Wikipedia:Reliable sources/Noticeboard/Archive 85

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Archive 84 Archive 85 Archive 86

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Humanist Society of New South Wales Inc.

Is an essay or opinion piece by a member of the Humanist Society of New South Wales Inc. a reliable source? It is being used as a source in the Distributism article to verify a claim that Distributism originates with Catholic authors but was later embraced by non-Catholic thinkers, including socialists and humanists. But, the article cites no sources, and I can find no indication that Howard is considered a notable scholar on the subject. I would like some other editor's opinions. ---RepublicanJacobiteThe'FortyFive' 02:43, 26 December 2010 (UTC)

SPS, not a RS. Fladrif (talk) 03:12, 26 December 2010 (UTC)
Just Some Website. Dlabtot (talk) 16:55, 26 December 2010 (UTC)
Neither the author nor the website would be considered experts on this subject. Jayjg (talk) 19:49, 26 December 2010 (UTC)
HSNSW's website exists to promote the opinions of the HSNSW and its members, non-notable opinion being used for fact. Not RS. Fifelfoo (talk) 00:47, 27 December 2010 (UTC)

Reliability of Modern

Modernbeats.com has the recording info about the recent songs that were released. They duplicate the methods of recording and derive at the conclusion. My question is how reliable is the website regarding the recording info? And can the info be added to FA class articles? — Legolas (talk2me) 15:07, 26 December 2010 (UTC)

Could you be more specific? To which article are you referring? What text? What citation? The website, as far as I can tell, does not claim to be reporting on the actual productions, but rather, how to duplicate them. Dlabtot (talk) 17:29, 26 December 2010 (UTC)
Exactly, for eg if I were to add their production methods to an article like "Bad Romance", would that be advisable? — Legolas (talk2me) 05:22, 27 December 2010 (UTC)
I feel it would be rude for me to refrain from replying, however, I have nothing further to add beyond my original comment and questions. Dlabtot (talk) 07:55, 27 December 2010 (UTC)
Hmmm, so here is the link from Modernbeats.com which I planned to add to the article Bad Romance. I wanted to add the Drum Production and Audio, and the vocal synth mixes. — Legolas (talk2me) 11:44, 27 December 2010 (UTC)

Judicial opinions

At the BLP Noticeboard, there has been a discussion today about an article Professional objector. This resulted in one editor deleting some material critical of certain attorneys sourced only to judge's opinions, citing WP:BLPPRIMARY: "Do not use trial transcripts and other court records, or other public documents, to support assertions about a living person." I think this rule was intended to bar the use of raw documents such as complaints and witness testimony, which can contain quite wild assertions. Judicial opinions, by contrast, are more of a secondary source, as they are the judge's definitive evaluation of the assertions made by witnesses and parties. Moreover, the material was cited not as absolute truth, but to indicate that the judges had a negative opinion of certain attorney behavior. From this point of view, I can't imagine a better source for a judge's opinion than a recognized, reliable series of volumes reporting the rulings of that court. And I can't believe WP:BLPPRIMARY would really require us to turn to newspaper accounts rather than the judge's own words. By analogy, WP:Reliable_source_examples#Law says: "When discussing legal texts, it is more reliable to quote from the text, appropriately qualified jurists or textbooks than from newspaper reporting." I was hoping for a reality check here on whether court opinions qualify as WP:RS. Thanks, Jonathanwallace (talk) 02:34, 27 December 2010 (UTC)

If we are looking for a source that says "Judge X said Y in case Z," then the opinion of the court in Z may fairly be cited. However, secondary sources are still useful in most cases to assess the meaning of the judge's holding or comment when it is not obvious, the long-term significance of the case, and the notability of the case, not all of which may be obvious from within the opinion. Caution is particularly appropriate where the opinion is being cited for negative findings the Court may have made about a not-otherwise-notable party or attorney involved in the case. Newyorkbrad (talk) 02:37, 27 December 2010 (UTC)
I agree with JW that WP:BLPPRIMARY was not a good reason for deleting the material. The problem here is that the quotes were cherry-picked to paint a non-neutral negative picture of individuals, basically WP:COATRACKing an attack page that would have been G10'ed if it had been titled with the attorneys' names instead of the term. (The article suffers from further problems of cherry-picking and misrepresenting sources to POV-push on the substance, but that's a separate issue.) This is a BLP/NPOV/NOR issue, not a RS issue. THF (talk) 02:56, 27 December 2010 (UTC)
To comment on Jonathan's point about preferring to use a judge's words to a newspaper report of those words, WP:BLPPRIMARY allows for primary sources to be used to augment a secondary source, but not in isolation which was the case with the material I removed. Ensuring the presence of a secondary source helps to prevent us from straying into original research, and ensures that we only cover cases that are significant enough to have attracted that secondary coverage. January (talk) 12:52, 27 December 2010 (UTC)

Additionally, the cases appear to have been chosen not for their importance, or for the importance of any decision by a judge, but only for comments made by a judge containing a specific phrase. This is, intrinsically, OR territory, especially when searches are done of primary sources, and not of reliable secondary sources which are presumed to have chosen material based on its importance, and not on a reporter searching for a phrase in Westlaw. The phrase, by the way, does not appear to have been intrinsically important in the cases cited. Collect (talk) 12:59, 27 December 2010 (UTC)

Some things I would like to discuss

1. First of all, I think Larry_King should go under the category: [Category:American_people_of_Belarusian-Jewish_descent] because it says in the article that his parents emigrated from Belarus and they were Jewish. Also I think Peter_Douglas and Eric_Douglas should go under that category as since their father Kirk_Douglas is listed under that category as well. 2. I think it should be noted in the Alexandra_Powers article that her mother is Katharyn_Powers and was a writer for variety of TV series. This article says they are related: http://www.museumstuff.com/learn/topics/Katharyn_Powers Also I think in the Katharyn_Powers article these links should be added: http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0584251/ http://memory-alpha.org/wiki/Katharyn_Powers http://www.moviefone.com/celebrity/katharyn-powers/2035049/main http://stargate.wikia.com/wiki/Katharyn_Powers In the Alexandra Powersarticle I created I found a website that says she is in Scientology. Here's the website: http://www.truthaboutscientology.com/stats/by-name/a/alexandra-powers.html Should this be used as a reference in the article? Please let me know. Neptunekh2 (talk) 06:49, 27 December 2010 (UTC)

Songwriteruniverse.com

Can I use this website to expand an article. It's really important for me to expand the corresponding article. Is it reliable? Novice7 | Talk 10:37, 27 December 2010 (UTC)

No, not for this purpose. The subjects of the article are also centrally involved with the website, so the article counts as self-published. The website seems to exist to provide consultancy to songwriters; it doesn't carry independent reviews of work. Itsmejudith (talk) 12:00, 27 December 2010 (UTC)
Okay. Thanks. So, I cannot use it write the "Inspiration: or "Background" behind the song too? Novice7 | Talk 12:41, 27 December 2010 (UTC)


Youtube video

Would this Youtube video be a reliable source for information about Islam and Judaism? Jayjg (talk) 18:02, 27 December 2010 (UTC)

No. This is potentially fairly contentious area and I think we would like to see only the best scholarly sources here. In the video, it's not clear who this guy is or what his credentials are. Not only that, at least some of the stuff he is saying is not accurate, so no way this can be used as a source for any kind of factual information. If, and only if, the person can be positively identified, and then if and only if he is some kind of established published scholar or political leader and not just a random rabbi, it could possibly be used to support a statement such as "Some people believe such-and-such", provided WP:WEIGHT is not violated. However, if the above is true, he must have some published articles etc. saying the same thing, and those would be better references. Herostratus (talk) 19:15, 27 December 2010 (UTC)
The link provides no information about what is being filmed in the video or who is speaking. I understand from other sources this to be a panel discussion of some sort broadcast on Turkish TV, and I have an understanding from a transcript as to who the participants say they are (note that most links to this video apparently misidentify the participants). There is no reason to think that the panel participants are expressing anything other than their personal opinions, and there is no reason to think that their personal opinions are notable in any respect. Other than multiple links in blogs and personal websites to these YouTube videos, I find no other references to any other articles or books written by any of these people nor any indication that they are recognized experts on the subjects they are discussing in this video. Thus, even if one got around every other objection that is made to YouTube videos as a source (just check the RSN archives for countless discussions of YouTube as a source), this would not qualify as a Reliable Source. Fladrif (talk) 19:37, 27 December 2010 (UTC)
It looks like a potential copyright vio and when you look at the uploader's channel it is obvious that the other video is. See no reason to risk contributory infringement or use something that is not from a verifiable RS. And WP:VIDEOLINK is an essay that I am plugging. Cptnono (talk) 05:23, 28 December 2010 (UTC)

www.mywikibiz.com

I have a question regarding content originating from this website. An editor placed photographs on the Vector Marketing article that originated from mywikibiz.com shortly after they were uploaded to said website. I find this a little odd and was wondering if there is any particular reason why anyone would upload picture there, then transfer them over to wikipedia? Its seems weird... Also, would content be allowed from there? Phearson (talk) 03:17, 28 December 2010 (UTC)

As long as the image licenses are compatable with ours, we can use the images. As for text, http://mywikibiz.com/Help:Copyrights says most of the material is under GFDL (a license Wikipedia use to run under). However, this is not a crazy idea that someone will upload an image there and then upload to here. We get that all of the time from Flickr. User:Zscout370 (Return Fire) 04:00, 28 December 2010 (UTC)
Even though at this point in time my question would be moot (pending a review process on article) are the photos' Licenses that were on the article earlier compatible with our current license? Phearson (talk) 05:11, 28 December 2010 (UTC)
This does not seem to be a question for this noticeboard. Try Wikipedia:Media copyright questions. Kenilworth Terrace (talk) 19:05, 28 December 2010 (UTC)

Bloggish interlude: lawyers cite Wikipedia, get lesson in sources.

Briefly, and before Signpost gets to it: GM, maker of Corvette, sued someone trying to trademark 'Corvoltte'. GM's lawyers cited Wikipedia's Corvette article as proof the brand's fame. The judges retorted:

There is no evidence of sales, advertising or the extent of the mark's renown. To the extent that opposer (GM) has relied on the Wikipedia evidence to establish the fame of the CORVETTE mark, an Internet entry is admissible for the limited purpose of demonstrating what has been printed, not for the truth of what has been printed.

GM didn't lose the lawsuit, but it was closer than it should have been. Nothing like a lesson in misuse of sources from the bench. Ocaasi (talk) 03:39, 28 December 2010 (UTC)

Sorry, did you have a question about a source's reliability? 96.228.129.69 (talk) 02:55, 29 December 2010 (UTC)

personnel testimonials

The aspartame controversy article consists of people who have been made sick by aspartame (or believe they have been made sick by aspartame) in conflict with the accepted wisdom of the FDA that has defined aspartame as safe regardless of many complaints. Your site does not allow personal testimonies and by doing so is doing a disservice to those people. Is there any way I can debate the wisdom of not allowing victims of what they perceive as a poison to be heard? Or is there simply no interest. I believe that this is a special type of situation that should be dealt with in a manor different from the usual OR or RS methods. I am reffering to a website I put up that is a collection of aspartame personal histories at http://www.aspartametestimonials.com/ Arydberg (talk) 04:05, 28 December 2010 (UTC)

Sorry, but though we might possibly be doing these people a disservice, we'd be doing a greater disservice to a lot more people if we were to allow Wikipedia standards of sourcing to slip (see WP:RS). This isn't a forum for advocacy, regardless of the rights and wrongs of the case. If you want to publicise your cause, you'll have to try elsewhere. AndyTheGrump (talk) 04:42, 28 December 2010 (UTC)
Arydberg, it's not great practice to shop this issue around to multiple forums, when you've already been answered elsewhere. You can debate people on many different internet forums about this issue, but Wikipedia is not a forum, it's an encyclopedia. There is interest in anything that is reliably sourced, but a collection of aspartame testimonials does not qualify. Try to find other recent, published articles that meet WP:RS and address criticisms, describe the controversy, or relay anecdotes. Newspapers would be one place to look but personal websites is the wrong direction. Ocaasi (talk) 04:50, 28 December 2010 (UTC)
Wikipedia can not solve all problems. It is an encyclopedia trying to collect what is published elsewhere. Personal stories need to be notable in publications outside of Wikipedia for some reason for us to give special space to them.--Andrew Lancaster (talk) 21:17, 28 December 2010 (UTC)

wordiq.com - it's just a wikipedia copy

  • wordiq.com: Linksearch en (https) - meta - de - fr - simple - wikt:en - wikt:frMER-C X-wiki • Reports: Links on en - COIBot - COIBot-Local • Discussions: tracked - advanced • COIBot-Link, Local, & XWiki Reports - Wikipedia: en - fr - de • Google: searchmeta • Yahoo: backlinks • Domain: domaintoolsAboutUs.comDomainsDB.netAlexaWhosOnMyServer.com

I see a number of articles are using wordiQ.com as a reference. I can't see how this can be a reliable source because its content is largely re-worded Wikipedia articles. What do people think? --Biker Biker (talk) 11:55, 28 December 2010 (UTC)

Not a reliable source - “their” encyclopedia is based on Wikipedia. Six words (talk) 12:11, 28 December 2010 (UTC)
Thanks. Perhaps someone could take a look at, or keep an eye on Scooter (motorcycle) where an editor (diff) has been trying to use wordiq.com as a reference to prove common knowledge. I'd rather not get dragged down into an edit war so other editor's opinions or helpful pointers to the editor in question would be very welcome. --Biker Biker (talk) 17:40, 28 December 2010 (UTC)

The Unofficial Guide to Transformers 1980s Through 1990s Revised & Expanded 2nd Edition

Would this book be at least one additional reliable third party source for a fictional Transformers character? [1] It's not licensed, it's published by major company, has a bibliography. Seems legit to me as both real and NOT primary. Mathewignash (talk) 18:17, 26 December 2010 (UTC)

[1] Seems to meet the requirements of WP:RS. Dlabtot (talk) 18:43, 26 December 2010 (UTC)
As lead writer of the Hasbro Transformers Collectors' Club newsletter, the author would appear to be more an enthusiast source rather than a scholarly one -- and not one demonstrating much in the way of independence, objectivity or distance from the subject, thus thoroughly WP:PRIMARY. HrafnTalkStalk(P) 06:11, 27 December 2010 (UTC)
umm, no. Please re-read WP:PRIMARY, perhaps with the assistance of an English-language dictionary. Dlabtot (talk) 07:09, 27 December 2010 (UTC)
"Primary sources are very close to an event, often accounts written by people who are directly involved, offering an insider's view of an event" -- I would argue that as a part of Hasbro Transformers Collectors' Club, Alvarez is "very close to", "directly involved" & "offering an insider's view of" the topic. I can give you the full, 20-odd volume, OED's definitions of any of those words, if you have difficulty with any of them -- some of them do after all run to two whole syllables (and one to three). HrafnTalkStalk(P) 07:30, 27 December 2010 (UTC)
I'm sorry but those words don't have the meanings that you apparently believe they do. For example, a 'enthusiast' is pretty much the opposite of an 'insider'. An 'insider' would be someone involved in the production. 'Directly involved' -- since the plain meaning of this so obviously and clearly excludes the author, I am at a loss as to how to explain such a simple concept. Dlabtot (talk) 07:49, 27 December 2010 (UTC)
No, 'enthusiasts' are quite frequently also 'insiders'. In this case, the Hasbro Transformers Collectors' Club, produces its own toy line and fiction (see for example Transformers: Timelines) and organises the "Official Transformers Collectors' Convention", BotCon, by license from Hasbro -- and thus is "directly involved" in the promotion of the francise. Your inarticulacy leaves me feeling profound sympathy for you -- here, have some colouring crayons. HrafnTalkStalk(P) 08:24, 27 December 2010 (UTC)
"No, 'enthusiasts' are quite frequently also 'insiders'." Really? Please do provide the OED definition that supports this bizarre assertion. Dlabtot (talk) 21:00, 27 December 2010 (UTC)
Alvarez went to work for the Transformers Collectors Club magazine in 2005. That book was published in 1999, long before the company that prints the magazine was even started. I don't think you can disqualify someone's work as too close to the source retroactively. The work he did before being employed by the club is definitely by an "outsider". Mathewignash (talk) 10:35, 27 December 2010 (UTC)
Schiffer Publishing appears to be a respected publishing house. Their books have been cited by or recommended as further reading by many reliable sources such as the Smithsonian magazine,[2], PBS,[3] the Weider History Group,[4] and others.[5] A Quest For Knowledge (talk) 16:33, 27 December 2010 (UTC)
I would also point out that Alvarez is not just a Transformers fan who published a book. Checking out the link on Amazon.com, he's the author of books on numerous subjects such as international law and the Spanish Foreign Legion. This, along with the publishing company's reputation, would really debunk the idea of ignoring his book as "fan" book. It appears to be both reliable and non-primary source. Mathewignash (talk) 18:25, 27 December 2010 (UTC)
Are you sure this same J.E. Alvarez has these wide interests? When I click on the link from Amazon I only get Transformers books by this particular author. Dingo1729 (talk) 17:13, 29 December 2010 (UTC)

Alexandra Powers

In the Alexandra Powers article I created I found a website that says she is in Scientology. Here's the website: http://www.truthaboutscientology.com/stats/by-name/a/alexandra-powers.html Should this be used as a reference in the article? Please let me know. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Neptunekh2 (talkcontribs)

Consensus is that this is not a RS. Discussed less than three weeks ago at Wikipedia:Reliable_sources/Noticeboard/Archive_83#www.truthaboutscientology.com_usage_in_BLPs Fladrif (talk) 17:51, 27 December 2010 (UTC)
Neptune went ahead and added the reference anyway. I just deleted it. Jonathanwallace (talk) 06:15, 30 December 2010 (UTC)

www.askmusa.org

Is http://www.askmusa.org/ a reliable source for information about Islam and Judaism? Jayjg (talk) 18:03, 27 December 2010 (UTC)

No, I don't think so...unnamed authors, no evidence of editorial oversight, no evidence of having a reputation for accuracy or fact-checking. Looks like another SPS. Might be acceptable for an external link, but that's about it. A Quest For Knowledge (talk) 18:14, 27 December 2010 (UTC)
I concur, authors of articles are not named, there's apparently no editorial board. If we cannot identify the sources of the articles, they cannot be considered verifiable. --Nuujinn (talk) 18:18, 27 December 2010 (UTC)
Thanks, that's what I figured; ok for an External link but not a citation. Jayjg (talk) 18:59, 27 December 2010 (UTC)
I have question regarding that: Wouldn't it be a reliable source of information since it is owned and run by the Simon Wiesethal Center for information on Judaism? I'm having a hard time understanding this. I have been looking through the general gudielines for reliable sources and it turns out that if it is a religious source then it's reliable. Because according to Wikipedia:Reliable source examples any "official religious bodies and the journals or publications of recognized and well-regarded religious academies and experts can be considered reliable sources for religious doctrine and views where such views represent significant viewpoints on an article subject." The SWC is thereby a reliable source in this context. Because its dealing with a religious subject namely Islam and Judaism. The citation - from "ask musa" - refers to Jewish view of Islam, therefore the specific jewish doctrine regarding that. Please give me your take on it. Musse-kloge
The Wiesenthal Center is a self-described human rights organization. It is not an official religious body or religious academy, and it is impossible to know whether an anonymously-authored article is written by a religious expert. I would not rely, and I do not think that Wikipedia can rely, on this source as being an authoritative or significant viewpoint on specific points of Jewish doctrine. Fladrif (talk) 21:29, 28 December 2010 (UTC)
Ok point taken. But I think this is a special situation. The organization promotes the understang of Jewish history and is a "Jewish human rights organization that confronts anti-Semitism, hate and terrorism, promotes human rights and dignity, stands with Israel, defends the safety of Jews worldwide, and teaches the lessons of the Holocaust for future generations. With a constituency of over 400,000 households in the United States, it is accredited as an NGO at international organizations including the United Nations, UNESCO, and the Council of Europe." The keyword here is Jewish. The SWC is headed by Rabbi Marvin Hier, its Dean and Founder. Rabbi Abraham Cooper is the Associate Dean and Rabbi Meyer May is the Executive Director. If an orgnization is headed by religious leaders (Rabbis) wouldn't they be regarded as relevant religious affiliation? Despite the fact that it promotes human rights, it promotes it from a Jewish standpoint. Musse-kloge
askmusa.org doesn't say it's owned or run by the Simon Wiesenthal Center. No More Mr Nice Guy (talk) 23:51, 28 December 2010 (UTC)
@M-k That still doesn't make it an official religious body or religious academy. Its views and opinions are its views and opinions; they aren't authorities on "official" Jewish doctrine .
@NMMNG A Whois query shows that askmusa.org is owned and operated by the SWC. [6] Fladrif (talk) 01:05, 29 December 2010 (UTC)
I doubt that's enough to claim that the SWC endorses what askmusa says. No More Mr Nice Guy (talk) 15:57, 29 December 2010 (UTC)
The SWC's website states that askmusa.org is one of its own projects.[7] [8] That does not change my opinion that this would not be a RS for the purpose being proposed. Fladrif (talk) 16:13, 29 December 2010 (UTC)

David Haye

Please adivise if this AFP agency report would be considered a reliable source to note David Haye as an "English boxer" in the introduction on his article. If so, please also advise which citation template would be the most suitable. Would you recommend using the original agency report, or using 'cite news' from one of the papers that picked it up? Thanks, Daicaregos (talk) 10:39, 28 December 2010 (UTC)

The AFP report is a good source. You can cite it on its own, or use one of the papers that picked it up, or cite both together. However, you don't need it for the description of "English boxer". From the article, Haye was born and brought up in London, so he can be described either as English or as British, without the need for a further source. Go with the label that his publicity people use. Itsmejudith (talk) 11:12, 28 December 2010 (UTC)
Thank you. Daicaregos (talk) 11:32, 28 December 2010 (UTC)
Go with what publicists use? thanks. GoodDay (talk) 22:46, 29 December 2010 (UTC)
Yes, because some English people prefer to be called English and others prefer to be called British. Haye's own statements would be a guide on this, so would statements made on his behalf. Itsmejudith (talk) 23:30, 29 December 2010 (UTC)

"Individual mandate" (United States)

In the United States, a new health care law has been passed which aims to expand coverage to most of its residents by providing sticks and carrots to get more of its population medically insured. One of the sticks is a new tax penalty assessed on those who do not have medical insurance which meets certain legally defined minimum standards beginning in 2014. Not everyone who is uninsured will be assessed for the penalty. There are a large number of exceptions. For example, people with insurance policies that were in force before the law came into effect and which do not meet the minimum legal standards can keep those old policies and will not be assessed for the tax. Neither will Native Americans, those with valid religious objections, non-resident foreigners such as overseas tourists, and the indigent poor. The penalty is, in effect, optional, because non-payment of the penalty is not illegal and no legal action can be taken if it is not paid.

The problem here is that politicians and the press in the United States has developed a shorthand for this "stick" - they call it "The individual medical insurance mandate", or simply "the individual mandate". It is easy to understand why. It would clearly be untenable for them to refer to this all the time as "the mandate on those without a defined minimum level of insurance to get insured with a free opt-out (for some) and an opt-out at the cost of a fine (or none if you choose not to pay the fine) for everyone else". Clearly, this "individual mandate" does meet the normal definition of "a mandate" (which means a legally enforceable command). So here we have reliable sources in one geographical location which has created a term that conflicts with normal usage elsewhere in the world. Some might argue that the term has POV overtones (because it makes the law seem more draconian than it really is).

Wikipedia has a global audience and not everyone will understand the use of the term "individual mandate" if it is not explained. I would argue that the term needs to be explained first of all before it is used in any Wikipedia article, and it should be used thereafter in quotation marks thereafter to indicate that this is a special usage. A "mandate" in normal English is something which makes doing something mandatory. A compulsion. There is, in practice, no compulsion in relation to individual coverage, The wording in the law does not call it "a mandate". The only mandates in the law relate to coverage mandates and cost sharing mandates imposed on insurance companies.

So here is the issue. Should Wikipedia use a colloquial term without having first explained it? And having described it, should the term be used thereafter in quotation marks given that there is no mandate or compulsion to have medical insurance?--Hauskalainen (talk) 14:01, 29 December 2010 (UTC)

Not really a reliable source issue, is it? Seems like something to be raised by adding a para to an appropriate article explicating (reliably sourced) dissenting views on the meaning of "mandate". Jonathanwallace (talk) 14:55, 29 December 2010 (UTC)

This editor and another do not like the word Mandate even though it is referred to as a mandate almost universally within the reliable sources. Arzel (talk) 16:21, 29 December 2010 (UTC)
This use of the word "mandate" should be explained for readers outside the USA. I'm sure there are sources that explain in great detail what the actual provisions of the law are. Itsmejudith (talk) 16:29, 29 December 2010 (UTC)
It is an issue of reliable sources because we have a conflict of interests between normal English usage and supposed "reliable sources" which have adopted a term which implies there is no choice at all for something that offers a real choice between (A) having qualified insurance and (B) paying a fine which is entirely vountary. It looks like a slogan term straight out of the Ministry of Truth, turning the meaning of words upside down. I am not saying that we cannot use the term "individual mandate", only that it should be explained (or as you say "explicated") and thereafter used in quotation marks because of its highly localized and quirky interpretation. --Hauskalainen (talk) 16:54, 29 December 2010 (UTC)
Give me a break. The fine is not voluntary. The only people twisting the words are the Obama Administration. They argued it was not a tax during debate to win support and are now saying it is a tax in order to allow the IRS to collect the "voluntary fine" (irony quotes well noted here). Arzel (talk) 18:00, 29 December 2010 (UTC)
No, it's not really a RS issue. The argument being advanced is not that the sources are not reliable, it is that the reliable sources are wrong. Lots of shorthand terms get applied to things that "stick" in mainstream press coverage that aren't technically accurate, especially when it's something complicated. That the term isn't accurate or even misleading doesn't mean that Wikipedia shouldn't use the term if the term is what is being used pretty much universally in RS. IMJ's suggestion is the way to go. Explain, using reliable secondary sources, what the "individual mandate" actually is. Deleting the term or putting it in irony quotes throughout the article would not be appropriate, however. Fladrif (talk) 17:11, 29 December 2010 (UTC)
Not an issue for this noticeboard. Kenilworth Terrace (talk) 17:24, 29 December 2010 (UTC)

MythBusters

I got an email through OTRS regarding using MythBusters as a source. With the author's consent, I am reproducing his email below:

A good example of this is June_1962_Alcatraz_escape#Investigation, where the MythBusters "determined" escape on a raft was plausible. That claim is not otherwise cited, but a quick Google search confirms that Wikipedia's version is faithful to the show [9]. The question remains of whether the show is itself a reliable source.--Chaser (talk) 17:57, 29 December 2010 (UTC)

I suppose the show is notable but would generally need to be attributed.--Andrew Lancaster (talk) 18:00, 29 December 2010 (UTC)
On a side note....Chaser, the link that you provided, mythbustersresults.com "is not endorsed by or affiliated with the Discovery Channel". It's just some web site, and possibly represents a copyright violation. As of this writing, mythbustersresults.com is cited by 15 different articles.[10] If anyone's bored, these articles should be resourced to MythBuster's official site, dsc.discovery.com/tv/mythbusters (assuming the information is contained on their website) or some other source. A Quest For Knowledge (talk) 18:11, 29 December 2010 (UTC)
I wasn't suggesting using that site to reference the article, but just to confirm for this discussion that the description of the episode is correct.--Chaser (talk) 18:18, 29 December 2010 (UTC)
As always, reliability needs to be determined on a case-by-case basis, but yes, I think that they're a reliable source. That said, there's nothing wrong with using in-text attribution, especially if they're the only source making a particular claim. In the test case you cited, the article reads: "In the 1st season of Mythbusters (8th episode, first aired 12 December 2003) the possibility of escaping Alcatraz on a makeshift raft was successfully tested and determined to be plausible." I don't really see anything substantial that requires changing, although I would substitute the word "determined" with "found". A Quest For Knowledge (talk) 18:46, 29 December 2010 (UTC)
No way that MythBusters is any kind of reliable source. They are an entertainment entity. I have absolutely no confidence in the credibility. I'd like to see some independent proof that they don't, for instance, suppress true results in favor of entertaining results, not even to mention the rigor of their research, whether they conduct proper control experiments, and so forth. Are we going to now use other entertainment programs such as "Inside Hollywood Gossip" and so forth as reliable source? Hope not. Herostratus (talk) 19:15, 29 December 2010 (UTC)
Also, they are a primary source, and we are not supposed to use primary sources. Herostratus (talk) 19:17, 29 December 2010 (UTC)
We can use primary sources. Indeed, there are policy pages about when to do so and when not to. I see no reason to believe that the Mythbusters website would not be a reliable source for what they say or do, should there be some reason to need to source that on Wikipedia. Generally speaking, people and organizations are considered reliable experts about themselves, no? (But we would avoid such sources for anything self serving for example.)--Andrew Lancaster (talk) 20:48, 29 December 2010 (UTC)

Question on reliability

Reason for asking. Are the following two considered reliable sources:

  • Reversed temporal region asymmetries of P300 topography in left- and right-handed schizophrenic subjects by the Department of Psychiatry at the Harvard Medical School and published by the Electroencephalography and Clinical Neurophysiology, a peer-reviewed medical journal

and

  • Computed tomography in schizophrenics and normal volunteers. I. Fluid volume as published in the Archives of General Psychiatry

Thank you. Basket of Puppies 01:50, 28 December 2010 (UTC)

No, they're not RS. Per WP:MEDRS these clinical studies are primary sources. If they have been cited in secondary sources like reviews published in peer reviewed journals, then use the reviews instead. If, after this amount of time (these are relatively old clinical studies) they have not been cited in a review, they are not regarded as reporting an important finding, and the source and associated text is to be removed. I'd suggest that Project Medicine[11] is the better board to discuss this in greater detail. Fladrif (talk) 03:40, 28 December 2010 (UTC)
Are all primary sources- even those published in peer-reviewed science journals- unreliable in all cases? Basket of Puppies 03:52, 28 December 2010 (UTC)
The short answer would be "yes". Primary sources like clinical studies, even though published in peer reviewed journals, are not to be used as sources in medical articles. Fladrif (talk) 03:59, 28 December 2010 (UTC)
Fladrif is misreading MEDRS. As with everything, reliability is contextual. Primary sources should be used carefully so as to not extrapolate a conclusion, especially a broader conclusion than the study actually warrants. Newspapers do this all the time, taking a primary study and drawing some sweeping conclusion from it. So be careful of that. But primary sources are reliable sources within the confines of what they are reliable for. Sometimes you'll only be able to say "In this study by Foo, this happened", explicitly. Gigs (talk) 04:01, 28 December 2010 (UTC)
Wikipedia:No_original_research#Primary.2C_secondary_and_tertiary_sources says primary sources that are reliably are published can be used on Wikipedia, only if great care is given to not make any deviations from the actual text. User:Zscout370 (Return Fire) 04:06, 28 December 2010 (UTC)
I suggest that primary sources be used, but only with the assistance of one or more other primary or secondary sources to help the interpretation (I think that was said in the link given by Zscout). These primary sources were published in a peer-reviewed journal, which means they probably went through first, a rigourous checking by their "peers," then a lesser one from the publishers. WikiCopter (radiosortiesimagessimplicitylostdefenseattack) 04:19, 28 December 2010 (UTC)
These are studies or approx 30 and 20 people with schizophrenia respectively. I agree with Fladrif that generally primary sources are not sufficient. Yes there are some that are like the Women's Health Initiative. And yes in rare conditions small trials may be all when have. But it is not like we do not have major review articles and this condition affects millions. These are not reliable in that more reliable sources exist. Doc James (talk · contribs · email) 05:44, 28 December 2010 (UTC)

Basket of Puppies is making this request per a dispute at schizophrenia; as a disclaimer, I am one of about half a dozen editors who disagrees with his use of primary sources there (and no one yet has agreed with him).

See WP:MEDRS:

Primary sources should not be cited in support of a conclusion that is not clearly made by the authors or by reliable secondary sources, as defined above (see Wikipedia:No original research).

and

Individual primary sources should not be cited or juxtaposed so as to "debunk" or contradict the conclusions of reliable secondary sources, unless the primary source itself directly makes such a claim (see Wikipedia:No original synthesis that advances a position). Controversies or areas of uncertainty in medicine should be illustrated with reliable secondary sources describing the varying viewpoints. The use and presentation of primary sources should also respect Wikipedia's policies on undue weight; that is, primary sources favoring a minority opinion should not be aggregated or presented devoid of context in such a way as to undermine proportionate representation of expert opinion in a field.

and

If no review is published in a reasonable amount of time, the text associated with the primary source should be removed as not reporting an important result.

Basket of Puppies wants to cite 1982 and 1992 primary studies when multiple recent secondary reviews are available that do not support the text he proposes to add (or at least, he hasn't produced one to date); if this info is not worthy of mention in reviews more than 20 years later, it doesn't belong in our articles. SandyGeorgia (Talk) 05:56, 28 December 2010 (UTC)

I am not in an edit dispute on Schizophrenia because I am not editing Schizophrenia. Indeed the link I cited at the very top of this indicates that Schizophrenia is not the article at issue. Regarding your claim of "multiple recent secondary reviews are available that do not support the text he proposes", what? That is not it at all and none of the recent secondary articles contradict these primary reliable sources- they don't even mention them. Primary sources may be necessary when where are no secondary to use. You are reading much more into this than actually exists, SG. I simply wish to know if Wikipedia policy views a peer-reviewed medical article as reliable. The consensus here seems to indicate 'yes, as long as no conclusion is made outside the article and it is used only when a secondary source is unavailable'. Basket of Puppies 07:34, 28 December 2010 (UTC)
Perhaps you didn't read my post above? "If no review is published in a reasonable amount of time, the text associated with the primary source should be removed as not reporting an important result." And you are attempting to add this info to mechanisms of schizophrenia, a sub-article tyo schizophrenia, because about half a dozen editors have rejected it at schizophrenia. SandyGeorgia (Talk) 14:25, 28 December 2010 (UTC)
Were we dealing with some plain vanilla Wikipedia article, I might agree with BoP, Gigs, Zscout and WikiCopter, based solely on the more general application of WP:PRIMARY. But, as this is an article that falls within the ambit of Project Medicine, the specific, and considerably more stringent requirements of WP:MEDRS apply rather than those more general principles. DocJames' and SandyGeorgia's interpretation and application of WP:MEDRS to these sources is exactly correct. These are primary sources that are approximately 20 years old in one case, and thirty in the other, that are apparently cited in no secondary reviews, and present what I take from the talk pages at the relevant articles to present very controversial claims. Because these studies (i) are primary sources (ii) are merely clinical studies with very small sample populations (iii) are not from within the last five years (iv) have not been the subject of reviews by reliable secondary sources, and (v) advance controversial claims where there are no other reliable secondary sources cited to support the proposition advanced by the primary source at issue, they cannot be used as a source in Wikipedia in an article on medical topics. WP:MEDRS is explicit about that. This identical argument about peer-reviewed primary sources has been made about many other studies at Project Medicine time and time again, and the consensus is consistent in every instance that they cannot be used as proposed here. Fladrif (talk) 15:04, 28 December 2010 (UTC)
Questions: are there other, more recent, primary research studies that replicate and cite these studies? Are there other, more recent, primary research studies that dispute and cite these studies? I haven't looked myself, but I'd encourage BoP to do so. My guess from what I see here is that the answer to my first question will be no, and the second may be either yes or no. If that's the case, it would tend to validate what Doc and Sandy have been saying. --Tryptofish (talk) 16:15, 28 December 2010 (UTC)
Correct. The burden is on the editor wanting to add text to source it, and BoP needs to do more work to uncover secondary sources if he believes this text can be sourced. The rest of the experienced and qualified medical editors, however, disagree with the text he wants to add, not only because it isn't well sourced, but because it also contains some basic misunderstandings of medical concepts by BoP. SandyGeorgia (Talk) 18:14, 28 December 2010 (UTC)
Thanks, but maybe not so correct, as to the specifics. Please see: [12]. --Tryptofish (talk) 21:20, 28 December 2010 (UTC)
Still correct; at long last, BoP turned his efforts to locating a secondary source, which will do once he adjusts the text to agree with the source. Could we consider this done now? The *first* order of business should have been to locate secondary sources, rather than taking half a dozen editor's time over five days. SandyGeorgia (Talk) 21:27, 28 December 2010 (UTC)
How dare you say I'm still correct? (kidding) --Tryptofish (talk) 21:32, 28 December 2010 (UTC)
  • EEG and CT are old technologies and there is little to no research being done with them on schizophrenic brains. It is not surprising or shocking that there is nothing more recent. The article I am improving goes into depth about all avenues of imaging, including old ones. If the imaging technique is old and there is no more research in that area then why the objection on using an old (but still completely valid and reliable) source.? Basket of Puppies 17:28, 28 December 2010 (UTC)
To the extent that MEDRS is imposing "considerably more stringent" requirements than our official policies that enjoy widespread consensus, MEDRS is wrong and should be updated accordingly. MEDRS was developed off in a corner by a few editors. It doesn't override community wide consensus. Gigs (talk) 18:05, 28 December 2010 (UTC)
Sorry, but your statement that it was developed "off in a corner by a few editors" is blantantly wrong. The statement that it is "considerable more stringent" than WP:V is also wrong; it elucidates WP:V for bio/med articles without deviating from it, has long enjoyed consensus, and has received broad input from many different editors over a long period of time. @BoP, if the findings were important, they would be mentioned in secondary reviews regardless of how old they are. What you are writing amounts to original research, promoting pet theories (that schizophrenia is neurological); considering the number of experienced and qualified editors who have disagreed with you, and your edit warring to insert this text against consensus, I suggest a review of WP:TEND. SandyGeorgia (Talk) 18:10, 28 December 2010 (UTC)
MEDRS is clearly outdated and needs an urgent update and review by the community. SG, when I cite a primary source I *only* state what the source states. I add in no commentary, analysis or original thought. Since you have charged me with adding original research then I ask you to prove it. Otherwise stop levying false accusations. Basket of Puppies 18:14, 28 December 2010 (UTC)
Sandy, while we may disagree about the level of consensus that MEDRS represents, I think we are on the same page regarding the application of MEDRS. It's a guideline in the truest sense, providing guidance, not requirements. I make no comment on the actual disputed content. Gigs (talk) 18:18, 28 December 2010 (UTC)
No problem-- I just didn't want (what I believe to be) incorrect info to be unchallenged here; there are few guidelines that get/got as much external feedback and review as MEDMOS and MEDRS (MILHIST is the only other one I'm aware of). SandyGeorgia (Talk) 18:27, 28 December 2010 (UTC)
Just to remove any uncertainty here: WP:MEDRS is part of WP:RS (see WP:RS#Medical claim where it is made clear that RS is the parent page by the use of the {{main}} template). It enjoys the same level of community-wide consensus as any other part of that guideline. BoP needs to be aware that repeatedly editing medical claims contrary to that consensus - after being informed of it by numerous other editors - may be considered to constitute disruptive editing. --RexxS (talk) 18:51, 28 December 2010 (UTC)
I came here to ascertain consensus for these peer-reviewed published articles and to determine the appropriateness of using these articles. I find it confusing to be warned of editing against consensus when I am the one who opened the discussion. Basket of Puppies 18:53, 28 December 2010 (UTC)
Forum shopping will not lower the perception of disuptive, tendentious editing: [13] SandyGeorgia (Talk) 19:53, 28 December 2010 (UTC)
SG, enough with the accusations. Please. You accused me of OR, refused to explain, so I went to the OR Noticeboard to seek advice. I alerted you of this on your talk page. What is wrong about it? Basket of Puppies 20:18, 28 December 2010 (UTC)
MEDRS is no more and no less stringent that our policies. However, getting medical facts right is rather more important than getting the latest Simpsons episode right so we care a little more and editors tend to be more passionate and more polarised. Primary research papers can be reliable, but for remarkably little useful information that we might want to include in our articles. Although some of the limitations on the use of such papers concern the application of WP:V (such as whether the news media are reliable for medical facts), most involve WP:WEIGHT and WP:NOR. For example, it is simply impossible to determine the weight of an experimental study (i.e. whether to mention it or not, and how much) without a secondary source. And typically, our emphasis should be on facts rather than the studies that found the facts. One can write "A study found that..." about just about anything. Wrt forum shopping, over at WP:NORN, BoP has given a classic example of original research when using a primary research paper as a source. BoP, I suggest you start listening to what people are saying rather than continue to waste their time. Colin°Talk 16:14, 29 December 2010 (UTC)
I agree with Gigs that reliability is always contextual. The most relevant piece of context here is that a bunch of newer secondary sources exist, and should be strongly preferred to 18- and 28-year-old original experiments (and this is per WP:DUE, and would be true even if we were talking about a non-medical topic. We similarly prefer recent books by historians to a three-decade-old "breaking news" stories). WhatamIdoing (talk) 01:59, 29 December 2010 (UTC)

I agree with all who say that primary sources are not adequate in this case, even if used with care. Reliability is not a question of yes or no, but a continuum, and from my point of view primary sources are the less reliable of the "reliable" sources. Moreover, they give undue weight to individual results, which may or may not be important, but which we are not the ones to judge: secondary sources are. There are over 90000 articles in pubmed on schizophrenia and over 11000 reviews. If a fact is not backed up by a secondary source it is simply not worth citing in a general article on the disease.--Garrondo (talk) 15:03, 31 December 2010 (UTC)

Middle East Quarterly as a reliable source for allegations of links to terrorism in the Tabligh Jamaat

Hello,

I am looking for third opinions in regard to this subject, in connection with this AfD.

The discussion on the AfD covers several issues, one of which is the quality and reliability of the Middle East Quarterly, along with the quality of its fact-checking and peer review process.

Is the Middle East Quarterly a reliable source to introduce material into this article? It seems it may contain more serious allegations against Tabligh Jamaat than the mainstream press or university presses.

I found this discussion in the archive. Further information, opinions and suggestions are appreciated.

Thanks Aquib (talk) 02:12, 29 December 2010 (UTC)

MEQ's website says that it was not peer reviewed until 2009, so the article in question was not peer reviewed. The article in question appears to be an opinion piece rather than a scholarly or news article. MEQ's publisher, "Middle East Forum" is a tiny thinktank, characterized by the Guardian as the "strident voice" of the larger Washington Institute, and the MEQ is self-described as "controversial".[14] It does not appear to be widely cited by mainstream news or scholarly publications. I'd be inclined to say that this is not a reliable source for the purpose for which it is proposed. Fladrif (talk) 03:21, 29 December 2010 (UTC)
Thanks for your response, your feedback on the below additional question is also most welcome Aquib (talk) 14:33, 29 December 2010 (UTC)

May I also ask who monitors these claims of "fact checking" and "peer review"? I found this statement on the Middle East Forum website, but it doesn't go into specifics as to who willl review the publication or how. How does a publication become "peer reviewed", what is the accepted criteria for an organization to pass when it claims it is "fact checking"? Is there an organization that oversees or publishes standards for these activities? Aquib (talk) 14:33, 29 December 2010 (UTC)

Short answer is "nobody". Every publication has its own standards of fact checking and peer review. No-one oversees or endorses the particular fact checking or peer review done by any individual publication; peer-review and editorial oversight are instances of self-regulation. See the Peer review article for an overview. Similarly, the level of editorial oversight or fact-checking that a publication may undertake can and does vary widely. Mainstream news organizations typically follow Journalism_ethics_and_standards. Because we cannot know in many cases what level of editorial oversight a particular publication may have, Wikipedia:RS#Scholarship cautions that publications promoting a particular POV should be viewed with caution. Such publications are not necessarily RS, notwithstanding that they claim to have peer review or editorial oversight. WP:RS prompts us to ask whether the source has widespread acceptance in the scholarly community, as measured by citation indexes. Where, as in this case, the particular publication appears not to be widely cited by either mainstream news or in scholarly publications, we can conclude that this lack of wider acceptance means that it is not a reliable source. Fladrif (talk) 15:08, 29 December 2010 (UTC)
If there are reasons to doubt a source's claims of fact checking we can look at how other sources treat this source.--Andrew Lancaster (talk) 17:25, 29 December 2010 (UTC)
MEQ is a journal available at several universities and academic institutions in Germany: BAW <180> Mannheim UB, BAW <21> Tübingen UB,BAW <208> Heidelberg MPI Völkerrecht, BER <188/211> Berlin UBFU Sozialwiss. Bibl., BER <H 223> Berlin Orient-Inst., HAM <18> Hamburg SUB, HAM <H 371> Hamburg GIGA FB Nahost, HES <30> Frankfurt/M UB, SAA <3/1> Halle/S ZwB Vord. Orient. So, it'd be fair and reasonable to use it in research and academic papers. छातीऀनाएल - chartinael (talk) 18:52, 29 December 2010 (UTC)
Being available in a university library does not confer RS status. I know of major university libraries with extensive comic book collections. It might indeed be reasonable to use MEQ in research and academic papers, but it is rarely so used. The paucity of citation to it in scholarly publications means per WP:RS a lack of widespread acceptance, which is the prerequisite to being considered as a reliable source for Wikipedia. It is also appears not to be cited at all in mainstream news sources, compounding the concern about a lack of acceptance and reliablity. Fladrif (talk) 19:13, 29 December 2010 (UTC)
Surely it does not confer RS status but it is indicative. Journals not available in Ulibs are much less likely to appear in academic papers than those that are available. http://scholar.google.de/scholar?hl=de&q=Middle+East+Quarterly&btnG=Suche&lr=&as_ylo=&as_vis=0 spits out a bunch of citations for articles by the MEQ in academic publications amongst other Wiley, JSTOR, Sage, Routledge, MacMillan and Princeton University Press. So, how exactly do you get your "rarely so used" from? छातीऀनाएल - chartinael (talk) 10:48, 31 December 2010 (UTC)
The editors are clearly trying to get this journal into standard academic journal format, by introducing the peer reviewing procedure. I can't see why they haven't gone in with one of the regular publishers, because that would get it stocked in a much larger number of university libraries. It's not clear from the contents of the current edition which articles are to be regarded as refereed research papers, and which are opinion pieces. An academic publisher would insist on that being clear. In a year or so they may have cleared all that up, and we can look again at the status. But the important thing here is that the article under consideration wasn't published under peer review, so we can't regard it as an academic source. Itsmejudith (talk) 12:38, 31 December 2010 (UTC)

Sourcing of episode summaries on ICarly (season four)

A large numer of IP editors are sourcing episode summaries at ICarly (season four) to Facebook and Twitter proclamations supposedly made by the people involve din the shows. It was my understanding that neither of those is a reliable source, and in fact, others feel the same way, since the sourcing has been reverted multiple times and the article protected briefly because of the unverified sourcing. Are Facebook and Twitter reliable sources for such things, when the shows haven't aired yet? Corvus cornixtalk 21:47, 29 December 2010 (UTC)

No Facebook and Twitter are not reliable sources; they would fall under the Questionable sources as they have no fact checking and are personal opinion. WP:NOTRELIABLE I mean really anyone can sign up to either site and claim to be whoever they want. Blackash have a chat 09:18, 30 December 2010 (UTC)
If the Twitter and Facebook accounts are legitimate, then they are reliable as primary sources. That said, articles should be based primarily on secondary sources. IOW, they can be used, but should be the exception, not the rule. One can quibble over whether an episode summary involves claims about a third-party. A Quest For Knowledge (talk) 12:27, 30 December 2010 (UTC)
Now I know that the accounts from the cast a real and from the real person. As I saw on the main icarly episode page that it could be used as a refference. Also we are using Dans blog as well and it is from him. once the episode does air we do put of proper reference up it just a support reference, since we really can't use show fax. 99.19.14.106 (talk) 13:07, 30 December 2010 (UTC)
At best, Facebook and Twitter can be used to say "Disney creation x says y". Tweets are essentially never usable because of context problems: by the time you've put enough tweets together to make a coherent statement, you've committed WP:OR by the very fact that you had to synthesise information from multiple tweets.—Kww(talk) 13:51, 30 December 2010 (UTC)
Actually, the best primary source for episode summaries is the show itself. We must stick to a purely descriptive account (no interpretation or analysis) to avoid OR, but you can cite the show itself for plot summaries. Blueboar (talk) 14:38, 30 December 2010 (UTC)
Good point. We're allowed to cite the show itself (as a primary source). But according to our article, season 4 is currently airing and won't end until 2011, so some of these episodes might not have aired yet. A Quest For Knowledge (talk) 15:06, 30 December 2010 (UTC)

Viktoria Vierheller, "Polen und die Deutschland Frage 1939-1945", Köln 1970

It's not sure if the title is correct, see http://books.google.pl/books?id=LFioWTr-bJwC&pg=PA385&lpg=PA385&dq=Viktoria+Vierheller&source=bl&ots=LjLbdh65qL&sig=w0RLf-nyunxgeIDykmm8uXyV_I8&hl=pl&ei=-FccTYfjN4eVOrvY8ZUJ&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=1&ved=0CBYQ6AEwAA#v=onepage&q=Viktoria%20Vierheller&f=false Can a book with an umknown title be a "source"?Xx236 (talk) 10:05, 30 December 2010 (UTC) I have checked http://catalogue.nla.gov.au/Record/1506209 . Has the editor seen the book, if he/she misquotes the title? Xx236 (talk) 10:14, 30 December 2010 (UTC)

It's in the British Library. Vierheller, Viktoria. Polen und die Deutschland-Frage 1939-1949. Series: Bundesinstitut für Ostwissenschaftliche und Internationale Studien (Germany). Abhandlungen ; Bd. 23. Abhandlungen des Bundesinstituts für Ostwissenschaftliche und Internationale Studien, Bd. 23 Published: Köln, Verlag Wissenschaft und Politik, [c1970] ISBN 3804684254 ISBN 9783804684256. And it appears to be scholarly. You can ask the editor whether s/he has had direct access to the book. Itsmejudith (talk) 10:39, 30 December 2010 (UTC)

Local sources of names

HI, before I get into an edit war. Mr Write has repeatedly removed sources that seem to be unreliable, but in context are not. http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Prizren&curid=283938&diff=404974803&oldid=404870552

I am also concerned about wikipedia and using good sources. But when It comes to local names of things in kosovo, there are not many books on the matter, many times we need to use forums and photo galleries.

That is what I have done here, included local names extracted from local picture galleries and fourm posts. THere is nothing disputed about the names, just what people call them. there are also pictures of the place in question that I am working on adding in as fair use historical pictures. I just find that for albanian language speakers in kosovo, you need to be able to use some forums.

One source that I would like to use, but have not included yet is this author on numerous books, Çerkin Bytyqi from prizren. I describe his article here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talk:Prizren#Article_about_the_acient_handicrafts_in_village_near_prizren

Another are the descriptions of the photos as removed from mr white.

please advise on how to continue, we need to be able to at least collect local names of things from such sources and for that purpose they are reliable enough. We dont need to present disputed facts from forums, but this article about this history of the village near prizren looks pretty good.

thanks, mike James Michael DuPont (talk) 11:19, 30 December 2010 (UTC)

Forums and picturec from Flickr cannot be used as reliable sources. You can place link below, but that cannot be source. We alredy explain you that. Also, you should follow WP:LAY, that is important for normal articles. --WhiteWriter speaks 12:58, 30 December 2010 (UTC)
Mr White. I am not talking about anything that is disputed, just names of places. For those purposes, names people give them should be fine. also layout is is not the question here, so please dont go of topic. thanks James Michael DuPont (talk) 16:18, 31 December 2010 (UTC)
A number of years a go some local wags decided to paint over a road sign and change it from Wickford to Dickford. If this had appeard as a picture on a forum or Soozetube or oterh user edited sites it would not have made it a real name of Wickford. If its a real name in general ue you should be able to find genuine RS for the name, if you can't its not notable.Slatersteven (talk) 16:22, 31 December 2010 (UTC)

Contention that what an organization says can't be included in WP despite being reported in a reliable source

Resolved: Yes, the Washington Post is a generally reliable source and specifically reliable in this instance. Questions of weight should be discussed on article talk pages or at WP:NPOVN

An editor over at Talk:Southern Poverty Law Center has contended that comments by the Family Research Council (a prominent public policy organization), reported in The Washington Post, can't be included in the article about the SPLC because the FRC is itself not a reliable source--that including the remarks as printed in the WaPo is a backdoor to getting in an unreliable source. Is there any basis in WP policy for this view? The WaPo article in question is here. Drrll (talk) 17:51, 30 December 2010 (UTC)

Note: current talkpage thread here.
Reliable sources often publish statements made by utterly unreliable ones. If the Washington Post quotes some extremist saying that Barack Obama is a worshipper of Satan, that does not magically make the statement that Obama is a Satanist "reliably sourced". Yes, this is a common trick for getting statements from non-reliable sources into articles. Having said that, the FRC's views may be notable, and a report in the mainstream press goes some way to indicating notability. What the report in the reliable press implies is that the quotation is accurately sourced to its authors. Whether or not it should be included depends on its notability and relevance. Paul B (talk) 18:01, 30 December 2010 (UTC)
The Washington Post is a reliable source for a statement of the form "FRC said XYZ about SPLC". Whether that statement is appropriate for the article is of course a different question. Kenilworth Terrace (talk) 18:10, 30 December 2010 (UTC)
(EC)It depends on how it's used. To use your Paul B's example, you can't say, "Person A is a worshipper of Satan" but you can say "Person B says that Person A is a worshipper of Satan." So, can you please tell us the exact statement you want to include in the article? A Quest For Knowledge (talk) 18:12, 30 December 2010 (UTC)
This is not about the reliability of the Washington Post. The issue is whether the Family Research Center has standing as a reliable source in order to justify its criticisms of the SPLC in the SPLC article.
A few more facts are in order. The Family Research Council has been labeled as a hate group by the SPLC. It promotes non-scientific and bigoted analysis of homosexuality (see [15]), has boycotted CPAC because it allowed a conservative gay group (GOProud) to participate (see [16]), and has even gone so far as to lobby against a Senate resolution condemning Uganda issuing the death penalty for homosexuality (see [17]).
Drrl wants to include this language in the SPLC article and attribute it to the FRC and a comparable group.:
"The left's smear campaign of conservatives is . . . being driven by the clear evidence that the American public is losing patience with their radical policy agenda as seen in the recent election and in the fact that every state . . . that has had the opportunity to defend the natural definition of marriage has done so" by Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council, and "The whole idea that somehow those folks who stand up for traditional marriage, like the Family Research Council, are hateful is wrong. [The law center is] trying to marginalize and intimidate folks for standing up for marriage and also trying to equate them somehow to the KKK" by Brian Brown of the National Organization for Marriage."
The language in question comes from a paid advertisement that appeared in another newspaper. At the present time, there is no mention at all of the FRC in the SPLC article and this is also an issue of undue weight. Why should the SPLC article give considerable attention to one hate group out of the 900 plus other hate groups? Tom (North Shoreman) (talk) 18:21, 30 December 2010 (UTC)
From the FRC web site:

Homosexuals experience considerably higher levels of mental illness and substance abuse than heterosexuals. A detailed review of the research has shown that “no other group of comparable size in society experiences such intense and widespread pathology."

http://downloads.frc.org/EF/EF10F01.pdf
Its worth it for anyone involved abstractly in this debate to spend some time browsing their website. I have no problem characterizing them as a hate group, in that they are not simply saying that marriage should be reserved to heterosexuals (which I also find a questionable position ethically); they are saying homosexuality is bad, wrong and dangerous.
That said, to satisfy WP:NPOV, I would add a sentence to the section on the listing saying something like "Some of the groups on the list have denied being hate groups and have criticized a perceived left or liberal agenda of the SPLC" referencing the Washington Post article and any other WP:RS sources. These sources in that context are being referenced only for the fact of the FRC's response, not for the truth of FRC counter-claims. Jonathanwallace (talk) 18:23, 30 December 2010 (UTC)
The Family Research Center is an advocacy group and it not reliable for anything but its own opinions. But that's not the issue here. The Washington Post article is considered reliable for Wikipedia's purposes. The issue of WP:WEIGHT is beyond the scope of this noticeboard, but in my opinion, the article text that Tom mentions seems unduely lengthy. Jonathanwallace's suggested text seems reasonable. But WP:NPOVN is the correct venue to discuss WP:NPOV. A Quest For Knowledge (talk) 18:56, 30 December 2010 (UTC)
The danger is always that that this technique allows the arguments of non-RS to be included in articles. We should not be presenting such views as legitimate counter-arguments because they happen to be quoted by newspapers. I think that is relevant to this board. Just adding that "X says..." does not alter the fact that non-reliable statements are being included. It's legitimate to do so if they are relevant, but too much information on a fringe position easily slips into argumentation for that position. To return to the Satanism example, "x says Obama is a Satanist because [long list of reasons footnoted to the Washingtion Post]" becomes a back-door way of using an unreliable source. Paul B (talk) 19:10, 30 December 2010 (UTC)
One may rely upon the WP as a reliable source for having reported that "X said Y about Z". It is not reliable for the truth of "Y", because it is not vouching for the reliability of "X". All it is reporting is what X said. That the WP reported it may be one indicia of the notability of X having said that, though by no means is it dispositive of that issue. Whether or not that report in the WP should or should not be used in an article is an editorial decision to be arrived at by consensus at the relevant article talk page, and the answer is likely to depend on context. Using PB's example above, I would expect that on the Barak Obama BLP, one would not use that source to add to the article "the WP reported that nutball X says Obama worships Satan". If there is a Wikipedia article on nutball X, on the other hand, I could well see editors coming to the consensus that that article include that statement. It may not be notable for purposes of an article on Z what X thinks about Z; while it is notable in an article on X what X thinks about Z and a whole host of other subjects. Different conclusions about the use of the same source in two different articles. But, not really a RS issue. Fladrif (talk) 19:12, 30 December 2010 (UTC)
"The danger is always that that this technique allows the arguments of non-RS to be included in articles." Actually, our NPOV policy demands that the arguments (or views) of non-RS be included in articles... if those arguments are important enough to mention in the context of the article (see WP:UNDUE). The key is to accurately present such material by attributing it to the person who says it... and not to present it as unquestioned fact. If we read in the New York Times that Rush Limbaugh said Obama is a Satanist... we can not say "Obama is a Satanist <cite the NY Times>"... nor can we even say "Obama is a Satanist <cite Limbaugh>"... but we can say: "Rush Limbaugh is of the opinion that 'Obama is a Satanist' <cite New York Times>" or better yet: "According to the New York Times, Rush Limbaugh stated that 'Obama is a Satanist' <cite NY Times>". That is a factual statement based upon a reliable source. Now, we can argue about whether Limbaugh's opinion of Obama is worth mentioning in the context of a specific article (probably not in the Barak Obama article... but probably so in Rush Limbaugh article)... but that is not a reliability issue, and so should not be argued here. Blueboar (talk) 19:46, 30 December 2010 (UTC)
You seem to have misread my comment. I stated that "It's legitimate to do so [include non-mainstream views] if they are relevant, but too much information on a fringe position easily slips into argumentation for that position." NPOV does not "demand" that any and all arguments be included. As you say, and as I and others said earlier, it is a question of undue weight. We should not be using a reliable source as a means to be giving legitimacy to counter-arguments to mainstream positions from non-mainstream ones. Paul B (talk) 20:00, 30 December 2010 (UTC)
Maybe, but that is not a question for this board. Kenilworth Terrace (talk) 20:11, 30 December 2010 (UTC)

{pls excuse unindenting) North Shoreman wrote: "The issue is whether the Family Research Center has standing as a reliable source in order to justify its criticisms of the SPLC in the SPLC article." I am very concerned by this argument. FRC is not a reliable source on most topics, such as the science of homosexuality or what the constitution says about separation of church and state, but certainly it is a reliable source for its own opinion. I don't like any outcome under WP:NPOV which says, "X may say whatever it likes about Y, but Y is not a reliable source to answer X's assertions." I personally sympathize with SPLC and detest FRC, but I think fundamental fairness and NPOV dictate that we dedicate at least one reliably sourced sentence to this issue. I also don't buy the argument, "Why let FRC respond, when there are 900 other accusees?" This suggests that if an organization lists enough people in a release of this type, we won't let any answer. Which feels unfair. The best way to deal (and avoid a daughter article or any WP:WEIGHT problems) is what I proposed above: a sentence which says some organizations disputed the designation; then add appropriate references. Jonathanwallace (talk) 22:22, 30 December 2010 (UTC)

You say, ""X may say whatever it likes about Y, but Y is not a reliable source to answer X's assertions." The problem with this is the article, as it exists, does not even mention the FRC. This is not a fairness issue where only X is represented -- X isn't represented and the reader must go outside wikipedia to find who is on the list. There is a debate now on whether such a list should be created on wikipedia. The FRC would fall under this description from the article "90 general hate groups subdivided into anti-gay, anti-immigrant, Holocaust denial, racist music, radical traditionalist Catholic groups, and other groups espousing a variety of hateful doctrines."
You say, "This suggests that if an organization lists enough people in a release of this type, we won't let any answer." I would reply that the appropriate response would come from an academic or governmental sources that has addressed the SPLC and found problems with the list. The fact is that while we can find such sources that support the SPLC, nobody has come up with any that challenge the list.
I agree with your proposed solution -- in fact such content was in the article until recently. I believe the rationale was that it was stating the obvious -- nobody agrees that their group belongs on the list. Tom (North Shoreman) (talk) 23:13, 30 December 2010 (UTC)
Yes, and as far I as I can tell from reviewing the SPLC article edit history, until recently the two groups mentioned there specifically (FRC and CofCC) were added after that general statement grew. Which in turn prompted other editors to object to singling out those two groups, recently (in a previous thread). The cyclical arguments continue at the talk page, with much interpretation of various policies as indicated above. I've added a note to the current thread about the previous thread's apparent consensus. -PrBeacon (talk) 00:46, 31 December 2010 (UTC)
  • Advertisements are never acceptable as reliable sources, the venue in which the ad is published is irrelevant. Dlabtot (talk) 01:58, 31 December 2010 (UTC)
Actually, the quotes above are from a Washington Post news story and don't originate from an ad. Drrll (talk) 02:08, 31 December 2010 (UTC)
Could you please provide the url? I've spent the last hour or so reviewing this discussion and that at the talk page and somehow I missed it. The majority of the discussion appears to consist of assertions about other editors and their arguments, as far as I can tell Dlabtot (talk) 02:24, 31 December 2010 (UTC)
Here. Drrll (talk) 02:32, 31 December 2010 (UTC)
The quotes mentioned in North's post[18] are found in this Washington Post article.[19] A Quest For Knowledge (talk) 02:33, 31 December 2010 (UTC)
I stand corrected. The following is the text that was directly from the ad and was also among the material that Drrl proposed to add:
"The surest sign one is losing a debate is to resort to character assassination. The Southern Poverty Law Center, a liberal fundraising machine whose tactics have been condemned by observers across the political spectrum, is doing just that...We, the undersigned, stand in solidarity with Family Research Council, American Family Association, Concerned Women of America, National Organization for Marriage, Liberty Counsel and other pro-family organizations that are working to protect and promote natural marriage and family. We support the vigorous but responsible exercise of the First Amendment rights of free speech and religious liberty that are the birthright of all Americans." Tom (North Shoreman) (talk) 02:51, 31 December 2010 (UTC)
Obviously the Washington Post and that article are reliable sources for this material. Whether it should be included in the article is an entirely separate question. This should never have been posted on RSN. If an editor makes a spurious, obviously tendentious argument about sourcing, please take it to WP:ANI, not here. If you must bring it here, please follow the instructions at the top of this page for asking a question. Dlabtot (talk) 02:47, 31 December 2010 (UTC)

Resp to the above thread:

  • "If the Washington Post quotes some extremist saying that Barack Obama is a worshipper of Satan, that does not magically make the statement that Obama is a Satanist "reliably sourced" True, but it does give the viewpoint coverage in an RS, which makes it more prominent for WP.
  • Since RS as defined by WP would say that the FRC is not a reliable source, that essentially solves the puzzle right there: FRC is not an RS. However, quoting or mentioning the FRC in the SPLC article might be appropriate, if 1) the FRC is more prominent than the other groups and 2) if its opinion is representative of other groups, so that quoting it would give a general overview of what these groups say.
  • The quote above is unduely long, per User:A Quest For Knowledge.
  • Relative to the issue of how much weight to give fringe groups, we should consider the entire universe of RS coverage on the SPLC, and give fringe groups opinions about that much weight. Which I think basically means we give some coverage to fringe group opinion in the article.
  • If we were to mention the FRC in the SPLC article, we would have to mention the response from the FRC. BECritical__Talk 03:00, 31 December 2010 (UTC)

Tabloid Newspapers

Are tabloid newspapers Reliable Sources? Can an article from The Sun or Sunday Sport be used for References? Seeker of the Torch (talk) 20:10, 30 December 2010 (UTC)

I think the answer will depend on the article being edited and the particular assertion being sourced to the paper. Jonathanwallace (talk) 22:25, 30 December 2010 (UTC)
(ec)The meaning of "tabloid" in the US is not defined by newspaper format, but by its nature as a reporter of hard news, as opposed to sensational articles about celebrities, UFOs and the like. So while the National Enquirer and other "supermarket tabloids" are not generally RS for WP purposes, the NY Daily News is generally accepted. "Reliable" does not mean "infallible" by the way - it means that some editorial control is exercised over what goes in print. Collect (talk) 22:29, 30 December 2010 (UTC)
Tell us what article and what information you want to source. I can't think of any circumstances when we would want to use the Sunday Sport. The Sun is acceptable for a few things, for example for film reviews. Itsmejudith (talk) 23:03, 30 December 2010 (UTC)

The content in question is a review of a television episode. The article in The Sun states that three wrestlers were discussing an old match. It is one of three sources being used to support the assertion (the other two being the episode itself and a summary of the episode from the wrestling company). GaryColemanFan (talk) 01:36, 31 December 2010 (UTC)

I should think that The Sun is a reliable source to report what happened in an episode of a TV show on wrestling. If it was reporting about what transpired on Meet the Press I might have a different opinion. Fladrif (talk) 02:29, 31 December 2010 (UTC)

The specific link is

[20]

The editor wishes to use this as a Reliable Source to show that the "Fingerpoke of Doom" is a pivotal moment that led to the downfall of WCW, and is therefore worthy of its own Wikipedia Article. Seeker of the Torch (talk) 08:39, 31 December 2010 (UTC)

No, I wish to use it as a reliable source to confirm that three wrestlers were watching footage of an old match and discussing it. The Sun is one of three sources being used to source the sentence "On the August 31, 2009, episode of Raw, Dusty Rhodes, Shawn Michaels, and Triple H were shown waching and discussing footage of the Hogan-Nash match backstage." The relevant sentence in The Sun is: "Dusty meanwhile, filled some time joshing with DX [Shawn Michaels and Triple H] and reminisced about the "Fingerpoke of Doom". GaryColemanFan (talk) 15:06, 31 December 2010 (UTC)

Nonetheless, the question of the Reliability of The Sun remains. Likewise, this editor has cited as a Reliable Source a wwe.com article at [21]. I am not questioning the Reliability of wwe.com (although one could state that there is a Wikipedia:PRIMARY problem involved). No, my issue was that the Source makes no mention whatsoever of any "Fingerpoke of Doom" nor anything of the sort. It is merely a(n inhouse) recap of an edition of WWE RAW. I thus removed it from the Article, only to be threatened with blocking for Level 4 vandalism(and accused of "blindly following a vendetta").

However, I now question both the Reliability of The Sun article above, as well as using the wwe.com Link as a Source, when it makes no mention whatsoever of anything in the Article? Seeker of the Torch (talk) 18:45, 31 December 2010 (UTC)


National government websites

In Global Peace Festival the official government news agency of the Philippines was tagged as an unreliable source and the official radio station of the government of Taiwan was tagged as a primary source for its coverage of a speech given by the president of Taiwan. This seems a little unreasonable to me, especially since the information cited was not especially questionable. Wolfview (talk) 09:57, 31 December 2010 (UTC)

Both are mainstream news sources. Itsmejudith (talk) 12:03, 31 December 2010 (UTC)
Which doesn't make them inherently reliable, or accurate. But neither reliability nor accuracy are considerations for Wikipedia, are they...
ALR (talk) 12:14, 31 December 2010 (UTC)
Seems to me the web site of a radio station is a secondary source, just like the web site of a newspaper. Anyway, a government radio station should be acceptable for its reporting of the remarks made by the country's president. In a brief Google search, I couldn't find a better source for this information, which, as you point out, is not controversial. Jonathanwallace (talk) 12:21, 31 December 2010 (UTC)
Radio Taiwan International is "a government-owned station" so hardly a WP:SECONDARY source for the comments of "the president of Taiwan". The PIA piece is (i) explicitly a "press release" & (ii) an exaggerated puff-piece, claiming that the song in question "has become popular worldwide." HrafnTalkStalk(P) 06:30, 1 January 2011 (UTC)

Why was this deleted when there is clearly a source?

A section was deleted from this page when it obviously says "Source: TNMS Media Korea, a Kantar Group company"?? Not sure whats goin on there. 200.149.233.2 (talk) 17:57, 31 December 2010 (UTC)

Sadly I could not see any raqtings listing on the page. Perhaps if you could provide the correct page and/or a translation.Slatersteven (talk) 18:02, 31 December 2010 (UTC)
Yes, providing a source is not always enough, 200.149.233.2. It also needs to be clear that the source actually contains the information you wish to see included in the article. --FormerIP (talk) 18:10, 31 December 2010 (UTC)
TNS Media Korea is a South Korean network, so information is only provided in Korean language. I don't know of any other sites that gives out these ratings for Korean channels. But TNS Media is noted in news artcles 1, 2 and 3. From the looks of it, that section provides 2 sources, TNS Media and Kantar Group. HanJey (talk) 18:16, 31 December 2010 (UTC)
As I have said can we have a translation them?Slatersteven (talk) 18:51, 31 December 2010 (UTC)
The section deleted was in English. HanJey (talk) 18:54, 31 December 2010 (UTC)
OK I shall be a little more clear. The sources is in Korean as such it is not possible to verfiy that is says what is cliamed without a translation of the source being provided.Slatersteven (talk) 18:57, 31 December 2010 (UTC)
Also, the cite given was simply the homepage of TNmS, which does not appear to contain any information relating to You're Beautiful. --FormerIP (talk) 19:02, 31 December 2010 (UTC)
References should be to the precise web page on which the info is to be found, not to the home pages of organisations. Sources in Korean are acceptable if there are no English sources with the same info. Itsmejudith (talk) 19:13, 31 December 2010 (UTC)

Unite Against Fascism and The Times et al

[22] defends removal of a short declarative sentence sourced to RS sources. The excuse appears to be that if The Times does not make the same claim in every article, that somehow it is not RS, and the Daily Mail is not RS in the first place. This edit does not comport with my recollection of the discussion here, and I would like this edit examined for being properly supported by RS sources: [23].. Thanks. Collect (talk) 18:07, 23 December 2010 (UTC)

Actually the point is that while the debate on RS and NPOV on this issue is still active here Editors should not be changing the article in the areas of contention. The RS and WEIGHT issues were previously discussed and transcluded to NPOV as per the diff above. Lets have the discussion in one place. --Snowded TALK 18:30, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
You assert, for example, that the Daily Mail is a "tabloid" and automagically not RS [24]. This is an RS issue, clearly, and the NPOV discussion is actually over. Perhaps you would like to stop over there for an opinion that the "The Mail is a tabloid not a broadsheet"? Thank you most kindly - the aim here is to get the opinions of others as to whether a "tabloid" is ipso fact not RS. Collect (talk) 18:34, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
OK then, opinion again on the Daily Mail. It's been discussed before. Worth looking at the archives, but from memory the consensus is that the Mail is mid-market, good for some things, not so good for others. Science reporting is the most notable area where it's problematic. For factual general news, should be OK; for an epithet that is essentially opinion, if that's what you're talking about, avoid. Itsmejudith (talk) 18:42, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
I tend to judge a newspaper by its content, rather than its size. As for whether the Daily Mail is RS, I'd say on any issue concerning politics, it is far from neutral, and generally it has a reputation for making crap up, so I'd never trust it as the sole source for anything of significance. AndyTheGrump (talk) 18:44, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
(ec)Actually Collect the RS resolution which was not altered by the subsequent NPOV discussion was implemented on the article, restoring the long standing stable version before you and others edit warred to impose a label which failed on WP:WEIGHT. That was immediately reverted by one of your side in this dispute. In consequence there is some more work to do there or on ANI to deal with the issue. This edit by you is a part of that resolution. --Snowded TALK 18:49, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
I have no "side" other than meeting the obligation of WP to present material from reliable sources in as neutral a manner as possible. AN/I has nothing to do with this, as far as I can tell. Collect (talk) 18:59, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
Inserting "left wing" without consensus and not respecting the RS view that the sources did not support the insertion per WP:WEIGHT. That sounds like something which is probably ANI sooner rather than later. --Snowded TALK 19:03, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
(ec)Andy: The word 'tabloid' has multiple definitions.[25] In the US, "tabloid" usually means the second definition, "featuring stories of violence, crime, or scandal presented in a sensational manner". A Quest For Knowledge (talk) 18:51, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
Fair enough. On that basis, the Mail is definitely a tabloid, see here. AndyTheGrump (talk) 18:53, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
IOW, you do not like the Daily Mail which, on WP, is not the way RS sources are determined. Collect (talk) 18:57, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
(ec)Yes, Quest, there is "tabloid" = small format, and "tabloid" = sensationalist. We all agree that the format of publication is irrelevant. The DM is sometimes sensationalist but not consistently. The editors have formulated their policies deliberately to frustrate WP editors who want clear-cut rules. Either that or to sell lots of copies. Itsmejudith (talk) 19:05, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
Collect, if you really want evidence that the Daily Mail isn't a reliable source, I'm sure it isn't difficult to find. Is there any particular field in which you'd like to see its unreliability demonstrated? AndyTheGrump (talk) 19:09, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
WP has WP:RS which governs. And by the standards of that, the DM is RS. RS is not determined by "I found something they printed which was wrong"-type argumentation -- in that case the NYT would never be usable. The criteria as set forth on WP:RS are all we are to examine. Collect (talk) 19:13, 23 December 2010 (UTC)

─────────────────────────In this case, where the text in dispute is along the lines of "UAF has been called a left-wing organization by X, Y and Z" and the Daily Mail is "Z", the Daily Mail is a reliable source for that purpose. It doesn't mean that UAF is a left-wing organization, it means that the Daily Mail and some other sources called it one. The argument that the Times used the term in one article but not others and thus the one article in which it did is not an RS or gives undue weight to that one article is frivolous. We just got done discussing that source here recently. This looks like a content dispute and an edit war rather than a legitimate RS issue. It doesn't even look like a legitimate NPOV or weight issue at this point. Fladrif (talk) 19:30, 23 December 2010 (UTC)

I think you're missing the point of the dispute, Fladrif. The issue is about whether these sources are good enough for us to label the organisation, without attribution, as "left-wing" in the first sentence of the lead. I don't think anyone would suggest that attributed discussion of the political leanings of the organisation is not appropriate in the body of the article. --FormerIP (talk) 19:34, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
No, I'm not missing the point, because the specific question posed above had nothing to do with the first sentence of the Lede nor with unattributed statements. It had to do with removing a sentence which is clearly attributed and sourced to RS, based on claims that the sources were not RS for the purposes for which they were being used. Those claims lack merit. As for how to write the lede, that is a matter for another board, and from my vantage point the fact that the interested editors are unable to resolve that question is looking like an edit war rather than collaborative editing. Fladrif (talk) 20:07, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
Collect, I see nothing whatever in WP:RS that can support a statement that 'X is RS' in the abstract. It is only of relevance in determining whether it is RS regarding a particular issue. Given the Daily Mail's long-standing right-wing political stance, I'd hardly take it as RS for unattributed assertions about the politics of UAF. What do other newspapers say? AndyTheGrump (talk) 19:37, 23 December 2010 (UTC)

For the billionth time, the political leanings of a source are completely irrelevant to the question of its reliability. Dlabtot (talk) 19:42, 23 December 2010 (UTC)

Since the statement that 'X is left-wing' can only ever be opinion, reliability doesn't even come into it. AndyTheGrump (talk) 19:46, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
There are in fact probably millions of statements of opinion in Wikipedia; like all content, our verifiability policy requires they be cited to reliable sources. Statements of opinion should be cited with attribution. The WP:Identifying reliable sources guideline quite correctly does not include political leanings or alleged bias among its criteria. Dlabtot (talk) 19:55, 23 December 2010 (UTC)

Regardless of whether the Mail is a tabloid, it isn't a RS; indeed, it has a reputation of making things up (ironic for the paper with the columnist who says that "you couldn't make it up"), especially for political purposes. This is an endemic problem among the "mid-market" papers that include, in essence, the Mail and the Express. Hell, both papers probably account for more PCC complaints than anything else. However, the Times is an RS for most intents and purposes; it has a reputation for being a good news source, and doesn't toe the Murdoch line as much as say, the Sun. It is right-leaning, though, so I'd personally not use it without due care (like I wouldn't use, say, the Guardian in an article about the EDL without due care). General rule of thumb: if it costs 50p or less, it's probably not reliable. The Evening Standard is a notable exception of this rule. Sceptre (talk) 19:58, 23 December 2010 (UTC)

it has a reputation of making things up -- Sceptre, could you point out some specific instances of DM 'making things up'? Dlabtot (talk) 20:09, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
Notably, nearly everything about the EU it reports are complete falsehoods; an example is this article about Cadbury being forced to remove their "Glass and a Half Full" slogan from their Dairy Milk bars by the EU (they did remove it, but for completely different reasons). That said, the fact that the Mail makes things up is a generally accepted truth in most of Britain. Sceptre (talk) 20:35, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
What part of the text of the Cadbury article are you saying is inaccurate? Or are you just disputing the headline. I would argue against citing the headlines from any newspaper. Dlabtot (talk) 21:04, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
The general tenor of the article is an anti-EU screed that the Mail is famous for. Indeed, as a Sun article mentioned on the same day, they removed the slogan as "the phrase didn't make sense" with the different sizes of bars Cadbury's uses. In addition, the European Commission released a letter sent to the Mail describing the story as (another) falsehood about the EU. Sceptre (talk) 01:06, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
Given that the BBC ran a story to the same effect the day before the Daily Mail ran the article cited above [26], as did a number of other reputable news organizations[27] before Cadburd "clarified" what is was doing or not doing, this would seem to be an ill-chosen example. The story isn't really "wrong", at all, it just has a bit of a Europhobic spin. Even the best news organizations get things wrong now and again. Not saying the Daily Mail is among the best news organizations. Just saying. Fladrif (talk) 01:22, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
The Daily Mail is a reliable source in that it generally reports accurate facts. If it reports Tommy Sheridan has been convicted of perjury we can believe that. If it reports Heathrow has been closed down due to snow we can believe that. It is a reliable source for reporting facts. If you were to check the Daily Mail, most its reported facts (as opposed to unqualified and ill-informed opinion pieces) would check out. Labelling something left-wing is an opinion, so it is really an issue of notability. I would say that comes down to the background of the person writing the piece. What is his education? What is his area of expertise? Is his judgment respected by other reliable sources? If the writer's credentials are established so that he is an authority on political ideology, then it is acceptable to source his views as a opinion through the Daily Mail. Betty Logan (talk) 20:27, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
The author is Jack Doyle, who is the main Home Affirs correspondent for the DM. Several hundred bylined articles. Apparently started as an "investigative journalist" but can't find his c.v. immediately. Clearly writes a lot on political topics though, as specialist on Home Affairs. Collect (talk) 20:59, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
I'd recommend the PCC website for evidence of the Daily Mail's 'reliability': a search for 'Daily Mail'. Here's a classic: (not for those with a weak stomach) AndyTheGrump (talk) 20:29, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
The Daily Mail might get some stuff it gets from the agencies right, but its quality of journalism otherwise is really bad. Sceptre (talk) 20:35, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
From that PPC site you get 492 hits for the Daily Mail compared to 316 for The Independent, 1400 for The Times, 159 for the Daily Telegraph and 184 for The Guardian. When you consider that the circulation for the Daily Mail is 2 million compared to 200,000 for the Indy, 500,000 for The Times, 700,000 for the Daily Telegraph, and 300,000 for The Guardian it doesn't seem to attract a disproportionate higher rate of complaints than the broadsheets. In fact, from those stats it's The Times we should be worried about. Betty Logan (talk) 20:42, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
Statistics should be treated with caution. If the Mail has a poor reputation, people may not feel they need to worry so much if it lies about them. As has been said above by someone else, the Mail has been discussed to death as a source. Community consensus appears to be that it is a reliable source for certain facts about news stories, but non for scientific reporting or for matters of opinions related to politics. That seems to me to obviously fair and there's no need to go round in circles over it. --FormerIP (talk) 21:03, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
The community consensus doesn't really seem to be founded on anything concrete though, just a casual disregard for the Daily Mail. In reality no newspaper should be used for something like scientific reporting, peer reviewed journals should really be used for that sort of thing. As for political opinion pieces, again this is entirely down to the notability of the author, not the newspaper. The Daily Mail is no less reliable for sourcing an opinion piece than say The Telegraph would be for the same piece by the same author. I don't see any evidence based arguments for regarding the Daily Mail differently to the broadsheets. I have no love for the Daily Mail but the reliable source criteria seems to be getting applied fairly arbitrarily here. Betty Logan (talk) 21:16, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
Actually, 'statistics' like those Betty Logan gives are best ignored entirely. The 1400 hits for 'the Times' on the PCC website include such newspapers as 'The Herne Bay Times', and quite likely every article that includes the words 'the' and 'times' too. There are clearly some false positives in the 'Daily Mail' search, but I'd suspect a lot less, from looking at the articles found (and I didn't cite numbers anyway). I'd also point out that not every complaint to the PCC is upheld. And yes, the Daily Mail is widely held in contempt, for being demonstrably biased and unreliable. AndyTheGrump (talk) 21:20, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
As opposed to the "Graudian"? Amazingly enough, folks seem to view "the other side" as intrinsically "unreliable" but WP policy is that is not a reason to call an RS source "unreliable." Really. Collect (talk) 21:22, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
Are you seriously suggesting that a demonstration that a source isn't reliable is irrelevant to its status as WP:RS? AndyTheGrump (talk) 21:26, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
So far, I have never found an infallible news source. Only if such exists would RS ever be construed to mean "infallible." What it means, moreover, is described in detail on WP:RS. And "infallible" is not one of the words used for RS. Collect (talk) 21:33, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
True enough. Here's some words that are used though. "Whether a specific news story is reliable for a specific fact or statement in a Wikipedia article is something that must be assessed on a case by case basis". Now can we assess whether the Daily Mail is reliable when it says that UAF is a left-wing organisation? AndyTheGrump (talk) 21:39, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
WP:NEWSORG states Mainstream news sources are generally considered to be reliable. However, even the most reputable news outlets occasionally contain errors, which is a criteria the Daily Mail satisfies. I would say the Daily Mail is a reliable source for someone saying the UAF is a left-wing organization. Whether their opinion is notable enough for inclusion in teh article depends on their authority on political ideology. Betty Logan (talk) 21:43, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
The writer has written several hundred articles on the broad area of "Home Affairs" which is certainly enough to establish reasonable journalistic dredentials. And since the sentense used the term "called", and the fact is that the DM did call them that, that is sufficient. The edit did not assert that the UAF is anything at all, just that a number of reliable sources have called them "left wing." Which is a fairly incontrovertible fact, I should say. Collect (talk) 21:50, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
I think the edit needs to be to be reworded slightly: it is the writers that call the UAF left-wing, not The Times or Daily Mail so it shouldn't be attributed to them directly, but I think those sources are fine for saying something along the lines "...the UAF have been described as a left-wing group in The Times, Daily Mail etc..." Betty Logan (talk) 22:23, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
I agree with that in general, but also I think it gives undue weight to one or two sources to have that in the first sentence of the article. --FormerIP (talk) 22:29, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
No I wouldn't agree to that per WP:UNDUE passing mentions is not enough to label this whole article as being about a left wing group. Mo ainm~Talk 22:34, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
I disagree with those sources being used to say it is a left-wing group. I'm not convinced the writers are qualified to make those judgments, so they should be kept out of the lede. The best place for them would be in discussing perceptions of the UAF, which do have a place in the article. They are commonly seen as left-wing, or at least having left-wing allegiances even if they have no actual political affiliation, and it is fair comment to document public perception of their political ideology. In that capacity it is ok to mention The Times, Daily Mail etc and other newspapers that describe them as left-wing, but it should be explicit that it is only a description, not a qualified assessment of their ideology. Betty Logan (talk) 22:39, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
Yes, that's perfectly correct. --FormerIP (talk) 03:05, 24 December 2010 (UTC)

───────────────────────── From where I'm standing, it's not a matter of political ideology. I find the Mirror to be just as unreliable as the Sun or the Star. As far as whether the Mail is a tabloid: the Mail, I believe, has always been a compact-size paper. From the driest sense, it is a tabloid. This is in contrast to the former broadsheets (Indy, Grauniad, Telegraph, Times, FT, all of which I'd be more inclined to use as sources for anything), which I find to have a better sense of writing. The Mail do have a tendency to be over-sensational too; other Britons will remember last Monday's front page, expressing outrage at the over-sexualisation of The X-Factor and then printing the pictures.

I should also point out that the Mail shouldn't be used as a source in this case, because if not through support then through tone, they do have a strange relationship to the far-right. Infamously, they ran the famous "Hurrah for the Blackshirts!" story back in the thirties. Even now, though, their readership does tend to be more reactionary than the broadsheet conservative papers, as evidenced by their "exposé" of the EDL last week which went down in flames. They also take a reactionary editorial line on the Muslim population, and are so well known that it's been mentioned in songs. In any case, they'd probably have a vested interest for this topic to negatively cover the UAF, if only to keep their readership. However, I have no reservations to using the Times with the standard due care given. Sceptre (talk) 01:06, 24 December 2010 (UTC)

The DM may have apolitical outlook but most (if not all) newspapers do. We would not say that you cannot use the Gaurdian as a RS for the EDl becasue its a bit lefty. Nor do we dismiss fox news as a sources becaseu its biased or somethimnes makes 'mistakes' we then see it retract in small print. NOw if we dismiss the DM here I hope we would dismiss it in all similar circumstances. The DM is used 5 or 6 times in the EDL article with no question of its RS status having been raised (as far as I know) until now. Slatersteven (talk) 17:37, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
Sceptre, why do you keep raising the bias argument, even though it has been repeatedly pointed out that it is irrelevant? Dlabtot (talk) 18:32, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
Because the right-wing bias of the Daily Mail is relevant? They are stating an opinion, not a fact, and as such, their own political stance is clearly going to affect their stance regarding UAF. This is common sense. AndyTheGrump (talk) 18:38, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
Bias is not a factor in our WP:Identifying reliable sources guideline. If you think the guideline should be changed, go to the take page of the guideline and propose a change. Dlabtot (talk) 22:18, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
The same applies to any newspaper (and most other medai). So I propose that any medai outlet (including magazines and webzines) that are politicaly opposed to a group as RS for the politics or polocies of that gruop.Slatersteven (talk) 18:47, 24 December 2010 (UTC)

The Daily Mail quite obviously meets the standards of WP:NEWSORG. Most UK papers have a political bias; indeed, most Western newspapers do. If we started dismissing them based on "political bias", we'd disqualify them all. Jayjg (talk) 20:57, 24 December 2010 (UTC)

The latest source being objected to is Searchlight. Which has been called non-RS for its views on its split from the UAF, and its accusation that the UAF is a SWP recrutiment drive [[28]]. Is searchlight RS for its views on this matter?Slatersteven (talk) 13:56, 25 December 2010 (UTC)

I would say that Searchlight is not an RS. It's a pressure group with an agenda that sometimes publishes stuff, but not a news organization. Betty Logan (talk) 15:27, 25 December 2010 (UTC)
Searchlight is used as a source on the English Defence League, however. If it is not RS in one place, it can not be RS in the other? Alternatively, as a SPS, would material relating to its own view of itself be ascribable as its view of itself? Collect (talk) 15:35, 25 December 2010 (UTC)
I think it would qualify as a primary source for information about itself, provided that information was not disputed by third-party sources. It would qualify as a primary source for its own views, but I seriously doubt its views about UAF and the EDL would qualify as notable. I can only imagine it is sourcing the EDL article because no-one has challenged the source. Betty Logan (talk) 15:50, 25 December 2010 (UTC)
Can people stop using this 'it's a reliable source, therefore everything it says is reliable' argument. This isn't what WP:RS says at all. Look what it says in relation to News Organisations for instance: "Mainstream news sources are generally considered to be reliable. However, even the most reputable news outlets occasionally contain errors. Whether a specific news story is reliable for a specific fact or statement in a Wikipedia article is something that must be assessed on a case by case basis. When using news sources, care should be taken to distinguish opinion columns from news reporting.". If this is true for mainstream sources, it must be even more so for less-reliable ones: "a specific fact or statement... must be assessed on a case by case basis". In any case, the comments about the relationship between the SWP and UAF were not written by a Seachlight journalist, as has already been indicated. AndyTheGrump (talk) 15:57, 25 December 2010 (UTC)
"Can people stop using this 'it's a reliable source, therefore everything it says is reliable' argument." - I'm pretty sure no one has ever said that, therefore people will be unable to 'stop' doing so. Dlabtot (talk) 02:31, 26 December 2010 (UTC)
Political bias certainly does affect the reliability of a source, as it very often compromises journalistic integrity or scholarship (it's why I mentioned to another user a couple weeks ago why we should use less Searchlight, and more academic work). Given how the Mail uses "left-wing" as a slur, it shouldn't be used as a source for the term (and I should argue, with its record on political reporting, nothing regarding politics at all). We should also be careful with what we do cite, given its (somewhat unfortunate) association with the far-right may also compromise its reliability (even if it's only to keep its readership) and its status as a mid-market tabloid with a tendency to oversensationalism (e.g. last week and X-Factor, or Manuelgate a couple of years ago). However, given the Times has none of these disadvantages, this may be used to cite "left-wing" (again, with care to ascribing labels and due weight). Sceptre (talk) 19:55, 25 December 2010 (UTC)
If you start trying to disqualify sources that meet the requirements of WP:RS based on allegations of "political bias", then you're heading down a very dangerous road. If we disqualify all newspapers with a "political bias" from commenting on political matters, we'll pretty much have to disqualify almost all of them. Are we now going to disqualify The New York Times or Wall Street Journal as WP:RS on political issues because of their well-known political stances? Are we going to disqualify all Marxist academics? Not likely. Jayjg (talk) 02:18, 26 December 2010 (UTC)
Not only does 'bias' not disqualify sources from being 'reliable', as the term is used on Wikipedia, but our WP:NPOV policy requires that all significant viewpoints be included in articles. That would be impossible to do if a source could be disqualified for having a strong point of view. Dlabtot (talk) 02:36, 26 December 2010 (UTC)
"...our WP:NPOV policy requires that all significant viewpoints be included in articles". Yes, but here's the problem. The Daily Mail's viewpoint is that UAF is a left-wing organisation, so it says so. Other sources apparently don't consider it 'left wing, and therefore don't say it is. You can't cite what a source doesn't say, so if you cite only the sources that do say anything, you risk giving a spurious impression that this is consensus. This is actually a fundamental problem with the way Wikipedia rules on sourcing work. About the only way around this in this particular case would be to say that "certain right-wing newspapers have characterised UAF as a left-wing organisation", but that isn't exactly elegant. AndyTheGrump (talk) 03:00, 26 December 2010 (UTC)
Your interpretation of multiple RS saying something without anything else disputing it is flawed.Cptnono (talk) 03:08, 26 December 2010 (UTC)
How? If the only notable sources that describe UAF as left-wing are right-wing, are we supposed to ignore this? It is ridiculous to suggest that a source can give an opinion on the political orientation of an organisation, and at the same time suggest that its own orientation is beyond comment. This isn't NPOV at all, instead it is 'RS' fetishism, which treats an opinion about something ('we think X is reliable for what it says on Y') as a statement ('X is RS, therefore anything it says about Y must be reliable'). There is no objective measure of political orientation, so everything written is opinion, and needs to be treated as such, with allowances made for the orientation of the source. AndyTheGrump (talk) 03:25, 26 December 2010 (UTC)
Just account for the bias in the claim then. You can say something like "the UAF is often described as a left-wing group by the right-wing press such as The Times and Daily Mail". Although claims may be one-sided, the socialist and liberal media as well as the UAF itself don't seem to be contesting those observations, and if they did you could include them. Betty Logan (talk) 13:24, 26 December 2010 (UTC)
Might you give an RS for specifying The Times as "right wing"? I would think that specifying their position sans any sources would be far worse than simply specifying that these particular sources identified the UAF as "left wing" in articles. Collect (talk) 13:54, 26 December 2010 (UTC)
http://www.ipsospublicaffairs.co.uk/researchpublications/researcharchive/poll.aspx?oItemId=755 and http://www.guardian.co.uk/news/datablog/2010/may/04/general-election-newspaper-support. The sources don't refer to them as "right-wing", but they do show them to be conservative newspapers if you want to qualify the political allegiances of these newspapers. Betty Logan (talk) 14:26, 26 December 2010 (UTC)
And a paper which supported Labour in 2001 and 2005 is "right wing"? I would think such a claim is weak. Very, very weak. Collect (talk) 15:04, 26 December 2010 (UTC)
As did the Sun, but alleging it's been left-wing at any point in the last thirty years would get you laughed at, as it takes, and has taken, a editorial line in support of most traditional Conservative policies (especially its Euroscepticism and stances on the economy and immigration); indeed, it had Richard Littlejohn on the payroll in those two election years.
On the topic of bias of sources: in most cases, especially for statements of fact, these sources would be fine to use. But when it comes to things such as political outlook and using these very general and very loosely defined terms, then we need to be careful. It's why I wouldn't use "left-wing" (questionable sources, bad specificity) in the article if we could use "anti-fascist" (good sources, good specificity). Which includes using high-quality sources over low-quality sources. For non-peer reviewed sources such as newspapers, there is a very real danger that an otherwise reliable source will skimp its duties to journalistic integrity when covering something it's opposed to (see: Fox News and its coverage on the healthcare debate).
For high-quality sources, such as the NYT, WaPo, WSJ, the Times, the Guardian—traditional broadsheets—this danger is minimised. Indeed, some newspaper editors for more sensational newspapers (Kelvin MacKenzie comes to mind) insist that their writers don't fully research stories because otherwise they wouldn't have a story at all. Which is why I'd lean against using the Mail (mid-tabloid, sensationalist, very right-wing), but I'd use the Times (former broadsheet, drier coverage, centre-right) or even the Telegraph (broadsheet, infamously pro-Tory). But given that the Times and the Mail are the only sources that use the appelation, we're really down to one source: which brings in WEIGHT issues.
Finally, Andy has a point on "RS fetishism". There is this obsession on Wikipedia that " if an RS says it, it must be true!". RSes are not always right and we don't expect them to be; it's why Fox News still remains a source despite infamously calling the then-chairman of the Republican Governor's Association a Democrat. We don't expect the sources to be neutral, either. But too many editors have blind allegiance to the fact something is an RS that they don't bother checking what the source says; I remember one source I used in an article mentioning Easter happened on a date in early March that happened to be a Thursday: instead of making the claim that Easter fell on a date it actually can't, I instead made the assumption they meant "April" (a Sunday that Easter did fall on that year). Editors really need to check the sources, especially ones that aren't peer-reviewed, before using them, because otherwise, we could re-introduce obvious inaccuracies that should've, but didn't, get caught out in the peer review process. Sceptre (talk) 00:33, 27 December 2010 (UTC)
Please don't encourage editors to label sources as "left-wing" or "right-wing", particularly based on WP:NOR; these simplistic labels add nothing but POV to articles. Jayjg (talk) 19:51, 26 December 2010 (UTC)
I'm encouraging editors to clarify the political viewpoints of sources that make political claims as opposed to just stating facts. The Daily Mail is an RS, but including their political opinions without clarifying their political leanings is to be selective in the information you include. If David Cameron wrote in the Daily Mail that "Labour is crap", do you not think it would be wise to mention the fact here leads the rival party? Please don't encourage editors to violate Wikipedia's policy of neutrality, you should read up on here: WP:NPOV. Betty Logan (talk) 13:05, 27 December 2010 (UTC)
You're encouraging poisoning the well based on simplistic labels. There's a reason we have links to articles on these newspapers, it's so people can get a full picture of the source, rather than two-word sound bites. Please take your own advice. Jayjg (talk) 18:57, 27 December 2010 (UTC)
WP:NPOV obliges editors to disclose any potential bias in presenting information, especially opinion based content. There however is no policy that prevents us or even suggests we do not disclose potential bias which is what you are advocating. If any editor wishes to characterize the political allegiances of a source then that is his prerogative, provided the claims about the source are sourced. If you are going to quote The Mail to say something is left-wing, then it is acceptable to point out The Mail is right-wing (or at least note its support of a right-wing political party) provided you source the claim. If you can't put the opinion into context, then you have to think twice about including it. Betty Logan (talk) 16:22, 28 December 2010 (UTC)
WP:NPOV nowhere obliges editors to pre-emptively POV names of reliable newspapers with simplistic labels intended to create POV and poison the well, under the guise of "disclos[ing] any potential bias in presenting information, especially opinion based content". That is why you will no-where in Wikipedia find The Guardian described as "the left-wing Guardian" or "the liberal Guardian", despite its well-known, longstanding, left-wing and liberal editorial policies. These terms are only used to discredit sources editors don't like, and for no other purpose. Please do not continue to pretend otherwise. Jayjg (talk) 02:18, 31 December 2010 (UTC)
This is extremely WP:LAME. Looking at the subject page, there's no way this group could be considered anything other than left-wing. Referrign to a political group aligned as this one is as "left wing" is not a contentious claim. As a matter of fact, it should be so unlikely to be challeged it wouldn't even need a source. Anyway, there's been a lot of churn, and it looks like both the Times and the Daily Mail were used as a source for it. And that doesn't require any further attribution; this org appears to be much further to the left than the Times is to the right . Squidfryerchef (talk) 14:37, 26 December 2010 (UTC)
I can't agree with you on this, Squid. How can a group that David Cameron supports be unequivocally left-wing? Betty has said a lot of good sense about the Daily Mail, which will be useful when it crops up here again. I sympathise with what Jay says about not labelling sources. It well poisoning when this is done in mainspace, but in the discussion here I see a good faith attempt to unpick reliability. If we want to bring the thread to a close and help the editors of the page towards a compromise, I think we can say the following. There are sources to support "the group has been called left-wing"; sources to support "the Socialist Workers Party had a role in setting it up", and also sources to support "senior politicians from across the political spectrum have expressed support for the group". While it isn't the role of this board to determine exactly how those sources are used in the article, as a board we could advise that there are sufficient reliable sources for editors to write up a nuanced description of how the group is regarded. Itsmejudith (talk) 14:08, 27 December 2010 (UTC)

Another sources saying that Seachlight mleft becaseu of SWP influence over the UAF http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2010/aug/09/fighting-racism-united-we-stand. IS this RS for the claim?Slatersteven (talk) 14:12, 27 December 2010 (UTC)

No. Because it doesn't say that. It says "When Unite Against Fascism was founded, Searchlight and its supporters were part of it. The fallout centred on the Socialist Workers party, and its perceived influence over UAF. As a result Searchlight and its supporters left UAF". Firstly, note perceived influence, and secondly, note that this is in the Guardian 'comment is free' section. The writer is Peter Lazenby "...chairman of the Leeds branch of the NUJ and Joint Father of the NUJ Chapel at Yorkshire Post Newspapers". [29] He is clearly not writing as a Guardian journalist (he isn't), but in a personal capacity. This is an opinion piece, nothing more. Though there appears to have been a falling-out between Searchlight and UAF, we cannot simply take Searchlight supporters as sole arbiters of the causes of this. AndyTheGrump (talk) 14:38, 27 December 2010 (UTC)
So we are saying that the Comment is free section of the Gaurdian is not RS? By the way is there any evidacen he is a Searchlight supporter? It seems to me he is not attributing blame. Asl owe can use one side, if only one side is ever given. This seems to be the case here. O)ne side has stated their reaspons for the split and the othe side has nopt reponeded.Slatersteven (talk) 14:45, 27 December 2010 (UTC)
Andy is confusing WP:RS and WP:NPOV. WP:RS qualifies the Daily Mail as a reliable source for reporting facts and opinions (although some editors may disagree) until there is a consensus that it isn't a reliable source. I understand his concerns about the Daily Mail not being neutral, but there is no requirement for the sources to be neutral. There is however, a requirement that claims are presented neutrally: WP:NPOV. To take this specific case, the Daily Mail has published an opinion that the UAF is "left-wing"; it is a reliable source for that opinion, but some care has to be taken in presenting it so WP:NPOV is not violated. The Daily Mail clearly don't like the UAF, so it is entirely conceivable that they decided not to identify it as "anti-fascist" since it could generate support for the group among their readership (some of which are presumably against fascism), so they label it as "left-wing" to immediately generate contempt for the group among their majority Conservative readership. An editor has argued that WP:NPOV obliges the inclusion of the Mail's opinion because it it is a viewpoint held by a notable contingent of the press, and I agree with that, but WP:NPOV also compels that opinion is put into context, by either including counter-claims or by clearly identifying potential bias in the publisher. I think it's fine to include polticial opinion pieces by the Mail (and any other mainstream newspaper for that matter), but its political allegiances clearly have to be identified for such opinions to be presented neutrally in the article. Betty Logan (talk) 15:12, 27 December 2010 (UTC)
On contentious subjects, sources that are generally reliable, especially non peer-reviewed ones such as newspapers, have to be carefully examined to see if they are reliable in that case. Would we use the Mail as a source on anything to do with European law? Of course not. Besides, the consensus on the Daily Mail is that it's evaluated on a case-by-case basis, a far cry from "generally reliable". That said, I have no objection to using the Times, as it is a good source, but really, if only two newspapers out of ten use the term "left-wing", then it's probably a minority viewpoint that doesn't belong in the lead section without attribution. Also, re: Slater: I wouldn't use CIF as a source, given that it's normally op-eds of a more controversial nature (see: Toynbee's "final solution" comments about the Coalition). Sceptre (talk) 18:16, 27 December 2010 (UTC)
It has been asked a hundred times but it must be asked again, where is the evidance that any one of wikipedia has contested this lable?, We only neded to take into account controversy where one exsists. We only need to put both sides where there are two opposing views, not where there is one view and a no comment. I take it them that we have consensus that CIF is not RS, and that anything sourced to it should be removed?Slatersteven (talk) 18:46, 27 December 2010 (UTC)

Other sources

As Andy notes above, it is difficult to find sources characterising UAF's political position (except as an attempted smear), or stating "UAF is not left-wing". However, there are clearly reliable sources making a more nuanced assessment, including the following:
BBC — "Unite Against Fascism, a new group supported by trade unions and MPs from all parties, including Tory leader David Cameron, and veteran left wing campaigner Tony Benn" [30]
The Times — "UAF, an umbrella organisation of a number of anti-racism groups and trade unions"[31]
The Guardian — "Unite Against Fascism is a group which was founded with the aim of uniting "the broadest possible spectrum of society" against far right politics. The list of UAF supporters illustrates its success in that goal."[32].
I'm sure there are others; but this seems sufficient for us not to simply state in the lead that it has "been described as" left wing. RolandR (talk) 19:22, 27 December 2010 (UTC)

I thought it had been agreed that CIF is not RS, or is it RS now? As for the others, they do not discus what the UAF views are, and at least one the antifascist organisations (how many others are there?) have in fact disassociated from the group (over its alleged the undue influence of SP). At least one trade union branch has also raised doubts about the amount of influence SWP has with UAF. We need an up-to-date source stating who does and does not still support UAF (by the way the list of supported appears to be broke at the moment). Also I would argue that "UAF, an umbrella organisation of a number of anti-racism groups and trade unions" does not dispute the left wing label, it just does not justify it. So in fact there is one RS here that could be seen as arguing against the label, against how many that use it?Slatersteven (talk) 19:46, 27 December 2010 (UTC)
To be honest, my personal position is that we shouldn't use "left-wing" because it's too vague. We should get out of this habit on Wikipedia on using vague labels just because a couple of RSes may use them. "Anti-fascist" is more specific and better sourced in this case, so should be used. Sceptre (talk) 20:37, 27 December 2010 (UTC)
It is used. But they have been accused (by a number of RS, an un-disputed accusation) that they are either left wing, or are a left winf front organisation (by the way its not a couple of sources). As I have said I am against all no self applied labels or for all non-self applied labels. Consistancy in approach is what I want to see. As an example either CIF is RS or its not. What I don't wnat to see is a situation where sources are disparaged or supported based upon what view they happen to be upholding (as a source) at that time.Slatersteven (talk) 20:45, 27 December 2010 (UTC)
We have consistent policy on CIF, but it's not a straight yes no RS/nonRS. It's the same with the Telegraph blog and all other blogs in the mainstream press. The initial pieces are op-eds and the standing of the author is important. The comments from members of the public aren't RS. Itsmejudith (talk) 22:25, 27 December 2010 (UTC)
Then it can never be consistant. Who is David Tate, and why are his views more RS then Mr Lazenbys? It wilol always be a case of (for example) CIF is accetable here becaseu its wirten by X, but not here becaseu its writen by Y. In that case we need to see why X is a btter RS then Y. So what are the criterai for accepting a peice on CIF as RS, that it has to be writen by a Gaurdian Jouonalist, or some one writing in the capactiy of one? Mr Lazenby Appears to be a reporte on the Yorkshire evening post, He appears to write regularly for CIF. He also appears to have writen for the Newstatesman, the wibsite RedPepper, Searchlight. Is this not enought to make his views notable?Slatersteven (talk) 13:41, 29 December 2010 (UTC)

This is really more a POV than rs issue, and was taken to the wrong board. It is very easy to Google "[a bad word]" and "[someone/something]" one does not like and if there are thousands of articles about the subject, one may find a description that matches one's point of view. That is editing of the worst kind, and totally unacceptable. TFD (talk) 04:36, 2 January 2011 (UTC)

Two dubious sources. Am I correct in saying these are not reliable?

At Leonard Hofstadter and Sheldon Cooper, articles on the two main characters in The Big Bang Theory, an editor has added some claims using sources that appear dubious.

Leonard Hofstadter

The content was first added in February 2010 but was removed then because it was uncited and showed no direct link to the article, only a coincidental link between last names. It was again added on December 23 and removed for the same reason. After attempts at discussion failed the editor finally added the content to the lede with some citations.[33] The first of these was The Big Bang Theory Wiki, which states on the source page "NOTE: Edited from Wikipedia:" so I removed it as it's very clearly WP:SPS. The second citation is to Imparja, a TV network in central Australia.[34] At first this may appear to be a reliable source however a google check reveals that some of the page has been sourced from bigbangtheory.wikia.com, another wiki. The claim that "He is named after Nobel prize winner Robert Hofstadter" is not supported by any source other than Imparja and therefore seems dubious, given Imparja's apparent reliance on wikis for its content. As it stands now, this article does not claim that Leonard Hofstadter is named after Robert Hofstadter, only that they share a last name. However, this is only a coincidence and not sufficient justification for inclusion in this article and especially not in the lede, which is supposed to summarise the main topics of the article, not introduce content that is not covered in the article. This last point aside, as it's more a content issue that a sourcing issue, am I correct in believing that the Imaparja source doesn't qualify as reliable?

Sheldon Cooper

The disputed content at Sheldon Cooper was only added today,[35] but it has been added by the same editor, who has already reverted the removal of it once,[36] so I thought I'd address it here as well. The claim is sourced from myfivebest.com which has as it's tagline, "User Submitted Trivia and Opinion" which makes it a WP:SPS as well.

Am I correct in stating that because Imparja sources at least some of its content from wikis and myfivebest.com boasts of being "User Submitted Trivia and Opinion", neither of these sources qualify as reliable? --AussieLegend (talk) 00:17, 1 January 2011 (UTC)

Agreed. Note also that both the Imparja page and the bigbangtheory.wikia.com page have "content from Wikipedia" acknowledgements, so they have the same circular-reference problem as with wiki.the-big-band-theory.com. For all I know, some other Imparja pages or broadcasts might meet the requirements for RSs, but this one definitely doesn't. --GenericBob (talk) 04:10, 1 January 2011 (UTC)
Yes, those aren't reliable sources. I couldn't find sources to verify those statements, however plausible they sound. Also see List of characters from The Big Bang Theory. Fences&Windows 18:35, 1 January 2011 (UTC) Ah, I think the mention of the names theory has gone. Fences&Windows 18:37, 1 January 2011 (UTC)

blog.zagat.com

This ip has been spamming blog.zagat.com references across Wikipedia. I've removed maybe a dozen of this ip's edits because of the spamming (WP:REFSPAM) and promotional (WP:NPOV and WP:SOAP) nature of the material, but decided to hold off on anything more until I got others' opinions of it as a source. (I've not checked if all the current references have come from this one ip, or if this ip has done any other editing besides adding these references.)

For example, this documents a Zagat award, and [37] the opening of a new restaurant. It could be argued that this blog is under Zagat's full editorial control as mentioned in Wikipedia:Rs#Self-published_sources_.28online_and_paper.29. --Ronz (talk) 16:18, 1 January 2011 (UTC)

I think this falls under the part in WP:RS stating that "otherwise reliable news sources—for example, the website of a major news organization—that publish in a "blog" style format for some or all of its content may be as reliable as if published in a more "traditional" 20th-century format." So in general, Zagat blogs should be ok as sources. But in the Spicer example, it's a primary source, so secondary sources would be preferable. —David Eppstein (talk) 22:48, 1 January 2011 (UTC)
That's pretty much what I was thinking. In Susan Spicer, they're reporting on their own awards.
I messed up on the second example and gave the ref rather than the diff. It reports on Pei Wei Asian Diner restaurants opening a new location. --Ronz (talk) 02:27, 2 January 2011 (UTC)
Clearly WP:REFSPAM. These links seem to serve no real purpose other than to self promote the site zagat.com. Comparitivley Its equivelent to linking articles to their yellowpage.com listings. Adds nothing valuble and just doesnt belong in an encyclopedic article.--Hu12 (talk) 16:52, 20 January 2011 (UTC)
Additionaly; Buisness can self edit their online profiles [38]
  • Update information & stats
  • Submit photos
  • Visit your restaurant's Reviews & Stats page
  • Click on the Update or Add To This Information
I think this fails the specific requirements of our Reliable Sources guidelines.
--Hu12 (talk) 17:17, 20 January 2011 (UTC)

Theoretical Question on Sources - Related to Gibraltar Sovereignty Dispute

[39] This source, written in German, is being presented as a neutral and objective source. It has been published by what would normally be classed as a reliable source. However, it contains several errors of fact, facts which are not even controversial or disputed and accepted by both sides of the sovereignty dispute. So it can be demonstrated that the source as a reference is flawed and I have always applied a policy of not using sources like this in my editing (a personal approach) i.e. I tend to discard sources that get uncontroversial facts so badly wrong. I see this as simply the application of common sense, another editor seems to disagree and that as a reliable source it must be used. Outside opinion would be welcome. Wee Curry Monster talk 19:54, 29 December 2010 (UTC)

As far as I can gather the book is an editted scientific book (Neues Europa - alte EU?: Fragen an den europäischen Integrationsprozess By Johannes Varwick, Wilhelm Knelangen) that consists out of chapters by a range of authors; all political scientists as far as I can see. The specific chapter is by Dieter Nohlen and Andreas Hildenbrand, both respected (political) scientists. So as I see no problem with classifying this source as reliable.... BUT
  1. The book seems to be set up as a series of essays, or position papers, which allow the author a large amount of freedom to present their own point of view, going far beyond what is usually accepted in peer reviewed journals.
  2. A scientist tends to be expert in their own domain, and may mix up examples and context information. This makes a scientific work reliable and useful in regard to its own main thesis, but not necessarily a relevant source on the examples / context information. In this case however, there are enough words making the statement very subtly worded that I find it hard to see that there are true factual errors. For example the contested 1984 issue is all about the UK making some actual concessions to Spain; which is different from never negotiating before, and from reaching an all out agreement. The problem is, of course, that when these carefully chosen nuances are disregarded by Wikipedia editors the factual mistakes kreep into Wikipedia. But that is basically the result of WP:NPOV and WP:SYNTH by Wikipedia editors.
  3. Social sciences (of which political sciences are one) have a very small basis of generally shared objective Truths (capital T intended) many of its truths are socially constructed and therefore often not the only relevant point of view. However, the historical facts appear rather straightforwardly listed here.
  4. To come back to my second argument, books are considered of lower importance compared to journal papers, this means that both authors, editors, reviewers and publishers have less strict quality control in place (I have published on social sciences in many scientific books, and have edited one recently; besides publishing and reviewing many papers in peer reviewed journals - so I have some experience there). Again there is no reason to assume this to be a problem here, although some additional sourcing in the original text would have helped a lot.
  5. Finally, even a reliable source never "must" be used, as other policies (like WP:DUE WP:SYNTH WP:NPOV) tell you what information should NOT be part of the article, reliably sourced or not. Arnoutf (talk) 20:31, 29 December 2010 (UTC)
We do not have to use all reliable sources. Which ones to use is really not a question for this board.--Andrew Lancaster (talk) 20:43, 29 December 2010 (UTC)
A theoretical answer: My own bias is that reliable sources are reliable sources, and the argument (which RSN sees all the time) RS "X" is indisputably wrong about "Y", so it can't be a RS for "Z" isn't persuasive with me. VS Verlag is a highly-regarded academic publisher. Its books are reliable sources. Even the best of sources can contain errors or mistakes - even stunningly obvious errors and mistakes. Where common sense comes in, you obviously don't want to cite it for the indisputably wrong "Y" (eg according to X, the Battle of Hastings was fought in Leeds in 1056), but it can certainly be cited as a reliable source for "Z" with attribution. Whether one chooses to use the source or not for that purpose is an editorial decision to be arrived at on the article Talk page, but is not a RS decision. Fladrif (talk) 20:49, 29 December 2010 (UTC)
In political science, a book chapter is close in status to a journal article. This looks like it does count as a reliable source. Per Fladrif, anything obviously mistaken must be avoided. I agree that not all sources have to be used, and that this should be discussed on the talk page, but you also want to be sure that you have included all relevant perspectives, and an essay by political scientists might well be a relevant perspective. It should probably be attributed. Itsmejudith (talk) 23:25, 29 December 2010 (UTC)
Flafdrif that is a good point. I agree that sources should not be excluded ONLY because they are not good for all things. And you are right that this comes up a lot, and I'd add that often when it comes up it is because someone is trying to exclude a whole source or category of source on a "technicality".--Andrew Lancaster (talk) 10:13, 30 December 2010 (UTC)
BTW for clarity, it is a personal policy of mine that I don't use sources that have known errors of fact. For the record, I wasn't suggesting excluding sources on a "technicality". Wee Curry Monster talk 22:18, 30 December 2010 (UTC)

───────────────────────── Thank you gentlemen for a comprehensive response. In answer to your question its being used to claim there were no negotiations between Britain and Spain before 1984. Refer to the wikisource:Lisbon Agreement (1980) for ealier negotiations. It is the demonstrably inaccurate comment that is being used. Wee Curry Monster talk 18:58, 30 December 2010 (UTC)

Wee Curry Monster, just on the side subject, the problem with excluding any source with any error in any way is that in practice this becomes a fuzzy and arbitrary red line, which can be and often is abused. Obviously setting your own personal policy should also not impact on what other editors may do. The simplest approach from a policy-for-everyone point of view is to say that this is a content dispute: If editors of an article agree that something does not need to be in Wikipedia then as long as this does not distort the neutrality, or remove something very notable, then that's enough. Trying to exclude material that other editors think important because, let's say, it appears in an article with spelling mistakes or a sentence which has become out-of-date, or whatever, does often verge on trying to use a "technicality".--Andrew Lancaster (talk) 12:56, 31 December 2010 (UTC)
Again I'm not trying to exclude it, just to have it noted as an opinion piece and not a "neutral and objective" source as originally claimed. In addition, I don't believe it should be used as cite for "facts" that happen to be untrue. Wee Curry Monster talk 21:29, 1 January 2011 (UTC)
Declaring my interest, I am involved in this dispute. My point is general, but it's probably worth making my interest clear from the outset.
So, there seems to be an argument that an error in one place never suggests that a source is unreliable in other places. I think this is too sweeping. If, as in Fladrif's example, an otherwise apparently reliable source put the Battle of Hastings ten years early and in entirely the wrong part of the country, I would be very uncomfortable in using it to back up more contentious or less well-established details of eleventh-century English history.
It would be the same if an otherwise apparently reliable source put the US Declaration of Independence ten years early and in Chicago. Such a basic error and apparent lack of fact-checking would make it difficult to accept that the source is credible in other matters.
Given this, I would be inclined to suggest that there are shades of grey. The fact that errors of fact are made is relevant to the determination of how reliable the source is - the bigger the error, the more question it calls on the source. A source with small or common errors might still be acceptable for other points. A source with major flaws might well not be. Pfainuk talk 23:04, 1 January 2011 (UTC)


UNINDENT

Hi, I am the editor who has proposed this source. Thank you very much for your comments, I have found them very interesting (one of the side benefits of editing in WP).

About discarding sources: I agree with Pfainuk (about the grey zones and terribly fundamental errors), Arnoutf, Andrew Lancaster, Fladrif and Itsmejudith in the theoretical approach.

About this specific source (which I didn't think would raise such hot debate in the article talk page) and its theoretically "being riddled with factual errors" that discard it as a RS: Pfainuk and Wee Curry Monster say (I don't know based on which reliable source) that there have been declarations of the UK's willingness to negotiate sovereignty with Spain pre-1984, so this source saying the contrary disqualifies it as a RS. Two things:

  1. This is a very secondary issue in our discussion.
  2. Even so, the source seems to be right and Wee and Pfain wrong. Take a look at the talk page for more info if you want. In any case, here you have just a few sources supporting this point (from Gibraltar, Spain and third countries):
  • New York Times: "Under that accord [the Brussels Agreement], Britain for the first time said it would discuss the question of sovereignty with Spain."
  • Panorama (a Gibraltar newspaper): "Former foreign secretary Sir Geoffrey Howe writes an opinion piece in The Times today. It was he who signed the controversial Brussels agreement with Spain in 1984, agreeing to discuss the sovereignty of Gibraltar for the first time"
  • RTVE (Spain's public national television): "It [The Brussels Agreement] is the first time that the British part expressly admits that sovereignty issues will be dealt with in this process" "[La declaración de Bruselas] Es la primera vez que la parte británica admite expresamente que se abordarán en este proceso cuestiones de soberanía."
  • Gibraltar Socialist Labor Party (a quite nationalist Gib party): "The 1984 Brussels deal was a climb-down by the British Government because for the first time ever the UK agreed to discuss sovereignty when it had been defending the opposite view until then."
  • Finally, Timeline of the history of Gibraltar (an article Pfainuk and Wee have intensely edited): "Under the Brussels Agreement[68] (27 November 1984) signed between the governments of the United Kingdom and Spain, the former agreed to enter into discussions with Spain over Gibraltar, including by first time the 'issues' of sovereignty." (this sentence has been sitting there for the last couple of years and neither Pfainuk nor Wee has ever disputed it).

I would be terribly thankful if you could add some comments taking this into account. Thanks!!! -- Imalbornoz (talk) 23:50, 1 January 2011 (UTC)

Imalbornoz,

1. We are not trying to discard this as a reliable source. 2. We are not trying to discard this as a reliable source.

Thought I might say it twice, to emphasis the point.

Now you presented this as a neutral objective source. It is not. It is an opinion piece. All we have asked is that it is noted as an opinion piece and acknowledged as the OPINION of the authors. That is all. Emphasis added to make the point.

You also presented this source as stating there were no negotiations before 1984. See wikisource:Lisbon Agreement from 1980. 1980 precedes 1984. You now much later qualify it as sovereignty negotiations. This is tedious in the extreme and starting to look like tendentious argument. Regarding your original claim, the source is clearly wrong. May I suggest you refer to responses above and in particular " The problem is, of course, that when these carefully chosen nuances are disregarded by Wikipedia editors the factual mistakes kreep into Wikipedia."

The people here have given a useful guidance, lets use it and move on in the correct place, which is the article talk page.

And finally, again we are not trying to discard this as a reliable source. Just asking it is acknowledged as an opinion piece, it is not presented as neutral and that it is not used to cite facts in areas where it is inaccurate. Wee Curry Monster talk 00:14, 2 January 2011 (UTC)

Just for info, a (very) minor point in the source, as I posted it, says (in German): "A significant progress in December 1984 yielded the agreement reached in Brussels, in which the British government for the first time since the Peace of Utrecht declared willing to clarify through negotiations the existing differences between Britain and Spain over the sovereignty of Gibraltar."
MOST IMPORTANT: at the current stage we are only trying to see how reputed secondary sources summarize the sovereignty and territorial dispute in order to decide how to summarize it -e.g.: whether to include the POV of the UN (so I can hardly see how I am trying to use this source to support any claim at this stage, like Wee has commented). Would you consider this a good source for this use? -- Imalbornoz (talk) 01:07, 2 January 2011 (UTC)
In response to a post by Imalbornoz on my talk page. This does look like a normal academic source. It definitely isn't an opinion piece. The only thing limiting its use is that it is a rather rapid overview. Make sure it isn't used to support anything that it doesn't actually say. Don't repeat any errors it makes. If it is contradicted by other scholarship, also cite that other scholarship, and attribute. The discussion above is rather involved; if you want more comments here you should try and summarise a bit more so that it is clear to those who haven't followed the talk page discussion. Itsmejudith (talk) 11:24, 2 January 2011 (UTC)
If anything, we're looking for something quite a lot more rapid than this. What we're looking for are the points that are absolutely essential to a discussion of the dispute, the idea being that these will be used to create a 2-3 paragraph description of the dispute, including only the most basic of points and leaving all the detail to the two existing dedicated articles. Imalbornoz argues that his opinion of the UN's position has to be included as one of those basic points. Others disagree. Pfainuk talk 11:31, 2 January 2011 (UTC)


Thank you very much Itsmejudith. To summarise the discussion a bit more: like Pfain said, at the current stage we are trying to see how reputed secondary sources summarize the sovereignty and territorial dispute in order to decide how to summarize it in the Gibraltar overview article -e.g.: one of the hottest points would be whether to include the POV of the UN on the dispute (and decide which that POV would be through secondary sources); nobody mentioned that 1984 agreement until Wee brought it here to say it was wrong.
IMHO, the relevant questions for this noticeboard would be:
  1. Would you consider this a good source for this use as a "summary guide"?
  2. How would this source compare (for the use explained above) with:
  • "Lonely Planet: Andalucia"
  • encyclopedia.com[40] (which puts together info from World Press Encyclopedia 2003, World Education Encyclopedia 2001, World Encyclopedia 1980, The Columbia Encyclopedia...)
  • GRIN Verlag (a self-publishing source) with a thesis to obtain the Master degree in Philosophy at the U of Wien called "Die NATO-politik der spanischen Parteien (The NATO policy of the Spanish political parties)"[41] by Christian Tillinger
  • Editions Ophrys with an "Atlas géopolitique des espaces maritimes: frontières, énergie, pêche et environnement (Geopolitical atlas of Maritime spaces: borders, energy, fishing and the environment)"[42] by Didier Ortolland and Jean-Pierre Pirat
I think the comparison would be very relevant for our current discussion. Thank you very much for your time already, and even more if you can spare the time to answer my last questions. -- Imalbornoz (talk) 11:34, 2 January 2011 (UTC)
Now having asked, and looked at the talk page, I don't think we actually do want to have a summary of the dispute here. The best help that this page can be for the Gibraltar article is to provide an external view of which sources are of the right calibre for the article. Then it will be up to you use them correctly, balance them, etc. Of the four you mention above: Lonely Planet, no use at all; World Education Encyclopedia, good to guide you in how to write an overview, tertiary source so not ideal; Master's thesis, not for this article, look for academically published texts by the same author; Ortolland and Pirat, could be OK. Surely you should be looking for an academic monograph on the topic of Gibraltar? If not available, then standard overviews of European politics. Itsmejudith (talk) 12:10, 2 January 2011 (UTC)
The sources that I have been trying to find are sources that summarise the dispute, but in an all-Gibraltar context, or else a general context. IOW, a context other than that of a long-winded document about the dispute. It seems to me that a source on the subject the dispute is less likely to be useful - as is a source on the subject specifically connected to the arguments on one side of the dispute (such as the UN General Assembly or Ceuta and Melilla). The point of this isn't to try and source the facts - we can already do that. It's to see what other sources think is appropriate.
Hence the Lonely Planet - it may not be reliable from a let's-get-all-our-facts-from-here perspective, but it does give an example of how the dispute is portrayed to a general audience by an outside publisher in a context other than that of the dispute. Hence also the Columbia Encyclopædia and a maritime atlas.
We do already have two articles on the subject of the dispute and I am very much against the notion being pushed by some that Gibraltar should be made into a third. Pfainuk talk 12:38, 2 January 2011 (UTC)

─────────────────────────

I don't think it is helpful to lobby everyone who has responded [43],[44],[45],[46] trying to get them to change their minds.

Getting back to the actual subject, the source in question is a series of essays, or position papers, which allow the author a large amount of freedom to present their own point of view, going far beyond what is usually accepted in peer reviewed journals. It has been portrayed as neutral but it is not. It represents the author's opinion and if used that should be reflected in the cite.

We have a surfeit of sources presenting objective secondary opinion, see Talk:Gibraltar/primary sources and Talk:Gibraltar/secondary sources. But that is not the subtext here. Consensus fell apart at Imalbornoz's insistence the article must state the UN supports Spain's territorial claim, citing Spanish Government papers and interpreting primary sources with WP:OR, rather than as requested seeking secondary sources that reflect an overview of the matter he is looking for very specific sources to back up his original demands.

Again the correct place for this discussion on the article content as Itsmejudith points out is the article talk page. But seeing as we have brought it here, I would like to take the opportunity to ask a further question. Imalbornoz makes a great deal of use of Google snippets, searching for selected phrases. When he finds what he likes, that is what he quotes - the snippet and the snippet only. If you look at the source itself, a very different picture often emerges. Examples Talk:Gibraltar#New Source 1, Talk:Gibraltar#New Source 2, Talk:Gibraltar#New Source 3. I don't think Google snippets should be used as it does not allow the quote to be considered in context, as I pointed out on the article talk page it reminds me of a theatre critic's review that described Laurence Olivier's performance as "Not one of Olivier's best performances." The quote on the poster in the theatre stated "...one of Olivier's best performances." Wee Curry Monster talk 20:14, 2 January 2011 (UTC)

Enneagram reliable sources oversight

Can someone review the source issues discussed here?

Would appreciate disinterested party oversight.

Thanks Zulu Papa 5 * (talk) 15:58, 30 December 2010 (UTC)

This [47] is indeed a reliable source, provided it is not used in a way that supposes that its claims are definitive statements of fact and a general spirit of NPOV is observed. The support given for the Ennegram of Personality in this paper appears to be very tentative, and that should be properly reflected if the source is to be used.
The dispute appears to relate to NPOV issues, however, so I'm not sure that my opinion about the source will be much help in moving things forward.
FWIW, it looks to me like the Enneagram of Personality doesn't appear to have any theoretical basis in psychology, and it would therefore be misleading for Wikipedia to give out the impression that it is a scientific practice. --FormerIP (talk) 18:17, 31 December 2010 (UTC)
Thanks, the Enneagram of Personalty is a construct in-which, psychology theories have been mapped to. The field is relativly new and seems to be growing around the Newgent study, which focused on RHETI psychometric testing. This testing validity, actually places it ahead on validity, as compared to many old established and widely practiced psychology theories, which have little if any reproducible claims. The RHETI is significant scientific practice. The Ennegram of Personality is still basically a theoretical description. Zulu Papa 5 * (talk) 22:35, 2 January 2011 (UTC)

Adding content supported by what I have heard in a Radio report

Is it correct as regards policy and guidelines to add things I have heard in radio reports? Is it correct to listen to a radio report and use it to source and add content? Off2riorob (talk) 00:45, 2 January 2011 (UTC)

Read WP:RS: "audio, video, and multimedia materials that have been recorded then broadcast, distributed, or archived by a reputable third-party may also meet the necessary criteria to be considered reliable source." Short Brigade Harvester Boris (talk) 00:56, 2 January 2011 (UTC)
Thanks, may also seems unclear - is this like encouraged, or normal practice or what do users think, is it good practice or perhaps an occasional possibility? IMO it is to be avoided as it is difficult to verify and also could well be classed as a primary report. It clearly isn't common practice. Radio interviews make much better external links than they do easily verifiable reliable sources, if users agree with this position I would like to add the disclaimer to the RS guideline. Off2riorob (talk) 00:59, 2 January 2011 (UTC)
  • It depends. If i cited Rush Limbaugh, probably not. His program is not a reliable source, and he is not a journalist. However, the specific incident that precipitated this discussion involves coverage of Tammie Wilson from the Alaska Public Radio Network, a statewide organization that employs professional reporters. The exact content of the cites I used can be easily accessed through audio streams that I linked to the article that specifically verify the statements they were attached to. Therefore, there is no issue with verification as the source can be easily accessed and is a reliable professional journalistic entity. I would add that removing the content as unsourced and then later asking if the sources were reliable is somewhat backwards, and I ask once again that you please restore it. Beeblebrox (talk) 01:52, 2 January 2011 (UTC)
Without comment on this specific incident - this debate about offline sources comes around every so often. WP:V explicitly states that sources don't need to be easy to verify, only possible to verify. A radio interview isn't hugely different in that regard from an out-of-print reference book, or an old newspaper that doesn't have an online archive, or a journal article that you can only see with a paid subscription. I think easily-accessible sources are preferable where they exist, but sometimes inconvenient sources can add a lot to an article.
Exception to this: some editors are quite willing to abuse our sourcing policy by making up cites that are hard to check (e.g. Peter Foster had an ongoing problem with this). When people are abusing them, I think it's reasonable to reject offline cites in that particular context. --GenericBob (talk) 02:00, 2 January 2011 (UTC)
Ok, I'm not sure why this point is not getting through, but I will repeat it once again. There is nothing inaccessible about this. All you have to do is follow these links [48] [49] and click the little play button and you can hear the reports for yourself. It's not an interview, it is a news story just like you would see in a newspaper. Alaska is really, really, big. Less than a quarter of it is accessible by road. Radio is therefore a much utilized resource here as it allows instantaneous transmission of content throughout the state. Beeblebrox (talk) 02:07, 2 January 2011 (UTC)
I think you missed my "without comment on this specific incident" there. In this particular case, as you say, the source is easy to check; I was responding to Off2riorob's general argument that sources that aren't easy to check should be avoided. The question of whether this particular source falls into that category is relevant in this specific case, but as I noted above I wasn't commenting on that aspect of the discussion - I felt you'd already settled that point and I had nothing to add. --GenericBob (talk) 23:41, 2 January 2011 (UTC)
Another issue I think is related to radio talks is that they can easily be 30 mins or 45mins long and to use then to cite perhaps a single sentence of your choice seems open to cherry picking by use of a single comment from a lengthy interview, the difficulty of which to find making verification extremely difficult. Off2riorob (talk) 12:16, 2 January 2011 (UTC)
I don't see why we shouldn't ask editors to add how many minutes in to a tv or radio report, just as we ask for page numbers. Dougweller (talk) 12:20, 2 January 2011 (UTC)

The key qualifier that seems to have been not mentioned so far is when using such sources "Additionally, an archived copy of the media must exist". While not made explicitly clear, obviously this must be taken to mean an archived copy which is accessible to anyone, not for example a closed archive held by a radio station. O Fenian (talk) 12:21, 2 January 2011 (UTC)

Well I appreciate Beeblbrox's comment that the medium used in Alaska has a stronger radio aspect, the particular station has around fifty links, suggesting to me that even in Alaska the practice of using radio station content to support content n the body of an article is not commonplace at all. Another here added by him here - one in Dean Young added by Beeblbrox here - four in Ted Stephens who died in the Alaskan plane crash, added by Beeblbrox - here, here and here - perhaps he has added them all? Surely there is a better source to say Ted Stevens died in a plane crash - Like an international publication in preference to a local radio station difficult to verify mp3 file. .Anyways, I don't think such radio interviews are a good way to support content at all, they make good external links and imo should not be used for anything contentious in relation to living people at all and the practice should be discouraged. Off2riorob (talk) 12:43, 2 January 2011 (UTC)
  • - note - I don't think there is much community support for radio reports/interview links to be used to support anything contentious, and it clearly isn't common practice, but in this situation and from comments in this thread and as regards this non controversial content I have replaced them. Thanks for commenting. Off2riorob (talk) 18:25, 2 January 2011 (UTC)

The point is, encyclopedic content must be verifiable. So if there is a way (it is not necessary for it to be easy or free, just possible) to verify a citation, it's usable, if not, it's not. Dlabtot (talk) 18:42, 2 January 2011 (UTC)

Yes, which means there is no problem using radio reports. Imagine someone arguing that something from a BBC Newshour segment was not a reliable source -- it's absurd. Likewise NPR. Nomoskedasticity (talk) 18:51, 2 January 2011 (UTC)
And in this particular case the individual reports, which were aired as part of a half-hour long daily newscast, can be linked to individually. There's only about two minutes to each report, so it's not any more of a burden on anyone trying to check it for verification than reading a brief newspaper article. I'll grant that users with hearing problems or really old computers won't be able to do this, but since the vast majority of users can easily verify that the content is in fact supported by the source in this instance I think we can consider APRN a reliable source. And once again, these are not interviews. Rob, I don't know what it is like wherever you are from but everywhere I have ever lived there has been a strong tradition of local broadcast journalism. I know a lot of radio shows are more or less just interviews that allow the subject to spin the story any way they wish, but these news reports are good old fashioned hard news and nothing more. Beeblebrox (talk) 19:56, 2 January 2011 (UTC)
Yes we are done, just a note, a couple of comments here have apparently claimed that it is good practice and a fine way to cite any comment, as in the same can be claimed of video interviews, I have disputed these also in the past and also don't think the overall community supports the addition of videos and saying watch it, you can see he says he doesn't like jonny at 32 mins, or do users think there is large support for this type of citation for content in article bodies, say for contentious content about living people? Off2riorob (talk) 20:04, 2 January 2011 (UTC)
I think policy is clear about this, Rob. Video and audio are as capable as text of being RS. --FormerIP (talk) 20:06, 2 January 2011 (UTC)
So you are claiming that any reliable-ish video interview can be used say to cite any comment users like about anyone? Off2riorob (talk) 20:07, 2 January 2011 (UTC)
Not reliable-ish, but reliable, yes. And not "any comment users like" but any comment that is supported by the source and is significant enough to include in the article. --FormerIP (talk) 20:10, 2 January 2011 (UTC)
Ok, so , multi - media, so all reliable videos and all reliable radio reports can be used to cite any article body content at all, about anything noteworthy. got it. Thanks to all commenters. (talk) 20:15, 2 January 2011 (UTC)
Not sure why you bolded that text. Here is some bold text in reply, since you seem to think that typography lends weight:
Other than you, no one said that, no one implied that, and no one said anything that could be reasonably inferred to mean that, or anything like that. Dlabtot (talk) 20:33, 2 January 2011 (UTC)

─────────────────────────I thought that was supported here, what don't you support about it then, users here appear to have supported that position, I bolded it to draw attention do it. What do you dispute about it? Former IP said just above you - " I think policy is clear about this, Rob. Video and audio are as capable as text of being RS."Off2riorob (talk) 20:36, 2 January 2011 (UTC)

Yes the policy is clear and neither it nor FormerIP's comments in any way resemble the absurd strawman you have presented. Please refrain from further disruption of this noticeboard. Dlabtot (talk) 20:50, 2 January 2011 (UTC)
Your position is disruptive not mine, pointedly bolding a comment because I bolded one. My comment is an attempt to clarify where the communities position actually is as regards this issue, so please don't attack me and feel free to actually comment something, its not a strawman comment, what do you actually dispute about it, or in what way do you think the comment is strawman against policy and accepted practice? - all reliable videos and all reliable radio reports can be used to cite any article body content at all, about anything noteworthy. Off2riorob (talk) 20:57, 2 January 2011 (UTC)
Yes, I'd say that is more or less correct, Rob. I think the important point, though, is that the standards are not lesser compared to print sources. I also think it may often be a good idea to go the extra mile in explaining your edit on the talkpage, including quote with the citation etc (in exactly the same way you might do if you are using a print source that others will find difficult to access). But, in the final analysis there is nothing in particular that makes an audio source less usable that anything else. --FormerIP (talk) 21:39, 2 January 2011 (UTC)
Yes, I think this is like a growing thing as far as wiki goes, more and more users are fully media accessible - and I can see in the expanding multimedia environment that specific citation templates for such additions would be an asset, like with a time section to state where the content is and perhaps a quote and an additional space also for who said it and to whom. But that is for another time and another noticeboard. Off2riorob (talk) 21:46, 2 January 2011 (UTC)

The Transformers: The Movie (1986) development script notes

In a recent charity auction one of the writers of the 1986 Transformers movie sold off early development art and scripts of the film. I wanted to add a few notes to the movie's article as "development", noting how the movie changed dramatically from it's original conception to final version. What would be the best wat to cite these notes? I realize all I have is a scanned copy posted by the guy who won the auction on a message board, but they are accepted as legitimate items as a group of fans got together and bid on them as a group just to make them available to the other fans. You can see one set of notes here: http://www.tfw2005.com/boards/transformers-news-rumors/352750-early-synopsis-1986-movie-plot-characters-ron-friedman-goodies.html Mathewignash (talk) 23:06, 2 January 2011 (UTC)

These might be allowable as primary sources, but unfortunately I am not a member of the Transformers World forum (I've been meaning to get around to it, honest!) so I can't see the jpegs in order to give an opinion. They would need to be permanently archived somewhere (if legal, archive.org would do) in order to qualify for Wikipedia. --FormerIP (talk) 02:37, 3 January 2011 (UTC)

Are these academic papers reliable?

This is in regard to a recent AfD, but since this is not the place for discussing whether AfDs were properly closed I won't point to it here. In discussion subsequent to the closure, the closing admin explained that he did not feel that the following four sources were reliable:

  • Java, Akshay; Kolari, Pranam; Finin, Tim; Oates, Tim (2006), "Modeling the spread of influence on the blogosphere", Proceedings of the 15th International World Wide Web Conference (PDF).
  • Busker, Rebecca Lucy (2008), "On symposia: LiveJournal and the shape of fannish discourse", Transformative Works and Cultures, 1, doi:10.3983/twc.2008.0049.
  • Fiesler, Casey (2008), "Everything I need to know I learned from fandom: how existing social norms can help shape the next generation of user-generated content", Vanderbilt Journal of Entertainment Law & Practice, 10: 729–762.
  • Hellekson, Karen (2010), "History, the trace, and Fandom Wank", in Urbanski, Heather, Writing and the Digital Generation: Essays on New Media Rhetoric, McFarland, pp. 58–69, ISBN 9780786437207.

I disagree: I believe that as peer-reviewed academic works (two journal articles, a chapter in an edited book, and a paper in a peer-reviewed conference) they clearly fall under WP:RS#Scholarship, bullet 2. The material they were being used to source is a web site that is the main subject of the book chapter, that has about a page of material in the two journal articles, and that is mentioned more trivially (but named as one of 50 most influential blogs) in the conference paper. What I would like to get here is a sense of the community on whether these are indeed reliable sources. —David Eppstein (talk) 22:03, 1 January 2011 (UTC)

The Proceedings of the 15th International World Wide Web Conference are certainly RS. It's a bona-fide conference, and in computer science, conference proceedings generally rank with journals. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 00:28, 2 January 2011 (UTC)
All look to be reliable for the purpose. The link in the first one has gone dead, but you don't need a link if you have full bibliographical details. Itsmejudith (talk) 10:28, 2 January 2011 (UTC)

I am the person who created the AfD in question. Because I initially handed the situation very poorly, I opted to sit out of the AfD. I have followed this fallout since the Fandom Wank was deleted, and I have to speak my mind at this point.

WP:RS reads: Wikipedia covers notable topics—those that have been "noticed" to a significant degree by independent sources. GNG also states ...not every person, business, or street can be considered notable, so on such topics, the line has to be further drawn. (I would assume this applies to websites as well.) According to Wikipedia: Party and person (which looks to be an essay and not WP policy): Wikipedia should not have articles on any topic that third-party sources have never written about, or have published only trivial, routine, or passing mentions. David has stated that two out of the four sources he is asking about have "about a page of material". This simply isn't true; one could not make a page of material on the first three sources combined. Let's look them over.

  • The first source - the Conference - lists the Fandom Wank url twice in a table. WP:NOT: "Notability and lists" section states: The fact that sources discuss a specific X (or even several individual Xs) does not in itself mean that all Xs are notable, or that Xs are a notable topic. To establish notability, the sources must discuss Xs as a group or set. There is no mention of Fandom Wank anywhere in the entire seven-page paper. I believe this would not be an RS because the mention is trivial; even David acknowledged this could be the case.
  • The second ("Modeling the course...") is two paragraphs (not pages) in a 34-page paper. A legitimate place to start, but the mention is both passing and routine. Because of this, I believe this is not an RS.
  • The third reference (the symposium) mentions Fandom Wank in four sentences, with no sources other than a link back to FW's home page. The piece is about LiveJournal, with FW mentioned only in passing, which is why I don't believe this is an RS.
  • The fourth, IMO, doesn't meet any of those criteria, but has another problem. It is a book with a (mostly) full chapter largely concentrating on single incident that occurred in Fandom Wank, not Fandom Wank itself. We see lots of third party sources in the chapter, but virtually none of them relate to Fandom Wank, but to fandom. The sources in regards to Fandom Wank itself come directly from Fandom Wank. (This also looks to be a problem with #2.) WP:RSEX states under "uses of electronic and online sources": Material from bulletin boards and forum sites, Usenet, wikis, blogs and comments associated with blog entries should not normally be used as sources. These media do not have adequate levels of editorial oversight or author credibility and lack assured persistence. David's source is based on the book, but the book's sources where FW is mentioned are the FW entries and the FW wiki. I'm not what this would be considered. Original research? Conflict of interest? Lack of verifiability? Reliable and okay?

I believe three out of four fail the requirement of reliable sources as far as Fandom Wank as as an article is concerned. These sources could probably be used in an article about fandom, or fanfic, or snark communities, but not about Fandom Wank. The fourth source, I think, is the one that needs the most clarification. Andrewowen2000 (talk) 12:28, 2 January 2011 (UTC) A source is a source, of course, of course...

While such a long detailed analysis would have been very welcome in the AfD, I think it is out of place here, since it is about the significance and depth of coverage of these sources rather than their reliability. WP:GNG treats nontriviality of sources (what you seem to be discussing) as a separate issue from their reliability. What I want to discuss here is just a very specific question: can these sources be considered reliable for what they happen to say about the web site? —David Eppstein (talk) 18:04, 2 January 2011 (UTC)
David, I'm not all that interested in what you feel is "very welcome" as far as I'm concerned, particularly since you seem to be clinging to the verifiable part of the AfD while completely ignoring the notable part.
Now, other than the gushing love fest that is the fourth source what do they say about the website? The first one doesn't say at all, other than listing FW's URL. The second and third are trivial mentions, which is why I asked whether you could even consider them sources for Fandom Wank. The fourth is little a gushing lovefest, but I'd like to see that one clarified, for the record.
So, a summary:
- You: Can these sources be considered reliable for what they happen to say about the web site?
- Me: I wouldn't think so, because the three of the four sources are saying little to nothing at all.
Short enough for you? Andrewowen2000 (talk) 22:05, 2 January 2011 (UTC)
I hardly think that ranking a web site as one of the 50 most influential in the world is "saying nothing". But my reason for attempting to restrict the topic here is not that I'm uninterested in the rest of the AfD; it's because it's off-topic for this board. This is not WP:DRV, I have not taken the AfD to DRV, I don't intend to take the AfD to DRV, and I don't want to take the blame for starting an off-topic discussion here. —David Eppstein (talk) 09:19, 3 January 2011 (UTC)
I hardly think that ranking a web site as one of the 50 most influential in the world is "saying nothing". No, but listing nothing but the URL is. We won't even get started on how they are defining "influence", or who they are to define it in the first place. And you (or anybody else) has yet to explain the reliability of your other three sources - two of which have no sources at all, other than FW links. Three, if you include your beloved first source. Andrewowen2000 (talk) 11:52, 3 January 2011 (UTC)
A reliable source does not achieve its reliability by some sort of homunculus argument in which its reliability comes from its own sources. It achieves its reliability by going through a process of being vetted by multiple people before being published. That vetting, by referees and editors, is exactly what happens to peer-reviewed academic publications, which all four of these are. My claim is that by virtue of undergoing peer review and publication they become reliable sources for the factual claims that they make. (Of course, that doesn't guarantee that what they say is true, or that their factual claims are nontrivial, but we can't guarantee that for any of the sources we use.) —David Eppstein (talk) 17:32, 3 January 2011 (UTC)
And what, exactly, was claimed? Nobody is going to argue that peer reviews are not reliable in and of themselves, which makes this DRV masquerading as RS/N to be a waste of time. I've said my piece, and I've made my point. You don't want consensus - or even discussion - but approval. Good luck. Andrewowen2000 (talk) 22:29, 3 January 2011 (UTC)
The closer of the AfD, in a discussion on his talk page after the closure, expressed the opinion that part of the reason for his deletion close was that the discussion had persuaded him that the sources were not reliable. I disagreed, pointing to the policy that (in my reading, and perhaps yours) clearly includes peer-reviewed academic papers as reliable sources, and he told me to take it here if I wanted to persuade him of their reliability. I was hesitant, because I was afraid of getting exactly the reaction I provoked from you: an attempt to re-litigate the AfD. I don't want to re-litigate the AfD; I don't see much chance of persuading DRV that it was improperly closed, but I think it would be helpful to persuade the closing admin that he misinterpreted our policies on reliability so that in future his closes don't make the same mistake. Instead, here we are, with you attempting to re-litigate the AfD anyway. Maybe now that you've signed off from here we can get some other participants to be more constructive. —David Eppstein (talk) 23:41, 3 January 2011 (UTC)

Although I found Andrewowen's approach to this question rather unhelpful, I think he does bring up a valid question, which is, what statements were these sources used to source?

  • The WWW conference paper was used to support the sentence "A 2006 study of approximately 1.3 million blogs ranked Fandom Wank among the 50 most influential blogs according to its pagerank and also according to an alternative greedy algorithm for selecting blogs in order by their influence."
  • The Busker paper was used to support the sentence "The portion of fandom hosted by LiveJournal is a particularly frequent target of these discussions, and many Fandom Wank participants are also active on LiveJournal." Here, "these discussions" refers to the discussions posted on the web site in question.
  • The Fiesler and Hellekson papers were used to describe and contrast two conflicting views of the role of the web site: a quote from Fiesler was used to support the view that the web site's role is to enforce social norms, while a quote from Hellekson was used to support the view that the web site's role is to document the history of its community.
  • Separately, the Fiesler paper was used to support the notability of the web site: the article stated that Fiesler called it "perhaps most notable" among several sites devoted to introspection in the fandom community.
  • The Hellekson paper was also used to document the etymology of the site's name from a British slang term.

Are they reliable sources for these statements? Note that I am not asking whether these statements together constitute the "significant coverage" that WP:GNG also requires of an article, only whether they are reliably sourced. —David Eppstein (talk) 00:04, 4 January 2011 (UTC)

The_Advocate as a reliable source

The_Advocate is a well-established, even venerable magazine serving the gay community. A reference to an Advocate interview with musician Spencer Day in which he self-identified as gay was removed from the article and blanked and deleted from the discussion page as the information was apparently deemed "disparaging" or "threatening". At what point can a published interview with an article subject be considered a "reliable source"? And since when has even the DISCUSSION that a person is openly gay become an "attack" or "disparaging"? Some guidance here? 160.111.254.17 (talk) 16:45, 3 January 2011 (UTC)

Oops, here is a link to the interview in question: http://www.advocate.com/Arts_and_Entertainment/Music/Brand-New_Day 160.111.254.17 (talk) 16:50, 3 January 2011 (UTC)

The "self identification" seems absent - there is no simple statement on the order of "I am gay" in the article. Rather it beats about the bush a great deal. Even the apparent question about him being an "out articst" manages to leave the issue open. Is there a stronger source for this claim in a BLP? Collect (talk) 16:58, 3 January 2011 (UTC)
I'd say that one can only take Day's comments as a confirmation that he considers himself gay:
Was there any hesitation for you being an out artist?
Oh yeah, I think its still a really big deal. It’s a challenge for a lot of my friends still to do it. The record industry is not doing well, so I think any variable or challenge for them to sell you and not just do the typical, matinee idol, Jonas Brothers thing makes it a detraction ... at the very least, not a good business move. I think that’s one of the really great things Rufus Wainwright and k.d. lang have done, is to blaze the trail and hopefully get it to the point where it’s like mentioning my eyes are brown. What I do, the causes I’m behind, that’s what’s important. Who I am, unless it is particularly relevant, has no place in my music.
The only question in my mind is whether Day's sexuality is relevant to an article about him. AndyTheGrump (talk) 17:11, 3 January 2011 (UTC)

I had also included another source, which I'm not going to push as "reliable" but it has similar commentary: http://greginhollywood.com/singer-spencer-day-tells-greg-in-hollywood-why-hes-publicly-out-i-want-to-be-part-of-building-a-bridge-29760

We are not talking about "outing" a closeted person here. It seems clear that, by agreeing to discuss the subject with a well-known gay magazine, he himself considers it relevant and wants the information to be out there (even as he cautions that it's not the sole thing defining him). Not to mention that he has been active in several gay-related causes. Aside from the "reliable source" issue, I guess what I found oddest was that this was considered inappropriate even on the discussion page. 160.111.254.17 (talk) 17:32, 3 January 2011 (UTC)

Editor adding poor sources to NY 112

An editor insists on sourcing claims on New York State Route 112's history section with a myriad of unreliable sources, such as self-published sources, e-mails, or photos used to source opinion claims. He's been raked over the coals for this on Talk:New York State Route 112, but given the lack of edits to the article since the last post to the talk page and the fact that the editor has edited other items since that time, I doubt any of it sunk in. I'd post something to the talk page myself, but given my prior history with this editor, I don't anticipate a positive outcome. Perhaps if other, non-road editors examined the article and commented on the talk and/or removed poorly sourced statements from the article, it would sink in better. TIA. – TMF 18:46, 3 January 2011 (UTC)

Trying to help out. Ravensfire (talk) 23:09, 3 January 2011 (UTC)

More from the above Editor...

Over at the above Article( Fingerpoke of Doom ) the same editor has now added new sources, whose Reliability is questionable. I would simply remove them, but the editor has accused me of "disruptive editing" and "vandalism", so I'm bringing them up here....

1. [50]

This is a fan website. While there is a book of the same name, this piece is NOT written by the author of the book, and appears to be nothing more than fan fiction. Certainly this is not a Reliable Source?

2. [51]

Not only is this piece irrelevant to the Article, but is the website wrestleview a Reliable Source?

3. [52]

No idea what this is supposed to be as it's a Dead Link, there though ARE commercials for "international dating". But it was supposedly from a site called "Wrestling Digest". Is this possibly a Reliable Source?

4. Overdoing stuff. For instance the editor gives BOTH

[53]

AND simply the text

WWE RAW USA Network Detroit Michigan 2009-08-31

as two separate "Reliable Sources". Of course, NEITHER(or is that just ONE?) makes any reference whatsoever to the January 4 1999 Nitro, let alone that it was a "pivotal moment" or anything at all!

Like I said I have removed these sources, but was then bombarded with warnings for "disruptive editing" and "vandalism", being "blinded by a vendetta", and threats of blocking by the person who inserted them. Seeker of the Torch (talk) 08:17, 1 January 2011 (UTC)

(1) is being used to source the fact that "fingerpoke of doom" is a nickname for an event. On the site in question,it is used as a nickname. The site has editorial control (by an author who is an established expert in the subject area with three published books about the topic) and is a long-running site that has been discussed in various, reliable, non-wrestling news sites. (2) is being used to reference the fact that a wrestler returned on this episode after two months absence. I believe that a few factors combine to make it a reliable source: it is well established, as it has been around for twelve years, per this, they do not publish unsolicited articles, and they have an established staff that has gone through an application process, and it has been discussed in the Toronto Sun and Ottawa Sun (see the January 12, 2003 update here) combined with the fact that a SLAM! Wrestling reporter appeared on a radio show with a WrestleView reporter (mentioned in the 2008 news section here) indicate that SLAM! Wrestling, an unquestionably reliable source, accepts WrestleView as a reliable source. While I understand that the radio show certainly does not establish reliability on its own, I note that the vast majority of reliable reporters would hardly be willing to do a broadcast with a complete hack. To an extent, it puts them on the same level. Based on these factors, I believe that the source is sufficiently reliable to source something that could easily be sourced with "cite episode". (3) Likewise, while the link doesn't work, Wrestling Digest is certainly not just a "dirtsheet", as it has editorial control. It is also important to note that the information it sources also has a second source (Canadian Online Explorer) to verify the statement, which again could be sourced with "cite episode", as it is a statement of what happened on a television show with no analysis provided. (4) States that the wrestlers were watching moments on old television shows, and is combined with an article from The Sun, which states the specific moments. As such, the reference is being used to source the names of the wrestlers who were watching the television. It is also sourced with (5), which is a "cite episode" reference to the program itself. The editor who is challenging this source has been on Wikipedia for fewer than three weeks, which has clearly not been enough to allow him to familiarize himself with policies and reference types, as "cite episode" is certainly sufficient to source a plot summary. GaryColemanFan (talk) 16:57, 1 January 2011 (UTC)
Incidentally, the user who brought this up has been blocked indefinitely as a sock puppet of a banned user. GaryColemanFan (talk) 05:59, 5 January 2011 (UTC)

Free Copts and 2011 Alexandria bombing

There is a dispute relating to the 2011 Alexandria bombing article that hinges on whether or not Freecopts.net is an RS. In the article's talk page and throughout the article's edit history, one side says the website "is in fact one of the most, if not the most respected source of news in the Coptic community", whilst the other claims it is an unreliable source, which is then challenged with "says who exactly?" Other people's opinions on this would be useful. Ericoides (talk) 22:18, 3 January 2011 (UTC)

I am against the inclusion. I don't know enough about wikipedia policy, so maybe I confused WP:RS and WP:COI as another user pointed out on the talk page, but I feel such drastic words, specifically, "The scattered body parts were covered with newspapers until they were brought inside the church after some Muslims started stepping on them and chanting Jihadi chants." hold such a strong accusation against Muslims that they require a VERY reliable source. I'll quote another user who said "extrordinary claims require extrordinary sourcing." Furthermore, I do believe that we can express this information, aka WP:NOTCENSOR, while reducing the chance that these words will insight violence. I am worried that people would have violent thoughts against Egyptian Muslims after reading such a claim... Even if another source is provided, I would like different wording... Tim.thelion (talk) 22:30, 3 January 2011 (UTC)
Per About Us page, a source that solely exists to lobby in the perceived interests of the Coptic minority. If editors do present evidence that Freecopts.net represents the majority viewpoint of the Coptic minority, then this source is usable as a primary sources (with secondary sources backup). But in light of the statement "We do not claim to represent the Coptic people as a whole politically or otherwise in any official capacity" in the About Us page, are there any other evidences that shows the Freecopts.net represents the majority viewpoint of Coptic minority? Jim101 (talk) 22:33, 3 January 2011 (UTC)
An article like this should be written up from the coverage of AP, the BBC and similar mainstream news sources. Itsmejudith (talk) 22:59, 3 January 2011 (UTC)
Another, more main stream, source presents a different story: http://www.time.com/time/world/article/0,8599,2040491,00.html I'm not saying it's true either, from Prague, I really can't see anything that's gping on in Egypt, but.... Tim.thelion (talk) 23:45, 3 January 2011 (UTC)
The article in question http://english.freecopts.net/english//index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=1180&Itemid=2 at freecopts.net is cited to the news agency http://www.aina.org/index.shtml and the author Mary Abdelmassih. I was able to verify that Mary Abdelmassih reports for aina with the aina search function... There is also a slight problem that the sentence in question appears to have been copy pasted from the article, but I don't think we need to worry about that now... Tim.thelion (talk) 01:34, 4 January 2011 (UTC)

This is a clear case of nothing more than a phobia of islamophobia. The article is not saying "Muslims are bad people". Nor is the article saying "every Muslim is stamping on Coptic corpses screaming jihadi chants". It does not even say "Muslims were justified by the Koran in stamping on corpses" as indicated here (http://www.adnkronos.com/IGN/Aki/English/Security/Egypt-Edict-posted-to-jihadist-websites-legitimises-church-attack_311489867679.html)

So at the very least, it is not even a critique of a particular religion.

It is describing the bare minimum - that a number of people, who were Muslims, and because it's quite obvious from Egypt's history of persecution of Copts, that they would be Muslims (since it is hardly imaginable that a Copt would chant jihadi chants on their former comrades) , committed an unspeakable act.

Otherwise every IRA attach should have any hint of "Catholic" removed - we all know how "Catholic" the [IRA] were.

But no, we can't state that some Muslims did this! Why? How is this inflammatory? We have yet to see a reason. I am worried that people would have violent thoughts against Egyptian Muslims after reading such a claim... is ridiculous. I think the current worry should be toward the 10% persecuted and blown up Copts. But that's a red herring - and more so of a red herring are the [lack of] "reasons" given for not including this

If including it worries you for the safety of Egyptian Muslims - because there are so many people out there stupid enough to think there friendly Egyptian living across the street has something to do with an event on the other side of the world - why not remove every eveil deed committed by anyone! What about every Catholic priest being viewed as a pedophile, because of a small percent, less than among US public school teachers - should we censor articles on those pedophilia cases? Think, please. 98.176.12.43 (talk) 01:33, 4 January 2011 (UTC)

The question here is whether the claim is A from a reliable source, and B true. As to the wording, if the claim is true the claim can go in. I just think that the wording should be euphamised as much as possible... Tim.thelion (talk) 01:42, 4 January 2011 (UTC)
The search is on for another source to contest or confirm then. 98.176.12.43 (talk) 02:25, 4 January 2011 (UTC)
"FreeCopts is a major source of reliable information for the majority of the Coptic minority worldwide." This is a simple truth, and I'm not sure how exactly you want me to support it!!! When any Copt wants to read about unbiased and non-governmentally-tainted news concerning the Copts (especially in English), they refer to either A) FreeCopts or B) CoptsUnited. You can ask any Copt in the world about that, but I don't know exactly how to prove it. It's like asking us to prove that it's the earth that rotates around the sun and not the opposite. --Coptic101 (talk) 02:54, 4 January 2011 (UTC)
Even if 100% of Copts believe it, that still doesn't nessesarilly make it WP:RS. I'm not sure why. I personally don't like WP:RS belief that only "mainstream media" is capable of reporting the truth. Indeed, I'm inclined to blieve that the main stream media is not the best source of truth. However, just imagine if every bit of slander from a hypothetical sect of Islam was taken as truth on wikipedia, and that sect of Islam published things in their newspapers such as "The Copts kidnapped, beat, and raped two women who attempted to free themselves and convert to Islam..." and was quoted in this article. I'm sure I could find an article which said that. I could also find an article from a source believed by 100% of athiests which said that god does not exist. Or from sceptics which said that faith is nothing more than guess work. Or from radical sceptics who questioned whether the attack even happened, and whether Egypt exists or if reallity is nothing but illusion(I'm pretty sure there are more people who believe that then there are Copts, so...). Tim.thelion (talk) 03:38, 4 January 2011 (UTC)
I'm going to have to argue against that Tim. See, it's unlikely a 10% minority would, in a country whereby Islamic law (mandating severe punishment for apostasy, proselytism or criticism of their religion) is at the least a great influence in the laws of Egypt, kidnap 2 women from a 90% majority. As for the other papers you've cited, I think it's a fallacy to assert their reliability with freecopts. That is not what you are doing, I see that -you are merely playing the devil's advocate. But I think we can escape any risks of going down a slippery slope, due to the fact that the "unreliability" of freecopts, if it has any, which it has not been shown to have (and therefore is innocent being not proven guilty) is far removed from the bias and unreliability a website might have concerning women being kidnapped by a Christian minority against a Muslim majority. In fact, these cases clearly testify to the opposite:
  • http://www.asianews.it/index.php?l=en&art=17231&theme=5&size=A
  • http://www.worthynews.com/8119-breaking-news-saudi-forces-free-kidnapped-christian-girls-in-yemen
  • http://www.crossrhythms.co.uk/articles/life/Christian_Girls_Kidnapped_In_Egypt_And_Forced_To_Convert_To_Islam/22375/p1/
  • http://www.asianews.it/news-en/Kidnapped-Christian-girls,-judge-ratifies-marriage-and-conversion-12771.html
  • http://aknews.com/en/aknews/3/206413/


98.176.12.43 (talk) 04:06, 4 January 2011 (UTC)

A source is reliable because it has not proven to be unreliable? First of all, per the principle of WP:BURDEN, all sources are presumed to be unreliable until proven reliable, so don't dodge the question. Second of all, what does religion/ethnicity/truth has to do with the reliability of a source? Which part of the "third-party, published sources with a reputation for fact-checking and accuracy" criteria (per WP:RS) is based on the above three factors? We can ignore the "third-party" criteria for now if we are looking at a primary source usage, but the "reputation for fact-checking and accuracy" still need to be proven with tangible evidence instead of the philosophical notion of truth. Seriously, the laziest defense people could form here is a Google search and a freecopts-is-reliable-since-x-numbers-of-other-RS-are-using-it argument. By going with "a source is reliable because it is not proven unreliable" is beyond lazy.
From my previous experiences in dealing with topics like this, there are only two kinds of sources that can be reliably cited. 1) Third-party, published sources with a reputation for fact-checking and accuracy or 2) THE official mouthpieces of the parties involved in the conflict. Which category does freecopts belong and where is the evidence? Jim101 (talk) 07:31, 4 January 2011 (UTC)
Agree with Jim. Free Copts website gives little information about the organisation, but it must count as either 1) an advocacy group or 2) an online current affairs magazine, or 3) both. If we treat as 1) it can eventually be cited for its own opinion, provided that it is a notable group, and with due regard to the problems of covering current events as they are emerging, i.e. it may not be appropriate to carry any commentary at all yet. If we treat as 2) we need to know that it is a notable magazine with a good reputation for fact-checking. Itsmejudith (talk) 09:56, 4 January 2011 (UTC)
To Jim: I never said it is reliable. I said that it is innocent of being unreliable. There's a difference. One of them is a negative claim - the other is what you are falsely accusing me of saying - which I never did. It is not guilty of being unreliable. And WP:BURDEN says nothing of the kind that you assert. But contrary to me having the burden of the proof, the people who are making the assertions and contentions are the ones who claimed it unreliable. So way to go with the fallacy of authority there, throwing around a few wikipedia rule links that don't actually back up what you say is ironic considering that you are judging how the article is being cited, and have shown poor skill in backing your own claims. Your assertion that I am lazy is an ad hominem and furthermore no more truthful than a skeptic is lazy for refusing to believe in an unsubstantiated claim - like that freecopts is unreliable. Now then, you're asking for evidence that freecopts is reliable? How can such evidence be presented when the coptic community is so unrepresented, so unheard off (and consequently so easy a target)? Judge for yourself the arbitrary and relative information you seek here: http://www.statbrain.com/www.freecopts.net/.
Okay, now I'm confused...if you refuse to characterize Freecopts.net as reliable, then what are the differences between "not reliable" and "unreliable" sources? "Not reliable" sources are somewhat better than "unreliable" sources thus it shouldn't be excluded from Wikipedia? Huh?
Furthermore, at first you refuse to provide evidence, now you even refuse to obey Wikipedia rules because it somehow insults Coptic POV? WP:V (which includes WP:BURDEN) is the core foundation of Wikipedia, and it specifically states "The burden of evidence lies with the editor who adds or restores material." It is you who wants to add materials from Freecopts.net, but I need to provide evidences before raising questions on Freecopts.net reliability?
Finally you provided data from a web traffic monitor site as evidence of notability. Well, freecopts.net has a daily visitor of 7,096 (out of a total Coptic population of 20,000,000, or 0.035 percent of the total population). By comparison Xinhua has a daily visitor of 3,873,868 out of 1,338,612,968 Chinese (0.2%), while Fox News had a daily visitor of 3,872,424 out of 308,745,538 Americans (1%). Both Fox News and Xinhua are often rejected here as unreliable sources, and you were trying to prove that Freecopts.net could be 10 times worse? Did you even took the time to form an argument before shouting no one bothered to listen to you? And you were saying you are not too lazy to form a proper argument? Jim101 (talk) 05:18, 5 January 2011 (UTC)

a military as a reliable source on their own targets

Over at List of Palestinian rocket attacks on Israel, 2011 I find myself facing multiple editors who are reverting the article to include " Israeli Air Force responded by targeting a Hamas terrorist activity center in northern Gaza and a weapons manufacturing facility in the central Gaza Strip" and sourcing that to In Response to Rocket Fire, IAF Targets Two Hamas-Linked Sites in the Gaza Strip, IDF Spokesperson 01-01-2011. (IDF is Israeli Defense Forces - i.e., the Israeli military.) It seems to me that this is a primary source that one cannot assume is non-biased -- nothing against the Israeli military in particular, militaries on both sides of almost all conflicts have made dubious claims about the targets they've hit and the impact. I'm open to being convinced otherwise. (Unfortunately, such convincing is not coming from the editors I am dealing with, who are reverting without edit summaries and not engaging my statements on the talk page.) I'm trying to replace it with " Israeli Air Force responded by targeting what they claimed were a Hamas terrorist activity center in northern Gaza and a weapons manufacturing facility in the central Gaza Strip", as the cited source is reliable for the force having made such a claim. --Nat Gertler (talk) 23:21, 3 January 2011 (UTC)

Your approach ("the cited source is reliable for the force having made such a claim") is WP:OR; theirs (the "multiple editors") seems to me to be POV-pushing and is entirely questionable. The IDF source is certainly not an RS, for the reasons you have given. Ericoides (talk) 23:37, 3 January 2011 (UTC)
Agree that the IDF is not a reliable source for statements of fact here. Ideally, a third-party source should be found. Alternatively, the IDF source could be used and attributed in the way you suggest ("...what they claimed..."). I don't think this is OR - we attribute statements all the time - although it is still one-sided and a way of avoiding it should be sought. --FormerIP (talk) 00:29, 4 January 2011 (UTC)
The IDF is reliable for what they publicly claim to have targeted as SPS opinion. They are not reliable for what they targeted as that is a matter of fact. Find secondaries for what they actually targeted. If the what the IDF claims to have targeted is encyclopaedically notable, use them for their own claims. Fifelfoo (talk) 00:33, 4 January 2011 (UTC)
The Israel Defence Forces website is not a reliable source for facts. TFD (talk) 00:37, 4 January 2011 (UTC)
It's a contentious issue, and I don't think a primary source is satisfactory in such an instance. A secondary should be used, and if the primary source differs from the secondary source then the primary source should be included to present their version of events. In the absence of a secondary source the information should not be included. Betty Logan (talk) 00:39, 4 January 2011 (UTC)
I see two issues here, the general case of targetting decisions and the specific case of sourcing IDF statements and targets.
First I think you need to be clear on what you mean by targetting, in a military context that would mean the legal and operational identification of legitimate targets and the creation of a corresponding target pack. That is different from what the munitions were launched against and where the munitions landed. The latter are not targetting.
In this instance until such time as the targetting material is placed in the public domain there is no way to demonstrate what the target actually was. I would suggest wordings along the lines of IDF have stated that.... Personally I would avoid the use of IDF have claimed... as one could easily infer that the author believes otherwise. Merely state the facts, and let the reader come to their own conclusion rather than leading them by the nose. If, on the other hand, there is some debate around targetting decisions and statements then represent the debate in text, at which point the use of a pejoraative term like claimed could be used as long as it's a reasonable reflection of the relative merits of the arguments.
ALR (talk) 12:00, 4 January 2011 (UTC)
Agree with ALR's well-stated analysis. And yes, "claimed" is a "word to avoid" ... for the reasons ALR mentions, coincidentally.--Epeefleche (talk) 15:39, 4 January 2011 (UTC)
i dont think it should reverted because the article is not "reason for rocket attacks" and seems to be "list of rocket attacks" so the reason aside its still a rocket attack whether supported or opposed by anyone. words like "terrorist" are not npov here, ut it would be fie to add a Hamas target is sourced elsewhere too. (pov doesnt cancel out pov)
As for the source, i think we can use it here. they do after all acknowledge full well carryign it out, although the wording can be changed. try also adding an additional source and asking for admin intervention for waht is clearly vandalism and warring reverts without reason.(Lihaas (talk) 17:08, 4 January 2011 (UTC));
Fair 'nuff on the "claimed" concerned, and the article now uses "described". We've got another editor chiming in with a more appropriate source, and while that source only states that the IDF named what their target was, the article has (for a few hours at least) been stable with stating it as in IDF statement. So I think all is relatively good at the moment; I'll take a look in a bit to see if we still have "targeted" in there and replace it with "fired upon" or somesuch if so. --Nat Gertler (talk) 19:55, 4 January 2011 (UTC)

Sources in Veganarchism

I'm wondering what people think of the sources here, especially the one (and it seems only one) published by Firestarter Press. The article looks like a bunch of OR and synthesis to me, but wiser heads might see otherwise. BECritical__Talk 02:20, 4 January 2011 (UTC)

I don't think it qualifies as a reliable source. The Brian Dominick source is listed at here at Amazon, and seems to be a propaganda piece. It seems to be published by a company called "Critical Mess Media" identified by only a PO Box and an email address ([email protected]). It looks like an SPS published by some vegan activism group. All the other bits are general animal rights/vegan stuff that seem to be dragged in to support the thesis put forward by Dominick. I'd nominate the article for deletion as a non-notable topic. All the sources make it look deceptively notable, but for the most part it is synthesis, and the only source that recognizes "veganarchism" as an ideaology/concept/subject is the Dominick source, which I don't think is RS. Betty Logan (talk) 03:43, 4 January 2011 (UTC)
Hey, thanks, that's what I thought but it's so well done I wanted more eyes on it (: BECritical__Talk 21:29, 4 January 2011 (UTC)

Professor Mobo Gao

Moved from [54]

There is a dispute over the inclusion of Mobo Gao, a Professor of Chinese Studies at the University of Adelaide [55], on the Mao: The Unknown Story and Great Leap Forward articles. One editor insisted on removal of Professor Gao as a source [56], suggesting that Gao is an employee of the Chinese Communist Party and follows party lines because he works for the Confucius Institute imbedded into the University of Adelaide[57][58]. He justifies this by using criticism of the Confucius Institute on its Wikipedia article as evidence [59], which I believe violates WP:SYN--PCPP (talk) 10:56, 4 January 2011 (UTC)

Runs a research centre in a respectable Australian university. Reliable source. If he takes a particularly pro Mao line then balance him with other scholars. Your point about synthesis doesn't come into it, because that relates to main article space, not to arguments on talk pages. Itsmejudith (talk) 11:06, 4 January 2011 (UTC)
Thanks for pointing that out.--PCPP (talk) 11:22, 4 January 2011 (UTC)
I'd second Itsmejudith. He ought to be balanced with other scholars anyway, of course, and more so if Gao represents a particular historiographic tendency, for completeness. Fifelfoo (talk) 22:42, 4 January 2011 (UTC)

Suzanne Somers and fluoride

Resolved

An IP has added the following to her article:

  • "Suzanne Somers is opposed to water fluoridation. <ref> The Malibu Times http://www.malibutimes.com/articles/2007/12/19/editorial/opinion/opinion1.txt <ref/>

This information isn't surprising considering her attitude toward pseudoscience and fringe subjects. The question for this board is whether we can allow use of this source, which is a posting by her on a public internet forum under "editorial / opinion". It's probably her, but anyone could have written that. Shouldn't we find a better source documenting her attitude on the subject? I suspect we can. -- Brangifer (talk) 22:44, 4 January 2011 (UTC)

Her blog contains similar anti-fluoridation sentiments: http://www.suzannesomers.com/Blog/post/Water-Fluoridation-Get-the-Facts.aspx If I understand correctly, her blog is a RS for her own article, but nowhere else. Could we use this source instead? -- Brangifer (talk) 22:47, 4 January 2011 (UTC)
Her book has got to be a RS for her opinion. -- Brangifer (talk) 22:49, 4 January 2011 (UTC)
Done. -- Brangifer (talk) 22:56, 4 January 2011 (UTC)

How to compile a list of programs

There is a discussion about which programs should be included in List_of_installation_software. Currently the list is based on whether given program (or its author) has an article in Wikipedia. However as noted on WP:RS "(...) Wikipedia articles (...) are not reliable sources for any purpose." (and there are other arguments against current sitiation mentioned in the talk page Talk:List_of_installation_software). So we (me and Ronz) came to conclusion that we need some reliable sources. Then there is a question what "reliable source" is in this case. Should the source merely confirm that given program exists? Or could it be a review? How are we to judge whether review is reliable (or should we judge it at all)? In particular we need to stablish reliablity of two links:

  1. http://www.installsite.org/pages/en/msi/authoring.htm
  2. http://www.appdeploy.com/reviews/sw_installaware_studio_2005.asp

Grobelny (talk) 20:25, 30 December 2010 (UTC)

But to establish notability, you want third-party sources such as InfoWorld, ComputerWorld, PC Magazine, etc. A Quest For Knowledge (talk) 21:17, 30 December 2010 (UTC)
What do you mean that it is acceptable as "source about itself"? We want to write about installation programs, not about appdeploy.
I hope we can all agree that Nullsoft_Scriptable_Install_System is notable. Yet none of those magazines mentions it. And article on WP does not mention any third party references either. Grobelny (talk) 22:37, 30 December 2010 (UTC)
It is completely acceptable and often done where lists are limited to entries that have articles on WP. To have an article on WP, topics should pass our notability guidelines, which nearly all of the time require reliable sources in the topic article. Thus, while you're correct that WP is not reliable itself, one can use the existence of a notable topic for that purpose. In other words, yes, what you're doing about reliable sources for installation software is one approach, there is nothing wrong with the present approach. --MASEM (t) 21:21, 30 December 2010 (UTC)
See my above comment. Plus I hope you have read my arguments in article's talk page. With many of those articles we have a problem that they are notable because they are on WP and they are on WP because they are notable. But probably for more than half of them we have no proof (ie. third party source) whatsoever. Grobelny (talk) 22:37, 30 December 2010 (UTC)
In order for a topic to be notable, it needs significant coverage in third-party reliable sources. This is explained in more detail at WP:Notability. Yes, the article on Nullsoft Scriptable Install System is poorly sourced (mostly primary sources and a forum posting). I did a search for sources, the the best I could come up with are these articles by Network World[60] and Windows IT Pro.[61] It's also briefly mentioned in this article by eWeek.[62] A Quest For Knowledge (talk) 00:05, 31 December 2010 (UTC)
Of those 3 IMHO only the first states something more than the fact that NSIS exists. In the other 2 NSIS might just be a typo (in fact eweek gives incorrect name!). And even the network world article doesn't state much (certainly less than 5% of claims made in article about NSIS). It doesn't list an features, bright sides, dark sides, plugins, nothing. The author is by no means an expert in software deployment (or at least he doesn't show that in the article). IMO that kind of coverage is by no means significant. Grobelny (talk) 19:16, 31 December 2010 (UTC)
Right. Which means NSIS might not technically be notable. Unfortunately, you're working on an article where there aren't a lot of good sources (according to Wikipedia's rules). Sorry, I'm not sure what else I can say. A Quest For Knowledge (talk) 21:28, 1 January 2011 (UTC)
Then we might just remove article about NSIS (as non-notable because of lack of significant coverage in reliable sources) and for than matter probably large portion of articles about other installation programs or even computer programs in general. Or we can accommodate Wikipedia's definition of reliable source and/or notability guidelines to this specific situation. So maybe in this situation sources such as installsite, mailing list messages or forum posts would be acceptable? I'm fine with either option (but would like the criteria to be common to all programs in given category). Grobelny (talk) 13:46, 2 January 2011 (UTC)
I don't know what you want me to say. I didn't make the rules. I'm just trying to answer your question. A Quest For Knowledge (talk) 17:13, 2 January 2011 (UTC)
I don't want hear anything in particular from you (hint: if anybody else is reading this discussion your opinions are much appreciated). I'm just wondering whether general Wikipedia guidelines can be bent in such cases as this one (installation software). Grobelny (talk) 17:31, 2 January 2011 (UTC)
Well, you can try asking the other editors on the article if they'd be willing to change the inclusion criteria. Right now, it's whether the program or its the author is notable. Perhaps they might be willing to change it to simply any program that has at least one reliable source about it? Or maybe 2? Or 3? Of course, they might not want to change the inclusion criteria, but you can always ask. A Quest For Knowledge (talk) 13:26, 3 January 2011 (UTC)

Appdeply markets it's own installation software and as such must probably can't be seen as independent of the subject.

I agree that installsite seems to be self published, and as such is unreliable. Taemyr (talk) 11:55, 5 January 2011 (UTC)

  1. ^ Alvarez, J.E. (2001). The Unofficial Guide to Transformers 1980s Through 1990s Revised & Expanded 2nd Edition. Schiffer Publishing Ltd. p. 119. ISBN 0764313649.
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