Wikipedia talk:In the news/2016 RD proposal

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Proposal to simplify ITN/DCEdit

All this strife about "notability". The DC were originally written to stop ITN from being an obituary. It happened anyway, so RD was created.

If the deceased person passed WP:AFD then for RD let "notability" be satisfied. Get more quality content up, regardless of the subject. If there are so many quality articles about RD people (unlikely) then we can revisit.

If a death is so newsworthy that it gets daily coverage from death to funeral (Thatcher, Mandela, Michael Jackson) then give them a blurb. And let the mistakes of the past just be in the past.

My two cents anyway.

Good luck! -- (talk) 22:16, 11 April 2016 (UTC)

  • Support as nominator -- (talk) 22:16, 11 April 2016 (UTC)
  • Comment. I'm not really clear on how this proposal is different from anything that we do already, or even what problem this is attempting to address. The whole point of discussing the nomination is to come to a consensus about notability. 331dot (talk) 22:28, 11 April 2016 (UTC)
    • Reply Sorry I wasn't clear. I'm saying throw out the "notability requirement". Just get rid of it, and strike the wording from WP:ITN/DC. WP already has WP:NOTABILITY requirements, let them be good enough. The goal is to get more quality content on the main page and eliminate discussion about "notability". The quality check would still stand, so at worst it would be no different, and at best there would be more articles going to the main page and fewer rules to deal with. -- (talk) 22:56, 11 April 2016 (UTC)
      • I don't think ITN/DC has a "notability" requirement. It has a requirement that the individual was important in their field that made them notable. – Muboshgu (talk) 23:00, 11 April 2016 (UTC)
        • "notability" is used all over the drug dealer, the CIA guy and the musician, but for the purpose of this suggestion, they're the same thing. Get rid of the " importance " requirement. The other points still stand. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:39, 11 April 2016 (UTC)
  • The drama vs. obit ticker argument. While I'd like to see less bickering over whether a nom gets posted or not, opening the floodgates doesn't seem to be the solution. "Significance" (/notability/importance/etc.) is there to limit the number of nominations passing through here, be it blurb/ongoing/RD. If not, this is just a version of ITN/R where instead we'd be posting articles listed in Deaths in 2016 daily. Is that a good thing? Perhaps. When we say ITN suffers from systemic bias, this would be a good way to increase the exposure of quality articles that wouldn't normally be considered. Though the inevitable fallout when an obscure nom pushes a popular entertainer off the template may need to be addressed.
Numbers-wise, take for example a slow day (10 April): 5 deaths - 2 red links, 2 stubs and one decent article (which was incidentally posted). 1 in 5 - that's great. But what about a bad day (3 April): 29 deaths - 2 red links, 15 stubs, 8 needing citations and 4 decentish articles (2 posted). That's roughly 30 potential noms. Even if you were to discount on average half as redlink/stubs and another quarter that won't be improved, do we want a turnover of 5-6 deaths hitting the main page on the same day? Those are two extremes but, given that we recently expanded RD because of unfortunate outliers recently, methinks there'll be more deaths eligible than not under this proposal. Fuebaey (talk) 00:10, 13 April 2016 (UTC)
  • How many articles linked in Deaths in 2016 have the quality to be main page ready? Let's do a quick count. Be back in a few minutes. --Jayron32 19:43, 13 April 2016 (UTC)
  • Just checked April 13: of the 7 present, 4 were stubs or marginally above stubs, and the other three had short biographies, likely not extensive enough for a quality article on the main page. The best of them is probably Mariano Mores, and it would need significant expansion of the biography and much referencing work to clean it up. Let's try April 12th. Hold on a sec. --Jayron32 19:47, 13 April 2016 (UTC)
  • April 12 analysis: 12 articles. Seven were stubs or near stubs. Of the remaining five, four have major referencing issues or serious orange-level tags to make them ineligible. Only one Balls Mahoney is main-page quality. On to April 11th. --Jayron32 19:50, 13 April 2016 (UTC)
  • April 11 analysis: 13 deaths noted, but 4 redlinks (so obviously can't be posted to main page). OF the remaining 9, 7 were stubs, while the other two have referencing issues (one has an orange level "additional citations needed" tag, and the other needs one.) On to April 10. --Jayron32 19:53, 13 April 2016 (UTC)
  • April 10 analysis: 7 deaths, 3 redlinks, 3 stubs, and one quality article (which was actually posted): Howard Marks. --Jayron32 19:54, 13 April 2016 (UTC)
  • April 9: 9 deaths, 5 stubs, of the remaining four, one has an orange level tag. One has some likely neutrality/BLP issues that isn't tagged, but probably should be, and the other two comprehensive enough but needs some referencing work, Tony Conrad and Will Smith (defensive end) aren't main page ready, but could probably be worked up to it. --Jayron32 20:02, 13 April 2016 (UTC)
  • April 8: 16 deaths, 6 red links, two redirects, 6 stubs or near stubs, and of the remaining two, one has some serious imbalance/WP:UNDUE issues that would need a LOT of work to fix. The other, which at first glance looks OK, Edward J. Steimel, I would have tagged for some neutrality/BLP type issues for balance, even though it is long enough and fully references, so probably not main page ready either. --Jayron32 20:02, 13 April 2016 (UTC)
  • In summation, over the last 5 days, assuming no significant additional work were done on the articles in the Deaths in 2016 list, the RD list would have had one additional posting based solely on quality, if we did not have ANY notability requirements over WP:N, which is the minimum needed for an article in the first place. Since there are only currently 2 on the list, such an addition would not have pushed off any current candidates. I'd hardly call that "opening the floodgates". --Jayron32 20:05, 13 April 2016 (UTC)
  • Support To quote the OP: "WP already has WP:NOTABILITY requirements, let them be good enough. The goal is to get more quality content on the main page and eliminate discussion about "notability"." I could not have said it better myself. --Jayron32 12:04, 13 April 2016 (UTC)
  • Support I'm good with this too. It might encourage people to actually improve articles rather than just drive-by ITN or make their edits purely in the Wikipedia namespace, god knows we have far too many of those "helpful" folk. Only problem I see, based on the analysis performed by Jayron, is that we may have five to ten RD nominations per day to deal with, which may somewhat flood ITNC. Ideas on how that's best handled? The Rambling Man (talk) 20:24, 13 April 2016 (UTC)
    Well, someone still has to a) notice and b) care enough to nominate them. That's still our gatekeeper. I'm not sure how this proposal changes that. --Jayron32 20:25, 13 April 2016 (UTC)
    Well, it's pretty obvious. Right now, most people wouldn't nominate old footballers who won nothing (60 or so, per month, I'd be happy to nom them all) or local politicians or actors from Filipino television shows, but this proposal would suggest that they would all be considered equally, article quality being the only hurdle (but god knows we have a serious lack of editors who understand that...) hence we'd be flooded with nominations. Perhaps not immediately, but certainly in time. The Rambling Man (talk) 20:45, 13 April 2016 (UTC)
    TRM is right, there is some risk of a flood. Maybe that's OK? Does it really matter if the footballer was only up for a day? I know it'd be frustrating after putting in a lot of work to see it bumped in 18 hours, but I think for that to happen it would take consecutive days of floods. Probably the clutter in ITN/C is a bigger issue. -- (talk) 00:59, 14 April 2016 (UTC)
    1) How many of those old footballers have articles whose quality we'd be proud to show off on the main page? 2) I'm not sure why I numbered that question, because I don't think we need a second question. --Jayron32 01:06, 14 April 2016 (UTC)
    Whether or not the articles are in a suitable condition is not relevant to the point I'm making. If we encourage the concept that the existence of an article passes the notability bar, then there's nothing stopping every single article being nominated, and why not? If they then get more exposure, more improvements will occur. The obvious conclusion being that we will have a serious flood of nominations at ITN, possibly a dozen per day if Deaths in March 2016 is anything to go by. The other corollary is that if, indeed, some of this many nominations per day are brought up to snuff, the throughput at the RD part of ITN will be substantial with so few names being allowed concurrently, listings will be changing there possibly many times per day. The Rambling Man (talk) 07:04, 14 April 2016 (UTC)
    Holy crap! Dozens of articles being improved to with high-quality well written text, and scrupulous high-quality referencing! Goodness, we don't want ANY of that around Wikipedia. We must stop this scourge! --Jayron32 10:32, 14 April 2016 (UTC)
    You missed the point again. I didn't say it was a bad thing, I just asked how it would be managed. And whether it would serve the RD ticker well to be turned over many times a day. But I sense you're now deliberately talking past me, so I'll give up trying. The Rambling Man (talk) 10:41, 14 April 2016 (UTC)
    My point is that we shouldn't be inventing problems out of whole cloth, and then using those imagined problems as a reason to oppose an otherwise good idea. Instead, lets first see if there is a problem, and then deal with it. Let's actually, you know, enact the idea, and then when it generates a flood of high quality articles for us to assess, we'll see if the current structure for doing so needs tweaking. But to anticipate the flood of high quality articles, and then use that as a reason to oppose the good idea, seems unwise. --Jayron32 12:05, 14 April 2016 (UTC)
    And my point is, who's opposing this? Just wind it in a little bit and try to be constructive. The Rambling Man (talk) 12:10, 14 April 2016 (UTC)
I apologize; glossed over the 'DC' part. 331dot (talk) 09:57, 14 April 2016 (UTC)
The following discussion has been closed. Please do not modify it.
  • Question. How would an AfD factor into this? Would that keep a nomination from being posted until it is resolved? I'm wondering if we could ask nominators to cite a notability criterion/criteria(even if just GNG). 331dot (talk) 20:41, 13 April 2016 (UTC)
    an active afd? What do you do now for like a train wreck or scandal or something that's afd? Honestly i don't know. -- (talk) 00:59, 14 April 2016 (UTC)
    How would an article with scrupulous referencing and quality writing be the subject of an active AFD? If the quality is good enough for the main page, it should never even get a whiff of a good-faith AFD nomination, and there's no way any article which would even remotely be considered for AFD should ever pass even the most cursory quality check for the main page. --Jayron32 01:05, 14 April 2016 (UTC)
    I'm sorry, I was not clear- if we are going to assume that nominations are notable, and someone creates an article to nominate it in anticipation of improving it(as often happens) and it gets nominated for deletion on lack of notability grounds before any improvements, what would happen? 331dot (talk) 08:42, 14 April 2016 (UTC)
We're just talking RD's here, or all nominations? 331dot (talk) 08:56, 14 April 2016 (UTC)

Is two supports a consensus? Thanks for the feedback, this one looks like it's toast. -- (talk) 17:21, 20 April 2016 (UTC)

I don't think two is consensus, but I still think this has legs. Worth keeping it going for a bit, perhaps encouraging regular editors like 331dot, Masem, WaltCip, Mjroots, Thryduulf, Muboshgu, Zanhe, Mamyles, BabbaQ, Nergaal, Stephen, David Levy, Smurrayinchester, Fuebaey etc to comment. The Rambling Man (talk) 17:30, 20 April 2016 (UTC)
The idea here is to post everybody who dies who has an article of decent quality? That'd open this up to a lot of postings. See Deaths in 2016; some days have upwards of 15 entries. Not all have postable articles, but I can imagine the churn. – Muboshgu (talk) 17:40, 20 April 2016 (UTC)
  • Oppose. Keeping in mind that importance is one factor, quality is another, and for that reason, just saying anyone that show's notable is going to be a headache for finding the quality needed on the front page. When we review by importance, that should hopefully lend itself to an availability of sources that can improve the article for front page posting; a notable but "non-important" person is not going to have that same type of sourcing capability and will lead into problems. --MASEM (t) 17:46, 20 April 2016 (UTC)
    A bizarre position to adopt. Assessing quality is easy, and that's what admins do. Assessing notability is much more complex and contrived. If an RD is up to scratch on quality, it gets posted. That's really simple and there's no problem with any "headaches" or "availability of sources" or "sourcing capability". All this proposal is saying is that "if the article is quality enough, it gets posted". That by its nature includes good sourcing. What's the problem with that? The Rambling Man (talk) 20:40, 20 April 2016 (UTC)
  • Support - The general idea is good. If a person that has an article (i.e a Wikinotable person) dies, then I see no good reason that they shouldn't be posted at RD, subject to the usual rules. That means no stubs get posted, no articles with serious issues get posted (except in very exceptional circumstances). It may be worth creating a separate discussion page for RD nominations to keep ITN/C clear of clutter. Call it WP:RD/C if you like. Also, it may be worth listing more RDs at a time, say ten or a dozen. As it's only names we are linking, doing so won't stretch the page by more than a few lines. Mjroots (talk) 18:03, 20 April 2016 (UTC)
  • Oppose of the 5M articles on wikipedia I say maybe around 50k are BLP. Assuming that half of them die in the next 50 years, that means 2 BLP become RD every single day. Even if 1 in 2 us good enough quality, I still think 1 RD per day is too much. Nergaal (talk) 18:20, 20 April 2016 (UTC)
    • I think you're a factor of 10 off - {{BLP}} is transcripted over 750,000 times...making your argument even stronger.--MASEM (t) 20:12, 20 April 2016 (UTC)
    • Just a quick question, why is two high quality and updated articles per day at RD "too much"? DYK gets through 16 mediocre articles per day. Complaining about a high throughput of quality of quality articles seems bizarre. The Rambling Man (talk) 20:37, 20 April 2016 (UTC)
      • We actually probably review (not necessarily post) an average of 1-2 RDs a day presently, though this is only a wild gut feeling guess; we probably could easily handle 3-4 assuming only 50% are accepted for quality and/or importance for posting. However, a big difference on DYK vs ITN is that DYK only takes effectively two people to promote after the nomination (the hook reviewer and an admin check), while ITN requires a larger consensus. We'd have to adjust how we handle RDs if we really want to push them out at the same rate as DYK, bringing it down to a similar two-man check for inclusion. --MASEM (t) 22:03, 20 April 2016 (UTC)
        • No, I think creating a problem (i.e. too many nominations to review) is a nonsense starting point. It's a good thing to have nominations, and certainly a great thing if people realise that items will be posted as long as they are up to scratch. The only reason we "review" an average of 1-2 is because that's how many are nominated. It's easy to review such things, we could easily handle a significant increase. The Rambling Man (talk) 07:39, 21 April 2016 (UTC)
  • Nolo contendere - We may as well try it, find out what the end result is. If it fails then we can get rid of it. If it's a success then we can keep it.--WaltCip (talk) 19:45, 20 April 2016 (UTC)
  • Nolo as well. I think I'd need to see this in practice to decide if I think it's a good idea, so I have no problem with trying it. I would only suggest that nominations still need to be shown to be in the news. 331dot (talk) 21:28, 20 April 2016 (UTC)
  • comment too bad this didn't get more attention. The 331dot is right, should we do this, items still need to be shown to be getting news coverage. Also, if you time box it as an experiment, remember the school year is about to end and WP always gets an uptick in contribs during the summer. -- (talk) 21:50, 1 May 2016 (UTC)
    I agree, it would have been a good experiment. I still think we should do it, perhaps for a month or two. And there's not any real opposition to it other than misguided statistical analysis which actually has no bearing on the "quality" aspects of RD. The Rambling Man (talk) 22:08, 1 May 2016 (UTC)
  • Support an experiment, per TRM's suggestion. If a death has been reported in the press, and they have an exemplary fully-referenced article, and someone nominates them, then they get posted. There are a couple of recent rejections that would have been posted but throughput and visibility are not bad things. Stephen 01:04, 2 May 2016 (UTC)
  • Oppose See Deaths in 2016. Every day, over a dozen people with articles die, and about half of those already have at least a C-class article. To post every one is not practical, and to exclude someone would be biased under this policy. More stringent criteria are required than simply posting every death. Mamyles (talk) 15:16, 3 May 2016 (UTC)
    You need to read Jayron's analysis above. It's very clear that we would not be posting every death, as most articles would not be considered of suitable quality (In summation, over the last 5 days, assuming no significant additional work were done on the articles in the Deaths in 2016 list, the RD list would have had one additional posting based solely on quality ...). C-class is not the bright line. The Rambling Man (talk) 15:27, 3 May 2016 (UTC)
Suitable quality is when the article has sufficient length, all statements cited, and no orange tags. From my lookthrough, about six recent death articles per day meet that, without even being nominated. Perhaps Jayron's five day sample size was of a particularly low quality batch. Mamyles (talk) 16:43, 3 May 2016 (UTC)
I disagree. It was a typical batch. I'd be interested to see your detailed analysis so we can determine the differences. The Rambling Man (talk) 17:04, 3 May 2016 (UTC)

[Enacted] Trial runEdit

So what about a trial then? We post every RD nomination that has an article which meets the quality criteria for one month following the closure of a discussion here which concludes in a positive consensus to do so? The Rambling Man (talk) 14:39, 3 May 2016 (UTC)

  • Support no harm in doing this at all. The Rambling Man (talk) 14:39, 3 May 2016 (UTC)
  • Support a trial as I indicated in the above discussion. 331dot (talk) 21:01, 3 May 2016 (UTC)
  • Comment What would be the goals/metrics to observe from this trial number? Gain an idea of numbers? Gain an idea of how much work at ITN/C it takes? How many of these RDs that get nominated are improved in the required timeframe? There's a lot of questions I would want to make sure we know what we're looking to get out of this (Beyond fighting over "importance" for RD deaths) brought up above that we should identify as a goal of this trial run. --MASEM (t) 21:16, 3 May 2016 (UTC)
    I would suggest all of the above. Sadly it's not so easy to ask our readers what they think of a more swiftly updated RD section, but assuming we got no complaints, it would indicate that we haven't put our foot in it, and the bonus being we'll have a few more up-to-scratch RD articles, so everyone wins. The Rambling Man (talk) 06:21, 4 May 2016 (UTC)
  • Support - can't do any harm. Mjroots (talk) 11:46, 5 May 2016 (UTC)
  • Comment if no-one else objects, we should enact this within the next 24 to 48 hours. We need to add a notice to state the running duration of the test, plus ensure that regulars who aren't aware of this become aware of this. We can do that by adding a temporary note at the RD criteria page, and linking those who object per lack of notability to this discussion. The Rambling Man (talk) 19:23, 9 May 2016 (UTC)
  • Enacted As an uninvolved admin, I hereby wave my magic wand, and declare that this experiment has consensus for a 1 month trial run. Between 9 May 2016 to 9 June 2016, inclusive, any article about someone who has recently died where (a) the death has been reported in the press (i.e. is "in the news"), and (b) the article meets ITN's current quality standards, will be posted to the RD section. The results of the experiment will be discussed here during this experiment (no need to wait until the end, a running discussion is useful), and at the end of the month the discussion will be re-evaluated to see if there is consensus to continue this new approach past 9 June. I'll attempt to put the requisite notice(s) in the appropriate place(s), but you know I'm going to miss something, so if you see something missing, please fix it. --Floquenbeam (talk) 19:52, 9 May 2016 (UTC)
Temporary note added to Wikipedia:In the news#Recent deaths section. Not sure if a separate note on ITN/C is needed, I'm inclined not to. --Floquenbeam (talk) 20:13, 9 May 2016 (UTC)
Quick comment: Can we clarify this as "Any existing article"? While the second point about quality will prevent stubs of non-notable people from being put to ITN, the wording might lead some to game the system and create articles on people based only the fact they have died and their deaths reported in the news, which is against the notability standards for biographical articles. Mind you, if someone that we probably should have had an article on dies and an editor spends the time to create sufficiently long starting point inspired by the obits but showing notability before that point, that's great and we should consider it. But I worry the given wording is ripe for gaming. --MASEM (t) 20:38, 9 May 2016 (UTC)
I don't understand how that could possibly be a problem. If someone whips up a new article that meets ITN quality requirements, how is that bad? I don't see that as "gaming" anything. --Floquenbeam (talk) 20:51, 9 May 2016 (UTC)
I agree, it has nothing to do with the past (or lack of) an article, this is to do with article quality. If we become flooded with ITN nominations about previously unknown people, then that will form part of the outcome of the trial. The Rambling Man (talk) 20:59, 9 May 2016 (UTC)
Okay, no problem. Let's see how it plays out, and we can adjust on the fly if this is abused (if at all). --MASEM (t) 23:00, 9 May 2016 (UTC)

Discussion of effects of trialEdit

There is currently a trial at in the news, affecting the criteria for recent deaths (RD). This has been in place since 9th May and runs until 9th June. During this period, RD nominations made to Wikipedia:In the news/Candidates no longer take into account significance and are judged solely on article quality. Any comments or suggestions are welcome. Fuebaey (talk) 15:18, 25 May 2016 (UTC)

Comments about good, bad, or interesting things that come up during the trial can be made here. --Floquenbeam (talk) 20:09, 9 May 2016 (UTC)

  • Oppose trial I, for one, think it went rather wrong procedurally. A full discussion on permanent change of RD criteria or an RfC should have been made instead. This has already led to a flood of nominations, messing the things up and disrupting the normal pace of discussion, since almost any person listed in Deaths in 2016 now becomes eligible. In the long run, it may lower the bar to yellow press deaths, push other news down the page and bring a headache. As such, I'd reserve the right to oppose any trial nomination. Brandmeistertalk 08:41, 10 May 2016 (UTC)
    What's been "messed up"? Point of information, anyone listed in Deaths in 2016 is eligible assuming they have died since the oldest listed RD and have a quality enough article. Not sure what "other news" it's pushing, nor why it may "bring a headache". You may oppose any trial nomination but your opposition will be overlooked during the trial. The Rambling Man (talk) 09:40, 10 May 2016 (UTC)
    Deaths in a fooian year consistently enjoy a high traffic anyway and are often included in Wikipedia:Top 25 Report, so duplicating many of them on the main page is rather redundant. On the main page, more frequent trial RDs may also push each other out on a daily basis, not giving enough time for the majority of readers to read them (unlike regular RDs). I'd abstain from voting on such nominations meanwhile. Brandmeistertalk 11:38, 10 May 2016 (UTC)
    Who reads the Top 25 besides a couple of hundred editors per day? We're here for the readers, remember? And your second reservation is perhaps valid but as of this time yesterday we had zero RDs on the main page, we now have three. Nothing has been lost. It's very easy to point to all the potential problems, but unless they actually happen, it's pure IDONTLIKEIT crystal-balling. The Rambling Man (talk) 11:40, 10 May 2016 (UTC)
    Top 25 is an indication that Deaths in... are well-served to many readers anyway, likely because Recent deaths is a perennial bolded wikilink on the main page. So perhaps there was a good reason not to include every notable death when the RD criteria were established. Brandmeistertalk 12:01, 10 May 2016 (UTC)
    As I said, it's very easy to point to all the potential problems, but unless they actually happen, it's pure IDONTLIKEIT crystal-balling. It's also very easy to speculate as to the motives of the origins of the RD section, but as we have seen all too often, one man's super notable is another man's tabloid trash. The Rambling Man (talk) 12:04, 10 May 2016 (UTC)
  • Comment. This hasn't been a good week for soccer players(3 nominations). 331dot (talk) 09:37, 10 May 2016 (UTC)
  • Oppose this idea. It is equivalent to posting any blurb on ITN as long as the event has happened and has an article. That is done by news sites not an encyclopedia. Only significantly notable news and deaths must be posted if they have quality articles. (talk) 13:12, 11 May 2016 (UTC)
    Incorrect. The item cannot be posted if it does not have a sufficiently high quality article, not just that it has an article. Please re-read the idea of the trial before making erroneous claims. The Rambling Man (talk) 13:57, 11 May 2016 (UTC)
    Okay, I should have said, "It is equivalent to posting any blurb on ITN as long as the event has happened and has an article of sufficient quality." The proposal will lead to this - ITN will feature a lot those obscure sportspeople who have played a handful of matches without any significant achievement or major contribution. That is because, it is easier to create and expand articles about such players as there's only so much to write about, compared to bringing an article about a successful player, with a longer career, to sufficient quality. RD will essentially become a ticker of obituaries of unheard people from different fields. I liked the RD section the way it was before, because it gave me an opportunity to learn about someone regarded important to their field. Now I'll be reading about some random person who used to get 4-5 pageviews a day (example: John Young (baseball)). (talk) 16:04, 11 May 2016 (UTC)
    No, it isn't the "equivalent", it is exactly that. This trial is intended to demonstrate that if someone is notable enough for an article on Wikipedia, they are notable enough for inclusion at RD. It's 100% purely objective, as long as the quality is there. As for your example, Young has made it to 13,000 hits in the past two days. Isn't that something to be proud of? We're directing our readers to a diverse and interesting set of articles. If we get a complaint from a reader that we are doing the wrong thing by posting these, I'll believe it, otherwise, your complaint is nothing more than IDONTLIKEIT. There is not one shred of evidence that points to this being damaging to Wikipedia, quite the opposite. The Rambling Man (talk) 18:08, 11 May 2016 (UTC)
    Speaking as the primary author on Young's article, I'm sort of proud of that result, getting that many page views. It got far fewer than when I got it to DYK in 2013. How is this a bad thing? I was a little against the trial before, but not enough to actively oppose it. Might've been that old instinct of fearing change. So far it seems to be working out okay as a few decent articles have made it up there that wouldn't have otherwise, while others that are nominated aren't of sufficient quality to be posted. – Muboshgu (talk) 18:31, 11 May 2016 (UTC)
    It's early days (i.e. two days in) but I'd like to think that this is precisely the return on investment we're aiming to achieve. I'm glad the article has been so successful at ITN, and I'm glad our readers are being tempted into looking at articles they may otherwise have overlooked. The Rambling Man (talk) 18:42, 11 May 2016 (UTC)
  • Oppose this idea. I don't generally comment on RDs. Regardless, this sets a dangerous precedent. Some people may be happy featuring minor pieces of news on ITN as long as the article is high quality, but I am not. Significance should matter, and this proposes to ignore it. The Lord Lucan nomination some time ago is an example of how this is not a good idea. Yes, it's for a blurb not a RD, but the essence is the same. Banedon (talk) 13:53, 11 May 2016 (UTC)
    This isn't really a place to "oppose" the idea of the trial, it's more a place to discuss what we're finding out. So far, so good, we've got four or five RDs posted over the last couple of days (about a third or so of those nominated), some good work done on some more minor interest biographies, and a far more diverse set of individuals being nominated. What's not to like? As for "ignoring significance", quite the opposite, this proposes a purely objective approach to significance, i.e. if an individual is notable enough for Wikipedia, they are notable enough for RD. It's very simple and avoids perennial bitch fights over American college basketball coaches etc etc. The Rambling Man (talk) 14:04, 11 May 2016 (UTC)
  • Comment. I'm seeing the many articles being improved and posted as well, and I'm wondering if there should be a separate page or subpage for RD nominations, so that they don't overwhelm regular ITN nominations. 331dot (talk) 20:26, 11 May 2016 (UTC)
    Are they overwhelming? Really? We've had a few more nominations than we have recently experienced. That's it. I think we're coping just fine. We're at day 2/3 so far, nothing is broken, we have a nice turnover rate at RD, some better articles as a result, yet all I'm reading (not from you 331dot) is "wah, I don't like this, I don't have any real reason why, but meh, I don't like it!!!!". The Rambling Man (talk) 20:50, 11 May 2016 (UTC)
    I'm very satisfied with what has gone on, not only from articles getting improved but for them getting more exposure and hopefully people are learning something about the people being posted. I should not have used the word 'overwhelm' but I have wondered if it would help from an organizational point of view. Just a thought; nothing I am formally proposing. 331dot (talk) 21:07, 11 May 2016 (UTC)
  • Several names have been posted and then pushed out by newer deaths. I see three names whose deaths occurred within four days. Honestly, this feels a little rushed, though readers might wanna check older deaths by clicking "Recent deaths". Also, since importance is not required, this all comes down to quality. However, the Tony Cozier biography is not posted on the Main Page due to... "quality" issues, despite looking well written and well sources. Is "quality" some sort of secret code of "notability" or something? George Ho (talk) 21:41, 12 May 2016 (UTC)
    Nope. It's secret code for "quality" At the time it was nominated, the article was substandard. It may or may not have changed enough for people to change their votes. --Jayron32 01:26, 13 May 2016 (UTC)
    Also, the "support" and "oppose" votes become quality-based. What if someone closes the discussion based on just quality? George Ho (talk) 02:38, 13 May 2016 (UTC)
    That's the idea. Quality becomes the only thing that matters in RD nominations, so someone can close a discussion based on just quality. Banedon (talk) 02:56, 13 May 2016 (UTC)
  • I tried nominating a late horse, but it got closed down per previous failed nominations. Why can't RDs still extend to animals even after "importance" is temporarily halted? George Ho (talk) 03:08, 13 May 2016 (UTC)
    That has nothing to do with this trial. If you want to seek a consensus to include animals at RD, start another, separate discussion. The Rambling Man (talk) 07:09, 13 May 2016 (UTC)
  • Like George Ho I am getting the feeling that some deaths are being pushed off the listing very quickly. I think the best way to resolve this would be to remove the four slot maximum in favour of a name staying there for five days after posting or seven days after their death, whichever is earlier. Thryduulf (talk) 08:01, 15 May 2016 (UTC)
    The general consensus was to keep RD listings to a single line on "most browsers", this suggestion could easily result in ten, twelve or more listings simultaneously, which won't be acceptable. The Rambling Man (talk) 08:27, 15 May 2016 (UTC)
    I think it would be worth discussing whether this consensus still holds as RD is moving a lot quicker now than before. It may do, but I'd rather not dismiss all suggestions based on it without checking first. Thryduulf (talk) 09:21, 15 May 2016 (UTC)
  • I had no idea that any sort of trial was in process until half an hour ago, but I've gone back and taken a look. It does explain why we've had tons of RD nominations recently. That has led to what feels like a slightly higher turnover on the template, but a lot of the nominations have got nowhere due to poor article quality, and many of them would not have passed the old significance standard. I don't think the odd extra less-important person is really helping ITN's mission, and quality over quantity is better as long as we have some turnover, say 2-3 RDs per week. I think we should go back to the previous RD criteria. Modest Genius talk 14:22, 15 May 2016 (UTC)
You're not alone in this. I, too, have issues with some lesser significant people, including a centenarian (not easy to memorize and spell at the start), being posted to the Main Page, though I marked it as ready. I did nominate several to test the consensus out, but the result was just quality-based in terms of content. In the light of overdue opposition, shall we shorten the trial to just three weeks or two? --George Ho (talk) 19:24, 15 May 2016 (UTC)
  • So a number of other centurians were posted. Nothing new there. What other "insignificant" people have been posted? -- (talk) 20:15, 15 May 2016 (UTC)
  • Random sportspeople, like John Warr (whom I nominated, but thank my nemesis for working hard on the article to get it posted) and John Young (baseball), and random political figures, like Margot Honecker (whom majority opposed solely for her "insignificance" before the trial). --George Ho (talk) 20:47, 15 May 2016 (UTC)
  • They're not "random", they're notable per Wikipedia guidelines. Please try to use more precise language. You seem to have no idea what you're talking about here. The Rambling Man (talk) 21:12, 15 May 2016 (UTC)
  • I don't mean random... in a general sense. They don't seem to meet the criterion to be "important" or "significant" in their own fields. --George Ho (talk) 21:30, 15 May 2016 (UTC)
  • Do you actually understand the premise of this trial? Or are you being deliberately difficult? The Rambling Man (talk) 07:51, 16 May 2016 (UTC)
  • The trial is just one month. After that, we'd revert back to what RD was before the trial. Of course, the trial made RD looser and more like obituaries that we've seen in newspapers. I can't say I like it or don't like it. Nevertheless, the consensus has reduced to just quality and... copyright, perhaps? Also, editors are given impression that they would nominate many as possible, especially during the trial. However, being threatened for "disruption" just because of so many nominations and so little work on articles would discourage editors from participating in ITN and/or even Wikipedia. It would also give administrators a lot more power to abuse and misuse by hurting editors than helping them, like criticizing? As for the purpose of the trial, probably it's to test our reactions and to see the effects of looser RD. George Ho (talk) 09:07, 16 May 2016 (UTC)
  • Again, I think you misunderstand, particularly with regard to the abuse of fair use images. Those should never be allowed to featured in any article, leave alone those which are featured on the main page. As for "hurting editors", I have no idea what you're talking about, your multiple nominations of inadequately updated articles, including an animal was treated as it should be, mildly disruptive. The animal issue is separate, so deal with that elsewhere. Editors are not being given any impression of anything, the trial is very straightforward, for one month RDs that meet a minimum quality threshold as assessed by community/admin will be posted. Everything else is nothing to do with this trial and should be discussed elsewhere to reduce the disruption here which isn't helping us assess the trial itself. The Rambling Man (talk) 10:10, 16 May 2016 (UTC)
  • If we're going to get rid of significance on that, then it's best to just get rid of deaths on ITN altogether. The high turnover combined with some of them having rather questionable notability for an article is troublesome at best. Wizardman 14:36, 15 May 2016 (UTC)
    • why? And less notable according to whom? -- (talk) 20:15, 15 May 2016 (UTC)
  • notice how there hasn't been a single argument about "notability" since the trial started and no quality articles have failed to go up because of an arbitrary "importance" benchmark? The system works! -- (talk) 20:15, 15 May 2016 (UTC)
    Agreed, and notice how many tens of thousands of pageviews these individuals are getting, and notice how their articles are being improved. All those complaining are simply saying "I don't like it" without any kind of objectivism. The Rambling Man (talk) 21:12, 15 May 2016 (UTC)
    That's largely because these people objecting are more concerned with being the gatekeepers of culture, and not with improvement of Wikipedia articles. "I don't think these people are important enough..." is all they are saying, with the greatest emphasis on "I don't think..." In the mean time, it is hard to argue with any experiment or trial at Wikipedia that results in higher quality articles and more views of those articles as a "failure", unless you simply don't understand what the purpose of Wikipedia is... --Jayron32 01:08, 16 May 2016 (UTC)
    I agree. At this point it seems fairly convincing to me. An article judged to be of sufficient quality can go up, otherwise it doesn't, and Wikipedia is better for the improved articles. – Muboshgu (talk) 01:26, 16 May 2016 (UTC)
    Agree too. These self-appointed guardians would prefer a completely blank RD section than allow "random" postings of high quality biographies of the recently deceased. How they think that improves Wikipedia is beyond my small, sleep-deprived noggin. The Rambling Man (talk) 07:52, 16 May 2016 (UTC)
    High-quality articles is the inherent Wikipedia goal in its own right, without the requirement of pushing them to RD. If someone wishes to propel high-quality articles, he/she nominates them to WP:GA or WP:FA. The thing is that to the average reader, it's unobvious that only revamped articles now appear on RD, he/she might have legitimate reasons to wonder why, for instance, Tony Cozier got an RD while Darwyn Cooke did not. Even ITN regulars like Modest Genius learned about the trial only recently. Such practice will just highlight natural editorial bias - articles deemed interesting will be improved and the rest will not. The pre-trial RD criteria mitigated that to the minimum, making the RD section more fair and natural. Regarding the pageviews, they always tend to spike at the time of person's death, regardless of whether the article is on the main page or not. Brandmeistertalk 12:35, 16 May 2016 (UTC)
    Did you nominate Darwyn Cooke? Did you actually do anything? And no, high quality isn't confined to GA (heaven help us) or FA. Perhaps you'd like to rewrite the ITN criteria, particularly the one that relates to "quality content"? As for Such practice will just highlight natural editorial bias - articles deemed interesting will be improved and the rest will not. this is the funniest post so far in this debate. What highlights editorial bias more, one where anyone with a quality article gets posted, or one where we endlessly debate the inherent super-notability of people that some Westerners have never heard of? Yet again, this is IDONTLIKEIT dressed up as something attempting to be vaguely objective but failing horrendously. Try again. The Rambling Man (talk) 21:37, 16 May 2016 (UTC)
    Just like many editors, I am not the one man army despite editing across multiple venues and topics. "Anyone with a quality article gets posted" is a theory, but in practice, since the trial was enacted on 9 May, the majority of RD candidates has been either from the US or UK. Right now, three out of four main page RDs are US people. This trend may or may not persist in the future, but the effect I mentioned above is currently there. Brandmeistertalk 22:36, 16 May 2016 (UTC)
    If it's a problem you care about and you didn't do anything to fix it, you have no right to blame anyone else that the problem still exists. --Jayron32 00:59, 17 May 2016 (UTC)
    Actually I've had my share in fixing it by creating dozens of multinational biographies. I don't regard it as a bad thing per se, this is natural, but that's why we have Wikipedia:WikiProject Countering systemic bias. I can wait until the end of the trial, so let's see... Brandmeistertalk 10:48, 17 May 2016 (UTC)
  • Do we now have a system (subject to trial) where regular news stories are vetted according to importance and newsworthiness (or whatever the best descriptions are) as well as quality but deaths are only subject to quality? If so, doesn't this turn the RD section into a newsticker, which has repeatedly been said to be against the purpose of ITN? And if we are only concerned about high quality articles, why continue with an importance/newsworthiness hurdle for regular news stories? BencherliteTalk 13:02, 16 May 2016 (UTC)
    Actually, that makes it the exact OPPOSITE of a news ticker. If it were a news ticker, we would run every major death and/or story and wouldn't check for quality. If, however, we ignore our own subjective and personal opinions over what the world should find important, and instead focus on posting quality content, then we're not assessing the newsworthiness (which is a newsticker's job) but instead assessing quality only (which is Wikipedia's front page content job). --Jayron32 14:10, 16 May 2016 (UTC)
    So, in other words, yes we will be running the main news and the RD sections by different standards. If John Smith wins a book prize and the consensus is that the prize is not of sufficient importance to post, then it won't be posted no matter how good the articles about John Smith or the book prize are; but if John Smith dies the next day, his article will be posted as long as it's good enough. We maintain an importance filter for every news story apart from the ITN equivalent of the obituaries page. I don't see the convincing reasons behind this divergence of approach. BencherliteTalk 14:54, 16 May 2016 (UTC)
    Point of note, ITN has four stated purposes, of which showcasing quality articles is but one of them. Banedon (talk) 14:56, 16 May 2016 (UTC)
    Point of note: Not one of those purposes says "Directing readers towards articles that voters at ITN/C declare to be important enough for the main page". Every single purpose is about showcasing content, and not about showcasing "important" stories. --Jayron32 15:28, 16 May 2016 (UTC)
    Au contraire, only one of the four purposes uses the word "showcase" or "quality". The other three can scarcely be interpreted as "showcasing content". Banedon (talk) 00:33, 17 May 2016 (UTC)
    Oh, really. Let's quote all four, since it doesn't look like you're actually reading them. "To help readers find and quickly access content they are likely to be searching for because an item is in the news." (bold mine). "To showcase quality Wikipedia content on current events." (bold mine). "To point readers to subjects they might not have been looking for but nonetheless may interest them." (bold mine) "To emphasize Wikipedia as a dynamic resource." (bold mine) You'll notice all four emphasize Wikipedia content, or synonyms for content that Wikipedia provides (subjects, resource). You'll also notice that exactly ZERO of them indicate that the role of ITN is to tell readers what is important or worthwhile in the news. --Jayron32 01:03, 17 May 2016 (UTC)
    Read all four again. Exactly one of them uses the word "quality". The other three mention "content", but "content" do not have to be of high quality. Stubs are still part of Wikipedia content. You further said "every single purpose is about showcasing content". Read the dictionary on what "showcase" means, then come back here and explain how "To emphasize Wikipedia as a dynamic resource" involves "showcasing". Banedon (talk) 01:07, 17 May 2016 (UTC)
    If I thought you were interested in anything except blind arguing, I'd note that Wikipedia can hardly be a resource if it doesn't have content. But you're really not here to make Wikipedia better. You're just here because you want to get in arguments and be "right". Fine, you can be right. I'll no longer have anything to do with you, however, so long as you aren't interested in making Wikipedia a more useful resource, and instead just want to pick fights. You win. I will no longer attempt to disagree with you because nothing you say is worthwhile towards improving anything. You're just a picker of fights, and for that I will now declare you the instant winner of every argument you have with me, so for the future you can just stop having them, because you can no longer lose them. --Jayron32 01:37, 17 May 2016 (UTC)
    Bravo. The Rambling Man (talk) 07:55, 17 May 2016 (UTC)
  • The argument "If someone is notable enough for an article on Wikipedia, they are notable enough for RD" is convincing to a certain degree, but I disagree with the claim that it is directing readers to "interesting" articles. I'm sure that John Young (baseball) got such a high number of pageviews because many people, like me, clicked on the link expecting it to be John Young (astronaut). (talk) 14:02, 16 May 2016 (UTC)
    But why can't someone say "If a news story is notable enough to have its own article on Wikipedia, or to have updated material in a relevant article, then it's notable enough for ITN"? BencherliteTalk 14:57, 16 May 2016 (UTC)
    If this trial becomes policy, I'm confident someone will inevitably say that. Banedon (talk) 15:03, 16 May 2016 (UTC)
    It's actually rather easy to see the difference. With an RD, we've got the entirity of the person's life to review for importance and notability per WP:GNG. While it may be a newly created article to reflect an importance person that we've not had an article for in the past, we should readily have sources from before the death to determine the notability. On the other hand, a breaking news event may be difficult to determine if it will meet notability guidelines (keeping in mind a burst of news is not the same as enduring notability), so just because a story is widely covered and someone made an article about it doesn't mean that story is notability. Thus we can't apply the same metric to regular stories as we do with RDs. --MASEM (t) 15:31, 16 May 2016 (UTC)
    Plenty of blurbs link to non-breaking news articles right now. Also, if breaking news items may not meet notability guidelines, why don't we see more proposal for deletion tags in nominated breaking news items? Banedon (talk) 00:39, 17 May 2016 (UTC)
    It simply doesn't read across that simply. An RD will relate to just one individual. One name only will appear on the ITN section. A news story will have the inevitable discussions over blurbs, alt blurbs, suitable targets etc. Also, news stories (e.g. stuff featured in the WP:Top 25 Report) is usually heavily tabloid biased, e.g. Captain America films (and the associated Marvel Universe stuff), Game of Thrones series, etc, so some form of subjective filtering would be required. Finally, we know that RDs meeting the quality threshold seem to top out at around 1 to 2 per day, news stories on the other hand could be dozens per day. It would completely change the way ITN works, while this trial seems to be adequately demonstrating that nothing has been broken at all. The Rambling Man (talk) 17:06, 16 May 2016 (UTC)
    This is about a subsection of ITN called RD. No slippery slope here. If someone wants to discuss the other nominations, that's a separate thread. -- (talk) 17:46, 16 May 2016 (UTC)
    There is no slippery slope. But someone will still argue, if we can do this for RDs, why shouldn't we do it for blurbs? Banedon (talk) 00:39, 17 May 2016 (UTC)
    If and when that happens I would encourage that individual to start a new discussion here. This discussion is about RD, no sense in worrying about future hypotheticals. -- (talk) 03:37, 17 May 2016 (UTC)
    And the sky may fall in. It's already been explained why we can't do it for blurbs. Please read more carefully. The Rambling Man (talk) 07:56, 17 May 2016 (UTC)

One week into trialEdit

So, just a quick objective update, we're almost one week into the trial and nothing has broken. The following is true during week commencing 9 May:

  • 13 RD nominations made
  • 8 RD nominations posted (including one from 6 May)
  • 4 RD nominations closed (one being about a horse)
  • 2 RD nominations remain open

So, we're averaging 1.1 new RD listing per day.

A quick and dirty look at previous weeks: In the week prior to this (w/c 30 April):

  • 3 RD nominations made
  • 0 RD nominations posted (excluding the one from 6 May which was posted under trial conditions)

So that averaged 0 RD listings per day.

In the week prior to that (w/c 23 April):

  • 10 RD nominations made
  • 5 RD nominations posted

So that averaged 0.7 RD listings per day.

In the week prior to that (w/c 16 April):

  • 10 RD nominations made
  • 4 RD nominations posted

So that averaged 0.6 RD listings per day.

The Rambling Man (talk) 11:18, 16 May 2016 (UTC)

Just a query, can I ask what metric (i.e. which week does a nomination fall under for the date of nom/death and the date of post/close) you're using to calculate those figures? A quick glance at the archives shows more than 16 nominations since the start of the month. Fuebaey (talk) 12:49, 16 May 2016 (UTC)
The date under which it was listed. The Rambling Man (talk) 16:11, 16 May 2016 (UTC)
Seems that week one was a success. – Muboshgu (talk) 21:57, 16 May 2016 (UTC)
I would agree. Hardly a flood of nominations, hardly a rush of postings, but actually quite a nice, measured turnover. The Rambling Man (talk) 07:58, 17 May 2016 (UTC)
Only if you define 'success' as 'more RDs posted'. I don't think that's true and over one a day is more than is desirable. You're also ignoring the significance of those posted. Modest Genius talk 12:58, 19 May 2016 (UTC)
A featured article is posted only for 24 hours. An RD entry, at one per day, would be posted for 4 days. Are you saying that keeping an RD on the main page for longer than a featured article is necessary or desirable? --Jayron32 13:00, 19 May 2016 (UTC)
I don't see FAs as a relevant comparison. Instead, we should compare the time RDs are up with the time ITN blurbs are. This is making RDs rotate much faster than ITN blurbs. Modest Genius talk 14:21, 19 May 2016 (UTC)
Actually that's completely untrue. The Rambling Man (talk) 14:32, 19 May 2016 (UTC)
"ignoring the significance"? What are you talking about? That's precisely what the trial is demonstrating, with tens of thousands of page views of those who have been posted who would not be posted if subjective "significance" played its traditional systemic bias role. More RDs posted also means more RDs with higher quality articles, thus improving Wikipedia. Of course, some people may not see an improvement in the average quality of Wikipedia articles as a reason to consider this a success, instead clinging on to the "good old days". The Rambling Man (talk) 13:15, 19 May 2016 (UTC)
I mean the importance of those listed. Like it or not, ITN is selective. We don't just post any blurb with a decent article, and that's very much a good thing. The same should apply to RD. I don't see a frequent stream of sometimes trivial articles as an improvement over a moderate stream of important ones. Quality over quantity, as long as the frequency is sufficient to keep things fresh. Yes there is an argument about bias, but this doesn't seem to be the way to solve it (and is still biased by the willingness of editors to write articles). Modest Genius talk 14:21, 19 May 2016 (UTC)
We don't just post any blurb with a decent article because we have featured articles about people like Jenna Jameson and news stories relating to her latest television appearance should not be posted on an encyclopedia. RD is entirely different, everyone who has a biography is notable and as such their death can/should be featured as long as the quality of the article is there. We've seen the old variation of RD failing for several reasons, e.g. posting more American television actors and college basketball coaches than European figures of literature or entertainment, we've seen lengthy periods where RD is empty, how helpful? Now we have a nice steady trickle of good quality articles actively encouraging improvements to articles and visits to our pages. These individuals "of lesser significance" are getting 10s of thousands of page views. How is improving article quality and increasing pageviews to perhaps more esoteric articles a bad thing? What is actually "wrong" with this other than just vague hand-waving dismissal of "this doesn't seem to be the way to solve" issues? I also refute the idea that if we didn't improve "trivial articles" then editors would suddenly migrate to the ones you consider to be "important" and improve those instead. People edit things they're interested in and increasing the scope of RD is really proving that to be a good thing for Wikipedia and the readers. The Rambling Man (talk) 14:31, 19 May 2016 (UTC)
Not exactly the way you think. Even Doris Roberts wouldn't have gotten posted under just "quality" criterion; the article still has some unreferenced sentences. Even under this trial, more American actors and basketball coaches would still be posted more than European literary and entertainment figures. Probably editors seem too American to care about biographies of Europeans? George Ho (talk) 17:56, 19 May 2016 (UTC)
Sorry, what does Roberts have to do with the trial? Because articles which are poorly referenced sometimes get mistakenly posted, doesn't make it right. And you missed all the salient points I made but I'm not surprised. The Rambling Man (talk) 18:28, 19 May 2016 (UTC)
This trial is for RD, so let's stay focused that. why is it a problem for the RD section to turn around faster than the blurbs? -- (talk) 19:52, 20 May 2016 (UTC)
If that was true... which it isn't. Again, it's another unfounded pseudo-problem. The Rambling Man (talk) 19:54, 20 May 2016 (UTC)
  • Just to note, the turnover rate is hardly excessive. I just removed a May 12th RD today. 8 days in RD seems hardly excessive, and I can't see the evidence that we're promoting RD articles too fast and too many if they stay on the main page over a week. --Jayron32 22:35, 20 May 2016 (UTC)
    Indeed, as I said to Modest Genius the first time round, the assertion that the RD churn is so much higher than the ITN blurbs is simply false. The Rambling Man (talk) 06:15, 21 May 2016 (UTC)

Two weeks into trialEdit

So, just a quick objective update, we're two weeks into the trial and still nothing has broken. The following is true during week commencing 16 May:

  • 10 RD nominations made
  • 3 RD nominations posted
  • 0 RD nominations closed (one being about a horse)
  • 7 RD nominations remain open

So, we're averaging 0.4 new RD listing per day.

Compare that to the actual ITN blurbs, we have had 7 new stories posted in that time. So any claims that the RD churn is far exceeding the ITN churn are simply not true (and never have been). The Rambling Man (talk) 07:58, 24 May 2016 (UTC)

  • 0 quality articles not posted because of objections about "notability/importance"
  • 0 angry discussions about "notability/importance" or how a similar person was/was not posted.

We are getting all of the predicted benefit and none of the predicted doom. -- (talk) 16:44, 24 May 2016 (UTC)

Yes, the primary benefit being the lack of subjectivity over who passes the "RD notability bar". Something which the trial was designed to challenge. Looks like it's doing the job. The Rambling Man (talk) 16:56, 24 May 2016 (UTC)
  • Still oppose - I've seen no convincing arguments to the contrary. Banedon (talk) 00:54, 25 May 2016 (UTC)
    • Oppose why? A reasoned position backed by evidence and rationality is easier to understand than a blanket "oppose" and is more likely to sway people to your position. -- (talk) 01:53, 25 May 2016 (UTC)
      • Same reasons as discussed above. I believe significance matters, and objections about notability/importance are valid. I also don't think that "0 quality articles not posted because of objections about notability/importance" is much of a benefit, if it is a benefit at all. We basically have different interpretations about what the purpose of ITN is. By the way do consider registering an account: it's hard for me to shake the feeling that I am talking to someone who realized that I am ignoring him / her and is therefore editing while logged out so as to get my attention regardless. Not alleging bad faith, but it makes me uncomfortable. Banedon (talk) 02:53, 25 May 2016 (UTC)
        • Why does your assessment of significance get to be the one that matters though? --Jayron32 03:46, 25 May 2016 (UTC)
          • And why does your assessment of article quality get to be the one that matters? Or your assessment of significance for that matter, lest the RD in question end up in AfD. Please read WP:Consensus. Banedon (talk) 05:31, 25 May 2016 (UTC)
            • No one person's assessment of article quality is the one that matters as posting or not posting is based on the consensus of those offering an opinion. Likewise when significance was a criterion, whether a person was significant enough for RD was also judged based on consensus. Thryduulf (talk) 09:15, 25 May 2016 (UTC)
            • Should an article listed on RD end up at AfD and be deleted, I'll happily eat my hat and your hat. We have a sufficient number of responsible Wikipedians lurking around ITN to sniff that kind of thing out. You really are delving deep to find problems here where in reality, not one single one exists with the current approach. Your "still oppose" amounts to "I still don't like it" and nothing more. The Rambling Man (talk) 09:57, 25 May 2016 (UTC)
    • So to restate: you oppose because you don't believe posting articles for "insignificant" RD people to the main page helps? why not? how does it hurt? -- (talk) 10:06, 25 May 2016 (UTC)
      • It hurts by taking "screen time" from the people who are significant. It also hurts because I dislike the idea that articles on the main page are censored by article quality, i.e. bolded links are bolded because the Wikipedia community thinks the article is of good quality and wants (read: tries to manipulate) me to read it. When significance matters, this feeling of manipulation is lessened. When only article quality matters, it is strengthened. I prefer a main page which features things that I might reasonably be believed to be interested in, not one in which the underlying idea is "this article is good, please read it". Banedon (talk) 11:59, 25 May 2016 (UTC)
        • "Screen time" has not been taken by anything. Page views dispute your view of things, there is interest in these RDs, regardless of your personal opinion. You "don't like it" and that's it. The Rambling Man (talk) 12:01, 25 May 2016 (UTC)
        • So there are a few challenges with this. 1) "screen time" isn't listed as an ITN purpose, and other main page features (FA, FP, FL, DYK) turn around daily. 2) WP already has a significance criteria, it's wp:notability which is the only threshold for other main page features (FA, FP, FL, DYK) so this is just aligning RD (not even all of ITN) with the existing policy. 3) quality is routinely evaluated by all the MP features, and also by FA/GA, FL, and the wikiprojects. It's routine, was already a requirement for ITN, and is not exactly censorship. 4) two weeks into the trial we're not seeing a high turnover rate. Lets consider though if all these facts were not the case, what exactly is wrong with the RD section turning over faster (it isn't)? -- (talk) 15:44, 25 May 2016 (UTC)
          • There was a period a few days into the trial when we posted several in quick succession. This has not happened since, suggesting it was a coincidence of several people with good enough articles dying in quick succession. This could have happened under the old system as well, albeit less likely, and it could happen again. If this is perceived to be a problem (which there are are differing views about) then there are other ways to change things than returning to the old system (allowing more RD slots and/or a guaranteed minimum appearance time are the obvious possibilities). Personally I was sceptical of the trial when I found out about it, but I have now been convinced that it is better than the old system. Thryduulf (talk) 19:34, 25 May 2016 (UTC)
            • I suspect the surge in nominations was because people subconsciously felt "hey something new let's give it a try", which is also why there was a nomination of a horse. Banedon (talk) 08:41, 26 May 2016 (UTC)
          • Someone who is better at writing concise notes than I am should I think place a note on the candidates page noting the existence of the trial and linking to the details. It might (or might not) reduce the number of times we have to repeat ourselves.... Thryduulf (talk) 19:39, 25 May 2016 (UTC)
          • 1) Yes. 2) Existing RD policy is on WP:ITN, not WP:notability, and existing policies can be changed by consensus. 3) ITN tends to have higher standards, see typical comments on nominations over article quality, plus the fact that at certain points in the past certain users have argued for blurbs in part because the target article is a featured article. Also compare Battle of Avarayr, currently bolded on OTD, which features a curiously short half-a-sentence description of the battle. 4) There's nothing organically wrong with RDs turning over faster (or slower, for that matter). What makes you think there is? Banedon (talk) 08:41, 26 May 2016 (UTC)
            • I'm not sure ITN has "higher standards", or special"notability" rules. WP:ITN simply says it must be in the news and have consensus to post. So let's recap: You believe ITN has a higher notability threshold (it doesn't), and that it should so that "significant" items get more screen time (not a goal of ITN), where screen time decreases is turnaround speeds up (it's not) but you agree it's not a problem, so long as it's "organic" (I think no one at ITN is killing people), because you want a MP which "features things that I might reasonably be interested in" (not a stated goal of ITN or WP). I think you've got a lot of work ahead to realize your dream. -- (talk) 12:10, 26 May 2016 (UTC)
              • I think you are twisting my words and making unjustified extrapolations from what I did say, not to mention putting words in my mouth. You seem to have for example assumed that a decrease in screen time for significant RDs (which I did say was bad) somehow equates to "an increase in turnaround time is bad" (even though I explicitly said that was not bad). The reason is simply because if lots of significant people die in short order, there would be quicker turnaround, but all RDs would still be of significant people, and that is not a bad thing from my perspective. Since my words may be dangerously misunderstood or misrepresented and snide remarks pushed my way, I am no longer interested in discussing this with you. Sorry. Banedon (talk) 01:19, 27 May 2016 (UTC)
                • I asked above "what exactly is wrong with the RD section turning over faster" and you replied "there is nothing organically wrong with RDs turning over faster" (these are actual quotes not made up ones). It seems obvious that more posts (faster turnaround) == less screen time. Anyway I'm sorry to the larger community for this wall of text and since Banedon has indicated an end to participation I would appreciate if someone could hat the whole thing. I just wanted to see if there was any merit to the objection. -- (talk) 01:41, 27 May 2016 (UTC)

Banedon, you prefer the RD listing to be empty? The Rambling Man (talk) 09:55, 25 May 2016 (UTC)

  • Strong oppose I have multiple reasons to oppose this. First, the introduction of RD was meant to decrease the amount of death blurbs and to reserve it only for extraordinary cases. By the time, the RD criteria have significantly regressed to the point that we post deaths of mediocre people in their fields. Second, the more we loosen the RD criteria, the more meaningless becomes the existence of the "Death in YEAR" articles, which are among the most viewed articles on Wikipedia. In this regard, if we let this trial become a rule, the only difference between the RD section and the "Death in YEAR" article would be the article's quality. Third, loading the RD section with links to articles documenting recent deaths would make the ITN poorly arranged. On one hand, there are events with some significance for which a consensus wasn't reached; on the other hand, there are recent deaths about people who are there just because their articles are updated or of some quality. Informing our readers about "an irrelevant person" on the price of not posting some significant news stories is a terrible way to deal with. Finally, I'd like to answer your question addressed to Banedon. We don't have specific guidelines how many days after the death an RD item should be removed from the listing as we normally don't remove blurbs. That said, we can simply leave it with older RDs until new one gets listed. But even if we have to leave it empty, it's a better solution than further regressing the criteria.--Kiril Simeonovski (talk) 10:53, 29 May 2016 (UTC)
    The trial has been highly successful with a number of more niche items posted, all of which have received tens of thousands of page views, which goes to demonstrate that we are serving our readers well with this trial. Mostly, the opposition to this trial has been a refusal to change, an "IDONLTLIKEIT" vote, and to suggest that an predominantly empty RD is better than having some high quality niche articles represented is patently absurd. We are here for our readers, not for ourselves. The Rambling Man (talk) 11:04, 29 May 2016 (UTC)
    It's quite logic that something will receive tens of thousands of page views when we post link to it on the most accessed and visible page on the whole project, i.e. the main page. You can insert a box with links to all FAs on the main page if you want to increase the number of page views to quality articles. But shall we really use it as a norm for serving our readers? We should also give a damn what people see on the main page and not how many page views the links put there will generate. I firmly support my stance that the ITN listing, and the RD as part of it, should retain relatively high and stringent criteria for posting. --Kiril Simeonovski (talk) 11:38, 29 May 2016 (UTC)
    Your position isn't supported in logic. You are content for someone to have an article on Wikipedia but you are not content to report their death if their article is of a sufficiently high quality. The RD items posted during this trial have been as a result of people making more of an effort to improve articles than they ordinarily would have done. We have received not one single complaint whatsoever from any reader, just a few disgruntled ITN regulars. And that tells me all I need to know. The Rambling Man (talk) 11:44, 29 May 2016 (UTC)
    You're right. I'm content for someone to have an article on Wikipedia but not to report their death if their article is of a sufficiently high quality. That's because the main page is not a medium for that purpose. The "Deaths in YEAR" article, which is already linked on the main page, is enough.--Kiril Simeonovski (talk) 11:53, 29 May 2016 (UTC)
    Not at all, because that page contains red links, stubs and articles of poor quality, BLP violations, articles about animals etc. We only feature high quality articles about the recently deceased during this trial. The Rambling Man (talk) 11:59, 29 May 2016 (UTC)
    (edit conflict) @Kiril Simeonovski: You appear to have some significant misconceptions. The number of RDs posted is completely independent of the number of blurbs posted, no change has been made (or to my knowledge even proposed) to the criteria for posting a blurb, including a blurb about a persons death. RD entries are removed 7 days after death or when there are four newer deaths, whichever happens first. RD may contain anywhere from 0-4 entries at any one time. RD lists only deaths that have occurred in the past 7 days, where the article about individual concerned is in the news, was nominated and is of sufficient quality; death in year articles list the death of every person with an article in the relevant year - they continue to serve the same different purposes they did before the trial began. Thryduulf ([[User talk:Thryduulf|talk]--Kiril Simeonovski (talk) 12:12, 29 May 2016 (UTC)]) 11:41, 29 May 2016 (UTC)
    I know exactly the differences between ITN, RD and the "Deaths in YEAR" article. It's unlikely that the RD listing will fully equalise the "Deaths in YEAR" article but its purpose substantially converges to the other over time. Yet, my opinion is a bit elitist that the main page is the face of Wikipedia and it should only list content of extremely high quality and relevance. That said, the news items posted should be of both extraordinary quality and relevance no matter how they can be useful in improving the traffic statistics.--Kiril Simeonovski (talk) 11:48, 29 May 2016 (UTC)
    Yes, and it's opinions like that which drive people away from using Wikipedia. It's not an elitist organisation, it's designed (as is all of ITN, including RD) to offer articles that people may be looking for. The pageviews prove that. Your opinion is harmful. The Rambling Man (talk) 11:59, 29 May 2016 (UTC)
    Fair enough. I respect your opinion and don't really intend to change it. You've surely wanted to improve something by proposing the trial and that merits respect. I just want to emphasise that in my opinion the ITN criteria we had five years ago were much better than they're now.--Kiril Simeonovski (talk) 12:12, 29 May 2016 (UTC)
  • Having seen the results of this trial, I have to put forth a mightily strong support for continuing this as a permanent fixture of ITN. Thanks to this, we have improved the referencing and prose of multiple articles nominated for RD. This, I think, is totally within the spirit of Wikipedia. The encyclopedia is not more or less improved by having an item stay on the RD ticker for an indefinite amount of time out of "deference", so much as it is benefited from having a mounting plethora of articles meeting standards of quality that we would use for posting on the front page.--WaltCip (talk) 17:36, 29 May 2016 (UTC)
    Question: Why does RD criteria matter when it comes to improving the referencing and prose of multiple articles? For example I updated Women's World Chess Championship 2016 with game scores and a summary of each game, even though I also wound up opposing the nomination, and even though ITN gave me no credit for it (e.g. Jayron32 said "The article looks like someone started to add prose synopses of each match in the championship...", emphasis mine). If the only relation RD criteria has to improving articles is to bribe editors with "hey your work may be featured on the main page" to improve articles, I would call that against the spirit of Wikipedia, not within it. Banedon (talk) 01:20, 30 May 2016 (UTC)
    A bribe involves an exchange of tangible goods or services. As far as I can tell, Wikipedia articles are not owned by anyone. But more to the point, if it's not the spirit of Wikipedia, please explain the existence of barnstars and featured articles.--WaltCip (talk) 03:02, 30 May 2016 (UTC)
    If I write a featured article, it's because I'm interested in it and / or want to see the article or Wikipedia improved. If someone awards me a barnstar for that, great. If nobody does, that's OK too. On the other hand if someone writes a featured article because he or she wants to be awarded barnstars, I'd call that against the spirit of Wikipedia. Banedon (talk) 05:18, 30 May 2016 (UTC)


Just past the halfway mark in the trial and I have a few general observations, hopefully we can start to generate more discussion to determine whether to extend the trial, make it a permanent change to the criteria or abandon it altogether.

  • We had an initial surge of RD nominations. It resulted in just over one RD being added per day.
  • The following week it had reduced to pre-trial levels.
  • The overall turnover rate at RD did not exceed the ITN blurb turnover rate.
  • A number of articles which ordinarily would haven't been nominated have been posted. Those articles have benefited from an improvement in quality in order to get them featured, some of them are of niche interest.
  • A number of articles posted at RD have experienced pageviews in excess of 10k. It is impossible to speculate what they would have had if they had not been featured in the RD section.
  • RD discussions have been very straightforward and generally civil (unless discussing this trial, ironically).
  • Supporters seem, in general, content that the trial has thus far improved articles that would ordinarily have been overlooked/ignored as the community knew they would never be posted to the main page.
  • Opposers seem, in general, to dislike the dilution of the "significance" of those posted (which seems key, and part of the subjectivity that has disappeared resulting the "ery straightforward and generally civil" discussions noted above).
  • RD has not been blank, but has rarely been full.

Observations, opinions, discussions etc would be welcome. The Rambling Man (talk) 19:17, 29 May 2016 (UTC)

  • I haven't specifically followed every posting but I believe (please confirm/reject) that I've seen a wider variety of nationalities represented than before, which would be a good thing for everyone. As of now I think that at a minimum that the trial should be extended, if not made permanent(after a discussion of course). 331dot (talk) 02:18, 30 May 2016 (UTC)
  • The trial is a failure. People who were not particularly notable have been posted, which is bad. No evidence has been presented that the trial method is an improvement over the old method. A while back I proposed that pageviews of a person prior to their death could be a useful metric of reader interest and should be taken into consideration when debating recent death nominations, and I was shot down. This trial metric is essentially editor interest, and consequently more prone to bias. Furthermore, the trial method is an attempt to silence debate. Even ITN/R items are allowed debate and on occasion have not been posted. Abductive (reasoning) 05:13, 30 May 2016 (UTC)
    Actually, that's incorrect, the trial has achieved precisely what it set out to do, hence the trial is a complete success. You don't like it, I get it. But I'll indulge you. Why is posting more RDs when we would have had zero a failure? Why is improving articles to a main page quality which otherwise would have languished as stubs or poor shadows of articles a failure? Why is combatting systemic bias a failure? As for silencing debate, that's nonsense. It is simply an acknowledgement that if someone is notable enough for an article, they are notable enough to be featured at RD. It takes away the puerile subjectivity that is often applied, it reduces wastage dramatically. And reader's interest has been significant in several of the RDs that would not have been posted. After all, it's the reader we care about here, not us editors, isn't it? The Rambling Man (talk) 05:39, 30 May 2016 (UTC)
    @Abductive: Indeed; it's not a bad thing for readers to read about these people that have been posted. Information is good. It's also not bad for these articles to get improved; that's a good thing. I believe bias has been helped, not hurt, by this trial. 331dot (talk) 10:12, 30 May 2016 (UTC)
    An ITN/R article has never, ever been not posted due to debate. The only times that ITN/R articles are not posted are when they lack the quality and prose to be posted on the front page. It is an established criterion that all ITN/R postings have to meet, and for that matter, that all RD postings have to meet as well. Also, if we should hesitate from posting articles of recent deaths due to systemic bias in our articles, then Wikipedia has utterly failed in its purpos and needs to be shut down. For the time being, ITN is doing exactly what it is supposed to be doing - showcasing timely articles.--WaltCip (talk) 14:18, 30 May 2016 (UTC)
    A total lack of curation is not a service to our readers. For that there is Deaths in 20xx. Abductive (reasoning) 05:06, 31 May 2016 (UTC)
    Well that's absurd. Of course there is curation. And Deaths in 20xx, as noted, features red links, stubs, sub-stubs, dead animals and has no quality control. Items featured on RD have to meet minimum standards. So please, stop trying to make things up to suit your position. The Rambling Man (talk) 06:03, 31 May 2016 (UTC)
    "...hesitate from posting articles of recent deaths due to systemic bias in our articles, then Wikipedia has utterly failed in its purpose and should be shut down"? That's an insane statement. And inane. Abductive (reasoning) 05:08, 31 May 2016 (UTC)
    It's neither insane nor inane just because you cannot grasp the nuance of that statement, but just for your benefit, I will spell it out for you. Articles, particularly of persons, on Wikipedia have to undergo the usual rigor of verifiability and notability before they can remain on Wikipedia. Those that do not meet those standards obviously are deleted. This was pointed out prior to the trial, in which the issue of an article being notable enough for posting on RD was solved by merely adhering to that standard. We solve the issue of systemic bias by posting everything that meets that standard, not just a select few articles judged by an arbitrary number of individuals and the posting admin on duty. If your concern is that the articles we are posting display systemic bias and thus we should not post them, then the problem lies not with our RD process, but with Wikipedia itself. Systemic bias on Wikipedia by definition is reflective of its authorial and editorial demographics and their interests. There are projects set up to address these issues in article space, and we leave it to them to deal with the matter. If we cannot trust that they are addressing systemic bias across Wikipedia, then Wikipedia as a collaborative environment have failed.--WaltCip (talk) 17:26, 31 May 2016 (UTC)

Not a good improvement, unfortunately. I see more businesspeople and sports athletes and actors than I saw before the trial. However, if the RDs during trial was the same as the ones in pre-trial, the whole trial would be pointless unless it's all about administrator discretion. George Ho (talk) 05:08, 2 June 2016 (UTC)

I'm afraid I don't understand what you're trying to say. What's pointless about listing a few more RDs of more niche individuals? What's pointless about improving articles to main page standard which wouldn't have ordinarily been improved? Judging quality has always been ultimately about admin discretion, what' your point? The Rambling Man (talk) 05:15, 2 June 2016 (UTC)
We can improve articles, but that's mainly to help other readers. Doing this for ITN... That's one thing, but there should be other reasons to feature a person's name on the Main Page. We post events in blurb-y style because they should be newsworthy and reflect impact, though other blurbs of less impactful events reflect the overemphasis done by the media. We post merely names in case people die; of course, before the trial, we post only significant people in their fields. The trial lets random (or, you call it, "niche") people be named... unless the quality of the article sucks. Hmm... people's deaths... we don't know how much they affect our lives unless the deaths are blurbed. We just merely name people whenever they die. George Ho (talk) 05:57, 2 June 2016 (UTC)
I'm not sure what any of that has to do with this trial. But thanks anyway. The Rambling Man (talk) 06:05, 2 June 2016 (UTC)

Notions of biasEdit

  • I don't think that deaths of relatively obscure people suffer from bias. Given that this is the English Wikipedia, people who are from non-English speaking countries are going to garner less interest in life and in death. Even if you guys succeed in ramming through this awful change, in a few months editors will stop improving the articles and the "bias" will be back. Abductive (reasoning) 05:15, 31 May 2016 (UTC)
    As you know, bias does not just have an impact on nationality, but on career, etc. We have featured niche actors and sportspeople from the English-speaking world that would not have been ordinarily featured. No-one is "ramming" anything through, this is a "trial" remember? Please try harder to stop making things up. The Rambling Man (talk) 06:05, 31 May 2016 (UTC)
    Suppressing articles for which WP has a bias does not solve the problem of bias, it simply masks it while denying focus for articles in which our readers might actually be interested. -- (talk) 22:25, 6 June 2016 (UTC)


  • I note that nobody has addressed the pageviews idea. Abductive (reasoning) 05:15, 31 May 2016 (UTC)
    Provide us with a suggested implementation and we can consider it once again. Perhaps it could be assessed in another trial? The Rambling Man (talk) 06:08, 31 May 2016 (UTC)

Why is this badEdit

I sympathize with the oppose votes, this change feels like "random" articles could be promoted to the main page. wp: notability is the first guard against this, but the second is quality. Could some dead mayor of Saskatoon get up on RD? Sure. For that to happen enough wp:rs would have to exist, then a quality non-stub article written, then it get nominated. Lots of hurdles. If all that happened, and the article went up, and few thousand people learned something about Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, even Canada, is that bad? I had to walk away from ITN for years to be able to look back and see how silly wp:ITN/DC is. If you're opposed to this change, ask yourself "is it really so bad if we post a few more deaths"? if so, what is the harm? How do you measure it? -- (talk) 01:08, 6 June 2016 (UTC)

Close to ending the trialEdit

Either today or tomorrow is the last day of running the trial without "importance" criterion. Frankly, there weren't arguments about how importance a person was before his or her death... unless I missed some. The arguments did not prevent the names from being posted. Kimbo Slice under "importance" criterion would have not been commemorated in the main page. Same goes for Donny Everett, Bryce Dejean-Jones, and Burt Kwouk. Unsure about Carla Lane, Hedy Epstein, etc. The trial was poorly publicized, if not advertised. Some got confused by the temporary changes made. Ah well, the links to articles are posted because of quality solely, and there is nothing to reverse the decision. By the way, what happen to the nominations posted before the end of the trial? Will temporary trial rules apply? George Ho (talk) 03:43, 8 June 2016 (UTC)

I've been keeping a subjective list of people posted to RD since the start of the trial. The full table is at User:Thryduulf/2016 RD trial but the summary is below. It relies on the assumption that articles not posted due during the trial (i.e. due to quality issues) would also not have been posted had the trial not been in effect.
Yes Maybe No TOTAL
10 5 13 28
"Yes" means people who would (in my opinion) have been posted to RD if the trial wasn't happening, "No" means those who would not have been and "Maybe" means I think the discussion could have gone either way. Note this is not necessarily how I would have voted in each case, but my prediction of the likely outcome of the discussion. It is not intended to be an objective measure.
In combination with the lack of arguments noted above, I personally regard the trial as a success. Thryduulf (talk) 14:18, 8 June 2016 (UTC)
Thank you for the analysis Thryduulf. It won't be a surprise to anyone to discover that I also consider the trial to have been successful. The handful of complaints we had seemed to focus on a subjective "devaluation" of the RD section of ITN. Benefits, subjectively again, seem to be a wider variety of individuals featured, an increase in the number of main page-quality articles, no endless argument over the comparative notability of a college basketball coach versus a sitcom actor, more timely posting (which also benefitted the "Yes" category above) and not one single complaint at all from any of our readers. Thanks to all who participated. I hope we can maintain this approach, but of course there are those who don't like it who will have different opinions. The Rambling Man (talk) 14:24, 8 June 2016 (UTC)
I've done a little bit of analyses for nationality and occupation at User:Thryduulf/2016 RD trial but I have run out of time to formulate conclusions. Please feel free to add your analyses and conclusions here or there. Thryduulf (talk) 22:42, 8 June 2016 (UTC)
Thank you for analyzing, and thanks for running this trial. My more impressionistic observation as a frequent reader (though rare participant) of ITN/C is that, now, the discussions were more focused and less unpleasant, articles got improved swiftly, maybe it was more worth the bother! (A comparative analysis of improvements made to RD candidate articles before and during the trial might be interesting as well). In my view, too, the trial worked.
For non-RD discussions, it might be worth thinking about separating, typographically, discussions on the article's quality from those on the item's newsworthiness. Such a visual distinction might allow for more focus as well, and a clearer display of agreement on newsworthiness might turn out to be more motivating for improving quality. ---Sluzzelin talk 23:20, 8 June 2016 (UTC)
If the RD trial worked, shall we do the same on the blurbs instead? That might be worth a try, right? George Ho (talk) 01:16, 9 June 2016 (UTC)
that's a separate discussion for a separate thread. -- (talk) 01:57, 9 June 2016 (UTC)
Indeed, I don't believe there to be any kind of read-across to blurbs, which are stories usually relating to just one (sometimes minor) aspect of an article. If George Ho would like to suggest a trial of that nature, he should do so (as noted above) in an entirely separate thread from this very specific implementation of a trial. The Rambling Man (talk) 04:58, 9 June 2016 (UTC)
To summarize from the chart (nice job, Thryduulf), from the "No" category, seven Americans, two British, one Cameroonian, one Lebanese, one Norwegian, one German. Rate of Americans of the "No" category is more than half. From the "Yes", two Americans, two British, one Afghani, one S. Korean, one German, one Bajan, one Russian/Swiss, one Chinese. Rate of Americans of the "Yes" is 20%; British, 20%; others, 60%. Rate of Americans out of total posted is 39.29%. The result of the trial is an increased rate of Americans. I hope it's not a case of systematic bias, is it? --George Ho (talk) 02:22, 9 June 2016 (UTC)
We fight bias by improving more articles about Cambodians, Norwegians, Indonesians, etc, not by suppressing articles about Americans or Britons. All the articles posted satisfied wp:n, were quality articles, and in the news. Fighting systemic bias is not a criteria of ITN or ITN/DC. -- (talk) 02:46, 9 June 2016 (UTC)
All right, all right. Enough talk about nationality. Let's discuss occupations then. From the "No", seven sportspeople, including four baseball players, is the rate of more than half of what would have not been under "importance". I see one super-centenarian; other occupations vary, one each. From the "Yes", I see various occupations. The rate of sportspeople out of 28 total would be 25%. I don't know whether the trial was the result of increased rate of sportspeople, but numbers don't tell us anything. Not one stub article has been posted; this would apply to a sports bio. Back to occupation, five out of seven sportspeople are Americans, but systematic bias isn't one of ITN's criteria. Nevertheless, I hope this doesn't leave me concerned, right? George Ho (talk) 03:11, 9 June 2016 (UTC)
I have no idea if you have been "left concerned", that's of no relevance to the trial. Over the course of just one month, this kind of nationality/occupation analysis is mildly interesting but nothing more. A little like the large number of celebrity deaths so far this year, a snapshot of deaths can vary wildly for any given month. The point of the trial was that articles which were nominated that passed the quality bar were posted. The majority of our editors will be English speakers, i.e. that will make the largest portion of them American. Hence we'll have more articles about Americans. It's hardly rocket science or news, is it? What this trial did show was that while those items are still posted, other, more niche items are posted that would never have previously made it, mainly because of the systemic bias against them. The Rambling Man (talk) 05:02, 9 June 2016 (UTC)
Time for an RfC to make this official? I think the trial was a success. We got all the benefit and no harm. TRM's interlude section above is spot on, and I've not seen any explanation of why the outcomes of the trial are undesirable. -- (talk) 02:00, 9 June 2016 (UTC)
Yes to an RfC, I agree with the rest of what you say as well - I understand some people don't like it, but I don't understand why the reasons they cite for doing so are bad things. Thryduulf (talk) 11:35, 9 June 2016 (UTC)
  • I also support moving to an RfC. Are we going to keep this going until the result of an RfC, or stop? I don't yet see a reason to stop. 331dot (talk) 11:44, 9 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Have followed this with some interest (I don't have the energy or inclination to edit on anything like the scale I used to, but am still a regular reader and think I might start getting involved in low-commitment editing such as ITN or TAFI). There are a few interlinked issues here. The most obvious question – though admittedly the biggest can of worms – is that if a high quality article is not worthy of being showcased to our readers on one of its most significant ever dates, when adding it to the main page would be displacing either older news or blank space, then why cover the topic? Secondly, if in practise ITN contributors were dead against an obituary section, then surely a consensus against RD's very existence would have emerged by now?

    So at a first glance, the RfC we're considering seems to be on what RD should be. Should it exist at all? Should it be a showcase on high quality articles whose subjects have died, regardless of notability? Or, subject to sufficient quality, should it be a halfway house for decent articles on people more notable than one-time footballers but not quite as notable as Nelson Mandela?

    In principle my position is somewhere between the second and third options. But in practise, the more notable a subject is, the more likely it is that the necessary work to meet ITN quality standards will actually be carried out. Conversely the less notable a subject is, the more picky reviewers are likely to be about quality issues. The only way to remove all drama from ITNC would be to ban all humans from editing it, but on balance I think adopting this trial on a permanent basis would at least channel that drama into a constructive purpose - improving articles rather than arguing about their importance. StillWaitingForConnection (talk) 04:58, 10 June 2016 (UTC)

Draft RfCEdit

As comments here seem largely in agreement that the trial was a success and has not identified any tweaks required, I propose that we start an RfC to make the trial conditions permanent. It should be fairly simple to word, but I'm creating this section as a draft to allow for comments and copyedits before it goes live.

If there are no objections or changes proposed, I will post this (approximately) as above on Saturday 11 June (UTC). Thryduulf (talk) 22:39, 9 June 2016 (UTC)

  • Pinging those commenting on this page recently: @331dot, The Rambling Man, George Ho,, Sluzzelin, Abductive, and WaltCip:. Thryduulf (talk) 22:42, 9 June 2016 (UTC)
  • You may proceed when ready, Thryduulf.--WaltCip (talk) 02:51, 10 June 2016 (UTC)
    • I strongly object to calling the trial a success. What evidence do you have? Abductive (reasoning) 05:04, 10 June 2016 (UTC)
      • I think this isn't the venue to argue whether the trial was a success. After all, Thryduulf is only trying to finalize the wording for the RfC. You, me, and everyone else who disliked the trial should save our arguments for the actual RfC when it's posted. Banedon (talk) 06:31, 10 June 2016 (UTC)
        • Abductive, you didn't like the trial, you offered nothing constructive as to why you believe it wasn't a success. Honestly, if you don't want to help, please find some other venue to vent your spleen. The Rambling Man (talk) 07:21, 10 June 2016 (UTC)
          • Okay. Point me to the RfC when it is ready. Abductive (reasoning) 23:33, 10 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Couple of things. One, there's a missing period at the end of #1 of the new criteria (after 'speedy deletion'). Second and more importantly, existing criteria apparently doesn't mention point 3 of the new criteria (about reliably sourced confirmation of their death), which is weird. I would suggest simply updating the existing criteria with the new point 3, inserting it even into current ITN policy since it's not there. Banedon (talk) 06:31, 10 June 2016 (UTC)
    • I'd rather not make any changes to any other part of ITN policy before this change has been accepted or rejected in order that there is no confusion about what changes are happening and why (there are a couple of principally organisational changes I'm thinking of for other parts of the ITN instructions and criteria as well). Everything posted is explicitly or implicitly currently required to meet BLP (of which this is a subset) but I'm adding it here to make it explicit and simple. Thryduulf (talk) 10:44, 10 June 2016 (UTC)
      • In that case, I'd suggest removing #3 of the new policy from the RfC, since it is not in dispute (i.e. it would apply even if the new policy is not adopted). Banedon (talk) 12:29, 10 June 2016 (UTC)
        • Hmm, yeah I guess it could cause confusion if this proposal fails. Struck above. Thryduulf (talk) 13:20, 10 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Three greens from me, good to go. The Rambling Man (talk) 07:21, 10 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Sufficient quality... How sufficient? I know it can't be a stub. Why not change number two from "sufficient quality" to "no longer stub quality"? George Ho (talk) 08:37, 10 June 2016 (UTC)
    Or maybe make it number four? George Ho (talk) 08:39, 10 June 2016 (UTC)
    • There are guideline standards set out elsewhere at WP:ITN about what constitutes sufficient quality for things to be posted, and it's more than just not being a stub and during the trial has been held to include things like sourcing and comprehensiveness. The latter especially cannot be judged other than on a case-by-case basis. Basically an article is of sufficient quality when a consensus of people commenting say it is. Thryduulf (talk) 10:44, 10 June 2016 (UTC)
      • In other words, if the article is long but has quality issues, then it won't pass. Right? George Ho (talk) 16:45, 10 June 2016 (UTC)
    • Quite, the community will judge the quality, just as they do with any other part of the WIkipedia that gets featured on the main page. This is no different from that at all. What are you trying to say? The Rambling Man (talk) 12:25, 10 June 2016 (UTC)
      • So meaning of "sufficient" depends on case-by-case, right? There's no need to elaborate "sufficient"; consensus can exemplify it. Right? --George Ho (talk) 16:55, 10 June 2016 (UTC)
        • Yes, of course. Just as it always has and always will. The Rambling Man (talk) 17:56, 10 June 2016 (UTC)
  • AFD already puts a banner on the article and ITN doesn't post with red banners so I don't know if a separate clause is needed but I also don't think it hurts. rest is fine. -- (talk) 10:59, 10 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Regarding criteria 1, what if the consensus picks to "keep" the article unanimously, and the AfD is still open? George Ho (talk) 17:16, 10 June 2016 (UTC)
    Until the AfD is closed, it's ineligible, simple. The Rambling Man (talk) 18:05, 10 June 2016 (UTC)
  • The proposal seems fine to me. Thanks to everyone for their efforts on this. 331dot (talk) 19:25, 10 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Agree, let's get the RFC up and running. Mjroots (talk) 20:09, 10 June 2016 (UTC)

Should the RfC be on this page, on WT:ITN or somewhere else? Thryduulf (talk) 20:43, 10 June 2016 (UTC)

  • Do it here, new section. Post a comment at WT:ITN and WP: RFC. I think this page should be the complete record. -- (talk) 11:23, 11 June 2016 (UTC)

@, Mjroots, The Rambling Man, George Ho,, Banedon, Abductive, and WaltCip: RfC started below and advertised at WT:ITN, WP:CENT and Talk:Main page. Please post links anywhere else you think is relevant. Thryduulf (talk) 12:47, 11 June 2016 (UTC) @Jayron32:

Pinging @Modest Genius, Bencherlite, Wizardman, and Kiril Simeonovski: since they commented on this talk page but have neither been pinged or participated in the RfC yet. Banedon (talk) 03:09, 14 June 2016 (UTC)

Is this proposal supposed to remove the requirement that the person was significantly notable in his field? Nergaal (talk) 18:07, 15 June 2016 (UTC)

@Nergaal: yes, that is the primary purpose of the proposal. The first sections on this page detail why this was proposed in the first place. It was trialled for one month, and the section "discussion of the effects of the trial" does exactly what it says on the tin. Thryduulf (talk) 14:37, 16 June 2016 (UTC)
I am ok with maybe decreasing the standard, but if we are going to apply the same threshold as we do for DYK, I think we should move RD there, below the first few rows of the main page. Nergaal (talk) 15:25, 16 June 2016 (UTC)
Firstly this isn't the actual RfC (you want the section below for that) and secondly the quality standards required for ITN (including RD) are higher than those required for DYK (see discussions on RD nominations during the trial 9 May-9 June trial) so this isn't actually a relevant comment. Thryduulf (talk) 22:26, 16 June 2016 (UTC)

RFC: Criteria for the recent deaths section of the main page In the news sectionEdit

The following discussion is an archived record of a request for comment. Please do not modify it. No further edits should be made to this discussion. A summary of the conclusions reached follows.
The over whelming opinion is that the proposal as described should occur, but that simple conclusion is not going to be enough satisfy those who have opposed. This has been subject to discussion before and reached different conclusions see Wikipedia:In the news/Death criteria. On the question of is someone notable the community has wrestled with this over the years creating various policies and guidelines as how to define that, all articles need to address this regardless of the subject even Bio articles. Those who oppose raise some potential issues that may need addressing in the near future;
  • Super notable being lost in the noise or lost because their article lacks quality
  • lack of definition for sufficient quality
  • Bias - a double edged sword praised for reducing us vs them but concerns that one or two nations will overwhelm the balance
  • Wikipedia:NOTMEMORIAL and turning the main page into an obiturary

Personal note:looking at the past history of the pages and previous discussions about the criteria the proposal as it stands its probably going to need more work. Gnangarra 12:46, 18 July 2016 (UTC)

Following a month long trial (9 May - 9 June inclusive) that was regarded as successful by most commenters based on objective and subjective measures (read this page for the full background), this RfC seeks to establish whether the criteria for the "Recent deaths" section of the "In the news" section of the main page, listed at Wikipedia:In the news#Recent deaths (WP:ITN/DC), should be changed to match those used during the trial.

Question: Should the proposal detailed below be implemented?

No other changes to the section at Wikipedia:In the news#Recent deaths section are proposed. These changes do not alter the criteria, standards or conventions for blurbs, including blurbs for people who have recently died.

If this proposal is successful it will apply to all nominations made from the UTC day after the RfC is closed (e.g. if this is closed on the 18 June it will apply from 19 June). Thryduulf (talk) 12:32, 11 June 2016 (UTC)

  • Support as proposer and per my comments about the trial. Thryduulf (talk) 12:32, 11 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Support Trial showed no flood of nominations, no complaints from readers, and more quality articles on the MP. The old ITN/DC are outdated. -- (talk) 12:59, 11 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Support - The trial brought lesser-known people who had died to the MP. This can only be a good thing as it gave readers a chance to learn something they might not otherwise have done. By insisting on a standard of quality before posting, we all win. Mjroots (talk) 13:01, 11 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Support - simply put, the trial was a successful one. Article quality should take precedence over perceived importance. Spiderone 14:10, 11 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Support Trial was a success. Lugnuts Dick Laurent is dead 14:55, 11 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Oppose Three issues. Under proposed criteria the editorial attention and efforts would be dispersed across arbitrarily chosen biographies, whereas current RD criteria help to check whether core and important biographies are up to snuff in the first place. Secondly, the trial showed that such nominations push other noms down the page, making the latter less visible and less likely to get editorial and admin attention. At the same time multiple trial nominations have been nominated without prior improvement (including stubs), probably just to get more editorial eyes for an arbitrarily chosen biography. Lastly, the proposed criteria would look arcane and kinky to the average reader. Nearly all main page content has an accompanying indication as to why it appears on the main page, such as FA, FP, DYK or selected anniversaries. Under proposed criteria, RDs would become an exemption, resembling the random page feature or virtual particles popping in here and there. Brandmeistertalk 14:57, 11 June 2016 (UTC)
    Your first point, we only saw a handful of RDs nominated who didn't make it. The "editorial attention" really tends to be just by those who nominate the articles in any case, so I don't think that's a valid position. Secondly, that's just a process thing, and someone has already suggested colour-coding nominations to make it easier for those who are too lazy to read the content. As noted below, after the initial surge, the RD noms balanced out to only a small amount above previous levels. Lastly, the arcane really sits with the original RD criteria which resulted in endless debate about minutiae. Nothing kinky about a straight-forward "if it's good enough to post, post it" approach. The Rambling Man (talk) 20:02, 11 June 2016 (UTC)
    The editorial attention is not only from the nominators, but from the voters/commenters as well, and in case of indiscriminate RD nominations it will naturally disperse rather than focus on noms that are assessed as High or Top importance by relevant Wikiprojects. Falling down the page is indeed a process thing, but under this proposal items will fall down at a faster rate. If some item gets nominated retrospectively, i.e. an event that occurred on June 9 gets nominated on June 12, it would be simply buried under new indiscriminate RD noms. And under current criteria, the average reader would most likely understand why out of zillions deaths Viktor Korchnoi, for example, popped in on the main page. Under proposed criteria, that reader will not get any clue as to why out of all recent deaths, some Joe Johnson appeared on the main page. Brandmeistertalk 22:25, 11 June 2016 (UTC)
    Well of course that's fundamentally flawed as well. A Canadian ice hockey player who is virtually unknown to a vast number of English speakers is there and deservedly so. Each nation will have people they recognise and people they do not recognise in RD. Some scientists will be unknown to kids at school, some sportspeople will be unknown to those who prefer to read, some authors will be unknown to those who prefer to watch golf. Your argument carries no weight I'm afraid. The Rambling Man (talk) 08:39, 12 June 2016 (UTC)
    @Brandmeister: I have a follow-up question on your first point (disagree with the other two but wouldn't ping you for that reason). Do the existing criteria ensure that the higher profile biographies are worked on to a greater extent than they would be if this proposal were implemented? I ask as an open-ended question despite the fact that I support this proposal.

    On the one hand there's the argument that a high notability bar means fewer viable Main Page articles to divide effort between, meaning that ITN participants will spend a higher propotion of time on those articles, and thus in theory those articles are posted in better condition than would otherwise be the case. On the other hand there's the argument that by removing the notability element, we remove the current scenario at ITNC where notability and quality at times compete against one another in determining whether there is a consensus to post, thus in theory focussing more of the community's efforts on improving previously-eligible articles because there is a determination to make sure the more important ones are featured on the Main Page rather than denied on quality. At a glance both arguments seem to hold similar weight to me, though I am interested in your opinion? StillWaitingForConnection (talk) 01:39, 16 June 2016 (UTC)

    From my experience, high-profile biographies are more likely to be picked up and improved by other editors, if the nominator is too lazy or doesn't have time to improve them himself/herself. For instance, Viktor Korchnoi, whom I nominated under current criteria while the trial was in progress, was picked up and improved by LauraJamieson, largely thanks to her it was posted. That there are could be fewer RDs under current criteria is just a natural thing reflecting how many high-profile people died on a particular day. Besides, current criteria allow more time for improvement, as RD nominations don't quickly fall down the page and are thus more visible and accessible. Brandmeistertalk 07:22, 16 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Oppose - This is fundamentally a dispute between those who want the main page to feature "important" articles, and those for whom article quality takes overarching precedence. I fall in the former camp.
Reasons to oppose:
  1. The death of someone like Harper Lee is not on the same level as someone like Doreen Liu. It's irrelevant if the Doreen Liu article is as comprehensively written as the Harper Lee article. Accepting the new RD criteria puts them both on the same level.
  2. The arguments for making this change can easily be rephrased to apply to blurbs as well. It's easy enough to say this is only for RD, and there is no slippery slope. But it's only a matter of time before someone comes along and says, why can't the existence of an article like 2016 Northeast India earthquake signify significance? I see no convincing argument for why blurbs should not have this while RDs should, but that would violate ITN's core purposes (of which only one of the four mentions "quality").
  3. The new criteria lead to relatively stringent constraints on article quality before something can be posted. I believe article quality takes a (very) backseat when it comes to ITN; certainly before I started reading ITNC I used ITN as a dynamic resource for what is happening in the world. I was not expecting that only the articles that met a fairly stringent constraint on article quality will be posted. If someone like Najib Razak were to die, I would rather it be posted even though the article is tagged for neutrality. This new criteria, if implemented, leads to a requirement on article quality far above what I want it to be.
  4. Finally there have been problems due to basing things only on article quality. Some time ago the Lord Lucan article was featured as a blurb, undoubtedly because it is in part a featured article. We had complaints and it was shortly pulled thereafter. If RD has not received complaints (it has, see above), I bet that's primarily because it's less visible compared to blurbs, but that's not a reason to be sloppy with RD.
The arguments for support are unconvincing. Leaving aside various arguments that do not argue for a change like "there has not been a flood of new nominations" or "there has been no complaints from readers" (which isn't even true, if the above opposes are anything to go by) then at its core all the arguments basically boil down to article quality.
  1. Some people appear to think that the purpose of the main page is to feature quality content. If that's so, we can do away with DYK, ITN, and OTD, and just feature multiple featured articles. That is not how I prefer the main page to look like, and I'm sure most people feel the same way.
  2. Some people appear to think that the new RD criteria gets articles improved. This seems to be based on the idea that some editors can be bribed to update articles by the prospect of the article appearing on the main page, and the new criteria gives them more target articles to work on. I do not think this kind of behavior is something to encourage. Editors should improve articles for the greater good, not because of some reward.
  3. Some do not like the arguments about significance and think we should spend time doing something else. In this case they can simply not participate after the initial vote. On the other hand if some people like to argue, that's up to them. For example a certain editor I won't name is almost certainly aware that I am ignoring him, but that has not stopped him from responding to my comments. It's not mine to tell him to stop.
  4. Finally some argue that assessing for significance is arbitrary, which it is. But the new criteria simply deflects the arbitrariness to assessment of article quality. I do not see it as an improvement. Comparatively, assessing for significance used to work, and continues to work for blurbs. Why change it?
Banedon (talk) 17:00, 11 June 2016 (UTC)
  • + 1 reason to oppose: The new criteria allows for easy systemic bias. It's obvious that most editors on Wikipedia are from the UK and US. When article quality is the only thing that matters, RDs become biased towards these countries even more so than they already are. Banedon (talk) 01:12, 1 July 2016 (UTC)
  • Au contraire. The RD criteria adds systemic bias because we, the mostly UK and US editors, assign importance to the subject. This proposal treats all bios equally. – Muboshgu (talk) 01:30, 1 July 2016 (UTC)
  • (ec)That is a Wikipedia wide issue that is not limited to ITN; you are free to work on underrepresented topics. There is more bias now, as people have difficulty judging people's importance whom they are not aware of, but they can judge a good article from a bad one, and did during the trial. The trial also provided a wider variety of nationalities and professions than before. It's not perfect, but perfect should not be the enemy of good or even just better. 331dot (talk) 01:39, 1 July 2016 (UTC)
  • It's odd how we look at the same data yet come to totally different conclusions. Here's what made me think the new criteria accentuates the bias problem: when looking at edits like this one [1], with no offense meant to LauraJamieson, I would interpret it as systemic bias manifesting itself (in this case, without knowing anything about either LauraJamieson or the recently-deceased, I'd guess it is a case of a UK editor supporting listing as RD someone who is exclusively of interest to the UK). Under the current RD criteria, it would be possible to oppose posting this. Under the proposed new one, it would not. Systemic bias is obviously already there, since the article was improved partly because of the large number of UK editors we already have, but posting it to RD accentuates it. If you have a counterexample for how the proposed RD criteria decreases systemic bias, please share. Banedon (talk) 02:02, 1 July 2016 (UTC)
    • Quality is, was, and will remain a requirement for any ITN nom. Regardless of what you would prefer, articles with orange banners or CN tags don't go up. Perhaps you don't understand quality. Importance is not a requirement for any MP features outside ITN/DC. TFA has featured a music store in Michigan and dead Australian soldiers. You have still failed to describe what harm is actually done by posting a few more deaths, beyond the conflict with your inaccurate view of the purpose of ITN. I wish you luck. -- (talk) 17:35, 11 June 2016 (UTC)
    • Nonsense, mostly. As covered above, many times, before this RFC started. It's still IDONTLIKEIT. You claim This is fundamentally a dispute between those who want the main page to feature "important" articles, and those for whom article quality takes overarching precedence. which is simply untrue. It's a method of ensuring that decent quality RD articles are featured on a timely basis without the endless debates over "super-notability" that seems to be currently required at RD, i.e. is a college basketball coach who won nothing more "super notable" than a British sitcom actor? Having said all that, you should be awarded a barnstar for simply exemplifying WP:TLDR. Cheers for that! The Rambling Man (talk) 19:52, 11 June 2016 (UTC)
It's silly how the people who complain most about drama on ITN tend to be the biggest contributors to it. Calling what someone else wrote as "nonsense" is a great way to get a constructive discussion! Banedon (talk) 02:02, 12 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Support it's obvious that if an individual is "notable" enough for Wikipedia, then they are "notable" enough to be reported at RD upon their demise, assuming their article has sufficient quality to be posted. The opposition are mad keen on keeping RD niche and elite and, if possible, completely empty, and continual comparisons with the Deaths in 2016 article are tragic; they do more damage to their cause than good whenever they attempt to conjure a reason as to why posting timely, decent articles to RDs that our readers are interested in reading is a bad thing. The Rambling Man (talk) 18:13, 11 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Support Trial was an unmitigated success. Article quality was improved on a number of pages we wouldn't necessarily care about previously. Our old RD criteria are far too subjective, leading to unproductive arguments often involving systemic bias. The point of the main page is to showcase quality content, and changing the RD criteria permanently helps us do that. – Muboshgu (talk) 19:01, 11 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Support as this trial resulted in more improved articles, a wider variety being posted(in terms of fields and nationality) and more learning about things we might not have otherwise, which is what we should all want. 331dot (talk) 19:32, 11 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Neutral (though leaning toward oppose while the pre-trial criteria [plural for criterion] continue) Weak oppose - I hate to admit that the trial was a success, but that would not lead to a successful change. The posting of some Canadian (ice) hockey player Gordie Howe's death as a blurb led to mixed reactions, like "pull blurb/move to RD" and "keep blurb". This reinforces the futility of the RD's efforts to prevent a death from being blurbed, i.e. fully detailed in the Main Page, as RD posts just people's names. Same for the proposed criteria here, which I don't think is much of an improvement other than to reduce (or suppress) pesky debates on recently deceased. The change wouldn't prevent pesky debates on death blurbs (and even non-death events). If Christina Grimmie's death is blurbed, how does the change prevent such deaths from being blurbed? --George Ho (talk) 19:47, 11 June 2016 (UTC) Changing my vote. George Ho (talk) 21:26, 11 June 2016 (UTC) Didn't fully read the OP; honest. George Ho (talk) 22:57, 11 June 2016 (UTC) Gordie Howe now demoted to RD ticker. George Ho (talk) 03:31, 12 June 2016 (UTC)
    I'm not sure you know what you're talking about. The posting of Gordie Howe to a blurb and Grimmie's support is not part of this trial. RD never makes an "effort to prevent a death from being blurbed". That's just stupid. But thanks for your "input". The Rambling Man (talk) 19:51, 11 June 2016 (UTC)
    From what I've read, the RD was created to reduce the blurb-ings of deaths and to loosen the rules on featuring deaths, but it was also to allow numerous names posted on the Main Page. Therefore, nominations would go smoothy. If I'm wrong, why else is Recent Deaths created in the first place? George Ho (talk) 20:12, 11 June 2016 (UTC)
    Please stop wasting my time. Ask someone else. The Rambling Man (talk) 20:25, 11 June 2016 (UTC)
    TRM won't say this, but I'm very happy to (and indeed to defend my use of the following sentence should someone take offence). We have problems with arguments other whether someone should be blurbed because most !voters are complete idiots. Not least for treating all discussions as a vote. But mostly for failing to realise that if the person is truly as well-known as is claimed, then "Recent deaths: [Name]" is just as helpful as "[nationality] [career] [name] [dies]". Blurbs should really be reserved for unusual deaths. Funnily enough, the criteria actually provide for this line of thought, but are widely ignored. StillWaitingForConnection (talk) 11:34, 12 June 2016 (UTC)
    See my new vote below. George Ho (talk) 11:45, 14 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Oppose. There are problems with this idea which I feel cannot be resolved. As commendable an idea it is to remove selective/systematic bias, this will not truly address that problem.
  1. The proposal substitutes editor interest for reader interest. The Main Page exists to serve reader interest.
  2. The Recent Deaths link is for readers who are looking for the articles on more obscure recently deceased people.
  3. If an article has not attracted enough editor interest prior to the person's death, then hastily attempting to rectify that in time to post will fail more often than not. Editors will make mistakes, creating problems with WP:BLP which still applies to the recently deceased. This will not end up improving articles on balance, if one considers posting erroneous articles to the Main Page to be bad.
  4. Over time editor fatigue will set in. Then RD posting will become more capricious, hardly an improvement over the current situation. Contestants in the WP:WIKICUP will provide some backup early in a year, but that will distort the Cup competition. Again, this idea seems geared toward editor satisfaction, not reader needs.
  5. Wikipedia's readership expect some curation in an encyclopedia. WP:NOTNEWSPAPER and WP:INDISCRIMINATE apply. This are WP:POLICY and are Policy for good reasons; WP:Systemic bias (a mere Guideline) cannot be allowed to trump Wikipedia Policy. Posting every death is like the obituary pages.
  6. It is not Wikipedia's and particularly not the Main Page's job to WP:RIGHTGREATWRONGS. Abductive (reasoning) 20:14, 11 June 2016 (UTC)
Sorry, you've misunderstood most of what the main page of Wikipedia is trying to achieve. The current proposal does indeed do your first point, it serves the reader, not the editor (how kind of you to note that). Your second point, malformed, is invalid, the list of deaths doesn't guarantee any quality (or even an article, or even a human). Your third point is, in fact, pointless. If we get an article to main page quality, then it can be posted. Your claim that it will create BLP issues is pure unfounded speculation and very disappointing from someone who has a clue like you. Your WikiCup point is without foundation. The fifth point, regarding "curation" is utter bullshit. No-one "expects" curation. You have made that up and actually, if people invest in an RD of a niche person, the likelihood is that it'll remain on their watchlist. And they'll "curate" it. You are pretty good at creating artificial problems, but terrible at real ones. Looks like we've covered all your concerns. The Rambling Man (talk) 20:22, 11 June 2016 (UTC)
You want to override Policy. "Curation" refers to the content of the Main Page, not the articles. Get it? I regret causing you emotional distress. Abductive (reasoning) 20:26, 11 June 2016 (UTC)
We've got it all covered Abductive. If you want to bitch about things on the main page, take your fight to DYK. At least ITN RD's are of high quality and of interest to our readers. Do you have any evidence that any of the RDs posted under this trial were not of interest to our readers? That we broke Wikipedia by posting high quality articles about niche recently deceased? That the world ended? I doubt it. You just don't like it. Sad but true. And no, you cost me zero credits emotionally, (Personal attack removed) The Rambling Man (talk) 20:31, 11 June 2016 (UTC)
One could look at the pageviews. But it will be hard to measure reader disappointment in being sent to an article on somebody that is not important. Abductive (reasoning) 20:38, 11 June 2016 (UTC)
Important is subjective. Notability on Wikipedia is objective. I thought you knew that. Perhaps you misunderstand the purpose of the project. The Rambling Man (talk) 20:41, 11 June 2016 (UTC)
Curation by consensus is far better metric than article quality. I understand the trial to have been pushed through without my and many other people being informed, then watched you repeatedly hector and downplay the opposition. This whole thing is a sham and a shame. Abductive (reasoning) 21:05, 11 June 2016 (UTC)
What a curious thing to say. I haven't lied about anything, there's been plenty of opposition, yourself included, but all of it utterly unfounded. Sorry, next time I'll make sure we inform you. After all, that's really important. The Rambling Man (talk) 21:08, 11 June 2016 (UTC)
Can't help but ask this. Abductive, you've used WP:RIGHTGREATWRONGS at least twice in this discussion. Under what conditions do you feel that the introduction of these criteria will make it easier for users to adopt fringe positions such as to expose notable people as child molesters, support supposedly wrongly convicted murderers, spread conspiracy theories or adopt increasing levels of religious or political advocacy? StillWaitingForConnection (talk) 11:41, 12 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Support - Absolute indisputable success. Oppose rationales seem to be based curiously on unfounded "what-if" scenarios, such as editor fatigue or attempting to presume the interests of readers.--WaltCip (talk) 20:48, 11 June 2016 (UTC)
  • And Wikipedia Policy, go ahead and ignore that argument. Abductive (reasoning) 21:05, 11 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Que? Go ahead and expand that "argument". The Rambling Man (talk) 21:08, 11 June 2016 (UTC)
  • I'll give you a little clue. Based on your non-sequitur. An RD for an unknown film director gets nominated. He's unknown because because he has an article but not much written about him. Some die-hard Wikipedians write their tits off and give said deceased director a decent quality article in a day or two. It gets posted to the main page. Props all round. Said article then gets more views, more interest, more watchlisting, more "curation". What is your problem with that? Or are you just "hypothesising" that a problem "could" exist? Do you have any evidence whatsoever that your position holds up to any scrutiny? Have we had one single issue during the RD trial? Please, expound. The Rambling Man (talk) 21:15, 11 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Support - Is this the reason why Christina Grimmie isn't on the RD right now? Look, to me RD is both a place where you put the people whose death have been on ITN but now you need more space for news, and a place for people who would not get a ITN once they died, but are still big enough for people on social media to mourn about. And, Christina Grimmie clearly falls under the latter. I hate to see the debate that would have happen if Wikipedia was around when Janis Joplin died.
Also, can we please stop acting like we are ruining the integrity of ITN and RD when we are adding a person's death to it? Nobody is saying that Christina Grimmie had the same impact as Prince or David Bowie, and definitely not Nelson Mandela; we're just saying that her death was notable, and we should probably link her page in the main page. I remember people saying the same thing when Paul Walker died. I am still disturbed at how disgusted some Wikipedians were when that guy got a RD. I know he didn't had that big of an impact on film as Roger Ebert did, but could you at least say it in a way that didn't sound like you were pissing on his horribly burnt body? 2600:8800:5100:38E:EC63:5C2F:5346:9B4C (talk) 23:19, 11 June 2016 (UTC)
The most wondrous thing about it is that, regardless of the outcome of this RfC, if Kim Kardashian or Justin Bieber die unexpectedly, they will apparently receive a blurb on par with Ali, Mandela and the like. Brandmeistertalk 23:56, 11 June 2016 (UTC)
"They will apparently receive a blurb on par with Ali, Mandela and the like?" See, this is the exact attitude I'm complaining about. You don't have to like either them (I certainly don't), but are you seriously saying that such an event, which will undoubtedly cause 90% of the internet to crash, doesn't deserve to be mention in the front page? Nobody is saying that Kardashian or Bieber are "on par with Ali, Mandela and the like" when they support giving them a full blurb; they saying that it's weird that something that crashed every social media site known to man isn't on ITN. 2600:8800:5100:38E:124:46BA:DDD9:9D35 (talk) 01:52, 12 June 2016 (UTC)
No, it's just a side observation. Perhaps if Kardashian will get a blurb solely because of unexpected death, then Christina Grimmie should too (and at ITN I've decided to support Christina's blurb). Brandmeistertalk 11:32, 12 June 2016 (UTC)
  • I support this proposal. From my observation, it results in more and quicker improvement of articles while wasting less time on subjective insistence on objectively being right about newsworthiness etc. Plenty of media outlets publish lengthy obituaries, by skilled writers, occasionally or even frequently on notable people a large portion of readers had never heard of. Similarly, WP's main page can feature recent deaths (notable qua existing article) based on the quality of the linked reading material. Some curious readers may find that rewarding. ---Sluzzelin talk 03:11, 12 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Support - I was both pleased and impressed with the results of the trial. Because, as it has been (cogently) stated above, "article quality should take precedence over perceived importance." Christian Roess (talk) 07:13, 12 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Support - if a person is notable enough to have an article on WP then they are notable enough to be mentioned on the main page when they die. The important thing is that the material which is featured is of a high enough standard, so this new proposal works well. Time and effort can be put into improving articles, which is good for the encyclopedia, rather than discussing a fairly arbitrary standard of notability. The discussion on Christina Grimmie is an excellent example. A huge amount of time is going into that nom discussion which could have been put into improving the article itself instead. MurielMary (talk) 08:35, 12 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Support because the new criteria can help reduce discussions on whether a person is significant in a field. If the death of a notable person is literally in the news, and the quality of its article is optimal for the main page, it deserves to appear on the main page. Plus, it doesn't take much space anyway. SSTflyer 09:18, 12 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Support a great idea and a successful trial. A simple idea that silenced the constant whining and whinging about what constitutes notability. The RD discussions have been refreshingly crisp, there's been great turnover, nothing controversial has been posted, systemic bias has been countered, quality has been seen by millions, and the sky hasn't fallen. Stephen 09:41, 12 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Support – the trial does not seem to have broken anything volume wise. And being more explicit about quality being the overriding factor would certainly have its upsides more widely.

    Looking at Gordie Howe, a current ITNC death discussion that has spiralled out of control, I can't help but think that a more explicit emphasis on quality would have spared us the drama (a certain level of quality has always been a requirement, especially so with BLP or RD nominations). At the point at which I got involved, there was probably sufficient consensus for a blurb (despite my preference for RD). However, no admin could act upon that consensus, because rather than making any effort to find citations, some of the proponents of a full blurb instead piled on support votes and made no edits. Of course I should make clear that several supporters did contribute significantly. But had the emphasis been on quality immediately, the article could have been ready to post a few hours earlier, at which point (again, despite my personal preference for RD), there was probably consensus for a blurb, and it is more likely that someone with no opinion on hockey could have made the call on. StillWaitingForConnection (talk) 10:59, 12 June 2016 (UTC)

  • Support - There's no need for another notability test on the deceased. STSC (talk) 14:40, 12 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Support - Presumably if the person deserves to be on Recent Deaths, there will be sufficient material from obituaries and other post-death material to improve the quality up sufficiently for posting. Many more articles should get posted and hopefully increased RD-entries might relax the extremely high rules for RD blurbs. ---- Patar knight - chat/contributions 16:26, 12 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Oppose weakening our current criteria per Abductive and Banedon. The "test" wasn't successful just because The Rambling Man and Thryduulf say it was and those voting in this RfC should read beyond this RfC's slanted introduction. Chris Troutman (talk) 18:30, 12 June 2016 (UTC)
    • Perhaps you can explain, as neither Abductive nor Banedon have: how does this proposal actually harm Wikipedia? -- (talk) 19:10, 12 June 2016 (UTC)
      • The harm is that the Main Page would be turned into a obituary page; a directory/memorial which is against multiple WP:NOT Policies. There's a reason newspapers put obituary listings in the back--most people are not interested in them. Abductive (reasoning) 22:01, 12 June 2016 (UTC)
        • Finally a concrete objection. I disagree with it, I think it helps our readers to feature quality content, and we already have RD, and it takes very little MP space. And WP:N is plenty good enough. -- (talk) 23:03, 12 June 2016 (UTC)
          • It wouldn't be turned into an obituary page any more than Wikipedia is an encyclopedia of obituaries. Improving articles and having people read them is a good thing. 331dot (talk) 23:46, 12 June 2016 (UTC)
    • Agree, good question. All very well to make this personal, but none of those opposing this change have actually come up with anything tangible. Your turn Chris, what's tangible and detrimental about this change? As has been adequately demonstrated, all of Abductive's and Bandon's complaints have been proven to amount to nothing (in some cases worse, actually that they were erroneous in their claims). What can you add to this? The Rambling Man (talk) 19:15, 12 June 2016 (UTC)
      • And it should be obvious to all that it is you and the other supporters who have failed to even acknowledge my policy-based arguments. Abductive (reasoning) 22:03, 12 June 2016 (UTC)
        • I acknowledged the link you seem to be using the most [2], and would gladly debate the more mainstream policies you've mentioned if I received a response to that. StillWaitingForConnection (talk) 05:24, 13 June 2016 (UTC)
        • Well shoot, looks like you're on your own. I'm not even sure what policy argument you're talking about. Is the "right great wrongs" thing you keep erroneously mentioning? Or is it the false claim that the main page will become "an obituary page"? Perhaps you're unaware, but we limit RDs to four entries, so, worst case there'll be eight words on the main page. A quick check – the main page at the moment contains 1314 words. So, on that basis, RDs would (at the maximum) occupy 0.61% of the main page. Is that what you consider "an obituary page"? Please note, even during the early stages of the trial, RD was seldom full, so RDs occupied perhaps only 0.31% or 0.16% of the main page. Meanwhile, the fun section of the main page (DYK) is currently occupying a whopping 12.6% of the main page. Perhaps you're okay with the main page being a repository for fun hooks and jokes and not links to high quality articles that have a community consensus for posting. I'm pretty sure you've misunderstood something here, so I'll assume good faith and leave it to others to help you. The Rambling Man (talk) 06:17, 13 June 2016 (UTC)
        • If directories of obituaries are against multiple WP:NOT policies, then someone better get the 'Deaths in 20xx' pages, amongst our most widely read, deleted pretty quickly! Stephen 06:30, 13 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Support Outside of increased used of the ITNC page, I saw no real downsides from the trial. We might need some more discussion to clarify RD vs Blurb for some topics, but that's outside this scope. --MASEM (t) 21:20, 12 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Support I do have some reservations, but not enough to prevent this change from happening. One benefit I see is a reduction in arguing over nominations (although quality is still objective). It could potentially increase the variety of nominations as it should minimise the nationalistic tendencies of some !voters. My reservations come from potential pitfalls of reducing the case-by-case subjective nature of these nominations. DYK has a similar model and an issue for them arises when an editor or group of editors flood the process with similar nominations. This problem is reduced considerably here as editors can't control when someone becomes eligible, but there is potential for undue focus on a very specific area. A bigger issue for me is what happens to the borderline blurb cases. There are clearly some people who don't quite reach blurb level, but are more notable than GNG gives credit for. Maybe it will make people more receptive to blurbs for these fringe cases, which in my opinion would not be a bad thing? Maybe there could be a way to highlight the more prominent recent deaths? Either way I think this deserves a larger go and if it all goes to hell in a handbasket then it can be changed back. AIRcorn (talk) 06:18, 13 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Support ITN needs to be posting far more, not less based on subjective feelings of 'importance'. Ed [talk] [majestic titan] 06:48, 13 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Support. I'll admit I expected the trial to cause an inflationary problem, with people proposing that those articles which pre-trial would have qualified for RD should get full blurbs instead to separate them from the more obscure figures, but that doesn't appear to have happened. If the change becomes permanent and more widely known I expect more "made three brief appearances as a substitute for a minor-league sports team but as the team was in a professional league he's automatically notable" or "UK political party donor who was given a peerage so is technically a member of a national legislature even though he never actually turned up to parliament" genuinely obscure articles to be nominated—I suspect that at present, most people weren't aware of the trial so didn't bother trying to nominate this kind of article—but if that happens we can rethink things. ‑ Iridescent 09:41, 13 June 2016 (UTC)
    Well yes, they can nominate anything they please, just as they can now, but if we're lucky enough to have a comprehensive and well-referenced article on a recently deceased minor-league sports substitute who made three appearances, I don't think it should be a major issue posting it. It's all about the quality. The Rambling Man (talk) 10:16, 13 June 2016 (UTC)
    My comments are very much conditional; assuming the change becomes permanent and editors become broadly aware of the change, I can easily imagine a situation where RD will become filled with bronze medalists in obscure sports, local business figures who got enough coverage in their local papers to scrape notability, academics who never did anything particularly significant but wrote enough papers to pass WP:PROF… If that reaches the extent that it's pushing high-notablity figures (of the type who qualify for RD now) off the list, that will create a strong pressure to start giving these people full blurbs, and we have the potential for ending up right back where we started before RD was introduced. ‑ Iridescent 10:35, 13 June 2016 (UTC)
    I believe the trial shows that we are still looking for a quality article, a comprehensive article, one which is suitable for the main page. That will still be assessed by consensus and ultimately judged by a posting admin. But I think that if we have a cadre of editors prepared to slog it out on the "bronze medalists in obscure sports" front and produce good quality articles, that'd be a good problem to have. The Rambling Man (talk) 10:53, 13 June 2016 (UTC)
    Iff we find that the turnover on RD increases significantly for any length of time, then we can consider ways to resolve any problems that causes when we know what those problems actually are. Ideas for such are outside the scope of this RfC though. Thryduulf (talk) 11:45, 13 June 2016 (UTC)
    I'm coming more from the experience of TFA, where the distorting impact on the main page of a few editors with one particular niche interest who are prepared to raise the articles in their specific field is very noticeable (just look at the TFA archives and count how often the words "hurricane" and "mushroom" appear). Note that I'm supporting making the trial permanent; I just feel that once it becomes widely known, there's a good chance we'll start seeing a lot of hyperniche nominations. (Not naming names, but as an example I can think of at least one regular editor who wrote numerous lengthy biographies of Greek baseballers.) If this does happen I do think there's a good chance the churn rate will get too high, given that all it would take is any number above four RDs per day to break the system. ‑ Iridescent 16:00, 13 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Oppose -
    1. RD is limited to a very few deaths whereas we have hundreds of thousands of BLPs. The first criterion is trivial so the proposed policy comes down to "Anyone with a good quality article will be covered in RD". The rationale that notable enough for an article implies notable for RD doesn't work for me in practical terms.
    2. It also doesn't work for me in terms of "Main page" principles. If someone has a great article or we want to showcase BLPs generally, we have FA for that. RD is (to me) specifically for those people whose lives and deaths have a markedly significance even compared to notable people in some way, even when they aren't FA or even GA. I'd like RD to stay focused on these, and not just be cluttered with any people who are notable and have a decent article.
    3. The criteria also seems redundant, in that if someone is worth a Main Page mention, under either proposal anyone can "step up" and fix article issues.
    Both proposals agree on "Has a good enough article" and "Article not facing deletion". So it comes down to "Of exceptional significance/newsworthiness" vs "Notable by Wikipedia criteria". RD is an "in the news" section - I think the focus should be on the former, although I do agree that current wording is too limiting ("high ranking..widely regarded as very important"). Oppose this change of focus, improve and relax/expand current criteria (but not this far), and keep the same general aim that we have now. FT2 (Talk | email) 13:48, 13 June 2016 (UTC)
    I'm not sure I follow. The first criterion is precisely that, a good quality article of a recently deceased person notable enough to have a Wikipedia article can be posted. Can you expand why that "doesn't work for [you] in practical terms"? The trial evidence seems to contradict your position entirely. We cannot showcase RDs in FA or GA because timing is of the essence. Part of the purpose of the proposal is to expedite items going to the main page so we're not bogged down in American college basketball coach versus British sitcom actor debates forever. RD is never going to be "cluttered up", it has a maximum of four entries, and even during the trial was seldom full. I don't follow your last point at all. These are designed to replace the current criteria, so it's still absolutely vital that we uphold the quality of items posted. The Rambling Man (talk) 14:13, 13 June 2016 (UTC)
    I'd also make the point that even with the trail in place for five days after his death, when Ali's blurb became the eldest he was eligible to convert into RD due to lack of newer articles keeping it off. Which seems bizarre, given how many deaths were eligible to go up. But in my experience there is a strong correlation between a subject's significance and the willingness of reviewers to get involved and improve the article (and indeed an inverse corellation between a subject's significance and the willingness of reviewers to highlight faults). In practise, the articles which were posted under the trial which wouldn't have been previously, were either of better quality than the ones that would always have made it, or the types of nominations which would generally fall just short of being posted after a lot of hot air and mildly racist disagreement on the nomination page. StillWaitingForConnection (talk) 15:50, 13 June 2016 (UTC)
  • 'Oppose - Success of the trial or not is an opinion. Just because some editors though it was a success does not make it objectively so. In my opinion the trial was successful in showing why we shouldn't change the criteria. Posting everyone with an article who dies diminishes the usefulness of RD. As the trial has shown, relaxing the criteria will result in essenitally unknown people being posted to RD, and I for one do not see the point in this. I strongly suspect this is more an attempt to reduce the number of notability arguments on ITN, but this alone should not be a reason to lower our standards. Also, as has been shown by stats above, this will likely enhance systemic bias, which is never a good thing. I would also refer users to WP:NOT points 2.6, 2.9 and 2.10. Fgf10 (talk) 17:50, 13 June 2016 (UTC)
    • Please advise how this change "diminishes the usefulness of RD". You counter systemic bias by improving articles not suppressing them. Articles still have to satisfy WP:N. -- (talk) 17:54, 13 June 2016 (UTC)
I have already stated that, it enables largely unknown people to be posted to RD. Opinions differ on how to counter systemic bias, again, this is an opinion. What has been shown is that during the trial a far larger proportion of English/American language area articles were featured on RD than normal. This is due to the systemic bias in article creation. The front page does not exist to highlight this bias. WP:N is not the same as notability for the front page (and has never been treated that way. (And I would argue WP:N is unfit for purpose anyway) Fgf10 (talk) 18:08, 13 June 2016 (UTC)
You haven't explained how posting "largely unknown people" "diminishes the value of RD". You're fond of citing policy, which ones state "the front page does not exist to highlight bias" or that suppressing articles from the MP fights bias? Which policy says " WP:N is not the same as notability for the front page"? -- (talk) 18:31, 13 June 2016 (UTC)
Well that really can't be explained any more than I already have. I seems simple to me, what is the point of RD if we post everyone to it? Does it not exist to highlight important deaths? Again, this is all opinion. There are no objective arguments here, apart from policy. I have cited the relevant policies, the rest, as I have clearly already stated several times, is opinion. There is no policy again highlighting bias of the front page, but neither is there one against "suppressing" articles. Just repeatedly stating your opinion as fact doesn't make it policy or any more factual than my opinion. Fgf10 (talk) 18:37, 13 June 2016 (UTC)
The purpose of RD is to get death blurbs off of the main ITN box. The ITN/DC were written to prevent ITN from being an obituary. When it happened anyway, RD was created. These aren't opinions, you should read the original RFC for RD. I'm still wondering how the value is diminished or where it's written that WP:N isn't the same as notability for the main page. -- (talk) 18:48, 13 June 2016 (UTC)
I have read the RFC. As for the rest, you should read my posts. If you still haven't understood that these are my opinions and not policy I have nothing more to add. Could you by any chance explain how you are so knowledgeable about wiki policy if you've never edited before today? Fgf10 (talk) 19:32, 13 June 2016 (UTC)
I read your posts and asked questions you didn't answer. As for your last question, I don't owe you an answer. -- (talk) 20:45, 13 June 2016 (UTC)
Indeed, you don't owe me an answer. Anyway, since you are fond of policy, I shall refer you to WP:Meat puppetry and/or WP:Sock puppetry. Fgf10 (talk) 21:37, 13 June 2016 (UTC)
(ec) I think the point is you're missing the point. You simply can't explain how this proposed approach "diminishes the value of RD" unless you place "niche" and "elitism" as key factors in RD, perhaps that's it. And why should an IP just have start editing today in order to be knowledgeable (more knowledgeable than you it appears) in policy discussion? I'm glad that your opposition appears to align well with all the other opposition, in that there's some kind of nebulous "I don't really know why and I can't really explain why, but I don't like it so let's not change it". Not one opposer has appeared to acknowledge all the tangible benefits of the proposed approach. It's a shame, but gladly the "I don't like it" brigade are a tiny minority. The Rambling Man (talk) 20:46, 13 June 2016 (UTC)
Au contraire, nobody has described any tangible benefits of this new approach, whereas the downsides have clearly been described by me and others. But I see this is a rubber stamping exercise, so I shall leave you to it. Good night! (EDIT: actually only wanting to add that in my opinion the entire concept of ITN/RD misses the point of wiki, and we would be better off without it entirely.) Fgf10 (talk) 21:42, 13 June 2016 (UTC)
Given that Fgf10 has opted to topic ban himself from ITN/C, I think we can discount his above !vote from consideration.--WaltCip (talk) 02:20, 14 June 2016 (UTC)
Ironically, I draw the conclusion that since Fgf10 elected to topic ban himself from ITN/C instead of engage in what he evidently feels are obnoxious discussions there (and here), certain editors I won't name should look in the mirror at their behaviour. He is not the only one who feels this way; I more or less indicated I am not interested in further discussion on this topic with certain editors in my response above. If you are not one of the people who care more about arguing than the topic being argued, then you would be disappointed Fgf10 is choosing to excuse himself, because there is less participation in the discussion. In any case, Fgf10 choosing not to participate does not make his rationale any weaker, in the same way whether Darwin recanted his theory of evolution on his deathbed has no bearing on the theory's validity. Banedon (talk) 03:05, 14 June 2016 (UTC)
Anyway, back to the matter in hand. If you, Fgf10, take a quick look at the Interlude section above, you'll see a brief synopsis of the results of the trial, including some of the "benefits", such as improved variety at RD, improved niche articles which would otherwise have just been left to languish unaffected, fewer uncivil debates (some people here could look in the mirror on that one!!), quicker time to post etc. The flipside, the "cons" if you like, I'm struggling to see anything realistic, certainly not one single "downside" was evident. Could you explain what you think all the downsides demonstrated during the trial (i.e. not ones that you're theorising could happen) so we can shed some light on your position? The Rambling Man (talk) 04:49, 14 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Comment: Without data about click-throughs or any other measures of reader response, the trial was pretty much just an exercise. People are discussing this purely on the basis of convenience and manageability for editors. Strange to see such a front-facing page discussed in such a reader-agnostic way. ApLundell (talk) 10:04, 14 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Page views are just one element of this. The point was no readers complained about having a few extra RDs listed, and Wikipedia benefitted from having a few more higher quality articles and less mind-numbing debate. Nothing strange about that. The Rambling Man (talk) 10:42, 14 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Oppose. While the trial was largely successful, the proposed standards are way too low to exclude RDs of people who aren't considered particularly important even within their country/region or profession/field. I suggest lowering the current relevancy standards, rather than abolishing them altogether. --PanchoS (talk) 10:37, 14 June 2016 (UTC)
    How can the "relevancy standards" be defines objectively please? The Rambling Man (talk) 10:40, 14 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Re-oppose - Changed from neutral to weak oppose to neutral to... the current standing. Despite the drama of Gordie Howe and Christina Grimmie nominations, I felt that this proposal would lead to huge problems, like mass postings of late American personalities, and repeated complaints as before (?). Speaking of Howe and Grimmie, the names are finally posted to RD either per IAR or per criteria or per America's lowered standard bar of significance. If the proposal fails, then maybe, without re-proposing this, we can find other ways to loosen the ITN criteria to allow a little more postings of names. Tightening the criteria would lead to huger problems than this proposal would do. As for the "success" of the trial, the trial was an experiment, and nothing more. It had a great run and okay-ish results, but it's best not to implement it so soon. I did nominate Shaibu Amodu, the late Nigerian footballer, for honorable commemoration, but the consensus did not approve it due to current RD criteria. Nevertheless, unlike Howe and Grimmie, the Amodu nomination didn't resort to bickering and fighting. Same for the American politician, George Voinovich. Perhaps the bickering and fighting might relate to entertainment personalities and sports personalities? We gotta do something about that, and this proposal isn't the way. George Ho (talk) 11:45, 14 June 2016 (UTC)
    So in summary, you're opposing based on a theoretical scenario where "mass postings" occur. We came absolutely nowhere near this during the trial so I'm confused where you get that idea from. What you have also neglected to mention is that for anything to be posted to RD, it has to be of sufficient quality, it's not just "post whatever's nominated", and the trial demonstrated that perfectly. Deaths in 2016 and subsequent article improvements demonstrates that we will never get a "mass postings of late American personalities". As for your latter examples, I'm not sure what relevance they have to this proposal. As for reducing the subjectivity applied (i.e. what you refer to as "bickering and fighting"), there's only one way to do that, and that's using the proposed approach, otherwise there will always be room for subjective bitching, and with our current editor base, that simply lands us more firmly back in systemic bias land where a flood of American personalities is actually more likely to occur if we don't adopt the new approach. The Rambling Man (talk) 11:54, 14 June 2016 (UTC)
    To be fair, the bitching, fighting, and bickering was mostly about RD vs. blurb. Sometimes, an article with a little poor quality is not pulled out after being posted... unless the quality of Prince (musician), which had maintenance and inline tags, was substantial? There's already a link of "Recent deaths" for readers to search for. Did you not forget the statistics of the trial? There was an increased rate of American sportsman, mostly baseball players. On to another point, Amodu and Voinovich didn't meet significance standards, and everybody accepted the results without conflicts or anything. Probably it has to do with interests of voters? And this proposal isn't the only way to prevent catfights and petty brawls. We can improve criteria by lowering the ITN's line of significance for recently deceased people. Or we can make rules about bickering and fighting. Or we can loosen our standards about entertainers and sports personalities. Million ways to improve ITN's RD... or ITN itself? George Ho (talk) 12:08, 14 June 2016 (UTC)
    Of course I remember the results, and I remember that there was no issue at all with our readers about what was posted. You've already been told about the Deaths in... page, it contains stubs, sub-stubs, red links and animals, none of which are valid for RD. Improving the "line of significance" will still include subjectivity, it is impossible to compare an American college basketball coach with a British sitcom writer. The trial was a success. The Rambling Man (talk) 13:32, 14 June 2016 (UTC)
I stumbled upon a past nomination of Fred Thompson. Voters seem to be mostly Americans, and the politician wasn't named in the Main Page because there was no consensus to post. Well... I reopened it because someone made a post-closure vote. Then... well, bickering ensued? Maybe some American politicians garnered American public interests? George Ho (talk) 12:22, 14 June 2016 (UTC)
I don't understand the relevance of this point. Of course some politicians are not going to make it, American or not. The Rambling Man (talk) 13:32, 14 June 2016 (UTC)
I just want to show an example of heated debate on one person vs an example of calm discussion on another, like Doris Roberts nomination. Maybe I'm trying to point out that the current (pre-trial) criteria hasn't resulted in vicious debates as people made it out to be. Of course, not all RD discussions after RD system was enacted in 2012 are at the same level as Howe or Grimmie nomination. Probably the matter is how we treat ice hockey players, entertainers, singers, actors, etc. As for no names in "Recent deaths" ticker, did people complain about it often? George Ho (talk) 13:58, 14 June 2016 (UTC)
That's interesting, but you're focusing on one aspect of the trial while overlooking all the other benefits. Still, I'm not wasting any more time here because I have a sneaky feeling that you'll oppose no matter what I say. The Rambling Man (talk) 14:14, 14 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Support - Muboshgu and TRM made the points that I was going to make. shoy (reactions) 14:59, 14 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Support per TRM's comment in the Grimmie discussion. The pre-trial RD criteria does nothing for us. Without it, we have less useless discussions and more quality content. Sounds like a win to me. Nohomersryan (talk) 00:26, 15 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Support I thought the trial criteria worked really smoothly. In the past, I've seen many lengthy discussions about whether Notable Person A satisfies some arbitrary standard of notability. During the trial, there was none of that -- the focus was entirely on article quality, and many articles were improved and featured as a result. Ackatsis (talk) 07:14, 17 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Well obviously I'd oppose a change that will reduce drama and feature more quality content on the main page. How could you even think of proposing it? That means support, in case you hadn't guessed. GoldenRing (talk) 14:39, 17 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Useless Head Count - 25 support making the trial criteria permanent, 7 oppose, and 1... I'm unsure. He's flipped his viewpoints a few times now.--WaltCip (talk) 15:19, 17 June 2016 (UTC)
    • A month of pre-trial discussion, a month long trial, a week of RFC with overwhelming support.... time to WP:CLOSE? -- (talk) 01:44, 18 June 2016 (UTC)
      • Yes, waiting longer is frustrating but I'd rather we not close it too early - there is opposition to the change so it is best to make sure that everyone who wants to comment has had the opportunity to, that way there should be no arguments about whether there was actually consensus, etc. In other words, I don't think it should be closed yet. Thryduulf (talk) 19:57, 18 June 2016 (UTC)
      • Agreed, we have all the time in the world. This needs proper understanding (I think some people still don't quite get it, or have misplaced focus) so it's no problem to keep it open for a while longer (particularly in the face of being accused of continually lying about any lack of opposition). The Rambling Man (talk) 20:07, 18 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Oppose per Banedon and Abductive. There has to be some sort of higher notability standard than simply WP:BIO for an article to be included on RD. My fear is that if we adopt these new criteria that ITN will be overwhelmed with RD nominations. That being said, I'd prefer a looser interpretation of the current criteria. For instance, I feel that George Voinovich was sufficiently notable to have met pre-trial criteria. Perhaps strike "at the time of death" from the first criterion, with a formal definition of "high-ranking office of power" (e.g. head of state/government or member of national legislature or national Supreme Court justice, etc.). - Presidentman talk · contribs (Talkback) 20:45, 18 June 2016 (UTC)
Re "There has to be some sort of higher notability standard..."; Why? The trial for the last month shows that we were not "overwhelmed" with nominations. You also seem to be contradictory by saying more than WP:BIO is needed but that a relatively unremarkable Senator should have been posted. 331dot (talk) 20:50, 18 June 2016 (UTC)
Well this opposition demonstrates perfectly why the proposal is a good one. It provides a clear, objective and universal notability standard, i.e. the one that Wikipedia adopts for the inclusion of BLPs. Apparently some of these are no longer that notable. The Rambling Man (talk) 21:04, 18 June 2016 (UTC)
This proposal leaves open a perfectly valid route to prevent an article from reaching the main page. Point out problems with the article at the time of nomination. If the concerns are valid and are not fixed, the article will not go up. If they are valid and are fixed, you've helped to improve the project. Win-win. StillWaitingForConnection (talk) 22:03, 18 June 2016 (UTC)
I've maintained all along that one of the key benefits to this proposal is that articles will be, on average, improved. But the opposition generally doesn't have any concern for the general state of articles on Wikipedia, just a more refined, cliquey and elitist view of what should appear in those eight words on the main page, while overlooking entire joke sections such as DYK. Fascinating stuff. The Rambling Man (talk) 22:06, 18 June 2016 (UTC)
@The Rambling Man: You are correct, "some of these are no longer that notable". A person such as Wu Jianmin will never be as notable as Muhammad Ali or Nelson Mandela or even Harper Lee. Therefore, they should not be placed on equal footing as them.
@331dot: Voinovich had a long, distinguished, career in public service serving in roles such as mayor of one America's largest cities (Cleveland), and governor of one its largest states (Ohio). You seem to be focused too much on his Senatorial career at the expense of the remainder of his career.
@StillWaitingForConnection: I agree that being nominated for RD will help improve articles, but should we really turn ITN's nom page into a sort of "nominate X so it can get improved because you are too lazy to do it yourself"? That's not the point of ITN. The point of ITN is to inform the reader and editor of what is happening in the world right now. And we need to have some sort of set rule establishing how notable X must be to be added. As others have said, Wikipedia is not a newspaper. - Presidentman talk · contribs (Talkback) 22:45, 18 June 2016 (UTC)
@Presidentman: Not at all; but typically governors and mayors weren't considered to have met the criteria(in virtually all cases, maybe an exception or two). The point here is that this system avoids this sort of subjective debate about importance, results in articles being improved, and helps to disseminate information. 331dot (talk) 23:02, 18 June 2016 (UTC)
With all due respect, 331., the debates that I've seen here usually don't resort to the level of Christina Grimmie nomination, which is the Supporters' excuse to favor the proposal, though they would consider it a "valid" reason. As said, the George Voinovich nomination had a huge opposition and is closed without bickering and bitching. The Janet Waldo nomination was... sorta late and did not receive much attention. Again, no bitching and fighting. A death must be newsworthy to Wikipedians... Well, generally, any death is newsworthy to specific demographics... or general audience. We can show readers quality articles of recently deceased, but that would give readers impression that we are posting too many names or running the RD ticker like an obituary, which Wikipedia should avoid. --George Ho (talk) 05:53, 19 June 2016 (UTC)
And as you've been told countless times, the trial demonstrated that the RD section did not turn into a ticker by any means. Please stop claiming otherwise. The Rambling Man (talk) 05:59, 19 June 2016 (UTC)
I didn't want to say this at first TRM, but I guess I can. Another reason to oppose this proposal is potential bureaucracy. Id est this gives administrators more control on nominations of recently deceased, making editors to be reluctant to comment on recently deceased subjects unless they would support or oppose blurb-ing a recent death. If the proposal happens, that would leave editors comment on only blurbs, especially on recently deceased. Nevertheless, you would still see people bickering on blurbs, especially with what happened to Gordie Howe nomination. (Howe's death was blurb-ed but then shifted to RD due to huge backlash.) What would happen if, after the proposal is implemented, one or more editors nominate so many deaths? I was warned for doing several in one section during the trial, and I have to be careful. --George Ho (talk) 09:17, 19 June 2016 (UTC)
@George Ho: The question is, were you nominating high numbers of the least notable articles you could find, without making a good faith effort to ensure that they were at least reasonably close to the necessary standards for posting? Or, were you nominating a high volume of high quality articles, some which met existing criteria and some of which were only eligible due to the trial, so that Wikipedians could assess the upsides and downsides of making a permanent change? One would clearly be a case of disrupting Wikipedia to prove a point, and one would clearly have been doing everyone interested in this debate a great service in trying to reach an informed decision. StillWaitingForConnection (talk) 23:05, 19 June 2016 (UTC)
Just several or few total during trial and nothing more. If scolding a person for making numerous nominations is not a threat, and if it's not a warning, than what is it? --George Ho (talk) 23:21, 19 June 2016 (UTC)
With the very limited information I have, I'm leaning towards "a scolding". Having asked one specific question, and received one specific answer, I'd like to get back onto a more general discussion around this point. My support for this proposal is pinned on the assumption that with any policy, guideline, inclusion criteria, or whatever, it is automatically assumed that Wikipedians will not go out of their way to disrupt Wikipedia to prove a point.

If people unfamiliar with ITN nominate individual sub-standard articles in good faith, that's absolutely fine. The ones that wouldn't have met the previous notability criteria are unlikely to motivate anyone other than the nominator to rectify quality issues, whereas the ones that would have met current criteria are more likely to do so (increasingly so the more obvious the notability). No different to the current system, except that the pile-on opposes would be with regards to quality, rather than brutal put-downs about notability.

If people intimately familiar with ITN consistently nominate substandard articles with no prior effort to check they are a good standard (or fair attempts to get them up to a good standard), that would be a case of disrupting ITN to prove a point. The solution to that is extremely simple, and already provided for by existing Wikipedia policies, therefore I discount it as a factor. It is not a particularly difficult line to stay on the right side of.

In the interests of balance, I'll conclude by saying that if the ITN system were to slow to a crawl because we had far too many decent nominations on recently deceased people, then I'd be torn. On the one hand that would be a lovely situation to be in. On the other hand it would be relevant in deciding whether to support or oppose this proposal. Ultimately it's a non-issue, because no-one has provided the slightest bit of evidence that the trial did have a negative impact on ITN. StillWaitingForConnection (talk) 00:03, 20 June 2016 (UTC)

Well... I guess... I would reach my limits at ITN if this happens. I'm not gonna do the work for ITN if this happens. I don't even know the subjects very much to research. Also, that would be a lot of pressure for me to quickly improve an article just for ITN. That's all I'm gonna say. --George Ho (talk) 00:29, 20 June 2016 (UTC)
Before the RD section was established four years ago, were editors blocked for bickering and fighting? George Ho (talk) 09:25, 19 June 2016 (UTC)
Hopefully someone else will give you the answers you're looking for. It appears that you either are ignoring me or not understanding me. Keep focusing on the negatives and think nothing of all the positives the trial showed, as for me, once again I'll no longer respond to you because, once again, I get the feeling that you'll keep arguing obscure points with me until this RFC is closed. The Rambling Man (talk) 10:35, 19 June 2016 (UTC)
@Presidentman: In answer to your comment about what ITN should be. I'd say that the point of ITN is to showcase topical encyclopaedic articles. On that basis alone, the current criteria are not as good at the "topical" part as these proposed ones. More broadly, the point of the Main page is provide multiple different takes on "the best of Wikipedia", be that the very highest quality articles, pictures and lists at TFA, TFL and TFP, quirky and fresh content at DYK, or topical articles at ITN. It goes without saying that quality is a factor in all of those sections, albeit to a higher degree in some than others. Tying those things in, I think a proposal that increases the rate of update at ITN and simultaenously improves quality is worth a few sneers over the significance of a few of the articles.

If down the road there were actually consensus that the complete lack of notability criteria was unfit for purpose, I'm sure some sort of middle-of-the-road notability criteria would be introduced. That said, on the basis of the trial and the level of frenzied activity at ITN since, I see no justification for any.

StillWaitingForConnection (talk) 23:16, 18 June 2016 (UTC)

You are correct, "the point of ITN is to showcase topical encyclopaedic articles". However, I feel that some sort of notability requirement is needed to define "topical". Articles at ITN must be of both the highest quality and the highest interest. - Presidentman talk · contribs (Talkback) 12:41, 19 June 2016 (UTC)
Why do articles at ITN have to be "of the highest interest" Highest according to whom? How does "lesser interest" hurt Wikipedia? What other MP feature has an "importance" criteria? TFA? The importance criteria at ITN/DC predates RD and is no longer relevant. A month long trial failed to produce the feared "flood of nominations". Why is WP:N not good enough for the rd box ... literally a single line of text?? -- (talk) 18:32, 19 June 2016 (UTC)
Because ITN cannot be a newspaper, just a summary. WP:N is much too broad for ITN. If you want a list of obituaries, you have Deaths in 2016. ITN does not need to be cluttered with obits. - Presidentman talk · contribs (Talkback) 22:42, 19 June 2016 (UTC)
This isn't about ITN, it's about the RD box. it already is an obituary. You still haven't told me how posting more articles to the RD box hurts Wikipedia. -- (talk) 23:48, 19 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Weak oppose: As someone who hasn't been involved in this and hasn't followed the trial, I can only speak to the merits of the proposal as it appears, and this doesn't look like a tremendously good idea to me. I rather think the point that Abductive makes above is a sensible one, that this prioritises editor interest over reader interest: when it comes to providing useful news information in the context of a box entitled "In the news", the criterion should, I think, be the notability of the dead person (or at least the newsworthiness of their death), not the quality of their article. Dionysodorus (talk) 03:07, 19 June 2016 (UTC)
Are you saying that you don't believe that quality should play a role in what appears on the Main Page of a website visited by millions of people? It's in the interests of readers to have good quality articles to read, about subjects that they might learn something about. This proposal does not change the fact that nominations must be shown to be in the news. 331dot (talk) 10:13, 19 June 2016 (UTC)
I'd be in favour of adding the two proposed criteria to the two existing ones, which would have the effect you state; but that isn't what the proposal says. The proposal, as it stands, replaces the notability criterion with a quality criterion, but on the whole I think the notability criterion should be retained as the main one. Dionysodorus (talk) 18:41, 19 June 2016 (UTC)
Yes, and bring on the major problem, once again, defining a "super-notability" (beyond WP:N) which is where all the problems lie. I'd prefer to see a multitude of different subject matters, nationalities, influences published at RD, assuming their articles are of sufficient quality, then spend four days debating whether or not the murder of reality TV singer should occupy two words on our main page. You main feel differently. The Rambling Man (talk) 19:48, 19 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Question ITN/DC was written before the RD box existed. The RD box is literally one line of text. How is Wikipedia harmed by filling it with links to quality articles about WP:N topics?? Anyone??? -- (talk) —Preceding undated comment added 20:49, 19 June 2016 (UTC)
Are you saying that anything that does not hurt Wikipedia benefits Wikipedia? If say "no" to this question, I think you have answered your own question. Banedon (talk) 01:03, 20 June 2016 (UTC)
One line of text doesn't hurt Wikipedia. Quality articles help it. Unless I've missed something the IP's question stands. StillWaitingForConnection (talk) 02:10, 20 June 2016 (UTC)
IP's question effectively asks why we should not implement the proposal if there is no harm done to Wikipedia. I consider that answered decisively: not everything for which no harm is done should still be done. You write that "quality articles help [Wikipedia]", which they certainly do, but the implication is that if this proposal passes, there will be more quality articles. I do not see how you draw that implication. Banedon (talk) 02:33, 20 June 2016 (UTC)
It would only take one article – ever – to be improved which would not have been without the Main Page carrot, for my "implication" to be right. You openly admit that no harm would be done, and if DYK can result in 24 articles a day being created or improved, I'm sure this change to RD can help us reach a grand total of at least one article, ever. But more realistically one every couple of weeks. StillWaitingForConnection (talk) 03:12, 20 June 2016 (UTC)
Not exactly - I do think there's some harm with this new criterion (see earlier in this page, "two weeks into trial" section), in the sense that there's quicker turnover that can push the really significant RDs off the screen. I won't call it major harm, but it is some harm. And, as I wrote in my oppose rationale above, I don't think editors should be improving articles only because of the chance of the article appearing on the main page, and if any editor adopts this attitude I do not think it is behavior we should encourage. Don't have anything more to say. Banedon (talk) 00:55, 21 June 2016 (UTC)
Collapse some nonsense
The following discussion has been closed. Please do not modify it.
I think that the IP is saying that readers reading quality articles is a good thing, as is providing access to them. 331dot (talk) 01:04, 20 June 2016 (UTC)
One of the golden rules of taking exams is, "answer the question that is asked, not the question you think is asked". In this case, the question asked is "How is Wikipedia harmed by filling it with links to quality articles about WP:N topics?", not "Is providing access to quality articles to readers a good thing?". Banedon (talk) 01:13, 20 June 2016 (UTC)
I'm not taking an exam, I'm giving my views on this matter. There is far more good with this proposal than bad, though I will not duplicate the discussion above here. 331dot (talk) 01:22, 20 June 2016 (UTC)
Is "responding" to a question with a question a golden rule too? I asked my question, I await your response. -- (talk) 01:23, 20 June 2016 (UTC)
No. Question answered. Banedon (talk) 01:24, 20 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Oppose - It seems self-evident that the feature is called "In the News." Not everyone who dies and has a Wikipedia article will be in the news, and merit a Main page listing. The previous standards should remain in place, in my view. Jusdafax 02:17, 20 June 2016 (UTC)
If you wish to oppose, fair enough, but the requirement that a nomination be shown to be in the news is not changing; RD nominations will still need evidence they are in the news. 331dot (talk) 02:21, 20 June 2016 (UTC)
No that's not what the proposal reads. I'll paste the actual proposal. Show me where it says anything about being in the news: {{divbox|plain|Proposal|

The existing criteria for a recent deaths listing:

  • The deceased was in a high-ranking office of power at the time of death and/or had a significant contribution/impact on the country/region.
  • The deceased was widely regarded as a very important figure in his or her field.

are replaced by:
The deceased has a Wikipedia article that is:

  1. Not currently nominated for deletion or speedy deletion.
  2. Of sufficient quality to be posted on the main page, as determined by a consensus of commenters.

(End proposal)

That's the proposal, is it not? "Sufficient quality" indicates article quality, I gather? Nothing there about importance of the subject, which means if you die, you are in the news. This proposal means anyone with a Wikipedia article gets an RD. No way I support that. Jusdafax 02:41, 20 June 2016 (UTC)

It doesn't say that because we already do that and it's not changing. This is still ITN. It will not be "you die and have an article, you get posted". You must still be in the news. 331dot (talk) 02:55, 20 June 2016 (UTC)
That is NOT what I have been previously told per my objection during the trial to an ITN nomination for a deceased person for the Recent Deaths (RD) section. So which is it? Because at this point it's critical to this RfC and subsequent implementation, and the RfC closer had better be looking at this point deeply. Jusdafax 03:14, 20 June 2016 (UTC)
By your own admission, the existing criteria do not cover your point, nor does the proposal. Presumably you strenuously object to the current implementation as well. The Rambling Man (talk) 04:56, 20 June 2016 (UTC)

(ec) Let's unpack the diff I provide above, TRM, in my oppose. I say in my reasoning:

      • Indent, this is my quote, not an Rfc !vote*** "*Oppose - Not seeing sufficient notability for ITN here. Death was not unusual, and "top of his field" is a stretch. I am also not seeing consensus for the ready tag." I then sign. You then respond:

"*Please see talk page regarding current trial. "sufficient notability is now justified by the existence of an article, we are simply concerned with the quality of said article." (End quotes). These are your own words, The Rambling Man. They are clear and direct. There is no ambiguity here.

Conclusion: you now define any nominated recent death as meriting an RD listing. Your words again: "sufficient notability is now justified by the existence of an article, we are simply concerned with the quality of said article. Jusdafax 05:55, 20 June 2016 (UTC)

No, I think you're missing the point. The absence of a criterion to state "it's in the news" is your complaint. But as you yourself have noted, this doesn't exist in the current criteria. So, ergo, you must object to the current criteria as well. There is no ambiguity here. (P.S. please be more judicious with the use of bold, it looks like you're shouting a lot). The Rambling Man (talk) 06:00, 20 June 2016 (UTC)
No, because as I say above, the old criteria, which I support are
  • The deceased was in a high-ranking office of power at the time of death and/or had a significant contribution/impact on the country/region.
  • The deceased was widely regarded as a very important figure in his or her field."

These currently existing RD criteria clearly include existing notability. The new ones do not. You support the new ones, as shown, and per your !vote. Please do not put words in my mouth. The point yet again: the new proposal, per your own words, does away with notability requirements aside from having an existing Wikipedia article. Jusdafax 06:11, 20 June 2016 (UTC) (ec my clarifications to this reply)

For the avoidance of doubt, and by your own comment "Show me where it says anything about being in the news", there is no ambiguity in that the existing criteria do not satsify you either. Yes, you'd like a "super-notability" criterion to remain, but that's just the whole point, that's where we're wasting time, energy, resource and gaining nothing. But your position is clear (ish), so we'll leave it there. The Rambling Man (talk) 06:14, 20 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Could some compromise be reached by adding an article length requirement? An any article that is GA or above gets posted rule? An age of article (no recentism) requirement? Or a pageviews metric just prior to them being in the news for their death? Of course if the article fails some of these requirements, they could be overridden by consensus. Abductive (reasoning) 05:26, 20 June 2016 (UTC)
All of your criteria have problems: (1) The article size for current VP of Republic of China (Taiwan) is only 11KB and is less than a year old; (2) Our article on MLB single-season hit record holder, who is also approaching 3,000 MLB hits, isn't a GA. - Penwhale | dance in the air and follow his steps 06:51, 20 June 2016 (UTC)
Well, each of those must have a lot of pageviews or be unimportant, n'est–ce pas? And as far as recentism, I was thinking on the scale of a week. Abductive (reasoning) 06:59, 20 June 2016 (UTC)
You'd think that a VP of a country is important by nature of the office without going to page views... Especially when he's in the shadow of first female president of the same country. - Penwhale | dance in the air and follow his steps 08:11, 20 June 2016 (UTC)
@User:Jusdafax You've been around here forever and aye, you know the ITN/DC are an addendum to the baseline ITN requirement that topis be "in the news". Would it help if that was added as a criteria to RD? (It presently is not) -- (talk) 00:43, 22 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Oppose on the grounds that criterion no.2 is a bit weak. Is there a better balance between the current and the proposed criterion on the influence (for lack of a better term) that the person must have? - Penwhale | dance in the air and follow his steps 06:51, 20 June 2016 (UTC)
    That is precisely the problem. You may think an American college basketball coach is super notable and well worthy of RD while the rest of us don't. We may think a British sitcom actor is super notable and well worthy of RD while the rest of don't. There's no objective way to determine this. If we are content for Wikipedia to have biographical articles, we should be content that if they are of sufficient quality, they can be briefly featured on the main page. The Rambling Man (talk) 06:59, 20 June 2016 (UTC)
    Actually, there is an objective way; pageviews. Abductive (reasoning) 07:01, 20 June 2016 (UTC)
    Yes, that's a gauge of "popularity", for sure. But we're an encyclopedia and "popularity" shouldn't be the governing factor. A quick glance at WP:TOP25 will demonstrate why we shouldn't go down that path exclusively. The Rambling Man (talk) 07:11, 20 June 2016 (UTC)
    All the people on that list were/are shoe-ins for RD. Anyway, my pageviews idea would be a low cut-off. Abductive (reasoning) 07:19, 20 June 2016 (UTC)
    It was more in relation to the point that popularity should not govern our main page alone. The Rambling Man (talk) 07:22, 20 June 2016 (UTC)
  • It might be wise to have 2 sets of standards for inclusion; that is, a specific set that would qualify the person as automatically included for RD, and for others, a less restrictive set of criteria that makes them eligible to be discussed. So, for example, we can say that all Baseball Hall of Fame members should automatically be included on RD, where as the Mayor of New Taipei City probably can (and needs to) be discussed, albeit unlikely to pass(?). I would think that the Deputy Mayor of New Taipei City isn't sufficient to warrant discussion of RD. - Penwhale | dance in the air and follow his steps 08:11, 20 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Replace the word "bureacracy" with "clarity", and look at Penwhale's ideas without the specific examples. Abductive (reasoning) 16:37, 20 June 2016 (UTC)
  • By the way, the ball player gets 4385 pageviews a day, and the VP of the notcountry of Taiwan gets only 85. So to my mind the VP should not get a listing in RD. Abductive (reasoning) 16:44, 20 June 2016 (UTC)
Off topic, but I can't agree with pageviews as a deciding criterion because it feeds systemic bias. Banedon (talk) 00:39, 22 June 2016 (UTC)
The proposal replaces readership bias with editor bias. Pageviews puts reader interest first. Who is to say that readers in the aggregate are biased? Who is the best judge of bias? Abductive (reasoning) 18:15, 22 June 2016 (UTC)
No, the proposal does more than that, e.g. encouraging more quality articles, reducing systemic bias, keeping RD timely etc. But most of you opposers are fixated by your own theoretical problems and making up stories about the supporters. Focus on the encyclopedia please. The Rambling Man (talk) 18:30, 22 June 2016 (UTC)
Why don't you recognize that you are incessantly hectoring everybody on this page who disagrees with this awful proposal? Stop treating Wikipedia as a WP:BATTLEGROUND. Abductive (reasoning) 18:43, 22 June 2016 (UTC)
You're the two arguing amongst yourselves! You have, time and again, summarily failed to actually explain what makes this "awful" (how dreadfully Victorian!), your protestations have been met with arguments that you have failed to address, you have become too attached to this I fear. Please, if it's getting too emotional for you, take a break. The Rambling Man (talk) 19:06, 22 June 2016 (UTC)
Why is it a problem if #2 is "weak"? What is the benefit of a high notability threshold? How are our readers served by that? -- (talk) 00:41, 22 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Support I guess I'll throw my lot in here. I don't have a great nor important argument to be made. I just think that it's better with the new rules. Miyagawa (talk) 08:45, 20 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Support More quality content getting a chance to appear on the main page is generally better. I don't believe this proposal is perfect, but it is a step in the right direction and could be refined latter if need be. Dragons flight (talk) 09:28, 20 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Support per the results of the trial. This seems like a good change to make. -- Tavix (talk) 21:22, 20 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Support I didn't think it would be a good idea before the trial, but seeing the trial results changed my mind pretty quickly. Results aside, from the trial days I popped in to look, ITN didn't get flooded, the discussions were a lot less dramatic, and more quality content is never a bad thing. ZettaComposer (talk) 12:30, 21 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Oppose per Justdafax. RD should feature names of prominent people and have high notability threshold. Obscure people are already listed in the Deaths in 2016 article which is bolded on the Main Page. So they're just one click away. (talk) 00:10, 22 June 2016 (UTC)
Why should RD only feature "names of prominent people and have high notability threshold"? How does that serve our readers better than relying on WP:N? What harm is done by posting links to quality WP:N topics? -- (talk) 00:38, 22 June 2016 (UTC)
Because of the same reason Copa America and Euro are not listed next to the bolded "Ongoing events". These too are "quality WP:N topics" (of greater worldwide interest) and occupy "a single line of text". The only thing that can be achieved by making this change permanent is the elimination of discussions about who is notable enough for RD and who isn't. That serves well our editors, not our readers. (talk) 10:56, 22 June 2016 (UTC)
"the elimination of discussions about who is notable enough for RD" <-- YES, precisely right! "That serves well our editors, not our readers." <-- Why? Please ... please ... please ... why? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:17, 22 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Question Can someone explain, in the very narrow scope of the RD box at ITN, without digressing into "Wikipedia" as a broader topic, or the blurb section at ITN, how this proposal negatively impacts our readers and/or how the current criteria helps? Can someone explain to me how a random band of drive by editors are more qualified to decide what is "important enough" for the main page? For literally a single line of text? Can someone cover that for me, preferably without leaving any new question marks? -- (talk) 00:47, 22 June 2016 (UTC)
It's already been explained above. You just either aren't hearing it or refusing to understand it. Note to whoever closes the RfC, when literally every single person who opposed gets badgered by negative comments from the people who support and they find themselves repeating the same arguments again and again and again, it's only a matter of time before fatigue sets in and they stop responding. This does not mean they changed their minds, but if getting "out-stubborned" is a thing, this would be it. Banedon (talk) 00:55, 22 June 2016 (UTC)
Agree with Banedon. This RfC has been attended by badgering of opposers, who are belittled, shamed and blamed. My oppose is a fine example, with aspersions of various types being cast. What supporters appear to find most important is to so weaken the RD requirements as to eliminate all discussion except on article quality. I say "appear" because, per my oppose, extraordinary word noodling as to what this proposed change actually does is going on. I let Admin TRM have the last word, a nasty snide aside, because I felt sickened by his deliberate and clever borderline bullying. The closer should take that into account, as well as the overall tone of this RfC. Jusdafax 01:55, 22 June 2016 (UTC)
I'm not TRM, but I'm frustrated. Yes, sure, "weaken the RD requirements as to eliminate all discussion except on article quality" but so what? Why is that a problem? How is that negative? I'm desperate to know. -- (talk) 02:22, 22 June 2016 (UTC)
I am TRM, but there has been no "word noodling" (whatever that is), the proposal wording has been clearly and explicitly described since day one. It's absolutely clear what the proposal means, at least around 30 other participants seem to think so. Worth noting the tone of several of the supporters, including those who included unfounded personal attacks. The closer should take that into account, as well as the overall tone of some of the opposers who have failed to explain their position adequately. The Rambling Man (talk) 05:52, 22 June 2016 (UTC)
Banedon, no one is asking you to change your mind, simply to explain it. There has to be a concise explanation as to why this proposal is so awful. -- (talk) 02:20, 22 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Comment Two and a half months this has been going on. ITN/DC was created to be more inclusive because at the time deaths of notable people were rejected due to "insufficient update". The clause "very important in his/her field" was added to prevent ITN from being overwhelmed with death blurbs. When it happened anyway, the RD ticker was created. Not TFA, nor DYK, nor ITN have a significance requirement (ITN provides guidelines). Even OTD with a historical significance criteria favors WP:MOSBETTER articles. Most significantly, the Wikipedia:In_the_news#Purpose says nothing about "significance" or "importance". Right now, while I'm writing this, TFA features Sons of Soul, OTD features Teacher's Day in El Salvador and DYK is ... DYK. Even ITN has what? A basketball game and some soccer hooligans. No one is pushing "importance" anywhere. The only thing any of those articles has in common is that they were judged to be of sufficient quality to go on the main page. The exception is the tiny, one line RD box of ITN. That tiny box gets voluminous walls of text featuring people bickering about the significance of this or that dead person. Any why? With what possible benefit to our readers? We ran a month long trial, there was no flood of postings pushing "worthy" links off the MP. One person mentioned "those who want the main page to feature "important" articles" but there is no MP feature dealing in "important articles". One oppose complained about compromising "reader interest" as if some random people trolling WP:ITNC are qualified to decide what the millions of people who visit WP daily are interested in. Several opposes per the opposes I've already mentioned. Some loose interpretation of various WP policies. One person suggested it "diminishes the usefulness of RD" but couldn't really quantify how that was so. A few opposes can be summarized as "importance is important". Asking questions and trying to get to the bottom of why the change is not "badgered by negative comments". I've read every single oppose, commented on many and tried to understand why it's a problem but no one can seem to complete the sentence "Posting links to all quality WP:N articles about recently deceased people who are being covered in the news is negative because:". Not one. All this over a single line of text. -- (talk) 02:20, 22 June 2016 (UTC)
The only thing any of those articles has in common is that they were judged to be of sufficient quality to go on the main page. No, they are posted not merely because of quality, but because of importance as well. If you still doubt that, ask yourself why we don't post Kardashians or Justin Bieber's arrests, for example, which are also in the news. And regarding No one can seem to complete the sentence, it seems to be just the way you see it. Brandmeistertalk 08:29, 22 June 2016 (UTC)
I was speaking about what was on the main page, not what wasn't. If the question was so easy to answer, you could have answered it again. Your Bieber misdirection and glib "the way you see it" responses are frustrating. I genuinely want to understand why RD needs to have endless debate about if a topic is "important enough" for the main page. -- (talk) 16:09, 22 June 2016 (UTC)
You're right that the purpose doesn't directly mention importance. However, other than judging importance, there is not any way to sort through thousands of current events "To help readers find and quickly access content they are likely to be searching for because an item is in the news." We must judge importance to fulfill this task, which is why the vast majority of ITN participants value importance in the subjective decision of deciding what to post. Mamyles (talk) 22:18, 22 June 2016 (UTC)
"To help readers find and quickly access content they are likely to be searching for because an item is in the news." <-- because it's in the news, not because it's important. -- (talk) 22:43, 22 June 2016 (UTC)
@User:Mamyles 1) ITN blurbs don't have an explicit "importance criteria", so why treat deaths differently? You can read above for how we got to this point. 2) The thing about RD is that they're all "someone who died", so they're not competing with space for soccer contests and Europeans voting. I think everyone should still feel welcome to bicker about whether or not the deceased persons article "deserves" a blurb. We ran a month long trial, there was no flood pushing "more significant" people out of the RD box. -- (talk) 01:50, 23 June 2016 (UTC)
Of course importance is a critical component of deciding what to post, else we would post about every celebrity marriage, baseball player retiring, or elementary school closing. Those would all be in multiple news sources and have an article, despite being of no consequence. ITN blurbs do already have an importance criteria. And, that's the reason that WP:ITN/R exists. The page even explicitly says "Items which are listed on this page are considered to have already satisfied the 'importance' criterion for inclusion on ITN" Mamyles (talk) 15:55, 23 June 2016 (UTC)
We aren't talking about ITN, we're talking about RD, which (for better or worse) has developed into a different animal than regular ITN. Many don't understand why we need two separate notability criteria(one to create a page, one to post to RD). ITN does have good reasons for that, one being that often articles are specifically created for an event in order to post it. That isn't the case with most if not all RD's. 331dot (talk) 16:12, 23 June 2016 (UTC)
RD is a part of ITN, created with the same intended purpose and ideals. It wasn't that long ago that RD didn't exist, and all important deaths were posted to ITN as a blurb. It was created because some people were tired of seeing so many deaths as a blurb. I would rather go back to blurbs and get rid of RD altogether than have an obituary newsticker. Mamyles (talk) 16:17, 23 June 2016 (UTC)
Fair enough; you are free to propose eliminating RD if you wish. That's something I and many others would oppose- but you can propose it. 331dot (talk) 16:20, 23 June 2016 (UTC)
Actually the claim that RD becomes an obituary newsticker is absurd, a work of fiction and adequately demonstrated by the trial. Please, try to contribute in such a way that demonstrates that you are commensurate with the discussion at hand, rather than just cherry-picking a single argument, and doing that inaccurately. Please remember that RDs will only be posted if they meet the quality requirements. That effectively eliminates around 75% of them as they don't rise to the quality level required. In answer to one of your original points, we've already judged importance, the people in question are notable enough to feature on Wikipedia. That is enough. Why do we need a second, even more subjective and qualitative bar that results in delaying articles from being posted? It's a curious position that you've adopted to support a turgid, unresponsive and unhelpful approach that inhibits article expansion, promotes systemic bias and guarantees biased subjective debate that results in days of delays. Oh well. The Rambling Man (talk) 17:07, 23 June 2016 (UTC)
There is a reason we don't make blurbs about every piece of news. An article exists about a sports figure that retires, but that doesn't mean that his retirement is interesting or relevant to the vast majority of readers, so we don't post on the main page about it. For the same reasons, we shouldn't post every death. News that someone died is often just as inconsequential as a sports retirement. Recently dying is a status change, which does not necessarily merit more attention than any other individual's infobox change, such as a marriage, retirement, new baby, or change of career. Mamyles (talk) 17:37, 23 June 2016 (UTC)
Yes, now you're arguing against yourself. We don't post the items you've noted because they're not inherently notable unlike individuals who have articles on Wikipedia who are inherently notable. RD exists to promote interesting, quality articles about notable people that have recently died. This proposal improves this process wholesale. Cheers! The Rambling Man (talk) 18:19, 23 June 2016 (UTC)
We have articles about most major sports figures. The individual is "inherently notable", as you say. However, the news of their retirement or death might not be. This proposal is just like posting a blurb for everything with a news article. Not every event is important enough to post to ITN, regardless of whether an updated article exists.
As I mentioned in my oppose below, the problem of not having enough RD entries would be better addressed by either getting rid of RD, or encouraging editors (or ourselves) to improve RD articles that meet ITN importance criteria. Further decreasing our standards for deaths in ITN would not be a beneficial change. Mamyles (talk) 18:43, 23 June 2016 (UTC)
No, you're wrong, a news item about a something is entirely subjective, i.e. is Kim's new Instagram picture important? No. But it might be covered in her article. If Kim died, is that notable? Yes. Just as if any of our notable BLPs died. It's very simple. We aren't decreasing standards, we're opening up the field, we're rejecting systemic bias, we're acting positively against subjectivity when notability has already been established, we're making RD relevant and timely, but you don't like that sort of thing. We get it. The Rambling Man (talk) 18:55, 23 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Support making the change permanent. I've long held that this should be the criteria for ITN as a whole, and consistent with my feelings on that, RD should work that way. --Jayron32 03:14, 22 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Oppose Brandmeister and Abductive's reasoning regarding the purpose of the ITN section resonates most with me. The ITN section is for drawing attention to articles that have are important and have been in the news recently. This proposed change would violate both of those principles.
It seems to me that the problem we're trying to solve is that the RD section is usually old, or not entirely full. So, essentially, the problem is either:
  1. That there are not enough important people dying recently to maintain RD as-is, or
  2. that some articles of important people who have died recently are not being nominated, or do not have sufficient quality
If 1, then perhaps we should do away with the RD section and instead change ITN criteria to be a full blurb to anyone who meets the RD criteria. If 2, then we should actively encourage editors to more quickly improve RD articles, or be ourselves more involved in improving them. Frankly, I don't think literally turning the ITN section into an obituary newsticker is the best solution to the stated problem. Mamyles (talk) 21:57, 22 June 2016 (UTC)
I'm not sure how people came to think otherwise, but deaths nominated under this proposal still need to be shown to be in the news. That isn't changing. The whole point of this proposal is indeed to encourage the improvement of articles; which people will (and did) do knowing that they would be posted. If there is uncertainty about the item meriting posting,(as with the current criteria) improvements might not be made, or made too late. 331dot (talk) 22:21, 22 June 2016 (UTC)
The purpose of ITN doesn't say anything about highlighting articles deemed important by the random participants at WP:ITN/C. -- (talk) 22:44, 22 June 2016 (UTC)
[3]. Do the rules say you can't rob the bank in Monopoly? Does the purpose of ITN say anything about highlighting articles deemed important by the random participants at ITNC? Does the same purpose of ITN say anything about how we should not be posting how Banedon is the greatest editor Wikipedia has ever seen and how Jimbo should be paying me $1 million per year for the privilege of having me as an editor? Does it?? Does it?? Banedon (talk) 10:56, 23 June 2016 (UTC)
Calvin and Hobbs? Monopoly? Jimbo Wales? I'm here to discuss WP:ITN/DC in the context of the ITN RD box. TRM is right, you should take a break. -- (talk) 11:36, 23 June 2016 (UTC)
I think the point of the above sailed right over your head. No point discussing this with you further. Banedon (talk) 00:58, 24 June 2016 (UTC)
In that regard, time to take a long hard look in the mirror. Hysteria based on speculation. Well played. The Rambling Man (talk) 16:34, 24 June 2016 (UTC)
Importance is a critical criteria when considering whether to post a blurb. Thus why WP:ITN/R exists, and says in its lead "Items which are listed on this page are considered to have already satisfied the 'importance' criterion for inclusion on ITN" Mamyles (talk) 16:12, 23 June 2016 (UTC)
That is somewhat of a petitio principii. If the trial criteria were implemented, obviously ITN/R would be amended to accommodate the fact that deaths of those with Wikipedia articles have themselves already satisfied the 'importance' criterion. Consensus can change, and the mostly positive response to this proposal is proof of that.--WaltCip (talk) 17:30, 23 June 2016 (UTC)
I was simply trying to keep the IP from repeating the same argument, by pointing out to him that importance is a criteria in ITN decisions, whether it's explicitly in the purpose at WP:ITN or not. Mamyles (talk) 18:47, 23 June 2016 (UTC)
Importance isn't required for ITN because it's not a requirement. Let's stay focused, this discussion is about RD, not blurbs or ITN/R. It proposes to let WP:N and quality be enough for the RD box. If you can tell me why importance should continue to be a criteria for the RD box I'm happy to listen. -- (talk) 21:17, 23 June 2016 (UTC)
Enough has been written about that, myself included. No point in repeating all that. Brandmeistertalk 08:53, 28 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Strong Support If someone passes Wikipedia's guidelines of being notable than they should be ITN. Chase (talk) 06:28, 23 June 2016 (UTC)
Yes, but you can't rob the bank in Monopoly.--WaltCip (talk) 12:55, 23 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Support – I have to admit that my stomach turns whenever I see debates over whether certain individuals deserve to appear in RD; Anton Yelchin is the most recent major example, but there have been many others. I'm always thankful that families of the deceased don't know this process exists, as they probably wouldn't like hearing how unimportant their loved ones (who were notable enough to merit articles here) were, as this is basically the argument that an opposer often must make under the current system. Although personal feelings shouldn't play a role in this decision, a dispassionate look shows multiple benefits. Instead of endless arguing over whether people are "important enough", I'd prefer to see efforts go into improving articles, and modifying the criteria seems like a good way to do that while reducing drama. ITN could use less drama in general, and a standard that isn't so subject to interpretation can only help. Also, there's the elephant in the room: ITN is sometimes very slow to update, due to a lack of events deemed worthy by commentators. A Brexit vote doesn't occur every day, and ITN can become stale at times. An RD section that updates more frequently would benefit readers by giving them something new to look at and learn from. Giants2008 (Talk) 15:29, 24 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Support: Any other criteria opens up a huge can of worms about systemic bias, recentism, and simple editorial opinion. If anyone has an article in Wikipedia, they are supposed to be notable, and hence their death is notable. QED. Montanabw(talk) 21:40, 24 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Oppose unless we increase the default number of listed from three at most to six at most. Otherwise we will simply have a very high rollover of cricketers and soccer players, pushing people like Doris Roberts, who most certainly should have had a listing, off RD in a few days. The RfC as currently worded could simply be paraphrased as, anyone who has a decent article, no matter how obscure and unimportant, gets a 6-hour listing. μηδείς (talk) 01:26, 27 June 2016 (UTC)
We ran a month long trail, there was simply no flood of nominations. You can see the results above in the section Discussion of effects of trial. -- (talk) 01:54, 27 June 2016 (UTC)
I agree with Medeis completely, bravo! No, IP 107. Many people were unaware of the trial. I know I was. So as the new standards become common knowledge, every third-string sports player that dies get nominated by their family or fans, forcing a return to so-called "super-notability" obituary blurb discussions to get truly notable persons Main page coverage that doesn't just vanish with new RD turnover. This proposal does not solve problems, it just creates new ones while trivializing the ITN feature. My oppose, above, has additional details regarding what has been stated by proposal proponents. Jusdafax 02:07, 27 June 2016 (UTC)
Hi, yes, thank you for your feedback. User:Jayron32 did a pre-trial analysis for a week in April and found there were insufficient quality articles for deceased persons to make an appreciable difference. If you believe his sample was inadequate, and the trial not sufficiently advertised (it was discussed for a month at WT:ITN, then I invite you to perform an analysis of a larger sample and publish your findings. You'll find that reasoned arguments backed by facts win more supporters than uncertainty and hyperbole. -- (talk) 02:20, 27 June 2016 (UTC)
Point of information, RD listings went to a maximum of four some weeks ago, sorry if you missed that (although right now we list precisely zero). The trial showed no such turnover concerns were valid. The trial also showed that articles had to be of a good quality before they were listed, so the side effect of this trial is article improvement. Incidentally, for an RD listing to only exist for 6 hours, that would require a new RD to posted four times every 24 hours. That is simply way off what the trial showed, and is therefore unnecessary scare-mongering and "number noodling"! But bravo nevertheless. As for "this proposal does not solve problems, it just creates new ones", it simply doesn't. It solves the problem of wretched debate over the intangible super-notability comparisons of different cultures which currently promotes systemic bias. In doing so it solves the issue of timeliness, i.e. that once an article is of good quality it gets posted, unlike many of the RDs we have had lately where the whinging and bitching has caused delays of several days before posting, rendering the nomination "out of the news". It improves articles, i.e. people will soon learn that nominating sub-standard articles for RD will be wasting their own time. There are a few of us reviewers who actually consider the quality of articles out there. As for the opposition to this, well mostly it's a dislike to change, (IDONTLIKEIT) some are nervous about a predicted flood of updates (disproven wholeheartedly by the trial), some are concerned over notability (WP:N applies, we won't be posting red links) and some are concerned over the "trivialisation of ITN" (again, see WP:N). So, in a nutshell, if you prefer out-of-date items sometimes being posted after a bitchfest, maintain the opposition. If you'd prefer a dynamic, quality-improved, timely RD ITN section which promotes some of the more forgotten BLPs suitable for the main page, think it over and reconsider. The Rambling Man (talk) 04:45, 27 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Support per The Rambling Man, Montanabw and others. Calidum ¤ 03:45, 27 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Support per The Rambling Man and others, I'm not convinced by many of the oppose !votes. - Yellow Dingo (talk) 06:42, 27 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Oppose it will weight heavily in favor of First World decedents because that's who edits here and that's whose articles are in better shape. So minor notability + decent article of some Brit or American will outweight the death of some major foreign figure who's article is start quality. That's not "news", that's favoritism. Carlossuarez46 (talk) 19:41, 28 June 2016 (UTC)
@Carlossuarez46: You are speaking of issues much larger than ITN, that involve all of Wikipedia. We cannot control who edits here, unless you are out in underrepresented countries recruiting editors. The current system for RD results in much more systemic bias than we saw during the one-month trial, which had a much wider variety of nationalities and professions(if imperfect) than usual. An analysis of this is posted above, I think. 331dot (talk) 19:48, 28 June 2016 (UTC)
Carlossuarez46 that's where you're 100% wrong. This proposal means that people who have articles of a decent quality will be noted on the main page. It won't matter where they're from. This promotes variety, inclusion etc and works against the current systemically biased system where Americans or Brits can super-outvote based on their own personal opinions of people they've never heard of. I'm so sorry that it appears you have this completely back-to-front, we should work harder on explaining that this is actively seeking to improve the situation you describe rather than exacerbate it. The Rambling Man (talk) 19:52, 28 June 2016 (UTC)
  • It remains to be seen - trial period results prove nothing as attention by folks will diminsh over time and and the only folks with an eye on stuff will be the regulars who can now use the fact of a bad article on an important personage to knock it out ...but time will tell. Carlossuarez46 (talk) 20:01, 28 June 2016 (UTC)
@Carlossuarez46: How are our readers served by posting fewer articles, regardless of the country of origin? -- (talk) 20:20, 28 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Who said fewer? I assume there will be the same number, now just with a more western bias. Carlossuarez46 (talk) 20:37, 28 June 2016 (UTC)
@Carlossuarez46: I'm sorry I was unclear. Under the proposed criteria, there will be a few more articles posted to the main page. Under the existing criteria, therefore, there are fewer. In that context, how does a more restrictive policy help our readers? -- (talk) 20:33, 29 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Nonsense, there will be more, and it will be down to editors to make the effort to get items up to scratch. If, after that, there's a western bias, it's because the non-western editors are too lazy to do anything about it. RIght now, there's a bias against the non-western editors whether they make an effort or not because there's a subjective bias against non-western nominations. This proposal dismisses that prejudice. But hey, see below, I think you've made your mind up so we should all stop now and allow you to enjoy the current biased, slow, prejudiced version of RD to continue. The Rambling Man (talk) 20:42, 28 June 2016 (UTC)
I'm completely confused by your response Carlos. I don't understand your "the regulars who can now use the fact of a bad article on an important personage to knock it out" statement. That is the case now, as it will be the case under the new criteria. Difference is that this will actively assist minority articles as there will be no nit-picking over notability. If the article is of sufficient quality, it will be posted. Time won't tell if this RfC is rejected after all. The Rambling Man (talk) 20:26, 28 June 2016 (UTC)
  • There will still be differences - you really expect unanimity on each proposal? Carlossuarez46 (talk) 20:37, 28 June 2016 (UTC)
  • It will be a quality debate, which will be determined by an admin, rather than a subjective "super notability" debate which is always death by text wall. Look, if you want to keep going with this current system of rejecting all minority RDs and arguing for days over the less minority RDs, that's fine. I'm not taking this discussion with you any further because it seems clear you've made your mind up regardless of what you're told. Thanks for your interest. The Rambling Man (talk) 20:42, 28 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Today: 3 Americans and Brit. 2 sports figures, a writer and a puppeteer, 2 with less than 5 interwiki links showing that if there is international renown it's limited, or limited to English-speaking folks. Carlossuarez46 (talk) 01:01, 3 July 2016 (UTC)
  • Yes, precisely one reason why removing the super-notability requirement is a good thing, to get more diverse nominations and RDs up there! The Rambling Man (talk) 05:54, 3 July 2016 (UTC)
  • Oppose The new rules make it easier to be listed. The first rules show more of what is necessary. Smarkflea (talk) 19:33, 29 June 2016 (UTC)
@Smarkflea:"New rules make it easier to be listed" <-- yes. "first rules show more of what is necessary" <-- how's that? The proposed criteria don't exclude anyone. -- (talk) 20:30, 29 June 2016 (UTC)
It's too easy to be listed. Only the most notable should be listed. Smarkflea (talk) 21:47, 29 June 2016 (UTC)
@Smarkflea: Why should "Only the most notable should be listed"? How does that help our readers? How does posting "less notable" people do a disservice to them? -- (talk) 21:57, 29 June 2016 (UTC)
Any reason you keep replying? There is a page for deaths. Smarkflea (talk) 22:22, 29 June 2016 (UTC)
@Smarkflea:You've opposed a proposal to change the working of a main page feature, I'm trying to see if the oppose has any merit. Yes, there is a page for deaths, how does that equate to "Only the most notable should be listed" (at ITN, in the RD box)?. How does that help our readers? How does posting "less notable" people do a disservice to them? -- (talk) 22:36, 29 June 2016 (UTC)
posting less people does a disservice to no one Smarkflea (talk) 23:17, 29 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Comment this is now nearly three weeks old, I'm going to make a request to get it closed out by an admin. Thanks to everyone who has contributed. The Rambling Man (talk) 20:55, 29 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Oppose - There are some things I like about this, but still no. ITN exists for the readers, not ourselves. This isn't serving our readers - we are smashing an established ITN convention to bits to display to our readers an uninteresting list of biographies, the vast majority of which will probably be Western and English speaking persons. A carrot for article quality, as it were. A good goal, certainly, but not really ITN's responsibility. This is a slippery slope that could easily be used to justify regular news blurbs (hot dog eating contests, Adele's latest album) as long as the quality is there. It wouldn't work there, and it doesn't work in the RD section. --Bongwarrior (talk) 19:14, 30 June 2016 (UTC)
    Ah, so you're one of those who prefers to have zero RDs listed than a couple of RDs of those who have high quality articles but whose super-notability doesn't match your own subjective threshold? I get it. We have already dismissed the latter point entirely. The trial demonstrated nothing other than pure success, and included some more niche RDs that would never have seen the light of day, these were beneficial to readers who went looking and discovered something interesting. We had not one single complaint from one single reader during the trial. I'm not sure why you would allude otherwise. This proposal is designed to enhance RD for our readers, we get good quality articles delivered in a timely fashion, sometimes about niche individuals. Of course, maintaining the status quo, per your vote, means we continue to advocate strong systemic bias, we actually strongly work against non-Western and non-English-speaking nominations as the fashion is to spend days agonising over whether they are super-notable or not. I get that many people prefer a blank RD to some RDs. I get that some people prefer to deny quality articles about RDs the twelve or fourteen characters on the main page. But this "claim" of not serving our readers is insulting and utterly unfounded. Why would our readers prefer a completely blank RD to one with quality articles about people that Wikipedians have already deemed notable per WP:N? The Rambling Man (talk) 19:41, 30 June 2016 (UTC)
    There you go again, hectoring people who disagree with you, and claiming your trial a pure success when it is apparent to everyone else that it caused controversy. Abductive (reasoning) 19:58, 30 June 2016 (UTC)
    There you go again, making unfounded claims. What "controversy"? Where did the readers of Wikipedia complain? You make these claims (like the main page becoming an obituary, like lack of curation) but under even the thinnest level of scrutiny, they are exposed as nothing, mere complaints of "I don't like it". When you have a reasonable argument backed with evidence, it would be great to hear it. The Rambling Man (talk) 20:02, 30 June 2016 (UTC)
@Bongwarrior: You've said "display to our readers an uninteresting list of biographies, the vast majority of which will probably be Western and English speaking persons". As the proposal removes restrictions, none of the fascinating cello players and European bureaucrats who've been features previously would have been excluded. Is there some harm in posting a few more deaths? Are you certain they'd "probably be Western" and if so, why is that a problem? Are you, or is anyone here, really qualified to determine what is "interesting" to the millions of people who pass by WP daily? Featuring "interesting" articles or pretending "systemic bias" doesn't exist is not an ITN responsibility either. Some simple facts: 1) a month long trial showed no "flood" of "uninteresting" people cluttering up RD, 2) this trial is very narrowly focused on the RD box, 3) WP:ITN/DC was created to try and prevent a flood of death blurbs, it was never about filtering based on what our readers might care about. You can read all of this above. Perhaps you could explain, in some way we can measure and evaluate, how our readers are negatively impacted by posting a few more articles to the RD box for ITN. -- (talk) 01:31, 1 July 2016 (UTC)
  • Support The trial showed that we wouldn't get a glut of third-division footballers and soap actors, and if you think about it, that's logical - such people, whilst passing our "notability", simply haven't got enough to be written about them to make an article of any quality; so it's unsurprising. The comparison with TFA is false; spending a long time writing a good article about a particular hurricane or mushroom just to get it featured is fine, but would you spend that time on a low-notability sportsman or actor just in case they die? Of course you wouldn't. Laura Jamieson (talk) 22:45, 30 June 2016 (UTC)
Or you might, because you're interested in the low-notability sportsman or actor. Why not, really? Banedon (talk) 01:05, 1 July 2016 (UTC)
Yes, this person was canvassed here by one of the promoters of this terrible idea. Abductive (reasoning) 07:02, 2 July 2016 (UTC)
  • Comment, already it is becoming apparent that there are not enough editors to keep up with the article improvements that would be needed to enact the proposal. I personally had to lengthen the lead of one of the RD articles to get it posted. Abductive (reasoning) 07:02, 2 July 2016 (UTC)
    Gosh, you "personally" had to some work in the article space? Well that's a good thing, isn't it. Enacting the proposal requires no changes at all, to assert so is absurd and misleading. We will post quality articles on recently deceased individuals. The proposal makes no change at all to the requirement for quality. People will edit articles in which they have an interest. The proposal makes no change at all to that paradigm. Now stop hectoring, we're all fully aware of your "position". The Rambling Man (talk) 07:15, 2 July 2016 (UTC)
  • Comment Abductive and The Rambling Man - you have both said more than enough here. Please stop. This RFC has run for more than sufficient time for someone uninvolved to be able to judge consensus and make a decision. Mjroots (talk) 11:22, 2 July 2016 (UTC)
  • Oppose per most of the above opposes. I'll just highlight three points instead of 15: It does substitute editor interest for reader interest, but the Main page is for the latter. It does substitute article development quality in place of global notability, but "In the news" obviously means the latter; "From today's featured article" is for the former and already dominates the main page. It will not address systemic bias, but result in ITN death notices of more and more UK and US minor celebrities. This is statistically undeniable because we have an order of magnitude more such articles than about statespeople and such in less influential or non-anglophone countries, while more such articles of the "barely notable English-language media personality" type are created every day than any other kind of bio, and they're damned near impossible to get rid of at AfD because incestuous entertainment media crap like People magazine and E! counts as RS, supposedly. (A good example of this kind of crap article is Chipo Chung, which can be summarized as "Chipo Chung works as an actress, actually got some minor jobs in that field, seems to have been competent, and has dome some charity stuff. The end." We have hundreds of thousands of such wannabe-star bios here.)  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  14:28, 2 July 2016 (UTC)
You seem to be describing a much broader notability issue than just one for RD; your statement seems to be an argument for tightening up the notability criteria for 'minor celebrities' and for what reliable sources are. 331dot (talk) 14:32, 2 July 2016 (UTC)
Oops. Point missed. Articles have tone of sufficient quality to be posted. If you believe RD for a truly non-notable individual could be posted, your argument is really more at WP:N than here. The Rambling Man (talk) 14:37, 2 July 2016 (UTC)
"Reader interest" is measured by page views, not the current death criteria. Pages that get views will get improved, and will be posted, even if their cases for RD are weak (remember Cory Monteith?). During the trial, a number of non-US/UK pages were promoted because we couldn't subjectively say they're "less notable" than those US/UK bios. – Muboshgu (talk) 17:54, 5 July 2016 (UTC)
Articles under current death criteria receive plenty of pageviews, more than some obscure cricketers or college basketball coaches. Brandmeistertalk 19:35, 5 July 2016 (UTC)
If you have a problem with "obscure" individuals, take it up at WP:N. All individuals in this proposal must meet our notability criteria, hence they are notable. Not "obscure". The Rambling Man (talk) 19:41, 5 July 2016 (UTC)
As long as it comes down to page views, some are obscure indeed (excluding artificial view spikes). Brandmeistertalk 20:15, 5 July 2016 (UTC)
Then your problem really is with WP:N, so I'd take your position there if you really are seeking a solution. The Rambling Man (talk) 20:38, 5 July 2016 (UTC)
  • Support as quality is more important than POV notability of subject and is also effective means of judging a nomination which otherwise could be subject to IDONTLIKEIT or SYSTEMICBIAS and get rejected. The purpose of Main Page is to highlight quality articles. Its only because of that that we keep featuring song-lists, filmographies, video games and such; which are of low-importance for any comprehensive encyclopedia. Because we value quality, we started accepting GAs in DYK enough though the hook could have been on wiki for ages and would not in that sense be hooky for being stale. I support this proposal. §§Dharmadhyaksha§§ {Talk / Edits} 07:22, 4 July 2016 (UTC)
  • Support - Trial showed that this works, and that ITN would not be overwhelmed. — Chris Woodrich (talk) 03:30, 5 July 2016 (UTC)
  • Comment – let me express my annoyance with the current RD criteria. Here's a recent example of how and why it doesn't work. I'm talking about Yves Bonnefoy (pre-eminent poet of his generation who died on July 1) but who never got featured on the front page for ITN/RD. Why did this oversight happen? First off, it took "The New York Times" almost 5 days to publish their obituary. Until that obituary was published, it would have been difficult to establish notability. Why? For one thing, Bonnefoy's Wikipedia page was of low quality, and it did not clearly establish his notability based on the current RD criteria. Anyhow, I nominated Yves Bonnefoy as an RD candidate on July 6 after I read about his death in "The New York Times." The article in "The New York Times" clearly established Bonnefoy's notability. Therefore, I revised Bonnefoy's Wikipedia page for quality. But understand, by this time there's only 2 days left to meet the usual 7 day nomination criteria. By July 7, other events were overwhelming the process, other more pressing stories that demanded editor's attention, ie., floods in China, police in Dallas, Texas shot and killed, and so on and so forth. Consensus was not reached, because two days is not enough time to get enough editors involved and only 3 editors responded. Again, more evidence here that the current RD criteria is anachronistic, and more proof as to why the trial period for updating the RD criteria was a success. During the trial period, Bonnefoy's RD nomination would have undoubtedly been approved because both "notability" (he has an article on Wikipedia) and quality standards were met:
  1. Notability established. Even using the current RD criteria, it's clear that Yves Bonnefoy is a notable figure (he's on Wikipedia in 23 different languages; he's one of the "pre-eminent poets of the 20th century" and one of the most important French poets of his time; when Roland Barthes died suddenly, Bonnefoy took over his position at the College de France; his translations of Shakespeare's plays into French are renowned and used extensively in schools throughout France,; the President of France released an official statement upon his death to honor his life and work, and so on, and so on). To recap:
  2. Minimum quality standards met – but not until 5 days after Bonnefoy's death. The problem with this is that "The New York Times" didn't release their obituary until 22:00 hours Eastern Standard Time on July 5. Before The New York Times obit appeared we only had Le Monde, a prominent French media outlet, establishing notability for English-Wikipedia. The BBC article on Bonnefoy (linked above) is only 10 sentences. This concerns English-speaking Wikipedia, and since this one BBC story was being republished over-and-over again all over the world, this did not provide definitive proof that notability criteria had been met.
  3. Without The New York Times obituary being available until July 6, notability could not be established definitively until this date. In turn, this gave Wikipedia editors little or no time to make improvements. FYI, as soon I was aware of The New York Times obituary clarifying Bonnefoy's notability for English readers, I extensively revised Bonnefoy's Wikipedia page so it would meet the minimum "quality" standards (and two credible editors who have established their integrity here on the ITN candidates page expressed their support).
  4. In closing, Wikipedia missed the boat here by not featuring for RD, Yves Bonnefoy, a notable artist on the world stage since the 1950s. The old criteria for establishing notability is anachronistic and cumbersome. However, under the trial guidelines for RD posting, Bonnefoy would not have been overlooked. Again, to stress what has been said many times: establishing notability of this or that person is inherently biased. It's a systemic bias. If Wikipedia already has an article at the time of death, then notability has already been established for many of our readers. We as editors are too distracted by this notability criteria. It's taking away from our ability to insure that quality articles are made available to readers around the world.Christian Roess (talk) 01:17, 9 July 2016 (UTC)
Worth noting though, nobody opposed posting that RD because of lack of notability, so I don't see how the new RD criteria would have changed anything. Banedon (talk) 04:39, 9 July 2016 (UTC)
According to the proposed "new RD criteria", notability will hardly ever be a consideration. If the person has a Wikipedia article, then notability has already been established. Therefore, under the new proposed RD criteria, we can assume that any recently deceased person's Wikipedia page will automatically be nominated, that's the only important "notability criteria." That leaves us with a much easier situation because virtually the only consideration now is going to be quality. In other words, does this-or-that RD-nominated Wikipedia page meet the quality standard? Yes or no? In the case above, Yves Bonnefoy died. He had a Wikipedia page before his death, and therefore notability is established. Now his name is promptly submitted for RD nomination. Did Bonnefoy's page meet minimum quality standards? In this case, I would say "no." Therefore it's up to any concerned editors to make sure the article is of sufficient quality to post to ITN/RD. If notability was not a factor, and there was no opposition as you say, then why wasn't he nominated sooner? Why this glaring oversight? You know why it happened? Because none of the ITN editors knew if Bonnefoy was or wasn't notable. If an editor would have heard of him, then he would've been nominated. I didn't know about his notability until I read his obituary that wasn't published until 5 days after his death. Sorry to say, but English Wikipedia needs "The New York Times'" or the BBC, etc. to establish notability. If as you say, there was no opposition to notability, then why weren't concerned editors given ample or sufficient time to meet quality standards? Something is clearly wrong with the current RD criteria if someone of the stature of a Yves Bonnefoy gets overlooked. That's the thing: Bonnefoy was passed over. That's a fact. Therefore the current criteria doesn't work very well. Something is broken. It's my understanding that Yves Bonnefoy would not have been allowed to fall through the cracks or be virtually ignored from even minimal consideration if we adopt the new RD criteria: (1) is there a Wikipedia article? and (2) is it a quality article? Christian Roess (talk) 05:40, 9 July 2016 (UTC)
I think what went wrong in this case is not so much the current RD criteria but rather that no admin posted the nomination. This isn't actually that rare - the Belarusian Ruble nomination was similar, off the top of my head I also remember this nomination [4] which was not posted as well in spite of five supports with no opposes. As for why he wasn't nominated earlier, I don't know - but explaining that as because people were afraid of being opposed is a huge leap of logic. You, for example, did not nominate him early because you weren't aware, not because of the current RD criteria. I am not convinced that under the new RD criteria Yves Bonnefoy would have been nominated and posted. Banedon (talk) 06:26, 9 July 2016 (UTC)
Thanks for responding, I appreciate it. I think I've been too long winded and unclear in what I wrote (above). And too confusing. Because really the issue can be stated quite simply and quite clearly. And that is this: During the trial period, Yves Bonnefoy's RD nomination would've undoubtedly been approved. That's because under the new RD criteria, only these two conditions need to be met:
  1. notability established (because Bonnefoy already had an article on Wikipedia);
  2. article quality established (because I---or another editor---would have made sure that a standard of quality was met).
There you go. Clear. Simple. Fair. Christian Roess (talk) 09:38, 9 July 2016 (UTC)
That is a perfect summation of this proposal. The Rambling Man (talk) 10:05, 9 July 2016 (UTC)
While that is exactly what the new criteria are intended to achieve they still require an article to be nominated before the news is stale. The only way I can think of to ensure that is to have a feed of obituaries and breaking news from major newspapers around the world that prompted Wikipedians to update articles and nominate them at WP:ITNC the same day. Even that would miss some people - e.g. I recall the case of a Swedish (iirc) Olympian in a minor sport whose death was reported only in their local/regional newspaper as they had been out of the spotlight for 50 years (their Swedish article was updated with their death but no other language was until highlighted by the Death anomalies project). Thryduulf (talk) 11:21, 9 July 2016 (UTC)
  • Comment this has now been running for four weeks. Can someone look into commencing the process for closure? I noted that someone tried about two weeks ago, and it all got a little heated, but please, either way, could we get some closure here? The Rambling Man (talk) 20:51, 9 July 2016 (UTC)
    • It's listed at WP:ANRFC but that is very backlogged (at least in part due to a couple of users religiously listing almost every RfC for formal closure whether that is require or not, and whether they are ready or not) and I put a message at WT:ITN a few days ago. If it's still open tomorrow afternoon I'll see if I can persuade someone at the London meetup to do the honours. Thryduulf (talk) 00:39, 10 July 2016 (UTC)
      • Just so you know, the admins aren't touching this discussion because it's extremely contentious and there probably isn't a consensus to be found.--WaltCip (talk) 14:43, 11 July 2016 (UTC)
        • I think it's more that admins are shying away from a proposal that impacts the main page, rather than lack of a consensus, which is clearly in favour of the proposal... But then I would say that, wouldn't I? The Rambling Man (talk) 14:49, 11 July 2016 (UTC)
          • If there is no consensus to be found then the RfC will be closed as no consensus and the status quo ante will continue. Thryduulf (talk) 19:16, 11 July 2016 (UTC)
  • Question Just for consideration: who came up with the RD criteria? Was there a discussion that led to a consensus? – Muboshgu (talk) 01:18, 10 July 2016 (UTC)
    • The current criteria were developed following discussions that happened at/are now collated at (I'm not sure which) Wikipedia:In the news/Death criteria. The criteria this RFC seeks to implement were developed following discussions on this page. Thryduulf (talk) 01:39, 10 July 2016 (UTC)
      • Thank you. It's interesting to see, years later. – Muboshgu (talk) 21:31, 11 July 2016 (UTC)
  • One last point I'd like to make is about something that hasn't really been discussed above: civility. People at ITN/C can get heated as they either support or oppose something being posted due to personal and subjective reasons, and many comments made in making those arguments violate WP:CIVIL. One recent RD discussion sticks out in my mind, that of Abner J. Mikva. It got heated quickly, with a "U.S. vs. U.K." battleline, as ITN/C has had often enough, and closed to stop any further incivility. I rethought my oppose and would've probably changed to support if not for the closure, which I didn't want to reverse. If only we had enacted this proposal, that wouldn't have happened at all; The article would've been judged only on its quality. Instead, we got into a pissing match that was totally unnecessary and counterproductive. Enacting this proposal would reduce incivility at ITN/C by removing a major subjective force from judging nominations. I can only hope that this proposal will be enacted, and that those who oppose this will see these benefits and understand that our "subjective" readings on the "importance" of the subject as some sort of "supernotability" was silly. – Muboshgu (talk) 22:47, 11 July 2016 (UTC)
No offense, but the example is another one of Americanisms on an American. The "incivility" more likely has to do with treating recently deceased American subjects, not non-British international ones. I don't believe one second that criteria had something to do with incivility. As said previously (either here or elsewhere), the minimal line of significance on American subjects is very high. There are other ways to treat or prevent incivility, like discussing it in a talk page. --George Ho (talk) 15:28, 12 July 2016 (UTC)
the minimal line of significance on American subjects is very high this claim is utterly bogus. American RDs have been ushered through in quick time, as you well know, like our college basketball coaches who won nothing example. Plus I have no idea what you mean about "Americanisms on an American" nor "with treating recently deceased American subjects, not non-British international ones." nor "I don't believe one second that criteria had something to do with incivility" - of course one of the criteria would not relate to incivility, are you joking about this? The Rambling Man (talk) 15:34, 12 July 2016 (UTC)
I also don't know exactly what you mean by "Americanisms on an American" or those other things. I do know that Americans subjectively assign more importance to Americans, Brits to Brits, Swedes to Swedes, etc. By removing that criteria, we remove issues of nationalism, which makes us all more civil. – Muboshgu (talk) 15:59, 12 July 2016 (UTC)
I'll rephrase: the politician didn't meet one of the criteria per consensus (and rightfully so). Then the discussion devolved into a typical battlefield involving usually frequent ITN regulars (i.e. Bugs and TRM), this time referring to Margate. Americans fighting over commemorating one American person... I don't know how people interpret "significance" differently, but doing this frequently would reinforce negative stereotypical views on Americans (or American Wikipedians). I.e. over-the-top, self-absorbed, vindictive, etc. I didn't engage in that discussion, but I'm Chinese American and don't feel enthusiastic about battling over one person anymore. Nor am I enthusiastic about improving articles for the sake of news. --George Ho (talk) 17:02, 12 July 2016 (UTC)
Bugs is hardly a regular, and I used Margate as an analog to Illinois. Most of the rest of the world has no clue about Illinois, how big it is, why a politician who was "big in Illinois" is any more relevant than a politician who was big in Margate. If you don't get that then I'm not sure what more to say. It wasn't about commemorating anyone or stereotyping, it was just a lively debate about the relative significance of low-level politicians. But you have summed up your position perfectly by suggesting that you are not keen "about improving articles". That is the final word, all we need to hear. The Rambling Man (talk) 19:53, 12 July 2016 (UTC)
In that specific case, I underrated Mikva's importance as someone who has served in all three branches of government and his role mentoring a young Obama, and in hindsight I would change my vote to support. Then TRM or someone else who feels it's too U.S.-centric or insignificant in a global view or whatever specific reason would oppose, and we'd get into an argument over the person's subjective notability by these subjective RD criteria. It would serve no purpose other than to waste time and inflame tensions, when the whole point of ITN is to promote decent quality articles. All we should care about is the article quality, not the extent of the person's career. – Muboshgu (talk) 20:19, 12 July 2016 (UTC)
Well there are already mechanisms in place to solve civility issues, plus one can simply refuse to participate in these "pissing matches". With that said, this particular pissing match seems fairly mild to me, and also I think the most straightforward solution to these issues is to ban the worst contributors to the pissing matches from ITN. The new RD criteria, even if they do cut down on civility issues, only address the symptoms, not the cause. Banedon (talk) 08:03, 14 July 2016 (UTC)
The results of the new criteria (plainly seen during the trial) was that the natural subjectivity imparted by various nationalities over their "own" interests was entirely absent, so the need to debate the relative merits of an American college basketball coach versus a British sitcom actor was entirely removed. This proved itself time and again and is a real boon. Time and energy was better spent in article space, making the encyclopedia a higher quality tool. The Rambling Man (talk) 11:18, 14 July 2016 (UTC)
That pissing match was far more mild than others that I've seen (*and fallen into) but it was still a good and recent example. As far as the other ways, some have been tried and they don't seem to work much, if at all. The better way seems to be removing the subjectivity as much as possible, which this prooposal would do. – Muboshgu (talk) 19:59, 14 July 2016 (UTC)


I am prepared to close this discussion. However I would like to clear up one point of doubt first, as I am not completely familiar with the ITN process. Several opposers have commented with words to the effect "anyone with an article can get posted to RD", and there were some responses to the effect "they still have to be In The News" although this does not seem to be codified in the guidelines. So my question is: are there any criteria for assessing whether something is in the news or not? Presumably a single local newspaper article would not suffice? — Martin (MSGJ · talk) 21:18, 11 July 2016 (UTC)

There has been no change from the existing RD criteria in this regard. So the point is moot. But of course the assessing admin would need to judge that the sources used to update the article in question are reliable and verifiable. That has never been in doubt. And if that were the case, then an article can currently and will be in future posted. The Rambling Man (talk) 21:24, 11 July 2016 (UTC)
To expand a touch, I guess that you could read the RD criteria as a subset of the ITN instructions. Those instructions have four purposes, one of which is "To help readers find and quickly access content they are likely to be searching for because an item is in the news." so one could assume that this maxim applies across all ITN nominations, be them regular blurbs, Ongoing items or RDs, as each of those is a sub-section of the aforementioned instructions. But for the avoidance of doubt, there is no change at all to the current approach of RD in this regard in this proposal, neither implicit or explicit. The Rambling Man (talk) 21:33, 11 July 2016 (UTC)
If I close the discussion then I will decide which points are relevant and which are not. But I thank you for the other comments from which I conclude that there is currently no codified requirement for an item to be "in the news" beyond the quality of sourcing used in the article. It's getting late for me now, but I will aim to close this tomorrow unless someone else gets there before me, which looks unlikely. Regards — Martin (MSGJ · talk) 22:16, 11 July 2016 (UTC)
That's fine, the majority were really in opposition to the idea that anyone with an article could qualify for RD assuming their article was of sufficient quality. As the "in the news"-ness parameter hasn't been modified in the proposal, I'm not sure what relevance it has here at all. The Rambling Man (talk) 22:23, 11 July 2016 (UTC)
  • Actually, I believe the exact opposite of TRM's statement was noted in my oppose. The issue in my view remains highly unclear. And MSGJ, as closer, you have put your finger on the crux of the issue. Again, my oppose makes this point clear, in my view. To be blunt, some editors here no longer feel vigorously debating notability is worth their time. I suggest that argument carries little weight in a feature on Wikipedia's Main page. If such editors no longer have the energy, or patience to conduct such debates, perhaps they should move on, instead of changing the rules in a dubious procedure, in which virtually all opposers were challenged and often dismissed or belittled. As I stated to TRM in my oppose: "Conclusion: you now define any nominated recent death as meriting an RD listing. Your words again: "sufficient notability is now justified by the existence of an article, we are simply concerned with the quality of said article." " [End my oppose quote containing TRM's quote.] This direct quote shows the agenda in play at its core. Jusdafax 20:38, 12 July 2016 (UTC)
    • Notability is for AfD, not ITN. – Muboshgu (talk) 21:17, 12 July 2016 (UTC)
    • (edit conflict) There is no hidden agenda here, you just disagree that requiring supernotability to appear on the main page is a bad thing. You are entitled to do that, but please do not ascribe underhand motives to those you disagree with without evidence. Thryduulf (talk) 21:20, 12 July 2016 (UTC)
    • (edit conflict) I think you had ample opportunity to make your complaints known, you appeared to have completely misunderstood the proposal, completely misunderstood the current criteria, and completely failed to provide any tangible reasoning as to why this proposal was in any way disadvantageous. To be blunt, I'd suggest you take some time out to revise what happened here and learn from it, as you seem to have missed the point more than twice. There's no "agenda", the proposal is plain English and if you don't understand it, other projects are looking for you to help, because several of us have tried to help you here, apparently to no avail as you still seem confused, and I'm really sorry about that because this is probably the simplest RFC I've ever seen in Wikipedia's history. The Rambling Man (talk) 21:23, 12 July 2016 (UTC)
      • If it's so simple, why is the closer asking for clarity? My point, using your own statement, continues to be unaddressed, and instead of responding, veiled threats are now in play. To be blunt in turn, you have serious ownership issues, both in this Rfc and at ITN at large. I've been editing at ITN for over half a decade, and am eminently qualified to make this observation. (I also see Thryduulf is putting words in my mouth with "hidden agenda." I have never said that, in fact just the opposite.) No, your own words are quite clear: "sufficient notability is now justified by the existence of an article, we are simply concerned with the quality of said article." Linked for complete context. Your words are so clear, that you can not or will not respond to them, instead resorting to attacks and smears. You promised to reform when the community pointed out your civility issues at your Rfc/U a couple years back. You would do well to remember that fact. Jusdafax 23:13, 12 July 2016 (UTC)
        • Putting it bluntly (and I have been variously publicly and privately thanked for my responses to your ongoing commentary), we addressed Martin's question, as did we yours, within moments. The primary difference was that he got it (i.e. this proposal does not change any current "in the news-ness" of RDs) while you continue to flounder. The rest of your observations are fascinating yet utterly peripheral, and a lame attempt at filibustering, which no doubt will continue as you continue to seek out the last word here. Be my guest, I've saved a space for you just here ----> . The Rambling Man (talk) 04:46, 13 July 2016 (UTC)
          • Attempt to inoculate yourself from further comment, and trivialize me, noted. Your failure to respond to your own comment noted. The key word you used in my cited, linked comment above, is your use of the word "now." That's as in "sufficient notability is now justified by the existence of such an article." So, things were changed in your rationale, in the example I cited above. "Now" means a difference had been effectuated under the terms of the trial. Again, these are your words. Then there is the phrase I note in the diff, "at the top of their field," a state formerly required for a recent death listing. You seem to have neglected to mention that codified requirement. Again, I give specifics, you respond with insults, smoke and mirrors. Your comments should carry little weight, as I see it. Jusdafax 05:15, 13 July 2016 (UTC)
            • Not at all, we all expected further confusion from you. Look, it's very simple. This proposal doesn't change the necessity that an item is in the news. This is not currently "codified", just assumed (the section is title "in the news", after all). So, to reiterate, the proposed rewording of the RD criteria does not change something because it doesn't exist. No smoke, no mirrors, and you are just making yourself look more absurd by the second. Keep enjoying your five minutes! The Rambling Man (talk) 06:10, 13 July 2016 (UTC)

Names of important or prominent people who recently died are often posted to ITN in a section titled "recent deaths". Suitable posts generally meet at least one of the following criteria:

  • The deceased was in a high-ranking office of power at the time of death and/or had a significant contribution/impact on the country/region.
  • The deceased was widely regarded as a very important figure in his or her field.

It is sometimes contentious whether or not the death of a person itself merits a blurb or a mere listing in the "recent deaths" section. In general, the following criteria are used to decide whether a death should be posted to RD or as a full blurb:

  • For deaths where the person's life is the main story, where the news reporting of the death consists solely of obituaries, or where the update to the article in question is merely a statement of the time and cause of death, the "recent deaths" section is usually used.
  • For deaths where the cause of death itself is a major story (such as the unexpected death of prominent figures by murder, suicide, or major accident) or where the events surrounding the death merit additional explanation (such as ongoing investigations, major stories about memorial services or international reactions, etc.) a blurb may be merited to explain the death's relevance. In general, if a person's death is only notable for what they did while alive, it belongs as an RD link. If the person's death itself is newsworthy for either the manner of death or the newsworthy reaction to it, it may merit a blurb.
  • In rare cases, the death of major transformative world leaders in their field may merit a blurb. These cases are rare, and are usually posted on a sui generis basis through a discussion at WP:ITNC that determines there is community consensus that the death merits a blurb. Comparisons to deaths of prior persons (we posted John Doe, so we should also post Jane Smith, or conversely we didn't post Bill Jones, so we cannot post Susie Johnson) are rarely considered sufficient to post in absence of consensus.
              • I'm copying and pasting the section in directly. It is section 3.4 in the index. It clearly does exist. Also note the notice of this RfC, proposing changes. Jusdafax 07:06, 13 July 2016 (UTC)

The proposal makes no changes other than to the first two bullet points. Cheers. The Rambling Man (talk) 07:18, 13 July 2016 (UTC)

Now you admit there are indeed changes, to the first two bullet points. Yet two replies ago you stated, and again I am copying and pasting your own words: Look, it's very simple. This proposal doesn't change the necessity that an item is in the news. This is not currently "codified", just assumed (the section is title "in the news", after all). So, to reiterate, the proposed rewording of the RD criteria does not change something because it doesn't exist. [Italics mine, your insults omitted.]
So, again, you are now admitting for the first time here, given obvious proof, that codified criteria does in fact exist in the form of the bullet points, and that this proposal changes them. And how? By doing away with them. This point is at the heart of the matter, and it is repeatedly denied by you and others on this page. Which brings us back to the proposed close, and the question raised by our proposed closer User:MSGJ at the start of this section. Note that he says in small print he will be the judge of what is relevant, after your response which I will charitibly term misleading. I submit this RfC should be closed as no consensus, given the tactics used here, and that you, sir, be warned and admonished, given said tactics. The insults you cast are another matter altogether. I feel this page should be reviewed by your peers regarding conduct unbecoming an Administrator. Jusdafax 07:51, 13 July 2016 (UTC)
Why is it that you seem to be the only person flogging this horse? If you want to try to desysop me, go for it. In the meantime, stop filibusting here and let the closing admin do his job. All we (and by that, I mean the numerous people who have told you countless times) have ever said is that the "in the news-ness" "requirement" is not affected. The proposal was dead clear about that. You still seem very confused. There are no tactics, no subtefuge, no hidden agenda, nothing. It strike me, given your posturing and anger, that it's you that has some kind of alternative agenda here, rather than the proposal at hand. The Rambling Man (talk) 08:00, 13 July 2016 (UTC)

For clarity, the exact proposal: Question: Should the proposal detailed below be implemented?

Jusdafax 08:10, 13 July 2016 (UTC)
Why are you doing this? Pasting the same stuff here, what, twice now? We are all aware of the proposal. As are the dozens of people who voted in its favour. It strikes me that you're the one becoming disruptive at this point. I would urge you to take a long hard look at yourself right now, this isn't looking good for you at all. The Rambling Man (talk) 08:34, 13 July 2016 (UTC)
@Justdafax: There are currently two criteria specific to recent deaths nominations to ITN, there are also requirements of all nominations to ITN, including RD - principally that the item be in the news and have a Wikipedia article that has been/is being updated. This proposal explicitly seeks to change only the criteria specific to RD nominations, and explicitly does not change any of the other requirements. Every supporter and almost every other opposer of the change has clearly understood the proposal, even though some disagree with it, and I am not sure how "no other changes are proposed" could be made clearer. If you wish to complain about any user's behaviour, please do so at an appropriate venue. Thryduulf (talk) 20:15, 13 July 2016 (UTC)
  • I really do not envy the closing admin. This RFC even in the post-discussion has been a tempest in a teapot.--WaltCip (talk) 11:59, 13 July 2016 (UTC)
    I couldn't agree more. It was about as straightforward as it could be and these attempts to sabotage the closure and the repeated bad faith accusations of hidden agendas, filibusting, repeatedly pasting the original proposal, threats of desysop etc reflect extremely poorly. Remind me, did the trial throw up one single issue with this proposal? The Rambling Man (talk) 12:38, 13 July 2016 (UTC)
I'll answer that softball question: the trial was a smashing success. I also don't envy the closing admin. I think there's nothing else to say and we should all shut up and let this RfC be closed. – Muboshgu (talk) 20:23, 13 July 2016 (UTC)
@MSGJ: are you still intending to close this yourself? Thryduulf (talk) 21:45, 13 July 2016 (UTC)
@MSGJ: may I suggest you start a second "Closure" section to allow yourself some clear space, and encourage others to stop the disruptive and repeated posting of the proposal, which dozens of editors seem commensurate with, with one exception. Having re-read the walls of text here, I get the feeling that the editor in question has missed the lines in the RFC proposal which stated clearly: No other changes to the section at Wikipedia:In the news#Recent deaths section are proposed. These changes do not change the criteria, standards or conventions for blurbs, including blurbs for people who have recently died. If not, then I am now at a complete loss how to handle their behaviour. The Rambling Man (talk) 07:47, 14 July 2016 (UTC)
@Jusdafax: as you've edited for a day or so without responding here, can we assume your queries have now been resolved? You seem to be the only person who wants to continue discussion in this RfC, so it would be helpful for the closing admin (or any willing closer) to know whether or not to expect a bunch more argument here. Thanks. The Rambling Man (talk) 20:05, 14 July 2016 (UTC)

It's now been 5 days since MSGJ indicated he was going to close this, but despite editing elsewhere in the meanwhile and multiple pings they have not actually closed it or sought any further clarification. At what point do we assume that we need to seek someone else? Thryduulf (talk) 23:01, 16 July 2016 (UTC)

@Thryduulf: if you can find someone else willing to wade through these walls of text, please do so. -- (talk) 20:02, 17 July 2016 (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.
Return to the project page "In the news/2016 RD proposal".