Wikipedia:Simple talk/Archive 101

From Simple English Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Wikipedia policies

I see many red links here. Is there a special rule concerning the creation/transwikification of policies and guidelines which exist on main English Wikipedia? Greets, --intforce (talk) 17:32, 8 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Wikipedia:Follow English Wikipedia. We don't generally move all policies over unless we need to modify it to specifically meet some different situation that exists here on simple that doesn't on en. We don't reinvent the wheel unless we have to so to speak. -DJSasso (talk) 16:08, 9 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Ah, ok, thanks for the answer. Apart from the policies, I plan to create some help pages like WP:Skin, WP:CSS oder WP:JavaScript. Is that OK? --intforce (talk) 16:23, 9 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Yeah, you can copy policies over as well....but its really hard to simplify them without changing their meaning so its more a recommendation not to do so unless you have a lot of time to spend on it. Chances are if we are missing a policy its cause we haven't needed it yet. But for articles like you suggest, have at it. -DJSasso (talk) 17:02, 9 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Here on SEWP, the information about not using Wikipedia or its mirrors, etc. as sources is in the guideline of citing sources. On enwiki, it is in the policy of verifiability. I started to move it to the same policy here, then decided I should bring it up for discussion first. Comments? --Auntof6 (talk) 13:17, 9 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]


Is there an easy way of submitting a request for someone to write up a Simple Wikipedia article on a given topic? I spent a while looking for it earlier but couldn't find anything.

(Also, for anyone who might be interested: I was trying to find information on Lie algebra, an advanced math topic that was getting a lot of press not too long ago. I'd offer to write it myself but I don't even know where to begin to try to understand the topic, which is how I got here in the first place. I cleaned up the article on lying a bit, though, so perhaps not all is lost.) --Roman à clef (talk) 05:17, 10 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

WP:Requested pages is what you are looking for. However, I have to say that lie algebra would be a super-ambitious topic to try and simplify. I looked at English wiki's article! Macdonald-ross (talk) 05:49, 10 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Wikidata is getting close to a first roll-out

(Apologies if this message isn't in your language.)

As some of you might already have heard Wikimedia Deutschland is working on a new Wikimedia project. It is called m:Wikidata. The goal of Wikidata is to become a central data repository for the Wikipedias, its sister projects and the world. In the future it will hold data like the number of inhabitants of a country, the date of birth of a famous person or the length of a river. These can then be used in all Wikimedia projects and outside of them.

The project is divided into three phases and "we are getting close to roll-out the first phase". The phases are:

  1. language links in the Wikipedias (making it possible to store the links between the language editions of an article just once in Wikidata instead of in each linked article)
  2. infoboxes (making it possible to store the data that is currently in infoboxes in one central place and share the data)
  3. lists (making it possible to create lists and similar things based on queries to Wikidata so they update automatically when new data is added or modified)

It'd be great if you could join us, test the demo version, provide feedback and take part in the development of Wikidata. You can find all the relevant information including an FAQ and sign-up links for our on-wiki newsletter on the Wikidata page on Meta.

For further discussions please use this talk page (if you are uncomfortable writing in English you can also write in your native language there) or point me to the place where your discussion is happening so I can answer there.

--Lydia Pintscher 13:37, 10 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Distributed via Global message delivery. (Wrong page? Fix here.)

Category synonyms

Why do we not have a category "Transport"? Why do we sometimes use the longer word "Transportation" (which conveys no extra meaning), and sometimes the simpler word "Transport"? I recommend wholesale use of the word "Transport" for categories involving movement of people or goods. Macdonald-ross (talk) 06:39, 6 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

I've read that "transport" is not normally used as a noun in American English [1]... though a native speaker might be able to correct me on that. Osiris (talk) 07:28, 6 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
I don't normally see it used it as a noun here in the US. However, that's not necessarily a reason not to use it that way here on SEWP. To me, being consistent is more important than which word we use. --Auntof6 (talk) 07:51, 6 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Not only is 'Transport' perfectly good American English, but quite a few American style guides advise against the habit of making nouns unnecessarily longer, e.g. Strunk & White. We should redirect Transportation to Transport. Macdonald-ross (talk) 08:42, 6 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Transport is very rarely used in American English as a noun and indeed can mean something slightly different than transportation. Transport tends to mean to move something, whereas transportation tends to mean the mode by which something is moved. At least that is how they are used in North America. It could very easily lead to confusion if you mix the two. If anything we should always go with the lowest common denominator (ie the word that is used the most commonly in all forms of English) which would be Transportation. I know I as someone who uses Canadian English would be very confused to see a category called Transport, it would seem like a big blinking mistake to me. That being said we do have a policy for this which is WP:ENGVAR which states that we use the version of the word that has the strongest national ties to the subject and in the case of a general subject we use whichever one was used by the first editor. In this case for categories/articles about Canada and the US we should use Transportation and for ones in England we use Transport. And for the generic category since it was originally created using Transportation we leave it there. -DJSasso (talk) 11:29, 6 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

I doubt that "transportation" is the most common form for the noun in general. American English more often than not stands out on its own, and most Commonwealth countries follow Commonwealth English. One of the reasons the category seems to have been renamed on the English Wikipedia was to conform with naming conventions for categories, which say that topic categories should correspond to the name of the article – the article was at Transport, and most of the subcategories were too, so it was agreed the topic category should match. That's also the case here, I guess. And for this wiki's purposes, I agree with Auntof6 that consistency is important; we should bring the categories and articles in line with each other. Simplicity is also important -- "transportation" is less ambiguous, but I really doubt it's used all that much outside North America. Osiris (talk) 06:25, 7 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

When I said the most common form, what I meant was that the form that means the same in all countries. Even if transportation is used less in Commonwealth English it still means the same thing as it does in North America. This means its the most common meaning of the word. Whereas Transport does not mean the same thing in all versions of English. That is why it is my preference to go with the word that has the most common meaning throughout the world. Especially on a wiki that is trying to teach the language. That being said I'd also go with the Engvar method as mentioned above. -DJSasso (talk) 11:45, 7 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
The diffs of those who disagree with Macdonald-ross are intuitive, plausible, etc., but the discussion thread as a whole persuades me to try to re-focus the argument.
A Please consider a different argument strategy. For example, please review
B Please reconsider Macdonald-ross' proposal in the context established by
* "Transport" at which is a Merriam-Webster web page?
Please note the significant disparity in these numbers
  • Google search term—Transport produces 1,210,000,000 hits
  • Google search term—Transportation produces 765,000,000 results hits
C My opinion is informed by research and it is supported by citing reliable sources. Looking forward
Is it not shown by citing this wide range of examples that Category:Transport is well suited to our SEWP purposes. --Horeki (talk) 13:50, 7 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Your links don't actually show anything helpful. You link to a dictionary definition, but that page also has a dictionary definition for transportation. You link to some pages which use commonwealth english which again no one disputes its used in commonwealth english. You show google hits which is the most amusing of your points, because no one disputes both words are widely used. Transport is used in EN-CA and EN-US and others often but has a different meaning than it does in EN-GB. So number of google hits shows absolutely nothing because google hit numbers can't show the difference in usages with different meanings. -DJSasso (talk) 14:34, 7 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
DJSasso -- Please explain again in different words. Please be specific. Your general points appear to be a little off-topic or off-target.
Please be simple, as in A + B + C
  • A. Commons and other wikis have adopted the category proposed by Macdonald-ross
  • B. The World Bank and the European Commission are not Commonwealth institutions; and thus, the institutional English usage stand outside the dichotomy argument above.
  • C. Japan is not part of the Commonwealth of Nations; and thus, the Japanese government's English usage stand outside the dichotomy argument above.
These examples represent a step in a constructive direction, yes? --Horeki (talk) 16:16, 7 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

English is an official language of the European Union. While not strictly "British" (or Commonwealth) usage, it probably reflects what we are trying to achieve here: using English for Communication. Probably very similar situation at the World Bank. Just out of interest: what does the UN use? --Eptalon (talk) 16:28, 7 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Aha, yes. See "Transport", which is a webpage of the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Division for Sustainable Development. --Horeki (talk) 17:02, 7 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

(ec)@Horeki: We don't follow how other wikis do things so the fact that commons has a category named one thing or the other doesn't affect us. As for the your second and thirds point, I never said they were part of the Commonwealth, but that they are using what is called Commonwealth English. Different countries use different versions of English. Lots of countries that are not part of the Commonwealth still use Commonwealth English. And no, your examples are quite far off the mark. It appears we are trying to reinvent the wheel here, we already have a guideline that covers this. en:WP:ENGVAR. To quote one of the parts that is very applicable "Wikipedia tries to find words that are common to all varieties of English. Insisting on a single term or a single usage as the only correct option does not serve the purposes of an international encyclopedia." In this case transportation is understood by all versions of English, where as Transport means different things to different versions of English. -DJSasso (talk) 16:31, 7 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Aha, yes. In the thread above, Osiris and Auntof6 mention "consistency" as a guide. In this context, the other-wiki decisions about categories seem relevant to me. For me, this is persuasive because it suggests a consensus which was reached by a wider group of opinions than we are able to poll. The category decision-making in Commons stands outside the self-limiting framework of the ENGVAR dichotomy. --Horeki (talk) 17:02, 7 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

False dichotomy

Should we considering whether en:WP:ENGVAR and the thread above presents a False dilemma. This is not an issue which divides nicely into an issue of spelling nor something to do with either American English or Commonwealth English.

Yes, according to Merriam-Webster, the word "transport" is linked with "transportation"; and yes, the "-ation" is commonly associated with American usage

Is it possible that a mistaken focus on a "fallacy of false choice" distracts us from a more practical perspective? --Horeki (talk) 16:38, 7 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Engvar is just one guideline, and shouldn't be used where it's causing problems. We're talking about the names of categories, which are meant to be supportive of the mainspace. It really doesn't make much sense to have the topic titled Transport and its category titled Transportation (and, in turn, most of its subcategories using Transport). In a wiki that's catering to beginners, it's just going to foster confusion. We should pick one or the other and use it consistently unless there is a good reasn not to. And ENGVAR isn't one of them, in my opinion. Osiris (talk) 23:20, 8 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Hello, see for example Collins English Dictionary (entry transport): As a noun, it can mean "the act of transporting or the state of being transported". Transportation can also have this meaning, but seems to be mainly US usage. One of the examples given for this usage (in the Thesaurus): "Safety rules had been breached during transport of radioactive fuel." The thesaurus does not have an entry for "transportation". In my opinion, renaming to the shorter (and more general) form seems to be the right thing to do. --Eptalon (talk) 09:44, 9 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Engvar was created for exactly this situation. The whole reason it exists is for situations like this. One group will argue for use of their preferred version and another group will argue for theirs. Frankly I think using one and only one especially if it is Transport that is used will be considerably more confusing than having Transport in a category called Transportation. But as I said before I would prefer everything was Transportation since it has the least ambiguous name. But I know many people in the UK will disagree with that belief so it again comes down to Engvar will have to do what it was meant to do, break such stalemates. -DJSasso (talk) 16:01, 9 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Yeah, but not when there are other things to consider – we will always have simplicity as our primary guideline for making decisions –; or when it comes into conflict with other guidelines: naming guidelines for categories states that topic categories should be under the same name as the article. When multiple guidelines conflict, it's up to editorial discretion. And for the sake of simplicity and clarity for learners, the category titles should match with the article and each other. Osiris (talk) 02:38, 10 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
I guess we have to agree to disagree, I think using a word that will confuse a large percentage of readers is less simple than having a category name and article name not matching. Personally I would move the article name as well to Transportation and then they would match. But I doubt we could get consensus on that so then I think engvar should come into play. We most definitely should never never never have them the same across all categories. The usage definitely has to match the local language for categories about transportation in the US etc. If it doesn't, then we are giving completely incorrect information to the readers. -DJSasso (talk) 12:13, 10 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Maybe there is no problem here. Use transportation as the category (although I personally would prefer Transport, I see what DJ means), and use both in articles, depending on article subject (actually, I think that's what DJ suggested higher up). Let's not look for a problem, when there isn't really one there. Yottie =talk= 17:58, 10 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
I suppose we'll have to disagree then. I would personally support a move either way, just to make the titles consistent. The original poster seems to have dropped out, though, so maybe Yottie's right, maybe we're underestimating our readers. Osiris (talk) 04:19, 11 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

How To Create A New Article?

How do I create a new article? PacificWarrior101 (talk) 02:18, 11 September 2012 (UTC)PacificWarrior101[reply]

Hello, please read Wikipedia:How to write Simple English pages. Thanks.  Hazard-SJ  ✈  04:43, 11 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

'Updated since my last visit'

I've become increasingly aware that unregistered users are allowed to use this formula instead of actually saying what they are doing. This has the effect that anyone watching a range of pages must check what has been done, item by item. Unregistered users can never be trusted, and even auto-confirmed registered users need close watching for the first few months.

There is a good reason why the 'Change summary' box should be properly filled in. It helps other users to know what you are doing to a page in which they may have an interest. This is a community, and it is discourteous for a user who knows little or nothing about this wiki to make changes without a summary. Large changes (even by registered but inexperienced users) should be prefaced by an explanation on the talk page. In general, talk pages are underused on this wiki, and administrators might need to remind some users...

Anyway, I think we should restrict the use of the 'updated' formula to experienced users. Macdonald-ross (talk) 07:20, 4 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

That only shows you which revisions has been made since you have last visited the page. Those "magic words" are a system message and are not an edit summary/autosummary. This is only to help you to see which revisions you may want to check, because you haven't seen them yet. -Barras talk 09:12, 4 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Oh! Thank you. Still, that means plenty are not filling in the Change summary, which is what I positively do want to see. Macdonald-ross (talk) 10:35, 4 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Well, we could force that people need to include edit summaries, but that would probably also scare people away. I've seen that some wikis give you a warning when you don't include an edit summary and that you then have to confirm the edit to have it saved without edit summary. However, I'm not sure if that would really help here. -Barras talk 10:46, 4 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Writing an edit filter that tells "new editors" to provide an edit summary is trivial, big question though: will we get sensible edit summaries with that? --Eptalon (talk) 11:15, 4 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
We could try it and look at the results. Macdonald-ross (talk) 11:59, 4 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Ugh absolutely not. I hate wikis that force edit summaries. They do nothing but force people to enter bad edit summaries. Edit summaries should never be mandatory. Are they good practice when making changes that might confuse people? Sure of course they are. But in the vast majority of changes they are unnecessary and forcing people to use them are more likely to cause unhelpful or even bad edit summaries to be added. -DJSasso (talk) 12:27, 4 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Simply put, edit summaries, or change summaries as we call them here, are to be encouraged, but not forced. If we force users to enter a change summary and whatever they enter are unhelpful, it would be still unhelpful. Let us remain as we are now: not forcing, but encouraging.  Hazard-SJ  ✈  02:59, 12 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Do we need this page? It's been imported from mw:Help:Assigning permissions and it seems like it's for wiki development, rather than anything to do with SEWP. Osiris (talk) 03:54, 11 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

I agree, if the content is the same then why duplicate it?  Hazard-SJ  ✈  04:29, 11 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
We should keep it, its for new admins/crats to learn to be able to assign permissions. The page isn't about wiki development at all. -DJSasso (talk) 14:12, 11 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
That would be what one would reasonably expect a page of that title on this project to be for, but that's not what it's about. It's part of the documentation for MediaWiki users; it's addressed to people who are setting up and developing a MediaWiki-powered wiki. It doesn't actually have anything relevant to Simple English Wikipedia, just the software we use. But we don't use the default MediaWiki configuration, which only defines the groups autoconfirmed, bot, sysop and bureaucrat. And we've already established our protocols for assigning these permission. Instructions for how to assign permissions might be useful, but that's not what this is, it's just a documentation page that's been imported from the MediaWiki wiki (word-for-word). We don't need it. Osiris (talk) 04:17, 12 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

I'm not sure whether there is still an objection here. Should I delete the import? I guess I can take it to RFD...? Osiris (talk) 07:27, 14 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Christianity article not neutral?

A few years back, an {{NPOV}} template was added to the Christianity article. Since there have been many edits since then, and no discussion, a removal of the template was proposed. It will be removed in about two weeks, unless someone steps forward and points out issues (relating to neurality) to be fixed. --Eptalon (talk) 21:22, 13 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

At a quick glance I don't believe it is POV at all. Throughout the article it says "Christians believe...", "Protestants think..." or "The bible says...". Bearing in mind that Christianity is a point of view, an opinion and a belief, but actually I don't think this article is one sided in that manner. It describes what Christianity is, but doesn't say it is necessarily 'true'. I'd support removing the POV template. Kennedy (talk) 09:18, 14 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
The article gives a good account of Christian beliefs, but it says not a word about the aspects of Christianity which have attracted most criticism, nor about the extensive literature on how the bible was put together, nor about the philosophical limitations of ideas which cannot be disproved. I'm just explaining why someone might legitimately think the article is one-sided. Had the title been "Christian beliefs" it could hardly be bettered. Macdonald-ross (talk) 16:45, 14 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Research article about Simple English Wikipedia

There is an interesting article in the new Signpost on English Wikipedia: Researchers find that Simple English Wikipedia has "lost its focus". The article is not "simple". :) Voceditenore (talk) 13:23, 11 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

It is really interesting. I checked a few articles that I would concern as "simple" and was shocked how low the scores were. However, we should not loose our focus on this wiki: simplicity. --@intforce 13:41, 11 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Looks like another word-counting approach. Take (some sort of average) word length, and words per sentence, and weigh them using some factors. This will give you a nice number, which you can use for comparison. This however does not take into account:
  • Replacing longer words with shorter ones does not necessarily make an article more readable, or easier to understand. Take phrasal verbs for instance. Replacing extinguish with put out will make you gain five letters. Problem: How do you find the meaning of put out from put and out?
  • Sentence length, and the choice of words also depends on the subject. Readability that is only dependent on word length and sentence length cannot take this into account; a scientific article is limited in the choice of words it can use, if it wants to stay scientific.
  • If the selection of articles between the two studies was changed, the numbers are no longer comparable.
  • Averages (means, modes) are mathematical constructs: They summarize data, to make calculation easier.
The model they use does not use any contextual data;it would probably be very difficult to find the "subject" of the article, given the collected numbers. In summary: another attempt at counting beans. --Eptalon (talk) 14:02, 11 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Yeah the problem is that people have been copying over articles from and then simplifying them over the last couple years. When previously people were writing simple articles from scratch. We should really be getting back to the writing from scratch way of things, but I doubt that will happen because people are inherently lazy. -DJSasso (talk) 14:08, 11 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

2 issues with this. The study was from 2010 so the last couple of years isn't really the problem. Also calling people who volunteer their free time to contribute to wikipedia lazy seems a bit off. --Tbennert (talk) 02:39, 12 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Actually, I prefer to write them from scratch. I think it's actually easier than trying to simplify Wikipedia articles. And more fun too! Someone commenting on the Signpost article, asked how WP compares to children's encyclopedias. Britannica has the first paragraphs of entries in its Children's Encyclopedia (ages 6-10) online. As an experiment, I compared the Flesch scores for "Navy" and "Frog" with the equivalent number of sentences from the first paragraphs in the Wikipedia and Simple English Wikipedia articles:
Children's Britannica = 79
Simple English Wikipedia = 76
Wikipedia = 18 (!!!)
Children's Britannica = 93
Simple English Wikipedia = 63
Wikipedia = 51
A crude neasure, but there you have it. :)– Voceditenore (talk) 16:38, 11 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
AS I pointed out, we are comparing apples and oranges: Take the frog article. Britannica for kids gives some basic facts about frogs; EnWP gives a scientific overview, with long sentences. We try the same, but use shorter sentences. As a consequence, our score is about mid-way between the two others. You also see that the algorithm used is quite stupid. When counting, it does not take semicola (;) into account. This is probably the cause the enwp article has this "low" score. --Eptalon (talk) 22:07, 11 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

This is what I like to call a typical "So what?" research article. The data is freely available, and the tools to generate some numbers are easy to use. But, so what? What is the actual relationship between Flesch Reading Ease and readability? They fail to demonstrate that, so the numbers don't mean anything to actual readers. Quote: "the whole concept of readability cannot be covered". Then don't present this as having anything to do with serving readers.

Plus, their methodology is pretty weak. They remove all of the headings and incomplete sentences. Yet, any editor knows that good use of headings and image captions can make a text much easier to understand. But, if they don't do that, their handy, convenient measurement won't work. Pretty poor. Also, it would have been reasonable to exclude every article on SEWP that is tagged complex from the sample. The community has marked these specifically for readers as not simple. These articles are basically placeholder texts there to be simplified. How about vocabulary frequency (common or uncommon vocabulary) and vocabulary recycling (how aften a word occurs in the text)? I could go on, but I won't.

Finally, they seem to be unaware of newer, more sophisticated tools like Coh-Metrix that go some way towards identifying writing qualities and measuring things like coherence and cohesion that are critical to ease of understanding. Gotanda (talk) 05:34, 12 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

  • Simple English Wikipedia has a page Textual difficulty which explains some of the basics. The Flesch formula has been extensively researched, far more than any other readability formula, and I can provide references to substantiate this. However, I want to make a more important point.
These formulae were all developed for, and tested on, readers of printed material. Our material is a hypertext (obviously), and this has consequences. In particular, links and wiktionary give ways for readers to check immediately the meaning of words they do not know. In practice, well-constructed Simple pages give the reader these facilities. Therefore, the readability scores are universally overestimating difficulty. On the other hand, printed text in the form of a book is still outstanding in legibility and searchability.
To do better, what we really need is research on people: how our readers actually use our system. In detail, how they find out the answers to questions or topics they wish to know about, how they deal with problems, what their reading ability is, and so on. Who needs to know that some of our articles are terrrible? Of course there are. But the system is self-improving, and I can think of many pages which are far better than they were. This is another of the fundamental issues which get ignored by outsiders looking in.
I added the above to the English wiki discussion. Macdonald-ross (talk) 10:15, 12 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Interesting research indeed, although I thought we had agreed many months back that readability tools weren't right for measuring simplicity. I think DJ has a point: people are too lazy to write from scratch. Why don't we put a stop to importing articles from enwp, and encourage writing from scratch? Maybe we should also focus on simplification a little more (you only have to look at the category complex pages to see what I mean...) as after all, that is what SEWP is about. Maybe setting some objectives would help. Or we could go for a more ruthless approach on complex pages, and delete them within a certain period if they aren't being simplified (this could be applied retro-actively, or could be only for new articles - we'd have to decide). Just a few suggestions. Good evening. Yottie =talk= 21:51, 13 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

I write from scratch about 50% of the time, and copy and paste for the rest. Both take about the same amount of time to do properly, so I am not sure that it is a matter of being "lazy". For me it is harder to write from scratch about something in which I have very little background knowledge (or sometimes no particular interest). Here it is easier to simplify from a cut and paste. I do think we really need to focus on keeping it simple. If we do not then the criticisms in the article are quite valid. But do not give up on the readability scores or else we become the target of criticism from those who do not understand the complexity of keeping it simple. There are many elements to writing in simple English. Rudolf Flesch knew this and never intended his "tool" to be the only measure. "Some...will expect a magic formula for good writing and will be disappointed with my simple yardstick. Others, with a passion for accuracy, will wallow in the little rules and computations but lose sight of the principles of plain English. What I hope for are readers who won't take the formula too seriously and won't expect from it more than a rough estimate." (Flesch, The Art of Readable Writing, 1949)--Peterdownunder (talk) 12:03, 14 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Is there a way that exists/we could agree on, to give a certain readability score, so that we could work from there? I think the project's main objective should be to keep things simple, and to make simple the things that aren't. That would be easier if there were at least some sort of way to give us an idea. I would hope agreeing on a way to evaluate simplicity would help put the project back on the right tracks. Yottie =talk= 15:23, 20 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Improving article quality.

I learned about Project RENDER, which is partly EU funded. Its aim is to provide tools that help improve article quality. One of these is the Link extractor; it compares different language versions of a Wikipedia article. It builds a set containing the links present in all versions. These are then classified along three criteria:

  1. There is no article in the resp. wikipedia (red)
  2. The article exists, but it is not linked (yellow)
  3. The article exists, and is linked (green)

If I do this for Evolution, one of our VGAs, I find that there are 140 links in common; of these 30 have no article, and 61 are not linked (for whatever reason). >Note that this is no criticism of the evolution article, I just took an example. I wondered if such metrics can help us in the VGA process, in any way.--Eptalon (talk) 21:57, 11 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Using this tool, the links in Prefectures of Japan are reviewed here. I don't know what to do with this. How can I use this information to guide me towards a next step? --Horeki (talk) 13:54, 12 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
There's limitations. For instance, it thinks the Evolution article has not linked 'variation'. Actually it does, by means of variation. And it is very time-consuming to find the words in the text. Macdonald-ross (talk) 15:18, 12 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
It looks like the thing gives false negatives (in the sense that it does not recognise redirects); I have forwarded this to the creator of the tool.--Eptalon (talk) 17:04, 12 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
It doesn't seem to ignore redlinks when it selects the languages to compare. The languages it selects are the ones with the most links, but since it (obviously) can't track redlinks across languages, it should really ignore them. For Iowa, it used en:Iowa, kn:Iowa, and cs:Iowa - the kn and cs versions have many redlinks and few bluelinks. Compare with de:Iowa and es:Iowa, which have fewer links total, but a LOT more bluelinks and which would have been better choices for a comparison. --Philosopher Let us reason together. 19:29, 16 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Thank you for your helpful feedback. We have improved the code of LEA. So, please test it again here. The new version ignores red links and only considers links within the article namespace. Additionally, it resolves redirects. Further ideas and feedback are very welcome via or on Meta. -- Angelika Adam (WMDE) (talk) 11:52, 19 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Okay, now this is helpful! --Philosopher Let us reason together. 16:46, 20 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Twinkle problem

Twinkle seems to have stopped working for me. Any clues??--Peterdownunder (talk) 04:18, 18 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

I'm currently undergoing a major redevelopment of the Twnkle scripts (see the development page). You can deactive the current script and active the new script in your preferences. Maybe that will work. --@intforce 05:18, 18 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Adding block notices to talk pages still isn't working. It just stops half way through and never does it. Osiris (talk) 05:49, 18 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Exactly the problem. I'd forgotten how much work it was doing it manually.--Peterdownunder (talk) 06:25, 18 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Ah, now I know what you mean! The issue only occurs on adding block message templates; I'll fix it. --@intforce 15:37, 18 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
It has happened to me when i tried to revert an edit.It just didn't revert it.Receptie123 (talk) 15:41, 18 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Please tell me: do you use the old Twinkle or v2.0? --@intforce 16:12, 18 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Version 2.Will it work if i change it to the normal version?Receptie123 (talk) 16:18, 18 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Well, it works here (Windows 7, Google Chrome 21, JavaScript on). Did you try to bypass your cache? --@intforce 16:23, 18 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
I tried that,but it didn't work.It doesn't work for User:Savh either.Receptie123 (talk) 16:26, 18 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
The new version does work for me though. --Savh·Tell me 16:29, 18 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Some minor fixes left (some bugs on twinklewarn and twinklebatchprotect) and I think the new version is stable enough to replace the old version. --@intforce 16:34, 18 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Okay, I've fixed the twinklewarn module (and added support for {{Blocked proxy}}, thanks Osiris). I think the script can now replace version 1. I can do this if nobody opposes. --@intforce 22:12, 18 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Stub tagging is down again... Osiris (talk) 02:00, 20 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Currently working on it. I need to make it tagging the stub template before the metadata, but that's really hard. The stub module should work now, I activated it again. --@intforce 05:07, 20 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Oh, cool. Thanks. The sorting would be best, but I don't think it's a deal breaker as far as having or not having the feature. It makes patrolling so much faster. Osiris (talk) 05:45, 20 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]


Hi I have added a new entry (Beaverton, Oregon). How do you add links to other wiki entries? Thanks

Please see Wikipedia:Interwiki: You add the links (so-called interwiki links) to the bottom of the page: [[en:Internet]] would create a interwiki link to the article "Internet" on the English Wikipedia. --@intforce 21:54, 19 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Given the state of the Beaverton, Oregon article stated, I'll assume you need help with linking to other articles on this wiki and not linking the article to other languages. The information on linking can be found at Help:Link. That page holds more than enough info on the subject, maybe too much. The two main link types you really need are the normal linking and pipped linking.

There are a bunch of other ways to link, mainly dealing with other websites or other parts of Wikipedia (such as the English Wikipedia or German wikipedia) but those two are the main ways to link that most editors need to understand. Someone already came behind you on the Beaverton article and "wikified" (linked terms to other pages) much of the page for you. Click the change button and look at way they did it and then play around in the Sandbox and you should be able to quickly understand how it works a bit better. --Creol(talk) 03:37, 20 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Going through the complex pages backlog, I've come accross the article entitled Problems of Wikipedia. I understand why this might have been named like this (trying to make the page name simpler), but other languages use Criticism isntead of Problems. I think we should use the same as it is important to be precise when naming pages, but I prefer to ask here before being bold. A second opinion would be welcome. Yottie =talk= 11:17, 7 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

I think it is a more important point that the article is out of date, and that most of the original criticisms have been well answered by independent reviewers. And that many of the critics were interested parties in other competing enterprises. Also, over here, one needs to say that all of the original criticisms were directed solely at English wiki. But as to the title, I think 'Criticism' just as good, although it is a word with two rather different meanings. Macdonald-ross (talk) 14:55, 9 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
So the question really is: update the article to reflect the current situation, or go through an rfd process? --Eptalon (talk) 19:47, 9 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
"Problems" suggests that the article is about describing what is wrong with Wikipedia, rather than describing what people have said is wrong with Wikipedia. Osiris (talk) 03:57, 11 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Yes, that's rather a good point. Change as Yottie suggests, please. On Ep's comment, I don't think rfd would be a good idea. The English wiki version is under discussion, and we could keep an eye on that. There is the same problem with all topical pages. The content gets out of date. There is obviously a great deal of stuff written about WP since then, and much of it in our favour. What we can and should do is signal clearly that this was a now historical discussion which referred only to the English wiki, not to other language versions. If anyone wants to work on the page to bring it up to date, the basic material is in the archives of the English wiki newsletter, which has regularly covered what others say about WP. Macdonald-ross (talk) 05:40, 11 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

I was going to leave this for Yottie, but it's been a while so I moved the article. Osiris (talk) 03:52, 21 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Thanks Osiris. Yottie =talk= 10:59, 21 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

New changes header

What happened to the box at the top of Special:RecentChanges? The text isn't wrapping any more, so you have to scroll right to see everything. --Auntof6 (talk) 19:47, 21 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Uh, sorry, I'll fix that. --@intforce 19:58, 21 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Criteria to evaluate the "simplicity" of articles?

It was suggested that we find criteria to evaluate the "simplicity" of articles, and to improve them. I am not into linguistics, but ideally, I would like to see:

  • A way to calculate a numeric score (one, possibly a set of numbers). Together with this, we need a (numeric) scale, to rate articles on. We also need to agree on the meaning of the scale. The calculation should be done automatically, by some sort of script.
  • The calculation should be independent of word lists and the lengths of words. Writing science-related articles limits the vocabulary; it may not be possible to find "another word with the same meaning, that is easier to understand". There simply may not be such a word. Also replacing longer words with shorter ones should not change the score much.
  • The calculation should be state free; To obtain the score, the article (or text passage) is fed into the system. All other parameters are fixed. Feeding the same article multiple times gives the same score.

If there are any linguists out there, are there any methods that meet at least some of the criteria? --Eptalon (talk) 20:02, 21 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

I think as well as finding a way of evaluating simplicity (once we have a system), we need to agree on how simple is simple enough for inclusion in SEWP. That way, if 80/100 (for example) were enough to call an article simple, then we could work to that standard. Unfortunately, I know very little about script so I couldn't help on that front. Maybe we could use some of the following for the calculation: length of sentence, whether a word is linked or not (hopefully a tool/piece of script would be able to detect when a word is linked once, and therefore doesn't/shouldn't need linking again, and take that into account when it comes to the article's rating), etc (to be honest, I do not have any other ideas that come to mind...). I think this tool is an idea worth looking into, and could help not only put the SEWP project back on track, but also give us some idea of what needs to be dealt with. Yottie =talk= 21:19, 21 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  • Probably the best tool out there currently is Coh-Metrix. Research shows that it is much better at indicating how difficult non-native English speakers will find a text. Coh-Metrix goes well beyond simple sentence length, number of syllables, and word length. It can measure cohesion, syntactic difficulty, and more. It is actually able to look at things like concreteness too. It is complicated, giving over 100 measures, but includes one global measure at the end of the output. Re vocabulary above, the complexity of vocabulary is and always will be an issue. That is a problem for scientific articles, but there is no good way around it. One advantage of Coh-Metrix is that it looks at noun overlap, basically does a difficult noun repeat and flow through the article, connecting it together and making it easier--or are there just a lot of different difficult words? One warning: indices are better at measuring difficulty rather than as guidelines. It is possible to "write to a number" and meet what seems simple, but will be very hard to read. Another warning: ironically, the Coh-Metrix documentation is hard to read, mainly for the reason above. It's science, and uses specific, difficult vocabulary. But they are better than many academic writers. I'd say more now, but I'm busy writing a simplified reader for language learners and the deadline is coming fast! Gotanda (talk) 08:17, 22 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Wow, I just ran Wolfgang Wagner through this and it looks quite thorough... I can see this being very useful. Osiris (talk) 08:50, 22 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Well, I think Coh-Metrix will not be of the slightest use. Gotanda says "Research shows that it is much better at indicating how difficult non-native English speakers will find a text". I don't think that is established; in any event, almost all the literature is authored by the main agent in producing the software. It is not an independent assessment.
As for writing, well, there is no magic bullet. Editors just have to try and write as well as they can! We can all improve. The difference between predicting difficulty and producing better text has been know for many years in reading research. They are fundamentally different activities.
Macdonald-ross (talk) 10:40, 22 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Yes, the best things is to just carry on trying to write well. Yes, I'm in agreement with Mac that there is no magic bullet. A single number won't capture the ease or difficulty of a text for a reader. Predicting and producing are different. As I said, one can write a passage to meet a set standard number but still have it be horrible and/or difficult. I just suggested Coh-Metrix as a new and useful development. There was that recent article comparing Simple and En using Flesch Reading Ease scores. We know that however valid or not, people will continue to look at this project and use those kinds of scores. It may be useful to have something else to point to and Coh-Metrix seems better at estimating ease of reading. The project is going through pretty rapid development and I expect to see it wider use soon. (Just to be clear, I have nothing to do with C-M.) Gotanda (talk) 00:48, 23 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
The different calculations of each component makes it more useful to me. A lot more useful than a random "score" that doesn't really tell me anything, that's for sure. There is no substitute for the mind, and you won't find the perfect script. But this can be useful in picking up on elements I might not have thought to address, and rethinking my efforts. Osiris (talk) 07:03, 23 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
A few thoughts, the Coh-metrix is extremely complex. I will stick to a few simple things that work for me. Using the Basic English vocab, with some of the extended vocab that is available (the Simple English dictionary for Firefox and Open Office is brilliant). Common sense; read it and it it doesn't seem to be simple it probably isn't. Me (if I do not understand it then it needs work!). Flesch - it gives a rough guide (which was all the author intended) - if we don't use it others will and judge us (see recent debate); and its simple to use; below 70 needs more work, above 70 is looking good. Scientific articles with lots of jargon do create interesting problems, BUT, they need to be simple. An article of complex words all linked is not easy or simple to read.--Peterdownunder (talk) 08:11, 23 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

I very much respect Peter's opinion and his practical results in editing. But, so far as science is concerned, pages must be accurate, though (of course) simplified. That accuracy demands a certain use of technical terms. These terms inevitably raise readability levels: a page on an advanced topic will be lucky to reach 55 on the Flesch scale, let alone 70. The terms must be explained, or linked to proper explanations (or wiktionary entries). Articles on technical topics must have substance, or they are fakes. As I said earlier, because Flesch (and other measures of difficulty) do not take into account the network-like hypertext, they ignore one of the reader's most important options when reading text. Editors should use any formula or method they find helpful; and they can try to write more clearly. Some topics, however, are always going to be difficult to explain. One main reason is that we cannot control a reader's entry knowledge. Much of regular education is an excercise on laying foundations, and building steadily on those foundations. If someone jumps into a technical page with no previous knowledge, well, yes, it's going to be difficult for them! Macdonald-ross (talk) 11:18, 23 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Rather than evaluatig articles with a tool, maybe we could create some sort of template which says something like Yottie/Osiris/Eptalon/etc considers this article to meet the required simplicity standards for inclusion on SEWP (poor wording, but hopefully you get the idea). This would be a subjective thing, and more than one user could add the template to the talk page of an article. If someone thought it didn't meet required standards, then he would be able to say so on the TP, with some detail to help correct this. Hopefully it would encourage review of articles, from a simplicity point of view, which often seems to be overlooked. It isn't difficult to do, as it require you only to read the article in question, and say if you understood and found it simple or not. Yottie =talk= 11:55, 23 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]


Twinkle has been updated to v2.0.

You will want to do two things:

Load the new and improved Twinkle gadget
To load the new Twinkle, simply activate the Twinkle gadget in your preferences.
Stop loading the old Twinkle scripts
The message that brought you here is shown because you are still loading one of the old scripts in one of your user script files. To stop that, edit that script file (typically Special:MyPage/skin.js, but possibly Special:MyPage/common.js) and remove all script imports of Twinkle or Friendly, like:
If you need assistance, do not hesitate to ask at Wikipedia talk:Twinkle.
Twinkle features a brand-new GUI settings panel. Once you've installed the script, you can set your personal settings at WP:Twinkle/Preferences.

More details can be found here. --@intforce 18:51, 23 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Citation and reference help available

A number of editors have been given access to online subscription libraries, including Credo Reference, Questia and HighBeam Research. If you need help with providing quality references and citations for an article, these editors may be able to help you:

--Peterdownunder (talk) 04:44, 20 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Excellent! I wasn't eligible to apply for these, so it's good to see some simple people were given accounts. Osiris (talk) 05:02, 20 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
I have a Credo account. fr33kman 20:39, 27 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
My local library actually allows access. This might be the case for others. Kansan (talk) 15:54, 28 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Merging different articles about small related religious groups?


We do have articles about Amish, Hutterites and Mennonites. These (Protestant Christian) groups are somewhat related; they do have a "common history". Since our articles about these groups are fairly small (in the order of perhaps 2-3 paragraphs), I wondered whether we should merge them (probably under Mennonites). I have had a quick look, and the articles "lack sourcing", to say the least; they have also been "relatively stable" (as in: untouched, except for bot edits) in the last few years. Compared ot other movements, they are relatively small, too. Sources will probably reflect the shared history as well; what is true for one group may (partly) apply to the others. When work is put in, and the part about one of the groups shows massive development, we can extract that part to a separate article again.

I see this as a "purely practical" means; I do not want to offend any Hutterite with the claim that there is only one article, about 2-3 groups, with similar history, and perhaps only "superficial" differences. Any thoughts? --Eptalon (talk) 16:00, 23 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

One of the problems we face is moving the content in such a way that the target where it is moved remains easy to undrrstand and clear; we do not want unnecessary levels of headings... --Eptalon (talk) 16:57, 23 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

While related these are very different religions. It would not be right to merge them into a single article. That would be like merging Muslims and Catholics into the same article because they have the same root as well. -DJSasso (talk) 11:24, 24 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

If the articles were shorter, I would probably agree to a merge, but DJ has a point. I would however support more merging of articles which do have a close link. It may help solve the stub problem, at least partly. Yottie =talk= 12:09, 24 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]


I've seen a few discussions going on recently about this criterion. I think it would be good if everyone (taggers, sysops) were a little clearer on how it applies. See the following, for example, which were deleted using this criterion and restored or objected to yesterday on the argument that it doesn't apply to them.

In these cases, no other details were included. Do we need to see a claim to notability in these professions? Or are these professions notable by nature?

If it's the latter, why doesn't it apply to this one?

Would being a regular filmmaker be a claim to notabilty?

Another contained more detail,

But it wasn't an attribute considered notable by sporting notability guidelines. If we match claims against notability criteria, is it acceptable to quick-delete the article if the claim isn't considered notable enough?

Are the taggers or reviewing admins expected to look for whether the subject is notable? Is it acceptable to request quick deletion for people that can be identified as notable by looking at other websites?

Djsasso made the objections and restorations, so I'll ask him personally to answer some of these questions. But it'd also be better if this were a community discussion so that we can all get a clearer idea of where this criterion applies and everyone is on the same page. Osiris (talk) 00:55, 28 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Looking at the examples:
  1. actor, puppeteer, voice artist, and comedian - The voice of Big Bird since the original episode of Seaseme Street - definitively notable
  2. a politician - Is a national assembly person - Notable per Wikipedia:Notability (people)#Politicians
  3. stand-up comedian, actor, producer, writer, voice artist, and comedian - the included IMDb tag lists way too many notable parts for this guy to fail notability. IMDb can't prove notability, but its pointing out that there is a whole lot of information out there that this guy is notable.
QD is a request that an article may need to be dealt with. Often times, there are better options than to just delete it and that is up to the responding admin to decide. That's why they were given the mop, because we trust they will make the good decisions. Politicians are rarely not notable - rare is the politician that does not have apply secondary sources to prove they are notable. Actors beyond extras and bit players (2-3 small entries in shorts or movies no one ever saw) are pretty much inherently notable. National level athletes will always get coverage somewhere, it just might be difficult to notice it (Many an offensive lineman in the NFL gets no news coverage, but a ton of commentary by the play-by-play on the broadcasts - hard to cite TV commentary though).
The only requirement to avoid an A4 is "claim notability" and that is vague at best. Certain professions being a level of notability with them and qualify as being a claim, others do not. Is the listed profession enough to a claim to notability? That's the admins opinion on the matter. Even if the admin sees it as a non-claim, its deletion is not mandatory.
One of the biggest issues with using A4 is "If not everyone agrees that the subject is not notable" - even without a claim of notability, all it takes is one person to say "I think the subject is notable" and A4 does not apply. Any admin that looks at a QD request and says to himself "He's freaking Big Bird" instantly made that an invalid request and would force it to be taken RfD to be deleted. Even a second admin couldn't technically "over-rule" that admin and delete it per A4 as someone clearly disagrees with the QD. (though they could delete it under a different reason if they could find one that applies).
As to the expectations of the taggers and the reviewing admin, I would say yes. It is not required that they do it, but I personally would expect someone to at least do a quick check to see if their tag/delete could be problematic (ie. someone could easily disagree with the non-claim of notability). As what a "claim of notability" is is a grey area, there is nothing against one person feeling no real claim was made while another person feels a claim was. One admin will decide if it wasn't made and delete (or not), any others can later decide that it was and restore. Just because an admin clearly sees it as claim of notability, the tagger may not see it that way. At that point, discussing the grey area of claiming with the tagger is needed to see if they can reach common ground for latter QD articles.
Much of this topic is exactly that "What is the grey area?" and really there is no clean answer to that question. I'm not exactly certain I want there to be an answer - it gives the admins a bit of room to follow the intent of the policy while still staying withing the exact wording of it. --Creol(talk) 01:40, 28 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
My general feeling is that an occupation by itself cannot justify notability, but a specific post (eg Minister of Defence) may do. So many 'actors' almost never act; so many 'sports people' never play at national or regional level; so many politicians are so trivial that they could never justify inclusion (for example a councillor on a small local authority). Is a 'model', who only shows frocks in a local shop, noteworthy? Of course not. There must be some evidence of performance at a notable level. The great virtue of QD is that it does not waste too much time, and we should not restrict its use too severely. I mean, if a page says just "Joe Bloggs is a famous sportsman", are we going to refuse ~QD~ on the grounds that notability has been claimed? Surely the claim to notability should be at least prima facie? (convincing at first sight) Macdonald-ross (talk) 07:40, 28 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
The big problem with QD is that articles get deleted quickly without any community scrutiny, thus the bar is supposed to be very very low to avoid being QDd. It doesn't take much to avoid QD. It is supposed to be hard to QD something so that things don't get QD'd without people noticing. Remember our inclusion criteria isn't fame, its notability, all that it requires is that the person has been written about in multiple sources. That can be said about most politicians, all athletes who have made it to the pro level, models are trickier so just saying model probably wouldn't be good enough, but if they said cover-girl then it would be a claim (even if the cover was a minor local magazine). etc etc. And remember we aren't proving notability we are only making a claim they have it. RfD is where we have to prove it. So any of those examples you use might not be notable and maybe they should be deleted, but they need to go to RfD to determine that with some amount of community scrutiny as opposed to just being deleted by a single person. -DJSasso (talk) 11:38, 28 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Maybe there should be a waiting period on QD/A4s? Maybe a few days to give more people a chance to see the QD and object if they want to, or to add to the article. --Auntof6 (talk) 16:11, 28 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Well on en that is what PROD is. A lot of the articles I have seen you A4 here would go to PROD on en instead. But we don't really have the editor base to support a PROD like system. Really I would just nominate these sort of articles for RfD, and even if they get no comments, at least they got the exposure of 7 days of sitting at RfD before being deleted. What would be nice is if our twinkle could make nominating an article for RfD a one click event. Like how it works on en. Last I tried it didn't work here but I haven't tried in awhile. -DJSasso (talk) 16:47, 28 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
@Creol: Yes, I definitely agree that it's most effective to have a wording that leaves it up to administrator discretion. I don't think I agree that listing someone's professions is a claim of any sort – I understand that some professions carry a greater likelihood of fame than others, but to me someone needs to claim to either be a notable actor or claim to have done something notable within that field. I guess, though, that's what you're really getting at – what constitutes a claim is very subjective. But it would be good to have a general consensus on that question for the future. Osiris (talk) 08:32, 28 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
All that is required is a claim. When deleting for A4 you have to ask yourself did the person creating the page reasonably think they were making a claim that the person was notable. They don't have to prove they were notable they have to claim it. So to use the most obvious example you list above, a professional athlete. Almost every single professional athlete has been written about at some point, so it is very reasonable that the person writing the article thought they were making a claim when they wrote that the athlete was professional as opposed to an amateur athlete because amateur athletes are rarely notable. Politicians is another example, almost every politician if they have won an election has been written about in their local paper. Thus just stating they were a politician is a claim to notability. Actors is a bit more difficult and sometimes you have to take common sense and look at the interwikis, if you can see that clearly the article shouldn't be deleted because they are notable then don't delete it or A4 it. A4 is intended for things like "Joe Smith is a teacher at Smallville highschool". The quick deletes that don't need discussion. Anything where there is any reasonable chance that the person is notable shouldn't be deleted by A4 and should go to RfD. The way its used on en for example is "would someone other than the creator object to its deletion on notability grounds". And the answer on most if not all of those above is yes someone would. Every A4 has to be taken on context, every situation of course is different. But the bar is very very low to avoid QD. If it is even remotely questionable then it needs to go to Rfd. Admin's shouldn't just delete on site, they need to put the work in when making a delete. If you see for example plenty of other wikis with the article and they have information on them that show the persons notability, then probably you should be taking the time to make sure the same is here. Delete is a very very very last resort. Especially QD which gets no scrutiny. -DJSasso (talk) 11:33, 28 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Something else to remember is that the minute someone (other than the creator) objects to a QD it must be restored (baring vandalism of course). So it is usually in the best interests of everyone to get it right the first time then to have to restore it later. -DJSasso (talk) 13:53, 28 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

I am one of the taggers. I agree with Mac ("an occupation by itself cannot justify notability, but a specific post (eg Minister of Defence) may do") and Osiris ("I don't think I agree that listing someone's professions is a claim of any sort"). When I look at these things, I ask myself if the claims or stated facts could apply to any member of the general public. If any non-notable person could be considered to be an artist, a photographer, an actor, an athlete, a writer, or whatever the statement is, then I don't think it shows notability. For example, anyone could write a biography of Barack Obama, even a student doing an assignment, but not just anyone could have it published by a major publishing house. I think DJSasso's ideas of what constitutes a claim of notability are pretty subjective. S/he has disagreed with me several times on QDing articles, which is fine, but I often don't understand why s/he thinks a certain phrase claims notability. This would be easier if we required refs on biographies, but we don't. --Auntof6 (talk) 16:11, 28 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Yes if you just said actor, athlete, writer, photographer then yes it wouldn't likely be a claim. But the difference becomes when they state that they are a professional athlete (where its very rare that a professional athlete isn't notable), or they are an actor on a nationally televised tv show. There was a reality show contestant for example recently. It is very reasonable to believe that being on a nationally televised show is a claim of notability. But that doesn't mean they are notable. I am not claiming any of these things make a person notable, but that they are a claim towards notability. Whether or not they are notable in these cases needs to be determined which is why they can't be QD'd and have to be RfD'd. Again basically if there is any reasonable reason why someone might think the person in the article is notable then a claim has been made. For example "Joe is a football player." <---- No claim to notablity. "Joe is a professional football player." <---- Claim to notability. As Mac mentioned a specific post might be notable, a professional athlete is a specific type of athlete. For example, any member of general public couldn't be a professional athlete or star on a reality tv show or be a published author. -DJSasso (talk) 16:25, 28 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
"then I don't think it shows notability" This quote is exactly the issue. You don't have to show notability to avoid A4. You just have to claim the person is notable. Whether or not the statement shows notability is irrelevant, the person writing the article just has to claim they are notable. An example is "Dave is a highschool teacher." <---- Doesn't in any way claim notability. "Dave is a highschool teacher who was voted best teacher at X highschool." <---- Its claimed they are notable because of an award, however, being best teacher at a local school doesn't show notability. Heck even just adding the word "famous" before any of your examples above would even negate A4. So "Jim is a famous artist." would disqualify them from A4 and it would have to go to Rfd. Although I wager most admins would IAR that. -DJSasso (talk) 16:41, 28 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
@ Auntof6 -- I agree that "this would be easier if we required refs on biographies." It may be helpful to notice that en:WP:NSPORTS emphasizes the importance of supporting cites from reliable sources. This is made boldly clear by a sentence in the first paragraph:
"The article must provide reliable sources showing that the subject meets the general notability guideline ..."
In other words, the center of the target is "reliable sources", yes? --Horeki (talk) 17:44, 28 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
No one disagrees that articles need sources, you are completely missing the point of this debate. If they don't have any when they get to RfD then they can be deleted. But they don't need them to avoid QD. -DJSasso (talk) 17:46, 28 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
The point of my response is to put a spotlight on what Auntof6 wrote.

This is not about me, not about what I understand or don't understand.

Auntof6's diff draws attention to more than one unaddressed issue: Do you understand the sentences of Auntof 6? If so, please show it by acknowledging the points she makes. Please show that you are trying to understand her words?

Please, if you respond with specificity to what Auntof6 wrote, I may learn something I need to know? I am not one of the taggers; but in general, I think I understand what she is doing. In general, I follow Auntof6's leadership.

Auntof6 is a leader in our community.

I think I understand her; and when I don't, she explains it for me. I'm now asking you to do what she has been willing to do many times. --Horeki (talk) 18:21, 28 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

I did respond specifically to what she wrote. If you don't understand what I have said that is your issue, not mine. -DJSasso (talk) 20:36, 28 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

In response to a critical response below, this diff was revised with bullets and numbered paragraphs.

  • ¶1-The practical problems Osiris asked at the top of this thread are not addressed directly, clearly and plainly.
  • ¶2-In the diffs above, DJsasso reformulates and answers the wrong questions. The misplaced emphasis distracts us from looking at practical issues.
  • ¶3-At the top of this thread, Osiris highlighted blp stubs which provide only a name and an occupation. Let us take a closer look at the politician.
  • ¶4-Lim Su-kyung is an excellent subject, in part because of its very short, very specific change history. Comments about this change history are collapsed below.
Lim Su-kyung change history comments
  • A. Almust created Lim Su-kyung here with links to Korean only websites . For someone who does not read Korean, these links were unclear. As posted, they are merely links to what we call "other websites" -- not "references." It is difficult to guess whether they were or were not reliable sources. It is difficult, time-consuming, tiresome to assess what information the links provided.
  • B. A Auntof6 tried to improve the article here with a change summary → copy edit; rem one stub tag that isn't for people
  • C. The article was tagged here with a change summary → Requesting quick deletion (QD A4). (TW). In practical, down-to-earth, nuts-and-bolts terms, Auntof6 asked a question with the tag. In other words, her very reasonable inquiry was made explicit with very simple words:
"No explanation of why the subject is notable."
  • D. Almust did notice the issue, but the next change did not answer the question or address it in any way. Almust changed the tag from {{qd|a4}} to {{orphan}}. For me, this change underscored the importance of the question Auntof6 asked. More importantly for our purposes, it is proof that the burden of moving forward was shifted to the one most qualified to do something constructive with it.
  • E. Horeki restored the A4 tag here with a change summary → restorin quick delete headnote which was wrongly removed -- see change history
  • F. DJsasso removed the tag here without a change summary.
  • ¶5- Removing the QD A4 was harmful because of its practical consequences. It was discouraging because
  • It undermines all burdens of proof and explanation and responsibility which need to remain with the one person who is best qualified, best informed and most personally motivated in this specific context.
  • It undermines a process of developing cooperation
  • ¶6-The result was that community-building consensus is quashed at a crucial point. No good was achieved.
Could you talk in English plainly. You make absolutely no sense. I hate to have to ask you again. You mention practical consequences. However the practical consequence of QDing an article that shouldn't be QD'd is that no one in the community gets a say on if it should be kept or not. The practical benefit of making it go to RfD is that it gets 7 days of exposure so that others have a chance to disagree or agree that it should be included. Another problem of QDing immediately is that you scare off an editor and devalues the investment that the person making the article made. In essence QDing when not appropriate squashes community-building consensus completely. Zero good is achieved. When it very easily could have been fixed by being an RfD instead of a QD. It is sort of amusing that you mention moral hazad, when QDing inappropriately does exactly that by destroying an article that now others have to restore/rewrite. As for the lack of an edit summary in that edit, there wasn't one because the edit summary was in my restore edit summary. -DJSasso (talk) 17:35, 28 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Aha, my words make no sense and they are amusing. Okay, fine. I have struck out moral hazard. As you asked me to do, please see that I have revised the writing in the diff. --Horeki (talk) 19:41, 28 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Again, such a large discussion for something rather insignificant... The fact is, most articles dubiously deleted under the QD A4 criterion are short stubs, which would probably sit there for years before being expanded. I think we should just adopt a strict policy on stubs, to avoid SEWP becoming even more of a stub depository. If the articles aren't stubs, then RFD. If really in doubt about a long stub, then RFD. But one/two/three/four liners, although they may be about a notable subject/person, are hardly worthy of inclusion as they clearly don't add anything to the wiki. If you are worried about scaring people away because the stub was clearly done in good faith, then drop them a line and advise them it needs to be longer, otherwise it will be deleted. If the problem is notability rather than length, kindly explain it doesn't have a place on SEWP. Yottie =talk= 18:10, 28 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

@ Yottie -- I agree that "we should just adopt a strict policy on stubs, to avoid SEWP becoming even more of a stub depository." IMO, the word "depository" is a very useful addition to this discussion thread. This word helps me to look at the issues in a different way. --Horeki (talk) 18:30, 28 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

I am surprised that this topic has caused so much discusion. QDA4 is for times there is NO claim of notability. We get these articles on occasion "Joe is super cool and has great hair." Very clear there is no notability. If there is a shred of possibility that the people, groups, companies or websites written about might be notable, another QD reason or RFD needs to be used. In my example above, QDA1 could also apply to some of these articles as there is no useful information. I encourage those who are struggling with the reason DJSasso undid the requests to read Wikipedia:Deletion policy. Several of the arguments for QD found in the above discussion can be found under the section "Not quick deletion criteria".

What is notability? We have a guideline at Wikipedia:Notability. For those who would like more indepth ideas about notability in certain professions we can refer to English. See Category:Wikipedia notability guidelines. While we are not beholden to follow English, these guidelines have had extensive discussion and refining. They are an excellent base.

As for Horeki's concerns about "The article must provide reliable sources showing that the subject meets the general notability guideline" that is for RFD not Quick Deletion.

And the idea of requiring a certain length to create an article, goes against the founding principles of Wikipedia. Plus, in my opinion, is elitist as hell. We expect articles to grow over time, even if it takes 12 years. Having a small stub provides readers with basic information. And see above, the guideline for what does NOT count for QD includes short articles. And if someone has an issue, anyone can edit, feel free to work on expanding. Horeki has an issue with the mass creation of football articles, and he has been fixing them. I don't like unreferenced BLP's so I've slowly been working on them. We have no timeline so it's fine if it takes months or even years.--Tbennert (talk) 20:19, 28 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

I would disagree with the assumption a two liner is always better than no article. In my opinion, it just makes us looks unprofessional, bad and pointless when there is an equivalent at enwp which is 30 times the size. Someone could most likely struggle through the article there, and get far more information understanding a quarter of it, than understanding the whole one here. When over 20% of our articles are stubs (1 in 5...) then we should be wondering where we went wrong - SEWP will become redundant. As for Quick Deletion, a more general category (ie. QD AX) could be created to allow admins to delete articles which clearly don't help the wiki. Yottie =talk= 20:34, 28 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Put yourself in the shoes of a reader (ie not an editor) and think to yourself. If I searched for apple and there was an article that said it was a fruit. Now imagine you search and there is no article at all. Would you be more disappointed that there is no article or that there is a short article. I know I certainly would be far more frustrated that there was no article as opposed to a short article and I would think the wiki that had no article at all was the less professional wiki than the one who had just a small one, especially if the topic was a highly notable one. We shouldn't compare the size of our articles to the size of en's articles. We are a much different wiki. Our articles by virtue of being simple should be smaller. -DJSasso (talk) 20:40, 28 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
To be honest I'd probably think the same in both cases. None: Oh, how stupid, I'll have to look somewhere else! Short stub: Well this article is a load of rubbish, I better go somewhere else... And I disagree, articles shouldn't necessarily be shorter than EN, although I do agree quality over quantity (although our short stubs are not quality). Yottie =talk= 21:24, 28 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
(off topic)Our articles are inherently smaller. Comparing articles at equal levels (our VGA article to En's featured article) on 4 articles I could find matches for, in each case our's was about 1/2 the size of theirs. --Creol(talk) 21:56, 28 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Ok, let's just turn this into stub-wiki. /sarcasm/ Our reputation with other wikis comes not only because of the language problem, but also because the content is so poor. Whether people like it or not here, our best chance of getting editors is from other wikis. If we can't even come up with a ten sentence article, then there is hardly a point having SEWP. The example used below, Saturn, is not a valid example, as it is a very notable/important subject, unlike most of the other articles which need expanding here. I could name a thousand artciles which won't be expanded within the next two years (or at least wouldn't, as I'm sure someone will try to prove me wrong if I do list them...). Yottie =talk= 09:46, 29 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Take a look at one of our Very Good Articles Saturn (planet). When it was created[2] it was 4 sentences long. Essentially Saturn is a planet and it has rings. Give the article some time and it becomes a VGA. Should we have deleted it because it was too short? No way. Start with what someone is willing and capable of doing and improve from there. Collaboration - a main concept of wikipedia.

And as for deleting truly small articles, we have QDA1. This can be used for an article so sparse that it conveys no useful information. So instead of an arictle saying "an apple is a fruit" an article of "an apple can be red". --Tbennert (talk) 23:49, 28 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Wow, thanks for your comments everyone. Very appreciated. There's still something outstanding I'd like to see a consensus on for the future, so that taggers and deleters are all clear on the issue. To make an article a candidate for A4:
  1. Is only listing regular occupations a claim of notability? (e.g., "John Smith is a [writer/actor/filmmaker/sportsperson/politician, etc]")
  2. If a quick check determines that the person is clearly notable, does this override the lack of a claim?
My answers would be no and yes. For the first, I'd want to see a claim to any sort of notability in these professions (e.g., the name of the film) or something more specific (e.g. "is a member of parliament"). If, however, a check determines the person is likely notable, then I wouldn't delete it. After all, the requirement of a claim is just to allow us to quickly discard the obvious (usually autobiographies of insignificants). I'd rather see no claim than see unsourced loaded words like "well-known" and "famous".
Two of my own examples at the top are exemplary of these points – this guy is obviously notable, although it doesn't make a claim that he is; and this guy is not notable (I know because we did a thorough check before I deleted it), but I suppose the claim that he played regional-level football could be considered a claim of notability.
That's what I've taken from this discussion above. But I guess that the criterion, being so vague, is open to different interpretations. Osiris (talk) 02:52, 29 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Can we talk about QD C1 next, cause I got some issue with that one (although most admin just ignore the wording and delete under it anyway). Or is it too early to go off in another direction? Probably too soon, but seriously.. needing to RfD a cat because it has interwikis.. having to wait 4 days.. --Creol(talk) 03:41, 29 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Yeah, I guess if everyone is happy to move on... I'd been thinking about what you wrote in your comment yesterday and the conclusion I came to is pretty much what I've given above. I might ask some of our chief taggers whether they've come to any similar conclusions, but otherwise I'm happy to move on to any other issues. Osiris (talk) 04:00, 29 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Chen also said he was going to comment on this over the weekend. Osiris (talk) 04:41, 29 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
I can't help but feel that our current policies/guidelines and what has been determined by community consensus are contradictory to each other. To quote QD A4: "(an article can be quick deleted if it) is about people, groups, companies or websites that do not claim to be notable. An article about a real person, group of people, band, club, company, or web content that does not say why it is important. If not everyone agrees that the subject is not notable or there has been a previous RfD, the article may not be quickly deleted, and should be discussed at RfD instead."
Now then, the first half of the criterion states that an article can be deleted if the article does not make a reasonable/verifiable attempt to claim the subject's notability, but then the policy allows editors to challenge the article's eligibility for quick deletion if they believe that it is notable in itself? Furthermore, if we look at WP:N on EN (which we have only partially transwikied), it states that "no subject is automatically or inherently notable (for the purposes of the WP:N guideline) merely because it exists".
It seems to me that there are two issues here:
  • There is something in the quick deletion criteria which seems to contradict itself.
  • We have, on at least two occasions, made changes to how we handle the issue of notability while ignoring the spirit of/failing to modify the original deletion policy.
I think that this is also an example of how the wording of our policies have resulted in issues. Chenzw  Talk  06:02, 29 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Yeah the wording of WP:N is slightly off because its well established on en as well as here that geographical locations are inherently notable but I am sure it doesn't explain that because it would be getting too specific in the general notability guideline. (I believe its spelled out in the sub-notability guidelines in these cases) That being said QD and WP:N don't contradict each other as much as they are two different things. You don't have to be notable to avoid QD but you do have to be notable to avoid RfD. The en speedy criteria explains it that A4 has a lower threshold than verifiability or notability. Ours doesn't mention it. -DJSasso (talk) 14:02, 29 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Looking at the text (of A4), there are two different points for consideration:
  1. The subject the article is written about is notable, and there may be articles about it at other Wikipedias. The article we have however does not say so.
  2. The subject is clearly not notable, and can be deleted.
Only in the second case can we apply quick deletion (A4). If the notability is questionable (as in the article about the casting show candidate we recently deleted), we should go through a regular deletion process. In the first case above (subject probably notable, but our article does not say so), time should be spent to change this, and it would probably be good to have a tag for it. Suppose I stick the tag on it, it would probably be safe to delete the article after about two weeks, if no work had been put into it. This would also be with a regular RFD. --Eptalon (talk) 10:22, 30 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Difficult decision

Very often, a decision what to do with a QD candidate has to be made. I have come across many cases where people wrote some nonsense; but under the heading of a subject that is notable. Similarly, we get a number of false positives. This is an example I found this morning. The text was later tagged for QD by a bot, and I have since replaced it with the blurb of the enwp article, with attribution. An IP created this article. I see similar cases quite a lot: Putting in 10-15 mins of work can avert the deletion; the original author retains their "moral rights", and we get a valid stub (see here). As to notability, it it very difficult to judge. Horace Greeley (1811-1872), Joseph Pulitzer (1847-1911) and William Randolph Hearst (1863-1951) were newspaper publishers/media tycoons. They influenced the media history of the US a great deal; does this now mean that owning a few newspapers will make you notable? - Will we talk about Silvio Berlusconi or Rupert Murdoch in the same manner, fifty years from now? --Eptalon (talk) 21:44, 29 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Of course, back then, owning newspapers was a bigger deal than it is now. --Auntof6 (talk) 22:12, 29 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Infobox Monarch: non-working image

Just wanted to point out that in our template {{infobox monarch}}, images do not work. I have tried two of them, both from commons, and they do not display. --Eptalon (talk) 10:37, 30 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

This template requires the image parameter to contain valid wiki markup for an image ([[File:Example.jpg|200px]]). Rather not change the template behaviour for now lest it breaks existing infoboxes on the other articles. Chenzw  Talk  10:42, 30 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

This has gone on long enough

At what point do we at least set a pause for a disruptive editor like Special:Contributions/

These are just more unwikified lists:

The editor(s) using the IP never respond to messages on the Talk page. Time for a time out to get their attention? Remember User:Nameless_User and User:Japan_Football? Before there are a thousand stubs to fix, please. Gotanda (talk) 13:37, 3 October 2012 (UTC)[reply]

The earlier discussion seemed to be leaning towards allowing the editor to continue, because there are some of us cleaning up after him. Are there editors who have given up already? To his merit the various warnings have had an impact on his editing (though the extent may be questioned by some), but they remain unacceptable and these articles still need further help. Chenzw  Talk  13:39, 3 October 2012 (UTC)[reply]
I won't stick up for him at this point. I have warned him a couple times since the last discussion. I won't say he should be blocked. But I won't get in peoples way if they decide he should be. To his credit many articles he has created have gotten better. But ones that are just lists are ridiculous. If you are going to block him, perhaps make it a short term block on the IP and encourage him to create an actual account so its easier for us to track his edits to a specific name. -DJSasso (talk) 14:21, 3 October 2012 (UTC)[reply]
I think this would be a good idea. I believe it was DJ who pointed out this was a school IP. Looking at the new pages, some are getting a bit better and some are just lists. Maybe more than one person is creating these batches of sportscaster articles. In this case, encouraging the user(s) to create ID(s) would be helpful. Either a very short block with a clear message, or start deleting groups of these. Gotanda (talk) 20:30, 3 October 2012 (UTC)[reply]
The articles above are at the brink of notability: Most people presenting in TV are probably not that notable, though there may be the case that one or two defined their carreer through that role; in which case it should probably be possible to say more about the person than giving a list of programs presented. f it really is an education-related ip(too lazy to look), there must be a teacher-type peron, that is responsible... - btw. what gives the feeling that this is more than one editor creating articls? --Eptalon (talk) 20:44, 3 October 2012 (UTC)[reply]
We thought it could be a school project. If that's the case, then it would make sense that they're not replying. I just want a response from the teacher or whoever is seeing the messages, some acknowledgement of them. Osiris (talk) 07:31, 4 October 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Re: Eptalon, if you look at Jim_Kelly you see an editor who seems to have understood some of the guidance, but ‪Jim Gray‬, no. Maybe I'm reading too much in, but it very well could be multiple editors and the change of style would match that. As Osiris, said, just finding out of someone/anyone is reading the messages would be a help. Gotanda (talk) 10:54, 4 October 2012 (UTC)[reply]

IP address creating pages

I think it would be better for Ip addresses to not be able to create page.Like on most other Wikimedia projects.Receptie123 (talk) 18:28, 3 October 2012 (UTC)[reply]

No, we are a small wiki and we want as many people to create pages as possible. We take edits where we can get them. We haven't had much of a problem with IPs creating pages so no need to restrict them. -DJSasso (talk) 18:41, 3 October 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Is that really true, that most Wikimedia projects don't let IPs create pages? I thought that was against the principle "The encyclopedia that anyone can edit". --Auntof6 (talk) 18:47, 3 October 2012 (UTC)[reply]
 (change conflict)  Founding principles states: the ability of almost anyone to edit (most) articles without registration. --@intforce 18:50, 3 October 2012 (UTC)[reply]
OK, so it's "edit", not "create". --Auntof6 (talk) 18:59, 3 October 2012 (UTC)[reply]
No, it is good to allow IPs to create pages. There usually aren't any problems--except when there are. Gotanda (talk) 20:24, 3 October 2012 (UTC)[reply]
There aren't really that many entries at Special:NewPages in the first place, so I don't see why it's a problem. --Philosopher Let us reason together. 20:32, 3 October 2012 (UTC)[reply]
The backlog at New Pages was bigger, but more to the point, at times recently one IP has been creating (semi) notable article stubs at the rate of one every 5 minutes or so. The time and effort required is out of balance--seconds to create a minor stub--longer to vet it through New Pages, get refs, wikify, etc. Gotanda (talk) 10:58, 4 October 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Sportscaster stubs and NOTSTATSBOOK

There is a big backlog on New Pages where tons of sportscaster pages from an IP editor have piled up. These are generally not wikified, referenced, or readable. I tried to wade in there and fixed up Dave O'Brien. I thought that could be an example for the editor. Then, the more I thought about it, should these be deleted under NOTSTATSBOOK. How about Eric Clemons? They are not athlete stats, but many of the the stubs are just lists of teams/sports covered. Anyone else have any thoughts on these or how best to proceed? I'm really not interested in cleaning up hundreds of these but the New Pages queue needs attention. As side issues, no attribution to En wiki either, which is where this info seems to have come from, and BLP problems too. Thanks, Gotanda (talk) 04:05, 20 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

The editor does not appear to be responding to messages on his user talk. One thing I am rather sure of - we are unable to continue to deal with the surge of new articles properly, considering the amount of work that needs to be done on them. One thing to note though is that some of the articles seem to be encyclopedic enough for inclusion, provided that the article is properly wikified and referenced. Perhaps a note about WP:MOS (on user talk) is in order? Chenzw  Talk  04:36, 20 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Definitely creating a problem. We already have a serious problem with unreferenced BLPs (currently over 5 times as many articles as the English Wikipedia has). Osiris (talk) 05:02, 20 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
What about a temporary block on the IP pending his/her making contact with an admin, and an attempt made to fix the problems before new pages are created.--Peterdownunder (talk) 05:11, 20 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Yeah, I think that would be preferrable than seeing the onslaught continue. I'll help out with the backlog where I can, but I'm keen to have the end in sight. With that many pages created by the hour, they should definitely be listening to basic advice. Is there more than one IP involved here? Osiris (talk) 05:45, 20 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Only one editor is involved. I am of the opinion though that a block should be used as a matter of last resort, for we cannot be sure that the editor is acting in bad faith (yet). I have left a more strongly worded warning on his user talk - we will see how it goes. I guess continued behaviour (in spite of the warning) can be taken as disruption done in bad faith. Chenzw  Talk  07:40, 20 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Also editing from two other IP addresses. At this stage I don't think we have made enough effort to contact or warn the editor. Let's try and solve it soon. I will leave messages on the other two addresses.--Peterdownunder (talk) 07:48, 20 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
For unref'd BLPs, Osiris, are you just looking at the tracking categories? I suspect we have many of them that aren't flagged. --Auntof6 (talk) 10:18, 20 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Thank you for raising this issue, Gotanda. I patrolled probably a few dozen of these and was getting tired of them -- I was reminded of the Japanese footballer articles. I also left User: a message about this. I would support deleting most or all of them, as well as some of the categories they're in. I removed some categories as I was patrolling (such as one for high school sports commentators), but I suspect some I removed are now back in the new articles. --Auntof6 (talk) 10:16, 20 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Thank you all–Osiris. Peterdownunder, Auntof6, Chenzw–for your attention and action on this one. I was also reminded of the endless Japanese footballer stubs. We'll have a bit of a cleanup to do, but let's hope it doesn't become a bigger issue. Gotanda (talk) 11:07, 20 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

I should point out before this witchhunt goes to far. That he is breaking no policy unless he is copy and pasting directly. Quality of articles is not a blockable offense. No one is required to follow a given format or add references or categories should they choose not to. That being said the content could then be deleted or fixed. But they still aren't required to do so. Any blocking based on the quality of articles made in good faith would be an abuse. I do agree the quality is quite poor, but this isn't block worthy unless there are copy vios. -DJSasso (talk) 12:26, 20 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Thank you for being the voice of reason, Djsasso. On a related note, more articles are being created. --Auntof6 (talk) 17:23, 20 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
One would think he would get the hint with so many people telling him. But it could be a young kid. That is my guess by the way they are being written. Technically the articles are much simplier than the English counter parts. They just aren't formatted very well. If I get some time over the weekend I will do my best to clean some more. -DJSasso (talk) 17:39, 20 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Hi, DJ. I didn't mean to start a witchhunt, nor did I ask for a block. I just wondered if many of these articles could simply be deleted as unreferenced lists of stats. I think this flood of articles may break that policy. Editors don't have to add refs, but they should for BLPs, right? In the meantime, I've put a QD request on George Blaha. Thanks, Gotanda (talk) 21:50, 20 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
I wasn't suggesting you had, but others had brought it up and things on here have a way of piling on if a couple people suggest one action so I wanted to put a cautionary note in the discussion. I wouldn't consider a list of their work to be stats. NOTSTATS discusses having stats without context. A list of jobs a person held certainly has context in that its their work. And even if it didn't have context its a bit of a stretch to consider them stats. Yes, we do need references for pages, especially BLPs and I have no problem with people putting them up for deletion if they choose to. My comments where more about actions being taken against the user since we don't actually require references. But in saying that any user who doesn't do such things does risk their work being deleted. But as always prior to jumping to deletion I suggest trying to fix if possible. Some of these might be quick fixes. But if he keeps up at the rate he is, then deletion may be the only option. I would not put them up as QD with does not show notability however, the George Blaha article for example did make a claim of notability in that he was the announcer for a NBA team which is definitely a claim to being notable. Remember you don't have to prove their notability to survive QD, you just have to claim it. If these are deleted (in the cases I have looked at) they would have to go to Afd not QD. -DJSasso (talk) 22:14, 20 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
As the editor has created another 11 articles I have given them another warning. I think if s/he continues to create new articles without fixing the existing ones over the this weekend, then an RFD for all the articles (approx. 400) is the next step. If anyone wants to help clean up the articles, then working on just one category would make it easier to keep track of what may need to be deleted.--Peterdownunder (talk) 23:03, 20 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
I should mention that yes, persistent additions of unreferenced material about living persons is a blockable offense under our policy for BLPs. Although the user hasn't posted anything that could be construed as defamatory (from what I've seen), they are not permitted to create hundreds of BLPs that are totally devoid of sources. Osiris (talk) 04:20, 21 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Actually no, nowhere in the policy states that creating BLP articles without sources is blockable. Now if he was creating articles with anything that is possibly defamatory then that would be different because the policy does say to avoid that. But it purposefully does not say that people can be blocked for just creating articles without sources or the vast majority of our editors would be blocked. All that the BLP policy states is that articles without them may be deleted. It did not make creating articles without sources blockable because the community did not want to punish good faith content creators. Now would I continue to warn him about the situation and delete where appropriate? Of course I would. But I wouldn't block simply for creating articles. We want editors to create articles. Especially ones that don't have anything defamatory in them like the ones I have seen from him. A low quality article is always better than no article. -DJSasso (talk) 12:34, 21 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
The section relating to blocks and protection directs us to the page on blocking, which gives: "persistent posts of unreferenced, poorly or incorrectly referenced, or potentially defamatory information about living persons". We're not talking about a few articles without sources, we're talking about a hundred or so BLPs that are totally unreferenced, with the number increasing. In this case, I agree with the others above that a block isn't warranted yet, but there's nothing stopping them from warning the user about the potential of a block if the pattern continues indefinitely. Any blocks given in the long term would be totally in line with policy (Fr33kman issued a block on the exact same basis to a prolific BLP creator a few months ago). Giving warning after warning and sitting through RFDs over and over with no end in sight is just wasting good editors' time. Osiris (talk) 02:31, 22 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
I should point out two things. One is that he appears to now be wikifying articles more than he was and laying them out in a more paragraph type format so he is taking on the comments people are leaving. Secondly the IP is a school IP so as I thought this is a kid. If we are going to be a wiki that is somewhat dedicated to children we have to remember they aren't going to be as good at creating the articles right off the bat as we are. I just went through most of his articles (all the ones on the IPs below) and gave them the basic style layout so they all now conform for the most part to what we expect stubs to look like. All they really need now is some better wikification. And of course sources, but we have tonnes of articles without sources that isn't all that unusual and I wouldn't delete on that alone since we could easily just copy the sources over from en. -DJSasso (talk) 13:16, 21 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Excellent, I've done a bit more. Wikification is the easy part though.. Osiris (talk) 03:17, 22 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

The editor has created a huge amount of articles, as one might see on the unpatrolled new pages. I'll do me best in wikifying and patrolling them and I invite everyone to participate with, because I think that improving is always better than deleting. --@intforce 23:41, 20 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

I agree: mass RFD them, and keep any that are rescued during the process. Osiris (talk) 03:49, 21 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

The speed and number would suggest copyvio as grounds for deletion. I think no-one would have worried about a few such stubs, but a large number suggests a single source (or a few) in a form which permits direct copying. Is it the case that the source is English wiki? Macdonald-ross (talk) 17:00, 21 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
The source is clearly But he has changed the wording quite a bit in all the ones I read. Essentially it looks like it is paraphrasing, any attribution issues could be solved by adding a based on template. -DJSasso (talk) 17:07, 21 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Any of these that we keep, I'd like to change the categories from "Foo broadcasters" to "Foo commentators" or "Foo announcers". To me, broadcasters would be a TV channel or network. --Auntof6 (talk) 23:29, 21 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

So what did we decide here? There are a bunch more, at least some of which are basically just a list of jobs. --Auntof6 (talk) 02:20, 6 October 2012 (UTC)[reply]


Second warning given. --Peterdownunder (talk) 22:57, 20 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

PROD process

Is there any reason we can't adopt such a process similar to en:Wikipedia:Proposed deletion (PROD)?

In this flood of sportscaster stubs, it would have been far easier to put a PROD tag on the first 20 stubs? 40 stubs? 60 stubs?

It is likely that this would have encouraged a constructive response? --Horeki (talk) 17:22, 26 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

We don't have prod because we don't have enough users that we could expect that someone having listed an article for prod would be noticed. The only reason en has it is because there are sooooo many deletion requests on a given day that they need a way to speed some up. We don't have that problem in that we only have a very few deletions at a time. Really Rfd only takes the same amount of tags as prod does since you can put all the delete requests on a single nomination. None of these articles would have been good PROD candidates. I personally would have removed the prod tags from any of them that had them. They are all notable people so putting them through prod would be inappropriate. And that being said it would have been unlikely to get a response I am guessing. -DJSasso (talk) 17:38, 26 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
That depends on how we defined the PROD process. Those articles would have qualified for PROD on enwiki, because they had no references. On enwiki, any BLP created after a certain date must have at least one reference (and a reference that directly supports something about the person in the article), or it can be PRODded. --Auntof6 (talk) 18:40, 26 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
They would have qualified for BLP PROD not PROD. Two different processes. And since we are on the topic of deleting people seriously need to stop trying to delete things and instead fix them. I realize you bump your edit count up further and you make yourself feel better by by doing quick tasks so the numbers rise faster whereas fixing the article will take longer and thus lower numbers, but with almost all of these articles simply going to en would have garnered the desired reference. People need to stop looking for quick fixes like deleting and work on fixing articles. The wiki will be far better off with a fixed article than a deleted one. -DJSasso (talk) 18:44, 26 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
I don't know who you're attempting to lecture here, but the proposer has spent the last few months adding citations to dozens of the unreferenced stubs he refers to. You should not be belittling anyone's contributions to the project. Osiris (talk) 22:44, 26 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
It was a comment in general. I see far too often people putting up QDs that state things like not claiming notability when they clearly make statements of notability. Or in this case, people jumping straight to suggesting deletion just because they don't want to have to fix up articles. Then there are the countless times we get people suggesting lets delete all the X stubs because there are too many of them. People need to stop trying to delete (aka destroy) other peoples work when they can't be bothered to do anything more than slap a tag on to delete it. -DJSasso (talk) 23:42, 26 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

BLP PROD process

Is there any reason we can't adopt such a process similar to en:Wikipedia:Proposed deletion of biographies of living people (BLP PROD)?

In this flood of sportscaster stubs, it would have been far easier to put a BLP PROD tag on the first 20 stubs? 40 stubs? 60 stubs?

It is likely that this would have encouraged a constructive response? --Horeki (talk) 19:09, 26 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Personally with such low editor numbers I am in favour of not being harsh on articles missing a reference. We don't get the sheer number of article creations en does. And it is in our best interest to have as many articles created as possible. en didn't get the BLP Prod process until many years after it was around and they had "most" of the major BLPs already created so could afford to be more harsh on new articles. I agree we need to get sources for BLPs for sure but we would lose a very very large percentage of our articles if we implemented something like this. I am guessing we would lose something like 75% of our biographies at least, probably more. And our growth would certainly stop or slow down because not many IP editors find sources. Our wiki needs to be less bureaucratic than en for its own survival. -DJSasso (talk) 19:13, 26 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
Sometimes we do get overwhelmed. This is a case in point.

In a flood of sports-bio-stubs, for example, we have a problem. It would have been very helpful to "nip it the bud" with a BLP PROD.

If not after the first 20 BLP articles without a cited source, what about after the first 100 stubs? after the first 200 stubs?

This is not rhetorical exaggeration. Something has gone wrong; and it needs fixing. --Horeki (talk) 22:09, 26 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

That is only if you think the flood of sports bio stubs is a problem. It isn't. This is how started and its how we are going to have to start and grow as well. These are articles we need. Very few articles are going to look perfect from the beginning. Stubs are the natural way of starting articles and the wiki building. There are those that like to create hundreds of stubs and there are those who like to expand stubs bigger. We need both kinds of editors. Seeking to nip it in the bud right away does nothing but scare off potential editors and cause us to lose articles. Nothing has gone wrong or needs fixing, this is how a wikis is supposed to work. -DJSasso (talk) 23:46, 26 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

It's an interesting proposal, Horeki. I know that you're looking for a practical solution to these "dumps" of unreferenced, maybe-notable stubs that we occasionally get hit with. The PROD process would probably be sufficiently preventative in some cases (for the footballer accounts, "Is it not likely that this action would have produced a few immediate and constructive changes in their stub creation process?" – yes, I'm sure it would have). But perhaps not in the case of anonymous users or brand-new users. I suppose the best thing, in my opinion, would be to identify these mass BLP creations as problems early on. Warn the user that mass creation of unsourced BLPs is against policy, and, if the articles are in a dubious state, send them to RFD. It is, essentially, the same process and should get the same response from the author. PROD is probably less likely to work here where there often won't be anyone interested in rescuing obscure biographies. Osiris (talk) 22:44, 26 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Another solution to this problem would be to realize that we do not need to patrol new pages so quickly. I think it's okay to take a couple weeks to do a thorough job of patrolling and fixing the articles. As DJSasso said above it is preferable to fix these articles than to simply tag them. Nearly all of this particular batch were easy to find references for and reformat. I completely agree it got boring after doing so many articles in a day and then doing it again the next day. Overall though this project gained a significant amount of articles in a subject area we had very little coverage in. --Tbennert (talk) 01:24, 27 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

@ Tbennert -- Is it possible that you vastly underestimate the scope of the problem? For example, Japan Football created nearly 50 new articles at an extraordinary pace in just one session in February 2012. Do we really need to survey the full history in order to recognize the scale of the problem?

47 new stubs in less than 2 hours
User contributions for Japan Football

The flood of sportscaster stubs make up a limited example of a problem which is not unique or trivial. --Horeki (talk) 02:24, 27 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Nope, not underestimating. On English there can easily be hundreds of pages in a day. Some of them need extensive work. It also sometimes takes 30 days before a page is reviewed. This is a much bigger problem than our pages being unreviewed because any page created on English becomes a hit on Google fairly quickly - and for some web searchers therefore becomes fact. Here on Simple we tend to review pages in less than 24 hours. I say it is better to take longer and fix those pages. Or if appropriate nominate them for QD or RFD during review rather than come back later to notice we have a problem.
The quantity or speed of creation is not the issue. As one example see User:London 107. This user has made many pages in a quick time. The issue is the quality the articles are left in when they are marked as "OK". Because we have few editors and only a small portion of that few check new pages, this becomes more difficult. Perhaps when someone notices a mass creation we can post a note on Talk to ask for a bit of extra help with the new pages. --Tbennert (talk) 04:32, 27 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
One big problem with BLP PROD is that while it could be useful to handle a certain issue occasionally, it covers far more than that. Any BLP without references is fair game to get marked and relatively quickly deleted with little to no attention to it happening. Djsasso pointed this out above. Though his numbers are a bit off, this really bears repeated and expanding on. We currently have 11,500(ish) articles in Category:Living people. Looking at the first 1500 or so in there, about 350 were newly tagged as {{BLP unsourced}}. This is not counting the articles already tagged in that 1500 which were skipped. 24% of the articles got new tags. For the remainder, we would be looking at 2387 more articles to be added to the list. This would bring us to around 3500 articles eligible to be BLP PROD'd. This isn't just about 1 or 2 editors tossing up a wave of tiles, 100 or so articles, this is about every BLP on the site (even those with refs if those refs go bad and get removed could be affected in the future). Also, most of Japan Football's new articles contained a reference section which would likely have made them excluded from this anyway. Better to fix the articles, or at worse, put the block up for RfD. Creating a policy to deal with one issue while that policy encompasses such a large scale is dangerous. (+ all the stuff Djsasso and Tbennert said.. those are very valid points also) --Creol(talk) 05:17, 27 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]