[WikiEN-l] WikiProjects overriding policy

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[WikiEN-l] WikiProjects overriding policy

Arne 'Timwi' Heizmann

Here is another case of something I mentioned to this mailing list some
time ago:

http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=User_talk:Timwi&diff=104821425&oldid=104820754

In a nutshell, the [[Wikipedia:WikiProject UK Parliament
constituencies]] wants to add the parenthesis "(UK Parliament
constituency)" to all constituency articles, even those that don't have
ambiguous names and would therefore -- under the general naming
convention rules -- not have the parenthesis.

These people feel they're completely in the right because they have a
discussion to link to -- a discussion that took place on the WikiProject
page. Since such a discussion cannot override a general rule such as the
Naming Convention, how do I properly respond to this without causing an
edit war (or move war)?

Timwi


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Re: [WikiEN-l] WikiProjects overriding policy

Stephen Bain
On 2/1/07, Timwi <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> These people feel they're completely in the right because they have a
> discussion to link to -- a discussion that took place on the WikiProject
> page. Since such a discussion cannot override a general rule such as the
> Naming Convention, how do I properly respond to this without causing an
> edit war (or move war)?

Tell them that you're pleased some Wikipedians actually managed to get
together and agree on something.

Tell them that you've thought again about what they're doing, and have
decided that since they're not agreeing to include original research,
nor are they agreeing that it's ok for their articles to be
unverifiable, nor are they agreeing that it's ok if they don't worry
about NPOV, that it's really no big deal that they are agreeing about
some absolutely trivial matter (even though it might be, in some
people's opinions, not within the strict letter of a mere naming
convention).

--
Stephen Bain
[hidden email]

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Re: [WikiEN-l] WikiProjects overriding policy

Kirill Lokshin
In reply to this post by Arne 'Timwi' Heizmann
On 2/1/07, Timwi <[hidden email]> wrote:

>
> Here is another case of something I mentioned to this mailing list some
> time ago:
>
> http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=User_talk:Timwi&diff=104821425&oldid=104820754
>
> In a nutshell, the [[Wikipedia:WikiProject UK Parliament
> constituencies]] wants to add the parenthesis "(UK Parliament
> constituency)" to all constituency articles, even those that don't have
> ambiguous names and would therefore -- under the general naming
> convention rules -- not have the parenthesis.
>
> These people feel they're completely in the right because they have a
> discussion to link to -- a discussion that took place on the WikiProject
> page. Since such a discussion cannot override a general rule such as the
> Naming Convention, how do I properly respond to this without causing an
> edit war (or move war)?
>
> Timwi

The best thing to do -- if you want to make an issue of it -- would be
to bring the question up on the main NC page and invite the
WikiProject to make their case their.  Having said that, a few points:

- There is nothing inherently less meaningful about a discussion on a
WikiProject page versus a discussion on some other page; both function
as a consensus of participating editors, which isn't really affected
by the page name.
- It's perfectly normal for guidelines -- particularly
one-size-fits-all guidelines -- to have exceptions (even broad ones);
and quite reasonable for WikiProjects to come up with such exceptions.
 The deciding factor is whether what's being proposed makes sense, not
who came up with it.
- Looking over the linked discussion on the WikiProject page, I'm not
convinced that they're actually incorrect in suggesting pre-emptive
disambiguation here.  It's pretty much a decided issue that all
geographic locations will eventually have articles; and if
constituencies are, indeed, named after locations, then delaying
disambiguation until those articles get started -- even though we
*know* that we'll need to disambiguate -- seems rather unnecessarily
bureaucratic.  (If nothing else, the project could easily fit within
the letter of the law here by creating one-liner stubs for the
locations; but I don't think that's something we ought to push.)

Kirill

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Re: [WikiEN-l] WikiProjects overriding policy

MacGyverMagic/Mgm
In reply to this post by Stephen Bain
On 2/1/07, Stephen Bain <[hidden email]> wrote:

>
> On 2/1/07, Timwi <[hidden email]> wrote:
> >
> > These people feel they're completely in the right because they have a
> > discussion to link to -- a discussion that took place on the WikiProject
> > page. Since such a discussion cannot override a general rule such as the
> > Naming Convention, how do I properly respond to this without causing an
> > edit war (or move war)?
>
> Tell them that you're pleased some Wikipedians actually managed to get
> together and agree on something.
>
> Tell them that you've thought again about what they're doing, and have
> decided that since they're not agreeing to include original research,
> nor are they agreeing that it's ok for their articles to be
> unverifiable, nor are they agreeing that it's ok if they don't worry
> about NPOV, that it's really no big deal that they are agreeing about
> some absolutely trivial matter (even though it might be, in some
> people's opinions, not within the strict letter of a mere naming
> convention).
>
> --
> Stephen Bain
> [hidden email]


I don't agree with you Stephen. The naming convention was created to avoid
overly convoluted names. The places articles are located should be easy to
link to.

We don't append "(US president)" to every president either. Because it's a
pointless exercise. It doesn't achieve anything other than a lot of
unneccesary work.

To overwrite a basic policy like that, you need much wider discussion
anyway.

Mgm
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Re: [WikiEN-l] WikiProjects overriding policy

MacGyverMagic/Mgm
In reply to this post by Kirill Lokshin
We never disambiguate pre-emptively (or rather: we shouldn't)
See [[Wikipedia:Disambiguation]].

Mgm


On 2/1/07, Kirill Lokshin <[hidden email]> wrote:

>
> On 2/1/07, Timwi <[hidden email]> wrote:
> >
> > Here is another case of something I mentioned to this mailing list some
> > time ago:
> >
> >
> http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=User_talk:Timwi&diff=104821425&oldid=104820754
> >
> > In a nutshell, the [[Wikipedia:WikiProject UK Parliament
> > constituencies]] wants to add the parenthesis "(UK Parliament
> > constituency)" to all constituency articles, even those that don't have
> > ambiguous names and would therefore -- under the general naming
> > convention rules -- not have the parenthesis.
> >
> > These people feel they're completely in the right because they have a
> > discussion to link to -- a discussion that took place on the WikiProject
> > page. Since such a discussion cannot override a general rule such as the
> > Naming Convention, how do I properly respond to this without causing an
> > edit war (or move war)?
> >
> > Timwi
>
> The best thing to do -- if you want to make an issue of it -- would be
> to bring the question up on the main NC page and invite the
> WikiProject to make their case their.  Having said that, a few points:
>
> - There is nothing inherently less meaningful about a discussion on a
> WikiProject page versus a discussion on some other page; both function
> as a consensus of participating editors, which isn't really affected
> by the page name.
> - It's perfectly normal for guidelines -- particularly
> one-size-fits-all guidelines -- to have exceptions (even broad ones);
> and quite reasonable for WikiProjects to come up with such exceptions.
> The deciding factor is whether what's being proposed makes sense, not
> who came up with it.
> - Looking over the linked discussion on the WikiProject page, I'm not
> convinced that they're actually incorrect in suggesting pre-emptive
> disambiguation here.  It's pretty much a decided issue that all
> geographic locations will eventually have articles; and if
> constituencies are, indeed, named after locations, then delaying
> disambiguation until those articles get started -- even though we
> *know* that we'll need to disambiguate -- seems rather unnecessarily
> bureaucratic.  (If nothing else, the project could easily fit within
> the letter of the law here by creating one-liner stubs for the
> locations; but I don't think that's something we ought to push.)
>
> Kirill
>
> _______________________________________________
> WikiEN-l mailing list
> [hidden email]
> To unsubscribe from this mailing list, visit:
> http://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikien-l
>
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Re: [WikiEN-l] WikiProjects overriding policy

Kirill Lokshin
On 2/1/07, MacGyverMagic/Mgm <[hidden email]> wrote:
> We never disambiguate pre-emptively (or rather: we shouldn't)
> See [[Wikipedia:Disambiguation]].

Um, fifth-pillar and IAR issues aside, the page doesn't actually say
that.  Indeed, the only real principles there are "Disambiguation in
Wikipedia is the process of resolving conflicts in article titles that
occur when a single term can be associated with more than one topic"
and "When there is no risk of confusion, do not disambiguate nor add a
link to a disambiguation page".  (Pedantry: note that this doesn't
explicitly require that both articles be created prior to
disambiguating; the only requirement is that the *term* be known to be
ambiguous.)

Kirill

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Re: [WikiEN-l] WikiProjects overriding policy

Charles Matthews
In reply to this post by Arne 'Timwi' Heizmann
I have to say that the WikiProject Go would dearly like to override the policy on Japanese names, because the name order used in 40 years or more of go literature in English has used Japanese name order.

Charles

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Re: [WikiEN-l] WikiProjects overriding policy

Alphax (Wikipedia email)
[hidden email] wrote:
> I have to say that the WikiProject Go would dearly like to override
> the policy on Japanese names, because the name order used in 40 years
> or more of go literature in English has used Japanese name order.
>

So... let them? Will the servers collapse if OH MY GOODNESS NOT
EVERYTHING IS THE SAME?!!!

--
Alphax - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:Alphax
Contributor to Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia
"We make the internet not suck" - Jimbo Wales
Public key: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:Alphax/OpenPGP


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Re: [WikiEN-l] WikiProjects overriding policy

David Gerard-2
In reply to this post by Arne 'Timwi' Heizmann
On 01/02/07, Timwi <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Here is another case of something I mentioned to this mailing list some
> time ago:
> http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=User_talk:Timwi&diff=104821425&oldid=104820754
> In a nutshell, the [[Wikipedia:WikiProject UK Parliament
> constituencies]] wants to add the parenthesis "(UK Parliament
> constituency)" to all constituency articles, even those that don't have
> ambiguous names and would therefore -- under the general naming
> convention rules -- not have the parenthesis.


This isn't "policy" in the sense of NPOV or verifiability. Or even in
the sense of deletion procedures. Naming conventions are essentially
arbitrary.


> These people feel they're completely in the right because they have a
> discussion to link to -- a discussion that took place on the WikiProject
> page. Since such a discussion cannot override a general rule such as the
> Naming Convention, how do I properly respond to this without causing an
> edit war (or move war)?


Decide what the "who cares?" value is.

If you can think of important counterexamples, raise those and see if
they can be fitted into the proposed convention in a reasonably
streamlined and obvious manner. They actually care about it, so good
on them for being prepared to work on our content.

When I say "important counterexamples", I mean ones that would be
clearly *wrong* with the bracketed bit after the name and a redirect
from the old name. Not ones where it makes no difference.

I'm a big fan of "who cares?" on naming conventions and a forest of
redirects to help searchers. I think the last one I bothered voicing
an opinion on in a LONG time was [[Ecma Office Open XML]], and only
because I was in the middle of the media coverage. (Microsoft's big
issue was the name - it was at [[Microsoft Office Open XML]] - and I
think they were arguably correct, given the analogous examples of
[[ECMAScript]] vs [[JavaScript]] vs [[JScript]]. So far it's been at
the current title for a week and fingers crossed it stays there.)


- d.

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Re: [WikiEN-l] WikiProjects overriding policy

Alphax (Wikipedia email)
David Gerard wrote:
<snip>
> I'm a big fan of "who cares?" on naming conventions and a forest of
> redirects to help searchers.

Me too. About the only problem I have is when you get stuff like "X (Y
of Z)", and X, Y and Z don't have links to it.

> I think the last one I bothered voicing
> an opinion on in a LONG time was [[Ecma Office Open XML]], and only
> because I was in the middle of the media coverage. (Microsoft's big
> issue was the name - it was at [[Microsoft Office Open XML]] - and I
> think they were arguably correct, given the analogous examples of
> [[ECMAScript]] vs [[JavaScript]] vs [[JScript]]. So far it's been at
> the current title for a week and fingers crossed it stays there.)
>

... I was about to ask "why isn't ECMA uppercase" until I read [[ECMA]],
which helpfully pointed out that they've dis-abbreviated themselves
(hrm, who else did that?), so the lowercase is correct.

--
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Contributor to Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia
"We make the internet not suck" - Jimbo Wales
Public key: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:Alphax/OpenPGP


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Re: [WikiEN-l] WikiProjects overriding policy

Stephen Bain
In reply to this post by MacGyverMagic/Mgm
On 2/1/07, MacGyverMagic/Mgm <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> I don't agree with you Stephen. The naming convention was created to avoid
> overly convoluted names. The places articles are located should be easy to
> link to.

In a series of many articles, *when the majority need disambiguation*,
how is it not easier (in terms of browsing and linking) to keep all
the titles in the same format, even the ones that don't need
disambiguating?

Surely it's easier to know that for a given set of articles - and this
is a clearly finite set of precisely 646 articles - the titles will
all be in the same format. If the purpose of naming conventions is to
ensure as much consistency as practicable, surely having all articles
in a given finite set titled in the same fashion is the most
consistent outcome possible?

The case would be different where only a small number of articles in
the set needed disambiguation, or where the majority of articles in
the set would be the primary disambiguation target (your US Presidents
example fits this description).

--
Stephen Bain
[hidden email]

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Re: [WikiEN-l] WikiProjects overriding policy

Ilmari Karonen
In reply to this post by Alphax (Wikipedia email)
Alphax (Wikipedia email) wrote:
> [hidden email] wrote:
>> I have to say that the WikiProject Go would dearly like to override
>> the policy on Japanese names, because the name order used in 40 years
>> or more of go literature in English has used Japanese name order.
>
> So... let them? Will the servers collapse if OH MY GOODNESS NOT
> EVERYTHING IS THE SAME?!!!

Names of people tend to be somewhat trickier, though, in that there's
usually more than one interest group involved.  The canonical example of
this is probably diacritics in the names of ice hockey players: The
hockey wikiproject insists (or did, last time I looked) that the names
be spelled without diacritics, since that's the most common way they're
spelled in sports media -- and the national wikiprojects insist they be
spelled with them, since that's the most common way they're spelled
everywhere else, especially in the countries the players come from.

The discussion, whenever it comes up, then gets sidetracked into issues
of usability (how hard is it to type those characters?), server load
(does it matter if most links come via redirects?), hit counting (which
version, for any given name, really _is_ the most common?), consistency
(should we pick the most common form for each player separately, for
each country/language, for each specific sport, for all sportspeople in
general, or what?  what about people who are both hockey players and
local politicians?), language politics (how to define the "most common
English name"?  does usage by people speaking English as a second
language count?  does it matter what some other-language Wikipedia
does?), prescriptiveness vs. descriptiveness (should we use the
"correct" name for a topic even if an "incorrect" one is more common?
what is "correct", and how, if at all, does it relate to "official"?),
turf wars (where should the discussion be conducted?  who should be
involved?  does alerting your wikiproject count as astroturfing?  what
about alerting your local Wikipedia?) and general wikilawyering (what
does the current version of the naming guidelines say?  what did it say
last month?  do the topical subguidelines override the main guideline?
does existing practice override guidelines?  does the fact that this
sentence seems to missing a word have any effect?)

At some point I was tempted to suggest a JavaScript hack that would make
the diacritics blink on and off.

--
Ilmari Karonen

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Re: [WikiEN-l] WikiProjects overriding policy

Steve Bennett-8
In reply to this post by MacGyverMagic/Mgm
On 2/1/07, MacGyverMagic/Mgm <[hidden email]> wrote:
> We never disambiguate pre-emptively (or rather: we shouldn't)
> See [[Wikipedia:Disambiguation]].

Lets of people do though. I seem to recall lots of "... (Price is
Right pricing game)" articles, lots of "... (some lame tv show
episode)" etc articles. There are plenty of reasons for and against.
IMHO, if more than some proportion (like 30%) of articles in a given
category have to be disambiguated, you might as well just do them all
for the sake of consistency and ease of guessing names.

Steve

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Re: [WikiEN-l] WikiProjects overriding policy

Phil Boswell
In reply to this post by MacGyverMagic/Mgm
MacGyverMagic/Mgm wrote
[snip]
The naming convention was created to avoid
overly convoluted names. The places articles are located should be easy to
link to.
The Naming Conventions are created to avoid endless move-wars between people who favour one formulation over another. Copy & paste takes care of problems to do with linking.

It just so happens that there is a strange wrinkle in the way that links are processed which can be useful in this context; see here (it will open a preview first that you might check I'm not linking you to the Last Resort :-):
http://preview.tinyurl.com/2xxkd5
Check out the "link with leading pipe".

So to link from [[a (b)]] to [[c (b)]] placing the link [[|c]] in the former during an edit will, at the moment, work just fine: it will automagically expand to [[c (b)|c]] in just the same way as [[c (b)|]] would have expanded to the same thing. I leave enumerating the advantages to the interested student.

HTH HAND
--
Phil