Wikipedia:Village pump (policy)

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Terminology for undocumented immigrantsEdit

The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

The page Wikipedia:Naming conventions (immigration) has been archived with no resolution. As-is, it notes that the AP Stylebook suggests the term "illegal immigrant;" however, as of 2013, this is no longer true.[1] Joe Biden's administration in 2021 has moved to the term "unauthorized noncitizen." This has made the issue more clear than it was during the prior discussion. Direct quotes should use the exact wording quoted; for non-quoted text, I suggest it is not appropriate to describe certain human beings as "illegal." John Moser (talk) 05:34, 18 July 2022 (UTC)

Which would be a valid point if that was what was being done here. "Illegal immigrant" is an exact parallel to "illegal operator" as used in cases such as this: . --User:Khajidha (talk) (contributions) 12:21, 18 July 2022 (UTC)
There was a Village Pump proposal in 2014 thread Guideline for terminology on immigrants.There was a WP:WTW proposal in 2017 thread The term "illegal alien". Both failed. Good. My favourite refutation was that we don't call football players "wide receivers" as a pejorative about their wideness. Peter Gulutzan (talk) 14:08, 18 July 2022 (UTC)
I'm glad you cleared that up. To my non-American ear "wide receiver" sounds like a rather obscene sexual term. Phil Bridger (talk) 15:53, 18 July 2022 (UTC)
A lot of Americans make jokes about that, too. Not to mention the "tight ends" on the same team. Even "full back" has possibilities for innuendo. --User:Khajidha (talk) (contributions) 15:59, 18 July 2022 (UTC)
The term exists in Canadian football too. Peter Gulutzan (talk) 15:12, 19 July 2022 (UTC)
Fun stuff. If the term "wide receiver" were used while locking up, deporting, and denying rights to wide receivers; if it were used for decades as a racist dogwhistle; if wide receivers themselves had been advocating against the term for many years; if many mainstream style guides had moved away from the term "wide receiver"... but Wikipedians preferred to outright mock it anyway, then yes it would be quite similar. — Rhododendrites talk \\ 18:22, 18 July 2022 (UTC)
Context matters. The refutation was of the argument that if an adjective appears before a noun that is derived from a verb, it cannot be referring to the meaning of the verb (if I understood the argument correctly). Peter Gulutzan (talk) 15:12, 19 July 2022 (UTC)
No, the argument was that referring to people as "illegal" is dehumanizing and unencyclopedic, and puts us at odds with the reliable sources that we're charged with reflecting. It's a pretty compelling argument. MastCell Talk 16:39, 19 July 2022 (UTC)
It seems like WP:MOS#Vocabulary has this covered pretty well: since the term "illegal immigrant" is (a) contested, (b) not the most common usage in reliable sources, and (c) not generally used by the people to whom it refers, there is unlikely to be any good reason to use it outside of direct quotes. -- Visviva (talk) 16:36, 18 July 2022 (UTC)

The new AP guidance basically said to avoid noun-ifying people as illegal immigrants. Instead to describe it in terms of the illegal action, and presumably only when that aspect is relevant. It doesn't push for "undocumented" and notes that that ambiguous term obscures the point that it is used to "specify"....that the entry or presence is illegal. North8000 (talk) 17:28, 18 July 2022 (UTC)

There are two problems: The first problem is that while you might find broad consensus that a term is preferred (or better avoided) in basically all instances, Wikipedians are extremely reluctant to codify an explicit preference or ban some term. Yes, "illegal immigrant", "illegal alien", and "illegals" are all denigrating language about immigrants for a wide range of social, historical, and legal reasons. That this is the case isn't actually controversial -- the controversy is whether to do anything about it. One of the most common arguments in favor (apart from "I don't like it when people tell me the words I use are offensive") is that they're still used by some official sources. While styleguides and the various sources we consider reliable are increasingly phasing out the language, it's true that they do still appear in various official documents (although less and less -- US immigration enforcement had to stop using it last year, and they were one of the last hold-outs). What's not controversial is that the groups affected by these terms (not limited to people who crossed a border illegally) aren't fans.
The second problem is the lack of an obvious replacement. "Undocumented immigrant", "unauthorized migrant", "person who crossed the border illegally", etc. -- people have different preferences, and there are legitimate criticisms that e.g. "undocumented" is imprecise. Without an obvious replacement, it's again hard to codify. I'd support a proposal to say that Wikipedia doesn't have a preferred formulation but that the three I listed above are discouraged, and would be happy to furnish a pile of sources which explain it (won't get too far into it here). Ultimately, there are a lot of reasons not to use the term, and not a lot of great reasons to use it. Who knows, maybe enough people will be on board, but I'm pessimistic. — Rhododendrites talk \\ 18:22, 18 July 2022 (UTC)

That sounds sensible. Getting broad agreement for that formulation may, as you indicate, be difficult. - Donald Albury 22:05, 18 July 2022 (UTC)
Yes, a formulation would be tricky, but Rhodedendrites proposal looks good. Doug Weller talk 07:04, 19 July 2022 (UTC)
If the proposal is to discourage "illegal immigrant", it doesn't look good to me. Wikipedia articles Illegal immigration, Illegal immigration to the United States Economic impact of illegal immigrants in the United States Illegal immigration to Canada etc. exist and there's no proposed alternative. The word "undocumented" appears for Wikipedia articles too (I don't know of a proposal to discourage it); however, although "illegal immigrant" seems like it may be in decline when I look at Google Ngrams, it still beats "undocumented migrant" by that measure. Certainly I don't agree with Rhododendrites that it's "denigrating language about immigrants", it very specifically is language about illegal immigrants, that's not merely a hint, it's shouting for all the world to see that if there's an objection it's about the illegality. Peter Gulutzan (talk) 15:12, 19 July 2022 (UTC)
Turning the smoothing off on Ngrams shows a more accurate picture: [1]. They're off by less than 0.000001%, a virtual tie, and if they were nearly equal in 2019, they probably already crossed by 2022, given the very strong trendline over the past two decades. The last illegal immigration RM appears to have been seven years ago. I wonder if the result would be different today. Levivich (talk) 15:42, 19 July 2022 (UTC)
Should we use Ngrams? Apologies for copying this text by User:Wee Curry Monster
A) Ngram being used to defend the position. When it comes to capitalisation Ngram are not an effective or reliable means of establishing usage in the literature. [2],[3], [4] Not only are they ineffective but can be easily manipulated. You see if you use my Ngram [5] it shows Copper Head Culture as the predominant term.
B) The only reliable means of establishing usage is a literature review.
Doug Weller talk 15:59, 19 July 2022 (UTC)
I'm not sure what capitalization has to do with what we're talking about here, but those Ngram examples are being manipulated by changing the smoothing setting: they are set at 10, 40, or 50, all of which are extremely high values; the best value is 0 (if you want recent trends); the default is 3 (good for long term trends). Set the smoothing to 0 and all those charts show the same thing. It's true that Ngrams aren't the be-all and end-all, and they can be manipulated, but they're accurate for what they show. Levivich (talk) 16:08, 19 July 2022 (UTC)
I would never suggest you don't use Ngram without smoothing the data, small values if you want to see short term trends, larger values if you want to see long term trends. 10 isn't high for looking at long term trends say 50-100 years. 1 or 0 is rather too small in general. 3 is rather too small for long term trends but I would recommend it if you wanted to look say over a decade. It is explained much better here. I'm not saying you shouldn't use Ngram for trends in language usage but trying to argue for trends in say capitalisation its very vulnerable to the point of being useless. If you wanted to compare one phrase against another it can be very nuanced. I would say whilst they can be helpful in guiding research, they can for example be used to search for sources in a particular timeframe, I don't think they are a substitute for reviewing sources to find trends in the literature. WCMemail 16:27, 19 July 2022 (UTC)
Looking at the particular topic posed, you can observe some trends. In American English, [6] undocumented immigrant has recently overtaken illegal immigrant. In British English, [7] the reverse is true there is poor take up of the use of the term. Combining the two [8] illegal immigrant remains the predominant term. I don't think its as simple as recommending terms not to use, since there are significant variations per WP:ENGVAR. Imposing a term common in one English language variation that is uncommon in another is a recipe for conflict. WCMemail 16:41, 19 July 2022 (UTC)
Indeed. In Canada arguments have involved the word "irregular". Disclosure: I removed a claim about Canadian usage in the Illegal immigration to Canada article because that cited source said no such thing. Peter Gulutzan (talk) 17:31, 19 July 2022 (UTC)
The term "illegal immigration" should be fine, since it's calling the immigration illegal, not the immigrant. An action that is contrary to established law can be legitimately called illegal, but labeling a person as illegal is problematic. --Ahecht (TALK
) 22:01, 19 July 2022 (UTC)

Comparing ngrams assumes the terms are roughly equivalent in both denotation and connotation, and that we're simply choosing which is most common. That's not the case here. "Retarded" and "retard" are still more common than "[intellectually/mentally/developmentally/adjective forms of these] [disabled/handicapped/noun form of these]. In American English, "Eskimo" is still more common than either "Inuit" or "Yupik". But our articles on these subjects aren't at the more common ngram. Why? As with "illegal immigrant", the many reasons why these terms are problematic are easily accessible with a simple search. The idea that because a term is offensive in one English-speaking country but not others we must default to the latter, as though the alternatives are unintelligible or the meaning for the former is irrelevant, is nonsensical (nevermind that a significant plurality of enwp readers are from a country where it's offensive). I will grant that "illegal immigrant" certainly has wider acceptance in 2022 than the two examples I gave above, but the fact remains that it's an offensive term to a large number of people. When we have the choice to use one of many different terms for the same thing, and some distract from the content because of loaded connotations, what reason is there to choose it? I don't think "people commonly use it" is sufficient in that context. — Rhododendrites talk \\ 17:20, 19 July 2022 (UTC)

I don't actually see it as an offensive or problematic term and it certainly isn't where I reside. You are obviously passionate about this for some reason of which I am not aware. I am not so I will go forth and find something more useful to do with my time. I will observe if you impose a solution upon a group who do not share your world view it rarely ends well. You have a nice day now. WCMemail 17:33, 19 July 2022 (UTC)
I don't actually see it as an offensive or problematic term and it certainly isn't where I reside. You are obviously passionate about this for some reason of which I am not aware. Let me make you aware: because the term is offensive or problematic in many parts of the world, even if it's not where you live. It's offensive in American English, which is the predominant variety of English. Levivich (talk) 17:36, 19 July 2022 (UTC)
It's offensive in Canada, too. There's horrifying things in our past like the Eskimo Identification Tag System. There's a reason people don't use words like that. I realize now that this thread is mainly about illegal immigrants, that one example just really jumped out to me, likely because I started Project Surname. But my opinion is that using "illegal" to describe human beings is also offensive. It's not a crime to exist. Clovermoss (talk) 17:53, 19 July 2022 (UTC), edited 18:01, 19 July 2022 (UTC)
for some reason of which I am not aware - I'm passionate about not insulting large groups of our readers, and prefer to use terms that aren't quite as loaded and distracting where possible. I hope it's possible here. It's strange to me that it not being a problematic term where you live is reason to dismiss the idea like some fringe POV rather than an opportunity to research and learn how/why people consider it an offensive term elsewhere. I'm unsurprised that it doesn't come up much outside of North America, but it's also really easy to google. — Rhododendrites talk \\ 18:14, 19 July 2022 (UTC)

A good general rule is to avoid "noun-ifying" people by some attribute without a pretty strong reason. But when the context makes illegal vs. legal status important, "undocumented" won't do because it is ambiguous / does not convey the status, PC ness aside. North8000 (talk) 17:44, 19 July 2022 (UTC)

Per Visivia and Rhododendrites above, it seems reasonable to proscribe the pejorative "illegal" formulation when used to describe a person (and all such variants), but not to prescribe other such uses. When describing a specific person in a biographical sense, "phrasing such as "illegally entered" or similar would be okay, as it describes an action, but we shouldn't use the terminology "illegal immigrant" or "illegal alien" or similar to describe a person in a biographical sense. I'm less concerned about the formulation in a general, non-personal usage, such as merely describing the concept, though I am not unconcerned; I'd prefer a less pejorative and more neutral terminology that doesn't carry the baggage that "illegal immigrant" carries, but the alternate terminology, such as "undocumented" or "unregistered", suffers from similar problems. I'd be willing to concede that a non-emotionally-charged term doesn't exist, but that also means we need to be careful when using the term in a biographical context, to the point of avoiding it. Which is to say, that unless someone can propose a reasonably-well-used neutrally regarded formulation, we're probably stuck with article titles like Illegal immigration to India, however we should still basically never encounter something like "John Doe was an illegal immigrant". --Jayron32 17:58, 19 July 2022 (UTC)

Personally, I think this is precisely the situation where Wikipedia shouldn't have any guidelines. Wikipedia is a big, diverse place and a term some people have grown to disfavor may be perfectly common in non-pejorative usage in other areas. In my opinion, there is nothing pejorative about saying someone is in a country illegally (what illegal immigrant means); it is simply a statement of fact (with no clear, undisputed replacements). That being said, I understand reasonable people disagree. To me, that's exactly the sort of situation where Wikipedia should let local consensus or an individual writer determine usage. Zoozaz1 (talk) 23:46, 19 July 2022 (UTC)

I think that that is a good summary of it. My only note is as with other areas, we should avoid negative nounification of people without a really pressing reason. We generally do say "Joe Doe is a race car driver" we shouldn't say "John Doe is a dog kicker" without a really pressing reason even if one can wikilawyer in the "dog kicker" using a non-existent urban legend policy.North8000 (talk) 12:54, 21 July 2022 (UTC)
Disagree that it's a good summary. there is nothing pejorative about saying someone is in a country illegally betrays not having put in any effort into learning what the debate is even about. Nobody disagrees that there is nothing pejorative about saying someone is in a country illegally. "It's not offensive to me" while making no effort to learn why anyone considers it offensive (or even what we're talking about) doesn't negate the fact that it's problematic for large groups of people, and to completely dismiss that with an "agree to disagree" when there are other options is... not ideal. — Rhododendrites talk \\ 15:33, 21 July 2022 (UTC)
I suppose one could say that anybody who is breaking a law might be offended by the "illegal" term. The avoidance of the term for this particular case relates more to American politics. Nevertheless there's no reason to use the term unless the legality is relevant to the sentence / text it's used in. `Even then, avoiding nounifying is a good goal. North8000 (talk) 16:09, 21 July 2022 (UTC)
I suppose one could say that anybody who is breaking a law might be offended by the "illegal" term - Yes, if people who park where they aren't supposed to were called "illegal parkers," including when they parked legally but stayed too long, or when they had no say in where they parked, and if "illegal parkers" were frequently used in a racist context about specific groups of people, then it might be analogous. — Rhododendrites talk \\ 18:31, 21 July 2022 (UTC)
My perspective is that we ought to be tolerant of different perspectives because of how hugely diverse Wikipedia is. I fully understand that some people are offended by "noun-ifying" the term. They should be able to write on Wikipedia as they wish. Others view it as a neutral statement of fact; they should be able to write how they wish as well. The ideal, to me, is not forcing one perspective on another for what is ultimately a fairly harmless debate. In clearer cases were the term has not gained mainstream, non-pejorative acceptance (such as "illegals") there is a much better case for discouraging a term, but the term illegal immigrant is still used neutrally and non-pejoratively in many contexts. Zoozaz1 (talk) 18:09, 21 July 2022 (UTC)
This isn’t actually a harmless debate when it involves real people who are or could be identified. Doug Weller talk 18:12, 21 July 2022 (UTC)
My point is that calling a person an illegal immigrant instead of saying that they are in a country illegally (or vice versa) is ultimately fairly (not entirely) harmless in the grand scheme of things. Zoozaz1 (talk) 18:21, 21 July 2022 (UTC)
So individuals don’t count, only some sort of “grand scheme”. You could excuse a lot of things with that. Doug Weller talk 18:46, 21 July 2022 (UTC)
We need to operate by a logic that's more sophisticated than "well, some people don't think it's offensive or imprecise, so it's A-ok for Wikipedia". That would allow for absolutely any terms considered offensive as long as some people simply say "it's not offensive". The only really relevant question is how prominent the view is that it's offensive or otherwise problematic. I'd argue that when members of the group it refers to nearly uniformly object to it, when major media outlets pointedly stop using it, when it's explicitly excluded from various organizational and institutional handbooks... maybe it's not a good basis for policy to just go by "well Zoozaz1 on Wikipedia says it's no big deal". Adding: This is feeling like wheel-spinning, and I'm taking up too much of this section, so I'm going to duck out of this thread unless/until it comes time to !vote on something (or if anyone wants help putting together a proposal). — Rhododendrites talk \\ 18:31, 21 July 2022 (UTC)
I'll just say this then. I certainly don't think every offensive term someone considers neutral should be allowed. But if that term has been and continues to be (if less so recently, as you highlighted) used often in mainstream sources and society as a whole in a non-pejorative fashion, then I believe we should tolerate it for the sake of pluralism. Zoozaz1 (talk) 19:27, 21 July 2022 (UTC)
But is it used in a non-pejorative fashion? Many newspapers here in the UK use the term "illegal immigrant", but in my experience it is nearly always used as a pejorative, to turn people against the people described as such. We should be following better sources than newspapers. Phil Bridger (talk) 20:04, 21 July 2022 (UTC)
Usage of terms in Wikipedia should reflect usage in reliable sources. Since rs have mostly stopped using the term "illegal immigrant," so should articles. If one wants to be pedantic, it's not clear that any of these undocumented workers are in the U.S. illegally until that has been finally determined by a court. IOW, we don't know if they are "illegal immigrants" until they are deported, in which case they cease to be illegal immigrants. TFD (talk) 16:29, 21 July 2022 (UTC)

IMO, this is more about American politics than it is about offense. I have many friends from south of the border (some here illegally) and spend a lot of time with them including in their homes. They don't nounify people by their legal status and legal status is not used in conversations where it is not germane, but don't hesitate to use the term "illegal" when referring to legal status, including for themselves. BTW I started making the distinction between politics and offense when I learned they do consider the politically fashionable term "latinx" to be an insult to their culture which proudly uses gendered nouns. North8000 (talk) 20:03, 21 July 2022 (UTC)

Interesting reading here. The author discusses the pejorative use of "illegal", noting that there are claims that the term is a "dog whistle" for racist profiling. One interesting point is the author's statement that entering the US without prior authorization is a criminal offense, while staying in the US after one's visa has expired is a civil offense, a difference that calling all people residing in the US without current authorization "illegal" obscures. - Donald Albury 22:53, 21 July 2022 (UTC)

They seem to be saying that somethings that are illegal are a "civil offense" and thus can't be called illegal and that unless it is "criminal" it can't be called illegal. There is such a thing as civil law (which is a basis for court actions by individuals) but I've never heard of "civil offense" and suspect that there is no such official thing. Even parking illegally is illegal.North8000 (talk) 03:55, 22 July 2022 (UTC)
That's a good one. North8000 (talk) 12:35, 22 July 2022 (UTC)
Almost. See below.
First, I agree with you (North8000) and Ahecht that the action is illegal, not the person (e.g., illegal publication would refer to breach of copyright, but I don't think it is common to label someone an "illegal publisher"). It's understandable, though, that media enjoy grammatical shortcuts, therefore it will be easy to find sources that use the identifier.
Second, and my main point, is that the awkward term "unauthorized noncitizen" mentioned by the OP is more accurate. I'm not a fan of Uncle Joe Biden but his terminology fits better with an article I read saying that a large fraction of "illegal immigrants" (something like 40% or was it 60%?) are people who entered *legally* but overstayed their visa. In that sense, they are (or should be IMO) categorized differently from people who never followed the law. Some countries are flexible about that, to one degree or another.
Third, as an additional point, a lot of these people aren't immigrants -- the do *not* intend to stay forever, only long enough to earn a bundle and buy a house (or whatever) back in their home country. Many people on working visas have similar motivation but they legally applied for their status, which is designated "non-immigrant" in DHS categorization. Martindo (talk) 20:41, 2 August 2022 (UTC)
Whatever new term we use will be considered a pejorative in ten years as Wikipedia's inclusion of the term will ensure its entrance into common discourse and its inevitable misuse. If this is about specific people, avoid the term and state the facts. John Doe is a best selling author who entered Fooland without a visa and was subsequently charged with entering Fooland without prior authorization. On use when discussing the topic in general no real opinion as labels do not change facts. Just as someone who is homeless/unsheltered/unhoused is still suffering from a lack of stable residence and using one label or another may make others feel better but does nothing to actually change the individual's circumstances. Slywriter (talk) 21:11, 2 August 2022 (UTC)

As a side note, the 2006 page called Wikipedia:Naming conventions (immigration) probably needs to be moved to a more appropriate page title. Our Wikipedia:Naming conventions are about what we put in the article title (e.g., Illegal immigrants in India, which is a redirect), not in the body of the article. The failed proposal on that page is largely about what to write in the article ("Bob was suspected of being an illegal immigrant"). If it had been successful, it probably would have ended up as a subpage of the Manual of Style, but since it wasn't, it might be better to give in a simpler name that doesn't imply any connection to any system of policies or guidelines. Does anyone have any ideas? WhatamIdoing (talk) 17:56, 22 July 2022 (UTC)

I guess the edge case is when the sentence cries for noun-ification, and status is essential to the sentence. Like "the state police were issuing tickets to speeders" vs. "the state police were issuing tickets to persons violating the speed limit". North8000 (talk) 22:07, 2 August 2022 (UTC)

My strong preference would be to push for policy which avoids the term "illegal immigrant" especially and specifically because of its pejorative, racist, and tactical use by right-wing American politicians for many decades now. The term cannot be NPOV regardless if we find it grammatically convenient. We should move away from it to make sure that wikipedia does not implicitly support language which does the bidding of white nationalists. Protonk (talk) 22:12, 7 August 2022 (UTC)

This argument is pretty emotional rather than neutral. There are certainly pejorative terms in use by right wing conservatives in the United States but this is more descriptive than pejorative. “Unauthorized” or “undocumented” is more euphemistic snd doesn’t describe what is being discussed. “Illegal” is in violation of the law. “Unauthorized” could mean a person has violated a parental curfew or some rule or regulation, not necessarily that he has broken a law and could face a legal or civil penalty. “Undocumented” says nothing at all about the law, policy or rule that has been broken. None of the above implies in any way, shape or form that the mere existence of a particular person is illegal or unauthorized. Obviously any discussion of the topic needs to include specifics such as the relevant laws, the penalties for breaking them, the number in violation, etc. Bookworm857158367 (talk) 18:30, 8 August 2022 (UTC)
There is a long-running push in the United States by right-wing figures to ensconce phrases like "illegal immigrants" and "illegals" into public discussion. Acceding to that is accepting and promoting their point of view. It's, frankly, intellectually debilitating to pretend as though we are having a "logical" discussion by starting from premises which benefit one side over the other. Any discussion on the topic needs to ignore the pettifoggery and tendentious appeals to detail that accompany this position. Protonk (talk) 19:06, 10 August 2022 (UTC)

“Illegal immigrants” or “illegal immigration” seems to be a clear and appropriate term. It describes group who are in the country without following the immigration policies of that country. Bookworm857158367 (talk) 13:00, 8 August 2022 (UTC)

Many people do not see those as neutral terms.("Words Matter: Illegal Immigrant, Undocumented Immigrant, or Unauthorized Immigrant?") - Donald Albury 15:51, 8 August 2022 (UTC)
I prefer clear language over euphemisms. If the subject being talked about is the legality of their presence in a certain location, “illegal” is the correct terminology. Bookworm857158367 (talk) 16:32, 8 August 2022 (UTC)
Is someone who shoplifts an "illegal shopper"? Is someone who drives faster than the speed limit an "illegal driver"? Is someone who jaywalks an "illegal walker"? Is someone who cheats on their taxes an "illegal taxpayer"? One could probably find occasional usages like this but they are uncommon, and if the "illegal X" construct is so rarely used except for the phrase "illegal immigrant", one has to suspect that it's not normal English usage, but is constructed to deliberately stigmatize the person, to imply that the person, rather than their crime, is illegal. CodeTalker (talk) 02:44, 9 August 2022 (UTC)
Actually, illegal alien has been the traditional legal term and I would assume illegal immigrant was at one time thought more polite and less likely to bring to mind UFOs. It is at least less euphemistic than undocumented or unauthorized immigrant or migrant or citizen, etc. Bookworm857158367 (talk) 04:23, 9 August 2022 (UTC)

An "illegal immigrant" is someone who has been formally deported from a country or banned from entry. For example if I commit a crime while overseas and part of my release orders me to not return, if I return then I am an illegal immigrant. For me to enter the county is by its nature a crime. An undocumented immigrant is an immigrant without documentation. For example, if you have ever been part of the process of filing an H1-A visa in the US you'll understand why so few people do it and work without it. Is this illegal? technically yes. If you are caught is part of your release banishment? no. These terms are important as we saw in the US in the 1980 when the government offered amnesty, they offered amnesty to undocumented immigrants not illegal immigrants. Dr vulpes (💬📝) 10:11, 9 August 2022 (UTC)

Each country has different laws regarding immigration and most have a process to apply to enter legally, something that is not guaranteed and might indeed be complicated and take years if it ever happens. Someone who does not follow the law and crosses the border anyway is in the country illegally and might be deported somewhere down the line. Whether or not it’s a civil or criminal penalty, it’s still illegal. That’s the common understanding of an illegal immigrant. An undocumented immigrant could just as easily be someone who had papers but lost them or left them at home due to war or natural disaster or some other crisis. Bookworm857158367 (talk) 10:25, 9 August 2022 (UTC)
This kind of argument is unpersuasive. We do not, as a rule, refer to people who break laws as "illegal-X"--we don't have "illegal drivers", "illegal politicians", "illegal merchants". There are cases where we use descriptive nouns for people who break specific kinds of laws (murderers, smugglers, and so forth) the usage stems from historical use and not some blank slate review of what laws might have been broken in the course of events up to now. It's also wholly unpersuasive to enter into a conversation where people are talking about language which 1. dehumanizes people and 2. supports a particular point of view and push up one's glasses on the bridge of the nose and say "well, actually there were laws that were broken so therefore this particular term is permissible." the fact that you produce "an undocumented immigrant could just as easily be someone who had papers but lost them or left them at home due to war or natural disaster or some other crisis" makes the even more farcical. Someone who "had papers but lost them" is just as much in violation of immigration laws as someone who never had them in the first place--same with someone seeking refuge from a war or crisis (which is what almost ALL of those "illegals" on the US/Mexico border are doing) who doesn't go through an official process for seeking refuge. Protonk (talk) 19:36, 10 August 2022 (UTC)
If someone had papers at some point, they would presumably not be in violation of the law. Neither would someone who has a valid reason to apply for asylum under that country’s laws. If someone crosses a border illegally because he finds it simply too onerous to follow the country’s procedures, that’s illegal immigration and he is the textbook description of an illegal immigrant. “Illegals” IS a pejorative that I would assume would be unacceptable to most editors. Bookworm857158367 (talk) 20:32, 10 August 2022 (UTC)
This is an imagined distinction. further, it is beside the point. You still have to come to grips with the fact that this language is dehumanizing and (more important for the work of an encyclopedia) implicitly supports the POV of one side in the debate. Protonk (talk) 20:40, 10 August 2022 (UTC)
The other suggested terms are euphemisms that do not explain what is being discussed. I also don’t think illegal immigration is dehumanizing. Bookworm857158367 (talk) 21:56, 10 August 2022 (UTC)
It's dehumanizing. Let's follow our policies and standards, rather than personal opinions against them. --Hipal (talk) 22:08, 10 August 2022 (UTC)
Obviously you don't. But that's immaterial. It is ALSO not as important a consideration for an encyclopedia than the other argument which you completely ignored: that use of this terminology is by its nature not NPOV because it is the chosen phrasing of parties to the controversy. Protonk (talk) 01:51, 11 August 2022 (UTC)
Ok let me try to explain what I was talking about slightly differently. You can't just label a person as being illegal, a person can not be illegal. It does not logically flow to have a human be illegal. The legal term used in the United States to label any non-citizen is alien. Anyone who either entered the country without going through immigration services OR someone who entered the country the country legally as a non-immigrant but remained after their authorized period of stay is labeled an "illegal alien". Note there are two things going on here, the first is someone who arrive and enter the country without documentation the other entered the country with no intent to immigrate (or immigrated under fraud) and stayed. There have been attempts to change this from illegal alien to undocumented foreign national, I personally believe this is a good idea and makes sense but this law did not pass because Congress. Courts have made this distinction calling foreign nationals who are undocumented and victims of a crime an undocumented immigrant (page 12) but they also use both terms interchangeability so the entire point is messy. I searched govinfo for a federal case that would better support my previous comment but couldn't, I was able to find some state court cases but I'm not opening up that trash can of worms plus immigration is a federal issue not a state issue in the US. Therefor my previous explanation was not correct and inaccurate, I was more wrong than right. I still think there is a very very limited class of peoples where an argument could be made that the label "illegal immigrant" would apply where if they were fraudulently in a country and were terrorists, nazis, and people who recruit child soldiers (8 U.S. Code § 1227 4cdf). As for the vast 99.999% of people living undocumented in places around the world. They're undocumented immigrants or undocumented foreign nationals but not illegal immigrants. Dr vulpes (💬📝) 01:56, 11 August 2022 (UTC)


The discussion above is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

Message to Author When New Article Is DraftifiedEdit

This concern is about the message that is posted on the user talk page of the author of an article that is moved to draft space by a reviewer. A New Page reviewer who moves a new article to draft space normally does so with a script that posts a message including

It needs more citations from reliable, independent sources. (Information that can't be referenced should be removed (verifiability is of central importance on Wikipedia).

The problem is that new articles are draftified for at least two different reasons. The first, which is what the canned message is oriented toward, is a sourcing or verifiability issue. The second, which is also a common reason why new articles are draftified, is a notability issue. The article has reliable sources, but they don't provide significant coverage to meet general notability, or they don't satisfy a special notability guideline such as musical notability. This results in unhelpful guidance to the author. The author may then reference-bomb the draft and resubmit it, without addressing the notability issue. The message that is used is not consistent with the standards that are normally applied by New Page reviewers in moving articles to draft space. It is correct for many articles that have inadequate sourcing, but it is not correct for adequately sourced articles that do not establish notability.

I just declined a dispute resolution request at DRN filed by an author whose article was moved to draft space and then declined. The article was a BLP of an Israeli musician, and the references were to reliable Israeli newspapers. The article didn't establish musical notability. The author said that the sources were reliable. The sources were reliable, but the article didn't establish notability. The message was profoundly unhelpful. This is a common problem.

I see four possible solutions:

  • 1. Instruct New Page reviewers that they should only move an article to draft space if the sourcing is inadequate. Instruct New Page reviewers that they should propose the article for deletion or nominate the article for deletion if there is a notability issue that is not also a sourcing issue.
  • 2. Instruct New Page reviewers to rewrite the draftify message when moving an article to draft space for notability reasons.
  • 3. Reword the canned message, either to expand the explanation of why articles are moved to draft space, or to include advice to ask the reviewer for guidance.
  • 4. Enhance the draftification script to provide a choice of messages.

Any option is likely to create more work for reviewers. My opinion is that, in any case, the canned message should include advice to ask the reviewer for guidance. Reviewers should be willing to explain why they have taken an action that new authors do not like. I don't recommend option 1; reviewers should be able to move an article to draft space for notability reasons even if it has references that don't establish notability. Robert McClenon (talk) 01:27, 27 July 2022 (UTC)

Let's have a tool like the XfD interface, where the draftifying editor can choose a basis from a dropdown menu. BD2412 T 02:09, 27 July 2022 (UTC)
Can we not just include that into User:Evad37/MoveToDraft instead of creating a whole new tool? Curbon7 (talk) 04:38, 27 July 2022 (UTC)
@Robert McClenon this is pretty broad, which specific policies and/or guidelines are you proposing changes to? If editors are poorly communicating with other editors, coaching them may be sufficient - sounds like the major issue is related to people just needing to review and follow WP:BITE / WP:DTTR? Wikipedia talk:New pages patrol/Reviewers may be a better forum to go over general improvements to NPR processes. — xaosflux Talk 13:11, 27 July 2022 (UTC)

For articles which require GNG, the routine needs to be for the zillion editors to find and include GNG sources, or give it up if they don't exist, and draft is a suitable place to work on that when the article doesn't have them. By saying "only AFD these" (with the current wp:before routine) you are (possibly unintentionally) proposing shifting the entire "search for sources" job from editors to the already-buried NPP'ers who are trying to handle the reviewing and disposition workload of about 1,000 articles per day. Sincerely, North8000 (talk) 02:38, 27 July 2022 (UTC)

User:North8000 - Either you misread what I wrote or I didn't write it clearly. You said that I was, perhaps unintentionally, proposing shifting the entire search for sources job from editors to NPPers. No. Please notice that I said that I didn't recommend option 1, and that is because it will create more work for reviewers. I had to list option 1 for completeness, because it is what is consistent with the way the script leaves the message on the user talk page. I don't like option 1, for the reasons that you list, but it is consistent with the current tools. Robert McClenon (talk) 06:02, 27 July 2022 (UTC)
@Robert McClenon: Yes, you're right. I missed that. Sorry 'bout that. Sincerely, North8000 (talk) 13:02, 27 July 2022 (UTC)
Editors can amend the standard text to reflect the reason for draftifying in any case, and right there in the box it says in big red letters to vary the text as appropriate. I agree it would be easier to have a default text that focused on notability rather than verifiability as an option. Mccapra (talk) 05:00, 27 July 2022 (UTC)
User:Mccapra - I am aware that editors can amend the standard text. I have very seldom seen reviewers do that. I am not sure that reviewers consider the wording of the draftify message to be important, or think about whether to rewrite it. Robert McClenon (talk) 06:02, 27 July 2022 (UTC)
What I think we should agree is a part of the solution is to add language to the standard draftify message saying that the author can ask the reviewer for guidance. Robert McClenon (talk) 06:02, 27 July 2022 (UTC)
That would be good, yes. Mccapra (talk) 07:33, 27 July 2022 (UTC)
I agree with that, but it would also help if the automessage included tickbox options for reasons for draftification. Ingratis (talk) 08:22, 27 July 2022 (UTC)

Even just deleting the default message and saying "insert message here" would be an improvement. IMO the default message is too specialized and too bitey. It also implies something which is incorrect which is that they are not allowed to move it out of draft themselves. North8000 (talk) 13:22, 27 July 2022 (UTC)

There is an open request to provide a formal draftification option within the NPP Page Curation tool. Until the WMF allocates more resources in support of NPP, that probably won't be implemented very quickly. If it ever is, this new tool should certainly incorporate good messaging options. Until we get a new tool, it would be easier to just reword the default message. MB 01:40, 28 July 2022 (UTC)
  • Comment editors are free to alter the language within the drafting tool. I have been adding a message within the text, so an editor can cut and paste, or delete and type. I know it takes a few extra minutes, but it works. Bruxton (talk) 23:12, 28 July 2022 (UTC)

Manual of Style - Postnominals in BiographiesEdit

I have posted on the talk page at Wikipedia_talk:Manual_of_Style/Biography to propose a refinement on the policy on postnominals, which would lead to some postnominals being removed from the lede and infoboxes of articles. Wikipedia_talk:Manual_of_Style/Biography#Fellowships_by_subscription,_e.g._FRSA

I made this change [9] but this was reverted by another editor who felt more discussion was needed. Please participate in the discussion if you are interested. Historylikeyou (talk) 11:59, 29 July 2022 (UTC)

I did not feel that "more discussion was needed". I felt that any discussion was needed. This editor, who had a previous total of exactly 17 edits, made a unilateral major change to MOS without the slightest bit of WP:CONSENSUS, and then proceeded to mass-implement his change by mass-deleting certain postnominals from British biographies. See WP:Administrators'_noticeboard/Incidents#Newbie mass deleting postnominals from British biographies (current permalink [10]). Softlavender (talk) 01:30, 31 July 2022 (UTC)

New essay - Prefer truthEdit

Please have a look at my new essay, Wikipedia:Prefer truth. Sennalen (talk) 22:57, 5 August 2022 (UTC)

Define "truth".Jéské Couriano v^_^v a little blue Bori 23:03, 5 August 2022 (UTC)
The top value of a Boolean lattice Sennalen (talk) 23:24, 5 August 2022 (UTC)
As Pilate asks, We both have truths...are mine the same as yours? Schazjmd (talk) 23:28, 5 August 2022 (UTC)
I mean, wasn't the point of that kind of that Pilate was a bad guy with his everything-is-relative shtick, and that Jesus was the good guy cos some truths are universal periodt? Asking. Herostratus (talk) 04:51, 6 August 2022 (UTC)



WP:NOTDIRECTORY has an RFC for possible consensus. A discussion is taking place. If you would like to participate in the discussion, you are invited to add your comments on the discussion page. Thank you. BilledMammal (talk) 04:32, 9 August 2022 (UTC)

Copyright of picturesEdit

Hello. I was wondering, whether it is possible to post a picture on wikipedia (upload on commons) by marking the owner/author of given picture with a link

to a Flickr page where the uploader of the picture says it is copyright free? (CC4.0). Xәkim (talk) 09:08, 9 August 2022 (UTC) Graeme Bartlett (talk) 10:01, 9 August 2022 (UTC)

Proposal to allow draftifying articles more than 90 days old when entered into New Page PatrolEdit

Currently there is a ban in place that prevents draftifying articles more than 90 days old without consensus. This ban had wide support and is a really good idea. There is an edge case where this rule becomes problematic. Older articles that would not pass the modern NPP rules get dumped into the NPP backlog if someone makes any sort of edit to the article. A great example of this is the article The Way Between the Worlds. As it stand this article has no references and is one sentence long with an infobox. The article is important when taken into the context of it's authors work. A lot or reviewers wouldn't want to send this to AfD because it has value and merit. But it needs some work, it needs to be sent to draft where it can be worked on and improved. Under the current rules we can't send articles like this to draft our only option is to send them to AfD.

I think a fair adjustment to the rules would be to keep the ban of draftifying articles more than 90 days old without consensus unless the article has been sent to NPP due to age. This would allow NPP the flexibility needed to salvage older articles in need of attention without running into administrative roadblocks.

It is very important to note that I am only talking about this one possible edge case and not any sort of overhaul of this rule. If we removed this rule then there could be a flood of drafts and that is 100% not what I want here. Dr vulpes (💬📝) 10:02, 9 August 2022 (UTC)

  • Why don't you take to AfD, and get consensus to draftify it? Jeepday (talk) 12:59, 9 August 2022 (UTC)
    Yeah that's kind of the only option that you can do in this case. In my other reply I mentioned that my intention here is to find a way to save articles instead of just punting them over to AfD. But if the current system is the best then I'll withdraw the proposal. Dr vulpes (💬📝) 22:57, 9 August 2022 (UTC)
  • It's a decent idea to allow draftification of articles that have legitimately languished in the NPP queue for longer than 90 days, but The Way Between the Worlds is a bad example since the reason it was in the NPP queue was that a different person draftified it out-of-process and I reverted. Finally, you misses the option that was the eventual fate of the article: redirecting. * Pppery * it has begun... 14:23, 9 August 2022 (UTC)
    The Way Between the World was just the article that I stumbled on and your right it isn't a very good example. I guess redirecting could work in a fair number of cases, I don't always like redirecting an article when it's in that gray area between draftify and redirect. But if that and sending articles to AfD is the best way to handle it then it is what it is. Thanks for pointing out the idea for redirect, it's one of those things I knew was an option in these cases but when brainstorming it just didn't come to me. Dr vulpes (💬📝) 23:01, 9 August 2022 (UTC)
  • The NPP project shouldn't get an exemption from globally agreed to guidelines just because they can't do the things they want to do in the given time frame. Also, one of the main reasons why the 90 day limit was put in place was to prevent the draftification of articles that had very little chance of improvement in draftspace due to e.g. the authors long ago moving on to other things. IffyChat -- 16:54, 9 August 2022 (UTC)
    Yeah I see your point. Part of my thinking here was rooted in the idea of trying to find a way to save articles instead of just punting them over to AfD. Is there some of option that I haven't thought of or is this really the best path forward? If the current system is the best then I'll just withdraw this. Dr vulpes (💬📝) 22:55, 9 August 2022 (UTC)
  • I sometimes think we need two distinct “Draft” spaces… the current one for new articles, and another for older articles that have potential but don’t yet meet our standards. Call it the article “fix-it shop” or something. Sending articles needing a fix to the “fix-it shop” would be an option at AFD. The “fix-it shop” would not be under NPP, so would not impact their backlog. And with no backlog there would be no need to have an automatic deletion time limit. These “drafts” would simply sit there, on the shelf in the shop, until someone volunteers to fix whatever needs fixing. Once fixed, they move it back to Mainspace. Just an idea. Blueboar (talk) 23:22, 9 August 2022 (UTC)

Long story short, this really need to be revisited in a significant way; the 90 days causes many problems and prevents many solutions. Even changing it to 6 months would mostly solve the problem. North8000 (talk) 19:46, 10 August 2022 (UTC)

Dispute Resolution and Limited EnglishEdit

I have a question about a situation that sometimes arises either at the Dispute Resolution Noticeboard or in other forums where dispute resolution is being attempted. The question is what can be done when an editor clearly wants to resolve a dispute in a collaborative manner and is trying to discuss the issues, but it is clear to a third party that the editor does not have enough of a command of English either to understand the details of the issues or to explain what they see as the issues. Robert McClenon (talk) 17:34, 9 August 2022 (UTC)

The immediate case in point is an article that was moved to draft space, and then its author requested discussion at DRN, which I declined because discussion could take place via the Articles for Creation draft process. I am not identifying the dispute because I am not asking for advice about the specific case. (I expect I will get advice about the specific case anyway.) The question is what should be done when the author or proponent clearly wants to discuss, but at the same time is clearly having difficulty understanding the English. This issue more generally extends to other cases where an editor is trying to discuss an article, but does not know enough English to understand explanations from volunteers. One guideline is Do Not Bite the Newbies, but how do we tell an editor that they do not know enough English, without biting them?

Standard advice includes trying to tell the editor to edit the Wikipedia in their first language, but some editors really really want to edit the English Wikipedia, even though they don't know as much English as they think that they know. Robert McClenon (talk) 17:34, 9 August 2022 (UTC)

I have an update that doesn't affect the underlying question. In the specific case in point, the author is an American. They seemed, over the Internet, to have a problem communicating in English. That problem is not due to lack of command of English. However, I have also previously encountered editors at DRN who have wanted to engage in moderated dispute resolution, and have not been able to communicate effectively in English. So I still have a question how to deal with editors who are having difficulty with English, in working on an electronic product that is in the English language. Robert McClenon (talk) 22:39, 9 August 2022 (UTC)
I've seen some disputes that sound similar. An editor with certain forms of severe dyslexia, for example, might find it difficult to communicate in writing. In my experience, discussions with people who cannot communicate with at least moderate fluency in writing are frustrating to all concerned, and eventually the editor leaves (voluntarily or otherwise). WhatamIdoing (talk) 18:14, 13 August 2022 (UTC)

My new policy proposals on voting TrollsEdit

The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

I was directed here by some very kind people who gave me their patience. Thank you! Recently, people were very eager to brand me as a troll for only 3 edits I've done in the admin crat voting process. If people are so paranoid and trigger-happy over outlandish opinions for voting rationale as "trolling" we should increase the requirements beyond extended confirm users since clearly the edginess over trolling is so justified because of rampant trolling. We should also make a "Committed Troll List" for people who have gain extended user rights but have been branded by the community as "trolls" or "trolling" with a watermark of no more than 3 "bad" or "trolling" edits as extended users since I was judged by the community as a troll by my last 3 edits out of 1000+. People who get listed as committed trolls (for their dedication to being a troll after 500+ edits) should lose their right to vote in admin-crat processes just like irl felons. If my ideas are bad then people need to stop throwing "trolling" like a slur in these discussions just because an opinion is out of place or they think something is "dumb". For context read the replies to opposing votes 11 and 8 on DatGuy and Shushugah admin polls and my talk page for insight. — Preceding unsigned comment added by FourPaws (talkcontribs)

  • Ironic proposal that sounds like trolling itself. PRAXIDICAE🌈 16:38, 10 August 2022 (UTC)
  • While the OP itself does not appear to be serious, there is, I think, a serious issue here. To refer to a !vote or other contribution to discussion as "trolling" is to say that it should be disregarded from the outset. But if "trolling" is extended to good-faith contributions that we simply disagree with, there's a problem. A determination of "consensus" that begins by excluding principled dissent is obviously invalid. "Consensus" does not mean "consensus among those who agree with the status quo." -- Visviva (talk) 17:24, 10 August 2022 (UTC)
    Oh dear I forgot to sign. I'm 100% serious. If my point somehow takes away from the validity of my proposal then Wikipedia's ears are wide open shut. I am seriously irritated with being dismissed as a troll and so if people are so scared of trolling on every corner here is my solution. FourPaws (talk) 18:46, 10 August 2022 (UTC)
    I have a different solution, and have applied it. Problem solved. GeneralNotability (talk) 18:48, 10 August 2022 (UTC)
  • Considering your evidence for any of this is a video by John Stossel [lol] complaining that admins have power of final draft [lol] and that, gasp, some of us are openly left-wing [lol] really doesn't turn me from the "trolling" aspect. But, Poe's Law is a harsh mistress. --Golbez (talk) 18:50, 10 August 2022 (UTC)
The discussion above is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

Has Wikipedia policy ever shifted toward inclusion?Edit

I am curious if there are any points when PAGs that previously excluded content have changed to include it. For example, has a notability guideline ever been successfully amended to extend notability more broadly than it previously did? (My hypothesis is "no, never", but I'd be very interested in falsifying that.) Just curious if any examples come to mind. Many thanks in advance! -- Visviva (talk) 17:10, 10 August 2022 (UTC)

The general notability guideline has been stable over the years (and a quick note that guidelines and policy have different specific meanings on Wikipedia). I'd have to do some research to see how it's changed but since it's been stable I don't think it's shifted in any meaningful way either towards or against inclusion. But if I really understand your question, the recent changes to NSPORT were a shift away from inclusion, but likewise SNGs have been added (though admittedly none since 2011). Existing SNG criteria are also sometimes expanded, such as when more women athletes were presumed notable under NSPORT as the number of women's leagues increased (though obviously this is a bit complicated now with the overall change to it). Best, Barkeep49 (talk) 17:23, 10 August 2022 (UTC)
Thanks! I will need to add some nuance to my thoughts on what SNG creation signifies. -- Visviva (talk) 17:30, 10 August 2022 (UTC)
You really have to examine when a specific SNG was created. Some predate the GNG, but others were written as a reaction to GNG (laying out alternatives to GNG)… while a few were written to reinforce GNG. Some are more inclusionist in their criteria, others are more exclusionist. The most stable ones tend to aim for a practical middle road: too inclusionist for some editors, while at the same time being too exclusionist for others. Blueboar (talk) 20:10, 10 August 2022 (UTC)
  • Another factor is that there have been several inclusion regimes that have never been supported by actual SNGs, just sort of unstated agreements. I think this was the case with the view that every winner of a US state level Miss America or Miss USA pageant was notable, it seems to have been presumed and implemented without actual support. The same seems to have been the case with all competitors in the Olympic Arts Competition, I have never seen anywhere where people were extending the same rules that apply to sports competitors to arts competitors, but in creation of articles there was the same assumption of default notability. The discussion of the Olympic notability guidelines assumes we are talking about sports competitors. The fact that the arts competition was ended in 1948, 74 years ago, in part because it was not reaching the level of acclaim that the organizers wanted, makes it likely that lots of people do not even know it ever existed. I didn't until I happned on some articles on competitors. There are probably lots of other examples. Some of this may come about because in addition to SNGs, which say various things and position themselves with regard to GNG in various ways, we also have other statements on inclusion that look sort of like SNGs, but are not quite SNGs.John Pack Lambert (talk) 12:53, 12 August 2022 (UTC)
  • What is the best way to go through the full list of currently accepted SNGs?John Pack Lambert (talk) 13:00, 12 August 2022 (UTC)
    Category:Wikipedia notability guidelines Ductwork (talk) 14:24, 12 August 2022 (UTC)
  • There was a time when many SNGs were written rather willy-nilly, and many of them seemed to endorse creating new articles for which no reliable source content could actually be found. In recent times, this has been started to be reeled back in, to ensure that we can actually have an article whose content is based on reliable sources, and not just mostly empty sub-stubs on subjects that meet some arbitrary criteria. The basic inclusion criteria has always been "Does enough reliable source content exist out there (waves vaguely at the entire universe of knowledge) to be used to help us write a reasonably well-written and comprehensive here at Wikipedia". SNGs were an attempt to circumvent that process, a way to start a new article about some subject for which no attempt needs to be made to determine if enough reliable source material even exists to support a reasonable article. Recent history has thankfully started to reel that in. --Jayron32 14:30, 12 August 2022 (UTC)


The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

User:Nightscream is making huge deletes on some pages, has anyone reviewed these? Is there a hatnote that says "recent huge delete needs to be reviewed and/or cited" ? ...0mtwb9gd5wx (talk) 09:56, 11 August 2022 (UTC)

Not appropriate here. I've notified Nightscream, see no evidence of this, and do see evidence that the OP is a problematic editor. Doug Weller talk 10:26, 11 August 2022 (UTC)
See User talk:Jimbo Wales#Moving uncited material to talk pages after a month (permalink) and User talk:Nightscream#Tagging uncited material (permalink). In that, I said that systematically removing potentially good material from articles would be a problem. This is not the page to discuss an editor but a couple of example edits might be discussed. The conflict is in the interpretation of WP:Verifiability which says "Any material that needs a source but does not have one may be removed." I assert that such removal would be fine in association with the development and general improvement of a particular article, but would be disruptive if interpreted as support for an editor to systematically remove good material from the encyclopedia. Johnuniq (talk) 10:32, 11 August 2022 (UTC)
Please explain how any material can be described as "good" if it is not verified. (talk) 11:49, 11 August 2022 (UTC)
THANK YOU. But you're not going to get an answer from to that question from Johnuniq. I've repeatedly asked him how one can determine if material is "potentially good", a completely subjective label without any basis in reason, and which is not defined anywhere in WP policy, and he's repeatedly chickened out of answering this, because he knows that he can't answer it, and that acknowledging this would cause his entire position to crumble.
But by all means, prove me wrong. One more time: By what objective criteria do you know that the material in question is "good material"? Simple question. Can you please give an answer, or at least explain why the question is not a relevant or reasonable one in this discussion?
And they are not "deletions", 0mtwb9gd5w. The material is fact-tagged, and after a month, I move the material to the article's talk page, complete with the diff showing where each passage was in the article, with the intention that this would spur others to restore it with the required citations (which indeed it does, as seen in multiple examples: [11][12], one of which you yourself provided --- the one entire section of uncited material you added notwithstanding), while also contributing to those articles myself [13], as I've been doing since I started editing here in 2005. Calling them "deletions", while omitting what I just described, may convey a false picture to those who come to this discussion, and is not in the best spirit of honesty. Nightscream (talk) 13:46, 11 August 2022 (UTC)
The discussion above is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

Letter-like unicode characters in quotes and citesEdit

Sometimes websites (and particularly people posting things on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook etc.) use unicode characters that resemble plain Latin characters, substituting these for their "plain" equivalents purely for typographic effect. Examples include:

There are websites which offer cut-and-paste translation into all of these, so it's easy for someone to do (without any arcane unicode knowledge, and with no ill-intention).

It strikes me that these are readability and accessibility problems when that text is copied into Wikipedia articles (either as quotations, or as the titles of references). I'd love to know what a screen reader makes of all of the above. I chanced upon Mateusz Malina today, which references a Facebook page than uses Mathematical Alphanumeric Symbols purely for bolding. I'd be inclined to simply rewrite the text in the plain Latin characters, but I'd like to cite the specific part of the MOS that covers that. Which is a problem, as it seems WP:ACCESSIBILITY and MOS:CONFORM are silent on the topic.

Is there anywhere else in MOS that covers this?

If there isn't, I'd suggest there should be. Something to the effect of "if the original text uses <the above wacky stuff> to substitute for Latin characters solely for typographical effect, and the intended Latin text is unambiguous, convert the text into the equivalent Latin characters".

Thoughts? -- Finlay McWalter··–·Talk 13:48, 12 August 2022 (UTC)

Oh, I forgot Halfwidth and Fullwidth Forms - e.g. Translate - in addition to deliberate typographical effect, you sometimes see this in text from Japanese or Korean sources, likely where the person creating the text wasn't a confident English speaker, and wasn't aware that the text they were creating would be so odd. -- Finlay McWalter··–·Talk 13:57, 12 August 2022 (UTC)
@Finlay McWalter well, for page titles: Wikipedia:Naming conventions (use English). Also, as this is the English Wikipedia, articles should be written in English, spelling words with those symbols instead of letters isn't English. — xaosflux Talk 14:04, 12 August 2022 (UTC)
Yes, I'd certainly that's the case for titles and the text of the article. But we do have quotes in foreign languages many places. I'd think the matter of translating these from pseudo-english to actual-english would be uncontentious. -- Finlay McWalter··–·Talk 14:10, 12 August 2022 (UTC)
If you are looking for a Manual of Style entry that says "Articles in the English Wikipedia must be written in English", I don't think I can help you there (See also: Wikipedia:You don't need to cite that the sky is blue.). The "cover" of our encyclopedia (Main Page) does say: This Wikipedia is written in English. I also can't point you to a MOS that says "Words used in articles must be spelled correctly", see again WP:BLUE. Spelling words using such symbols is not considered correct spelling, so in general they should not be included in articles. If the symbols themselves are especially noteworthy of the subject, they could quoted in article prose (which should explain why they are noteworthy, and be reliably referenced).
Regarding actual foreign language quotes, see Wikipedia:Manual_of_Style#Foreign-language_quotationsxaosflux Talk 14:38, 12 August 2022 (UTC)
  • This seems like a solution in search of a problem. Unless and until you can produce BOTH of the following two conditions 1) Places in wikipedia where this is being done and most importantly 2) Where you have been prevented from fixing the problem yourself, then there is not any reason to do anything about this. Can you give examples of these sorts of problems, and can you demonstrate, with diffs, how you are not able to fix them yourself? --Jayron32 15:28, 12 August 2022 (UTC)
  • Is MOS:CONFORM what you are looking for? A quotation is not a facsimile and, in most cases, it is not a requirement that the original formatting be preserved. Formatting and other purely typographical elements of quoted text should be adapted to English Wikipedia's conventions without comment provided that doing so will not change or obscure meaning or intent of the text. Caeciliusinhorto (talk) 07:38, 13 August 2022 (UTC)
  • In the absence of any real and significant problems changes to existing guidelines are premature, see WP:BLOAT. (talk) 15:51, 13 August 2022 (UTC)

Proposal to change how list criteria are documentedEdit

There is a proposal for changing the way list criteria are documented in stand-alone lists. Please feel free to join in the discussion here. Thanks! — hike395 (talk) 11:59, 13 August 2022 (UTC)