Template talk:Use mdy dates

Active discussions


How about recommending a place to put the template? JIMp talk·cont 11:10, 9 January 2009 (UTC)

<!-- dmy --> instead?Edit

Could we not achieve the same result simply using <!-- dmy -->? JIMp talk·cont 11:10, 9 January 2009 (UTC)

Actually, it might be better to create a hidden category like Category:Use dmy dates to be able to track marked articles rather than using a seemingly pointless template once expanded. ~ PaulT+/C 19:21, 14 January 2009 (UTC)
  • I had thought about using a transcluded category. How does one create a hidden category? Ohconfucius (talk) 14:57, 16 January 2009 (UTC)
Rather than the category transcluded via the template, I think Paul's suggesting using the category instead of the template. It makes sense to me—a far simpler solution. JIMp talk·cont 11:21, 18 January 2009 (UTC)

I have no objections to a category. We could even have subcategories to indicate at least one valid mismatch. However, categories don't support timestamps, as far as I know. So how would we focus audits? Lightmouse (talk) 14:56, 18 January 2009 (UTC)

So, if we use categories all you have to do is make sure the magic word __HIDDENCAT__ is in the body of the category. In lieu of the multiple templates, should we use Category:Use dmy dates and Category:Use mdy dates instead? In the interests of populating these categories more easily, I propose the template include only the relevant categories and be subst'ed so that the category is expanded into the body of the article (and nothing else). ~ PaulT+/C 19:57, 22 January 2009 (UTC)


Might it be good to move it to something humans can read also like {{Use dmy dates.}}? JIMp talk·cont 11:10, 9 January 2009 (UTC)

  • Done. it has been created as a redirects to the relevant simplified template. Ohconfucius (talk) 14:23, 11 January 2009 (UTC)


Many templates out there use timestamps. A timestamp could be useful to save rechecking the whole of Wikipedia, audits could focus on articles with the oldest timestamps. What do you guys think? Lightmouse (talk) 16:31, 16 January 2009 (UTC)

  • I agree it could be useful for your planning systematic sweeps. Ohconfucius (talk) 16:33, 16 January 2009 (UTC)

I suggest an optional parameter e.g. {{dmy|2009-01-16}} or {{dmy|20090116}}. I have also suggested an optional parameter to indicate number of valid mismatches in the article e.g. {{dmy|3|2009-01-16}} if there were three valid mismatches at the last audit. That will produce a smaller list and humans will have to process those in more detail. Lightmouse (talk) 16:42, 16 January 2009 (UTC)

I think a timestamp is a bad idea. It will just cause confusion for people. This is a date formatting template, adding a timestamp to this template will lead to people not understanding why there is a date in the template and it will quickly become a useless parameter. ~ PaulT+/C 18:37, 19 January 2009 (UTC)
  • You may well be aware, the system of time-stamping of templates is not new to WP. For example, {{cleanup}} has it, and a bot sweeps up from behind. Perhaps that's how Lightmouse imagines this will work? If so, we could write in explanation to the effect on the template page... Ohconfucius (talk) 03:19, 20 January 2009 (UTC)

"Sweeping up from behind" - that is a very good analogy of the intention. If you have 100 janitors and 10,000 rooms, the janitors need to know which rooms haven't been swept in a while. Resweeping all rooms, or sweeping rooms at random is inefficient. As with the other dated templates, the timestamp is not just for bots. It is also helpful for humans. Lightmouse (talk) 09:47, 20 January 2009 (UTC)

I'm familiar with how datestamps work on Wikipedia, but it is unclear how this will help this template. Every article doesn't need to be checked every X days, only those that have been edited recently. That is why I think a hidden category for each date format will work better than a maintenance template that won't be visible in the article at all. Conceivably every article on Wikipedia would end up being tagged by one of these template, which will cause quite a lot of overhead if the template's code is ever changed. I'm not convinced that a template makes sense and even then I not convinced we need to sort them by date last checked. If there needs to be a log and priority list, the bot should do that computation on its own and not have rely on the template to keep track of articles' last date maintenance dates. Each article's last edit date is already captured by MediaNiki so why shouldn't we use that existing system (with perhaps a priority given to pages with high viewcounts) to organize updates instead? ~ PaulT+/C 19:47, 22 January 2009 (UTC)

Template usageEdit

Why is this template being placed in the article wikitext itself? All similar templates (see, for example, Category:Varieties of English templates which has a very similar purpose) are placed on the talk page.
V = I * R (talk to Ohms law) 12:00, 10 January 2010 (UTC)

  • I created and in the hopes that it could make future automated maintenance easier. My idea was to incorporate these into the relevant scripts, so that we can potentially insert these templates to the top of any given article when work is done to unify the formats. This would indicate, in the body of the article, that work has been done to convert all dates (exc ISO) to a given format. Down the line, a bot, or a user with AWB, could maintain all those articles which have been so tagged, converting incorrectly formatted dates inserted subsequently. The tags can remain invisible, as at present, or they can be made to insert markers of some description like the star at the top of each featured article. Ohconfucius (talk) 02:44, 8 January 2009 (UTC)
    humm... I don't mind the template, but it's use on the main article wikitext is a bit bothersome. Even if (or especially if?) it's target audience is primarily bots and automated tools, it seems like a bad practice to start allowing non-content related "stuff" to go on the article page instead of the talk page. The varieties of English templates, as I mentioned above, serve as an apt comparison here. I could easily argue a similar intended use there, with a hook to AWB's typo fixer for example, and start including those templates on the article.
    V = I * R (talk to Ohms law) 16:31, 10 January 2010 (UTC)
Actually, I'de like to refer you to the earlier discussions which took place on Lightmouse's talk page (reffed above), and even earlier on WT:MOSNUM, although there wasn't as much interest (which is why I adjourned it to LM's page). I'm not sure how we could deal with this if the template was put on the talk page instead (ie how the maintenance can work). The template is invisible after all, and its positioning is not sensitive, thus not intrusive. I see its presence probably much like the {{DEFAULTSORT:}} template. Ohconfucius ¡digame! 16:47, 10 January 2010 (UTC)
Looking above, I see the same concerns (or, at least, very similar concerns) being brought up by User:Psantora and User:Jimp. You've been getting feedback but you seem to be ignoring it? Anyway, note that DEFAULTSORT is a mw:Help:Magic words, not a template. I'd classify that as more of a holdover of deprecated practices from the early 2000's then as something to use as justification for adding maintenance templates to article wikitext. Besides, it's easy enough to use something like AWB to gather lists of talk pages, and then flip the namespace of all the pages on the list to the main namespace. That's the main reason that pretty much all maintenance related "stuff" has long been moved to the talk pages (WikiProjects spring immediately to mind, here). It is slightly more complicated that way, but the benefit is that it's much more collegial.
V = I * R (talk to Ohms law) 21:49, 10 January 2010 (UTC)
With respect, I don't think you're being fair saying I ignored the concern. At no point did they did say it should not be embedded in the article, just that it a hidden cat might be preferable – easily achieved by slightly modifying this template. Ohconfucius ¡digame! 02:19, 11 January 2010 (UTC)
It's hidden and not intrusive in edit mode; so I don't see what the problem is. Tony (talk) 02:27, 11 January 2010 (UTC)

The drawback with putting it on the talk page is twofold. First to add it you have to do more work (and make sure it doesn't get archived), secondly the readers need to access two pages. Now I know there's a philosophy that says "if computers have to do more work so be it" but actually the work is human coding work for every coder who creates stuff dealing with this - and the result will probably be it being ignored, if not programming effort that could be spent usefully elsewhere will have been wasted. Rich Farmbrough, 02:55, 11 January 2010 (UTC).

Oh ad the varieties of English thing - many pages start with and HTML comment saying "This page is written in XXX English" ... Rich Farmbrough, 03:06, 11 January 2010 (UTC).
  • Here you go, a real solution: Wikipedia:Editnotice. Of course, right now you'll need an admin to create the editnotice page(s) because there are a few admins insistent that the editnotice pages should all be permanently fully protected, but since an edit notice is the exact intent of this "template" it would seem logical to me to work something out about converting this to a set of /Editnotice templates.
    V = I * R (talk to Ohms law) 00:01, 13 January 2010 (UTC)

There but not thereEdit

I am trying to figure out when this template was first placed in the Metre article. I edited an old version. The list of transcluded templates shows the Dmy template, but I cannot find the letters dmy in the edit window with a case-insensitive search. So why is it being reported as transcluded? Jc3s5h (talk) 23:22, 11 May 2010 (UTC)

You'll have to press "Show preview" once, otherwise it lists the templates transcluded on the current revision of the page, not the one you're editing. It mentions that oddity right above the list, too: "Pages transcluded onto the current version of this page" (emphasis mine).
Anywho, for such investigations, try http://wikipedia.ramselehof.de/wikiblame.php
Cheers, Amalthea 23:46, 11 May 2010 (UTC)
Thanks. Jc3s5h (talk) 23:49, 11 May 2010 (UTC)

Multiple date format templates?Edit

Please see the discussion at Template talk:Use ymd dates/doc#Multiple date format templates?. Jc3s5h (talk) 12:24, 30 August 2010 (UTC)

Edit request (TfD template)Edit

Gigs has nominated template:Use mdy dates for deletion here. As the instructions at wp:TFD#Listing a template say, I am using {{editprotected}} here to request that this line be added to the beginning of the template:

<noinclude>{{Tfd|{{subst:PAGENAME}}|Template:Use mdy dates}}</noinclude>

Thanks, Dynamic|cimanyD talk·edits 17:47, 8 September 2011 (UTC)

Done. JIMp talk·cont 00:53, 9 September 2011 (UTC)

Placement reduxEdit

Please place these at the bottom of the articles, not the top. At the top, it becomes additional clutter, on top of infoboxes etc., that is confusing to new contributors. At the bottom, it's closer to categories and so forth. -Pete (talk) 06:23, 20 September 2011 (UTC)

{{Tl:Dated maintenance category}}Edit

See Template:Dated maintenance category, {{Cat use dmy dates}} and {{Cat use mdy dates}} section. — Robert Greer (talk) 17:55, 1 November 2011 (UTC)

What would you like us to look at? I don't understand the point of this post. Jc3s5h (talk) 18:32, 1 November 2011 (UTC)

mea maxima culpaEdit

See Template talk:Dated maintenance category, {{Cat use dmy dates}} and {{Cat use mdy dates}} section. — Robert Greer (talk) 20:47, 1 November 2011 (UTC)

Which dates? need warning of universal scopeEdit

Template talk:Use dmy dates#Which dates? need warning of universal scope --P64 (talk) 21:00, 24 May 2012 (UTC)

reason paramEdit

When adding this template or {{Use dmy dates}} to articles lately, I've been adding a reason parameter (often reason=WP:STRONGNAT) to indicate the justification for using the chosen format. It's purely for documentation purposes currently, though I suppose it could be useful in the future to find related articles if a policy (like WP:DATERET) is changed. Any comments for/against adding this as a suggested param in the docs? —[AlanM1(talk)]— 13:00, 22 November 2012 (UTC)

I would like to see some preset values for this. Often I'm wondering what rationale there was to add the template. Usually it's just national ties or something, but sometimes it's seemingly just current major style or preference. —  HELLKNOWZ  ▎TALK 16:31, 22 November 2012 (UTC)
I never likened this to deletion- or copyright-related templates, where a reason is primordial, so such parameter was never envisaged. For the purposes of article maintenance, the additional parameter is removed when the bot(I wish)/script updates the articles for any changes and redates the template. Even if it isn't removed, I don't see much value in including this parameter, because in the vast majority of cases of which I am aware, once an article has been tagged or aligned whether dmy or mdy, it's unlikely ever to be changed. However, the date format is still open to challenge under principles enunciated in the Manual of Style, or if the article was mis-tagged. Again, to not complicate maintenance, I would prefer not to add this on a systematic basis. If, however, there is consensus to make note of such situations justifying the mdy or dmy choice, I would suggest an html comment to be inserted after the template but on the same line. -- Ohconfucius ping / poke 02:43, 23 November 2012 (UTC)

template can cause extra spaceEdit

When used at the top of articles (as the documentation currently says) this template can cause an extra newline to appear. For example, if the source starts,

{{Use mdy dates|date=April 2012}}
{{Infobox U.S. County
|county           = Essex County
|state            = Vermont

instead of

{{Use mdy dates|date=April 2012}}{{Infobox U.S. County
|county           = Essex County
|state            = Vermont

The first way is much nicer and should be allowed. How can this extra newline be prevented? Jason Quinn (talk) 03:40, 31 March 2013 (UTC)

  • Not every article has an infobox; some have other templates; a very small minority of articles go directly into headings (contrary to WP:LEAD). If really needed, I could modify the script so that it prepends without a line feed, but I'm not sure I would agree that it's really preferable or nicer. I seem to notice the convention is that each template goes on a line of its own. Although I haven't experimented, it's possible that the template insertion would cause undesirable displacement of other content. -- Ohconfucius ping / poke 10:24, 31 March 2013 (UTC)
  • I agree with you that putting each template on a separate line (like in my second example) is a good thing. It makes reading the source easier. Unfortunately, this template causes an extra newline when used in that way. This is sort of contrary to the "Wikipedia way" where it takes an empty line to cause an actual newline to appear in the rendered output. Since this template is meta-content, not content, it should affect the article visibly in the minimal way possible. Having the template insert whitespace like it's curently capable of doing serves no purpose but to cause confusion to readers and occasionally make the encyclopedia a bit uglier. I very often see articles with unusual whitespace in the lead and this is one (of many) templates that seem to be contribute to that. If you know how to make this template not introduce any characters (including the dreaded newline) to the rendered output, that'd be great. PS I'm not sure what you mean that going directly into headings is "contrary" to WP:LEAD or why it's relevant. My point is that
{{Use mdy dates|date=April 2012}}X
{{Use mdy dates|date=April 2012}}
should render identical regardless what "X" actually is (infobox, banner template, hatnote, lead paragraph, etc.) Just for completeness,
{{Use mdy dates|date=April 2012}}

should introduce a newline because there's a blank line there. Jason Quinn (talk) 00:01, 1 April 2013 (UTC)

Extra spaceEdit

There's an extra space at the end of this template that stretches pages like this (notice the line of white space at the top, at least in my browser). Please, administrator, place your cursor right at the right end of the line of text (where it has the >) and please press delete once to eliminate that extra space. Red Slash 00:10, 8 June 2013 (UTC)

  Not done: There is no superfluous whitespace in this template, nor in any of its subtemplates {{Dated maintenance category}} {{DMCA}} {{FULLROOTPAGENAME}} {{Ns has subpages}}.
I do see the extra blank line: that is one of the reasons that I prefer that templates like this, {{use British English}}, etc. should not be in the first section of the page, but in the last - I usually put them with {{coord}} (group 7 of WP:ORDER) - extra blank lines aren't so much of a problem there. --Redrose64 (talk) 08:47, 8 June 2013 (UTC)
Well,. that's nice of you to think that, but as a matter of fact they are placed at the beginning of articles; can you take out that one extra character, please, Redrose64? Red Slash 21:52, 8 June 2013 (UTC)
No, because there is no character to take out - unless you can inform me as to which specific character is the one causing the problem. --Redrose64 (talk) 22:07, 8 June 2013 (UTC)
What browser is that?
I always move such instructional-editorial templates to the top (where alone they are likely to work as intended) and also run them together on one line.
  • {tl|use british english} {tl|use dmy} {whatever}
--P64 (talk) 21:00, 15 June 2013 (UTC)

Try againEdit

So, the extra space is still there. Please, admin. Click on "edit", scroll to find the </noinclude> and click immediately to the right of the ">". Please then press the delete button. Then press save, and voila, the space will be removed. If you are incapable of doing this, please do not list the request as answered, and do accept my thanks for trying. Red Slash 06:05, 20 June 2013 (UTC)

If I do exactly as described above, nothing happens. It is a null edit, and is not recorded in the page history. There is no space to delete: there is a newline (specifically, a U+000A line feed), but every Wikipedia page - template or otherwise - ends with a newline, and these cannot be removed. Where are you still seeing problems? --Redrose64 (talk) 12:53, 20 June 2013 (UTC)
Okay, that's peculiar; no other page seems to have a "newline" so far as I can tell. In any case, the problem I saw at this diff seem to have been resolved by this edit to {{Infobox U.S. county}}. Thanks for your help and explanation. I apologize for my apparent ignorance and thank you again! Red Slash 08:37, 21 June 2013 (UTC)
It's easy to find the newline. Edit any page (or the last section of a page), click anywhere in the edit box, and (assuming you're using a Windows PC), press Ctrl+End. The cursor will move to the start of a blank line after the last text, not to the end of the text. Therefore there is a newline after the last text. --Redrose64 (talk) 08:55, 21 June 2013 (UTC)

Usage on articles that contain no datesEdit

I've started a discussion over on that other template's talk page that relates to this one as well. In order to keep the discussion centralized please contribute there, not here. —David Eppstein (talk) 15:56, 13 July 2013 (UTC)

Placement of templateEdit

This template's documentation says "Place this template near the top of articles", though I note that an editor above (#Placement redux, @Peteforsyth:)has asked for it to be placed nearer the bottom. It isn't mentioned in the list of "Order of article elements" at WP:ORDER. I've started a discussion at Wikipedia_talk:Manual_of_Style/Layout#Order_of_article_elements:_what_about_Italic_title.2C_Use_DMY_dates.2C_etc_.3F: do join in there if you have views. Thanks. PamD 14:54, 7 November 2014 (UTC)

PamD and anyone else interested: Please see Wikipedia talk:Manual of Style/Lead section#Placement of "Use" templates. —Anomalocaris (talk) 08:48, 19 March 2018 (UTC)


Why are articles tagged with this template. Is it mostly the result of whether the initial creator of an article used dmy or ymd? Or is there some other kind of reasoning involved, maybe depending on the article's subject? -- (talk) 03:01, 9 December 2014 (UTC)

I think it is to try and ensure that the page looks tidy by having all refferences use the same date.--Ditto51 (My Talk Page) 23:45, 17 January 2015 (UTC)
It's not just the dates in the references but throughout the article. Another reason to choose mdy over dmy would be context (e.g. if the article relates to a country which uses mdy). See WP:MOSNUM#Formats. Jimp 01:36, 19 January 2015 (UTC)

Relevant discussion at {{Use dmy dates}}Edit

Please note: There is a discussion going on {{Use dmy dates}} that is directly relevant to this template's documentation and parameters (as well as covering the interest in perhaps adding a new parameter to this template) – see: Template talk:Use dmy dates#Template's documentation concern... --IJBall (talk) 05:40, 4 April 2015 (UTC)

what objection to totally unifying date formatsEdit

The documentation says, "Due to there being some objection to totally unifying date formats within an article ..." What objection? Well, of course an MDY article can refer to "the 4th of July" or "Cinco de Mayo" and a DMY article can refer to the September 11 attacks. And of course, we wouldn't edit direct quotes of spoken or written words, or titles of books, chapters, or articles to comply with mdy dates. And of course, yyyy-mm-dd dates are acceptable in references. But aside from these few special cases, what are the objections to totally unifying date formats within an article? —Anomalocaris (talk) 22:54, 17 May 2015 (UTC)

I don't see how there could be any valid objection beside obvious ones like those you've mentioned. Jimp 00:33, 18 May 2015 (UTC)
Thanks for pointing it out. The wording was from an era when the semi-automated process of changing date formats was not so well refined or the idea of date alignment wasn't so widely accepted. It's clearly obsolete and I've now removed the phrase from the documentation. -- Ohc ¡digame! 02:55, 18 May 2015 (UTC)
It seems to me that the "common practice for archive and access dates to use the alternative ymd format" is also a hangover from that era. Once upon a time, these dates had to be entered as ymd for the citation templates to work properly. The idea was that the dates would be formatted according to user preferences. When autoformatting was thrown out, archive and access dates suddenly became ymd for all to see creating the impression that this was the done thing. However, it was never the intention that these dates should appear as ymd. Therefore I don't agree that "the archive and access date formats should not be altered when fixing dates". Furthermore, on some pages not all of the archive and/or access dates use a consistent format, in this case they definitely should be altered. Jimp 03:16, 19 May 2015 (UTC)
Why was autoformatting of dates thrown out? It seems to me that the most rational and reader-friendly approach is to always specify dates in YMD format, and then reformat them according to the reader's preference when the page is displayed. IMHO: since Wikipedia is an international encyclopedia, dates within it should be coded in conformance with ISO 8601. How those dates are presented to a reader should then be in control of that reader. After all, WP is not a static printed document: each page is dynamically formatted in real time when the user accesses the page. For WP to impose a date format on readers is impolite. Christopher Rath (talk) 15:43, 12 September 2019 (UTC)
Here are some links to the extensive discussions:
Jc3s5h (talk) 17:36, 12 September 2019 (UTC)
Thank you Jc3s5h for the background. From my reading of the historical discussion, it appears that those commenting objected to dates being cast as links. I would have objected to that concept too; however, casting dates as links was idiotic as dates should have been coded with markup and not links. In any case, it looks like this isn't something that will change anytime soon. So, I'll continue to write all my dates in ISO 8601 format and let bots and editors with too much time on their hands put them into some other format. Christopher Rath (talk) 02:48, 13 September 2019 (UTC)
ISO 8601 is a horrible choice for Wikipedia because it requires all dates be in the Gregorian calendar, and doesn't allow dates before 1583 without first asking permission from your readers, which is completely impractical in Wikipedia's case. Jc3s5h (talk) 03:07, 13 September 2019 (UTC)
A few things to note here:
  • ISO-8601 means yyyy-mm-dd but yyyy-mm-dd doesn't necessarily mean ISO-8601 - they are not synonymous.
  • I spend a lot of my time harmonising dates (among other things) and I definitely do not have too much time on my hands. I do this because I want WP to have a consistent, professional look instead of looking like it was written by bored 10-year olds. Editors that deliberately buck the system and rely on others to clean up their mess is like people who throw rubbish on the street and rely on others "with too much time on their hands" to clean up their mess.
  • Most of the auto formatting arguments (separate from the links issue) bogged down because the mdy format has some complications about whether a comma follows the year or not, depending on context which the computer has trouble figuring out. Eg "13 September 2019 is today's date" vs "September 13, 2019, is today's date" (trailing comma) vs "September 13, 2019 is today's date" (no trailing comma). See Wikipedia_talk:Manual_of_Style_(dates_and_numbers)/Archive_119#Date_autoformatting_example_ready_for_testing for examples of the complication.
  • References have recently added auto formatting. Luckily the trailing comma isn't an issue in this situation.  Stepho  talk  03:38, 13 September 2019 (UTC)
Re: "...doesn't allow dates before 1583 without first asking permission from your readers,..." This is trivial for WP to do: it's simply a setting in their preferences for how they would like to see dates presented.
Re: "dates before 1583" -- If a WP editor writes "January 1, 1500" or they write "1500-01-01", there is no semantic difference. Your objection doesn't make any sense to me. I realise that there are different historical calendars; but the solution is simply to either state that all WP dates are in Gregorian format, or to allow a mark-up tag that provides for non-Gregorian dates to be added to pages (so that the WP formatting engine can reformat for readers per their preference settings).
Computers exist to reduce the workload of people. The last I was aware, WP pages were formatted by a computer. I don't see why the computer should offload work onto editors. Christopher Rath (talk) 04:09, 13 September 2019 (UTC)

The vast majority of Wikipedia readers are not logged in and therefore have no preferences, which is a major reason date autoformatting was kicked out (along with some users). Jc3s5h (talk) 04:31, 13 September 2019 (UTC)


I have started a discussion on visibility for {{Use dmy dates#Visibility}} which is identically applicable here. Please go there to consider the arguments. Martin of Sheffield (talk) 00:05, 28 December 2016 (UTC)


What do people think about the idea of templates such as this having two date parameters, the first for when the template was first placed on the article, and the second for when the article was last checked? Beyond My Ken (talk) 15:52, 27 April 2017 (UTC)

cs1|2 auto date formattingEdit

At Help talk:Citation Style 1#auto date formatting it is proposed that {{use mdy dates}} and {{use dmy dates}} be read by Module:Citation/CS1/Configuration to determine the dmy/mdy form used by the article and automatically conform the dates in cs1|2 citations to that form. Additionally, it is proposed to add a non-functioning parameter, |access=ymd, to instances of the {{use xxx dates}} templates that will direct the cs1|2 module to render access-/archive-dates in ymd format as permitted by MOS:DATEUNIFY. Questions and comments at the linked discussion please.

Trappist the monk (talk) 10:57, 21 March 2019 (UTC)


why is there a flag for enforcing the least logical dating system? does anywhere other than the USA put it out of order like this? i found this on a page about the Black Sea. We should only put it out of order like this on articles actually related to the USA e.g. "September 11, 01", and even then only in "local name" type contexts. Otherwise put the components in order, doesn't matter which direction, d-m-y or yyyy-mm-dd are both perfectly logical, just not out of order. Irtapil (talk) 14:06, 15 March 2020 (UTC)

I agree with the illogicalness of MDY, but the noise of millions of crying Americans is painful to our ears.  Stepho  talk  14:19, 15 March 2020 (UTC)
@Stepho-wrs: Then keep it that way on articles about the USA? e.g. i'd not call the 2001 destruction of the New York City World Trade Centre "11-9". But disordered dates on the Black Sea article isn't justified. And, if we put the dates out of oder, we probably need to write the month in letters. Though, that seems to usually be done anyway? Irtapil (talk) 12:57, 27 March 2020 (UTC)
I will answer Irtapil's question "does anywhere other than the USA put it out of order like this?" Yes, for example, the Daily Post and The Sunday Times. Jc3s5h (talk) 14:37, 15 March 2020 (UTC)
@Jc3s5h: That's not a "where" that's a "what". Most of the UK puts the units of time in order by size. Irtapil (talk) 12:57, 27 March 2020 (UTC)
In normal use, most western countries use dmy (the US being the biggest exception). However, for reasons that escape me, countries that use DMY for everything else will use MDY for newspaper masts. Even worse, many newspapers use MDY in the masthead but then use DMY in the articles. It's very much a special case of the publishing industry rather than the UK officially using MDY. In olden days, England used to use MDY. The newborn US quite naturally copied them. Then England changed to the far more logical DMY while the US stayed behind. I can only guess that the newspaper industry keep it in their mastheads for traditions sake.  Stepho  talk  11:26, 16 March 2020 (UTC)
"the US being the biggest exception" as seems to often be the case. 🤨😕 Irtapil (talk) 12:57, 27 March 2020 (UTC)
@Stepho-wrs: I was thinking maybe newspaper masts were a historical thing? Maybe the UK used to do that when they went to the USA and the UK fixed it but the USA never sorted it out then i saw that's what you'd said. But then why is their independence from British empire "fourth of July" not "July fourth"? so then i started wondering if the USA system a muddled mash up of UK dd-mm-yyyy and continental yyyy-mm-dd? but then the newspaper mastheads wouldn't be muddled. So i guess my first guess was right, but then why "September 11, 2001" vs the much older "4th July"? Irtapil (talk) 12:57, 27 March 2020 (UTC)
but, more pertinently, given nowhere else puts it out of order, can i remove this template from any article that's not about the USA? i.e. that one about the Black Sea for a start. Irtapil (talk) 12:57, 27 March 2020 (UTC)
Warning: Editors who engaged in campaigns to change articles to their favorite date format in defiance of Wikipedia:Manual of Style/Dates and numbers have been indefinitely blocked. The guidance is "articles on topics with strong ties to a particular English-speaking country should generally use the date format most commonly used in that nation." Otherwise, the established format is retained. So, for example, if you found an article about a person who lived her entire life in the UK that had the mdy format, you could change the format and the template. But if you found an article about a person who lived his entire life in a non-English speaking country, like France, you should leave the established date format, and template reflecting the same, alone. Jc3s5h (talk) 13:29, 27 March 2020 (UTC)
I was being a bit facetious in my first reply but it is based on a truth. In the early days of WP, somebody would create an article using dmy. Then a US editor would come along and "correct" it to mdy - because that's what everybody uses. Later on a Brit would then change it back to the "correct" dmy. And later on again a Yank would come along and "correct" it back to mdy. Often it changed multiple times per day as each side insisted that they knew the one true date style that all of WP must obey. We had similar issues with spelling (eg, "colour" vs "color"). So a number of policies were created (eg WP:RETAIN, WP:DATEUNIFY, WP:TIES and WP:ENGVAR). The general direction of these is that articles with very close ties to a particular country should use the spelling, dates, grammar, etc of that country. Articles with vague ties, multiple ties or no ties can use whatever the first editor chose and it can only be changed by a consensus on the talk page. This cut the edit warring down a huge amount.
Regarding your particular example of the Black Sea article. In has no close ties to the UK, the US or any other predominantly English speaking country. So it does not have to be US mdy style dates. However, it also does not have to be UK style dmy dates. Somebody chose mdy dates way back when, that is the current style in use and it can only be changed by consensus on the talk page.
If you try to change it without consensus then you are effectively telling the Americans "screw you, we do it my favoured way". And the Americans will then tell you "screw you, we do it our favoured way" and we're back to anarchy and daily edit wars of trivial matters.
Now, choose carefully - do you preferred polite discussions/editing (with the occasional compromise) or arse-holes shoving their views down your throat (daily edit wars)?  Stepho  talk  00:38, 28 March 2020 (UTC)
The solution to this debate is to stop enforcing a date standard of any kind. Dates should be encoded in a tag that indicates their format. Then, when that date needs to be displayed to a reader, the WP engine reformats that date into that user's preferred date format. This approach takes the entire debate off the table. As well, with this approach, if an editor does not want to bother typing the tag details, they can simply type the date in yyyy-mm-dd format; a format that the WP engine can unambiguously parse. Christopher Rath (talk) 12:57, 28 March 2020 (UTC)
The idea has been suggested many times before but there are complications. See Wikipedia_talk:Manual_of_Style_(dates_and_numbers)/Archive_79#Proposed clarification regarding comma usage in American dates. It gets messy for the software to know what to do for "2009-01-31 was when we went swimming", "On 2009-01-31, we went swimming." and "We went swimming on 2009-01-31." For dmy it can just change "2009-01-31" to "31 January 2009" but it cannot change it to "January 31, 2009," due to the trailing comma conflicting with further punctuation.
A second problem is for readers not logged in. Do we default to dmy and upset all the American readers. Or do we default to mdy and upset the rest of the world.
There may be fixes for these but I vaguely remember other problems. Please feel free to go through the archives at Wikipedia_talk:Manual_of_Style or to raise the point there.  Stepho  talk  14:28, 28 March 2020 (UTC)

Indeed, this entire discussion belongs there. This page is more suited to more technical aspects of the template rather than the principle of what date formats to use. -- Ohc ¡digame! 14:43, 28 March 2020 (UTC)

Question about how to make template comply with this tagEdit

  You are invited to join the discussion at Template talk:Spoken Wikipedia § Date format. {{u|Sdkb}}talk 23:40, 16 November 2020 (UTC)

Return to "Use mdy dates" page.