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How/where/if to include hull-numberEdit

History
 United States
NameWill Rogers
Hull numberSSBN-659
NamesakeWill Rogers (1879–1935), an American humorist
History
 United Kingdom
NameHood
Pennant number51
NamesakeAdmiral Samuel Hood

There's a dispute at Talk:USS Torsk#Hull Number in Lead Paragraph that seems like it could use some external eyes. DMacks (talk) 13:27, 21 July 2022 (UTC)

This is probably something that should be discussed more broadly than at just one article. Parsecboy (talk) 15:14, 21 July 2022 (UTC)
Are you seeking to include the hull number link to the opening line of other warship articles? And why is it that is must be included on this article? - wolf 17:08, 21 July 2022 (UTC)
If hull/pennant numbers are retained in the lead, then yes, the link should be there too. The vast majority of readers don't know what the little combination of letters and numbers are, and we shouldn't be presenting them without an explanation, or hope that they stumble upon one down in the body. Parsecboy (talk) 17:36, 21 July 2022 (UTC)
It looks kinda clunky. Would you propose the opening sentence of, say... USS Iowa (BB-61) be changed from
"USS Iowa (BB-61) is a..." to
"USS Iowa, hull number BB-61, is a..."?
I'm not sure we need to spoon-feed an explanation to readers immediately like that. Numbers (and letters) are used everywhere, in everyday life, from lisense plates on vehicles to home addresses, complete with postal/zip codes. I believe it more likely that the majority of readers will accept that the little combination of letters and numbers are a means to organize the ships, just as they do on their homes and cars. That seems more likely than readers becoming "shocked, surprised, or confused" as they "struggle" to understand what a hull code is for. If there really is a need to add an explanatory link, why not add it along with the naming of the ship, which is usually in the lead still? eg: "The ship was named for the U.S. state of Iowa, with the hull code BB-61 attached." Or something along those lines? The same could be done for USS Torsk, which currently provides no information regarding the name. - wolf 19:01, 21 July 2022 (UTC)
The point is, we shouldn't be doing things the vast majority of readers won't understand without additional information. It's why we avoid jargon, link terms at first use, introduce individuals at first mention, etc. I'd just as soon ditch them from the lead altogether - no other type of disambiguator is treated this way, so I don't know why the hull number needs to be there either, heresy though this idea may be. Parsecboy (talk) 20:56, 21 July 2022 (UTC)
Yes, we're aware of your disdain for hull codes, and that you'd like to get rid of all of them, especially in titles... except you can't. They are needed for the numerous ships here that share the same name, so at most you can only get rid of some of them, which is why we have this silly mix of ship articles, some with hull codes and some without, that quite frankly looks ridiculous. We should undo that needless bit of guidance and restore the hull codes to all ship article titles, for the sake of consistency, and to help reduce some of "shock, surprise and confusion" some of our readers and editors must experience as they "struggle" to cope with the lack of uniformity, and missing relevant information. (imho) - wolf 21:45, 21 July 2022 (UTC)
Well, yeah, we can; using years to disambiguate would actually be more consistent, and as you are probably aware, there was an RFC at WP:AT to do just that, it ended in a consensus in favor of the proposal, but it sort of just petered out as no one had actually put forward specific wording. Hull and pennant numbers are bits of specialist information and we are supposedly writing articles for a general audience, are we not? Parsecboy (talk) 22:24, 21 July 2022 (UTC)
And it only took minutes to get to years ;-). It would seem that the list-by-year prop flaked out because many writers here can't even agree which year to use. Beyond that, if anything years are the specialist info, for they need to be reasearched, while hull codes are typically plastered on the side of the... well, the hull. - wolf 23:45, 21 July 2022 (UTC)
Right, because it’s the obvious and superior alternative. I’m not sure what discussion you read, but no one in that thread was confused about what year to use. Years are hardly more specialist; one can tell which HMS Ark Royal saw action in World War II much more readily with a year than a pennant number. We’ve been through this all before, there is little need to rehash it now. Parsecboy (talk) 00:50, 22 July 2022 (UTC)
For what it's worth, I've always found the use of pennant numbers for disambiguating RN ships a bizarre choice, as they have not always been painted on the ships so they provide no information to a casual (or even realtively knowledgable) reader as to which ship it refers to. They're not incremented consistently like US hull numbers either. It's a perfect example of arcane knowledge, and I'm sure that must fall foul of disambiguation rules... Martocticvs (talk) 09:31, 22 July 2022 (UTC)
Indeed, and there are of course examples of the same pennant numbers that have been reused for ships with the same name (the RFA Sir Galahads come to mind), requiring year disambiguation. Parsecboy (talk) 11:41, 22 July 2022 (UTC)
Right now, Wikipedia:WikiProject Ships/Guidelines § Introductory sentence seems to say that hull numbers for US military ships are included with the ship name in the article's opening sentence. If that is offensive and a wikilink to hull number preceding the ship's hull number is offensive, then perhaps a pair of new parameters in {{infobox ship career}} are in order. Perhaps: |Ship hull num= and |Ship pennant num= (only one allowed) the infobox could then render an appropriate heading that links to either hull number or Pennant number according to the parameter chosen; error message if both are provided. If this is adopted, the guidline would, of course need modification.
Trappist the monk (talk) 19:28, 21 July 2022 (UTC)
Yep, that could work. Cheers - wolf 20:06, 21 July 2022 (UTC)
I suggested putting it down in the infobox as a compromise or solution way earlier in the discussion. But that was simply ignored. GansMans (talk) 18:44, 22 July 2022 (UTC)
Go to the article in question and tell me what you see directly under the photo. Parsecboy (talk) 20:59, 22 July 2022 (UTC)=

I see the hull number. What's your point? That's not what was suggested above and not what I suggested 4 days ago. Actually, what is suggested above is kind of what I had in mind, but I never had the opportunity to elaborate on it because you weren't ever considering compromise. GansMans (talk) 21:15, 22 July 2022 (UTC)

Broader issueEdit

Wikipedia:WikiProject_Ships/Guidelines needs to be brought into compliance with MOS:FIRST, specifically the line "Similarly, if the title has a parenthetical disambiguator, such as Egg (food), "(food)" should be omitted in the text." This is based on the following points:

  1. Hull numbers are not part of a ship's name. Treating them the way we do contributes to the false idea that they are. We should not continue practices we know contribute to misinformation (harmless though this specific situation may be).
  2. The entire purpose of hull numbers is to differentiate from other ships of the same name (both from our perspective and the issuing navy's). They are therefore no different from any other disambiguator used on Wikipedia, and they should not be treated differently.
  3. Hull numbers are no different than pennant numbers, which the guidelines already advise against including in the first sentence. There's no reason to exclude one and not the other.
  4. Hull/pennant numbers are specialized bits of information the vast majority of readers will not understand and they will either ignore it (bringing into question why we're presenting it in the first place) or be confused about what it means (and my solution at USS Torsk is objectionable for reasons that have thus far failed to materialize).

As a result, I propose that the guidelines be amended to remove "U.S. hull numbers should be retained in bold and instead simply state "For example, HMS Ark Royal, USS Enterprise. This would bring the project into compliance with the broader consensus at MOS:FIRST and ensure we are presenting articles in a consistent way.

Whatever we decide to do with infoboxes as proposed by Trappist above is a separate matter and doesn't directly address the core of the issue at hand. Nothing here should be construed as an endorsement or rejection of the infobox changes, as that should be discussed separately. Parsecboy (talk) 19:45, 23 July 2022 (UTC)

Support - this regularly comes up. This also would help with those ships that carried multiple pennant numbers. Only one is listed in the title of the article and the rest of them are jumbled together following the name. ex: USS Enterprise (CVN-65) where the pennant number CVN-65 is given, but the previously used CVA(N)-65 is also placed in bold. Nothing is explained and only the 65 is painted on the hull, not the CVA or CVA(N). If things painted on hulls would help people understand ships, then every cargo ship would have their homeport/registration number in the lead. Llammakey (talk) 11:33, 25 July 2022 (UTC)
Oppose - What we're forgetting here is that hull numbers have been treated differently from other disambiguators for a reason. That reason is because hull numbers are not just Wikipedia disambiguators. They have a real life purpose outside of Wikipedia. No wonder they're being treated differently. It's because they are different.
I also think you're over grossly overstating just how "specialized" hull numbers are to the casual reader. As someone stated before, this isn't the only place on earth were a serial number or code is placed after an object. Regular readers probably understand that the bolded numbers and letters attached to the ships name are some sort of accessory to the ships name. That's all that matters. They don't need to know exactly what the letters stand for or what the numbers are. They just need to understand what a hull number is, not what it exactly means. I think you're using "what it means/what it is" interchangeably, and that's why you're saying it's specialized info too complicated for the casual reader. GansMans (talk) 15:11, 25 July 2022 (UTC)
Asserting something is different without actually explaining how it’s different is a logical fallacy called special pleading. Hull numbers are not at all different than any other method of disambiguation, mainly because they serve no other purpose. In other words, why do you think the USN adopted them in the first place? They are intended purely to distinguish one vessel from another. What other “real life” purpose do you think they serve? Parsecboy (talk) 15:43, 25 July 2022 (UTC)
I just explained how. Because it has real world purpose. I'm not quite sure how you missed that...I'm not getting into a pointless argument again just because you don't agree. It's my two cents. Take it or leave it. GansMans (talk) 16:26, 25 July 2022 (UTC)
Hey, GansMans. I'm sorry but I'm not sure I understand the real-world purpose you're positing here. Can you explain that more in depth? How often does a typical person use a serial number? Ed [talk] [majestic titan] 16:35, 25 July 2022 (UTC)
No, you didn’t, GansMans; you said there’s a real world purpose but did not elaborate further. What real world purpose do hull numbers serve? Vaguely asserting that something exists is not proof that it does. Parsecboy (talk) 16:54, 25 July 2022 (UTC)
The ed17. Hull numbers weren't made up by Wikipedia users to disambiguate. They were used for a real purpose in real life so the Navy could. Hull numbers have been treated differently here on Wikipedia because they aren't for Wikipedia, so I don't see why they should be treated the same as made up disambiguators that were invented by Wikipedia users to ease navigation. Just because we use them as disambiguators on Wikipedia does not mean we forget that they are used in the real world. If they're used in the real world, it makes sense we continue to use it here. I'm simply saying that people aren't idiots and we shouldn't assume Wikipedia readers are idiots either. People can recognize a series of characters when they see them and understand they have a purpose. I doubt anybody is looking at a hull number and racing though countless possibilities as to what they could possibly mean. Same with an address or zip code or a license plate, people understand a combination of digits and letters serve as an identifier or label. Again, I think we're all grossly overstating how complicated 4 characters can be. I don't think anyone is that confused when they read the ships name and its number. They assume the two go together and that a hull number goes with the name. After all, they do go together. GansMans (talk) 18:49, 25 July 2022 (UTC)
@GansMans: I'm sorry, but I'm still not understanding your core point. No one is disputing that some navies use hull numbers. What is being questioned is if there is a need to include them in the opening sentence of a written piece intended for general readers. What do you believe we lose by dropping them from that prominent position? Ed [talk] [majestic titan] 19:03, 25 July 2022 (UTC)
The ed17 The more important question is what are we gaining if we take them away? Less confusion, less complication? I'm arguing it's not that complicated to begin with. We are the ones making this complicated. Specialized info? How complicated can 4 letters and numbers get? Like I said, people aren't confused when they see other sets of numbers and letters, why are we assuming causal readers are having their mind boggled by hull numbers? GansMans (talk) 20:06, 25 July 2022 (UTC)
GansMan, so your argument is that because the USN came up with hull numbers to disambiguate their ships, they are somehow different from Wikipedia’s methods to disambiguate ships that lack hull numbers? Parsecboy (talk) 19:15, 25 July 2022 (UTC)
  • Support as Wikipedia is for general readers, not naval purists. Hull numbers are not necessary on Wikipedia; plenty of navies get by just fine without them. Most people visit Wikipedia for only a few seconds to get an answer to a question, so let's reduce unnecessary confusion and complexity in lead sentences. Ed [talk] [majestic titan] 16:35, 25 July 2022 (UTC)
The ed17 Another thing we have to ask is are we overhauling this because it actually needs changing? Or just for the sake of change? If there's nothing fundamentally wrong with the way we've been presenting hull numbers all this time (if there was something fundamentally flawed with it, then this would've changed years ago when this discussion popped up for the first time), then should we even change it? GansMans (talk) 22:39, 25 July 2022 (UTC)
  • Oppose - Per MOS:BOLDREDIRECT: "After following a redirect: Terms which redirect to an article or section are commonly bolded when they appear in the first couple of paragraphs of the lead section, or at the beginning of another section...". In almost all case, the hull numbers are unique to each ship, and redirect to the article, so they have to be bolded somewhere within the lead anyway, and doing so immediately after the name is the most obvious place to do that. Also, hull numbers are nearly ubiquitous in most USN online documents, and in almost any publication mentioning the ships, even non-specialist works. The useage is so common that is treated as part of the name in most publications, even though it isn't the official name. If we're going to be consistent, we'll also need to remove "HMS" and all other ship prefixes from article titles too when they're not necessary for disambiguation, as they aren't part of the official names either. BilCat (talk) 21:04, 25 July 2022 (UTC)
You are misreading the MoS; every redirect isn’t required to be bolded in the intro. If it did, articles would have dozens of bolded text in the opening paragraph. See the guideline it points to, WP:R#PLA, which explains the principle in greater detail. An example of a redirect that should be bolded in the intro is a person’s alias; this is not what we’re talking about (an apples to apples comparison would be for ships that were actually renamed – the new name should be in bold as per the MoS you cite). And the line you bring up is irrelevant in any case, given the fact that the MoS specifically states that disambiguators should not be bolded in the text. Parsecboy (talk) 21:47, 25 July 2022 (UTC)
Obviously I disagree with your interpretation, as hull numbers are not disambiguators, but simply being used that way. It's a fine difference, but significant. Seeing as this is is MOS issue, with it should be discussed on a MOS talk page, as project consensus cannot override Wiki guidelines. BilCat (talk) 22:01, 25 July 2022 (UTC)
What are hull numbers if not disambiguators? Why did the USN adopt them if not as a means to differentiate between vessels of the same name? And how is that at all different from how we use them here? But as to the MoS, you are more than welcome to open a thread there to see if your understanding of the section you cite is correct or not. But this proposal, to amend this project’s internal guidelines, is well within the scope of this project and requires no larger audience. Parsecboy (talk) 23:44, 25 July 2022 (UTC)
  • Question are we getting Pennant numbers and Yard numbers confused here? Yard numbers are not used as disambiguators. Mjroots (talk) 12:14, 26 July 2022 (UTC)
    • No, we're talking about USN hull numbers (which for some reason, the SHIPS guideline treats differently than pennant numbers, which is what I'm trying to have corrected). Parsecboy (talk) 12:24, 26 July 2022 (UTC)
  • The issue is that USN hull numbers are not really treated the same as Pennant numbers, but are often used as alternative names - sources will say things like "RAST was tested aboard FFG 8 in 1981..." (a quote from Conway's), and will refer to classes by the lead ship's hull number (e.g. FFG 7 class). While it isn't part of the name of the ship (except where it is - i.e. for things like LSTs), it is a pretty regularly used alternative to the name and as such probably warrants appearing somewhere prominantly in the lead - so Oppose as written , although the hull number should probably be separated more clearly from the actual name to avoid giving the impression that it is part of a single name.Nigel Ish (talk) 19:44, 26 July 2022 (UTC)
    • To be clear, the proposal as written is to stop writing articles with the format USS Foo (XX-123), which it doesn't sound like you're opposed to doing. I have no objection to including them in the lead (which I had done at USS Torsk, and was what started this whole kerfuffle in the first place). Parsecboy (talk) 20:04, 26 July 2022 (UTC)
  • Oppose - this is a solution in search of a problem. I see terms like "specialist knowledge" being bandied about, along with links such as WP:PLA, attempting to indicate that readers are somehow "shocked, surprised, or confused" as they "struggle" to understand what hull numbers are, or that hull numbers somehow add "unnecessary confusion and complexity" to articles. Yet, in all the ship articles that I've watched and edited over the years, mostly USN, I don't recall seeing scores of readers popping up on talk pages asking for hull numbers to be explained. (This would include the many, many GA and FA ship articles that have hull numbers included.) I have, however, taken notice of the small group of editors that have tried to do away of hull numbers, simply because they don't like them. There's no great mystery here, hull numbers, at least for the US Navy, are simply part of their ship nomenclature. They are part of the ship's name, which is why they are almost universally included in articles we use as references, the very sourcing we rely on. Time to move along folks, there's nothing to see here. (imho) - wolf 20:44, 26 July 2022 (UTC)
Did you want to address the first three points (i.e., the main ones) with more than a dismissive hand wave? It’s no secret that a small group of editors like hull numbers, but that is no more reason to keep them than your dubious assertion of an anti-hull number cabal is to get rid of them. You know, I had thought you would take this proposal seriously. Parsecboy (talk) 21:29, 26 July 2022 (UTC)
Well, I disagree with the first point, I believe hull numbers are part of the ship's name, along with the prefix (please don't tell me you wanna get rid of those as well). That basically negate's the second point; they are not Wikipedia disambiguators and therefore should not be treated as such. The bungling attempt to do so a few years led to some USN ship pages with hull numbers and some without, and the on-going confusion and disruption that followed as a result. There is, to some degree at least, a difference between hull numbers and pennant numbers, which is why I've only addressed hull numbers (USN hull numbers to be specific). You and Ed keep asking why do we need these numbers included in article titles and lead sentences, and to that I ask; why this desperate push to remove them en-masse, when they're already there, have been since the beginning, and there is only the likely potential for more confusion and disruption and no appreciable benefit?
I do take this seriously... I think think this is a serious mistake. - wolf 23:21, 27 July 2022 (UTC)
Well, frankly, you're wrong. They're not part of a ship's name, plain and simple (if you're curious, you might wonder why a USN style guide advises writers "For first reference always include USS, the ship's name and the hull number", why NHHC explains that ships are "identified by their name (if any) and hull number" [and also makes clear that the USS prefix is not part of the name, another point you're mistaken about] why the NVR differentiates between hull IDs and ship names, the USCG does the same, as does this Navy report for Congress). That fact that we treat them as names contributes to the misapprehension (which has claimed you as a victim, apparently) that they are part of the name. This is the fundamental problem with how we treat hull numbers on Wikipedia. We should not be spreading misinformation. Parsecboy (talk) 23:49, 27 July 2022 (UTC)
Oy. Is your intention to pounce on every. single. comment. that doesn't completely support your position? Your persistent badgering and bludgeoning are passing the point of collegial discourse in this thread and turning it into a battleground. You've made your case, and supported it with numerous responses, so why not just allow people to !vote how they see fit? I actually have respect for the work you had put into this project, but I just don't understand why you have this... desperate need to remove hull codes, nor the confrontational attitude you've adopted in your ongoing attempts to do so. That said, I really don't care to keep going round and round with you here on this. Have a nice day. - wolf 03:24, 29 July 2022 (UTC)
The point of a discussion like this is to discuss the issue at hand so we can arrive at a consensus. And in your specific case, if someone is operating under a plainly incorrect assumption, do you not think it wise to educate them? They might reconsider their position (well, one would hope; instead, we’ve completely ignored that in favor of ridiculous strawmen about my “desperate needs”. So much for good faith) Parsecboy (talk) 10:04, 29 July 2022 (UTC)
  • Support re. Pennant Numbers, Soft-Oppose re. US Hull numbers. Pennant numbers make for poor disambiguators IMO, as they are neither unique or chronologically sequential. They are unique only for ships currently in service, as their function is as operational shorthand identifiers. Especially for capital ships, where there is no flag superior, they are confusing. For all of these reasons, I have always felt that pennant numbers were a poor choice for disambiguators, and and were most likely used for some apparent consistency with US ship. US Hull numbers are different, however - as far as I am aware they ARE unique, and they do seem to have more widespread use amongst the public. To me, US Hull numbers do seem to be valid disambiguators so I don't see much need to stop using them in that way. That said, using the launch year is never going to be wrong. Martocticvs (talk) 08:44, 27 July 2022 (UTC)
This proposal isn’t about disambiguators for article titles, but whether they should be included in the bold text in the first sentence of the article. For some reason, our guideline says we should treat pennant and hull numbers differently Parsecboy (talk) 09:15, 27 July 2022 (UTC)
Right, sorry. Although I think my comments above can be applied to that as well. Martocticvs (talk) 10:01, 27 July 2022 (UTC)
No worries - can you explain why pennant numbers should be treated as the MoS suggests but hull numbers shouldn’t? It seems to me that we should be consistent with how he handle disambiguators. Parsecboy (talk) 10:12, 27 July 2022 (UTC)
My knowledge of US ships is limited so I don't really have a strong opinion on it. But the way I look at it is that in the example Egg (food), 'food' is not an intrinsic property of Egg. Sure, it often is used as food, (in most cases) usually has the potential to be food, but it's not an actual property of an egg. BB-61 on the other hand IS an intrinsic property of USS Iowa - at least to the same extent that the name itself is. Together with widespread public use, that is why I view it as OK both for disambig. and to appear in article leads if authors wish. I don't think it should be bolded, however, as it is not part of the ship's name. You can say the same things about Pennant numbers as used in the RN et al, but as I've already said they are somewhat more ephemeral, and are definitely not widely used by the public. I do agree that we should be consistent. Martocticvs (talk) 22:25, 27 July 2022 (UTC)
I think we are generally in agreement, and that you don't actually object to this proposal, which is limited to stopping the practice of placing hull numbers in bold text in the lead. There's nothing wrong with including them (preferably with a link to hull number as I did at USS Torsk, or pennant numbers are frequently treated as at HMS Hood). The one thing I'd add about the seemingly more durable nature of hull numbers is that many ships change them over the course of their careers, particularly in earlier decades before the United States Navy 1975 ship reclassification program, which more or less solidified the nomenclature. Parsecboy (talk) 22:53, 27 July 2022 (UTC)
  • Comment - USS Indiana (BB-1) is a good example of why our current practices are broken. The ship never wore the hull number and Indiana (and in reality, by that time, Coast Battleship Number 1) was at the bottom of the Chesapeake when the USN's hull number system was instituted, and yet we've got it in the article title and bolded in the intro. We are actively propagating the false idea that there ever was a "USS Indiana" with BB-1 painted on the side. There are many ships that fall into this category; USS Tennessee (ACR-10) never wore that hull number, let alone while under the name Tennessee. Why are we perpetuating bad information, in bold text, in the lead of our articles? Parsecboy (talk) 12:20, 27 July 2022 (UTC)
This I can definitely see being perceived as an issue, and it is technically incorrect. But I will point out that other databases and archives use those unofficial hull numbers for disambiguation so they still have some sort of organization. So this isn't unique to Wikipedia. GansMans (talk) 14:49, 27 July 2022 (UTC)
Here's another example: USS Arkansas (BM-7); there never was a "USS Arkansas BM-7"; there was a "USS Arkansas M-7" and a "USS Ozark (BM-7)". As to other sources, how many of those are reflections on our practices, which have been going on for 15+ years? Webber's Monitors of the US Navy correctly reflects that BM-7 was attached to Ozark, not Arkansas. Webber, published in 1969, got it right, but Osprey titles (published in 2019 and 2021, respectively) appear to be parroting Wikipedia. Citogenesis related to Wikipedia is a well-known phenomenon, and we should use caution when determining whether something is commonly done outside of Wikipedia, because it may well be influenced by Wikipedia. Parsecboy (talk) 15:57, 27 July 2022 (UTC)

Support I see no reason to bold hull numbers in conjunction with the ship's name in the lede. They're not part of the ship's name and refer to the ship's role or classification, with the number being its place in the roster of ships with that classification. I can accept the hull number being given somewhere in the lede, but, offhand, I'm at a bit of a loss of how to phrase that gracefully. In the USS Missouri (BB-63) article that I'm working on, I moved that to the construction para as that's when the hull number is allocated. The reason that you run across references to ships solely by their hull number is that doing so is often easier that writing out the ship's full name.--Sturmvogel 66 (talk) 13:51, 7 August 2022 (UTC)

Why bother...?Edit

@Parsecboy: that is the question, one of many. Why bother with this discussion? Why ask all these people for their responses if they never mattered to you in the first place? This discussion is still active, yet you are now on an editing spree, changing numerous ship pages: (BB-1), (BB-2), (BM-6),(BM-9), (CL-105), (CL-104), (CL-103), (CL-102), (CL-101), (CL-90), CL-89), (CL-87), (CL-86), (CL-50), (CL-49), (CL-45). In edit summaries and tp comments, you've repeatedly stated that the "local consensus..." (here on wt:ships) "has no bearing" (on your interpretation of) "the MoS", and then just "MOS:FIRST" repeatedly.

I don't see how mos:first supports these mass-changes of content, of long-standing, consensus-supported content on FA & GA pages, and apparently I'm not the only one. I reverted two of those edits (BB-1 & BB-2), as this discussion was still active, (and per WP:BRD & WP:QUO) and your response to revert them again, and then come to my talk page, accuse me of "HOUNDING" and threaten me. Then on your tp you again insist that you are right, and I (along with everyone else who doesn't agree with you) is wrong. Again, there is an active discussion here, the first of your edits were reverted, your position on this has been challenged, if this wikiproject means nothing, then take it up on the MOS talk page. You need to stop mass-changing and disrupting these articles, and subverting the rules, just to suit your own purposes. That's not how things here work, I would think that an admin with your experience would know that. - wolf 13:09, 30 July 2022 (UTC)

The discussion is happening because the guideline here should be corrected. But the fact that it is currently wrong doesn't preclude me from editing articles to bring them into compliance with the MoS. As I already told you, Wikiprojects don't control articles, and any editing guidelines they might put together are in no way binding. There's nothing for me to discuss at the MoS, since I don't have a problem with it as written. If you want the hull numbers to remain in bold in the intro, you can go to the MoS and get it amended. It really is that simple.
I've already made clear how MOS:FIRST supports what I've been doing. But since you have apparently missed it previously, see this line:
"Similarly, if the title has a parenthetical disambiguator, such as Egg (food), "(food)" should be omitted in the text"
Hopefully that clears things up for you.
Consider this your last warning. If you don't stop hounding my edits, we're headed to ANI. Parsecboy (talk) 13:20, 30 July 2022 (UTC)
Erm... another threat? And what is the ANI gonna be about? How I "hounded" you yesterday, with a whopping total of two reverts, to two separate articles, both on my watchlist, and haven't made a single edit to your contribs since? (That is, since your last threat.) Imo, this type of behaviour, from an admin no less, is designed to have a chilling effect on the DR process. Just as you suddenly claiming "local consensus from wikiprojects has no bearing", setting up a pivot to an MOS tp. That's just not cricket.
As for the MOS, what's "clear" is that you believe it supports your position, but that doesn't mean it does. That's why, when your edits are challenged, you need to stop making them and start discussing, as opposed to edit-warring, posting threats, and other generally hostile behaviour (like wasting people's time, ignoring other editor's postions, and posting these dismissive, condescending comments, while claiming you don't think you're superior to anyone else here). What's more, while editor's generally can make changes to content, when the subject of that content is currently being disputed and discussed, then you need to stop editing, join the discussion (if you like), and/or await a consensus. What you don't do is make a series of edits in a despertate race change numerous articles to your preferred version, disrupting them in process. I again suggest you self-revert all those pages back to QUO, and await the outcome of this discussion, that you started, and that directly addresses this dispute. - wolf 01:18, 31 July 2022 (UTC)
It’s only a threat if you can’t find it within your control to stop stalking my edits. Otherwise, it wouldn’t be a problem, now would it?
No, the language at the MoS is abundantly clear. Do we include disambiguators in the first sentence? No. Plain and simple. You say my interpretation has been challenged, but what’s stopping you from providing an alternate interpretation?
What this boils down to is your mistaken belief that hull numbers aren't disambiguators, but rather part of the ship’s name. Trouble is, your assertion is patently false, but you still have refused to even acknowledge that I pointed this out, let alone try to argue your point. Instead, you filibuster here. Why is that? Parsecboy (talk) 01:41, 31 July 2022 (UTC)
"It’s only a threat if you can’t find it within your control to stop stalking my edits." - it's only "hounding" and "stalking" and if you can provide the evidence to support it. I've lost count of the number of times you've now posted this same, empty accusation, which is an WP:NPA vio. Maybe you should take your hounding accusation to ANI afterall, (put up or shut up, as they say). - wolf 02:13, 3 August 2022 (UTC)
"No, the language at the MoS is abundantly clear. Do we include disambiguators in the first sentence? No." - but they are not disambiguators we've added, they already come attached. They are nomenclature included with the ship's name by the Navy, and then again by virtually every source we use. You continue to filibuster over semantics, using the phrase "part of the ship's name" as literally and as limiting as possible, ignoring any explanation and reasoning provided, to drag this on as long as possible. Why? Because your proposal, the one you posted here in the first place, did not get the consensus you wanted, and now before the discussion is even closed, you keep going on these mass-editing binges to change the content being discussed anyway. You need to stop your tendentious editing and follow the process. - wolf 02:13, 3 August 2022 (UTC)

(arbitrary break #1)Edit

And now User:GansMans has decided to mass edit his preference into articles, arguing that no-one is allowed to change the article as long as there is an ongoing discussion. This is not acceptable behaviour and probably needs to go to ANI. .Nigel Ish (talk) 15:17, 31 July 2022 (UTC)
Nigel Ish: I'm sorry, but why is User:ParsecBoy allowed to mass edit war but I get in trouble for cleaning it up? He's been told twice now by User:Thewolfchild to stop his edits. GansMans (talk) 15:33, 31 July 2022 (UTC)
I would be interested in pursuing this discussion, but it has become abundantly clear that the two of you are only interested in stonewalling. Engage in good faith or stop wasting our time. Parsecboy (talk) 16:06, 31 July 2022 (UTC)
Interesting that when you revert peoples edits, it's not you stonewalling, it's us "acting in bad faith." But when we are reverting yours, we are the ones stonewalling. If this goes to ANI, it's not the slam dunk you think it is. You are not coming across as the good guy here. You will not be unscathed if administrators determine that action is needed. That is not a threat, it's simply pointing out that your behavior here over the last 2 weeks has been questionable and some of it has been worthy of reprimand. GansMans (talk) 16:21, 31 July 2022 (UTC)
Let me be abundantly clear. I have attempted to debate the merits of this issue with you and TWC; both of you have repeatedly refused to actually engage on the points. Instead, you have made nonsensical and patently false arguments, and have stood content to stonewall when challenged on them. You are the individuals here who are not discussing the issue in good faith. Parsecboy (talk) 18:31, 31 July 2022 (UTC)
How you be acting in good faith while simultaneously threatening, insulting, and refusing to cooperate with your fellow editors? How can we be acting in bad faith trying to find compromise? You won't budge an inch, let alone meet us halfway. GansMans (talk) 22:42, 31 July 2022 (UTC)
Where have I insulted anyone? If you feel insulted by my description of your behavior, maybe you should do some honest self reflection and think if the reason you feel insulted is because you know it’s true. Show me literally one diff where you actually responded to one of my points, rather than move the goalposts, make spurious claims, or pretend I haven’t said something I clearly said, and I’ll retract what I’ve said.
There is no room for compromise here; you want the hull numbers bolded in the intro, I don’t. One of us has the MoS to support our position, one of us doesn’t. What’s your proposed compromise, we bold the letters but not the numbers? Where exactly do I meet you halfway? This is a binary, it’s yes or no. Parsecboy (talk) 23:13, 31 July 2022 (UTC)
GansMans  - did you want to respond to my question here? What compromise do you see possible in this situation? And do you see how your continued refusal to actually engage on the points I raise and instead focus on how "insulting" I've been (while directly insulting me, I might add - I haven't called anyone a prick) only confirms to me that you aren't discussing this issue in good faith? Because if you were, you would actually respond to my questions? Parsecboy (talk) 12:00, 2 August 2022 (UTC)
I refuse to engage in a discussion until you apologize for the way you've treated me over the last 2 1/2 weeks. You've been disrespectful to so many editors that you being told you were acting like a prick is the least insulting thing anyones said has said. If you can't handle being told you're being rude and disrespectful, that's on you. GansMans (talk) 16:17, 2 August 2022 (UTC)
I guess I'll have to assume you've conceded the point, then, as I will not apologize for calling out your bad behavior over the course of this discussion. I do not have to tolerate your repeated lies about what I've said, your logical fallacies, and refusal to get the point. And no, you didn't say I was "acting like a prick", you said I was "being an overall prick"; try to soften your insults all you like, but our "semi-private" discussion is open for all to see. Parsecboy (talk) 16:25, 2 August 2022 (UTC)
Then you have no self respect. Anyone with any would admit to their wrongdoings and apologize. But apparently that's too hard for you. I'll start. I'm sorry I said you were being a prick. I was pointing out you were being disrespectful and then crossed the line myself. It was too brash and straight forward. And for that I apologize. Now it's your turn.
I haven't conceded. I'm simply waiting for the apology I deserve.GansMans (talk) 16:47, 2 August 2022 (UTC)
How's about you apologize for repeatedly lying about what I've said and refusing to admit your false statements and tendentious debate tactics, and then I'll apologize for calling out your bad behavior? The fact that you can say "Anyone with [self respect] any would admit to their wrongdoings"], and yet you still refuse to engage with this comment from 2 weeks ago. Let me be blunt: either admit that you were engaging in tendentious debate tactics or explain how you somehow weren't (in a way that is satisfactory to me - simply saying you didn't won't cut it) and I will be more than happy to bury the hatchet. But until you can admit how your bad behavior caused this entire problem, we don't have much to talk about. Parsecboy (talk) 17:02, 2 August 2022 (UTC)
Shame. Even when provided an opportunity to right your wrongs you still choose to sour the water...and you refuse to admit you had a hand in escalating the entire predicament. GansMans (talk) 20:15, 2 August 2022 (UTC)
I have repeatedly said I've lost my patience with you during this discussion. Have I gotten exasperated with you? Sure. But I have not insulted you or belittled you (even when you've done the same to me). Do you not see how your repeated refusal to even address your behavior in infuriating? I made a simple request, now at least three times, that you explain why you've moved the goalposts when I've demonstrated that you were incorrect, and you can't bring yourself to do it. Why is that?
If you are doubting my sincerity in this discussion, I once had an editor of this project more or less directly accuse me of abusing my children during a rather heated discussion about that person's interactions with a third editor (who has since been banned on an unrelated issue), and while they and I avoided each other for some time, we are (as far as I'm aware) perfectly fine mow. I won't say more than that as I'm not particularly interested in dredging up something that happened several years ago and is water under the bridge at this point. I see no reason why you and I can't also bury the hatchet. Believe it or not, there was a time when TWC and I got along, but then he resumed his old patterns (a comment he referenced at Torsk, but you wouldn't have caught the point of that comment). Again, if you think TWC's characterization of me is a good one, you might want to consider the possibility that he's an unreliable narrator. Parsecboy (talk) 21:49, 2 August 2022 (UTC)

(arbitrary break #2)Edit

The first problem is your reading of MOS: "Similarly, if the title has a parenthetical disambiguator, such as Egg (food), "(food)" should be omitted in the text"... these are not WP dabs, created and added by WP editors to disambiguate same-named items, but merely part of the ships name that the Navy has added as part of their nomenclature to organize the ships. And it doesn't matter if it was on the side of the hull or not. As far as the Navy is concerned, it's part of the name. Now on that point, let's clear up some phrasing here; "part of the name", "attached to the name", etc., - I'm using them synonymously, you are using them disruptively. There is the ship's given name, "Foo", but also the prefix, "USS" and hull number, "ABC-1", which combined altogether make the full name; "USS Foo (ABC-1)". Numerous sources report ship names this way, the very sources we rely on. This is not "specialist knowldge", it's everyday info that everyday readers, of either the attached sources or our ship articles (or both), look for and understand. I said before, your argument is not as solid as you seem to believe. Certainly not enough to change the long-established, consensus-supported content that you are seeking to omit or drastically alter, in dozens if not hundreds of articles. And that still doesn't take your behaviour into account; the mass-changes your're cramming through (during a debate), the battle-ground attitude, the edit warring, the threats and bogus accusations, and so on, and so forth. This is disputed content, including at (DD-5), (DD-1), (DD-2), (DD-3), (DD-4), (DD-10), (DD-11), (DD-12), (DD-13), yet you keep changing these articles to suit your preferences, without regard for the relevant polices and guidelines, or essays you've cited, or even the whole dispute resolution process. It applies to you, just like everyone else. - wolf 03:43, 2 August 2022 (UTC)

Provide literally a single .mil source that supports the idea that hull numbers are part of a ship’s name. I provided you several that say otherwise above, which you conveniently ignored. We can address the other points you made after you provide a source to support your assertion, but I can assure you, they are equally baseless. But first things first, a source please. Parsecboy (talk) 08:33, 2 August 2022 (UTC)
Just go to https://www.navy.mil/, there are two ships currently highlighted on the main page that both include the prefix "USS" (you're not looking to get rid of that as well, are ya?) and both include the hull numbers. Same goes for just about any ship you care to search out via that page. They all appear to include hull numbers, just like most of the secondary sourcing we use. - wolf 02:13, 3 August 2022 (UTC)
Is that supposed to be a joke? No one is disputing that hull numbers exist. You need to provide a source that explicitly states they are part of the ship’s name, not purely disambiguatory information appended to the name. Otherwise your position here is completely baseless. Parsecboy (talk) 08:53, 3 August 2022 (UTC)
"Is that supposed to be a joke?" - you've been treating this whole process as a joke. I really don't even know why we're here, since you're just making the changes you want anyway. You just seem to like arguing, making shit up as you go, one strawman after another. This is fast becoming pointless... - wolf 13:22, 4 August 2022 (UTC)
Thewolfchild  - still waiting on that source, friend. While we're waiting, let's address the red herring about hull numbers being special and different because Wikipedia didn't come up with them. Firstly, the argument amounts to special pleading: "these aren't disambiguators, they're different. Somehow. Because we didn't invent them." We don't care who invented the disambiguator, the fundamental point is that hull numbers are disambiguators. MOS:FIRST makes no exceptions for "special" disambiguators. We don't include them in bold text in the lead, full stop. And this argument ignores the fact that the Navy adopted hull numbers to disambiguate their ships.
Second, what makes you think hull numbers are unique in this regard? Do you believe that the Wiki sages of old invented the concept of using the year of launch to disambiguate ships? They didn't. Do me a favor and flip to the end of any edition of Conway's All the World's Fighting Ships and tell me how they decided to differentiate ships of the same name in the index. I'll give you an example, from the 1922-1945 edition: USS Ranger (CV-4) is listed as "Ranger (USA/1934)". Clearly, using the year of launch as a disambiguator did not originate on this project. Parsecboy (talk) 09:56, 4 August 2022 (UTC)
"still waiting on that source, friend." - Erm, I didn't edit at all yesterday, "friend". I am not at your beck and call.
"let's address the red herring about hull numbers being special and different..." - nice strawman. I've never once claimed they are "special and different". Quite the opposite actually, hull numbers are a routine part of the naming used on numerous ship articles, many of them FA & GA, and going back years (some as old as the project itself), utilized by countless editors.
"fundamental point is that hull numbers are disambiguators." - a point of view that you keep hanging your hat on. Just how do you propose we disambiguate ships of the same name?
"Second, what makes you think hull numbers are unique in this regard?" - quote please, or redact, admit you lied, apologize and move on.
"Do you believe that the Wiki sages of old invented the concept of using the year of launch to disambiguate ships?" - um... what are you on about now?
"Do me a favor and flip to the end of any edition of Conway's All the World's Fighting Ships and tell me how they decided to differentiate ships of the same name in the index. I'll give you an example, from the 1922-1945 edition: USS Ranger (CV-4) is listed as "Ranger (USA/1934)"." - ah, so years then. You wanna change everything to years? Perhaps for some navies, but the USN attaches hull numbers to virtually all the names of their ships. This means we don't need to make mass changes, and add special disambiguators, such as years, to organize USN ships. This basically counters every argunent you've made. And this whole exercise has been a giant waste of time. - wolf 13:22, 4 August 2022 (UTC)
  1. Didn't say you were, but you did respond here without providing a source.
  2. "they are not disambiguators we've added, they already come attached" - you are asserting that they are special disambiguators, because reasons. So no, I will not be striking or redacting anything, because I haven't lied. You just don't like the fundamental logic (or lack thereof) of your argument pointed out.
  3. You've missed the point entirely. I don't myself care what we use to disambiguate articles. If you look at the big RfC I've cited previously, I didn't actually comment in it. Hull numbers are perfectly fine to use as disambiguators. The issue at hand is how we treat hull numbers (or any other disambiguator) in the text.
  4. See the diff cited in #2. You are asserting that hull numbers are special because the USN invented them, not Wikipedia. And also these are not WP dabs, created and added by WP editors to disambiguate same-named items. If you're going to make an argument, stand by it, don't pretend you didn't That's tendentious!
  5. See above. You seem to think that only dabs invented by Wikipedia need to follow MOS:FIRST
  6. Not at all. What was that about strawmen you were complaining about earlier? Parsecboy (talk) 14:05, 4 August 2022 (UTC)
  • Can someone just hat this subsection as it really isn't helping to resolve the issue. If editors want to accuse each other of bad faith then please do it at ANI where someone may be able to take appropriate action to solve any behavioral problems.Nigel Ish (talk) , 2 August 2022 (UTC)
Taking in both the direction that this thread is going, and the continued article changes being made without consensus (even Sturmvogel 66 is now removing hull numbers: (BB-63)), I have requested a close. - wolf 13:22, 4 August 2022 (UTC)
Another thing worth pointing out: MOS:FIRST already has consensus; nothing we decide here locally overrides it. The point of this proposal from the start was to bring our guidelines into compliance with the MoS. Parsecboy (talk) 15:05, 4 August 2022 (UTC)
"I don't myself care what we use to disambiguate articles." - blah-ha...ok. It's quite clear just how much you "don't care", from the giant walls of text and the persistent, circular arguments, to the threats on my talk page, to the disruptive and tendentious article changes, to the edit warring, to your must-have-the-last-word posts. It's enough already, don't ya think? Give it a rest. We're done here. - wolf 20:19, 7 August 2022 (UTC)
You seem to be conflating article titles with article contents; the two are not one in the same, and it is quite possible to have divergent opinions on them. But as you don't appear to be at all interested in discussing the actual issues here, at long last we've agreed on something - the discussion between you and me is over. Parsecboy (talk) 20:42, 7 August 2022 (UTC)
Q.E.D. - wolf 20:44, 8 August 2022 (UTC)

"this is hatted for a reason - stop being disruptive" - per Nigel Ish - I didn't see any reason, supported by policy, being provided. Repeatedly trying to hide sections of a discussion, just because someone doesn't like or agree with it, is "disruptive". Usually it's best to leave things be, especially when such hatting (or collapsing) has been challenged. - wolf 17:55, 15 August 2022 (UTC)

Do you forget requesting that this thread be closed because of its "many off-topic comments"? What exactly is your objection to your request having been fulfilled? If "we're done here", surely you aren't interested in further discussion. Parsecboy (talk) 18:10, 15 August 2022 (UTC)
Oy. There's a difference between posting a request, via an established process, for an uninvolved admin to close an entire discussion, and a disgruntled, involved editor selectively and arbitrarily hiding only a section of a discussion that clearly doesn't suit them. Surely you don't need this explained to you? So don't act like you've added this collapsing becuase of a request I posted. You added it because you desperately want this hidden. I had said "we're done here", specifically to you, when it became clear you were only intent on proloning a dispute, with battleground behaviour, ignoring of rules, and blatant personal attacks (eg: this). Disengaging does not give you a free pass to start hiding comments you don't like. You know this. - wolf 18:48, 15 August 2022 (UTC)
Amusing as this is, surely you are aware that the discussion as a whole is still on-going, so your request to close the entire discussion was very premature; but these subthreads have reached their end point long ago. You have said as much multiple times now. And as for "desperately" wanting to hide this whole interaction, you are aware that it's still here, right? I didn't delete anything, you are free to re-read it at your leisure. If anyone here is prolonging anything, it ain't me; surely you have something better to do with your time. Try writing an article. Parsecboy (talk) 19:26, 15 August 2022 (UTC)
@Thewolfchild and Parsecboy: So I get that this conversation has been contentious and there's a history here, but can you both take a deep breath and a step back? You both have a deep love for ships and Wikipedia, and I know that's fueling the strong views here, but at some point it's more beneficial to everyone to agree to disagree. (I don't want to see either of you burn out and leave!) Ed [talk] [majestic titan] 14:10, 16 August 2022 (UTC)
@The ed17:, I basically disengaged over a week ago. That said, I don't agree with editors selectively hiding comments they don't like, from other editors they've have had a dispute with. I don't think the rules support it either. This collapsing is not supported by a close request, they're two different things and PB knows that. He needs to stop trying to prolong these disputes with the baiting, the disruptive edits, and the churlish, must-have-last-word posts. As the discussion is now progressing, as pointed out, he should just focus on that and let this rest. - wolf 18:49, 16 August 2022 (UTC)
This needs admin attention now - this subsection is doing nothing to resolve the issue. If you have nothing to contribute to the discussion then stop disrupting it.Nigel Ish (talk) 19:06, 16 August 2022 (UTC)
Both for here and Wikimedia I'm against using hull numbers in titles, we should always use launch dates if disambiguation is required. Hull numbers don't help for chronology, and the situation will only get worse 100 years from now. The importance we give to hull numbers is ridiculous; in the long term they are never commonly used apart from being embroidered on baseball caps. --Broichmore (talk) 12:48, 28 August 2022 (UTC)

ExamplesEdit

Can we get some examples of how the lede might turn out under the proposals given above. I'm getting a wall of text and not much clarity. If someone could show what the likely outcome would be that would be useful. For my part I see ledes with pennant numbers and hull numbers distanced from the ship name as being like:

  • "HMS Quitebigshipreally was a cruiser of the Royal Navy. With pennant number C43 it served in the Nth Cruiser Squadron during the interwar period" or
  • "USS Well-known Settlement was a United States Navy warship of World War I. Built for commerce protection with hull number CP-22, it was reclassified as a depot ship DS-22 in 1924" GraemeLeggett (talk) 18:34, 31 July 2022 (UTC)
    • That is almost exactly what I'd like to see done (albeit without bolding the hull numbers as per MOS:FIRST). What (I thought was) a good solution might also look like the first line of USS Torsk:
      • "USS Torsk, hull number SS-423, is a Tench-class submarine built..."
    • Another option is USS Florida (BM-9), which includes the line:
      • "Florida was renamed Tallahassee in 1908 and was later assigned the hull number BM-9 in 1920.
    • I'm not particularly fussed on the specifics, as it will probably vary from article to article (particularly in older ships that existed before the institution of hull numbers, as with the Florida example. Parsecboy (talk) 18:47, 31 July 2022 (UTC)
  • Can I propose the following;
    Introductory sentence should be renamed Introduction in Wikipedia:WikiProject Ships/Guidelines and I suggest the following wording;
    The first sentence of (any) article should use the article title, set in bold face, early in the sentence to establish context. If the title has a parenthetical disambiguator, year of launch, pennant number or hull number, the disambiguator should be omitted. In the case of ships, set all elements of the name in bold face; italicize the ship's name. For example, HMS Ark Royal or USS Enterprise. The commissioning nation, the ship type, and the time period are important elements of context. Why the particular name was given is interesting, especially if it is not obvious. It is also helpful to the reader to mention the particular significance of the ship, such as "world's first aircraft carrier". Later references to the same ship in the article should just use the ship's name, still in italics: Ark Royal or Enterprise. Do not begin the introductory sentence with a definite article ("The") unless it is part of the ship's name. Hull/pennant numbers should be included in the opening paragraph along with a link to hull number/pennant number to explain their significance.
    On Wikipedia:Naming conventions (ships) in the Hull or pennant number or disambiguation section, the following wording:
    If a ship had several hull or pennant numbers in her career, use the best-known for an article title. If none of the several hull/pennant numbers are clearly the best-known, use the first. Redirect others to the article, listing all in the article's lead section:
    USS Goldsborough was a Clemson-class destroyer in the United States Navy during World War II. During the destroyer's service, Goldsborough was identified with the following hull numbers; DD-188, AVP-18, AVD-5, and APD-32. Llammakey (talk) 17:19, 4 August 2022 (UTC)
  • That seems generally fine to me. The only question I have is whether pennant numbers should be included in the last line you've proposed for the Guidelines. Parsecboy (talk) 17:35, 4 August 2022 (UTC)
    • I'm good with including them. I will amend the proposal accordingly Llammakey (talk) 17:53, 4 August 2022 (UTC)
  • Furthermore in Template:Infobox ship begin/Usage guide under Ship identification I would strike the following
    (although consider not using the field for hull numbers if these are indicated in the lead sentence of the article). Llammakey (talk) 18:01, 4 August 2022 (UTC)
    Way back towards the beginning of this 'discussion', I proposed a change to {{Infobox ship career}} that would add |Ship hull num= and |Ship pennant num= parameters so that a ship's hull number(s) or pennant number(s) could be listed there (I don't think that I have ever thought that |Ship identification= was the best place for hull/pennant numbers). The sentence:
    Hull/pennant numbers should be included in the opening paragraph along with a link to hull number/pennant number to explain their significance.
    reduces to something like:
    Hull/pennant numbers should be included in the infobox.
    Perhaps these two suggested infobox parameters are a good solution?
    Trappist the monk (talk) 18:30, 4 August 2022 (UTC)
    Shouldn't this sentence:
    Later references to the same ship in the article should just use the ship's name, still in italics: Ark Royal or Enterprise.
    be written like this:
    Later references to the same ship in the article should just use the ship's name, still in italics: Ark Royal or Enterprise.
    If we are going to address disambiguation, should we not also address <country><ship type> disambiguation (German cruiser Admiral Graf Spee, for example) at the same time and get all of the disambiguation variants out of the way at once. What about class articles and the proscription against the initial definite article?
    Infoboxen are summary-holding elements of an article lead (see MOS:LEADELEMENTS). Collections of miscellaneous data need not be part of the prose of a lead section when those data can be organized and tabulated in an infobox. This eliminates the need for repetitive, formulaic sentences appearing in many ship article leads:
    During the <ship type>'s service, <ship name> was identified with the following hull numbers: <list of ship's hull numbers>.
    Trappist the monk (talk) 18:30, 4 August 2022 (UTC)
    As for the proscription of the initial definite article, I would suggest wording like
    Do not begin the introductory sentence of an article about a single ship with a definite article ("The") unless it is part of the ship's name.
    That would prevent any class article problems. As for the infobox entries, is there a way to make sure the pennant number/hull number infobox entries locate next to ship identification ones. There are some editors who put both in the article and it would be good to group all those numbers in the same area in the infobox. As for why I said in the lead, I was trying to find a way to appease both sides. Those who believe the hull numbers are important for the identification of the ship and those who believe it superfluous. The numbers should be in the infobox either way because they are a way to identify the ships as much as IMO and MMSI numbers are. Llammakey (talk) 20:22, 4 August 2022 (UTC)
    I put the |Ship hull num= and |Ship pennant num= parameters immediately after |Ship name= because I think that these 'identifiers' are, for readers, more closely connected with the name than are Maritime call signs, ICS flags, IMO, MMSI, and the plethora of other sorts of identifiers that are shoehorned in |Ship identification=. The community can decide where all of these parameters render in an infobox; it is merely a matter of rearranging the parametric 'deckchairs' in Module:WPSHIPS utilities/data.
    You did not answer the italics question nor did you answer the <country><ship type> disambiguation question.
    Trappist the monk (talk) 22:12, 4 August 2022 (UTC)
    Sorry, I thought I had. I only suggested the top wording to cover the problems of the current discussion. Since everyone was just trading slings and arrows up top, I thought I would put forward some concrete proposals. I'm good with your template suggestions. They should be in there no matter what. However, we still need to address the point of some editors that the hull number of each American ship is an intrinsic value to that ship and should be in the lead. I thought my way was the middle ground, where the hull numbers would remain in the lead, but as you rightly point out, it makes writing almost like filling out a form. I'm open to suggestions as to how we compromise on that.
    As for the <country><ship type> disambiguation (German cruiser Admiral Graf Spee, for example), I have no idea, because I am not well versed in how that came about in the first place. I am open to suggestions though if people think there is a better way. I agree with the italicization part, I missed that when I first read your comment, sorry again. Llammakey (talk) 16:45, 5 August 2022 (UTC)
  • Why is this being extended to force the use of pennant numbers in the lede? That is going in entirely the wrong direction, as pennant numbers are not the same as hull numbers, and are not used as alternative names for ships.Nigel Ish (talk) 11:00, 5 August 2022 (UTC)
    • Hi Nigel. I see some articles about European navies and some Southeast Asian navies that put the pennant numbers before the names of ships and/or using them like American hull numbers. (Like Gepard-class fast attack craft, Ensdorf-class minesweeper, Polish Navy#Mission and organization or ORP Orzeł (1986) where the article is disambiguated one way and the pennant number replaces the disambiguator in the lead and is bolded.) I threw the pennant numbers in there to head that off after being asked by Parsecboy, since there should be a link to pennant numbers somewhere in the article. Do you think we should have some text in there stating that pennant numbers should not be used with ship names unless for disambiguation? Llammakey (talk) 16:45, 5 August 2022 (UTC)
      • Just to get clear, I wasn’t saying that the pennant number needs to be mentioned in the intro, I was only raising it for discussion. I don’t edit much in the pennant-era of the RN, so I’m more or less agnostic on that issue. I just didn’t want it to be overlooked if others felt more strongly about it. Parsecboy (talk) 20:01, 5 August 2022 (UTC)
        • I suspect that editors were just following the existing practices. I'm fairly certain that there are still articles with pennant numbers following the name in the lede and bolded. Quite probably even some of my own!--Sturmvogel 66 (talk) 14:23, 7 August 2022 (UTC)
          • Not being a classification system for the RN before NATO began, pennant numbers are not well documented, IMO. I do know that Nigel Ish has surprised me several times with those that he's listed for WWI-era destroyers so he probably has a better idea of what resources are out there covering them than I do.--Sturmvogel 66 (talk) 14:35, 7 August 2022 (UTC)

I'm generally OK with Trappist's addition of hull number and pennant number to the infobox as they will generally replace the ship identification field for warships. I am concerned, however, that they will lengthen the infoboxes as people attempt to be completists and list every single one. Perhaps we should just tell them to pick one, preferably the one used for the longest time or during wartime? Thoughts?--Sturmvogel 66 (talk) 14:26, 7 August 2022 (UTC)

Just an observation on ship names US-style. It is easy to think of "name" in several ways (hence much of the wall of unedifying text above). I have always thought of the whole caboodle as an "identifier", with

  • USS - allegiance - to the USN commissioned forces, rather than coastguard, auxiliary service etc or, indeed, foreign forces
  • the true name itself - derived from a namesake and often repeated (one-at-a-time)
  • hull number, a purely sequential designation of a given ship type, nowadays given to all ships regardless of the ship name, even if there is only one ship of the name or of the type, and not repeated - despite the nomenclature as "hull numbers" they consist of letters and numbers (though the former do not always appear on the hull).

While any of these could be described as differentiators for the USN, none are disambiguators in the WP sense, driven by the same needs. However, we do use hull numbers here as such, rather than the build year generally used for other ships, because they are reliably sourced and effective. They are not fully effective for WP use as they are not unique identifiers for a ship that changes its type classification (but we can deal with that with redirects from variant hull numbers). Davidships (talk) 15:42, 7 August 2022 (UTC)

  • Ok, to summarize, pennant/hull numbers should be put in the infobox and Trappist's new infobox parameters are acceptable. However, the problem with the hull numbers/pennant numbers in the lede has to be addressed because they are used as diambiguators and other disambiguators, such as "ship", "cruise ship" or the launch year are explained in the lead. Unless we want to go over what should be used for disambiguation for ships, then we need to mention the hull/pennant number explanation in the lead, much like a launch year. I've added a little bit of language to the end of my proposal to make sure that only those pennant/hull numbers used for disambiguation is included in the lead.
    Introductory sentence should be renamed Introduction in Wikipedia:WikiProject Ships/Guidelines and I suggest the following wording;
    The first sentence of (any) article should use the article title, set in bold face, early in the sentence to establish context. If the title has a parenthetical disambiguator, year of launch, pennant number or hull number, the disambiguator should be omitted. In the case of ships, set all elements of the name in bold face; italicize the ship's name. For example, HMS Ark Royal or USS Enterprise. The commissioning nation, the ship type, and the time period are important elements of context. Why the particular name was given is interesting, especially if it is not obvious. It is also helpful to the reader to mention the particular significance of the ship, such as "world's first aircraft carrier". Later references to the same ship in the article should just use the ship's name, still in italics: Ark Royal or Enterprise. Do not begin the introductory sentence an article about a single ship with a definite article ("The") unless it is part of the ship's name. Hull/pennant numbers should be included in the opening paragraph along with a link to hull number/pennant number to explain their significance if used for disambiguation. Otherwise, they can be listed in the infobox, and/or expanded on further down the article.
    On Wikipedia:Naming conventions (ships) in the Hull or pennant number or disambiguation section, the following wording:
    If a ship had several hull or pennant numbers in her career, use the best-known for an article title. If none of the several hull/pennant numbers are clearly the best-known, use the first. Redirect others to the article, listing all in the article's lead section:
    USS Goldsborough was a Clemson-class destroyer in the United States Navy during World War II. Goldsborough was initially identified with the hull number DD-188.
Hopefully this covers all the bases, explains the use for disambiguation, allows for space to discuss hull/pennant numbers in the article without clogging up the lead and keeps the infobox decluttered.Llammakey (talk) 23:58, 7 August 2022 (UTC)
Your proposal demands that all five pennant numbers must be added to the the lede of HMS Marksman (1915). They are not used as alternative names for the ship so why must they be listed in the lede?Nigel Ish (talk) 20:17, 8 August 2022 (UTC)
Just my read, but I'd interpret the need for pennant numbers in the lead to be dependent on the "if used for disambiguation" bit - so we'd want to explain in the lead what "R07" means in HMS Ark Royal (R07) since it's featured prominently in the title, but there wouldn't be any need to do so with HMS Marksman (1915). But Llammakey can clarify if I'm not reading it right. Parsecboy (talk) 20:29, 8 August 2022 (UTC)
Yep, that's exactly it. Should I put the "if used for disambiguation" earlier in the sentence to make it clearer? Something along the lines of - If a hull/pennant number is used for disambiguation, it should be included in the opening paragraph along with a link to hull number/pennant number to explain its significance. Otherwise, hull/pennant numbers can be listed in the infobox, and/or expanded on further down the article.
Makes sense to me - what do you think Nigel? Parsecboy (talk) 16:40, 9 August 2022 (UTC)
This does make we wonder why we don't just use years—the thing everyone knows, as opposed to pennant numbers—as universal disambiguators. But that's a separate discussion. Ed [talk] [majestic titan] 15:13, 10 August 2022 (UTC)
We probably want to make clear that identifiers that are or were used as names should be listed - even if they are hull numbers - ie. even if we wern't using the hull number of USS Tallahatchie County (LST-1154) as a disambiguator, LST-1154 should be listed as it was used as the ship's sole name for several years.Nigel Ish (talk) 19:45, 10 August 2022 (UTC)

New proposed wording;Edit

The first sentence of (any) article should use the article title, set in bold face, early in the sentence to establish context. If the title has a parenthetical disambiguator, year of launch, pennant number or hull number, the disambiguator should be omitted. In the case of ships, set all elements of the name in bold face; italicize the ship's name. For example, HMS Ark Royal or USS Enterprise. The commissioning nation, the ship type, and the time period are important elements of context. Why the particular name was given is interesting, especially if it is not obvious. It is also helpful to the reader to mention the particular significance of the ship, such as "world's first aircraft carrier". Later references to the same ship in the article should just use the ship's name, still in italics: Ark Royal or Enterprise. Do not begin the introductory sentence an article about a single ship with a definite article ("The") unless it is part of the ship's name. If a hull number was used as the ship's name, include it in the lead. Otherwise, if a hull/pennant number is used primarily for disambiguation, it should be included in the opening paragraph along with a link to hull number/pennant number to explain its significance. Hull/pennant numbers can be listed in the infobox, and/or expanded on further down the article.
On Wikipedia:Naming conventions (ships) in the Hull or pennant number or disambiguation section, the following wording:
If a ship had several hull or pennant numbers in her career, use the best-known for an article title. If none of the several hull/pennant numbers are clearly the best-known, use the first. Redirect others to the article, listing all in the article's lead section:
USS Goldsborough was a Clemson-class destroyer in the United States Navy during World War II. Goldsborough was initially identified with the hull number DD-188. Llammakey (talk) 12:57, 11 August 2022 (UTC)
You're going to be mad, but do we want to spell out bolding any additional names a ship might have served as? Maybe we don't need to, since it follows the logic of MOS:BOLDREDIRECT, but it might be worth doing for newer writers.
Otherwise it looks good to me. Parsecboy (talk) 15:20, 11 August 2022 (UTC)
Does the naming conventions page need to spell out that pennant numbers should only be mentioned in the article text if they're part of the name of the article? Ed [talk] [majestic titan] 18:54, 11 August 2022 (UTC)
The ed17: Absolutely not. Pennant numbers should usually be mentioned in the article text as they are significant detail in the narratives.
And we should not have an exclusion rule for the Lead para(s) as content there should be determined by the normal guidance as a summary of the overall article.
Llammakey: I think that your Goldsborough example needs fillling out to meet the statement prior to the colon, which is about the inclusion of multiple hull numbers Davidships (talk) 09:13, 12 August 2022 (UTC)
  • Updated wording to reflect feedback
Introductory sentence should be renamed Introduction in Wikipedia:WikiProject Ships/Guidelines and I suggest the following wording;
The first sentence of (any) article should use the article title, set in bold face, early in the sentence to establish context. If the title has a parenthetical disambiguator, year of launch, pennant number or hull number, the disambiguator should be omitted. In the case of ships, set all elements of the name in bold face; italicize the ship's name. For example, HMS Ark Royal or USS Enterprise. The commissioning nation, the ship type, and the time period are important elements of context. Why the particular name was given is interesting, especially if it is not obvious. It is also helpful to the reader to mention the particular significance of the ship, such as "world's first aircraft carrier". Later references to the same ship in the article should just use the ship's name, still in italics: Ark Royal or Enterprise. Other names that the ship sported should be in bold face and italics in the lead, with redirects from those names. Do not begin the introductory sentence an article about a single ship with a definite article ("The") unless it is part of the ship's name. If a hull number was used as the ship's name, include it in the lead. Otherwise, if a hull/pennant number is used primarily for disambiguation, it should be included in the opening paragraph along with a link to hull number/pennant number to explain its significance. Hull/pennant numbers can be listed in the infobox, and/or expanded on further down the article.
On Wikipedia:Naming conventions (ships) in the Hull or pennant number or disambiguation section, the following wording:
If a ship had several hull or pennant numbers in her career, use the best-known for an article title. If none of the several hull/pennant numbers are clearly the best-known, use the first. Redirect others to the article, and explain the choice of hull/pennant number in the lead:
USS Goldsborough was a Clemson-class destroyer in the United States Navy during World War II. Goldsborough was initially identified with the hull number DD-188. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Llammakey (talkcontribs) 11:33, 12 August 2022 (UTC)
While I still think removing hull numbers from the ships name and lead sentence is a step backwards, this is about the outcome I saw coming a few weeks ago and I think it's a good solution. I'm all for it. GansMans (talk) 16:40, 15 August 2022 (UTC)
  • Should work if all the protagonists above respond in like manner as GansMans. Davidships (talk) 19:20, 15 August 2022 (UTC)
  • Oppose - for some navies, like the USN, especially post-WWI ships where hull numbers are almost universally included as part of the ship's name, (especially in the very sources we rely on), this is is going to lead to needless mass-changes in a majority of USN ship articles. The status quo for these articles is sufficient. - wolf 19:05, 16 August 2022 (UTC)
  • Support the proposed revision - its not ideal and probably goes too far down the road of being overly prescriptive, but a solution is needed here.Nigel Ish (talk) 19:10, 16 August 2022 (UTC)
  • Oppose I don't think that the pennant/hull number is important enough to include anywhere in the lede. It baffles me that anyone can think that they deserve coverage in the lede where we're supposed to cover the most important facts about the ship. They're far better relegated to the main body where any multiple redesignations can be covered in whatever depth they deserve. Pennant numbers before the formation of NATO, IMO, verge on trivia as there's little apparent rhyme or reason for them apparent to an ordinary reader. USN hull numbers at least have the virtues of classifying the ships by role, propulsion and armament if the latter two are out of the ordinary as of the 1920s when the system was formalized.--Sturmvogel 66 (talk) 20:44, 16 August 2022 (UTC)
    • I understand your perspective (and to an extent, I agree with it), but I think we need to come down on the side of explaining the title of the article since hull and pennant numbers aren't immediately obvious to general readers, despite assurances to the contrary from some. I don't know that there's another option, apart from putting it a note after the name, but I don't know if that's an improvement. Parsecboy (talk) 12:00, 17 August 2022 (UTC)
    • Hi Sturmvogel. Are you asking for hull numbers/pennant numbers to be eliminated entirely from the lead and just placed in the infobox like Trappist suggested? Just to validate my suggestions I thought adding that info to the lead would help readers because unlike the egg (food) example given, the jumble of letters and numbers used by the project for disambiguation is not self-explanatory. Llammakey (talk) 13:04, 17 August 2022 (UTC)
      • One point that I haven't seen in all this tempest/teacup is that our printed sources generally do not provide any significant coverage of pennant/hull numbers, usually relegating them to an appendix or a table somewhere where they're accessible to the curious reader, but not taking up precious space in the pages about the ships. Granted this is less true for the USN's hull numbers since those have an actual meaning. Why should we elevate them in importance beyond what our sources have given them?
      • I think that we're too focused on explaining the disambiguator. Taken literally, the new language would have to explain that the year (for those ships that have them) is that of launching rather than some arbitrary set of digits. Honestly I think that ordinary readers will skip that confusing alphanumeric blend in the title until it's explained somewhere. I'm fine with listing the numbers in the infobox, as much as I'd like to shorten it, so it's easily accessible to someone looking to ID a photo or something.--Sturmvogel 66 (talk) 15:30, 22 August 2022 (UTC)
        • Sturmvogel 66, is the wording in Option A below in the new wording section preferable? Llammakey (talk) 16:19, 22 August 2022 (UTC)
      • I'm 100% with Sturm—these numbers are trivial. I believe that they should be put into the infobox instead of taking up space in valuable article leads, knowing that most readers don't make it past there.
      • Notably, we put plenty of other things in infoboxes that aren't immediately obvious to a general reader (what's a displacement? what's belt armor? how do ship classes work?), and these are often not explained in the article body because we can link out to that information. Why can't pennant/hull numbers also go into infoboxes with a blue link for readers who want to know what they are? Ed [talk] [majestic titan] 16:00, 17 August 2022 (UTC)
        • The difference, I think, is that those other things aren't in the article title. If we were disambiguating articles like USS North Carolina (35,000 LT), I'd argue we should explain what that meant in a place readers are likely to see it. I don't know if sticking it in the infobox serves that purpose as well (my hunch is that more people read the intro than go over the infobox, unless they're looking for statistics). But I'm not prepared to die on this hill if others prefer that option. Parsecboy (talk) 16:26, 17 August 2022 (UTC)
    I agree with this comment. However, if a pennant number is being used as a disambiguator (I guess that's a separate discussion), it probably should get some explanation in the opening paragraph. Doesn't belong in the lead senetence, though, that's for sure. Martocticvs (talk) 11:46, 21 August 2022 (UTC)
  • Support If there is a disambiguator used which is not clear to majority of readers, then its meaning needs to be explained. (I believe this holds true across any topic on enwiki) In an ideal world all disambiguators would be clear without explanation but that's a project for another day. We are not asking to expend much effort, it is possible to get it out of the way in relatively few characters before moving on to the meat of the subject. GraemeLeggett (talk) 17:36, 17 August 2022 (UTC)
  • To summarize, we have three opposes and four supports, I'm not sure that this is enough support to make the changes. I suggest if Sturmvogel and Ed would like to eliminate the use of hull/pennant numbers in the lead, they update the wording on Wikipedia:Naming conventions (ships)#Hull or pennant number or disambiguation where it says to list them all in the lead section. Llammakey (talk) 13:56, 20 August 2022 (UTC)
    • Assuming you support your own proposal, I count six supports. And Sturmvogel and Ed voiced support earlier for the idea that hull numbers shouldn't be bolded in the text, their objection is on the specific guidance provided for handling them in the lead. If we can hammer out a solution that satisfies their concerns, we can still move forward.
    • Probably the place to start is to ask those who accept the current proposal (you, @Nigel Ish:, @Davidships:, @GraemeLeggett:, and @GansMans: whether they feel strongly that the hull/pennant number should be explained in the lead, or if there's an alternative (like Trappist's infobox suggestion) that would satisfy all involved. Parsecboy (talk) 15:48, 20 August 2022 (UTC)
@Parsecboy: If you're going to ping people, then you need to ping everybody that took part in this entire discussion, since the beginning, and not just those you are in agreement with, otherwise you may run afoul of the wp:canvanassing guidelines. - wolf 08:14, 21 August 2022 (UTC)
@Thewolfchild: - your opposition to all of this is noted, you have !voted, and there's nothing in WP:CANVASSING that requires me to ping you. Surely you are aware of all of this. Can you stop shit stirring? Parsecboy (talk) 09:15, 21 August 2022 (UTC)
I don't think it needs to be spoon fed to the readers. It looks cleaner and simpler in the infobox.
But if it's used primarily for disambiguation (and if that's what it takes to get everyone on board), then putting it in the lead paragraph is what we'll do. GansMans (talk) 00:02, 21 August 2022 (UTC)
This appears to be a ramp-up for mass-changes to the leads of numerous ship articles, changes that have already started, despite protests, and that are generally unnecessary. - wolf 08:14, 21 August 2022 (UTC)

We seem to be at a crucial point. There are two elements in play above 1) the wording on what is supposed to be in the article introduction and 2) dismabiguation in article naming. And there is interplay between the two. I think that it's not clear whether there is support for both equally, or that lack of support for one is affecting agreement on other. Can we have both suggested wordings presented as separate proposals so we can explicity assess opinion/consensus for each? GraemeLeggett (talk) 10:17, 21 August 2022 (UTC)

  • Support This seems like a fair compromise. Whatever is used for disambiguation requires some mention early on. I think a separate discussion is needed on pennant numbers as disambiguators (not USN hull numbers) - especially pre-NATO ones. But whilst they are still being used that way, they need some explanation. Martocticvs (talk) 11:51, 21 August 2022 (UTC)

Updated proposed wordingEdit

  • Option A: The no hull/pennant numbers in the lead:
Introductory sentence should be renamed Introduction in Wikipedia:WikiProject Ships/Guidelines and I suggest the following wording;
The first sentence of (any) article should use the article title, set in bold face, early in the sentence to establish context. If the title has a parenthetical disambiguator, year of launch, pennant number or hull number, the disambiguator should be omitted. Do not begin the introductory sentence an article about a single ship with a definite article ("The") unless it is part of the ship's name. In the case of ships, set all elements of the name in bold face; italicize the ship's name. For example, HMS Ark Royal or USS Enterprise. The commissioning nation, the ship type, and the time period are important elements of context. Why the particular name was given is interesting, especially if it is not obvious. It is also helpful to the reader to mention the particular significance of the ship, such as "world's first aircraft carrier". Later references to the same ship in the article should just use the ship's name, still in italics: Ark Royal or Enterprise. Other names that the ship sported should be in bold face and italics in the lead, with redirects from those names. If a hull number was used as the ship's name, include it in the lead. Hull numbers/pennant numbers can be listed in the infobox, and expanded on further down the article. - this is predicated on Trappist the monk's suggestion for new parameters in infobox
On Wikipedia:Naming conventions (ships) in the Hull or pennant number or disambiguation section, the following wording:
If a ship had several hull or pennant numbers in her career, use the best-known for an article title. If none of the several hull/pennant numbers are clearly the best-known, use the first. Redirect others to the article, list the numbers in the infobox and explain hull/pennant number in the article.
USS Goldsborough was a Clemson-class destroyer in the United States Navy during World War II. Goldsborough was initially identified with the hull number DD-188. - This predicated on the fact that disambiguator should be discussed somewhere in the article. Even Egg (food) is described as a foodstuff in its first paragraph after the lead.
  • Option B: The hull/pennant numbers in the lead
Introductory sentence should be renamed Introduction in Wikipedia:WikiProject Ships/Guidelines and I suggest the following wording;
The first sentence of (any) article should use the article title, set in bold face, early in the sentence to establish context. If the title has a parenthetical disambiguator, year of launch, pennant number or hull number, the disambiguator should be omitted. Do not begin the introductory sentence an article about a single ship with a definite article ("The") unless it is part of the ship's name. In the case of ships, set all elements of the name in bold face; italicize the ship's name. For example, HMS Ark Royal or USS Enterprise. The commissioning nation, the ship type, and the time period are important elements of context. Why the particular name was given is interesting, especially if it is not obvious. It is also helpful to the reader to mention the particular significance of the ship, such as "world's first aircraft carrier". Later references to the same ship in the article should just use the ship's name, still in italics: Ark Royal or Enterprise. Other names that the ship sported should be in bold face and italics in the lead, with redirects from those names. If a hull number was used as the ship's name, include it in the lead. Otherwise, if a hull/pennant number is used primarily for disambiguation, it should be included in the opening paragraph along with a link to hull number/pennant number to explain its significance. Hull/pennant numbers can be listed in the infobox, and and expanded on further down the article.
On Wikipedia:Naming conventions (ships) in the Hull or pennant number or disambiguation section, the following wording:
If a ship had several hull or pennant numbers in her career, use the best-known for an article title. If none of the several hull/pennant numbers are clearly the best-known, use the first. Redirect others to the article, and explain the choice of hull/pennant number in the lead:
USS Goldsborough was a Clemson-class destroyer in the United States Navy during World War II. Goldsborough was initially identified with the hull number DD-188. This is roughly what I had up top with a few modifications of the wording, since everything in the infobox has to be cited and stated somewhere in the article. Llammakey (talk) 12:58, 22 August 2022 (UTC)
I'm leaning towards option B, reason being if we aren't having the hull number attached with the name, I'd at least like to see them acknowledged in the lead directly. GansMans (talk) 02:58, 23 August 2022 (UTC)
I would also prefer B, but I'm fine with A if that's what others would prefer. Parsecboy (talk) 12:50, 23 August 2022 (UTC)
  • There should be some language to the effect that mass-changes to otherwise long-term stable articles, just for the sake of change, should be avoided as unnecessaey disruption. Specifically, many of the USN ship pages are fine the way they are, with the hull number included in the lead opener, (included with the name, along with the prefix). Once a link for 'hull number' is added to the infobox, that should address any issues, wrt these articles at least. (jmho) - wolf 04:43, 23 August 2022 (UTC)
    • This. We need to specify that this is a stylistic preference and the format used by existing articles (if any) is to be respected to avoid edit wars. If no style is used, an editor was use whichever one they prefer.--Sturmvogel 66 (talk) 13:31, 24 August 2022 (UTC)


That presentation doesn't really make it easy to see the differences between options. For introduction the difference comes down to
  • A "If a hull number was used as the ship's name, include it in the lead."
  • B "If a hull number was used as the ship's name, include it in the lead. Otherwise, if a hull/pennant number is used primarily for disambiguation, it should be included in the opening paragraph along with a link to hull number/pennant number to explain its significance. "
Option B is closest but to my mind the key sentence should be more like. "If hull number or pennant is used as disambiguation for article name, it should be included in the opening paragraph with meaning explained by linking to appropriate article"
And for what its worth "sported" is not encyclopaedic language. GraemeLeggett (talk) 19:02, 23 August 2022 (UTC)
Really, whatever is used for disambiguation - hull number, pennant number, launch year, etc - should be included in the opening paragraph and explained etc. We don't really need to specifically refer to hull numbers/pennant numbers in this context. That's just a semmantic point and I'm not bothered by it, but thought I'd mention it anyway! Martocticvs (talk) 07:58, 24 August 2022 (UTC)
My stance is also whatever the disambiguation is (year, ship type, pennant, hull number, builder) should be in explained. Perhaps the angle here is that you can explain hull or pennant by linking to the article "Foo was given pennant number G-22" rather than a longer winded "Foo was built as hull number BB-22; meaning the 22nd battleship according to the US Navy designation system at the time". GraemeLeggett (talk) 11:21, 24 August 2022 (UTC)
It may be best to simply strip out the advice about how to treat hull/pennant numbers beyond not including them in the initial bold text, or water it down a bit to just say that they should be explained somewhere, ideally with a link to hull number or pennant number. This would give editors the choice of how to treat them, either as just another bit of info in the infobox, explain them in the lead (in whatever manner they deem best), in a footnote, or just handle them in the body of the article. Certainly there are situations where including every number for a vessel that had several over the course of its career would bog down the intro too much. Parsecboy (talk) 13:05, 24 August 2022 (UTC)
This would be my preference. The number needs be explained somewhere; I just don't want it to required to be in the lede where it gets undue weight, IMO, and breaks up the flow of the writing.--Sturmvogel 66 (talk) 13:31, 24 August 2022 (UTC)
I'm now oppose to both wordings. I'm for the status quo. It sounds more and more like some of the editors are in WP:IDONTLIKEIT territory and are trying to rig the rules so they don't have to include something in the articles they write. Llammakey (talk) 13:40, 24 August 2022 (UTC)
I'm somewhat perplexed by this about-face; you seemed to be in favor of the changes before. Can you explain what you mean by rigging the rules?
I can only speak for myself, but as for my comment earlier today, it seems to me that we won't reach consensus on how exactly to treat these numbers, but we do seem to have generally agreed that the current version should be corrected to bring the guidelines into line with the MoS. To my mind, it makes more sense to stop where we agree and leave the rest to individual choice. Consistency is not that important, seeing as we don't enforce consistent styling in wide variety of areas. Parsecboy (talk) 14:15, 24 August 2022 (UTC)
We need to specify that this is a stylistic preference and the format used by existing articles (if any) is to be respected to avoid edit wars. If no style is used, an editor was use whichever one they prefer and I just don't want it to required to be in the lede where it gets undue weight. "Stylistic preferences" is code for WP:IDONTLIKEIT and WP:OWN. So my oppose stays. Llammakey (talk) 15:58, 24 August 2022 (UTC)
It's quite true that I don't like it, but I object to your characterization of my reasons. We've had many, many FA articles with no objections or even comments about this issue, one way or another, so even readers knowledgeable about every jot and tittle of the MOS have either not noticed or simply don't care so long as the terms are explained somewhere in the article. My solution is exactly that used by WP:CITE and WP:SHE to resolve opposing viewpoints and avoid endless edit wars because I'm not seeing much of a majority one way or another.--Sturmvogel 66 (talk) 17:29, 24 August 2022 (UTC)
If you think "stylistic preferences" like WP:SHE4SHIPS ends edit wars, have I got news for you. As it stands, the status quo would deliver the same thing you mentioned. We've had many, many FA articles with no objections or even comments about this issue, one way or another. I see no reason to change it, if it does not affect you, as an FA article writer. May I ask what your opposition to the hull number being in the lead other than WP:IDONTLIKEIT? It doesn't seem to affect your writing at all. Are you afraid that someone will come in and change an article you wrote citing the guideline here? Because that sure sounds like WP:OWN. Llammakey (talk) 18:30, 24 August 2022 (UTC)
This is the sort of thing one encounters that demonstrates why the status quo needs to be amended. Because the guidlines currently state that some parenthetical disambiguators should bolded in the first sentence, some editors have apparently come under the mistaken impression that all disambiguators should be bolded. This is most certainly not the first time I've seen this. Parsecboy (talk) 13:29, 29 August 2022 (UTC)
Indeed, not 5 minutes later, and there's another one. Parsecboy (talk) 13:34, 29 August 2022 (UTC)
And a third. Parsecboy (talk) 13:36, 29 August 2022 (UTC)
Umm, am I missing something? I read your Indeed, not 5 minutes later,... as implying that five minutes after someone added the bold (1862) disambiguator to USS Brockenborough (1862), someone (possibly the same someone) added the bold (1862) disambiguator to USS Britannia (1862), etc. That is demonstrably not true:
USS Brockenborough (1862) was part of the first version of USS Brockenborough (1862); created 31 October 2007
USS Britannia (1862) was part of the first version of USS Britannia (1862); created 11 November 2007
USS Braziliera (1856) was part of the first version of USS Braziliera (1856); created 31 October 2007
If one is to believe this search there are about 410 ship articles (those with a ship infobox) that have a bold four-digit disambiguator attached to the ship name in the lead. The four-digit disambiguator is usually a year but not always; at least two in that list are pennant numbers.
Trappist the monk (talk) 14:24, 29 August 2022 (UTC)
No, I meant that not five minutes after I stumbled across the first example, I found another one. Parsecboy (talk) 20:29, 29 August 2022 (UTC)

The fact these these discussions about hull numbers always die out after a bit just shows that these proposed changes are just for the sake of change, not because they're necessary. If it was, it wouldn't be this controversial and wouldn't take so many different discussions over the years only for them to end the same way. And now that one editor as opposed any changes (and I've always been leaning that way anyway), makes it hard to believe this discussion will lead to any meaningful change. GansMans (talk) 22:52, 7 September 2022 (UTC)

Stick around Wikipedia long enough and you'll see this is how just about all discussions of this sort end. The thread above about shortening the infobox was just archived, having achieved nothing, despite the fact that no one opposed anything. It's the way things generally go here. Parsecboy (talk) 09:11, 8 September 2022 (UTC)

American Blimp MZ-3, name or hull number?Edit

In American Blimp MZ-3, is "American Blimp" like a prefix, and is "MZ-3" a name or a hull number, that is, should it be italicized? Or does this just not fit in to the traditional US Navy naming scheme at all? GA-RT-22 (talk) 20:23, 26 August 2022 (UTC)

"American Blimp" is the manufacturer of the airship - which name wise should probably be treated as an aircraft - after all it does have a Bureau number like an aircraft.Nigel Ish (talk) 20:36, 26 August 2022 (UTC)
Yeah you're right. I was thinking "American Blimp" was a description, like "US submarine". GA-RT-22 (talk) 22:17, 26 August 2022 (UTC)
See American Blimp Corporation. Alansplodge (talk) 10:24, 3 September 2022 (UTC)

Huntsville-class ironcladEdit

Hog Farm (talk) has already started to work on expanding the CSS Tuscalosa article and while discussing sources and info, I suggested combining that article and her sister CSS Huntsville into a new Huntsville-class ironclad article as the documentation on the sisters is sparse, to say the least. Both were failures as warships and were relegated to service as floating batteries that saw no action until the end of the war. Since most of the information available on these sisters is related to their similar designs and service, there would be a very high level of duplication between the two individual ship articles, which just seems redundant. So we propose to turn the current individual ship articles into redirects and copy the relevant info from them into the new class article. Thoughts, comments? Sturmvogel 66 (talk) 16:46, 6 September 2022 (UTC)

Titanic conspiracy theories...Edit

...looks like an embarrassing collection of WP:PROFRINGE nuttery. Anyone want to take a shot at cleaning this up? -Ad Orientem (talk) 20:11, 7 September 2022 (UTC)

Update: I gutted the section on the Gardiner theory which was largely unsourced and monumentally UNDUE. -Ad Orientem (talk) 20:57, 7 September 2022 (UTC)

Notice: "Largest naval battle in history"Edit

Please see associated talk page for this article, along with recent discussions there and recent, significant changes to the article's content. The objective is to, by way of consensus, determine if a name change is needed, as well as which content (which battles) should be listed, (and what criteria to use), and any other changes and/or improvements as needed. But this starts with getting more editors involved. Thanks - wolf 04:15, 10 September 2022 (UTC)

Discussion on WP:RSNEdit

The following discussion and RFC on WP:RSN might be of interest to members of this WikiProject: Wikipedia:Reliable sources/Noticeboard#Military fansites. -Ljleppan (talk) 10:21, 10 September 2022 (UTC)

Discussion on RSNEdit

Discussion posted at RSN regarding the reliability of globalsecurity.org, see-> link. - wolf 20:59, 10 September 2022 (UTC)