Wikipedia talk:Article titles
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Proper names other than names of persons
The policy says to use reliable sources in determining the title of an article about a person. Shouldn't this approach apply to all proper nouns (a/k/a proper names)? — Preceding unsigned comment added by Finell (talk • contribs) 04:49, 4 April 2016
standard keyboard characters
This article suggests there may exist any single «standard keyboard characters». This is wrong as keyboard standards may be in number or in characters comparable to the number of nations or the number of languages.
Additionally, you cannot expect from the reader being in one country to know what are the characters available on your specific keyboard and you cannot expect him to imagine what standard keyboard characters can be.
For instance, Many US keyboards sold do not have the extra US-International characters or AltGr engraved on the keys, although € (AltGr+5) always is; nevertheless, the keys work as expected even if not marked. (QWERTY). This means that € is an acceptable character? Correct?
Or also, the United Kingdom and Ireland use a keyboard layout (...) very similar to that of the United States, but (...) includes £ and € signs, that is the currency of United Kingdom and Ireland.
So I suggest to replace standard keyboard characters by English keyboard characters which might be less vague, if we mean English keyboard characters or by any keyboard characters if we mean any keyboard characters.
— Preceding unsigned comment added by 188.8.131.52 (talk) 20:56, 12 July 2016
I have an issue with the following line on WP:CONCISE.
The goal of conciseness is to balance brevity with sufficient information to identify the topic to a person familiar with the subject area.
Wikipedia is written for a large audience; we're trying to write encyclopedic articles for the general reader. That we should keep article titles as concise as possible makes sense to me, and that by itself doesn't need any explanation. So why have "to identify the topic to a person familiar with the subject area" there? It also makes me wonder, how can a person "identify the topic" just by its title? For instance, I'm mostly concerned with editing video game-related articles; there are big budget video games like the Assassin's Creed series, the Call of Duty series or classics like Super Mario Bros., but there are also hundreds of small-time indie games, with titles like I Am Bread, AaaaaAAaaaAAAaaAAAAaAAAAA!!! – A Reckless Disregard for Gravity or The Binding of Isaac; even if someone is familiar with the subject area of video games, they might not've heard of these types of games. So how can we assume the general reader would? soetermans. ↑↑↓↓←→←→ B A TALK 09:01, 15 July 2016 (UTC)
- Well, without the "to identify the topic..." language the statement would leave readers wondering "'sufficient information' to what?" The very idea of conciseness is to communicate maximum information in minimum space, not just solely to use as little space is possible. So there's some kind of balancing act. I don't know if you'll find this example helpful, and I know USPLACE is kind of a bugbear, but to me the benefit of added information is apparent if you compared the article title "Bothell" with "Bothell, Washington" – the latter title is longer, but it also allows readers to identify just by looking at the title that the article is about a town in a particular US state. An article title "Bothell" by itself is not a very helpful one.
- If you're asking, why do we care if it's 'enough information to identify the topic to someone familiar with the topic area', as distinct from 'enough information to identify the topic to the general public,' that's a little beyond my field of expertise, but using the same "Bothell, Washington" example, there is a real benefit for American readers to including the ", Washington" notwithstanding the fact that non-american wikipedians might not understand the state reference or find the additional context to be helpful. AgnosticAphid talk 18:50, 26 July 2016 (UTC)
- I guess "identify the topic to a person familiar with the subject area" is mainly so that you don't have to overly worry, in the title, of explaining concepts that a person interested in the subject probably already knows or ought to be able to get up to speed to study the subject. I think it's just an out so we don't have people making article titles "Bothell, Washington, United States" since if you're interested in an obscure town in Washington State you probably already know that Washington State is in the United States. Herostratus (talk) 23:02, 26 July 2016 (UTC)
- This is precisely why the original language was "to a person familiar with the topic" (rather than the subject area). As Soetermans notes, just because someone might be familiar with the subject area of video games does not mean they are likely to recognize video games from their titles alone, but someone familiar with a given video game will recognize it from the title alone. That's the point, and that's the only familiarity standard we've ever needed to meet (and these video games are a great example of that, but then so are city names and countless other examples), and the policy wording should reflect that accurately. --В²C ☎ 21:34, 20 September 2016 (UTC)
The guideline, "British nobility" appears to conflict with "Use commonly recognizable names". The policy says, "Wikipedia does not necessarily use the subject's "official" name as an article title; it generally prefers to use the name that is most frequently used to refer to the subject in English-language reliable sources." But the guideline says, "Members of the British peerage, whether hereditary peers or life peers, usually have their articles titled "Personal name, Ordinal (if appropriate) Peerage title", e.g. Alun Gwynne Jones, Baron Chalfont; Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington."
The British field marshall is universally referred to as the "Duke of Wellington," and that page redirects to Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington, a name that I suspect few if any readers would type in. The name of the article for the British admiral, Lord Nelson, is "Horatio Nelson, 1st Viscount Nelson." Lord Nelson is a redirect to the article.
Similarly, some peers are better known for their common names. We had this discussion with John Buchan, a well known writer who was elevated to the peerage when he was appointed Governor General of Canada. The article had been named, "John Buchan, 1st Baron Tweedsmuir."
I recommend in keeping with policy, the guideline request that we use the simplest name as the article name rather than as a re-direct.
- I have mentioned this discussion at Wikipedia_talk:WikiProject_Peerage_and_Baronetage#Discussion_elsewhere and Wikipedia_talk:Naming_conventions_(royalty_and_nobility)#Discussion_elsewhere. PamD 08:23, 1 September 2016 (UTC)
- As you're proposing changing WP:Naming conventions (royalty and nobility), shouldn't the discussion be taking place on that talk page? Opera hat (talk) 09:14, 1 September 2016 (UTC)
The simple reason that this guideline exists is that all British peers are commonly known as either "Duke of [Title]" (if they are a Duke) or "Lord [Title]" (if they are not). Every holder of the Dukedom of Norfolk, for example, is and has been known simply as "the Duke of Norfolk", and (as far as I can see) every single one of them has an article. So if we followed the common name policy blindly we'd have to have a whole string of articles called Duke of Norfolk (19th century politician), Duke of Norfolk (15th century soldier), etc. For a lot of peers there wouldn't be obvious disambiguators (in some families generation after generation had political or military careers), so you'd end up with lots of the even messier Duke of Norfolk (1628-1684), etc. (You couldn't even use 1st Duke of Norfolk, etc., because that doesn't distinguish between different creations of the same title, in this case Thomas de Mowbray, 1st Duke of Norfolk and John Howard, 1st Duke of Norfolk.) Your alternative would therefore be far messier and confusing (for both editors and readers) than the current system, which is the system encyclopaedias and scholarly works pretty much always use to solve this problem. It would make article titles simpler for a few peers who are far more famous than the other holders of their title (like the Duke of Wellington and Lord Nelson), but far messier for all the others, and knowing Wikipedia would create endless disputes as to precisely who fits into which category. Proteus (Talk) 10:01, 1 September 2016 (UTC)
- I tend to agree with Proteus on this. Only a very few people who are distinctly NOT known by their titles should be an exception. I can't really think of an example... Gerard von Hebel (talk) 11:52, 1 September 2016 (UTC)
- Proteus has answered this pretty well. The form of the name we use is essentially a pre-Wikipedia type of disambiguation invented to deal with the problem he describes. Our current practice is consistent with other encyclopedias and biographical works that list multiple peers, and I consider that a much stronger imperative than maintaining the internal consistency of rules we invented. Choess (talk) 12:55, 1 September 2016 (UTC)
- Yup, I too agree with Proteus. There's no good reason to change the guidelines. -- Necrothesp (talk) 12:43, 7 September 2016 (UTC)
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