Wikipedia talk:Notability (people)/Archive 2011

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New article(s) for Alexandre Bustillo and Julien Maury?

I'd like to make an article for Alexandre Bustillo and Julien Maury, the directors of Inside and Livid. Both are notable individuals. That being said, I don't know if they should get separate articles or just one as both seem to work together on their projects and I imagine most of the information for their careers would be near-identical. What should I do? Thanks!--CyberGhostface (talk) 01:31, 2 January 2011 (UTC)

Anyone?--CyberGhostface (talk) 23:41, 4 January 2011 (UTC)
Well, we have Coen brothers as a model, as well as Rodgers and Hammerstein and Gilbert and Sullivan. On the other hand, we have separate articles on each of the members of those last two, and separate articles on the director pair Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger. john k (talk) 00:16, 5 January 2011 (UTC)
Thanks! I guess I'll just make one article for the two of them, and they can be split up if something changes with them in the future.--CyberGhostface (talk) 03:25, 5 January 2011 (UTC)
I think there are several important factors to consider:
  1. Are the two notable as a pair? are they usually covered in the media and other reliable sources as a pair? All the examples above are pairs which are usually mentioned as a pair.
  2. How much contribution the individuals have outside the pair? Compare to music bands - we usually make an article on the band, as it's the notable faction. We only create band member articles if the band member has considerable contributions outside the band (solo album, member of other projects etc.)
  3. Practically, how much material you have on the individuals? If 90% of the material is on joined work, and the only material you have on the individuals is two lines of "Early life" before they met each other, it can be done easily in one article. If, on the other hand, you are going to write several sections on each individual, go for independent articles.
I hope this helps in any way. --Muhandes (talk) 08:48, 5 January 2011 (UTC)
Thanks, that helps a lot. As it is, the two have done all of their their films (as well as future and cancelled projects) together with both of them co-directing and one of them doing the screenplay. They haven't done anything separate from one another. Pretty much all the sources out there refer to them as a pair.--CyberGhostface (talk) 20:01, 5 January 2011 (UTC)


Hello, the issue on inherent notability of bishops has come up at AfD. I searched the archives of this page and found this discussion that pretty much agreed that bishop's are notable. So if bishops are, are any other clergymen from other denominations? Should we have a section here for clergymen? I think we need a wider discussion than just the one from 2008 but I believe the discussion should take place. J04n(talk page) 15:21, 30 December 2010 (UTC)

  • These can all be handled handily by the GNG. Abductive (reasoning) 15:34, 30 December 2010 (UTC)
Well, I agree JO4n but what would expect form a "REV"? - Ret.Prof (talk) 15:44, 30 December 2010 (UTC)
  • I agree with Abductive. Bishops in the Catholic church are generally notable, but their notability can generally be justified through the GNG. Bishops in other churches are less clear and in any case again need justification, through GNG. We don't really need automatic notability rules here. —David Eppstein (talk) 16:02, 30 December 2010 (UTC)
  • Comment, I actually have no opinion yet on the matter other than I would like to see consensus one way or the other. My knowledge/interest of things of a religious nature is absolutely zero. I apologize if I wasn't clear in my original post which should have asked if any level of clergymen are inherently notable? J04n(talk page) 16:05, 30 December 2010 (UTC)
  • I think we can probably get clergymen under one of our existing guidelines. The GNG, obviously, but also WP:CREATIVE (which includes WP:AUTHOR) is clearly applicable. Max Lucado, for instance, isn't anyone particularly special as a preacher (or actor, for that matter, c.f. Hermie and Friends), but has been a bestselling American Christian author for well over a decade. On the other hand, we have various "bishops"--which means something different in every denomination. I'd say the title "bishop" could be presumptively notable for national or larger churches. In some denominations, the term "bishop" is used much like "pastor" is used--simply to denote the lead clergyman of a local congregation. I've actually sourced about three clergy unreferenced BLPs yesterday, and it wasn't too hard. Good sources for notable clergy include national denominational or interdenominational publications, seminary bio sheets (many major clergy are adjunct faculty, others who teach as tenured seminary faculty may meet WP:ACADEMIC). I don't think there's a specific size cutoff for notability of megachurch pastors (e.g., Rick Warren), because most of them will have attained notability through press coverage before they've met whatever threshold we might set. Jclemens (talk) 17:37, 30 December 2010 (UTC)
  • (edit conflict) I would suggest that the bishops of major denominations are notable. By "major" I am referring at least to the dominant church of a country - Catholic in most of Western and Southern Europe; Orthodox in Greece, Russia and much of the Balkans, Lutheran (or Evangelical) in Germany and Scandinavia; Anglican (or equivalent) in UK and Commonwealth. My problem comes with splinter groups, which are often small and insignificant, but are liable to use unduly grand titles. I am thinking of groups that have split off from the Catholic Church with a mere few thousand members, divided between half a dozen churches each with a minister who is called a bishop. I think there may be Pentecostal denominations that have "bishops", who are merely the minster of a church, or perhaps supervisory minster over half a dozen churches. I would not wish to declare such people automatically to be notable. Peterkingiron (talk) 17:44, 30 December 2010 (UTC)
Jclemens' views (with whom I had an edit conflict) seem to be along the same lines as mine. Peterkingiron (talk) 17:46, 30 December 2010 (UTC)
  • Comment We should be clear in not setting a precedent for "bishop" as automatically conferring notability for any denomination, I'm comfortable enough with it for the Greek Orthodox Chruch, but usage of "bishop" in some other denominations, even large ones such as the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, is sufficiently broad that I wouldn't support automatic notability. I think my view is "I'm happy to see some inherent notability argued for high church officials of significant beliefs", and flexing that some with the size of the church involved, but "high church officials" needs to be measured on a denomination-by-denomination basis, and with an eye toward preventing bias. --je deckertalk 18:39, 30 December 2010 (UTC)
  • I used to be in favour of bishops having automatic notability as they in effect do if they are Roman Catholic or Anglican (and they should as Russian or Greek Orthodox, or any recognised by the Patriarch of Constantinople) but the number of Old Catholic and evangelical bishops who are in effect self appointed would argue against that. I would say that being a validly ordained bishop of a major historic church should confer automatic notability, but that should be a limited group of churches. Otherwise clergymen (including bishops) should show notability through mentions in significant sources as other people do. I would not, however, want to go the other way where Anglican and Catholic bishops are routinely challenged "just because". JASpencer (talk) 20:47, 30 December 2010 (UTC)
  • If bishops are automatically notable, then that presumes that the majority of them would meet GNG. It may be true for Catholic bishops, but there are numerous smaller denominations with bishops who may be more obscure. I don't think we can make an ecumenical standard that will apply to everyone with that title. I'm also concerned about the notability of bishops who served long ago. We could end up with a bunch of one-line entries. I think that there needs to be a cut-off on automatic notability, perhaps sometime around 1700 or 1800. Overall, I think it'd be safer to just stick with archbishops and let the bishops be governed by their individual notability   Will Beback  talk  23:48, 30 December 2010 (UTC)
    • Archbishops will have the same issue. Some one from an evangelical church with 35 members, an Old Catholic who has no followers or a kid who gets "ordained" over the internet claims to be an Archbishop, or for that matter Cardinal or Pope. I think that there has to be a denominational test for any automatic notability. We can then discuss which are the borderline churches. In short I don't think that choosing Archbishop would get round the problem of self-anointing (although it would cut it down) while at the same time it would allow for "just because" PRODS, speedy's and deletion debates (I'm more concerned with the PRODs than anything else. 09:19, 1 January 2011 (UTC)
      • Second point about the cut off, there's been no change to the status of bishops in that time frame, and if anything they've become less important in the modern period. There would be an argument for a cut off around 600-700 as bishops had increased in stature by then in both the West and the East, but I don't think that would address the issue that the cut off is trying to address. JASpencer (talk) 09:22, 1 January 2011 (UTC)
  • Bishops are Notable: Bishops are one step from Archbishop. Many of them serve at cathedrals. Cathedrals are notable and therefore so are bishops. Nobody would argue that a Vice-President of the United States was not notable. Ditto, nobody would argue that a Deputy Primeminister was not notable. Bishops are no less notable. If some churches knock-out bishops like McDonald's hamburgers then their notability might be in question. But on the whole it is usually a big deal when somebody is called a bishop. Even on a chess board everything except the pawns are notable (in fact, the bishops and the castles are second only in power to the Queen). Nipsonanomhmata (talk) 11:00, 31 December 2010 (UTC)
    • No offense, but I've rarely seen a list of such irrelevant factors presented in an argument. Schools are notable, but school headmasters are not, so the fact that bishops serve at notable cathedrals does not automatically confer notability. The role of the bishop in chess is also irrelevant. The fact that archbishops are (presumably) notable does not mean that bishops inherit their notability - there are far more bishops than archbishops.
    • There are apparently only about 75 archbishops in the Catholic Church, per Archbishop. OTOH, according to Bishop (Catholic Church), there are 5,100 living bishops. One can only guess how many bishops there have been in the past, but it must be in the tens of thousands. That's two orders of magnitude more than archbishops. While we might be able to find some biographical information for bishops in America and Europe, I doubt we can find much info about the majority of the living bishops, much less the dead ones. This would be the equivalent of saying that all US mayors are automatically notable, even those of small towns.   Will Beback  talk  23:09, 31 December 2010 (UTC)
      5100? *boggles* --je deckertalk 23:14, 31 December 2010 (UTC)
      • 5000 seems a reasonable number that we can perfectly well deal with. It's a big encyclopedic , and we are not paper. We have many times that number of articles for people in some other professions. I think it will be easily possible to find sufficient information about essentially every one of them to write an article. The writing of biographical material about bishops is one of the very oldest genres of Christian literature. There are a great many biographical handbooks for al areas , denominations, and centuries. In general, they will all have had a notable administrative role, not just directly in the church, but in education and in their community. DGG ( talk ) 08:41, 1 January 2011 (UTC)
I'm assuming we are agreed that "bishop" does not necessarily mean a level above a church/parish in some denominations. I think that bishop is the leader of the local community (only) for LDS and certain Christian groups in the US. Therefore they would need "something else" besides title for notability.
I can agree that 5000 is a large number for Catholic bishops. We are talking about a average diocese (assuming 5000) of 200,000 each, which seems notable. In truth, most will not ever get documented, a bit ironic when you think that some local band of 20-somethings will, but oh, well. Student7 (talk) 18:43, 1 January 2011 (UTC)
Do we even have articles on the 5000 dioceses the Catholic bishops administer? Perhaps that'd be the place to start. If there are bishops for whom little information can be found they could just be listed in those articles. FYI, there are also over 1000 Anglican bishops.   Will Beback  talk  22:09, 1 January 2011 (UTC)
Take a look at this
There is no article for Archbishop Grigorios. Well, at least no linkthrough from the above article. Nipsonanomhmata (talk) 23:31, 1 January 2011 (UTC)
  • What reliable sources can people find about them? Is it enough to write a decent article on them? NW (Talk) 22:20, 1 January 2011 (UTC)
The Morneau entry has three sources. One is the diocese website, which for purposes of notability would be considered self-published and so irrelevant. Another source,, is also self-published. The third is a listing of books found by searching a bookseller.
I searched for Ricken in Proquest's newspaper archive. There are about 60 hits, but most are passing mentions. One is a 200-word profile of him, and a another article has about 300 words about Ricken. Those would be enough for at least a stub.
We might also look at deceased bishops. How about Petrus Paulus Aaron?[2] What could we say about him beyond the years of life and service?   Will Beback  talk  23:52, 1 January 2011 (UTC)
While I like fresh approaches and this is imaginative, not sure where we are going. The bishops are have (roughly) 200,000+ believers in their diocese. Like Brigadier Generals, they've been here, been there. Most Brigadiers today haven't been shot at much, so their bios are not really that lively. Bishops the same, right? I don't doubt you can find material, but in the Brigadier's case, most bios are written from a single online source ("house" source, if you will). Actually, Brigadiers are a bit harder than priests since priests usually have talked the press on more than one occasion. But for both folks, most of these would be easy "soft-serve" interviews. Student7 (talk) 21:29, 3 January 2011 (UTC)
  • Since I started this I suppose I should weigh in. After reading through the string I do not believe that all bishops (of any denomination) are inherently notable. If they pass WP:GNG they are notable, if they don't they ain't. J04n(talk page) 01:46, 4 January 2011 (UTC)
I guess there has to be a certain presumption anyway. There are stubs. Obviously, after a time, the stub goes. Either the article is enhanced or it isn't and is deleted. Student7 (talk) 17:56, 6 January 2011 (UTC)

Removed link to essay low profile individuals in reference

I've changed the footnote in the Wikipedia:Notability_(people)#People_notable_for_only_one_event section, as it contained a link to an essay. This essay does not have community consensus, so we shouldn't be linking it as a footnote. - Aaron Brenneman (talk) 01:42, 5 January 2011 (UTC)

Hi Aaron, I'm utterly surprised at your statement that the essay does not have community consensus. It has remained in our guideline for some time, due to its consensual acceptance by the community. In case you have a better essay, please place that; else, kindly replace the previous essay on low-profile individuals that, as of now, is the closest logical differentiation to understand the difference between low profile and high profile individuals. Also, I've reverted back the differentiation that you perhaps deleted while you were trying to delete the essay link; yet, I have not added back the link, pending discussions here. Kind regards. Wifione ....... Leave a message 03:42, 5 January 2011 (UTC)
Moved from User talk:Aaron Brenneman talk page.
Hi Aaron, I noticed that you recently removed a link to a low profile individuals essay from Wikipedia talk:Notability (people). As far as I know, it is standard practice on policy pages to link to relevant essays, essays apparently do not need to have community consensus, and this caveat is covered by the essay template that should be on the page top of each essay. There may well have been something I missed, so for my own education as I am also currently writing couple of essays, if there were any special reasons why you removed this link, please do not hesitate to provide an explanation on the talk page or even on my own talk page. Best wishes for 2011! --Kudpung (talk) 05:09, 7 January 2011 (UTC)
End section moved from user talk page.
While an essay does not have to have consensus, a guideline does have to have consensus. Linking something from a guideline gives it imprimatur. - Aaron Brenneman (talk) 05:02, 8 January 2011 (UTC)
Respected or informative essays are linked from guidelines all the time. It's simply a matter of consensus to do so, and you appear to be the only one interested in removing the link. Jclemens (talk) 05:55, 8 January 2011 (UTC)
Perhaps it's just the "tone" that I read it in, but that seemed a more provocative response than was called for? Has this issue been discussed before than, and I missed it in the archives? Can I have a link? Aaron Brenneman (talk) 10:30, 9 January 2011 (UTC)
I am surprised, disappointed and a bit shocked to learn that essays, with little unbiased input, are linked all the time from policies and guidelines. Can you point to an instance?
I guess I could phrase this question backwards: If the essay does have community consensus, why is it not part of the guideline/policy instead of being separately labeled? (I don't mind forking, but shouldn't it then be labeled as a forked guideline/policy?) Student7 (talk) 20:52, 9 January 2011 (UTC)
Geez, Student7, where were you when I needed you a month ago? :-) Nightscream (talk) 00:04, 10 January 2011 (UTC)

Stand Alone Lists

What is the concensus on articles that are merely lists? Should red-linked individuals be allowed to be listed when they've been redlinked for years? If so, how is notability proven for these redlinked people? Thanks for any insights. Cheers, -Uyvsdi (talk) 17:54, 3 December 2010 (UTC)Uyvsdi

My reading of WP:LISTPEOPLE is that, in case of a red link, there must be a reliable source cited for each such person. (Beyond that, my personal opinion would be to favor removing the brackets making the listing red, and just list the name in regular type, and to be pretty strict about there being a good, well-sourced reason for listing the person at all.) --Tryptofish (talk) 18:31, 3 December 2010 (UTC)
Red links, used properly, help Wikipedia grow. They serve as a signal to contributors that new articles are needed. They also serve as a reminder that this encyclopedia is far from finished, and that there is much work for all of us to do. Cullen328 (talk) 07:29, 11 December 2010 (UTC)
Which would be a great argument for turning them from red to blue, not just letting them sit there red. But anyway, the relevant part of what I said (aside from what I clearly indicated as being my personal opinion) is that there must be reliable sourcing for each item in such lists. And that requirement for RS is not a matter of opinion. --Tryptofish (talk) 20:07, 11 December 2010 (UTC)
There are many ways to improve the encyclopedia. One is to create new content by expanding and improving existing articles. Another is the creation of new articles, either because a red link is noticed, or because an editor encounters a notable topic without an article, and sets about writing one. I have created and expanded my share of articles. I also maintain my own list of red links - articles I plan to write in weeks and months to come. When I create a red link, it is because I hope to write an article or hope that another editor will notice it and take up the task. Some red links sit there for a while. That is not a bad thing, but just another indication that we all have a lot of work to do to improve the encyclopedia. The amazing thing about red links is that they automatically turn to blue once the article is created. I am unconvinced that complaining about red links is helpful, Tryptofish, but I sincerely assume that your comments are made in good faith. Cullen328 (talk) 02:11, 12 December 2010 (UTC)
Well, please don't think of it as complaining. More like replying to the opening post, where the answer is that WP:LISTPEOPLE requires sourcing. Peace. --Tryptofish (talk) 20:48, 12 December 2010 (UTC)
The current text says that there should be a reasonable expectation that an article will be written. Which means that there should both be some indication that they'd meet the notability standards, and that someone will actually write an article about them. The longer a name stays red the less chance thre is that it's a candidate for creation.   Will Beback  talk  23:51, 30 December 2010 (UTC)
It's worth bearing in mind that some people still regard Wikipedia's original principles of openness and accessibility as a source of inspiration and a red link for something that's familiar or of interest is an encouraging starting point for someone new (as is one of the oft-maligned persistent stubs). Opbeith (talk) 21:21, 10 January 2011 (UTC)

POLITICIAN addendum?

With respect to third-party candidates, it seems that some editors think that being a third-party candidate automatically makes one notable (for being such). Now, obviously, most third-party candidates are not going to meet the GNG or Politician, because they only get coverage on their own sites, and only during an election every four years or so. Moreover, third parties rarely win elections. I'm also well aware that there are plenty of "mainstream" candidates for local and state offices who don't win either (but unless you watch results, that can't be seen), and they don't get WP articles as candidates, so can we add something indicating the non-party specificity of criterion 3? MSJapan (talk) 03:55, 11 December 2010 (UTC)

I agree.   Will Beback  talk  04:39, 14 January 2011 (UTC)


I think there is a problem with part 3 of this sub-section. We are told that a perpetrator is notable if The motivation for the crime or the execution of the crime is unusual or has otherwise been considered noteworthy such that it is a well-documented historic event. This appears to set a particularly high standard compared to regular notability for people. However, the sub-section goes on to say: the assessment of notability on the basis of news coverage should follow the same criteria for assessing the notability of the crime, which appears to set a lower standard. In fact, if you look at Wikipedia:Notability#Criminal_actsWikipedia:Notability (criminal acts)#Criminal acts, (link corrected; Wifione ....... Leave a message) you will see that it sets no higher standard than common-or-garden notability - it just reminds the reader that WP:RS and WP:N apply. This seems to me to create a loophole and make a nonsense of the sub-section. Since, we are told, it is permissible to just apply ordinary notability criteria, talk about being "renowned world figure" or being part of a "well documented historic event" doesn't seem to add up to anything. This could be resolved by simply removing the reference to Wikipedia:Notability#Criminal_actsWikipedia:Notability (criminal acts)#Criminal acts, (link corrected; Wifione ....... Leave a message) and leaving decisions about whether something is or isn't a "well document historic event" to talk page discussions. However, I also don't think this criterion reflects practice on WP. Many highly notable criminals do not have articles in their name (eg Myra Hindley, Lyle Menendez, Jon Venables, Ian Huntley, Dylan Klebold, Talmadge Hayer, Scott Roeder, Bonnie Parker). On the other hand, some murders who appear much less well-covered in secondary sources do have their own articles (eg Henry Martin (murderer), Phillip_Austin, Alfred Dancey).

It seems to me that the deciding factor here is not actually notability per se, but WP:CFORK. We have a presumption that one criminal event should be covered by one article. This will most usually appear under the title of the name of the perpetrator of the crime (contrary to the idea of a special notability benchmark for such articles). However, where WP:COMMONNAME applies or where there is more than one perpetrator involved in a crime (ie where naming articles after criminals would require content forks), this may not be the case. Additionally, there may be legitimate spinoff articles where the amount of encylopaedic content available requires (a good example of this is Seung-Hui Cho).

I think that part 3 of the sub-sections should be re-written to reflect this. Am I making sense or not? --FormerIP (talk) 19:57, 6 January 2011 (UTC)

  • In my view, the sections are all perfect. We have higher standards with respect to people accused of crimes and proven guilty than with respect to normally notable people or events. Read BLP1E, BIO1E for further information. I've added two punctuation marks for more clarity to the sub-section. Write back if you still are confused. Wifione ....... Leave a message 06:31, 7 January 2011 (UTC)
But the sub-section doesn't appear to provide for higher standards with respect to criminals. Amongst the options available to me if I wish to show that a criminal is notable is show (per (3)) that their crime is a "well-documented historic event". I am told that I can do this on the basis of news coverage by following WP:N/CA. This guideline tells me "As with other events, media coverage can confer notability on a high-profile criminal act, provided such coverage meets the above guidelines [i.e. WP:N] and those regarding reliable sources". In other words, so long as I have an RS news source, the only threshold I need to meet is the regular notability threshold that applies to everything. I'm supposing that this loophole has come about by accident, rather than design.
I'm not sure what you mean by asking me to read 1E and BLP1E. It seems to me that the subsection here is intended to incorporate guidance on how those apply in relation to perpetrators.
As noted, even if these guidelines are perfect as you say, it does not seem they are very widely followed. Some of the most significant criminals in history do not appear to have been deemed notable, whereas some incredibly obscure ones do. --FormerIP (talk) 18:31, 7 January 2011 (UTC)
During a slow news time some years back, the US public was easily (as it usually is) mesmerized by reports that a female teacher had molested teen aged boys. Ultimately four women teachers were reported and are documented here, before it finally dawned on the media that this was not unusual in itself and that there were dozens, if not hundreds of these cases. They quickly moved on to other things. So now we are stuck with these poor teachers, notorious here, but probably should not be any more notorious than any other perp in the same category. But they are. I have no idea how to get rid of them. They received enormous publicity at the time. Anyone naive looking at Wikipedia would assume that there were only four female teachers who ever did this, which would be a ridiculous assumption, but we cannot document the other hundred or so because the media has wandered off and Wikipedia is not a police blotter.
I wish there were a way. These perps have served or are serving their time BTW. Student7 (talk) 21:01, 8 January 2011 (UTC)
I think that's a slightly different subject, Student7. Lots of people, for example, do heroic things in times of war. Some get articles here, some don't, depending on how notable they've become. --FormerIP (talk) 00:08, 10 January 2011 (UTC)
FormerIP, reading BIO1E and BLP1E would make you realize the difficulty you would have in attempting to prove notability for a criminal involved in one event. Other than that, yes, there are criminals who should be there on Wikipedia and there are those who are there, but shouldn't. Can't help it in general. That's the nature of the project. But in specific, if you see stuff that shouldn't be there, nominate the same for deletion; and if you wish stuff to be there, add it. Simple! Wifione ....... Leave a message 12:40, 10 January 2011 (UTC)
I think you're misunderstanding, Wifione (perhaps I have not explained myself very well). I am not complaining about inconsistent practice. In fact, practice in this area is mainly very consistent and logical. It's just that it appears to be radically different from what is in the guidance here. So, we have no article for Myra Hindley in spite of her notoriety, because there is insufficient content for a spinoff, for example, not because logic has not been followed.
If you look at Wikipedia:Articles_for_deletion/Jared_Lee_Loughner you will see what I mean. Regardless of how this AfD turns out, it is clear that only a minority of users actually consider notability to be the deciding factor in this case. The majority view, whether from deleters or keepers, is that Loughner should get his article as such a time as their is sufficient content to warrant a spinoff. A number of editors have cited this guideline or the notability exception in BL1E which, on the face of it, is a correct interpretation of policy. But it is clear that they are going against the general tide. Note this comment: Reluctant Keep - I hate articles like this, but ... WP:PERPETRATOR is pretty clear..
So, what I am saying is that there is a mismatch between practice and policy as expressed here. The policy should be reframed to reflect practice because, at the end of the day, practice reflects community consensus. --FormerIP (talk) 16:18, 10 January 2011 (UTC)
FormerIP, I agree that the policy should be reframed to take into account aspects of wp:CFORK. Do you have suggested text you could post here?--Hodgson-Burnett's Secret Garden (talk) 20:38, 11 January 2011 (UTC)
Okay, my stab at it is below. --FormerIP (talk) 03:21, 15 January 2011 (UTC)

Minor proposal

Regarding WP:PERPETRATOR and WP:VICTIM, are there any objections to striking the first point from each? Specifically the following lines: "The perpetrator is notable for something beyond the crime itself." and "The victim is notable for something beyond the crime itself." My recollection is that these points have carried over from the old guideline Wikipedia:Notability (criminal acts) which was later split and merged into the appropriate parts of Wikipedia:Notability (events) and Wikipedia:Notability (people). These are redundant additions in that it is already presumed that any individual who doesn't pass the specific sub-guideline, but is deemed to be notable by some other general guideline still passes. It's not necessary for academics, athletes, creative professionals, diplomats, entertainers, or politicians, so it shouldn't be necessary for criminals and crime victims. (Relevant essay is Wikipedia:ABELINCOLN.) Location (talk) 18:16, 12 January 2011 (UTC)

Seems reasonable.--Hodgson-Burnett's Secret Garden (talk) 21:51, 13 January 2011 (UTC)
I've tried to incorporate that in the proposal below, Location. Thoughts? --FormerIP (talk) 03:22, 15 January 2011 (UTC)
 Done It appears as though striking the redundant criteria has some agreement, so I've made that change. Location (talk) 21:46, 15 January 2011 (UTC)

Proposed text for "Perpetrators"

The main part of the proposal is to add the text in green below. --FormerIP (talk) 23:07, 15 January 2011 (UTC)

A person who is notable only for committing a crime or crimes should not normally be the subject of a Wikipedia article if there are any existing articles that do or could incorporate the available encyclopaedic material relating to that person. Where there are no such existing articles, such a person should be the subject of a Wikipedia article only if one of the following applies:

  • The victim of the crime is a renowned national or international figure, including, but not limited to, politicians or celebrities.
  • The motivation for the crime or the execution of the crime is unusual—or has otherwise been considered noteworthy—such that it is a well-documented historic event. Generally, historic significance is indicated by sustained coverage of the event in reliable secondary sources that devote significant attention to the individual's role and which persists beyond contemporaneous news coverage.

Note: A living person accused of a crime is not guilty unless and until this is decided by a court of law. Editors must give serious consideration to not creating an article on an alleged perpetrator until a conviction is secured.

--FormerIP (talk) 03:21, 15 January 2011 (UTC)

I'd also consider removing "Generally, the historic significance is indicated by persistent coverage of the event in reliable secondary sources that devote significant attention to the individual's role". This is in the current version, but I think it goes without saying. --FormerIP (talk) 03:26, 15 January 2011 (UTC)
I like the first part, but I am wondering how this change would affect articles like Jared Lee Loughner since an argument could be made that Gabrielle Giffords "has an uncontested Wikipedia article that predates the crime", but is not a "renowned world figure". I am also concerned that what crimes are "unusual" or are "well-documented" (beyond standard newspaper reports) is open to interpretation. Location (talk) 01:38, 16 January 2011 (UTC)
Glad you like the first part, since that's the main thing I'm here for.
Thinking about the Loughner case, think you are right, so I've strucken the references to "world". By the same token, the murder of a Belgian politician who no-one on the English Wikipedia has heard of also ought to confer notability. There is the issue of the notability of the murderer of a barely notable figure who happens to have a WP article. However, I think we then fall back on the first part, since an encyclopaedic info about the criminal can be included in a section of the existing article.
Agree also on "unusual" and "well-documented". The current version follows with a link to WP:N/CA, which basically sets the bar at "standard newspaper reports" (see my attempt at a critique of that above). I'm not sure what to do about this other than leave it for talkpage discussion. Perhaps giving some examples of where this applies, or changing the wording to emphasise that it really has to be historic, as opposed to arguable as a footnote in history. --FormerIP (talk) 02:15, 16 January 2011 (UTC)
I think what this part of the guideline is attempting to say is that we do not want an article about a previously unknown perpetrator unless the victim was a big shot or the crime was a big deal... with lots of emphasis on "big". Unfortunately, I really don't know how to objectively measure or define which people are big shots and which crimes are big deals. Perhaps changing "renowned figure" to "renowned national or international figure" might be a good idea. I also do not think the second sentence of the first bullet point is particularly useful in defining which people are big shots in that there are plenty of non-big shots who are the subjects of Wikipedia articles who will eventually be the subject of some crime or other. I'll have to think about the second bullet point a little more. Location (talk) 05:54, 16 January 2011 (UTC)
Okay, I made the "national or international" change. However, I wonder if this bullet-point could go altogether. If the victim meets this criteria they will have an article, so an article "that does or could incorporate the available encylopaedic material" will exist.
The second bullet point could perhaps talk about "significant and sustained national or international news coverage" (?). --FormerIP (talk) 20:17, 16 January 2011 (UTC)
Regarding the first bullet point: I would leave the first sentence for now, but consider removing the phrase "...or immediately related to a renowned national or international figure". (I'll put this as a strikeout for the time being.) I would also consider changing the introductory sentence to this: "A person who is notable only as the perpetrator or victim of a criminal act should not normally be the subject of a Wikipedia article if there are any existing articles that do or could incorporate the available encyclopedic material relating to that person." Location (talk) 01:31, 18 January 2011 (UTC)
"Persistant coverage" needs additional clarification, something about coverage existing beyond the standard news cycle covering the events (i.e. books or articles written years after the events). --Jayron32 21:19, 17 January 2011 (UTC)
Okay, so what about something like: Generally, historic significance is indicated by sustained coverage of the event in reliable secondary sources that devote significant attention to the individual's role and persist beyond contemporaneous news coverage.?--FormerIP (talk) 22:24, 17 January 2011 (UTC)
These are all very objective and I am not disagreeing. It is unfortunate that we are obliged to adopt media standards when reporting anything new. They are trying to sell widgets and to appeal to viewers by hyping material. We are not. As I have probably too persistently mentioned, there were "the four" women molesters who received huge attention and then the category was dropped by the media who then went on to something else that might interest the viewers more. No doubt about "significant attention" though.
It's like the media reporting four people who were 6' 10" tall and giving them huge publicity and then, discovering that there are a lot of people who are 6' 10", going on to a new topic so that it appears to the casual reader that there are only four people in the world with this height - the problem with having the media define articles for you! Student7 (talk) 22:48, 17 January 2011 (UTC)
I like the bit about sources that "... persist beyond contemporaneous news coverage". Location (talk) 01:34, 18 January 2011 (UTC)
While it sounds reasonable and fair, the last line is actually deeply problematic, and Wikipedians certainly don't (and won't) follow it: "Someone accused of a crime is not guilty unless and until this is decided by a court of law."
If we actually followed that rule, we would have to remove the statement from the article Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold that they actually perpetrated the Columbine High School massacre. Since they killed themselves, they were never tried and thus never convicted -- thus, if we actually followed the above line, they are "not guilty". The same goes for any other murder-suicide perpetrator, including suicide bombings.
It is possible, in such cases, for the facts of a crime to be abundantly clear despite the absence of a prosecution. News media which usually refer to "the accused" and "alleged perpetrators" do not do so in such cases; and neither does Wikipedia. Since policy should reflect practice, we should amend this line to do so. I suggest: "A living person suspected or charged with a crime is presumed not guilty unless and until ..." --FOo (talk) 07:36, 18 January 2011 (UTC)
Yes, fair point. I've made that change above. --FormerIP (talk) 11:37, 18 January 2011 (UTC)
Regarding the second bullet point, I think the unusualness of the perpetrator's motive for or execution of the criminal act is irrelevant and leaves it up to Wikipedians to determine what is "unusual". In my opinion, it doesn't matter if a passerby was flogged to death with fluorescent green dildos by the Vienna Boys' Choir if the act doesn't receive a substantial amount of coverage. What matters is the weight of coverage in a historical context. I would consider eliminating the first part of the second bullet point and changing it to something like: "The criminal act has historic significance indicated by sustained coverage in reliable secondary sources that devote significant attention to the individual's role and which persists beyond contemporaneous news coverage." Could also preface that comment with "Consistent with the parameters set within WP:EVENT, ...". Location (talk) 05:13, 19 January 2011 (UTC)

Criminals (a slightly different subject)

Four women teachers, alone of dozens or probably hundreds (since and before), were selected by the for notoriety for molesting children. They fail the criteria for "criminal" #1, #2. But perhaps succeed in #3? Anyway, I wonder if the criteria is meant to be "Or" rather than "And." Perhaps this should be made explicit? Student7 (talk) 21:56, 10 January 2011 (UTC)

I'm undecided on which way this should go, but the proposed text above currently makes the criteria "or" rather than "and". Location (talk) 01:41, 16 January 2011 (UTC)
Notability guidelines on Wikipedia are generally constructed with an "or" syntax. The exception being the GNG, which has but one clause. Jclemens (talk) 06:37, 16 January 2011 (UTC)
If the first bullet was got rid of, as suggested above, this would not be a difficulty. --FormerIP (talk) 20:19, 16 January 2011 (UTC)

Could I get help with the wording...

here, with concern wp:PSEUDO and wp:VICTIM? Thanks.--Hodgson-Burnett's Secret Garden (talk) 15:29, 20 January 2011 (UTC)

Suggested text:

2. Occasionally it is appropriate, in cases where the perpetrator has been convicted of the crime, is known for one event and is well known, for a move or merger of an article about the crime to a biographical article about the perpetrator, to avoid, when possible, that the weight given to treating the crime then produces an article essentially serving as an unnecessary pseudo-biography of the living victim, also creating a content fork between coverage of a criminal event and the person known only for being its perpetrator. Many times such a consolidation of coverage is not possible, however, and prominent living victims are named in titles of articles about crimes in which they were victimized.<ref>Example of the latter case: Death of Damilola Taylor.</ref>

--Hodgson-Burnett's Secret Garden (talk) 16:30, 20 January 2011 (UTC)

It's not completely clear to me what you are trying to say or why it is in the VICTIM section. In my opinion, a relatively simple guideline for perpetrators and victims would go something like this: "For notable criminal acts, articles should normally be created about and named after the event and not the perpetrator(s) or victim(s); the article may instead be named after a perpetrator (e.g. Jeffrey Dahmer) or victim (e.g. Matthew Shepard) if community consensus dictates. When to fork to a separate page about the perpetrator(s) or victim(s) is also a matter of community consensus." In other words, WP:EVENT determines notability; WP:CFORK determines when to have articles about the people involved. Location (talk) 16:06, 20 January 2011 (UTC)

Sounds good. Still a link to pseudo-biography should in some way also be included because I think the points there are particularly informative.--Hodgson-Burnett's Secret Garden (talk) 16:25, 20 January 2011 (UTC)

Suggested additions (off hand):

Articles should normally be named after the criminal event and not the perpetrator(s) or victim(s) in cases where either of the latter are known for the one event of the event. In such cases, where more complete information about perpetrator(s) have been contributed by Wikipedia editors, a separate article about the perpetrator may be called for, with details about the crime merged into this biography, if appropriate. Avoid unnecessarily creating a content fork between coverage of a criminal event and the person known only for being its perpetrator except when issues of wp:WEIGHT come into play. Also, in the case of living victims, except in the case of otherwise well-known individuals, be especially careful to avoid unnecessary pseudo-biographies; whenever reasonably possible, name an article using the name of the convicted perpetrator(s) instead of the living victim(s).

(I bypassed mention of consensus because it doesn't really specify any guidance and only acts as a space filler until actual guidance is given, IMO. After all, isn't consensus whatever is live at the moment on the project's website mainspace? A lawyer can truthfully argue, "The law says whatever the current judge over our case says it does." True. But that tack is really a mechanism for that lawyer to avoid delving into whatever the legal issues at hand.)--Hodgson-Burnett's Secret Garden (talk) 17:13, 20 January 2011 (UTC)

I agree with most of the above. But it seems to me that WP almost never carries an article on the subject of the victim of a crime, the only exception being where the victim has independent notability (e.g. Jill Dando). Do we actually need to say any more than that?
IMO Matthew Shepard is wrongly named and should be moved to Murder of Matthew Shepard, which would be consistent with other high-profile murders. --FormerIP (talk) 18:36, 20 January 2011 (UTC)
Re: "WP almost never carries an article on the subject of the victim of a crime". If you check out Category:Crime victims by nationality, you'll find that that assertion is not true. The guideline needs to be revamped for perpetrators AND victims. Location (talk) 03:05, 21 January 2011 (UTC)
It's important to see what that cat contains though.
So I started to look through that category, and did Afghanistan, Albania, Algeria and a bit more than half of America before giving up. There does seem to be general trend there towards only BLP1E exceptions having articles. Just to prove how anal I am, here's what I counted:
2 senior civil servants, 2 police chiefs, 1 CIA chief, 17 politicians, 2 journalists, 1 playwright, 3 TV presenters, 1 film director, 1 leader of an uprising, 2 boxers, 5 religious leaders, 5 baseball players, 1 basketball player, 3 paramilitary activists, 1 economist, 2 musicians, 1 (apparently notable) madame, 1 fashion designer, 5 businessmen, 1 university president, 12 senior diplomats, 1 TV producer, 1 model, 3 heiresses, 2 native American leaders, 1 judge, 2 labour leaders, 1 person notable for fathering a criminal gang.
There are also 40 people there who are only notable as victims of crime. 14 of these were victims of state torture (that can be argued about in different ways, but I would say they are not ordinary victims of crime, but of human rights abuses). 2 are doctors murdered for performing abortions (someone may have thought this makes them an exception, but I don't think it does). 20 are victims of LGBT hate crime. Additionally, there is a subcat I didn't look through for "Murdered American children", which appears to contain a fair few otherwise non-notables.
One interpretation of this is that the community follows the current guideline generally but makes a small number of exceptions for children and LGBT hate crime victims. I'd say that these exceptions have simply been made wrongly.--FormerIP (talk) 18:18, 21 January 2011 (UTC)
From above, "For notable criminal acts, articles should normally be created about and named after the event and not the perpetrator(s) or victim(s)." This makes a lot of sense IMO. As you know, I have been grinding an axe over 4 women who were convicted of sex crimes against boys. Their victims were not notable. Nor, prior to these acts, were they. Are we saying that these articles can be renamed to reflect the crime, rather than the 4 perps names? Or that they must. There would be considerably objection to the latter since there are people who have invested their lives in these 4 articles, for whatever reason.
Since there have been many hundreds of lesser known, but equivalent crimes against boys by women teachers, would this (new) collective article now become a WP:COATRACK of sorts for those folks? That would be a shame IMO.
Whatever the outcome, I think these 4 teachers do serve as a sort of dichotomy around which a discussion can be held. Student7 (talk) 19:30, 22 January 2011 (UTC)
I don't know the details of the case, Student7, but I would suppose that the default would be that there should be only one article about the incident, incorporating biographical information about the perpetrators if encyclopaedic. As a default, there should not be separate article about the perpetrators unless (1) BLP1E doesn't apply for some reason; (2) secondary sources contain a lot or relevant, encyclopaedic material about the the backgrounds of one or more of the perpetrators, so that spinoff articles are reuqired; (3) depending on how the two bullet-points end up getting worded, the event is somehow historic or an suitably famous person is involved somehow. --FormerIP (talk) 19:43, 22 January 2011 (UTC)
I agree with Hodgson-Burnett's Secret Garden and Student7 that the section should address perpetrators and victims. Applying the various BLP and one event guidelines, the introduction to the above proposal applies to victims, too. Given that article are created for 1E victims relatively frequently, there is certainly no harm in clarifying this. Location (talk) 01:24, 23 January 2011 (UTC)
I think it would be wrong to treat criminals and victims according to the same criteria, but I've left the wording of the page so that it covers both.
Think point (2) under victims is very difficult to understand at the moment though. --FormerIP (talk) 03:50, 23 January 2011 (UTC)
I agree. Any suggestions to make it clearer? Making it easier to understand will perhaps lengthen point no. 2 but that is not necessarily a bad thing IMO.--Hodgson-Burnett's Secret Garden (talk) 15:34, 24 January 2011 (UTC)

I now see that FormerIP's new version of wp:CRIME and its wp:PERP subsection does a very excellent job of precisely and succinctly covering everything contained in #2 @ wp:VICTIM (and more!) so I've cut back on that point drastically--still, I'm open to something better, if anyone has suggestions.--Hodgson-Burnett's Secret Garden (talk) 16:16, 24 January 2011 (UTC)

No one is stating that perpetrators and victims should have the same criteria, however, redundancies should be reworded when there are points that overlap. For example, point #2 under victim (i.e. "Be cognizant of issues of weight, to avoid creation of unnecessary pseudo-biographies of living people.") also applies to perpetrators, so it should be moved to the section's introduction if we are going to use it. Location (talk) 21:35, 24 January 2011 (UTC)
I get that point. What if the second part were broken off so that is just becomes the end of the whole subsection (eg In general. be cognizant of issues of weight, to avoid creation of unnecessary pseudo-biographies of living people.)? --FormerIP (talk) 22:32, 24 January 2011 (UTC)
Also, I'm not entirely familiar with style issues on policy pages. I totally agree with the contents of WP:PSEUDO, but it isn't a guideline. Does that make it OK or not OK to wikilink to it on a guideline page? --FormerIP (talk) 22:34, 24 January 2011 (UTC)
Hmmmm. Normally I would say "no", but there may be examples elsewhere. Given that it applies to other biographical articles, I'm not sure PSEUDO should be placed only in PERP/VICTIM. Location (talk) 22:48, 24 January 2011 (UTC)

dab - Inclusion in article

Someone included a dab on a non-notable person, who was mentioned in an article. Let's say we had "Ken Jennings", Jeopardy contestant, then we had four other Ken Jennings who are not known generally but are included in four article, which were linked. Does this seem right? Student7 (talk) 00:50, 21 January 2011 (UTC)

"multiple" in entertainers

I suggest the removal of the word "multiple" from item one of the entertainers section. I think it doesn't produce the intended result. Consider the example of an actor who has a breakout role as the star of a critically reviewed national television program, fifteen episodes of which have now been shown. Is that person not notable because it's a single television show? I recognize that this may result in more "one-hit" persons making the presumed notability cut, but I think it better to err on the side of false positives than false negatives. I think the criteria would function efficiently without "multiple". Alternatively, is there another way to reform the criteria to address this? --Bsherr (talk) 19:36, 27 January 2011 (UTC)

The situation you describe is fixed by the fact that the person probably has passed WP:GNG at that point so this criteria doesn't matter. -DJSasso (talk) 20:40, 27 January 2011 (UTC)

Gnews as criterion of notability

I have questioned the notability of an artist who is the subject of a short WP article. Another editor has stated [ this Gnews search] makes it pretty clear he's notable enough for an article here. The ... stand for the rest of the url that provides a list of Google references to the artist. Can I find out the guideline that supports this criterion of notability and, if so, how to find it. Even better, I would appreciate a direct link to the relevant guideline. Michael P. Barnett (talk) 21:41, 27 January 2011 (UTC)

There is no such guideline despite the frequency of such suggestions. See, in particular WP:GHITS for discussion. Bongomatic 22:01, 27 January 2011 (UTC)
Thanks. Your answer was what I hoped for, and I have posted the gist of your comment and the link on relevant Discussion page.

Bibliography as criterion

On a somewhat different tack, are any of the following valid criteria

1. the number of books by a person, listed in the online catalogue of a major University or National library,

2. the number of research papers listed in a search on the person's name in a major bibliographic database, such as Web Of Science (Science Citation Index), SciFind Scholar (Chemical Abstracts),

3. the number of citations to a research paper found, e.g., in Web of Science or Scopus.Michael P. Barnett (talk) 00:43, 28 January 2011 (UTC)

IMO no. In either case you could be looking at someone non-notable but prolific. So I think we still need reliable third-party sources, as is standard policy always. --FormerIP (talk) 01:49, 28 January 2011 (UTC)
Barnett, see WP:PROF. --Cyclopiatalk 01:51, 28 January 2011 (UTC)

TV appearances

Is a TV appearance (e.g. being on Oprah) at all relevant to notability? While being on a widely-viewed TV show would seem to enhance notability, it would also seem to be a primary source. Axlrosen (talk) 02:53, 28 January 2011 (UTC)

I'd say it's a primary source unless the show in question is This Is Your Life or something similar where the show has researched the subject's life rather than relying on their personal account. If the show was reviewed, the reviews could be relevant to notability if they are in reliable sources and have significant coverage of the subject of the article, rather than merely of the show. That will be rare, I think. Qwfp (talk) 09:50, 28 January 2011 (UTC)
I would think that the appearance could help establish notability if the show broadcast a background segment profiling the person that was under the control of the producers, in addition to the interview itself. Just a simple interview would not be enough. In that sense, I agree with Qwfp. Cullen328 (talk) 16:25, 28 January 2011 (UTC)
As has been mentioned, mere appearance by a person on a show such as Oprah is not notability, unless the show is about the person (and even in that case, it may be a WP:BLP1E matter). In other words: if you've been a talking head on TV speaking about hair replacement surgery, or human trafficking, or cholesterol in infants, that doesn't make you notable, sincenotability is not contagious. --Orange Mike | Talk 14:53, 4 February 2011 (UTC)

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Is it sufficient to satisfy a WP:SNG without satisfying the WP:GNG to keep a biographical article?

Some weeks ago, there was a deletion discussion regarding the article Shingo Kobayashi. This person by himself did not meet the criteria of the general notability guideline. In fact, he didn't meet the general criteria of WP:BIO. But arguments in favor of keeping the article quoted the additional criteria for creative professionals, claiming that, despite being at best a key animator, the works in which this person worked are notable enough that he fulfilled the additional criteria and thus that was enough to keep the article. There is no indication that Kobayashi is regarded as an important figure or is widely cited by peers or successors, and there are no sources that recognize him as being the originator of a significant new concept or that he played created or played a major role in co-creating a significant or well-known work, or collective body of work that has been the subject of an independent book or feature-length film, or of multiple independent periodical articles or reviews. Essentially, his work does not seem to presume that he meets the additional criteria for any biography and only allegedly meets the third point of WP:ARTIST. The closing administrator determined that there was no consensus because it was not his call to determine whether or not it was sufficient that one of his works fulfilled the criteria of the Wikipedia notability guidelines without him meeting the general notability guideline.

Thus, I would like to know what's the current consensus on this policy-related debate. Is it enough that a work from a person is relatively notable per the notability guidelines to warrant an article about said person even if he/she doesn't meet the general notability guideline or the notability (people) basic guideline? If so, what kind of creative work must the person meet to presume that he/she played a major role in co-creating, a significant or well-known work? Is it enough to be a key animator or does the person need to be director, animation director or writer? How does this apply to other fields like sports? Jfgslo (talk) 00:16, 13 February 2011 (UTC)

There was very recently an RfC about this question, at Wikipedia talk:Notability/Archive 47#Do subject-specific guidelines override the GNG. It's a topic where editors disagree quite a lot, and I'm not sure that there was really any sort of consensus there. For what it's worth, my individual opinion (your mileage may vary) is that, at least in theory, there should be no such thing as an SNG that confers notability on a subject that truly fails GNG. Instead, SNGs are intended to provide easy-to-follow guidance as to whether or not a page is likely to satisfy GNG, in cases where it may be hard to track down the sourcing needed to literally pass GNG as written (example: a person who lived before the existence of sources that are available on line, where the sources as described by GNG might require going to a library that is not practical to get to, so the SNG describes alternative sourced information that would indicate that the library sourcing does indeed exist somewhere). Thus, if a subject passes an SNG, there is a presumption that GNG sourcing exists somewhere. In practice, situations like the one you cite end up being decided case-by-case, by the consensus at the individual AfD. It would be nice to have more of a bright-line guideline, but consensus for such a bright line just doesn't exist. --Tryptofish (talk) 00:30, 13 February 2011 (UTC)
I belatedly participated in the debate referred to above. My personal view is increasingly that the SNG should be designed to provide easy-to-follow guidance for classes of articles that in general, meet the GNG in order to reduce the amount of debate on individual cases, increase consistency, and allow comprehensive coverage (in principle) of some classes of people or things. But at present, some of the individual criteria in some of the SNG are not easy to follow, or are drawn too broadly and thereby include articles that, in general would not meet the GNG. I think that it's the particular criteria that are the problem here, and we should try to reword or remove such criteria. Qwfp (talk) 09:11, 13 February 2011 (UTC)
SNGs should provide likely criteria whereby a topic may not presently show that it meets the GNG but that given reasonable time and effort on the part of editors, sources can be found or will come about. It should not be the case where the SNG criteria can be met once and then no further sources to show more notability never have to be shown. If, 5 years down the road after its creation, I come across an article that meets an SNG but no effort has been shown to source it better, I will likely start calling for editing improvements or deletion process (without being BITEY about it, of course). SNGs can provide cases where the GNG can be shown to be met, but the SNG criteria require even stricter requirements; but that's not the case here with BIO. --MASEM (t) 14:53, 13 February 2011 (UTC)

Is a woman who is sentenced to death in the USA notable?

Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/Emilia Carr has a considerable number of people who feel that being female and being sentenced to death is a definite notability criteria, though we don't appear to have a guideline on such a situation. Is the clear consensus on the AfD a local consensus, or it a wider held consensus? If it is a wider held consensus then it would be helpful to have a clause added to Wikipedia:Bio#Crime_victims_and_perpetrators, such as "The sentence for the crime is noteworthy enough to have attracted commentary from reliable sources, such as Ruth Ellis being the last person sentenced to death in the UK." SilkTork *YES! 16:28, 4 March 2011 (UTC)

I would agree with Silktork that a new clause needs to be added. It generally seems like people considers female killers sentenced to death is in fact notable in itself. In the case referred to there is other factors including the mentioned one that has made users coming to a quite clear consensus about that particular article.--BabbaQ (talk) 16:40, 4 March 2011 (UTC)
In the U.S., I don't think any kind of case has been made that this constitutes notability. This person is no Eileen Wuornos; just another non-rich convict who happens to be female. --Orange Mike | Talk 17:18, 4 March 2011 (UTC)
hmm have you actually read the article?--BabbaQ (talk) 17:33, 4 March 2011 (UTC)
A similar issue occured at the Silver Star article, with Leigh Ann Hester. While being awarded the Silver Star does not in of istelf make one notable, unlike the Medal of Honor, the fact that Monica Lynn Brown and Leigh Ann Hester were females being awarded the Silver Star was deemed by consensus to be a notable event as women usually are not in combat, and the Silver Star is only awarded for valor in the face of the enemy. While all awardees of the Silver Star are heros by definition, that does not make them notable by Wikipedia standards. Only the fact that these two women were in fact female was the determining factor in including them under "notable recipients" and in meriting their own stand-alone article. I suggest that that is a good standard for inclusion here. If Ruth Ellis is considered notable enough for her own stand-alone article, then she should certainly be mentioned here and linked. If not, then mentioning her (even in passing) is not merited. Rapier (talk) 18:32, 4 March 2011 (UTC)
It seems to me that this is a question of when WP:1E allows exceptions. I would think the decision in such AfDs would rest on whether or not the second paragraph of 1E applies to the particular page. --Tryptofish (talk) 21:37, 4 March 2011 (UTC)

There is no longer a consensus at the article that a woman who is sentenced to death is by default notable. It seems that some people think it is notable, while others don't. Our usual guide to notability is the range and depth of coverage in reliable sources, which can be done on a case by case basis, so a special clause would not be required if there is not a clear consensus that a woman who is sentenced to death is by default notable. SilkTork *YES! 17:28, 5 March 2011 (UTC)

While I think that this particular Afd will end with No consensus, its definitly something to continue discussing as we cant have people saying a person isnt notable simply because no one has brought the subject of women on death row up.--BabbaQ (talk) 18:01, 5 March 2011 (UTC)
That's kind of what an encyclopedia is...not a platform for original research, but a compilation/summary of what can be found elsewhere. If nothing can be found out there to support your opinion, then it shouldn't appear here in the encyclopedia. Tarc (talk) 18:47, 5 March 2011 (UTC)

Who cares? People get put to death all the time in the U.S. Unless this person killed like 20 people and ate them or something, it is not notable. User:RenamedUser5 (talk) 20:54, 5 March 2011 (UTC)

I do not agree with the claims of "inherent notability" for being a female who murders someone and gets the death sentence for it, anymore than being "over 70 years old" or "being a dwarf" or "being over 6 feet 9 inches tall" and getting the death sentence for murder would grant automatic notability, when any of those sorting criteria would likely produce an equally rarity. Notability requires more than sorting criteria which produce rarity of a conjunction. Edison (talk) 05:08, 6 March 2011 (UTC)
  • Does she meet the GNG? Most murderers do. Jclemens (talk) 05:13, 6 March 2011 (UTC)
    • But GNG clashes with WP:ONEEVENT, notability is more than just the GNG. In this case the coverage is minimal and entirely local, which speaks against the case being notable. Fences&Windows 05:24, 6 March 2011 (UTC)
      • Ongoing coverage of appeals is not the same event. Jclemens (talk) 05:32, 6 March 2011 (UTC)


A few weeks back, a good-faith editor nominated a number of articles on Olympic athletes (including some medal winners) for deletion at AFD. His rationale was that the athletes in question were only notable due to one event (the Games) and therefore did not pass BLP1E. All articles were kept, as our guideline with respect to notability of athletes (WP:ATHLETE) clearly states that any athlete who has competed at the Olympics is notable. Good faith or not, these AFD nominations showed that BLP1E isn't always understood in relation to other guidelines. The nominator suggested that the BLP1E entry be edited to avoid this problem again. Do we need anything more than:

"The Olympic Games are not considered a single event for the purposes of BLP1E. Individuals who have competed in an Olympic Games are considered notable pursuant to WP:ATHLETE."

Thanks. --NellieBly (talk) 23:04, 11 March 2011 (UTC)

There are more fundamental problems with BLP1E than that... but the existing guidelines already state: "if that person otherwise remains, and is likely to remain, a low-profile individual". Olympians are not low profile, full stop. The nominator should have been trouted at that point. Jclemens (talk) 23:24, 11 March 2011 (UTC)
I agree that it should be blindingly obvious, but that argument falls flat against a nominator who thinks "high-profile" means "well-known to Americans". --NellieBlyMobile (talk) 17:52, 12 March 2011 (UTC)
Agreeing with everything said above, but thinking that this is a problem which can keep coming up in different contexts without a bright-line rule. How about adding a more general statement like, "Absent exceptional circumstances, BLP1E should not be applied to an subject who meets the requirements of any of the specialized notability guidelines for individuals." Something similar for BIO1E as well. Hullaballoo Wolfowitz (talk) 20:19, 12 March 2011 (UTC)
That would seem sensible to me, assuming that its necessary to be that explicit about something that would seem to stand to reason. --FormerIP (talk) 20:37, 12 March 2011 (UTC)

re state legislators

Under WP:POLITICIAN there is a note (#12) for state legislators which says "This criterion ensures that our coverage of major political offices, incorporating all of the present and past holders of that office, will be complete regardless."

Is it really a goal of the Wikipedia to have an article on everyone who ever served in a state legislature? Because that's what it says. Maybe it is a goal, but has this been thought through? I'm asking because I'm dealing with William Nutt who served as a state legislator in 1871-72 and doesn't otherwise meet WP:GNG or any other criteria. Do we really need to have articles on folks like him?

Why state legislators in particular? No objection to listing them somewhere, but an article? I don't see a state legislator as any more prominent or important than a lot of other folk, and I could see this leading to a whole lot of my-great-grandpa cut-and-paste genealogycruft (like [[William Nutt]). But I dunno. I'm just wondering what was the reasoning behind this decision. Herostratus (talk) 23:20, 14 March 2011 (UTC)

Ahhh, the slippery slope fallacy, I never tire of seeing it used in an argument. --Richard Arthur Norton (1958- ) (talk) 04:56, 15 March 2011 (UTC)
The primary notability guideline, WP:Notability, makes it clear that notability is determined not by whether or not we think a subject is important but rather by "significant coverage in reliable sources that are independent of the subject". I was not involved in fashioning that part of WP:POLITICIAN, however, I imagine that there was some consensus that state legislators are presumed to have met WP:GNG. The example of William Nutt is actually a good example of this in that it shows that various people found him prominent enough, important enough, or "worthy of notice" enough to write about him and his achievements. Location (talk) 04:30, 15 March 2011 (UTC)
I agree with Location's general point here and oppose any changes to the consensus notability guideline WP:POLITICIAN. State and provincial legislators often have a major impact on their districts, and their states or provinces. Almost invariably, they are covered in depth by reliable sources during their time of service. When speaking of 19th century legislators, these sources may not be readily available online, but the presumption of the existence of these sources is a reasonable one. In theory, it would be a good thing if we had a referenced, biographical article on every one of them throughout history. In practice, perhaps only a small percentage will have articles researched and written any time soon. That is fine. If a person, even a great-great-grandchild, is motivated to research and write such an article, so be it. Pretty much by definition, these were notable people. Let these articles stand. Cullen328 (talk) 05:01, 15 March 2011 (UTC)
See Ambrose Abbott, an article I created, to see how well-sourced an article I could create about a random 19th century state legislator. Everything I could find online at Google Books and Google News archive, as well as everything I could find at a large public library is included as a ref, and it is pretty slim.It even includes Census information, which might be considered a primary source. The only "reliable sources" are the proceedings of the legislature, which say he served for one 8 week session. Is he notable enough for an article? This guideline seems to say "Yes," with "inherent notability," which many editors hate. My reference librarian suggested that there might be more info in the state library of the state where he served, such as archives of newspapers from his district (not included in online archives I could find.) If he were just a grocer, rather than a one session legislator, there is no way he would be found notable in an AFD. See also George Herbert Babb, who served in one term of the Main Legislature 1917-1918, and 2 terms in the Maine Senate. I could find no sources for him other than the legislature sources. I could find no references about them introducing legislation, making speeches, being involved in power politics or scandals, or anything else. These articles get viewed about 100 times and 24 times per month, respectively, so there does not seem to be a great demand for such information. On the other hand, it is verifiable (like the existence of some lake or some populated hamlet), and perhaps someone in the home state of the men might in the future go to the state library and find some old print references with more coverage to expand the articles. Edison (talk) 16:50, 15 March 2011 (UTC)
"Inherent notability" for state legislators is somewhat palatable, but the vast majority of these creations will likely never evolve past a stub. Consider also cases like New Hampshire...our General Court (i.e. state legislature) has 424 members, 4th largest in the English-speaking world. I'd be surprised if even the current 424 all had pages at this time. Tarc (talk) 16:59, 15 March 2011 (UTC)
We have the advantage in Wisconsin of the existence online of the gloriously useful Wisconsin Blue Books. In many states, if no such guide exists online, they may nonetheless be available at your state historical society and the like. (I've been working on Wisconsin's late-19th- to mid-20th-century Socialist legislators, who were often carpenters, cigarmakers, housepainters, tire vulcanizers, bookkeepers and the like, sometimes otherwise non-notable and often darned hard to trace after they leave office, in part because the policy of the establishment press was often to ignore such vile persons as much as possible.) --Orange Mike | Talk 17:18, 15 March 2011 (UTC)
I agree with Location about state legislators and notability. I started articles involving Wisconsin Legislators. Many of these state legislators have had some impact on their communiities. Therefore, the standard on notability and state legislators should be kept. Thank you-RFD (talk) 18:13, 15 March 2011 (UTC)
That sounds like a green light to create more stubs referenced to the state's legislative records, if no other references are obtainable. Good to know. I do expect that the electoral campaigns, political shenanigans, obituaries, local vanity biographies, Civil War histories of their service (if of that era), and other things which could flesh out such an article likely reside in the print archives of their state's archives and state newspaper morgues, regardless whether there are online sources. If Wikipedia grants blanket notability, even with slim referencing which satisfies WP:V, to legislators, hamlets, geographic dots on maps, obscure species, chemical compounds, proteins, stars, comets, etc., life as we know it will go on and the servers will not be overloaded, so long as the information is verifiable and referenced. Tarc, if it is "somewhat palatable" to you, then it suits me as well. Such stubs are at least "almanac type information" and not hoaxilicious vanispamcruftisements. Edison (talk) 04:09, 16 March 2011 (UTC)
Other than the threat to create stub articles on everyone, it is really hard to come up with material (notability takes care of itself) for most of these 19th century legislators and most of the early 20th century ones, as well. That is why there are so few. What, maybe 2% of all legislators from the 1980s and earlier whose term of service did not extend to the 21st century? Max. Student7 (talk) 00:45, 17 March 2011 (UTC)

There is, I think, one very good thing about the "state legislator" rule: it is entirely objective. Either you were one or you weren't. And that is a good thing. It's kind of arbitrary, but its defensible and it saves work.

I wouldn't overestimate how important a typical state legislator is. A lot of them are just drones. Yes they vote on laws, and laws are important, but a lot of things are important, and they're just one vote, and they vote as they're told. If they're committee chairs or something that's another matter.

It's like... if you have a distinguished but typical career as a lawyer, or a doctor, or a businessman, you don't get in. But if you have a distinguished but typical career as a professor or a porn actor, you do get in. If you have a distinguished but typical career as anything and it includes a couple years down at the state house, you get in.

These're just things that were decided. Not unreasonably, and it's not a terrible thing or anything.

Here is a list of people who are, all in all and taken as an average, probably at least as notable, impactful, accomplished, and likely to be looked up in an encyclopedia as a typical state legislator:

  • Vice-president of a large firm
  • Executive vice-president of a medium-sized firm
  • President of a firm (any size)
  • Senior partner at a large law firm
  • Senior surgeon at a large hospital
  • State director/chairman of large charity or large fraternal-type organization
  • Yadda yadda yadda

Should these people have articles? I don't know. Maybe. If state legislators do, they should, I would think.

However, I would support one immediate change to footnote #12: New Hampshire State Legislators are not covered by this rule. I am entirely serious - look into the Granite State legislature some time and you'll see why. Herostratus (talk) 05:41, 17 March 2011 (UTC)

The New Hampshire House of Representatives is very modest with 153 articles compared to the Pennsylvania House of Representatives that have 1,120 articles according to the category. Also there are the United States territorial legislatures. I had to create categories for articles in which the person served in a territorial legislature in a US territory prior to statehood. Wisconsin is a good example, so is Hawaii, Nebraska, Alaska, etc. Just a thought-thank you-RFD (talk) 20:31, 20 March 2011 (UTC)

Standalone lists

This section of the guideline says: "Many articles contain (or stand alone as) lists of people. Inclusion within stand-alone lists should be determined by the notability criteria above." The remainder of the section appears to deal only with lists contained in articles.

So, how does one evaluate a standalone list for notability? The sentence above seems to be circular. My interpretation is if each person listed in the standalone list is otherwise notable, the list must be notable. On its face, that seems like an absurd conclusion because it would mean that one could almost never challenge the existence of a list article. Is my interpetation wrong, or does the guideline need to be modified?--Bbb23 (talk) 14:13, 19 March 2011 (UTC)

No, the notability of the people on the list does not impart notability to the list grouping. "List of people that wear hats" would not be notable just because you populate it with notable people. Standalone list notability has been recently discussed over at WP:N in more detail. --MASEM (t) 14:36, 19 March 2011 (UTC)
Actually, I suspect that while there maybe a difference between the implementation of the standard for stand alone lists and lists of people in articles, that in fact the analysis is the same. A stand-alone list just being long enough to move out of the article which is supports. (A) For example, it seems to be standard practice that a list of notable alumni(ae) is a notable list when included as a section in an article on a school, college or university. Such included lists are notable for, it seems, two reasons: (1) it says something important about a university that it has seven Noble Prize winners (or whatever their individual notability) as alumni(ae); (2) the alumni(ae) status of the notable individuals is frequently included in reliable sources about their notable deeds (gifts, etc.), as opposed to just in their biographies. So, as for included lists, one should look for reliable sources about the topic that include X type of people as examples or secondly non-biographical reliable sources about events that include the status-in-question when mentioning the specific individuals. For example, articles about Lew Wallace as governor of New Mexico generally mention that he wrote the historical novel Ben-Hur and often mention that he was a general in the American Civil War, even though those facts are not directly germane to the topic. Thus it would be reasonable to suppose that under the topic Historical Novels a list of authors might be notable. This would be especially true if articles (reliable sources) about historical novels, such as the sixteen page Firth, C. H. (1922) "Historical Novels" Historical Association, London, OCLC 17517607, routinely discuss a selection of authors. Similarly, it would seem appropriate for an article on the American Civil War to have a list of generals, as being a general of that war seems to be a notable fact. (B) On the other hand, stand-alone lists appear to have a higher standard, as they do not have a topical article that they are supporting, but in fact they do either express or implied. Take for example a hypothetical list that may fail independent notability. For example, is "List of people diagnosed with colon cancer" notable? Questions: Do articles (reliable sources) about colon cancer generally list people by name as examples? No. Do non-biographical articles (reliable sources) about other aspects of notable people usually list their status as having been diagnosed with colon cancer? No. Does a list of otherwise notable people diagnosed with colon cancer support any concept that is true of colon cancer? No. Such a stand-alone list, were it to exist, probably is not notable. Other the other hand take, "List of animated theatrical shorts (cartoons)" which supports the less-than-fully-descriptively-entitled article Golden Age of American animation. Do articles (reliable sources) about animated theatrical shorts generally list cartoons by name as examples? Yes. Do articles (reliable sources) about other aspects of cartoonists usually include their status as having drawn/produced specific animated theatrical shorts? Yes. Does a list of otherwise notable cartoons support any concept that is true of animated theatrical shorts? Hard to say, probably not directly. I hope this helps. --Bejnar (talk) 17:06, 19 March 2011 (UTC)
Okay, I read what I think is the discussion that Masem was referring to (a little heavy-going because it was about lists and about other things), and, of course, I've read Bejnar's comments. Let's put this in concrete terms. Relatively recently, List of ex-gay people was created. The article defines its existence as follows: "This is a list of people who either identify as ex-gay, or who once identified as gay or lesbian and no longer do, or who have eliminated unwanted same sex attractions." Now, there is already an article called Ex-gay. That article is broader and covers mostly various groups around the world that are part of the so-called ex-gay movement. Within the Ex-gay article is a list of "people associated with the ex-gay movement". That list is much longer than the nine people in the List of ex-gay people article. There is overlap, but not everyone listed in the list article is also in the other article. And, of course, the two lists aren't defined the same.
The question becomes whether the List of ex-gay people is notable. I felt that even though the two lists weren't identical and were not defined the same, it nonetheless qualified for speedy deletion under Speedy Deletion criterion A10: "A recently created article with no relevant page history that duplicates an existing English Wikipedia topic, and that does not expand upon, detail or improve information within any existing article(s) on the subject, and where the title is not a plausible redirect." My nomination was declined because it wasn't a "duplicate". I then considered nominating the article for deletion and going through the deletion discussion process, but I got stuck on the guidelines.
Using Bejnar's colon cancer example, do articles about ex-gays generally list the ex-gays by name as examples? Well, yes and no. The Ex-gay article did not list ex-gays, it listed people associated with the ex-gay movement. I don't think an article about gay people would list gays as examples. So, in that sense, if others agreed with me, the ex-gay list would fail notability. However, I don't see how Bejnar's example is illustrated in the guidelines themselves. Contrary to what Bejnar says about the analysis of a standalone list and a contained list being the same, that is not what the guidelines say. In fact, they make a big deal out of distinguishing the two AND give no further guidance on standalone lists: "Inclusion in lists contained within articles should be determined by WP:Source list, in that the entries must have the same importance to the subject as would be required for the entry to be included in the text of the article according to Wikipedia policies and guidelines (including WP:Trivia sections). Furthermore, every entry in any such list requires a reliable source attesting to the fact that the named person is a member of the listed group." The bolding is in the guidelines.
So, now you have the background and a concrete example. What do you think?--Bbb23 (talk) 22:32, 19 March 2011 (UTC)
The two are different because the stand-alone list does not have a topical article that they are supporting. But if you find the appropriate topic, then the techniques of analysis are similar. So, being ex-gay and being a member of an ex-gay movement is not the same. For example, one could be the sister of an ex-gay and be in the movement because of your belief in your sibling. Therefore ex-gay movement is not the appropriate "topic" to analyze the "List of ex-gay people" against. It looks as though Wikipedia doesn't have such an article. (One of the problems with "movement" articles is that they are inherently POV. See for example my comment at Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/Abolition of Prostitution (a movement article).) It would be better if the ex-gay movement article was about the state (or status) or being ex-gay and the movement was dealt with within a section of the article. But anyway... Do reliable resources that discuss ex-gays provide examples of specific people? Yes, not many, but usually a few. Do non-biographical reliable sources about the notability of people mention in passing that they are ex-gay? nor usually. Is there any support for the non-article topic "ex-gay status" to be gleaned from a list of ex-gays? Probably not. Over-all it looks like a case of an un-necessary list, that is likely to contain original research, much like the list discussed at Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/List of resisters to the war in Afghanistan (2001-present). --Bejnar (talk) 23:49, 19 March 2011 (UTC)
The Ex-gay article should be renamed to be "Ex-gay movements". That's what it is about. The explanation of the term ex-gay and any collateral information about ex-gays are incidental to the article's main thrust. I agree with your conclusion that the list is unnecessary (obviously or I wouldn't have nominated it), but I don't think it has original research per se. Each of the people listed has a source that supports the proposition that the individual is an ex-gay. I also still find it tough to apply the guidelines as written if I were to nominate the list for deletion. I can't very well reference "Bejnar's guidelines". :-) --Bbb23 (talk) 00:00, 20 March 2011 (UTC)
Actually, I expect that you will find synthesis in the list, because it says who once identified as gay or lesbian and no longer do. the guideline says: Do not combine material from multiple sources to reach or imply a conclusion not explicitly stated by any of the sources. If one reliable source says A, and another reliable source says B, do not join A and B together to imply a conclusion C that is not mentioned by either of the sources. You can nominate the list as 1.) not independently notable (i.e. there are not source materials about ex-gay status separate from the ex-gay movements); 2.) contains synthesis rather than sourced data; 3.) combines non-essential (not mentioned when the person is mentioned in a non-biographical source materials) personal data to create a new category; 4.) The list might be independently notable if it were of people in the ex-gay movements, but not as is. and as a list of people in the ex-gay movements it is duplicative of the otehr list. --Bejnar (talk) 14:23, 21 March 2011 (UTC)
Actually, the list article says "This is a list of people who notably identify as ex-gay, or who once did." Then, each person has a citation to a source in which they identified as being ex-gay. I don't see any synthesis there. I have taken your comment to heart that the ex-gay article should really be called the ex-gay movement article. I've proposed that on its Talk page. So far, one editor agrees with me, and no other editor has commented. I said I'd wait a bit for comments. If there is no opposition, I'll do the name change/move. After I've done that, I will nominate the ex-gay list for deletion and see how much of your commentary can be worked into the discussion.
However, I do think that the notability guidelines for lists should be rewritten. There should be nothing about lists contained in articles because the content of an article supposedly isn't judged by notability ("These notability guidelines only outline how suitable a topic is for its own article or list. They do not directly limit the content of an article or list."). Thus, to focus the notability of a list article on lists that are contained in articles is inherently contradictory and confusing.
Finally, I want to thank you for hanging in there on this. I appreciate it.--Bbb23 (talk) 23:34, 21 March 2011 (UTC)

Notability for businesspeople

What are the notability guidelines for businesspeople? I see that any politician of reasonable national or international imporance is notable. Does this extend to businesspeople as well -- and if not, why not? Say, the top 5 people at Fortune 500 companies or well-known private firms? I'm unsure about the notability of Michael Patsalos-Fox, for example, who was one of the top 5 at well-known consultancy McKinsey & Company. Thanks! My2011 (talk) 22:46, 4 April 2011 (UTC)

Anyone else please correct me if I'm wrong, but I do not think that there is a specialized guideline for businesspersons per se. There is WP:ORG, which deals with businesses, however, and I think that one can apply common sense to that and expect that a person might be notable on the basis of their business to the extent that the business, itself, is or is not notable. Beyond that, WP:GNG always applies. --Tryptofish (talk) 23:56, 4 April 2011 (UTC)
Agree, I see no reason to attempt to establish criteria for every walk of life. The GNG and the closely related basic bio criterion seem to be adequate. VQuakr (talk) 02:37, 5 April 2011 (UTC)

Writers and directors aren't as notable as actors?

Why are there different standards? WP:ENTERTAINER says actors are notable if they have "had significant roles in multiple notable films, television shows, stage performances, or other productions." Why not use the same standards for writers and directors? Aren't they equally significant in the multiple films and television shows? Dream Focus 17:28, 16 April 2011 (UTC)


To get around the WP:VICTIM policy, editors are creating articles that incorporate the bio but are named something else. See, for example, the Murder of Eve Carson. Student7 (talk) 19:55, 12 April 2011 (UTC)

If the article is simply a biography page, that would indeed be a concern. But if it is about the event, rather than about the person, then the notability depends on the notability of the event. --Tryptofish (talk) 21:08, 12 April 2011 (UTC)
I've experienced this the other way around with some editors recommending an article about a notable event be deleted because it is named after the victim or the perp. Location (talk) 02:35, 13 April 2011 (UTC)

Multiple secondary sources

How many multiple secondary sources are needed before someone becomes notable? 3? 5? Presuming they're on different topics etc. Thanks! Alien9542 (talk) 00:26, 16 April 2011 (UTC)

Hopefully, it is apparent that they are notable outside of their local area to anyone who might audit the bio. For the record, Wikipedia has too many bios now undergoing "review." The review will mostly terminate in the bio being declined or nominated for deletion. We are not looking to "create" notable people. The media (I suppose) has already created them.
Perhaps the criteria ought to be more subjective. "If there is any doubt in the editors mind that the person is notable, s/he should skip the bio."
For example, most mayors are not notable. Therefore, a person's notability should exceed that of the local mayor.
Sorry I didn't answer your question. But it can't be answered in quantitative terms. The person could be mentioned 100 times in local sources and not be notable. Or 2 at the national level and be notable. But even that isn't guaranteed. Student7 (talk) 12:03, 18 April 2011 (UTC)

WP:ANYBIO being satisfied by Padma Shri?

Does being awarded Padma Shri satisfy the requirement of WP:ANYBIO for "[having] received a well-known and significant award or honor" by itself? This was just claimed in Sivanthi Adithan. Are we now to create 2336 stubs for the recipients (as of 2010)? I'd rather hear what people think before taking this to AfD. --Muhandes (talk) 07:39, 1 May 2011 (UTC)

I don't know about the award, but Sivanthi Adithan appears to have other claims to notability so I would likely recommend "keep" in an Afd. Location (talk) 14:17, 1 May 2011 (UTC)
To clarify, this is first and foremost a general question about the applicability of Padma Shri in satisfying WP:ANYBIO, not an AfD discussion. --Muhandes (talk) 14:47, 1 May 2011 (UTC)
Understood. I was pointing out that the example you provided was not a good one in that the notability of the subject was not attained solely on the basis of receiving the award. I've spot checked Category:Recipients of the Padma Shri and cannot find any stubs that were created simply for receiving the award. As with the example you provided, it's likely that people who have received the award are notable for other things. Location (talk) 00:31, 2 May 2011 (UTC)
I understand. But notability needs to be verified with reliable sources. It is my understanding that WP:ANYBIO is a loophole where all that needs to be verified is the award. My query was whether other editors think Padma Shri is such a significant award to merit that (as was claimed with this edit), or would additional sources be required. --Muhandes (talk) 08:48, 2 May 2011 (UTC)

International Math Olympiad, exceptional participants

I'm looking to find out what notability guidelines (any of them) say regarding to exceptionally successful participants in the International Mathematical Olympiad (i.e., participants with three or more gold medals), or exceptionally young participants. Of course, some of them already gained notability beyond their IMO success (e.g., László Lovász, Terence Tao), but some did not (yet). Question is whether these people meet notability criteria for their exceptional IMO results alone? (Keep in mind we're talking about a small group of people here; List of International Mathematical Olympiad participants is complete, so we're not "opening the floodgates" here).

This has been the topic of a number of AfDs now, and no clear consensus has been established. Some resulted in delete (i.e., Tiankai Liu, Darij Grinberg [note: Grinberg wouldn't have meet the criteria I'm proposing here, anyway]), some in keep (i.e., Reid W. Barton). Recently, Iurie Boreico has been nominated for deletion. So can we please find consensus here?

As pointed out at Wikipedia talk:Notability (academics), we're not talking about academic achievements here, because it doesn't add to "sum of all human knowledge". A fitting comparison for IMOs might be chess tournaments, or any athletic competition. Certainly a "simple" participation in these tournaments doesn't merit notability, but if I'm not mistaken we do recognize exceptional achievements. For example, we have an article on some of the youngest ever chess grandmasters, like Richárd Rapport or Illya Nyzhnyk. Shouldn't we also have articles on some of the youngest IMO winners, like Raúl Chávez Sarmiento, or Aleksandr Khazanov, or on some of the exceptionally successful participants, like Christian Reiher, or Iurie Boreico? --bender235 (talk) 10:54, 2 May 2011 (UTC)

Just so everyone is clear: it's an international math competition for high school students. A large number of the participants get gold medals. My own take is: if they satisfy WP:GNG because of third party stories written about their performance, then they're notable, but the performance itself does not confer notability. —David Eppstein (talk) 15:20, 2 May 2011 (UTC)
Yes, you're right. I've forgot to mention that this is a high school competition. Anyway, the number of three-time gold medallists is pretty small (exceptionally successful participants is complete), therefore were not talking about a large number of individuals here.
Also, judging it individually by (press) coverage is problematic, because it differs from country to country. Three-time German gold medallist "Lisa Sauermann" got far more coverage than three-time Moldavian gold medallist "Iurie Boreico". Wouldn't it be unfair to call one of them notable, and the other one not? --bender235 (talk) 16:18, 2 May 2011 (UTC)


What is a "significant award or honor" in WP:ANYBIO? Specifically in the British honors system, what level would be considered "significant"? Would it include the highest levels of knighthood, all levels, OBE or levels below that? TFD (talk) 03:50, 29 April 2011 (UTC)

I don't think the term "honor" was referring to an honors system, but to honors generally. As to whether/which knighthoods would apply, this was discussed briefly at Wikipedia talk:Notability (people)/Archive 2009#Peers again, though no conclusion seems to have been reached. Perhaps the folks over at Wikipedia:WikiProject Peerage and Baronetage could help you? --Philosopher Let us reason together. 02:12, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Any honour bestowed by the monarch would appear prima facie notable. The lists are widely published and disseminated. And widely discussed. Note that any honour bestowed by any nation is "notable" - even the US Purple Heart, bestowed upon many. Local honours are not generally notable ("key to a city" material). Awards given by national private organizations are generally considered notable in Wikipedia ("Oscars" specifically, and many others including life-saving medals). Is there a specific honour you wish to discuss? Collect (talk) 11:24, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Would you recommend keeping an article about someone whose only notability was the receipt of a purple heart? TFD (talk) 03:03, 16 May 2011 (UTC)
If a RS source made a specific note of it, likely yes. I know of no book which is merely a list of the recipients of that medal, and we have over a thousand BLPs apparently relating to recipients of it. Te probability is high that it was related to a specific event as a minimum, and quite likely the person would have more than the single medal as an event in their life. In short, I find no reason to think that such a person exists whose receiving of the medal is covered in a reliable source. Can you find one, or it is simply a cavil for its own sake? Collect (talk) 19:15, 17 May 2011 (UTC)
The original question was "significant" awards, perhaps really a bio question and not for this project. Somehow this got changed to "notable," where notability was not really the topic. Student7 (talk) 13:39, 17 May 2011 (UTC)

Notable Alumni

Hello, I would like to know if there is a consensus on who should be included on a list for a fraternities or sororities Notable Alumni list? I was editing the page of Sigma Lambda Beta and re added a template that was removed by User:Coquidragon who removed the template and re-added the list stating “Undid this deletion which was made without cause” even though previous edits left a link Wikipedia:Notable alumni was placed as to reason for original removal. Fearing a mistake I would just want some clarification on the issue. Thank you. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Justplaying2 (talkcontribs) 18:43, 12 May 2011 (UTC)

Wikipedia:Notable alumni is not part of the guideline, and is only kept for historical reference. However, WP:NLIST, which says almost the same, is part of the guideline, and is what I usually give as a reason for deleting members from a list of alumni. Anyway, I find that the best approach is to first add {{alumni}} to the list, and after some time if no sources and notability are shown, remove. --Muhandes (talk) 20:48, 12 May 2011 (UTC)
These tags last forever. I suggest tag each name with {{fact|needs source identifying alleged alum as actual grad and the year they graduated, or would have graduated if they left early}}. Then delete the ones without footnotes at the end of three months. That's plenty of time. Otherwise, it will be in the same shape a year from now. IMO. Student7 (talk) 18:42, 14 May 2011 (UTC)

Suggested changes to "entertainers" section

While the majority of entertainers work in the field of acting, singing, dancing, and comedy, the "Entertainers" section has a single sub-section for "Pornographic actors and models." This seems on its face to have a number of issues that could use some changes:

  • "Pornographic actors" could be considered an "oxymoron." Some people actually assume that most porn stars are not notable for their "acting" ability;
  • "Models" are not considered "entertainers;"
  • Having a single subsection is clearly wrong since if anything it should be included in the main subject and only subdivided if there are at least two subsections;
  • The fact that articles about notable people is a key attribute of WP, excluding mention of "dancers," for example, and emphasizing the above moronic connections, does nothing to enhance WP as a RS.
  • The entire text description of "entertainers" in the section also seems totally wrong for each of its 3 examples:
    • Having "significant roles in multiple notable films," etc. is meaningless and redundant, and ignores the basics of RS and V criteria;
    • Requiring a "large fan base" or "cult following," is without support and likewise meaningless;
    • Requiring "unique, prolific, or innovative contributions" is more of the same unsupported verbiage.
  • The fact that the "Entertainers" section is so devoid of meaningful description in its 3 numbered examples, with the fact that the oxymoronic and overweight subsection has 4 examples and even more text, would imply that WP's definition of "notable people" leaves something to be desired. It should be entirely rewritten. --Wikiwatcher1 (talk) 19:26, 25 April 2011 (UTC)
  • Comment: I'm not yet supporting or refuting these points but this, IMO, is not sufficient enough of a discussion to change such an important guideline. WikiProject Pornography should have been notified and musicians already have their own notability guidelines. J04n(talk page) 01:47, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
I agree with J04n: I don't yet have an opinion, but I think there needs to be much clearer consensus for such a change. (My initial reaction is that we need specific language about porn, not as a value judgment about acting prowess, but to avoid controversies about article deletions.) Perhaps an RfC should be considered if you really want this change. --Tryptofish (talk) 21:25, 16 May 2011 (UTC)
On the porn bios - I've been looking for a way of sensibly, fairly, limiting these articles. It would be nice to suspend Afds, and explain which articles might not survive under the new guidelines. Or which (in sandboxes) would be enabled. I would feel very uncomfortable waking up tomorrow and discovering that we had inadvertently enabled the creation of several thousand new articles on "porn actors/actresses"! And let's not look for 100% consensus on this, if we are serious. 100% is not achievable. These folks have their own claque, like everyone else. Student7 (talk) 13:10, 17 May 2011 (UTC)
Hasn't Mr. Wales just created a Wiki Lite (I forget the name) where transitory entertainers, popular musicians, etc. might go? This would relieve the strain considerably off a site trying to be a serious encyclopedia, and not a almanac or grocery store tabloid. Student7 (talk) 13:14, 17 May 2011 (UTC)
a Fando-pedia would be great! Active Banana (bananaphone 19:24, 17 May 2011 (UTC)

Creative professionals guidelines

The criteria for the inclusion of articles on "creative professionals" are far more stringent than those for entertainers, and I'm wondering why.

For instance, one of the criteria for entertainers is "has a large fan base or a significant 'cult' following." Writers often have a "a large fan base or significant 'cult' following," but for "creative professionals", notability is based on reception among peers or critics. This would be like including figures from the entertainment business only if they've been widely recognized in RS as having made significant contributions to their craft. In fact, most working fiction writers survive on the basis of their fan following; they don't have the attention of the Manhattan-based publishing elite, but their books keep getting published and keep selling. Under the current guidelines, a writer must be "important" (which elsewhere is distinguished from generally "notable") and have demonstrated significance to a degree that only the top echelon of writers ever achieve. By contrast, I've never tried to look up any minor actor and not found a WP biography. WP is full of garage bands that few people are ever going to hear of.

Based on our guidelines, a writer could've published five books, had one of them reviewed in several sources, and been nominated for an Edgar, and her article could still be targeted for deletion. A poet who's published three books, won an award, and been nominated for others isn't "notable" enough (though obviously acknowledged within the field, if you know anything about the world of contemporary poetry), because neither of them

  • is regarded by peers or successors as "important". (David Foster Wallace is important to literary history; Bernard Cornwell is not.)
  • has originated a significant new concept, theory or technique. (Vanishingly few writers throughout literary history have done this; if there are even 50 in Western literature who could meet this criterion inarguably I'd be surprised.)
  • has created, or played a major role in co-creating, a significant or well-known work, or collective body of work, that has been the subject of an independent book or feature-length film, or of multiple independent periodical articles or reviews. (This one takes the cake. A measure of a writer's notability is whether his book has made into a movie? Ha. And there are many, many writers who have produced a "well-known" book within their genre or field that hasn't been the subject of a book-length treatment. Popular writers with a large fan base may not generate academic treatment in periodicals.)
  • has work that either (a) has become a significant monument, (b) has been a substantial part of a significant exhibition, (c) has won significant critical attention, or (d) is represented within the permanent collections of several notable galleries or museums. (Again, this is setting a much higher bar than we set for entertainers. It excludes many, many contemporary visual artists who may exhibit regularly, perhaps contributing one painting that is arguably not a "substantial" part of whatever a "significant" exhibition is, or who may have independent exhibitions in galleries that aren't permanent.)

These stringent guidelines encourage deletion battles over articles about writers who have numerous publications and a solid readership, or writers of previous centuries who are quite minor figures but who left enough of a mark on culture to be noted, though not to the glorious degree outlined above. Notoriously, however, Wikipedia features many articles on supporting characters from TV series (or the actors who portray them) that have no cultural currency beyond the number of eyes who watch them. They don't have to be "important" to peers or successors.

I would also point out that a couple of years ago, there was a flurry of coverage about print publications cutting back their book review sections; mid-list authors in particular are now reliant mainly on online-only book review sites such as Bookslut which may not meet RS. By comparison, a short-lived, critically panned crime show will generate a number of articles in MSM that would enable it to meet notability criteria. The notability criteria should be appropriate to the field of endeavor.

What gives? If you've ever tried to get a book accepted by a major publisher, you know that the mere fact of getting five or six books published is a serious vetting process. (Stupid and trivial books get published, but dumb stuff can still be notable, as we acknowledge frequently on WP). Why are sales figures and a fan base not acceptable measures of notability for writers? I emphasize writers, but as I point out above, visual artists get the shaft too, in different ways. Cynwolfe (talk) 15:14, 29 May 2011 (UTC)

Having read this twice, I am wondering exactly how you would like to see the change. I think no one is actually challenging most author pages as notable (I mean if an author gets nominated for an award or is discussed in 3 or more sources, they are likely to be kept in my experience). Bernard Cornwall, for instance, is clearly notable because historical fiction critics bring him up all the time. However, many first novelists, per my recently written article Debut novel, don't stand much of a chance in creating an impact on readership or the publishing industry, therefore are non-notable. Do you have any particular deletion discussions in mind where you think our notability policies have been misapplied? I don't remember encountering any recently, I think the bias you are seeing is just because less people are interested in talking about their favorite authors and novels unfortunately :P If you could give some more specific ways in which you would like to see the Notability guidelines changed that would be great, Sadads (talk) 16:26, 29 May 2011 (UTC)
Yes, quite right. (I mentioned Cornwell to illustrate the subjective ambiguity of "importance": he's clearly notable and a competent craftsman, as indicated by his level of success and accompanying coverage, but has no importance in terms of canonical literary history, and certainly doesn't meet the criterion of originating something new.) I'm thinking of so-called "mid-list" authors, who have published a number of books and whose sales records obviously are substantial enough for mainstream publishers to keep publishing their works, but who won't generate a lot of secondary coverage for the reasons above. Publication of multiple books by a mainstream publisher (that is, one who meets guidelines similar to those of RS) is in itself evidence of notability, in a way that self-published books aren't, because it's a vetting process. Entertainers are considered notable if a certain number of people think they are (the "fan" or "cult" criterion); I don't know how fandom is verified, but if it's a legitimate criterion, it should apply to writers as well. As for specific examples, here's the most recent one that prompted this tirade: Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/Carole Berry. (Here's another, historical and from a different field, and another minor writer.) All these resulted in "keep" (well, one is still open), but the strong wording of the "creative professional" guidelines encourages these time-wasting AfDs, when what's probably needed in most of these cases is a simple {{Refimprove}} tag. Cynwolfe (talk) 17:11, 29 May 2011 (UTC)
Okay so now I see what you are getting at, that is a problem, people aren't looking far enough afield for sources to point to significant coverage through reviews in periodicals per #3 with the following wording which cuts the wording "significant or well-known work," which as you point out is not at all representative in other parts of the encyclopedia and adds the fact that industry review is still review:
  • The person has created, or played a major role in co-creating, a work, or collective body of work that has been the subject of an independent book or feature-length film, or of multiple independent periodical articles or reviews. (Reviews may include industry publications such as Kirkus Review or Publisher's Weekly for books).
Is this getting at where you see the problem? Our standards for books are nowhere near as high as our standard for their authors apparently, and I think this solves it. We may also want to add a note to #1 which mentions that "High regard from peers can be ascertained based on recognition as winners or runner ups for creative community awards." Sadads (talk) 17:50, 29 May 2011 (UTC)
We may also want to say at the beginning "Creative professionals should be considered notable if they meet one or more of the following:" because as you point out, rarely does someone meet all those criteria, especially in literature and art, Sadads (talk) 17:53, 29 May 2011 (UTC)
Yes, sorry I didn't try to distill my first remarks better; I was trying to show the reasoning. I especially like the "one or more" introduction you propose. What we want is something to verify that a writer is established in the profession, it seems to me, as a form of notability; the current wording sounds as if we're placing a special burden of importance, quality, or significance on those who fall in the category of "creative professionals" that doesn't apply to entertainers in general (since writers of popular fiction can be considered "entertainers" in that their work is meant to be entertaining, not necessarily monumental). I also agree that awards, or nominations for awards that are not self-nominated (which are sometimes made public), are indications of peer esteem that could be mentioned in establishing notability. I left requests for comments at various projects pertaining to literature, so there may be other suggestions for wording forthcoming.
In the criterion you quote, I would change the order of clauses: The person has created, or played a major role in co-creating, a work, or collective body of work, that has been the subject of multiple independent periodical articles or reviews, or of an independent book or feature-length film. The clause I've moved to the end is a harder-to-reach goal than the other, and it would be unusual to have a work that spawned an independent book or film without having had reviews. I would also place this criterion first in the list, as it seems more basic than evaluations of a writer's importance or originality. Having those two first may cause an over-reading of what the third actually says.Cynwolfe (talk) 21:07, 29 May 2011 (UTC)
Very good. I like we are with this, hopefully some others show up :P 08:55, 30 May 2011 (UTC)
Cynwolfe's new wording is much better! The old wording definitely led to over-reading of the requirements and was quite out of sync with WP:MUSICBIO. Voceditenore (talk) 09:46, 31 May 2011 (UTC)
The problem is not to loosen criteria on others but to figure out how to apply them to pop bands, most of whom play in bars and have cut whatever passes for a CD nowdays. They aren't very "notable." How do we take "creative" guidelines and apply it to pop musicians? Student7 (talk) 17:40, 31 May 2011 (UTC)
The gulf between criteria for writers and pop bands does indeed seem vast, but maybe I should point out again that I wasn't talking about "loosening" criteria to include self-published writers. You're right that a band with enough cash can rent a studio and record a professional-sounding CD, but that doesn't make them notable. Notice, however, that while a band is notable if it "has released two or more albums on a major label or on one of the more important indie labels," the bar is much higher for writers: there is no equivalent criterion such as "has authored two or more books published by a major publisher or one of the more important small presses." Writers are required to have significant secondary coverage, which as I pointed out above is increasingly hard to come by for mid-list authors these days even if their books sell well. Cynwolfe (talk) 20:02, 31 May 2011 (UTC)
I have to agree with Cynwolfe, we aren't actually loosening this policy with the wording that we propose in respect to other groups, but instead bringing the wording of the notability guidelines of writers and others "creative professionals" in line with common practice on AFDs and General notability guidelines, so that the policy does not actually interfere with what should be a straightforward acceptance of notability. Admittedly, I think we are a little too lenient on letting bands in :P but I don't think this will actually change the way we handle authors, it will just make it more straightforward, Sadads (talk) 08:26, 1 June 2011 (UTC)

Question on cumulative notability

I have a question:

  • If person A has done X that by itself would make them only marginally notable, perhaps not really enough to deserve their own article
  • If person A has also done Y that by itself would make them only marginally notable, perhaps not really enough to deserve their own article
  • is person A notable because X+Y is accumulative?
  • why isn't that covered in the article? Flying Fische (talk) 20:32, 23 May 2011 (UTC)
That's a good situation to use the GNG directly in, and try to measure the actual coverage. It's not mechanical; there's no formula. Hullaballoo Wolfowitz (talk) 21:10, 23 May 2011 (UTC)
(ec) Because it's tricky and must be decided on a case-by-case basis? Personally I think notability is really a logarithmic scale. If you want to put it numerically, you could take it as the order of magnitude of the number of people who have heard of the person. If the limit is 100 million and aspects X and Y each narrowly miss this target, then that usually means something like 10 million people know the person from X and 10 million know the person from Y. Together that would be 20 million, thus still not enough. (Only read this argument as a metaphor, please. Of course notability cannot be put into numbers.) Hans Adler 21:17, 23 May 2011 (UTC)
The problem is that few people in here seem to understand how the adult entertainment industry works. Pornstars notability should be measured inside the adult entertainment business and not outside of it. I have seen deletions of pornbio articles lately that can be compared to deleting The Killers from the music section. If you want to include pornbios on WP you must know which the reliable secondary sources are and how they work, you must know what are the important awards, the weight of certain nominations, how the industry works today versus just five years ago. The adult entertainment world is a world by its own and does not follow certain standards of the mainstream entertainment. Media coverage in the adult entertainment business works differently than in other fields: they all start from a press release; there is little or none independent coverage of news and characters especially by the two major players AVN and XBIZ. A piece of news covered by Gram Ponante at Fleshbot makes it today much more relevant and independent and therefore reliable than if it was covered by AVN. An "as is" press release is published only on the Companies Press Release section at AVN and XBIZ and it's never endorsed by an AVN or XBIZ writer, but a piece of news covered by XBIZ and AVN and endorsed by their editors still starts from a company press release (except for interviews) and it still follow the original press release draft for a good 90%. This is just to say that you can't treat notability in porn as you would do in mainstream entertainment. --Engenius (talk) 01:12, 10 June 2011 (UTC)
Actually, we are not here to "fairly" select equal numbers of people from all walks of life. If there is a porn star with the credentials/notability of Stephen Hawking or Condolezza Rice, in the porn line of work, fine. If this works out to 1 out of 100,000 "performers", that's the way it is.
While testosterone is a hormone, it acts as a drug. Other notables do not have the advantage of stimulating a drug-like addiction. Maybe men editors should nominate, women editors should perform the final selection for women would-be porn "notables". Since women are not as addicted to testosterone as men are, they might be a bit more neutral and will ensure that the citations are truly reliable and sufficient to justify "notability." Student7 (talk) 12:53, 14 June 2011 (UTC)

Clarification about List of people policy

There has been quite a bit of confusion regarding the section WP:NLIST in recent the discussions at Talk:Line of succession to the British throne. My understanding is that the policy states that every person listed in the stand-alone list Line of succession to the British throne should be notable enough to have their own Wikipedia article. Is that the correct interpretation of this policy?

I just wanted to double check, since a handful of editors have had different interpretations; for example they quote the final sentence of that section, which is: "On the other hand, a list within an article of past school presidents can contain all past presidents, not just those who are independently notable", as justification that each person listed in Line of succession to the British throne need not be independently notable.

By the way, the list I mentioned has recently been reduced in size from over 2000 people to just 40 or so, following this archived BLP/N discussion. Mlm42 (talk) 02:19, 31 May 2011 (UTC)

First of all, I think that the case against requiring independent notability is stronger. It's a finite list, and its basic reason for existing is impaired if you start blanking slots. Second, who knew John Cleese was that high on the list? Hullaballoo Wolfowitz (talk) 03:31, 31 May 2011 (UTC)

Cleese? Am I missing some recondite joke? --Orange Mike | Talk 01:22, 10 June 2011 (UTC)
I think the more relevant policy for stand alone lists is WP:LISTPEOPLE, not WP:NLIST, which deals mainly with lists within articles. In essence, both policies require notability but they both allow exceptions, and it is important to distinguish between those exceptions.
WP:NLIST allows for an exception for any entry which would have otherwise been listed in the article, even if not notable by itself. So, for example, many Indian universities have a list of former vice chancellors, most of which are not notable by themselves. I don't think this is relevant for stand alone lists.
WP:LISTPEOPLE allows for an exception for a "person is especially important in the list's group". I tend to see this in an expansive way. For example, if a list is by definition meant to be complete and finite, that in itself sometimes makes a person important to the list. A list of succession, for instance, looks to me like the classic case where removing a member will leave a hole in the list, making that person "especially important" to the group. You can decide to stop the list at #100, but everyone up to 100 will need to be listed. --Muhandes (talk) 07:37, 31 May 2011 (UTC)
While the current list of succession to the British throne may be (mercifully) finite, I would like to point out that 80% of the British are direct descendants of Edward III. So, I suppose if "something" happened to the 40 on the current list, the other 50 million or so, most of them nn, would technically be eligible. This is the trouble with genealogy, and nn lists, generally. Would be nice to reduce them as much as possible. Student7 (talk) 14:10, 3 June 2011 (UTC)
Actually there are only a few thousand who are technically in line.. but your point still stands. And anyway, my question was about the non-notable people in the top 40.. I now realise the exception in WP:LISTPEOPLE allows them into lists, even if they are non-notable; thanks to Muhandes for pointing this out. Mlm42 (talk) 18:04, 3 June 2011 (UTC)

Essay elevation to Guideline proposal

You are invited to join the discussion at Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Military history/Notability guide#Essay to Guideline. RightCowLeftCoast (talk) 22:01, 12 June 2011 (UTC) (Using {{pls}})

Trimming shortcuts listed

Per WP:2SHORTCUTS, I propose trimming the number of shortcuts listed in the shortcut boxes to 2 or 3, from the 4 or 5 that are currently listed in the shortcuts boxes on this page. For instance, WP:CRIME, WP:VICTIM, WP:PERP, WP:PERPETRATOR, WP:CRIMINAL, can be reduced to WP:CRIME, WP:VICTIM, WP:PERP. LK (talk) 02:49, 15 June 2011 (UTC)

I also note that you made a trim like this at WP:PROF. I don't know, maybe this is where WP:IAR should trump WP:2SHORTCUTS. It seems to me that the most important thing is to make navigation user-friendly, not to make boxes tidy. Maybe I find "PERP" easiest to remember, and someone else remembers "CRIMINAL". Listing more shortcuts allows users more opportunities to remember one that they will, later, find useful. --Tryptofish (talk) 19:26, 15 June 2011 (UTC)
Point taken. I've added back one shortcut to WP:PROF. However, I think 5 is a little much. How about 4 as an upper limit? (With 2 or 3 being prefered.) LK (talk) 07:00, 16 June 2011 (UTC)
Thanks. I guess I agree with those numbers, broadly speaking, so long as plenty of IAR is allowed on a case-by-case basis. --Tryptofish (talk) 17:57, 16 June 2011 (UTC)

Question about artists

It current reads:

4. The person's work either (a) has become a significant monument, (b) has been a substantial part of a significant exhibition, (c) has won significant critical attention, or (d) is represented within the permanent collections of several notable galleries or museums.

Wouldn't having just one famed museum have your works in their permanent collection be enough to prove someone was notable? Why must it be several? Dream Focus 16:00, 1 July 2011 (UTC)
I imagine that a museum might be notable, but not all the artists represented in that museum are notable. Notability should be determined by more than just one "source". Location (talk) 16:35, 1 July 2011 (UTC)
I was thinking that museums like Falmouth Art Gallery which feature works by "old masters, major Victorian artists," decided someone's work was notable enough to add to their permanent collection, then that would prove they were notable. They know more about artwork and what's notable than anyone here does. An artist had his article deleted today [3] despite being featured in their permanent collection. [4] I found that rather odd. Dream Focus 18:37, 1 July 2011 (UTC)

Stage actors

At an AfD for a stage actor, it occurred to me that WP:ENT doesn't really deal adequately with notability for stage actors. Because plays have so many more performances than films and consequently so many more actors, having the guideline be "took part in several notable stage productions" is not really a good measure of notability. At the AfD, reviews were produced that showed that the actor had had large roles in several productions that were clearly notable, and if they were films instead of stage productions, it would have been a no-brainer keep. Yet it would be difficult to argue that every actor who had a lead in every few regional theatre pieces was notable enough for an article. How can we adjust this guideline to better address the notability of stage actors? Roscelese (talkcontribs) 17:39, 7 July 2011 (UTC)

How's this for a start: "For stage actors, who may play many dozens of roles during a lifetime, notability may be demonstrated by recognition through Tony Awards, Olivier Awards, multiple long-running Broadway or West End productions, or significant critical coverage of major roles in notable productions by reliable sources over the course of a significant stage career." -- Ssilvers (talk) 02:06, 8 July 2011 (UTC)
I think that Ssilvers has made a good start here. Cullen328 (talk) 02:39, 8 July 2011 (UTC)
It's a good start, yes. In my mind, though, the issue is more that many more people may perform in a notable play than in a notable film, rather than that a stage actor may play many roles. (Because a film actor may as well.) Should we also be concerned about bias against regional theatre? How can we make sure we also cover people who are notable in non-English-language theatre? Roscelese (talkcontribs) 03:38, 8 July 2011 (UTC)
In support of this issue, I'll quote from my statement at the procedure referenced: "Theater is a live experience which isn't processed simultaneously across the country like a film or recording; it is an immediate immersive experience which takes place in the here and now. As a result, all theater criticism is local. Some local theater criticism is good; the newspapers I threw as a child had truly awful theater criticism inside. No matter the variation, local sources don't generally make the best sources for this encyclopedia, except for major market work (New York, Chicago, LA, a small number of regionals). This definitely puts the working stage performer at a disadvantage when compared to the trivial hijinks which might gain the film or TV actor additional media coverage." I would like to see discussion on what constitutes notable productions. BusterD (talk) 13:01, 8 July 2011 (UTC)
Including just Broadway and the West End would appear to be rather biased. What about the rest of the world? What about the Market Theatre Johannesburg, Royal Exchange Manchester, Comedie Francaise, the Berliner Ensemble, Bristol Old Vic, Gil Vicente Theatre Lisbon, National Grand Theatre Beijing, Maly Theatre Moscow and so on. How will a theatre be determined to be sufficiently notable? Jezhotwells (talk) 19:28, 8 July 2011 (UTC)
Re:bias, I agree and I suspect that's one reason User:Roscelese raised the issue. While I only referred to U.S. locations, clearly there would be theaters around the world where productions would almost always be notable. My point was that local coverage doesn't usually meet the standard for independent reliable sourcing, but that some major theater markets possess notable newspapers and other media which report nationally and internationally. So I'm seeing several questions: How does a theater or theater company become notable? Is WP:GNG enough? Does each warrant an encyclopedia article? How does an individual production become notable? (Does every production with x number of independent reviews become notable, for example? Does such a production which meets GNG deserve a page?) What would be an appropriate standard for individual stage performer notability, seeing sometimes local sources (from non-notable theaters and productions) must be used to establish and verify? BusterD (talk) 02:27, 9 July 2011 (UTC)
Reset for a minute and forget modern day actors. There were nationally and internationally known stage stars before films. If guidelines were established with them in mind (before stage awards), this might help. Today, good acting is rewarded with a film contract. Actors whose film careers are flagging may find momentum in a stage role. Not a lot of truly notable actors nowdays whose careers are confined to the stage. Student7 (talk) 18:49, 9 July 2011 (UTC)
Even in cases where that is true, it's still a terrible measure of notability for stage actors. For instance, it would give you the impression that Mark Rylance is just barely notable for playing minor roles in The Other Boleyn Girl and Prospero's Books, although he has won two Tony Awards and two Olivier Awards for Best Actor, among other stage awards/nominations. Roscelese (talkcontribs) 13:51, 10 July 2011 (UTC)
  • Comment Perhaps the venue and production should count strongly - appearing as a significant character (even though not a lead character)in notable productions is likely a stronger recommendation of an individual actor's notability than anything else. And clearly appearing in notable productions at notable venues also would establish an actor's notability. ( In each case, notable refers to "able to have a Wikipedia article survive AfD" <g>.) This would bypass the issue of actors with twenty roles as a butler or maid getting by on numbers alone, or of "rave reviews" in Podunk being sufficient (although likely usable in the BLP). Cheers. Collect (talk) 14:03, 10 July 2011 (UTC)
Well, yes - but there's a wide spectrum between "podunk" and "the Tonys." Roscelese (talkcontribs) 03:01, 11 July 2011 (UTC)

Honourable occupations

I am in discussion about notability of a very short article concerning a Roman Catholic Bishop. I marked the article for a speedy delete as not demonstrating notability but two other editors asserted that merely being a bishop was an honourable estate and de facto conveyed notability on the article. I disagree but would welcome views, especially from editors who are not themselves linked to the Catholic faith.  Velella  Velella Talk   23:33, 9 June 2011 (UTC)

I'm trying, and failing, to remember discussions that have taken place about notability for clergy. But given how strictly CSD ought to be applied, I'd come down on the side of saying that the page should not be speedied, and the issue should instead be addressed by WP:PROD or WP:AFD. --Tryptofish (talk) 00:16, 10 June 2011 (UTC)
As a republican I don't give a dead mackerel about "honourable estate" or any such aristo garbage; but I believe the consensus is that R.C. bishops are pretty much inherently notable. --Orange Mike | Talk 01:14, 10 June 2011 (UTC)
Apologies Orangemike my thought were only half complete. The reference to honourable estate was a quotation from the Church of England marriage ceremony and I had intended to ask whether everyone who is married has therefore been awarded an honour - very much tongue in cheek. However the more significant point is that being a Bishop is a job like any other, it probably equate in salary and responsibility to a CEO of a medium sized business or a Headmaster. Why therefore are Bishops inherently notable whilst Headmasters are not? I am reluctant to start a test case AFD because that is not the way Wikipedian policy is made. Many editors believe that Bishops are inherently notable but I cannot find any policy that says so. Is this therefore a widespread delusion held by editors or is there indeed policy and if so, what is the logical basis of such a policy ? Alternatively, where can I raise this to get a proper discussion and develop some clear guidance so that we can have consistency ?  Velella  Velella Talk   16:44, 12 June 2011 (UTC)
I've looked through the archives, and found Wikipedia talk:Notability (people)/Archive 2008#Notability of clergy, which I suspect still reflects the current consensus about these things. (I have a memory of a more recent discussion on the topic, but I haven't been able to figure out where I saw it.) I suppose you could also try asking at WikiProjects that deal with religions. --Tryptofish (talk) 18:38, 12 June 2011 (UTC)
Thanks Tryptofish - that is the most useful contribution I have received to date on the subject! Regards  Velella  Velella Talk   23:05, 13 June 2011 (UTC)
You are very welcome! --Tryptofish (talk) 23:26, 13 June 2011 (UTC)
As a former lay preacher I recognized the phrase and wondered; yesterday was my 30th wedding anniversary and I certainly consider it an honor to be married to ma cher Cicatrice! --Orange Mike | Talk 14:24, 13 June 2011 (UTC)
btw, the justification for the general rule (which is stated in the essay WP:OUTCOMES), is that for RC bishops it is always or almost always possible to find sufficient references to meet the basic criterion WP:GNG. Checking even just in Google News Archive as a sort of very minimal quick preliminary, I find 80, including the New York Times. The article does need them added, I suggest you do so--it appears that he has a world wide role as a representative of the Philippine Church in international assemblies. DGG ( talk ) 01:29, 14 June 2011 (UTC)
People who hold high positions in major institutions are notable. TFD (talk) 02:40, 14 June 2011 (UTC)
Being a bishop in the Roman Catholic Church is hardly a "high position", in fact it is just a single notch above the lowest rank of priest. There are thousands of these low level managers. If they were soldiers, bishops would be mere lieutenants, not generals or even colonels. I'd accept "automatic" notability for cardinals but really, mere bishops are a "dime a dozen". A diocese often consists of only a single city and it's surrounding rural area. Are all mayors inherently notable? Roger (talk) 07:21, 11 July 2011 (UTC)
Nope. "Monsignor" is the rank above "priest." Below Pope, the top three ranks are essentialy Cardinal, Archbishop, and Bishop. A typical diocese has about a half million Catholics (generally at least one hundred thousand), making the Bishop the equivalent of a mayor of a major city. I trust the mayors of the top fifty US cities are notable <g>. Cheers. Collect (talk) 09:33, 11 July 2011 (UTC)
That same argument could not necessarily be applied to Bishops in the Church of England or the Church in Wales, which in the latter case can oversee relatively small rural population such as at Bangor or St. Davids. In these cases the total number of regular parishioners overseen by a Bishop might number only a few hundreds Should notability depend therefore on the church of which the Bishop is a member ? I believe that the best solution is NOT to say that Bishops are inherently notable but to simply apply the general tests of notability already well(ish) established in Wikipedia and not draw any special distinction for the Clergy.  Velella  Velella Talk   22:03, 16 July 2011 (UTC)


Are independent sources always needed to establish notability for an author? I mean this as a serious question. We accept some individuals as notable based on objective criteria. For example, WP:ACADEMIC states that being a Fellow of the IEEE would suffice. There's still some reference to reliable sources, but my guess is that at an AfD, if the subject was an IEEE Fellow, most editors would simply point to that part of the guidelines and WP:!VOTE to keep, his name appearing on an IEEE list being the only source needed.

With authors, it's looking to me like guidelines and practice have diverged and that practice (e.g., here) seems to be to accept objective criteria, e.g., sold lots of books, as sufficient, even if there are no independent sources actually about the subject. Do you think the criteria for WP:AUTHORs should change? Msnicki (talk) 14:41, 11 July 2011 (UTC)

No. The argument from mere quantity is not part of our current standards, and nobody has so far advanced a cogent argument that it should be added. --Orange Mike | Talk 14:48, 11 July 2011 (UTC)
  • The discussion has come up time and again. Some argue that even if a book sold millions of copies, it isn't notable without coverage, and reject adding anything to the book notability guideline page to say otherwise. Same way with writers. I argued back in 2008 that being the writer of various successful films including one that made 70 million dollars made someone a notable writer, but others argued against that point, deleted the article, and rejected any attempts to make chances to the notability guidelines for writers. Dream Focus 14:58, 11 July 2011 (UTC)
Then this needs to be discussed at length. As I understand it, nobody in Hollywood cares about who actually wrote a $70 million film, so that's not a very strong reed to lean on. Allegations of large sales from companies like Amazon are always questionable. There's a reason that best-seller lists are compiled in other ways. --Orange Mike | Talk 15:55, 11 July 2011 (UTC)
"Nobody in Hollywood cares about who actually wrote a $70 million dollar film"? Hollywood isn;t just TMZ, Perez Hilton, and their audiences.Hullaballoo Wolfowitz (talk) 16:08, 11 July 2011 (UTC)
I perhaps overstated my case slightly, but the remark was based on conversations with members of Writers Guild West, such as my wife of 30 years, and other people who have worked in the industry. --Orange Mike | Talk 00:25, 14 July 2011 (UTC)
This has become a perennial argument, and too much of it rests on a misapplication of WP:NOTINHERITED (which is neither policy nor guideline anyway). In most cases, the notability of authors is inseparable from the notability of the body of works they create. It's simply wrong, and it's inconsistent with Wikipedia's encyclopedic purpose, to insist that authors be treated as non-notable unless their personal lives can be covered in the gruesome detail that's become practice in "celebrity" biographies. As BLP indicates, when covering noncelebrities, there's nothing wrong with limiting principal coverage to matters related to that which makes them notable, which is to say, their creative work. They can't all be Kardashians, which is generally a very good thing.
There's also nothing wrong with applying reasonable rules of thumb in notability discussions. Most best-selling books generate enough coverage to establish notability; it's a very reasonable empirical argument which doesn't need specific acknowledgment in the applicable guideline. There are exceptions (how-to books, comics strip collections, etc), but such exceptions shouldn't swallow rational analysis. Hullaballoo Wolfowitz (talk) 16:04, 11 July 2011 (UTC)
The specific example to which Msnicki provides a link up above is an author of how-to books (also non-notable, every one of 'em). --Orange Mike | Talk 16:13, 11 July 2011 (UTC)
How-to books are not purchased because of their writer usually, but instead because of the content within. Same way with recipe books. And the information they list isn't usually something they came up with themselves, but instead are covering the work of others. Totally different than other types of non-fiction, and certainly nothing related to fiction works. Different guidelines for different types of books perhaps. Dream Focus 00:21, 14 July 2011 (UTC)
  • Newspapers and magazines review certain genres of books, while usually and sometimes entirely ignoring others. There is a large number of Star Wars novels that hit the bestsellers list, but their articles were deleted sometime ago because they got no coverage at all. Other times a bestselling novel has been challenged, for lack of any reviews at all, and those random editors who showed up said to keep it because it was on the bestsellers list. Dream Focus 00:21, 14 July 2011 (UTC)

@Msnicki - The subordinates like "ACTOR" and "ACADEMIC" are meant to support the overarching basic criterion, WP:BASIC. The presumption is that someone who has done the listed items will indeed have signifigant independant coverage. This has been played out in several different versions, where sub-populations attempted to carve out exemptions, but all large-scale consensus on the issue has always come back to the basic guidelines. - Aaron Brenneman (talk) 02:07, 14 July 2011 (UTC)

That makes sense to me and OrangeMike, but go take a look at that example I gave. I don't think everyone got the memo. Msnicki (talk) 02:36, 14 July 2011 (UTC)
Late to the discussion and many good arguments have been advanced.
On the original topic, we need independent verification that he has achieved Fellowship (IEEE is "independent" for this purpose). Anyway, he has to have done something to merit Fellowship, which needs to be reported. Probably publications. Personal/family items are not vital to an encyclopedia but some tracing of his professional/career life needs to be done eventually, if not right off ("stub").
As has been pointed out before, editors need to take care about nn professional organizations "awarding" Fellowships for (essentially) membership or pay. A few around that are actually doing that. IEEE not one of them!  :)
Volume of pubs with a vanity press clearly nn. Almost screams non-notable!  :) Student7 (talk) 17:40, 16 July 2011 (UTC)
In all fairness, nobody has asserted that volumes of vanity press titles constitute notability; the question was whether somebody who has written perennially well-selling "how-to" guides to software can be deemed notable simply on the basis of those sales, despite a lack of press coverage of the author himself; and somebody else raised the issue of franchise books like Star Wars novels that briefly appear on bestseller lists, but get little or no attention (even from the SF trade press), and whose authors get no attention at all. --Orange Mike | Talk 23:11, 16 July 2011 (UTC)

a satisfying explanation

The text on "special cases" now reads "If neither a satisfying explanation nor appropriate sources can be found for a standalone article..." I have removed it twice (one revert, I won't do a second), another editor has replaced it twice, and a third editor has removed it once. I removed this as the core content policies require sources, and this sentence appears at odds with those. Please discuss. - Aaron Brenneman (talk) 03:39, 14 July 2011 (UTC)

A third editor reverted me with "Rm unclear addition". I think they thought I just added that in, instead of me reverting someone taking it out. Have to wait for them to say something to be certain. You shouldn't remove something that has been there for quite sometime without discussing it first. And if consensus is that a satisfying explanation has been given then the article is notable. You don't absolutely have to find coverage on everything. Dream Focus 03:49, 14 July 2011 (UTC)
I looked back over those edits, and noticed that Aaron's change made the first part of the sentence read: "If appropriate sources can be found for a standalone article...". To keep the original meaning, it would actually have to read: "If appropriate sources cannot be found for a standalone article..." (emphasis added). Perhaps that's part of the confusion? I would tend to agree with Aaron that "appropriate sources" cover what we need for this particular statement, and "a satisfactory explanation" seems weaselly and vague. It's not really saying that sources have to be found for everything. It's just saying that this is what can be done when sources aren't found. --Tryptofish (talk) 18:39, 14 July 2011 (UTC)
  • *facepalm* Well, that's embarrasing for me. - Aaron Brenneman (talk) 23:42, 14 July 2011 (UTC)
With that explanation, are other editors satisfied with making the change? Face-smile.svg I can't see anything wrong with deleting "a satisfactory explanation", and I think it's more to the point without it. --Tryptofish (talk) 20:36, 15 July 2011 (UTC)
You don't need absolutely need sources in some cases, as consensus has shown. Thus "satisfying explanation" needs to be there. If someone wins a Nobel prize they are automatically notable enough to have an article, by rule of common sense. Not all winners get any coverage at all. There may be no secondary sources at all, other than a brief announcement, no other information about the person, only their accomplishments which should be listed. If people agree this is a "satisfying explanation" than the article should be allowed to exist. To say they need sources without exception, leads to pointless AFDs, and we end up loosing articles about notable scientists while keeping the hordes of articles about popular celebrities. Dream Focus 10:49, 16 July 2011 (UTC)

Criteria for the notability of business people

What are the notability criteria for biographies of business people?-The Gnome (talk) 12:42, 20 July 2011 (UTC)

Well, there is nothing specific for business people, so WP:Notability (people)#Any biography would be the guideline. Jezhotwells (talk) 18:24, 20 July 2011 (UTC)
Although it isn't a biography guideline, there is also WP:ORG, which can help provide some sense of the notability of the associated businesses. --Tryptofish (talk) 20:54, 20 July 2011 (UTC)
Thank you both. But perhaps we should construct specific criteria for business people. I would think there should be, among other things, some by default inclusions, e.g. the CEO of Coca Cola, even if otherwise he/she's not notable. The question then becomes, for which corporations this would apply. And WP:ORG could be one starting point for the relevant guideline for business organisations. Opinions?-The Gnome (talk) 07:48, 21 July 2011 (UTC)

Please confirm that an article is fine if it meets the guidelines other than the GNG

I just undid another edit done by Aaron Brenneman. [5] He has stated elsewhere his belief that meeting the guidelines doesn't matter, if you don't also meet the general notability guidelines. Can someone please explain this to him so he stops trying to alter this and possibly other guideline pages. Dream Focus 14:51, 15 July 2011 (UTC)

SNG like this are considered alternative criteria in lieu of immediately being able to show the GNG notability. Ultimately, it is expected that if one of these criteria is met, more sources towards the GNG will be found/created and thus ultimately meeting the GNG. It is a temporary (on the order of months-to-years) allowance, and why the criteria are fashioned in a way to assure that sources will likely be found. --MASEM (t) 15:08, 15 July 2011 (UTC)
The first one listed on the people notability guideline is WP:ANYBIO. If someone wins a Noble prize, aren't they automatically notable enough to have a Wikipedia article, even if there is no coverage of them? Not every single Noble prize winner gets coverage of course, some of them not doing a single interview ever. Should we eventually delete those articles? Same way with those who meet WP:artist. Some famous artists with notable permanent collections in museums might not do interviews. Should we delete them also? Dream Focus 15:49, 15 July 2011 (UTC)
They may not interview, but it is very very likely that in either case, someone one will have gone through the person's background and created some small biography that can be sourced as a third-party secondary source to meet the GNG, after the initial reveal of the award or the exhibit. There are exceptions, but they are very very rare. And that's why I've said its a temporary - not indefinite, but well longer than weeks or months alone - assurance that the topic is notable, in order to allow these sources to become available or discussed. It is almost impossible to believe that such people will have received such honors without having any type of third-party source comment on their work before that honor, it just may be that we have not discovered those third-party works because they're not in the standard body of literature we use for such sources.
So to this point, lets say someone creates an article on a Nobel Prize winner that hasn't had an article before. This SNG allows that to be kept around easily for a year or more simply on the basis that there is a source that says "so and so won the Nobel Prize for ..." but doesn't at all go into any depth of the person themselves. Come 3 or 4 years later, and that's still the state of the article, I would start challenging the editors that want to keep it to find sources if I'm unable to find these myself, and if they truly did not exist (insomcuh as you can't prove a negative) maybe this guy was a fluke and we should merge the article to a list of Nobel Prize winners. Common sense would of course say this situation is so highly unlikely it won't happen (the evident lack of sources). But there may be other awards that are not as prestigious but covered by the ANYBIO that could be the case, but again, common sense tells me this isn't going to happen on any regular basis.
It's more a problem for other SNGs like NSPORTS where the criteria barrier for inclusion is much lower (eg any pro that plays one pro game) that there will likely be many cases of bios that can never develop past a few sources. This specific SNG is well structured that the criteria and the likelihood of GNG sourcing is virtually assured. --MASEM (t) 16:19, 15 July 2011 (UTC)
WP:N is clear enough - "A topic is also presumed notable if it meets the criteria outlined in a subject-specific guideline listed in the box on the right" - it's either GNG or SNG for notability, despite the tendency of some to see GNG as the only ultimate test of notability. Ultimately these come down to consensus for what is worthy of inclusion.--Michig (talk) 16:40, 15 July 2011 (UTC)
I'm fine with Dream Focus' decision to revert. It's true that we use the SNGs as a sort of shorthand, but explaining it can tend to make it more confusing instead of less so. I think the existing wording is clear. --Tryptofish (talk) 20:33, 15 July 2011 (UTC)
Don't get me wrong: I think this version (the version DF reverted to) is the better version. I just want to point out that people get hung up on SNGs as being criteria that last forever and never can be challenged. The key word in WP:N is "presumed" so that stupid, trivial challenges to notability on "I don't like it" bases can be quickly ignored. But for any article, that presumption of notability can always be challenged. If you don't have a lot of sources and less that are secondary, even though the SNG is met, that's still fair game for someone to question "why are we giving an article to this topic?" Again, why the SNG is a temporarily measure: we're more readily to accept the lack of sources beyond enough third-party to verify the SNG criteria being met early on, but less accepting of that as time progresses by the years. --MASEM (t) 11:42, 16 July 2011 (UTC)
The only issue I have with that explanation Masem is the case where the article subject has already had years, but perhaps not in Wikipedia. If something barely scraped by the genre-specific notability "rule of thumb" in 1980, for example, but there was not sufficient coverage then to meet the other guidelines, we are diminishingly unlikely to have some new sources pop up. Thus SNG points to but does not supercede GnG. - Aaron Brenneman (talk) 13:54, 18 July 2011 (UTC)
For older items, you're right - its not likely going to be new items appearing, but instead a matter of hitting the books and going to local libraries to find print sources that still likely came out at the time of the award or equivalent. If someone hasn't done that leg work at all in 2-3 years since article creation, that's still a problem, but the time allowance is sufficient to research past articles for a people here. --MASEM (t) 14:10, 18 July 2011 (UTC)
I'd prefer those edge cases live in userspace until fully sourced, but I'd be open to debate on that. However, I think that A) We're not giving DF the clear answer that he was looking for, and 2) As much as we agree that's a tenable idea, I don't see it reflected in policy. Might I suggest that this is actually too small a venue for this discussion, that moving it to one of the other (more trafficked) noticeboards would be appropriate. Copy to WP:N for wider audience, any objections? - Aaron Brenneman (talk) 14:22, 18 July 2011 (UTC)
The issue has been worked out before, but as to the original question, I've said that the original language is completely fine to capture the essence of the SNG. The finer details are left to elsewhere. --MASEM (t) 14:30, 18 July 2011 (UTC)

@Michig - You may have missed that the word presumed in "presumed notable" links to "rebuttable presumption." Thus pretty much exactly what my rejected edit (apparently poorly) stated: It's a good yardstick, but if we can't find the source... - Aaron Brenneman (talk) 14:25, 18 July 2011 (UTC)

I can't seriously argue against presumed notability for a Nobel Prize. But the Literature awards generally signify material well worth skipping. Then there are the "Peace Prizes" which often seem a joke. With those two, one sometimes wonders how much this branches over into missteps in the sciences, as well. They waited until the woman who should have received the prize for DNA, had died, then awarded it to Crick and Watson, who were more presentable/popular. (Have to be alive to receive the prize). Student7 (talk) 01:01, 19 July 2011 (UTC)
Although I understand what you mean about the literature and peace prizes, we obviously get into matters of editor personal opinion/OR in deciding whether they are skip-able or a joke. (I realize that you understand that.) And for what it's worth, my personal opinion is that Rosalind Franklin should indeed have won it, but it isn't the case that the Nobel committee intentionally waited for her death before making the award. --Tryptofish (talk) 20:45, 19 July 2011 (UTC)
A list of awards considered significant enough to count towards notability can be made, and discussions had on what is allowed on it. Winning a Nobel Prize, a Pulitzer Prize, an Academy Award, etc. Dream Focus 02:08, 19 July 2011 (UTC)
A very reasonable proposal. Although i can easily see how this discussion can get dragged through all the dirt. Beta M (talk) 04:02, 19 July 2011 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── I've undone Dream Focus's change. The most comprehensive RfC we've had on the issue of whether SNGs are subordinate to or alternative to the GNG was inconclusive, but the only proposals which had over 50% support were those which supported subordination (in other words, that an SNG simply strongly hints that if a subject has done X then multiple reliable sources probably exist). As such, the old wording was the best reflection of consensus. Chris Cunningham (user:thumperward) - talk 10:32, 27 July 2011 (UTC)

I didn't have any changes, I just reverted someone else's. So you undid my undo of their bit, and then added something else. As for what the few dozen random people that showed up at that RFC said, who cares? Any issue that affects the entire Wikipedia should be announced for more people to know its going on. With relatively such small numbers of people commenting on it, you could get results one way or the other. How did those who knew about this find their way there? Dream Focus 10:45, 27 July 2011 (UTC)
Over two hundred people commented on that RfC, which IIRC was widely advertised on pretty much every relevant part of the project. As far as RfCs go that's rather a large buy-in, with editors from all the various camps re: notability represented. it's certainly the closest thing we have to a concrete document showing the prevailing consensus at this time. Chris Cunningham (user:thumperward) - talk 11:22, 27 July 2011 (UTC)

List of authors published by Persephone Books

Is this list covered by this guideline? If so I presume the redlinks should go, in which case the list itself probably shouldn't exist! Dougweller (talk) 15:16, 20 July 2011 (UTC)

I'd edit out the reds, but I wouldn't feel that the list of blues that would remain needs to be AfD'ed. --Tryptofish (talk) 20:56, 20 July 2011 (UTC)
The article itself, on the other hand, is not encyclopedic content, and I'll AfD it as soon as I get access to Twinkle. --Orange Mike | Talk 21:08, 20 July 2011 (UTC)
I hadn't looked there. If that's the case, I'd AfD the list too. --Tryptofish (talk) 21:11, 20 July 2011 (UTC)
Actually it should be speedied as advertising/spam. Roger (talk) 07:25, 21 July 2011 (UTC)

Proposal - merely being published makes one sufficiently notable for having an article about that person, not necessarily a biography

This topic was discussed above at Authors, but I would like to offer the following proposal.

First, I'd like to note that the criteria for athletes is that, for example, simply having played in one pro game is sufficient for being considered notable. I suggest that having one published work is consistent with that.

For anyone who has published works, I think we need to distinguish between notability of the person and notability of the person's life. This applies to everyone, but I would say that anyone who has a published work is notable for having the work published, if nothing else. If the only citable content we have about that person is their name and the names of the work or works they've published, then that is sufficient to have a (very short) article about that person. If more information is found, then we have a place to put it.

In other words, the criteria for having an article entry at all is separate from the normal criteria required for article content. What that means is that not all articles about people are or should be actual biographies; many people articles are simply repositories for any and all properly sourced information that is related to that person, no matter how sparse that information may be.

In terms of having a good encyclopedia, if someone has a published work, then readers are likely to want to look that person up. If the only information available in reliable sources is that they published that work, then so be it. How is it better to have no entry at all for such a person?

So, my proposal is to clarify at WP:PROF, WP:CREATIVE, etc., that having a published/citable work is sufficient for making that person notable and justifying an article for that writer, just like being in just one pro game is sufficient for having an article for that athlete, though perhaps it's not nearly sufficient for having that article be an actual biography. --Born2cycle (talk) 17:52, 1 August 2011 (UTC)

The NSPORT criteria you point to is highly contentious and should not be used as an example. But at least there, there is some justification that if you are playing in the pro sport, there is bound to be some information about your past athletic history (why you were signed to the pros, etc.) This is still a very weak rationale and one that I would love to see removed. When applied to any published author, that pretty much means that every grad school student in the world and a good # of undergraduates, not only professors and scientists, would "become" notable through the normal process of peer-reviewed paper submission. Way too broad a stroke. --MASEM (t) 17:58, 1 August 2011 (UTC)
I have worked professionally in the book trade for over thirty years, and can assure you that this is a totally spurious and downright bogus criterion for notability, undoubetedly intended in good faith but revealing an appalling ignorance of the realities of publishing (and writing). Even before the era of modern-style self-"publishing" by automated and POD systems, vanity presses and local printing companies ground out many tens of thousands of non-notable books every year. And if you intended to extend this to newspaper and magazine articles, etc.: this is the ultimate nightmare of impracticality. --Orange Mike | Talk 18:04, 1 August 2011 (UTC) (who might or might not qualify under this proposal, but is no less appalled by it for all that)
Strong oppose: with the rise of self-publishers and print-on-demand, anyone can "publish" a book, and often the next item on their "become a celebrity" to-do list is a Wikipedia article about themselves. Any such criterion should certainly be restricted to mainstream publication where some degree of selection has taken place, and IMO even that would be too broad. If the book achieves the fairly tough standard of WP:Notability (books), that could justify an article, or a redirect to the book article; but otherwise I would not support articles for authors who do not meet the GNG, just because they have published. JohnCD (talk) 18:11, 1 August 2011 (UTC)
  • This proposal ironically illustrates quite well why WP:ATHLETE is at odds with (nearly?) all other SNGs. NW (Talk) 18:19, 1 August 2011 (UTC)

Okay, pardon my ignorance, but can anyone please explain - or, better yet, point to an explanation -- for what is the problem with having articles for people whose notability is limited to having a published work (or having played in a professional sporting event for that matter)? And, regardless of what that explanation is, what if the requirement for inclusion is that the person has a published work, and the work and/or the author is mentioned in a reliable secondary source? --Born2cycle (talk) 18:51, 1 August 2011 (UTC)

Although the proposal may be too open and generous, the question arises because of real changes in the publishing industry (as Orange Mike indicates). Amanda Hocking is an example of an author who's been successful, but who is self-published. The notability bar for writers is higher than for musicians, too: a notable musician has released two or more albums on a major label or on one of the more important indie labels. The equivalent for a writer would be has published two or more books through a major publisher or one of the more important small publishers. So forget self-publishing for a moment: according to our guidelines, a writer who's published three books from a mainstream publisher (that is, had good enough sales to keep publishing) isn't notable unless the person has created, or played a major role in co-creating, a significant or well-known work, or collective body of work, that has been the subject of an independent book or feature-length film, or of multiple independent periodical articles or reviews. And for some reason, biographical material from the publisher (aka press releases) isn't considered RS, but an article in the LA Times might be, even though the journalists themselves would be getting their biographical data from either interviewing the person (not a third-party source) or from the media kit provided by, yes, the publisher. Cynwolfe (talk) 18:53, 1 August 2011 (UTC)
Here's where I'm coming from. If I'm reading a book or some work, and look up the author here, I'd much rather find out that the person is relatively obscure, little if anything is publicly known about his or her life, and this is the only work the person has ever published, than find no article at all. Yet our policy seems to be to have no article in such a case. Why? How does this policy improve the encyclopedia? --Born2cycle (talk) 19:00, 1 August 2011 (UTC)
Yep, I agree, mainly—but with the qualifier that determining RS may be an obstacle. Cynwolfe (talk) 19:26, 1 August 2011 (UTC)
This is an encyclopedia of notable topics, not a directory listing of every obscure body who's ever had their name pasted on a book-shaped object. There are seven billion people on this planet and if we had articles on even one tenth of one percent of them, that would make an additional seven MILLION articles here and would require a quadrupling (at a minimum) of the number of admins here (which ain't gonna happen as long as we're all volunteers)! If there are no reliable sources about these persons, why on earth should we create a non-article about them? Verifiability of our content from neutral, reliable sources is not optional. --Orange Mike | Talk 19:38, 1 August 2011 (UTC)
Exactly. Too many ppl expect WP to be the end-all for information when by necessity we're meant to be the tip of the iceberg. There are other sources that are better suited for specific types of specialist information (and maybe that's the argument you use over at NSPORTS to get rid of that pro game criteria....) --MASEM (t) 19:46, 1 August 2011 (UTC)
(edit conflict)OrangeMike, I don't get it. Is there an actual or potential problem with having "too many articles"? And why does more articles necessarily require more admins? Short stub-like articles with little traffic require virtually no maintenance.

Further, there is a difference between the potential number of books and authors, and the number of books and authors that WP editors would actually add. If we have the cycles to create these articles AND debate whether to keep or delete each one, then we have the time to create each one and do nothing else with them.

As to why we would have a non-article about someone who is not mentioned in reliable sources, the answer is this: to have it on record that there is no information in reliable sources about that person. With no article, the reader can't even ascertain that.

Finally, lack of "notability" (however it's defined) is not necessarily justification to avoid adding an article, nor is it necessarily justification to delete an article.

How about this, if it has an ISBN, then the author can have an article (though perhaps not a biography)? --Born2cycle (talk) 19:58, 1 August 2011 (UTC)

Masem, I don't think anyone expects WP to be an end-all to all information, but I do think that a summary/overview, ideally with good references to sources with more details, of all notable information is expected. I suggest that's more than a tip of the iceberg - it's an index to all of the iceberg. --Born2cycle (talk) 19:58, 1 August 2011 (UTC)
Even indexing can be a problem. It is one thing to talk about profession sports players: despite there being 10,000s of them, they are a known finite set as there are only so many teams and so many positions each year. Published authors, on the other hand, are unbounded; it would be impossible for use to summarize these via an index.
And as for the problem above, since the Foundation has made us very aware of BLP issues, every BLP article for published authors would have to be monitored and corrected when unsourced information was added. This would likely need dedicated volunteers and admins to keep track of everything, and given how many their could be, it would be insane to try to follow these. --MASEM (t) 20:46, 1 August 2011 (UTC)
I have come to say much the same as Masem. Here are two reasons why there is a "potential problem with having too many articles":
  • Indexing - the "needle-in-a-haystack" problem. If there is a notable author called, say, James Brown who many people want to read about, they are not helped by having to work through a disambiguation page to distinguish between seventeen other "James Brown (author)" articles which very few people are actually interested in.
  • Maintenance. Articles are not maintenance-free. The subject and friends may well add unsourced praise and Myspacey unencyclopedic detail about personal life; enemies or rivals may alter the article or add attacks. It is unlikely that anyone will have these marginal articles watch-listed - the burden of keeping them clean will fall on the Recent Changes patrollers, who are hard pressed as it is. If they cannot keep up, the articles will gradually degrade, and while having lots of articles about minor authors may be thought to be a Good Thing, having lots of vandalised and unreliable articles is not. We see this problem with school articles already, but author articles would be BLPs.
JohnCD (talk) 21:31, 1 August 2011 (UTC)
So it's worth it to "monitor" every sports figure who's ever kicked a ball on TV, or individual characters on even modestly successful TV shows, but not authors who've published multiple books? And no one's addressed my point as to why we set the bar higher for authors than for musicians. But this is the kind of thing people outside WP point to when they want to show that editorial biases run in favor of pop culture. Born2cycle is perhaps too generous with notability and sourcing here, but I don't see any grounds for being so much stricter with admitting writers to the encyclopedia than we are with sports figures musicians, and other entertainers. There are certainly ways to document authors, if we recognize what sources are appropriate. Cynwolfe (talk) 21:39, 1 August 2011 (UTC)
(edit conflict)Masem, I'm not sure what to do about points I've already made that you're not addressing. Perhaps you have not read this entire discussion. Shall I repeat them? Allow me to restate my main points.
  1. So what if published authors are an unbounded set? Bounded or not, we are under no obligation to cover all of them. But if editors choose to take the time to add some of them, why not appreciate their contribution and thank them instead of taking the time and energy to debate their "notability" and possibly delete the fruit of their labor of love? I mean, adding articles about non-existing people is one thing (vandalism), but if there is evidence that the person exists and did publish something, and someone felt the person sufficiently notable to create an article about him or her, why not have that fact recorded in Wikipedia? Are we trying to discourage new editors? Regardless, discouragement is the effect of such action.
  2. And if we define "published writers" as writers of works with ISBN numbers, which is perfectly reasonable, I would think, it's not an unbounded set by definition.
  3. As to the BLP issue, that concern seems to also be predicated on the notion that if we don't delete these articles of marginally notable published writers, then their numbers will grow to be unmanageable. But since it takes people to create the articles in the first place, the size of the problem would appear to be self-managed. Further, the policy to delete such articles requires the time and effort to:
    1. review such articles,
    2. tag the ones that don't meet the notability criteria for deletion,
    3. participate in discussions about the nominations for deletion, and
    4. actually delete those that are so doomed.
Further, once such an article is deleted, nothing prevents that editor or some other editor from re-creating the article in a day, week, month, year or 5 years. After all, if someone thinks it's worth creating, odds are pretty good that someone else will as well. And if it is re-created, the policy requires all the time and energy to be expended again.

On the other hand, if we just leave those articles be, any edits will be suspect since there is so little to say about them.

In other words, the tradeoff is not between "no work because the articles don't exist", vs. "unmanageable maintenance work because there are so many"... the tradeoff is between "a certain amount of work implementing the deletion policy" vs. "a certain amount of work watching those that are created".

I'm struggling to understand whether the objection to the retention of such articles stems from a genuine concern about manageability, or whether it's really about enforcing some kind of standard, for the sake of that standard. Comments like "[Wikipedia is] not a directory listing of every obscure body who's ever had their name pasted on a book-shaped object" indicate it's probably more of the latter. --Born2cycle (talk) 22:01, 1 August 2011 (UTC)
The point is we are trying to write an encyclopedia - meaning a tertiary source with some additional reference material. It is not our place for any factoids to be found, even if its a author with a published ISBN. Instead, our goal is to provide educational information to our readers. A stub that says "John Smith wrote this book in X" and cannot say anything more is of no educational value if there is no additional information about the book or author. Our notability policies are aimed so that topics that are included are those that will have educational information that readers can use and find out more through external references. So yes, part of it is a standard, not just for people but for any topic. But that's not to say that managements is also a problem: again, BLPs are treated at a higher level of verification requirements than any other article type due to the Foundation's request. Self-management doesn't work because that's how we got there in the first place and why we had to drive to source-or-delete BLPs lacking sources; there's too much turnover to consider self-management of these articles. (Also given the fact that there are editors that want to simply create series of articles based on simple data just for completeness sake). --MASEM (t) 23:12, 1 August 2011 (UTC)
I just don't get it. Very few if any articles about even the most obscure people that most editors would bother to create would be limited to the name of the person and title of their published work. Some additional information is available about almost everyone, including place of birth, year of birth, other works, and some basic information about their life. And all of that is educational.

Source-or-delete already applies to these articles - if any information in them is unsourced, it's deleted. How is the encyclopedia better or more educational if we delete whole articles not because the information is inaccurate or unsourced, but simply because there isn't much of it? --Born2cycle (talk) 00:05, 2 August 2011 (UTC)

In the long run, we want to cover topics by summarizing secondary sources about the topics. Bio stuff like place and date of birth is all primary data, and necessary for a comprehensive article on a person, but if we cannot comment on their contributions to mankind outside of "they wrote a non-notable book", then we're not writing an encyclopedia, we're writing a "who's who", which is not what we are. Furthermore, new editors are strongly influenced by the state of other articles. Take a look how you started this: you saw the NSPORT allowance for people that played one game and wondered why not any published author. Taken to the extreme, people will think that as long as the information can be sourced, they can include articles on themselves, even if they have no notable merits to discuss. And that gets to the 7 million article issue above, and that starts to become impossible to maintain. --MASEM (t) 00:12, 2 August 2011 (UTC)
I understand your concern is not about an actual problem, but a potential one you anticipate. Nobody knows whether the scenario you envision -- the 7 million article issue -- would actually occur, or if it would be as problematic as you imagine. I can't say for certain it won't happen, but I think we should err on the side of inclusion rather than exclusion. After all, what's the worst case? Since it's possible to identify articles that are biographies, and under a certain length, and have few links and/or page views... if paring down is ever deemed necessary... it should be easy enough to identify good candidates. In the end, I'm an inclusionist and I guess you're... a deletionist (though I don't see you listed there)... so it's really more of a philosophical difference than anything else.

The bottom line is that since notability is not a requirement, lack of it is not necessarily a justification for deletion anyway. So unless there is some real problem with an article's inclusion, I vote keep. --Born2cycle (talk) 01:07, 2 August 2011 (UTC)

What makes you think that "notability is not a requirement?" Back in the early days there was an idea that Wikipedia should be a "list of everything" but discussion, and arguments like User:Uncle G/On notability gave rise to the WP:GNG and all the subsidiary notability guidelines and, though there are discussions like this about the boundaries, I don't think anyone seriously argues any more that there should not be some kind of notability threshold for inclusion. JohnCD (talk) 16:52, 3 August 2011 (UTC)
I reject this false dichotomy of "inclusionist" and "deletionist". There are plenty of editors who occupy pragmatic middle ground. LonelyBeacon (talk) 16:45, 3 August 2011 (UTC)
  • Consensus is determined by whoever randomly shows up to comment their personal opinions on things. A writer is notable by their work. If they've published a bestselling novel, written a successful film, wrote award winning or high rated television episodes, then common sense they are notable enough to have a Wikipedia article. Being an actor who says lines on a television show or film makes some people notable, so why not the guy who came up with the words he is saying? They already agreed directors are notable if their work is. Did you know albums are considered notable if they get a gold record in the nation they are in, and that in some nations you only have to sell three thousand copies to get a gold record? List of music recording certifications Being given a gold record makes music notable, but books aren't notable even if they are a bestseller. Dream Focus 22:19, 1 August 2011 (UTC)
A real bestseller would surely get enough independent reviews to pass WP:BK #1. JohnCD (talk) 17:09, 3 August 2011 (UTC)
  • Politely oppose - it sounds like there may be some need to revisit the criteria for inclusion of writers, however simply stating that anyone who is published should meet notability is not the way to go. In virtually all cases of someone earning a doctorate (and in many Masters degree scenarios), a thesis is required, with a substantial number of the doctoral these (and even some masters theses) being published in some form. I myself have published articles. I think simply "earning a doctorate" is not sufficient reason to be notable. I also agree (not sure who noted it above) that WP:ATHLETE is far to inclusive a guideline, and makes for a poor comparison (akin, though not exactly the same as, WP:OTHERSTUFF). LonelyBeacon (talk) 01:51, 2 August 2011 (UTC)
  • Oppose If someone writes a book that is not notable then that does not make the writer notable. If the book is notable then what is known about the writer can be mentioned there. TFD (talk) 04:35, 2 August 2011 (UTC)
  • Oppose. This would result in too many permanent stubs that could never be turned into full articles, at least not without violating WP:V. (For the record, I strongly disagree with WP:ATHLETE, as currently written, for the exact same reason.) — Satori Son 04:57, 2 August 2011 (UTC)
  • Oppose To make the example personal, the fact that I've sold precisely seven copies of my self-published book of nature photography in no way evidences my putative notability. The particular rule suggested here would make "notability" about a $20 expenditure for any individual who wished to create an article about themselves. More importantly, I don't see why the general notability guideline doesn't suffice here. If we don't have two reliable, independent/secondary sources willing to talk about an author, why are we to believe that we have anything like a broadly neutral biography of them? If all we know is that they published a single book, (and they happen to be living), isn't that BLP1E, and doesn't that mean the article should be about the book instead of the author if it exists at all? And if we do have those sources, why do we need to add a SNG, the GNG would seem to my mind to be sufficient. Perhaps if the proposer would indicate even a single article they believe describes a notable, verifiable author where we're certain we have a neutral biography but who, for whatever reason, can't be said to meet WP:GNG, I'd understand their concern better. (And, btw, having spent a lot of time digging up references to several dozen obscure Thai footballers, or failing to, for articles other folks have written, I'll chime in and suggest that WP:ATHLETE is problematic here as well.) --joe deckertalk to me 17:39, 3 August 2011 (UTC)
If you think the current ATH is bad, you should have seen it before. --Tryptofish (talk) 19:10, 3 August 2011 (UTC)
Yes, we have to ensure that the book was published by a) a notable commercial press or b) a notable academic press. Articles are a problem by themselves.
Having said that, we should not, in good faith, argue against including articles on otherwise notable people because we are understaffed. By itself, not really a fair argument. That is a problem that we will have to consider separately. (I agree with it though :) Student7 (talk) 01:05, 4 August 2011 (UTC)
  • Oppose - The specific notability guidelines function to indicate articles that are likely to meet the GNG. If a subject has not been written about by reliable secondary sources, it is not verifiable and should not have an article. Merely having published a work does not mean that one should be able to expect that a person meets the GNG. VQuakr (talk) 02:56, 4 August 2011 (UTC)
  • Oppose - Merely publishing something is nowhere near sufficient for notability - any idiot can "publish" any crap and call themself an author - there is no threshold at all. In addition "an article about that person, not necessarily a biography" is itself an oxymoron because an article about a person is by definition a biography. "Jane Doe wrote a book" is nowhere near enough material for an article. If the book itself were to become notable - receive substantial attention from reviews published by reliable sources - then an article about the book would/could most probably contain some basic biographical information about the author. Roger (talk) 07:12, 4 August 2011 (UTC)
  • Oppose Wikipedia is not a directory. Epbr123 (talk) 11:58, 4 August 2011 (UTC)

Relationship between GNG and SNG

On 15 July 2011 Aaron Brenneman added a bit which would make all secondary guidelines meaningless. [6] I reverted it since it goes against years of consensus. I just noticed that Thumperward readded it. I removed it again. There is no reason to have secondary guidelines if only the general notability guidelines matter.

Does anyone want this part added in?

  • Oppose Since consensus has always been that if it meets a secondary guideline, then the article passes notability. Changing this would result in a massive number of articles being deleted, despite being clearly notable. Dream Focus 09:53, 10 August 2011 (UTC)
  • Oppose The GNG isn't, and has never been, the be all and end all. And I consider myself a deletionist. --Mkativerata (talk) 11:23, 10 August 2011 (UTC)
  • Politely Oppose -- Frankly, I would like to see GNG gutted and secondary guidelines given more strength to set specific limitations on what can and cannot be included, with consensus of the community deciding grey areas. The GNG, as written, is far, far too lenient about inclusion. Right now, American high school athltes are getting articles because there are a 100 specialty websites that grant them notability even though an injury the day after their season renders them a great high school athlete, and nothing more, and you can't get rid of the article because notability is forever. LonelyBeacon (talk) 14:35, 10 August 2011 (UTC)
  • Oppose. If anything GNG should be given less emphasis. Reliable sources demonstrating sufficient importance in an encyclopedic subject area (as defined by the subject-specific guidelines) should be the primary concern, not the 'significance' of the coverage.--Michig (talk) 17:35, 10 August 2011 (UTC)
  • Oppose the actual formulation is and should remain complementary such that GNG establishes an all-cause inclusion criterion: reliable, independent, non-trivial coverage. The SNGs can establish other paths to notability. Winning a Nobel prize, for example, confers notability even if there wasn't reliable, independent, non-trivial coverage. That's a bit of an absurd example, but consider other circumstances, like Olympic athletes: anyone who's ever won a medal, ever, in any sport, should be covered. Jclemens (talk) 17:54, 10 August 2011 (UTC)
  • Excellent job on the strawman title. I have fixed it for you. NW (Talk) 18:01, 10 August 2011 (UTC)
  • Oppose "making all secondary guidelines useless", although I'm far from convinced that the wording actually does that. In terms of what we should do, my view roughly matches the view of Michig and JClemens. To elaborate on JClemens' example, I would phrase my own view this way: "Winning a Nobel prize, for example, confers notability even if there wasn't reliable, independent, non-trivial coverage, but it does still require reliable sourcing." I think a central source of differences in AfD !voting comes from differences in what people consider reliable, it's actually quite difficult to reliably make statements about a person from a passing mention in an article, does "English actress" in an article mean the actress is English, or that they speak in English (I saw an example of the latter today). Does the same name in two passing mentions in different articles refer to the same person? Often one can make a good guess, but I've seen some surprising counterexamples. --joe deckertalk to me 18:07, 10 August 2011 (UTC)
    Note that I found the wording addition proposed consistent with the view I expressed above, which apparently many people do not. --joe deckertalk to me 18:08, 10 August 2011 (UTC)
    I agree with Joe Decker. Policy mandated verifiability of a notable fact in a reliable source does not itself mean the verification n that reliable souce must itself be significant coverage. I am more at odds with any sentence that can be used to discourage discussion elsewhere. Schmidt, MICHAEL Q. 18:14, 10 August 2011 (UTC)
    • Well sure, it requires reliable sourcing, but that's a V issue, not an N issue, hence I didn't say that. Jclemens (talk) 18:33, 10 August 2011 (UTC)
      • Agreed, didn't mean to suggest you had, my apologies. --joe deckertalk to me 19:02, 10 August 2011 (UTC)
  • Oppose While appreciating an attempt at clarity, the GNG is not intended to be the "over arching" guideline, nor the sole means by which editors might determine notability. Guidelines are guides that have occasional exceptions, and are intentionally not given the strength or tone of policy. Giving any one guideline undue weight undermines policy, and including any instruction that seems set to discourage discussion ignores that we are a community where discussions among editors are to BE encouraged, "lengthy" or not. Schmidt, MICHAEL Q. 18:11, 10 August 2011 (UTC)
  • Meh. This thread strikes me as way too over-heated over something that really wasn't such a big deal. The existing wording is fine with me, but the change was hardly an evil conspiracy to nuke the SNGs. It was a good faith attempt, not entirely successful, to explain the inexplicable. Whether individual editors like GNG or not, it is the basic (if not over-arching) statement of what Wikipedia considers to constitute notability. The SNGs are a pragmatic way to determine whether a page could satisfy GNG, if editors had convenient access to the entirety of the world's reliable sources. Editors don't, by and large. So if someone can't find the requisite coverage via Google of a particular Nobel laureate, the SNGs are intended to save us the hassle of explaining to that someone in an AfD that it defies common sense that a Nobel laureate would lack the coverage that GNG requires. Does what I just said sound inexplicable to you? Don't worry: it sounds that way to me too. So it wasn't so unreasonable for a few editors to attempt to explain it a little better, even if it wasn't worth the effort. --Tryptofish (talk) 23:13, 10 August 2011 (UTC)
  • Oppose. In AfD discussions, vague secondary guidelines tend to invite a lot of wikilawyering that "if no reliable third-party sources can be found on a topic, then it should not have a separate article" WP:N doesn't apply based on some technicality, e.g., an award of questionable importance, etc. The proposed change is not helpful. It muddies rather than clarifies what it takes to establish notability. Msnicki (talk) 23:46, 10 August 2011 (UTC)
  • Support, but needs rewording. The SNGs are meant to be a temporary allowance to find sources for the GNG based on a presumption of notability and to write a detailed encyclopedic article instead of a few statements of fact. This time, however, is very very flexible - an article can survive for 2 to 4 years on an SNG claim, but if you can't evidence any more sources beyond how they meet the SNG criteria, you can expect to be seeing the article at AFD. This is why the SNG criteria are meant to be written very carefully to assure that meeting the criteria will resolve in the locating of secondary sources. Remember that there are other ways to cover people that may only have weak notability beyond a dedicated article. --MASEM (t) 03:22, 11 August 2011 (UTC)
Where was it ever determined it was suppose to be temporary? If I check anywhere in the discussions when they were first created, would I find anyone mentioning that? They have always been permanent. Dream Focus 03:34, 11 August 2011 (UTC)
It's not really a spelled out thing, it is how people take the word "presumption" and the fact it can be challenged at any time.
Let's put it this way: notability (GNG or SNG) rides on the "presumption" that if a topic is notable, it should get its own article. The GNG provides the absolute evidence: the existence and depth of secondary coverage of the topic - the more there is, the more that the presumption is met - and of course provides a better article altogether. The SNGs basically require one single fact to be demonstrated to create presumption, which is fine if that is a relatively new fact, but an article on WP is not going to last forever if all you can source the topic (and this is the non-existence of sources, not the lack of including existing sources in the article) is a primary source with that one fact ("So and so won the Noble prize"). If this is for the 2011 Nobel Prize, and the person relatively unknown, then yes, it will take time for sources to appear. If it is for the 1991 Nobel Prize, that's a bit of a difference - if no sources have appeared, it is likely that the person notability is a fluke, and instead teh article should be redirected to an appropriate list.
Of course, the extreme is the case of a Nobel prize winner being non-notable. Most of this SNG are wisely selected cases that will rarely have a problem finding sources that already exist or will be available shortly after the criteria does become met. The issue becomes more critical with NSPORT or NMUSIC - take NSPORTS "Played a game at a professional level" tidbit. There's absolutely no assurance that years later, a 3rd string player that got put into the last play of the last game of one season will be more notable than that.
Note that the GNG is not isolated from this. Find 2 sources for a new article you created, no one is likely going to touch it. But years down the road, if you cannot add any more to that because sources simply just do not exist, then the presumption of notability will be questioned.
Basically, if you know your topic passes an SNG, resting on your laurels not to improve it further could eventually cause consensus to disagree with your assumption of notability and have it deleted. --MASEM (t) 03:57, 11 August 2011 (UTC)
  • I'd suggest that this straw poll cannot overide the Wikipedia:Notability/RFC:compromise, where the most supported section was "SNGs can outline sources that assert notability" at 76% support. The statement "SNGs override GNG" only had 19% support. - Aaron Brenneman (talk) 03:46, 11 August 2011 (UTC)
  • Aaron that poll was done in 2008. We're discussing changes to the current page here, on its talk page, which is appropriate. The overwhelming consensus is against your change. Dream Focus 04:02, 11 August 2011 (UTC)
    ... and a poll done in 2008 cannot override WP:CCC, can it? Jclemens (talk) 04:35, 11 August 2011 (UTC)
    I won't disagree that a consensus reached 3 years ago in an RFC will necessarily have stayed dead center now, but I will also say that only based on general observation of AFD results, that consensus is still mostly true, despite the opinions of some on this page. --MASEM (t) 04:52, 11 August 2011 (UTC)
    I've been active in AFDs for years now, and the secondary guidelines have always been enough to establish notability. Dream Focus 14:56, 11 August 2011 (UTC)
    Which still fits into the general outcome of the RFC; the SNG are there to help guide topics towards GNG notability, but they cannot simply override them forever. --MASEM (t) 15:36, 11 August 2011 (UTC)
  • The SNGs serve to remind us that the vast majority of reliable sources are not online. We are, by and large, an online community. We often exhaust our source searching without leaving our computers. Most sources are not available, not published, or not free online. They still do exist, and we still work on the assumption that they can be found. It is simply not a credible claim that there would be no reliable sources on a Nobel Prize winner. Their hometown newspaper has done a profile story about their "local boy/girl done good", and that person has achieved international prominence. Just because we cannot find that story through a google search doesn't mean we assume it doesn't exist. The same applies to sports figures, authors, etc. Certain professions, awards, and positions carry enough weight to provide notability beyond the local level, and that is all we are concerned with. We still need those sources for verifiability, but there is still no deadline to finish the project. We can wait for the material to show up online if we need to, or we can wait for someone to get to a library, newspaper archive, or for someone to write and publish a book. There is no harm, and we serve our readers who may be looking for just such an article. Jim Miller See me | Touch me 13:25, 11 August 2011 (UTC)
    • If all there is - beyond the fact the person met one of the SNG criteria, is info from a local paper, that still suggests that there's a lack of larger notability that we expect for most other topics. Yes, the case described for a Nobel prize winner seems completely crazy, and that's because the Nobel Prize is a highly regarded achievement and even just being nominated suggests there's a host of material to be found about the importance of that person's work. The case more applies to, again, NSPORTS's "played a pro game" criteria; even if local sources that talk about their hometown hero exists, that has no inference of larger notability - it is simply a factoid and not appropriate to construct a whole article around. As for the argument about offline sources, yes, that's why the SNG is temporarily, to allow those sources to be located, if just even cite them as existing. But again, as I state above, notability is about the "presumption", which can only be proved positively by pointing to said sources. If you haven't done that in a few years of making the claim the topic is notable, that "presumption" will be challenged more and more. Yes, there is no deadline, but there is also a matter of patience and we do delete articles where notability was initially presumed but later determined to not be appropriate. --MASEM (t) 13:56, 11 August 2011 (UTC)
      • The SNG are there because you don't need to have coverage to prove something is notable. You use common sense. Just read what this page says. WP:Notability_(people)#Additional_criteria. That's been there for years. Dream Focus 14:56, 11 August 2011 (UTC)
        • Again, "presumed" means that can always be challenged, and as consensus can change, what is notable via common sense now may not be considered notable by common sense 5 years from now. If articles legitimately cannot be expanded past a stub despite the fact they pass an SNG (and it takes time to make this determination), they will likely be merged or deleted. --MASEM (t) 15:36, 11 August 2011 (UTC)
          • Stay on topic please. If they meet the secondary guidelines, they are notable, and notability is not temporarily. There is no requirement to have coverage in various newsources, found or assumed, nor has there ever been such a requirement. Dream Focus 15:53, 11 August 2011 (UTC)
            • I am on topic. The word "presumed" needs to be carefully considered here. That word is loaded with the impact of time and consensus whether the threshold has been passed. A topic's notability may always be re-evaluated at a later time and opinion may change. The statement that "notability is not temporary" is applied to the period of time that the topic actually occurred, not when WP determined that. For example, there have probably been numerous monarchs in Europe that have no impact today, but certainly at the time of their reign, they would have been notable, ergo they remain notable. --MASEM (t) 19:54, 11 August 2011 (UTC)
              • The GNG also uses the same "presumed" qualifier. --Mkativerata (talk) 20:14, 11 August 2011 (UTC)
                • Exactly. Consensus may consider two third-party sources ok today for the GNG; tomorrow maybe not. The only way to readily avoid any question of notability for any topic is to add more secondary and third-party sources to expand the article past what one criteria or a few sources can only readily provide. --MASEM (t) 20:27, 11 August 2011 (UTC)

International equity

Wikipedia:PORNBIO#Pornographic_actors_and_models uses National awards ceremonies in three of the four criteria. This seems unfair for countries/regions where there is no body to give awards, e.g. Japan. There should be a level playing field of burden of proof for all countries. Or if not, the rules should be interpreted in that spirit. Dan88888 (talk) 14:10, 14 August 2011 (UTC)

"International equity" has no bearing on notability. The underlying issue is reliable-source coverage. If the culture in a particular country manifests little interest in a group of people, and therefore there's very little RS coverage, that takes care of the notability question. I don't have a clue who the best mystery novelist in Egypt is, but absent RS-coverage he or she doesn't meet our notability standards. Not that I find any of the porn awards terribly credible, since they're mostly given by promo/PR enterprises to their own clients or advertisers. Hullaballoo Wolfowitz (talk) 17:24, 14 August 2011 (UTC)


If a journalist has been an editor-in-chief of a major newspaper, is that (or should that be) sufficient to establish notability, even in the absence of sources? I can't find support for that in the WP:CREATIVE section but that's the argument being raised by two other editors at Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/Bret Stephens. If consensus view is that that is generally sufficient, I will of course respect that. I'd appreciate comments. Msnicki (talk) 23:54, 17 August 2011 (UTC)

I don't know of a specific SNG that would demonstrate a community consensus for such a conclusion. However, I would support a proposal to create an SNG that would presume notability for an EIC of a major newspaper, if "major" could be carefully defined.
In this specific instance, I think this and this and this and this and this go some distance toward demonstrating notability under WP:GNG. While adding an SNG might arguably be seen as "instruction keep", it also might quell pointless debates where GNG-demonstrable notability is so likely that presumption is relatively safe, as verifiability is likely to be high, and (in my experience) promotional biasing is likely to be, well, if not low, lower-than average. Perhaps it's time to discuss such an SNG. --joe deckertalk to me 00:59, 18 August 2011 (UTC)
It is silly to decide on the terms of a SNG without first looking at the articles we have currently. Are the EICs of every newspaper with circulations greater than 750,000 notable by the GNG? What about those that run newspapers greater than 500,000; 300,000; 200,000, etc? NW (Talk) 01:50, 18 August 2011 (UTC)

Notability criteria for an author

Can somebody please tell me what are the criteria for the notability of an author of book(s)? More specifically, does writing/publishing some literature/poetry books without any national or international acclaim makes an author notable enough to have an article on Wikipedia? My queries are concentrated on User:Hemant Shesh, he's some Hindi language writer, and wrote his autobiography Hemant Shesh. — Bill william comptonTalk 10:37, 22 August 2011 (UTC)

The criteria for authors is expressed at WP:AUTHOR. Hemant Shesh appears to be marginally notable at best (many awards are mentioned, but only one is explicitly stated and linked), but send it to AfD and see if other editors agree with you on that. NW (Talk) 04:11, 31 August 2011 (UTC)
I've no major opinion whether this article should be deleted or not. My whole point is to understand the Wikipedia's policy for such matters. Many awards? I see only one, which is also not linked. And I don't think award is notable in itself because it's only a state (Rajasthan) level award. — Bill william comptonTalk 01:27, 1 September 2011 (UTC)
"Has received many awards and honors...Member and office-bearer of many international and national philanthropic cultural & literary bodies...apart from several other honors and felicitations at state/ national/ international level." And I'm pretty sure I agree with you. NW (Talk) 01:41, 1 September 2011 (UTC)


What are the criteria for the notability of a spokesperson? Since he/she provides information to the press about the organization on a regular basis, his/her quotes will be referenced in many articles. Would that be counted as getting significant coverages? If the organization is notable and the spokesperson of that organization provides many comments about the organization in many stories to the press, would that be the right criteria? Z22 (talk) 03:56, 31 August 2011 (UTC)

In that context, a spokesperson is nothing more than a conduit for news, and everything that could be added to their article could also be just as easily be included in the organization's article. Obviously someone like the White House Press Secretary will be notable, but other than that...How about this: a spokesperson is notable if there is already an article on their job and that article cannot reasonably include all of the relevant information on that spokesperson. NW (Talk) 04:08, 31 August 2011 (UTC)
What about if the fact that he/she is promoted or hired to that spokesperson position in itself has been covered in the news? Z22 (talk) 04:27, 31 August 2011 (UTC)
The mere coverage of the hiring does not necessarily constitute the requisite substantive coverage of the person in their own right. The local papers in Green Bay, Wisconsin might cover the promotion or hiring of a new spokesperson for the Pack, but that's not what I'd call a true claim to notability. See WP:NOTINHERITED and WP:NOTNEWS. --Orange Mike | Talk 14:15, 1 September 2011 (UTC)


GeorgeLouis made an edit described in the summary as needed "to keep articles about local public officials from being proposed for deletion simply because they are local public officials. If you disagree, explain on talk page. Thank you." The context is an AfD for a county supervisor where GeorgeLouis is arguing for keep. Here's the before and after:

Before: Just being an elected local official, or an unelected candidate for political office, does not guarantee notability, although such people can still be notable if ...

After: Just being an elected local official, or an unelected candidate for political office, does not guarantee notability—nor rules it out; such people can still be notable if ...

Okay, I disagree. It's grammatically incorrect on number and wouldn't be an improvement even if it was grammatically correct. I think the previous language was perfectly clear and GeorgeLouis's proposed change introduces a strange ambiguity, suggesting that maybe being an elected official would rule out notability if we didn't clear that up. This isn't better language. Sorry. Msnicki (talk) 17:13, 7 September 2011 (UTC)

I think the whole purpose of that section was to keep most minor public officials from having an article unless they could fully establish notability. -DJSasso (talk) 17:14, 7 September 2011 (UTC)
I agree with both of you, and support keeping the original wording. --Tryptofish (talk) 17:21, 7 September 2011 (UTC)
Exactly. It's totally possible that a minor public official could be notable, but it has to be established the old-fashioned way, with reliable independent secondary sources WP:RS offering significant coverage WP:SIGCOV. Just being a public official does not make one per se notable. Msnicki (talk) 17:26, 7 September 2011 (UTC)

"Being" is a gerund (like a noun). It is the singular subject of the sentence. The verb "does" is also singular. Subject-verb agreement seems OK. Am I missing something? Sincerely, GeorgeLouis (talk) 22:37, 7 September 2011 (UTC)

Although in my opinion it's really a side-issue, I think that "nor rules it out" should have been "nor rule it out". --Tryptofish (talk) 22:48, 7 September 2011 (UTC)

I agree it is a side issue, but why was my so-called misuse of the English language brought up in the first place? I'm assuming it was a simple mistake on the part of the bringer-upper and was not put forth as a way to denigrate moi, the proposer. As for using a plural verb, rule, with being, a singular word, well, gee, what is the source for that, Tryptofish? I suppose I am missing something again. I only delve into this because other people brought it up, of course not as a slam against the main idea. Still, if they are mistaken in English grammar, mightn't they might be mistaken in the core argument as well?? Sincerely, GeorgeLouis (talk) 23:53, 7 September 2011 (UTC)

The sentence has an auxiliary verb, "does", which takes a bare form of whatever verb follows. But this wasn't the only or even the major problem; it also muddled the issue, distracting from the intended point of that sentence. Normally, I might have simply reverted something like this as simply "not better" but you requested discussion, so I gave the reasons, both of them, and right away, two other editors agreed. Are we cool? Msnicki (talk) 01:30, 8 September 2011 (UTC)
Let's leave it at this: I trust that Msnicki simply made a factual statement about grammar because GeorgeLouis had requested discussion, and I hope that GeorgeLouis understands that no one is casting any aspersions on him. We seem no longer to have any disagreement about the primary issue here, which is the formulation of the guideline, so let's move on. --Tryptofish (talk) 17:44, 8 September 2011 (UTC)

Recipients of the Distinguished Conduct Medal

Do we have any consensus (or precedent) for notability as it relates to recipients of the Distinguished Conduct Medal? My search-fu is weak today, and I can't seem to track a discussion down. In the absence of other criteria, would the DCM be itself sufficient for notability of an individual? UltraExactZZ Said ~ Did 18:54, 14 September 2011 (UTC)

Author notability

Editors interested in this guideline as it applies to fiction authors might want to weigh-in on this AfD and help clarify the consensus on what meets WP:AUTHOR #3 & #4, and maybe even refine AUTHOR. Novaseminary (talk) 04:15, 2 October 2011 (UTC)

Notability of Journalists

Hi. I've recently been involved in an AFD discussion about an article concerning a fairly well known British television journalist, and would like to float the idea of a section in the guidelines covering broadcast journalists, and journalists in general? For example, one might not expect to find an article about someone who works for a local daily newspaper, but there might be a case to include someone who presents a regular national news bulletin (as is the case here). We have lots of these type articles floating around, many just consisting of a few lines and a couple of references, and the notability of many could be called into question. The closest guideline we have at present is WP:ENT, but I don't think this sufficiently covers the topic. Any thoughts? Paul MacDermott (talk) 18:57, 4 October 2011 (UTC)

I would not classify most of these newsreaders as actual journalists. I'd say WP:ENT comes closer to covering it than WP:AUTHOR. --Orange Mike | Talk 19:11, 4 October 2011 (UTC)
I agree an entertainment presenter does not necessarily fall into a journalist category, but many newsreaders are also broadcast journalists so do. Certainly those on the news channels are often doing a lot more than simply reading an autocue. I don't know about the case mentioned above, but maybe there's an argument for a specific guideline. We'd just have to consider each individual on a case-by-case basis. Bootlegbobby (talk) 11:44, 10 October 2011 (UTC)

I strongly support some sort of standard for journalists. Journalists are notorious hard to "source out." There's one up at AFD now that has a vast output over a 35 year career, including managing editor of an English language paper in the Middle East — but it's likely doomed due to the lack of so-called "independently published reliable sources" FEATURING the writer. There needs to be some sort of notability threshold like we have for actors, academics, and athletes... Carrite (talk) 16:06, 18 October 2011 (UTC)

Let's see . . . awards? Named chairs at universities? Prizes? Published books? No, definitely not some guy or girl who is simply doing a craftsmanlike job for his or her pay, but somebody who is Really, Truly Notable. On the hand, we don't want to throw out somebody who has written a column or drawn a cartoon every day for 10 or 15 years for the same newspaper, do we? Would Matt Weinstock be Notable under a new set of guidelines? How about Frank Interlandi? Hm. GeorgeLouis (talk) 01:48, 19 October 2011 (UTC)
I don't think that journalists should get a special break, probably. Anyway, I haven't seen a compelling argument that they should. The normal GNG and BIO guidelines work fine, I would say. If they meet these guidelines, fine; otherwise, not. Herostratus (talk)

Notability of professional eSports players.

I have been involved in an AFD Discussion for a professional esport player (namely a dota player). He is (was) a professional esports player who is fully paid to game, and has participated in international gaming events (such as the world dota championship, or dota 2 the international which has a $1 Million prize for the winners). i think we need a criteria for professional esports players. Redefining history (talk) 03:49, 19 October 2011 (UTC)

I don't. That a person is "fully paid" to practice his profession applies to 100% of all employed people. An event with a total prize pool of $1 Million is not very impressive.Electronic sports is notable, but much less notable than professional baseball and football and golf so forth. It's arguably true that a few e-sports players should have articles -- but probably only a few. Generally, those people will meet WP:GNG and WP:BIO in that there will be articles about them in the notable sources, I would think. If not, then we would have to ask how notable they really are. (If there was to be an e-sports standard, then: if there is such a thing as a a universally (or at least generally) recognized "World Individual E-Sports Champion", then it's arguable that each year's winner should have an article. I wouldn't go beyond that, I don't think.) Herostratus (talk) 04:45, 19 October 2011 (UTC)
If they can pass the GNG they can have an article if they can't then the answer is no. Pretty simple. Ridernyc (talk) 04:57, 19 October 2011 (UTC)

There are generally alot of competitions throughout the year, none being recognized as "the" competition of the year. So what would meet the notability guideline? Does appearing in CCTV5 count as sufficient coverage? Redefining history (talk) 08:43, 19 October 2011 (UTC)

I think they already gave you the answer,; I don't think these people you keep on bringing up have the criteria to establish notability by wikipedia standards. Sergecross73 msg me 14:07, 19 October 2011 (UTC)
Redefining history, I understand where you are coming from. You are knowledgeable and enthusiastic about this subject. We welcome your knowledge and enthusiasm. You have put a lot of effort into the article Bu Yanjun, for instance, and this is admirable and welcome. We don't mean to discourage you. We just want to be careful about who gets an article.
The problem, I think, is that e-sports just have not obtained much general notability. Are there any stories about these people in Hankook Ilbo or Dong-a Ilbo, for instance? If not, why not? Doesn't this tell us that these people are not notable enough for the general public to be interested in?
If there are articles in Hankook Ilbo and Dong-a Ilbo and Korea Times and so forth, well, then, Bob's your uncle, and you don't need any special e-sports standard: articles about them are (arguably, and depending on other factors such as depth of coverage) accepted under the basic WP:GNG and WP:BIO standards.
It's possible that we are 1) behind the curve and 2) being anglo-centric here. As to #1, we deliberately try to stay a little behind the curve. As to #2, what can I say? It's a problem. We may be all wet about this. I guess it's something you could try to get some fellow editors to take up at Wikipedia:WikiProject Video games, maybe. Perhaps you can develop some cogent new arguments for having an e-sports standard.
I dunno. To me, it sounds a little like Contract bridge. If you're a bridge enthusiast, people like Percy Sheardown and so forth are a big deal. But to the general public, not so much, and so we have articles only on Oswald Jacoby and a relatively few other. Take a look at the article List of bridge people, maybe an article like that for e-sports would be good, or a list with a sentence or two about folks like Bu Yanjun. Is that possibly a compromise that would be of interest to you? Herostratus (talk) 15:37, 19 October 2011 (UTC)
How if, the players have been featured on CCTV-5, ABC News, Phoenix Television and a documentary on professional e-sports players by Valve? Redefining history (talk) 02:24, 20 October 2011 (UTC)
is it significant coverage of the individuals or just the individuals as part of of a larger event. And by significant I mean significant not a 30 second interview. Ridernyc (talk) 02:46, 20 October 2011 (UTC)
[7] [8] Redefining history (talk) 03:35, 20 October 2011 (UTC)
A small story on a local news affiliate is not coverage by ABC News. Again if they are notable you would not need to try this hard. Ridernyc (talk) 03:38, 20 October 2011 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── I feel I should mention this at least the third place this editor has brought up these issues. He tried to make this point at AFD, when that failed he tried to make his point at Reliable Sources, when that failed he came here. If these people truly are notable we should not need to do so much special pleading and examining of sources. I'm also starting to wonder about possible COI. There are now 5-6 articles created by this editor at AFD, all these articles were created and are being heavily edited by the same small group of single purpose accounts that all showed up on almost exactly the same date. Ridernyc (talk) 16:27, 19 October 2011 (UTC)

Agreed, we do not need a specific subsection on this. The criteria in WP:BASIC are adequate. VQuakr (talk) 03:46, 20 October 2011 (UTC)

I can understand the editor's frustration. If a person had a single at bat in 1887 for a major league baseball team, he gets an article, notwithstanding that there are no references for about him beyond the fact of that appearance in the baseball records. The fact of the matter is, Clinton Loomis is a lot more notable than that. He has an article about him in an actual mainstream news outlet. It's a short article, but it's about him, not just mentioning him in passing. Granted it's a local news fluff piece. At any rate, it's not enough, because the bio guidelines require "multiple" such refs. (Two is arguably "multiple", so if Loomis gets another such article the argument can be made that he should have an article. It doesn't guarantee him an article but it puts the idea into play.)

Anyway... I would ask the editor: what would you suggest? Take a look at WP:NHOCKEY or whatever. It talks about playing on a notable team, wining a notable award, being drafted by a notable organization, yadda yadda. But e-sports doesn't have any of that. So what should we do? "Is an accomplished gamer with many fans" is way too vague. If the editor can come up with set of reasonable standards then we can talk.

"Won a gold medal (or whatever e-gamers have) in one of the major categories of one of the 3 major international competitions -- Tokyo World E-game Olympics, Paris Video International Championship, or Dallas Invitational (or whatever e-gamers have)". Or what? "Verified collected more than X million in prize money in a calendar year". "Winner of the Hickock Cup for Gamer of the Year presented by the World E-Gamer Society". Stuff like that seems reasonable, maybe.

What I'd suggest is that the editor hash this out at the video games project with other people who know about this stuff. Come up with a draft proposal of actual standards and we can talk about it. I don't mean that in a harsh way, I mean that in a positive way. If you cna do this, you'll have a reasonable chance of this happening. At least it would be concrete proposal the we could discuss. Herostratus (talk) 05:12, 20 October 2011 (UTC)

Exactly, I'm not saying there should not be a standard, I'm saying that there currently is not one and we have absolutely no inclusion criteria for this. Also as has been stated I would recommend not trying to pass this through WP:Athlete, I can almost guarantee that you will never even get consensus that these guys are athletes. This desperately grasping at straws trying to save this current batch of articles is just wasting energy. Ridernyc (talk) 05:29, 20 October 2011 (UTC)
This would be my proposal. In our eyes, every game is a different sport. Every competition weighs differently for every game, for instance, WCG might be important to wc3 or sc2 players but of less importance to dota players and so on..

Professional Electronic Sports

  • Srarcraft 2 (ESWC? WCG? GSL? i dont know much about this game)
  • Warcraft 3 (ESWC? WCG? again, i dont know much about this game)
  • Defense of the Ancients (this is the game i play and most knowledgeble of)
Has appeared in one of the following competitions
  • Electronic Sports World Cup
  • SMM Grand National DotA Tournament (top 8)
  • World DotA Championship
  • Dota 2 The International

On another note, this is another article about Clinton Loomis [9] now he has multiple articles right? Redefining history (talk) 09:22, 20 October 2011 (UTC)

I'm not quite sure I grasp why we would need a special guideline for this category. The general notability guidelines ought to suffice. Of course, my general feeling on this subject has always been that a) we should avoid the proliferation of specific guidelines for tiny subsets of articles, but that b) we should interpret the general guidelines broadly, so as not to force deletion of articles on people for whom there is a reasonable case for notability. Having a couple of local news stories that are about a person seems perfectly adequate to me. john k (talk) 04:52, 30 October 2011 (UTC)

End of argument on this page

I see no point continuing the argument on this page. The arguments are continued here:

Wellknown perpetrators and unusual crimes

Currently we say:

The victim of the crime is a renowned national or international figure, including, but not limited to, politicians or celebrities.

Surely the same should apply for wellknown perpetrators, like William Adams (judge) (who is an elected official, albeit at a county rather than state level). Similarly we say:

The motivation for the crime or the execution of the crime is unusual—or has otherwise been considered noteworthy

Surely the same should apply for any circumstances that are sufficiently unusual as to be considered noteworthy, like Beating of Hillary Adams (where a judge ruling on child abuse cases was accused of child abuse himself). -- samj inout 20:14, 7 November 2011 (UTC)

Previously well-known perpetrators will have an article anyway. I can see that William Adams' has been nominated for deletion - if that succeeds, then it means the community feels he was not previously well-known.
Where I crime is considered noteworthy because of its circumstances, then there should be an article about the crime. But I'm not sure why you would suggest that that situation means we should also have an article about the perpetrator. --FormerIP (talk) 20:21, 7 November 2011 (UTC)
Good point re well-known perpetrators already having an article, but they may not — on the other hand the same could be said for the victim and I believe the intention applies to both. For the second point, it should be considered independently, in which case it looks like you agree that where I crime is considered noteworthy because of its circumstances, then there should be an article about the crime. -- samj inout 09:21, 8 November 2011 (UTC)

well-known and significant award or honor?

Can this be clarified? How exclusive this has to be? Which of the items at Category:Civil awards and decorations confer notability, exactly? The current wording of our notability policy suggests that they all do, which is probably a too far stretched interpretation. Or can an award be notable and yet unknown and non-significant? --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| talk to me 22:28, 7 November 2011 (UTC)


The relevant section in question says: "2.Major local political figures who have received significant press coverage.[7] Generally speaking, mayors of cities of at least regional importance are likely to meet this criterion, as are members of the main citywide government or council of a major metropolitan city." There are two problem with this. One is that the phrases "cities of regional importance" and "major metropolitan city" are ill defined. In a recent deletion debate that I started the city in question had 107,000 people and is 40 miles away from its regional centre, Chicago, yet two of the keep votes argued: "A city of 100,000 in the US is consider sufficiently large for mayors to be notable" and "Keep Mayor of a city with over a hundred thousand people" indicating problems with the wording in question. Secondly there seem to be misconceptions over what constitutes "significant coverage." Almost every mayor will have a local newspaper covering their election and usually stories about what they did on their every day duties and those are increasingly being used as part of the significant coverage needed to justify keeping articles. However to me "Mayor Smith opens local shopping centre", "Mayor Jones commented on the local crime issue" don't seem to meet the requirements of WP:GNG.

Accordingly I would like clarification on what constitutes a major metropolitan city and also believe we should consider adding a section to the mayor section of WP:POLITICIAN. Something like "routine coverage of local figures carrying out their duties is insufficient for the purpose of WP:POLITICIAN. Alternatively we simply agree that all mayors of urban areas over 100k are notable and save people a lot of time? Valenciano (talk) 21:06, 9 November 2011 (UTC)

Don't know the answer, but would say that this guidance should be changed so as not to be so US-centric. Most mayors perform a purely ceremonial function in the UK and they are not really notable even in major cities. --FormerIP (talk) 21:28, 9 November 2011 (UTC)
I believe mayors should be subject to the same criteria as other local elected officials such as city council members - namely, the requirement for significant independent coverage. And I agree that "Mayor Jones opened a shopping center" is not significant coverage. I believe there should NOT be a rule that mayors of cities over a certain size are automatically notable. There is no such rule now, although two commentators at the deletion debate cited above seemed to believe that there is.
I would like to see the guidelines here clarified to make it clear that there is no cutoff point, over which all mayors are automatically notable. People often misquote the "mayor of a city of at least regional importance" guideline, stating that such mayors are automatically considered notable. They are not. The guideline merely says that such people "are likely to meet the criterion" of significant press coverage. They still do have to meet the criterion, and that needs to be clearer. IMO any attempt to define "major metropolitan city" and "city of at least regional importance" would be a bad idea. It would simply strengthen the false impression that those elected officials are automatically notable - rather than the actual guideline of "likely to prove notable".
Also, I agree with FormerIP that "mayor" is sometimes a purely ceremonial or honorary title and does not in itself make the person notable. That is sometimes true in the US as well; see the current discussion at Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/Laura Friedman for example. --MelanieN (talk) 23:19, 9 November 2011 (UTC)
In the example I cited above, Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/Laura Friedman, once again the result was "keep", with most of the "keep" arguments based purely on the size of the city, citing the size of the city as if it was policy. My argument that the guideline says "likely to meet the criterion" rather than "automatically notable" fell on deaf ears. This in spite of the fact that the title "mayor" in that city is rotated among the city council members on an annual basis, and that the "mayor" is purely ceremonial with no power or administrative function. (That info was explicitly supported in the AfD by references.) I feel like I am in a losing battle trying to apply notability criteria to mayors, when it appears most people want a lazy shortcut such as city size, so they can rubber-stamp their !vote and move on. --MelanieN (talk) 16:15, 15 November 2011 (UTC)
Well, the point is well taken that the clause "mayors of cities of at least regional importance are likely to meet this criterion [of 'significant press coverage']" is kind of... weird. Either they meet the coverage criterion or they don't. The only reason I can think of for the clause is to say "Well, if they're mayor of a city of at least regional importance they'll likely have significant coverage, so rather then deleting the article go look for it and put it in the article, or if you're thinking of writing an article about such a person, be encouraged that you'll probably find enough sources" or something. But right, it's not taken that way, it's taken to mean "these people are presumed notable". If that's what we want, we should say "mayors of cities of at least regional importance are generally assumed to be notable even if they don't meet this criterion [of 'significant press coverage']". Is that what we want? Maybe. It's not madness. We could say "Mayor of city over 100,000 during any part of tenure, in." After all if you're a New Hampshire State Legislator, which is an unpaid part-time job mostly used as a hobby for retired people, you're in, period. The advantage of this is, saves discussion time. Disadvantage, lots of really marginally notable people are in. I'd be willing to go either way. But leaving it as it seems not a good solution. Herostratus (talk) 17:17, 15 November 2011 (UTC)
I put a clarification that mayors have to meet the primary criterion, but this was reverted by an editor who noted that since it's a secondary criterion they don't have to meet the primary criterion. That's fine, either way is fine with me, but it should be clear is all I ask, thus I changed it to "Mayors of cities of at least regional importance and members of the main citywide government or council of a major metropolitan city. This is a secondary criterion. People who satisfy this criterion do not need to satisfy the primary criterion". This seems slightly odd to me, since if they don't meet the primary criterion that means there are basically no significant refs for the person and so unless it's a stub it probably won't meet WP:BLP, which trumps everything. But I guess if they're dead it's OK. Herostratus (talk) 04:28, 22 November 2011 (UTC)
I would favour just removing the section beginning "generally speaking mayors..." as the "cities of regional importance" bit is very vague and in the example cited above, a commuter town 40 minutes from Chicago with 107,000 people was judged a key regional centre. I would also favour adding a section along the lines of "routine coverage of a local politician carrying out their daily duties is insufficient for notability purposes." That simply clarifies what we already have in WP:ROUTINE. Valenciano (talk) 14:32, 22 November 2011 (UTC)
Yes, that's fine also. The construction I tried to add was "Generally speaking, mayors of cities of at least regional importance are likely to meet this criterion, as are members of the main citywide government or council of a major metropolitan city. But if they don't, they're not notable". But this was reverted (which is the editor's perfect right of course), with an edit summary of "They don't have to meet the GNG otherwise secondary guidelines wouldn't exist". Which, maybe that is correct; I don't think so but I'm not sure. However, just removing the "Generally speaking..." passage altogether might pass this objection; I'll try it and see if anyone objects. Herostratus (talk) 17:13, 22 November 2011 (UTC)
Well, I certainly don't. It's an improvement. --FormerIP (talk) 17:23, 22 November 2011 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────I undid it. I agree with the 100k inherent notability rule and think the better change would be to clarify "cities of at least regional importance" to that end. With regard to internationalization, I would not be opposed to the application of a different rule to symbolic vs. governmental mayors, provided a rationale is provided for why they are being treated differently.

The bigger question is: what's wrong with the rule for inherent notability of mayors? We have inherent notability of other significant politicians, such as state-level legislators, so why not for mayors of cities of regional importance? --Philosopher Let us reason together. 02:47, 24 November 2011 (UTC)

So, I asked what's wrong with inherent notability for mayors and came across footnote 12 on completeness. It occurs to me that that rationale doesn't apply to mayors in at all the same way it would apply to state/provincial legislators. Given that, perhaps it is better to lump the mayors back with the city councils in notability determinations, especially considering that there are a great many different kinds of mayors even within the United States. That said, if the "cities of regional importance" question comes back up, 100k is a good estimate of what a city of regional importance is. --Philosopher Let us reason together. 02:57, 24 November 2011 (UTC)
Regional importance requires a city of 100,000? Within how many miles? What exactly does regional importance mean? So a city like Ely, Nevada is not regionally important? What about Montpelier, Vermont? Better to not even try to associate a population number with importance. Vegaswikian (talk) 03:34, 24 November 2011 (UTC)
Perhaps, but as the proposal moots the question of "regional importance," this argument can be put on hold unless someone objects to the proposal itself, right? --Philosopher Let us reason together. 17:31, 24 November 2011 (UTC)
I agree with Philosopher's proposal that mayors should be treated the same as city council members, namely, having to meet WP:GNG. (In some cases, like the one I cited above, that's all the mayor is: a glorified city council member.) And I agree with Vegaswikian that we should not try to pick an arbitrary population figure to define a "city of regional importance". In some locations a city of 50,000 would be a major metropolis; in others a city of 300,000 would be just another suburb. Regional importance depends entirely on context. Bottom line, I agree with the deletion of the sentence in question from the project page. --MelanieN (talk) 16:54, 29 November 2011 (UTC)

Notability: Lack of specific criteria for media-producers

Please consider as example this subject, actually nominated for deletion. Not considering how the article is poorly written, I should agree with the DGG comment in the AfD: "People are notable for the things they do. Very few people's private life is notable--its their accomplishments. (...) Producers are notable because of the shows they produce, just as authors for what they write, and businessmen for the businesses." How is possible that this guideline does not actually include any specific criteria that recognize a direct and automatic notability to media-producers with verifiable credits on a body of notable "products"? --Cavarrone (talk) 08:31, 20 November 2011 (UTC)

Because outside of their own narrow field, they do not achieve any actual notability by having verifiable credits? "Producer", depending on the industry, may mean anything from "writer" or "head writer" to "money provider" to "money provider's current significant other being thrown a credit as egoboo". There is no one-size-fits-all for "producers". --Orange Mike | Talk 18:08, 29 November 2011 (UTC)
OM sees exactly the problem. Author or actor are unambiguous roles,director relatively so. Producer is not. This has to be overcome be examining just what they did and just how important are he productions. DGG ( talk ) 02:54, 4 December 2011 (UTC)

Alfonso Gomez-Rejon ?

I am considering creating Alfonso Gomez-Rejon. He has directed 5 episodes of Glee (TV series) according to List of Glee episodes, several notable commercials for American Express, Chevrolet and T-Mobile according to RSA Films, and has served as Second unit director on several major films, many of which were critically acclaimed according to the NYTimes. I can not find sources that would truly qualify for WP:GNG. What do people think?--TonyTheTiger (T/C/BIO/WP:CHICAGO/WP:FOUR) 07:25, 10 December 2011 (UTC)

  • It seems that, also considering a couple of American Horror Story episodes he directed this year, he doesn't still pass WP:FILMAKER and WP:ANYBIO, but nothing against an article if there are sources to support his notability. If you are not sure, you can consider the opportunity of creating the article in your user pages.--Cavarrone (talk) 09:06, 10 December 2011 (UTC)

Voice actors

Some voice actors might get a "shortcut to notability" by being the relatively unknown person hired to dub the voices of principal characters in several films, even though the voice actor himself never had significant coverage in multiple reliable and independent sources, needed to satisfy WP:N. "Voice actors" were included in January 2011. I don't find any consensus on the talk page around that time to support the addition. Some voice actors might get coverage in the trade press or in magazines and newspapers of general circulation, or are well known actors in their own right, but I doubt that this is always true. I suggest that voice actors should be removed from the list under "Entertainers;" "Actors, voice actors, comedians, opinion makers, models, and television personalities" before "Has had significant roles in multiple notable films, television shows, stage performances, or other productions." This would prevent a little-known dubber from getting automatic notability by inheriting it from the film or TV show they are hired to dub into another language. They could certainly have their own articles if their work receives significant coverage in multiple reliable and independent sources. June Foray is such a voice actor, for instance. Edison (talk) 21:09, 13 December 2011 (UTC)

The discussion was had in various places, including some AFDs. A significant role means they didn't just translate what some foreign leader said for a news program. In the anime industry a bit budget production has very high standards for voice actors these days. They are equal to regular actors, having to get their voice just right to convey the proper emotion. Voice actors aren't dubbers. Decades ago, they just hired some random fool to say the lines, but that isn't the case anymore. They know no one is going to watch it if the voice acting is bad. Dream Focus 21:59, 13 December 2011 (UTC)
A guideline does not just apply to recent films. We have AFDs for films from the decades ago, so we should be careful not to give automatic notability to those random dubbers you mention from decades ago. "Notable films" from the major countries might have had the voice of a main character voiced by a low paid hacks for exhibition in some very small country, and this standard as stated would confer automatic notability, without any reviews or other good coverage of his voice acting in the films. I'm just looking for some tightening up of the wording to head off such inappropriate granting of notability. There should still be a requirement for multiple reliable and independent sources with significant coverage, rather than giving them a Golden Ticket. Edison (talk) 22:29, 13 December 2011 (UTC)
The secondary guidelines exists to keep things that are notable, even when the don't meet the general notability guidelines. They'd be pointless otherwise. "Has had significant roles in multiple notable films, television shows, stage performances, or other productions." Whether it was a significant role or not is determined in the AFDs of course. Was the person a voice actor, or a dubber? Some shows don't have voice actors, they have one guy that does all the voices, and usually poorly. Hmm... hard to explain. Those in the AFDs we've dealt with this before understand the difference. I don't know how you would reword it. Dream Focus 22:50, 13 December 2011 (UTC)
Other than in animation, or in speaking for some object or animal, isn't a "voice actor" in a movie typically a "dubber" from a foreign language? I expect that in many cases these have not been really notable for their dubbing. If they haven't been "noted," then they aren't "notable" by Wikipedia standards, however admirable their efforts may have been. Are there "voice actors" in "stage performances?" Could happen, I suppose. Otherwise the present wording just doesn't make sense. Edison (talk) 01:10, 15 December 2011 (UTC)

Notability of Crime victims and perpetrators.. and notability of investigators and their work

There is material in this guidleine about notability of criminals and victims, but not about the notability of the investigators and their work. The detectives are often most of the story in follow up stories, and are oten the protagonists in ficional accounts of detective stories. There is discussion of notability of Crime victims and perpetrators as well as investigators and their work Law here and here. If there is consensus to try to modify the Notability (people) guidleline at either of those pages, I will move the discussion to this talk page. PPdd (talk) 23:09, 16 December 2011 (UTC)

I don't think that notability guidelines require special wording specifically for small town cops. However, it's worth bearing in mind that we put some weight on the depth of coverage; a criminal or crime may be the focus of an entire newspaper article, whereas an investigator may get more of a passing mention - it's unusual for media coverage to be about them. bobrayner (talk) 16:00, 18 December 2011 (UTC)

Detectives are not likely to be notable unless:

  • They held a reasonably high rank. Except in very exceptional circumstances, I would suggest that nobody of the rank of captain/chief inspector or below would be considered notable and even more senior officers would have to have a damn good reason to be notable. And;
  • They operated at a national level or in a very major sub-national jurisdiction (such as London or New York). And;
  • They were the lead investigator in major cases of national importance. And;
  • Their work was substantially covered in the national media.

-- Necrothesp (talk) 23:37, 18 December 2011 (UTC)

In your interpretation, there might be an article on WIki about a criminal or victim, but not the investigator, when the investigation is often the interesting part for crime buffs. A researcher of local crimes (yawn) wanting an encyclopedia article to quickly get info from would only get part of the information, when more full information is not that hard to achieve with a more liberal interpretation of a notability threshold. PPdd (talk) 02:08, 23 December 2011 (UTC)
On the contrary, only exceptionally notable crimes, criminals or victims should have articles on Wikipedia, and these investigations are usually led by officers much higher in rank than a mere sergeant. Local crime with no national significance falls into WP:NOTNEWSPAPER. We don't need detailed biographies of every detective in the world. -- Necrothesp (talk) 02:44, 23 December 2011 (UTC)
Not quite; we should cover notable crimes, but the only real way of defining notable crimes ins saying we should cover the crimes we want to cover. The individuals associated with a notable crime who are likely to become notable by their association with it are the victim and the perpetrator--and here our coverage is restricted by the BLP policy with respect to the perpetrator, and the victim is still alive (which is why it is usually the crime which we write the article about.) There will be other people: the judge, the prosectors, the defense attorneys, the investigators, the witnesses, the jury. Normally none of them will be made notable by any one particular crime, except in the most extremely exceptional cases--if any of them are notable , it will be because of the entire career, as shown in the usual way by awards, books about them, and so on. And having done non-notable things any number of times does not make someone notable. DGG ( talk ) 05:00, 26 December 2011 (UTC)

Inconsistent application of WP:BIO

Am I imagining it, or are the standards of WP:BIO being interpreted in an enormously varied way across professional fields, and over time. For example, sports figure or musician articles seem to have to pass a far lower bar to keep them than articles about cops. Is there a thoroughly discussed rationale for this, or does something need fixing to have consistency? PPdd (talk) 02:02, 23 December 2011 (UTC)

That is certainly true. But it's because far too many minor "celebrities" are covered, not because too few other people are. I'm not sure what you want exactly - do you think that every cop who has been mentioned in the paper a few times should get an article? That would lead to far too many articles (and calls for other people who get a lot of local media coverage, like city councillors, to have articles too). And in case you think I'm biased against cops, I'm not - I am one and I've probably written more biographical articles about police officers on Wikipedia than anyone else (at least 100 at last count). I've even had one of those deleted at AfD - the subject was a very senior detective who had headed some extremely high profile investigations that were continually in national media headlines, and I still believe it shouldn't have been deleted. But I'm afraid I simply can't support articles about junior officers who are investigating routine crimes as part of their day-to-day work. They really have to have done something very notable. If we have articles about police officers doing their routine work, why not anyone else? To reverse your question, why should cops be a special case simply because the media is more interested in what they do (for obvious reasons) than what a street cleaner, say, does? -- Necrothesp (talk) 02:46, 23 December 2011 (UTC)
Agree with Necrothesp, what we need to do is to stomp on sports figure, musician, artist and other fan-made articles, if they don't pass pass the WP:GNG notability test. There are far too many of them. LK (talk) 05:47, 23 December 2011 (UTC)
Necrothesp wrote, "If we have articles about police officers doing their routine work, why not anyone else?... simply because the media is more interested in what they do (for obvious reasons) than what a street cleaner, say, does?" That is a good point. I am merely pointing to the huge inconsistency in application of what counts as having been recorded in a news source in different fields. Worse, I am pointing to a problem but not to a solution. But pointing to the problem is a necessary small first step to fixin it. (Incidentally, there was a big story about "streetcleaners" in California when it was found that the state government street cleaners from Caltrans were secretly dumping road kill and landslide material into the watershed, and got caught when they dumped a dog... with its ID tags. It had potential to become one of the biggest environmental cleanup costs of any mess ever created by the state. The notable street cleaners behind it were the lowest level, but they were clearly directed by the upper levels, who did not get named, since the story died or got buried. This is a kind of reversal of your reversal, since the top ones shold have been notable, but the bottom ones ended up potential targets of prosecution or lawsuits. But your point is good since cops solving crimes or even investigating is inherently newsworthy, while other jobs are not.) PPdd (talk) 06:36, 23 December 2011 (UTC)
I'm not necessarily disagreeing with Lawrencekhoo, but how can there be "too many" Wikipedia articles of any kind? (That is not a rhtorical question. There may be a good answer to it that I agree with.) PPdd (talk) 06:41, 23 December 2011 (UTC)
There can be 'too many' of a certain type of article, if enthusiasts for a topic create very many non-notable articles that would be deleted if they came to an AfD, but there are just too many for people to nominate. For example, should an encyclopedia have the thousands of star trek articles (e.g. this article on Demora Sulu), or tens of thousands of anime related articles (e.g. Pacifica Casull) that we currently have? LK (talk) 08:58, 23 December 2011 (UTC)
I don't really know what anime is, but WIkipedia seems like the encyclopedia to go to in order to find out. One argument against such proliferation I can think of is that reliability and verfiability standards might be lost in a fog of too many articles. I don't know if there is any empirical basis for my statement, however. PPdd (talk) 00:50, 24 December 2011 (UTC)
It's not lost in a fog of too many articles, it's that the importance of something gets lost in a sea of the unimportant. If the encyclopedia cannot tell the difference, it may be trustworthy as a directory, but not as an encyclopedia. Disregarding notability opens the door wide to promotionalism. It's hard enough to keep it out for the actually notable , but once the barrier gets too low there's nothing else to say but what is promotional. (Yes, here I am, defending the concept of notability: I may have a relatively inclusive standard,, but there needs to be some standard for us to be respectable.) DGG ( talk ) 05:34, 26 December 2011 (UTC)

Pornographic actors/actresses