[mailto:wikien-l-bounces@Wikipedia.org] On Behalf Of Nick Boalch
Peter Mackay wrote:
>> NPOV, for example, depends on different
points of view, including
>> opinions, being given space consistent with their level
> Consistent with their level of support in the world, yes.
their level of support among the Wikipedia editing community,
no. There is a crucial difference.
Beg pardon, but I think you've got that the wrong way around...
I don't think so. Take [[Criticism of Wikipedia]], for
instance. I imagine that most regular Wikipedia editors
disagree with many of those criticisms. For example, I doubt
that many of us agree with Robert McHenry and Andrew Orlowski
that it is improper and unsuitable for Wikipedia to call
itself an encyclopaedia. However, this is an opinion
Hardly an average Wikipedia article, wouldn't you agree?
Accordingly on other articles, different points of
to be included based on their prominence and level of support
in the real world, not just on which happens to be most
popular among the Wikipedia editing community.
That's the problem. In theory, theory and practice are identical. In
practice, they aren't.
WP articles are not written by the general community, they are written by
editors, usually a handful of core contributors. NPOV works out to what
these editors agree it is, simply because nobody else has any significant
This especially applies to articles on specialist or relatively obscure
topics. High-profile articles fare better because there are more eyes on
are free to express their political opinions so
long as it is
done in a civil and non-inflammatory manner.
They may be free to express them, but my point is that they
aren't free to inflict them on articles.
That's precisely what I *do* mean. Articles are written by
political views, and where I know an editor's
they are revealed on user or talk pages), I find
it extremely rare
that they write something in an article that is contrary to those
A good editor will do it in a civil, factual, sourced and
non-inflammatory manner, consistent with NPOV.
Yes. Which is exactly what I said above.
It may be what you meant to say, but it certainly is not what I understood
you to say. Hence my response.
with NPOV is not 'inflicting your opinion on an article'.
Biasing an article towards your own opinions *is* inflicting
your opinion on an article, is obviously not consistent with
Beg pardon, but it is. If (say) a Republican and a Democrat write an
article, each one only writing material that supports and reinforces their
partisan views, but the end result is balanced and consistent with community
support, then that is NPOV.
I don't particularly want to end up rehashing the
userbox debacle, but we *have* seen groups of users banding
together with the specific, identified purpose of
systematically applying bias to Wikipedia articles.
Sure. Wikipedia is generally able to handle this.
Jimbo's word on the matter:
The point is, we don't act *in Wikipedia* as a Democrat, a
Republican, a pro-Lifer, a pro-Choicer, or whatever. Here we are
Wikipedians, which means: thoughtful, loving, neutral.
With all due respect to you and Jimbo, that's not the way
Thoughtful, loving, neutral, touchy-feely gets
don't suddenly turn into opinionless
automatons. Nor do we
to. We want Republicans to have input into
articles on the
Party. We just don't want it to be Republican
With all due respect to you, I think you're slightly
misinterpreting what Jimbo (and I) actually mean. I don't
think either of us are suggesting that editors should be
'opinionless automatons', just that they shouldn't let their
opinions influence the way they write articles.
That's plain bizarre. There's absolutely nothing wrong with editors
inserting their own opinions into articles. It happens every day. So long as
it is done with NPOV in mind it works fine. Here is the fundamental
statement of NPOV, taken from [[WP:NPOV]]:
"The neutral point of view is a means of dealing with conflicting views. The
policy requires that, where there are or have been conflicting views, these
should be presented fairly, but not asserted. All significant points of view
are presented, not just the most popular one. It should not be asserted that
the most popular view or some sort of intermediate view among the different
views is the correct one. Readers are left to form their own opinions."
May I highlight that sentence: "All significant points of view are
presented, not just the most popular one."
Peter in Canberra