Wikiquote talk:Limits on quotations

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This is the talk page for discussing improvements to the Wikiquote:Limits on quotations page.

General comments


Will this be labeled as "Official Policy Guideline" or what? Should we (eventually) clean up Wikiquote:Copyrights and cite it as "policy"? I ask because this document has a lot of particularities, of a sound but arbitrary nature, for a policy statement. ~ Ningauble 15:35, 11 November 2008 (UTC)Reply



Proposal: Instead of implicitly encouraging further contributions of this sort, advise editors to cease and desist. (Cf. previous discussion showing the beginnings of a consensus for this: 3 editors in favor, 1 suggesting it will work itself out.) Suggested language:

Maximum of two brief quotes by the character. Fictional character pages should link to works in which the character appears. Total distinct quotes in all pages based on a work must not exceed the limit for that type of work.

If there is agreement on this direction then I think this is the appropriate context for it, because multiple articles based on a work will tend to multiply the limit. ~ Ningauble 15:40, 11 November 2008 (UTC)Reply

As the one who had suggested that the problem will work itself out, I should add that I wouldn't be at all averse to speeding up the process by following these recommendations. Character pages certainly increase the difficulty of following our new guidelines. For example, we have the James Bond (film series) page, with many films on the page and links to others with separate articles. And yet we already have a duplication in the case of the recently released Quantum of Solace, which has its own page of quotes as well as quotes in the James Bond article. We could tell editors that there should be no character pages for quotes, as the quotes should be on the pages for TV shows, films, video games, anime, etc. Character pages would then be reduced to disambiguation articles, as had been suggested in the prior discussion. If a character appears in only one work, the character page would simply become a redirect. I would prefer this to allowing any quotes on character pages, as we know from experience that limits will be frequently violated. By keeping character pages as disambiguations, we would prevent more cleanup hassles.

The question, then, is: are there any instances where pages of character quotes are justifiable on the grounds of being more convenient? It could be argued that the Sherlock Holmes page may be such an instance, as many of the works have only a few quotes and would not require pages of their own. On the other hand, once all these stories are trimmed per the guidelines, it might not be unworkable to put them all on the page for Arthur Conan Doyle. - InvisibleSun 03:40, 17 November 2008 (UTC)Reply

I agree that we should probably go toward using character pages as disambig pages. The James Bond (film series) page you mention is one that should be completely broken up with individual pages for each film (I've had it on my To-Do list for a while). And as for Sherlock Holmes, I would also follow your suggestion to move those quotes to the page for Arthur Conan Doyle. Where I could see it becoming problematic would be with iconic characters from comic books (e.g. Superman) that appear in works that may be authored by different people, but on their own may not have enough to warrant having individual pages. But even then, I would not be averse to having disambig pages for the characters that point to the individual works that the character appears in (e.g. in the case of Superman -- Action Comics, Superman, Superman: The Man of Steel, and the various TV and film appearances). ~ UDScott 14:26, 17 November 2008 (UTC)Reply
I have no problem with Sherlock Holmes as a breakout for a collection of works, like The Chronicles of Narnia as a breakout from C.S. Lewis, but I would not want to see separate character articles for quotes of Mr. Holmes and quotes of Dr. Watson. The present organization of Superman and Superman (disambiguation) seems exactly right to me: a logical grouping of works that gives priority to the original over the derivative. (In regards priority, I am tempted to whack Dune with a meat cleaver but I haven't thought of the right title for the derivative works article.) ~ Ningauble 17:01, 17 November 2008 (UTC)Reply
On a related subject, Category:Articles to be merged has a number of character pages to be assimilated into other articles. Since the character page quotes, however, are often unsourced by episode, it wouldn't be possible to merge them unless one happens to be very familiar with the films, TV shows, etc. to which they belong. For this reason, it's fairly unlikely that most of these pages will ever be merged. I would suggest instead that these character pages be made into redirects, with their quotes to be placed on the talk pages of the merge-to articles. If a character is featured in more than one work and these works have separate articles, a disambiguation page could be created; but the quotes would simply have to be deleted, as it wouldn't be known where to transfer them when more than one work is involved. (This is what I did the other day with the page for Jack Sparrow.) - InvisibleSun 03:53, 4 December 2008 (UTC)Reply

1/2 hour TV specials


I recently trimmed How the Grinch Stole Christmas! (TV special) down to 5 quotes, forgetting that it is actually only a half-hour show. Using the rules we have established for a TV show of this length, the limit would actually be 2. But a page with just 2 quotes on it seems a little pointless. What are the community's thoughts on such shows - when there is not a season's worth of episodes? There probably won't be too many of these, but I wanted to see what everyone thinks about them. ~ UDScott 02:06, 2 December 2008 (UTC)Reply

Is there anything in the show that is not in the book? BD2412 T 05:13, 2 December 2008 (UTC)Reply
From How the Grinch Stole Christmas! (TV special):
The plot is faithful to that of the original book, with almost all narrations made verbatim from the book, and the only notable additions being the adding of color (the original book was in dichromatic red and black, with the occasional pink), the early appearance of the Grinch's dog Max, and the insertion of three songs, the Christmas carol "Fah Hoo Forres" (an apparent reference to June Foray, who also sang the song), the polka-styled "Trim Up the Tree" and the now famous "You're a Mean One, Mr. Grinch," this last performed by an uncredited Thurl Ravenscroft. One major addition to the narration is a description of the noise-making Whos on Christmas morning; another is the substitution of mundane gifts such as bicycles and bubble gum as written with the book with nonsensical Seuss-like gifts such as "bizzle-binks."
It seems to me that the article on the TV show should be limited to stuff not in the book, and there should be an article on the book with the rest. Alternately, we could have a sort of hybrid article covering both, with a separate section for stuff only in the TV show (which, I think, amount only to the "You're a Mean One, Mr. Grinch" bits). BD2412 T 05:34, 2 December 2008 (UTC)Reply
I fully endorse treating the TV adaptation as a footnote in an article on the book. It does not have enough original material to sustain a whole article: one stanza should be sufficient. Were I looking to nominate something for QOTD, I should turn to the original rather than a derivative work. ~ Ningauble 15:15, 2 December 2008 (UTC)Reply
To the general question: the rule admits exceptions. If a half-hour program is dense with prose or verse then a little extra may be appropriate, considered as a percentage of the total. Otherwise, the spirit of the rule for "two quotes" of ten lines or 250 words each can be respected with a greater number of shorter passages if that makes for a meaningful article. I also see no problem with having a short article for one or two great quotes (other than the problem of preventing undue accretion). They could also be cross-listed in theme articles. ~ Ningauble 15:48, 2 December 2008 (UTC)Reply
I would agree with Ningauble that a two-quote article, short though it may be, can stand on its own. Where consolidation with another article is possible, it should be done. I had recently trimmed It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown to two quotes. Since Charles M. Schulz, however, is given sole credit for the script, the page could be made a redirect after the quotes are transferred to Schulz' page. - InvisibleSun 03:33, 4 December 2008 (UTC)Reply

Model articles


We should, I think, set up a few "model" articles for each class of page (e.g. a few "model" pages on persons, on films, on books, etc.). Get the pages done just right, then protect them and point to them on this policy page as model examples of what a page that conforms to these requirements should look like. Cheers! BD2412 T 03:22, 4 December 2008 (UTC)Reply

I deliberately came t this talk page to make this exact point. It's already done for a section or two (the Gettysburg Address is cited as a possible example of an exceptionally long, but still approvable quote). But one of the next sections states that a occasionally there are rare works whose ratio of acceptable quoted content vs overall content length is quite high. Seeing as they are rare, why not provide an example Are we talking Aesop's Fables or Casablanca or what? Spawn777 (talk) 01:15, 9 October 2013 (UTC)Reply

I would suggest The Big Lebowski as an example of a film with high quotability, demonstrable by the number of mainstream sources that pull a wide variety of quotes from it. BD2412 T 13:38, 9 October 2013 (UTC)Reply



How many quotes should be allowed from a song that was never included in an album? If we're to keep any sort of proportionality between singles and albums then I'd have thought it difficult to justify more than one quote. After all, a song's lyrics may consist of no more than a handful of lines repeated for three minutes. --Antiquary 15:09, 10 January 2009 (UTC)Reply

It's not easy to come up with a rule of thumb. As with poetry, a single line can be a substantial percentage of the work. Even when anthologized, as in an album, short works are often individually protected by copyright. To quote them at all I think we have to consider the whole article in relation to the author's body of work, and keep it short. How short? It's not easy to come up with a rule of thumb. ~ Ningauble 21:14, 15 January 2009 (UTC)Reply



How is the "exceptions appeal" going to work? It seems to undermine the entire point of copyright length. Does it suddenly become legal to have excessive quotes from just because we really, really like them? Thanks. -Sketchmoose 22:40, 19 January 2009 (UTC)Reply

I must confess I've rather been dreading the creation of the exceptions appeal. We'll probably be flooded with scores of posts per week. It's natural for people to think that every quote they favor is exceptional by definition. And yet the purpose of the appeal is not to create a lot of extra quotes per article, but only one or two more beyond the limit. The idea is to allow a greater flexibility in the case of "classic" works: Casablanca, for example, or The Wizard of Oz. If it turns out how I fear it will, it could be seriously time-consuming. My suggestion would be not to even start it until we have done all the trimming in Category:Pages which need their copyright status checked. - InvisibleSun 23:00, 19 January 2009 (UTC)Reply
Well, to an extent, our limitations on quotations are a very conservative measure. With respect to the type of quotes that we would (or, at least, should) allow as exceptions for this rule, we should set a high standard of cultural importance, demonstrated through actual repeated use in other media, or in lists such as the AFI's 100 greatest movie quotes. We should put the burden squarely on the person suggesting inclusion of additional quotes to provide evidence for the proposition that (a) the quote is significant enough to belong despite the limitations, and (b) it should be added to the existing list, instead of added in place of an existing quote. BD2412 T 05:33, 20 January 2009 (UTC)Reply
That was sort of my thought, as it seemed to me this could get pretty messy. Thanks, you two. :) -Sketchmoose 21:05, 20 January 2009 (UTC)Reply

Calculating number of quotes for films


For film articles, the formula I've been using to calculate the max quotes is (length of film in minutes / 60 minutes to an hour) * 5 quotes per hour = number of quotes, rounded to the nearest whole number. So if, for example, the formula spits out 8.4, the movie can have up to 8 quotes; if the formula gives me 8.5, it gets 9 quotes.

My questions:

  • Is the rounding legitimate? I mean, if I get anything less than 9, should I go to 8? When I started trimming I blithely went about rounding things, but now upon reflection, it seems that perhaps the film should have to hit the whole number mark before it gets another quote. So I would like to know others' thoughts about this.
  • Other people appear to be calculating differently (for example, I saw a movie with a running time of 111 minutes allowed only 8 quotes; with my formula I get 9.25 i.e. 9); which is the proper way? Clearly I think my way makes sense or I would not be using it, but that does not mean I've interpreted the policy correctly.

Thanks! -Sketchmoose 17:21, 17 February 2009 (UTC)Reply

I don't think your process is wrong (and on the film in question, I believe I was in error in cutting to 8; it should have had 9). I've been using a similar approach, although not quite as scientific as yours. Basically, I've been allowing a quote for every 12 minutes of film, but when close to the high side, I've rounded up (close meaning within 5 minutes). I'll be interested to hear others' opinions, but I like your approach. ~ UDScott 17:32, 17 February 2009 (UTC)Reply
Well, now that you mention it and I think about it, my approach is the same as dividing the running time by 12, so basically I've just added a few clicks to the calculator. I have a hard time being bold, and trimming RiffTrax has brought standardization to another level, so I sort of panicked at the 8. But I am still curious what people think about both questions. -Sketchmoose 18:54, 17 February 2009 (UTC)Reply
Given that the unit of measure, the "quote," is itself variable in size (How long is a "piece of string?"), I think rounding is reasonable. After all, the guideline is not based on some quantitative legal precedent, but on the need to draw a reasonable line in the sand somewhere lest contributors go overboard and get the project in trouble. (That said, I am of the opinion that the vast majority of articles that approach or exceed the limit do so through a lack of discrimination regarding the quality of the quotes. More aggressive trimming may be justified on that basis, although it is too subjective for drawing bright lines.) ~ Ningauble 20:01, 17 February 2009 (UTC)Reply
I've also done occasional rounding upward for quote limits; for example, giving The Big Lebowski, a 118-minute film, a ten-quote maximum. - InvisibleSun 00:14, 23 February 2009 (UTC)Reply
Actually, I've been confused as to how many in a certain span of time. In some articles I've worked on, I use the every-12-minute system you guys devised, so if it's a 118-minuter, I put in nine quotes only.--Eaglestorm 15:45, 13 August 2010 (UTC)Reply
Personally I would have allowed 10, since my formula gives 9.8 based on a 118 minute runtime. Likewise, if using UDScott's rule as it is stated above, 118 minutes gives you 9 full 12-minute periods plus one 10-minute period; since 10 is within 5 of 12, it would get "credit" for ten 12-minute periods. Ningauble is correct that a quote is not a discrete unit, so now that I've stopped panicking (good thing; panicking for 18 months hardly seems sustainable) I think rounding mathematically is entirely reasonable. -Sketchmoose 17:06, 13 August 2010 (UTC)Reply

Electronic games limit


I removed the phrase "or more" from the guidelines for electronic games. It said that the "recommended maximum length of quotes" was "ten or more lines of dialogue;" if 10 is a maximum, it can't be more. I think maybe it was supposed to be "or less," but since that is inherent in "maximum" I just removed it. -Sketchmoose 18:19, 27 February 2009 (UTC)Reply

There are all sorts of electronic games, and I don't think a fixed number of quotes per game is going to be a workable guideline. At one extreme are games with no words other than instructions and verbal or textual annunciations, and at the other extreme are what might be considered illustrated electronic texts. In between are games with cinematic interludes, set-piece dialogues, or copious epigrams. I am sorry that I don't have better solution to offer than case-by-case consideration, except to note that most game articles that had length problems did so due to including material that was unquoteworthy in the first place. ~ Ningauble 19:00, 13 April 2009 (UTC)Reply
I propose that the rule be set for mission-type games in terms of hours of gameplay that can typically be expected to complete the game. Perhaps three quotes per hour of play? BD2412 T 04:45, 3 August 2009 (UTC)Reply
Sounds like a good place to start. I haven't played many newer video games, but I remember old Super Nintendo ones that would (on the packaging and in advertising) claim to take anywhere from 40 - 60 hours of gameplay. That would equal approximately 120 - 180 quotes. Even more recent games would likewise have pretty high values, imagine you could beat Diablo I in 7 hours (which would be pretty quick if you weren't "speed running") and you would have, at a minimum 21 quotes. Newer role-playing games take in the tens of hours, at least, so they would extremely variable, around the 50 - 100 quote region upwards. The real difficulty of this measurement becomes apparent when we try and objectively judge how many hours of play a game really takes; this is nearly impossible. Speed runners brag about how quick they can beat a game, and role-players who really get into a game take vastly longer than the average player. There is a huge discrepancy between these values, and there are no good notable/reliable/verifiable sources (that I know of) that contain gameplay lengths which we could use as a reference for implementing such a rule. A more conservative rule of 1 per hour for a lot of video games would still even lead vast amounts of allowable quotes, and nonetheless, there's still no objective way to measure the "length" in time of a videogame. Peace and Passion ("I'm listening....") 05:45, 3 August 2009 (UTC)Reply
Right now, the maximum is three quotes per game. I wonder, is three quotes for one game really worth creating an entirely new page? Or will it include all sequels and spin-offs? Raisin56 11:00, 25 August 2010 (UTC)Reply
Quotes from a game series or franchises have sometimes been consolidated into a single article, and this is the approach I recommend. It seems to work reasonably well in most cases (e.g. Command & Conquer) but organizing them by works can sometimes be a challenge (e.g. Super Mario Bros.) ~ Ningauble 15:13, 25 August 2010 (UTC)Reply
Going by the length of time is, I think, the wrong way. But three quotes is really restrictive, as there are very few triple-A games designed to be completed in less than an hour (even Super Metroid's speed record is about 54 minutes). Still, a lot of games are less dialogue-intensive. I've got a couple of proposals:
  • A hard limit, around 30-ish, for the amount of quotes for a single game. This would bring it in line with the "five per hour" maxim for audiovisual works.
  • For shorter or older games, a lower soft limit.
  • For chaptered games (which seems to be the norm), no more than two quotes per chapter, not breaching the hard-limit. We can bend this rule for especially short or long chapters.
Will (talk) 05:13, 3 April 2011 (UTC)Reply
Ideally we should be able to set the number of quotes by the total amount of dialogue in the game. A talk-heavy game should get more than a game with virtually no quotes in the first place. BD2412 T 15:13, 4 April 2011 (UTC)Reply
Yes, ideally it is the amount of dialog, or text in general, that is the appropriate basis of proportion. Unfortunately, one must be familiar with the work to asses it because there are no readily available metrics such as page count for a book or running time for a film. ~ Ningauble 14:06, 5 April 2011 (UTC)Reply
Wasn't three quotes the agreed max? A problem I see with this is that when you try the amount of dialogue for text-heavy games, some bloater would try to put in whole scene transcripts, like let's say the entire ending of MGS4. --Eaglestorm 15:20, 5 April 2011 (UTC)Reply
I'm going on the assumption that seventh-gen games last around six hours. This is probably a very conservative estimate; Mirror's Edge, which is a relatively short game, took me nine hours to complete on first playthrough. It probably might be still too low for RPGs, which have lengths in the tens or hundreds of hours. It's also kind of why I included the chapter limits too; most games with a linear structure are divided into chapters now, which we can find out easier than dumping the entire script. Still, we should include common sense in any LOQ work. Will (talk) 23:02, 7 April 2011 (UTC)Reply
I think the electronic games limit is extremely oppressive and stingy. I can see how it's harder to assess how many quotes an individual game deserves due to a lack of obvious things like running time or page number, but come on. A tiny handful of quotes is not so far from none at all. How about making it three quotes for three characters and at most fifteen to twenty lines of dialogue? The bottom line for me is there needs to be more freedom, a little more room to work with. The page of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 looks like it was approved by the Soviets. ( 02:14, 11 April 2012 (UTC))Reply
The anon troll above keeps referring to the article because of the limit...calling people names and claiming the article was this and that will not get you anywhere. --Eaglestorm 00:31, 3 October 2011 (UTC)Reply
The example of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 is the sort of action oriented first-person shooter where the verbiage is only incidental, serving to set the scene for the action which is the real focus of the game. The authors of this type of work are not aiming at quotably original, thought-provoking ideas or memorable literary expression. To do so would be a mistake because it would distract from the actual game.

When removed from the context of the game, the verbiage is largely trite, cliché, and even vacuous by design. To the extent that it makes sense to include material from action oriented games in a compendium of quotations at all, two or three examples of the best each game has to offer are more than enough: this is simply not what these games are about. ~ Ningauble 13:50, 3 October 2011 (UTC)Reply

I love how someone who calls somebody an "anon troll" at the very beginning of their statement dares to criticize others as "name callers". Is anyone who wishes to engage in an argument on the internet a troll by default? Are words less meaningful simply because they are being used on the web? I would also like to note that I, too, observed the talk page for Modern Warfare 2. This self-appointed policeman of Wikiquote got ticked off, evidently, and ever-so-politely addressed the "anon troll" as a "goddamn white knight". I guess it's not name calling if Eaglestorm does it. Wikipedia- and Wikiquote- are supposed to have rules. I understand that. Taking a shot in the dark, I'd say the "anon troll" does too. But hacking and slashing at contributions made by anonymous editors- even if they don't fit with the regs- and then coldly rebuking them when they protest, has got to be a violation of the "don't bite the newbies" policy, the one rule on Wikipedia I respect most. Wikipedia may need people to police its pages, but as the question goes, who watches the watchmen? For Wikipedia to work, someone's gonna have to. ( 02:14, 11 April 2012 (UTC))Reply
Suggesting that "the authors of this type of work" are not aiming to create any kind of meaningful or thought-provoking dialogue is to sneer at video games entirely. This brings in the ongoing debate about whether video games are to be respected and acknowledged as an art form, as movies have. The fact that Wikipedia imposes a much stricter policy on video games shows clearly where *they* stand on the issue, at least currently. I've played a long list of video games on numerous consoles, and to me Ningauble's comments are completely missing the mark. It's just flat-out wrong, and a slap in the face to all who devote their working lives to the making of video games. If a person thinks that video games and their dialogue have not one shred of meaning, that just shows how little they know. I'm not saying Ningauble is entirely wrong. About many, many games he is entirely right. But his commentary is on all video games ever, and in that sense I disagree with him totally. ( 02:14, 11 April 2012 (UTC))Reply
I did not say "all video games ever", I was specifically referring to "action oriented first-person shooter" games. I do not "sneer at video games entirely", there are quite a few games that I enjoy. This is not about whether the games are any good. Wikiquote is about the quotes. Many very fine things in this world do not include quotable words. ~ Ningauble (talk) 16:01, 29 February 2012 (UTC)Reply
To be fair, no you didn't. But I felt that's what you were implying, and certainly that's what many other people will explicitly say- that no video game has meaningful dialogue or is meaningful in any way. And while you are more right than not about FPS games, I'd still argue that there can be exceptions, even with that type. What I'm trying to argue here is not against you personally- for me, it's about giving the quotes limit on games some more room. Even a little. That's all I want, and I'm pretty sure I'm not the only one. And if I might add something else, I'd like to ask that Eaglestorm be reined in as the undisputed policeman of MW2, MW3, and Down Periscope among other quote pages. He enforces the rules much too strictly, and is haughty and unreasonable when addressed directly. Pretty soon I'm going to start complaining to Wikipedia about him. He's enjoying the power his editor status gives him *way* too much. ( 02:14, 11 April 2012 (UTC))Reply
I have thought more about my long-standing dispute with the existing quotes limit on Wikiquote. Given some edits I have recently performed on here- partly in response to the promised retaliatory attacks by Eaglestorm- I have a compromise proposal. One that, if accepted by Wikiquote as a whole, will improve the situation and allow VG quote editors much-needed working room. The Wikiquote page for the video game "Bully" has, right now, two dialogue quotes and two stand-alone quotes. I firmly believe this even number- 4- gives the page a much more complete look than any three. It also gives average users like myself some more breathing space, a little more room in which to work. Which, all his time, is all I have been asking for. I suggest that Wikiquote allow the video game quotes limit to be raised from 3 to 4. Thank you for your consideration. ( 02:14, 11 April 2012 (UTC))Reply
Scare tactics again? Boohoo. --Eaglestorm (talk) 04:49, 11 April 2012 (UTC)Reply
The Bully article is a very poor example for showing a need to make video game articles larger. Rather, the quoted dialog, consisting of unremarkably trite banalities, is a good example of a need to refocus on quality over quantity. ~ Ningauble (talk) 16:07, 11 April 2012 (UTC)Reply
that's why there needs to be a limit of up to three only. Consolidating them into a franchise works. and yet there are these people lodging "I'll report you to ANI" threats. Wasn't there a guideline for three per game? --Eaglestorm (talk) 13:09, 8 November 2016 (UTC)Reply
It seems to me that three quotes is far too restrictive for games like Mass Effect, which are full of meaningful dialogue.--HalfElfDragon (talk) 23:31, 27 April 2012 (UTC)Reply

Prose v. Poetry


There's a strange inequity in our treatment of prose as against verse in quotations from books: we allow five lines to be quoted per ten pages of prose, as against eight lines per ten pages of verse. At first sight that looks fair enough, since a line of poetry will usually be shorter than a line of prose, quite possibly five-eighths the length; the trouble is, there will also be fewer words in ten pages of verse than in ten of prose. As a result we are allowing about 1¼% of any prose book to be quoted, but a full 2% of any poetry book. Perhaps that's what we want, but personally I'd prefer to see a little more consistency. That would also have the effect of making it easier to trim the works of authors like J. R. R. Tolkien, Khalil Gibran or A. A. Milne who use both forms in the same book, or even the same page.
Thoughts, anyone? --Antiquary 17:58, 5 May 2009 (UTC)Reply



There are a number of genres we haven't taken into account yet when it comes to quote limitations:

Comic books/graphic novels


Should they be treated the same as books? They have much less text to their pages. If they were all of roughly equal length, we might arrive at a fixed number; but they aren't. Example: Scott Pilgrim.

Another challenge to arriving at a fixed number is that different writers and artists come up with different levels of verbosity, for lack of a better work. Some carry the story primarily in images with minimal dialogue to gently nudge or guide the story. Others are intensely verbal with the images serving to illustrate or frame what is being spoken. Additionally, comics from the golden age were much longer than modern comics. Annuals are longer than regular issues. It all makes for a unique challenge when compared to books to find a common rule of thumb to apply. Bradp521 23:29, 10 April 2009 (UTC)Reply

Comic strips


Even if we chose one quote per comic strip installment, we could still end up with copyvio if fans add zealously. What, then, would be the limitation? Example: Garfield.



Musicals don't have fixed performance times, so what is the basis of measurement? Albums? Libretti? Film versions, if any? Example: Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (musical).



If anyone can think of other types of works to discuss here, they could be added as well. - InvisibleSun 02:07, 8 April 2009 (UTC)Reply

Electronic Games


Why only 3 quotes per game? I don't see a proper reason why there can be only 3 quotes per game page and finally where is a proper reason why every game page is to be limited to 3 quotes?(Dennys 22:31, 20 June 2009 (UTC))Reply

The same question was asked here earlier this week; please read the reply. - InvisibleSun 00:17, 21 June 2009 (UTC)Reply
I agree with Dennys, and rather want an answer to that question myself. I have yet to receive a satisfactory reply. This is Wikipedia, not the headquarters of the KGB. Point- give us some room to work with. The existing limit on video games is too strict. --Anonymous
—This unsigned comment is by (talkcontribs) .
The reply that InvisibleSun pointed to was that we are thinking of changing it. BD2412 T 18:34, 5 October 2011 (UTC)Reply
If Wikipedia was to give serious consideration to changing the existing limit on video games, put the issue up for debate somehow, I think the site could learn a great deal in the process. Many powerful arguments have been made against video games, but in my opinion just as many if not more have been made in favor of them. The controversy over the quotations limit relates to a bigger issue- are video games to be respected as an artform as movies are, or not? That issue will have to be resolved eventually- Wikipedia needs to think about that as well. ( 15:08, 1 March 2012 (UTC))Reply

For what it's worth, I agree that the limit should be increased (to at least 5 quotes, in my opinion). I know that this has been discussed before, but I still think the limit of "three quotes maximum per game" is too restrictive. ~ Daniel Tomé (talk) 21:57, 16 February 2013 (UTC)Reply

So you already know! Why do you keep pushing like certain anons butthurt over violations of the LOQ policy? --Eaglestorm (talk) 09:26, 17 February 2013 (UTC)Reply
Sir, no, I do not "already know", because no consensus has been reached on this issue. And I hate to repeat myself, but I already answered your question: I do believe the limit is far too restrictive. Regards, Daniel Tomé (talk) 13:11, 17 February 2013 (UTC)Reply
I assume this was prompted by recent discussion of the Mass Effect article. (Perhaps not, but it is still an illuminating case in point.) The issue there was not a couple extra quotes (e.g. five vs. three), but rather, the addition of mass quantities (about a hundred individual quotes plus dozens of dialog segments), much of it trite, hackneyed, and cliché. To repeat my observation from the Electronic games limit discussion above: most game articles that had length problems did so due to including material that was unquoteworthy in the first place.

Although this draft rule provides for exceptions, I am not aware of any game article for which a convincing case has been made. I can think of a couple titles for which a good case could be made; but discussions have rarely considered what limit is appropriate in a given case, only whether any restraint should be used at all. The loudest and most persistent objections to limiting game quotes have involved some of the least quoteworthy material in the annals of Wikiquote history.

To be sure, the limit is arbitrary, necessarily so; but in the absence of a substantial number of specific exceptions established by consensus, I don't see that a need for a larger limit has been demonstrated. ~ Ningauble (talk) 16:43, 17 February 2013 (UTC)Reply

None of the very excellent points Ningauble raised should be a problem for implementing a reasonable (higher) limit on quotes from video-games. I must say that I find myself in agreement with Ithinkilostmyheadache when he says What is the point of this article existing if only 3 quotes are used? Ridiculous. ~ Daniel Tomé (talk) 18:57, 17 February 2013 (UTC)Reply
I do not think there is anything inherently ridiculous about short articles. (There are many persons and works for which venerable compendia of quotations include only one or two quotes.) However, I recognize that some people may feel they appear "stubby". This appearance can be ameliorated by merging articles on a body of works or a media franchise, such as Mass Effect, Mass Effect 2, & Mass Effect 3, into a more substantial presentation with only a few quotable bits from each work.

The rhetorical question about what is the point might be "answered" with another rhetorical question: what is the point of quantity without quality? This non-answer reflects different views about what the point of Wikiquote is: to compile memorable quotations, or to memorialize productions by compiling trivia. My own view is that there are better places for the latter activity. ~ Ningauble (talk) 17:28, 18 February 2013 (UTC)Reply

There are, I think, two different issues at play here. One is maintaining article quality, the other is the pleasure derived from the misfortunes of others. The first is a noble concern, the second is a mental disorder. In any case, in order to give license to those who wish to delete large portions of articles, whether out of concern for quotability or to satisfy destructive urges, a strict policy needs to be in place, so that they are protected from criticism. Then they would be just enforcing the rules. Great. (The problem with that line of argument should be obvious.) I really think if someone doesn't understand that limiting an article to just 3 quotes is "ridiculous", that person is beyond my powers of argumentation. I realize, based on previous conversations, that this is going nowhere, but one can always hope. Regards, Daniel Tomé (talk) 19:57, 17 February 2013 (UTC)Reply
I suggested above that there is at least one line of reasoning by which I might be persuaded: demonstrating multiple specific cases where a need for exceptions is agreed upon. However, if you are going to base your position on character assassination then, yes, your argumentation is going nowhere. ~ Ningauble (talk) 17:28, 18 February 2013 (UTC)Reply
Just a brief reply. I did no "character assassination": I am not trying to destroy anyone's reputation, nor do I want to hurt anyone's feelings. Quite the opposite, I want people to stop getting their feelings hurt because of faulty policies. I think of those who contribute to a page and then see it all removed because of this crippling limit of just three quotes. NOT smart, and hardly defensible, in my opinion. And FYI I have the highest respect for you, Ningauble, so much so that I wrote "noble concern" precisely thinking of people like you. BUT having so strict a limit in place as a rule to prevent the addition of poor quality quotes is something that I think I must oppose, exactly as I should oppose having a three-quote limit for other articles. Truly, Daniel Tomé (talk) 20:00, 18 February 2013 (UTC)Reply
Lots of people have worked on developing and implementing the policy; and lots of people have opposed it in theory and in practice. Denouncing people's character, individually or nonspecifically, for schadenfreude and mental derangement does nothing to advance the formation of consensus.

For myself, I am well aware that any limitation will make some people unhappy, but I derive no pleasure from it. Let us strive to find reasonable limits with reasonable rationales that people can appreciate even when they would prefer less constraint. ~ Ningauble (talk) 17:48, 23 February 2013 (UTC)Reply

Thanks for repeating yourself. You seem to have finally got my point. Oh wait, no you didn't.
Moving on... ~ Daniel Tomé (talk) 21:56, 24 February 2013 (UTC)Reply

Star Wars The Clone Wars


Why two quotes per episode? How about give this page an update and everyone will be happier with ten quotes per anything?(Dennys 00:00, 14 July 2009 (UTC))Reply

Wikiquote:Limits on quotations#Television: two quotes for a half an hour episode. Dialogue back-and-forth is counted as a single quote, so we're not actually limited to just two single lines; it's just that the page in question has spectacularly shitty quotes on it. EVula // talk // // 13:32, 14 July 2009 (UTC)Reply

Well give this page an update because what's wrong with having ten quotes per any form of pages created?(Dennys 19:03, 14 July 2009 (UTC))Reply

w:en:Fair use. That trumps your wish for more quotes just because you want them. EVula // talk // // 23:51, 14 July 2009 (UTC)Reply

That's it! Everyone will form an alliance to destroy this pathetic and pointless LOQ page and if you ban more users they will continue to return to put up deletion signs on the pathetic limit of quotes page!(Dennys 01:46, 15 July 2009 (UTC))Reply

...and now you're blocked for threatening me on my talk page. Buh-bye. EVula // talk // // 01:52, 15 July 2009 (UTC)Reply



I've just realised a snag with the restrictions: by the letter of the rule, shows on commercial-free networks such as the BBC or PBS (most notably, Doctor Who), are "entitled" to one less quote than shows of a comparable length on mainstream television (e.g. A Doctor Who episode runs approximately as long as, say, an episode of Grey's Anatomy). So, we have two ways of fixing this:

  • Include an exemption for BBC and PBS shows allowing us to class them as we currently do, as being about 35% longer, or:
  • Reduce the lengths by about 25%.

Thoughts? Will (talk) 21:49, 4 August 2009 (UTC)Reply

Our rule on half-hour shows takes in the fact that they have commercials; really it's about one quote per seven or eight minutes of actual programming. BD2412 T 00:53, 5 August 2009 (UTC)Reply
An "hour" on PBS is generally only 52 minutes long -- the same length as the old "hour" of U.S. commercial television -- not including the closing credits. (Now, of course, the commercial "hour" can be 48 minutes or even less. The (voluntary) NAB Code used to require no more than 18 minutes of commercials per hour.) On radio, there are three different "clocks": APM and some PRI hour-long programs use a 58 minute, 39 second hour; NPR hours run 50 minutes, and NPR half-hours run 28 minutes. 121a0012 02:51, 5 August 2009 (UTC)Reply

Another discussion about quotation limits


I would like to draw the attention of the community to a discussion about quotation limits and the copyright cleanup project. Additional comments would be welcome. - InvisibleSun 08:56, 1 October 2009 (UTC)Reply

Seems what to be said has been said already, so additional comments may be redundant at this time. On the "Limits on quotations" itself, on the other hand, it looks to me ripe enough to adopt a formal policy. Why not go forward? Any hazard? Just a curious. --Aphaia 07:45, 25 October 2009 (UTC)Reply
Having reflected on this for a while, I think - and this is my professional opinion as an intellectual property attorney - that our numerical limitations are too strict. At any rate, they are stricter than they need to be to ameliorate copyright concerns. Now, I have pointed to Castle Rock Entertainment, Inc. v. Carol Publishing Group (the Seinfeld trivia book case) to illustrate the point that plucking quotes infringes copyright if enough material is taken. However, in that case, the infringing work contained over 640 items of information analogous to quotes from 84 episodes, adding up to over 7.6 items per 30-minute episode. A comparable figure for a 90-minute film would be about 23 quotes. Furthermore, the court weighed the fact that that the infringer was selling a publication for profit, and that their actions would effect the market for the copyright owner to sell its own competing product. We are a non-profit, educational endeavor, and that would weigh strongly in our favor in a copyright dispute. I would also note that the popular films for which we feature quotes (like The Big Lebowski and Star Wars) have been quoted all over the Internet, and we are therefore not affecting the market for the works. In light of all of this, I think we should relax our restrictions to permit a quote for every six minutes of material from a film or TV show. BD2412 T 16:48, 25 October 2009 (UTC)Reply
Thanks much for this assessment. I just got back from a brief excursion, and will have to be going on at least one more today, but I want to note that this is the one of the most sensible statements on the matter I have yet seen made in many months. There was too much nonsense being bandied about previously for me to even want to wade into it before, and I was far too busy with far too many other things to feel comfortable getting much involved in this dispute, previously, though it was something that did concern me. There are numerous other things I have to deal with for a few weeks, and after that I will probably have more time to comment on this matter. These are just a few brief comments as an interested, but thus far largely uninvolved person. ~ Kalki 17:35, 25 October 2009 (UTC)Reply
Thanks for your thoughts BD2412. I would welcome a relaxation of our limits - I think that having your input, given your real-world experience is a good barometer on what we should do here. I have no problem with your proposed limit of a quote per every six minutes of material - this would lead to 5 per half-hour show and 10 per hour-long show, which I certainly do not feel is too extreme. I have vigorously applied the current limits because that was what had been agreed to. But I, for one, am more than willing to expand the limits given the right rationale to do so (which I feel your input provides). I would recommend we put it to the community to vote on a change to the policy (and then actually make it an official policy). ~ UDScott 19:28, 25 October 2009 (UTC)Reply
Not exactly, because we still have to account for commercials and beginning/end credits. It would be more like four quotes for the twenty-two minutes of content in a typical half hour show on commercial TV, and eight quotes for the forty-eight minutes of content in an hour-long drama. The community also should be able to agree to exceptions on a case-by-case basis, particularly for older films which have exhausted most of their commercial utility, but which have a high degree of "quotable" content for which readers might need to determine the source. BD2412 T 21:21, 25 October 2009 (UTC)Reply
My thanks to BD2412 as well. It would be a pleasure, not to mention an administrative relief, to know that we may not have to be as stringent as we have so far deemed necessary in the limitation of quotes. I would be especially interested in our discussing the matter of older, "classic" and "cult" films, as they have arguably been the ones made most to suffer from strictly numerical limits. My only reservation — and it is not a decisive one — is that those films, TV shows and video games which, although popular, don't often have particularly memorable or well-chosen quotes will become even more unimpressive. In the mean time, for the sake of being equable, I will continue to trim pages according to the current limitations until we decide what revisions to make. - InvisibleSun 04:12, 26 October 2009 (UTC)Reply

Both Fictional and Real Character Quotes


So how many quotes can we have on both Real and Fictional Character Quotes?(StarWarsFanBoy 02:07, 26 November 2009 (UTC))Reply

There is some case law on this. In the Seinfeld case above, it would not have mattered if the book was on the show or on a specific character. Similarly, in Anderson v. Stallone (where Sylvester Stallone successfully sued someone who wrote a script treatment for Rocky IV), the court set a standard regarding the characters being identical to the story, so that a sufficient amount of use of existing characters even in a brand new framework could constitute copyright infringement. The question, really, is whether our page will substitute for something that the copyright owner could sell. I would say that for a page on a fictional character that meets the criteria for inclusion as a theme page, the real issue is how many quotes are included from any specific work. BD2412 T 03:13, 6 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

So does that mean all real life people pages gets to have to many quotes? As for fictional characters they will be more likely be deleted by a VFD so I don't want to take that chance on creating an article that talks about a fictional character.(StarWarsFanBoy 05:45, 7 January 2010 (UTC))Reply

The point is that fictional characters are not real people. Harry Potter, for example, has never actually said anything because he does not exist. Instead, every word that could be credited to Harry Potter is something authored by J.K. Rowling, so she is the person to whom those quotes should be attributed. We also have pages on themes, like Love and Porcupines, because these are topics about which a wide variety of authors have had interesting things to say. For similar reasons, we could have a theme page on a fictional character, but can not merely have a page of quotes attributed to that character. BD2412 T 01:51, 8 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

Record albums


The limitations set forth for record albums are also somewhat too stringent. They do not seem to take into account the variable length of albums, and the tendency of some to be "wordier" than others. Moreover, the value of a record is at least as much in the music (which we can not convey) as in the lyrics, meaning that we can quote a larger portion without affecting the market for the original work. We can not quote entire songs, of course, but we can for example quote several lines plus a chorus from a lengthy song. BD2412 T 03:16, 6 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

B-17 Flying Fortress


So how many quotes are allowed on the B-17 Flying Fortress page? 7, 8, 9, 10, or 30 quotes? Also should anyone allow a page that talks about Airplanes on the wiki?(StarWarsFanBoy 02:40, 29 January 2010 (UTC))Reply

As many validly sourced, pithy quotes that can be found. The limits are about copyright concerns and so are aimed at limiting the number of quotes from individual works, not at theme pages such as this. ~ UDScott 02:42, 29 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

Star Wars and Transformers Comic Book series


So what is the quote limit for any Transformer and Star Wars comic book series including Star Wars: Legacy comic book series and Transformers All Hail Megatron comic book series?(StarWarsFanBoy 07:24, 28 February 2010 (UTC))Reply

To be clear...


So the to be clear, the copyright holders have us by a rope too, and if we put too many quotes in a page, we've got issues. Please inform me on what we infringe on by have quotes, from a movie.--The Navigators 04:48, 13 August 2010 (UTC)Reply

Having a few quotes from a movie infringes on nothing due to the doctrine of fair use. Having a large number of quotes from a film infringes on the rights of those who hold that film's copyright. -Sketchmoose 17:15, 13 August 2010 (UTC)Reply
Let me clarify that a bit further. Most countries have laws permitting the author of a work to file a lawsuit and collect money from someone who uses too much material from that author's work. Various court cases delineate exactly how much can be copied for a collection of quotes like ours, and our rules impose a fairly strict reading of the limitations established in those cases, to insure that a copyright owner can not press a credible claim against our project, and individuals posting to it. BD2412 T 17:35, 13 August 2010 (UTC)Reply

Moving to relax


Our current limitations on quotations are far in excess of what is required to comply with any existing copyright regime. I propose relaxing it by implementing for all videographic media (films and television programs) a limitation of one quote for every six minutes of time, excluding time for commercials and beginning or ending credits, unless original dialogue continues during those credits, and rounded up to the nearest whole number. A 90 minute film would therefore be permitted fifteen quotes; a half hour TV show running 22 minutes outside of commercial interruptions would be permitted four quotes. BD2412 T 18:51, 5 October 2011 (UTC)Reply

I support this proposal. As I have noted in the past, I am not one to naturally seek to limit things except when the number of quotes goes beyond reason. I have never professed to know the law, but after prior discussions, the current limitations were put in place, and I, along with others, have worked to enforce this agreed limitation. Should this new proposal be accepted by the community, I am all for expansion. I would however suggest that this be moved to the VP rather than continue here, as this is a topic that is better served by a larger discussion. ~ UDScott 20:02, 5 October 2011 (UTC)Reply
Do you think it would suffice to drop a note at the Village Pump pointing here? BD2412 T 16:07, 6 October 2011 (UTC)Reply
That would probably work - and then at some point I would post a new section here with the formal proposed policy change for people to register their support or opposition. ~ UDScott 16:20, 6 October 2011 (UTC)Reply
I'm not clear on what's changed since I'd last participated in this general issue. BD2412, could you state specifically why "Our current limitations on quotations are far in excess of what is required to comply with any existing copyright regime"? Are there recent legal decisions that are loosening things up? Thanks. ~ Jeff Q (talk) 20:30, 6 October 2011 (UTC)Reply
Nothing has changed, it has just occurred to me as I have worked on these pages over time that our restrictions were really unnecessarily strict when they were first implemented. The defining cases that are out there all relate to books in print being sold purely for profit. They do not address non-profit uses for educational purposes and contained within a much larger body work, (all of which are fair use factors for which much wider leeway is granted); they sometimes deal with release of materials such as interviews prior to publication by the copyright owner (which should never happen here, because our policy is to only include quotes traceable to a published source); and they also do not deal with materials hosted on a publicly accessible website, which therefore falls under the safe harbor protection of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. Castle Rock could just walk into court and sue the seller of the Seinfeld trivia book. Here, a copyright claimant would first have to send the Wikimedia Foundation a takedown notice, and if their request was complied with, would have no grounds to sue anyone. In any case, in the six years that I've been editing here, I've never heard of a DMCA takedown notice being submitted against Wikiquote, and I think such a thing would actually be pretty far-fetched. BD2412 T 21:25, 6 October 2011 (UTC)Reply
I have real reservations about the prospect of doubling the size of our largest articles and subpage farms for serial productions. I do not believe copyright should be the limiting factor, yet I despair of finding a way of encouraging contributors to focus on quality over quantity so that we can feature highly quotable quotes in an accessible format, rather than burying them amidst mass quantities of less exceptional material. I will elaborate further in the comming days. ~ Ningauble 15:04, 7 October 2011 (UTC)Reply
I don't think we'll be doubling the size of anything. It looks to me like most of those pages are already well above our existing limits, and some are already above the relaxed limits proposed here. BD2412 T 16:07, 7 October 2011 (UTC)Reply
The quotes limit per article based on time has worked well for so many years. I myself have worked hard to really cut down on all bloated articles and fought several times with certain people who preferred to thumb nose at LOQ (that anon on the electronic games is an example), why propose a change again? I see that just because we halve the time limit per quote, this will be an excuse to jam much more quotes, defeating the purpose of the cleanup project. In a two-hour film for example, that's already 20 quotes - and I bet some noob user or even anon will use that leeway to create 20 big blocks of quotes or even include lines per character when the line already exists in a piece of quoted dialogue. Even if there are no DMCA takedown orders, do we really have to wait for one to quote-cull?--Eaglestorm 15:42, 8 October 2011 (UTC)Reply
Our quote culling should be driven by what is worth including or not including in a collection of notable quotes, not based on an overly cramped reading of copyright law. I do not propose that allowing 20 quotes in a two hour film means that every such film must have 20 quotes. As for the length of the quotes, we already have restrictions covering length (250 words) and number of lines of dialogue). However, what we could do is set up a tipping point, where a film is limited by default to the current level, but that number can be expanded to the proposed higher level if there is a consensus that the particular work has additional quotes which really should not be left out of this project. We could set up a centralized discussion place (as we have for deletion votes) for pages to be proposed for expansion of that type. BD2412 T 16:06, 8 October 2011 (UTC)Reply

This policy is ridiclous


Is this policy even policy? It still says that its a "policy needing adoption" and there's no other tag indicating its status, yet its being shopped around and enforced like it is policy. And then, using these overly specific requirements based solely off the medium just seems a little wrong. 3 quotes per video game only is ridiculously arbitrary, given that most video games nowadays contain as much dialogue as a feature film, or more. Whatever happens, it should be fair use that decides how much is even enough.

I'm going to draft a revision of this that makes things more sane. ViperSnake151 (talk) 15:27, 20 May 2012 (UTC)Reply

There have been numerous proposals above to relax or revisit the limitations on electronic games. These proposals need to be carried through. However, with respect to other media, our numerical guidelines are very much in keeping with the standards set forth in fair use cases decided by U.S. courts. BD2412 T 19:18, 20 May 2012 (UTC)Reply
Personally, I'd actually find a way to merge this with Wikiquote:Quotability; both of these go hand in hand. While this limits the use of quotations due to legal restrictions, I actually think that the reason why we even had to make this particular proposed guideline, is because people aren't following Quotability. ViperSnake151 (talk) 19:58, 20 May 2012 (UTC)Reply
I think they serve different purposes. There are for example some awful, unoriginal movies, from which we could legally garner a dozen quotes, but which contain nothing quotable. Similarly, even the best of Shakespeare's plays contains many lines of exposition and filler. I would like to avoid creating a sense that we should include everything that we are legally able to, since we do end up with plenty of TV and movie articles where characters are quoted as saying things like "Let's get out of here!" (for the record, the earliest Google Books source for that particular line is from William M. Bobo, Glimpses of New York City (1852), p. 191). Cheers! BD2412 T 20:50, 20 May 2012 (UTC)Reply
You just contradicted yourself; you say they serve different purposes. Yet, you also just said that we need to "avoid creating a sense that we should include everything that we are legally able to." Hence, we have a "you can do this, but why would you" situation here. Thus, its a justification for this idea. ViperSnake151 (talk) 04:06, 21 May 2012 (UTC)Reply
I should offer the other half of the equation, then, which is that a well-worn film like Star Wars may have a great deal of material that has been quoted or is worth quoting, but that we would run afoul of the copyright laws if we included more than a fraction of what is quotable. In other words, WQ:Q limits us to quoting things that are worth quoting, irrespective of what the law allows; and WQ:LOQ limits us to quoting no more than the law allows, irrespective of how much is worth quoting. However, I see your point - both policies (or drafts or guidelines, or whatever we are going to call them until this is all sorted out) deal with limits on quotations, with one addressing legal limits and the other addressing some common sense limitations, and clarifying what constitutes a "quote" for our purposes, in terms of length and originality. I would agree that we could present both sets of considerations on a single policy page, and use section redirects to refer to a specific element of policy in play in a specific situation. BD2412 T 14:32, 21 May 2012 (UTC)Reply
WQ:Q is essentially about the quality of individual quotes and WQ:LOQ is about their quantity. Quantity impacts overall article quality. The opening sentence of WQ:LOQ begins "To maintain the quality of our pages and..." It has done so since the very first draft, and rightly so in my opinion. I think WQ:LOQ should not be construed as serving copyright compliance only, lest we do indeed create the impression that we should include as much as is legally permissible. I fear we have already done so: some very earnest contributors are filling the allowable quota with passably interesting but perfectly ordinary and unremarkable material, with little regard for genuine quotability.

What I find ridiculous in the present situation is the way articles on serial productions become so bloated, even under the current limitations, that they completely fail the purpose of showcasing brilliant quotes. Consider the case of The Simpsons, which was drastically trimmed in response to serious concerns about copyright. We presently have over 674 kilobytes of material, dispersed in 23 seasons. Although the program has a considerable number of widely quoted and remarkable quotes worth showcasing, that is not what we are doing. We are burying them in mediocrity.

I agree with ViperSnake that this guideline would be superfluous if people paid serious attention to quotability and article quality. Unfortunately, subjective criteria are much harder to implement than quantitative ones, so quotability is often ignored even when WQ:LOQ is strictly enforced. If the result sometimes tends to be ridiculous, it is all the more so when quantitative limits do not scale well for serial productions. ~ Ningauble (talk) 16:41, 21 May 2012 (UTC)Reply

Either way, ViperSnake is correct that we have not designated these guidelines as policy. We should. BD2412 T 17:28, 21 May 2012 (UTC)Reply
I agree that we need to formalize these things, because common sense seems inadequate to the need. I am not sure which ones, or portions thereof, might better be called "guidelines" rather than "policies" due to the amount of subjectivity involved. ~ Ningauble (talk) 18:24, 22 May 2012 (UTC)Reply

While 3 quotes per game seems sparse, it is ridiculous to compare a feature film, which will have at least 60 minutes of dialogue for the average 2 hour film, to a game. 14:50, 21 May 2012 (UTC)Reply

Metal Gear Solid 4 has a cutscene which is at least 40 minutes long. And then, why do you think L.A. Noire needs three dual-layer DVDs on its Xbox 360 version? According to its Wikipedia article, it has over 20 hours of possible dialogue. ViperSnake151 (talk) 05:22, 22 May 2012 (UTC)Reply
Yet I note that Metal Gear#Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots contains a considerable proportion of unremarkably generic and formulaic writing, and even includes a quote that is not original to the work, but is borrowed from Shakespeare. I also note that L.A. Noire is comprised of such completely unquoteworthy and unoriginal utterances as "It never gets any easier", "You're loving this, aren't you?" and "He's an institution."

It would be appropriate to make exceptions for games that contain an unusually large amount of highly quotable material, such as original quotes that are shown to be widely quoted in noteworthy secondary sources, but this does not appear to be the case for these examples. If we had several existing examples where exceptions had been granted for sound reason, showing that it is actually unexeptional for some particular sub-genre, then we might consider relaxing the guideline for a suitably defined category of works; but this is not now the case.

Pleas to downplay quantitative limits in favor of focusing on quality would be a lot more compelling if quality were on offer.~ Ningauble (talk) 18:17, 22 May 2012 (UTC)Reply

This is insane. Today's RPGs have much more story and dialogue than any film, and our policy should reflect this. 3 quotes only per game is dogmatic and absurd. ~ DanielTom (talk) 20:19, 7 June 2014 (UTC)Reply

I agree with DanielTom on the limit of 3 quotes for RPG's, I'd like to ask BD2412 what actual court case that number was generated from for video games, or whether someone just made it up based off how TV and film work. Should video game LOQ should be determined by average run time like we do TV and film, in which case the typical Super Nintendo RPG takes twenty plus hours to beat, and the ones nowadays can take hundreds of hours; or should it be treated like a book by converting dialogue to an equivalent amount of pages? If the second, than why don't we do that for TV and film as well and set a word limit based off a percentage of the total word count instead of a more nebulous quote limit which can include long tracts of back and forth dialogue or multiple memorable one liners that don't even add up to the length of one conversation? CensoredScribe (talk) 08:06, 2 February 2018 (UTC)Reply

Merger draft


I have created a draft of a merged version of these two proposals into a new guideline, Wikiquote:Quality and Quantity. Please take a look, discuss, etc. ViperSnake151 (talk) 06:17, 22 May 2012 (UTC)Reply

As long as we're doing this, I'd like to add a section on originality, to the effect that:
A quote should only be attributed to the person who coined it. Many works use stock phrases such as "Let's get out of here!" (which appeared in print in William M. Bobo, Glimpses of New York City (1852), p. 191, and may have been used elsewhere before that). Such phrases are by their nature not original to later works, and therefore should not be included on the page for that work or its author. An exception to this would be the occurrence of such a phrase as part of a larger section of dialogue for which inclusion of the phrase is necessary to display the context of the discussion.
Cheers! BD2412 T 03:53, 23 May 2012 (UTC)Reply
Also, we may wish to incorporate Wikiquote:Fictional characters into this policy, as this guideline touches on both quality of the theme and copyright concerns. Cheers again! BD2412 T 15:53, 23 May 2012 (UTC)Reply
I have commented about the proposed merger on its talk page. ~ Ningauble (talk) 18:00, 23 May 2012 (UTC)Reply



As noted above, we don't yet have a guideline for comic books/manga. A question I have related to this: it seems that some of our anime/manga articles use "unofficial" fan translations, but I'm not sure if those are even legal. Are fansubs (translations by fans) allowed on Wikiquote? ~ DanielTom (talk) 20:56, 24 July 2013 (UTC)Reply

A few points: (1) We don't have an official policy on user translations, which are of very uneven quality. There is ample precedent for removing them when they are conspicuously bad, but there is no bright line between what is good enough and what is nonsense. (The casual reader might be forgiven the impression that some of the "quoted" works are written in pidgin for stylistic reasons.) (2) Where a published translation is used the source should be cited. Always. (3) When a source (fannish or otherwise) appears to be unreliable, its use could be challenged; but its use may be justified if it is nevertheless a notable or widely quoted one. (4) A lot of our anime/manga articles are quite poor in terms of WQ:Q, WQ:LOQ, and WQ:SOURCE – so poor that I would hardly know where to begin, so I mostly ignore them. If you want to work on cleaning up unreliable translations of dubious quality, I think it would be a good thing. ~ Ningauble (talk) 14:15, 25 July 2013 (UTC)Reply
My question is: are quotes taken from scanlations allowed on Wikiquote? ~ DanielTom (talk) 15:33, 25 July 2013 (UTC)Reply
Technically, in the United States the copyright in a translation is owned by the translator. The same fair use rules apply, so a small proportion of a total translation should be fine to use. However, I would suggest at least crediting and if possible linking to the translated text, so that readers can get a sense of how authoritative the translation is. BD2412 T 20:46, 25 July 2013 (UTC)Reply
In the case of manga, the originals are scanned and then some anonymous group translates the text (e.g., those at mangafox). The "translation" part of scanlations are fine, but they do come with scans of the manga, so don't you think linking to those could be problematic? (Same with fansubs, they come with the anime episodes, which I don't think are legal to download in the USA.) ~ DanielTom (talk) 21:49, 25 July 2013 (UTC)Reply

Electronic games (again)


I propose the following guideline: "Up to 5 percent of the video game script, with an upper limit of 1000 words." (This could probably be phrased better.) Thoughts? ~ DanielTom (talk) 14:30, 6 January 2017 (UTC)Reply

I'm thinking about how to qualify this. If you took a single 5% block of the script, it might still be a problem. I would prefer a limit of 5% of any given scene or segment (or perhaps some slightly larger portion of each scene or segment adding up to no more than 5% of the total script). Of course, this only makes sense to the extent that a game has clearly delineated scenes or segments. You get what I mean, though, right? BD2412 T 18:20, 6 January 2017 (UTC)Reply
We could add: "Recommended maximum length of quotes: seven lines by one character, ten lines of dialogue" (as in the previous guideline). ~ DanielTom (talk) 18:57, 6 January 2017 (UTC)Reply
Perhaps we can craft our policy to differentiate between different kinds of games, or different eras. BD2412 T 02:37, 5 February 2017 (UTC)Reply
Delineating generational eras is mostly a console thing which would be problematic with computer games, and most games that aren't RPG's don't have a whole lot of dialogue in them. 5 percent and a limit on contiguous lines should work fine, excellent ideas from both of you that should greatly improve the quality of video game articles. CensoredScribe (talk) 08:06, 2 February 2018 (UTC)Reply

Limits on quotations on blogs


When quotes originate from blog-post of for example 500 to 1100 words, I think, it is with the current guidelines difficult to interpret how much of the text may be quoted. Recently I proposed the following guideline, see here:

Adopt and apply a fair interpretation of WQ:LOQ guidelines. For example with a 1100 words blog-post: don't quote more then 250 words in maximum five quotes. Then about 20% of the text is quoted.

Could it be possible to add a similar text ti the guidelines here? -- Mdd (talk) 18:53, 4 February 2017 (UTC)Reply

Move "Themes" into another section or give it its own section?


Under the heading "Types of articles" there are 7 sub-headings which discuss the maximum number of quotes for certain types of articles. Then 2.8 Themes discusses proper sourcing. Any reason why the 2.8 text should not be moved up into the first heading under 1.2 Sourced vs. unsourced quotes? If there is, any reason not to make 2.8 be 3 and give the text its own heading? Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 12:17, 22 October 2017 (UTC)Reply

A theme page is still a type of article, so I have added a line explaining how limitations apply to such pages. BD2412 T 18:16, 24 October 2017 (UTC)Reply

Change quote number to length


A long quote takes up the same amount of time/space in a work as several short ones. It makes absolutely no sense to consider a three-word line the equivalent of a minute and a half of dialogue. Dronebogus (talk) 17:51, 7 March 2022 (UTC)Reply

An aside: It is probably for reasons such as this that this proposal never got accepted. Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 03:13, 8 March 2022 (UTC)Reply
What unit of space would you use for the length? Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 03:13, 8 March 2022 (UTC)Reply

templates referring to this


Please remove them. This policy draft apparently didn't make it. Example page: QI. 19:08, 12 August 2023 (UTC)Reply