Wikiquote:Village pump archive 18

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January 2008, originally posted to Wikiquote:Village pump.

Village pump archive 18[edit]

Dispute on remarks about Jews[edit]

There is currently a dispute that has been discussed at the Talk:Jesus page. User:Écrasez l'infâme insists that certain quotes by John Chrysostom about Jews belong on the page because they indicate certain important opinions and policies among early Christian leaders. That they are significant remarks is not disputed, and they arguably could be added to Chrysostom's page and the page on Jews, but I have agreed with another editor that they are not actually remarks about Jesus himself, and that they are not relevant to the Jesus page and don't belong there. Further comments are welcome as an indication of community opinion on the matter. ~ Kalki 19:04, 14 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

We can't use the Jesus article as a dumping ground for remarks made long after His death. Put them on the page of the man who said them and that's it. Poetlister 21:24, 14 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
Again, Poetlister, you are the model of concision compared to my own verbosity (see Talk:Jesus). I've decided my motto is "never use a drill when an wrecking ball is available". ~ Jeff Q (talk) 21:31, 14 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
Thanks guys. The Jesus page could use some help. (On its talk page I made the case that it is WQ's most important.) Steve Dufour 03:18, 15 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
Here is Saint John Chrysostom's quote in full:
    • [T]he Jewish people were driven by their drunkenness and plumpness to the ultimate evil; they kicked about, they failed to accept the yoke of Christ, nor did they pull the plow of his teaching. Another prophet hinted at this when he said: "Israel is as obstinate as a stubborn heifer." … Although such beasts are unfit for work, they are fit for killing. And this is what happened to the Jews: while they were making themselves unfit for work, they grew fit for slaughter. This is why Christ said: "But as for these my enemies, who did not want me to be king over them, bring them here and slay them." (Luke 19:27)
It invokes Jesus twice: the first time to say that the Jews refuse the "yoke of Christ", then a second time to explain that slaughtering the Jews as a consequence is precisely what Jesus meant in Luke 19:27. This quote, made by a highly influential leader of the early Church, a Sainted Archbishop of Constantinople, one of the only Three Holy Hierarchs, and a Doctor of the Church, is directly about Jesus and belongs on the page of quotes about Jesus, no matter how controversial or how uncomfortable it may make some editors. Écrasez l'infâme 20:13, 16 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
I don't think that anyone is denying that John Chrysostom is notable. He has a page here on Wikiquote and nobody is proposing it for deletion. Nor is anyone trying to stop these quotations being added to Chrysostom's page, where they belong. The question is whether every quotation with the Name of Jesus in belongs on His page. I say emphatically no. I would urge this editor to put the quotations in the right place, and to source the other quotations on that page. Poetlister 20:48, 16 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
There are many people in all fields of human endeavor, like Jesus, Gautama Buddha, Charles Darwin, Louis Pasteur, Albert Einstein and innumerable others, who, even when surrounded by all forms of hostiltilies and bigotry, can persist in pursuing balanced and fair forms of progress in their lives and be very helpful to others in theirs. While acknowledging that errors and foolishness must be recognized, and to some extent reported upon and combatted with what wisdom they can muster, they are for most part far more interested in either discovering, expressing or gathering together the very best wisdom and insight they can for others to appreciate in their own lifetimes, and as a legacy in the ages to come.
There are of course others, who no matter how good-willed and amiable others might be, or wish to be, will insist on trying to find the worst things that have been said about others, or by others, intensely focused upon the stupidity in others which they can feel superior to, and which they may repeat to others, that they may go on feeling superior to anyone who doesn't sink to such depths of hostility and fervor as they do in their outrage and their willingness to be outraged. And thus new paths of bigotry and needless hostility can ever be fed by the stupidity of a few, until such a time as hopefully may come, when the general awareness of humanity that such behavior truly is itself a severe form of stupidity, can make even these extremely stupid people too embarrassed by their own stupidity as to persist in it.
Some of the recent re-additions might arguably be valid, but once again it all smacks of a rather obsessive focus on some of the darkest aspects of human history. Figuratively it is a further polluting of the general atmosphere which must exist for all to breathe with some of the foulest enunciations that can be found. I cannot applaud such zealousness, nor the obviously intense efforts that have been made to persist in spreading as much stupidity around as is possible.
People can often be extremely clever and effective in pursuing certain goals, but remain very stupid in the very choice of the goals they choose to pursue. There will always be an abundance of stupidity to be found in the past, but I do hope that there will be less in the future, and that more and more people will not be so stupid as to wish to focus on the stupidity of others any more than is absolutely necessary — as when it makes itself disruptive of the more worthy aims as exist in others.
I perceive that these recent attempts to reinsert material (which consensus had begun to clearly weigh against including) need a bit more editing, but I might not have time to attend to the matter fully. I personally happen to have far more on my mind than finding ways to further publish some of the foulest expressions of others that can be found, or getting into prolonged disputes with those who wish to. I have to be briefly leaving in a short while, and might not have time to attend to these matters further for at least a few hours. ~ Kalki 20:57, 16 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
I agree with what Kalki has to say. But I would also like to stress, both for this argument, and future arguments on other subjects, that a quote that merely mentions X is not necessarily about X. Écrasez l'infâme ("Crush the infamous") claims that his quote listed above "invokes" Jesus twice, but I think he means it "mentions" Jesus (I do not see this quote as actually "calling on" or "appealing to" Jesus). Let us boil this quote down to its essentials: "The Jewish people refused to accept the yoke of Christ." Here is a sentence with an almost identical structure: "The Jewish people refused to accept pork in their diet." Does anyone believe that this sentence is about pork? Obviously, the most correct place for these quotes would be on a page about Saint John Chrysostom, or the sayings of the early church. Possibly, they could be placed on a page about Jews (if suitably balanced by other quotes to insure NPOV). But they do not belong on a page about Jesus, as it is neither his opinion, or someone else's opinion about him. --Ubiquity 22:17, 16 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

I agree about the irrelevance of the quote on the Jesus page. Merely to "invoke" the name of Jesus does not make Jesus its subject. There is scarcely any limit to the number of quotes which could be added if all it takes is for someone notable to mention Jesus or to claim his approval. The quote from Luke 19:27 is already in the article. How Chrysostom interpreted it is not to the point. Aren't there a great many notable interpreters of the words of Jesus? Shall we, then, include them as well? The inevitable sprawl which would result would make the article virtually unreadable. - InvisibleSun 22:13, 16 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

That has already happened. :-) Steve Dufour 23:40, 16 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

These are among the most historically significant and influential words ever written about Jesus. Saint John Chrysostom's quote, obviously about Jesus, quotes Him directly, i.e., does not merely "mention" Him, to provide a theological justification for the treatment of the Jews that has been used thoughout Christianity's entire history, running through the 4th Lateran Council, to Luther and beyond. Even Hitler stressed this long history in his defense of the final solution. As this quote about Jesus illustrates, the person of Jesus Christ and His own words were used repeatedly by Christians to justify a policy of slaughtering Jews. This is historically significant and cannot be ignored or whitewashed by laughable claims that Chrysostom's quote about Jesus merely "mentions" or "invokes" (meaning cite as an appeal to authority) Jesus. Chrysostom's highly influential quote about Jesus was used on numerous occasions to slaughter Jews for the theological reasons Chrysostom gave: the Jews rejected and killed Christ, and Jesus implies to kill anyone who does not want Him to be king over them. These are Chrysostom words about Jesus, not mine. This is an important and significant quote about Jesus and belongs in a list of quotations about Jesus, regardless of their controversial nature. Écrasez l'infâme 11:51, 17 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

Btw Great Hierarch and Ecumenical Teacher, Archibishop of Constantinople, Saint John Chrysostom has his own entry on our project too. --Aphaia 13:45, 17 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
I just happened to look at the recent comments here, and I must remark the the statement that "These are among the most historically significant and influential words ever written about Jesus" is frankly absurd.
Do I consider them quotes worth knowing about? Yes. Do I consider them quotes anyone looking up quotes by or about Jesus simply has to know about? ABSOLUTELY NOT. They belong on John Chrysostom's page, where you are welcome to place them, and perhaps on the page on Jews, if you insist upon it, but they are rather off-topic on the Jesus page. The growing consensus of editors here seems to indicate that the page should remain more constrained in its focus. Though I have long been well aware of him, and can agree he played a prominent role in the formation of many forms of dogma, ask the vast majority of Christians who John Chrysostom was and you would draw a total blank. Many in total ignorance might even venture to think he might have been one of the apostles, but there have been dozens of people whith equal or far greater influence on Christian history, and an extensive exposition of their opinions and commentary is not something most of us wish to over-burden the Jesus page with.
Although a few people, in one way or another have found ways to either subtly or overtly do so, Wikiquote is not is not a place to vent one's particular form of hostilities against some particular person or group. I have been too busy with many other things to examine and edit all the recent changes that have occured on this and other pages that have interest for me, but I hope to do much this week, and get around to crossing a few tasks off of my extensive list of things to do here. Dealing with this is among the top dozen or so things about the project that are on my mind. I might get around to making a few edits sometime later today. ~ Kalki 17:41, 17 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
A bit OT, your comments gave me a suggestion about your identity, Kalki :) No orthodox or coptic Christian may say "ask the vast majority of Christians who John Chrysostom was and you would draw a total blank". :-) Sorry I couldn't stop me to say, since it was so hilarious - but on other parts, I agree with you on this issue. Who should be responsible for the death of a human Jesus of Nazareth may be an interest for some people - but it is not directly related to his personality and if the article includes this topic, it may be overburdened. --Aphaia 17:48, 17 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
I am quite aware that Chrysostom is a major and respected figure among many, but I stand by my original comments. The vast majority of Christians don't have enough familiarity with history to be aware of him, but this is true of people in general about many significant figures in the traditions which they most respect or adhere to. ~ Kalki 18:31, 17 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

In support of my statement that Chrysostom's quote about Jesus condoning the killing of the Jews is "among the most historically significant and influential words ever written about Jesus":

  • [A]lthough the tradition of Chrysostom continued to cause unbridled vituperation for Jews and Judaism, climaxing in the violence of 1096 and beyond, the modulating Augustinian position became, more or less, the "official" policy of the papacy … [G]overnmental coercion became the instrument though which the Church made its scornful commentary on Judaism. Here is the decisive turn in the history of Christian anti-Judaism, a turn whose ultimate disfiguring consequence was enacted in the political antisemitism of Adolf Hitler.

Here's another:

The direct intellectual lineage from Chrysostom to Hitler is standard, well-documented history in Christian antisemitism. The poorly justified and poorly argued attempts to purge a page of quotations about Jesus of this history are whitewashing, pure and simple. Écrasez l'infâme 21:41, 17 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

Whitewashing what? I will no doubt disagree with many here about who Jesus was, but I cannot suggest that Jesus was in any way responsible for Chrysostom's remarks. To pu tthem on the Jesus page is to whitewash Chrysostom.--Cato 22:17, 17 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
Chrysostom quotes Jesus from Luke 19:27. That's why Chrysostom's quote belongs in the section Quotes about Jesus, because it's a quote by Chrysostom about Jesus, in this case explaining why Jesus intended in Luke 19:27 a Christian policy to kill Jews that reject Him. It goes without saying that the subject of any quote is not responsible for what the writer says, especially after they're dead. For those who hold that Jesus was resurrected and was a living influence on Chrysostom and others, the question of responsibility remains an open problem in this case. Écrasez l'infâme 23:04, 17 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

Écrasez, your continued use of words like "uncomfortable", "whitewash" and "controversial" suggest to me that you have a point of view to push here. Just out of curiosity, I'd be interested in knowing whether you think the words of Chrysostom need to be on the page about Jesus because they are gospel or because they are appalling, and exactly who are the infamous you would like to crush. But neither of those have much to do with the matter at hand. You are the only one in this discussion who sees this as political. For the rest of us, it's a simple matter of grammar and usage. I've addressed the grammar issues earlier (that it is "Jews" rather than "Jesus" who are the subject of Chrysostom's remarks). As far as usage: why do people come to Wikiquote? Either to find a particular quotation, to learn what someone said, or to learn what people said about someone. In the first two cases, these quotes clearly belong on the John Chrysostom page (where they already are). If I were looking for them, that's where I'd look. If I wanted to learn about Chrysostom, these are important things to read. In the third case, they belong on the page about Jews. They tell me important things about how certain people felt about Jews. They don't tell me anything about Jesus — they weren't even made until almost 400 years after he lived, and they do not address any aspect of Jesus's personality or actions. --Ubiquity 22:53, 17 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

My point of view is that highly significant quotes by and about Jesus should appear on Wikiquote's Jesus page. Chrysostom's quote is blatantly about Jesus because it quotes Him and explains why Chrysostom believes that Jesus condones a policy of killing Jews that reject Him. Again, Chrysostom's statement here is about Jesus. As I've documented clearly above, Chrysostom's statement about Jesus is viewed by many historians to be historically significant because it provided the theological framework for centuries of Christian antisemitism, culminating in Hitler's final solution. These are the reasons that Chrysostom's quote about Jesus belong in the section Quotes about Jesus: because it is a quote about Jesus, and because it is documented to be highly significant. Écrasez l'infâme 23:04, 17 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
As has often been the case recently I had to interrupt my sessions here with activities elsewhere, but picking up the discussion again, the accusations that this is "poorly justified and poorly argued attempts to purge a page of quotations about Jesus of this history are whitewashing, pure and simple" are frankly TOTAL crap. NO ONE has said these quotes shouldn't be posted at the Chrysostom page or the page on Jews, but they remain primarily about Jews, and not about Jesus, and don't belong on that page. I will concede that you have made a somewhat valid claim that at least one of them could be included as having some reference to a statement of Jesus, but the level of relevance is one that is seems pretty strained to everyone but yourself.
Just for those who might not be aware of it, Écrasez l'infâme is a phrase made famous by Voltaire, who is someone I myself do admire, but addressing the person using it as a username, I would state: After a clear consensus of some of the regular editors of this project began to form against your inclusion of the quotes on the Jesus page, you have engaged in a blatantly besmirching the motives and objectivity of everyone but yourself in an attempt to whitewash your continuing efforts to place some of the foulest expressions that you can find in regard to some Christian's opinions everywhere which you can find to place them. We don't prohibit such activity, but I don't think most of us welcome it.
You have persisted in a haughty presumption of your own superiority to such ethnic bigotry as John Chrysostom was plainly guilty of in regards to the Jews, yet frankly, that you seem to be an extremely bigoted party against any form of traditional Christianity is extremely clear. I myself am certainly no apologist for it, but neither am so hostile to those who would wish to be as to condone an exaggerated and irrelevent emphasis on the defects of some Christians as a blanket condemnation of all Christianity, and upon Jesus himself.
You state that the "direct intellectual lineage from Chrysostom to Hitler is standard, well-documented history in Christian antisemitism" — even if one were to accept that very contestable claim the quotes remain remarks made primarly about Jews — NOT about Jesus. There are all manner of people who believe in rather dubious "direct intellectual lineages" of all kinds of ideas and opinions that have little real association, but though Hitler and his most fervent devotees might have wished to claim otherwise, I don't believe anyone with much rational competence would assert Jesus was the first great anti-semite. ~ Kalki 23:36, 17 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

[Resetting the indent for another of my essays. Ouch.] I have to say that I'd never heard of Chrysostom before this discussion (which, as Aphaia says, suggests where I'm not from), so I felt it important to get a perspective on his works to see how the quotes in question are treated in that context. Although Wikipedia is not a reliable source, it's usually pretty darn good for this purpose. w:John Chrysostom strongly suggests that although a few anti-Jewish Chrysostom homilies are an important part of his work, mostly because of how they were used centuries after he wrote them, they are only one small aspect of Chrysostom. Below is the entire "Antisemitism" section of a 5 April 2007 version of the WP article that passed a GA ("good article") check. (I've used that instead of the current version solely to emphasize general approval for the article state.)

Chrysostom's Adversus Judaeos homilies have been circulated by many groups to foster anti-Semitism. James Parkes called the writing on Jews "the most horrible and violent denunciations of Judaism to be found in the writings of a Christian theologian". His sermons against Jews gave momentum to the accusation of deicide — the idea that Jews are collectively responsible for the death of Jesus. British historian Paul Johnson claimed that Chrysostom's homilies "became the pattern for anti-Jewish tirades, making the fullest possible use (and misuse) of key passages in the gospels of St Matthew and John. Thus a specifically Christian anti-Semitism, presenting the Jews as murderers of Christ, was grafted on to the seething mass of pagan smears and rumours, and Jewish communities were now at risk in every Christian city." During World War II, the Nazi Party in Germany abused his work in an attempt to legitimize the Holocaust in the eyes of German and Austrian Christians. His works were frequently quoted and reprinted as a witness for the prosecution.

After World War II, the Christian Churches denounced Nazi use of Chrysostom's works, explaining his words with reference to the historical context. According to Laqueur, it was argued that in the 4th century, the general discourse was brutal and aggressive and that at the time when the Christian church was fighting for survival and recognition, mercy and forgiveness were not in demand. According to Patristics scholars, opposition to any particular view during the late fourth century was conventionally expressed in a manner, utilizing the rhetorical form known as the psogos, whose literary conventions were to vilify opponents in an uncompromising manner; thus, it has been argued that to call Chrysostom an "anti-Semite" is to employ anachronistic terminology in a way incongruous with historical context and record.

(FYI, the above is very well-sourced in the WP article, but I left out the sources so as not to complicate this discussion.) The way I see it, this pretty much says that Adversus Judaeos is about Jews and how they differ undesirably from Christians, who must keep to their own faith and practices, lest they be treated (wretchedly) like Jews. I have to agree with Ubiquity's "pork" analogy above — emphasis on Jews as non-Christians or even "Christ-killers" is much more about Jews and Christianity than it is about Jesus, just as quotes about Jewish dietary rules are more about Jewish practices than pithy statements about the individual food items.

The material of Adversus Judaeos is clearly quite famous and quite controversial, so it certainly has a place in Wikiquote. But that still doesn't mean quotes from there are primarily about Jesus. They are clearly about Jews, and secondarily and famously about anti-Judaism sentiments (possibly distinguishing that from modern anti-Semitism because of psogos, which must sound familiar to anyone who follows modern politics, at least in the U.S.).

As far as these continued arguments from Écrasez l'infâme that these quotes are specifically about and even from Jesus, they simply don't hold water. The quote he most works to justify above, starting with "Jewish people were driven by their drunkenness", he claims two specific Jesus references for.

  • First, he mentions "the yoke of Christ", which presumably alludes to Matthew 11:29: "Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light." Matthew 11:29 is an attributed quote of Jesus. Chrysostom's allusion to it is not, nor is it about Jesus, but rather submission to and acceptance of the form of worship — Christianity.
  • Second, Chrysostom (not Jesus) says this, "And this is what happened to the Jews: while they were making themselves unfit for work, they grew fit for slaughter. This is why Christ said: 'But as for these my enemies, who did not want me to be king over them, bring them here and slay them.' (Luke 19:27)" While this includes a quote attributed to Jesus, Chrysostom's quote is about an interpretation of what Jesus meant. While Chrysostom can be quoted expressing his opinions, Wikiquote cannot allow interpretations of meaning as inclusion criteria.

This is especially tricky in religious texts, as they can readily be used to make just about any point, regardless of the apparent original intent. The particular quote from Luke is from the Parable of the Ten Minas, in which a "man of noble birth" actually uses the quoted statement to justify his punishment of his servant for not investing the master's money for interest and for supporting a delegation to discourage another country from making a king out of the master. Luke 19:26-27 quotes Jesus as saying of the master: "He replied, 'I tell you that to everyone who has, more will be given, but as for the one who has nothing, even what he has will be taken away. But those enemies of mine who did not want me to be king over them—bring them here and kill them in front of me." To me, that clearly justifies obsession with money making, ruthlessness, and above all, not to cross the powerful, lest you be killed. (That's what Jesus was all about, wasn't it?) I suppose the metaphor that Jesus is supposed to have expected his followers to understand is that those who follow and work for him will prosper, but those who reject him will perish, and that certainly seems to be the way that Chrysostom interpreted it. But it doesn't really matter. We don't interpret the quotes of other people. We must not treat A's published interpretations of B's quotes as words coming from B's mouth — citable quotes — but only as A's quotes. And just because A quotes B to make a point, that doesn't mean that the quote is about B. It's about the point.

Basically, this passage is clearly about Chrysostom's interpretation of a Biblical parable from Jesus as Chrysostom applied it specifically to Jews. There's far too much indirection to claim this is "about Jesus", especially when it is manifestly about the conflict between early Christians and their Jewish contemporaries. ~ Jeff Q (talk) 00:40, 18 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

Jeff Q, though you do raise some important issues, and ignoring the red herring that anyone may be confusing Chrysostom's quote of Jesus with Jesus' intent (no one knows what that is, or even if He ever uttered those words, after all), you have neglected the most important and obvious point: though Chrysostom's quote begins with a slur against the Jews, its intent is to show (by quoting Jesus from Luke 19:27) that Jesus condoned killing Jews that reject Christ. These are the very arguments used by Christians against Jews from the very beginning: Jews are Christ-killing deicides deserving of Christ-sanctioned death themselves for their rejection of Christ. How can anyone say that this is not all about Jesus with a straight face? If this most important and obvious point is not precisely about the person of Jesus, then what it is about? Écrasez l'infâme 03:37, 18 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
P.S. Chrysostom was born 25 years after the Council of Nicaea and the imposition of the state-sponsored Christian church by Constantine, so the idea that there was some threat to Christianity from Judaism, or that "the Christian church was fighting for survival and recognition" in Chrysostom's lifetime is beyond absurd. Écrasez l'infâme 03:48, 18 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

I believe JeffQ would concede that he has little familiarity with the history of the early Christian churches, and probably very little interest in studying it, but though Chrystosom did live in a period of Christianity's ascendency to power and prestige, many of the points he made about the rhetorical nature of Chrysostom's most repugnant remarks are probably valid. Also, Chrysostom might well have had some fear of a possible resurgence of Jewish influence and prestige after the attempt Julian had been willing to make to rebuild the Temple in Jerusalem, which could have proven embarrassing to developing Church attitudes and doctrines towards Jews, and to the supposed status of Christians as the new "chosen" people.

You began by posting 4 quotes from Chrysostom's Eight Homilies Against the Jews as if their relevance to the Jesus page were obvious, and treated their initial removal as "vandalism"; you have continued to treat every attempt to remove them from that page as sheer dull-witted obstinacy on everyone else's part, and are basically insisting that as you can make a case of a couple of them having some reference to statements of Jesus, that their relevance and importance is plain and that their placement on the Jesus page should not be challenged at all.

Everyone else who has commented has seen little or no relevance of the remarks to the Jesus page, and stated that they don't belong there. You have added them to the Chrysostom page, and none of us have disputed that this would be a proper place for them. As this is a project which is based on a respect for community consensus in cases of dispute, I believe that most or all of the remarks should be removed, once again, from the Jesus page, and I will attempt to review the page as a whole within the next week or so, as many things of only slight or dubious relevance seem to have been accreting there (as well as a few other places). ~ Kalki 08:03, 18 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

I simply included a quote by Chrysostom about Jesus on the page of Quotes about Jesus. As I and others have clearly documented, this quote is among the most historically significant and influential quotes ever made about Jesus, and it is glaringly obvious that this quote is about Jesus, because it provides the first written argument used by Christians for centuries that the Jews are Christ-killing deicides deserving of Christ-sanctioned death themselves for their rejection of Christ. It's true that some here have said that this quote really isn't about Jesus, but no one has provided an explanation why this is not about Jesus. Merely asserting something is not a valid argument, and no argument has been made here that addresses this key point. ow can anyone say that this is not all about Jesus with a straight face? As you, Jeff Q, and others admit, general knowledge of Chrysostom is very limited, which is all the more reason to include his most lasting and influential quotes on the person of Jesus on Wikiquote's page of quotes about Jesus. I'll ask my simple (unanswered) question again: if Chrysostom's argument that Jesus sanctions killing the Christ-killing Jews that reject Him is not precisely about the person of Jesus, then what is it about? Écrasez l'infâme 15:45, 18 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
That you persist in being so oblivious as to ask "what is the remark about?" is somewhat appalling — read the section heading : "Dispute on remarks about Jews."
Most of your rhetorical questions have been abundantly answered — and that you now seem to be restricting your arguments to one quote out of the four is perhaps a sign of some progress of the force of common sense, but to say that you and others "have clearly documented, this quote is among the most historically significant and influential quotes ever made about Jesus" remains ludicrous, and simply repeating the assertion in bold doesn't make it otherwise. You haven't documented diddly that this quote is about Jesus. You've quoted a few people who's views you seem willing to take as absolutely authoritative on the matter of Chrysostom's significance in the rise of Western anti-semitism, and insulted anyone who would disagree as incompetent. It might well be a very significant remark made about Jews, that was significantly misused by the Nazis, and by others before and since, but that might serve as some primary origin of all western anti-semitism remains an extremely forced conjecture, and your repeated claim of its significance as one of the most ultimately notable statements about the person known as Jesus goes beyond the absurd and borders on the truly pathological. Such phrases as "this is why Christ said" were common among interpreters of his sayings since the writers of the Gospels. That this remark, added to a quote of Jesus (wrongly attaching far more extensive appeals to prejudice and bigotry to a few words of one of Jesus's parables) indicates the quote may have been included almost as an afterthought to Chrysostoms's primary remarks about Jews seems to be something you wish to remain oblivious to in your arguments for including them on the Jesus page. ~ Kalki 16:52, 18 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
Kalki, this is a libelous rant. I demand that you show where I "insulted anyone who would disagree as incompetent" immediately, or retract your unwarranted untruths and apologize. Écrasez l'infâme 21:23, 18 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

Though you might not make an overt declaration against any particular person, despite repeated objections by other editors (most of whom have expressed little or no attachment to Christian traditions) that this quote doesn't belong on the Jesus page, you have persisted in implying some overt bias on the part of others on behalf of them, and incompetence because they don't agree with you.

A few instances of that on this page alone:

"This quote, made by a highly influential leader of the early Church, a Sainted Archbishop of Constantinople, one of the only Three Holy Hierarchs, and a Doctor of the Church, is directly about Jesus and belongs on the page of quotes about Jesus, no matter how controversial or how uncomfortable it may make some editors."
"poorly justified and poorly argued attempts to purge a page of quotations about Jesus of this history are whitewashing, pure and simple."

And after extensive examples and explanations of why the quotes are not more than marginally about Jesus, even the one which includes an extremely misinterpreted direct reference to one of his statements:

"It's true that some here have said that this quote really isn't about Jesus, but no one has provided an explanation why this is not about Jesus. Merely asserting something is not a valid argument, and no argument has been made here that addresses this key point.

Perhaps you are inclined to think that the phrase "poorly justified and poorly argued attempts to purge a page of quotations about Jesus of this history are whitewashing, pure and simple" is not an insult to the intelligence and the integrity of the people who have expressed themselves here, but I would think that most would disagree with you on this as well. ~ Kalki 22:07, 18 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

Kalki: "You … insulted anyone who would disagree as incompetent"
Écrasez l'infâme: "show where I 'insulted anyone who would disagree as incompetent' immediately"
Kalki: "Though you might not make an overt declaration against any particular person …"
Thank you for your prompt admission that I levied no such insult. Let's overlook the pointless justification of twisting what I said into your unjust accusation and get back to the matter at hand.
Chrysostom said that Jesus sanctioned killing Jews because they killed and reject Christ. You say this a quote about the Jews. I say that this is a quote about Jesus, as it pertains to Jesus' recommended penalty for the Jews' involvement in His execution and their rejection of Him as God. Would you or someone else please address this central point and explain why you believe that Chrysostom's quote saying the Jesus approved killing Jews that reject Him is not about Jesus? Écrasez l'infâme 02:11, 19 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

My "prompt admission" was that you made no such insult to any specific person, but I will repeat the assertion that you seem to be someone who persists in insulting, ignoring, or blithely denying the intelligence of everyone else who has weighed in on this issue thus far. Your appeal to "overlook the pointless justification of twisting what I said into your unjust accusation" might be entirely welcome if I considered my assertions unjust, but I do not. I rarely choose to be harsh in my criticism of people's apparent attitudes and behavior, but when I do, I make damn sure my criticisms are valid — and I don't try to deny the fact that I am engaging in criticism.

I have conceded at several points that you had succeeded in making a case for at least one of the quotes referencing a statement of Jesus, albeit incorrectly, and thus having at least a marginal relevance to the page — but I have not conceded that it has anything more than that. There is also no absolute rule of exclusion that I would embrace to prevent it from being retained, and I had not been in any hurry to remove it at this point, as I have been willing to await further indication of community consensus on whether that particular quote should be removed from the page or not. After the last two exchanges my inclination to retain it has actually decreased because of your obstinate insistence that if one can prove that a quote has some relevance to Jesus that it becomes sufficiently or even primarily about him, and must be retained, whether anyone else agrees it has sufficient relevance or not.
Your continually repeated opinion that it definitely belongs on the Jesus page, irrespective of whether most other people here agree to it belonging there or not is one that I cannot endorse. It is not your project to do entirely what you wish any more than it is mine or anyone else's. We are all constrained by community consensus on most matters, and by legal imperatives on a few. ~ Kalki 05:01, 19 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

Kalki, please calm down and answer this simple question: Why do you believe Chrysostom's quote that Jesus approved killing Jews that reject Him is not a quote about Jesus? This debate could be quickly resolved if someone would address this central point, but no one yet has. Écrasez l'infâme 11:33, 19 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

I am quite calm about the issue, but I have no intention of letting highly presumptuous, dishonest or deceitful remarks go unchallenged, on those occasions when I actually do have the time to address them.

If a community consensus develops to retain the one quote in question, I am quite willing to let it remain without further argument on the matter. At this point several people have spoken on the issue, and I am the only one who has indicated any relenting from their original assertions that none of these quotes belong on the Jesus page.

I have modified my original stance, and plainly stated this — there is a case for this one quote mentioned being marginally about Jesus; you seem to have modified yours, but also seem to be speaking at times as if you had never added the 3 other quotes with far less relevance to the page, or actually extended the quote originally posted so as to include one single short remark about Jesus so as to have some solid basis for its inclusion.

Even with the one still being debated, the only portion of Chrysostom's remark that is about Jesus is "This is why Jesus said" — that is it. He then quotes one statement from one of the parables out of context, which provides you a very limited base on which to continue tenaciously asserting that the whole quote, which is plainly about Jews, is primarily about Jesus. That Chrysostom misuses a statement by Jesus to support several statements about Jews I have admitted. That this makes the whole of those particular remarks primarily about Jesus, or even enough to be of sufficient relevance to the Jesus page as to necessitate including them, I do not.

No one at all agrees with you're extremely presumptuous assessment that the "central point" is one about a quote indicating that "Jesus approved killing Jews that reject Him" — and once again I will assert the central issue is whether the mere quoting of Jesus out of context makes Chrysostom's statements about Jews of sufficient relevance to include on the page.

I'm quite sure there are numerous examples where fanatics of all kinds would state that their own particular forms of prejudice, bigotry and persecution of others were things some admirable figure had sanctioned or would sanction. That doesn't mean all of the excuses and reasons which they can concoct to justify or reinforce their own behavior belong on the page about that figure. Some disputable quotes might be included if community consensus indicates they are relevant and notable enough, but not all need be included as if their were some absolute rule that they must be because they have some arguable relevance.

I have not had time recently to tackle all of the issues I would like to as fully as I might wish, on this and several other pages, but I intend to make an attempt on doing some cleanup of the Jesus page within the next week. ~ Kalki 13:41, 19 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

Extending my comment a bit more, and simply addressing the nature of the quotes themselves: though I would have strong disagreement with Chrysostom's views on this and many other metaphysical or moral issues, I actually don't even believe he himself would actually have sanctioned the killing of any Jews, though his extreme rhetoric in this one instance can easily be used to make it seem he did. As far as I am aware, there is no record of any persecutions against Jews which he actually sanctioned, and there have been arguments made that the statements being quoted were actually aimed at dissuading his own followers from adopting many of the Jewish traditions, rather than at inciting them to any persecution of those who continued to follow them. The exact nature of his original Greek words is one that continues to be debated. ~ Kalki 14:07, 19 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

Kalki, you're still skirting the main issue. You haven't explained why you believe Chrysostom's quote is not about Jesus. Just because it's also about the Jews, it doesn't mean that it's not about Jesus. Just because you believe that Chrysostom quotes Jesus out of context or strongly disagree with Chrysostom are not a valid reasons for omitting this or any other quotation of Jesus from the page of Quotes about Jesus. Whether or not you believe that "Chrysostom misuses a statement by Jesus", that Chrysostom quotes "Jesus out of context", or that you "have strong disagreement with Chrysostom's views", would you please provide a straightforward answer to this simple question? Why do you believe Chrysostom's quote that Jesus approved killing Jews that reject Him is not a quote about Jesus? Écrasez l'infâme 15:12, 19 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
I am not skirting anything. I am not stating that "This is why Jesus said..." followed by the quote is not a remark about Jesus. I am stating flatly no other part of the statements are, and that the continuing effort to include these on the Jesus page smacks of nothing less than a repugnant fanaticism. You continually have skirted all mannner of deceptions that your remarks and questions have aimed at making, and keep asking such inane questions as why everyone else here considers the remarks which are plainly primarily about Jews to be primarily about Jews, and won't agree with you that they are primarily or at least sufficiently about Jesus, or why they won't respond to questions obviously framed to prompt a mistaken concession that they are what you wish them to be believed to be. This issue has been abundantly adressed, and you continually try to avoid any indication that community consensus of opinions and not your sole opinion is what should determine whether they are relevant enough to be included on the page. ~ Kalki 15:49, 19 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
Kalki, please drop the abusive language and focus on the subject of the debate. You say that

I am not stating that "This is why Jesus said..." followed by the quote is not a remark about Jesus.

Therefore, you admit that Chrysostom's quote is a remark about Jesus. If X says "Jesus says to kill the Jews that reject Him", this is a statement about both Jesus and Jews equally because removing either Jesus or the Jews from the statement changes its meaning entirely. So the claim that this is primarily a statement about Jews does not hold. Now that we both agree that Chrysostom's quote is about Jesus, do you have a reason to omit it from the page of Quotes about Jesus? Écrasez l'infâme 17:29, 19 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
How many times do you wish me to REPEAT it, I am NOT denying that the quote you have extended since the debate first began now includes a comment which allows you to validly claim it to be about Jesus, as well as the Jews. I still assert the quote remains primarily about Jews, and I don't believe the relevance to the Jesus page is so clear or sufficient that it simply must be included. If the majority feels it should be, it should be; but, if after this long drawn out and tedious dispute full of repeated denial by you alone that the quote is primarily about Jews, the majority believes it doesn't belong on the page it should not. I had been quite willing initially to let this one quote remain, and to even support its inclusion in its newly altered and extended form, but now I am so fed up with your inanely redundant assertions that it is about Jesus and shouldn't be opposed, that I really have no desire at all to see it remain, and am beginning to lean toward opposing it, if the matter comes to a vote. ~ Kalki 17:59, 19 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
I must be leaving soon, for perhaps a few hours, but I also wish to note that your previous comments have once again misrepresented the nature of Chrysostom comments to artificially and falsely buttress your position, implying the statement is of such structure as could be read simply as "Jesus says to kill the Jews that reject Him" when in fact the remarks are far more extensive than that — they are initially Chrysostom's own impressions denigrating Jews, followed by highly disputable conjectures about the remarks of a Jewish prophet, after which he closes with the totally false comment "this is why Jesus said" followed by a quote from his parable. It is certainly not equally about Jesus, it only ends with an incidental comment which is about him. The remark about Jesus could even be an after-thought to the whole statement, and a sudden impulse to justify his ranting against jews by implying "and besides Jesus says so..." My contention is that this does provide you some basis to say it can be a valid inclusion to the page, but one person's mis-application of a statement of Jesus to imply "Jesus said so" hardly makes the whole statement so relevant to the Jesus page as to automatically merit inclusion. ~ Kalki 18:43, 19 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
Kalki, if X says "Jesus says to kill the Jews that reject Him", this is a statement about both Jesus and Jews equally because removing either Jesus or the Jews from the statement changes its meaning entirely. So the claim that this is primarily a statement about Jews does not hold. Even if Chrysostom's statement were "primarily about the Jews", which it is not, that is irrelevant for the case of inclusion of a quote about someone, especially given the impact of these statements. Finally, your opinion about whether Chrysostom misquoted Jesus or not is also irrelevant. What would be relevant is the inclusion of a notable quote stating this opinion. Inclusion of quotes in Wikiquote cannot be based on Kalki's personal opinions about the quote. Écrasez l'infâme 03:02, 20 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
I entirely agree that it should not be based solely on my opinions about the quote, nor solely upon your extremely ludicrous ones. I really have grown extremely tired of responding to your rather inflated regard for your level of logical integrity, and false assumptions about many matters. It is wasting far too much of my time. I say let it go to a community vote now, and be done with it. I have prepared a voting section below. ~ Kalki 06:44, 20 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

Another issue that has gone unremarked is the suggestion that Chrysostom's quotation was the basis for anti-Semitism. That is not true at all; anti-Semitism had been around for centuries before that [1].--Poetlister 15:40, 19 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

And if I recall correctly, Chrysostom was not the first Christian writer who used the word "murderers of the Lord" (note: it is one word in Greek). I heard it was Eusebius of Caesarea, who was a contemporary of Constantinus, hence belonging to the generation earlier than Chrysostom . --Aphaia 16:57, 19 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
No one ever argued that his remarks were the basis for antisemitism, simply that this "golden mouth" was the most persuasive and influential early Christian writer is spreading anti-Jewish opinions. Also, Greek adjective-noun pairs are commonly written together, though this not "one word" as we think of it in English. Read about the history of the defaced Byzantine Emperor Justinian II (Rhinotmetus) for a colorful example of this practice. Écrasez l'infâme 17:29, 19 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
You say that the quote was used "to provide a theological justification for the treatment of the Jews that has been used thoughout Christianity's entire history", as though tis were the only or main quote used. However, this was only one such quote, and far from the most important. See footnote 11 here [2].--Cato 22:31, 19 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
Chrysostom's sermons have been cited as pivotal by historians, such as here:
  • [A]lthough the tradition of Chrysostom continued to cause unbridled vituperation for Jews and Judaism, climaxing in the violence of 1096 and beyond, the modulating Augustinian position became, more or less, the "official" policy of the papacy … [G]overnmental coercion became the instrument though which the Church made its scornful commentary on Judaism. Here is the decisive turn in the history of Christian anti-Judaism, a turn whose ultimate disfiguring consequence was enacted in the political antisemitism of Adolf Hitler.
And even the web page you cite states "the language of John Chrysostom stood out for it's invective". He wasn't the only one though, and a case can be easily made for including other Christian anti-semitic quotes. Écrasez l'infâme 02:32, 20 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
I'm just envisioning inclusion of a quote derived from a character in a film stubbing their toe. BD2412 T 05:49, 20 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
No reasonable person would argue for inclusion of a quote under those circumstances, which are opposite to this case in which the person and words of Jesus are used directly to support a particular action. Écrasez l'infâme 16:33, 20 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

The same editor we can thank for quotes from the anti-semitic dregs of Chrysostom's works which initiated this discussion has recently added these to the Jesus page:

  • I SAY: MY FEELING AS A CHRISTIAN POINTS ME TO MY LORD AND SAVIOUR AS A FIGHTER. IT POINTS ME TO THE MAN WHO ONCE IN LONELINESS, SURROUNDED ONLY BY A FEW FOLLOWERS, RECOGNIZED THESE JEWS FOR WHAT THEY WERE AND SUMMONED MEN TO THE FIGHT AGAINST THEM AND WHO, GOD'S TRUTH! WAS GREATEST NOT AS SUFFERER BUT AS FIGHTER. In boundless love as a Christian and as a man I read through the passage which tells us how the Lord at last rose in His might and seized the scourge to drive out of the Temple the brood of vipers and of adders. How terrific was His fight for the world against the Jewish poison. Today, after two thousand years, with deepest emotion I recognize more profoundly than ever before - the fact that it was for this that He had to shed His blood upon the Cross. As a Christian I have no duty to allow myself to be cheated, but I have the duty to be a fighter for truth and justice. And as a man I have the duty to see to it that human society does not suffer the same catastrophic collapse as did the civilization of the ancient world some two thousand years ago - a civilization which was driven to its ruin through this same Jewish people.
  • And the founder of Christianity made no secret indeed of his estimation of the Jewish people. When He found it necessary, He drove those enemies of the human race out of the Temple of God.

The second of these I would retain as being directly enough about Jesus to merit inclusion. The ALL CAP portion of the first is simply the typography from the page the editor linked to, which is NOT universally used, and should be eliminated on all pages where the quote is retained. The final portion of it, beginning with "As a Christian I have no duty to allow myself to be cheated, but I have the duty to be a fighter for truth and justice..." is simply more of Hitler's anti-semitic ranting and has no relevance to the Jesus page at all, and should be eliminated from it.


Originally 4 quotes were in dispute; 3 of them seem now to have been retracted, but one remains. It was orignially posted in a form that had no direct relevance at all to the Jesus page:

  • [T]he Jewish people were driven by their drunkenness and plumpness to the ultimate evil; they kicked about, they failed to accept the yoke of Christ, nor did they pull the plow of his teaching. Another prophet hinted at this when he said: "Israel is as obstinate as a stubborn heifer." … Although such beasts are unfit for work, they are fit for killing.

It now has been extended to by the editor who originally posted it to include an incorrect comment by Chrysostom about a statement of Jesus to stand thus:

  • 1 : [T]he Jewish people were driven by their drunkenness and plumpness to the ultimate evil; they kicked about, they failed to accept the yoke of Christ, nor did they pull the plow of his teaching. Another prophet hinted at this when he said: "Israel is as obstinate as a stubborn heifer." … Although such beasts are unfit for work, they are fit for killing. And this is what happened to the Jews: while they were making themselves unfit for work, they grew fit for slaughter. This is why Christ said: "But as for these my enemies, who did not want me to be king over them, bring them here and slay them."

In this revised and extended form it now has at least marginal relevance to the page, something it plainly did not have in its original form. A few of the comments about Jews, have been removed by the use of ellipses, which serves to exaggerate the proportion of the comment devoted to Jesus. One might conceivably extend it further to eliminate the ellipses and provide fuller context of the statement, which plainly is primarily one about Jews:

  • 2 : When brute animals feed from a full manger, they grow plump and become more obstinate and hard to hold in check; they endure neither the yoke, the reins, nor the hand of the charioteer. Just so the Jewish people were driven by their drunkenness and plumpness to the ultimate evil; they kicked about, they failed to accept the yoke of Christ, nor did they pull the plow of his teaching. Another prophet hinted at this when he said: "Israel is as obstinate as a stubborn heifer". And still another called the Jews "an untamed calf".
    Although such beasts are unfit for work, they are fit for killing. And this is what happened to the Jews: while they were making themselves unfit for work, they grew fit for slaughter. This is why Christ said: "But as for these my enemies, who did not want me to be king over them, bring them here and slay them".

OR one could trim it of most of the anti-Jewish polemics to contain only the final 2 sentences which relate Chrsysostom's assertions about Jews (improperly) to a statement by Jesus:

  • 3: This is what happened to the Jews: while they were making themselves unfit for work, they grew fit for slaughter. This is why Christ said: "But as for these my enemies, who did not want me to be king over them, bring them here and slay them."

If it is retained in any of the above forms it could be followed by a comment such as this:

OR it could be eliminated entirely as being of only dubious relevance or significance in any of these forms.

Votes and comments[edit]

Indicate whether you wish the quote retained on the Jesus page or removed with either a Keep 1, 2, or 3 or a REMOVE vote. Additional comments are welcome.

  • Keep 3 (with comment): Despite my own loathing of the extreme over-emphasis and exaggeration of both the significance and relevance of the damned thing by the editor who posted it, an utter contempt for the rather obvious bigotry which seems to drive many of this person's edits, and the speciousness and apparent deceitfulnes of many of the arguments that have been used to justify its inclusion, in this much trimmed down form it is relevant enough to retain. While granting it is a significant anti-semitic statement I continue to see both its relevance and significance to the Jesus page as only marginal, and can accept the assessments of others who might feel that even in this extremely trimmed down form it does not possess sufficient relevance or significance to that page as to merit inclusion. ~ Kalki 06:44, 20 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
  • Remove. There are some subjects whose "About" sections are practically guaranteed to overwhelm the actual quotes from the person. Jesus, Muhammad, and Buddha are surely three of the most likely subjects, attracting 1500–3000 years' worth of wildly varying interpretations because of both their iconic value in many cultures throughout history and the endless arguments about the meaning of their often cryptic and seemingly self-contradicting statements. (There may be many more, as this sort of conflict seems to readily arise around religious/spiritual figures who are no longer around to be interviewed by reliable sources.) All of these articles should be thoroughly stripped of any quotes that have even the most prominent, published interpretations, as they are not quotes about the subject, but about the worship that has developed around that subject.
    There have never been and will never be any shortage of people who believe they speak for their dead leaders, but they are only quotable as expressing their opinions, however learned and/or popular. It seems prudent to ensure that the literal millions of such interpreters not be given the opportunity to bury the actual subjects' quotes on Wikiquote by the kinds of relentless effort that our esteemed colleague Écrasez l'infâme has more than amply demonstrated over a handful of quotes from a single source.
    I don't want to see these spiritual leaders' articles turn into another ideological battleground like Abortion, and drawing the line at people using Jesus's and others' words to push a POV — any POV — strikes me as a reasonable means to avoid this. The quotes still can and should be represented in articles from the actual quotee, as well as theme articles about the primary subject of the quote. ~ Jeff Q (talk) 07:26, 20 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
    • To clarify what I mean by "POV", I'm not just talking about the idea that Jesus's words are evidence of any dissatisfaction with Jews, let alone anti-Semitism. We don't need people saying things like "Jesus said, 'Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth', encouraging humility and admonishing against aggression". What's important here is what Jesus actually said, not what people think about it. Wikiquote reprints quotes, not interpretations. Where notable people have reliably published interpretations, as is clearly the case for John Chrysostom, they should be quoted on their own pages. ~ Jeff Q (talk) 07:51, 20 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
  • Remove. Even though this is not a court of law, I see the rules on hearsay applying here. A quote by X should be a quote which we can verify that X made, himself or herself. A quote about X should be a quote we can verify that someone else made, expressing their own opinion of X. Quotes in which X is interpreted, or quoted secondhand, are hearsay, and inadmissible since the difficulties of attributing and verifying a quotation are multiplied when we have it second or third hand. Quotes in which X is mentioned, but not as the subject of the quote, are simply irrelevant. --Ubiquity 07:48, 20 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
  • Keep 1. The reason that Chrysostom's quote is notable and significant is that it widely influenced Christian anti-semitism on three key points: (1) The Jews killed Christ; (2) The Jews reject Christ; (3) Christ meant for the Jews to be slaughtered because they reject Him. The quote I included contains these three highly influential and significant statements about Jesus and the Jews, statements recognized by professional historians to be "the decisive turn in the history of Christian anti-Judaism", leading directly through history to the "antisemitism of Adolf Hitler." Not including these significant quotes about Jesus on Wikiquotes page is simply to turn a blind eye or whitewash the demonstrable impact of the application of Jesus' Biblical statements on the world. This quote, while it is I'm sure that we hope, abominable to all that read it, nevertheless satisfies all the major criteria for what Wikiquote is: a collection of "Accurate, Comprehensive, and Notable" quotations. Without including quotes about how Jesus' own words have been used throughout the long and significant history of Christian antisemitism, the page of Quotes about Jesus cannot be said to be either Accurate or Comprehensive.
    As for a comment following such controversial quotations, I believe that all quotes should speak for themselves, and comments should only be included to clarify an honest representation of what the speaker intended to say, not what any of us wish was said instead. If the comment states that the speak is incorrect, as does the suggested one here, then a notable authority must be cited that concisely explains why the speaker is incorrect. Without such a cited authority, such a comment by itself would violate Wikiquotes wise policy of citing sources. Écrasez l'infâme 16:01, 20 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
All kinds of lunatics and fools make all manner of interpretations about all manner of things. Both Chrystostom's remarks and yours might well serve as rich examples of this. The points you continually repeat regarding this quote are for the most part highly disputable and often simply ludicrous.
Not all quotes should simply be presented here without comment. It has been standard practice here since the beginning to permit comments about quotes when their context can use clarification. The comment I proposed serves to state a very important FACT about the quote, which can EASILY be verified by reading the entire parable in context, and any desire to omit such a FACT — the fact that it makes a FALSE implication — displays a very strong bias to maintain FALSE implications about it. To insist that one must find a published authority to provide a quote about a quote in order to make a comment about it is something I consider a contemptible attempt to prevent the provision of relevant facts. ~ Kalki 16:34, 20 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
Gee Kalki, thanks for comparing my inclusion of Chrysostom's quote to Chrysostom's invocation of Jesus' words in a denunciation of the Jews. The necessity of simply citing commentary follows from Wikiqote's very reasonable policies:

The need for citations is especially important when writing about the opinions held on a particular issue. Avoid weasel words such as, "Some people say…" Instead, make your writing verifiable: find a specific person or group who holds that opinion, mention them by name, and give a citation to some place where they can be seen or heard expressing that opinion. Remember that Wikiquote is not a place for expressing your opinions or for original research.

Is this what you find to be contemptible? Écrasez l'infâme 18:37, 20 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
Here is one possible Christian authority to cite on Chrysostom and his relationship to the Holocaust:
  • It is true that “writings have many lives,” but John Chrysostom in fourth-century Constantinople should not be held responsible for the misrepresentation of his writings by Nazis in twentieth-century Germany.
Écrasez l'infâme 19:00, 20 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
I am not the one inclined to using weasel words when I express my own opinions and clear cognizance about anything, and I am not going to retreat from the assertion that Chrysostom's misuse of a parable by Jesus to make false implications is a directly and immediately verifiable FACT, to any person not extremely blinded by prejudice and bigotry who actually examines the parable. I am not the one saying "some people say" or other people say, and giving specific examples — and then take their opinions AS IF they were certain facts, rather than their OPINIONS. I made an easily verifiable factual statement and provided the link by which any person of sense can easily verify it for themselves. ~ Kalki 18:53, 20 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
I added the comment with a proper citation for the opinion expressed, consistent with Wikiqote policy. Écrasez l'infâme 19:09, 20 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
Écrasez l'infâme, Wikiquote:Citing sources is not policy, but only a draft (as it says boldly at the top). It is one of our least useful so far, as it is virtually unchanged from a 2-year-old version of w:WP:CITE and has considerable material that makes no sense for Wikiquote. The issue of weasel words is largely irrelevant, because Wikiquote contains virtually no user-written prose, and where it creeps in it is usually appropriate to remove it. We quote, source, and at most provide a basic description of the event or situation in which the quote was made, based on the source, not how we or other outsiders view it.
I am proposing that Écrasez l'infâme, Kalki, and myself stop posting in this section, because I don't see how it serves any purpose for us to keep repeating our positions here, especially when we are supposed to be polling the community at this point. (Frankly, I'm not surprised few have responded. Who wants to jump into this mess at this point?) If we wish to continue to continue writing long tracts on this subject, let's take it over to Talk:Jesus, where most of this should have taken place anyway. Meanwhile, let's please give everyone else a week or so to register their opinions with a formal vote, and the three of us try not to bug them either way with these endless repetitions. ~ Jeff Q (talk) 01:13, 21 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

Username change[edit]

I wasn't paying attention when I signed up, but I want my username to be BrokenSphere, so my English Wikipedia, Commons, and this account are all tied together. What has to be done? Thanks. --BrokenS 19:24, 14 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

Simply log in at WIkipedia and indicate on your talk page that you wish this name change here, and I will do it shortly. ~ Kalki 19:27, 14 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
Left the request here. --BrokenS 19:30, 14 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
This renaming has been done. ~ Kalki 23:15, 14 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

Question on questions[edit]

Is this the place to post questions one has on wikiquote rules, functions and policy, or is there another, more appropriate place - and if so, could someone point me to it? 22:13, 18 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

This is the place. --Ubiquity 23:18, 18 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

Hi all!
All pages from Wikiquote fail at .
See Best regards
‫·‏לערי ריינהארט‏·‏T‏·‏m‏:‏Th‏·‏T‏·‏email me‏·‏‬ 01:21, 20 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

I would suspect that this is probably a common situation with any wiki-page anywhere. ~ Kalki 06:31, 20 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
It's a problem with any MediaWiki-based wiki, including all the Wikimedia Foundation projects, because we have no means to enforce XHTML use by our editors. Even if the MediaWiki rendering engine were provide only XHTML, nothing prevents editors from adding direct, non-compliant HTML (like <br>, <font>, and many table formatting elements actually recommended for use in wiki tables). I am not aware of any general movement to address this problem in the foreseeable future. ~ Jeff Q (talk) 07:42, 20 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
Concur with Ubiquity and Jeff. We don't mind and you are better to bring it up on Bugzilla, not here. --Aphaia 11:25, 21 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]


I would like to propose that we come up with "quotability" guidelines. Here is my thinking:

  1. If we include everything that happens to be said by a notable person, then we end up becoming indistinguishable from WikiSource (who is to say, after all, that any random Shakespeare passage is not quotable).
  2. However, we must recognize that when highly notable persons say things, they are more likely to garner attention, even if they speak less eruditely.
  3. At the same time, we must recognize that occasionally completely non-notable people say something that slips into the collective consciousness (e.g. "Don't tase me, bro").

Therefore, I think we need a guideline that addresses the inclusion of both persons, and individual quotes, and that generally excludes quotes that are not, in and of themselves, notable in light of the circumstances that generated them (said by a person who was already famous? part of a famous work? related to a significant event?). Any ideas? BD2412 T 15:03, 27 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

Several, in fact. First, I agree pretty much with everything you say above. Second, the most useful and objective means I've found to collect both memorable quotes from famous people and widely quoted material from lesser-known individuals is to require iron-clad reliable sources for everything. Just as Wikipedia uses this measure to cite evidence of notability, we use it to show both notability (or the person and/or the quote) and quotability (because we're after what people are actually quoted as saying in all those sources, which have limited space to provide their view into the world and so must make their own inclusion decisions). Third, I know that reliable sources don't solve every inclusion and quoteworthiness issue, but it can significantly cut down on the content disputes so we can spend more time on the edge-cases. Finally, if and when this discussion becomes substantial, we might want to take it up on a new guideline page's discussion page, perhaps Wikiquote:Quotability and Wikiquote talk:Quotability.
I know there are many other aspects to this question, and I'm sure folks will chime in on them, but I wanted to make these particular points. ~ Jeff Q (talk) 18:08, 27 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

If we have something like WP:V, we'll have to confine ourselves to copying existing dictionaries of quotations or otherwise quote a source to prove notability. That would cramp our style a lot, but might solve quite a few problems. I've just added a quote to Robert Moses [3] citing his New York Times obituary, which I'd say is proof of notability for the quote, but I don't always have such good evidence.--Cato 20:24, 27 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

We still quote liberally from movies and TV shows, which is more than most existing quotation books do. I'm not against that, just concerned with enforcement of the quality of what we include. Of course, we can hope that existing quotation books have already done the job of verifying their attribution, especially in the older cases. BD2412 T 23:19, 27 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

No surprise that I support this idea with special emphasis given to promptly deleting unsourced content related to living people. In addition to dealing with notability issues, there are legal issues I think. Some of the entries are pretty dodgy and really border as attack pages. Also we have problems with violating copyright laws if we allow improperly cited material to remain. We can not properly claim fair use of the material without citing a proper source and having a good reason to justify its Quotability. For these reason I agree that we need to tighten our standards for Quotability and think requiring a reliable source is a good first step. FloNight♥♥♥ 23:33, 27 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

We especially run into copyright concerns when we have extremely loooong passages (I can think of a few examples), or where we have so much of a movie or TV show that we are essentially transcribing the script. In each case, if we knock out the stuff that's not really worth quoting, we'll have a better (and safer) article for it. As for the attack pages, there are likely to be frequent issues with the notability of the person leveling the attack (since politicians do most everything negative through surrogates, who are themselves not particularly notable). BD2412 T 00:03, 28 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

I totally agree that the availability of reliable sources should be a major criterion in determining the notability both of individuals and of quotes by individuals. Robert Moses is a case in point -- there are at least two big biographies of the man, and he figures heavily in most histories of NYC in the last century. It should be possible to find some quotes. On the other hand, it will be much more difficult to find quotes for people who are currently having their fifteen minutes, whether as wrestlers, DJs, Z-list celebrities or YouTube and MySpace phenomena. This would suit me just fine. --Ubiquity 00:20, 28 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

Would it be reasonable to say that something is demostrably "quotable" by the presence of that quote in a book of quotations, or in a book or magazine or the like? Not that this should be a requirement, but it should be strong evidence of quotability.
My concern with setting such a standard stems from my recent VfD nominations of Raleigh Theodore Sakers‎ and Tiffany Patterson‎, both of whom are (in my opinion) of borderline notability and with nothing profound to say. It is clear to me that these entries simply do not belong, but I can't point to a policy which explains why. At the same time, I'd like to be clear not exclude things like William Pitt (ship-builder), about whom very little is known, but whose brief poem has been quoted down through the ages. BD2412 T 04:39, 28 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
I am somewhat uncomfortable with the proposed standard. I suppose it boils down, yet again, to the question of what Wikiquote is for. I think it's valuable for us to have entries which serve a somewhat more substantial purpose than simply repeating what third parties have quoted other people as saying; in calling out specific passages that illustrate an author's philosophy, or controversies that an author has been involved in, or an author's writing or speaking style, or even an author's biography, we can provide a more meaningful and worthwhile resource. I think many of the concerns mentioned above can be addressed through greater insistence on proper citation and verifiability, without requiring that someone else have already quoted every passage. (Of course this is somewhat self-serving, seeing as I spent hundreds of hours and hundreds of dollars in my attempt to build the definitive set of Stephen Jay Gould quotations with this broader purpose in mind.) 121a0012 04:45, 28 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
Well part of what I'm trying to bring about is the idea that the more notable a person is, the lower the burden their verifiable comments should have to carry to be deemed "quotable". Since Stephen Jay Gould is very, very notable, his quotes should probably be presumed quoteworthy so long as there as a hint of profundity there (as opposed to someone who barely scratches the surface of notability). I think we can identify categories of people who are automatically recognized as being famous (winners of specified literary awards, presidents, etc.) and characteristics of presumptive quotability to determine who should be given the benefit of this lesser burden. BD2412 T 06:11, 28 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
I am sharing my comments here at BD2412's request. I believe that quotability has a lot to do with the material itself, rather than who is actually saying it. A quote like "Don't taste me, bro," as pointed out earlier is NOT a quoteworthy line. Generally speaking, a quote has to have a moral, and/or be gritty/smart/memorable. If it is none of those things, then mere curses and swearing towards each other aren't really quoteworthy. Modern quotations fall into this category because many people assume that just because a popular person says it, it's quoteworthy. I believe we should concentrate on what is being said rather than who is saying it. And this goes for everyone, whether it be Genghis Khan or Michael Jackson. Quotes are heavily weighed upon their meaning, not the way they sound. Recently, I have been adding an extensive amount of quotations and creating pages devoted to military people of the WWII era. Is it because I like those people only and add only just because they are saying it...absolutely not. It's because the things they say, the actual material is very historically enigmatic and very heavily memorable and smart. It also has climactic overtone to it. I'm not saying more modern people don't have good quotes, it's just that I don't know any that do. If my opinion matters, I'd say that almost none of the new singers, actors, etc. have said anything remotely quoteworthy per this guideline. I agree with BD2412's early comment when it comes to this ideology of quote-worthiness. Hope my input was helpful in deciphering a better style or format of maintaining as to what is quoteworthy and what isn't. - Zarbon 06:31, 28 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
Thanks for commenting, Zarbon. - I don't want to give the impression that I think anything a famous person says is quoteworthy, and I absolutely agree that the substance of the quote itself is a strong factor to be considered. Thomas Jefferson's recitation of his grocery list, for example, should not be included; and even passages from Shakespeare must be culled to what we need (or else we may end up reciting the complete works). However, I do think the fame of the speaker should be taken into consideration. I'm sure there are plenty of non-notable men, for example, who have said the equivalent of "I did not have sex with that woman", but there is one instance that clearly impacted our culture, and we all know what it is without my naming the speaker. I suppose what I'm getting at is that the speaker puts a thumb on the scale, and so do the circumstances of the quote.
What I'm getting at is that we should have one set of criteria to determine whether a person should have an individual entry; and a second set of criteria to determine whether a specific quote should be included, in the individual's entry or in a theme entry covering a particular year or area of interest. I do think we should include, perhaps in an entry on 2007, "Don't tase me bro" because it entered the national consciousness (in the U.S., at least), even though the speaker is not particularly notable (aside from the quote). Cheers! BD2412 T 16:23, 28 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
That's recentism. We should be looking for quotes that will still be as interesing in 10 years' time.--Poetlister 16:32, 28 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

When I overhauled Never, I added a quote from King Lear. That was exactly how the quote appeared in the Concise Oxford Dictionary of Quotations. InvisibleSun [4] removed the second line and added a couple of lines preceding what I'd quoted. Would I have been justified in reverting him on the grounds that I had a reliable source that the quote should appear in that form?--Poetlister 16:32, 28 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

Poetlister brings up another important criteria here for judging what is justified in quoteworthiness. The second line that was removed, as Poetlister brought up that example, may not have had anything additive to the initial moral. Therefore, the initial removal may have been the best choice. The difficult decision here is the "quotations" of recent. By recent I am referring to the last 10 years, where regular comments have been considered as quotes. It's very hard to decipher what should be notable from 2007. I'm not sure if I'd even consider putting in anything just because of it's impact. Comical quotations are exactly what they intend to be: comical. However, just because they are funny, doesn't necessarily mean they are quoteworthy. As Poetlister pointed out, and I quote,: We should be looking for quotes that will still be interesing in 10 years' time. I can say that I honestly agree with that. And furthermore, I can add to it. We should be looking for quotes that will still be interesting in a thousand years' time. - Zarbon 16:45, 28 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
Well, that's one reason I'm so fervent about finishing the Wikiquote:Bartlett's 1919 Index - every quote in that book is at least a hundred years old, and most are several hundred years old (some are thousands). Perhaps what is called for here is an additional thumb on the scale in favor of quotes which have stood the test of time. In fact, I'd go so far as to say that most any pithy observation that we can quote from more than, say, a thousand years ago is inherently quotable. BD2412 T 17:20, 28 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

Ok, I'm working on a draft based on the above. Stay tuned. BD2412 T 12:56, 31 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

Just to add a different perspective here as the discussion strayed towards an individual's quote worthiness. I am here because of the TV quotes. Most of my formatting work has been on TV shows and in my spare time, now that I have found the link, I intend to work through as many clean-up and no-intro TV/Film pages as possible to clean them up. Does anything on TV or in films merit quotation? Is there a minimum time frame for TV/Film? I ask because I find that much of the writing from Joss Whedon's series of shows to be a wickedly delicious feast of witty language. I feel the same for much of the writing for House. However these are relatively young by comparison to the time-frame discussed for individuals. Neither example is close to the decade mark mentioned above.

On the other hand it saddens me that the page I see the most activity day-after-day is Barney & Friends. Maybe I'm being snobbish but I can't think of anything in a children's show which would be of any notability much less enough to generate, on some portions of some days, more edits than the rest of WQ combined. -- Greyed 16:58, 31 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

Greyed - TV and film quotes can sometimes be a problem here, as regular viewers of a show or rabid fans of a film tend to overquote their favorites. In past discussions on this, several informal points about TV show quotes in particular seem to stand out: first, we should limit the number of quotes per episode to avoid copyright concerns (generally this means no more than 8-9 per episode); second, the quote should not really be a transcript of an entire scene, but instead should capture the essence of what is memorable - in fact if all the surrounding lines and/or scene setting are needed, perhaps the quote is really not all that memorable; and third, that the quote should be pithy and able to stand on its own, even to someone that has never even seen the show. As for films, overquoting is not usually as much of an issue (but there are exceptions - see Monty Python and the Holy Grail as an example of a film that has definite issues with overquoting.
Bottom line is that most films or TV shows are fair game for quoting, provided they are not obscure or web-based (and thus probably not notable enough) and that their quotes are properly formatted and, for TV shows, that they adhere to the loose guidelines I outlined above. In the end, just as we probably need some ground rules for people pages, we also probably need to formalize the rules around TV and film pages. Oh, and yes it is interesting how much activity Barney & Friends generates, but there have been plenty of worthy shows that had as much if not more activity in building them to their current state. Hope this helps! ~ UDScott 17:25, 31 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
I am not aspiring to propose rules for quotations from films and movies - the idea I am aiming to put forth at this time is a set of rules governing biographical entries only. Of course, we do need guidelines for other media, but that's a later project to tackle. BD2412 T 19:28, 31 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

I had somewhere long ago stated that though I recognize a need for some agreed upon rules in nearly any human enterprise, I generally believe the rules which are actually necessary and absolutely helpful to any endeavor are usually very few, and am usually inclined to object to efforts to advance any guidelines or attempts at making absolute rules as something that should stand as "official policy." Though there are many worthy and steadfast aims and goals that might be embraced by anyone, maintaining much flexibility about many things rather than imposing an absolute rigidity about anything has usually been among my own primary concerns.

Though I am maintaining some daily activity here, my work on other things is currently much reducing time I can spend here. My own lack of interest in making rules has sometimes resulted in rules or guidelines arising which I perceive little or no point in having, and which are often detrimental or even contrary to those policies I would prefer to prevail. There are some I might eventually make comment upon, but others remain of but little interest to me one way or another. I had seen this discussion previously, but had not had time to attempt much comment upon it until now. There are nearly always numerous issues worthy of consideration in any debate, and very often many of these get neglected or forgotten.

I have very little interest in expanding or maintaining such rules as I for the most part consider unnecessary or overly constrictive, and attempts to clearly delineate any definition of "quotability" and make it a standard are among these.

One notable example from the arguments made above in the problems and conflicts that are inherent in attempting any absolute definition of "quotability" is where the notability of "Don't tase me, bro!" by Andrew Meyer was objected to as "recentism"; yet in a Reuters news report (20 December 2007) it is declared by Fred R. Shapiro, the editor of The Yale Book of Quotations that "Don't Tase Me, Bro" tops '07 memorable quote list, and I expect that it, as well as many such incidental remarks by the otherwise non-famous will remain notable to many in the decades to come.

I myself have little or no interest in most of the inane expressions which have been posted as quotes of professional wrestlers, or in many of the electronic games, cartoons and children shows, but I have not seen any need to impose my own interests and standards as those which others must use, and to categorically object to some of the pages for such quotes, as a few others have done. I have accepted that there should be better sourcing on many of these, which often effectively eliminates the rather casual efforts that have been made to add immense amounts of the trivial, and has resulted in the removal of much of it. When such pages have been up for deletion, I have usually had little interest in defending their inclusion, even when I would not have proposed them for deletion myself.

Personally, though I appreciate the value of both criticism and humor I am increasingly uninterested in much of the clearly notable commentary of professional comedians and cynics who in their fervor to attack others often have very little good to say about humanity, or many of the arts, sciences and religions which exist, but I don't object to others posting these, so long as they are actually posted in the proper places, and not zealously spread onto any page where they might conceivably be wedged in by some loose or tenuous association. Clearer rules or guidelines on what is or is not relevant to a page might be useful, but as I have stated previously, I doubt that any fair and absolute rules on the matter could easily be arrived at, and thus far have preferred to rely on consensus and "the common sense of most" when conflicts arise.

I applaud the present effort to add quotes from out-of-copyright collections of the past, which was one of my initial aims when I first began here, though I never pursued it in so methodical a manner as several editors are now engaging in. Yet, I strongly object to the idea that has been mentioned that a previous incident of quotation in some separate collection, essay or other published work should ever be among the criteria used to assess inclusion of a quotation here. Verifiable citing of an original or reliable source is a sufficient rule, and whether some of the quotes are notable enough to include might be a matter of discussion of interested editors on the talk pages, but whether or not one can find incidents of it being widely quoted should not be. I strongly feel we should not attempt to limit the project to providing familiar quotations, but we should aim at the provision of notable ones.

I do not consider it a great disaster that there is still much dross here that might be better ignored or forgotten. I do consider unfortunate that there is not far more which is precious and admirable included, and adding to that material remains a primary concern of my activities here, and allowing others to do so, to the extent it does not violate necessary legal concerns, a primary commitment. ~ Kalki 17:44, 31 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

"Don't tase me, bro" may well be a long-remembered quote, but that doesn't mean we need an entry on Andrew Meyer (who doesn't even rate an independent Wikipedia article). Perhaps (most likely, anyway) it belongs on a page about 2007 quotes that don't fit anywhere else. Really I'm not looking to set absolute rules so much as a set of guidelines that we can point to in explaining our decision not to include something. For example, as I mentioned above, we could transcribe into Wikiquote every line of each of Shakespeare's plays (no copyright concerns there, after all) as each such line is verifiably written by the most notable playwright of all time. Similarly, we could include the entire text of every president's speech, and every rambling of Charles Manson. And, if we don't put quotability on a scale with notability, we could include every word demonstrably uttered by Andrew Meyer, Joey Buttafuoco, Kato Kaelin, and any other schlub who managed to get into the national spotlight for fifteen minutes. We need to have some standards to prevent us from becoming either Wikisource or the Daily Dirt. BD2412 T 02:17, 1 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
Lots of great discussion here! I can't follow it all at the moment, but I'd like to argue that there's an equally valid reason not to include everything quotable from any subject, even when copyright isn't an issue. The more you put into a document, the less concise and special it is. A quote collection of Shakespeare that included the "best" 1,000 of his lines isn't very focused, just like an article on him that included all sorts of trivia and digressions wouldn't be good reading. From my days of both writing and critiquing student essays, I recall that one of the hardest things we have to learn is how to focus on the essentials in order to compose an excellent work. Our conversational nature tends to make us want to mention everything of interest on a subject, but we must fight that to stay focused on the most important points we want to communicate. That's even more critical — and challenging — when there are dozens or hundreds of contributors to an article. For quotes, we need to keep to a select set of lines that not only stand the test of time but also can be used in many situations. As Antoine de Saint Exupéry said, "Perfection is achieved, not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away." (And we achieve that for Saint Exupéry's article by including only a few great lines like that one from his works, rather than trying to add every single original, pithy thing he ever wrote.) ~ Jeff Q (talk) 05:15, 1 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

I am still working on formulating this - it is more complicated than I imagined, fitting all the parts together into a coherent whole. I should have a draft proposal ready in about a week. Cheers! BD2412 T 22:25, 5 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

  • In Wikipedia, we have this quote: And I'm the one who will not raise taxes. My opponent now says he'll raise them as a last resort, or a third resort. But when a politician talks like that, you know that's one resort he'll be checking into. My opponent, my opponent won't rule out raising taxes. But I will. And the Congress will push me to raise taxes and I'll say no. And they'll push, and I'll say no, and they'll push again, and I'll say, to them, Read my lips: no new taxes.


    • But, here in Wikiquote, we have Read my lips: No new taxes!

(here: So, the question is, which is the more useful quote, and how do we decide? My vote is for completeness, with the more famous part highlighted. DOR 08:33, 19 March 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Move to match Wikipedia[edit]

Under the guidelines for creating a new page there is a suggestion that a new page should, barring any other reason, match the title of the Wikipedia article for the same item. With that in mind would it be beyond the pale for editors who are trying to better organize WQ to tag pages which do not match for a move?

For example... WQ: Portal and WP: Portal (video game). -- Greyed 19:31, 31 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

Seconded. Another example I think is Angel -> Angel (TV series)(w:Angel (TV series). See also Talk:Angel, thanks. --Aphaia 19:53, 31 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

Established editors can rename pages themselves. However, we can go too far in aligning with Wikipedia. Wikipedia may have many pages of the same name and must disambiguate them (say John Smith (astronaut), John Smith (cook), John Smith (poet), John Smith (soldier)). We only have a page for the poet; is there any need for us to call the page John Smith (poet)?--Cato 23:27, 31 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

Maybe it is the programmer in me but, yes. Because doing so sets precedence for later naming convention of John Smith (playright), John Smith (author), John Smith (politician) and John Smith (musician). The idea of naming conventions is not so they play nice by themselves, it is so they place nice with past and possible future additions. -- Greyed 23:36, 31 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]

The problem with that is that sometimes WP articles are renamed after an ambiguity is discovered. Do we need to rename the WQ page then? --Ubiquity 15:17, 1 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

My gut reaction is yes. This is because WP has the larger name space so name conflicts there are something of a predictor of possible name conflicts here. But it need not in real time. In fact it should not be in real time. This is a wiki after all. If the WP page moves and the WQ page does not move until someone notices, no problem. However, if someone notices and wants to take the initiative to mark it for a move I believe that is a behavior that should be encouraged. -- Greyed 16:38, 1 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
That is my thinking also. The biggest benefit to making our pages match will be that our regular editors will start an entry with the correct title and save time (and possible confusion) later if another entry with the same name is started here. But no real harm is done if they don't match for awhile. As you point out, sooner or later someone will notice and fix it. FloNight♥♥♥ 17:59, 1 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

As long as we stay newbie friendly, I think making the titles match is an good idea. I don't think that checking Wikipedia for the "correct" title for an entry should be seen as a requirement for starting a page. Also, since we have limited volunteer hours, focusing on re-naming entries where there is not a conflict should not be a main priority. But having the regular editors here know the preferred name scheme will save time in the long run since these entries will not need to be fixed later. FloNight♥♥♥ 16:29, 1 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

We do have a few articles where there is no Wikipedia article, and I'd oppose a policy that there must be a Wikipedia article before we have one. It is conceivable that we'd have a disambiguation problem that Wikipedia does not.--Poetlister 16:35, 1 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
Good point. It is possible that we could end up with a naming conflict that Wikipedia does not have. FloNight♥♥♥ 17:54, 1 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
I'm not sure where that came from, Poetlister. The current convention is that if there is a WP article its name should be preferred when creating a WQ article. Noone has suggested that WP must have an article prior to a WQ article being created. -- Greyed 17:58, 1 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
I think you misunderstand. All I'm saying is that WQ has and will continue to have articles without WP counterparts, which makes aligning our names 100% with Wikipedia tricky.--Poetlister 18:29, 1 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Wait a minute, folks. I think we're misreading Help:Starting a new page to begin with. I see nothing in that page that says new Wikiquote articles should necessarily match existing Wikipedia articles, and I know it hasn't been our practice to make this happen just for form's sake. What I do see are two points made in several places:

  1. Wikiquote generally follows Wikipedia article naming practices. But the context is for capitalization and official versions of names, not for disambiguation. In fact, we do follow Wikipedia's general policy on disambiguation: don't do it unless and until it's needed. We just don't need it 90% of the time, compared to Wikipedia.
  2. If there's a corresponding Wikipedia article, add a {{wikiquote}} tag to the WP article. Of course, this assumes the article titles match, but it's trivial to add the correct WQ title (e.g., {{wikiquote|John Smith}}). We probably should include a note about doing that if the titles don't match.

I think this convention has worked pretty well so far, so I see no need to change it. But in situations where the unqualified name might cause confusion (e.g., Angel or Heroes), it's not unreasonable to pre-emptively disambiguate. I think Wikipedia suggests this, too. (Our practice of using plural countable nouns for theme articles could be considered to make "Angels" the official theme for the supernatural entity and "Angel" clearly the TV show, but not everyone gets the countable-noun distinction, and avoiding confusion is also important.) ~ Jeff Q (talk) 20:10, 1 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

I agree that our convention follows Wikipedia for style not for disambiguation. I think we should, however, disambig from the outset common words used as TV show/movie titles (for example Dogma). BD2412 T 06:30, 2 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
Dogma is a good example of a title that should be dab'd right away. Since "dogma" can be either a countable noun ("different dogmas") or mass noun ("preaching dogma"), we can't rely on the plural to make the distinction between concept and film, and far more people know what dogma is than have seen or heard of Dogma the film. We should either create a theme article for "dogma" with dab links between the two, or at least move the current one to Dogma (film). ~ Jeff Q (talk) 10:11, 3 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
I think we should preemptively disambiguate all of them - Dogma, Angel, Heroes, Popular, Bleach, etc. Even if we're never likely to have an article under one of those names, we should still be clear that the meaning of our entry is not the most common meaning. BD2412 T 22:22, 5 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
Um, would anyone object if I just went ahead and did this? BD2412 T 18:09, 8 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
I wouldn't but I guess that could be surmised by my having brought up this issue as I was considering marking them for moves as I found them and was casting about for a consensus standard to follow. -- Greyed 18:52, 8 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
I've moved this bunch. Will search for more later. BD2412 T 05:52, 11 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Articles that every Wikiquote should have[edit]

I'm not sure what we call it around here, articles like on Wikipedia. Their not rely articles, more like lists. But anyway. I made a short post at Meta here about a possible list of articles that every Wikiquote project should have. Do you guys think that en.q has reached a point where it has most of them? We could start of by top 100 list, or 500. What about 1000. This would mostly help other small languages to grow and not so much for en.q and that's why I posted it first at Meta. But after a short wait I wasn't getting any reply I decided to post it here since you would probably have the best experience to do such a list. --Steinninn 05:04, 1 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

  • That is kind of an interesting conundrum - perhaps there are things that would be vital to one WQ that would be humdrum to another. I suppose for the sake of cultural understanding, every WQ should have coverage of widely regarded religious texts like the Bible and the Koran, and the Upanishads, along with the most widely known religious figures such as Moses, Jesus, the Buddha, and Mohammad; foundational philosphers like Socrates, Plato, Confucious, and Lao Tze, along with some of their more modern counterparts like Marx and Kant; the most widely known scientific figures such as Galileo, Newton, Freud, Einstein, and Sagan; and political/military leaders of historical import such as Ghengis Khan, Napoleon, Washington, and Lenin. I know I haven't even mentioned the poets and writers yet, but there are many of those as well. More important than biographies, all WQ's should have thematic entries on universal concepts such as Love, Justice, Honor, and Courage. It would take quite a while to assemble a complete list, but that's where I would work from. BD2412 T 05:34, 1 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
    • Agreed. I made it years ago in Japanese at my user subpage. Basically it goes along the outline BD2412 described. If you guys have an interest, I'll post it as latinized for your food of thought. --Aphaia 07:17, 1 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Religious figures, scientists and philosophers can be translated. However, it's difficult to believe that there are many novelists or poets who need to be in every language Wikiquote.--Poetlister 16:38, 1 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Shakespeare, most likely, and Chaucer. Some of the ancients as well (Homer, Ovid, Aeschylus, Sophocles). BD2412 T 17:23, 1 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
I think that few people, whatever their language, would query these, or Goethe, Victor Hugo or Tolstoy. But I bet that plenty of people would be horrified to find that their favourite poet in Turkey or Portugal is scarcely known in the English-speaking world. Indeed, some very famous (in America) poets are less well-known in Britain. This is a recipe for endless arguments.--Poetlister 18:34, 1 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
Point taken. I think the list of "every Wikiquote should have" should be more tightened and concise than "English Wikiquote should have" just because of the Poetlister's argument. But we may logically suppose the former should be a complete subset of the latter? --Aphaia 17:51, 2 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
You mean, if an article is one that every WQ should have, it is definitely one that English WQ should have? Incidentally, I think every WQ should have Shakespeare (for example). Perhaps if a particular poet or writer could be identified as the favorite (or perhaps most quoted) of their language/culture/country (whichever division is largest) that poet or writer should be included in the list, since we are a multicultural endeavor. BD2412 T 19:06, 2 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
I can't think of any WQ project that shouldn't have Shakespeare. We should also try to have world leaders and influential people from all over the world. I can't say that I know them all, if I had, I would have started of by making the list and then post it on the Village pump. So, Aphaia, could you give us a link to the japanese list? --Steinninn 19:40, 5 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Sorry for late reply. There it is: ja:User:Aphaia/WQ100. I forgot it was a bilingual page from the beginning exactly for serving the broader audience in future :o --Aphaia 23:03, 5 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

I used the same list and posted it at is:Wikivitnun:Greinar sem ættu að vera til. I think we should put a draft here also. --Steinninn 11:09, 10 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
Grateful if people would look at this. There's someone who's very upset at the proportion of English-speaking authors and poets. Maybe he has a point, but he's insisting on deleting Milton and Wordsworth rather than Tolkein and Mark Twain!--Poetlister 23:02, 21 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
Maybe it's already been changed since you posted, but Milton was on the list I saw, and not Tolkien. True, Twain was on and Wordsworth was off, but I think that's defensible. Of course, that's the trouble with this kind of list; it doesn't surprise me that someone named Poetlister might feel Wordsworth had the better claim. But I'll defend Twain, not on the basis of being more important than Wordsworth, but on the basis of being at the top of the American list. Now someone will have to figure out why Bierce is on the list and Dickens is not... --Ubiquity 02:33, 22 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
Wordsworth is in, and Dickens and Twain. (Why do we necessarily have to have an American? There's no American composer.) However, Milton and Yeats are out, as is Bierce.--Poetlister 22:34, 22 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
Wikipedia is in several languages; maybe someday Wikiquote will be, too. When there is, the quotes are very likely to be more representative of that (those) language(s). Let's not cripple the original Wikiquote because someone thinks it isn't balanced enough with languages in which it is not currently written. DOR 08:40, 19 March 2008 (UTC)[reply]
But Wikiquote is in several languages! Just look at the sidebar for Napoleon I of France. BD2412 T 20:11, 19 March 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Fans or non-fans?[edit]

As many other editors have discussed quite a bit a lot of the TV/Film articles have become dumping grounds for any moderately funny quote from the show/film. Because of this fair use is put to the test and as a result it is often suggested that only a few select quotes be used.

However, on articles where we're well past the "few select quotes" stage which is better to go about the task of trimming the quotes. Fans or non-fans?

Fans are familiar with the work so are better informed as to what is germane to the show's themes and style.

Non-fans, however, being unfamiliar have the advantage of reading the quotes cold and providing a filter in that if they don't get it then maybe it isn't sufficiently decent of a quote to be cited here on WQ.

Thoughts? I ask because I am pondering tackling trimming some TV/Film pages, both as a fan and a non-fan. -- Greyed 16:33, 1 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

We don't have so many editors that we can recommend that any subset be specifically charged with the responsibility of trimming. Everyone is encouraged to learn why we have the limits we do, and how to look at quotes to help do the trimming. The very short answer for "why" is: to avoid copyright violation and to provide the very best (not largest) selection of quotes for the entire Wikiquote audience. The "how" is a little more involved (see Talk:Blackadder#Cleanup tag for my latest pass at this perpetual discussion), but it boils down to providing quotes that even non-fans would find witty or otherwise memorable, quotes that don't require that you can see or hear the show in your mind to get the pith of the words.
On this basis, being familiar with the material can be an impediment. Star Wars action scenes are exhilarating to watch, but basic scene descriptions don't convey the same excitement to anyone who hasn't seen them. On the other hand, show fans, for obvious reasons, probably make up the majority of all editing to any show article. It is therefore necessary for us fans to learn the guidelines and enforce them ourselves. If we don't, we should expect our favorite articles to be periodically reduced to minimal versions by "outsiders". The same is true for excessive quoting in any genre. ~ Jeff Q (talk) 19:26, 2 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
Quite true. In fact it was reading Talk:Blackadder#Cleanup tag that lead me to ponder the pros and cons of fans and non-fans engaging in trimming. This was right before I doing some clean up on Harvey Birdman, Attorney at Law. Are you planning on placing that essay in a semi-regular spot User:Jeffq/Essays maybe? That way when I hit on a page that I might want to trim I can reference it on the talk page. Or is that me being a tad this side of bold? Still trying to find that balance of doing stuff without being annoying while I do it. -- Greyed 20:03, 2 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
Not at all annoying, just ahead of me. I am planning to start gathering these mini-essays there. I started collecting links to them last year. But I'm still running too slowly to do anything but urgent, time-consuming, critical work as necessary, and quick edits and posts while multiplexing non-wiki stuff (like right now). Wikiquote doesn't really have much in the way of essays, like Wikipedia. I'm not yet comfortable with community-written essays, so I don't know what to advise on this. I'm planning essays in my user space because I'm very opinionated and want to write my own thoughts out without community participation before I try to work with everyone on something that would be generally applicable. But don't let me stop anyone from trying this approach. ~ Jeff Q (talk) 10:26, 3 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
In my opinion it's very hard to trim down on quotes for a TV/Film that you haven't seen. For instance, if I hadn't seen The Matrix I wouldn't understand the dynamics of „Dough this“, and might remove it. But I think we can all agree that this quote should stay in The Matrix article. --Steinninn 19:20, 5 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
No, Steinninn, we don't necessarily agree on this point. "Dodge this" is certainly something Neo said, and is well-known among fans as a key point in a key scene, but its usefulness and relevance to the rest of the English-speaking world is questionable. The problem we face is that each Wikiquote collects memorable, significant quotes within the culture it represents, but fans have a skewed view of what's significant in the overall culture. Matrix fans will certainly remember "dodge this", but how widespread is the knowledge or interest in this phrase? If we keep this, aren't we encouraging stuff like "woah" and "I know kung fu", which aren't original or pithy, even in their usage?
This is how Wikiquote becomes a copyright-violating collection of everything that fans want to remember from their favorite shows and films. We need higher standards, and fans seem almost universally unable or unwilling to commit to these standards, even though they probably form the backbone of our editing staff. And this is why Wikimedia Foundation board members talk about shutting down Wikiquote entirely: the difficulty in avoiding copyright violations because the editors are more concerend about turning Wikiquote into a collection of fan pages than about avoiding copyright violations and staying focused on a select set of the very best material from established people and works in the target culture. (Oops — end diatribe.) ~ Jeff Q (talk) 19:50, 5 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
Actually, it was Trinity who said "Dodge this". ;-) BD2412 T 22:24, 5 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
I tend to agree with JeffQ about this, but what do we do with quotes like "Frankly my dear, I don't give a damn" and "Round up the usual suspects"? (If I have to tell you where these are from, I'm disproving the point I'm about to make). They're not particularly witty or pithy except in context, but the contexts are so well-known that the lines are iconic. Now Steinninn might say the same thing about "Dodge this" -- where does one draw the line? --Ubiquity 00:12, 6 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
Yes, that's the challenge. Fans of those two films will certainly know these lines, but so do many who have never seen them. Many who haven't can even tell you who said each line, and what the context was. This shows breadth of experience (either of simple memorability or of reusability in other situations, or both) as well as timeliness. That's what makes these otherwise simple statements good quotes for a collection.
One way we can make a rough guess at how widely known these quotes might be is (you all knew I was going to say this!) finding reliable sources that cite or reuse the quote. We don't have any mechanism for citing popularity levels of quotes, but one simple (though hardly guaranteed) way to determine them as needed is to search for the exact quote in Google Book Search. Lots of relevant hits would indicate a thorough penetration of the audiences for those books — in our case, the English-speaking world. (I got 545 for the first quote and 624 for the second. Unfortunately, it's not very useful for short phrases like "dodge this". I got 720 for that query, but the first three pages have nothing relevant, and the vast majority of hits appear to be two sentences, one ending in "dodge" and the next starting with "this" — one of the flaws of Google's engine.) An ordinary Google web search doesn't suffice, because there seems to be no one in the world with more time and energy to create websites than film, TV, and video game fans (which is one reason it's so incredibly easy to find episode numbers for TV quotes these days — every show seems to have at least one copyright-violating transcription site). Using Book Search filters out the ephemeral fan material and flash-in-the-pan phrases that fade as fast as they rise.
I'm not proposing any solution here, just making some observations. ~ Jeff Q (talk) 04:00, 6 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
Just as an example of how a fan's perception might be colored look at one of my favorite quotes from Firefly in [this episode].

Mal: Well, look at this! Appears we got here just in the nick of time. What does that make us?
Zoë: Big damn heroes, sir.
Mal: Ain't we just?

I like to think that it is notable because of the triple pun (just in time, just being heroes, heroes are just). It's a line that has stuck with me for the years since seeing the show. I find it memorable and needing very little to convey to other people. If I had to pick one quote from Firefly that would be it. But does it work here? Is it something that other people feel the same as I do?
I am clearer on some other things for which I am a fan. For example I intend to take a hatchet to the Portal page sometime in the near future. While what GlaDOS says is sometimes amusing a good portion are situational. Most of what the turrets say are situational and visual. There was another Mortal Kombat is another page that should me trimmed excessively, especially the multiple permutations of what the announcer says. That might be clear to me because I am not a fan. However I do know part of the charm is the inflection with which the announcer says the lines. Again, something which is not and, to my understanding, should not be conveyed here. -- Greyed 21:17, 7 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
Let's see how your point stands against a non-scientific survey, me. First one is... Casablanca? Which I have never seen. Second one, no clue. I could look them up but that, too, defeats your point. As for "Dodge this" Jeff Q's got a great litmus test. Does the quote stand on it's own without a massive amount of stage direction/setup. "Dodge this" doesn't simply doesn't meet that requirement because what makes the line are three things.
  1. Neo's bullet-time dodge.
  2. Trinity's gun against the Agent's temple.
  3. Trinity's growling voice.
Without those three things the line does not mean anything. With them they're it's not a quote. -- Greyed 08:16, 7 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
Following morning I did look them up. I was wrong, the second line is from Casablanca, the first one is from Gone with the Wind. I have not seen either. I can say that I knew of "Frankly my dear..." but am clueless as to the context. Take that as you will. -- Greyed 18:18, 7 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

"The usual suspects" has become a cliché in Britain. For example, whenever there is a threat of a large back-bench revolt against the Government, journalists say "It's not just the usual suspects who are protesting". And of course every sourceable cliché should be in here. I can't see "dodge this" getting a status like that.--Cato 09:48, 6 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Problem with formatting[edit]

Could someone look at the formatting of Danny Kaye please. I have created the article with two quotes by him and one about him, all sourced from Halliwell's Who's Who. If others add quotes from other sources, it will make the format I have used rather unwieldy. The only solution I can think of is to repeat the reference.--Cato 20:05, 6 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

The current format makes it look as if the first two quotes are sourced from Halliwell, while the source of the third quote is unknown. The TOC shows that the third quote is from Halliwell, but it comes across ambiguously in the article itself. I would delete the "About Danny Kaye" heading and simply include all three quotes under Halliwell. I'm assuming, by the way, that the third quote is Kaye speaking about himself. The heading "About Danny Kaye" is a bit confusing, as if someone else had said the quote but was inadvertently not mentioned. When the subjects of articles speak or write about themselves, these quotes don't need a separate section. The About section should only be for what others have said. - InvisibleSun 20:26, 6 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
I tend to agree with InvisibleSun. I think giving Halliwell a subheading gives his book an importance it doesn't deserve with respect to Kaye. (If the quotes were both from a book by Kaye, I'd feel differently). I'd rather see all three quotes under "Sourced", each with its own reference. If you feel the repetition of the reference will be punishingly redundant, use "Halliwell (Ibid)" for the subsequent references (and if you're worried the average user won't understand "ibid", use "[[w:ibid|]]" ;-) ). --Ubiquity 21:41, 6 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
I've removed the Halliwell heading and placed explicit sources under each quote, and moved the "About" section under "Sourced", based on my assumption that each of the three quotes is from the same page in the cited edition of Halliwell, and that the "private life" quote is spoken by someone else about Kaye, not by him about himself. This I deduced from Cato's formatting and the normally understood meaning of "About" headings in Wikiquote, which is "quotes about the subject by someone other than the subject" (i.e., a place to put quotes that aren't directly from the subject, which is the primary article content). I ask Cato or someone else with the book at hand to fix any error I made in this regard.
There are many problems that this highlights, all having to do with the problem of many editors who don't know each other trying to work on an article over long periods of time. Here are some consequences:
  • If you add several quotes without citing specific sources for each and every quote, it looks like all but the first (or last, depending on how it's done — and people do it both ways) are not sourced. (Look at the problems we're having between frequent editors on a 1-day article with only three quotes.) Over time, articles with quotes like this will attract unsourced quotes mixed in with the not-obviously-sourced quotes, and may be rearranged into the order-du-jour, rendering the implied sourcing totally useless and misleading. (I have fixed a number of articles with this exact problem, and I'm sure there are at least several dozen I've never seen for each one I've fixed.)
  • If you place a book heading above a set of quotes, but don't add specific source information under each quote (even if it's only to repeat the page number), you have the same problem — there's no way to differentiate between a sourced quote and an unsourced one added later by someone else, without laborious examining the article history. (And that's examining by diffs, not by edit summary, because many editors routinely fail to include any edit summary. Personally, I think the default preference setting for "Prompt me when entering a blank edit summary" should be "checked", especially for anonymous editors!)
  • If you add a heading with a book title, but no other information, even people adding sourced quotes in the right section are likely to add quotes from different editions. Years aren't sufficient, either, because many books (especially popular ones, which are more likely to be quoted from) have more than one format printed in a single year. But cramming all that data into a heading makes for horrible headings and interferes with squeezing useful info into edit summaries, which are hard enough to get people to add without taking up all the available space. (Headings are terse introductions to sections. They should not be used as detailed source lines.)
There are many other potential problems, I'm sure, but you get the idea. We have several ways to avoid these problems:
  • Add full citations to each quote in a source line immediately below each. This is best to avoid errors, but clutters up the page with repetitive source information. (More and more I'm thinking French Wikiquote has the right idea about mandating sources and formalizing a way to make them readable but less of a distraction.)
  • Add a brief but specific citation (e.g., "Halliwell (2001), Who's Who, p. 242") to each quote, with the full citation given elsewhere. Two ways to do this are: to group the quotes under a heading, like the shortest common version of the title, and add source line just under the heading; or to use footnoting to place the complete citation at the bottom of the article. Either way, each quote has a unambiguous source cited, with the full details in a single place. The heading method is likely to collect partial sources from wrong editions, especially if there are enough quotes to make additions far enough below the top source line to allow the editor to fail to notice which edition.
  • Using footnoting to place the entire source line at the article bottom, so that quotes have nothing but a trailing number to indicate they're sourced. Personally, I think this is a very bad idea. Not only does it make it harder for readers to verify quotes, it also makes it much easier for editors to fail to realize the critical need for sourcing because it's too unobtrusive. Sourcing is so important that it is the top-level priority in organizing articles; i.e., sourced quotes come first, and unsourced quotes are nothing but raw material from which we must shuck the useless husks. (That's why I put sourced "About" quotes under "Sourced" headings instead of under a higher-level heading. As far as I'm concerned, anything that isn't sourced should be deleted as soon as anyone can take a pass at finding it. "About" quotes should be treated more, not less, skeptically.)
These are methods I've seen in use in a number of Wikiquote articles. There are probably more I haven't noticed (or don't recall off-hand).
Sorry about yet another essay, but there are a lot of issues here that have not been definitively resolved and codified in policy by the community, and they'll only get worse as Wikiquote grows. ~ Jeff Q (talk) 01:41, 7 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Halliwell attributes the quote to Sylvia Fine; I have noted this.--Yehudi 17:25, 7 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Thanks to everyone.--Cato 22:41, 8 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

I have importing rights here now[edit]

Continuing from Wikiquote:Village_pump_archive_16#Probable_GFDL_problems_with_improper_transwikis, I just tried importing the full page history of American history quotes Roaring 20s, American history quotes New Deal, and American history quotes from English Wikipedia with their temporary undeletion there. Please check the import log and you will see my actions. However, as the imported pages have full edit history from Wikipedia but are not prefixed "Transwiki:", so they are separate from Transwiki:American history quotes Roaring 20s, Transwiki:American history quotes New Deal, and Transwiki:American history quotes, I would like to ask what to do with these transwiki-prefixed pages:

  1. Merge prefixed pages into unprefixed pages?
  2. Merge unprefixed pages into prefixed pages?
  3. Delete prefixed pages?

Based on my importing experiences on Chinese Wiktionary and Chinese Wikisource, once the full edit history is imported, there should be no need to prefix "Transwiki:" to imported articles. As there were no importing rights available here, from the above choices I personally favor the first action, like merging Transwiki:American history quotes to American history quotes and making needed edits, to appreciate those who cut and pasted while they could not import. Please reply before I import more page history for you.--Jusjih 01:17, 7 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

You can (and should) import to the transwiki namespace. Just set the "Transfer pages into namespace:" dropdown to "Transwiki" before hitting the button. As for what to do on this project, I have no opinion as I don't know how things work around here. – Mike.lifeguard | @en.wb 16:47, 9 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
Also keep in mind that if the page already exists, upon import, a history merge will take place, and the imported version will be on top (regardless of revids or timestamps).
After re-reading this, a manual history merge seems in order for at least the cases mentioned here. – Mike.lifeguard | @en.wb 16:57, 9 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
Thank you for your comment, but where is the "Transfer pages into namespace:" dropdown to "Transwiki"? From Special:Export and its Wikipedia equivalent? If the majority comments call for importing to a "transwiki" namespace, I will follow you.--Jusjih 03:16, 11 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
On Special:Import, you should have a dropdown for the import source (w=Wikipedia), a textbox for the page to import, and checkbox for all revisions, or the top one only and another dropdown for the namespace to import into ("all" means it goes to whatever namespace it's coming from - not sure what happens if the namespace doesn't exist here; I don't suggest you try). See m:Help:Import for details. – Mike.lifeguard | @en.wb 04:49, 11 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
Unfortunately I can only "browse" a saved file and then click "upload file" without your mentioned choices here.--Jusjih 03:02, 12 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
Apparently you have XML/upload import enabled. I think WMF wikis are supposed to have transwiki import instead, since upload is insecure. You should perhaps submit a shell request in Bugzilla and/or talk to a developer about getting that changed. – Mike.lifeguard | @en.wb 03:42, 13 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

User talk-page change email notification is now enabled[edit]

Per our request (mentioned in the VP archives under "Email notification when user talk page changed"), registered users can now choose to receive emails as soon as their user talk pages are been changed since they last read them. Just check the "E-mail me when my user talk page is changed" option in "my preferences". Hope this helps. ~ Jeff Q (talk) 11:43, 8 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Picture of the Year competition[edit]

Dear Wikimedians,

Wikimedia Commons is happy to announce that the 2007 Picture of the Year competition will be held soon. Any user who is registered at any Wikimedia wiki and has more than 200 edits is invited to vote.

The competition is among the 514 images that became Featured Pictures at Wikimedia Commons between 2007-01-01 and 2007-12-31. There are literally hundreds of beautiful high quality pictures... please help us choose the best one!

Voting will be conducted through a tool on the toolserver (to make it easier to count compared to editing on a wiki). Users can request a voting token on . You will need to have email enabled for the user account you intend to vote from. You can only vote once, even if you have multiple accounts that meet the edit requirement. The voter log will be public although the actual votes themselves will be private.

There are two rounds of voting. In the first round, you can vote for as many images as you like, regardless of category. In the final (28), you can only vote for one image.

Thanks, Wikimedia Commons Picture of the Year committee --Herby talk thyme 13:05, 8 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Wikiquote is also not this[edit]

I'd like to propose the following section be added to Wikiquote:What Wikiquote is not, as official policy:

Wikiquote is not a fan site
Wikiquote is not a depository for every utterance made by a person or in a creative work. If a quotation can only be appreciated by fans, or is only notable within the context of knowing and admiring a particular person or creative work, it should not be included.

Discussion? --Ubiquity 14:56, 8 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Of course we can all agree that "Wikiquote is not a depository for every utterance made by a person or in a creative work" but I believe that the rest of this proposal is a far too forceful extension of some of the arguments expressed above in "Quotability" and "Fans or non-fans?".
There are always going to be disputes as to what or what should not be included, no matter how little or how precisely one attempts to establish a definition of what criteria should be used, and there are always going to be disputes as to who and what should define the criteria.
At the end of the first discussion above BD2412 indicated "I am still working on formulating this - it is more complicated than I imagined, fitting all the parts together into a coherent whole." I believe this will always be the case whenever one attempts to formulate anything with full honesty, rather than for some very limited convenience and very limited purposes.
It was observed above in defense of the impulse to pare pages down, that Antoine de Saint Exupéry said, "Perfection is achieved, not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away." I can agree the paring down of excess in anything is often useful, and even necessary, but it should always be engaged in in an intelligent, considerate and responsive way, and I believe the saying is far more applicable to the formation of rules about anything than it is a compendium of quotes ultimately about everything.
I would thus propose that we retain only a very few innate considerations, and leave it at that, beginning with: Is it legal, under the current copyright law and fair-use policies which we must heed? When there are no disputes about this, there always remain the disputes about what is or is not sufficiently notable, and in most regards I am content with an adoption of the strategy of Arthur Ponsonby, who expressed in regard to rules, "The absence of disapproval may be accepted as sanction, and publicity and opportunity for discussion and criticism are the really material and valuable elements..."
I am here expressing my disapproval of this proposed rule, because I do not believe there are easily formulated rules for "quotability" and do not expect that there can be any end to the quagmire of debating it in general terms. I prefer the debates to remain for the most part on a page by page basis. Where disputes inevitably do arise, I would prefer to see each case play out with reasonable arguments on the talk pages, and where resolutions are not likely by the use of reason, then a resolution can be made through consensus polling of interested parties.
The proposal made above is that "If a quotation can only be appreciated by fans, or is only notable within the context of knowing and admiring a particular person or creative work, it should not be included." This could easily be used to rule out the quoting of "Dodge this" or even "There is no spoon" from the page for The Matrix and frankly a page for quotes for that movie, which left out these quotations, is one that I would feel to be the result of gross negligence and incompetence, and any rule that could be used to insist that they be excluded even more so.
In cases where many people have been unappreciative of the need for some moderation, as has occurred on the page for Monty Python and the Holy Grail administrators can eventually pare down, or moderate the paring down of the pages to more acceptable levels, and consensus appealed to in the cases of dispute, and on some pages perhaps even some set level someday reached by consensus, beyond which it is agreed there should be little or no addition.
There are no easy or immediate answers to many of the more subtle and complex disputes that arise among people, and there are certainly no easy rules that can be made to end them, for rules themselves become the subject of dispute, as in this case. In this regard, and many others, I remain a person generally in favor of not making any truly unnecessary rules. ~ Kalki 16:29, 8 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Kalki makes some very good points, most of which I agree with. I see that my proposed wording goes a little too far. In fact, I was not trying to settle the question of things like "Dodge this" (though my opinion about that particular item is probably a little to the right of Kalki's). What I would like to address is pages such as a game page which notes every utterance by every character, or wrestler pages filled with epithets and not much else. These kinds of pages exhibit a fan's lack of selectivity to a fault, in my opinion. Since everything about the subject is wonderful, every golden phrase deserves to be immortalized. Is it a valid defense of a quote such as "Booyah!" for someone to say "wrestler X has a big following, and we all get off when we hear him say "Booyah!"? --Ubiquity 17:01, 8 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

I agree that such pages prone to the overabundance of many inane remarks are often a problem. Yet, I have never agreed that it is usually necessary to delete pages created by such game fans, wrestling fans, and the like, although where others have thought so I have rarely seen anything of any great value to cause me to argue the issue. I would much prefer most pages to contain mostly memorable statements, but with limited time to spend on adding what I feel is memorable where I can, I seldom even pay much attention to the disputes on deletion of pages, and generally trust that on this project "the common sense of most" will not go too far, or become too oppressive — as long as there are not any official rules which appear to justify too great a constraint of things.
Right now I am concerned at the spate of deletions of images of early 19th century paintings occurring at the commons, and affecting the pages here and across many of the wikis, where editors at the commons seem to feel justified in summarily deleting these old images rather than simply checking up on their status as public domain works with a few google searches. I know it is often futile to argue with legal imperatives and established rules, but there are so many willing to constrain and limit others with them, and so few who are willing to insure that they are not unjustly or unnecessarily constraining. ~ Kalki 17:45, 8 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

I would not like to see such a rule in place. However, as an alternative, maybe some note on the the fact that it is ok to look at the quotes that are present and pare down those that, in an honest assessment, really aren't that stellar. I think in the admonishment to [be bold] the hardest way to be just that is in the removal of something that someone else has added. Adding is far easier. One is less likely to be in conflict over what is added since that's a single person operation. But removal, unless an editor removes their own quote that's often at least a 2-person operation and almost always in opposition to one another. So in the natural course of things any page's entropy is towards more quotes, not less.

Something I have been meaning to toss out there in these discussions, especially when it comes to recent fiction be it in movies, books, video games or what have you. I think that it is OK for Wikiquote to take something of a spaghetti approach to quotations from recent fiction. As in, throw it at the wall and see what sticks. The newness of a work of fiction lends itself to an exuberance of quotations from fans. But as the years pass and the newness fades I feel it becomes clear, collectively, that some things which appeared spectacular at first exposure really isn't spectacular. At that time, to carry the pasta metaphor, it falls off the wall... some editor removes it. What's left are the quotations that are of a higher quality.

So what is needed is a tolerance of the exuberance in the early years along with a conscious effort to fight the bloating entropy. To pare things down intelligently as it becomes apparent with time and experience what's stellar, what's debatable and what's best left aside. -- Greyed 18:40, 8 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

I am all for tolerance and not biting the newbies. But let's take a case in point: John Layfield. Which of the almost 200 unsourced quotes here deserve to be left in? I would say "none" -- so we're back to discussing whether the page should be deleted as a fan page. But I'm sure Mr. Layfield's fans feel that even "he cheated!" and "it's not fair!" are golden witticisms when issuing forth from the master. And maybe they are. Maybe (I don't know, I'm not familiar with Layfield) he says "he cheeeeeeated" and "it's not faaaaaaair!" in some uniquely amusing way. But even if so, I don't think the quotes have any value to the Wikiquote project.
It's clear that Wikiquote is aspiring to a standard like "only what would be good enough for Bartlett's" (and I think we'd miss a lot if we did). But it's also clear that we don't want to be the MySpace of quotations. I'm just trying to form a more explicit statement of where we are drawing the line. --Ubiquity 20:52, 8 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
That's why I like what I mentioned above in "Fan or Non-Fan" for "Dodge This". Maybe Jeff Q can jump in and provide a link to where he first said it but the idea is sound for cases of fiction like this. If what he said is said with a particular inflection then it isn't quote-worthy because the words aren't what matter.
All that WQ can convey are the words, not the inflection, facial expressions, vocal tones, reactions of other people in the scene, dress, mannerism, etc. Some minimal stage direction should be permissible with the emphasis on minimal. But in the end if the words don't stand on their own then it isn't a quote in the WQ sense, it is a different beast.
It is an elegant approach which has wiggle room but can be invoked to settle disputes. It allows the spaghetti approach of tossing a lot of material up to see what sticks while helping guide those who would pare down the stuff that just doesn't stick. Sure, it catches things like "Dodge this" but I want it to. Not because I dislike The Matrix or dislike the line. I loved the movie and I love the line. But I do feel the words of the line cannot be separated from the action setting it up, the stance of the actors in the scene, the vocal inflections of the character uttering the line and the action immediately following the line. None of those rightly belong here and without them the line is nothing. -- Greyed 21:17, 8 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
After a few minutes of thinking I realized there's another way to put it. It separates out content from presentation. My impression is that WQ is concerned with content, not presentation. We can quibble about content 'til the cows come home but presentation, being a separate beast, is far easier to come to a consensus about. -- Greyed 21:43, 8 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Voting open - Picture of the year Competition[edit]

Dear Wikimedians,

The 2007 Wikimedia Commons Picture of the Year competition is now open!

Please visit here to see if you are eligible and get a voting token:

The images are presented in categories, but you can vote for as many as you like, in as many categories as you like. (The categories are just so you don't have to look at hundreds of images at once.) The top 28 images will make it to the final.

Before you cast your vote, you can preview them all at . Voting is open from January 10-17, so please take the time to have your say!

Thanks, Wikimedia Commons Picture of the Year committee --Herby talk thyme 11:09, 10 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Using Wikiquote for a vendetta[edit]

Are there no standards whatsoever on Wikiquote? A page on my real life identity as Chip Berlet was created here for the sole purpose of inserting a nasty quote out of context into a Wikipedia entry where the quote had already been deleted by admins for violating rules on Biographies of Living Persons. What is even more outlandish, is that my request for deletion was refused. Is there no one here willing to deal with the fact that Wikiquote is being used to violate Wikipedia guidelines on defamation? --Cberlet 02:30, 13 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Strictly speaking, there is nothing defamatory in Wikiquote accurately reporting that a notable quote was uttered by a notable person about another notable person. However, I think the quote in this case is garbage, and am troubled by the personal-attack nature of the entry, and the lack of anything other than that lending balance to the page. I think we should delete the quote as a precautionary measure until we have discussed and resolved the propriety of this situation. BD2412 T 02:36, 13 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
I just noticed that the discussion had extended to this page. I had seen the comment on the article's talk page, and though I disagreed with a request for it's speedy deletion, I basically agreed there was an imbalance that should be remedied, which I attempted to begin by adding a couple quotes from an article I found after a brief search. Unlike Wikipedia which is primarily engaged in creating statements, we are primarily engaged in presenting them, and our criteria for inclusion and exclusion cannot be the same as Wikipedia's.—This unsigned comment is by Kalki (talkcontribs) .
I have done as BD2412 has suggested. Personally, I think the quote should be deleted for the same reasons as outlined in WQ:QLP, it appears to be a non-notable quote, not in the neutral point of view, that was only brought here to defame someone. Cbrown1023 talk 03:05, 13 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
I tend to agree with BD2412, except on one thing. I think it can be speedy-deletion subject per request by the affected person. Not oversight, but deletion of related revisions, since the request doesn't come from the formal and legal channel via Foundation Legal Counsel. --Aphaia 03:10, 13 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
The affected person really has no rights over what we present - imagine if, say, Hillary Clinton or John McCain were to take issue with our entries on them! The fact that we limit ourselves to entries on notable persons inherently means that we are speaking on figures of public interest, which is the First Amendment test for immunity to suit for defamation, so long as we act without malice. Even if the purpose of the original poster was malicious, so long as the quote is accurate (i.e. the person claimed to have said it did, in fact say it) we have no legal issue. But, as has been noted above, there's nothing "notable" about it, even if the speaker happens to meet 'pedia notability guidelines. BD2412 T 04:53, 13 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

This seems to be a case of double standards. Justin Raimondo is a notable person with his own page here; many of the quotes on that page are attacks on living people. Should we not remove those quotes as well? Indeed, shouldn't we delete that whole article, because not a single quote there is notable?--Cato 10:38, 13 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

A close precedent is this VfD, where I argued that a biased collection of quotes from the subject himself violated NPOV. The reaction was "If you know of other interesting stuff that he said that makes him look less extremist then you're welcome to add it, but why try to censor accurate information that's already there?" (iddo999). The policy actually says "Quotations included in Wikiquote do not need to conform to NPOV, as they are reflections of the point-of-view of the quoted individual."--Cato 10:56, 13 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
Cato, I think Justin Raimondo has some notable quotes, but I think his quote about Berlet is not one of them. Just because a person is notable does not make everything they utter a "notable quote" (or else we would include Bill Clinton's grocery list). That's why I have been struggling for these past several weeks to write up quotability guidelines. Raimondo's attack on Berlet is no novel turn of phrase, no clever, pithy use of words. It is a run of the mill attack, and thus excludable, certainly from an entry on Berlet. BD2412 T 17:17, 13 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
The further we get away from objective criteria for inclusion, the more we encourage editors whose only goal is to promote or defame notable people with well-sourced quotes. But as I write this in a hurry, it's not obvious to me what kind of objective guidelines we can use. My gut feeling is that someone who is primarily notable for attacking others, or even just coming down hard on one side of an issue, may very well merit what seems to be an "unbalanced" article purely because their fame comes from this one-sided outlook (and the vilification they receive from their ideological opponents, who are often just as extreme). But how can we easily separate the true believers of [fill in the philosophy], who can't avoid having articles that reflect only contention, from those who present a broader set of views but who nevertheless attract notable, nasty quotes from a subset of those views? I have no idea of where the participant subjects in this particular situation fall in this spectrum, but this is a general challenge that is not going to go away with a few content disputes. ~ Jeff Q (talk) 12:27, 13 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
I protest this characterization of my work. I have written for major daily newspapers, have written peer review scholarly articles, am on the board of a peer review journal, and been quoted as an expert in mainstream media internationally. What is happening here is that a tiny handful of editors who object to my written material condemning bigotry, conspiracy theories, and credulous uncritical support for right-wing populism, have been Wikistalking me for many months. They cherry pick critical comments made about me, and plop them into Wikipedia. Now they are using Wikiquote. The idea that I am some sort of fanatic is unfair. I am not objecting to having a Wikiquote entry that traverses a range of views. I am objecting to lazy, clueless applications of poorly defined policies that allow Wikipedia and Wikiquote to be used to settle personal and political vendettas. That is the issue. I very much appreciate the debate happening on this page, and attempts to create a more balanced entry. --Cberlet 17:02, 13 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

My basic understanding of WQ:QLP background consists in two parts:

  1. WQ:QLP is a policy with which we try to reduce legal risk.
  2. WQ:QLP is a policy which verbalizes and is therefore an incarnation of one of our fundamental principle - Be nice, no bully. That said, Wikimedia project won't go to the direction "if it is legally okay, we are bold to do it".

IANAL and BD2412 is, so for the first point I appreciate his insight and am being persuaded. But the second point it not closely examined I am afraid. Or I miss a point or understand wrongly. Please let me know your opinion about that. And also I believe the Wikimedia project is one whole project consisting in several forms to carry a sum of human knowledge to every single individual. So I esteem greatly consistency between each Wikimedia wiki in particular its fundamental principles of behaviors and in the fundamental direction of content treatment. So if something is not accepted by a certain project in regard of legal concerns, specially US ones which may affect all Wikimedia project, another Wikimedia project are wise to learn from the precedent, say, issues around w:WP:BLP. --Aphaia 14:03, 13 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

I would like to know which of Justin Raimondo's quotes is more notable than his one about Berlet, and how we can possibly justify retaining his appalling attack on Benjamin Netanyahu (alleging that Israel had advance knowledge of the 7 July 2005 London bombings and failed to warn the UK because the bombings would serve Israeli interests) if we delete the one on Berlet. I would also like to know why we retained the highly POV collection of quotes from Ovadia Yosef on the grounds that it is a well-sourced article on a notable person yet we are not applying the same criteria here. Yes, we should be consistent with Wikipedia to the extent that they do not delete articles on notable people, even if the person concerned wants them deleted.--Cato 20:45, 13 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

I think I can give two possible answers:

  1. As non-US resident, and non English native speaker, I don't know Mr. Berlet since recent (sorry, Mr. Berlet, if you feel offended). I am no Jew but know Mr. Netanyahu. I think their notability is substantially different: Mr. Berlet is less notable than Mr. Netanyahu. This difference may affect the treatment for their article.
  2. Mr. Berlet complainted particularly on his article and it is an estabilished custom for Wikimedia project as a whole, so I understand, to delete the materials if they ask to get rid of, even before they choose a more formal way. Even we recommend the former one and appreciate their friendly notice rather than filing a suit to the court. Recently Florence Devouard said a similar thing, while it is a copyvio case. As an OTRS volunteer, on the contrary, I said, I haven't know any claim mail from Mr. Netanyahu or Mr. Yosef. Village pump discussion either.

Also I think those links I put on the below will be helpful:

I noticed m:Comcom this discussion as well as other members or admins do, since claims from notable people may affect the Foundation's public relation. In the discuss I got those links from David Gerald. Giving a look to those links, I'm inclining to delete the whole current article, since it inherits the first revision ineveitably, and if they are resubmitted, blocking the editor who dare it.

Last not the least, I feel sorry Mr. Berlet seems not to learn from his Wikipedia sanction: not to deeply involved his own article. As hindsight, it would be better to contact us thorough email, (see Wikiquote:Contact us), not to try to delete it from his own hand. --Aphaia 21:24, 13 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Excuse me, but I was following the clear Wikipedia Arbcom advice of not editing my own article but using the discussion page and other mechanisms to seek relief. A private e-mail is hardly more open and transparent than asking in a public manner for people here at Wikiquote to look at the entry. This simply misrepresents the Arbcom discussions and decisions, which resulted not from me obsessively editing entries on my real life persona, but other editors maliciously placing negative mayerial on the entry as part of a personal or political vendetta that started while editing text on other entries. It would not be better to contact privately through e-mail, because that would mean there would be no discussion over policies and standards.--Cberlet 03:40, 14 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
Thank you for your response, Cberlet. However I disagree with you on two points. In my view you were not completely following the advice from our sister project,English Wikipedia's Arbcom. Your first action was not coming to this forum, but putting speedy request tag on that page. It would be far better than blanking, but technically still "editing your own article". Also while normal deletion request or comment on this page would be "asking in a public manner", but it was not your first attempt. Your action was (sorry for redundancy) request for speedy deletion which one sole admin may notice and process in most cases. Also I would like you to remind English Wikiquote is not ruled by any Wikipedia Arbcom, nor English Wikipedia Article for Deletion, while in this case I think they gave you a good advice. In general, without giving a background, it would be a weak argument "they said so, so it should be so here too." Otherwise the autonomy of each project may be harmed. I hope you keep trying to follow it and to avoid potential troubles here as well you are doing on our sister project. --Aphaia 04:40, 14 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
I hope you realize Aphaia that for most average editors like myself the distinctions you find so important in your continuous effort to criticize me are for the most part totally incomprehensible disinctions without a difference. Do you have any idea how complicated this stuff is to a basic editor? I thought I was doing what I was supposed to do. And, yes, I am angry at the endless mindless policy esoterica posted here when what is really going on is that Wikiquote does not have the proper policies and guidelines to prevent cyberstalking vendettas from being carried out. Trolls are using Wikequote and Wikipedia as a sockpuppet for Wikipedia Review and other notorious cesspits of bad will. Favoring form over substance seldom results in a fair and equitable outcome. Wikilawyering rules the day, apparently.--Cberlet 23:37, 14 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Where did I criticize you? I rather gave favorable comments of this incident, and currently only the editor who support for its deletion and all others are inclinig to keep it, while it is not helpful to point out you either unconsciously or not confuse those distinctions. I feel I am pointlessly criticized, so perhaps it would be better for all of us that I make this comment my last comment on this discussion. I hope Wikiquote community reaches the consensus very soon. Cheers. --Aphaia 01:15, 15 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

I am interested in a discussion of larger policies and a solution to the text on one entry. I am not trying to drive you away, and I hope you stay involved. I am suggesting that your focus on procedures is so esoteric as to have little constructive value to the current situation. That coupled with my inability to unravel your meaning through language differences makes for a frustrating dialogue.--Cberlet 03:25, 15 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Chip Berlet use Wikipedia for self promotion and now he is angry that some people added criticism of him into "his" article. --Markzum 22:03, 13 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Is Aphaia saying that because she has heard of Netanyahu, it is OK to make outrageous allegations about him? Is Aphaia saying that all that say Daniel Brandt had to do was ask for his article to be deleted and there was no need for the long series of AfDs and DRVs on his article? As for legal action, if Mr. Berlet is threatening anything does WP:NLT apply here?--Cato 22:08, 13 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
I am not threatening legal action, and never have against any Wiki entity. I am asking for sensible people here at Wikiquote to look at the situation, correct it in some reasonable way, and develop better guidelines and policies than currently exist.--Cberlet 03:45, 14 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
Exactly. Exemplary ownership of articles. Cberlet probably thinks that Wikipedia article and Wikiquote page are his property. OK, maybe he doesn´t think that, but without a doubt he behave like that. For example here he wrote about pissing on his page or here he wrote also about his page. --Dezidor 10:20, 14 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

I believe most of us can agree the original comment plainly was both extreme and defamatory, but all the same I do not believe the article should be deleted or the quote of another notable person removed merely because of that. Though we might disagree with it, or doubt its honesty, it may have been sincere expression of that person's opinion. Even it it were not, simply discarding it because it is defamatory, corrupts some very important principles of free speech which I believe we have thus far been fairly good at maintaining, even when it comes to the expression of views many of us may not particularly like or believe to be accurate or valid at all.

Varying degrees of many forms of extremism, exaggeration, hypocrisy, prejudice and presumption can be exposed and combatted in various ways, and it is ultimately not only the most obvious and plainly extreme forms with which we must deal, but many subtler forms as well. Extreme scare-mongering is obviously often a strategy of many conspiracy theorists, but in milder forms it is also a strategy of many who would advocate extremes of "political correctness" even to the detriment of the principles of "free speech", and I don't believe expressions from any of the extremes of the social spectrum should be automatically excluded, merely because we ourselves may find many of them foolish exaggerations or even baseless slanders. Many notable quotes on the pages of many current and past past political and religious leaders and comedians would have to be discarded.

I much prefer to uphold the principles expressed by Thomas Jefferson: "We are not afraid to follow truth wherever it may lead, nor to tolerate any error so long as reason is left free to combat it." It is often helpful for the wise to hone their own insights and arguments upon the dullness of others assertions, and not seek to exclude the blunt expressions of even the most biased entirely. Including some such comments can be helpful in this way, even where they do not contain any particularly valid insights for us to consider and appreciate.

Though people interested in many forms of fairness and accuracy can grow understandably very tired of confronting much of the false and often repetitious nonsense from extremists of many kinds, I believe people should generally practice their skills at defending of truth and combatting falsehood by more means than simply removing any comments that might be extremely unjust, or insisting that they be removed.

We should try to insure that no page ever becomes little else but a forum for the unjust defamation of anyone, but we should not simply remove any incident of defamation which may occur in the comments of notable individuals. There would probably be many notable and famous quotes by political commentators like Rush Limbaugh, Michael Moore, Ann Coulter, Al Franken or even from less strident celebrities like David Letterman and Jay Leno which would become off-limits to us.

The issue of removing defamatory remarks given unwarranted prominence in an an encyclopedia article where they are not essential information is far more clear than that of removing them from a compendium of quotations, especially in an age where defamatory remarks are especially common, from all quarters and all ranges of the political spectra. Neglecting to mention the most extreme of them or ignoring them and their abundance is not going to do much to make them go away, or reliably diminish their influence. We should all probably have at least some familiarity with the beliefs, opinions, and attitudes of the most extreme fanatics whether they be considered "left" or "right" and whether they happen to be "in" or "out" of popular favor.

If a person is notable enough to have a Wikipedia article they are notable enough for a Wikiquote article, if notable statements by or about them can be found. We might not agree with them, nor have much interest in creating articles or gathering quotes for or against them ourselves, but people on various sides of issues should for the most part be left free to do it, and intervention should occur only when there are some clear violations of established and necessary policies.

The bias of the creator of the page was fairly clearly against the subject, but that does not mean the page, or even the quote needs be removed, because it was apparently created by someone with malicious intentions.

Yesterday I revised the page a little and I had been making a further edit to add a favorable comment about Berlet which I had found, as a further counter to the original one, but there was an edit conflict, as the original quote was simply removed. I decided to pause in any involvement with the article at that point, as I didn't know much about either of these people, didn't have much time to spare, and thought it would be best to learn at least a bit more about the various adversaries before getting further involved in the issue. I've been too busy with numerous other things to spend much time here the last several days, and that is likely to remain the case for at least most of the next week or two, but I'm extending my comments on this matter today while I have a little time.

For the most part we have been good at maintaining standards of freedom of speech even for those most of us probably strongly disagree with, within the articles and on the talk pages about them. I recently encountered a troll whose heights of wit seemed to involve calling me a "wanker", and once it became clear I was dealing with little more than a troll I ceased to make any further attempt to engage in dialog, and simply removed comments plainly aimed at nothing more than insulting me, but I did not remove the discussion which had occurred prior to that. The troll actually had prompted me to express myself to some extent on a few matters I'd been meaning to for a while, and thus the time I spent responding to what initially seemed merely a vigorous complaint of a concerned editor was not time entirely wasted.

Learning how to competently examine and effectively address even the most ridiculous and contemptible viewpoints and expressions people can make is part of the process of life. That does not mean we should let any page remain a page of little else but unjust defamations, but neither should we seek to entirely exclude or automatically remove defamations.

I do believe that if we see some greivous slanders, exaggerations or plainly dishonest or unfair bias occurring we should try to provide at least a few remarks which provide some balance, or context, which is what I attempted to do after noticing the article yesterday. I certainly do not believe that there should ever be a policy that in all cases we should be required to always seek a full balance of contrary opinions, or otherwise we'd end up needing to seek a mass of glowing accolades to such murderous fools as Adolf Hitler, Joseph Stalin, Charles Manson, Jeffrey Dahmer, and Osama bin Laden.

I have just expressed a few personal opinions of my own about a few people, and in my remarks I did not hesitate to call some of the worst of people fools, because I believe we are all fools to some extent, and know that I have been a fool many times. I think we can take great pride if we do not descend into being malicious or dishonest fools, but being an ignorant and confused fool is very often an inescapable part of the human condition. I do think it is an extreme foolishness to seek to focus primarily on the foolishness of others, as many people seem to do, or to exclude expressions of even some of the worst forms of foolishness entirely from a compendium of quotations.

As I have to get doing a few others things, and this comment is already rather long, has already made a few of the important points on my mind at least once, and I am beginning to digress a bit too much, I think I will simply end it here, and let others add their own persepectives to the discussion. ~ Kalki 03:33, 14 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Mr Berlet says "that Wikiquote does not have the proper policies and guidelines to prevent cyberstalking vendettas from being carried out". This is a new allegation. What cyberstalking has been taking place here?--Yehudi 12:38, 15 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
It is not a new allegation. It is why I came here to the Village Pump. Based on the broad definition found on numerous websites, I have been the victim of cyberstalking that began on Wikipedia many months ago, and then evolved into a flurry of nasty e-mails to me, several websites placing much false and defamatory information online, including posts from two former Wikipedia editors now banned in part for their bullying and nasty conduct regarding me (see for example Wikipedia Review and various pro Lyndon LaRouche websites).
False and defamatory information about me in articles in print publications and online publications have been referenced into the entry on my real-life persona on Wikipedia by persons with whom I have had prior editing disputes.
Most recently a quote from Justin Raimondo was posted on the Wikipedia entry on my real life persona Chip Berlet, and then removed by administrators for violating Wikipedia BLP rules. The quote was then added to Wikiquote in the Raimondo entry, by a new user who came here for the sole purpose of adding negative material about me. That new editor then created an entry on my real life persona here on Wikiquote, with the Raimondo quote added as the only text, and then this same editor went to Wikipedia to add a link to the Wikiquote entry on Chip Berlet to attempt to circumvent Wikipedia administrator oversight.
When I asked for a speedy deletion here, the editor who denied the request turned out to be an editor banned from Wikipedia for numerous abuses, and who is active on Wikipedia Review, a website with many false and nasty critical comments about me, as well as Wiki projects in general.
Nice smear, Chip. You can't argue the decision so you attack the admin. You're a credit to your clan. -- 01:01, 17 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
I call this cyberstalking - a mild case relatively, perhaps, but a clear case nonetheless. I realize that Wikipedia and Wikiquote are two different instituions, but the problem now involves both.--Cberlet 23:06, 15 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
I definitely agree that we can't operate in a vacuum - if a party is banned from Wikipedia based on that party's edits with respect to a certain subject, we should cast a skeptical eye when that party starts editing on a similar subject here. BD2412 T 00:13, 16 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
Cberlet: it is most unhelpful to make such remarks about an administrator here. It is also irrelevant; your argument is not with her, but with the bureaucrats and administrators collectively, none of whom has suggested that they would have done other than refuse your speedy delete request. And what has happened here is not stalking you by anyone's definition.--Cato 19:58, 16 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
Please cite the definition used by Wikiquote and a definition you consider useful,Cato. Thanks.--Cberlet 21:56, 16 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
  • Definition of the verb "to stalk": "Pursue or approach (game or an enemy) stealthily. Steal up to game under cover. Stride, walk in a stately or haughty manner." (Concise Oxford Dictionary) Clearly, there was nothing stealthy here; all actions were out in the open for everyone to see.--Cato 22:02, 16 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
Not funny. Try citing a definition of the term "cyberstalking."--Cberlet 22:32, 16 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
You know, it is far more sympathetic if you provided a third party definition of what you considered it and then followed up with how this situation applied to that definition. You asking others to provide that definition only makes you look like someone looking for attention by arguing for argument's sake and no real issue.
As an outside observer all I see is someone with no prior WQ experience coming here and complaining about an article and wanting things done with it. Given the medium what has been provided, at best, is heresay. All we have is your word, as a semi-anonymous name on a screen, that you are who you say you are, that you are being "stalked" and that you want us to take action, now because you say so. It is up to you to present your case. You don't do that trying to corner others into presenting it for you. When you do outside observers, such as myself, write you off. -- Greyed 23:19, 16 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

<-----It is not hard to check out what I say, since there is a full record going back over a year at Wikipedia. Forgive me for assuming that people posting comments here on Wikiquote would actually read the entire discussion. For those who have difficulty reading the entire discussion, or do not want to bother to scroll up, here is what was already posted in the way of evidence:

Let me know if I can offer any other assistance.--Cberlet 04:38, 17 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Here is the lede from the entry on "Cyberstalking" on Wikipedia:

  • Cyberstalking is the use of the Internet or other electronic means to stalk someone.
  • It has been defined as the use of information and communications technology, particularly the Internet, by an individual or group of individuals, to harass another individual, group of individuals, or organization. The behavior includes false accusations, monitoring, the transmission of threats, identity theft, damage to data or equipment, the solicitation of minors for sexual purposes, and any form of aggression. The harassment must be such that a reasonable person, in possession of the same information, would regard it as sufficient to cause another reasonable person distress.
    • Cited to: Bocij, Paul. Cyberstalking: Harassment in the Internet Age and How to Protect Your Family. Praeger, 2004, p. 14.

Hope this helps.--Cberlet 04:46, 17 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Y'know, I had a two paragraph reply all ready but decided it's not worth it. It's obvious at this point you're not gonna get it. I'll just leave you with these 2 key points.
  1. I can't verify that you're who you claim to be.
  2. False victimization. The cyberstalker will claim that the victim is harassing him. Bocij writes that this phenomenon has been noted in a number of well-known cases.(Bocij, Paul. Cyberstalking: Harassment in the Internet Age and How to Protect Your Family. Praeger, 2004, pp. 12-13.) -- Greyed 04:59, 17 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
How easy it is to simply dismiss the idea that a problem exists and needs to be solved. First, You could easily send an e-mail to Chip Berlet at Political Research Associates and ask if I am that person who is writing these posts. Second, If Wikipedia has had several arbcom rulings that discuss how I am being harassed, that might serve as an indication that this is not a fantasy.--Cberlet 13:15, 17 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
ArbCom has no standing here. Anyway, has it made any comment on how Cberlet is being treated here?--Yehudi 17:02, 17 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Next Steps[edit]

So what is the solution to the larger issue of policies and the smaller issue of the entry?--Cberlet 03:27, 15 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

We could have a policy that nothing is permitted that is in any way disrespectful to a living person; this would require us to delete quite a lot. I would hesitate to go that far.--Yehudi 12:38, 15 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
That would be way too far. How about a system for flagging entries that appear very unbalanced in ways that could be corrected by the addition of more quotes? Kalki suggested this already.--Cberlet 23:06, 15 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
The problem with flagging, as with so many other things here, is that Wikiquote doesn't have the active community focused effort to address most of its flagged-for-deficiencies problems. This inevitably leads to the situation we find ourselves in here, in which an publicly notable editor makes a plausible case for bias and cyberstalking that includes only well-sourced quotes, and finds tepid community will to either (A) remove the quotes and possibly block the stalkers; or (B) go find well-sourced, balancing quotes and add them. While this may seem like rude neglect to the victims, it's a reality the level of participation here. (Defame a TV show or a video game by questioning its characters' copiously listed unoriginal, contextless utterances, however, and you'll get an army of defenders.) Any policy or practice we implement should be practical given the likelihood of timely community attention to the problem article. (That's why I continue to support WQ:VFD as a problem-resolution arena — it's the only community forum here where articles must be dealt with in a specified timeframe.) ~ Jeff Q (talk) 01:03, 16 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
OK, that is a problem. Critical mass is a real issue.--Cberlet 02:06, 16 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
Also, some people may have had bad things said about them, but have no notable quotes of their own. Not every such situation can be resolved by seeking balancing positive quotes. We certainly should hold quotes about living people to higher standards of notability/quotability and verifiability (still working on a holistic proposal). BD2412 T 02:34, 16 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
About living people, I prefer the direction of German Wikiquote (and consequently of French Wikiquote): cite only from a source with full bibliographical data, and abolish "unsourced" section in their articles. --Aphaia 14:43, 16 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

I don't know how others feel, but it strikes me as grotesque that Cberlet is here asking for sympathy, saying that he is being defamed by a quote that claims he calls his opponents neo-Nazis, while simultaneously he is using the Wikipedia article on Public Interest Research to defame Fletcher Prouty, in effect calling him a neo-Nazi. I like irony as much as the next person, but this is over the top. --Portia 07:50, 16 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Welcome another newly-created single-purpose account! For the record, I never claimed or implied that Prouty was a neonazi. See discussion at Wikipedia here.--Cberlet 13:53, 16 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
Claimed, no. Implied, yes -- innuendo is your specialty. In the linked Wikipedia discussion, you get things rolling right away by insinuating that Brandt is a racist. Now, why would anyone call you a "political hit man"? --Portia 16:09, 16 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
You'll pardon me, "Portia", if I agree with Cberlet that your popping up on Wikiquote for the first time ever to make these sort of accusations lends no support to your credibility. But since you're here, how about helping us improve any of the thousands of entries that having nothing to do with the present controversy. Here's a list of some entries we'd like to have, to get you started. Cheers! BD2412 T 17:52, 16 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
BD2412, you're incorrigible. I applaud your effort to turn these narrowly focused editors to the greater purpose here. ~ Jeff Q (talk) 17:51, 17 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

This is in response to some of Cberlet's assertions about "cyberstalking" and what we should do about it here.

Frankly the definition of "cyberstalking" by Paul Bocij which is provided above might be a published one, and aimed at primarily the most extreme and obvious forms of it, but it is also so broad that it could include nearly any form of criticism posted on the internet, including some of your criticisms of various individual and groups, whose sympathizers seem to be intent on criticizing and harassing you. If we were to set up rules that forbid the quoting of any criticism that was likely to cause someone distress that would truly be a blow to the principles of free speech and not only the most pernicious or persistent forms of harassment.

I entirely agree that non-essential information can be properly excluded from WIkipedia articles, but I can't agree that distressing or even extremely erroneous statements by anyone notable enough for a Wikipedia article should be automatically excluded here. Whether they are posted by malicious parties or not shouldn't be our criteria for including or excluding them. If there develops a severe imbalance some of us might be interested in doing some work to remedy that situation, but the general rules and practices which are in place regarding resolution of disputes and edit-wars involve accurate sourcing and developing a clear consensus on the notability and relevance of quotes, not any mandate that the quotes themselves be fully accurate expressions of fact or posted by disinterested parties.

Problems exist in the willingness of many to criticize others, distort truth, exaggerate situations, and not all such problems are going to be solved by any official rules made in reaction to people taking offense at the criticism of others. You have publicly criticized people and groups on the internet (whether fairly or unfairly is not an issue here), and you have deemed it a problem which needs to be solved that they are left free to fairly or unfairly criticize you. Expressions by them distress you and expressions by you distress them. Most of us don't actually see that as a clear problem, even if determining the fairness or unfairness of various accusations and claims sometimes can be.

I believe some of the issues you address are interesting ones, and some of the people or groups you criticize are among those I might readily and vigorously criticize myself, but I don't feel that I should be protected in any way from their right to publicly criticize me, were I to make public criticisms of them. I generally prefer to criticize actions and attitudes rather than people but do not entirely refrain from the criticism of individuals and groups. Even though I do have the additional safeguard of some degree of internet anonymity, I do not consider the specific criticism of other people to usually be the most useful or important thing to spend my time in doing, but I believe that both you and they should be free to engage in it to your heart's content, anywhere you wish, so long as it does not violate the rights of others to ignore any of you, and attend to other things.

In dealing with some of the most extreme enthusiasts, conspiracy theorists and fanatics of all persuasions one might to some extent agree with Susan Sontag : "I envy paranoids; they actually feel people are paying attention to them." I do not believe we can ever attain a world free of various irritations, risks, dangers, and criticisms and very often those who most vigorously seek to totally eradicate some particular or peculiar types of them often themselves produce some of the most pervasive or pernicious dangers and injustices.

Though I recognize that vigorous opposition to false ideas and to immediate and real threats by others are sometimes necessary and proper, I generally believe that building upon what is good in people's ideas is usually far more effective at improving situations than focusing ridicule, derision and other forms of intense disapproval on many of their worst ideas. Yet the notions that anyone should be either forbidden from doing so, or be fully protected by others from many of the natural consequences of doing so are both ideas which I myself am vigorously opposed to. If those who are attempting to harass you create too much of an imbalance here, it will probably eventually be addressed. We certainly cannot promise that it will be immediately or thoroughly addressed to anyone's satisfaction.

We must all ultimately protect ourselves and others through our knowledge of important truths, and of how to effectively express and apply them, not by the official mandating of any presumptions which we may hold, including those that we possess wisdom and the right to express it which is absolutely superior to that of those we might be most inclined to criticize or condemn. ~ Kalki 17:17, 17 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Jeez! Are you serious? I never have suggested that I want all criticism removed from the Wikiquote entry on my real life persona. I asked that the entry be inspected for balance and significance of quotes, and that editors here deal with the issue of malicious trolling as part of a long-term vendetta that qualifies as cyberstalking. Get a grip. No one is suggesting that al criticism needs to be excluded. No one. Re-read the entire discussion. No one. Someone suggested that I was not notable. Fine with me. But is you have an entry, the project has a responsibitly to deal with cyberstalking. The issue is that Wikiquote is being used as part of a cyberstalking campaign. Deal with that please. I get enough florid oratory following the presidential campaign. --Cberlet 21:47, 17 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
You should never dissimulate about what you have and have not said in a medium where all changes are recorded. Granted, you didn't say all criticism of your page be removed. You did, however, [request the entire page be removed]. Functionally the same thing. -- Greyed 22:09, 17 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
Please. Angels on the head of a pin. There is no reason to have a Wikiquote page for my real life persona. I am not notable in terms of being quoted on any regular basis. The only reason the page was created in the first place was as part of a venemous personal attack. I still think the suggestion that the page be deleted makes perfect sense. As soon as it became clear that there was some sentiment to keep the page, I changed course. This is hairsplitting. I am amazed at how much energy editors here have to spend on avoiding the central issues. Should the entry remain? Yes or no? If the entry remains, it should be accurate, fair and balanced--Yes? If there is cyberstalking going on, serious ethical editors should discuss what policies are proper--Yes? --Cberlet 22:31, 17 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
As for the issue of cyberstalking, last night someone created a Chip_Berlet account on Wikipdia, posted a Chip_Berlet cartoon without the proper copyright, then blanked my user page and replaced it with the cartoon. Wikipedia admins have now blocked the user erased the history page, forwarding it to the current page.--Cberlet 17:03, 19 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
The Wikiquote:Quotability proposal I've been working on should go a long way to prevent cyberstalking types of entries, as it weighs heavily against recentism, and quotes by persons of minor notability about persons of minor notability. BD2412 T 21:53, 24 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
Thanks, it looks like you have given the policy issues a lot of thought. I appreciate it.--Cberlet 12:18, 25 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
You're welcome, but what I really need now is some concrete input on the language of the proposal. Cheers! BD2412 T 22:01, 25 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

My first article is up for deletion, and I am not understanding notability on wikiquote very well. I cannot find the page like there is one on wikipedia to explain. There are quotes started on this page by famous BC personalities, since the deletion notice there are additions made explicitly referring to geographical features of BC. The quotation about the 2010 BC Olympics and by the Premier were deleted as per the deletion notice that they weren't good for the wikiquote article. Is there a page for newbies to wikiquote to help in the notability or what quotes should be here...? Thank you. SriMesh | talk 17:47, 13 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

I left Sri a long note on his WP talk page (where he prefers to receive communication) explaining in detail my objections to the quotes on the British Columbia page, and of course we have the Wikiquote:Votes for Deletion page to discuss specific issues with that page. But this would be a great place to address the topic of notability in general. --Ubiquity 16:32, 15 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]


Just thought I'd let you now that Monty Python and the Holy Grail/temp, which is used "to resolve copyright concerns" hasn't been worked on in quite a while (June 2007). I'm not familiar with the proceedings regarding to copyright infringement, but shouldn't it be done as quickly as possible? and it's messing up the interwikis too :-)

chtit dracotalk 14:05, 15 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

I love to replace it with the current version - but how? Deleting the current one and move? Or just copy and paste? --Aphaia 20:03, 15 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
Move and merge? BD2412 T 20:19, 15 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
Move and merge (once the former 60KB+, so double sized content deleted to make the way, and soon restored). --Aphaia 05:56, 29 February 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Reading notes: where is it appropriate?[edit]

I read books. Typically copyrighted books. I take notes, of things I find surprising, or typical, and to which I may want to come back later or to relate to other books or ideas. I can see that there are already many similar case, e.g. Richard Dawkins. So, it is a priori appropriate to put them here? If so, good. Is there a procedure? Should one get an agreement? From the publisher? From the author? Has such an agreement been got already (since I find some existing quotes)? Can it be extended to new quotes? Why is that not in the FAQ? Where should I have looked for, then? Thanks. Marc Girod 19:54, 15 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

It falls in fair use case unless your note is so huge to be an excerpt of the book. The latter is considered as copyvio without written permission of the copyright holder (unnecessarily same with the author: it can be transferred). The permission should be sent to the Wikimedia Foundation by email (see Wikiquote:Contact us) directly from the copyright holder thus the right person who issues such. Why not in FAQ ... uh, it is no frequently asked question. But regarding to the current cases (see just the above as the example what is no-no), it would be a good addition. Cheers, --Aphaia 20:01, 15 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
Thanks for the reply. Now, let's take the example of Richard Dawkins (by "the example above", did you mean Monty Python and the Holy Grail? I miss the insight that should be retrieved from this). Has any permission been asked about it already? Where would it have been recorded, in a way that I (as a new potential contributor) could check? How to express limitations to its extensibility? I can guess that a copyright owner could grant publication rights on a precise excerpt, or quite liberally (I'd be suspicious about the latter, in fact). After they'd be approached several times, they might want to specify some restrictions which would cover possible extensions, so that one would not bother them every time. Marc Girod 09:18, 21 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Panic At The Disco[edit]

I always band quote on band's or members respective pages and found that there is no Panic page. Anyone that wants to change that....just giving you a heads up.

Needs Catagorization template?[edit]

Does one exist? Checked the pump archives and see no mention of it. Checked categories and templates to no avail as well.

Of course the ancillary question is if there isn't one, should we have one?

I don't see the need for one, since the following are already available under "Special pages" in the left margin toolbox:
Hope this helps. ~ Jeff Q (talk) 20:36, 18 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
[Burns]]Exxxxxcelllennnt[/Burns]. Thanks for the pointer. -- Greyed 20:40, 18 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

The first comes under Category:Britons and the second under Category:Europeans. Is this intended to accommodate the different views our editors have on the political status of the Scottish people, or is it just a mistake? Antiquary 10:35, 19 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

None of the linked words are visible on my server. Is it a fault of my server or is something else wrong? Odd. Antiquary 10:47, 19 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
I'm not seeing them in the title, either. They're here on the edit page but all I see on the page itself is the word "and". -- Greyed 10:59, 19 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
There we go, forgot the leading colon so they were added at the bottom of the page and the Village Pump was added to those categories. -- Greyed 11:01, 19 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

To return to the question, I can't see any reason for two categories unless someone is trying to distinguish ethnic Scots from people born or living in Scotland. Even so, they are Britons!Poetlister 13:18, 19 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

VfD closure by non-admins[edit]

I have started a discussion at Wikiquote talk:Deletion policy.--Poetlister 15:12, 19 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Further to the discussion on Quotability above, I have started a policy draft on this difficult topic. Comment would be most welcome at Wikiquote talk:Quotability. Cheers! BD2412 T 21:48, 19 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

I am continuing to work on this, but I feel like I'm stabbing a bit blindly. I would really appreciate more community input, particular in the form of proposed language that should be incorporated into (or taken out of) this proposal. Cheers! BD2412 T 21:55, 24 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Username change[edit]

Hi. Grandmaster is my user name in en, ru and az:wikis, as well as commons, meta and wiki source. I wanted to register an account with the same name here, but found out that there's an account of User:Grand master, which has no edits, but judging from the content of his talk page made only one deleted edit back in August 2006, for which he was warned, and is inactive since then. I would like to change my username here to Grandmaster, since I use that name on other wikimedia projects, and considering that there's no established user with a similar name here, I hope this will be possible. Please see w:User:Grandmaster for the links to my accounts on other projects. Thank you. --Grand M 11:41, 21 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

While logged in to Wikipedia, simply make a statement that you are requesting this name change here, and I will then rename your account as Grand M to "Grandmaster". ~ Kalki 17:33, 23 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
Done. Please see: [5] --Grand M 12:55, 24 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
Your account has now been renamed. ~ Kalki 17:44, 24 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
Thank you very much. --Grandmaster 05:38, 25 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Official format policies[edit]

As much as I am adverse to making or enforcing needless rules about anything, I perceive a growing need for a stronger statement of official policy rejecting the use of multiple subject headings within pages for people, and a clear statement against their overuse on theme pages.

Against previous guidelines, there has been a growing use of "subject headings" within articles for people and sub-headings within "Theme" articles. In my experience this is almost always being employed by people seeking to promote attention to some narrow POV agenda, whether extremely hostile or extremely favorable to some subject. I have done some cleanup on a few pages, but some editors continue to use such formatting primarily.

Past policy discussions have always deprecated the use of such headings on people pages, but without much in the form of clear guidelines on their use on theme pages. Within pages on themes there can be some greater justification of use of sub-headings but there remains great potential for extreme overuse (often very long lists of "subjects" with only with a single quote) and POV abuse with much presumption and even deception used in describing what quotes are "about." I believe that if there are disputes and no clear consensus for the use of some particular section heading arises it should not be used. Currently there has been an insistence on placing quotes primarily against "zionism" and for "terrorism on the page for Allah. And after my initial removal of one of these quotes it has been replaced and the current section headings created (ALL with just a single quote):

1.1 Allah in the Quran
1.2 Allah and Jews opposing Islam
1.3 Allah in HAMAS constitution
1.4 Roots of faith in Allah

I intend to remove these sections as unnecessary and the quote presumptively titled "Allah and Jews opposing Islam" to shoehorn a quote that is plainly about supporting terrorism against Jews and Israel onto the page.

In all my years here I recall only 2 incidents where I created any non-chronological "subject" sections on the people pages, and I regret doing so as a bad precedent. Both were many years ago, the most significant one being where many quotes by Thomas Jefferson on religious matters were exported from Wikipedia to here; with rather limited time to deal with a massive import and recognizing that Jefferson's religious views were one of the most frequent subjects of contoversy about him I decided to simply create a section for quotes on religious matters on the page. With the frequent overuse and abuse of such sections I have long since come to the conclusion that sourced quotes and sections for specific works on the people pages should be entirely chronological, with perhaps a few exceptions where later quotes on the same subject are immediately referenced in the comment below them, or some where a series of works are placed within their own section, independent of other works. I have meant to do such cleanup on the the Jefferson page and a few others myself, but haven't yet had the time to actually do it (or many other things). Currently it has only 4 non-chronological headings:

1.5 On religious matters
1.6 On race
1.7 On the judiciary branch of government
1.8 On financial matters

I intend to remove these and organize all the quotes in standard chronological format, but it might be a few days more before I get around to it.

A quick review of policy pages and past discussions has revealed to me some confusing deficiencies and errors on some of the pages, and I will probably do some work on pointing out, discussing, and correcting these within the next month or so. ~ Kalki 16:44, 23 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

I'm inclined to agree with Kalki on this, for the reasons above plus another. Most editors here don't seem to care whether quotes are sourced, and the articles that have these inescapably subjective headings are among the worst offenders in posting sourceless quotes. But sourcing is absolutely essential, not only for the reputation of accuracy we are trying to build, but also to the very survival of this project. Chronological order imposes an objective order to the quotes, points out their dated sources, reveals some of their source deficiences, and even provides an opportunity to see how quotees' views (or societies' views, for theme pages) change over time.
We cannot prevent agenda-pushers from trying to make arguments by loading articles with pointed statements (which are often memorable and can be reliably sourced) and then trying to "sell" them as a particular point of view instead just letting the words speak for themselves. But we can make it easier to fix or remove these efforts by discouraging these subjective groupings, instead encouraging the official scheme of grouping by sourced/unsourced and one of the two objective sub-schemes of chrono order (the other being alphabetical, which has its own problems in a multilingual compendium). Chronological order is also supported by its common use in printed compendiums. There remain problems for our collection, which can afford to exceed the books' limitations and therefore have additional organizational needs. But I suggest that they are not nearly as difficult as restraining agenda-pushers, especially given that the Wikimedia POV practices aren't as easy to implement when we cite many quotes by people made famous by their controversial POVs. ~ Jeff Q (talk) 17:45, 23 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
I believe that subject headings for quotes are absolutely necessary for all articles. I know that it causes embarassments in some cases but it is also helpful in revealing things that people don't pay attention to.
At any rate, my 2006 Microsoft Encarta Encyclopedia has sub-heading for quotes of people. For Machiavelli, the subject heading are "change," "church," "deception," "government,"..."self-interest"...It is the same for other people. Therefore, I am not a loner advocating outlandish ideas. In cases where the wording of subject headings cannot be agreed upon, those quotes should go under a ===Miscellaneous=== subject heading.
Lastly, concealing ideas can be part of an agenda.--Inesculent 18:23, 23 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Concealing or denying an agenda can also be an idea many people have in their overuse and abuse of section headings. That an encyclopedia article has subheadings is entirely appropriate, but it was long ago determined here that, as much as possible, the use of non-POV chronological and alphabetical order should be used on the pages. I am stating that there should be an even stronger official policy statement of this, and guidelines developed to minimize the overuse and abuse that has occurred on many of the theme pages, where I concede they sometimes can be useful or even necessary. This means there will likely be disputes on the matter, but where disputes arise I am proposing that where the consensus does not clearly indicate that some particular section heading should be used, it should not be used. ~ Kalki 18:48, 23 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

At first I agreed with you, Kalki. I dislike the agenda pushing that is evident on many contentious pages. However, after a little bit of thought I feel that this is the wrong way to go about it. I believe that section headers are a good thing on larger pages. Breaking down quotes from prolific figures in history by subject is, to me, a good thing. For example I would not want to read a page on Winston Churchill where his copious amounts of quotes are listed only in chronological order.
I feel that if we're going to have a policy which is admittedly provoked by agenda pushing then the policy should not address a symptom of the problem, it should address the problem. The sub-headings are a tool. Like any tool they can be used properly or abused. Why, then, worry about the tool if it is the abuse of the tool that is the problem? -- Greyed 19:33, 23 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

I feel there is no way to effectively and reliably constrain the overuse and abuse of section headings other than by such policies as actually have long been in use here, their more vigorous expression, and their extension to include some policies for the "Theme" pages, such as I am now proposing. The Winston Churchill page you point to actually uses no "subject" headings of sourced quotes but those dealing with chronological ordering of works or quotes. All of the section headings of the sourced quotes there are simply a sub-dividing of the standard chronological order of quotes, and chronological order of sections for works. That page is not one that would be affected at all. ~ Kalki 20:07, 23 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Speaking of Agenda Pushing.[edit]

Over the past week or two I've been trying to get some meaningful discussion on the topic of agenda pushing as it relates to two editors that I believe are one, Cdorman2 & The issue is that these editors have systematically and exclusively edited Wikiquote pages to post highly negative quotations about members of the political right. In one case it was to remove a highly negative quotation of a member of the political left. The main page of contention is Rush Limbaugh, Talk:Rush Limbaugh and Fox News Channel.

Let me start from the beginning. On Fox News Channel posted several quotations which are clearly not in line with the page as stated not only on the page itself but on Talk:Fox News Channel by Kalki. In short they were quotations from Fox News and not about Fox News. It was those edits which got me to look further into the editing patterns of those two editors that in turn lead me to the large number of negative edits on the Rush Limbaugh page.

I reverted the edits of Fox News because it was a clear case. In fact one quotation which was added was one that had been previously removed by Kalki. However on the Rush Limbaugh page I figured that blanket reversions would not be the best course of action since it would probably result in an edit war. Because of that I sought advice from Aphaia on what to do. Aphaia suggested the NPOV tag with an appropriate mention on the talk page about why it was added. This I did.

The result is that two more IPs have joined in and basically created what I have sought to avoid, an edit war. Those IPs being and Both have repeatedly removed the NPOV tag without discussion on the talk page. I have readded the NPOV tag most times but Kalki did revert one and commented that it was appropriate even if with deficiencies. As I have noted on the talk page both of those IPs show the same pattern as the first two above. Exclusive edits to cast extremely negative comments on the political right.

Now, I know that there is going to be contention about these things. However I believe these are beyond the pale. Look at the diff histories of Cdorman2 & and you will see extensive commentary about the quotations. For example this one from

  • It‘s all coming from the haters on the far left. Just throw it in the garbage. But the regular folks who really enjoy this program, what we want you to ask, Laurie, is why do we do things? Why do we do them?
    • explaining to his ombudsman, Laurie Dhue, what to do about mail complaining about the low quality of Fox News Channel material; November 2007 [6]

And this one from Cdorman2:

  • There was no involvement whatsoever.
    • on WHAS-11, denying his office's spreading lies to the media about Graeme Logan, a brain-damaged recipient of S-CHIP funds, and his family, despite recovery of subject email (see below); October 19, 2007; Countdown

Hmm, just noticed that most, if not all, of their quotes are from MSNBC. I digress.

Now, my issue is not that there are negative things said about Rush Limbaugh or Fox News Channel or any other subject. My issue is that these editors are using Wikiquote in an obvious effort to push their agenda through the use of anti-right quotes. In fact in a [recent reversion] stated "This page is not an adjunct of the Limbaugh fan club" which shows a misunderstanding of my position and certainly an unwillingness to discuss the issue. If anyone is curious as to why I say the above I encourage them to review my user page and contribution history, especially when it comes to talk pages and the village pump. For those who don't want to go digging let me just say that I am far from being a fan of Rush Limbaugh and have a history (albeit short, thus far) of opposing agenda pushing on pages where I would agree with the agenda being pushed!

Regardless astute readers will have figured out by now that I again had asked Aphaia for guidance on what to do. The two suggestions were to either take the discussion to a more public place, WQ:VP being that place, or to petition for the page to be protected. Since this whole mess started with me trying to avoid the adversarial approach I am appealing to the consensus here instead of attempting to force the issue on those pages through edit protection.

However, this is a larger issue than just 3-4 editors waging an ideological war on Wikiquote. I have attempted to find any policy which would inoculate Wikiquote from this abusive behavior. As I noted above in my reply to Kalki's thoughts on formatting tools can be used properly and abused. I will not deny that many of these quotes are properly sourced and fall within the letter of currently established Wikiquote policy. I, however, contend that most, if not all, of the quotes fall outside the scope of the pages they are on. Furthermore I think there should be some guidance on what to do with the hit-and-run agenda pushers who come to Wikiquote to post the latest negative commentary on people or policies they disagree with. It is clear that these people I have mentioned care not one whit about project as a whole. They have barely engaged in the discussions about NPOV, they habitually revert that which they don't agree with without commenting on why, and they post narrowly focused, ideologically driven quotations to ensure that their view and only their view is presented. I contend that behavior should be frowned upon, should be reacted to and should be clearly refuted by policy.

However why I am an enthusiastic editor on many different pages I am a recent editor and not completely immersed in established WQ culture. I take my lead from recent discussions by Jeff Q, Kalki, BD2142, Poetlister and Aphaia. What I perceive should be present may not jive with established culture. I am looking for clear guidance in these matters. Either some support for the position I have established and am defending or a reasoned argument on why I am incorrect and why I should back down. Hopefully in hashing that out it could dovetail into a broader policy on the issue or at least one hell of a page to direct new editors to when these things arise. -- Greyed 20:33, 23 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

There is no such thing as a quote "by" Fox News. There are quotes about Fox News, some of which may be made on behalf of Fox News, or by Fox News spokespeople or employees. But the fact that something is said as part of a Fox News broadcast does not make it "by" Fox News any more than something said on The Tonight Show or My Name Is Earl is a quote "by" NBC. BD2412 T 20:59, 23 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
You are correct that my language was a tad sloppy but I feel that it was understandable that the quotes removed were not about Fox News since they were broadcast on Fox News and uttered by Fox News employees for a Fox News program. Allow me to give one example...
  • Unidentified Fox Business News Reporter 1: "Let me just correct ourselves. It is not Apple. Apple Dubai?" Off camera: "Apple Dubai." Reporter 2: "Oh, oh, uh, the, uh, Arabs."
    • "correcting" themselves on their report that Apple had acquired 8% of AMD; actual purchaser: the Abu Dhabi government's investment branch; November 16, 2007 [7]
So thank you for correcting me on the distinction but I feel it is irrelevant to the larger issue I posed about agenda pushing and how regular Wikiquote editors or Wikiquote as a project should respond to it. -- Greyed 21:14, 23 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

I feel the questions we should be concerned with most are not whether people have any particular agenda which they are pushing, so much as whether they are unfairly ignoring established guidelines and rules which constrain them from being too aggressive in their attempts to do so.

I have weighed in that the NPOV tag is probably one that should probably remain on the Limbaugh page for the foreseeable future, as the imbalance of quotes that have been added there is obvious, and to some extent probably unavoidable. I do feel that the NPOV tag should perhaps also be amended to reflect that when there is an imbalance to be corrected it should usually be done by the addition of relevant quotes, not removal of them.

Even though I myself might prefer to keep them very limited in number, I am not against including some very offensive and very biased and unfair quotations. There are growing efforts being encountered to censor some remarks that are arguably on subject, as well as efforts to include remarks that are off subject. There are some quotes in contention on that page and others which I would personally much prefer not to be there, and which I would not have added, but now that someone has, I do not feel they should be removed merely because they are offensive. Others might disagree, and though I have but little desire to keep quotes I regard of low value, even when genuine, I feel that where contentions arise about the "notability" or "quotability" of particular quotes which are not likely to be settled by reasoned arguments between adversaries, there should be a polling of consensus on the matter. That is usually the last resort available to us when policies are not or sometimes cannot be precise enough upon some matters. This is one reason why I have been very little interested in arguing about defining "quotability" in some artificially precise terms. No matter how precise and absolute a definition or rule might seem, there will usually be some loophole which would permit some extreme abuse of it, and a general sense of what is appropriate once again would have to be appealed to. I truly feel this will always be the case. ~ Kalki 22:22, 23 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

And in cases where some of the participants refuse to engage in honest discussion? I feel that is the case here. I purposely did not alter the content of that page precisely because of comments like yours above. However those IPs have thus far refused to engage in any discussion or debate on the matter. Take a look at the Talk page and notice that the sum total of the discussion from the most often reverter of the NPOV tag is, maybe, 4 lines. All of which are unsigned. All of them amount to "You're wrong!" with no explanation, no support, no discussion, no debate. -- Greyed 23:17, 23 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Geolocation of IPs[edit]

Of the IPs Greyed mentions, does not geolocate consistently but is in the US. is in New York City, probably Brooklyn, and is in Jersey City. This is not inconsistent with them all being the same person, but is far from conclusive.--Cato 23:12, 23 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Thanks Cato. Of the participants the only ones I feel might be the same are Cdorman2 and Even then, let me be perfectly clear, I am not making any accusations of sock puppetry. It could be that those two are the same and simply someone who forgot to log in. I've done it, others here have done it, nothing malicious about it at all. -- Greyed 23:17, 23 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]


How do you know to use boldface? What makes a quote so special that it has to be in bold? Va girl2468 17:54, 30 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

This is a largely subjective matter. I have usually added bold to many of the most famous and significant statements of people, especially if they would otherwise be lost amidst a mass of text. It is never an absolutely necessary addition, though when I work on any large page, I usually prefer that there be some bolding of significant quotes, if only to provide some visual texture to it. Past comments I have made on the matter include this discussion, which I usually link to when the subject now comes up. ~ Kalki 18:53, 30 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
I never use boldface myself, but I see the advantages. If there is a long passage of which one sentence is the best known, that sentence should be bolded.--Poetlister 22:07, 30 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
Same with Poetlister. Also I prefer to make a remark if I boldface something, as "the boldface is given by the contributor of this website and is therefore not original" or whatever. In an academic source, on decorative things like boldface or underline it should be distinct if the original author gave or the editor does. --Aphaia 02:43, 31 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]
I am generally against boldfacing quotes, but accede to the strong opinions of others on this matter. One case I find it quite useful is in emphasizing a very short passage — the essence — of a longer quote, where both the short and long versions are separately quoteworthy. ~ Jeff Q (talk) 02:54, 31 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Bill Hicks quote about Rush Limbaugh[edit]

There is a heated argument going on at Talk:Rush Limbaugh (under several topic headings) about whether we should include a particular quote about Limbaugh, by comedian Bill Hicks, in the Rush Limbaugh article. I believe the arguments have been made, rather thoroughly, and that we will not be able to close this matter without a call for a consensus. Therefore, I am calling for a vote to take place, starting sometime after 05:00, 1 February 2008 (UTC), and taking exactly 1 week. Please go to Talk:Rush Limbaugh#Call for consensus on Hicks quote for more details and to participate. ~ Jeff Q (talk) 04:26, 31 January 2008 (UTC)[reply]