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Proposal - suspension of VfD

Voting for deletion of articles is no longer in the best interest of Wikipedia. Deletion of an article is an action which intends to destroy the entire record of that article from the viewable website. The article's history is removed, and any inward or outbound links are broken. In every circumstance, except for candidates for speedy deletion and copyright problems, deletion for content reasons (as opposed to technical reasons, like preparing for a page move) is not in the best interest of Wikipedia's future endeavours. Alternative solutions are already available, and are always more appropriate:

  • Merge the useful content and redirect - An article which is deleted can unfortunately be recreated by a novice user, or someone who has a personal agenda. This can lead to a repetitive cycle of deletion discussion. Merging the useful content into an existing article (or articles) and then changing the page to become a redirect to the most appropriate target will discourage repeated creation. This new target can be changed later, so editors should not be afraid that their chosen one might be a mistake.
  • Transfer to Wiktionary, Wikibooks, etc. -- The Transwiki process allows article content to moved to one of the appropriate sister projects. The process can be performed by any editor, or they can ask for help. Once the content is placed onto the sister project, a "soft redirect" can be created.

Beyond the benefits outlined above, the chief one is that even non-admins can essentially delete a page (by creating a redirect), and undelete it (by restoring previous versions or creating new ones). No special process is required, and normal consensus-gathering discussions on article talk pages can be used instead. The article's history is also easily available should later attempts be made to make it more encyclopedic. If page is subject to vandalism or continued edits against consensus, it can be restored to a redirect and protected by an admin.

The danger in not adopting this practice is that a significant amount of editorial time is wasted on the current Vote/Delete process. Because of its nature, Votes for deletion frequently attracts editors who lean towards deletionism, so it is impossible to determine whether there is true community consensus - particularly since the deletion act is such an important one.

In accordance with this proposal, I will no longer be listing any pages on Wikipedia:Votes for deletion, and will actively attempt to resolve all such listings in the manner documented above. I encourage others to do the same until such time as "VfD" is recognized by the community as no longer being needed.

  1. Netoholic @ 05:51, 4 Sep 2004 (UTC)

Comments on the proposal

  • Where do we have the important reorganization discussions that we currently have on Votes for Deletion? ---Rednblu 06:22, 4 Sep 2004 (UTC)
  • You can't be serious! I strongly oppose this idea.
    1. Some articles really do need to be removed entirely from the Wikipedia, because quite frankly, they're crap. Storing their history helps no one. We can't speedy everything (are you opposed to speedy, too?) since that just means fewer eyes get to judge such articles. VfD is a good thing.
    2. Relisted articles that were already voted for deletion in the past are generally removed at once; Syed Hussain comes to mind. We can't stop people with agendas from repeatedly copying and pasting pages, but we can make it clear that they are wasting their time: we can delete, block, protect, and ban.
    3. VfD is no more a waste of time than CfD, TfD, IfD, Copyright problems, or any of the numerious maintenance pages that all Wikipedians ought to frequent. It merely gets more traffic.
    4. I am a deletionist. This is an encyclopedia, and content that is not encyclopedic has no place here. For instance, if I encountered my own biography on the Wikipedia, I would flag it for speedy deletion. I'm simply not that important in the grand scheme of things (yet.) Those who want a more inclusive wiki can always download MediaWiki and fire up a project of their own.
    5. The VfD chopping block has saved a large number of articles thanks to the extra scrutiny it provides. I think that this is both good (VfD is more effective than cleanup) and bad (VfD is not cleanup!), but suspending VfD altogether is not the answer.
    6. Only a minority of articles on VfD are worthy of TransWiki, so we're essentially left with speedy deletes and merge + redirects as the only way to remove unneeded content. You know as well as I do that that is not enough.
You may do what you wish with your own VfD nominations, but you can't be serious about suspending the entirety of VfD when you offer no viable alternative. --[[User:Ardonik|Ardonik(talk)]] 06:26, Sep 4, 2004 (UTC)
In response to your points:
  1. No, A well-defined speedy-deletion process has its benefits, as well as retaining the undelete process (mistakes happen). I only propose that it's arrogant to assume an article has no potential, or that its history is useless. VfD is a good thing, gone horribly wrong.
  2. Redirects will only help avoid re-creation, but won't eliminate it. Troublesome users can be dealt with as usual. What we do on VfD has no bearing on that though.
  3. Yes, far too much traffic.
  4. If I saw your biography on WP, I'd redirect it to your user page. A redirect is harmless, so long as it doesn't interfere with regular searching. WP:RFD still has its place.
  5. You made my argument - if we didn't spend so much time on VfD, maybe we'd spend it on Cleanup.
  6. I think redirects and speedies by themselves offer solutions to nearly every article listed right now on VfD.
-- Netoholic @ 06:49, 4 Sep 2004 (UTC)
The main problem with VfD is that too many items are referred to it. I rarely now list anything, deleting/redirecting/editing instead. Although there are pages where discussion may be appropriate, there are many obvious junk pages listed for VfD, which I would delete if they were not effectively protected from a speedy. jimfbleak 06:38, 4 Sep 2004 (UTC)
Dunno. 1) I take your point that in many or perhaps cases, an appropriate redirect is equivalent to and better than deletion. But what do we do about true vanity pages or utterly non-notable topics? I realize that not everyone acknowledges the existence of such things. But let's suppose I were to create an article about, say, four guys who occasionally sing barbershop together but have not even bothered to register as one of several thousand SPEBSQSA registered quartets. Where does that redirect to? What about junior high school bands that have never had a paying gig?
2) I have a problem with the transwiki solution, just as I do with the occasional suggestion that people use Everything2. The problem is this. Wikipedia has, currently, achieved a degree of success. It's useful. I look stuff up in it. When I actually want to know an answer, I always start with a Google limited to site:en.wikipedia.org before proceeding with general Googling. To may way of thinking, and apologies to any hardworking Wikipedians associated with these projects, Wiktionary and Wikibooks are not yet close to being useful and I am frankly skeptical as to whether they were will be. "Transwiki to Wikibooks" is basically sending recipes to Siberia.
I agree that if we are convinced that "Wiki is not paper" and "disk is cheap" we probably could afford to create WikiVanity and WikiGarbage and WikiUnverifiable and WikiDeadStorage and just transwiki everything instead of deleting it—BJAODN on a grand scale—and this might really be preferable to destroying information. But the psychological effect is the same, and I think if we did that we would soon see a need for Votes for Transwiki-ing. [[User:Dpbsmith|Dpbsmith (talk)]] 13:42, 4 Sep 2004 (UTC)
I think that it's still necessary for pages to be deleted, such as wiki-spam. And it's true that lots of pages on VfD end up getting improved and kept.
One problem I see is that people get addicted to VfD; it gives them a feeling of power, and it probably is the place where they can most easily impose their views of what should be on Wikipedia. It seems that people ignore all the rest of the maintenance pages and go to VfD, because it's more fun.
So here's an idea: what if VfD was merged with something like Wikipedia:Pages needing attention? If there were some pages that just need to be improved, not deleted, mixed in, then VfD addicts might be more prone to contribute to pages. I'm not entirely sure how this would be structured, just throwing out an idea. RSpeer 17:32, Sep 4, 2004 (UTC)
The whole concept outlined above is intriguing, and probably needs thrashed out more. But in essence, I am in favour of investigating alternative options to VfD. Apart from anything else, VfD drags the whole seedy underbelly of Wikipedia into one place. As it is, it would suit a different colour scheme – a black background with red text or something. It's a horrible, horrible, nasty place. zoney ▓   ▒ talk 18:02, 4 Sep 2004 (UTC)
Not at all. What are Netoholic and Zoney complaining about? In the case of many articles submitted to VfD exactly what Netaholic reccommends doing is exactly is done, material is merged and a redirect is created or it is trans-wikied to another wiki. This happens a lot.
And why don't other cleanup pages get the same attention? First, there is no time limit on the other lists, no reason to rush. Also, the articles are often not in such obviously bad shape or obviously unsuitable for Wikipedia at the moment as most articles on VfD. And most of the articles in other lists are best discussed and handled by someone already familiar with the topic of the article. If they were easy cleanups, most people who posted them on the list would have done the work themselves. Many of us are already doing a lot of cleanup work in areas we are familiar with. The articles that appear on the lists are a very small percentage of articles that need fixing. I could probably list over two hundred further articles, many of them in far worse shape than most articles currently in the cleanup lists. Others have similarly mentioned the many, many articles that need improvement in their areas of expertise. There is an enormous amount of garbage in Wikipedia. What mostly happens is that people work through articles that need cleanup in areas they know as they find such articles and don't post them on lists. I think that mostly concentrating on articles on topics I am familiar with is better use of my time and better helps Wikipedia than either throwing them onto a cleanup list or jumping into cleaning up an article whose topic I am not familiar with. I feel this especially, because many articles I have cleaned up have been in bad shape because they have been built up indiscriminately by users from misinformation or created to fill a precieved hole in Wikipedia but created from bad information. The errors are so often embarrasingly glaring and obvious only if you know the topic, but not so otherwise. I would certainly make similar errors in tyring to clean up articles on subjects which I am not familiar with. Ofthen the same misinformation is found on website after website and seems authoritative to the average reader. So I've no particular interest in working on an article just because someone else has marked it for cleanup or marked it as a short stub or marked it for merging unless it happens to fall into an area I know well.
Also, I've personally often moved information from many short articles into larger articles and made the former short articles into redirects. I've also changed redirects into full articles. So have many others. Both are appropriate at different times. That an article is currently a redirect or has been made into a redirect does not necessarily indicate, as Nethoholic seems to think, that it should not be made into a topic. I've sometimes moved information from a short article into a large one and made the former short article into into a redirect because that seems to me best for the current state of information in Wikipedia, while believing that the article that is now a redirect does deserve future expansion into a full article. Better a reasonably sized article than five short articles containing overlapping information. But eventually the material might be expanded again so that we have again five articles, but this time five full articles plus a sixth summary article.
Jallan 19:18, 4 Sep 2004 (UTC)
  • Keep. That's my vote. I rarely ever post anything to VfD, choosing instead to devote time to the less visited and what I consider to be more interesting CfD. But I think VfD caters to a certain segment of interest which is important and it should be kept. That of course doesn't mean that people can't also use Netoholic's option. I don't see this being restricted to only one method. —Mike 21:14, Sep 4, 2004 (UTC)

I agree that Vfd, as it stands now, needs serious help. But removing it is not the answer. There are pages that maybe should stay in, maybe not (fairly obscure bands, for instance) that need discussion, and that couldn't be merged elsewhere. What Vfd really needs is more people. As is, it's populated by the same small group, and those are people who are self-selected, for the most part, to want to delete articles. If you don't like the way Vfd is (and I don't), then you must become part of the solution. A plea to the regulars to avoid snide remarks and hostility wouldn't be out of place either. But this reform won't work. [[User:Meelar|Meelar (talk)]] 21:21, 2004 Sep 4 (UTC)

Once again, those who don't deign to sully themselves by visiting the slum which is VfD want to screw up a process which WORKS. If you don't like the WAY it works, visit the slum and participate -- don't pontificate from upon high. RickK 22:25, Sep 4, 2004 (UTC)

Rabid inclusionists strike again. People, there really is crap that should be deleted. Most of what gets listed here actually deserves it (at the time). The only real problem with VfD is that it's becoming unmanagably large, and I haven't seen any solid solutions for that. -- Cyrius| 02:24, 5 Sep 2004 (UTC)

Yes, yes, there couldn't be any remotely conceivable failure on the part of VfD that's responsible for the lack of participation from some!
"Rabid inclusionists strike again." - Exactly the kind of commenting plaguing VfD. Not exactly going to ensure peace, love and happiness! How would you respond were someone liberally labelling people "deletionists"? zoney ▓   ▒ talk 09:25, 5 Sep 2004 (UTC)
They do. In fact, it's those who want to do away with VfD who throw around that term as a slur. You might want to read some of the emails on the mailing list which have become very personal in their attacks. RickK 20:19, Sep 5, 2004 (UTC)
Oppose to the idea of suspension. While some issues may be solved using be bold, it is generally bad idea to be too bold, It our cases IMO it is too early to be bold. Usually VfD are populated by articles that didn't go through sufficient scrutiny. Non-destructive actions, such as merge and redirect are IMO of no harm, but pure deletion should be left restricted according to the current policy. Mikkalai 03:19, 5 Sep 2004 (UTC)

People are currently voting keep or delete for random reasons, rather than actually checking to see if deleting is a good idea at all. You remember that VFD has always been a dirty hack on the wiki process, right? The Code smell is starting to come on a bit too strong by now! Time to refactor. :-) Kim Bruning 03:44, 5 Sep 2004 (UTC)

As I just posted to the mailing list, I think this proposal is deplorable. There is plenty of junk here that there isn't any reason whatsoever for keeping. Look at how many items on this page have unanimous delete votes. It just seems like the inclusionists realise that they're outnumbered, and so try to go over the community's head rather than accept community consensus. In my book, that's unethical. I don't consider myself a deletionist (rather, an anti-vanity, anti-pure-dreck inclusionist). But this page so obviously needs keeping, and if it goes, I think it's fairly safe to say where Wikipedia is headed, and it isn't nice. Ambi 06:40, 5 Sep 2004 (UTC)

The reason they're "outnumbered" is that so few feel welcome in vfd. Please assume good faith; everybody's trying to build an encyclopedia here. The negativity of this place is far, far too much, and I'd ask for people to tone it down. We're a long way from "the process works" when most regular users can't even stand to come here. [[User:Meelar|Meelar (talk)]] 07:21, 2004 Sep 5 (UTC)

As others have said, VfD needs work. The idea of merging it with other cleanup/help this article! pages and creating one grand quality control page sounds intriguing to me. However, as I have stated on the mailing list, plenty of articles just need to go. Removing a way for the Wikipedia community to propose removal of articles effectively disenfranchises the community, and nearly ensures that Wikipedia will go down the same Internet hole of spam and trash that so many other sites go down. --Slowking Man 08:51, Sep 5, 2004 (UTC)

Yes, VFD is just a sop to deletionists who think that because they are not interested in something, no one else should be able to be. Keep, of course! 11:04, 5 Sep 2004 (UTC)
Excuse me? Are you implying that everytime I vote to delete, the entire reason is that I'm not interested in it? Assume Good Faith. My feeling is that Wikipedia is an encyclopedia, it's not somewhere that I can go and have my time wasted sorting through the various junk and web-detritus that other places offer. VfD is a very necessary part of what makes Wikipedia useful. I vote oppose on this proposal. -Vina 23:43, 5 Sep 2004 (UTC)

Wha? Get rid of VfD? As a deletionist who doesn't frequent VfD, I strongly object! Inclusionists mean well, but some unverifiable junk just doesn't deserve to be here. Jimbo has said it before, and I'll repeat it: We don't delete vanity articles for being vanity. We delete them for being unverifiable. That's about all I have to say. Johnleemk | Talk 11:28, 5 Sep 2004 (UTC)

I'll agree (borrowing from someone wittier than I; who, I can't recall) to getting rid of VfD entirely if all those in favor of doing so will agree to give up showering. —No-One Jones 04:05, 6 Sep 2004 (UTC)

I'd like to say that I simply don't understand why this proposal is needed. Whenever I've participated in VfD (which is on and off - I'll occasionally stop by and look through some pages to vote), I've never seen any glaring instances where a page that should have been saved was deleted. Usually what's deleted is, well, crap. And the deletion process encourages people to write decent articles on the subject - I've several times seen something I knew about listed on VfD, looked at the article and seen it was total crap, and then written a new article. I don't believe that my article has ever been deleted in such instances. So what's the issue here? Can somebody provide any horror stories of how VfD has gone horribly wrong? john k 04:48, 6 Sep 2004 (UTC)

In too many cases I've seen (and confirmed even by the people commenting here) is that the main purpose of posting on "Votes for deletion" is to encourage cleanup of an article so that it doesn't get deleted. My suggestion is that every article can somehow be improved over time - even if that improvement is to replace it with a redirect. Noone here should ever presume that they know a badly written article can never be improved. I see a lot of laziness going on at VfD - its easy to vote delete and hard to improve an article. I find that completely anti-Wiki. -- Netoholic @ 06:07, 6 Sep 2004 (UTC)

I think that VfD needs to be retained. Noisy 03:08, 7 Sep 2004 (UTC)
I vote to retain VfD. There are plenty of articles which are about subjects of massively restricted interest (e.g. an average 13 year old student) and therefore can't be checked, or articles which contain one line and leave you none the wiser on the subject, and we therefore don't lose anything by losing the article. Also, we have deliberate nonsense articles added - do you propose keeping them? Average Earthman 12:55, 7 Sep 2004 (UTC)

I think there are at least two different categories voted for deletion. The first category is about copyright infringement, for example, but the second is about only the article's importance (more exactly: about only the voter's opinion). So why not to delete the first category and create a "shadow-Wikipedia" for the second one? You could search the normal wikipedia" by typing words into the search box, but you would have an opportunity to search an extended (normal+shadow) wikipedia, if you prefer.

  • Idea: instead of removing VfD, generalize it. The main problem with VfD is when people use it as a cleanup replacement. We should change VfD into a general point where people can raise an issue with an article and people see what to do with it - Clean it up, replace with a redirect, delete it, or do nothing. People usually use VfD as Cleanup because people will be more impelled to save it before the gillotine comes down on it. I recommened that a lot of the action-request pages be merged into a general system. Except for speedies, those go straight to speedy deletes. KirbyMeister 00:19, 14 Sep 2004 (UTC)
  • I feel that VfD serves a vital purpose of the community, and while I vote delete more often than keep (that is, I feel the proposers of deletion tend to do a good job), I do vote keep when I feel it's mandated, and occasionally have written or improved articles in response to deletion discussions. I feel strongly enough about deletion that I swear to take a permanent vacation from Wikipedia should VfD be removed -- I don't have any faith in an encyclopedia that will accept every bit of garbage that we've been working to remove in that forum. If anything, there is too much that fails to be deleted nowadays, not the opposite. Let me point out a few things that you may not be aware were articles (and pardon if I don't recall them just right)
  1. An entry for the first level of Sonic the Hedgehog
  2. An entry for a first name
  3. A list of lists that do not contain themselves
  4. An episode list for "Full House"
  5. A high school band
  6. Random people on the web
  7. Random blogs on the web
  8. Local organizations with about 10 people in them

This bothers me a lot. Without a way to remove, I feel that we're not sticking to producing an encyclopedia. --Improv 03:42, 11 Oct 2004 (UTC)

Yes, Wikipedia should be pruned. Yes, some things are not notable. Many articles on vfd are suitible for speedy. Others are just common sense to delete. However, the standards should be inclusive. Wikipedia is not a general encyclopedia in the conventional sense, but rather an encyclopedia of everything. If it could be included in a general encyclopedia, it belongs here. But if it could be included in a hypothetical encyclopedia on a specific topic. Wikipedia is an encyclopedia on all of human knowledge. The question should be if someone might be interested. It shouldn't be wherther an article is encyclopedic, but whether an encyclopedic article could be written on the subject. Episode guides for TV shows: someone might be interested. High school bands: ditto. Random people or random blogs, the question should be if there is enough information for an encyclopedia article. The standard should be delete only if deleting, in and of itself, improves Wikipedia. I agree that a line needs to be drawn, but it needs to be drawn in a more inclusive way. Wikipedia is not paper, and deletion is antithetical to Wikipedia's nature as a collabortive creative project, so deletion should only be done when absolutely necessary. --L33tminion 17:33, Oct 29, 2004 (UTC)


The trouble is those who oppose deletion on principle don't usually have time to vote to keep on everything that is listed for deletion, because there is so much. How about a page that people can list their intention to oppose any deletion, and those votes automatically being counted as 'keep'? 04:54, 7 Sep 2004 (UTC)

How about we list such people so their votes can automatically not be counted? —Morven 06:01, Sep 8, 2004 (UTC)
Now, I would vote for that. RickK 21:21, Sep 9, 2004 (UTC)
(Sigh) likewise. (;-> Andrewa 20:24, 13 Sep 2004 (UTC)
All hail the deletionist dictators! I can respect that you take the time to destroy on principle, inclusionists should take the time to preserve on principle. Heaven forbid people should spend their time actually improving Wikipedia. --L33tminion 06:38, Oct 30, 2004 (UTC)

Shorting the VfD page for modem users (Proposal)

I would like to nominate the following text as a template to help shorten the VfD page when the discussion has reached well over a certain size. --AllyUnion (Talk) 10:09, 5 Sep 2004 (UTC)

Because of its size, the text of this discussion is no longer being included on the main VfD page. It can be viewed at Wikipedia:Votes for deletion/ARTICLE_NAME, where you are welcome to state your opinion on the matter.

That would be very nice if it were workable (I don't know if it is, but I'm just saying). — Ilγαηερ (Tαlκ) 14:47, 5 Sep 2004 (UTC)


I agree this is one area in which VfD needs serious work. Would it help if we were a bit bolder in creating talk pages for VfD subpages, and moving any slabs of conversation there?
Very few VfD subpages do have talk pages, but it's where a lot of this discussion belongs IMO. It's then not included in VfD. VfD subpages should contain only votes and brief comments, which can of course include see the talk page preferably with a link to make it clear which talk page (tutorial advice on wikilinks gladly given).
I guess this a counter proposal, but it might achieve the same thing, and all within existing policy. And it doesn't have to be a sysop who does this of course, although IMO it should be a signed-in user. Andrewa 19:05, 5 Sep 2004 (UTC)
Interesting idea, might be worth a trial run or two. One issue I have with this though: it's a form of m:instruction creep as it creates more work for everyone involved. First, the voters who want to discuss will have to post in two places. Second, it creates work for maintainers cleaning up after verbose voters who forget to be brief on the main vote page (leaving maintainers to move long comments to the talk page). Third, it creates more work for sysops when archiving older discussions (two pages to juggle instead of one). • Benc • 01:25, 6 Sep 2004 (UTC)
I've had a go at Wikipedia:Votes for deletion/Tran Van Ba which seemed a good candidate. Points taken about instruction creep and extra work! This technique should only be used when it's the lesser of two evils. Maybe there's a better way, but until someone comes up with it let's consider this an experiment. Andrewa 20:29, 13 Sep 2004 (UTC)
And there now has been some feedback, both at my talk page where one user commented I dislike the "experiment" of moving comments from VFD to talk pages (where they will never be read). Despite the name, the purpose of VfD is discussion, not votes, and also at Wikipedia:Votes for deletion/Tran Van Ba. It seems to me that Wikipedia:Deletion policy#Commenting on a nomination for deletion is worth a look in this regard. Andrewa 00:53, 14 Sep 2004 (UTC)

I usually connect by modem (and not a particularly fast connection, either) so I clearly feel the same pain but I oppose the first suggestion for all but the very longest discussions. Even when it's a long discussion, I'm going to read the whole thing. Please don't make me waste countless clicks to find it. I also oppose the second recommendation (sub-sub-pages) because they will make the maintenance steps after the discussion is complete almost impossible. It's hard enough figuring out who voted what when the discussion's all in one place. When there are multiple page and multiple responses (all with different time stamps)... I can't begin to figure out how we would determine what had actually been decided. Rossami 01:27, 6 Sep 2004 (UTC)

In reply, what I'm talking about is not a sub-sub-page, but the talk page of an existing subpage, and in the default skin there is a tab linking to this (generally non-existent) page already. My proposal is not to move any votes or even brief comments there, only lengthy discussion. IMO the problem is not that there's anything wrong with existing policy, the problem is it's being ignored, and the solution I'm proposing is to follow it. Andrewa 01:03, 14 Sep 2004 (UTC)

First proposal clarification

I said "Certain size" -- I didn't define the length... What I meant was to use the template after the discussion was too lengthly. We'd still do the same thing as we do on the VfD page. But when someone thinks the discussion is too big (anyone care to define 'too big' in this case?) then the template is used. Several examples for candidates to use this template is like "Gay Nigger Association of America" or "Elros (and other rulers of Númenor)" (which this template example has been borrowed from) discussion. --AllyUnion (Talk) 05:47, 6 Sep 2004 (UTC)

Removing submissions etc.

I'm very much in favour of removing unnecessary submissions to VfD. This is something which for some reason is viewed as unacceptable at present. Nevertheless, there's currently a number of "merge and delete" pages - these shouldn't need to be voted on (the content is kept). Usual procedures if such action results in edit war.

But I very much think there needs to be agreement on criteria, etc. before people hack at VfD willy-nilly (i.e. avoid the situation of random removals)

Also, I REALLY think VfD should get a level-headed careful evaluation. Some of the stuff here is such tripe that it should just be speedy-delete (an appeals process would be useful to handle "mistakes" or "over-eager" speedy deletes).

It's hard to appeal when you can't see what's been deleted because, err, it's been deleted... 13:10, 7 Sep 2004 (UTC)

I'm sure there are other categories of submission where alternative action could be taken.

There IS some listed of badly written articles here. Either use clean-up, or scrap the idea of keeping bad content live, and VfD everything currently on clean-up. (It's sitting there months in horrible state anyways).

Finally, this is no criticism of any individual. It's perfectly valid to look at matters critically though. Plus "If it ain't broke, don't fix it" is a rather flawed argument IMO.

zoney ▓   ▒ talk 13:30, 6 Sep 2004 (UTC)

I'm in favor of immediately removing the following: proposal is "cleanup" or proposal is "merge and redirect" as non admins can do both. But non admins can not do "merge and delete". The problem with posting stuff as patent nonsense for speedy is that people often disagree on what constitutes on patent nonsense. If you have an appeals process for that, then why not just list it in VfD in the first place and save some time? -Vina 00:32, 7 Sep 2004 (UTC)
While a non-admin cannot do a "merge and delete", they can do "merge and redirect". Then submit on Wikipedia:Redirects for deletion if they think the redirect is not usefull (though it most cases it is, since it discourages re-creation of the article under that name). -- Netoholic @ 00:40, 7 Sep 2004 (UTC)
Please be considerate of the GFDL implications of merging an article and then deleting it, i.e. losing the authorship history. Kate Turner | Talk 14:48, 2004 Sep 7 (UTC)
Good point, seems to be an excellent reason to keep any redirects created from this process. Wikipedia:Redirects for deletion#When should we delete a redirect? already covers that, since only redirects which have useful edit history should be retained. Even the simple act of renaming an article is considered usefull, and a merge even more so. -- Netoholic @ 18:28, 7 Sep 2004 (UTC)
Can we put BIG MAD INSTRUCTIONS at the top of the page not to list "cleanup", "merge and redirect" or "merge and delete" (what Netoholic says is true, just list the redirect for deletion - housekeeping, not a voting issue). zoney ▓   ▒ talk 11:31, 7 Sep 2004 (UTC)
I disagree with this. True: any user can perform a "merge and redirect." True: this is arguably the right disposition for 80% of current VfD nominations. The problem is that such situations is that they still ought to receive a thoughtful five-day discussion in a place where the discussion is likely to attract notice and have a well-defined conclusion. Many of us are not subject matter experts. We can say "that really sort of looks like something that probably ought to be deleted," but "be bold" goes too far. On articles like Hubert Dreyfus I'd much rather see ready-aim-fire than ready-fire-bury-exhume. I am not convinced that a high volume of truly ruthless editing would be any better than a high volume of VfD nominations.
I would, however, suggest that at the point when someone becomes convinced that merge-and-redirect is the proper disposition for an article on VfD, they should just do it, then edit the VfD discussion to a single line stating what they've done. Most of the time that would be the end of it, and both the edit and the discussion could be reverted if anyone took exception. In other words, a VfD discussion can be provisionally terminated early if the article becomes a redirect. [[User:Dpbsmith|Dpbsmith (talk)]] 18:06, 7 Sep 2004 (UTC)

I think it'd be a good idea if articles that are put on VfD by somebody who proposes that they be merged and/or redirected, or cleaned up (rather than deleted) were removed, since there's really no need for them to be on VfD. Gwalla | Talk 22:50, 6 Sep 2004 (UTC)

This is another issue - can we have a CLEAR POLICY that inappropriate VfD submissions can be removed by anyone? (For that, we need a clear definition of inappropriate). zoney ▓   ▒ talk 11:31, 7 Sep 2004 (UTC)
Probably not. You're welcome to have a go at proposing one. But until one is accepted, there is AFAIK no policy preventing any user from removing inappropriate listings from VfD, such as those in which the proposer suggests redirect and nobody has validly voted to delete. If the removal is reverted, then I'd think twice about any further action, just let it go through the process. But this could shorten VfD a great deal, and postpone the need for breaking it into smaller pages (which I think will come eventually). Andrewa 01:26, 14 Sep 2004 (UTC)

Another Proposal

It takes me 10 seconds to load VfD on a DSL connection. How about making pages like Wikipedia:Votes for Deletions/September 1 and then linking there from the main Vfd page? Ilγαηερ (Tαlκ) 18:04, 6 Sep 2004 (UTC)

Maybe if the page gets too unwieldy, people will stop posting articles that have no business on VfD. Davodd 18:30, Sep 6, 2004 (UTC)
Not likely. I only see VfD traffic increasing in the future. Now, I use Firefox with tabs, so the VfD page gets loaded once (takes longer than 10 seconds for me) and then I can do "drive-by voting" by opening the "add to this discussion" links in new tabs. That doesn't fix the problem, of course--I think diligent archiving and delisting will end up being the most viable solutions. I'm not sure what criteria we should use, though. It seems that no one's sure. --Ardonik.talk() 18:42, Sep 6, 2004 (UTC)
/me has visions of people shouting "keep" and "delete" from the windows of passing cars :) Chris 01:55, 18 Sep 2004 (UTC)
I'd be careful of this suggestion, which seems logical to me. It's been proposed at least twice in the past. The first time it was tried briefly and IMO it didn't get a fair go. I wasn't involved in this trial except as a user. When I proposed that we have another try at it, the replies were rather forcefully to the effect that it didn't work the first time. Good luck! Andrewa 01:11, 14 Sep 2004 (UTC)
I would only support this suggestion if the pages can some how magically be included on to the VfD page, and allow you to edit the subpage from the main VfD page. One then can change from including to an article link, if one wished. --[[User:AllyUnion|AllyUnion (talk)]] 13:16, 15 Sep 2004 (UTC)
I support dated pages for inclusion in main VfD page. It might ease the load on slower computers when VfD suggestions from a certain date are available on a separate page. I'm trying to make a user subpage so I can watch the latest VfD's without all the clutter at User:MacGyverMagic/Deletion but the current header coding prevents me from doing so. [[User:MacGyverMagic|Mgm|(talk)]] 11:37, Nov 15, 2004 (UTC)

Yet another proposal

Is there already a "Votes for redirect" page, where pages that we really don't want deleted, but just want to turn into redirects can go? It seems like I see a few of these every week listed on VfD, and that a lot of articles listed on VfD end up turned into redirects rather than actually being deleted. If it doesn't exist, something like that and maybe a "Votes for merging" page could both break up the VfD page (making it load faster and easier to parse) and reduce the number of articles that get actually deleted, which would preserve the article's history. -Seth Mahoney 02:24, Sep 18, 2004 (UTC)

I don't see the point. If you want something to become a redirect, you can just do it. You don't need any special permission. If you want to announce a merge ahead of time, you can add {{merge}} so other editors have a chance to say if they think it's a bad idea. Deletion requires admin priviledges, though, which is why VfD exists: so regular non-admin users have a say in what stays and what goes. Gwalla | Talk 03:29, 18 Sep 2004 (UTC)
Yeah, you're right. I was just thinking that a lot of votes end up being for merging or deletion, and that this would cut down the traffic to this page. Back to the drawing board, I guess. -Seth Mahoney 21:05, Sep 19, 2004 (UTC)

Autovoting proposal

The suggestion above is an interesting one - how a page where users can list themselves as wanting to vote for not deleting anything? They would sign a page that was a template, and then anyone putting that template onto a vfd proposal would automatically invoke those names. The page would be constructed so that at any time they could remove their name from the list, or manually override it if they felt they disagreed in some rare circumstance. This would overcome the problem that many people would like to vote against deletions, but the sheer number of them, and the difficulty in doing it en masse means that in practice the number of pro-deletion folks is over-represented. In this way a vfd could pass, but deletionists would have to get a majority of users who wanted it to be deleted - the 'silent majority' would get a vote. Is there a procedure for setting up templates, or a better way to impliment this? Thanks, Moooo! 12:38, 7 Sep 2004 (UTC)

Ah come on, I don't think it's sensible that anyone should be voting to keep everything!!! There's piles of <insert expletive> listed here all the time as well as the dubious listings. But the current VfD has become insane - I'd like a filter to ignore all the obvious deletes for a start (why bother voting on these unless there's an attempt to keep nonsense?). Finding the "less obvious" keep or deletes is more difficult than ever. Signal to noise ratio. Stuff. Lots of stuff. Glad I have DSL/T1. There must be some amount of people don't bother to VfD due to the size (even DSL people, it's a lot to trawl through). zoney ▓   ▒ talk 14:53, 7 Sep 2004 (UTC)
I must oppose the autovoting suggestion. (Comment: It has been discussed and rejected before.) These questions are too important to try to think that a "one size fits all" answer can possibly work for every situation. If someone can't take the time to research the article and make a careful decision, then I don't want them to get a vote either to keep or to delete. People who disagree with the policies should express their displeasure by opening discussions on the policy Talk pages, not by cluttering up VfD. If the policy is changed, then the votes on VfD will follow. Rossami 15:21, 7 Sep 2004 (UTC)
Oppose. VfD is not a vote in the usual sense, it's a determination of rough consensus. There are no quorum calls. There is no sergeant-at-arms to check ID and boot people with improper credentials.
I rather imagine that many sysops, in judging consensus, faced with delete votes from selective deletionists, that give short but valid and coherent reasons, and keep, famous votes from inclusionists-on-principle who systematically vote keep on everything and don't attempt to justify their assertions of fame, would not give quite as much weight to the "keep-on-general-principle" votes. A cluster of people automatically voting "keep" on everything would probably succeed in creating contention between sysops, some of whom would feel obliged to consider these votes in judging consensus and some of whom would ignore such votes. It is unlikely to have an overall positive effect on the process. It transforms votes that are supposed to be on individual articles into votes on general policy.
It seems to me that the only rationale for such autovoting is disruptive—to deliberately break VfD in order to prove that VfD is broken.

It's not trying to show it's broken, it's just saying, since we have it, I want my voice to be heard - I don't want things deleted, and I don't want to spend upwards of an hour every day saying that. Moooo! 02:27, 8 Sep 2004 (UTC)

By the way, is there a proposal to allow users to automatically vote "delete" on everything? [[User:Dpbsmith|Dpbsmith (talk)]] 15:31, 7 Sep 2004 (UTC)

I think it is harder to imagine someone wanting to delete something without seeing it, whereas redirecting and/or merging is a pretty benign thing, so I have no problem automatically recomending it. Moooo! 01:28, 8 Sep 2004 (UTC)

Good lord! You're actually serious, aren't you? Autovote keep? If this passes, it's probably time for me to take a permanent wikivacation. -Vina 01:14, 8 Sep 2004 (UTC)

I'm perfectly serious, and no, I'm not suggesting that we should keep rising tides of crap, nearly all of those should be on Speedy deletion anyway, and yes, there is, in my opinion, maybe 5% of the contents of vfd that really do need to be deleted, although, if it didn't it would really be the end of the world. I think 95% of things listed on vfd should be improved or redirected and merged. I don't have time to vote on each article to say that, so in essense I have no voice. I would like the option, and I suspect others might too, to have my preference to keep everything listed, without having to say so between 25 and 30 times a day. There may, of course, be occasions when I want to manually vote to delete something. What is unreasonable about that? Moooo! 01:26, 8 Sep 2004 (UTC)

  • Your proposal, if adopted by enough people, would lead to the destruction of VfD, with people looking over articles and arguing for their deletion being pitted against {{autokeep}} "voters." Can't you see this? Like I said to Netoholic on my talk page, I find archinclusionism and archdeletionism to be equally silly. We are an encyclopedia, we do have standards, and if we dropped them, it would mean the death of this work. --Ardonik.talk() 05:04, Sep 8, 2004 (UTC)
  • According to policy, you're supposed to please include your opinion and your reasoning when voting on VfD, whether it's for Keep or Delete or something else. That might be a problem. If User:Moooo! is serious in his/her time-saving scheme, how about constructing the page so that it adds a template reasoning to all the automatic Keep votes? Something on the lines of "Keep: this article is a valuable addition to the store of human knowledge." (Note: satire. Shoot, that's hard to do with this proposal.) Bishonen 22:03, 8 Sep 2004 (UTC)

We've had this discussion before. It was nonsense then, and it's nonsense now. It was a troll proposing it then, and it's a troll proposing it now. It wasn't going to happen then, and it's not going to happen now. Now, can we please stop it and get back to writing an encyclopaedia? sjorford 07:43, 9 Sep 2004 (UTC) (note to self: must...preach...peace and love...)

Well, I think it is born out of frustration at the amount of deleting that is going on - it is virtually impossible to read and comment on all of it, and there do seem to be a cadre of people who make listing things for deletion pretty much a full time job ;). I think that being able to register your general disaproval of deleting would be useful. It might be good to have a list of people who would, in principle, oppose most deletion, just to get a feeling for the level of discontent. Right now VfD is populated most by pro-deletion folks. Mark Richards 18:16, 9 Sep 2004 (UTC)
1) Although there "do seem to be a cadre of people who make listing things for deletion pretty much a full time job," they cannot delete articles by themselves. (Or: they can, but the mayn't, and they adhere to Wiki-process). 2) I think if you actually examine the voting records of people who have a reputation as "deletionists" you will see that they do not form a monolithic bloc and that many of them vote "keep" fairly frequently. 3) Some of the people who list a lot of things for deletion do so in a curt, brusque, irritable manner. Nevertheless, their actual judgements are pretty good; most of the stuff that is listed for deletion is pretty darn delete-worthy. 4) The stuff that is listed out of simple ignorance ("Some non-notable alleged composer named Ludwig van Beethoven; vanity") usually gets fixed pretty quickly. 5) Borderline and controversial cases usually acquire enough "keep" votes to prevent destruction. Do you really think large number of worthwhile articles are getting deleted because trigger-happy deletionists list them, a wolfpack of their deletionist buddies all mechanically vote delete, and that huge numbers of diamonds-in-the-rough are getting flushed down the VfD toilet faster than cool heads can assay them? [[User:Dpbsmith|Dpbsmith (talk)]] 01:13, 10 Sep 2004 (UTC)

When "keep" autovoting goes through I'm going to create an article on every family member and their pets along with my own ideas on politics, religion, sex, and my favorite words and when I use them. No one will be able to delete them so why not? I won't be the only one. Those "pro-deletion folks"? They are trying to rid the garbage and keep a valid encyclopedia we can be proud of. - Tεxτurε 18:29, 9 Sep 2004 (UTC)

Well, people would be able to delete those, and I'm sure most people who had an autovote would manually override it for that. If there wasn't so much stuff that shouldn't be deleted, you would be able to spot articles that really should be. The problem is that this kind of page makes up perhaps 2% of what is listed for deletion. Mark Richards 18:44, 9 Sep 2004 (UTC)
A rhetorical, POV, statistic of "perhaps 2%" pulled from the air is not a compelling argument. And who is "you"? "I" can often spot the articles that should be deleted quite well among the articles I look at despite the mass of stuff. Why should every person have to look at everything? I don't. I don't think most do. And I don't vote either way or comment on all the articles I do look at. Still, I agree with Mark Richards that it is often easy enough to spot those that should be merged and redirected, and so forth. But surprisingly, others don't always agree with me, or each other. Hence the necessity of considered votes instead of Mark Richards or someone else deciding unilaterally for everyone which articles "really should be" deleted and that every article he or she hasn't personally looked at should be accepted, despite what anyone else thinks. Autovoting? People wanting to automatically vote on something they haven't looked at? Seems to me those people shouldn't be voting at all because they don't understand the concept of a considered vote, don't value it. Imagine even thinking that uninformed opinion on an article they haven't bothered to examine should be counted as highly as the opinions of those who have bothered to look at it. Jallan 20:30, 9 Sep 2004 (UTC)

I'm not asking to unilaterally decide for anyone else, just that someone who opposes deletion of nearly everything have a change to have that voice heard. Unless the vast majority of people also think almost everything should be kept, things could still be deleted. Mark Richards 21:23, 9 Sep 2004 (UTC)

If one is opposed to deletion, they should list their reasons and vote to keep. If one is opposed to keeping, they should list their reasons and vote to delete. In either case, each article must be considered on its own merits, and a voter should be prepared to defend his or her ideas. It's an outstanding system--VfD is responsible for a lot of the behind-the-scenes cleanup on the Wikipedia. It is bulky, and we're all aware of its flaws, but template:autokeep is an absolutely dreadful idea (we've been having a spate of those recently.) I notice that people have been arguing in favor of archinclusionism around here but not archdeletionism. Both extremes are equally unhelpful. --Ardonik.talk() 21:30, Sep 9, 2004 (UTC)

First off, I'd like to register my opinion that this was a silly proposal and still remains one. However, I think many people arguing in favor of it are missing a very important point: Votes do not necessarily dictate what gets deleted. I haven't voted on VfD in a while, but when I did, many of the valuable articles were expanded by the people who were strongly in favor of keeping (which I think is a great reason for VfD in and of itself; people are going to get on the ball and improve an article they like when it is facing extinction rather than when it is simply listed for cleanup.) Also, when I voted, most votes were discussions (as VfD is meant to be), not simply votes. People vote and give their reason. When the article had merit, more often than not, someone would come along and vote to keep and give strong reasons.

But the basic concept being missed is that sysops are the only ones who can delete. VfD is designed to give sysops informed opinions on what should and should not be deleted. When a page is easy to see that it should be deleted, it should be listed for speedy deletion. But either way, sysops are generally trusted members of the Wiki-community. If there is a largely sock-puppet vote or a majority vote without decent reasons, no matter what the vote says, I trust most sysops to use their own judgement. They are not robots looking at the vote count and deleting if it is above a certain percentage. They are (for the most part) responsible individuals capable of independent thought and reasoning. Let's not forget that VfD is only votes for asking that something be deleted. Not actually votes forcing deletion if there is a consensus.

Still, I agree that the system needs an overhaul and speedy deletions should be more common and chat on the article talk page should be more common before an article is listed on VfD. But, while I can't speak for everyone, when I choose to spend my contribution time on VfD, I am trying to improve the quality of Wikipedia based on established standards. When an article is not clearly in violation, I usually give the benefit of the doubt and vote to keep.

Deletionists aren't vandals or mean-spirited (generally), they are simply trying to improve our project. Let's keep this in mind. Skyler 13:58, Sep 10, 2004 (UTC)

I strongly oppose for an autovoting idea. As I've written before, "If there is no reason to keep, do not vote. If there is no reason to delete, do not vote." Simple as that. I mean, why vote to keep simply because there is no reason to delete? Likewise, why vote to delete simply because there is no reason to keep? Autovoting would be just as the same of not having a VfD page at all. --[[User:AllyUnion|AllyUnion (talk)]] 12:58, 15 Sep 2004 (UTC)

  • I also strongly oppose autovoting. There are many things that don't belong in an encyclopedia on here, and it's bad enough as is, with certain users manually voting to keep every bit of nonnotable cruft. Autovoting is an invitation to wikipedia being a project to provide every person on the planet infinite amount of webspace for whatever purposes they may desire. Not a bad goal, perhaps, but not ours. --Improv 03:30, 11 Oct 2004 (UTC)

Autovoting of any kind is extremely anti-consensus, as consensus is based on discussing things first. I strongly oppose it. siroχo 04:14, Oct 11, 2004 (UTC)

Instead of the autovoting being a blanket position, what if we generated a few lists, for instance, a list of wikipedians who believe all high schools are notable, etc. And then, you could go add yourself to that list, and whenever a high school comes up on VfD, and the grounds for deleting the entry is that high schools aren't notable, persons on that list count as voting against its deletion. That way, this is not a blanket "keep everything," but those inclusionists don't need to spend an inordinate amount of time finding each and every high school being listed in order to make their opinions heard. And there could be a similar list for deletionists, I suppose, "delete all high schools that don't have quality X" where X is whatever they think would make it notable enough to include. I mean, its one thing to talk about autovoting to keep articles regardless of content, but when the same exact types of articles keep coming up, and the challenge is just about where the notability bar should be set, one should have the ability to vote, once, to support all articles challenged on that particular ground. Posiduck 20:25, 26 Oct 2004 (UTC)

Talk page issue

Ok, I'm new at this, so I'm in doubt as to what should be done, if anything, about a talk page I stumbled upon. The article itself is valid (I guess), but it's one of those "invites for vandalism". The actual problem concerns the Rocco Siffredi (the Italian porn star) article's talk page. Really, I have no idea whether that's a joke or just some clueless visitor, but I just thought that stuff had to go. I didn't delete it though, since we do not do that with talk pages. So what should we do in that case? Just delete it? Leave a message in case that guy shows up again? Regards, Redux 04:18, 8 Sep 2004 (UTC)

  • I blanked it. What nonsense. --Ardonik.talk() 04:57, Sep 8, 2004 (UTC)
All right, now I've found another crazy talk page, so I once again turn to more knownledgeable Wikipidians. My doubt is whether I should just go ahead and blank crazy stuff like that or put it to a vote here first. Here is the problematic talk page. You will notice that all the edits in the talk page are by some anon user identified only by his IP address. Unlike the previous case above, this one edited repeatedly (although he did it in an 8-minute timespan) in order to compose his idea of a joke. Shouldn't this guy be blocked from editing? Regards, Redux 04:00, 10 Sep 2004 (UTC)
I blanked both that talk page and another that the anon posted "what" to (that was the entire post). I also left a message on the anon's talk page welcoming them to the Wikipedia, along with a link to the Sandbox. SWAdair | Talk 04:42, 10 Sep 2004 (UTC)
Looks like a newbie confusing the main article space for the sandbox ("hey, you really CAN edit these pages! Wowie zowie!") I'd leave {{test}} ~~~~ on the anon's talk page. If they actually try to damage a live talk page or an actual article after that, you move to {{test2}} ~~~~, {{test3}} ~~~~, {{test4}} ~~~~, and finally Wikipedia:Vandalism in progress, though some people take the fast track to the final step.
Shouldn't this question have been put up on the Village pump? --Ardonik.talk() 04:53, Sep 10, 2004 (UTC)

Have the people who keep arguing for the suspension of VfD actually seen what's on Cleanup and Wikipedia:Pages needing attention? Those pages are enormous, and very little is getting done about the items listed on those pages. RickK 22:09, Sep 9, 2004 (UTC)

To be fair, I think we ought to all be looking there more often. But cleanup of unfamiliar articles takes research and time; it's not the easiest thing in the world to do. In a perfect world, newbies wouldn't be giving us substubs to clean up, but I guess it comes with the territory. I've only cleaned up John C. Stennis Space Center so far, and that took the better part of a day. --Ardonik.talk() 04:57, Sep 10, 2004 (UTC)
Yeah, I know. I work slowly! --Ardonik.talk() 04:59, Sep 10, 2004 (UTC)
I would have to agree with Ardonik. All experienced Wikipedians should take a little time to work on the Cleanup and Pages Needing Attention pages, but having even experienced Wikipedians working on articles they do not understand is no good to anyone. It will only result in more need for cleanup and possible inaccuracies. Personally, I think we need to form some sort of grouping system for Wikipedians who are interested in and/or knowledgable about a certain subject to collect their ideas and work on the articles within their respective fields. However, until something like this happens, the best we can do is keep VfD as an outlet for getting rid of what is not needed and will (most likely) not be cleaned up in the near future. Skyler 13:07, Sep 10, 2004 (UTC)
I only disagree with you in that I think any article can benefit fron the touch of an experienced Wikipedian, even if he or she knows nothing about the subject at hand. That's what wikification is all about--making articles conform to our guidelines, adding links, copyediting, improving sentence structure, categorizing, adding to lists, formatting articles to look like articles on related subjects, and so on. After all, don't we all troll Special:Recentchanges every now and then, looking for a new substub to pounce on? (Or {{subst:vfd}}....) --Ardonik.talk() 00:22, Sep 11, 2004 (UTC)
A short, grossly inaccurate article does not benefit from being wikified and improved stylistically and grammatically. Obvious advertising is not improved by someone who knows nothing about the product rewording making it unobvious, actually aiding sneaky insertion of advertising material in Wikipedia. Vanity articles don't improve with polish. I've seen also seen many articles "disimproved" by people adding one piece of misinformation after another. It's depressing to come accross articles that have been given bits of spot editing, a stub notice added, minor bits of cleanup, categorized three different times, had links added to it, and so forth, and through all this have remained fundamentally crap. Jallan 13:40, 15 Sep 2004 (UTC)

A new template to put something on the VfD page: {{vfdsec|PageName}} {{subst:VfD warning}} --Sgeo | Talk 23:02, Sep 10, 2004 (UTC)

  • I'm adding {{subst:VfD warning}} to the vfdsec so it stands on its own. Now, will it be faster if we use {{subst:vfdsec|Article name}} or {{vfdsec|Article name}}? --Ardonik.talk() 03:04, Sep 11, 2004 (UTC)
I don't believe subst: works with params, so VfD warning would be worthless (unless I'm mistaked, it's to warn authors that they're editing directly on the main page.

First names?

Is there an agreement (as much as there is EVER agreement here) about whether "first-name" articles like Marge and Helga are appropriate for Wikipedia? Joyous 23:54, Sep 13, 2004 (UTC)

Depends on the name and the article. For example, Alexander is a relatively lengthy article, and many people have been known solely or primarily by that name. Names (both first and last) should be reviewed on a case-by-case basis. -Sean Curtin 04:08, Sep 15, 2004 (UTC)


Maybe I've just misunderstood the way that old VfD discussions are archived, but is Template:VfD-Blimey really supposed to be there? - RedWordSmith 23:52, 14 Sep 2004 (UTC)

I've moved it to talk:Blimey. -Sean Curtin 04:05, Sep 15, 2004 (UTC)

This is a hold-over from before we developed the current archiving process (see Wikipedia:Deletion process). Yes, the discussion pages are supposed to hang around forever. For kept pages (including kept as a redirect), they are linked to and referenced on the article's Talk page. For deleted pages, the link is recorded at Wikipedia:Archived delete debates. We formalized the archiving process after several articles were deleted then recreated but no one could find the record of the debate, forcing us to go through the whole mess again. We also had some articles that were kept, were renominated and no one could find that debate either. It's relatively cheap to keep the discussion around forever. Rossami 13:58, 15 Sep 2004 (UTC)

Wired article

Copied from the Village Pump:

Lore Sjoberg, a journalist at Wired Magazine (and who is mentioned at Lightbulb joke) has an entry on his [site] about Wikipedia and specifically the VfD pages, which he finds "endlessly fascinating". Nothing too earth shattering, although he classes Wikipedia as a guilty pleasure equal to Romy and Michelle's High School Reunion. --Roisterer 02:24, 16 Sep 2004 (UTC)

Short and thought-provoking IMO, nothing too radical perhaps but very well put. Recommended reading for all those who wish to discuss whether VfD should change, and how to achieve the desired result either way. I copy it here becuase it's relevant and my experience is there are far too many active talk pages on Wikipedia to regularly read all the relevant ones even to a single policy issue. Andrewa 03:59, 16 Sep 2004 (UTC)

header maintenance

It is convenient to edit only the first section of the VfD page when updating the date links (for example, removing a date when all entries have been processed off the /Old page). Section edit reduces the chance of an edit conflict. It's also a lot more usable on a dial-up connection. I've added a (somewhat) discrete link to edit the first section. It is at the end of the "Current Votes" line. Rossami 03:35, 17 Sep 2004 (UTC)

Un-including discussions

I've created a guide to "un-including" large and/or unanimous discussions at Wikipedia:Votes for deletion/Maintenance. Comments and edits are welcome, of course. • Benc • 09:13, 17 Sep 2004 (UTC)

Note that this guide is still applicable under the new process for easier listing and editing. :-) • Benc • 07:10, 22 Sep 2004 (UTC)

User:Crevaner and User:Old Right almost always vote within one or two votes of each other and on the same entries. Is one a sock puppet of the other? Or should we assume that they are two siblings or friends working the VfD page with side-by-side computers? - Tεxτurε 18:21, 20 Sep 2004 (UTC)

Others have noticed this. But unless these/this users/user care/cares to volunteer information I don't see how we can do more than speculate.
Their user pages both contain similar though not identical images of the American flag, and both user pages consist largely of links to political websites that they profess to admire. According to his usage page, User:Old Right does not seem fond of liberals and admires conservative websites; User:Crevaner admires libertarian websites, which is, of course, not at all the same thing. Their votes are often within a fraction of an hour of each other, but are usually separated by many minutes. User:Old Right usually, but not always, votes first. On nonpolitical articles, both usually vote keep; on political articles, they tend to vote keep on articles that appear to me to have a conservative POV and delete on articles that appear to me to have a liberal POV. [[User:Dpbsmith|Dpbsmith (talk)]] 19:37, 20 Sep 2004 (UTC)
We can ask a developer to check the logs to see if they're posting from the same address. RickK 19:45, Sep 21, 2004 (UTC)

VfD history archived

To counter page move vandalism, VfD history is now archived at Wikipedia:Votes for deletion history archive 2004-09-20, talk at Wikipedia talk:Votes for deletion history archive 2004-09-20. For those unfamiliar with it, history here is large enough that it's inconveniently slow to just move the page back, so periodic archiving is done instead. Jamesday 00:17, 21 Sep 2004 (UTC)

New process for easier listing and editing


User:Kate has taken live some code which makes it possible to use section editing for section headers in templates. That means that it's no longer necessary to add the unusual "Add to this discussion" links. Instead, all you have to do is add a section header to the subpage which you include with {{Wikipedia:Votes for deletion/Bla}}. You can then use the regular [edit] links.--Eloquence*

General feedback

I'd just like to say I find the new way of doing things better :-), but it would have been nice to have some advanced warning and / or a more prominent notice that something fundamental has changed. Using the edit links to the right of each heading to add a new entry now screws the process up something wicked. --Ianb 22:26, 21 Sep 2004 (UTC)

as I don't seem to be the only one caught out, I've taken the liberty of adding a red box to the footer with a warning as well. I have refrained from using font-decoration:blink for the time being. --Ianb 22:38, 21 Sep 2004 (UTC)
Why is there not an "add to this discussion" anymore in the standard thing to paste? I agree that people should go to the page the first time, but subsequent times they want to comment gets rather annoying. -Vina 23:05, 21 Sep 2004 (UTC)
Because there's now an "[edit]" link for every entry. Kate Turner | Talk 23:08, 2004 Sep 21 (UTC)
to be precise: the "[edit]" link now directly opens the subpage for editing, rather than the section of the main page with the links to the subpage. --Ianb 05:41, 22 Sep 2004 (UTC)
True. That's actually kinda nice. - KeithTyler 18:51, Sep 22, 2004 (UTC)

Yes, and its right aligned, a mile away from the page name, instead of right next to it as before. Oh well. - KeithTyler 23:36, Sep 21, 2004 (UTC)

(Get ready for a "me too!" post. :-)) I like this new change, too; it's an excellent application (implemented by Angela, Eloquence, and others) of an excellent feature (implemented by Kate). Its sudden implementation has taken many Wikipedians off-guard — I've had to adjust to this improved system, myself. Life goes on, though. This change is for the best — a big thank you to those involved in implementing this improved method. • Benc • 07:06, 22 Sep 2004 (UTC)

My only reservation is that this change requires users to have the "Enable section editing via [edit] links" preference set. Then again, most Wikipedians have this preference enabled, I would imagine. (Maybe someone with SQL access could report the number/percentage of users with this preference enabled?) • Benc • 07:15, 22 Sep 2004 (UTC)
Would a __FORCEDITSECTION__ token be useful? Kate Turner | Talk 21:07, 2004 Sep 22 (UTC)
Yeah, that would solve the problem. (Albeit in a mildly arm-twisting way. :-)) • Benc • 21:38, 22 Sep 2004 (UTC)

This is excellent stuff - hearty congratulations to Kate and anyone else involved in the work! —Stormie 07:14, Sep 22, 2004 (UTC)


  • can someone work out what has happened to the two submissions I just made (Olden days, WikiUniversity)? They seem to be entwined with the entry for Kaiou, and my mind is a turmoil of confusion. Thanks. --Ianb 21:37, 21 Sep 2004 (UTC)
    • I think I've got it worked out. --Ianb 21:42, 21 Sep 2004 (UTC)
      • still screwed up somewhere, methinks. --Ianb 21:48, 21 Sep 2004 (UTC)
        • seems to have worked out somehow. I've taken the liberty of adding a bold warning to the VfD footer, in the hope that the next person used to using the edit button of the last section on the page doesn't make the same mistake. --Ianb 22:00, 21 Sep 2004 (UTC)

What the hell is going on here? OK, I've followed the new, UNDISCUSSED process to add a new page to the VfD page (for Seanchai), and there's no link on the page to edit. RickK 22:10, Sep 21, 2004 (UTC)

You seem to have used (( instead of {{ for the template inclusion: see here. Kate Turner | Talk 22:24, 2004 Sep 21 (UTC)
Oy. Sigh. Thanks. Still, could we have some NOTICE before we do things like this? RickK 22:36, Sep 21, 2004 (UTC)
Possibly. Don't look at me though, I didn't touch VfD :-) Kate Turner | Talk 22:38, 2004 Sep 21 (UTC)

The header for the latest addition Wikipedia:Votes for deletion/Jesus built my hot rod doesn't seem to be turned into a link, is this a bug, when i first added the section header it was not wikified, but that was fixed. I guess the header should update then or is that impossible -- Solitude 07:27, Sep 22, 2004 (UTC)

I may be misunderstanding your question, but here goes: The section header is not automatically inserted into the discussion pages. The section header is also not automatically made into a wikified link. You have to do both manually when you nominate a page for deletion, as in:
===[[Jesus built my hot rod]]===
I will let this article speak for itself... -- ~~~~
Hope this helps. • Benc • 00:01, 23 Sep 2004 (UTC)

What am I doing wrong?

Why can't I get Wikipedia:Votes for deletion/Scottsdale Fashion Square to show up on the VfD page? I'm using the curly brackets. The VOTES show up, but not the header. I deleted it and moved it, and it still won't show up. RickK 23:35, Sep 22, 2004 (UTC)

To list pages under this new system, you have to add a section header to the discussion page itself rather than the main VfD page. HTH, • Benc • 23:50, 22 Sep 2004 (UTC)
This is yet again ANOTHER change? RickK 23:54, Sep 22, 2004 (UTC)
No, this is part of the original change. It wasn't explained as well as it could have been (obviously). • Benc • 00:02, 23 Sep 2004 (UTC)

Oops! Help!

Somehow there was confusion about a page, Mountain Region of the Alps that had an edit link that pointed to a different page. I did an edit to the main VFD page to try to fix it, changing the name, and that entire entry disappeared. I'm not sure exactly what I did wrong (if anything) -- things have been somewhat more confusing here since the subsection magic was turned on. My apologies -- could someone fix my blunder? --Improv 19:47, 23 Sep 2004 (UTC)

  • Now fixed. It needed ==[[[[Mountain Region of the Alps]]== at the top of the discussion page. Rossami

Bug fix: restore [edit] links

Whatever happened to the [edit] links that would appear next to each entry? It made it a lot easier to add a new deletion candidate, by editing say the last entry as a section, and adding your new submission there. Instead, the only way is now to edit and save the entire VfD page. - KeithTyler 20:19, Sep 21, 2004 (UTC)

There was a __NOEDITSECTION__ in Template:VfDFooter. This is now no longer needed (see above comment), so I removed it.--Eloquence*

{{vfd}} vs. {{subst:vfd}}

Sorry for being ignorant, but what's the difference between {{vfd}} and {{subst:vfd}}? I've gotten myself into the habit of doing {{vfd}} for speed. Am I causing a problem by doing this, and what is it? The only difference appears to be that {{vfd}} stays as a template link (which is easy to remove from a kept article), and {{subst:vfd}} actually inserts the text of the template into the article. Other than that, they both do the exact same thing. - KeithTyler 23:44, Sep 21, 2004 (UTC)

Several reasons, all of them relatively minor. It really doesn't hurt anything if you use {{vfd}} instead of {{subst:vfd}}. The benefits of using subst include:
  1. Allows you to edit the tag itself. Useful for special cases where you're listing multiple pages for deletion, since [[Wikipedia:Votes for deletion/{{PAGENAME}}|its entry on that page]] doesn't work unless the VfD subpage is an exact match.
  2. Discourages vandalism, a little. The average newbie who has just created an inappropriate page will be less apt to remove the entire wikicode for the tag, rather than a short "{{vfd}}".
  3. Extremely minor benefit: less strain on the database as it doesn't have to access Template:vfd when rendering the article.
Hope this helps... • Benc • 06:45, 22 Sep 2004 (UTC)
I guess that answers some of the rationale. Although...
  1. I could see doing it that way, in that uncommon special case.
  2. But the average newbie might more easily accidentally corrupt part of the tag, meaning more cleanup work for the non-newbie to reinsert the tag.
  3. Of course, if the VFD tag is changed/updated/improved, the subst: method won't reflect the improvement.
- KeithTyler 18:49, Sep 22, 2004 (UTC)

What does "subst" actually stand for? Joyous 23:59, Sep 22, 2004 (UTC)

Substitute. • Benc • 00:02, 23 Sep 2004 (UTC)
  1. {{subst:vfd}} is a pain in the ass for mirrors and violates Wikipedia:Avoid self-references.
  2. using subst makes it impossible use "what links here" to find articles where the tag was kept after delisting from vfd (both valid and malicious delisting).

anthony (see warning) 05:40, 1 Oct 2004 (UTC)

I want to bring this up again. I think the {{subst:vfd}} has more disadvantages than advantages. Apart from what Anthony mentioned in the previous post, the large and scary subst block has the potential to scare away a newbie from editing the article. Perhaps that same newbie would be able to bring the article above deletion standard. The subst has the same effect as a really large HTML style table at the beginning of an article. I suggest we go back to recommending {{vfd}}. — David Remahl 20:13, 17 Nov 2004 (UTC)

  • I disagree. Newbies are not children, and we shouldn't base our policies on the possibilities of scaring people off. The only duty we have to newbies is not to be rude to them. The same thing goes for mirrors -- while it's great they exist, we shouldn't be bending over much to make them easy. Their existance is a fringe benefit. The subst use of the template serves a valid and good purpose -- to discourage people from trivially removing it, and to serve as a really good visual cue that it's important. --Improv 20:41, 17 Nov 2004 (UTC)
    • To a computer-literate person who knows a bit of HTML etc, it is not scary. But a newbie who is not used to markup, who clicks edit and sees a lot of things he/she does not recognise from the article, may think that editing Wiki is too difficult for him/her. To counter bias in Wikipedia we need to attract more non-technical users. Besides, is it really that much more difficult to remove ten lines compared to removing one? I usually select the whole block and press the backspace button in both cases. If we want to make it clear that the tag serves a purpose and is important, why not use:
      {{vfd}} <!-- do not remove -->
    • David Remahl 17:03, 18 Nov 2004 (UTC)
      • I doubt people will actually put that in, although it's not a bad idea. There are, by the way, a huge number of articles that newbies can edit -- why should we assume they should gravitate towards those on VfD? And yes, it is much more difficult to remove 10 lines -- making sure one removes the right, and only the right, lines is a bit tricky -- it takes more effort. --Improv 21:26, 18 Nov 2004 (UTC)

Making sure one removes the right lines may be hard, but removing half the VFD notice is no worse than removing all of it. Removing the VFD notice and some other text is even worse than just removing the VFD notice. In any case, it's quite trivial to revert in any of the cases. This reason doesn't really make much sense to me. subst:vfd violates Wikipedia policy, and when I see it I will replace it with the template. anthony 警告 02:04, 19 Nov 2004 (UTC)

  • You just said that use of "subst:vfd violates Wikipedia policy". That's news to me. Which policy does it violate? Thanks. Rossami (talk) 12:32, 19 Nov 2004 (UTC)
  • vfd also violates policy, as stated on the VfD page. When I see it, I will replace it with the substitution. --Improv 16:20, 19 Nov 2004 (UTC)

Page still on vfd after more than month

Look here: 2004 Summer Olympics medals count by International Organization The relevant page:Wikipedia:Votes_for_deletion/2004_Summer_Olympics_medals_count_by_International_Organization shows a clear vote in favour of keeping.

Some admin please do whatever needs to be done in order to show that the page has survived the deletion process. And remove the vfd tag. I am not an admin and so don't want to do it myself.

Page didn't show up

I did something wrong. The page I tried to list was Chan Te-tang but all I see is my comment added to the previous listing. Now someone added a listing after mine and my article shows up but their comment is stuck on the end of mine. What gives? Rmhermen 01:33, Sep 26, 2004 (UTC)

You need to put a four-equals-sign header at the top of your subpage, or else it doesn't get a section Gwalla | Talk 05:38, 26 Sep 2004 (UTC)
Three equal signs. RickK 05:39, Sep 26, 2004 (UTC)

Gay Nigger Association of America

Gay Nigger Association of America has just been listed on VFD for the third time now last time two weeks ago, is there no limit to how often pages can be listed on VFD and how frequently and if not should a policy be formulated which states that they cannot be listed again for say 6 months or so? -- Ævar Arnfjörð Bjarmason 09:13, 2004 Sep 27 (UTC)

Just speedy delete it if it's identical to a previous vfd post which was agreed to delete. If it's different, then it may merit a new discussion. I'm assuming it is identical though. T.P.K. 11:13, 27 Sep 2004 (UTC)
For the record, there was no consensus on whether it should be deleted or not. -- Schnee 12:08, 27 Sep 2004 (UTC)
Template:VfD-GNAA - Conclusion: Keep.
Second time - Conclusion: Keep.
Wikipedia:Votes_for_deletion/Gay_Nigger_Association_of_America - Forecasted conclusion: stop adding to VfD, clean up again, keep. Goat-see 14:47, 27 Sep 2004 (UTC)
  • I see no reason there should be a limit. I hope that it is successfully deleted this time, because the reasons it should be are sound. In any case, I suspect this isn't the right place to vote for a policy change, although it might be a good place to argue and discuss before such a vote. --Improv 15:12, 27 Sep 2004 (UTC)
    • There most certainly is a reason, it's called "beating a dead horse". We should impose an absolute limit to the number of times something gets added to VfD within a finite amount of time. (ie no more than 3 VfDs within a 6 month period) [[User:GRider|GRider\talk]] 19:30, 22 Nov 2004 (UTC)
    • Sure there is. If the one article has been voted on 3 times, and the consensus was to keep - what does that tell you?!? - Ta bu shi da yu 14:05, 29 Sep 2004 (UTC)

Proposed new rule: No repeat submission of articles

Possible proposals to increase efficiency

Please add possible ways to improve VfD efficiency to this list, comment on them and we'll see whether there's much chance of them relieving some of the VfD workload. Jamesday 06:00, 29 Sep 2004 (UTC)

  • If an article is increased in size by 100% with meaningful content by someone who hasn't previously contributed to it, it should be removed from VfD because it has been demonstrated that it can be expanded. It can be relisted in one month.
  • If an article is less then one day old at the time of listing, it should be removed (insufficient time to know if the original author will expand it).
  • If an article is less than one week old at the time of listing and has been edited within three days of listing it should be removed (still being worked on, so premature to list on VfD).
  • If an article is listed for being insignificant and there are more than 10,000 estimated non-Wikipedia or mirror Google hits which appear to be for the article topic, it should be removed unless the listing reason explains why the Google hits should be ignored.
  • If an article has been tagged as a small stub (substab tag) by someone other than those who had previously edited it, that's an indication that someone thinks it is improvable and it should not be listed for deletion for at least one week after the tag was added.
  • If an article has been tagged as a stub or for cleanup by someone other than those who had previously edited it, that's an indication that someone thinks it is improvable and it should not be listed for deletion for at least one month after the tag was added.
  • Someone who has previously voted to delete an article which was kept may not list that article in the future unless it is massively changed first. A forum shopping limit, to discourage "submit until it gets deleted" as a method. There's no shortage of people to list things for deletion.

Any more possibilities? Please add them to the list. Jamesday 06:00, 29 Sep 2004 (UTC)

sounds all like a lot of effort in checking and monitoring. How about "An Admin can delete an article if there are three Delete votes and not Keep votes, and the admin thinks there is no chance that the article will pass VfD." That would clean out the VfD pretty quick I think -- Chris 73 Talk 12:17, Sep 29, 2004 (UTC)
That list makes my brain hurt with Instruction creep. -- Cyrius| 12:21, 29 Sep 2004 (UTC)
The above suggestions mostly ignore entirely deletion for original research or POV or vanity (save for the Google test). For example, I once listed an article on VfD for original research while the author was still working on it (and advised the author). The author agreed on VfD that the article should be deleted, being previously unaware of the original research rule. When original research or being an advert or vanity and so forth is the issue, increasing content 100% means nothing. Who decides that the content is meaningful or useful or appropriate? Currently this is done by Keep and Delete votes on VfD. What other method would be used?
That an article is marked with a stub or substub template is meaningless. Too many editors mindlessly slap one of those templates on any short article they encounter, often on subjects about which they know nothing. There is, unfortunately, no thought whatsoever about whether the article could or should be expanded or whether it should be made a redirect and so forth.
Also many edits on articles are trivial and shouldn't effect whether it should go to VfD. Sometimes an article is submitted by the very person who cleaned it up, because only in so doing did the person see that something seemed wrong.
It seems to me to be rare that an article gets listed on VfD where a decision to keep results from additional editing by the original author which the author or someone else was going to do immediately in any case. I don't see value in such complex rules for a very few submissions .
As to the idea of removing on three delete votes and no keep votes, that badly subverts VfD. It is too easily gamed. Someone lists a controversial article, and three other immediately mark with Delete (perhaps by pre-arrangement). The same would be true for removing, if there are three Keep votes and no Deletes. Such rules would only encourage quick and unthinking responses by ardant deletionists and ardent retentionists on various topics to mark a listing quickly in hopes that it could be dealt with before those who might feel differently noticed it. More reasonable might be a rule that if after three full days on VfD, there are at least three Keep votes and only Keep votes on an article or at least three Delete votes and only Delete votes on an article, then the article could be diposed of as indicated. However even that creates an obvious target for trolling, sticking on an opposition vote just to make the listing remain.
Jallan 14:55, 29 Sep 2004 (UTC)
  • All of the above seem to indicate that Jamesday is operating under the mistaken belief that the purpose of VFD is to determine whether or not an article is suitable for inclusion in Wikipedia. It is not. It is to determine whether or not a topic is suitable for inclusion. It doesn't matter whether the article was written last year or two minutes ago, it doesn't matter whether it's a stub or a substub, it doesn't matter whether the prose is glorious or dreadful - all that matter is: should this subject be covered by Wikipedia? If so, keep. If not, delete. Please, have a read of Wikipedia:Deletion policy. —Stormie 00:08, Oct 1, 2004 (UTC)
    • No. The article is the basic issue. Wikipedia:Deletion policy mentions "article" again and again, not topic. And again and again on VfD one finds remarks like: "A good article could be written on this topic, but this isn't it." As an example: it is reasonable to delete a article on a company which is really an advert. But the deletion is without prejudice to the topic and certainly does not indicate that any later objective article on the same company should be deleted. "No potential to become encyclopedic" is one reason given in Wikipedia:Deletion policy why an article might be deleted, but it is not the only reason. And even under this head a particular article might have no potential to become encyclopedic because POV haunts all parts of it rather than because the topic itself could not be encyclopedic. If no-one is immediately willing to write what would essentially be a new article on the topic, then it is better that a POV rant be summarily deleted, again without prejudice to the topic itself. Jallan 03:08, 1 Oct 2004 (UTC)
      • I find this question interesting. I always assumed VfD was about the topic, not the article. But Jallan's argument is persuasive, and many comments on VfD certainly imply that people are talking about the article, not the topic. On the other hand, articles are commonly speedily deleted due to the fact that the title was previously deleted via VfD, even if the content of the article is different. If consensus can be reached on this question, the answer should be heavily advertised. anthony (see warning) 05:31, 1 Oct 2004 (UTC)
        • Wikipedia:Candidates for speedy deletion gives as a reason for speedy deletion:

          Reposted content that was deleted according to Wikipedia deletion policy.

          Speedy deletion because the title is the same is not at all the same thing. If indeed this is being done where the content of an article is not essentially the same as in another article (or in other articles?) that have deleted through VfD, the article should be listed on Wikipedia:Votes for undeletion. (I also think I have occasionally seen an article placed on VfD immediately after being rescued from a speedy deletion ... but can't at the moment find where in the policies where this practice is allowed, if it is officially allowed and I am remembering properly.) I believe, in any case, that the fact that people on VfD are often obviously talking about the article and not the topic, and that Wikipedia:Deletion policy doesn't mention topic at all, indicates consensus has been achieved here. I also recall an obvious advert being listed on VfD with a note that its content differed from a previous advert article on the same company and therefore it was not a candidate for speedy deletion. But, since some seem to be misunderstanding the policy, obviously [[Wikipedia:Deletion policy should be updated to make this clearer. Basically, a vote for deletion by me, on any article, is an indication that I feel no article at all is better than what currently appears, not that it would ever be impossible for an acceptable article to appear on the topic, though often I cannot conceive of how such an article could be written and feel in those cases that it is impossible. But I am certainly not voting against any such future article that would surprise me.
          Jallan 19:01, 11 Oct 2004 (UTC)

Keep or redirect

Copied from Wikipedia:Votes for deletion/Fluoride poisoning:

  • Keep. Valid topic of great public interest. The initial article was basically a disputed and controversial claim presented as fact, and there's now been an edit war featuring the same player, but that's not grounds for deletion. The debate over the redirect belongs in the talk page, not here. Andrewa 03:37, 30 Sep 2004 (UTC)
    • This is exactly the right place for a debate about whether an article should exist or redirect. Rhobite 04:19, Sep 30, 2004 (UTC)

I don't think so. VfD is the place to discuss whether or not a sysop is to be asked to delete the article. What it's kept as can be changed by any user at any time, and should be discussed on the article's talk page. Andrewa 04:55, 30 Sep 2004 (UTC)

If a user insists on putting an unnecessary article in place of a redirect, I see no alternative. AAAAA told me he would revert me "as many times as necessary." Rhobite 05:03, Sep 30, 2004 (UTC)
There are lots of places to seek help without cluttering up VfD. The first place to try is the article talk page, which you did. Probably the village pump is the next step if you need to get more people involved, although IMO it would be hard to find better help than David Brooks who was already interested. Deletion rarely solves this sort of problem. Unfortunately, listing on VfD often does help, but that doesn't make it right! Andrewa 05:31, 30 Sep 2004 (UTC)

Proposed new format for sub-pages

Now each vote is on a sub-page it is possible to make the format of each vote easier to follow and count. I propose that each sub-page have 4 sections: Keep, Delete, Abstain and Comments. The first three would appear in a table above the last like this:

Proposed new format


  1. first keep vote


  1. first delete vote


  1. first abstain vote


  • Add comments here

I have tried to minimise the complicated bits, but more expert coders might manage better. What I would really like is an extension to Mediawiki which mechanises vote-counting, but that's better left for MediaZilla. --Phil | Talk 12:33, Sep 30, 2004 (UTC)

Sorry I don't really like it. The table looks too complicated. Also, there are many more options in VfD: Merge, Redirect, Move to Wictionary, etc. My favorite would be to just have the vote at the front in bold like:
  • Delete because .... (sign)
  • Keep. Reason is .... (sign)
--Chris 73 Talk 13:57, Sep 30, 2004 (UTC)
I reckon it's much better, but perhaps the Abstain should be an Redirect column (counting the number of people abstaining is pretty pointless and they usually comment anyway). violet/riga (t) 17:11, 30 Sep 2004 (UTC)
I can't say I like it. Usually when somebody comments, they're replying to a vote (or another comment), and this would separate them. Plus it doesn't allow room for votes like "transwiki and delete", move, merge/redirect, etc. Gwalla | Talk 20:19, 30 Sep 2004 (UTC)
Only the voters name would appear in the keep/delete/other column - all comments would appear in comments section. As for "transwiki and delete" the name could appear in the delete column and "transwiki" could be mentioned in the comments or "transwiki [name]" in the delete column. violet/riga (t) 09:49, 1 Oct 2004 (UTC)
I strongly oppose this. Call me a dreamer, but I think VfD should be more about discussion and less about counting votes. anthony (see warning) 05:23, 1 Oct 2004 (UTC)
Though seeing a majority in one column may bias the outcome I'm sure people will still comment and that the admin will be read them before making a decision. violet/riga (t) 09:48, 1 Oct 2004 (UTC)
More instruction creep. -- Cyrius| 11:46, 1 Oct 2004 (UTC)

Oppose this strongly, agree /w anthony and cyrius here. siroχo 04:11, Oct 11, 2004 (UTC)

"If you were looking" notice

I restored the notice "If you were looking for an article on the abbreviation "VFD", please see VFD." to the top of the page. The problem is that vfd in the main namespace redirects here, so if someone is looking for information on, say, Volunteer Fire Departments, they could be very poorly served without that notice. It seems to me that we should either keep the message or change the redirect. I'd prefer to keep the message, since typing in "vfd" is so convenient. - RedWordSmith 03:29, 1 Oct 2004 (UTC)

Just add "wp:". wp:vfd goes here. I've fixed the redirect. Should we now remove the notice? anthony (see warning) 05:21, 1 Oct 2004 (UTC)
VfD still redirects here, so the notice should stay. At any rate, the Talk:Vfd page seems to wish vfd redirecting here, so I think it will redirect here in the future, again, confusing more people. 07:31, 3 Oct 2004 (UTC)

Vfd to prepare a page move

Can Wikipedia have a separate section for articles that need to be deleted to prepare a page move?? I put sweetheart on Vfd for this exact reason, but it was objected to easily. 20:58, 10 Oct 2004 (UTC)

Try Wikipedia:Requested moves. This page is still in the process of being set up, though you are welcome to add requests to it. • Benc • 03:32, 11 Oct 2004 (UTC)
Put a request there by all means, but there are already ways of achieving this particular move/merge without needing VfD, and just incidentally, there's no consensus that this particular move/merge is a good idea. See Wikipedia:Votes for deletion/Sweetheart and talk:boyfriend, where several people have replied to your proposal. A request for a move should point to these previous discussions. Andrewa 11:31, 15 Oct 2004 (UTC)

Someone recreated the article, already deleted off vfd, I've put a vfd tag on to discourage any more editing. Delete automatically? -- user:zanimum

Bad Instructions

While the instructions at the bottom of the page can be followed (with some difficulty), the link provided there as "this edit link" is not functional and should be removed or corrected - Marshman 01:16, 14 Oct 2004 (UTC)

I believe I've fixed the link. - RedWordSmith 04:19, 14 Oct 2004 (UTC)

Fred Ashley White

In this latest bit of vandalism, an anonym created several medical articles which referenced real, difficult to check phenomena in subtly wrong ways, and used these bogus articles, plus another bogus article on a different editable web site, to support the final bogus article, Fred Ashley White. These vandals are becoming increasingly sophisticated, and spending more and more effort to slip in bogus articles. Fortunately this series was spotted by R. S. Shaw, who had the knowledge to smell a rat. With such determination, I wonder if some of these sophisticated vandals don't have a commercial interest in discrediting Wikipedia? If so, they will only get slicker and slicker. Also, we are supposedly getting 2,500 new articles per day. How many of this type are we already missing?

I have now swung to the view that not only is deletionism necessary for the health of Wikipedia (think white blood cells), but that it needs to become much more aggressive. Possibly we should be deleting several hundred articles per day, rather than the present average of 40; and VfD in its current form cannot handle that load (which will only continue to increase). Either that, or make it much harder to create new articles. With over a million articles already, but most of them stubs, I really don't think easy article creation is necessary or even good for WP at the moment. At least, anons probably should not be able to create new articles. Or does anyone have any better ideas how to deal with this problem? Securiger 00:47, 18 Oct 2004 (UTC)

fix for 'deletion tools' box

The "Deletion Tools" box currently says:

Articles {{vfd}}

I believe it should say:

Articles {{subst:vfd}}

I believe the purpose of the tags is to just quickly tell users how to add them to an article, so I think the above is the right thing to do now. I don't know how to edit the "Deletion Tools" box; can someone more powerful do this? Tempshill 17:19, 18 Oct 2004 (UTC)

Is there still a reason for it to be subst? Doesn't this rule date back to when deletion discussions were sometimes moved to the talk page during the 5 days and the template needed to be easy to change? This isn't the case anymore since all discussions take place on subpages. Angela. 20:03, Oct 22, 2004 (UTC)

Notability is Relative

IMO, far too many of the entries listed here are for the reason of the entry being about a "non-notable" person or thing. I think that this is overdoing things. While I will admit that some entries of this sort (those lacking any significance or purely created for vanity) should be deleted, I would error on the side of caution. Notability is relative, and can develop over time. If there is any doubt, I don't think articles should be deleted for this reason. Disk space is cheap. --L33tminion 07:05, Oct 23, 2004 (UTC)

  • Disk space is not *that* cheap. Remember the recent upgrades we recently saw a drive for. As for notability developing, let it do so, and *then* an article can be created. Otherwise, we may as well accept articles about everyone born ahead of time because maybe notability will happen. --Improv 07:07, 23 Oct 2004 (UTC)
    • Disk space is cheap, you can buy a disk that can hold the entirety of en.wikipedia text (no images) approximately 5 times for ~ $1.95 . Pure disk space isn't the problem. Multimedia might concievably be a problem, and bandwidth is a definate problem. Kim Bruning 11:54, 23 Oct 2004 (UTC)
See User:Geogre/Talk_archive_3#Hmmm... for an interesting in-depth discussion between two Wikipedians on this topic. On a side note, deletion has nothing to do with saving disk space. Remember that old revisions are still stored, and can be undeleted in an instant by an administrator. If anything, deletion consumes disk space. — David Remahl 07:11, 23 Oct 2004 (UTC)
Some time ago, I developed the {{notable}} template to mark articles with doubtful notability, to help lighten the load of VFD, but it has since been deleted. I am thinking of reinstating it. [[User:Poccil|Peter O. (Talk)]] 07:21, Oct 23, 2004 (UTC)
    • Perhaps it should have been {{non-notable}} :-) Nicholas 12:11, 23 Oct 2004 (UTC)
  • What do we deal with on Wikipedia that isn't relative? Somebody's patent nonsense is another person's insight into the way government really works. Nothing that goes on on VfD is really quantifiable except things like Amazon sales ranking and Google hits, and people differ on how important they are. Personally, I'm a big believer in somebody's long-term notability affecting how much they deserve a Wikipedia entry. Lord Bob 07:23, Oct 23, 2004 (UTC)
    • One thing I disapprove of is schools being deleted because of "lack of notability". If wikipedia is to be an information resource for all, then the ability to get an NPOV description of the different schools in your area is of immense value to parents. Limiting wikipedia to the contents of printed and bound encyclopaedias is highly short-sighted. Nicholas 12:15, 23 Oct 2004 (UTC)
      • There are other places for that that do the job better. Our school descriptions are never very detailed anyhow, because that information is not encyclopedic. Information that is too local does not belong here. It might be worthwhile to find another place for it though. --Improv 15:40, 23 Oct 2004 (UTC)
        • But what reason is there that local information doesn't belong on Wikipedia? Information about different schools is useful and can be used to create good encyclopedic articles, and thus does belong on Wikipedia. --L33tminion 17:37, Oct 29, 2004 (UTC)
          • The same reason why the local bus timetables aren't on here. Wikipedia is not your local unitary authority's service directory. Schools are not inherently notable any more than any discussion on VfD is inherently unbiased. Many pages on schools are there just for the sake of having them, for which many an article has been deleted before. Chris 05:39, 31 Oct 2004 (UTC)

Proposal to reduce size of VfD

I have proposed on Wikipedia:Preliminary Deletion (it's a bad name, but I was pressed for time when I wrote it) something that will cut down the size of VfD by listing "dubious" articles that aren't clear speedys nor clear VfDs on a separate page (for more, see the page). Comments appreciated (preferably on its talk page). Johnleemk | Talk 16:22, 23 Oct 2004 (UTC)

Sending rejected articles to Wikinerds

Someone calling himself NSK, email nsk2@wikinerds.org , runs a site named Wikinerds which seeks to become a "knowledge base" (as opposed to an encyclopedia). He does not think we should be deleting things and thinks Wikipedia ought to seek to be come a knowledge base rather than an encyclopedia, accepting anything true whether or not it is encyclopedic. "Disk is cheap" etc. I asked whether he himself would be interested in accepting Wikipedia's rejected articles in Wikinerds, and he is. (Except for copyright violations).

(A long aside. I don't know that I grok Wikinerds in fullness. It seems to be running MediaWiki software, but if I understand how to work allpages there are only nine articles at present. Nor is it clear to me that VfD material resubmitted to Wikinerds will automatically be kept, because the site says:

"You are free to do anything you want here, but the sysops have exactly the same freedom (i.e. we can delete/move/change anything we want). There is no due process (although we may create one in the future)." It says "JnanaBase is a knowledge base with no limits on what can be included here. It is a wiki and everyone can contribute content, including non-registered anonymous editors!"

So I do not see what might be called any guarantee to keep. All I see is a founder's intent to guide the site toward becoming a knowledge base (rather than an encyclopedia). But anyway.)

But anyway. What NSK would like is for those whose articles are rejected by Wikipedia to be aware that they are welcome to submit them to Wikinerds.

Would there be a terrible objection to adding a very short phrase to the VfD notice, something like "Resubmission suggestions" or "Alternative outlets," that would link to a page with information on any sites, outlets, individuals, etc. who are interested in having material that is deleted from Wikipedia? User:Anthony DiPierro is interested in this, too [not exactly - AD].

I realize that it's providing publicity to a minor site, and a competitor-of-sorts at that, and that we might lose contributors who prefer NSK's vision to Jimbo's, but I still think it would be a reasonable thing to do. [[User:Dpbsmith|Dpbsmith (talk)]] 23:45, 23 Oct 2004 (UTC)

Wikinerds uses the GFDL it is true, but, despite their claim to support open content, their standard copyright appears much more offensive http://www.wikinerds.org/legal/copyright.html (written permission required). Are there any truly free alternatives? Could they be persuaded to fix their copyright? Mozzerati 13:16, 2004 Oct 24 (UTC)

I'm not overly concerned with people going there instead of here (hey, if people are really that interested in our VfD rejects, they can have 'em), and I certainly don't find the idea objectionable in any way. Take this as me voicing reserved acceptance. Lord Bob 00:05, Oct 24, 2004 (UTC)

Material submitted to Wikipedia must be licensed under the GFDL, and this licensing does not disappear when an article is deleted; as such, everyone's free to use it (so long as it's not deleted due to copyright problems). I personally don't think Wikinerds will attract many contributors, but if they want to use Wikipedia content (whether deleted or not), the GFDL explicitely allows this.
That being said, I see no reason why Wikipedia should link to this site, though. -- Schnee 00:11, 24 Oct 2004 (UTC)

Guys and girls, if the articles are deleted, how is he going to put them onto his own site? - Ta bu shi da yu 00:18, 24 Oct 2004 (UTC)

Admins can view deleted revisions of articles; alternatively, he could copy the articles' contents when they are listed on VfD (while they are still available). -- Schnee 00:23, 24 Oct 2004 (UTC)
What I had in mind is that the resubmission work would be done a) before the article was deleted, b) by the people most motivated to preserve their work—the contributors themselves. In some cases, the article would be submitted to Wikinerds and then also kept here. I don't see any problem at all with that. I'm trying to figure out how to set this up in a natural way that doesn't require new Wikitechnology, and that distributes the work to people who have an interest in doing it. Follow a little link to a big explanation... and let contributors stung by the possibility of rejection know that Wikinerds says they would like to have their material. [[User:Dpbsmith|Dpbsmith (talk)]] 01:25, 24 Oct 2004 (UTC)
The easiest way to do that would probably be to poll VfD regularly (every hour or so), parse it for new listings, download the articles in question, remove the vfd template (if present) and put it up on Wikinerds. -- Schnee 01:30, 24 Oct 2004 (UTC)
Not sure how useful it would be to write such a script, as the format of VFD changes regularly. But I just thought of an alternative. Category:Pages on votes for deletion. Unfortunately, even this would require screen scraping, as there is no bot friendly version of category pages. anthony 警告 23:32, 26 Oct 2004 (UTC)
I don't have a problem with the idea, although I see two small technical issues:
  1. Just because we don't use the article, doesn't mean it gets un-GFDLed. Make sure NSK understands that.
  2. I can see the potential for other sites wanting to be listed too. Rather than making the VfD notice point specifially at Wikinerds, it might be more flexible to point it at a Wipiedia namespace page which listed anyone who wants to receive them. Then new sites could be added (or removed) quickly. Securiger 11:59, 24 Oct 2004 (UTC)

Just wanted to clarify that my site does not currently allow submissions. I have said that I'm interested in being able to download deleted articles. Eventually I may allow people to submit articles directly, but this is low on my to-do list. anthony 警告 02:17, 25 Oct 2004 (UTC)

Of course go with this, for Wikinerds or any site. One person's garbage may be another person's treasure. But polling VfD for new listings and copying articles would not work well. Not all articles on VfD are deleted and many are changed drastically while on VfD.

Also in order to avoid confusion, I think it should be required that the material downloaded should be identified on any site on which it is displayed as coming originally from "Wikipedia Deletions" or some similar phrase, if this would help protect Wikipedia from being involved in any subsequent accusations of copyright violation or libel or promulgating hate literature and so on. Such issues have sometimes been part of the reason why an article has been deleted. Similarly anyone downloading deleted material should have to click on some kind of legal disclaimer indicating that it is recognized that the material being downloaded has been deleted from Wikipedia as not suitable for Wikipedia, that Wikipedia by allowing others to publish or display this material is not recommending that it be published or displayed, and that the downloader agrees that Wikipedia bears no responsiblity for any legal problems that might result from display or publication of the material.

Jallan 17:34, 24 Oct 2004 (UTC)

Those requirements restrict the GFDL license. I don't think we can do that. - Ta bu shi da yu 23:49, 24 Oct 2004 (UTC)
What exactly can't we do? We require people reusing Wikipedia material to credit Wikipedia. What prohibits us from requiring people reusing Wikipedia material taken from Wikipedia deletion archives to credit Wikipedia Deletion? If this is not done, I can see people taking material that has been deleted from Wikipedia (for various reasons), and promulgating it as Wikipedia material, along the lines of: "According to a Wikipedia article, 'John Obvious Vanity', John Vanity is one of the greatest philosophers of the twentieth century." Of course anyone checking would see, hopefully, that the article no longer existed in Wikipedia. Also, currently does anyone and everyone have the legal right to publish material submitted to Wikipedia according to GFDL licence, provided they credit Wikipedia and themselves abide by the GFDL licence? If so, then does Wikipedia have the right to withhold deleted material at all. If someone requested any or all deleted material, would Wikipedia be legally bound to agree because the material was originally submitted under GFDL licence. If Wikipedia does have the right to withhold material submitted for publication, as it now does by deleting it and making in generally inaccessible, then surely Wikipedia also has the right to request any third party who might later wish to pubish it to disclaim any Wikipedia responsibility for any negative results of it being published or otherwise distributed. That would not, it seems to me, restrict the licence. What it does mean is that Wikipedia won't go out of its way to give you the material unless you agree to take all legal risks in publishing or further distributing the material. If you obtain the same material some other way, say from someone's copy made while the material was on VfD, you could publish that without any restrictions other than those GFDL imposes. Similar rules apply to public domain works. The work may be in public domain, but if the work is rare and complete copies exist only in certain libraries and private collections, then you must obtain permission from one of the owners to duplicate his or her copy. The owner can charge any fee the market will bare for providing access, even if the material is public domain. The holder of the manuscript is not obliged to provide access even if the work is legally public domain. Jallan 23:03, 26 Oct 2004 (UTC)
We require people reusing Wikipedia material to credit Wikipedia. No we don't. anthony 警告 23:23, 26 Oct 2004 (UTC)
anthony stated about requirement to credit Wikipedia: "No we don't." See Wikipedia:Copyrights, Wikipedia:Verbatim copying, and Wikipedia:Copies of Wikipedia content (undetermined or disputed compliance). We do ask this for verbatim copies. If the material is not a verabitm copy, it is possible to avoid mentioning Wikipedia, it seems. But authorship information must be maintained. It would be possible to add material into the text of any deleted articles before officially releasing it to indicate that it was an article that had been deleted by Wikipedia, listing the last author of that information as "Wikipedia Deletions" or some such name. I have no objection to this material being released under GFDL for use of whoever wants it, if it is clearly marked as deleted material. (Obviously if someone already has a copy of this material from before it was just deleted, they would have the material without this marking.) Material has been deleted under VfD that is probably also copyvio, as well as material that is libellous or slanderous, that transgresses laws about hate literature and so forth. By deleting such material, when brought to its attentions by outsiders or individual editors, Wikipedia indicates it is acting in good faith. But releasing such material to others casts the entire deletion process into doubt. Deletion is no longer deletion. Jallan 02:03, 29 Oct 2004 (UTC)
See Wikipedia:Copyrights, Wikipedia:Verbatim copying, and Wikipedia:Copies of Wikipedia content (undetermined or disputed compliance). I've seen them. Do you care to tell me where these say that we require people reusing Wikipedia material to credit Wikipedia, so I can either remove that comment or ask for an admin to remove it on the talk page? Wikipedia does not own the copyright on the material, the submitters do. Let me cut you off at the pass on a few misconceptions you might be making. Wikipedia:Copyrights specifically says "The text of the GFDL is the only legally binding document; what follows is our interpretation of the GFDL: the rights and obligations of users and contributors." It says that the GFDL requires that "you must acknowledge the authorship of the article", but "Wikipedia" is not an author. The page says that "You may be able to partially fulfill the latter two obligations by providing a conspicuous direct link back to the Wikipedia article hosted on this website." Key words there being may be able to and partially. The statement also saying nothing about being "required to". Linking back might be sufficient according to this page (although it isn't), but that doesn't mean it's necessary. As for Wikipedia:Copies of Wikipedia content (undetermined or disputed compliance), that is by no means a policy page. If the material is not a verabitm copy, it is possible to avoid mentioning Wikipedia, it seems. Right. So we don't require people reusing Wikipedia material to credit Wikipedia. But authorship information must be maintained. Correct. That's one of the reasons I have a list of all Wikipedia contributors at http://www.mcfly.org/users/enusers.txt. I have no objection to this material being released under GFDL for use of whoever wants it, if it is clearly marked as deleted material. To contribute material to Wikipedia you must release it under the GFDL with no invariant sections and no cover texts. If you object to this, then don't contribute. "If you do not want your writing to be edited mercilessly and redistributed at will, do not submit it." But releasing such material to others casts the entire deletion process into doubt. Deletion is no longer deletion. Deleted material is already available to admins. So the entire deletion process has already been cast into doubt. anthony 警告 18:29, 29 Oct 2004 (UTC)

Sending rejected articles to Wikinerds' JnanaBase, round 2

Here's my current proposal. WIthin the VfD template, I propose to add this link at the end:

Alternative outlets for rejected articles

Read it and see what you think. We don't do anything automated. We don't promise anything. We don't do anything on the contributors' behalf. All we do is put something in the VfD notice that links to a description of Wikinerds' Jnanabase and tells them how to submit their article. Hashing out licensing, etc. is directly between the contributor and Wikinerds (or McFly, or...)

Help me wordsmith this to keep it legally in the clear. Does anyone have any suggestions for any phrasing that is shorter or clear than "Alternative outlets for rejected articles?" [[User:Dpbsmith|Dpbsmith (talk)]] 00:41, 25 Oct 2004 (UTC)

I've now made some changes that tell the user to transfer only single-author text: "IMPORTANT: To avoid complicated licensing issues, submit to JnanaBase only text which you have completely written yourself. Do not use versions of the article that been changed by anyone else (even to correct typos)." I think this puts things in the clear regarding GFDL licensing and preservation of history. Not having heard any objections to the idea, I'm going to Wikipedia:Be bold and go ahead and put the link in the VfD notice template. I will try to watch for any problems, but other experienced Wikipedians should feel free to revert my change to the template if they see serious issues. Of course I'd appreciate discussion here if that happens. [[User:Dpbsmith|Dpbsmith (talk)]] 12:52, 25 Oct 2004 (UTC)

I think the alternative outlets page is overly detailed. Just link to the site, give a very brief description, and let them explain there how to contribute. As for putting this in the VfD notice, I am neutral on this. It doesn't seem to resolve much, and the Wikinerds site only seems to have been around for a short while, so it's not clear how stable it's going to be. anthony 警告 17:36, 25 Oct 2004 (UTC)

Yet more problems with editing

Okay, I added my entry (Glossary of matrix theory) following the instructions, but I forgot to put a link in the section heading! (Being a good Wikipedian, I'm not used to doing such a thing! ;) So how do I change the header to have it linked on the VFD page? - dcljr 09:54, 25 Oct 2004 (UTC)

Why are places held to a different standard than people?

I ask this question because Bawlf, Alberta. I listed it, and although I personally have no problem with it staying, I felt it was worth listing due to the standard of "notability" that usually gets used. It's a small town of 370 people: which seems to make it as notable as a lot of the people and websites that get deleted for being vanity.

To my surprise, every single vote was to keep. Some people even said things along the lines of every real place should have a page, and that wikipedia isn't limited due to constraints like paper.

I ask this question then: If we apply that standard to places, why not people? Websites? Crackpot theories? I personally think consistency is important above all else: it's really the only concrete thing anyone has to fall back on when resolving disputes. So I ask, why the lack of consistency here? Shane King 23:33, Oct 25, 2004 (UTC)

Part of it's history, related to the Rambot's creation of stubs for all counties and incorporated cities in the United States. Part of it is that places are more easily verifiable, have lower probability of disappearing, and are completely unlikely to write vanity articles about themselves, their cats, or their high school bands that are looking for drummers.
If you're looking for consistency on a project run by an ever-changing group of a few thousand people voting on stuff, you're going to have a hard time finding it. It's especially hard when you're trying to come up with criteria for including a particular subject. There's no "absolute scale of encyclopedia worthiness" where you can say "everything above a 5 belongs in Wikipedia". -- Cyrius| 00:40, 26 Oct 2004 (UTC)
Settlements are notable because something drove someone to set up the town. They are geographical entities, as are counties, countries, and continents. This is as opposed to social or ecomonic entities, such as people, schools, businesses, individual streets, etc., who need good reason to be here. Comparing towns and schools is rather like comparing apples and agent orange. Chris 05:48, 31 Oct 2004 (UTC)

To purge your page to see what others have added, click here

What we have here is a very complicated situation. There appears to have been a copy and paste move done between Zionist Revisionism and Revisionism in the Israel-Palestine Conflict. I am quite happy to merge the two and setup a redirect, however because Zionist Revisionism is on VfD at the moment I don't want to do anything like this right at this moment. Also, it is further complicated by the fact that there is another article called Israeli-Palestinian history denial, that's almost exactly the same as the other two. I'm sending a message to all participants so far, requesting their comments on what they think we should do. My own preference is to merge into a more appropriately named article, something like Historical perspectives of Israelis and Palestinians (as that's what this is all about), but I'm flexible. - Ta bu shi da yu 12:16, 26 Oct 2004 (UTC)

  • Hi Ta bu shi da yu, Zionist Revisionism was the original article. I had moved it to Revisionism in the Israel-Palestine Conflict in an attempt to NPOV it, but Alberuni undid the changes and the move, without redirecting the other article. I have since redirected the 2nd article to another page.--Josiah 19:35, 26 Oct 2004 (UTC)
  • Good idea, or you could just merge all three into Revisionism in the Israel-Palestine Conflict. As long as you merge information rather than deleting it, as some have a habit of doing. Don't worry about the VfD entry for Zionist Revisionism; it is invalid. Josiah has, yet again, failed to provide valid reasons for the listing. --style 13:01, 2004 Oct 26 (UTC)
    • Yet again? You obviously don't watch anything I actually do, as 1) That was the first page I had ever put up for deletion - the fact that I had done it wrong should be proof of that, and 2) I and others listed perfectly good reason on the VfD page.--Josiah 19:35, 26 Oct 2004 (UTC)
    • I would avoid POV titles that are bound to be challenged. As for the VfD entry, it is perfectly valid to list the article for VfD, and the entry will be dealt with via the usual VfD process. Jayjg 15:18, 26 Oct 2004 (UTC)
  • I would suggest not to use the word "revisionism" in the title at all. It it nothing but an allusion to historical revisionism (a.k.a. Holocaust denial). Since none of the holders of these views on either side consider their views "revisionism", it would be better if the title did not contain this word. Finally, the potential for confusion with te unrelated Revisionist Zionism is enormous. More seriously, I also cannot see how any such page would contain anything but POV fights. Is that really what we need? Does it make sense to keep a list of historical points were Alberuni disagrees with Jayjg? Is that encyclopedic? Gadykozma 03:14, 27 Oct 2004 (UTC)
    • You have neatly summarized exactly what is wrong with the word "Revisionism", thank you. Jayjg 03:21, 27 Oct 2004 (UTC)

"Merge" vs "Keep Or Delete All"

A wise man once said "he who has a deep semantic theory can claim to be truely blessed". Sounds like fun, let's try it. :-P

As articles grow, they tend to split up and take up multiple wikipedia pages, but these pages still sort of form a loose whole.

Think for a moment, semantically, what is the difference between the results of a perfecly merge-ing these pages back into one, and the results of a keep all ?

Right! There's very little difference at all.

So far, so good.

Ok, let's give a name to this. Say you have:

  • a single page,
  • a page that has just been split up,
  • a set of pages that was designed together,
  • a set of pages that once might have only been one page,
  • etc.

Let's call that an aggregate.

So what happens if we have such an aggregate article, and only one sub-part gets deleted ? . This often happens when people claim that a sub-part is non-notable, even if it is part of a notable whole.

Okay, now semantically, something has changed. The whole has lost part of its cohesion perhaps (if there were crosslinks), and the whole, while notable, has now lost some of its data. Hmm, if this section of the whole is deleted, shouldn't we really actually be considering all of the aggregate for deletion? Hmm, possibly!

In either case, partial deletion seems to be a bad plan to me.

ok, descision table:

                      | final consensus
                      | merge          delete

vote  merge           | mostly merged  partial deletion       < Action
vote  keep/delete all | fully kept     full deletion          < Action

In the real world, merges aren't always perfect, and sometimes loose information as well.

People might want to consider clarity considerations, is it clearer to have a single massive block of text on one page, or spread out across multiple pages?

If one person decides to spread an article out, he might inadvertantly cause sub-parts to get deleted, since individual sub parts might not meet "notability guidelines" posited by some of the vfd regulars. Also then, keep/delete all might be the superior option.

So put together, this is why I'm going to be using keep/delete all instead of merge whenever such a vote might be appropriate.

Kim Bruning 20:19, 27 Oct 2004 (UTC)

Easier access to discussions

I devised a method for lower-speed users to more easily access VFD discussions. See Wikipedia:Quicker_access_to_votes_for_deletion. [[User:Poccil|Peter O. (Talk)]] 00:47, Oct 29, 2004 (UTC)

Why So Delete-Happy?

Things appear on VfD far to often for these reasons:

  • Notability: Now, I don't mean some class clown or some pure vanity or advertising. That deserves deletion. What I'm talking about are things that clearly have some notability, but not necessarily enough for some people to consider them notable. Nothing is gained by deleting somewhat notable articles.
  • Fancruft: Yes, the body of all obscure knowledge about fictional works is huge, but once again, nothing is gained by deleting it.

I think that, in all but extreme cases, deleting hurts Wikipedia, and deletion should be done only if deletion, in and of itself, helps Wikipedia. Storage space is cheap, and Wikipedia is not paper. --L33tminion 17:17, Oct 29, 2004 (UTC)

What is gained by deleting crap is the overall value of WP, and particularly the average value per article. Think of it as a means to promoting "natural selection". Someone comes along, hits "random page", and goes to a beautifully detailed description of architecture in London, and finds themselves gripped, with rather a good impression of Wikipedia imprinted on their brain. Someone else comes along, hits "random page", and gets some trivial detail, such as "John Wotzisfase was a character appearing in one episode of a TV series" or "Michie Nursery School is a school in the middle of Nowhere, Yorkshire", then they think "My, this place is useless. I'm not coming here again." Every visitor turned away by these pitiful articles is a potential contributor lost. Now, if the subject of a stub is notable, then someone will have something to write about it. This is a Good Thing, as it results in encyclopaedic articles (note the correct spelling there) about important people or things. However, if the subject of the article really is that bland that you can't say anything beyond the basics that you could say about other similar entities, then the hope for expansion is misplaced, and effort in creating and researching articles wasted. I for one would rather be spending hours writing about things I know about, and finding out about useful things I don't know, rather than voting to get rid of patent crap from WP. I consider myself to be neutral in the inclusionist-deletionist debate - I am in favour of the inclusion of articles that maintain the overall profile of Wikipedia as a quality source of information. I am in favour of expanding articles with useful information. But I am against pointless articles which duplicate generic descriptions. I am against articles that for which someone would not look in an encyclopaedia. On the matter of schools, someone might look for Eton College - it is well-known, and people not in the know will hear the name "Eton" in conversation, and want to know what people are talking about. For this, I would look in a reference dictionary, and finding that it's a reference to the school, I'd look it up. Parents of children who are designated a school anyway would not be looking in an encyclopaedia for information about their local schools (which in most sensible education systems is something beyond the scope of parental choice from secondary level onwards). In particular, if a school is partiularly good or bad, to say so in WP would be un-NPOV. </rant> Chris 06:09, 31 Oct 2004 (UTC)
This is such crap. What you mean is that you want more people who are interested in things that interest you (London architecture?) and fewer people who are interested in a character from a tv show you don't like. That's your POV, and your right to hold it, but don't thrust it down other people's throats by deleting things just because you are not interested. 22:55, 7 Nov 2004 (UTC)
TV shows produce large volumes of information that we know will be useless once the fans of the show disappear, which for most shows takes about 3 years after cancellation. They don't merit inclusion in an encyclopedia. As for encyclopedic judgements, they are essential to running the encyclopedia here. You can't claim that others are enforcing their POV without noting that, by insisting that every piece of fancruft be kept, you would be enforcing yours as well. keep is not a privileged position. --Improv 18:03, 8 Nov 2004 (UTC)
  • There are plenty of people here who already agree with you, L33tminion. [[User:Radman1|RaD Man (talk)]] 19:32, 29 Oct 2004 (UTC)
  • Except storage space isn't really that cheap, or Wikipedia wouldn't have to have donation drives every so often. PMC 00:03, 30 Oct 2004 (UTC)
    • That's because Wikipedia is growing: new articles and new media (especially the latter, the text content of Wikipedia is relatively small, storage wise. Also, the drives are not just for new equipment, but for operating expenses for the server. And history is retained, so deleting does not save a significant amount of space.
    • That's for co-location and bandwidth, which cost thousands of dollars per month. Storage space is trivial. You can buy sufficient storage space for wikipedia en (text only) for under $1.95 ;-) (DVD-R, text fits 4-5 times). Replacing the current storage available to (as opposed to used by) wikipedia (counting all languages, images and multimedia, but not counting backups and additional servers) would cost approximately $1000 at this moment in time. Kim Bruning 00:50, 1 Nov 2004 (UTC)

Another proposal to trim VfD

Note that these things actually already sometimes occur--this is mostly to formalize the process.
"Accelerated VfD"

  1. If, after 48 hours (24 if nominated by an anon), there are at least 5 Keep votes, and no other votes, the nomination can be removed from VfD, and the tag/text RE VfD can be removed from the article. Example: Wikipedia:Votes_for_deletion/Stephen_Bronner
  2. If, after 72 hours, there are at least 5 Delete votes, and no other votes, the nomination can be removed from VfD, and the subject article is deleted. Example: Wikipedia:Votes_for_deletion/Lydia_Wilson

Niteowlneils 18:57, 5 Nov 2004 (UTC)

Why do Keep votes get priority over Delete votes? It seems that the same length of time should be used in both cases. And it should be made clear that, under the current state of VfD, it be from the time that the proper posting is made to the VfD page, and NOT just a VfD page for the article be created, because if the article isn't linked to the VfD page, most people don't know it exists. RickK 19:58, Nov 5, 2004 (UTC)

Oppose. Let's take the "lotsa deletes" case first. It just plain takes five days for interested parties to become aware that something is going on and check it out. I've recently seen a number of examples of incredibly crappy articles that certainly looked royally deletable, that garner a solid string of deletes before someone says "Whoa! I've heard of that." Also, I am not sure whether this is a Good Thing or a Bad Thing, but five days gives those who see potential in the article a chance to improve the article.
Now, let's consider the "lotsa keeps" case. So far, I don't believe i've seen any examples where a) there were five Keep votes and no other votes and b) then deletes rolled in and the article was deleted. However, I think the proposal offers an opportunity for inclusionists who want to play hardball to game the system. I honestly don't know of any users currently whom I think would do this, but if we implement this proposal I think we would find some.
Third, the articles that fall in the categories that would be covered by this proposal do take up space and bandwidth but don't take up much attention. If I see an article that has nothing but five keeps or nothing but five deletes I glance at it and move on. Unless the subject matter sounds like something I would actually know something about, there's nothing much I could usefully contribute.
Finally, one of the virtues of VfD is that the discussion period is long enough. Anything that shortens it, even in obvious cases, will tend to increase the extent to which the VfD process is dominated by a small club of "regulars." [[User:Dpbsmith|Dpbsmith (talk)]] 20:56, 5 Nov 2004 (UTC)
Oppose [[User:Noisy|Noisy | Talk]] 02:43, 6 Nov 2004 (UTC)
Oppose. The current system is as fair as we can hope. I don't see a strong reason to change it, and I feel that it's important to make sure articles get the full consideration they deserve, as people visit VfD at different times. --Improv 17:52, 8 Nov 2004 (UTC)
Oppose. Axl 12:00, 9 Nov 2004 (UTC)

List, not include

One of the main reasons for me rarely visiting the VFD pages is that the main project page is enormous due to the VFD subpages being included into the main page. Can't we just have them as a list? Surely people would be able to scan through the list much better than having every single VFD nominee on one page? violet/riga (t) 12:20, 9 Nov 2004 (UTC)

But then the actual contents of each VFD debate will be hidden. It's much easier to take part if everything is available in one hit, rather than having to click through to find out what something is, then click back, then go to the next, then back, ad infinitum. I think it would severely reduce the level of contribution to VFD. T.P.K. 12:47, 9 Nov 2004 (UTC)
I think this is one of the reasons for the existence of Category:Pages on votes for deletion. Ideally, the "this page's entry" link in the template should link directly to the discussion subpage, so that way you can browse the list, jump to an article, read it, and then go and vote. Sometimes, of course, the subpage ends up having the wrong name and so it doesn't work, but it usually does. - 15:09, 9 Nov 2004 (UTC) Lee (talk)


A new user wants to ad 4x4 Offroaders Club Karachi, but has had some problems. I tried to help, and I had problems too... Here is where he asked me to help: User_talk:Sam_Spade#Howdy. Thanks for the assist, Sam [Spade] 22:58, 9 Nov 2004 (UTC)

  • Ok now? I think the problem was the lack of a section heading on the subpage. - RedWordSmith 23:34, Nov 9, 2004 (UTC)

Another proposal

Why don't we use the variables that give the current date to create a page for automatic inclusion here? That way we can have the most recent day on the main Votes for deletion page and have earlier deletion debates archived in pages named after the day they were nominated and linked from the main Vfd page. Hopefully that should shorten VfD a bit. [[User:MacGyverMagic|Mgm|(talk)]] 10:35, Nov 10, 2004 (UTC)

Many users like to review the discussions and, based on subsequent comments and evidence presented by other users, reconsider their votes. In fact, several of us think that's the only responsible way to contribute to VfD discussions. Moving parts of the discussions off to separate pages will just make us click more to do our jobs and does nothing to reduce the total burden of loading and reading the contents. This was discussed extensively several months ago. You could probably find the discussion thread in one of the archive paged.
The exception is an "old" discussion which is moved to the \Old page to await action. Old discussions are ones where the 5 day discussion period has run out but no admin has yet volunteered time to act on the decision. Discussions can sit on the \Old page for quite a while but they do eventually get taken care of. Rossami

again w a problem

I tried listing Wikipedia:Votes_for_deletion#Apeman, and appear to have made a mess of it. Apparently this sort of page formatting is not my style. Any advice/assistance? Sorry for being such a consistant problem. Sam [Spade] 18:03, 10 Nov 2004 (UTC)

Why not just add your listing to the main page and a wikijanitor can fix it up for you. Must be simpler than having all that torn-out hair littering the floor :-) --Phil | Talk 08:58, Nov 11, 2004 (UTC)

Hey dude! this isn't RfA! :)

Please don't try and organise VfD votes like they are, thanks! :-)

  • overriding comments (such as invalid vfd or copyvio) don't show up, or look like they are only one vote among many (which they certainly shouldn't be!)
  • You make it look like merge or redirect votes are actually valid or so, while they are actually merely tolerated on vfd (I'd better write a merge considered harmful text sometime ;-) )

So whoever is doing this, please stop!

Kim Bruning 21:20, 12 Nov 2004 (UTC)

Numbered voting on VfD

Hey! How about getting some consensus before we start doing numbered voting on vfd. I'm strongly opposed to it and all , but at least we should have a discussion and vote before we go and do this?

The problem is that numbered voting is inherently a way for a majority to do POV pushing, that's why it's not allowed for articles. Having numbered voting on VfD is just a back door to let that situation come back to wikipedia again, and that's definately a bad thing.

Soooo, I'll wait 48 hours to hear if anyone has convincing reasons not to, else I guess I'll just be bold and take out all the numbering and put things back in the old style. Kim Bruning 13:41, 13 Nov 2004 (UTC)

Kim Bruning 13:34, 13 Nov 2004 (UTC)

There are a few cases where numbered voting makes sense but they are very few. In generaly, VfD is better served as a discussion thread where you can see how the introduction of new evidence changes the general opinion. I agree with Kim that most of the current numbered votes should be restored to the traditional format. Rossami (talk) 15:21, 13 Nov 2004 (UTC)
Concur with Kim Bruning. I strongly oppose numbered voting. It limits the verdicts possible, or at least shoehorns them into just a few, eliminating complex votes. --Improv 01:23, 14 Nov 2004 (UTC)
Agreed. The only time a tally is needed is at the end of the VfD process; Netoholic's attempts to make VfD more readable are once again backfiring and giving everyone else a headache. -Sean Curtin 02:41, Nov 14, 2004 (UTC)

VfD is designed to produce one of two outcomes. Either the article is Deleted (along with its history), or is Kept. Suggestions like merge, redirect, cleanup, etc. all are implicite "Keep" votes. It's kind of like Keep, but do this after the vote. I think that separating the voting makes it very clear to the voters which of those two distinct options they support. -- Netoholic @ 06:57, 2004 Nov 14 (UTC)

There are more than two outcomes. Keep, redirect, delete, transwiki, and conditional forms of all the above exist, along with other outcomes like swapping two pages, delete all, delete X, Y, and not Z (for multiple articles in one VfD), etc. For some of these, the voting touches on the content on the article, and the decisions made by consensus should be just as binding on the form as the raw status, along with any other metadata in the votes. Besides, it's more a discussion than anything else. It's grossly disruptive to conversation to, say, remove the structure when one person's vote is included in their reply to another person's. --Improv 14:23, 14 Nov 2004 (UTC)
Additionally, this is not a simple vote. Like everything on wikipedia, this is an attempt to gain consensus. Conditional keeps, merges, deletes, and the like are important for understanding everyone's exact position and determining if there is consensus for any particular resolution. Cool Hand Luke 19:58, 14 Nov 2004 (UTC)
If this page isn't about votes, then let's rename the page "Gathering consensus for deletion". No, I don't think we should mince words about what this page is, since everyone here is voting. When an admin evaluates "consensus" at the end of a vote, they count the Keeps and the Deletes and then make a determination. After that, if the article is kept, it is rare for the admin to do any more work interpretting the results. They archive the vote to the article talk page, and move on. -- Netoholic @ 20:30, 2004 Nov 14 (UTC)
Would you also like to forbid people from stating reasons? You've moved comments, so I suppose you do. In tough cases, the comments, context, and attributes of votes are imperative to judge consensus. Cool Hand Luke 08:40, 15 Nov 2004 (UTC)

I agree with Kim. This is yet again another attempt by Netoholic to subvert the VfD process. I strongly object to the pages being refactored so that my vote is not where it was when I placed it on the page. RickK 07:02, Nov 14, 2004 (UTC)

The above is yet another attempt by RickK at poisoning the well by making comments like that. I am certainly not "subverting the VfD process" by suggesting this improvement, and so far, it seems well-received on the votes it's been used on. I have not moved any of RickK's votes around, since I think I've only used the Keep and Delete sections on brand-new VfD submissions. Noone was forced into putting their vote in such a section. RickK, please take it easy. -- Netoholic @ 07:14, 2004 Nov 14 (UTC)
Netoholic, I agree with RickK. You have been constantly shifting around text on VfD pages. At one point you even moved the list of comments on the Wikipedia:Votes for deletion/2004 U.S. Election controversies and irregularities to the talk page without asking. I had to put them back again. I strongly suggest you don't touch other people's comments. Incidently, that edit I referred to is on your request for arbitration evidence page. - Ta bu shi da yu 11:58, 14 Nov 2004 (UTC)
This is laughable. Based on a suggestion by Geogre to make the page workable, and based on fairly common procedure, the long comments section was moved to the talk page to reduce the load on the main VfD page. -- Netoholic @ 18:19, 2004 Nov 14 (UTC)

support removal of numbering. there is another outcome apart from delete and keep. For example; the page is there for a reason, but there's a better way to do what the page is trying to do. In this case what starts as a keep vote with a reason turns into a delete vote as the other problems are fixed. For example P. serraticauda images. Separating the votes between keep and delete provides an artificial divide which makes it difficult to cross over. Mozzerati 13:32, 2004 Nov 14 (UTC)

  1. support removal of numbering. :) Martin 15:41, 14 Nov 2004 (UTC)
No numbering. I'm curious though, apart from deletions and transwikis, are the other actionables (e.g. merge) often acted upon after keeping? zoney talk 20:38, 14 Nov 2004 (UTC)
When they're non-controversial they are in almost every case. So-called "fancruft" is usually merged/redirected as specified. Often with less than a simple majority, but merely by a majority of the non-delete votes. Israel/Palestine stuff though... Cool Hand Luke 08:40, 15 Nov 2004 (UTC)

Long histories

I don't think VfDs that are long should be moved like Chris did. I've rolled back. - Ta bu shi da yu 06:14, 14 Nov 2004 (UTC)

No reasons needed any more?

Since time immemorial, the VfD page has said that nominators should "Finally, explain your reasoning for every page you list, even if it is obvious." And within living memory (i.e. my own feeble memory) it has asked that every comment do the same. Now, however, it appears as if no reasons are needed?

I think that if the purpose of VfD is to achieve consensus on a page, it is really helpful for people to cite their rationale, opening the possibility of influencing others, rather than just demonstrating raw strength of numbers. [[User:Dpbsmith|Dpbsmith (talk)]] 17:01, 22 Nov 2004 (UTC)

  • Hear, hear, from a usually pretty opinionated VfDer. - [[User:KeithTyler|Keith D. Tyler [flame]]] 00:41, Nov 25, 2004 (UTC)

The goal of VFD is indeed to create consensus, but I think we have to accept this isn't always going to succeed, so both the straw poll and the discussion/explanation bits have a reason for being here. If a previous voter has already voted the same way as I am voting and for the same reason, duplicating the reason isn't useful. Not listed reasons should always be added though, agreed. --fvw* 00:47, 2004 Nov 25 (UTC)

We're not mind readers, we can't be expected to guess which previous reason you agree with. I think it's still worth noting your reason, even if it's only "agree with X". Shane King 00:53, Nov 25, 2004 (UTC)
Doesn't really matter which reason I agree with. If a reason is incorrect/wrong/stupid you'll want to respond to it and explain the mistake to those who hold it, whether there's one or a hundred of them. --fvw* 00:56, 2004 Nov 25 (UTC)

Clearly the purpose of VFD isn't to achieve consensus. anthony 警告 01:58, 25 Nov 2004 (UTC)

That's the sad truth. Dr Zen 23:23, 28 Nov 2004 (UTC)

Fixing Votes for deletion: A technical proposal

I've got some ideas about Votes for deletion that I'd like interested people to take a look at and comment on. Please see Fixing Votes for deletion: A technical proposal. Shane King 23:19, Nov 23, 2004 (UTC)

Seems like a band-aid on an inherently non-scalable system. VFD needs to be fixed so that we don't have to keep arguing the same exact questions over and over and over again. Making VFD slightly easier will accomplish as much as using templates, it'll buy us a few extra months. anthony 警告 02:03, 25 Nov 2004 (UTC)

Removed some vfds which did not comply with deletion policy

I removed vfds on Ununbium, Ununtrium, Ununquadium, Ununpentium, Ununhexium, Ununseptium, Ununoctium. User:Trollminator has replaced them. Since they blatantly are not following the Deletion policy, there is no reason to even leave them for 24 hours. Just wanted to make my reasoning clearer. siroχo 22:33, Nov 24, 2004 (UTC)

I put them back. If this precident is allowed to stand I hope I can remove all of the vfds I disagree with. Mark Richards 22:34, 24 Nov 2004 (UTC)
  • Siroxo, I think it's part of due process that we leave them on the page. As someone who abstains (so far) on their inclusion, I find it disappointing that you're so sure they belong that you'd take them off. If there's room for doubt by a non-troll (I hope I'm not considered a troll by anyone), then what's the problem with having them on VfD, even if it looks fairly certain they'll survive? --Improv 22:37, 24 Nov 2004 (UTC)
  • For articles which do not comply with the deletion policy, the appropriate thing to do is to vote keep, give as a reason "does not comply with deletion policy," and explain why not. If they in fact do not comply with the deletion policy, your explanation will convince others to vote keep as well. If the vote is overwhelmingly to keep, that in turn will convince people not to list similar articles in the future. [[User:Dpbsmith|Dpbsmith (talk)]] 00:21, 25 Nov 2004 (UTC)
    • I agree with this. This is the correct procedure. - Ta bu shi da yu 00:51, 25 Nov 2004 (UTC)
      • I disagree. Such obvious keeps like this should be removed. If someone disagrees with the removal, they can always restore it, but we shouldn't be restoring it just to stop a precedent or something trivial like that. anthony 警告 01:57, 25 Nov 2004 (UTC)
        • And I respect the fact that you disagree with me. However, removing "obvious" keeps seems to me arbitrary. Who is going to define what is an "obvious keep" and what is an "obvious delete" before the seven days is up? How do we maintain transparency in the whole VfD process? I thought that's why we had the whole detailed procedure. - Ta bu shi da yu 03:06, 25 Nov 2004 (UTC)
          • Community consensus defines what is an "obvious keep". If it turns out it wasn't obvious, the article can simply be renominated. If something you thought was an "obvious keep" is renominated because someone disagrees with you, then I don't think we should start edit warring over it, but I don't see the harm with removing an obvious keep once. What I think is harmful is people to add back an obvious keep when they don't even want the article deleted themselves. I don't think what Mark Richards did was appropriate. I don't think we should be speedily deleting anything but speedy deletion candidates though. Removing a listing from VFD is something which can be done by anybody. Undeleting a page, however, can only be done by an admin. anthony 警告 23:14, 27 Nov 2004 (UTC)
  • I don't understand your comparison between undeletion and removing listings from VfD. Could you try to explain a bit more? I agree with you, by the way, on speedy deletion. It scares me that what might be potentially good articles may end up being zapped before the community has a chance to look at them. Remember that I vote to keep sometimes too :) I would like to see people be a bit more careful with speedy deletes. With regards to due process, I think it protects all of our interests, which is why I've been voting against expedited deletions and similar. I think that the process we have going on VfD is a really good one. The time given for processing is long enough that one doesn't need to check Wikipedia every day to make sure one has input, and while I'm sure anyone would be delighted to see the way consensus works out move closer to their personal input, by and large it gives us all a voice. I'm satisfied. I don't see any reason we should, even given what looks early on to be a strong consensus to keep, to remove the listing. --Improv 00:07, 28 Nov 2004 (UTC)

Thanks for all the replies, I don't agree that it is part of "due process" that we leave them on the page. The deletion policy clearly spells out what can be put on VfD, and none of these articles fit any of the criteria. Had they remotely fit the criteria, I would have waited the day and removed them tomorrow after the wave of keep votes appeared. Yet, I feel that when a policy exists, it is not useful to us unless it is enforced. Improv, Dpbsmith, and Ta bu shi da yu, Keep in mind there is no part of the deletion policy that gives any wikipedian (other than Jimbo, perhaps) the right to list any article they please for deletion; there are specific requirements. Also the part that says to wait a day or so before removing listings that are decided upon with some solution other than deleting really can only apply to listings that should have been made in the first place. The only "precident" we'd be setting by removing these patently invalid VfDs from the page is to begin enforcing a policy in order to help the page better serve its purpose. As for the problem with leaving them on vfd, there are a couple. First off, by allowing these articles to linger on vfd, we're encouraging people to list articles they don't like or they wish were deleted for no good reason. Secondly, it increases the length of a page that many wikipedians already say is too long. This is why there is a policy to begin with, to keep the page on task and useful. Lastly for the curious ones, the reason I did not vote is so that I can feel comfortable removing the discussions, which I'll do "after about a day or so", despite standing by my original intentions of enforcing the policy. siroχo 02:20, Nov 25, 2004 (UTC)

  • Firstly, for those who find VfD too long or cumbersome, they're free not to take part in the process. For the rest of us who care enough, we'll keep showing up to comment on everything. There's no problem with allowing things to last on VfD if they're clearly going to be deleted or kept -- what's the deal? As for policy on deletion, there are many areas of the policy that involve considerable judgement calls (especially what is encyclopedic), and, like in law, different people will come to different conclusions on how to handle the process. Claiming a particular interpretation of these guidelines to be gospel, and using it to avoid the normal process, seems to me to avoid a very useful process. Would you take this further to remove high schools from being deleted due to lack of notability, or other areas of active disagreement with regards to VfD? --Improv 04:41, 25 Nov 2004 (UTC)
  • I oppose premature delisting. A nomination that gets all Keep votes sends a strong message that the nomination was inappropriate. Premature delisting risks creating controversy where none previously existed. Transparency for the VfD process is more important the convenience of a marginally shorter VfD page. Let the process work. If someone is abusing the process, censure them directly. Rossami (talk) 15:23, 26 Nov 2004 (UTC)
    • Premature delisting is one thing, an abusive VfD is another. As Siroxo said, this did not meet the deletion policy criteria and should have been removed from VfD immediately. The fact that it was receiving 100% keep votes should have been evidence that this was a bad faith listing. —[[User:Radman1|RaD Man (talk)]] 21:13, 27 Nov 2004 (UTC)
      • It was not recieving 100% keep votes. Look more closely. --Improv 00:07, 28 Nov 2004 (UTC)
        • Oh yes, yes it was. Are you blind? Each and every one of these had 100% keep votes with the exception of Ununseptium which received 100% keep minus one Abstain, which was from yourself. Perhaps you should take a dose of your own advice. —[[User:Radman1|RaD Man (talk)]] 02:25, 28 Nov 2004 (UTC)
          • No, I am not blind. My vision is actually pretty decent. Thanks for asking :) Anyhow, yes, I was referring to my abstention. I think it was a fair abstention, and it is not a keep vote. --Improv 02:48, 28 Nov 2004 (UTC)
    • In my opinion the controversy was only created when Mark Richards reinstated the entry without even wanting the page deleted. VFD, just like any other page, is a wiki. Delisting an entry which no one seriously thinks should be deleted is perfectly reasonable, in my opinion. If it turns out someone disagrees, the page can always be renominated, with a note not to delist it, if necessary. anthony 警告 23:25, 27 Nov 2004 (UTC)
      • I feel the listing itself was sufficient, and as I abstained, I would re-list it just because I do think it's part of due process to pass through the listing. Look at the reasoning behind my abstention -- I don't think it's so faulty. Do you? --Improv 00:07, 28 Nov 2004 (UTC)
        • What is faulty is when we worry more about "due process" than about what is best for Wikipedia. If you don't want an article deleted, you shouldn't be listing (or relisting) it on VFD. If it wasn't for the fact that deletionists run Wikipedia and many of those in power have a personal vendetta against me I'd have personally removed the VFD tag from every one of these pages. Wikipedia is not best served by cluttering articles which will obviously not be deleted with VFD notices. anthony 警告 00:24, 29 Nov 2004 (UTC)
          • I run wikipedia? That's certainly news to me. Maybe someone should've nominated me to be an admin by now if I'm supposed to be running the darned thing :) I see no evidence for deletionists running Wikipedia, nor are we a unified lot. And, as we've conversed productively (and in a friendly way) on IRC, I think it's safe to say that at least *I* have nothing personal against you. We disagree on some things, but hey, don't most people disagree on something? In any case, due process serves two purposes. Firstly, it gives us a framework on which to build expectations on how things work. We're able to call foul when people don't play by the rules. Secondly, it protects all of us. There are some articles that I have voted keep on that have been deleted, and, of course, vice versa. It ensures that some amount of deliberation happens when we have due process. Would you rather admins freely speedy things they dislike, and other people remove plenty of things from VfD when they feel like it? The current system makes sure we all get the chance to look. That's a good thing, I think. I know things are often high tension on VfD (and in some other policy areas), but if we can do our best to keep a cool head on things (even when we don't get what we want, and believe me, I'm used not to getting my way, and am at peace with it) and to stay civil, things will go a bit more smoothly and hopefully we'll all be able to respect each other more. I'm not meaning to single you out here -- there are plenty of hotheaded people on every side of most policy disagreements. They don't always hurt their cause, but they usually arn't helping it as much as they could, and usually irritate people on both sides. --Improv 09:03, 3 Dec 2004 (UTC)

VfD is painful

VfD is a horrible process. See Wikipedia talk:Votes for deletion/Cantometrics and Talk:Swish.Hyacinth 19:24, 26 Nov 2004 (UTC)

  • It would be more helpful if you could summarize your objections to the process, and then say "see Talk:Swish (etc.) for evidence," rather than just making a (fairly inflammatory) statement and expecting everyone to understand what you mean. My interpretation of your argument is, "I have, on multiple occasions, had brand-new articles listed on VfD while I was still in the process of writing them, so that someone else thought they were stubs or copyright infringements, because he/she was looking at a very early stage in the article's development. This is representative of X property inherent in the current VfD process. Therefore, I would like to propose Y change." Am I close? -leigh 09:41, Nov 27, 2004 (UTC)
Sorry, no. Contributors do not discuss the deletion of the page. They discuss my merits as an editor, they discuss copyvio, or they have general discussions about the way wikipedia should be. It is often not respectful, pertinent, or efficient. Hyacinth 15:40, 27 Nov 2004 (UTC)
Hyacinth, I agree with you. VfD is nothing more than an ocean of ignorance where anyone can nominate an article to be deleted simply because they know nothing about the subject. The fact is we're destroying Wikipedia with the loss of certain gray-area articles. I suppose I should back this up by citing some examples... —[[User:Radman1|RaD Man (talk)]] 19:23, 27 Nov 2004 (UTC)
Me too. I am disheartened by the number of articles listed for deletion with the only reason given being that they're "fancruft", when the article in question merely needs to be clearly labelled as being about something fictional or perhaps merged into a higher-level article about that fictional universe. There is nothing inherently unencyclopedic about articles on fictional entities, IMO. I find it an amusing parallel that Trollminator listed articles on not-yet-discovered chemical elements here as "sciencecruft" and was met with outrage. Bryan 19:55, 27 Nov 2004 (UTC)
Before addressing the gray-area articles, there is a small faction of people who might want to spew nonsense like "the fact that the good articles are voted to be kept proves that VfD is working" -- I strongly disagree. While there seems to be a growing percentage of naive (and possibly bad-faith) listings recently on concretely notable subjects, the fact that these can be listed "just because", sometimes within minutes of an articles creation (while someone may be working on it!), is sure to detract would-be contributors. Now to the heart of the problem. There are a number of informative and factually verifiable articles which are being posted simply because the lister feels they're "not notable". Then a dozen or so of us get together and vote on the highly-subjective issue of whether or not something is important enough or not to us using completely inconsistent metrics. i.e. Singapore Airlines Destinations, Franklin Income Fund, White Dawg, and Beck's Bolero are some currently active examples. I strongly feel that all of these should be kept as there is nothing wrong with them, and this is the core of the problem. They might all be kept this week, but there's nothing to prevent someone from relisting all 4 of these articles the day after they "survive" the convoluted and destructive process that is VfD. —[[User:Radman1|RaD Man (talk)]] 21:25, 27 Nov 2004 (UTC)
I don't think that wikipedia will suffer too much from the loss of a few stubs of notable things if they are so poorly written that the notability of the subject is not apparent. And yes, people can relist things, but if it survives once it will most likely survive again, and I've seen people change their votes to keep because they object to the relisting. We can always close that particular loophole but its existence doesn't mean the whole process is broken. Gamaliel 21:58, 27 Nov 2004 (UTC)
Again, I must respectfully disagree. The more people that discover the horror that is VfD the worse off we are. Every time a biased admin plays with the vote count in order to delete a perfectly valid article, we have failed. Don't think that the number of those who are bitten and don't return aren't impacting the success of this community driven effort. —[[User:Radman1|RaD Man (talk)]] 22:17, 27 Nov 2004 (UTC)
I have no idea what the problem of biased admins have to do with my comment, but that's quite a charge. Can you provide us with some examples of admins who have "played with the vote count", whatever that means? Gamaliel 23:37, 28 Nov 2004 (UTC)
Take a look at the history of VfU some time. anthony 警告 11:40, 3 Dec 2004 (UTC)

Unfortunately, I, apparently, opened a can of worms. I think that articles should only be listed on VfD if they meet the requirements, however, I also think it usually does little harm to those pages which deservedly survive the process. Thus I am not concerned about that problem. Far worse than the listings are the actual discussions. These seem likely to drive away contributors as the one's I have participated in are not pertinent or civil and have discouraged me from editing (obviously I have not stopped). Hyacinth 23:03, 27 Nov 2004 (UTC)

They are one and the same problem, Hyacinth. Pages are listed with a cursory "not notable". Hackles are raised. Some editors are like "lords of deletion", listing any and all pages that do not pass their own personal filters without contacting the originating editor to see whether they intend to do further work and without so much as googling to research the pages' "notability". This dismissiveness of others' work is encouraged by the process, and breeds a certain arrogance. Because the LoD apply only their own personal standards to their decisions, they tend to be highhanded in discussion. I'm sorry you've felt the rough edge of that because you are clearly a valuable contributor, and I'm doubly sorry that newbies stumbling into VfD will get the message that this is how business is conducted here and either hate it and steer clear or like it and join in. Dr Zen 23:34, 28 Nov 2004 (UTC)

  • I agree with a fair amount of what you're saying, Hyacinth and Dr. Zen, but I don't know what would fix the problem, aside from taking it up one-on-one with the people who are bothering you and ask them to be more polite. Are you (either of you) suggesting some kind of system-wide change? If so, please share. -leigh 00:22, Nov 29, 2004 (UTC)
    • One system-wide change we could (and should) implement immediately is to only allow registered users to post a VfD. It's the least we could do. —[[User:Radman1|RaD Man (talk)]] 08:18, 3 Dec 2004 (UTC)
  • The characteristic tone of voice in VfD is dreadful. Dismissive remarks are common. In-group jargon is used. In-group jokes are made. Articles are discussed as if VfD were a private executive session with the article contributor absent, when it is not only public, but the contributors have been invited (via the VfD notice). It's a problem. I sometimes contribute to this problem; it's hard not to get sucked into the prevailing mores. I was very bothered by a recent incident in which a Dartmouth professor suggested that students in a computer-science-for-non-CS-majors-course contribute to Wikipedia in order to get a feeling for the open source process. Something over two hundred articles were contributed, most of which were unnoticed by anyone because they were good articles. Something like twenty or thirty vanity articles in breezy promotional language about not-very-notable Dartmouth student activities got contributed, and brutalized in VfD. All sorts of childish attacks on Dartmouth itself got made. An article about Dartmoor drew comments along the lines of "more Dartmouth follies." The disturbing part is that the professor, Peter C. Wayner, joined in the VfD discussions and exhibited most of the noxious flamewar-like behavior that is so common in these discussions, convincing me that VfD does, in fact, induce bad behavior in reasonable people. [[User:Dpbsmith|Dpbsmith (talk)]] 01:07, 29 Nov 2004 (UTC)

I would suggest that we make it more explicit in the instructions that VfD be civil, but improper listings suggest contributors do not read and/or follow the instructions. Perhaps the instructions need to be made more clear or harder to ignore. Hyacinth 06:23, 3 Dec 2004 (UTC)

  • I second this as well. —[[User:Radman1|RaD Man (talk)]] 08:18, 3 Dec 2004 (UTC)
  • In this regard, I fear we might have brought some of the hostility and confusion on ourselves by creating the link in the VfD template that takes a user straight to the deletion discussion and allows them to bypass the instructions at the top of the VfD page. New users are being implicitly invited to participate in the discussion without being shown the norms and standards that guide the discussions. Rossami (talk) 14:03, 3 Dec 2004 (UTC)

There's a lot to be fixed about VfD, but part of the problem lies with people creating non-finished articles in the article namespace. If whatever is posted doesn't show why it's important enough for inclusion it's likely to be hit with a deletion process (either speedy or VfD). We should inform all users that writing an article should ideally start in a personal sandbox or text editor. Also, there should be some notability test before an article is put on VfD. I made some mistakes in this regard myself, simply because info couldn't be found. (for example Cuban artists are not very likely to have a big web presence, so how can you be sure they are notable?) Maybe we should have notability check page with some stricter guidelines on how to measure notability? The term is widely used, but I have yet to see a Wikipedia defenition of the word. Also, we should still find some way to shorten VfD, the page still goes over the 30 kb limit on regular basis. [[User:MacGyverMagic|Mgm|(talk)]] 08:34, Dec 3, 2004 (UTC)

  • I disagree. The problem of creating unfinished articles in the main namespace is a completely separate issue independant of VfD with its own set of problems. But lets not lose focus here, the current VfD process is broken. Anyone, and I mean anyone can list an article for deletion just to "test" and see if its notable. The catch? There is no standard metric for notability, and many would argue that notability alone shouldn't even be a deciding factor in whether or not to delete a factually verifiable article on something of historical value. Every day that an article is lost because a small faction of us, VfD monitors, deem something "unworthy of note" is a step back into the dark ages. I draw the line at pure vanity and complete nonsense, but it astounds me that people are voting to delete articles such as Memorial Quadrangle, DEViANCE, and Dickinson High School, all clearly notable subjects, even after they've been significantly worked on and cleaned up. Honestly, it makes me sick. —[[User:Radman1|RaD Man (talk)]] 08:53, 3 Dec 2004 (UTC)
    • If you draw the line at pure vanity and complete nonsense, the speedy deletion system should suffice really.
  • I also disagree, but for a different reason. I feel that it's perfectly fine to create unfinished articles, stubs, mini-stubs, and the like. I almost never vote delete based on the content of articles. For me, so long as the topic is encyclopedic and the article as named and considered with existing articles doesn't form a bad structure, and so long as it's less effort to eventually reach a good article by cumulative edits than it is to start over, I vote to keep. If this makes me an unusual deletionist, I'm fine with that. Partly replying to Radman, there are some kinds of articles that I think categorically are not encyclopedic. Many lists, and all things that are not notable, including pre-university schools, fit into that category in my judgement. I don't think that this makes me a proponent of the dark ages. That seems to me to be a disappointingly grandiose way of saying that someone doesn't think it helps the encyclopedia. We're all using our judgement, as best as we're able, to build a good encyclopedia. It's important to try to respect that. --Improv 09:11, 3 Dec 2004 (UTC)
    • I've long argued that lists should be in a separate namespace (and to some extent this has been resolved by categories, but categories are lacking a number of features that would make them as powerful as lists). Lists are generally not found in a paper encyclopedia, because paper encyclopedias don't have hyperlinks. I think you have to apply completely different criteria to lists. In fact, this is why we used to have a separate section of VfD just for lists. Merging it was probably a mistake. anthony 警告 11:46, 3 Dec 2004 (UTC)
  • I'm always happy to change my vote if someone proves an article can be turned into something useful or interesting, but some articles will never grow beyond a basic stub. Minor TV show characters spring to mind. Include them in a larger article if you want, but don't start an article on them until you have a decent amount of information. And what about schools? You could potentially include every school in the world, but unless there's something special about them, I want them deleted. It's hypocritical to have call articles on non-notable people vanity, but still list non-notable schools. Wouldn't that be school vanity? That's using a double standard. We should have some sort of discrimination on what's in and out.
    • When schools can writeup their own articles (and not their student body) then they'll meet my definition of "pure vanity". The term "school vanity" is quite laughable. Deletionists could, and have twisted the word vain to include everything under the sun. Under such twisted definitions, any article on any human being (or anything) has been considered "vain". Yet another bright example of how VfD is completely vulnerable to mismanagement. —[[User:Radman1|RaD Man (talk)]] 15:19, 3 Dec 2004 (UTC)
  • I think the Votes for Deletion process captures Wikipedia beautifully. Steady as she goes. --Jscott 09:02, 3 Dec 2004 (UTC)

I wish to remind everyone that stubs are allowed and acceptable on Wikipedia, all articles are "non-finished articles". This is indicated by the existance of a stub notice template for articles which are more "non-finished" than others. Requiring users to complete full drafts before posting would involve a massive and radical change of Wikipedia's current practice and, in the extreme, destroy the collaborative process at the heart of Wikipedia. More importantly, the above suggestion is off-topic.

Also, the problem is not with what should or should not be deleted, as how people get treated while this is figured out. Thus, three ideas that sound good to me now:

  1. That a "notability" test be conducted before contributors list an article for deletion. See the proposed Wikipedia:Importance.
  2. That a listing on VfD be accompanied with a reason quoted from Wikipedia:Deletion policy#What to do with a problem page/image/category "Problems that don't require deletion" "Problem with page". All listings that do not provide a valid reason should be deemed invalid themselves.
  3. A notice be added at the top of all VfD discussion pages reminding contributors of Wikipedia:Civility and other Wikipedia:Deletion policies. Hyacinth 18:06, 3 Dec 2004 (UTC)

New users creating articles that eventually get deleted

In my opinion, a large number of the articles that get deleted (by VfD or speedy) are created by new users. So, first question: Do you agree that this is true? One of the most common problems is I think is new users not understanding what constitues an acceptible article. They often create an article about themselves and their band (which may have never played for an audience). If it is true that many new users create "deletable" acticles, then second question: Could there be a special page to review all articles created by new users, so that they don't come to VfD at all? If the articles created by the new user is deletable, an extra effort could be made to guide the new user into the Wikipedia culture. Please comment. ike9898 14:56, Dec 3, 2004 (UTC) [bold added by leigh (φθόγγος), hope you don't mind]

  • I really really like this idea. It's a compromise between the status quo and the suggestion to prohibit non-logged-in page creation (which strikes many as being anti-wiki). It doesn't, in fact, limit the rights or powers of IP editors at all. But it does give everyone a simple way to check up on a group which I think everyone agrees is statistically more likely to create nonsense articles. And I don't know anything about Wiki programming, but my instinct is that this shouldn't be at all difficult to create. Further question: should we create a similar page of "edits by new users"? If not, is Ike9898's proposal the beginning of a slippery slope toward that policy? Just playing devil's advocate. Finally, should we maintain a distinction between new users (IPs with no contribution history) and anonymous users (IPs with a contribution history)? What about the case of IPs for internet cafés or computer labs? Or should we lump both groups together? Regardless, I like this proposal because it allows us to monitor anonymous/new users without censoring them. -leigh (φθόγγος) 22:49, Dec 3, 2004 (UTC)
  • I also strongly support this idea. New users who create deletable articles should be warned as soon as possible in order to save their time and effort and to spare them the disappointment of seeing their work destroyed. In particular, new users may create several articles on things which seem worth writing about, such as local hospitals or trivial fictional entities, only to find that the current consensus is that these things are not "notable" enough for inclusion. Also there is nothing on the way in (ie something one might see before the article is created) to suggest that this is the case... I believe there should be. Kappa 00:14, 7 Dec 2004 (UTC)
  • Re IPs: I don't mean to be silly, but isn't this called "Recent Changes with Hide Logged-In Users and Minor Edits Turned On"? It's the vandal hunter's #1 tool. There is only something to it if we consider new articles by new registered users. The Welcoming committee could expand its activities (note that it has a list of queries to ferret out new users, but this is of no use to mere mortals)—now it's usually just posting a boilerplate welcome and answering any questions the user asks, but not "stalking" the newcomers for new content. Should it? I don't know. Maybe that's to be preferred over the deletionists doing it for them and speedying/VfD'ing anything the newbies come up with, with such efficient but cold explanations as "not notable" or "fancruft". And it's no more than reasonable that we expect all newcomers to be aware of the idiosyncrasies of the deletion process, of course. :-(
    Maybe the welcoming committee could watch VfD for newcomer article nominations, and explain/console the newbies as part of the hazing acclimatization process. I think most of this can be done without special pages or tools, just some community gruntwork. JRM 00:40, 2004 Dec 7 (UTC)

Merging before Purging

This applies especially to fancruft and stubs. Please move whatever tidbit of information is in the article to the main article itself. This was done with some Quake stubs such as "Rocket Jump," where instead of having its own article, it remains a piece of information in the main Quake article. Any obscure information, minor characters or places, or tidbits should be moved in this fashion, regardless of whether or not you appreciate Power Rangers Ninja Force.

Also, the article may be an offshoot of a larger article. Always check "what links here" beforehand. A user may have thought the article would be suitable as a subsection of a larger article, and in this case you can simply merge it back with the larger article .

Last, make sure you have at least some knowledge of the category the article fits in. If you see an article titled "Battle of the Nimzoidians" and reply with "there was no such battle!" you'd be missing the point, as it fits under the List of fictional battles category. This is especially important with works you may be unfamiliar with. Chances are, if you have no interest in the work or subject, you won't care much about it's existence, therefore you should consult someone familiar with it first.

And remember, Google is not the all seeing oracle. Do not consult Google as if it were your WikiGod. It is not. There are plenty of worthwhile articles that can be drawn from more exclusive or limited resources. Such as a rare book. Just because some random person hasn't made a personal GeoCities page about the subject does not mean it doesn't exist.

  • Note however, that verifiability is important. One plus to Google is that anyone can verify information coming from it (where verify means, for better or for worse, finding duplicate sources). Things from rare books are hard to verify. Note also that the topic for articles shoud be notable. Google isn't a great test for that either, but it's at least a starting point. --Improv 17:00, 5 Dec 2004 (UTC)
  • Most of the complaints about the Google test comes from people protesting in VfD discussions. It is extremely rare for the articles in question to cite any references or verifiable evidence. If an article on such a topic were to give the ISBN number of a book about it, or the date and page number of a story about it in a big-city newspaper, people would be inclined to accept such a reference as valid until proven otherwise. For a good verifiable reference it is often possible to get confirmation within a couple of days by calling the reference desk of a public library... [[User:Dpbsmith|Dpbsmith (talk)]] 17:07, 5 Dec 2004 (UTC)
  • A further note on the "google test" - where something is likely to be sourced from an obscure book, it's usually apparent (often obscure theology/philosophy/history - there's a page on a minor treaty on VfD just now that's been caught as valid) that it's not the sort of thing likely to be online - and so people will often check other resources (I have a Brewers here, and a couple of almanacs, that are good for this sort of thing). Also remembering of course, remember that Google has access to, as a rough guess, about 10% of the information on the net - I've run queries past the Dictionary of National Bibliography via ATHENS before, for example, part of the hidden "deep web", and seen people cite Lexis searches or Dialog. The Google test is usually thrown up in response -
a) to something recent (where it's unlikely conventional publishing would give much),
b) to test if someone is famous or not (it's a reasonable test there, but I'm sure people would usually accept "As a matter of fact, he's listed in X, Y and Z, but died in 1503 and is currently obscure due to (...)" as a counterargument) or
c) as a quick existence check.
  • For a) and c) it's not a perfect solution, but it is a good and effective first pass - and it's very rare someone holds onto it as Evidence in absence of proof from another source. But if you're looking at a page, which you don't know enough about the topic of to be able to find a decent source, and pondering it for deletion - well, you can do a quick google check, or you can speak to someone who knows about it. The best way to find someone who knows about it who can correct you, it seems, is VfD... Shimgray 18:46, 7 Dec 2004 (UTC)

Small query

Is there a reason that the main VFD page is marked [[Category:Chess players]]? --Calton 01:06, 7 Dec 2004 (UTC)

I think I fixed it now. It had to do with a deletion vote on an article in that category. It was kind of hard to track down. Jayjg 03:02, 7 Dec 2004 (UTC)

Should we vote this article for deletion?

Hi. I'm uncertain if we should list this vanity article for deletion. You will notice that the article's creator and only contributor goes by the user name Pinnecco. The article is most likely about a relative of the user (father? grandfather?), who happens to be a painter. I don't know if this person would merit an article on Wikipedia, at least the English language one. If this person is recognized only locally (his home state or home town in Brazil), it might be more suitable for there to be an article in the Wikipedia in Portuguese website. I may be overreacting, but it always looks bad when someone starts writing articles about their family, regardless of who they are. And this particular user has already shown some attitude problems (follow the link above to his user page and see what's written there, or see MacGyver's talk page entry on him. I have also addressed the issue in the Village pump). Regards, Redux 16:47, 7 Dec 2004 (UTC)

Proposed organization change

I notice that in some entries, votes are grouped by type. It would be helpful if this was standard policy. Also, it would be useful if people used "#" instead of "*" to list votes, as that would make votes easier to count. A vfd page would look something like this.

Article Title Heading


  1. User
  2. ...


  1. User
  2. ...

Merge to Another atricle

  1. User
  2. ...



  • Comment --User
  • ...

--L33tminion | (talk) 22:08, Dec 7, 2004 (UTC)

No it wouldn't be helpful. This is not a strict vote where you sum up the deletes and keeps. Rather it's an attempt to judge consensus. As such, it's most useful to keep all votes in chronological order. For example, sometimes votes start out as being delete, then the article gets updated and suddenly they all switch over to keep. The current format makes scenarios where opinion shifts easy to see. If anything, it should be policy never to group votes. See also: Wikipedia:Deletion process, Wikipedia:Deletion guidelines for administrators.
  • Oppose strongly. The sequence and conversation is important. --jpgordon∇∆∇∆ 05:08, 8 Dec 2004 (UTC)
I also oppose this proposal for the same reasons. While we do not always achieve consensus, that is always our objective. The conversational style is more likely to achieve it.
I will note, however, that I've broken that rule occasionally by creating a recap table in order to clarify the opinions expressed so far (and to sort out votes when a person has commented multiple times in the same thread). The recap table should always be considered secondary to the discussion thread. My personal rule is that a recap table might start to be useful when the discussion breaks about 8 screens - a very long thread. Rossami (talk) 14:43, 8 Dec 2004 (UTC)
Right. But the discussion thread would be maintained in the comments section, and I'm not suggesting that this be run as a "pure vote". I do consider the discussion to be of prime importance. I merely think this would make the discussion easier to read. --L33tminion | (talk) 16:32, Dec 23, 2004 (UTC)

My earlier reversions

Earlier this evening, I reverted the VFD page twice. What *I* saw was a totally black screen, with a statement that people frequenting VFD were losers, and we'd be better off writing articles than deleting them. In the history, hfool was the last person to have edited. When I rolled the page back, regular VFD was restored. A few minutes later, the black screen with the message about someone having destroyed VFD had returned. I reverted again, placed the "please do not test" message on hfool's talk page. At those times, I could access the black screen via the edit history. Now I can't. I'm thoroughly confused about what has happened. Has anyone else noticed anything unusual about VFD tonight? Joyous 00:29, Dec 8, 2004 (UTC)

  • No problem, and yes, I saw a black screen a few days ago, but no text and the page ended up loading normally. I'm going to relist Kelly-Ann Evans, if that's alright. hfool 00:38, 8 Dec 2004 (UTC)
Of course. I'm sorry for the inconvenience. Joyous 00:41, Dec 8, 2004 (UTC)

Binding redirect

It's been said by several editors that VfD establishes only whether a page is kept or deleted. On this view, other votes like merge and redirect merely offer suggestions to future editors in the event there is no consensus to delete. Sometimes we do treat the redirect as binding somehow (see VfU#Curious (perfume) which was not actually deleted—its history still exists), but there is no policy on this matter.

I think this is unfortunate. In highly partisan debates, one side—or even one individual—might never consent to a page move. I think that VfD votes are actually a better gauge anyway because the outside community, less impassioned about Israel/Palestine/Jesus/Poland/Libertarianism/whatever, is more likely to advocate more NPOV solutions. There are cases, for example, where a vote turns out something like 55% redirect, 25% delete, and 20% unqualified keep. There is no consensus for deletion, but I feel it's a waste of time to keep the page and expect a redirect solution hammered out on the talk page. Those involved in the article's future are typically the polar extremes of the VfD vote, and are unwilling to budge.

Therefore, I'd like to introduce a new kind of vote I'd call binding redirect. This vote would be shorthand for saying "keep, but this vote should be interpreted as delete if the article is anything other than a redirect."

I want to know if others believe this kind of vote would be legitimate. Cool Hand Luke 04:57, 8 Dec 2004 (UTC)

The only real way to make such a thing "binding" would be to change the page to a redirect then protect it. A better solution is if you really want a redirect, vote delete (and encourage those who vote redirect to do the same). Then, once the article is deleted, create a redirect there. I'm fairly sure that's valid: recreated articles are speedy delete candidates, but you're not recreating the article, you're recreating a different article (a redirect) with the same title. Nobody can change the article back to what used to be there, because it would then be a speedy delete candidate. Shane King 05:12, Dec 8, 2004 (UTC)
I believe it would be plenty binding to delete an article if it ceases to remain a redirect, and indeed delete any non-redirect recreation of the article. "Binding merges" would be even more straightforward with a page history merge and the threat to delete any non-merged recreation of the article. Redirects and merges are somewhat more palatable to people than "delete" because the page history can be used as a reference, but if deleting is necessary, then I guess delete and redirect might not be so bad. Cool Hand Luke 05:34, 8 Dec 2004 (UTC)
Well, deleting's not really neceesary as such, but that way is atleast something that can be achieved without a policy change. Changing policy seems to be hard (perhaps too hard). Shane King 05:39, Dec 8, 2004 (UTC)
Yeah. I'm asking if this sort of thing can be generated from VfD without changing policy. We do have other conditional votes (transwiki, then delete), so I'd like to know if such a specific kind of conditional vote is legitimate. Cool Hand Luke 05:45, 8 Dec 2004 (UTC)

Wikibooks for deletion

This article brought to you by the Department of Fun: User:JRM/Wikibooks. Suppose someone nominated Wikibooks, what would happen? Well, in any case, not this, surely... JRM 13:34, 2004 Dec 8 (UTC)

Deletion unlisting mechanism

See Wikipedia:Deletion unlisting and of course Wikipedia talk:Deletion unlisting.

RFCs listed on VfD

IMO it was totally inappropriate to list these on VfD. I have shifted them to /Old. - Ta bu shi da yu 11:52, 10 Dec 2004 (UTC)

  • I support this move, but does a concensus need to be in place before taking such measures? [[User:GRider|GRider\talk]] 18:44, 10 Dec 2004 (UTC)
    • Yeah. I should point out that I may not have handled this one too well, but a lot of discussion is happening on WP:AN. - Ta bu shi da yu 22:45, 10 Dec 2004 (UTC)

VfD footer.

I have some concerns about recent changes to the language of VfD's instructions. Please see Template talk:VfDFooter#Recent changes to VfDFooter. - RedWordSmith 00:13, Dec 11, 2004 (UTC)

Section link

I added the section link at the bottom so someone could easily use that to add more VfDs. The only flaw is when someone removes a date or section from the top, the number of the last edit section (one short from the VfDfooter) changes. So please be advised to keep this number updated when you add a date or subtract a date. Thanks! -- AllyUnion (talk) 18:25, 11 Dec 2004 (UTC)

You're dead-on right that the core issue is accurate updating. I added some more comments to guide users, especially in readjusting when it gets out of sync. (Note that unless we institute a template for creating the section headings that replace the transclusion of VfD subpages that would overload the rendered version, just taking the oldest section out when the new one comes in would not solve the need for update, even if we could get those who add the new section to move the old one to /Old.)
I will make some kind of proposal when i get a chance to analyze the screwups that have been occurring in the last few days, during which i've refrained from the usual "Transition to ..." edits, by which more often than not i am the one doing both the addition and removal, often in the first half hour of the new UTC day.
--Jerzy(t) 02:00, 2004 Dec 14 (UTC)

New Days at the Top?

This might be a radical proposal (and probably not the right section in which to propose it) but, given all the structural changes made when we switched to transclusion of sub-pages, can we/should we flip the list upside down and enter new nominations at the top? It might simplify a lot of the page maintenance without the need for complicated new instructions. Rossami (talk) 03:50, 14 Dec 2004 (UTC)
While we had last night what appears to have been a successful update, it was IIRC the first, and i am also thinking once again about add-day-at-the-top. It would also have an advantage during the gap (occasionally more than a day) between someone (anyone) adding the new day's heading and the creation of the before-the-ToC link to that new heading (probably over 90% of the time by me): as it is, the most efficient way to go through the new entries during the gap is this counter-intuitive procedure:
  1. Page-down a few times to the top of the ToC
  2. Link via the first entry of the ToC (i.e., to the heading for the oldest day remaining)
  3. Page-up to see the end of the Toc (but don't link via its last entry: Yeah, you could read each VfD before the one above it, but for any of them that have already gotten long, you'd have to scroll up to its start, read it downward, then scroll back up thru it a 2nd time to get to the next VfD that you might read thru.)
  4. Page-up until the ToC entry for the current day's heading is visible
  5. Link to the current day's section
  6. Read each VfD in order, proceeding each time from the top of the one below it
In contrast, newest-day-at-top means steps 2 gets you to the new day, obviating steps 3-5 of the above procedure. Besides avoiding the multi-step procedure, in that context step 2 is a bit counter-intuitive only if you think of yourself as finding a way around the long ToC (rather than as using it as it's intended, to link you to the item (the first) that you wanted); even if it comes out counter-intuitive for a given user, it has the virtue of being a simple technique that works for getting past any long ToC (such as the one on this talk page.)
My observation, BTW, is that
  • You can't presently count on new VfDs being added at the bottom of the day's section, but
  • Since there's no other significance to the sequence of VfDs within the day, that presents a problem only for users who bother looking at VfDs on the day they are created. (Presumably some instead read each day no sooner than the start of the day following, while others usually read VfDs starting with those that will go to /Old at midnight UTC, and go on to fresher ones only if they doesn't get distracted.)
(It's not obvious to me whether such a change would make the end at which new VfDs get added within a one-day section more consistent, or less.)
I hope that no one will boldly carry out this idea, tho. Implementing it should blow some minds (despite the success of the analogous procedure on WP:CU), and even tho i don't have any great ideas for easing the transition, i would hope we could rack (but not wrack) our brains in that area first.
--Jerzy(t) 21:36, 2004 Dec 14 (UTC)

Sub-page per Day?

Consider the implications of having VfD consist of

  • a bunch of instructions and other headers (like the pre-ToC index to days),
  • 6 transclusion links to subpages each encompassing one day's nominees
  • a edit-link (or two) to the current day's subpage.

As far as i can see, it would still be worthwhile to have a sub-page for each nominee's VfD, easing the editing, reducing ed-confs, and easing the post-resolution preservation of discussions. (Remember that transclusion nests just fine, and hopefully this includes the recent VfD-motivated enhancement whereby headings get passed up the transclusion path to be reflected in a single ToC no matter which level is the outermost that you are viewing.) This subsection, like the whole of the section containing it, is motivated by day sections now being identified (for edits) by numbers that shift around in ways that aren't always easy to grasp. They would be supplanted by subpages with fixed names, e.g. Wikipedia:Votes for deletion/2004 December 09 or Wikipedia:Votes for deletion/Day/2004 December 09 (so that the names sort almost correctly).

The natural oldest-first order could be preserved (and the confusion attending upon changing it avoided), and instead of adding a heading for a new day, the procedure for the initial nominator would be

  • on WP:VfD to
    • update the edit link(s) to the current day sub-page by simply changing the date imbedded in it, and
    • de-comment one previously prepared transclusion call, to a previously prepared day sub-page;
  • and, on that day sub-page, which would already have
    1. the proper heading,
    2. a VfD-footer call,
    3. a (commented??) request that the person who adds the first VfD also remove the VfD-footer call from the previous day's subpage, and
    4. an edit link to that previous day's page, to facilitate that removal (The link and request might be in a parameterized template, simplifying their removal.),
  • place the usual transclusion link to the nominated page's VfD subpage,
  • preview, and follow the link to yesterday's subpage, to remove the footer
  • return and remove that request and that edit-link, and
  • save.

(The pre-ToC index would be affected by becoming a little simpler to maintain: the addresses of days would no longer need "/Old" inserted when they have served their 5-and-a-fraction days; you'd just move a link around the current/old separator and add the italics markup.)

The day sub-pages could also have (non-edit) links forward and back to adjacent days.

Am i missing some problematic implications?
--Jerzy(t) 21:36, 2004 Dec 14 (UTC)

Requiring seconding

A lot of talk at Preliminary deletion and Proposal to expand WP:CSD has gone into shortening VfD by removing things that obviously should be deleted. An easy, and perhaps, less controversial, method of reducing the length of this page is remove those pages that should obviously be kept. Perhaps a rule should be introduced whereby all VfD's need to be seconded within 24 hours by another delete vote or they will be removed. This would knock off the handful of articles each day that are listed by misguided newcomers, trolls, or by a simple error on the part of a respected user. Currently seven pages would be bumped from VfD if this rule were enacted: Tightlacing, Hi Hi Puffy AmiYumi, Bash.org, Radomir, Treaty of Finkenstein, Al Jazeerah, and Stepping - SimonP 21:52, Dec 11, 2004 (UTC)

  • Sounds like a good idea. [[User:Dpbsmith|Dpbsmith (talk)]] 23:06, 11 Dec 2004 (UTC)
I like this idea. It seems clear and simple. Would reduce the load on WP:VFD/Old, too. Joyous 23:14, Dec 11, 2004 (UTC)
What would also save time is if the subpages for these invalid nominations could simply be deleted, rather than labouriously closed and archived. - SimonP 23:43, Dec 11, 2004 (UTC)
Perhaps you should start your own discussion thread regarding that suggestion. Hyacinth 00:22, 12 Dec 2004 (UTC)
The idea of "getting a second or having the discussion deleted" is rather similar to the rules over at Wikipedia:Requests for comment, where two people have to certify a dispute in 48 hours or the page is deleted. -- Cyrius| 00:55, 12 Dec 2004 (UTC)
Yes, that the policy has worked well on RfC was an inspiration. - SimonP 01:11, Dec 12, 2004 (UTC)
RfC policy does not provided for deleteing the subpage. Policy refers to entry and subpage as distinguishable entities, then calls for deleting the entry. This is just like deleting the entry from VfD page, while preserving the debate (currently as a subpage). --Jerzy(t) 08:33, 2004 Dec 15 (UTC)
Subpage should not be deleted if the nomination is plausibly an abusive action. --Jerzy(t) 02:31, 2004 Dec 15 (UTC)
Sounds good to me. Maurreen 18:36, 12 Dec 2004 (UTC)
I strongly oppose this. I see no problem with things spending the time on VfD that they do, and feel that this time limit is very negative, given how many people might not check wikipedia every day. The current process works, and I fail to see the problem with it. --Improv 19:36, 12 Dec 2004 (UTC)
Then why not approve it and then second everything? I strongly support it myself. It's a very good idea that hopefully will cut down on the number of unmerited listings.Dr Zen 03:06, 14 Dec 2004 (UTC)
What??? "Why not approve [the policy] and then [render it null and void by] second[-ing] everything?" Because the policy is a waste of effort, that will do nothing to cut down on listings, as long as one user follows your advice. --Jerzy(t) 08:33, 2004 Dec 15 (UTC)
The problem is that VfD is too long and that it takes many hours of to clear out VfD/Old each day. - SimonP 20:00, Dec 12, 2004 (UTC)
  • I agree with this proposal and believe it could cut down on some of the obvious keeps. A significant number of these are created by users who add the {{vfd}} tag to a page but don't bother to create an entry on WP:VfD. I think in cases like those editors should have a choice of going through the process and creating an entry for it if it seems VfD-worthy or simply removing it from the page as vandalism. It doesn't make sense to keep entries for which no reason to delete was given. [[User:Livajo|Ливай | ]] 04:50, 13 Dec 2004 (UTC)
  • Concur. -- Jmabel | Talk 23:10, Dec 13, 2004 (UTC)
    • Me too. I've suggested more than once that we should just do this as a matter of course. Frankly, if the lister can't manage the process, they probably don't have enough experience of Wikipedia to be deleting articles anyway.Dr Zen 03:06, 14 Dec 2004 (UTC)
  • I am in strong favor of requiring a seconding in order to qualify a candidate on VfD. This would greatly reduce the number of vandalism-styled VfD listings. [[User:GRider|GRider\talk]] 17:28, 14 Dec 2004 (UTC)

There seems to be fairly clear consensus in favour of this change. I have added this idea as a proposal to the deletion policy page. The "Unlisting a page from VfD" section now includes: (Proposed) Any page that has been listed on VfD for 24 hours that has not received a single delete vote beyond that of the original nominator can be removed from VfD after twenty fours hours. The VfD subpage for these debates should be kept, but they do not need to be archived. - SimonP 21:57, Dec 14, 2004 (UTC)

Proposal: Wikipedia:Deletion policy#Unlisting a page from VfD
Discussion: Wikipedia talk:Deletion policy#Unlisting a page from VfD

Requiring seconding - removal

Following Hyacinth's advice I am raising this issue separately. Would it be appropriate to simply delete the debates that are removed after 24 hours? This would save time and I would not expect these curtailed debates to contain much worth archiving. - SimonP 01:11, Dec 12, 2004 (UTC)

The fact that "this page was nominated for deletion but the nomination was not seconded" should be recorded somewhere. I suggest a very brief note on the article's talk page. Or better, a very specific comment in the article's edit summary when you remove the VfD header. Rossami (talk) 03:06, 12 Dec 2004 (UTC)
I also oppose this -- I don't think debates should *ever* be deleted. --Improv 19:36, 12 Dec 2004 (UTC)

I oppose this. The debates are part of the record and should be retained. They do not need to be moved to the article's Talk page or anything like that. I think "requiring seconding" is a good idea, I think removing the debate from the VfD page does no harm and may reduce contention.
We frequently see "obvious deletes," where good reasons to keep surface several days after listing. I am sure that it is possible for the reverse to happen. I can't think of an example offhand and don't want to strain my brain concocting a hypothetical strawman, but I'm sure sooner or later it will occur. I'd like to see some explicit language in your proposal saying that if it does, the article can be re-listed without the nominator getting flamed (or the re-listing removed).
I think the intent of your proposal is to facilitate keeping "obvious keeps" where there really isn't any sensible debate. I think it's a good idea. I think it will work. And I think it will ease a small but signficant source of tension.
But in rare occasions where a mistake is made in removing an item from VfD, it's important to have the debate there for reference, and it's important to define a way in which such a mistake could be corrected. [[User:Dpbsmith|Dpbsmith (talk)]] 20:16, 12 Dec 2004 (UTC)
While I am sure that it is theoretically possible that some crucial piece of new information could be presented proving a page to be unencyclopedic, such events are rare enough that I don't recall one ever happening. As with any other page that clears VfD there would be no limits on relisting them after they are kept, especially if there is new evidence to present.
I am fine with keeping the debates, the real waste of time is archiving them and linking them to the talk page. Is simply linking the debate in the edit summary when the VfD header is removed is enough? The page history will be the first place an editor will check when they are wondering why the page was removed from VfD. - SimonP 04:24, Dec 13, 2004 (UTC)
Sure, I think that works perfectly. In theory, if the deletion debate is accurately named, you can find it without any link at all, so putting a link in the edit summary icing on the cake anyway. Yes, this is all way off in hypothetical territory and probably doesn't even matter. [[User:Dpbsmith|Dpbsmith (talk)]] 00:32, 14 Dec 2004 (UTC)
Any and all debates should be kept. [[User:GRider|GRider\talk]] 17:28, 14 Dec 2004 (UTC)
Many valid reasons against are already given here. Even if there are debates with no future value, they are worth saving for the sake of the occasional debate that would be deleted because its value is not obvious early enough. An example could be long-con (or "sleeper") sockpuppet, who does a good job of building an identity before embarking on their real purpose. --Jerzy(t) 08:33, 2004 Dec 15 (UTC)

Wikipedia:VfDs needing attention

Perhaps some of these problems can be relieved by creating a page to list VfDs that are already at least a day old and have close vote counts. A large number of entries are nearly unanimous, and obviously poor nominations sometimes invite scores of votes, superflously keeping as if to express outrage. The proposed page would be listed voluntarily with no particular stigma keeping or removing entries. Cool Hand Luke 06:12, 18 Dec 2004 (UTC)

userfying pages

I've just altered template:vanity slightly so it's suitable to be given either direct to anon IPs that have created or put it at the top of deletion debates for obvious vanity pages. The aim of it is to catch some newbies without biting them. Any thoughts? tis below; Dunc| 23:20, 22 Dec 2004 (UTC)

Some of the people, places or things you have written about in the article [[{{{1}}}]] may not be sufficiently well-known to merit articles of their own. The Wikipedia community welcomes newcomers, and encourages them to become Wikipedians. On Wikipedia, each user is entitled to a user page in which they can describe themselves, and this article's content may be incorporated into that page. However, to merit inclusion in the encyclopedia proper, a subject must be notable. We encourage you to write or improve articles on notable subjects.

  • I recommend adding a comment and link that "Wikipedia strongly discourages the creation of autobiographies in the article space." You might also consider linking one of the instances of "notable" to Wikipedia:Criteria for inclusion of biographies. It may not be official policy but it's a pretty good starting point for a new contributor. Rossami (talk) 20:36, 23 Dec 2004 (UTC)

Now that 1.4 is in use, perhaps this template would be useful? --Sgeo 04:03, Dec 23, 2004 (UTC)

Holy crap, it works now! -- Cyrius| 20:27, 23 Dec 2004 (UTC)
Also, another thing that works is using parameters in subst: --Sgeo 20:54, Dec 23, 2004 (UTC)
Updated the template to reflect new instructions. Sgeo 21:08, Dec 23, 2004 (UTC)