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Case Created Last volunteer edit Last modified
Title Status User Time User Time User Time
List of political parties in Italy In Progress Scia Della Cometa (t) 103 days, 22 hours Robert McClenon (t) 87 days, 12 hours Autospark (t) 86 days, 2 hours
Founding Fathers of the United States On hold Allreet (t) 51 days, 3 hours Casualdejekyll (t) 17 days, 13 hours Randy Kryn (t) 17 days, 12 hours
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Last updated by FireflyBot (talk) at 06:30, 30 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]


Current disputes

List of political parties in Italy

Pictogram voting wait blue.svg
– Discussion in progress.
Filed by Scia Della Cometa on 19:43, 16 January 2022 (UTC).[reply]

Have you discussed this on a talk page?

Yes, I have discussed this issue on a talk page already.

Location of dispute

Users involved

Dispute overview

After long discussions, it was in no way possible to find an agreement on the criteria of inclusion and on the set up of the page. In my view, the criteria should be remarkably simplified, and the tables listing the parties should look better and contain more useful information.


How have you tried to resolve this dispute before coming here?

Talk:List of political parties in Italy/Archive 1#Revision of some criteria, Talk:List of political parties in Italy/Archive 2#Issues of the page, Talk:List of political parties in Italy/Archive 3#Revision of criteria (2), Talk:List of political parties in Italy/Archive 3#Approval of the inclusion criteria, Talk:List of political parties in Italy/Archive 3#RFC on Regional Criterion, Talk:List of political parties in Italy/Archive 3#Criteria conflict

How do you think we can help resolve the dispute?

In the latest RFCs many users have expressed themselves for the simplification of the criteria, and I agree with them. I think we need for impartial mediation in order to achieve a consensual set of rules and a better set up of the page. --Scia Della Cometa (talk) 19:43, 16 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Summary of dispute by Checco

Please keep it brief - less than 2000 characters if possible, it helps us help you quicker.

List of political parties in Italy discussion

First statement by moderator, Italian political parties

I am opening this thread for moderated discussion. Your discussions should be addressed to the community, and to me as the representative of the community, not to each other unless I say that you may engage in back-and-forth. First, please read the rules. These are not exactly the same as the rules that I or other moderators normally use, but they are similar to the usual rules, with certain differences. Second, please read the rules again. If you have any questions about the rules, ask, rather than guessing.

I see at least four basically different possible ways that we can specify what parties are listed.

For now, I will ask each editor to make a one-paragraph statement as to whether they favor A, B, C, or D, and explain briefly why. Each editor may also ask any questions about the rules. Robert McClenon (talk) 22:55, 16 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Old discussion. Robert McClenon (talk) 16:21, 1 February 2022 (UTC)[reply]

First statements by editors, Italian political parties[edit]

First statement by Firefangledfeathers, Italian political parties[edit]

I am grateful to Robert McClenon for moderating. I favor Option D. As editors at the talk page have noted, Italy has a plethora of parties and party-like political organizations. I think our readers will be best serve if we take advantage of the option provided by WP:NLIST in which "the individual items in the list do not need to be independently notable" as long as the grouping the list is about is itself notable. Including only parties with articles, or with a demonstrable chance of meeting a notability guideline, would exclude content readers will value. For the record, I initially joined this dispute as a WP:Third opinion volunteer. Firefangledfeathers 05:58, 17 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

First statement by Scia Della Cometa, Italian political parties[edit]

I would exclude option A, any user could include objectively irrelevant parties in the list, without their own article. In the past there has been a significant production of articles about irrelevant or unknown parties (or similar subjects), so I would also exclude option B. I don't have a particular preference between options C and D, perhaps option D is preferable. Obviously the rules will have to be rewritten point by point, and will have to be established through consensual procedure. The rules should be simple, not full of quibbles. By simple rules I mean immediately demonstrable. The rules could be displayed on Talk:List of political parties in Italy, or on the page itself, as long as they do not have too much impact on the appearance of the page. --Scia Della Cometa (talk) 10:29, 17 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

First statement by Autospark, Italian political parties[edit]

My preference is for Option D. The subject at hand, the scale of diversity and number of political parties in Italy, requires that approach. I think the rules should be compiled by consensus, with the end aim of being as concise and understandable as possible, while also detailed enough to be useful.--Autospark (talk) 22:54, 17 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

First statement by Yakme[edit]

Italian parties are a lot, this is true. However there is no reason why we should exclude WP:NOTABLE parties from this list. In fact, the issue that Italian parties are a lot is an important characteristic of Italian politics (almost "a feature, not a bug"), and of the way it works. I do not think it is a good idea to "hide" this from the interested reader by presenting only a selection of parties in the article called "List of political parties in Italy": a reader would expect this list to be as complete as possible. Furthermore, any criterion to exclude parties is going to be arbitrary, and possibly the source of more disputes in the future whenever some major or minor political rules change (like electoral laws, that in the last decades have changed very often). So I would go for option B, noting that this does not mean to include only the parties that have WP articles, but actually all the ones that would be notable enough to qualify for one. --Yakme (talk) 13:24, 18 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

First statement by Checco[edit]

Option D! Italy's party system, regional party systems and politics in general are very complex. List of political parties in Italy is one of the most clearly organised and complete articles of that kind, but also one of the longest in terms of number of parties. With no rules, it would be infinite and never settled. If having no rules is not an option for me, including all the parties with articles would not be fine: there might be relevant parties lacking an article, worth being included and ultimately having an article of their own. Rules should be simple, but also comprehensive (tracking Italian politics is not easy) and should be written and presented in a way preventing frequent interpretation disputes. --Checco (talk) 16:44, 18 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

First statement by North8000[edit]

I'm not involved in a dispute but agreed to participate. First to note, the inclusion/exclusion criteria (rightly so) being addressed separately from the classification question. I would recommend an unlisted option "E" which is a criteria that it has a Wikipedia article. I think that "B" and "C" sort of strive for meeting this in spirit, but IMHO they both have significant technical and implementation issues. I'll not detail those unless asked, but a general note that trying to say that they meet the criteria for having an article sets this up for eternal debates on whether or not one meets the criteria, whereas saying that it has to have an article decisively settles it. The next question is whether or not "has an article" is too high or low of a bar. Looking at the article, even with the criteria, you certainly have a huge list. And it would only exclude a few percent of those currently listed. o IMO that shows that it isn't too. Also, if a party has an article, they certainly merit one line on this list so IMO that shows that it isn't too low. Sincerely, North8000 (talk) 17:58, 18 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Second statement by moderator on Italian political parties[edit]

It appears that most of the editors favor Option D, but there is some support for Option B. Option D is to have a set of rules on the listing of political parties.

So the way forward probably is to develop the proposed set of rules that has agreement by people who think that there should be a set of rules. Then the proposed set of rules can be submitted to the community via RFC. If there is disagreement, among proponents of a ruleset, as to what the rules should be, we can decide to develop two alternate rulesets, but not more than two, and not now.

So the next step is for those editors who favor a ruleset to state what categories of political parties or sections it should be organized into. If we have agreement on the categories of parties or sections, then we can start populating each category with rules. Otherwise we may identify issues about what the categories or sections are.

The responses by editors may each be several paragraphs if they are clearly structured. At this point, clarity is even more important than conciseness. So each editor should provide a clear breakdown of what they think the categories of political parties should be. Editors who don't want a ruleset can just state briefly that they don't think that we need a ruleset. We are developing a proposed ruleset at this point, not a final ruleset (and we might not have a ruleset). If you favor Option D, a set of rules, define how the rules should be organized. If you favor Option B, restate that view. Robert McClenon (talk) 16:59, 18 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Second statements by editors (Italian political parties)[edit]

Second statement by Checco[edit]

I favour the current organisation of the list, featuring sections for political parties (active and defunct), coalitions and parliamentary groups, as they are currently defined. One could argue that coalitions and parliamentary groups should have separate lists, but a joint one has clear advandages. A better presentation of the current rules is available at Talk:List of political parties in Italy/Archive 4#RfC: new presentation of rules. Political parties are so many that both active and defunct ones should be classified in sub-sections: main/major parties (so that readers, who might not be interested in an in-depth study of Italy's party system, can easily identify them), minor parties, regional parties and parties of Italians abroad. By "regional" I mean political parties active only in one region or autonomous province, not multi-regional parties and/or parties supporting regionalism. There should be general conditions of admission and rules of classification. The fact that I like the current structure of the list and that I like a specific presentation does not mean that I am endorsing the current rules. --Checco (talk) 17:24, 18 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Second statement by Scia Della Cometa[edit]

I begin to expose my point of view, the page should be divided first into Active parties and Defunct parties. Coalitions and parliamentary groups, which are not political parties, should not be included in the list (which is indeed called "List of political parties"), their presence on the page is redundant and not necessary. Both sections should be divided into: National parties, Regional parties (or "Parties active in a single region") and Overseas parties (or "Parties of Italians abroad"). I think the current distinction between Major and Minor parties is the result of original research, based on arbitrary criteria. I think instead that there is a need to make another type of distinction (only for active national parties): a distinction between the parties currently represented by a parliamentary group (at the moment there are seven parties with a parliamentary group) and the other parties that meet at least one inclusion criteria (Extra-parliamentary and minor parliamentary parties).

A brief consideration regarding the rules: I don't really like the idea of having inclusion criteria, but I realize that an excessive number of pages concerning Italian parties have been created on en.wikipedia, some with very little relevance. In my view, the new rules should meet the following characteristics:

  • being very simple and immediately verifiable (no quibbles);
  • being as inclusive as possible
  • being the same for all types of parties (national parties, regional parties, overseas parties), no exceptions should be made for any type of party.

Furthermore, only parties with their own article, or with a high expectation of creating it, should be included in the list. The parties of which we have no information, and which therefore cannot have their own page, must be excluded from the list, because they do not meet the principle of WP:Notability.

When we decide on the new rules, we will have to consider the following factors: electoral threshold, the election of a representative in an assembly with its own symbol (which assemblies), the minimum number of representatives in an assembly for those parties born from splits (or that have elected their representatives within other lists or parties). --Scia Della Cometa (talk) 18:20, 18 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

First Statement by Nightenbelle[edit]

I'm sorry I was not able to participate before now..... personal life. However- I would also favor option B or the unstated E- that they have to have a WP article to be on the list. I fail to see how adding anything to the list which is not notable enough to have a WP page meets WP guidelines, AND why re-invent the wheel when there is already a carefully developed policy that decides what is and is not notable. Any other list of what makes a party notable is going to be, by definition, original research- because Italy does not have such standards, nor do most developed countries. In addition, creating that list creates needless drama- Example A- this entire dispute! Nightenbelle (talk) 03:19, 19 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Second statement by Yakme[edit]

I re-state my view supporting option B, or really any solution that avoids arbitrary selection criteria. Notability is enough and all it is needed to create a complete list of Italian parties. In the "parties" I also include political coalitions and parliamentary groups – really, any political organization which is notable and has (or had) a continuous activity in Italy. Inclusion criteria involving thresholds on the electoral results, or on the number of MPs, are going to be questionable by definition, and rightly so. Also because – like it is with the current criteria – the actual thresholds are probably going to be "doctored" by the Italian politics experts here to be inclusive of those parties they personally think should be in the list, and exclude the rest. See the amount of discussion on Talk:List of political parties in Italy about fine-tuning a threshold to be 1% or 0.5% (why not 0.6785%, I would say?), or rather 2 MPs or 3 regional councillors. Regarding the classification criteria: I guess in that case, once all notable parties are on the list, then approving criteria to simply order or separate them in a certain way is going to be a secondary discussion.

An additional note about the feasibility of option B: as far as my experience goes, the issue that an Italian party might be notable and not have a page on WP is virtually non-existent. Italian politics editors usually immediately produce articles for any smallest political group or regional party as soon as it comes to life. However for completeness and logical reasons, I would still use option B rather than E as the final choice: the difference is only going to be a handful of red links which – again, from my experience – would very likely become blue in a short amount of time. --Yakme (talk) 07:17, 19 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Second statement by Firefangledfeathers (IPP)[edit]

I have been persuaded by some of the above statements into dropping my previously stated reasoning. I had been worried that notability as a list criterion would exclude useful content. I now worry that notability as the sole criterion would be overbroad. SDC alluded to this, and a glance at Category:Political parties in Italy and its subcats supports the existence of an issue here. I am torn between B and [D but with notability as one of the criteria]. B would create a long list and burden article editors with adding richness of content to elevate the list over a simple category. D would create a shorter list, but would likely perpetuate dispute over the additional criteria. Firefangledfeathers 17:29, 19 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Third Statement on Italian Political Parties by Moderator[edit]

I was not clear in stating what option B was, and I intended it to mean that the party had to already have an article, so that the party would be listed in blue. However, I will now revise the list of options to be consistent with how they have been discussed:

  • A. No rules. Any editor can list any political party.
  • B. A party may be listed if it is thought to be notable enough to have a Wikipedia article. The party should be listed in blue link or red link.
  • C. A party may be listed if it has a Wikipedia article. A set of rules can be adopted for when articles on Italian political parties are in order. These rules may be maintained somewhere else, such as at WikiProject Italy, and will need to be established by consensus, which can be established by RFC.
  • D. This article can have a set of rules as to what parties are listed. If so, the list should be established by consensus. Any statement that there is an existing consensus will need to be established, and can be modified anyway, or an RFC can be used to establish the consensus.
  • E. A party may be listed only if it already has a Wikipedia article, so that it can be listed in blue. A party has an article if it satisfies general notability.

The next question, regardless of what option applies to listing the parties, is how to order the list of parties. Are we in agreement that the list will be arranged as:

  • 1. Active parties
  • 1a. Active national parties
  • 1b. Active regional parties
  • 1c. Active overseas parties
  • 2. Former parties
  • 2a. Former national parties
  • 2b. Former regional parties
  • 2c. Former overseas parties

? Robert McClenon (talk) 07:44, 21 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Each editor may restate their viewpoint on which option to use, and is then asked to comment on the listing of groups of parties. Robert McClenon (talk) 07:44, 21 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Third Statements on Italian Political Parties by Editors[edit]

Third statement by Checco[edit]

Regarding the options, I confirm my preference for option D. The other four options look very similar to me and I oppose them.
I think that, similarly to most lists on political parties in countries, there should be a distinction between major/main and minor parties. Thus, I confirm that I would organise the list in the following way: 1. Active parties → 1a. Active main parties; 1b. Active minor parties; 1c. Active regional parties; 1d. Active overseas parties; 2. Former parties → 2a. Former main parties; 2b. Former minor parties; 2c. Former regional parties; 1d. Former overseas parties. As a side-note, I prefer "former" to "defunct". Finally, I continue to think that, for readers' sake, it is better to include in the list also coalitions and parliamentary groups (meaning groups formed by multiple parties and/or non-party independents). --Checco (talk) 16:20, 21 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Second statement by Autospark[edit]

My preference is for "former" or "disestablished" as terms for non-extant political parties, although "defunct" is on balance not controversial. I support the idea of attempting to distinguish major and minor political parties, although I realise this could be problematic in practical terms – there would have to be clear guidelines, agreed upon consensual lines of what exactly constitutes either category. These categories would have to be time-relative (taking into account the variation in seat counts in the Italian parliament and regional assemblies over history) and region sensitive (the regional assemblies in Italy can vary significantly in terms of seat count).--Autospark (talk) 22:42, 21 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Third statement by Scia Della Cometa[edit]

I have reread the various options better and I rectify my previous opinion: in my opinion, the best option is C. This option is certainly the one that would best allow us to have an overall view of the situation for a possible determination of new criteria. Theoretically, my preferred option would be E, but I think currently many blue-linked pages don't meet the WP:Notability criterion. The page might get too crowded.

About the classification, I agree with the Moderator proposal (I don't know if the more correct term is "Former" or "Defunct", I am not a native-English speaker, but this is a minor issue). A further distinction between "Main parliamentary parties", "Minor parliamentary parties" and "Extra-parliamentary parties" can be made only for active parties. The only objective criterion for distinguishing a major parliamentary party from a minor parliamentary party is the current representation in Parliament with its own parliamentary group.

Instead, the distinction between former major parties and former minor parties is much more complicated, parties born from splits and represented both in the Chamber and in the Senate with their own parliamentary group have eventually turned out to be micro-parties in the test of the elections (an example, Future and Freedom got less than 0.5% of the votes in the 2013 general election). These parties should not be classified as "Former major parties". Establishing distinction criteria for former parties is very complicated and should not take into account parliamentary splits. In my opinion, the distinction between "Former major parties" and "Former minor parties" is not necessary. Any criterion of distinction, in this case, could turn out to be arbitrary.

Surely the page should not list coalitions and especially parliamentary groups: their presence is a contradiction with the title of the page itself (List of political parties), their presence is decidedly misleading. On a page entitled "List of Political Parties", I expect to find political parties, not different subjects. --Scia Della Cometa (talk) 08:59, 22 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Third statement by Yakme[edit]

I confirm option B, and I refer to what I wrote in my first and second statements. Option C could also be a good idea in my opinion: as far as I understand, this would mean that we will have a general written set of guidelines, approved by consensus, by which we can determine whether a new party (or movement, or group/association) meets the Wikipedia notability criteria; I think this could be very helpful to avoid future issues. Regarding the classification in the list, I agree with the one proposed by the moderator, and I would add two things: (1) a sub-categorization – or a sub-ordering – within the national parties, in order to be able to distinguish the main parties who usually are in Parliament from the rest of the smaller, but still active and notable, parties; (2) separate categories for party coalitions, e.g. The Union and the House of Freedoms (which are objectively a main piece of Italy's political history), and for parliamentary groups, e.g. the infamous Mixed Group or other relevant multi-party groups like For the Autonomies. --Yakme (talk) 09:03, 22 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Third Statement by Nightenbelle[edit]

I confirm option B as well- why reinvent the wheel? I also would be okay with E- but I prefer B. As for how they are listed- The way Robert suggested makes sense imo- I wouldn't mind them being separated by major and minor, except that I think that will lead to yet more pointless, unending arguments. I oppose any option that requires this page to have a set of rules different than other lists of political parties for other countries. That's just silly and unnecessary. Nightenbelle (talk) 16:26, 23 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Second statement by North8000[edit]

I suggest option E. Besides being a good and workable idea, this would make this simple and settled (vs. being an opening for more eternal debates), and not require major shifts in who is/isn't listed. "A" if taken literally has and issue which would need to get clarified if selected. Besides saying "no rules" has a second statement which can be taken as any one editor can force inclusion.

Regarding the sequencing, I see nothing wrong with that but will leave it to others more knowledgeable than me on this specific situation to decide. North8000 (talk) 17:16, 23 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Third Statement by Firefangledfeathers (IPP)[edit]

I support B and D. More specifically, I support B if there's agreement that this wouldn't create an excessively long list, and I support D provided that notability or likely notability is one of the criteria.

I support the moderator's proposed organization in general. I support the addition of subsections for major/minor parties, at least in the active parties section. I would like to hear counterarguments to SDC's point about the split being untenable when it comes to former parties. I support the inclusion of coalitions/parliamentary groups and think it's justified by WP:NCLL, which states, "The title is not expected to contain a complete description of the list's subject." I do think it's wise to distinguish the collective groups from solitary parties, and I am agnostic for now on whether that should be done with subsections, columns, footnotes, etc. Firefangledfeathers 05:48, 24 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]


Fourth Statement on Italian Political Parties by Moderator[edit]

I will focus for now on the organization of the list. The inclusion options still need to be addressed, but we can work on the organization of the list first, because we seem to be almost in agreement on that. We will refer to former parties rather than defunct parties for reasons of connotation in English. (I have probably spoken more English than anyone else in this discussion.)

It appears that some editors think that we should distinguish between major and minor parties, as follows:

  • 1. Active parties
  • 1a1. Active major national parties
  • 1a2. Active minor national parties
  • 1b. Active regional parties
  • 1c. Active overseas parties
  • 2. Former parties
  • 2a1. Former major national parties
  • 2a2. Former minor national parties
  • 2b. Former regional parties
  • 2c. Former overseas parties

Do parties ever change between major and minor status due to losing or gaining voters? If so, should active national parties be listed based on their present status? Should former national parties be listed as on their maximum status?

Do parties ever change between being national and being regional?

We know that parties can change from being active parties to being former parties, but that is not the question.

I would like each editor to state briefly why parties should be listed separately as major and minor, or why they should not.

There has been mention of groupings of parties, and coalitions. As an American, I think that I would want to see groupings of parties and coalitions listed, and that I would want to see them listed separately. I think that a Briton also would want that. If there is a reason why we should completely omit groups and coalitions, or alternatively why we should jumble them with the parties, I would like to see it stated briefly.

As I said above, I was initially not clear as to what option B was, and there is now confusion as to what options B and E are. Option A is no rules. Option E is that a party may be listed if it has its own article. Is there any other middle-ground option, or did Option B go away?

Option C is to have the set of rules defined somewhere else, such as by a WikiProject. Option D is to have this article define the set of rules.

I think that the remaining issues about the organization of the list are whether to distinguish major and minor, and how to list coalitions and groupings.

I think that the remaining issues about the inclusion criteria are whether to:

  • Have someone else have a set of rules (C).
  • Define our own set of rules (D).
  • List all parties that have Wikipedia articles (E).

Please follow up briefly, as explained above. If this isn't clear, then I will start over on the next round. Robert McClenon (talk) 06:07, 25 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Fourth Statements on Italian Political Parties by Editors[edit]

Fourth statement by Yakme[edit]

@Robert McClenon: I did not quite get why option B has been dismissed now, given that three editors out of seven supported it in the third round. Option C – on the other hand – was supported by one editor, and by myself as a second option (even though I misunderstood the meaning of option C, so I was going to backtrack on that now). Before I write my full reply to your fourth statement, I would like to ask you to revise the "remaining issues about the inclusion criteria" by including also B which is one of the most popular options. --Yakme (talk) 07:53, 25 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Fourth statement by Scia Della Cometa[edit]

I apologize in advance that my statement will not be very short but rather detailed. I premise that I am not opposed to options B and E. If it were not possible to find a broad agreement on rules that allow the inclusion of the highest number of parties, I still firmly think that the page should not have any specific rules (but that only meet the general rules of Wikipedia). However, these options could potentially lead to future disputes (for example, in my view, not all articles on Italian parties meet general notability guidelines).

About the organization of the list: I am not in principle against the distinction between major and minor parties, but how do we determine objective criteria to make a neutral distinction? When is a party "major"? When, on the other hand, is a party "minor"? There is no doubt about some parties: in the past, DC, PCI, PSI, DS, AN, PDL, etc. were definitely major parties. But exactly what characteristics must a party meet in order to be considered "major"? It is not easy to determine objective criteria. Above all, it is not easy to determine equal criteria for active parties and former parties. Let me explain: in Italy, since the 1990s / 2000s, the phenomenon of parliamentary splits has become very frequent. In the Italian parliament, parties are frequently formed from splits with a considerable number of MPs. Anyway, when these parties participate in elections, their electoral results are almost always unsatisfactory. These parties are not historically remembered as large parties, because they had temporary relevance (SD, FLI, AP etc.). Even the parties currently represented in Parliament that were born from splits, IV and CI, have already achieved disappointing electoral results and are quoted in the election polls with very low results.

In my opinion, it is decidedly complicated to establish objective criteria for distinguishing between major parties and minor parties that are the same for both active and former parties. For active parties the most important feature is the current relevance (ie: parliamentary relevance), the former parties instead should be considered from a historical perspective. IMHO, it would be easier to make a distinction between current parliamentary parties and current extra-parliamentary parties, as in other lists of parties (this distinction would instead be complicated to apply for the parties of the past, as there have often been individual adhesions difficult to ascertain).

Answering shortly the questions: "Do parties ever change between major and minor status due to losing or gaining voters? If so, should active national parties be listed based on their present status? Should former national parties be listed as on their maximum status?" It depends on the threshold of voters considered. Surely the active parties can be categorized according to their current status and the former parties according to their maximum status, but it depends on what we mean by status: number of MPs or number of voters? As I said above, the number of MPs can be a valid criterion of distinction for the current parties, while the number of voters would be a valid criterion of distinction for the former parties (even if it would risk being arbitrary). "Do parties ever change between being national and being regional?" It's possible. For example, the MPA, initially active throughout southern Italy, subsequently remained active only in Sicily. But this is not a problem, it is enough to consider the current or historical status.

About parliamentary groups or political coalitions (or electoral lists): they are certainly interesting articles, however I think that the List of political parties in Italy is not the right place to list them; for example the List of political parties in France or the List of political parties in UK don't list parliamentary groups. A solution could be to list them on separate pages, a page like Parliamentary group (Spain) could be created, indicating it in the "See also" section at the bottom of the page. The same solution could be adopted for political alliances in Italy.--Scia Della Cometa (talk) 11:24, 25 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Fourth statement by Checco[edit]

I agree with the organisation of the list that the Moderator presented at the beginning of his fourth statement. Terminologically speaking, I have always preferred "former" over "defunct", I would avoid "national" (there have been parties neither regional-only nor national—see Lega Nord, Movement for the Autonomies, etc.) and, finally, I prefer "main" over "major".
And now to the issues! 1) Political parties should change between "main" and "minor" status due to losing votes and/or MPs. That is why the current rules are so balanced and, unfortunately, complicate. Parties should be listed on their present status, former parties on their maximum status. 2) Very rarely, "national" or "multi-regional" parties are reduced to being "regional" or the other way around, but, for historical purposes, I would consider them "minor". 3) Parties should be listed separately as "main" and "minor" so that regular readers, who might not be interested in an in-depth study of Italy's party system, can easily identify them. Basically, each and every "List of political parties in Xxxxx" does that. In our case, being represented in Parliament is not enough because dozens of parties are, so that not even all parliamentary parties are included in the list (the bar was raised recently and I was not the proponent). A certain share of vote and a certain number of MPs should be the thresholds. The distinction between "main" and "minor" parties matters also for former parties as there are so many. 4) There could be separate lists for parliamentary groups (meaning parliamentary groups not directly connected to a political party and/or formed by MPs belonging to different parties and/or non-party independents) and coalitions, but having those items in the same list would quite benefit readers. Also, in this case, we should have limits as coalitions and electoral lists are also quite common and numerous.
As I said, the only option I can agree with is D, due to the near-infinite number of parties in Italy. Having no rules is really not an option, in my view. I am an inclusionist and I will never propose an article on a party for deletion, but this does not mean that we should have a near-infinite list (option E). Also, there might be relevant parties lacking an article and they should be listed, possibly in red so that some editors might think about editing them. Having notability rules both for having an article and being included in the list (option C) would be quite problematic. We really risk moving controversy and debates to dozens of talk pages and requests for deletion: an opening to more endless debates, indeed. --Checco (talk) 17:48, 25 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Fourth Statement by Nightenbelle[edit]

I also don't understand why option B was removed when 3 of us were in favor of it. But I am also fine with E. I'm not sure why Checco thinks either of those options will create an endless list- both have rules- they require a party to meet general notability requirements for WP. And if they meet those requirements- and are, by definition- a political party in Italy, why then would we then exclude them from this list? That makes absolutely no sense. I like going a step further and saying that they have to actually have a WP page- saying that some editor has put the work in to make a page, and it has been accepted as notable so yes - that party deserves to be on this page.

As for listing them as major or minor- I think that is opening the page up to yet more arguments as we set regulations for what each of those mean (see the multi-paragraph responses in this section alone as evidence)- So I would rather just see current, and former as the only two definitions used. Nightenbelle (talk) 18:48, 25 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]


Fifth Statement on Italian Political Parties by Moderator[edit]

I either have confused everybody, or am confused. We will primarily go back to the inclusion criteria for now. We will work on the organization of the list again when we have the inclusion options defined.

I dropped Options A and B for the inclusion criteria, and have caused confusion by dropping Option B. I thought that I had worded it poorly, and I meant that each party should have its own Wikipedia article, so that it was the same as Option E. I had written that the remaining issues about the inclusion criteria are whether to:

  • Have someone else have a set of rules (C).
  • Define our own set of rules (D).
  • List all parties that have Wikipedia articles (E).

So if there was an Option B that differed from Option E, what was it? How do the editors think that Option B differs both from Option E, which requires an existing article, and Option A, which is no rules? Robert McClenon (talk) 22:21, 26 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Discussion of the organization of the list of parties can continue. If editors think that I should not have dropped an Option B, will they please tell me what they think Option B is, and how it is different from either A (which we agree should be dropped) or E? Robert McClenon (talk) 22:21, 26 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]


Fifth Statements on Italian Political Parties by Editors[edit]

Fifth statement by Yakme[edit]

[I move here part of my reply above, since I posted just a few seconds after the moderator started the fifth round of statements] Yakme (talk) 22:24, 26 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

My reply to the fifth statement by the Moderator – regarding inclusion:

Yes definitely there is some confusion. By option B, I mean that parties should be on the list even if they do not have an article yet, but are notable by WP standards. Their notability should be proven by providing appropriate reliable sources (or by using an inter-language link if available). See also the Spanish, British or German counterpart, where parties which do not have articles (yet) are also listed in black (red). Alternatively, I could also support option E – but just because I know that the risk of having a notable Italian party without a WP article is virtually zero (likely the opposite is true: over-proliferation of non-notable Italian "parties" articles). Yakme (talk) 22:33, 26 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

My replies to the Moderator's questions in their fourth statement – regarding classification:

  • Do parties ever change between major and minor status due to losing or gaining voters? Sure, a party might start as minor and become major, or viceversa. If so, should active national parties be listed based on their present status? Yes, and Should former national parties be listed as on their maximum status? yes. The historical relevance of a former party can definitely be measured on their peak popularity, and I do not see any inconsistency in having similar criteria for major/minor current and former parties.
  • Do parties ever change between being national and being regional? Other editors might know examples of this which I do not, but certainly this change cannot be excluded. In these events, I would – again – use the maximum extension of the party as the reference status for classification of former parties.
  • I would like each editor to state briefly why parties should be listed separately as major and minor, or why they should not. A separation is necessary given the amount of notable political parties in Italy: with a simple alphabetical or chronological list of parties, the reader would get lost and not understand which parties actually hold power and popular support. For example, having a separation based on whether a party has MPs or does not have MPs could be a criterion (I would generally take as reference the very-neatly-organized List of political parties in Spain, where there are also many parties, and a reasonable grouping has been achieved).
  • Regarding coalitions of parties and "parliamentary groups", I also do not see a reason why not to include them here, in a separate section.

The risk of having a very large number of parties listed in this article is real. But if this becomes a problem, the solution cannot be to cut off notable articles based on an arbitrary selection. If we notice that we are getting to a very long page, the list can surely be split (for example by creating a List of former political parties in Italy, as a special case of WP:NCSPLITLIST). Yakme (talk) 22:21, 26 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Fifth statement by Firefangledfeathers (IPP)[edit]

Originally, Option B was A party may be listed if it is notable enough to have a Wikipedia article. A party may have an article if it satisfies general notability. I took that to mean blue or red link. Your followup tweak didn't change my understanding of Option B. I believe most people who have supported Option B have a shared understanding of that meaning. Option E appears to be bluelinks only. Firefangledfeathers 22:29, 26 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Fifth statement by Scia Della Cometa[edit]

I interpreted the difference between options A, B and E like this:

  • A: inclusion of blue links and red links, regardless of notability;
  • B: inclusion of blue links and red links, provided that parties meet the principle of WP:Notability (I did not understand only one thing: only the parties with the red link must meet the principle of notability or also those with the blue link?);
  • E: only blue links.

It seems to me that we all agree to exclude option A, which would allow anyone to include any objectively irrelevant party on the list. The practical difference between options B and E is minimal: as has already been stated, it is easier that an irrelevant / unknown Italian party to have its own article than a known party not to have its own article yet.

I think it is absolutely necessary to go beyond the current criteria, and it finally seems to me that most users think like me, not only these criteria are arbitrary, but they create incredible paradoxes: they exclude from the list potentially known parties and allow the inclusion of completely unknown "parties". Until last summer the situation was even worse.

When I refer to inclusion criteria, I refer to criteria that tend to include, not exclude parties, like the current criteria. Indeed, if we can't agree on inclusive (and consensual) criteria, I think the best options are B or F. More precisely option B, if the WP:Notability principle were applied to both blue and red links. But when does a party meet the principle of notability? I think I have interpreted this principle correctly, but some other users might think differently from me. And there would again be disagreements about what meets this principle and what does not meet it.

About "major" and "minor" parties: it is not enough to agree on applying this distinction, but it is necessary to determine when a party is major and when a party is minor. The distinction between parliamentary and extra-parliamentary parties is different from the distinction between major and minor parties. It is necessary to make concrete proposals, and to take into consideration all the possible consequences.

About coalitions and groups: there are many reasons for excluding them from this page. 1. First of all they are not political parties, while this is a list that explicitly concerns parties. 2. No list of political parties also includes lists of coalitions and parliamentary groups. 3. A reader may be confused about the inclusion of entities other than parties on a list that should only include parties. 4. If we include coalitions and parliamentary groups, why not include further political entities other than parties? Electoral lists, youth wings, factions, movements (not parties, but movements in the literal sense of the term). If we list anything related (directly or indirectly) to a party, the list would become really huge and the situation would become anarchic, since in a list of political parties we could include in it a series of entities that are in no way political parties. IMHO, the best solution would be to list them on other pages, to be indicated at the bottom of the list of parties.--Scia Della Cometa (talk) 10:47, 27 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Fifth Statement by Nightenbelle[edit]

I still prefer B- any party that qualifies for a WP page based on notability can be included. I am totally fine with E though- any group with a blue link can be included- I don't think there are many parties that don't have a page that would qualify- and if someone wants to add them- well they can go make a full WP page and then add them. I still maintain anything more is contrary to our WP:NOTABILITY policy. I 100% do not want more rules. I think separating them into major/minor/defunct is just going to create more drama and is unnecessary. I like the idea of if the list becomes too long creating a separate list for defunct (or whatever word people want to use) parties. Nightenbelle (talk) 14:39, 27 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Fifth statement by Checco[edit]

I appreciated the fact that some options had been dropped because too many options looked similar to me. I was thus a little bit confused to read the following statement. If B is restored as an option, others might go. By the way, I am going to answer below. --Checco (talk) 17:43, 28 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Sixth Statement on Italian Political Parties by Moderator[edit]

I will restore Option B now that I understand it. The possible inclusion criteria are:

  • List only parties that are thought to be notable, so that they must have either a red link or a blue link (B).
  • Have someone else have a set of rules (C).
  • Define our own set of rules (D).
  • List all parties that have Wikipedia articles, so that they will have a blue link. (E).

Robert McClenon (talk) 02:27, 28 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Option C can go away if there is no other candidate for who will have the set of rules, in which case the choices are between B (red and blue links), D (our own list of rules), and E (blue links only).

We will try to set up an RFC to decide between those criteria, but not quite yet.

In the meantime, we will discuss organization of the list of parties. I think that we should try to keep the organization of the list relatively simple, because it won't be simple anyway. The most detailed list of parties seems to be:

  • 1. Active parties
  • 1a1. Active major national parties
  • 1a2. Active minor national parties
  • 1b. Active regional parties
  • 1c. Active overseas parties
  • 2. Former parties
  • 2a1. Former major national parties
  • 2a2. Former minor national parties
  • 2b. Former regional parties
  • 2c. Former overseas parties

So what groups can be combined? Some editors have said that it is not necessary to distinguish major and minor parties, and some have said that is necessary. What else can we possibly combine? Robert McClenon (talk) 02:27, 28 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Editors may reply to any previously asked questions, but do not reply with a wall of text to any question. Robert McClenon (talk) 02:27, 28 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Sixth Statements on Italian Political Parties by Editors[edit]

Sixth statement by Yakme[edit]
I re-state (for the sixth time) my preference for option B for all the reasons that were explained in the previous rounds by myself and others.

Regarding the classification of parties, I tend to agree to the one proposed by the moderator. However, if not major/minor (which are terms that sound too "generic" and open to interpretation), then at least a separation between national parties with current Parliamentary representation and national parties without current Parliamentary representation must be done IMHO. A similar separation could be done for former parties: former parties that were in Parliament at least once, and former parties that were never. Yakme (talk) 11:37, 28 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Sixth statement by Nightenbelle[edit]

Yup, I'm still pro-B

As far as separating parties. I still think former and current are enough. However, I would be open to dividing them by who had candidates in parliament and who did not. I don't like the idea of terms "major" and "minor" because those are subjective and unless we have a Reliable source calling them that- WP:OR. Nightenbelle (talk) 15:04, 28 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Sixth statement by Checco[edit]

Option E is probably the worst because it would overlad the list with mostly unrelevant parties and still exclude some relevant parties lacking an article (there are about 20 red links in the current list and they are all relevant parties—I hope to be able to start those articles soon). Option B and option C look very similar to me and are not acceptable because, through very generic rules, they would also create an endless list. Per option D, I continue to think that we should have conditions of admission and a reasonably long list that can be an effective guide for readers.
Being an effective guide also makes necessary the distinction between "main" and "minor" parties, as it happens in most lists of political parties. Quick readers should be able to identify the main parties, while other readers would still be able to have a broader picture. Being in Parliament should not be the bar, as there are usually several dozens of parties in Parliament, they come and go, MPs frequently switch parties (more than 200 did so in the current parliamentary term), some parties are short-lived, sometimes parties are formed by only one MP and have not an electoral base (that is why User:SDC successfully proposed to raise some thresholds during 2021) and so on.
On the organisation of the list, I have to repeat myself, as the question was asked again. I broadly agree with what the Moderator presented in his sixth statement, but I need to clarify three points: 1) I am happy that "former" replaced "defunct; 2) I prefer "main" over "major", as the former is more accurate; 3) again for the sake of accuracy, I would refer simply to "main parties" and "minor parties", by avoiding "national" (there have been parties neither regional-only nor national—see Lega Nord, Movement for the Autonomies, etc.). --Checco (talk) 17:43, 28 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Question for Checco[edit]

I am genuinely curious- if both B and E require that a party meet WP:NOTABILITY, other than "there are too many," how can you justify not including all notable parties? I'm genuinely confused by this- not trying to pick a fight- just a question. Nightenbelle (talk) 19:47, 28 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

My answer is quite simple, sorry about that. There have been hundreds, possibly thousands, of parties in Italy meeting notability (meaning that they had an organisation and/or MPs and/or MEPs and/or regional councillors and/or a notable share of the vote and so on). My argument is that all of them are worth of an article (and I will never propose any party for deletion), but not all of them are worth being included in the list, that would become near-infinite and unreadable. --Checco (talk) 09:01, 29 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Sixth statement by Scia Della Cometa[edit]

It is not easy to distinguish between major and minor parties in Italy. And it is even more difficult to put the current perspective and a historical perspective on the same level. Objectively, the parties currently relevant in the Italian Parliament are seven, not five as currently shown on the page: in addition to Lega, M5S, PD, FI and FdI there are also Italia Viva and Coraggio Italia. That is, those parties that are currently represented by a parliamentary group. But I am not sure that IV and CI, when they are dissolved, will be remembered as major parties. For this reason I struggle to find uniform criteria of distinction for both the current parties and the former parties.

The distinction between parliamentary and extra-parliamentary parties might be reasonable for the current parties, but extremely difficult to implement for the former parties. The political and party situation in Italy is unstable. On this point Checco is right: too many MPs change party, in some cases joining small extra-parliamentary parties (until then). The current situation can be monitored, but making a clear distinction between former parliamentary and extra-parliamentary parties would be complicated.

I understand that making big parties stand out over small ones is useful, therefore I have a proposal: we could distinguish the current parties into "parliamentary" and "extra-parliamentary" parties. Parliamentary parties would be listed from most to least represented, in this way the major parties would automatically stand out on the others.

I would make a single list for the former parties. To make the larger parties stand out (such as DC, PCI, PSI, PPI, PDS, DS, AN etc.) we could insert in the table (not yet existing) their maximum result: for example their best electoral result for the Chamber, Senate and the European Parliament; or the maximum number (if available) of Deputies, Senators and MEPs. In this way the readers would immediately understand which were the most relevant parties, without making arbitrary distinctions on the list.

One last brief comment on a statement by Checco: some parties remained with the red link because there are no sources that describe them. I myself tried to create a page for some of those parties, but I gave up due to lack of sources. If a page is to be a three-line stub based on a single source, it better not exist. --Scia Della Cometa (talk) 21:25, 28 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Post scriptum

In this last statement I did not comment on the topic of the rules: at this point I believe that option B is the best choice. No arbitrary rules, let's just include all parties that have an article (except blatantly irrelevant stubs or subjects that are not parties, such as regional council groups) and let's include only red-links of parties that may potentially have a page.--Scia Della Cometa (talk) 13:51, 30 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Third statement by Autospark[edit]

My preference is still for option D, with option "B" a distance second-choice (albeit with the proviso that the red-linked articles would be soon created). If the sub-categories or "major/main" and "minor" former parties have to be combined into a single "former parties" list, User:SDC's solution has its merits for a means to distinguish the more significant parties; however, I raise the issue that seat counts for the Italian and European parliaments have varied over time, so that may lead to "apples and orange" comparisons.

For notability reasons, I think there should be a mechanism in the rules for inclusion of former parties, however small, which participated in national-level government cabinets at some point, even if said parties never participated in later elections independently.--Autospark (talk) 19:56, 30 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Seventh statement by moderator on Italian political parties[edit]

The status quo would appear to be D, a set of rules, which are listed in the article. I will comment that, if we keep a set of rules for when parties are to be listed, then it will serve as the special notability guideline for Italian political parties (even if it has a clause saying that it is not a notability guideline). There is less difference between a special notability guideline and an outcomes essay than may be intended by those who categorize the essays and guidelines.

The status quo breakdown of categories of rules is as I previously listed them:

  • 1. Active parties
  • 1a1. Active major national parties
  • 1a2. Active minor national parties
  • 1b. Active regional parties
  • 1c. Active overseas parties
  • 2. Former parties
  • 2a1. Former major national parties
  • 2a2. Former minor national parties
  • 2b. Former regional parties
  • 2c. Former overseas parties

A tabulation of the number of parties in each category in the current article, List of Italian political parties, is:

  • 1a1 - Active major parties - 5
  • 1a2 - Active minor parties - 37
  • 1b - Active regional parties - 82
  • 1c - Active overseas parties - 2
  • 2a1 - Former major parties - 27
  • 2a2 - Former minor parties - 84
  • 2b - Former regional parties - 106
  • 2c - Former overseas parties - 2
  • 3a - Active coalitions - 2
  • 3b - Former coalitions - 14
  • 4a - Active parliamentary groups - 1
  • 4b - Former parliamentary groups - 18

I will comment that this is a list article, and that lists often include a few hundred items, as this list, which is organized into sublists, does. The number of parties does not seem to be a reason why either inclusion criteria are needed or why inclusion criteria are not needed.

Are we in agreement that the choice of inclusion criteria is between the status quo, which is D, a set of rules, or B, red or blue links, or E, blue links only? If so, a question is whether any parties are being excluded by the current rules. If so, should we include them by going to B or E, or leave them excluded?

We currently have 12 sublists. I would suggest that those who wish to reduce the number of lists, that is, combine lists, should explain why the lists should be combined.

We already have lists of coalitions and parliamentary groups. Editors who want to exclude those lists should explain why they should be excluded. In a list article, additional information is often good.

The next step should be for editors to explain why they want to change the status quo, which has a set of inclusion rules, and 12 sublists. Robert McClenon (talk) 05:40, 1 February 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Seventh statements by editors on Italian political parties[edit]

Seventh statement by Scia Della Cometa[edit]

I still think that option B is the best: we should include all blue links (except blatantly irrelevant stubs) and we should exclude parties whose pages will surely never be created. Anyone who wants to include a red link must at least prove that there are enough sources to create a page. For this reason I prefer option B to option E: the red links of potentially relevant parties are very few in the case of the Italian parties, but some pages can still be created. The inclusion of the red link in the list may be an invitation to create the page, but to include this party, it will be necessary to demonstrate that there are already enough sources and therefore the party meets the principle of WP:Notability. If instead we decide to create a set of rules, these should be flexible, inclusive and free of quibbles.

I think 12 sublists are too many. I also think that other parties should be included in the list, and that they should be organized into informative tables. I do not think it is consistent to complain about the length of the list if one wants to include subjects different from parties in it (meanwhile excluding parties that could instead be listed). I have not proposed to delete this information, I have proposed to move them in different pages, such as "Parliamentary group (Italy)" and "List of political alliances in Italy", whose links could be indicated at the bottom of the page. It seems to me the most coherent and efficient way of organizing information; if we want to make a complete list of parties, it would be long enough, it doesn't seem like a good idea at all to want to include different subjects on the same page, when they might just be listed on different pages. If we begin to include subjects other than parties in this list, we risk never ending: movements (such as Sardines and Pitchforks), youth wings, factions, etc. It seems useless to steal space from information that is certainly more inherent.

For those who want a distinction between major and minor parties, I invite other users to make specific proposals. For example, it seems to me that there are currently 7 Major parties in Italy, not 5 (I would also include Italia Viva and Coraggio Italia).--Scia Della Cometa (talk) 09:05, 1 February 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Seventh Statement by Nightenbelle[edit]

I want to go with option B because the current set of rules is arbitrary and contrary to WP:Notability. I see no problem having a long list- with a couple hundred parties. That is the nature of Italian politics and should be accurately represented by this list. I don't care if we go with blue links only or red and blue links- as long as there is enough sources to prove the party is notable enough for a page.

I'm not a fan of 12 sublists. I would rather see it split thus:

1. Active parties

1a1. Active major national parties
1a2. Active minor national parties
1b. Active regional & Overseas parties

2. Former parties

2a1. Former major national parties<
2a2. Former minor national parties
2b. Former regional & Overseas parties

Just for simplicity sake. But I'm less passionate about how they are split up than I am about inclusion rules. If others want more or less or a different arrangement- I'm okay with that. As long as all notable parties are included and ones that are not notable are left off. Nightenbelle (talk) 15:10, 1 February 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Seventh statement by Checco[edit]

I have little to say on the latest issues raised by the Moderator, as I am basically in favour of the status quo over:
1) Option D — I would change the current rules, however they are already so lax and inclusive that all notable active and former political parties, by any definition, are already included.
2) 12 sublists — I would adopt different names ("main" not "major", no to "national") and I would surely change some of the classification rules, e.g. those between "main" and "major" (if I am not blatantly wrong, they became stricter after a proposal by User:SDC that I endorsed for the sake of collaboration, but I would be more than happy to lower the thresholds). Finally, I could accept separate lists for coalitions of parties and non-party parliamentary groups, but I believe that it is beneficiary for readers and editors alike to have them in a joint list.
I am more than willing to change how the rules are presented. There should be general conditions of admission (notability, if you will) and then a reasonable classification of the parties in sublists. That is exactly what I have long been arguing for. The point is: which admission/notability rules? --Checco (talk) 16:14, 1 February 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Eighth statement by moderator on Italian political parties[edit]

I have created a subpage for this dispute resolution, at Wikipedia:Dispute resolution noticeboard/List of political parties in Italy, and has a shortcut of WP:DRNLPPI. I have done this so that our discussion does not overshadow any other DRN threads. There aren't currently any other DRN threads, but there may be, and this discussion appears to be still unfolding rather than wrapping up.

There are three separate related questions that we need to address. The first is whether this list article needs special rules for listing of parties, or whether general notability is a sufficient guideline. The second is how to divide the listing. I would like to try to resolve the first question, which is the choice between options B, D, and E:

  • B. Parties should be listed if they satisfy general notability, and are listed either as blue links or as red links.
  • D. A set of rules should be used. The list currently includes rules for listing, and these rules will be the status quo, and we can then discuss where to go from there.
  • E. Parties should be listed if they satisfy general notability and already have articles.

Since Wikipedia already relies on the general notability guideline, GNG, going with either B or E simplifies the housekeeping of this article, and avoids the need to argue over percentages, and numbers of seats, et cetera. I will start by saying that option B is the easiest to maintain, and so will suggest that editors who disagree should explain why they disagree. At least one editor has said that option B or E would result in a near-infinite number of parties being listed. Isn't 300 already quite a large number? I have a homework exercise, that is optional. How many political parties have articles but are not currently listed? How much expansion would B or E really result in? Can someone identify how many articles Wikipedia already has on Italian political parties that are not listed in the list? If there are only a few parties that have articles that are not currently listed, then we do not need inclusion criteria other than GNG. So my assignment to any editor who says that we need to keep or modify our inclusion criteria is to identify how much longer the list would be with no criteria other than GNG.

The second is whether to retain the lists of coalitions and parliamentary groups. Since we already have them listed in this article, that is the status quo. So my question for any editor who wants to delete those sublists is to say what harm is done by keeping them.

The third question is how to group the lists of political parties. Each editor may briefly restate their position on whether to combine or modify the sublists.

Fourth statement by Autospark[edit]

As for retaining parliamentary groups and coalitions on the list page, we should consider that 1.) some notable historical parties may have been (by modern standards) parliamentary groups, and 2.) some deputies and senators will have been elected via coalition electoral lists rather than as members of organised parties. This should be taken into account before we may a clear choice as to whether to move from the status quo.

If we stick to the status quo and include coalitions and parliamentary groups, by proposal would be:

1. Active parties
1a1. Active major parties
1a2. Active minor parties
1a3. Active parliamentary groups
1b. Active regional parties
1c. Active overseas parties
1d. Active coalitions
2. Former parties
2a1. Former major parties
2a2. Former minor parties
1a3. Former parliamentary groups
2b. Former regional parties
2c. Former overseas parties
2d. Former coalitions

Without:

1. Active parties
1a1. Active major parties
1a2. Active minor parties
1b. Active regional parties
1c. Active overseas parties
2. Former parties
2a1. Former major parties
2a2. Former minor parties
2b. Former regional parties
2c. Former overseas parties

--Autospark (talk) 16:02, 3 February 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Discussion is (still) continuing at WP:DRNLPPI. Robert McClenon (talk) 05:55, 2 February 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Eighth statements by editors on Italian political parties

Summary of dispute by Randy Kryn

Please keep it brief - less than 2000 characters if possible, it helps us help you quicker.
Pointless dithering

I know you are but what am I? Randy Kryn (talk) 19:42, 27 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]

@user:casualdejekyll: I am asking you as moderator what this means? The personal attacks have finally been removed, for that I'm thankful. But frankly, this strikes me as mockery of the DRN process. Allreet (talk) 17:08, 28 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Hi. From someone who has a little sister who says this way too much... yeah, this is Randy being strangely combative casualdejekyll 17:16, 28 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
What? No, this was "said" lightly, and had been used several times between Allreet and myself. If I was mocking the process it would be shorter. It is actually something light in place of my earlier assessment, which had been criticized and I'd been asked to change, and wording that I assumed Allreet would recognize as a friendly summary. Randy Kryn (talk) 04:09, 29 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
I see no humor in what you said before. More appropriate would have been an apology. Allreet (talk) 05:07, 29 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
An apology for saying that you are now forum shopping here after you've posted scores of discussions, some very long, and opened and closed three RfCs, with every discussion and RfC ending with results you didn't like? I, at least, need a sense of humor to continue this journey (because it's true, canceling 57 or so Founding Fathers is no laughing matter). As to the Continental Association and Articles of Confederation not being founding documents when the former non-famously formally formed the first and foremost union of the colonies and the latter literally created (in other words, founded) America's first constitution and first government (the Confederation Congress), it's either smile awhile or drink heavily (and I seldom use, alcohol at least). Randy Kryn (talk) 13:10, 29 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
@User:casualdejekyll, I am respectfully requesting feedback from the moderator on @User:Randy Kryn's reinstatement of his personal attack. My opinion is this and other comments he has made throughout potentially falls under Wikipedia:Behavior that disrupts dispute resolution, though of that I know nothing. Allreet (talk) 19:32, 29 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
A major problem here is that you are disregarding "Edit only in your own section" and have filled my brief summary with requests for apologies and questions and respectful requests for feedback, thus not allowing another editor to just have their say. I'm not editing in your summary section, although I could say a thing or two, but I wouldn't even think of actually doing such a thing. Randy Kryn (talk) 20:56, 29 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Your "brief summary" was a playground taunt, Randy. Collapsing section. casualdejekyll 22:22, 29 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Founding Fathers of the United States

Pictogram voting comment.png
– This request has been placed on hold.
Filed by Allreet on 14:50, 10 March 2022 (UTC).[reply]

Have you discussed this on a talk page?

Yes, I have discussed this issue on a talk page already.

Location of dispute

Users involved

Dispute overview

I have thoroughly discussed content in this article with another editor regarding the lack of adequate sources, specifically in terms of an assertion made on July 30, 2021 by a different editor claiming 145 historical figures are founding fathers. After we were unable to reach a resolution, I opened a 3O. The editor who responded seemed to agree with me, but was refuted by the other editor. I then opened a series of RfCs, none of which received an adequate response; only four editors replied, three of whom agreed with me. Unable to resolve anything through these avenues, I made substantial changes to the article to clarify the lack of consensus among historians regarding who is a founding father and who is not. All of those changes were based on reliable sources and none has been reverted or disputed. Only yesterday did I change the edits made last year. My latest changes were reverted today in what may be a violation of WP:3R. Also in dispute are 50 or so articles where the subjects were deemed founding fathers, most without any sources. Please note that the disputes in question also relate to another article, Continental Association. Additional discussion can be found on that article's talk page.

How have you tried to resolve this dispute before coming here?

Talk:Founding Fathers of the United States

How do you think we can help resolve the dispute?

Provide feedback, and hopefully a resolution, on the need for reliable sources regarding the content in this article and changes made to many others.

Founding Fathers of the United States discussion

Please keep discussion to a minimum before being opened by a volunteer. Continue on article talk page if necessary.
Old discussion
  • Volunteer Note - The filing editor has not notified the other editor on their user talk page. Robert McClenon (talk) 17:15, 10 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
  • Volunteer Question - Is this a dispute about article content, or about the reliability of a particular source? It is difficult to determine, from the length of the discussion on the article talk page, exactly what the issue is, other than that it is clear that there is an issue. Please be concise. Robert McClenon (talk) 17:15, 10 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
(repeated from above) Well, there is no dispute. Months have come and gone, and so have three open and closed failed RfCs by Allreet (and many page discussions where he also didn't get his way). If three failed RfCs haven't gotten the message across to him I know why he may be calling it a dispute - forum shopping. Please ask him to stop what has possibly become, after not prevailing at three RfCs, slow-motion and ongoing vandalism ICANtHEARYOU edits of the page (although he has done many good edits as well). Randy Kryn (talk) 17:37, 10 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
This is a dispute over content regarding the need for reliable sources. For just short of a year, actually much longer, the Founding Fathers article has had no sources to support the assertion that signers of the Continental Association are "considered founders". This specific claim was made in July 2021. The "implied" claim is about seven years old. The same may be true of the Articles of Confederation though at least some authors recognize its signers. However, the National Archives, USCongress.gov and "serious" historians do not. Allreet (talk) 21:35, 10 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Volunteer Note - please remember that participation in DRN is voluntary. @Randy Kryn - If you truly believe that having this discussion would not be valuable and that there is no dispute, you do not have to participate. However, calling his (presumed to be good faith) actions vandalism may constitute a personal attack. So, don't do that, please. casualdejekyll 17:46, 10 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Struck, thanks. Could be valuable if mediators would read every word at scores of discussion pages (not only the Founding Fathers talk page but at least the talk pages of Continental Association and Articles of Confederation, then I could leave it as is. So will wait to see what occurs. Randy Kryn (talk) 17:56, 10 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
So, you do want to have a DRN discussion? (I'm planning on opening pending you actually wish to participate.) casualdejekyll 19:28, 10 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Tagging @Randy Kryn for response because I forgot to the first time. Whoopscasualdejekyll 19:40, 10 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Of course I'll join in, and hopefully be as brief as possible as tens of thousands of words already exist, but can you do me a big favor? Please don't open a discussion for a couple of days. I've been going at this almost daily for two months, and breaks from it are valuable and I'd be dragging if this occurred immediately. It should take you at least a couple of days anyway to read the discussions, RfCs, and the sources, and create a mental map of the vital American history being discussed, how Wikipedia has accepted and stood behind much of the definition and terminology being discussed since 2010, and the discussions themselves. If you're willing to do all of that then the least I can do is join in, but after some time away if you don't mind. Thanks. Randy Kryn (talk) 20:58, 10 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
I would welcome whatever it takes to resolve this. And per Randy's request, I'm willing to wait until next week or whenever it suits Randy or whoever else is involved. Allreet (talk) 21:20, 10 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Seriously, next week, a few days actually away from all of this with things left as they are I assume, would be great, thanks (and it may take the mediator a few late nights and some strong coffee to put enough time in to really study the entire structure, and what's nice is they will learn a lot of American history by taking on your request). Randy Kryn (talk) 21:47, 10 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Volunteer note - Randy Kryn there is no expectation or need for the moderator to be or become an expert in the topic area of a dispute to properly moderate it. A. C. SantacruzPlease ping me! 21:57, 10 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
I am no expert on the subject either. The issue is not American history, but the need for reliable sources. What Wikipedia has "accepted" for however many years does not qualify as a source. Nor does an article that cannot be quoted, that is not clear and direct, regarding what is being claimed. @Randy Kryn) Allreet (talk) 22:24, 10 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
I did let Randy know on his talk page, though I may not have followed whatever guideline applies. Allreet (talk) 21:17, 10 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Volunteer Note - I see that a volunteer has agreed to moderate the discussion of this dispute, so I will offer a few comments. I may choose to list myself as a participating editor, but am not doing that yet. First, I advise the moderator not to try to read the lengthy prior discussion in detail. Taking a look at its volume will be desirable, but it is neither necessary nor useful for the moderator to try to study the details. The participants should be able to present their arguments concisely without repeating what has already been said repeatedly. Any argument that cannot be summarized concisely may not be adequately presented. Any argument that has not been summarized concisely is one that needs summarizing. Second, the principal editors both refer to three RFCs. One of them was at Talk:Founding Fathers of the United States. The other two were at Talk:Continental Association. But none of the three RFCs were open for 30 days, and none of them were formally closed. The statement by one editor that the other editor "lost" three RFCs is incorrect; the RFCs were withdrawn. In my opinion, two of the RFCs were poorly worded. There has not, in my opinion, been an effective attempt to use an RFC, so much as playing around with RFCs. I would suggest that the moderator and the editors conduct the moderated discussion with a recognition that a good neutrally worded RFC might be the best resolution of this dispute. That will not require that the moderator review the excessive interchange between the two participants. I might have a third comment later. Robert McClenon (talk) 23:02, 10 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Volunteer Note I am currently formulating a first statement. At the request of Randy Kryn, I will not formally open the moderated discussion until.. well, you seemed to agree on next week, so I'm going to take that to mean Sunday the 13th Monday the 14th, please correct me if that is wrong. I request that both editors involved refrain from commenting on this thread further until that date (unless agreeing on a different one), and make an attempt to comment as little on this topic on other places as possible. Further comments will be taken as an invitation to open early, since I see no reason for any more pre-discussion discussion. Putting this on hold, then. casualdejekyll 23:30, 10 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Can you make it Monday, lots of Sunday and weekend stuff to do. Thanks. Randy Kryn (talk) 23:44, 10 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Monday the 14th it is! Since there is no deadline, I'm willing to moderate whenever you two have the time to start the discussion casualdejekyll 00:07, 11 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Agreed. I'll tune in as early as I can. Thanks to all. Allreet (talk) 17:07, 11 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]

First statement by moderator, Founding Fathers of the United States

I am opening this thread for moderated discussion. Your discussions should be addressed to the community, and to me as the representative of the community, not to each other unless I say that you may engage in back-and-forth.

First, please read the rules carefully. Then read them again, just to be sure. If you have questions on the rules, ask before assuming. The rules may be different from any previous cases you have participated in. Any uncivil comments will be collapsed. (I reserve the right to move to stricter rules if the discussion gets nasty, but so far, so good.)

Each editor is asked for up to one-paragraph statements on each of the following questions. (Remember, being concise makes your points more clear.)

1. Does signing a founding document of the United States make one a Founding Father?

2. Is the Continental Association a founding document of the United States?

Please make arguments based on policy and sources. Also, as Robert McClenon said, a proper RFC hasn't really been done on this yet, and it may be the best solution. casualdejekyll 23:57, 13 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Pinging @Allreet, @Randy Kryn for reminders. (No hurry, just wanted to make sure you knew.) casualdejekyll 18:07, 14 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]

First statements by editors, Founding Fathers of the United States

First statement by Robert McClenon

Since I have listed myself as a participant, I will make my statement:

The other participating editors, who have been pinged, should respond within 24 hours. Robert McClenon (talk) 01:25, 15 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Just noting that I've updated my First statement to make it clear that I am perfectly okay with this style of response despite my original statement implying I wouldn't be. casualdejekyll 01:38, 15 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]

First statement by Randy Kryn

First statement by Allreet

The Continental Association is considered a founding document by a few sources - e.g. Werther, Architects of the Capitol - but not by most - e.g. National Archives, U.S. Congress, Pandover, Stanfield, etc. As best as I could determine from a search of numerous indexes, few histories of the Revolutionary era pay much attention to the 1774 trade embargo.

In sum, sources are lacking in substance and number, particularly regarding the extraordinary claim that the Continental Association's 53 signers are "considered founders". The policy that applies is WP:VER, which states "exceptional claims require exceptional (multiple high-quality) sources". The sources offered so far don't come close to satisfying that.

1a Statement by Allreet
This is neither here nor there, so I put it here. After looking up annual page views for Founding Fathers, I thought I'd do the same for some related pages. The number I find most interesting is for the Articles of Confederation. Really, that many people still care? The stats are for 2021. The number of most importance, I think, is for Founding Fathers - that it's in the ballpark with far more relevant and contemporary topics.

By coincidence, I came across a column in last Sunday's New York Times on James Madison and suspected the interest in the Articles is based on Federalism vs. Anti-Federalism. I have no fish to fry over the politics therein but suspected the interest in the Articles is related to libertarianism. So I looked into it by googling "Cato Institute Articles of Confederation". Sure enough the 245-year debate rages on, though nobody has much to say about founders beyond an occasional reference. Allreet (talk) 12:06, 27 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Second statement by moderator, Founding Fathers of the United States

There's an alternate universe where I'd be opening this statement by saying "Is Abraham Lincoln a reliable source?". Thankfully, this is not that universe. As far as I'm concerned today, it doesn't appear like what Lincoln did or did not say is very important. Judging by your responses, it appears that there is consensus that signing a founding document makes you a founding father, but rough consensus that the Continental Association is not a founding document.

So, a tally of opinions suggests to remove the Continental Association signers from the list of Founding Fathers (unless other, non Continental Association related reasons apply - for example, it'd be ridiculous to argue that George Washington was not a founding father just because he signed the Continental Association. Don't think I needed to spell that out for you all, but I did anyway just to make sure.) Obviously a tally of opinions isn't the perfect solution (if it was, 3O would have ended it), but it is suggestive of a forward path.

We could probably discuss forever about the definition of a founding document without getting anywhere useful. I'm going to do something a little odd and phrase my next questions in the form of sentences, which I want you to state whether or not you Agree strongly, Agree, are Unsure, Disagree, or Disagree strongly. (Think of it like a 1-5 scale, because that's essentially what it is.)

Just to make sure we all understand what I'm asking for, let's say for example -

0. "Robert McClenon is amazing and his work at DRN is invaluable to the Wikipedia project."

For this statement, I personally would say I Agree strongly, because I agree strongly. I would then follow this up by explaining why I believe this, for example: "He has been resolving disputes between editors for many years now and has been mediating a large proportion of DRN cases."

Here are the actual statements:

  1. "Signers of the Continental Association were undoubtedly pro-independence."
  2. "Most reliable sources agree that the Continental Association was a founding document of the United States."
  3. "Abraham Lincoln claimed that the Continental Association was important in the founding of the United States of America."
  4. "The Continental Association was written from a Loyalist perspective."
  5. "Signing a founding document is the usual definition of who are the Founding Fathers of the United States and represents what reliable sources have written."
  6. "Signers of the Continental Association are Founding Fathers of the United States."
  7. "Signing the Continental Association does not mean one supported the Union."

Some of these statements are contradictory. Some of these statements are repetitive. That is intentional. You may be as concise or as long-winded as you want while explaining your answers, but keep in mind that shorter answers are typically easier to comprehend.

Some last notes from me before I sign - The previous RfCs, despite not being proper, do show a greater headcount supporting omitting the Continental Association founders. I put little weight in this but do note it.


Additionally, I would like your opinions on whether it is necessary to open a new RFC. casualdejekyll 00:21, 16 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Pinging @Allreet, @Randy Kryn. Would ping McClenon but we all already know he watches this page like a hawk ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ casualdejekyll 00:23, 16 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Second statements by editors, Founding Fathers of the United States

Second statement by Allreet

1. Disagree strongly: independence wasn't on anyone's mind
2. Disagree strongly: most agree on Declaration and Constitution, few on Continental and Articles
3. Agree strongly: no question, but Lincoln only mentioned it once; he referenced the Constitution 28 times
4. Agree strongly: everyone was a loyalist, to be otherwise was treasonous
5. Disagree: it's used as a definition sometimes but usually only regarding the Declaration and Constitution
6. Disagree strongly: some are regarded as founders, far from all
7. Unsure: actually the "union" began with the Congress's opening, not just the Continental Association

I have no objection whatsoever to another RfC. My concerns, however, go well beyond this one issue. Everything said here also applies to the Articles of Confederation; it has more support than the Continental Association but not enough to satisfy WP:VER in regards to anointing 28 signers who signed nothing else founders. National Archives and U.S. Congress, for example, do not consider it a "founding document" because it was a failure.

For ten years, the Founding Fathers article has "implied" and at times explicitly stated that the signers of all four documents are founding fathers. The two additional documents were added in 2012 without any sources, and since then assertions about the four "founding documents" have been emphatically presented as "fact". Yet this characterization, like the term founder itself, is purely subjective. In fact, most respected historians eschew both terms, and the few who do use them on occasion, primarily Morris and Ellis, limit their choice of founders to a select few.

I've tried to reflect this state of affairs with the changes I've made recently. Since the issue is unsettled, I left most of what was here intact, that is, until removing the unsourced statement that "the following (146 signers) are considered founding fathers". Clearly, more work is needed to straighten this out, not just here but in the 50 or so other articles affected. Allreet (talk) 14:24, 16 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Second statement by Robert McClenon on Founding Fathers

First, a proper RFC is in order on the Continental Association, and probably on the Articles of Confederation. Second, I will respond to the seven statements:

Third, using the DRN talk page to discuss this dispute on the side is inappropriate. Robert McClenon (talk) 16:57, 17 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]

I agree with your third point and just wasn't sure how to bring it back over here (see how I pinged Allreet "for transparency".) I realize now that I should have been upfront with saying that the discussion must move back to the main page here. casualdejekyll 00:24, 18 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
I initially thought your comment, Robert, related to my "side discussion" (additional comments) above. I now understand you were referring to the talk page. However, in my uncertainty I thought it appropriate to "hide" my comments to avoid interfering with the process. Not sure what to say about my action being reverted. In any case, I have no problem with what I said so if all else is okay, I'll leave the revert stand. Please clarify "how far we can go" with our responses. Allreet (talk) 11:56, 18 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
@Casualdejekyll: Robert indicated I should direct my questions to you. I'm open to submitting this for a RfC should @Randy Kryn: not respond. What do you recommend?. Also @Robert McClenon: Thanks to all. Allreet (talk) 20:17, 18 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
I was hoping Randy had the intention of responding. If they don't respond soon then an RfC is in order for sure. casualdejekyll 22:01, 18 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
What do you recommend regarding a RfC should there be no response? Allreet (talk) 01:20, 19 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Excuse me, nobody gave a time limit, and when I get pinged I see this back and forth with two of you going off in new directions, talking among yourselves, which all further clutters what needs to be responded to. These things take time, this topic is not one that should be handled lightly or quickly. Many thoughts to organize into words for my response, now a few more, so I'll focus on posting it on Monday if not before. Randy Kryn (talk) 02:27, 19 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]


Second statement by Randy Kryn

First: Do we need a new RfC? Certainly not on the question of the Continental Association, its sources, or its founding document status. I will explain why.

To understand the real scope of our daily two month discussion, and why other editors were given every opportunity to join in, allow me to draw your attention to the sections of the talk page of Founding Fathers of the United States devoted to it, which includes 13 long discussions plus one RfC:

Contents

2 List of Founding Fathers disputed
3 Officially WP:3O
4 Request for comment on use of sources
5 Key
8 Erroneous Origin of Term "Founding Father"
9 Lack of sources for Continental Association signers being considered Founding Fathers
10 The "Myth" of the Founding Fathers
11 Deleted wordhistoryedu.com citation - source is unreliable/unnotable
12 Should Lincoln also be credited with early usage on the page?
13 Fathers
14 Replaced paragraph in lead...other suggestions
15 Revised List of Founding Fathers section
16 Prior Political Experience section
18 Changed title of list section

...and to the sections of the Continental Association talk page devoted to it, which includes five detailed discussions plus two RfCs:

Contents

5 Not a "detailed system"
6 Inline dispute regarding Founding Fathers and Continental Association
7 What the Journal of the American Revolution has to say about the Continental Association
8 Request for comment regarding WP:VER and the use of sources
9 Request for Comment: Are Continental Association signers Founding Fathers?
10 "Union" of the colonies
11 New source, CA and AofC Founding Document discussion

Please note that in all those sections, and on literally dozens more on other talk pages, not only was no consensus reached but few editors even joined in even though the discussions were well viewed ([1] Founding Fathers of the United States 90-day talk page views and [2] Continental Association 90-day talk page views). Arguably, everyone who did not comment agreed, by their non-response, that the page and sources were fine, and at a minimum many opportunities for comment and/or criticism by the community were freely available and not taken.

Next, and maybe even more importantly regarding the need for a new RfC on the Continental Association or its sources, several times it has been stated-as-fact in this process that Allreet's RfC wordings were "not proper". That is just not true. Let's take a look.

RfC #1. Allreet's RfC title and question are understandable and quite direct (plus he then presented his concerns well in the first comment). "Request for comment on use of sources: Are the sources being used sufficient for declaring signers of a particular document 'Founding Fathers'?"

RfC #2. The title and question technically described the concern and seemed accurately worded (Allreet then adequately presented his case in the first comment). "Request for comment regarding WP:VER and the use of sources: Regarding WP:VER, does 'clear and direct' mean relying solely on the text of a source, as opposed to allowing verification of an assertion with a combination of the source's title and text?"

RfC #3. The third RfC has gold-standard wording. Could not be more direct. Why has this been described as inadequate or improperly worded? RfC title: "Request for Comment: Are Continental Association signers Founding Fathers?" RfC question: "Are the 53 signers of the Continental Association agreement Founding Fathers of the United States?"

These three RfCs join dozens of other discussions in not gaining outside response. Many editors followed all or parts of the dialogue, but did not choose to join in, and Allreet closed all of them accordingly.

There is no need, or has a need been shown, for yet another RfC on the stable and well-discussed existing wording concerning the founding document status of the Continental Association.

Now, to answer the moderator's other questions:

1) "Signers of the Continental Association were undoubtedly pro-independence."

Agree strongly. The Adams boys, Washington, and many if not most of the others, of course they were. These people were not blubbering idiots, they knew exactly what they were stepping into. But the Colonies had to first unite and try to either make their rulers see the sense in backing down from their oppressive actions or they were going to go toe-to-toe with England - it was going to turn one way or the other. The Continental Association was not pulled out of a hat for the wonderment of children. It was the initial giant step towards war and independence.

2) "Most reliable sources agree that the Continental Association was a founding document of the United States."

Disagree strongly. Not at present...yet more than enough sources do to give due weight to the Continental Association not only as a mere dime-a-dozen founding document but as a major founding document. One of the "Fab Four" as it were (always wanted to use "as it were" in a sentence).
WP:VER tells us when "reliable sources disagree, then maintain a neutral point of view and present what the various sources say, giving each side its due weight." Allreet did just that with his carefully crafted neutral language, an inspired job well done and consistent with Wikipedia's stable-since-2010 four-document presentation. Then, with neutrality and due weight in place, he inexplicably started an edit war.

3) "Abraham Lincoln claimed that the Continental Association was important in the founding of the United States of America."

Agree strongly. Please note the criteria for FF status as directly spelled out in the stable opening sentence of Founding Fathers of the United States (emphasis mine): "The Founding Fathers of the United States, or simply the Founding Fathers or Founders, were a group of American revolutionary leaders who united the Thirteen Colonies, led the war for independence from Great Britain, and built a frame of government for the new United States of America...". The Continental Association united the Colonies. It was designed to do that. There is no possible argument refuting it. Abraham Lincoln correctly said that the Continental Association formed the union. It was revolutionary in nature and devastating in practice, and so recognized by Lincoln.

4) "The Continental Association was written from a Loyalist perspective."

Disagree strongly. The first few sentences were, loyal subjects asking nicely for a favor. Then, the worm turns, and the "Loyalists" threaten England with a total export-import economic boycott such as the world had never seen. True-blue Loyalists do not dare such a thing, so before very long and by the time they could sing a rallying song or two for the dear old, Loyalists became few and far between, many fled, and the Adams's and associates got their war.

5) "Signing a founding document is the usual definition of who are the Founding Fathers of the United States and represents what reliable sources have written."

Agree, yes, in part, but certainly not limited to just signers (see George Mason, one of foundliest of the founders).

6) "Signers of the Continental Association are Founding Fathers of the United States."

Agree strongly. All sources agree on the Declaration and Constitution being founding documents. Then enough sources add the Association and Articles of Confederation (the nation's first constitution and governmental blueprint) to make the Four-document presentation a significant alternate view worthy of triggering Wikipedia's article neutrality and due weight directives. Several sources stand out:
  • Abraham Lincoln. Yes, we live in a universe where Lincoln’s First Inaugural Address is a reputable source which examines the pathway Americans took to create their nation (formed, Lincoln explained, by the Continental Association: "The Union is much older than the Constitution. It was formed, in fact, by the Articles of Association in 1774"). Lincoln pioneered, within this section of the speech, the Four-document approach used by Wikipedia and others.
  • The Journal of the American Revolution, a scholarly academic journal devoted to the era, provides two major 2017 reputable sources:

7) "Signing the Continental Association does not mean one supported the Union."

Disagree strongly (trick question?) because the Association created the union of Colonies. The signers knew what they were doing and where their deeds could lead. Joseph Galloway, John Dickinson, and a handful of others tried valiantly to stop what they experienced as a runaway team of horses barreling towards war and independence, but had to reluctantly clear Liberty's road when they realized its size, spirit, and direction.
Randy Kryn (talk) 13:25, 21 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]


Third(?) statement by Moderator, Founding Fathers of the United States

I'm just going to say this right now: there is nobody to blame but me for the technical hiccups this case has encountered, and I'm sorry.

With that out of the way, I think it's a good idea to refactor discussion and try to corral all these threads into one coherent discussion instead of jumping all over the place. I would like a short statement from all parties on the following things:

1. In one of all these massive threads of stuff, Randy suggested: A real compromise may be achieved by adding words on the pages of the disputed founding fathers that "some sources call him..." Is this an acceptable compromise to you all, and if so, what needs to be done going forward?

2. If that is not a good compromise, is it RfC time?

3. If the answer to both above questions is "no", what do you suggest we do, going forward?

casualdejekyll 19:30, 25 March 2022 (UTC)
[reply]

Third(?) statements by editors, Founding Fathers of the United States

Third statement by Allreet (Founding Fathers)

1. I definitely do not favor the compromise suggested regarding signers of the Continental Association. My reason is that their acceptance as founders would be to endorse an extreme minority view. Sources are so scant in this case that Wikipedia would be leading the way as an endorser (1st, 2nd or 3rd), and it my understanding that Wikipedia does not lead in adopting minority views; it follows. I came across this construct around the time the current dispute was developing. It was in a RfC or DRN discussion, and I haven't been able to find it again. In any case, the concept exists and we would do well to adhere to it. Perhaps a check with knowledgeable Admins/Wikipedians might be a way to track it down.

I do see some justification for a compromise regarding signers of the Articles in that at least 2-3 reasonably prominent sources support it. Unfortunately not anyone nearly as authoritative as the National Archives. If you don't know what that means, check out Founders Online, a project of the Archives that has consolidated the papers (185,000 documents) of seven of the top founders. Essentially, they're the keepers of the Holy Grail, so if anybody knows, they do, and they clearly do not endorse the Articles as a founding document. So what justifies us accepting a couple middling sources against la crème de la crème of authorities? That I'm afraid is a tough question. So I'd like to reserve offering an opinion on this part of the equation until hearing from Robert and Randy.

Meanwhile, to clarify the the idea of minority views and Wikipedia "leading", I'd like to offer a quote I shared with Randy during our two-month ping-pong match that further clarifies WP:VER: "If your viewpoint is in the majority, then it should be easy to substantiate it with reference to commonly accepted reference texts. If your viewpoint is held by a significant scientific minority, then it should be easy to name prominent adherents, and the article should certainly address the controversy without taking sides. If your viewpoint is held by an extremely small minority, then whether it's true or not, whether you can prove it or not, it doesn't belong in Wikipedia..." — Jimmy Wales, 2003. I'm leaning toward the third of Jimmy's scenarios, plus I don't see any harm in letting future "scholarship" shine its light.

2. Rather than do something for expediency's sake and certainly rather than do the wrong thing, I'm perfectly willing to endure another trial by fire or whatever a RfC might mean. That said, this would not be my first choice.

3. I think my second answer (if that's what it takes...) renders this moot.

In closing, I'm mystified by whatever chagrin you're suffering from, casualdejekyll. Ya done just fine, in my view. I have no complaints, zero, plus I've been through enough ordeals in various roles and organizations that I look at everything as a learning experience and believe nothing is ever gained by being your own worst critic. So thanks for leading the way and especially for treating us fairly. Allreet (talk) 00:16, 26 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]

I've thought about this at length, did some more research, and read Robert's thoughts, which I generally agree with, especially the idea that this is as much about the biographies of 50 dead people as the Founding Fathers article itself.
I stand by what I said about the Continental Association: sources are so lacking that saying "some consider" its signers founders would be to ignore WP:VER. If someone did something else to qualify, of course they should be recognized.
As for the Articles, I'm amenable to adding wording along the lines of "A few sources consider XYZ to be a founding father" with Padover, Stanfield, and Werther cited and a wikilink to the main FF article. (This is not to withdraw my objections regarding the ambiguity of Werther's piece.) To be clear, I would not accept "Founding Father of the United States" as part of the wording. I know that sounds nit-picky but what's being compromised is "due weight"; that is, we're not acknowledging the greater authority of the sources that disagree, so I think it's important to imply as little as possible.
The Founding Father article's list section needs to be edited to remove the implication that everyone on the four lists is a founder. First, that is not the case with the Continental Association. Second, the ambiguity regarding Articles signers needs to be brought in line with what's proposed for individual biographies. And third, delegates to the Constitutional Convention who did not sign for one reason or another need to be listed somewhere. They're noted in the last paragraph of the lede (source: National Archives) but aren't listed individually somewhere and should be.
Finally, I'd like to apologize for my own verbosity throughout this exercise. I spent 20 years as a software documentation writer, a large part of that training others to cut, cut, cut. In looking back at my writing here, I'm about to fire myself. Allreet (talk) 06:22, 27 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Pinging @User:Randy Kryn, @User:Robert McClenon, @User:casualdejekyll: I've thought about the wording and not allowing caps and "of the USA". Consistent with that, a more complete sentence would read: "A few sources consider XYZ one of the nation's founders" followed by the three cites. Note the wikilink. Regarding my objection to the Association, the same could not be said because "a few sources" are not available to support that. Allreet (talk) 14:40, 27 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Third statement by Robert McClenon (Founding Fathers)

I didn't read the two months of back-and-forth and do not intend to read it. I would not have read it if I had been the moderator. However, it appears that either the real issue or part of the real issue is not just about the article on the Founding Fathers of the United States, but the biographies of dead people of the men who signed the Continental Association or the Articles of Confederation, but not the American Declaration of Independence or the Constitution of the United States. It appears that a question is whether they should be referred to in the lede paragraph of each biography as a Founding Father.

I think that we agree that any signer of the Declaration of Independence or the Constitution is a Founding Father.

Robert McClenon (talk) 00:26, 27 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Third statement by Randy Kryn

1) "some sources call him" would end this discussion and I urge the moderator to boldly accept it per WP:NPOV: "...representing fairly, proportionately, and, as far as possible, without editorial bias, all the significant views that have been published by reliable sources on a topic" and WP:RELIABLE: "...making sure that all majority and significant minority views that have appeared in those sources are covered". The reliable minority gold standard sources (Journal of the American Revolution, especially its defining article "Analyzing the Founders: A Closer Look at the Signers of Four Founding Documents"; Abraham Lincoln first Inaugural Address; the Architect of the Capitol) and several silver-standard website sources meet:

  • The 1774 Continental Association literally "united the Thirteen Colonies". That is what it was designed to do and that is what it did. As clear as can be.
  • The Articles of Confederation literally "built a frame of government". It was the nation's first constitution which built the nation's first government, the Confederation Congress. As clear as can be.

2) No new RfC needed, as Allreet's very well viewed and clearly worded Request for Comment: Are Continental Association signers Founding Fathers? RfC already provided an adequate request and ample opportunity for comment and topic clarification. Interestingly, of the hundreds of readers who viewed the RfC, the only editor besides myself to respond said:

  • Thus "sometimes considered to be founding fathers" or "some sources call him" meetsWP:NPOV for the Continental Association.
  • As for an RfC on the Articles of Confederation, please, can we deep six that one? The Articles of Confederation created both a national constitution and the nation's first government. How much more founding-centric can you get?
Randy Kryn (talk) 12:34, 27 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Back and Forth discussion, Founding Fathers of the United States

To prevent cluttering up the main statements, I've moved all the responses down here and I ask that you continue to respond to things down here.

Allreet's response to Randy Kryn's Second Statement #6

Five sources are mentioned for the claim that signers of the Continental Association are Founding Fathers. Yet not one reliable source supports this. While they all call the Continental Association a founding document, we cannot jump to the conclusion that signers of founding documents are founders on our own.

I contend multiple sources are required for an assertion of this magnitude. If the claim is "true", it should be easy to find sources stating this clearly and directly as WP:VER requires. Allreet (talk) 09:33, 25 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Randy Kryn's response to Allreet's second comment to #6A

Thank you for agreeing that the Continental Association is a founding document. That alone should end this dispute. Wikipedia has recognized signers of four founding documents as, well, founders, since time immemorial (2010) and lays out the criteria in the first sentence of Founding Fathers of the United States: "The Founding Fathers of the United States, or simply the Founding Fathers or Founders, were a group of American revolutionary leaders who united the Thirteen Colonies, led the war for independence from Great Britain, and built a frame of government for the new United States of America...."

Specifically, Abraham Lincoln, as an inarguably reputable source in a historically major speech, agrees on the four founding documents. In doing so, Honest Abe actually created the standard (honestly, he did, please read the link).

The inarguably reputable Journal of the American Revolution agrees with Lincoln, and its inarguably reputable defining article "Analyzing the Founders: A Closer Look at the Signers of Four Founding Documents" provides all the clarification needed in its title. Allreet, you argued for a month or so that the title of this major academic paper was maybe placed there not by the academic paper's author but by a rogue typesetter or some other vandal (I kid you not, read the book-length discussion). The paper first sets out the criteria (Signers=Founders) and then discusses these signers in its text and interesting charts.

The two inarguably reputable sources which focus on Roger Sherman as a Founder who signed all four founding documents (the Architect of the Capitol calls them the "four great state papers") of course extend to the other signers of the same great papers, per consistency and common sense. Sherman, the Journal, and the Architect, bless their souls, leave no man behind (nor does the "Founder of the day", a very popular and, more importantly, carefully crafted website by a dedicated "enthusiast". Bless his soul). Randy Kryn (talk)

Allreet's reponse to Randy Kryn's last two statements

The dispute is not over founding documents. The issues are sources and founders. The following observations apply to both of Randy’s most recent statements.

I have no qualms regarding subsequent RfCs if that’s what it takes. I believe sources will determine the outcome and should others see them differently, what’s to fear? Allreet (talk) 20:23, 27 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Randy Kryn's response to Allreet's reponse to Randy Kryn's last two statements

(In progress. I was not pinged, missed this and just saw it, so would ask for an additional 24 hours to respond. Randy Kryn (talk) 04:50, 29 March 2022 (UTC))[reply]

@User:Randy Kryn, independent of your latest post, I've changed my mind about a compromise. I'm telling you that to save you the time of making a reply, though of course that's up to you. Stand by for a new comment under "Back and Forth". Ping @User:casualdejekyll, @User:Robert McClenon Allreet (talk) 07:01, 29 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Statement 2A by Robert McClenon

One of the statements is too long to understand. I see that it is saying that there is no need for an RFC, and it says it at so much length that it doesn't say anything. However, there may not be a need for an RFC, but not for the reason argued at length. The text of the article says that different reliable sources disagree as to whether signers of the Continental Association and the Articles of Confederation alone are considered Founding Fathers, and the table lists which documents were signed by each person. That seems to be an adequate way to finesse the disagreement. I don't think that it has been established that the signers of the Continental Association were Founding Fathers, and writing at length that has been established does not make it so. However, I see no harm in retaining the current acceptance of ambiguity. I personally think that the signers of the Continental Association were not Founding Fathers unless they signed something else, or are founders in some other way; I personally think that the signers of the Articles of Confederation were Founding Fathers, and that they engaged in a very successful failure that set the way for the Philadelphia Convention of 1787. Those are my opinions, and they are worth what you paid for them. I don't think that we need an RFC unless someone objects to the current studied ambiguity. Robert McClenon (talk) 05:19, 25 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Robert McClenon, I reacted to your first couple sentences here and your comments at a talk page I had just read, and stupidly didn't comprehend the rest (you, too, may need to be more concise but my fault). You seem to say leave the stable status quo, and of course I'd agree. A real compromise may be achieved by adding words on the pages of the disputed founding fathers that "some sources call him...". Randy Kryn (talk) 16:09, 25 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]

A light from the middle at the end of the tunnel?

unfortunately, later events have made this not a viable exit point

A pleasing solution has been there all this time. Quite awhile after this discussion began a third RfC was held. It consisted of Allreet and I continuing our back-and-forting (not misspelled) except for one lone editor who wandered in. Let's call him North8000.

After commenting on the value of both points of view, and after giving it some thought, North8000 came back 18 hours later and proposed a simple and fair solution: "What arises from my post is that any statement would need calibration like 'sometimes considered to be founding fathers'".

I suggest we accept North000's wise counsel, retroactively agree that he provided a consensus, and then work on simple wording. Articles of individuals who signed only the Con.Assoc. or Ar.ofConf. (although some could easily argue that such wording belongs on all founder articles except for the "Big 7" Superstars) would contain a qualifier such as "Because he signed the Articles of Confederation, some consider xxxxx a Founding Father of the United States" and appear not in the first lead paragraph but later or much later in the lead (except maybe for big hitters like Patrick Henry and Peyton Randolph, where a qualifier isn't needed and it can say in the first paragraph).

With North8000 being the sole editor, aside from the two of us, who replied to the well worded and well-viewed RfC, accepting his solution reads out as symmetrical and aesthetically pleasing, making it, in some schools of thought, the correct one. Randy Kryn (talk) 19:22, 27 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]

@Randy Kryn, @Robert McClenon, @Casualdejekyll: I like that wording. I might suggest adding "sources" after "some", but either may work. To be clear and hopefully not contentious, I would not agree to this for the Continental Association at present. More sources of a prominent nature would be needed to support that. Allreet (talk) 20:11, 27 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
I just noticed FF of the US which I objected to earlier. I was going to object to it again, but then thought "what the hey". I'm pointing this out to be explicit about my change of mind. Allreet (talk) 20:15, 27 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
P.S. Sometimes the lights at the other end of the tunnel are trains. :) Allreet (talk) 20:27, 27 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
So, is that.. that? casualdejekyll 20:49, 27 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Yes, if Randy accepts what I just said, that this would only apply to the Articles, not the Continental Association. If not, I’m willing to ask for RfCs on both documents. Allreet (talk) 17:09, 28 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
What did you mean you objected earlier to "FF of the US"? I'm missing something there. And sure, since you refuse to accept that the CA has enough minority sources to be neutrally named a founding document by Wikipedia policies and guidelines, a qualifier on at least the Articles is fine (although, because all pages of Article signers already mention that significant signing in their lead paragraph, the Founding Father descriptor should quickly follow). Thanks for putting that dispute behind us. As for yet another RfC on the CA, which Allreet's already had, I would ask the moderator to advise against it. If he seriously plans to continue, then how would wording be decided (and I should, out of fairness because Allreet unilaterally opened and then closed three previous RfCs on the exact same topic when they weren't going his way, be given the first statement). Randy Kryn (talk) 04:37, 29 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
@User:casualdejekyll: I don't think it would be appropriate to respond to any of the above so I'll leave that to your good judgement. Allreet (talk) 06:56, 29 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Allreet's final answer

@User:Randy Kryn, @User:Robert McClenon, @User:Casualdejekyll: The compromise before us was one Randy proposed and I believe Robert endorsed: we accept "some sources consider XYZ to be a founder”. Then after much thought, I realized how anathema this is to our responsibility as editors regarding sources.

The Continental Association has two sources at best:

Both these also apply to the Articles of Confederation, which has one additional source:

Even if I'm wrong about founderoftheday and Werther, we barely satisfy "some sources" for the Articles and a "couple" for the Continental Association. Meanwhile, I can name more than a dozen sources that clearly hold otherwise, the leading institutions and books on the subject. (I now own seven of the latter.)

So rather than compromise on one of our core values, I’d rather endure RfCs on the two documents. That leaves two questions: With sources this clear, why would anyone have to? And then, if there's a good answer to that, who would initiate and manage them? Allreet (talk) 07:42, 29 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Other editors, please read the title of what Allree refers to as Richard Werther's journal article. I have a sense of wonder as to just why, oh why, he didn't include the paper's name (which summarized its premise)? Randy Kryn (talk) 12:40, 29 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
@Randy Kryn, because I wanted to make sure you'd point out the "premise" you've repeated since January 14: that you can't find a direct connection in his text - that you must read the article with his title - "Analyzing the Founders: A Closer Look at the Signers of Four Founding Documents" - in mind. My response to that is he never makes a "clear and direct" statement such as "I wanted to analyze the Founders" or "when the Founders signed these documents". No matter. Even with Werther you're left with just one other source of any worth. Allreet (talk) 14:09, 29 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Aha, you set the bait and reeled me in, just to be told that the entire article is about the founding signers (signer=founders according to the paper's clear, direct, and defining title). As for only one more worthy source, are you referring to Abraham Lincoln, the Architect of the Capitol, Founder of the Day, or the spirit of common sense itself? Randy Kryn (talk) 14:22, 29 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Yes, I wanted to call attention to the specific flaw in your reasoning, and you're still citing the title as if it can be used as a source. Could somebody else please provide feedback on that? As for Lincoln, he's a source for what? Founding documents? That's not at issue. For the nth time, the issue is signers, and Lincoln said nothing even remotely connected. The same is true of Architect; it's a source for founding documents. Founderoftheday, as a self-published work without any editorial oversight, is an unreliable source (per WP:VER). Which leaves Pardover, but only for the Articles and its signers. So where are we on these issues? Anybody else care to chime in? Allreet (talk) 19:00, 29 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Pinging @User:casualdejekyll and @User:Robert McClenon Allreet (talk) 19:03, 29 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
If the Continental Association and Articles of Confederation are sourced as two of the four main founding documents but you can't accept that their signers are Founding Fathers, shouldn't consistency with the signers of the two Superstar documents, the Declaration and the second constitution, be maintained? Although the signers of the CA and Art.ofConfed. have fewer but existing reputable sources, articles should be neutral and reflect all validly sourced points of view. Common sense really should be a factor here. Randy Kryn (talk) 20:45, 29 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
@Randy Kryn, @Allreet This discussion has slowly become more and more violent. Reel it in you guys.
Titles of articles can in fact not be representative of the actual article. This is a truth. Regardless of that truth, the only thing the title actually says is that the documents are founding, not the people which signed them. WP:V does in fact say "clear and direct", as Allreet pointed out. Are we going to have this argument AGAIN? Because we can have this argument again. That just seems like the opposite of productive. If we've agreed on the Articles of Confederation (which mind you - was NOT the subject of this when the discussion was opened).. can we please move past it? Would you guys both agree that "some sources" is acceptable for the Articles? This discussion appears to have stonewalled. I can tell you two have respect for each other's contributions, but it's looking less and less like you have respect for each other. casualdejekyll 22:33, 29 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Casualdejekyll, I fail how to see how anything I have said or done could be construed as "violent". While I appreciate the difficulty of your position, the need to be equally fair to both sides, how is that judgement fair to me? I'll let that question go by saying it's a rhetorical one meant solely for the record, so I see no particular need for a response.
Your feedback on Werther's article is part of what I asked for at the beginning of this DRN. As for other sources, while it's clear the Continental Association has plenty of support as a founding document, the only support its signers have is founderoftheday.com. Unfortunately, in terms of reaching a resolution, the same is true of the Articles except for one prominent source, Saul Padover's article. How, then, does it qualify for "some sources consider signers of the Articles of Confederation founders"? I'm afraid that compromise runs contrary to WP:VER and my regret about that is I, too, would like nothing more than a speedy and peaceful resolution.
BTW, the Articles of Conderation is at issue under this DRN. In the opening, I mentioned the Continental Association page was also affected and not the Articles of Confederation page because it wasn't changed last year. But the issue I raised at the outset expressed concerns over "an assertion made on July 30, 2021 by a different editor claiming 145 historical figures are founding fathers." About 30 of those figures (part of the 50 pages changed) were signers of the Articles. Subsequently, the Articles has been mentioned by all three of us throughout. Ping: Randy Kryn and Robert McClenon. Allreet (talk) 03:00, 30 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
@Casualdejekyll, @Randy Kryn @User:Robert McClenon: In looking back, I saw that I overlooked Stanfield, which gives us two sources on the Articles and I'll compromise on founderoftheday to make that three, because the day is bound to come along when we can replace it and in the scheme of things, it's not so bad. And so, I will accept "some sources, etc." provided the wording doesn't go overboard. Solely for the record, I'll note that this compromises a bit on WP:VER's Neutrality provision in the sense that the other side should be acknowledged when sources differ. We can let that go as well. Also, I want to let Randy know three things. First, I see no reason why the Founding Fathers article should not be a Featured Article, and I'd like to work with him on that process if he's willing. Second, regarding the Continental Association, its day may come and I will endeavor diligently to dig up sources to facilitate that. And third, what say you, Randy, on shaking hands and moving on? Allreet (talk) 03:50, 30 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
As a preface, to quote Abraham Lincoln once again, "The Union is much older than the Constitution. It was formed, in fact, by the Articles of Association in 1774".
1) All of these document and main FF pages should be feature articles (none of them is at present) especially with the upcoming 250th anniversaries. The Continental Association will be first up among the documents, and should be featured near or on the date of its creation by the First Continental Congress, in late October, 2024. Hopefully many editors will join in on your plan.
2) Since everyone here agrees on the four founding documents, on the signers of the Articles being Founding Fathers, and that the biographical pages of the Articles sole signers needs a brief qualifier, can we please return to the initial and ongoing disagreement on the signers of the Continental Association. The signers of the Association and Articles being founders are both minority viewpoints (other editors could claim there are plentiful sources for only seven men to qualify as real Founders, and they would list all other founding-document signers as alternate minority viewpoints which would need qualifers) that have enough sources to be included per neutrality, as Wikipedia has stably done since 2012. Wikipedia has stably aligned with the four-document format since 2010, so a main question is one of consistency - if the signers of three of the four are listed as founders, which Wikipedia has done for a decade, how can the signers of the fourth now be excluded, especially when they can be backed up by sources as well as being explicitly and concisely defined by the criteria for founders in the first sentence of the Founding Fathers article.
3) Academic papers are a realm to themselves, and in that realm "Titles of articles can in fact not be representative of the actual article" is incorrect, and actually just the opposite. The title sets the premise and then the paper explores the premise. Werher's entire aricle is about America's founders signing the four major founding documents. It doesn't separate founders and non-founders by document signed. It includes informative charts of which founders signed which founding document, and a sorting tag that includes the word 'Founders'.
4) I again propose that we accept @North8000's compromise of including a brief qualifier on pages of the signers of the Association as set forward by the only "non-combatant" of Allreet's defining and well-worded third RfC (pinging North8000 as a non-participant reader to let him realize the influence that they've already had in this discussion). It seems the only fair and neutral resolution to our "dispute". Everyone here must realize that we cannot unilaterally change the criteria for a Founding Father or remove the signers of the CA as Founding Fathers on the FF page from a discussion on a non-public page, even if we wanted to. The best we are able to do, and arguably probably the best we can do, is accept North8000's consensus of adding qualifiers on biographical pages of many of the sole signers of the CA (I would think that qualifiers shouldn't be needed on some of the biographical page of prominent sole CA signers such as John Jay, Patrick Henry, and Peyton Randolph).
5) A handshake? Ha. No matter what evolves, when I meet you in person at the next North American WikiConference (hopefully in Vegas) expect a hug as a worthy adversary and, more importantly, as recognition to someone involved in improving and safeguarding Wikipedia's Union and U.S. founding pages (many of which already include very good edits by both of us because of these long discussions). Randy Kryn (talk) 13:51, 30 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
To the community, to be as clear and objective as I can:
  • The only issue of relevance is sources that explicitly identify founders.
  • Sources that recognize founding documents must say more to identify the documents' signers as founders.
  • Lincoln only addresses founding documents, not founders.
  • The text of Richard Werther's article is only "clear and direct" about founding documents, not in recognizing signers of the Continental Association or Articles of Confederation as founders. Its title is irrelevant.
  • The Continental Association has no reliable sources that accept its signers as founders.
  • The Articles of Confederation has only two reliable sources (Padover and Stanfield) identifying its signers as founders.
  • Stability, consistency, common sense, and the like are unacceptable criteria for verification.
I find it disappointing that WP:VER and the most reliable and prominent of sources - from the National Archives to Morris, Ellis, Isaacson, et al - are ineffective in the face of recalcitrant subjectivity. Since that tactic is not likely to prevail, I'm committed to enduring whatever else it takes to remove the 50+ claims for both the documents in question. Allreet (talk) 16:57, 30 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Pinging @Randy Kryn, @Robert McClenon, @Casualdejekyll, @North8000

@Randy Kryn: Thanks!! North8000 (talk) 13:55, 30 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]

I respectfully ask the moderator to put an end to this as regards the Articles of Confederation. Allreet kindly outlined above that he had taken the Articles off the table after adding a new source, and was quite articulate about it. It was a well-worded and obvious defense of keeping the Article signers as Founders and adding the qualifier to the biographical pages as proposed, and I think we all have agreed to that. As for the rest of his new statement, it is yet another long posting with points to counter, which would need a complete answer, a forty-eight hour clock starts now I would say (just came online and saw it) but I'll try to keep it to 24. Randy Kryn (talk) 03:29, 31 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]

@Casualdejekyll: I can substantiate that to compromise on the Articles as proposed may violate three provisions of WP:VER (exceptional claims, neutrality, questionable/self-published sources). But fair enough, if Randy wants to rebut what I said. BTW, my "long posting" of 180 words simply summarized points I've raised several times. So I kindly ask that he stick with the issue: do signers = founders in terms of what reliable sources have to say? Ping: Randy Kryn and North8000 Allreet (talk) 12:20, 31 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Various replies to Second Statement by Moderator

@User:Randy Kryn, @User:Robert McClenon, @Casualdejekyll: I'm curious as to our next step. I would like to respond to Randy's 2nd statement, but only in regards to sources (about 300 words). I would also appreciate a revision of Randy's Summary of Dispute, which continues to impugn my integrity. Allreet (talk) 21:34, 24 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
You may respond, yes. casualdejekyll 01:54, 25 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
We can respond to each other? In that case I would have had lots to say already. I'm assuming I can then respond to Allreet's response, so the two-month-plus daily back and forth will now pick up again and continue? Randy Kryn (talk) 03:31, 25 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
@Casualdejekyll, @User:Robert McClenon, @Randy Kryn: Casualdejekyll, before I say anything else, I think it would be a good idea to have some ground rules on responses. I agree with Randy to the extent that we don't need another unending back and forth. Concurrent with that, we don't need responses that run 1,000+ words long or that drag in everything imaginable. The first amounts to filibustering; the second, to a holiday for red herrings. What we do need, then, is focus. So I thought a good place to start would be the subject of this dispute: the need for sources to verify whether signers of the Continental Association are "considered founders". Just as a suggestion, a 300-400 limit should suffice. The same would be true of some of the other (but hardly all) of the issues addressed in your seven questions, such as #2 and #5. The item I had in mind immediately in terms of sources is #6 where Randy mentions four. Allreet (talk) 05:26, 25 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Rather than await further permission, I thought it better to simply be bold and exercise the permission I have. So I'm adding a 200-word response to Randy's assertion that "Signers of the Continental Association are Founding Fathers". He based this on five sources. IMO, none of them qualify anyone for the distinction. The only way to test this is to post and let others have their say. Pinging @Casualdejekyll, @User:Robert McClenon, @Randy Kryn, @Casualdejekyll. Randy, swing away with your response, but please try to keep the verbiage to 400 words.Allreet (talk) 09:07, 25 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
So we have a new moderator? I'll await the real moderator's response to see if I should respond to the response to my second statement newly posted just above my second statement (placement seems backwards and, honestly, quite unfair. So should my answers, if any, always go above or can I put some below responses?) and the intrusion in my second answer-box, and ignore for the moment the two moderator-wanna-bees. Randy Kryn (talk) 11:46, 25 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
The 400 word limit is acceptable - personally I would have it shorter, but if both of you agree I am open to it. Aditionally, calling me and Robert "wanna-bees" is a personal attack. Be civil, Randy. casualdejekyll 12:36, 25 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Where exactly can I answer him? Interesting reading of my comment. No, just the opposite - based on this discussion I was calling Allreet and Robert "wanna-bees", not you. Both were trying to dictate page direction and moderate, but you, not either of them, are moderating. 400 words sounds doable in 4eight hours, hopefully sooner, but a lot to summarize even though the exact same thing has been discussed in public space scores of times now and there is no dispute on this: he never got a consensus. Another RfC would be giving another huge bite at the apple because, as already decided by scores of no-consensus public settings and discussions, no RfC or even another public discussion is warranted. Please read both my first and second statements again for further explanation of this, thanks.Randy Kryn (talk) 13:33, 25 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
@Casualdejekyll, @Randy Kryn, @User:Robert McClenon: Personally, I'm not terribly concerned about how many words it takes, though I do know brevity is preferable to volume. As for "bites at the apple", let's try getting our priorities straight. The Founding Fathers article has a million viewers per year, so it's important that what we offer is the best possible. In that regard, the only consensus that matters is that of historians. It then follows that the key is sources, major and minor, which means keeping their notability (relative importance) in perspective, for example, the National Archives versus a random journal article. That's far from the end of it all, so to speak, but not a bad place to start. Allreet (talk) 16:58, 25 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
@Randy Kryn: Please stop personalizing this. Reply below my response. Don't worry about the RfC - casualdejekyll will help adjudicate that, I'm sure. Allreet (talk) 17:01, 25 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Rules for Founding Fathers

Moved from User talk:Casualdejekyll § Rules for Founding Fathers
 – casualdejekyll 19:37, 25 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]

I think you made a typo in trying to provide a link to the rules that you were specifying. As a result, the link doesn't link to a set of DRN rules, but to an editing essay. That is why one of the editors said that there wasn't a time limit. You might want to check that and repost the rules. Robert McClenon (talk) 03:18, 20 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]

OH/ oops casualdejekyll 18:01, 20 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Update: no typo, but WP:DRNC, for whatever reason, does not match the pattern of WP:DRNA and WP:DRNB. Fixed. @Randy Kryn, @Allreet. I apologize for the inconvenience but the rules were not linked properly. This is entirely my fault and I'm very sorry. casualdejekyll 18:04, 20 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
?, those are the rules I was going by, which added to my emphasizing consensus and the many opportunities Allreet already had on multiple talk pages to build one, which he never did. New Rules? Sounds like Bill Maher. Since we are so far into whatever territory we've entered it seems the rules have pretzel-wised so maybe should be set aside for this one. I'm working on the rest of my second answer and will post it sometime on Monday if not before. Randy Kryn (talk) 18:26, 20 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Agreed whole-heartedly. Let's just say I screwed it up and move on. casualdejekyll 18:31, 20 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]

@User:Robert McClenon, @User:Casualdejekyll, @User:Randy Kryn: I just returned from a vacation and in catching up with things, I came across this exchange. I have no understanding of the snafu, nor does it seem very important. What I'm wondering about is what "the many opportunities Allreet already had on multiple talk pages to build (consensus), which he never did" has to do with anything? The characterization is simply not true, in fact a complete distortion of what went down. Anybody care to explain its relevance and then how such comments should be regarded given Rule 1.1? Allreet (talk) 02:24, 25 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]

User:Allreet - First, as to the mistake. The link that the moderator had provided that was supposed to be to the rules was originally not to a set of rules but to an unrelated editing essay. As a result, in particular, discussion started without a time limit, and the rules didn't originally include a statement to be civil and concise. As a result, the discussion hasn't been following a 48-hour response cycle. Also, the rule to be civil restates the fourth pillar of Wikipedia, but there hasn't been a rule to be concise, and User:Randy Kryn hasn't been concise. That is the issues about the ground rules. If you think that civility has been violated or that another editor has been commenting on contributors rather than on content, state it plainly to the moderator. You are implying such a complaint, but you aren't stating it plainly. Robert McClenon (talk) 02:53, 25 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
User:Casualdejekyll - You are the moderator. Please provide further instructions. This discussion needs moderator intervention. Robert McClenon (talk) 02:53, 25 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Moderator's instructions were "You may be as concise or as long-winded as you want while explaining your answers..." I chose long-winded, and on such an important topic that seems the right choice, no? Randy Kryn (talk) 03:42, 25 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
@Casualdejekyll, @Randy Kryn, @Robert McClenon: Robert, I understood there was a problem with the link as well as a misunderstanding regarding the rules. What you said clarifies that further. In any case, NBD. What I found mystifying was how any of this related to me and then that nobody noticed what Randy said. So I felt that calling attention to the passage would do all the talking needed. If it would be better I say so directly, yes, I absolutely consider his comments uncivil. Allreet (talk) 04:10, 25 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Allreet My comment was framed by the linked rules, I explained that above. Please read the full sentence you object too. Randy Kryn (talk) 11:34, 25 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
User:Randy Kryn - Thank you for calling my attention to the moderator's instruction about verbosity. The idea that importance of a topic warrants overly long posts is silly. You had the right to post at length. It often makes one feel better. It often does not convey information to the other editors; whether a lengthy post clarifies or obscures depends on many factors. Your post summarized your opinion on the Continental Association in a way that one paragraph could have done. I will comment that you complain that another editor had many opportunities to build consensus on talk pages. If you are trying to build consensus by posting at length for two days, it hasn't done that, but maybe you need a choir to preach to. Robert McClenon (talk) 05:42, 25 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
While foolishly thinking I was answering the moderator's questions I must have just been silly as a goose, wandering about looking for a choir (if you see one, preferably robed, please let me know, thanks). And you're the fellow the moderator admires so? Yikes. Randy Kryn (talk) 11:34, 25 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Robert is probably a better moderator than I. Regardless. Whoah. I'll type out a third statement Soon:tm: but I'm thinking the next step is a trip to RfC land. Anyway, Randy, take a step back. Allreet opening three RfC's, despite their failures, is very much not never trying to build consensus. Which one of you opened the DRN case, exactly? If you guys both believe I've failed as a moderator, I will step down, but I really think that's not the issue here. (Obviously, I'm biased towards myself, but still.) @Allreet, @Randy Kryn casualdejekyll 12:34, 25 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Allreet opened it, I joined to say there is no dispute, the issue was settled. Robert isn't moderating, you are. Maybe a student-becomes-the-teacher moment, at least on civility. You're doing fine as a moderator so far, aside from the biased very early assessment of the Continental Association and its founding document status, mainly because, and thanks again, I needed the time to compose my detailed and full second answer which Robert seems up in arms about and hopefully shifts your CA assessment a little. Robert, just what did I get wrong? A serious question. And no, I never said "not never trying to build consensus". Again, just the opposite, he tried in public discussions scores of times, viewed by probably many of the main editors of the pages, and never found one. Randy Kryn (talk) 13:16, 25 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
@User:Robert McClenon, @User:Casualdejekyll, @User:Randy Kryn: I did start this. Frankly, disputes are beyond my pay grade and that includes RfCs, which I was obviously incompetent at. I won't say the same about the other work I do, though I believe all writers need a combination of excruciating humility and somewhat overbearing egoism. That said, teams require a high level of mutual respect. That doesn't mean we can't fight - we should regarding anything we're passionate about - but for sure we need to fight nice. Allreet (talk) 18:08, 25 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Yes, and to those who don't know, I have the utmost respect for Allreet, as I would for any Wikipedian who has a true interest and has done good edits on Founding Faher and founding document pages. Wikipedia has a very nice collection, and Allreet has ably added to it. Randy Kryn (talk) 18:33, 25 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Communication gaffe on my end - I meant to say it was very much not "never trying to build consensus" but dropped the quote marks casualdejekyll 18:54, 25 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Casualdejekyll: Can you "collapse" this section as more "dithering"? I don't see much of substance. I have no problem whatsoever with anything I've said here nor do I see anything of value from others regarding the issues. Ping others to ask if they object. Or be bold. Just a suggestion. Allreet (talk) 03:07, 31 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Collapsing is fine, that doesn't mean it's removed from the discussion. Randy Kryn (talk) 03:40, 31 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Statement 3A by Robert McClenon

User:Casualdejekyll - Where are we? User:Randy Kryn and User:Allreet seem to be responding to each other all over this noticeboard and pinging all of us, and it isn't clear to me whether they have agreed on something, or almost agreed on something, or are just talking back and forth. Also, is there still a dispute about the Founding Fathers article itself, or does the issue have to do with a number of biographies of dead people? If that is an issue, then I think that we only have an issue about anyone who signed only the Continental Association and/or the Articles of Confederation, and not signers of the US Declaration of Independence or United States Constitution. But I think that I will ignore the pings from the other editors until the moderator asks for more input. Robert McClenon (talk) 05:20, 30 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]

For the latest, refer to the to the series of comments added by Randy since I began writing this and then the preceding comments. Allreet (talk) 14:51, 30 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
At this point I'm just trying to figure out if Randy will cooperate or not. Regardless, they appear to have agreed on the Articles which leaves the Association open for RfC or similar. Allreet appears to support an RfC, Randy does not. Randy has also been skirting the edge on personal attacks, which I have warned him on before. He's gotten better about it since. I would like everyone involved to stop pinging Robert please. casualdejekyll 00:27, 31 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
@Allreet, @Randy Kryn, @North8000 casualdejekyll 00:30, 31 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Statement by North8000

I'm sure I didn't follow the format correctly so feel free to fix that or tell me what to do. I would like to start with a few structural observations. First, it would be good to more specifically frame the question of the dispute. I don't see that above. Presumably it is "Should the article say / imply that members of the Continental Assoc are founding fathers?" but that should be clarified. Next, it should be recognized that we're not trying to uncover some fundamental reality, we're trying to decide whether or not to apply a mere vague characterizing term that was made up about 140 years later to characterize those individuals. So IMO the article should more strongly cover the fact that it is about a term. So, since we're talking about a term, the common meaning of the term should help guide things. IMO, the later shorter lists certainly fall under all of the common meanings of the term and so it would be OK to explicitly or implicitly treat them as founding founders in the article. Some (but fewer) common meanings of the term include the full larger lists such as the CA. IMO any explicit or implicit (by inclusion) statement that they are founding founders should include clarification/calibration/ attribution type wording e.g. "often considered to also be founding fathers" but that it is a fine and good idea to include that info. Sincerely, North8000 (talk) 01:55, 31 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]

The dispute is about whether sources explicitly identify signers of certain documents as founders. The documents in question are the Continental Association and Articles of Confederation. At issue are signers in the article's list section and then in the individual biographies of certain signers. I won't say more about that because I don't want to influence you or appear that I'm trying to. Regarding your editorial point, we can save that for later because it's separate from the dispute. Allreet (talk) 02:50, 31 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
The two main persons in this dispute need to pose a specific question regarding the content of this article that they disagree on. I don't see that here. North8000 (talk) 19:01, 5 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Since nobody will define the specific content question, perhaps I could help by suggesting a few ideas (in shorthand, would need the details fleshed out):

  1. Is it OK for the article to flatly state in the voice of Wikipedia that persons who are only members of the Continental Association are founding fathers?
  2. Is it OK for the article to make a more limited attributed statement of persons who are only in the CA sometimes / by some / by some criteria also being considered to be founding fathers?
  3. Is it OK to even/merely list persons who are only in the CA in the article, thus implying that they are in some way founding fathers?
  4. Is this article about only persons typically included within the common meaning of 20th century term "Founding Fathers", or is it about the larger group of people (including the CA) who had significant founding functions in the US. Or does it cover both which means also recognizing the narrower group as such. Note that this is an internal Wikipedia organization question.

North8000 (talk) 12:22, 6 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]

To summarize, my reply to all of your questions is "no". Sources define founders, not criteria. The Continental Association? It turns out it has no reliable sources. As for implying anything, that's not acceptable. In fact, that's been the problem with the Founding Fathers article since its inception. Despite claims of "stability", the article's list section has vacillated between "Founders" and "Signatories" throughout its history, and the problem with that, once lists of Continental and Articles signers were introduced, was the implication that everyone was a founder. I think the only solution to that, since "fine print" disclaimers are likely to be missed, is to remove the two lists and recognize those who do qualify separately. As for a "common meaning", there is none beyond a dozen or so "greats" and recognition of signers of the Declaration and Constitution. Just to demonstrate the lack of consensus: How Do You Define Founding Fathers?
I'm a little puzzled by your observation that nobody has defined the "content question". The content in dispute is the statement that "the following (145 persons) are considered founders", and then, the 50 or so biographies where the title Founding Father was added. I've said this a few times before, and I just provided a statement on the nature of the dispute in my response below to Robert. Given that and what I just said, how would you re-word that statement? Allreet (talk) 20:52, 6 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]
@North8000 @Randy Kryn @Casualdejekyll Is there an answer to my question? A larger question is: is there anybody here to help? I'm a volunteer who's acted on nothing but good faith for 16 years. I've followed every rule. I've never had an unkind word with any editor. My work is fully researched and sourced. But when I stand up for the core values and policies that I've followed faithfully and this endeavor is supposed to be about, I'm totally on my own. It doesn't matter that I can fully document my concerns. It's my word against what often is simply not true even if it can be proven as such and is apparent to others. But no, what you say is ignored. And if you say it a couple times, you're criticized for repeating yourself. I can't tell you how messed up that is. Allreet (talk) 15:28, 7 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]
@Allreet: Once the specific content questions is defined, you'll be able to find out if anyone is with you. Now that you are at least starting to at least more specifically explain the question. it's looking like my #1 above, along with n assertion that the answer is "no" and that the article as currently written does #1 above. Although there is some calibration type nuances, I tend to agree with you. And a while back I proposed a re-write solution that significantly reduces that problem, and Randy agreed with it and has been promoting it. So, where are we? North8000 (talk) 17:50, 7 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]
You need to be specific about "specific content" messages. I'm specifically disputing a specific assertion, not a definition of founderhood or some other broad concept to bring others into the fold. It's as if @Randy Kryn changed the spelling of someone's name. I'm challenging the sources on that change. So since I honestly don't understand what you're saying, would you mind offering an explanation? As for #1, Wikipedia doesn't have a voice per se. It reflects what others say through its editors. We as editors cannot "flatly state" Continental Association signers are founders unless reliable sources express that first. Allreet (talk) 21:56, 7 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]
@North8000, thank you for your reply. Allreet (talk) 10:26, 8 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Statement 3B by Robert McClenon

User:Casualdejekyll : Was the dispute resolved, or did it merely take a nap? It seems that we passed the Do Not Archive date, and then no one said anything for 48 hours, and the bot came in with a broom. I have rescued this dispute from the archive. Is the dispute closed, or did we just take a nap? Also, is this dispute really about the article, or about multiple biographies of dead people who signed the CA and/or the A of C? Robert McClenon (talk) 02:29, 5 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]

A nap while waiting for a reply from @Randy Kryn, and then the bot intervened.
I'm amazed nobody knows what the dispute is about, though clearly much of the confusion stems from the extraneous issues that are being raised at every turn, including some of those introduced at the top of the DRN. No point at all in recounting any of that, so as best as I can summarize it at this point: I dispute that signers of the Continental Association and Articles are founders, based on what the most reliable of sources have to say. And again, this applies to both the main article and the 50 or so biographies of dead people where the title Founding Father needs to be removed.
My position on this is stronger than ever based on the additional research I've done in every corner. Thus, the "studied ambiguity", as you called it at one point, is not acceptable and neither is the compromise because both run counter to the prevailing view, and to award the minority view any weight, given the scarcity of sources, would violate WP:VER. Since the term "prevailing view" may be new to some, I refer everyone to WP:VER's Exceptional claims provision. I have more to say on that and other provisions of WP:VER, but first I'd like to hear from @Casualdejekyll on how he would like to proceed (and please remove the errant footnote below...thanks). Ping @North8000. Allreet (talk) 14:57, 5 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]
What "errant footnote"?
As for VER... Well, I was intentionally avoiding this before, but as Randy appears to be combative and has failed to respond in a timely manner repeatedly...
I think you're at least partially right. VER clearly says "Any exceptional claim requires multiple high-quality sources", and calling somebody a Founding Father of the United States is clearly an exceptional claim. Signers of the Continental Association have maybe one-and-a-half sources at best. One is surely not multiple. The Articles of Confederation, however, are much more of a gr[a/e]y area in this regard. casualdejekyll 19:20, 5 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]
As a matter of fact, I have whittled the sources down to 1-1/2 and the 1/2 is not a quality one by any means. "Multiple" simply isn't there. The exceptional claims provision also touches on my main concern and explains why I've hung in this long: the article's potential for "significantly alter(ing) mainstream assumptions" - from school kids to house dads to assistant profs. That's what's wrong with the "studied ambiguity"; its nuances are sure to be lost on most.
The "edict" also pairs with the Jimmy Wales quote I found, which not only bears repeating but belongs on every Wikipedian's "rules of thumb":
"If your viewpoint is in the majority, then it should be easy to substantiate it with reference to commonly accepted reference texts. If your viewpoint is held by a significant scientific minority, then it should be easy to name prominent adherents, and the article should certainly address the controversy without taking sides. If your viewpoint is held by an extremely small minority, then whether it's true or not, whether you can prove it or not, it doesn't belong in Wikipedia."
Since adherents for the minority are far and few, I'm sure I'm more than partially right, plus I have more to say on WP:VER in a new section that should settle the dispute, at least "on paper". I qualify that because @Randy Kryn is certain to disagree. Which means I will seek an RfC, but a very focused one to prevent another endless back-and-forth. BTW, the footnote I mentioned is now below the next dispute. Ping: @North8000 Allreet (talk) 20:29, 5 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]
With statements like this from the moderator and other biased statements during this discussion, starting with my revised opening summary which I told him was written lightly, playfully, and was ignored and accused again of, well, we all can read, and the moderator weighed in heavily against the obviously reputable and important Werther article, which is a very major point in this dispute and the subject of numerous discussions and three failed RfCs, I believe it is within my right to request that he consider withdrawal, and that an unbiased moderator be appointed to guide what is to come. If he doesn't want to recuse himself because he truly believes that he has been and is unbiased, and can be so going forward, as is his right, then I ask that he please at least re-read my "Second statement by Randy Kryn" where I've laid out many of the reasons behind my responses, emphasized the importance of the Journal of the American Revolution article, and gave specific reasons why yet another RfC is not needed. As for the new walls of text above and below from Allreet, for sure I'll need two days to respond or even to wade through them. Randy Kryn (talk) 00:09, 6 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]
I have no intention going around and around again on whether Werther is identifying all signers as founders. I questioned this in my very first posts on the Founding Fathers talk page in January, and we're still nowhere. Meanwhile, @Randy has interjected countless issues in this DRN that are either totally irrelevant or grossly mischaracterized. In my view, our discussions have become an endless game of "whack a mole" addressing everything except founders and what reliable sources have to say. The short list: Lincoln, past RfCs, page views, stability, consistency, Architect of the Capitol, "popular websites", the lede's opening sentence, and now bias.
The only thing that can settle this, at least as far as I can see, would be consensuses from the larger community on some key issues. Therefore, as a starting point, in my next post (under Statement 3c?) I'll be proposing a RfC focusing on Werther's article and Randy's novel view of WP:VER. Ping @Casualdejekyll, @North8000 Allreet (talk) 17:14, 6 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]
This is going nowhere, (and it appears than the proposed RFC may have the same problem) until it gets framed in the main SPECIFIC CONTENT question(s). I gave 4 ideas for those above. Except for helping develop the specific questions. I'm not going to participate further here until the specific content question(s) gets developed. Sincerely, North8000 (talk) 18:56, 6 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]
@North8000: With all due respect, I just rejected your four ideas as unacceptable, primarily based on verifiability. Regarding content, I'll try to clarify the issue a different way. As I've said numerous times, the statements about certain signers being founders lack sources, as do the Founding Fathers titles @Randy Kryn added to 50 articles. If I can marshal a consensus on this, that that these edits lack sources, I will remove all such content. This is no different from if I declared the Earth flat based on a bogus citation, and upon proof that my source was unacceptable, my assertion about the Earth would have to be removed. I hope that helps and also that you hang in for another round or two, because I'd appreciate your input on a series of specific RfCs I would like to initiate. At that point, the DRN will be wrapped up. So in fact this is going somewhere. Allreet (talk) 21:35, 6 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]
As for "framing" an RfC, that's where I need the help of others. A less specific RfC on the Continental Association is not likely to garner much input because nobody knows or cares what it is, while a broad one on the nature of founders is likely to veer into all the areas of irrelevancy that have plagued this DRN and all previous discussions. 'herefore, I'd first like to dispense with something tangible, the only source @Randy has to "hang his hat on" regarding signer=founders, Richard Werther's article. @Casualdejekyll's feedback on Werther is what I was asking for at the top of the DRN in terms of "feedback on sources". Unfortunately, his assessment has no weight because DRNs seem to be short on "teeth". Anyway, if I have anything "wrong", I'd also appreciate feedback on that. Allreet (talk) 21:47, 6 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]
"A less specific RfC on the Continental Association is not likely to garner much input because nobody knows or cares what it is..." Seriously? Nobody? The CA formed the union. Randy Kryn (talk) 14:19, 7 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]
@Randy Kryn: Well, next to nobody. If the Continental Association is barely mentioned by historians - as I said earlier, I've checked as many indexes as I could find - and its Wikipedia page draws less than 28,000 views per year, how many people know about it? And if you can't find a source to support it, how notable could it be? As for when the Union was formed, that's not at issue. The issue is its signers. Allreet (talk) 15:13, 7 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Statement 3b(?) by Allreet: WP:VER

In under 300 words: Here's the sentence that was suggested for individual signers: "Because XYZ signed the Articles of Confederation, some sources consider him a founding father of the United States". Actually, only "two" sources, Padover and Stanfield, recognize signers of the Articles, and Stanfield is questionable. As for other sources, Werther does not identify specific signers as founders, and founderoftheday.com is not reliable. Eliminating the last two leaves Continental Association signers without any adherents.

Conclusion: We have only one reliable source for Articles signers, Padover. Even if we could accept Stanfield, we'd still have a less than significant minority relative to sources representing the prevailing view. Ping: @Randy Kryn, @North8000, @Casualdejekyll Allreet (talk) 20:50, 5 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Comment 3C by Robert McClenon

User:Casualdejekyll - Again, where are we? It appears to me that User:Randy Kryn and User:Allreet are going on and on, restating more or less the same positions, one that signers of the CA and the A of C should be considered founders, or at least considered to be considered to be founders by some sources, and one that the claim that signers of these documents is an extraordinary claim that has not been adequately verified. Sometimes disputes are resolved in Wikipedia by strength of arguments; any idea that they are resolved by length of arguments is a myth. It looks as though at least Randy Kryn is trying to "win" this content dispute by length of arguments. How long will the two editors just continue to restate their views? Both the bot and I are becoming tired of the repetition. Robert McClenon (talk) 18:46, 6 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]

For sure your assessment is accurate. North8000 and Allreet have the right idea with RfCing to end it once and for all. That is where we are, since Randy's argument for why an RfC isn't necessary is basically saying 'an RfC isn't necessary" ad nauseam, or "Arguably, everyone who did not comment agreed, by their non-response, that the page and sources were fine, and at a minimum many opportunities for comment and/or criticism by the community were freely available and not taken." This, while correct to some degree, represents a feather-weak consensus that is effectively overturned by the fact that there is still an argument about it to this day. casualdejekyll 19:15, 6 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]
I just added a fairly succinct analysis of WP:VER, the policy at the heart of this dispute. Everything I said is new except for further clarifying "exceptional claims". I can't think of a stronger argument, then, than demonstrating that at best, only one source supports Articles signers. That’s also a new development, considering everyone else was recognizing 2-3 sources and also believed the Continental Association had some support. Since this would normally settle any argument over an article's content, I'm totally at a loss as to what's expected, because for sure, my good faith attempts are apparently inadequate.
On a similar note, I just posted the fact that I intend to propose a RfC. Didn't that strike anyone as new development, a way to settle what this DRN apparently can't? So in 150 words or less, that's where we are. Allreet (talk) 20:21, 6 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Please note that what I just added was without the benefit of Casualdejekyll's comments. Our replies "crossed in the night" Allreet (talk) 20:24, 6 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Comment 3C by Randy Kryn

Journal of the American Revolution, 2015 ("How Do You Define Founding Fathers?". multiple major historians, including John E. Ferling and Daniel Tortora, each interview is an individual source), 2017 (Werther). Randy Kryn (talk) 04:02, 7 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Ferling: anyone who did anything is a founder, for example, soldiers, state legislators, and members of committees of safety. That gives us tens of thousands of founders. Tortora: mentions signers of the Declaration, Articles, and Constitution along with all other "key influencers", yet another broadly inclusive view. Then we have a dozen or so additional interpretations. Together they support what we all know: that there is no appreciable consensus beyond a few greats and signers of two particular documents. In fact, I made exactly that point in the lede of the Founding Fathers article a month ago with this Journal article as one of its sources. I also pointed out the lack of consensus to @North8000 yesterday and provided the very same link to illustrate it. @Randy Kryn, so how does this help your cause? Allreet (talk) 14:46, 7 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]
One use of these reputable sources: Yes, Tortora does mention signers of the Declaration, Articles, and Constitution. Please count him among your Article sources. For another, John E. Ferling specifically mentions the Association. Others interviewed also expand the definition to the point of covering the CA and Articles. Each one is a separate source. My cause? World Peace, bringing back Indian food buffets, things like that. Randy Kryn (talk) 19:57, 7 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]
@Randy Kryn, please keep your own tally. Ironically, a month or so ago when I first brought this article to your attention, you claimed the Journal was correcting its uncertainties with Werther's 2017 article. At the time the argument suited your subjective interpretation of what Werther was saying. Now you're pitching a different interpretation, asserting things about this article that simply aren't there. For example, that its 14 opinions "expand the definition to the point of covering the CA and Articles"? Besides the fact that this amounts to Synthesis, that's not at all what the article is saying. Allreet (talk) 10:20, 8 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]
I wrote some of the 14 do, and maybe FF's should include some of the French and some other Union military leaders in that second chart-list of other FF who didn't sign a founding document that you were going to prepare. You have ignored Ferling as including the CA and Tortora including the Articles, so please don't misrepresent the number of sources. Randy Kryn (talk) 16:29, 8 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]
One-liners from the article are worth maybe 0.1, which brings the tally I'm keeping to 0.1 for the Continental Association (Ferling) and 1.1 for the Articles (Padover-Tortora). Not that Ferling and Tortora are 1/10th as reliable as Padover, but neither gives any detail to indicate what they mean. Ferling, for example, would include the entire Continental Army so how significant are the signers he favors? Meanwhile, the tally for the prevailing view is 10-20 times greater, possibly more given that the National Archives' POV represents a broad community of scholars. Re-read the Neutrality section of WP:VER: "Tiny-minority views need not be included, except in articles devoted to them". On that basis, I'd suggest removing the List section and using it for an article on Founding Documents, but surely it doesn't belong here. Ping: @North8000 and @Casualdejekyll Allreet (talk) 17:44, 8 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]
P.S. I didn't ignore Ferling's reference to the Continental Association. He specifically said "those that enforced the Association", which is why I included "members of committees of safety". As I'm sure you know, they were responsible for enforcing the embargo. Allreet (talk) 18:09, 8 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Interviews of multiple people can be used as a source for any one of them. Do you not know this? And why not just be happy to add these reputable sources? Our three-month-old discussion seems to have just gotten ten-percent weirder. Randy Kryn (talk) 02:25, 9 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Comment 3C by Allreet

Ping: @Casualdejekyll and @North8000. I would appreciate assistance/feedback on composing a neutral RfC seeking consensus from editors on whether it is acceptable under WP:VER to rely on the title of a source rather than solely on the text in verifying a statement. Everyone should be familiar with the source in question: Richard Werther's Journal of the American Revolution article. @Randy Kryn has admitted that the text does not directly support his assertion that Werther considers signers of the Continental Association and Articles of Confederation to be founders, but says the article's title establishes Werther's "premise" and thus an understanding of his text. As Randy put it in one exchange: "I don't have to quote from Werther's article because the entire text backs up the title of the paper".

Here's a "prototype" for the wording I have in mind, though I could re-word this in countless ways. Others will probably have a better idea than my example:

"Does WP:VER allow using the title of a source to elucidate its text or must the text stand on its own in verifying a statement?"

Pardon the multi-syllabic "elucidate" but it is the best word I can think of. The questions are: is this clear and is it neutral? Any and all comments and suggestions would be appreciated. Thank you. Allreet (talk) 22:31, 8 April 2022 (UTC)'[reply]

Yes, the text supports it completely and I stand by "I don't have to quote from Werther's article because the entire text backs up the title of the paper". By the way, this is not how this works on DRN or on a common sense site for a fourth RfC on the same topic (at least I would think not). You've already "worded" three of them, so if the moderator (new or same one) deems there should be a fourth RfC then the wording would come from a full all-agree consensus. And I still want the first posting on a potential 4th RfC out of fairness. Randy Kryn (talk) 02:01, 9 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]
@Randy Kryn, @Casualdejekyll, @North8000: So far everyone except you seems to think a RfC is the avenue to pursue to settle this dispute. I really do want to be fair in terms of how this works out, so I posted the suggested wording to try to get your input as well. That offer is still open. So do you want to help? As for "full all-agree consensus", where'd that rule come from? Allreet (talk) 11:32, 9 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]

As soon as I get some feedback on the above - any comments at all - I'm willing to ask that the moderator, @Casualdejekyll, close this DRN. In advance of that, thanks to all. Allreet (talk) 11:34, 9 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]

If the RfC goes up, I can put the DRN on hold just fine. I'd rather wait for both of you to agree that closing the DRN is a good idea before closing the DRN. casualdejekyll 20:49, 9 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]

I'm just trying to help if I can, Anything that y'all want to do is fine with me. North8000 (talk)

@North8000: For sure I know you have, throughout, tried to help and that's greatly appreciated, no doubt by everyone. I would like some feedback on the wording or even the efficacy of this, but if you prefer not, that's okay too. Allreet (talk) 13:41, 9 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]
In stasis until an unbiased moderator informs us how an RfC, if any, emerging from DRN is formed (surely not by one participant jumping ahead and wording the RfC, this would, in fairness, have to be jointly decided per topic, wording, and placement). Randy Kryn (talk) 14:10, 9 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Ping: @Casualdejekyll @North8000 @Randy Kryn: While awaiting some direction, I thought I'd post a few more examples of possible RfC statements. At least I'm finding the practice helpful. While they all say basically the same thing, I did include a couple that may be slightly less objective than others.

  1. "Does WP:VER allow using the title of a journal article to clarify what the article is saying or must we rely solely on the text?"
  2. "Editor A contends the title of a source proves what the text is saying. Editor B contends we can only reference the text. Based on WP:VER, who is correct - Editor A or Editor B?"
  3. "If a source's text does not state something explicitly, can we reference both the title and text to verify a statement?"
  4. "Regarding verification, is it okay to use the title of an article for clarifying the article's meaning or is the title irrelevant?"
  5. "May we ascribe conclusions to a journal article based on its title, or are we limited to relying on the text?"
  6. "If a journal article does not state something explicitly, can we reference the article's title for clarifying the article's meaning?"
  7. "Are we allowed to use the title of a journal article to reach conclusions not directly found in the text?"
  8. "Can the title of a source be referenced as proof of what the source's text means?"
  9. "In verifying a statement, can we use combination of a source's title and text or must the text support the statement on its own?"

I understand that the question would be followed by a summary of the specifics. As for what I do post, I'm certain that's up to me, so I'm not looking for permission or for anyone to take my side. Where Randy is getting the idea that somehow this would be collaborative or adjudicated first is beyond me. Not that I wouldn't prefer sharing or handing off the responsibility, but unfortunately that's not how RfCs work. Allreet (talk) 20:52, 9 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Comment 3D by Robert McClenon

First, all 9 of the abstract questions listed above by User:Allreet will distract attention from what the dispute should be, which has to do with the content of the article on Founding Fathers of the United States. The question is, or at least should be, whether the signers of the Continental Association should, by that action, be listed as Founding Fathers, and possibly whether the signers of the Articles of Confederation should be listed as Founding Fathers. None of those questions will answer the content issue. Those are not questions about American history, but about policy and procedure, and abstractly worded questions about policy and procedure. If you plan to use one of those questions to introduce the Continental Association question, that will be putting cart before horse. Second, the lead sentence of the RFC, which is listed on a list of all open RFCs, should be a summary question that may get the attention of editors who are looking for RFCs. A question about who is a Founding Father is more likely to get the attention that is needed than a question about the details of verification. Third, I am willing to assist in formulating the RFC. Fourth, the idea that agreement is required prior to posting an RFC is mistaken. One editor can post an RFC, although it might or might not resolve this dispute. However, any of the questions listed above will just prolong this dispute by another thirty days. Robert McClenon (talk) 03:24, 10 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Action 3D by Robert McClenon

I have created a temporary subpage to compose the RFC. It is at Talk:Founding Fathers of the United States/Fourth Draft RFC. After its wording has been tweaked and diddled with, and possibly rewritten, it can be moved to Talk:Founding Fathers of the United States, at which time the ((RFC)) thingy should be activated by removing the commenting code, and a signature can be inserted below the key statement. I would prefer that we get agreement on the wording, but if this discussion continues to go nowhere, I or someone else can activate it unilaterally. If we want to change the wording, we can discuss changing the wording before it is activated. For instance, do we want to offer three answers to the question: Yes, No, and By Some Sources? Do we want to also ask about the Articles of Confederation? In any case, what I have drafted is a better wording for an RFC than any of the 9 abstract questions listed above.

User:Casualdejekyll - I think it is time to do something other than continuing to talk in circles. What do you want to do next? Robert McClenon (talk) 03:48, 10 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]

@Casualdejekyll @North8000 @Randy Kryn: I appreciate Robert's setting up a page for drafting a RfC on signers of the Continental Association and possibly the Articles, though I'm concerned as to the lack of sources for either.
I do want to let everyone know that a random "Third Opinion" from an experienced editor has been provided at the bottom of the Talk:Founding Fathers of the United States page. His feedback should clear up any misconceptions about Richard Werther's journal article. Based on the summary provided, there shouldn't be any question remaining regarding the article's title or content:
I'm just now noticing the extended kerfuffle of the last three months, and I would like to point out that Werther does not support the idea that "signers" are the same as "founding fathers". Werther uses the term signers specifically to talk about the men who helped shape and then signed at least one of the four major founding documents. He uses the term "founding fathers" to refer to a smaller and more influential cohort; he chooses six of them to demonstrate a point. Werther does not define "founding fathers" and he does not name a number of them. I don't discount Werther because history is a hobby for him, he was after all published in a fine journal, which provides the credibility. Rather, I hold the position that Werther is not relevant to "founding fathers", because he does not actually define the topic. User:Binksternet
I'm not sure how this relates to the issue of whether Association/Articles signers are founders, though it does remove Werther as a potential source since he doesn't discuss founders to any extent. For confirmation, refer to the above and then the related sections of the article. Allreet (talk) 08:22, 10 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Remove the issue? Well, no, not at all. I've answered the edior's posting with: "hello, and thanks for joining in. Some counter-points to your comment. You truncated Werther's use of the term 'Founding Father's', notice that he prefaces it with saying "The core group of the most prestigious Founding Fathers (I have chosen six)..." and only then names six of the 145 signers who he includes in the title. Please give Werther a re-read with the title of his peer-reviewed Journal academic paper in mind (titles of peer reviewed academic papers distinctly set a paper's premise, and they are almost always designed, and can be read, as the paper's first sentence) Analyzing the Founders: A Closer Look at the Signers of Four Founding Documents. He thus includes all of the signers of the four great founding papers as founders, and focuses on specific signers only after using not one but two qualifiers: 'core group' of the 'most prestigious'" Randy Kryn (talk) 11:14, 10 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Based on what he wrote, I'm certain @Binksternet can read. I'm pinging him to get his input on the current discussion. Allreet (talk) 13:16, 10 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Robert, thanks for getting a well-worded RfC draft in place. If this goes forward where should we comment on its wording and structure, here or on the draft itself? Randy Kryn (talk) 11:28, 10 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Robert, regarding a goal as a clear content question, IMO you should clarify one thing. "listing in the article as FF" could mean two different things. One would be listing with a statement that they are FF, the other could be mere listing in the article without any such statement, which one might imply is such a statement. Sincerely, North8000 (talk) 12:49, 10 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]
"Recognized" would be better. The "implication" that those listed are FF is a problem that has plagued the page since the addition of Continental and Articles signers in 2011-12. Allreet (talk) 13:09, 10 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]
"Plagued the page" since 2011? Abe Lincoln, who recognized the CA as the document which formed the union and as one of four founding documents is turning over in his grave (per the video feed). Randy Kryn (talk) 13:56, 10 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Yes, plagued. What you described as stability over the decade was actually a back and forth between "List of Founders" and "Signatories", but no matter which, the lists implied everyone was a founder. For an edit history of the list section, see my Sandbox. Lincoln is a irrelevant, a red herring, because he has nothing to say on who's founder and who isn't. Allreet (talk) 22:08, 10 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Comments about the draft RFC go here until the RFC goes live. When the RFC goes live, they go in the Discussion section. I did not include sources in the draft RFC because the draft RFC is not about sources, but about article content. Sources for a position in favor of or against can and should be added to the Discussion section of the RFC, that is, on the article talk page, when the RFC goes live. Until it goes live, discussion of its wording should be done here. Robert McClenon (talk) 15:06, 10 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Robert and @Casualdejekyll, does Yes mean a definitive or a nuanced acceptance of founders per the wording that would result? I believe the first possibility would be to ignore WP:VER, while the second would allow the ambiguity of "some sources". I'm asking because you posed "some sources" as a possible third option, which indicates the intention to have black-and-white Yes's and No's. Another question: either way, who gets to determine the wording, what would then be acceptable for future edits, and just as important, the use of sources?
The above concerns, plus all the red herrings likely to be thrown at this, convinced me a broad, once-and-done RfC was less desirable than a series of incremental ones that dealt with sources and policy (with specific examples, my examples were only meant to abstract the questions' structures). That would mean working toward acknowledging guidelines and then allowing editing to continue as usual for a more natural, ultimately more accurate outcome.
As for the current article, I believe it's misleading. Since that would mean many editors might start their thinking process with a false impression, I suggest the dispute templates I posted a month or so ago be reinstated to alert newcomers. Allreet (talk) 19:12, 10 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Statement 3E by Robert McClenon

I have a question for User:Allreet. Are you really interested in resolving a dispute about the content of the article, or are you interested instead in just discussing and discussing and dragging on and on? First User:Randy Kryn was bludgeoning the process with an interminable posting. Now User:Allreet seems to be trying to extend the process indefinitely with interminable proceedings. Any RFC runs for 30 days, and this dispute has already been going on and on. I am confused as to what Allreet wants. They say that the current article is misleading, which implies that they want to change it, but they want to continue editing with a "more natural" approach to editing, and they seem to want irrelevant tangential RFCs while leaving the main content issue, which is the status of signers of the two documents, unresolved. Are they really just trying to drag this out? Robert McClenon (talk) 03:50, 11 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]

I will try to get the RFC to be satisfactory to as many editors as possible, and then if I think that it is not making any more progress, I intend to post the RFC, at least unless User:Casualdejekyll provides other direction. The RFC that I will post will answer one or two content questions, about signers of one or two documents. Issues about sourcing can be addressed during the discussion of the RFC. So should I revise the RFC to ask about two documents rather than one? And if anyone wants to change the wording of the question or questions, please indicate how they think the question or questions should be worded. I would like to get this matter resolved. The issue isn't sources. Sourcing questions are secondary to the primary question of what the article or articles should say. Most readers do not read the sources. We certainly don't need to waste time with abstract tertiary questions such as the 9 questions in the list, having to do with how to use sources.

If there is agreement or near-agreement on a better wording for the main question, I will revise the main question. Then I will start the RFC (at least unless the moderator gives other instructions). So discuss the wording of the RFC now, before I start the RFC running. Robert McClenon (talk) 03:50, 11 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Hi. Just read this, can you give us a day or so for wording discussion? Will quickly say that the Articles of Confederation seems a different set of issues and sources which deserve their own subsequent, not concurrent, RfC if Allreet insists on going forward with such a thing. More later, thanks. Randy Kryn (talk) 04:05, 11 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]
The only things I "insist on" are an adherence to guidelines, good-natured collaboration and personal honesty. The Articles do represent a separate issue of sorts. The Continental Association has almost nothing to recommend it - and I'm basing that on the fact that the leading historians and institutions give it little to no attention - visit the indexes of your choosing for proof. The Articles, admittedly more prominent, are problematic in that they too are short on support as a founding document. My not-so-humble opinion is that the Articles provided a governmental framework that got us through the Revolution but little else in terms of forming a union, an assessment based on the many sources I've surveyed. The "news" here, meaning what seems of utmost importance and interest, is that the founders were able to hammer out agreement on the Constitution despite the deep differences between the new "nation states". Whatever, the Articles could be addressed in a joint RfC, but then you'd have to pose separate Yes's/No's. Difficult but I'm sure Robert can work it out if we're going to take that route. I also request a bit more time (until tomorrow, Tuesday) since this has been three months in the making and shouldn't be rushed. Ping @Randy Kryn, @North8000, @Casualdejekyll Allreet (talk) 15:18, 11 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Why can't we just drop the Articles for now (or, like a hot potato, for always). Its signatories easily have adequate minority sources to be considered Founding Fathers per Wikipedia neutral content and coverage guidelines, as well as per common sense, because a country's 'Founding', by definition, would surely include the first national constitution, the first framework of government, the literal creation of an agreement for what turned out to arguably be the core founding principle of the United States (defended to the death by Abe Lincoln and hundreds of thousands of others less than a century later): a Perpetual Union, and a founding document which formally laid out the functioning framework in effect for the first 12 years of a nation's existence. Pretty please with a fife and drum on top. Randy Kryn (talk) 16:46, 11 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]
More fiction, really. The Articles do not obviously have sufficient support; the opposite is true. Would they be accepted in a RfC? Probably, because few people know the history and it sounds right. The problem is that this would put Wikipedia way ahead of the prevailing view defined by sources.
Signers of the Articles have one solid source - Saul K. Padover - and then a one-liner from the JAR's FF definition article. As for Werther, he has nothing to say about signers = founders. And Lincoln? The same is true, though Randy uses synthesis to find meaning there. (Lincoln's speech is a primary source in which he never mentions signers or founders.) So what qualifies this view as more than a "tiny minority"? Even Randy's "facts" on the Articles as a framework are fiction. The Articles were ratified in 1781 and were superseded in 1789. That's 8 years, so he's using the creation year (1777) as the start point. Meanwhile, the Articles didn't form a union, but a confederation of nation states under an all but powerless federal government. Most scholars understand that, which is why so few consider it a founding document and almost nobody recognizes its signers.
I think expert advice is called for before taking this particular leap. Why not ask the Archives or Harvard's scholars for guidance? If we were running a newspaper, we'd do that. Why? Because it's a reliable way to confirm information. Allreet (talk) 20:10, 11 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Werther says outright that "signers = founders", and includes the Articles. Much of it was used as an unofficial framework of U.S. government from 1777 until its formal 1781 ratification. I think the Founders began work on creating the Articles and the concept of Perpetual Union the day after approving the writing of the Declaration - the two went hand in hand in a logical calling for, and then the creation of, a new nation. Randy Kryn (talk) 03:30, 12 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Action 3F by Robert McClenon

@Casualdejekyll, Allreet, Randy Kryn, and North8000: I have created a second draft RFC that will cover both the Continental Association and the Articles of Confederation. It is at Talk:Founding Fathers of the United States/Draft RFC 4B. Please discuss the draft RFCs here, not in their Discussion sections, which are for discussion by participants after the RFC goes live. As you can see, I have made two changes between the two versions of the RFC. The first change is the inclusion, with a separate question, of the Articles of Confederation. The second is to provide an ambiguous answer as well as Yes and No on each question. If there is a preference, a compromise is possible with A, B, and C only for the Continental Association.

It is my intention to post one or the other of these draft RFCs as a live RFC within a few days. How many days will depend on whether the comments that are offered are useful or are just empty comments. That is, I will wait a few days if there are useful comments being made that will improve the RFC I don't intend to post any abstract RFCs about how to interpret sources. I also don't intend to post any more specific RFCs about sources; those should go to the Reliable Source Noticeboard. If I don't read any useful comments within 24 hours, then the second RFC may go live within 36 hours. Robert McClenon (talk) 01:05, 13 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]

We've all agreed to your first RfC language, so that should be posted. Second one is much too complicated, seems confusing with so many moving pieces. So I'd be against the second and go with the agreed upon first. Randy Kryn (talk) 02:12, 13 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Done. The RFC is running. Robert McClenon (talk) 03:06, 13 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Throwing the DRN on hold for now while this runs its course casualdejekyll 03:35, 13 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Question: is it okay to alert major editors of RfC pages to the existence of an RfC? The main FF and CA editors are the ones I have in mind. Thanks. Randy Kryn (talk) 03:58, 13 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]
WP:CANVAS says: "In general, it is perfectly acceptable to notify other editors of ongoing discussions, provided that it be done with the intent to improve the quality of the discussion by broadening participation to more fully achieve consensus." (Emphasis mine.) As long as your statement is neutrally worded, and you notify people because of their interest in the topic, not because they agree with you on it (I'm not accusing you of that, just explaining), you should be fine. (Also, the following tip is not from policy, but from me, myself, and I: Please avoid mentioning Lincoln at all and any point in that statement. He has no relevance in that context.) casualdejekyll 04:24, 13 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Much thanks. Aye, swearing by the great beard of Abraham Lincoln himself, I shall go forward. Randy Kryn (talk) 05:18, 13 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Summary of dispute by User:Ghazzalch

Please keep it brief - less than 2000 characters if possible, it helps us help you quicker.

There has been some kind of consensus in the previous discussions that this article is too long, and should be shortened. Under this pretext, Fad Ariff was removing some important anti-MEK details (such as[3]) from the article, and in the same time was adding some pro-MeK details (such as[4][5]) to it. Per Wikipedia:Tendentious editing I reverted them all. Because I saw them as a whole. But Fad Ariff preferred not to narrate the whole story here. He picked up a single edit and brought it here, arguing that why we should not be able to add a well-sourced material to the article. To show that he is not even sticking to this partial logic, I recently added a well sourced anti-MeK material to the article. He reverted it immediately, arguing that Ghazaalch says the article is too long while adding more cult content to the article. I asked him here that If you agree with me that the article is too long and you revert what I add, then why you insist on restoring what I reverted? And why you took this case to the Dispute resolution noticeboard? What is the dispute here? We both are doing the same thing. No answer yet. Ghazaalch (talk) 09:51, 18 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Summary of dispute by User:Iskandar323

Please keep it brief - less than 2000 characters if possible, it helps us help you quicker.

Summary of dispute by User:Fad Ariff

Please keep it brief - less than 2000 characters if possible, it helps us help you quicker.

Replying to Ghazaalch, the content in this dispute is not "pro" anything, it’s just content by a good publisher and author. About Ghazaalch’s response that I reverted one of his edits, the short answer to that is that I reverted it because cult stuff is already covered in four different sections and in the lead of the article (while the information in this dispute is not in the article). It’s fine if Ghazaalch wants to open a separate dispute about that edit, but they still have not provided a reasonable answer for removing the content in this dispute (neither here nor on the talk page). Fad Ariff (talk) 12:03, 19 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]

People's Mojahedin Organization of Iran

Symbol wait old.png
– New discussion.
Filed by Fad Ariff on 12:30, 15 April 2022 (UTC).[reply]

Have you discussed this on a talk page?

Yes, I have discussed this issue on a talk page already.

Location of dispute

Users involved

Dispute overview

I wanted to add to the article that

“During the Islamic Revolution, Massoud Rajavi prevented the MEK from using violence against Khomeini’s new government, which raised his status within the MEK”[1]

Ghazzzalch reverted saying "Rajavi’s position toward terrorist attacks is also covered in the section "Assassinations". So the article is already too long and no need to repeat its contents all over the article". But this is not repeated in the article.

Then Iskandar323 said this quote should be in another article, but the quote is about People’s Mujahedin Organization of Iran.

So both their reasons for not wanting this in the article don’t seem very reasonable. I asked an admin, and they suggested I should try a dispute resolution.


How have you tried to resolve this dispute before coming here?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talk:People%27s_Mojahedin_Organization_of_Iran#%22Removal_of_designation%22_text_tightening

How do you think we can help resolve the dispute?

By checking the reasons that Iskandar323 and Ghazzalch have given for not wanting this information in the article

People's Mojahedin Organization of Iran discussion

Please keep discussion to a minimum before being opened by a volunteer. Continue on article talk page if necessary.
  1. ^ Cohen, Ronen (2009). The Rise and Fall of the Mojahedin Khalq, 1987-1997: Their Survival After the Islamic Revolution and Resistance to the Islamic Republic of Iran. Sussex Academic Press. ISBN 978-1845192709. He succeeded in looking after the organization during the Islamic Revolution by preventing it from acting violently against Khomeini’s government. Rajavi’s successful management raised his prestige within the organization.

Summary of dispute by X-editor

Please keep it brief - less than 2000 characters if possible, it helps us help you quicker.

Summary of dispute by Valjean

Please keep it brief - less than 2000 characters if possible, it helps us help you quicker.

My only involvement is to oppose edit warring by Domiy. They even used a bogus edit summary to undo a revert of their rejected edit, calling it "vandalism". This whole section is an illegitimate attempt to bring a content dispute here without a really good attempt to resolve the matter at the article's talk page. With only four comments on the talk page, Domiy is escalating the conflict to this board far too prematurely. -- Valjean (talk) (PING me) 15:46, 24 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Summary of dispute by ElijahPepe

Too long, didn't read. Robert McClenon (talk) 02:16, 29 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Libs of TikTok is a Twitter account that primarily posts TikTok videos from a conservative perspective in a derogatory manner. The videos often show people at a low point (i.e. a teacher crying after being misgendered or finding out about Ron DeSantis' 'Don't Say Gay' bill). The account occasionally posts images of news reports of teachers who are actual pedophiles (in contrast to the account's captions to the videos, which often involve calling the videos "grooming") or videos of events such as the Family Sex Show (which, according to Independent, is a show aimed at children and was supposed to be a show talking about gender, sexuality, consent, with depictions of nudity). These videos are not as frequent as Domiy presents them (I will admit, I am not an avid viewer of the account, but in order to gain a better perspective I browsed some tweets prior to the drama taking place).

On April 21, 2022, at 8:33 P.M. PST, Domiy made an edit to the Libs of TikTok article's lead. The edit changed "curated content" to "mocks" and removes the "[TikTok] users as a form of mockery and to support more conservative views" section from the first sentence. The edit makes the claim that the account is popular among conservatives (the original sentence) because the account mentions pedophiles. The claim is attributed to The Spectator; according to WP:RSPSS, The Spectator has opinion pieces and would not be suitable for any place in the article, especially for the lead, without attribution of the claim (which then should be moved to another section). The same organization is also used to cite the claim a paragraph down that Chaya Raichik (the creator of Libs of TikTok) was "doxxed" by Washington Post journalist Taylor Lorenz. 18 minutes later, the reliability of The Spectator was used as reasoning for undoing the edit by Pokelova.

I should note here that whether or not Lorenz doxxed Raichik is not what we're discussing here. The reason why the edit were undone is because it used two sources that should not appear in a lead in the lead. Editing these articles is tricky but, and apologies for breaking the neutral point of view of this summary, it seems like Domiy is attempting to find citations to back up a claim, not find a claim to back up with citations.

23 minutes after Pokelova undid Domiy's edit, Domiy returned to the article with a similar edit (I'm not sure whether this counts as a revert, but enough seems to be changed to where it doesn't). The edit keeps the lead edits in tact (with the exception of changing "criticizing videos that promoted pedophilia or contained sexual references about young children" to "criticizing videos that contained sexual references about young children". The Content section seems to be where most of the action occurs, where Domiy's edit sandwiches "It also reposted and mocked videos in which a professor encouraged the use of the term 'minor-attracted persons' to avoid stigma of being called a 'pedophile', and a woman speaking about teaching young children how to masturbate 'as soon as they could talk'" in between "The account has targeted schools and teachers, referring to schools as "government run indoctrination camps" for the LGBT community and encouraged followers to contact schools that allowed transgender students to use the bathroom of their identified gender" and a huge section about the level of which the account mocks the LGBTQ+ community. Again, I have a couple of problems with this:

  1. The sources are still coming from The Spectator, which was the original problem to begin with which is not being made better here.
  2. Inserting that comment in between the those two claims is very clunky and hamfisted.

Domiy then expands upon the claim he added and cites news.com.au instead for that section which would be fine (given he remove the section from the lead and shift the statement around to not be positioned in such an awkward way), but news.com.au (being owned by News Corp) actually licensed their article from the New York Post, which is a no-go tabloid newspaper.

At 4:37 A.M. PST the following day, Domiy then stampedes a large number of edits to rewrite the lead and Content section to his edit, with the reasoning "Please stop deleting factual information to push bias. Repeated deletion will be reported as vandalism." This, of course, is undone 10 minutes later by Pokelova. 5 minutes after Domiy makes the edit, a new section is added to the talk page with the title "Please stop deleting factual information to push bias":

This article is not going to be used as another driving range to push left-wing bias. If you're going to mention detailed accounts of the controversial things posted by Libs Of Tiktok, then there is also room for the fact that the account criticized educators who were openly promoting peadophilia and masturbation among young children. Whether you feel this is moral or not is irrelevant - the public deserves to know as it is these very posts that has made Libs Of Tiktok so popular among conservatives. These are relevant details.

If you do not agree with the particular wording, there is always room to discuss ways of rephrasing, but deleting information that you don't like in order to keep the article focused solely on negative posts is a clear violation of neutrality. Please stop deleting factual, referenced information.

As a frequent contributor of the Libs of TikTok article, I chime in a few hours later, refuting Domiy's claims, and likewise Zaathras does the same 41 minutes later with a much harsher message. X-Editor, a large contributor to the article, also joins in.

About 16 hours after Domiy posted the initial message on the talk page, they then reply to my message, misconstruing my point:

If there is a reputable source that can claim that LoTT brings up direct pedophilia and masturbation among young children (not LGBTQ+ content; that is a huge NPOV problem), then add it yourself.

The Spectator article links to an actual Tweet made by LoTT. As far as I know, Wikipedia also allows using Tweets as a source for what someone said. Here is a direct link to the Tweet in question. The Tweet and the pedophilia reference (as well as the fact that the poster was fired for it) was also reported by News.com.au,, a very reliable Australian news source which also links to the tweet made by LoTT.

Your attempt to pretend that the videos of LGBT activists promoting pedophilia or child sexualisation never happened are blatant delusion and a breach of neutrality. You cannot, and will not, use this article to focus solely on left-wing criticism of the account. There are numerous reliable sources which confirm that the account gained notoriety for calling out LGBT members who expressed outright inappropriate, sexually explicit views of children. This will be re-added.

There are two parts to this:

  1. Any claims, even those backed up with tweets, must be cited with a reliable news source. A tweet can be a one time thing, which is why claims that can be sourced are necessary. The reason why news.com.au is not a good source in this case is because the source for news.com.au is actually from the New York Post, which is not allowed. This is a common practice in the news business and yes, it must be watched for.
  2. I never acted like "the videos of LGBT activists promoting pedophilia or child sexualisation never happened". I want to add a mention of it somewhere, because I do feel the article could benefit from such an expansion (lest we start adding lies to make the article larger), but with that comes being tactful. You have to cite your reliable sources, there's no negotiation to be had here. If your source comes from the New York Post, and the New York Post is disallowed on Wikipedia, tough luck. This is not the place to discuss that kind of policy change. These sources are disallowed for a reason, and they benefit from bureaucracy.

I summed all of that up into a reply to Domiy nearly an hour later. While I'm crafting my reply, Domiy readds his section, gets undone by X-Editor, then undoes X-Editor's edit under the guise of "reverting vandalism", to which Valjean tells Domiy to knock it off. In response, Domiy then adds ((uw-ew)) to Valjean's page (despite the fact Valjean was not edit warring), and three minutes later Domiy continues to erroneously twist my argument:

I am more than happy to use a direct link to the Tweet in question if you have doubts on whether the alleged Tweet criticizing pedophilia or masturbation really did occur.? I am also not using the New York Post as a source, I'm using a collaborated source from news.com.au, one of Australia's largest and most trusted news sites.

This is not about whether or not the tweets are real, they obviously are, but the sources used are against Wikipedia's reliability policy for sources and are being reverted on those grounds. We (Valjean, X-Editor, Pokelova, myself) are not undoing your edits because of some hidden agenda, we're undoing them because there is a very stringent policy on what you can and can't cite on Wikipedia and it must be followed. This applies to Media Matters (considered by many to be a left-wing source) too, and it applies to news.com.au because they're getting their article content from the New York Post.

Four minutes later, this DRR is created.

I am one to avoid confrontation and conflict, which is exactly why this is a bit troubling. We (Valjean, X-Editor, Pokelova, myself) are looking to make the article better, and that requires some consideration and bureaucracy, not brute force. elijahpepe@wikipedia (he/him) 14:52, 24 April 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Libs of Tiktok

Symbol wait old.png
– New discussion.
Filed by Domiy on 04:28, 24 April 2022 (UTC).[reply]

Have you discussed this on a talk page?

Yes, I have discussed this issue on a talk page already.

Location of dispute

Users involved

Dispute overview

In lieu of recent media attention, this page is receiving a lot of interest and additions. There is a section clearly dedicated to summarizing the type of content posted by the subject Twitter account, however other users are repeatedly removing references to content they find unappealing.

Specifically, the the Libs of Tikok Twitter account has gained notoriety for criticizing videos that contained sexual references about young children, including a post in which a professor expressed apologetic views towards pedophilia and a woman who claimed to host "sexual liberation and masturbation" workshops for children. I have added this information in and cited it using multiple sources, including a direct link to the Twitter posts in question, however other users are removing this without answering why.

Given that the article goes into detail about a variety of Tweets from Libs of Tiktok, it seems rather arbitrary and completely biased to omit some Tweets that certain editors find unappealing.

How have you tried to resolve this dispute before coming here?

Talk:Libs_of_TikTok#Please_stop_deleting_factual_information_to_push_bias

How do you think we can help resolve the dispute?

Provide neutral commentary, suggestions, or resolutions from an uninvolved editor on whether it is appropriate to remove certain material referencing a Twitter post which is currently live on Twitter itself.

Libs of Tiktok discussion

Please keep discussion to a minimum before being opened by a volunteer. Continue on article talk page if necessary.