Wikipedia talk:Manual of Style/Film

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Films from countries that made them and TV show airdates[edit]

I want a new rule about films and TV shows that from the countries that made them. The films from a country that made them should have the releases dates on the year of films, not from a country that first released a film, as seen on 2013 in film. It would confuse every signal reader that remembered the first release date from a country that made them.

The TV shows that are from various countries should be the only country to have the airdates on various season orders, not from the airdates that have earlier in different countries for reasons from what I said above. These changes must be agreed upon for the sake of readers from various countries. BattleshipMan (talk) 22:01, 12 December 2014 (UTC)

We don't have jurisdiction over television articles, but films are listed by their global release date for two reasons: i) Wikipedia needs to adopt a WP:WORLDVIEW - the release date in just one particular country is largely inconsequential for the majority of our readers so we simply go with the earliest; ii) listing films by the release date in their "country of production" would introduce problems for co-productions i.e. Skyfall was a British-American co-production and was released on separate dates so what would you advocate in such cases? Perhaps using a date based ordering system isn't the smartest idea when films have different release dates in different countries, and arguably an alphabetic system would be better but that's down to the editors working on those articles to decide. Betty Logan (talk) 22:47, 12 December 2014 (UTC)
Well, I'm not pleased with the release dates listed in 2013 in film on the earliest ones because it would create confusion among readers who remember the films released from a country that made and produced them and that's why we need to change the rules regarding the release dates on films that were made by the country. BattleshipMan (talk) 22:58, 12 December 2014 (UTC)
Except readers don't remember the release dates in the production country, they remember the release date in the country they live in (that is if they remember the release date at all). Can you remember the British release dates for British films, or the French release dates for French films? If readers are confused by the date then their confusion can be cleared up with a single click anyway, so your argument is largely a red-herring. You didn't address my second point, either, regarding the impracticality of your proposal in the case of films which are produced by more than one country. Betty Logan (talk) 23:50, 12 December 2014 (UTC)
American, British and French movies should have their release dates in year movie by their own country, not by when first release by a different country which they never involved in. As seen in 2013 in film, American movies like Olympus Has Fallen, The Last Stand, Elysium, A Good Day to Die Hard and such should have their American release dates. British films like About Time, The World's End and such should have their British release dates. French films in that year should have their country's release dates. Therefore, a consensus should be made about the release dates of films made by the country to the year of film articles. BattleshipMan (talk) 01:36, 13 December 2014 (UTC)
You got to find a way for people to set up a consensus for films from the countries that made and produced them to have their release dates on the year in film articles, not just by earliest releases from a different country that was never involved in the production of that film. BattleshipMan (talk) 18:03, 16 December 2014 (UTC)
I'm not gonna stop until a consensus to have films from the countries that made and produced them to have their release dates on the year in film articles has been reached. BattleshipMan (talk) 05:32, 20 December 2014 (UTC)
There already is a consensus to list them by their first release date. You need to get one to go against this long standing consensus. Good luck! Lugnuts Dick Laurent is dead 10:51, 20 December 2014 (UTC)

I am proposing an new idea for years of film. Any film released in America, England, France and any other country should have the certain film made from a certain country should have their release dates also, because I'm not happy with the film year format on 2013 in film because the earliest release dates ignore the release dates of a film made by a certain country and it ruins the meaning of a film year from a certain country. BattleshipMan (talk) 06:16, 8 March 2015 (UTC)

  • Oppose: We should focus on the date that a film is first released, not the date that it’s released in any given country. —174.141.182.82 (talk) 19:42, 23 April 2015 (UTC)

MOS guidance for film actor and film director articles[edit]

The MOS:FILM is focused on film articles. It would be helpful to have some guidance about film actor articles and film director articles. One question which has come up is whether film genres can be attached to movies in the lead of a film actor article or a film director article. The article for Brad Pitt is a Featured Article and the lead for this article names the genres of several of the films he has appeared in. In three cases, this was done by editors other than me (I added in the reference to two films being dramas). I believe that the way the lead gives the genres for Thelma and Louise, Seven (film) and 12 Monkeys is helpful for the reader. The articles for Jake Gyllenhaal and Maggie Gyllenhaal are featured articles I have not edited. The leads name several genres of films they appeared in. The article for Angelina Jolie is a Featured Article and it has about five genres named in the lead. Ethan Hawke is a Featured Article and the lead names nine genres of films (I added the ninth). Kirsten Dunst and Reese Witherspoon are Featured Articles and they name several genres in the lead. The article for director Sidney Lumet, which I have not edited, has several mentions of film genres in the lead. OnBeyondZebraxTALK 03:07, 26 January 2015 (UTC)

OnBeyondZebrax (and I do thank you O for trying to gain wider input) and I have been discussing this here User talk:MarnetteD#I am intrigued by your comment on genres. Rather than copy and pasting my comments you may read them there. I will say that if any consensus is reached that they can be included I do feel (especially in the current climate) they need WP:RS when added to the various articles. MarnetteD|Talk 03:26, 26 January 2015 (UTC)
I don't see a big problem with listing genres, but I usually strip them out when I see them. Too subjective and not relevant enough. For some actors it makes sense to discuss genre and their significance to it. You could write an entire article about Sigourney Weaver's significance to science fiction, horror, and fantasy. But Brad Pitt? I dunno, man. Obviously, if the article is FA quality, someone disagrees with me. But I'm not sure what it adds. Featured Articles in general tend to be full of pointless trivia that is grammatically correct and well-sourced. I admit that the one time I tried to write a featured article, I got a little carried away, too. NinjaRobotPirate (talk) 05:44, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
Providing the genre for films provides information to the reader about the genre(s) of film that the actor works in. Chevy Chase and Jennifer Aniston, for example, have mostly done comedy films, which is acknowledged in both articles' leads. I think that the genres of the films are relevant.OnBeyondZebraxTALK 01:05, 2 February 2015 (UTC)
Proposed new section for MOS on film actors...

The lead section should the actor and provide a summary of the most important aspects from the article body. The opening sentences should identify the actor, and their most notable films, either in terms of box office success or critical acclaim. It may be useful to state the primary genre or sub-genre under which some of the notable films are verifiably classified. OnBeyondZebraxTALK 23:25, 4 February 2015 (UTC)

Question about naming "Controversy" section[edit]

If a section is titled "Controversy", but it has mulitple subsections (as in multiple controversies), should the section be pluralized (titled "Controversies")? Pyrotlethe "y" is silent, BTW. 20:35, 4 February 2015 (UTC)

Are we talking about multiple people/countries that have responded to the same controversy, or distinct controversies? If it's the former, then it should be singular. If it's the latter, than it should be plural.  BIGNOLE  (Contact me) 21:11, 4 February 2015 (UTC)
That would be the controversies for this film, which is multiple controversies. Confirmation? Pyrotlethe "y" is silent, BTW. 23:36, 4 February 2015 (UTC)
I fixed the page; the controversy section is the latter, so I changed the section to plural. Pyrotlethe "y" is silent, BTW. 01:02, 5 February 2015 (UTC)
Why would one want to needlessly and arbitrarily destabilize the naming of a whole section based on events over time, when the word "controversy" is already a completely correct collective noun? Section titles aren't there to count things. This is why such parts of speech exist. There is no problem. — Smuckola (Email) (Talk) 01:26, 5 February 2015 (UTC)
You're not going to destabilize the entire section by changing the title of a single section header. By saying "Controversy", you're implying that this is a single controversy and the subsections are the various impacts of that single controversy. In this particular case, that's not the reality. You're talking about multiple controversies that are independent of each other. We wouldn't say "Critical Review" or "Theme" if there were multiple ones.  BIGNOLE  (Contact me) 02:26, 5 February 2015 (UTC)
@Bignole: I don't mean to argue, but the whole point of a collective noun is to eliminate implication. This didn't imply anything. There was no problem. — Smuckola (Email) (Talk) 03:02, 5 February 2015 (UTC)
I'm aware, but there are appropriate times to use a collective noun. In this particular case, it is best to use the plural. It creates less confusion for a reader.  BIGNOLE  (Contact me) 03:27, 5 February 2015 (UTC)
"Controversies" is fine. Heck, I was told at one point to use "External links" even when there was only one. Now that I think of it, the same applies to "References". Clarityfiend (talk) 02:40, 25 February 2015 (UTC)

Film Date formats[edit]

I know that this seems to come up every few years or so, but I'm trying to clarify something here. Are we still using the films production companies as criteria for a films origin? If not, what should the new criteria be?JOJ Hutton 19:23, 24 February 2015 (UTC)

Are you asking if the location of the production company dictates the date format? IE, an American film would use MDY, while a British film would be DMY? If that is what you were asking, then yes, I believe that is the distinction. If it is a multi-production film, from various countries, then I believe one should look to see where it releases first? - Favre1fan93 (talk) 23:36, 24 February 2015 (UTC)
Well I know it seems like sort of an odd question because I've always been under the impression that we dictate date formats and even the films titles based on the date and title of the film's production company. And in the event a film has production companies from two or more countries, we can either use the weight of the production companies in the overall production of the film, or simply use WP:DATERET when it's not clear as to which company was more involved.JOJ Hutton 23:46, 24 February 2015 (UTC)
I would say it mostly depends on the version of English in use in the article. It would be inconsistent not to use American date format in an article that uses American English and strange to use the American date format in an article that uses British English. DATERET and MOS:RETAIN permit change based on "strong national ties to the topic", so what does that mean? Something like Harry Potter and James Bond have indisputably strong ties to Britain, and the same with the United States for the likes of Star Wars and Superman. The nationality of a film may be a factor but it is not necessarily the sole factor. As for your other questions, WP:COMMONNAME determines the article title (not the origin of the film) otherwise we end up with tons of foreign titles, and nationality is determined by sources that strictly address that point since it would be OR to determine nationality ourselves. You can find a film's nationality at the likes of the AFI catalog and the Lumiere database. Betty Logan (talk) 03:28, 25 February 2015 (UTC)

Film years and film made & produced from certain countries[edit]

I may one other solution for year film articles that were made and produced by certain countries. I'm proposing year of film articles that were release in certain countries that made the films like [[2013 in films in United States of America]], [[2013 in films in England]], [[2013 in films in France]] and such. I'm not happy with the film year format on 2013 in film and I'm proposing the alternative idea for films made and produced by a certain & release dates in the country that made and produced the film. I don't care how redundant as it may sound, I'm wont stop until a consensus on that issue is met. BattleshipMan (talk) 06:40, 8 March 2015 (UTC)

... I don't understand. NinjaRobotPirate (talk) 07:58, 8 March 2015 (UTC)
@NinjaRobotPirate: I'm not happy about the year of release format on 2013 in film, replacing it with earliest released date which the majority of them are countries that didn't make and produced them and nobody cared about the release dates of films that were made and produced in certain countries. They should either include the release dates of films that made & produce them or created a year by film from certain countries, including [[2013 in films in United States of America]], [[2013 in films in England]], [[2013 in films in France]] and such. That's why I proposing this experimental idea. BattleshipMan (talk) 13:14, 8 March 2015 (UTC)
I totally understand what you mean. There are already these type of articles, e.g. List of American films of 2015, List of British films of 2015, List of French films of 2015, ...etc. These lists are arranged according to different countries' produced films. 2015 in film is the list for every country and every language films. --Captain Assassin! «TCG» 15:28, 8 March 2015 (UTC)
@Captain Assassin!: I know that. Problem is the other film by year articles in those countries are not sorted by release date and that's what it needs to be done. Also, we need to have the release dates on 2013 in film to have the release dates from countries that produced and made them and right now, 2013 in film doesn't really have those release dates. BattleshipMan (talk) 17:14, 8 March 2015 (UTC)
Sorting out the films by release date in List of American films of 2015, List of British films of 2015, and List of French films of 2015 like articles will be the best idea. But adding release dates for every country who produced and made those film will create more complexity and mess. Sometimes, there are films which are co-production of Germany, France, England and the United States, what would we do with those? Will we add all release dates? That'll surely create a mess, and sometimes release dates are not announced for all countries who made that film. Sometimes we are not sure of the country which produced the film, like I've been in those issues. I create/start new articles and when I'm not sure about which country's that film is, I just leave the country's mentioning thing alone. And usually even mostly, American release date announces first before others. That's why we just keep the list simple. Yeah sure, we should sort the films in the above mentioned lists according to their release date. --Captain Assassin! «TCG» 17:38, 8 March 2015 (UTC)
@Captain Assassin!: @Doniago: Alright, We'll do sort out films by release in date in film by year in specific countries, like List of American films of 2015, List of British films of 2015, and List of French films of 2015 articles. Also added a list of release date of films by country, sorted out by year and place them in a specific year of film articles, kind of like in 2014 in film has a Lists of box office number-one films in 2014, as you can see it there. What do you think of that idea?
What do you think we should do with the release dates on 2013 in film? BattleshipMan (talk) 18:05, 8 March 2015 (UTC)
Not sure why you tagged me here, as I haven't participated in the conversation to this point and this isn't an issue I've previously been involved with AFAICR. I might chime in later, but I don't have anything to contribute at this time. DonIago (talk) 23:41, 8 March 2015 (UTC)
I'm not quite sure about this. No offence but I don't think it would be appropriate. I'll ping Favre1fan93 and Sock to participate here. --Captain Assassin! «TCG» 02:08, 9 March 2015 (UTC)

@Captain Assassin!: See to that. @Doniago:, I apologized for the unexpected ping, but there's some multiple issues & flaws I want to reveal and discuss. I need some idea on how to work on a plan to make 2013 in film have the release dates of the films that made and produced them, rather than have the earliest release dates. The problem with the earliest release date in that some countries that have the earliest release date on never made and produced those specifics films, which shatters the meaning of knowing the release dates of films that were produced by a specific country in the year in film articles. Also, I just thought we should sort the year in film from specific countries by release date, since most of them are in alphabetical order. I also think there should list of either [[List of films released by country]] or something along those lines, like the Lists of box office number-one films and sorted them by year, which we piped specific years in year by film articles. For example, we have piped the link with Lists of box office number-one films#2014 in the 2014 in film. That's we probably should do to connect the year by film from specific country articles. We need to make corrections of those issues & flaws in the year by film articles and set up a consensus on having the release dates of films made and produced by specific countries. I know that they are some films that were produced by two countries, so that issue will be discussed also. Anyone wants to talk about how to solve those issues in the year by film articles, I am willing to hear it. BattleshipMan (talk) 03:00, 9 March 2015 (UTC)

This has already been discussed at #Films from countries that made them and TV show airdates 2. We use the global release date on the XXXX in film articles because they adopt a worldwide view of the film industry. Betty Logan (talk) 03:43, 9 March 2015 (UTC)
That's not good for the release dates films that have been made and produced by specific countries. What we need to do is how to setup a consensus to allow the release dates of films made and produced by specific countries, not by the earliest release date from a country that was never involved in making that certain film. It's profoundly flawed and I will not be satisfied until this issue is solved in the way it should be. BattleshipMan (talk) 04:14, 9 March 2015 (UTC)
To say that you "will not be satisfied" until something is addressed in a way you feel "it should be", sounds dangerously close to suggesting that you won't respect a WP:CONSENSUS. I assume that's not what you meant to say and would invite you to more clearly express your intended meaning. Cheers. DonIago (talk) 05:45, 9 March 2015 (UTC)
@Doniago: @Captain Assassin!: @Betty Logan: I don't like how WP:WORLDVIEW and WP:FILMYEAR consensus ignores release dates for films and TV shows that were made and produced by specific countries, which ruins the meaning of revealing the release dates in XXXX by film articles and that rule needs to be up-to-date. 2013 in film ignores the release dates of films made and produced specific countries, which ruins the meaning of knowing the release dates of films produced by that country and the earliest release dates are in countries that were never involved or produced that certain film, which is profoundly flawed at best. Some of the rule WP:FILMYEAR needs to be amended so we can have the either the release dates of films made and produced by specific countries in XXXX in film or set up a list of article of the year by film articles in certain countries, sort them by year and put them in certain year by film articles. I'll also ping Darkwarriorblake, Y2kcrazyjoker4, Drmargi and Obi-WanKenobi-2005 to participate. BattleshipMan (talk) 15:15, 9 March 2015 (UTC)
I can give an idea of mentioning produced country, which I thought about a year ago but never tell anyone or proposed it. We could add a column in XXXX in film type articles, which could be named as "Country," "Produced country," or "Production." Whatever decided, in which we'll be able to mention film's production country(s). I don't know if it's good but it just popped into my head a year ago, and I thought to do it without asking or proposing it to anyone but I stopped. This way we could use the existed articles in better ways. The purpose of XXXX in film would also be fulfilled, when every country's films will be added into the these articles, where country will also be mentioned in a column. How about this BattleshipMan? --Captain Assassin! «TCG» 16:13, 9 March 2015 (UTC)
Hmmm...Maybe. We'll discuss that proposed idea you thought of, Captain Assassin!. We'll discuss how to make it work and such. BattleshipMan (talk) 16:19, 9 March 2015 (UTC)
@Doniago: Actually BattleshipMan is not disrespecting WP:CONSENSUS. I know, he is just passionate to resolve this issue, I thinks it's burden on his head which he is trying to take down. I think he is doing fine, what he is trying to propose, we've to manage that either way. --Captain Assassin! «TCG» 16:21, 9 March 2015 (UTC)
Thanks for backing me up, Captain Assassin!. That issue has to be resolved so we can have release dates for films that were produced by specific countries BattleshipMan (talk) 17:00, 9 March 2015 (UTC)
You cite WP:WORLDVIEW, but by putting an American film that was released in 2014 at Cannes, but not released until 2015 in the US, would then go against WP:WORLDVIEW by being US-centric in its approach. Lugnuts Dick Laurent is dead 19:07, 9 March 2015 (UTC)
There are flaws in some Wikipedia policies, flaws that can cause problems and would need to be amended. The problem with films with earliest release dates like in 2013 in film is that the majority of the countries that released them never made or produced that specific film. Sometimes you have to reveal release dates on countries that produced that certain film in XXXX by film articles. BattleshipMan (talk) 20:09, 9 March 2015 (UTC)

We need to start discussing this issue about the release dates of films made and produced by specific countries on XXXX in film. @Darkwarriorblake: @Y2kcrazyjoker4: @Obi-WanKenobi-2005: and @Drmargi: gather around and joined in on the discussion. The release dates in Year in film articles should been in countries that made and produced, not the earliest release dates, like in 2013 in film, because the majority of those dates are in countries that never produced and made them, which ruins the meaning of the release dates of countries that made and produced them. BattleshipMan (talk) 22:40, 16 March 2015 (UTC)

Everyone, Captain Assassin! and I have a proposal to resolve the issue about release dates of films that were produced by a specific country. We could add a column in XXXX in film type articles, which could be named as "Country," "Produced country," or "Production." Whatever decided, in which we'll be able to mention film's production country(s). That way, we could use the existed articles in better ways. The purpose of XXXX in film would also be fulfilled, when every country's films will be added into the these articles, where country will also be mentioned in a column. Either way, we need an idea to resolve an issue about release dates of films made and produced by specific countries in the XXXX in film articles. BattleshipMan (talk) 05:58, 17 March 2015 (UTC)
@Captain Assassin!: @Betty Logan:. What do you all think of this proposal for having Year in films articles to have release dated of specific countries that made and produced a certain film? BattleshipMan (talk) 16:53, 23 March 2015 (UTC)
You know what my stance is: I oppose it. The "XXXX in film" articles adopt a world view and as such the only relevant release date is the global release date. Do you care when a Russian film was released in Russia? A French film in France? How will that information improve these articles? Country specific dates should be left to the individual film articles. Betty Logan (talk) 17:21, 23 March 2015 (UTC)
@Betty Logan: @Captain Assassin!: I don't tolerate ignoring release dates on films that made and produced from specific countries in year by film articles, like 2013 in film. The earliest global release dates ignores the release date from specific countries that made and produced, which destroys the meaning knowing those dates in year by film articles. Films made from certain countries should also have their release dates in those articles and it is considered relevant. BattleshipMan (talk) 17:30, 23 March 2015 (UTC)
We track that in the individual film articles. Or, at least, I do in the articles that I create. If it means that much to you, you could hold an RFC. I don't really see what good will come of arguing back and forth. NinjaRobotPirate (talk) 18:07, 23 March 2015 (UTC)
I don't agree with making individual articles of Year in Film in Country as it seems like it's decentralising a lot of information that makes it much harder to maintain and verify. However, if a film was initially released in a previous year either in the source country or as part of a festival, you could include it on that Year's article, say 2013, and on hte 2014 article also include that film for it's wide release, with just a link to the relative 2013 section. Darkwarriorblake / SEXY ACTION TALK PAGE! 21:57, 12 April 2015 (UTC)
@Betty Logan: I agreeing with @Darkwarriorblake: since we should make individual articles of Year in Film in Country. BattleshipMan (talk) 04:56, 20 April 2015 (UTC)
Why is it important to list local release dates? —174.141.182.82 (talk) 20:05, 23 April 2015 (UTC)

The use of aggregators on articles about older films[edit]

Our guidelines at Wikipedia:Manual of Style/Film#Critical response currently advise "Caution: reliable review statistics may not be available for older films. Appraise the sample size in conjunction with other reliable sources, using best judgment to determine consensus". I would like to collate some opinions on whether we should advise against using aggregators completely for older films. I appreciate that aggregators split editors down the middle; I am on the fence in that I see them as a necessary evil: we need to assess critical consensus and while they are crude in their application they probably solve more problems that they create so I accept their usage in lieu of anything better. If we do not use them, we then face the problem of how we assess the critical consensus of newly released films.

However, they seem to be proliferating on articles about older films and I am struggling to see their purpose on such articles. The survey size is often small, and they often mix contemporary reviews with retrospective reviews. In short, they do not really tell us how the film reviewed at the time, and they do not really tell us about how they are perceived today i.e. they are a mishmash and do not tell us all that much. Is there a "they are better than nothing" case to be made here? Possibly, but certainly in the case of classic films that have had much retrospective analysis I don't think they add that much. For instance, does an RT score really add anything at Citizen Kane#Reception?

I think the guidelines should be revised to advise against using aggregators on articles about 20th century films, and to encourage editors to seek out proper restrospective analysis. I am not proposing we ban them outright, but to simply stem their usage and recommend a better approach. Betty Logan (talk) 01:07, 16 March 2015 (UTC)

I would agree. I've found people citing RT for films 40 years old, when the reviews are clearly from the last 5 years. It sends a deceiving message to readers who may believe that a film was well received (or poorly received) when it was released. Horror films are really bad about this, as many were almost completely hated by critics when they were released, but appreciation for them 30 years later makes it appear that they weren't.  BIGNOLE  (Contact me) 01:38, 16 March 2015 (UTC)
When I first saw this, I struggled with how I felt about it. Eventually, I decided it wasn't as big a deal as I initially thought, and I began to add aggregators to older films. Sometimes people stick aggregators in a separate subsection/paragraph for modern reviews, which makes sense to me. I don't usually do that, though, because I figure people want to know right up front what the aggregators say. If there's been a reevaluation, I attempt to source it as best as possible, but sometimes you just can't find a source online that says the obvious. Review aggregators can be helpful in that case, as they can show that a critically despised film, such as Twin Peaks: Fire Walk with Me, has actually experienced that reevaluation. On many older horror films, this is the only chance they have to show any critical reevaluation. Some "important" films transcend their initial reception. Nosferatu is one of the best-reviewed films on all of RT, and that is relevant to its reception regardless of any other concerns. NinjaRobotPirate (talk) 06:03, 16 March 2015 (UTC)
Is Nosferatu's modern critical standing best served by a Rotten Tomato percentage though? I would have thought there would be a wealth of a critical analysis to draw from for such an iconic film. Betty Logan (talk) 08:14, 16 March 2015 (UTC)
That's a good point, and I guess films like Nosferatu and Citizen Kane can make a RT score kind of pointless, as it tends to get lost in the sea of high quality scholarship. Still, if Nosferatu can maintain a rare near-perfect rating for years, make several "best of RT" lists, and get press related to its RT score, I think maybe it is worth at least mentioning. I guess I wouldn't put up a big fight about it, though. NinjaRobotPirate (talk) 08:52, 16 March 2015 (UTC)

I have to agree with BL's initial statement (although in an ideal world I would ban Rancid Tomatoes from all films for being the deeply flawed tool of the lazy, but that's just my take on it). I think there is a slight difference in the use RNP is talking about, and one that I've followed sometimes for older films, which is to split the contemporary reviews of the time away from the "reflective reviews" of more modern reviewers and dump the RT score in there: it needs careful handling though, and I wouldn't like to rely on RT to support any sort of notability or quality check on the film, especially (as per the examples of Nosferatu and Citizen Kane), there are numerous solid sources which are far better to use to judge a film's importance. - SchroCat (talk) 09:07, 16 March 2015 (UTC)

For older films, I find Rotten Tomatoes to be useful mainly as a collection of links to some of the reviews. I don't think the "Tomatometer" is of much value. As noted above, critical perception of a film often changes over the years, and Rotten Tomatoes doesn't capture this. Further, the sampling of critics for older films isn't very systematic. So I concur with discouraging the routine use of its statistics for 20th century film articles. I have no objection to including an external link in articles, as is commonly done. Easchiff (talk) 11:04, 16 March 2015 (UTC)
I would like to clarify that to avoid further confusion: I also support the inclusion of an external link when reviews are listed which we do not directly source in the article. RT is a great resource for locating reviews. Betty Logan (talk) 11:10, 16 March 2015 (UTC)
I don't think that we should "advise against using aggregators completely for older films." I see nothing but a lot of WP:Wikilawyering about what "an older film" is resulting from such advice, and I certainly cannot get on board with the suggestion that we should not use Rotten Tomatoes for 20th century film articles. So use of Rotten Tomatoes for late 1990s films is out? I don't agree. Even if we put an exact date on what an older film is, I don't like the idea of the guideline advising (which will be interpreted as telling) people that they can't cite Rotten Tomatoes at all in such a case. What the guideline needs on this matter is better advice on citing Rotten Tomatoes; if you look at the Conan the Barbarian (1982 film)#Critical response and The Terminator#Reception and legacy, for examples, you will see that they currently do not give priority to Rotten Tomatoes, which is the opposite of what Wikipedia film articles generally do. Instead, they cite Rotten Tomatoes more as an afterthought. Flyer22 (talk) 11:57, 16 March 2015 (UTC)
I think the point is more about masquerading current data as historical data for films. It's not accurate to say that The Terminator has 100% approval rating from critics, because they weren't the reviews from 1984. This is especially bad (IMO) when the page is listing the aggregate counter alongside the Top 100-esque placements of the film, as if getting 100% approval rating is an achievement. It would be accurate to state that "based on reviews in the last 5 years (<--fill in whatever is accurate), RT has calculated an approval rating of 100%." That at least lets a reader understand that we aren't saying that all critics liked this film in 1984 (which in fact, they clearly did not). Hindsight is 20/20, but that doesn't mean that we should forget that foresight wasn't.  BIGNOLE  (Contact me) 12:09, 16 March 2015 (UTC)
The Terminator#Reception and legacy example is an appropriate way to use Rotten Tomatoes for an older film, in my opinion; that's why I cited it. Yes, it currently states (WP:Permalink seen here), "The review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes reported a 100% approval rating with an average rating of 8.7/10 based on 50 reviews." But the section begins by noting how the film was reviewed at the time, and it does not get into the Rotten Tomatoes aspect until the final paragraph of the section, among all the modern reviews for the film, and it adds, "With its impressive action sequences, taut economic direction, and relentlessly fast pace, it's clear why The Terminator continues to be an influence on sci-fi and action flicks." That bit is clearly speaking from a modern perspective of the film. I see no deception there. Flyer22 (talk) 12:23, 16 March 2015 (UTC)
That's similar to the format we used in On Her Majesty's Secret Service (film)#Reflective reviews: at the bottom of the section dedicated to more modern reviews, and alongside the "eighth best ..." type of listings". (Even then it's slightly awkward, and I'll probably tweak it in a day or so, after this thread dies). - SchroCat (talk) 12:30, 16 March 2015 (UTC)
Yes, that's a good format for the On Her Majesty's Secret Service (film) article, SchroCat.
Also, Bignole, what did you mean by "as if getting 100% approval rating is an achievement." It's rare, or at least not very common, that a film gets a 100% score on Rotten Tomatoes. Flyer22 (talk) 12:40, 16 March 2015 (UTC)
Being prestigious to Wikipedia does not make it prestigious anywhere else. Considering that almost half of the "100%" club have less than 25 reviews, which is barely statistically significant itself, I think there's more weight being applied to this "rarity" than is appropriate.  BIGNOLE  (Contact me) 13:47, 16 March 2015 (UTC)
I wasn't basing the matter on Wikipedia; I don't judge a topic's notability, popularity and/or rarity on Wikipedia. I was basing the matter on what is shown at the Rotten Tomatoes website, which is that it is not at all usual that a film reaches a 100% score on that site. It is rare, or at least significantly uncommon, from what I've seen. I pointed to the Wikipedia article as a quick go-to reference with regard to the matter; it lets readers easily see how often a film has reached the 100% score. If it was very common that a film reached that score on that site, I doubt that Wikipedia would have a list on it, since that list would be gigantic. That article should probably be deleted anyway, or rather not be a list and instead be more of an article; I see that it survived one WP:AfD (the second WP:AfD nomination was poorer than the first one). Flyer22 (talk) 22:02, 16 March 2015 (UTC)
Briefly looking at The Terminator entry at RT I see it has reviews listed from 1984 right up to the recent years, and I find it hard to believe there were no negative reviews at the time of release, so I don't consider that an achievement, I consider it selective. But to get back to the point I was making, I am not saying we should prohibit anything, I am simply recommending better practices. In the case of older films the relevance of an RT score is inversely proportional to the amount of retrospective critical analysis that is available to us. How old, and how much athoritative writing is available very much depends on the prestige of the film. Case in point: given that Citizen Kane has repeatedly topped the most prestigious critics poll in the world for the last 50-60 years is there really any value in mentioning its critics score? I don't see the issue as "we should exclude it" or "include it in the second paragraph" etc; I am saying that sometimes there are preferable alternatives to including the tomato score, and when there are we should exercise them. Betty Logan (talk) 12:56, 16 March 2015 (UTC)
What wording for the guideline do you propose? Flyer22 (talk) 13:08, 16 March 2015 (UTC)
No rules, just guidance. I propose simply adding a couple of sentences to what is already there (bold is my additions):
  1. Caution: reliable review statistics may not be available for older films. Appraise the sample size in conjunction with other reliable sources, using best judgment to determine consensus. If a significant number of the aggregated reviews were published many years after the film's release be careful to not present aggregator findings as the contemporary critical consensus.
  2. For older films, seek reviews from the period of the film's release and the present to determine if a film's initial critical reception varies from the reputation it has today. If a film has been the subject of comprehensive retrospective analysis there may be more appropriate alternatives to including aggregator statistics when summarising its current critical standing.
Betty Logan (talk) 14:05, 16 March 2015 (UTC)
Well, that seems quite reasonable. NinjaRobotPirate (talk) 14:47, 16 March 2015 (UTC)
These additions don't seem necessary: they add to the length of the guideline, making it incrementally more complicated and difficult to use, and at the sime time, with somewhat equivocal instructions like "be careful not to" (as opposed to "don't" or "never" or "avoid"), and "may be more appropriate," are as like as not to contribute to confusion, debate over interpretation, and ultimately, more wikilawyering, when applied in editing discussions.
In suggestion 1., the existing statement, "Caution: reliable review statistics may not be available for older films. Appraise the sample size in conjunction with other reliable sources, using best judgment to determine consensus," should be clarified. It is hard to understand, and refers to aggregators specifically, when it should cover all reviews of older films. Replacing it with easily understood, comprehensive guidance like, "With older films, it is important to distinguish between contemporary critical reception, summarized from reviews published around the time of initial release, and subsequent reception, from reviews made at later dates." Something like that would not add additional words, and would seem to sufficiently make clear the consideration, as a guideline, for any reasonably literate editor.
In suggestion 2., the existing statement is clear (and complements, perhaps somewhat redundantly, the proposed rewording of 1, just above) and does not suggest anything beyond making sure not to misrepresent the time frame the reception coverage represents. The proposed addition is somewhat vague, and as far as adding specific direction, seems to tentatively establish grounds for removal - "there may be more appropriate alternatives to including" - of one type of reliable source in favor of a "superior" source, which is a tricky editorial position (mandating what source trumps what), and the sort of thing that tends to lead to contentious discussion.
I took a look at WP articles for a dozen or so well-known movies from the 1940s-50s, and didn't find any evidence of misrepresentation where contemporary and current reception might easily be confused, so I'm not sure how much of a pressing problem this is, although my sample is small. If the underlying issue here is Rotten Tomatoes, which no doubt many editors dislike in all its incarnations, then that should be addressed head-on.--Tsavage (talk) 15:48, 16 March 2015 (UTC)
Your rewrite of my first point is reasonable; the second consideration follows from the first: where an aggregator hosts a substantial number of modern and contemporary reviews we should be careful to not draw conclusions about a film's current standing from just an aggregated score. An aggregator does not provide any chronological conclusions so we should steer clear of using them in that capacity. If you feel that my rewrite is a "prescription for removal" then I suggest tweaking it as follows:
2. For older films look to retrospective analysis in determining if a film's initial critical reception varies from the reputation it has today.
Betty Logan (talk) 04:37, 23 March 2015 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────Apologies if my reply wasn't clear. Two additions are proposed, and neither appear to be necessary or desirable, in that they add to the length and complexity of the guideline rather than clarify it. A simple modification of the existing wording should convey the intended recommendation, and add to the overall usability of the "Critcal reception" section.

The problem is that the two paragraphs of "Critical reception" in question are at present poorly structured. The four issues covered, film review sources, aggregators, older films, and foreign films, are not well-delineated. To improve clarity and maintain brevity, these points can be better organized. Something like this is what I meant:

CURRENT WORDING:

The overall critical response to a film should be supported by attributions to reliable sources. Avoid weasel words. If any form of paraphrasing is disputed, quote the source directly. Detailed commentary from reliable sources of the critics' consensus (or lack thereof) for a film is encouraged. Individual critics can also be referenced to detail various aspects of the film. Sources that are regarded as reliable are professional film critics, though notable persons or experts connected to the topics covered by the film may also be cited. The use of print reviews is encouraged. These will be more reliable in retrospect; review aggregation websites such as Rotten Tomatoes or Metacritic are citable for statistics pertaining to the ratio of positive to negative reviews. (Caution: reliable review statistics may not be available for older films. Appraise the sample size in conjunction with other reliable sources, using best judgment to determine consensus.) To maintain a neutral point of view, it is recommended to quote a reasonable balance of these reviews. This may not always be possible or desirable (e.g. films that have been almost universally acclaimed or panned), and best judgment should again be used.
Reviews from the film's country of origin are recommended (i.e., Chinese reviews for a Chinese film, French reviews for a French film), though evaluations from several English-speaking territories are desirable.[1] In the case of films not in the English language, the section should contain quotes translated into English from non-English reviews. For older films, seek reviews from the period of the film's release and the present to determine if a film's initial critical reception varies from the reputation it has today.

SUGGESTED IMPROVED WORDING (deletions and additions indicated):

The overall critical response to a film should be supported by attributions to reliable sources. Avoid weasel words. If any form of paraphrasing is disputed, quote the source directly. Detailed commentary from reliable sources of the critics' consensus (or lack thereof) for a film is encouraged. Individual critics can also be referenced to detail various aspects of the film. Sources that are regarded as reliable are professional film critics, though notable persons or experts connected to the topics covered by the film may also be cited. The use of print reviews is encouraged. These will be more reliable in retrospect;.
Review aggregation websites such as Rotten Tomatoes or Metacritic are citable for statistics pertaining to the ratio of positive to negative reviews. (Caution: reliable review statistics may not be available for older films. Appraise the sample size in conjunction with other reliable sources, using best judgment to determine consensus.) To maintain a neutral point of view, it is recommended to quote a reasonable balance of these reviews, although this may not always be possible or desirable (e.g. films that have been almost universally acclaimed or panned), and best judgment should again be used.
For older films, seek reviews from the period of the film's release and the present to determine if a film's initial critical reception varies from the reputation it has today. it is important to distinguish between contemporary critical reception, summarized from reviews published around the time of initial release, and subsequent reception, from reviews made at later dates. Aggregator scores that combine original reviews with reviews from later dates, should be used with caution.
Reviews from the film's country of origin are recommended (i.e., Chinese reviews for a Chinese film, French reviews for a French film), though evaluations from several English-speaking territories are desirable.[1] In the case of films not in the English language, the section should contain quotes translated into English from non-English reviews.
  1. ^ a b For an experimental list of sites that can be used to obtain aggregate ratings and link to reviews from non-English-speaking countries see Wikipedia:WikiProject Films/Resources#Non-English resources.

That would make clear the aggregator consideration with regard to older films, while improving the whole section.

"Retrospective analysis" may be a useful additional term, however, is it widely and clearly understood: does it mean analysis by the editor based on original reviews, or a published media article or academic paper formally looking back at a film, I'm not sure what? --Tsavage (talk) 18:48, 23 March 2015 (UTC)

Firstly, I think " Aggregator scores that combine original reviews with reviews from later dates, should be used with caution" should be rephrased as "Caution should be exercised when using aggregator scores that combine original reviews with reviews from later dates" so it does not sound like the MOS is mandating their usage. Secondly, I think most editors will know what "retrospective analysis" means: "retrospective" is used quite frequently in this MOS and everyone knows what "analysis" means. The intention is to encourage inclusion of third-party sources that explicitly adopt a historical perspective when qualifying how a film's reputation has evolved over time (see the last sentence at Wikipedia:Manual_of_Style/Film#Box_office for a working example). Betty Logan (talk) 13:58, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
Either wording seems fine to me, for all practical purposes, they convey exactly the same thing. Neither suggests mandatory use of aggregator scores, this cautionary note for "older films" builds on the general aggregator guideline in the previous paragraph, which says they "are citable," an option. Seems quite clear in context either way.
Regarding "retrospective analysis," I really don't understand exactly what that means (as I explained just above), especially if a guideline is encouraging me to use it. Thank you for explaining your intention: "to encourage inclusion of third-party sources that explicitly adopt a historical perspective when qualifying how a film's reputation has evolved over time." Fortunately, that's already covered under simple verifiability: it's clear that one needs reliable, more recently written reviews of older films, in order to discuss how a film has held up over time (unless I don't fully understand "explicitly adopted historical perspective").
IF we need it, a simply written, comprehensive, and less prescriptive caution specifically addressing use of aggregator statistics compiled from reviews spanning many years could be simply worded: "Aggregator scores that combine original reviews with reviews from later dates, should be used with caution." Or equally: "Caution should be exercised when using aggregator scores that combine original reviews with reviews from later dates." However, I'm very conscious of instruction creep, and don't see why we have to add more and more words if they aren't warranted. Is this a pressing problem? Are substantial numbers of "older film" reviews being reduced in quality because of misrepresentation of aggregator scores? --Tsavage (talk) 15:42, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
I really don't see how it is instruction creep to inform editors how to edit in a manner consistent with other policies. We are not telling them what to do or not to do—we have policies that do that—but explaining how those policies should be interpreted in a particular context. Our MOS currently states "For older films, seek reviews from the period of the film's release and the present to determine if a film's initial critical reception varies from the reputation it has today." It is not appropriate for an editor to draw their own conclusions about how the reputation of a film has changed over time by comparing contemporary reviews to modern reviews, as the MOS currently instructs them; we are instructing them to engage in WP:SYNTHESIS. I really don't know how else to explain "retrospective analysis". "Retrospective" is a simple enough word—and one that is commonly used in the MOS—that means to "look back", so in this context "retrospective analysis" is analysis that looks back i.e. if editors wish to include commentary on how a film's reputation has changed over time they should seek out analysis that actually considers this particular aspect of the film's reception. Betty Logan (talk) 04:00, 30 March 2015 (UTC)
Your proposed wording seems like something I can support, Betty. We can always tweak it further if need be. Flyer22 (talk) 04:23, 30 March 2015 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────@Betty Logan: I agree with you on, "For older films, seek reviews from the period of the film's release and the present..." and WP:SYNTHESIS. You've tentatively agreed with the following wording (above: "Your rewrite of my first point is reasonable") as it applied to "Caution..."; it also replaces the similar "...seek reviews..." instruction:

"For older films, it is important to distinguish between contemporary critical reception, summarized from reviews published around the time of initial release, and subsequent reception, from reviews made at later dates."

Re aggregators: Aggregator stats are a form of film review and are already covered, by verifiability and reliable sources, and by this MOS with "For older films..." WP:SYNTHESIS exists if sources are improperly used retrospectively. Getting even more specific is instruction creep.

Again, does the scope of the problem justify more rules? As I mentioned, I surveyed a dozen or so popular films from the 1940s and 1950s and found no problem like this. My main concern: we should take care not to confuse or subvert the core policies and guidelines with additional layers of overly pointed interpretation in a local MOS. --Tsavage (talk) 15:06, 30 March 2015 (UTC)

I am not making myself clear. The MOS currently instructs editors to perform comparative analysis. This is forbidden by WP:SYNTHESIS. My proposed wording makes the following revision:
  1. From For older films, seek reviews from the period of the film's release and the present to determine if a film's initial critical reception varies from the reputation it has today.
  2. To For older films look to secondary sources for retrospective analysis of how a film's initial critical reception varies from the reputation it has today.
It is not the place of editors to make judgment calls about a film's reputation and if articles are going to sepcifically discuss how a film's reputation has changed over time then we should defer to sources that specifically discuss how a film's reputaion has changed over time. This is essentially no different to how the critical reception is handled i.e. we defer to aggregators and secondary sources to analyse a film's reception; we don't simply pluck out a bbunch of reviews and draw conclusions ourselves. I can getting tired of debating what is a straightforward revision of a problematic area of the MOS so if you are going to continue roadblocking the alterations I am just going to elevate this to an RFC and seek a consensus from the community. Betty Logan (talk) 18:27, 30 March 2015 (UTC)
If that is the entirety of the amendment you're proposing, I don't have a problem with critically improving the wording of what is already there. It is not what you proposed earlier, which was to insert additonal guidance about aggregators. I've already suggested a more inclusive version of this rewrite, which both eliminates WP:SYNTHESIS and addresses all cases of older film reception, not just retrospective analysis:
  1. From For older films, seek reviews from the period of the film's release and the present to determine if a film's initial critical reception varies from the reputation it has today.
  2. To For older films, it is important to distinguish between contemporary critical reception, summarized from reviews published around the time of initial release, and subsequent reception, from reviews made at later dates.
It seems you are not hearing me, as I've already said all this more than once. If you feel this is no longer a discussion, please elevate it to RfC, I'm interested in how that process works! --Tsavage (talk) 19:57, 30 March 2015 (UTC)
Again, your rewrite does not address the issue of synthesis. Yes, it is important to distinuguish between contemporary critical reception and modern day reception, but that does not address the issue of determining if the film's reputation has changed! Even if an editor makes that distinction it is not acceptable for them to make evaluative claims about how the film's repuation has changed. And yes it is what I proposed a week ago in my second draft. You objected to the referencing of aggregators in my original draft so I dropped that part of my proposal. I will initiate the first alteration that is agreed on and I will formulate an RFC for the second. Betty Logan (talk) 22:06, 30 March 2015 (UTC)
Again, it appears you are not hearing me. You haven't made clear why my more inclusive alternative (my To directly above), that covers all cases, including retrospective comparisons, isn't sufficient. Supplementary MOS instructions shouldn't be so specific that they eclipse common sense application of core policies and guidelines. In this case, everything "older" - film, books, prize-winning pie, scientific breakthroughs - requires the same consideration, observing source dates when writing about original, and changes in, perception over time, this isn't unique to film. The RfC should be interesting as we explore community consensus! (BTW, I wasn't clear on exactly what was your second draft, thanks for eventually pointing that out, it was a radical departure from the original proposal to stem aggregator usage; it takes two to miscommunicate, if that is what happened.) --Tsavage (talk) 23:25, 30 March 2015 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────PLEASE NOTE: The changes being discussed in this thread - including to guidance that encourages original research via WP:SYNTHESIS - concerns wording that has been in place verbatim since 2008. When significant guideline problems have gone unchallenged for many years, it seems like a good and prudent idea that we give the whole of MOS FILM an item by item review. (In addition to general clarity, I'm personally particularly concerned with redundancies that eclipse core policies and guidelines, instruction creep, unnecessarily specific instructions, and unduly prescriptive instructions.) --Tsavage (talk) 19:04, 1 April 2015 (UTC)

Section break[edit]

Betty and others, per what has been stated above in this section, I think we should add better clarity with regard to using Rotten Tomatoes for older films; the content currently states "caution should be exercised when using aggregator scores that combine original reviews with reviews from later dates." But as noted above, that isn't the only concern. Giving Rotten Tomatoes priority for a 1980s film, for example, can be a problem. See this recent case that I edited. Flyer22 (talk) 09:15, 4 June 2015 (UTC)

The revised guideline isn't massively helpful in suggesting a course of action, but at least it now acknowledges that aggregator stats are not always particularly useful and even misleading in some cases and encourages editors to take appropriate action in that regard. It seems reasonable to me to make the stats less prominent in the section if they aren't particularly conclusive, as you have done with the Billie Jean article. Betty Logan (talk) 09:09, 6 June 2015 (UTC)

Unnecessary subheadings, which violate MOS:Paragraphs, in the Box office sections[edit]

Opinions are needed on the following matter: Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Film#Unnecessary subheadings, which violate MOS:Paragraphs, in the Box office sections. A WP:Permalink for the discussion is here. Flyer22 (talk) 02:56, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

RfC: Should the last sentence of the "Critical Reception" section at MOS:FILM be revised?[edit]

The following discussion is an archived record of a request for comment. Please do not modify it. No further edits should be made to this discussion. A summary of the conclusions reached follows.
There is clear consensus that the existing wording encourages synthesis, and in favour of clarification. Of the two alternatives, the first has broad support, the second would probably be equally acceptable to those involved. Proceed with caution, as the number of editors expressing a view is small, I would certainly leave the door open to making the most conservative change consistent with clarity - the outcome is not sufficiently robust to endorse any specific form of words at this point. Guy (Help!) 17:41, 7 May 2015 (UTC)

Currently the last sentence at MOS:FILM#Critical response reads:

"For older films, seek reviews from the period of the film's release and the present to determine if a film's initial critical reception varies from the reputation it has today."

Proposal 1[edit]

I propose revising it to:

"For older films, use secondary sources to determine if a film's initial critical reception varies from the reputation it has today."

Betty Logan (talk) 15:35, 6 April 2015 (UTC)

Proposal 2[edit]

Alternative wording
"For older films, it is important to distinguish between contemporary critical reception, from reviews published around the time of initial release, and subsequent reception, from reviews made at later dates."

—proposed by Tsavage (talk) 18:33, 6 April 2015 (UTC), added here by 174.141.182.82 (talk) 19:33, 14 April 2015 (UTC)

Survey of opinion for proposal 1[edit]

  • Support as nominator. The reason for the change is that the current wording encourages WP:SYNTHESIS i.e. an editor performing their own analysis of the available reviews, rather than deferring to analysis in secondary sources. This is already discouraged for a film's contemporary reception where review aggregators are commonly used to determine if a film's reception is positive or not, rather than leaving it to editors to decide for themselves.
The revision would also pull the guideline into line with the MOS:FILM#Box office which encourages editors to defer to secondary sources for analysis of financial performance: "Determine a consensus from objective (retrospective if possible) sources about how a film performed and why, but editors should avoid drawing their own conclusions about the success or failure of the film." Betty Logan (talk) 15:35, 6 April 2015 (UTC)
  • Support per nomination. Lapadite (talk) 16:50, 6 April 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose This wording is (1) overly specific, addresses only comparative retrospective analysis, ignores other uses of reviews of "older films" (e.g., to illustrate reception at time of release), which are not addressed in "Critical response"; 2) as worded, can be misread as an encouragement to perform retrospective analysis: "For older films, use..."
I proposed more inclusive wording that covers all cases of using reviews of "older films," and not just in retrospective comparisons:
Alternative wording: For older films, it is important to distinguish between contemporary critical reception, from reviews published around the time of initial release, and subsequent reception, from reviews made at later dates.
This covers referring to and quoting contemporary and later reviews, also, aggregator scores that mix initial and later reviews. The core policies and guidelines regarding verifiability (WP:V) and reliable sources (WP:RS) should be sufficient additional guidance for specific cases and disputes. --Tsavage (talk) 18:33, 6 April 2015 (UTC)
Your alternative wording completely misses the point. My revision only addresses retrospective analysis because that is all that part of the MOS addresses. Obviously we should distinguish between older reviews and later reviews—that goes without saying—but the issue here is where we draw the analysis of revised opinion from. The reviews themselves are only reliable for the opinions they express, not for qualifying how those opinions have changed over time. My proposed revision takes account of WP:V and WP:OR, while the current wording in place does not. Betty Logan (talk) 18:55, 6 April 2015 (UTC)
Respectfully, your RfC and discussion here is somewhat disingenuous: this issue was just discussed with you at length, where your initial proposal included keeping this wording and adding on to it language suppressing use of aggregators (Your proposal from 16-Mar-2015: "For older films, seek reviews from the period of the film's release and the present to determine if a film's initial critical reception varies from the reputation it has today. If a film has been the subject of comprehensive retrospective analysis there may be more appropriate alternatives to including aggregator statistics when summarising its current critical standing."). In fact, the wording now in such need of change has been present verbatim and unopposed since 2008. In the above discussion, I proposed fixing this WP:SYNTHESIS issue in a way that would improve the whole "Critical response" section, by addressing all uses of reviews of older films. You essentially ignored my proposal there, all other editors backed off, and now you are proposing to simply bandage poor wording that hasn't been seen as a problem for six years, I fear only to make a point. My proposal addresses the problem AND improves the guideline. --Tsavage (talk) 19:47, 6 April 2015 (UTC)
I don't really see how it is "respectful" to call starting an RFC disingenuous. If a disagreement between two editors cannot be resolved through reason or compromise then the proper thing to do is engage the wide community. It is irrelevant what my initial proposal was: it was discussed and I compromised on various aspects of it, incorporating other suggestions along the way. Of the two revisions I put forward I accommodated your complete rewrite of the first point. I am rejecting your second revision because it is completely tangential to what that particular part of the MOS is addressing. The current wording explicitly instructs how we should cover revised critical opinion, and your rewrite moves off this point. I would like to retain the essence of the existing guideline but simply eliminate the suggestion of synthesis from it. Betty Logan (talk) 20:01, 6 April 2015 (UTC)
I say that because the full discussion was whether the guidance regarding retrospective analysis was overly specific and warranted, the WP:SYNTHESIS problem only came up later and secondarily to that. I mentioned I surveyed a dozen well-known 1940-1950s films, and found no recurring problems with what retrospective analysis there was. I suggested that we change that specfic wording to wording that covered all cases, not JUST retrospective cases, citing concerns with over specificity and instruction creep. Now, this RfC reduces that whole discussion to the correcting of a single sentence that encourages original research, and in doing so, ignores what I have been saying: that "Critical reception" needs overall guidance on the use of reviews of older films, which it doesn't have, before it needs specific guidance on retrospective analysis only (something that from what I've seen, seldom even appears in film articles). --Tsavage (talk) 20:19, 6 April 2015 (UTC)--Tsavage (talk) 20:19, 6 April 2015 (UTC)
Uninvolved editor’s opinion: It’s okay to deal with one problem at a time. It’s okay to fix the synthesis problem now, and then have another RFC (or not, whatever’s appropriate) to address the question of whether additional guidance is needed, or whether the whole (now less problematic) section needs to be rewritten. There is no deadline. —174.141.182.82 (talk) 17:14, 12 April 2015 (UTC)
I completely agree, if what you mean by no deadline is that there's no rush to try and remedy all problems right this instant. If there is a way to resolve a dispute by moving forward in smaller increments than originally discussed, great. And I think it is important to fix the SYNTHESIS issue. My comment in this RfC is that the proposed new wording is poor. Since we are not voting, but seeking consensus, I'm continuing to discuss the point, offering background and alternative wording, within this RfC. (I honestly don't know if that's "bad form" as I see such discussion in other RfCs.)--Tsavage (talk) 18:30, 12 April 2015 (UTC)
  • Support. Editors frequently post their own analysis of critical reception, and we should explicitly discourage this. I did that in a few of the early articles that I created, and this probably would have helped me to see that it was a bad idea. NinjaRobotPirate (talk) 19:02, 6 April 2015 (UTC)
Not clear on your definition of "analysis of critical reception": is that comparing reception at the time of release with later reception, and how that has changed, or deciding how to summarize and which positive and negative quotes to use to fairly weight contemporary reception? I think both of those cases should be covered with one simple instruction that says, take care with the dates of reviews of older films. This RfC proposal is aimed specifically at comparison of contemporary and subsequent reception. Retrospective critical analysis (like use of blackface in The Jazz Singer), seems to be another thing entirely, generally beyond the scope of the usual journalistic film reviews, more in the area of film theory and academic papers, which is not what's being addressed here. --Tsavage (talk) 21:05, 6 April 2015 (UTC)
  • Comment: Should we not say something like "high-level secondary source"? Technically, a film review is still a secondary source. We want secondary sources that assess film reviews collectively, whether contemporary, retrospective, or both. Erik (talk | contrib) (ping me) 19:32, 6 April 2015 (UTC)
A review is a primary source for the film criticism itself; a secondary source in this context is essentially a source that discusses the reviews. Betty Logan (talk) 19:49, 6 April 2015 (UTC)
Yes, I understand that is the goal, but WP:PSTS defines secondary sources a specific way, which is why I think there could be clarifying wording. Actually, looking at tertiary sources, that might be the better term to use, since we want to summarize the film reviews. Erik (talk | contrib) (ping me) 21:00, 6 April 2015 (UTC)
Well, analysis isn't a tertiary source by definition. A review would be a secondary source for facts about the film, while it would be a primary source for the opinion of the reviewer i.e. secondary for "Titanic stars Kate Winslet", and primary for "Titanic is a 4-star movie". Maybe something along the lines of this: "For older films, use secondary source analysis of the critical reception to determine if the initial response varies from the reputation it has today." Betty Logan (talk) 21:21, 6 April 2015 (UTC)
This suggests that we also have to distinguish between journalistic reviews and scholarly analysis. Do we need to even go there with specific guidance, especially for a type of content that is not common? To what standards do we hold academic analysis, we can't be citing a random thesis on "Review of critical analyses of Battleship Potemkin", or whatever. My concern here was to keep things general, get rid of specific guidance regarding "retrospective analysis" and simply cover the general relevance of when a review was written. --Tsavage (talk) 21:36, 6 April 2015 (UTC)
  • Support The proposed wording will help editors avoid synthesis and rely on secondary sources for analysis of historical shifts in a film's critical evaluation. Bede735 (talk) 00:00, 7 April 2015 (UTC)
  • Support per nom. The current wording definitely suggests synthesis and arguably condones it. —174.141.182.82 (talk) 17:01, 12 April 2015 (UTC)
    Problem is, the proposed wording equally suggests synthesis. Movie reviews are secondary sources, they analyze and evaluate films, and they are likely the first type of secondary source an editor would be pointed to concerning a film's critical reception. So what is being proposed can easily be read as, "For older films, use film reviews to determine if a film's initial critical reception varies from the reputation it has today." This is only incrementally different from the current wording, and suggests the same thing, that the editor compare various reviews to arrive at a conclusion. At best, this wording seems vague and provides no additional guidance, as we are already encouraged to use reliable secondary sources in general, in the No original research policy. --Tsavage (talk) 18:12, 12 April 2015 (UTC)
    I disagree with “equally,” but I see your point. How about: For older films, seek reviews from the period of the film's release. Period. After all, the same paragraph doesn’t (and shouldn’t) recommend we determine whether critical reception in countries of origin varies from that in English-speaking countries. —174.141.182.82 (talk) 03:48, 14 April 2015 (UTC)
    Yes, I agree, if specific "older film critical reception" guidance is needed at all, a simple reminder to watch review dates should be sufficient for all situations. Your wording, however, could suggest excluding later reviews, like "A 2015 review of this 1947 film noted..." That's why I suggested something like, For older films, remember to distinguish between reviews published around the time of initial release, and reviews from later dates. (And, yes, that paragraph should at least be split, as it addresses two separate areas: country of origin/language, and "older" film.)--Tsavage (talk) 05:34, 14 April 2015 (UTC)
  • Support original proposal, per nom - SchroCat (talk) 15:47, 15 April 2015 (UTC)

Survey of opinion for proposal 2[edit]

  • Support Tsavage’s alternative per both users’ concerns about WP:Synthesis. Failing that, Betty’s proposal is still preferable to the status quo. —174.141.182.82 (talk) 19:33, 14 April 2015 (UTC)
  • Support as author of alternative wording. Proposal 2 covers the general case of critical reception of older film, including comparisons of reception over time, by simply reminding editors to check review dates. The Proposal 1 wording is unhelpful, as the reference to "secondary sources" is likely as not to be interpreted as "movie reviews" (the usual secondary sources cited regarding critical reception),and "use movie reviews to determine if a film's initial critical reception varies from the reputation it has today" suggests synthesis/original research in a similar way to the existing wording.
Additionally, there has been no demonstrated need to provide instruction specifically for cases where editors want to compare differences in critical reception for "older film." We shouldn't be writing rules, or suggesting/highlighting particular types of content, indiscriminately. In this case, simply deleting the offending sentence would fix the SYNTHESIS problem. --Tsavage (talk) 22:17, 15 April 2015 (UTC)
  • Prefer Proposal 2 to Proposal 1, Prefer Either to Original Wording, though I think the wording of Proposal 2 could use some cleaning up as well. The intent is clear but the language may be a bit confusing. DonIago (talk) 14:15, 20 April 2015 (UTC)

The above discussion is preserved as an archive of the debate. Please do not modify it. No further edits should be made to this discussion.
  • The RFC has been closed and the conclusion is that the first proposal has broad support, so I will install it in the MOS. However, it was also found that the alternative proposal is equally acceptable, so I intend to add that too, unless there are objections. At least then the deficiencies of either one are compensated by the alternative. Betty Logan (talk) 19:44, 8 May 2015 (UTC)
    You mean like, one after the other? Sounds good to me. —174.141.182.82 (talk) 00:44, 9 May 2015 (UTC)
    Agreed, both versions, to get rid of the synthesis wording. It would be...nice to have one simple, clear sentence, but in service of compromise and consensus, fine by me! --Tsavage (talk) 03:11, 9 May 2015 (UTC)

AfD of Leatherface film[edit]

Leatherface (film) has been nominated for deletion on the grounds that it fails the notability criteria, contains unreliable sources, and it is not clear if the name of the article will actually be the name of the film. See discussion at Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/Leatherface (film).  BIGNOLE  (Contact me) 17:48, 1 June 2015 (UTC)

Not sure what that has to do with an MOS subpage, but, okay. —174.141.182.82 (talk) 03:41, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
It's an announcement. Not every frequents the main Project page. Additionally, the future film guideline is a sister guideline to this page.  BIGNOLE  (Contact me) 03:43, 2 June 2015 (UTC)

Jurassic World[edit]

So, I corrected the cast order at Jurassic World to match the billing block per this MOS page, and have had numerous editors revert it based on other criteria (specifically their subjective opinion of the importance of the character, and not the actual billing block used in promotional materials). Is there a place to get help with dealing with this (I assume this isn't the place, but was looking for some guidance). Thanks! —Locke Coletc 03:37, 3 July 2015 (UTC)

Adding a note to the section explaining why it's organized as it is might deter further disruption. DonIago (talk) 15:53, 3 July 2015 (UTC)

Expanding WP:NOTPLOT[edit]

Opinions are needed on the following matter: Wikipedia talk:What Wikipedia is not#Expanding NOTPLOT. A WP:Permalink for it is here. Flyer22 (talk) 08:43, 25 July 2015 (UTC)