Talk:1976 Tangshan earthquake

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("C" on the map)[edit]

Perhaps my preferences aren't set correctly, but I see no map with any points labeled (not "C", as indicated in the 2nd sentence of the 3rd paragraph of "The Earthquake" section, nor "A" or "B" either, as noted in the infobox, as well as in later sections), other than in the infobox, where only the epicenter is marked. - Rusty Lugnuts (talk) 17:23, 5 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Apparently I'm getting a Syntax Error for the map in question (under the next section, "Damage", titled, "Extent of significant shaking"). I've tried enabling and disabling various gadget and beta preferences with no luck. Unfortunately I'm not familiar with the formatting of infoboxes well enough to perceive if there's a problem with the source. - Rusty Lugnuts (talk) 17:44, 5 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Curious. The "map in question" is, of course, the one displayed — or should be displayed! — in the "Damage" section, not the location map in the infobox. Perhaps the text should be clearer about that. At any rate, I believe the problem you are seeing (or in not seeing?) has nothing to do with the infobox. The map of concern, titled "Extent of significant shaking", is displaying properly for me, with the points "A", "B", and "C" displayed next to the red triangles. So it's not a gross problem, and we will need to do some careful trouble-shooting to figure this out. Please provide the following information:
Q1: do you see any map, or even just a box, in the "Damage" section?
Q2: What is this "Syntax error" you see? (Exact & complete wording, please.) I presume it shows up in the text; right?
Please go to my test area. In the "small test" section: Q3: do you see two maps, one of Tangshan, and one that is mostly blank? Q4: Do you catch any error messages?
In my "Bigger test" section: Q5: do you see the "Tangshan earthquake" map? Q6: Do you see the diamonds? Q7: Any errors?
And in the "OSM overlay tests" section: Q8: Do you see three maps? Q9: Any errors?
(Feel free to interpolate your answers.)
There could also be a browser problem; you should check this with any other browsers you have available. Also try accessing the map without logging in; that should eliminate any problems with your personal configuration. ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 20:39, 5 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@Rusty Lugnuts: awaiting your response. The problem you have seen may be connected with a deeper level bug that is being investigated, and the difference where you encounter this problem and I don't may be a useful datum. ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 19:17, 7 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
If it's worth anything, I do see the labels on Windows desktop Chrome Version 72.0.3626.96. — MarkH21 (talk) 03:22, 13 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Unfortunately, no. Troubleshooting a bug requires having some knowledge of the effects of the bug, particularly the error message encountered. At any rate, I suspect what the problem is: two software packages out of sync. Not an issue specific to the map at hand, or addressable here. Though I might tweak the text so that readers having this problem will understand that the reference to "C" is on the map they don't "see". :-) ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 22:43, 15 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Just noticed that the map also doesn’t appear on many mobile devices. Moving the letter labels to the caption may be the best option. — MarkH21 (talk) 01:25, 28 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
What do you mean by "moving the letter labels to the caption"? They identify elements on the map by their adjacency; putting them into the caption (where they already are) destroys that.
I suspect that the problem of the map not appearing arises from a problem with PHP-7. If you have a mobile device (any device?) where you can disable PHP-7 that would be a good test. ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 20:03, 28 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Thanks to a tip from RobinLeicester I can get something that looks like broken OSM maps. @Rusty Lugnuts: does clicking on '' show the same problem you saw before? What I see from that link is the basemap (without the overlaid annotations) at the upper-right, and a blank box (presumably where the overlay data is/isn't) a little lower on the left. Is that what you see? ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 23:15, 12 March 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Various edits coming up (Feb. 2019)[edit]

@MarkH21: Just letting you know I am about to do some extended editing. I would like to point out that your edit (13 Feb.), replacing "complete lack of warning" with "failure to predict" (without explanation) evinces an identity that does not apply here. For sure, the concepts are closely coupled, and often the difference is immaterial. But as explained (perhaps inadequately?) in the "Question of prediction" section: whether there was, or was not, a prediction is questionable. What is not questionable is that there was no public warning, and therefore, in contrast to Haicheng, no preparation. Also, in several cases where you have removed text I would suggest that templating (such as with {{cn}} or {{or}}) would be more appropriate. ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 22:32, 16 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Sure, but again I am just trying to remove some of the interpretive tone that is present or at least suggested by some of the wording here. In particular, there are some instances of WP:ALLEGED and WP:EDITORIAL here (e.g. "fortunate") that can easily be avoided. In my second-most-recent edit, the "palpable failure" sentence seemed particularly egregious since it was unsourced at the time. But even now, the "Tangshan was not so fortunate" sentence is unnecessary here. Of course the reader can infer what they want from the objective explicit contrast, rather than have the subjective opinion on whether something is "fortunate". — MarkH21 (talk) 20:04, 18 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
In your zeal to de-editorialize do you actually check the sources given? (Well, usually given!) Or are you just flying by a gut-feeling? (I don't mean to sound snide; it's genuine question. I have seen quite a few editors that seem to be running primarily on WP:IDLI.)
Perhaps you have in mind this text from WP:EDITORIALIZING:

Clearly, obviously, naturally, and of course all presume too much about the reader's knowledge and perspective and often amount to excess verbiage. Wikipedia should not take a view as to whether an event was fortunate or not.

So is your objection to "Tangshan was not so fortunate" — that it is unnecessary — because this is clearly and obviously true? I think that is presuming upon "the reader's knowledge and perspective". Alternately, perhaps you are thinking this is Wikipedia taking a view? Sorry, no, that is the source (Kerr, 1979), which says: "The city of Tangshan had not been so fortunate....". (If the text was any closer quotation marks would be needed.) And in this source and others there is an explicit contrast with Haicheng, and mention of specific points (such as lack of precursors, and time of day) where Haicheng was fortunate, and Tangshan was not. As to being subjective — I presume you mean in the sense of opinions arising from one's own personal feelings, distinguished from opinions based on sensible, external reality, without distortion from personal feeling — well, the objective explicit reality is: the factors in why Tangshan got crushed a lot worse than Haicheng all seem to be fortuitous. ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 01:25, 19 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
For de-editorializing, it's both. But even if a source is given and states the exact words "___ was fortunate", that does not mean that it should be included in an article. The well-established position in MOS is:

Wikipedia should not take a view as to whether an event was fortunate or not.

So an article should not read "___ was fortunate". It would be acceptable with respect to this position that an article may something like "___ thinks that ___ was fortunate in his/her analysis of ___". However, in this (and many other) cases such a statement is unimportant and doe not need to be included in an article.
I think it is perfectly acceptable (and preferable here) to just have what is already given: 2,046 people died as a result of the 7.5 Ms earthquake at Haicheng. 242,419 people died at the similarly-sized earthquake at Tangshan. The (lack of) precursors and time of day contributed to the low death toll at Haicheng and the high death toll at Tangshan. One doesn't need to state that Kerr thinks that Tangshan was not as fortunate as Haicheng.
As to why the MOS explicitly takes the position that articles should not take a position on fortune, it's really a subjective opinion whether something was "fortuitous" or not. Some silly "examples": Some would consider Trump's election fortuitous. Some would not. Some would consider Tangshan's suffering as unfortunate. Some would consider it a result of poor construction techniques and planning. There's no objectivity in fortune and results of probability. If one objects, then the appropriate venue is the MOS talk! — MarkH21 (talk) 07:46, 19 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The MOS "Editorializing" section comes under "Words that may introduce bias", and I see no instance of any words being absolutely forbidden. As to Wikipedia "not taking a view" re "fortunate", well, I do not see that reporting an attributed characterization is "taking a view". Nor do I see that absolutely forbidding "fortunate" is a "well-established position in MOS". Indeed, I have yet to find any discussion of that in the archives. As to rigid avoidance of "fortunately", the only discussion of this I have found in the MOS archives is here, where the statement at the top of the MOS was reiterated: "The advice in this guideline ... should not be applied rigidly." [Emphasis in the original.] There was also discussion of why "words to avoid" was changed to "words to watch", with mention of some editors taking this to mean "remove on sight".
I dispute your opinion that "fortuitous" is "really a subjective opinion". It refers to things or events "happening by accident or chance". And, to take time of day as an example, there is no reason known (or even suspected) why the Tangshan earthquake happened at 4 AM and not (say) 4 PM; that was purely and objectively by chance, there is no subjectivity to it. ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 00:21, 20 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I think there is some misunderstanding about my objection. I am not saying that the word is forbidden, but that the attribution should be clear if the word is included, i.e. "___ thinks that ___ was fortunate" (or something more graceful), rather than a statement that "___ was fortunate". The former is different from the latter with a ref tag afterwards. I'm not saying that the occurrence of an event with unknown reasons is subjective. What I'm saying is that the position that something was fortunate is subjective. Saying that something is fortunate or fortuitous implies the position that it was "good" or "bad" that something happened. I personally agree that it was "bad" that many people (including my friends' relatives) lost their lives at Tangshan, but I don't think that it should be states as "bad" on Wikipedia. The earthquake happened and some factors led to more people dying. There's no need to state whether it or the relevant factors were good or bad fortune. — MarkH21 (talk) 03:04, 20 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I think you were quite clear, with little room for misunderstanding: "But even if a source is given and states the exact words "___ was fortunate", that does not mean that it should be included in an article." Also citing the MOS ("Wikipedia should not take a view ..."), for: "So an article should not read[your italics]"___ was fortunate"." That sure sounds like "forbidden". But perhaps today we agree that "fortunate" is not forbidden.
I disagree that "fortunate" should be attributed in the text ("__ thinks that"). We do that when there is a dispute, or when it might be of interest to the reader. But lacking any contention of the fact I see no reason why the usual attribution in a note is not sufficient.
I agree that "fortunate" is often used with a strong tone of "good" or "bad", which certainly have subjective elements. But! There is no "position" taken here that 242K deaths (or any other aspect) was "bad". This is about the contrast between Haicheng vs. Tangshan (e.g., few deaths versus many deaths). That is: Tangshan was not so fortunate as Haicheng (would "not as fortunate" be better?), for what are very similar earthquakes in very similar contexts. The point is not that Tangshan's "fortune" (destiny) that day was "bad" (by some subjective criterion), but that it was "less fortunate" than Haicheng's, and that some of the "relevant factors" were entirely fortuitous. Which, by the way, does NOT imply goodness or badness (in the way that "lucky" has come to imply good luck); it means only happening by chance. Again: hat sentence does not say that Tangshan was unfortunate, only that it was less fortunate than Haicheng. And this was to a degree so extreme as to be significant and notable in its own right (and thus should be mentioned), and leads into why the supposed "failure to predict/warn" was so serious. ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 21:44, 21 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]

It's more than just often... it's the explicit definition in most definitions (e.g. The Merriam-Webster Dictionary, The Cambridge Dictionary)! Similarly for "fortuitous" which has "fortunate" and "lucky" strongly associated and included in many definitions (e.g. The Merriam-Webster Dictionary, The Oxford Dictionary) Even if that is not the intended usage here, it does have that connotation for many readers. Yes, it's not really so bad if we use "fortunate" here but the contrast can easily be drawn without using words carrying an implicit "goodness". What I wrote above works as a bare example:

2,046 people died as a result of the 7.5 Ms earthquake at Haicheng. 242,419 people died at the similarly-sized earthquake at Tangshan. The (lack of) precursors and time of day contributed to the low death toll at Haicheng and the high death toll at Tangshan. One doesn't need to state that Kerr thinks that Tangshan was not as fortunate as Haicheng.

The inclusion of the sentence "Tangshan was not so fortunate." is unnecessary. — MarkH21 (talk) 03:50, 24 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Source for official death toll[edit]

@MarkH21: At one point I found what appeared to be the official (CEA) death toll (here) but it's gone away. (Yeah, I should have archived it. Dang.) Given your command of Chinese, could you search for a replacement? Or even (a long shot) do you suppose we could ask them to restore that page? Incidentally, the missing page had this notation: "International Networking Unit Record No. 京ICP备06029777". But that seems to be worthless. Googling on that last part plus "唐山" turns up some hits, but they're all 404. ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 22:39, 22 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I can look for sources later, but at the very least here's an archive [1] of that website :) — MarkH21 (talk) 04:51, 23 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes, I see the "242769" figure there, which supports our use, and is likely good enough to quell any objections. Though it would be good to have an official source that is still current. What do the Chinese language wikipedias cite? ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 23:19, 23 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The Chinese Wikipedia cites 1 (a 1982 academic book published by zh:地震出版社, a publishing house sponsored by the State Seismological Bureau) for giving 242,769 deaths and 164,851 serious injuries and 2 (1988 academic book published by a now-Elsevier-subsidiary by members of the National Seismological Bureau of China) for 242,419 deaths.
1) 林泉. 地球的震撼. 中国地震出版社. 1982. (Lin Quan. The Earth's Shock. China Earthquake Publishing House / China Earthquake Press / China Seismological Publishing House / China Seismological Press. 1982.)
2) Chen, Yong; Tsoi, Kam-Ling; Chen, Feibi; Gao, Zhenhuan; Zou, Qijia; Chen, Zhangli, eds. (1988), The Great Tangshan Earthquake of 1976: An Anatomy of Disaster, Oxford: Pergamon Press, p. 153, ISBN 978-0080348759, LCCN 88005916.
Hope that helps. — MarkH21 (talk) 04:04, 24 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes, that is great. (Double-plus good!) I know of the second book, but have never seen a copy, so I couldn't verify it. For the first book, could you provide a page number for the 242,769 figure?
While these books are good (authoritative, and even officially blessed), I think we still need to find an official source. ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 19:47, 24 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Looking further at the discussion in the Chinese Wikipedia article, the official number of victims is 242,419 according to Xinhua News Agency, the official state-run press agency of the PRC ([2]). Interestingly, this news article also mentions that the public memorial has 246,245 names on it due to some recent additions and revisions in 1992, 2008, and 2010. Nonetheless, 242,419 remains the official number. — MarkH21 (talk) 22:01, 24 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Not as clearly and cleanly "official" as I'd like it to be, but that is problem with the Chinese government. (And my inability to read Chinese?) I'll see about working these in, and hopefully that will suffice to cover the matter. ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 00:02, 26 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
What do you think of this as a citation of that first book:
  • 林 [Lin], 泉 [Quan] (1982), 地球的震撼 [The Earth's Shock] (in Chinese), Beijing, China: 中国地震出版社 [Seismological Press].
I am presuming "Lin" is the surname--is that correct? For publisher you gave four terms (or is that two pairs of "Publishing House/Press"?); is there a preferred form here? I tried googling the title with "isbn", but the results seemed to be trash. Am I correct in presuming that books published in China also use ISBNs? ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 02:12, 26 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes, Lin is the surname. I gave four different English names for the publisher that I found in different references online. The publisher's website ([3]) gives their English name as "Seismological Press" when omitting China from the Chinese name. So the official English name should be "China Seismological Press". Yep, China uses ISBNs as well. It seems to be 978-7116460933 or 978-7477148487 according to second-hand book sales listings ([4], [5]) which are not exactly reliable... I couldn't verify that these are correct ISBNs via an ISBN lookup. The book is less than $5 USD if you want it though :) Of course it'll be entirely in Chinese. — MarkH21 (talk) 02:39, 26 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes, that occurred to me. :-0
I see that both of your links seem to link to the book. But for both ISBNs the template complains of a checksum error. I suspect "" is a bit casual about copying data from the original publisher. Well, ISBN would be nice, but not absolutely necessary. ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 04:14, 27 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yep, is like Chinese combination of Amazon + eBay. This book might not have an ISBN: China issued ISBNs beginning in 1987. — MarkH21 (talk) 05:26, 27 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yeah, I figured out last night that my question should have been whether China used ISBNs in 1982. Searching turned up some interesting stuff, but it didn't look anything to do with the book. So I have tweaked the citation, and will run with that. Thanks for your assistance. ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 20:55, 27 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No problem! Given that the official figure is actually 242,419 (and it originates from a more recent study), I'll also add the Xinhua and 1988 book references and change the IB entry. — MarkH21 (talk) 22:08, 27 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]

@J. Johnson:I made a few edits regarding the death toll that you may want to review. I basically changed the infobox entry to reflect the official figure (at least what was more recently reported by official media), made two subsections since two thirds of the section is about reports immediately following the earthquake and one third is about the later government-reported figures, removed two minor unattributed claims, and replaced boldfaced figures with emphasis (per MOS:NOBOLD). — MarkH21 (talk) 22:27, 27 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I see. Yeah, the more I consider it, breaking out "Official figures" seems to be a good idea. Do keep in mind that a while a study might be authoritative (in the sense of strong basis for accepting its results), an official number is not necessarily most authoritative, nor even most accurate; "official" means the number published ("blessed") by the official authorities (usually the government). And it is a big difference between citing an official report directly, and citing what others say the officials said. (But perhaps the best we can do in this case.)
A preliminary review: the "citation style" of this article is to use {{citation}} templates (CS1 style), not the {{cite xxx}} family (CS2 style). Where a {cite} template is used (sometimes there is no CS1 equivalent) the |mode=cs2 parameter should be included. Also, the cite/citation templates create full citations, which should be in the Sources section; the in-line citation should be a short-cite. News agencies are a little tricky; I suggest something like {{Harvnb|Xinhua|2019}} for the short-cite, and adding |ref=CITEREFXinhua2019 ("name" and year concatenated) to the cite template. If that doesn't work: don't worry about it, I can make it work.
[Last paragraph split off to start next sub-section.]
♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 23:47, 27 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Right, but there are no claims to being the authoritative or the most accurate here. Regarding citing what others say the officials say, the government-run press should be a reliable source for reporting the government figures! I agree though, that a government source of some sort dedicated to reporting such figures would be better, but this is more than sufficient until such a source can be found.
Sorry about the citation format change! Feel free to change the formatting - or I’ll get around to it in a bit. Note that the year of the Xinhua article is 2017, not 2019. — MarkH21 (talk) 01:17, 28 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Bold vs emphasis[edit]

I am going to demure on removing the bolding. I agree we generally avoid that. But with a bunch of different figures (and adamantly not wanting to convert that section into a table) I think the different figures should be highlighted in some way, but more than italiciation. They are, after all, essentially index terms for the content of that section, and (I feel) should be readily findable without having to sequentially search the text. As to alternatives: Underlining? I rather don't like it (makes the numbers a little less clear), but could accept it. Colored text? Not really a good idea. Background coloring? So so, has to be done carefully, but I am kind of liking it. How about a slightly larger font? ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 23:47, 27 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]

For highlighting the figures, that’s the purpose of the emphasis template! I do think that it’s sufficient even though it’s less prominent than bolding. Also relevant is that the “em” and “strong” templates produce semantic emphasis as opposed to just typographic emphasis. An example of the usage difference is that semantic markup is read by text-to-speech readers for the visually impaired and by other software that usually ignores typographic markup (normal bolding using apostrophes, normal italicization, colors, etc.). — MarkH21 (talk) 01:00, 28 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I beg to disagree on the use of {{em}}. It is for mild emphasis (not highlighting!) that is semantically significant. These figures are key terms, essentially the topic of each paragraph, but not, I think, otherwise semantically significant. Note that the effect intended here is not a mild bump of emphasis as one reads the text (e.g., "this term is significant"), but (from the {{strong}} documentation)to draw the eye from elsewhere on the page. It's a matter of scanability: to find a particular figure in the section. (Though as {strong} is also "semantically significant" the use of the WP <b> or triple apostrophes are indicated.)
I note that bolding of subsection headings is not only permissible, but done automatically. If each paragraph is broken out as a subsection, with the figure under discussion used as the heading, then the scanability problem is solved, and we are entirely kosher per MOS:BOLD. However, I don't particularly like lots of small subsections. Perhaps we could just prefix the figure (in bold) to each paragraph as a quasi-subsection heading. What do you think?
In any event, I think italicization, no matter how effected, is neither appropriate nor useful here.
Alternately, perhaps a colored background? ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 21:49, 28 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Here, it is semantic emphasis! Typographic bolding / italicization is used where there is "no sense of emphasis", e.g. titles of publications, headers, scientific names. Here, we are emphasizing the figures because they are the primary topic of discussion in that section. It does not carry a strong semantic meaning, but I do think there is a semantic emphasis here. I also agree that it would be strange and undesirable to make each figure a subsection, which if justified would automatically merit bolding for typographic reasons. Quasi-subsections would be just as strange though. Otherwise, bolding here would be very distracting and draw too much emphasis to just the figures. The background coloring might work... I feel like I've seen that on another article before but I can't find an example right now. — MarkH21 (talk) 11:46, 1 March 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Ah, maybe you saw it in the (now) first paragraph of this section? Which goes to show that background color can be subtle to the point of uselessness. Seems to need a stronger color than "azure". Perhaps something on the order of "at least 655,000 dead"?
Sorry, no, this emphasis is not "semantic": its presence or absence makes no difference whatsoever to the meaning of the text. (That "sense of emphasis" is a bit misleading. E.g., the primary purpose of typographic bolding is to make an element, such as a volume number, stand out from the rest, which is a form of emphasis. And exactly what we need to do here. I think this "sense" is where one part of a sentence is emphasized relative to another part, which can clarify, or alter, the meaning, but that doesn't happen here.) Drawing attention to the figures is exactly what is needed. Italics are too "mild" for this, as you hardly notice them until you're already upon them. I see the figures as a primary index key, which is useless if the only way to find a given figure is sequential reading.
How do you reckon that bolding would be "very distracting"? ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 01:21, 2 March 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Ah okay, I think I misunderstood your intention of use of bolding / emphasis / color to be actual emphasis and demonstrating the varied figures rather than as an index. How it was before, the bolding was too strong to serve as emphasis and really pulls one’s eyes away from other text. To some extent, this is the purpose of indexing typography but this was to the degree that it detracts from the rest of the content in the section. I think this is also what is the stance of MOS:BOLD which only prescribes boldface for article title terms, automatically bolded terms (headers, infobox, etc.), and a few specific cases (e.g. mathematics). Avoidance elsewhere is still the preference, regardless of the reason of emphasis.
Regardless, I disagree with the need to index the figures (which would usually then merit subsections) since there is only a sentence or so for each figure. I think that there are too many figures with small accompanying text for it to really be useful.
What I meant by an example is an article that uses the colored background. Are there articles that currently use colored background for figures? I feel like I might have seen one once but I’m not sure. Perhaps an outside opinion may help for this matter? There may be some who are experts on WP typography that may help here at WP:TYP (which seems to possibly be inactive), WP:RFC, or somewhere else? — MarkH21 (talk) 15:13, 3 March 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
As to colored backgrounds for figures: there are infoboxes (e.g.: {{weather box}}) that use colored backgrounds, but more to classify within a table than to emphasize. I searched article space for "hastemplate:bg"; got a rather low 415 hits. (Perhaps by another name would turn up more?) A cursory examination showed use of {bg} for emphasis at Base64, but that was in a table. At any rate, I don't feel any love for {bg}. What I would really like is something on the order of "half-bold". Hmm, I might try some experiments with {fg} to that end. Another idea I had: Fraktur! (Gee, aren't all letters essentially black by default?) Maybe a 115% font size? Another idea I want to swish around a bit: some kind of bullet.
Even with only "a sentence or so" for each, the different figures are the essential elements of the section. (They could also be viewed in respect of the sources, but that is a secondary consideration/key.) It is a very notable element of the story that there were these highly divergent (and strikingly large) figures, and it is reasonable that readers are likely to be interested in comparing the different figures. That is the point of highlighting: to enable the reader to quickly find ("index") the figure that each little pile of text is about. (A table would facilitate that, but I find a table to be unsuitable here.) ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 22:19, 7 March 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
So I tried some experiments. (See User:J. Johnson/sandbox2.) Two methods look good: using guillemets, and {{larger}} (sets font size to 110%), giving "no more than «242,419» people died in the quake" and "no more than 242,419 people died in the quake". I still prefer bold, and haven't yet figured out any way of doing "half-bold", but would consider guillements and {larger} satisfactory in giving the readers a visual "anchor". How do you feel about these? ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 23:35, 9 March 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]

A bit uneasy about fraktur (even if properly rendered) as I haven't seen any use of it outside of mathematics. My understanding is that guillemets are only used in some languages outside of English and for translations from other languages to English, so I don't feel particularly good about that either. Larger also seems a bit off... I'll make a post at the typographical Wikiprojects to ask for attention or otherwise make an RfC. — MarkH21 (talk) 19:02, 10 March 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Fraktur (as an instance of an inherently bolded typeface) is just my little amusement. Stand easy! ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 20:13, 10 March 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Request for comment: bold vs emphasis[edit]

The consensus is against adding bolding or emphasis of the reported death figures.

Cunard (talk) 23:45, 21 April 2019 (UTC)

The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

Should reported death figures for a historical event use boldface, emphasis, or any other type of typographic or semantic emphasis? The editors and are unsure of the options and standards. One editor is against the use of boldface per MOS:NOBOLD and advocates for the use of italics or {{em}}, while the other editor would like a typographic way to highlight the death figures as indices. See the above section for past discussion and additional proposed alternatives. 19:22, 10 March 2019 (UTC)

I see no need for any form of highlighting. Digits are taller than most lowercase letters, so it's already easy to pick out a multi-digit number from a passage of text:
Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, lorem vivendo luptatum an qui. Sea munere feugait recusabo ei 242,419, dicit convenire accommodare at mei, et ornatus efficiantur sit. At qui dolores vulputate consectetuer, harum eripuit ne duo, vim mazim prompta ea 275,000. Ne numquam saperet mel. Ei est zril dicunt dolorum.
Maproom (talk) 08:31, 14 March 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
WP:SEVERE doesn't bold death tolls for tornadoes. United States Man (talk) 23:38, 14 March 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Normally we do not bold or otherwise highlight a death toll (or any other single number). But in this case it is notable that there was not "a" death toll (including preliminary estimates), but multiple and wildly differing death tolls, which took on political significance. (E.g., claims of a government cover-up.) I think it is reasonable to assume that many readers will arrive here (or return) with a particular number in mind they have seen elsewhere, and would like to go directly to the relevant text, which bolding or highlighting would faciliate. That digits are as tall as capital letters is of little effect. (So are the lowercase letters 'bfhl', for what little effect that has.) But note that making them a little larger – 110%, to be precise, using {{larger}}, as in '243,419 deaths' – is one option under consideration. Another options is just insert a bullet ('•') of some kind, or to enclose the figures in guillements, like «this». ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 19:44, 17 March 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No emphasis. See MOS:TEXT. This doesn't qualify for italics or boldface. It's just numbers. And there being multiple conflicting numeric reports makes them even less appropriate to emphasize per WP:DUE, since they're all shaky data. Are we certain we should be including them at all, instead of a simple range from high to low estimates? That seems like the more normal practice. The experiments in the thread above this (guillemets and large font size) are even further from our stylistic norms, and bear no resemblance to other Wikipedia content.  — SMcCandlish ¢ 😼  22:40, 18 March 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Mac: this is not one of your more stellar comments. While all data has a degree of shakiness, there are big differences in the reliability and significance of these data. Presenting them as "just numbers" in "a simple range" does the readers a disservice in blunting their understanding of the matter. Some of these numbers have been very widely repeated (even in a peer-reviewed journal), but for all that they are entirely meaningless without some explanation of where and how they came about. They all have some basis, and though we are not fortunate enough to know all of that I think we should explain what we can. And as I said above, I think it is quite likely that some readers will arrive here wanting to know not what the range of estimates was, but about a particular number. ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 22:19, 19 March 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
But it's not like the numbers won't still be there. Plus, are there that many readers with a specific figure reported in 1976 or 1977 soon after the earthquake ingrained in their minds coming to the death toll section of the earthquake page specifically to look for that figure? That's a very narrow audience, plus the section is not very long / dense and it's not difficult to find the different figures anyways. — MarkH21 (talk) 22:30, 19 March 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The "very small audience" would be those people who had a casaulty figure "soon after the earthquake ingrained in their minds". (Especially as most of the world's population wasn't even alive then.) The much more likely scenario is someone is comparing "the world's deadliest natural disasters" (or some suchy), or comes here straight from List of natural disasters by death toll#Deadliest earthquakes, where the "242,769–655,000" range given for Tangshan ranks it deadlier than three other earthquakes of 273,400, 250,000, and 260,000 deaths, and wants to know something about the validity of the different numbers.
But I weary of this discussion. For a distinct albeit small improvement I am getting way too much friction. The harder our readers have to work to understand something the more they will value it; right? ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 23:42, 19 March 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Ah I see. To digress, I think that the range on that page should probably be changed to what is the current "official" (government) figure. Even the USGS site doesn't list the range but notes the high estimates as note.MarkH21 (talk) 00:37, 20 March 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I believe you refer to the WP "List of" page. Yes, the range there is not what the cited source says, and ought to be corrected. I have not undertaken that correction, or others, because undoubtedly there are other instances, and I think this page should address the different numbers that readers are very likely to have encountered elsewhere. Simply giving our readers more contradictory numbers (i.e., typical WP style!), or even not giving them the numbers, serves them less well than if we provide some basis for resolving the contradictions. ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 21:14, 20 March 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]

The discussion above is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

"Ceased to exist"[edit]

@J. Johnson: Regarding this, even if Housner writes ceased to exist doesn't mean that we should use it here. It's a dramatic flourish suitable for a book but not for Wikipedia articles, particularly since it's not precisely correct. If eighty-five percent of the buildings in the city collapsed or were unusable, then the city did not literally cease to exist. It's just literary flair. I'm not sure why you prefer that to something capturing the same spirit like nearly completely destroyed that is accurate and not just puff.

Also regarding the revert and what I think was confusion over my edit summary (i.e. about the cns?), the while true, doesn’t really need to be said especially if unattributed part of my edit summary refers to me reverting this edit and still seems dramatic and somewhat imprecise refers to the ceased to exist change. — MarkH21talk 03:56, 28 February 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Your view of continued existence seems to be based on having some fragment of the city's physical fabric surving intact, while Dr. Housner's view was that it no longer existed as a functional, living entity. This would be clearer if you would read the source (your "even if" suggests you have not), where he describes the failure of practically all city services. "[N]early completely destroyed" is inaccurate (how much is "nearly completely"?), not what the source says, and does not "capture the same spirit" as the explicit "ceased to exist" as a fuctioning entity. Yes, it is dramatic, but so was the reality, and I know of no rule or guideline that prohibits use of an accurate, sourced statement. You imply that it is "puff", but I don't see that. The city was entirely rebuilt, to a new plan, so it seems quite accurate to say that Tangshan as it was no longer exists.
No misunderstanding about the other edit. The "one of the most damaging [EQs] in modern history" is a fair rendering of Housner's "greatest earthquake disaster in the history of the world", and arguably even more accurate. ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 22:33, 28 February 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I'm not sure why you think I didn't read the Housner & He source... even if here means that despite the source having the words ceased to exist, I don't think that the article should state that in WP voice in the lead.
My point is simply that ceased to exist is a literary dramatic flourish that, while an interesting hook, can be misconstrued and replaced by more standard neutral wording (neutral in the sense of emotional & reporting tone, not in the sense of NPOV). The city still existed - sure not in its former form or as a functional city - but it continued to exist in a destroyed state with several hundreds of thousands of surviving inhabitants, and later continued to exist as a rebuilt city. The words ceased to exist (without any other context, e.g. without the as a functioning entity that you provide) can carry the connotation that Tangshan was no longer any kind of entity, that Tangshan was no longer an item in history after July 28, 1976, and that the approximately 1 million inhabitants were wiped out. This is what I mean when I say that those words, without any additional context, are inaccurate and dramatic. Can you see what I mean here? I'm not saying that the phrasing is prohibited by guideline or policy, but that the wording can be improved through some modification.
Perhaps some other alternative to nearly completely destroyed would be better, but even removing the entire sentence would be fine. Perhaps even just combining the two adjacent sentences to form:

In minutes, eighty-five percent of the buildings in Tangshan, an industrial city with approximately one million inhabitants, collapsed or were unusable...

I'm sure we can come up with several suggestions that would be better than just stating that it ceased to exist.
Also I don't see the point of adding the sentence This earthquake is regarded as one of the most damaging in modern history. when the very next sentence says that the third (or possibly second) deadliest earthquake in recorded history. It's unnecessary and redundant since the second sentence already prescribes it as one of the most damaging in recorded history. — MarkH21talk 02:45, 29 February 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Taking your last point, re "most damaging", first: the first sentence is about damage, while the following sentence is about deaths (i.e., fatalities). Those are different, not at all redundant; your comment is incorrect. While I am rather neutral on whether it stays, I would hope you can make a better argument for its removal.
Your "even if Housner writes ceased to exist" comes across to me as questioning whether Housner wrote that, where it is readily verifiable that he did, in fact write that. Presuming that you had merely not read the source seemed the more charitable explanation for what you wrote. Perhaps you don't understand that "if" carries a strong sense of "possibly not true"? Perhaps "despite", meaning notwithstanding, unaffected, or regardless, better fits what you meant to say?
And perhaps you are reading too much into "ceased to exist"? We could add a qualifying "as a functional entity", which would clarify what Housner meant. But would there then be a problem with that not being exactly what he said? At any rate, I find "ceased to exist" a more accurate description than the weasely "nearly completely destroyed", which is NOT what Housner said.
I don't what you mean by "more standard neutral wording", other than utterly bloodless. I imagine that for most residents the experience was F...ING DEVASTATING!, and a plain statement of cessation seems quite bland, and even colorless. You seem to be most opposed re dramatic, but that seems like a personal feeling that you just don't like it. Perhaps (to the extent this is historical writing) you have always thought history is boring, and therefore WP must be boring? Sorry, I don't agree. ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 00:32, 1 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Damage can refer to both damage to physical structures and damage to human life. Plus, the quote to which you associate this sentence doesn't specifically refer to physical damage in greatest earthquake disaster in the history of the world from Housner-He. If you're neutral on whether the statement stays, then I take it that you won't oppose its removal unless you want to be POINTY.
You're talking about "if", which is different from "even if". "Even if" is synonymous with "despite", "in spite of", etc. You can check any dictionary you want to see that (Merriam-Webster, Cambridge, OALD).
The lead doesn't need to say exactly what Housner-He say, unless it is specifically attributed to them a la WP:INTEXT. It would be fine to either write According to Housner-He, ... ceased to exist or modify the statement to something else without in-text attribution to them. Again, I am not suggesting that we have to use nearly completely destroyed. See the proposed text in my previous comment.
It's not a personal feeling and I don't understand where you're drawing these bizarre and incorrect personal inferrals. Do you not see how ceased to exist can have different implications, which I discussed in my last comment? One can describe the physical devastation and tragic loss of life without using cheap idioms that lacks precision, even if that's how one book introduces the topic
If you refuse to consider any proposals or alternatives, we can just go to RfC. — MarkH21talk 00:50, 1 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
"If", again? That is a hypothetical, as I have not "refuse[d] to consider any proposals or alternatives". And I have offered an alternative, to which you have not responded.
Per your own citation (Oxford), "even" as adverb is "used to emphasize something unexpected or surprising", which, coupled with your "if", suggested to me that you were surprised or doubtful of what Housner said. But you are being unnecessarily contentious here: you seem to have missed my key qualification that your "even if" comes across to me as questioning whether Housner wrote that. Whether you or I have the better grasp of a fine point of English usage is quite immaterial here, as I was attempting to explain why I thought you might not have read the source. That you are so inconsequentially disputatious is totally unuseful.
Incidentally, it is not helpful to characterize my explanation as "bizarre", or "ceased to exist" as a "cheap idiom". Also, WP:IDIOM says nothing about "cheap"; it says that "Clichés and idioms are generally to be avoided in favor of direct, literal expressions." Which I believe favors "ceased to exist".
And I find your characterization of death as subsumed under "damage to human life" rather bizarre. My broad experience is that damage and deaths are always reckoned separately, and that this is so obvious – i.e., WP:BLUE – that it hardly warrants assertion. But if you can find some source that says otherwise, sure, knock yourself out, perhaps I will find it amusing.
The concept of WP:I just don't like it is where you have opinions, but can't base them on any standards or polices or such. Why am I having to explain this to an experienced editor? ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 21:25, 1 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
You've still ignored my proposed text and immediately shot down your own proposal of adding as a functioning entity, which I also think is worse than other alternatives. Would you care to consider the proposed removal of the text in the blockquote that begins In minutes, eighty-five percent...? I don't see any argument for why ceased to exist should be in the lead, besides Housner-He having written it. I don't see it adding any value here, and only serving to be imprecise and idiomatic language.
By the Oxford citation, see that it defines even if (distinct from even + if) as: despite the possibility that; no matter whether and despite the fact that; even though. There's no implication whatsoever that there is any surprise or doubt. That's just a fact of English. It's fine if you misunderstand the wording, but don't be so quick to accuse editors of not reading sources.
What is bizarre was your inferral that I personally find history and WP boring because I find the wording overly dramatic, idiomatic, and non-encyclopedic (Perhaps (to the extent this is historical writing) you have always thought history is boring, and therefore WP must be boring?). That, plus your quip Why am I having to explain this to an experienced editor? are commenting on the contributor instead of commenting on the content. Stop.
Yep, WP:IDIOM says Clichés and idioms are generally to be avoided in favor of direct, literal expressions as you point out. Ceased to exist is an idiom; it's a form of "cease to be" which is in the Wiktionary list of English idioms (linked in WP:IDIOM) and in the Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. But even disregarding its status as an idiom, I have discussed how it is imprecise. Especially when taken as a direct, literal expressions, it is imprecise because Tangshan did not literally stop existing on 28 July 1976. Do you not accept that there are other connotations of the phrase (no longer being any entity, being wiped out, etc.)? I don't see that you've acknowledged that yet.
It's standard and within guidelines to write precisely, unambiguously, and clearly. That ceased to exist is imprecise and has other interpretations that are inappropriate here is not a matter of opinion. It's a simple logical argument for modifying the statement. You might not think that any alternative expresses what happens more precisely and clearly while I do, sure. Just because you disagree with the argument doesn't mean that my position is somehow entirely opinion-based and not borne from any application of WP writing guidelines and standards. — MarkH21talk 03:15, 2 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I made no "inferral" of your beliefs; I only questioned whether you might have a certain belief or attitude (about history), which might in turn explain your view. If you don't have such a belief, fine, just say so (a simple "no" would suffice). My "quip" is a straight-forward question of why we don't seem to be on the same wave-length; it is your "inferral" that this is a comment about the contributor (distinct from the contributor's behavior).
I find your arguments so thin as to be incredible. E.g., you interpret "ceased to exist" as being imprecise (which I dispute), while arguing that it is a form of "cease to be". Which, precisely speaking is NOT the case. You claim it is forbidden as idiomatic, which is demonstrably counter-factual. E.g., a search of article space shows only 10 instances of articles with "ceased to be", there are 7,615 instances of "ceased to exist". More particularly, there are 10 instances of "city ceased to exist" (including a case of "the Jewish population of the city ceased to exist"), and 43 instances of "town" or "township" (instead of "city"). The ONLY talk page I have found where "ceased to exist" is objected to as idiom is this one.
I have not ignored your proposed text; I reject it. And I have suggested an alternative, which you reject. Because of your disputatiousness I am disinclined to discuss this any further with you. ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 00:36, 3 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Your comment about whether you might have a certain belief or attitude (about history) is literally a comment about the contributor and not the content. The possible belief or attitude of a contributor is a property of the contributor. That and the other comment are both inappropriate.
You say that you dispute it being imprecise without addressing or even discussing the points I mentioned. The phrase has connotations beyond partial destruction. That other pages use the phrase or that The ONLY talk page I have found where "ceased to exist" is objected to as idiom is this one. are non-arguments and don’t address the issue here.
You essentially rejected your own proposal in the next sentence and you didn’t acknowledge my proposed text until just now, while still not explaining why you reject my proposed text. You also still have not provided a single reason for including ceased to exist besides it being written in a source. If you refuse to debate the actual merits and precision of the wording then fine, I’ll open an RfC. — MarkH21talk 01:09, 3 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I am as baffled by your "You essentially rejected your own proposal" as I was with your earlier "shot down your own proposal" (@ 03:15). (The shooting down of that proposal would be your continuation of that sentence: "worse than other alternatives.") I don't see where I have "shot down" that proposal ("essentially" or otherwise), so please point to the specific text where you got that impression.
Your proposal, at the top of this discussion, was to replace "ceased to exist" with "nearly completely destroyed". I responded to that in my following comments (at 22:23 28 Feb. and 00:32 1 March). QED: your statement of non-acknowledgement is FALSE. (I take response to be a form of acknowledegment, but perhaps you dispute that.)
I would say that "being written in a source" – but not merely "a source", but a very pertinent, authoritative source – is a better reason for inclusion than your claim that WP:IDIOM forbids it. Another reason (per my previous comment; did you not read it?) is that 7,614 instances of "ceased to exist", without any evident objection except here, shows that your objection is contrary to wide-spread, established, and accepted practice.
I reject your insinuation that I have refused to debate "actual merits", etc. (All of the foregoing notwithstanding? Perhaps you have yet another precise meaning of "debate"?) What I am disinclined to discuss is your immaterial (and even false) pettifoggery. I have offered an alternative; perhaps you should clarify why you reject it. ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 00:55, 4 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Again, my comments were regarding the blockquoted proposal beginning with In minutes, eighty-five percent of the buildings in Tangshan..., not the initial nearly completely destroyed one. You still seemed to have missed that.
For the rest of the discussion, it’ll be discussed below in the RfC. — MarkH21talk 01:11, 4 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
So you are ducking out on explaining your "shot down" statements? Perhaps you should modify your comment on who is refusing to "debate" this matter. Also strike your demonstrably false statement that I did not address your points. And if you won't discuss my suggestion perhaps I should just do it. Okay? ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 23:00, 4 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I already said I’ll continue the discussion in the RfC section. Just because someone haven’t gotten to responding less than 24 hours later, doesn’t mean they’re ducking out or anything else fitting that rhetoric. — MarkH21talk 23:19, 4 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
That is a rather impudent statement from someone who was in such a rush to open an RfC. And wouldn't your "shot-down" explanation be more appropriate for this discussion rather than the RfC? ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 22:45, 5 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Excuse me? You literally said Because of your disputatiousness I am disinclined to discuss this any further with you. We were clearly not coming to an agreement so I opened the RfC. Re shot down, I interpreted your But would there then be a problem with that not being exactly what he said? that immediately followed as a dismissal of the preceding sentence. Okay, my interpretation of that was wrong based on your support for that option in the RfC below. I think we're done here. — MarkH21talk 00:02, 6 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]

There's the problem: your interpretation was wrong, just as you have persistently mis-interpreted through out this discussion. (And your tendency to run away with an uncivil interpretation rather then inquiring whether that is what I meant is why I fault you on AGF.) In particular you should note that "disincline" should be taken as unwillingness to discuss, not refusal. It seems you also failed to note that my question was, quite literally, "would there then be a problem ...?" (I was contemplating whether, if you and I agreed on that change, it might be challenged by other editors.)
By your "we're done here", do you mean that you have withdrawn your objection to "ceased to exist"? Or perhaps you accept the qualification? Or something else? Is the RfC still needed? ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 22:53, 7 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
we're done here means there aren’t any outstanding issues, which are not part of the RfC below, that need to be addressed further in this section; i.e. we can just focus on the RfC. Although, I think our thoughts & positions are quite clear; perhaps waiting for more responses from the editors there / more editors and letting the RfC run its course would be most productive. — MarkH21talk 04:45, 8 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I think we are not done here. (Such as you explaining why you still reject my alternative wording.) I would resolve these issues here so that they don't bog down the RfC, but have it your way. ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 22:47, 8 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]

"This earthquake is regarded as one of the most damaging in modern history."[edit]

(Splitting this issue from the above discussion)

If damaging is taken in its most general sense (including human cost, physical damage, financial cost) then it is redundant with the sentence that immediately follows it (...making this the third (or possibly second) deadliest earthquake in recorded history.). Number of deaths is a easily quantifiable and common way of describing the destructiveness of an earthquake (alongside magnitude, intensity scales, and financial cost).

If damaging is taken to solely mean physical/structural damage:

  1. The attributed Housner-He source does not say it was one of the most damaging earthquakes, it says that it was the greatest earthquake disaster in the history of the world - this does not refer to physical damage alone.
  2. There is no source in the article that asserts that it is one of the most physically damaging earthquakes. Here I am focusing on the superlative one of the most (and regarded by whom?).

Then the claim is unreferenced. If this is purely about physical damage separate from the deadliness, then any claims about being a superlative for physical damage should be clearly sourced whether it is a specific claim (e.g. in terms of intensity scales or buildings destroyed) or a more general statement about physical damage. — MarkH21talk 06:57, 2 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]

All very disputatious. If you question the sourcing of any of the existing text please tag the specific text. ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 00:38, 3 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The onus is on the addition of unreferenced material, not its removal. This WP:STONEWALLING is appalling. — MarkH21talk 00:56, 3 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
As it stands, its not directly referenced to anything. I’m removing it; you can re-add it after providing a reference directly supporting it per WP:CHALLENGE. — MarkH21talk 01:11, 4 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
If you two could stop the 'squabbling' that would be good (apologies if that seems a bit harsh)- it is clear that you both have the best of intentions regards getting the article sorted but different interpretations of the correct wording.
I'd suggest this as a compromise - part a) rewrite of the section however Mark wants it - but also part b) that should include the exact quote from Housner (described as a quote from Housner) hope that works out EdwardLane (talk) 14:15, 6 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Thanks for the suggestion. (And I don't believe any apology is needed.) I have no problem with adding adequate citation, though I did have an issue with Mark for simply deleting the text rather than tagging it with {cn}. We also have an issue where Mark insists that "damage" includes "deaths", and his interpretation of Housner's remark ("the greatest earthquake disaster in the history of the world") is that it "does not refer to physical damage alone." However, on that basis Housner's remark would be untrue, as the 1556 Shaanxi earthquake is generally considered the deadliest "in the history of the world." In fact it is quite clear from the context that Dr. Housner – don't forget that he was an engineer – was applying "disaster" to the failure of structures and their functioning. E.g., in the preceeding sentence he says:
An earthquake disaster requires a large earthquake efficiently close to a large city to produce destructive ground shaking and that the city has buildings not designed to resist earthquakes.
To quote him simply, where some readers confound "greatest disaster" with "greatest number of deaths", is to make him speak that which is not true. The context clearly shows that he was focused on the built environment. When that context is not provided "most damaging" more accurately conveys what he meant than an "exact" quote taken out of context. ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 23:01, 7 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@EdwardLane: Was your comment here about the sentence using most damaging that is the focus of this subsection, or about the RfC / original section’s discussion of the ceased to exist matter?
@J. Johnson: Removing unreferenced or unclearly referenced material is acceptable by WP:CHALLENGE, whereby the onus is on the editor reintroducing the content to add a precise reference that directly supports the content.
Housner having been an engineer and Housner-He saying that a certain level of physical/structural damage is a prerequisite for an earthquake disaster does not directly support the claim that Housner-He is referring solely to physical/structural damage in the greatest earthquake disaster in the history of the world. — MarkH21talk 04:45, 8 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Ooops - I got a bit distracted by the amount of arguments on the page and missed that the debate got split - i was trying to stop things before the page got unreadable and out of hand - and my comment a little higher up was aimed at the original 'ceased to exist' - but I am probably too late now to stop the whole thing blowing up out of control - I don't know if there is some sort of arbitration standards for this kind of thing in wikipedia, but a cooling off period for both of you seems in order - both of you want a good result, but neither of you see this the same way - so it looks likely to be a bone of contention until someone can word things in a fresh way that you can both agree to dislike but tolerate, i'm going to wish you both the best of luck with finding that EdwardLane (talk) 10:11, 9 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
[I have moved your comment so it doesn't split Mark's comment.] Thanks for your effort. What may have been missed here is that I have been somewhat neutral about retaining or removing the "most damaging" sentence. But I am strongly convinced that an isolated "exact quote" is factually incorrect, and "most damaging" is the more accurate phrase. So there we are. ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 21:39, 9 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@EdwardLane: I appreciate the mediation suggestion, but I actually think this wasn't much of an issue anymore by the time of your post. Any outstanding issues would be resolved by the RfC via consensus of other editors, while I felt that disengaging from the heated and escalating language here would be a better use of all of our time. The important thing is that a consensus is reached by editors in the RfC over the actual content matter. — MarkH21talk 21:07, 9 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Since you are so obtusely disputatious I submit a list of the 23 chapter headings from the four volumes of "The Great Tangshan Earthquake of 1976". Note that ALL of these chapters are about engineering, buildings, structures, or geological/seismological aspects of the quake that are pertinent to engineering. I challenge you to find where this report discusses the overall death toll, other than incidentally.

Chapters in "The Great Tangshan Earthquake of 1976"


Volume I:
Volume II:

Volumd III:

Volume IV:

The Overview volume mentions fatalities in three places, and almost incidentally. What is totally unsupported is your claim that Housner-He are not "referring solely to physical/structural damage".

Also: as I have explained previously (did you read it?) if "greatest disaster" is interpreted as equivalent to "greatest number of deaths" than Housner's statement is incorrect. As that is quite unlikely, I suggest that your interpretation is incorrect. As you have not responded to my request (at 21:25 1 Mar.) for "some source that says otherwise", I think we can presume that you are unable to support that interpretation.

By the way, WP:CHALLENGE also says: "In some cases, editors may object if you remove material without giving them time to provide references; consider adding a citation needed tag as an interim step." Particularly irksome about your deletion is that there was no lack of a reliable source, nor even a lack of a citation (it was on the following sentence), but only that that sentence was missing its citation. ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 23:01, 8 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Again, tone down your aggressive language. Obtusely disputatious is language for escalation and is not helping resolve anything. It's WP:INCIVIL and inappropriate. This is your last warning from me.
Let's follow the logic here. I removed the because the newly inserted sentence because it was not clearly or directly referenced. You claim that the sentence

This earthquake is regarded as one of the most damaging in modern history

is A) solely referring to physical damage so it is not to be redundant with the following sentence about being the second/third deadliest in recorded history and B) directly supported by the quote:

An earthquake disaster requires a large earthquake efficiently close to a large city to produce destructive ground shaking and that the city has buildings not designed to resist earthquakes. The Tangshan disaster met all these requirements and the result was the greatest earthquake disaster in the history of the world.

We disagree about both A and B. Even if I took A for granted, this source does not explicitly say that the earthquake is one of the most damaging in modern history and does not explicitly say that it was some superlative with regards to physical damage. It says that such an earthquake disaster requires substantial physical damage from a large enough earthquake, close proximity, and poor building structures. Anything else that may be inferred from the table of contents, the contents of the rest of the book, the fact that the authors are engineers, the fact that it was not the single deadliest earthquake whereas they use the words greatest, etc. would indirectly support that Housner-He may mean physical damage when they say the result was the greatest earthquake disaster in the history of the world. These arguments do not do anything to provide a source that directly supports the contribution a la WP:CHALLENGE (italics mine).
Yes, WP:CHALLENGE acknowledges that some editors may object, and to consider adding a citation needed tag as an interim step. That does not that it should be considered inappropriate to remove unreferenced material without taking the interim step.
You said before that I am rather neutral on whether it stays. If that's the case, then this is all unnecessary and an unproductive use of both your time and my time. — MarkH21talk 21:29, 9 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I attribute the unproductivity here to your many mis-interpretations and "inferrals", and general tendency to disputation.
Your argument is based on interpreting "directly supports" as requiring exact wording. I reject that, as W:V has no such requirement, and on showing that an exact quote (as proposed) would be counter-factual. Your rejection of the engineering interpretation as being inferred and not explicit does seem obtuse, given that 23 chapters of a four-volume engineering report firmly establish the engineering context of structure, infrastructure, etc., without any mention of the total death toll. ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 23:50, 9 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I didn't say that directly supports requires exact wording. However, the passage does not directly say anything about any kind of superlative with respect to physical damage. I didn't say that that the book being about engineering is inferred, but that extrapolating that the greatest earthquake disaster in the history of the world specifically refers to physical damage from the fact that the rest of the book is about engineering is an inferral. That's what's indirect. — MarkH21talk 23:57, 9 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Same as before: WP:V has no such prohibition (only of WP:SYN). Furthermore, that this source is ENTIRELY about physical damage (and pertinent aspects) is not an inference, but a plain, clearly seen and understood (no?) observation.
Another reason why I sometimes wonder if you have read any more of the source than the Overview (or perhaps just the Prologue to the Overview) is where you keep referring to this source as a "book". It is not "a book", it is four volumes of pretty dry engineering reportage. ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 00:44, 10 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
By WP:V: The burden to demonstrate verifiability lies with the editor who adds or restores material, and it is satisfied by providing an inline citation to a reliable source that directly supports the contribution (changed bolding is mine). It requires direct support from the reference.
Again, I didn't say that Housner-He being about physical damage is an inference. That the specific phrase greatest earthquake disaster in the prologue refers to physical damage is an inference. It is being inferred from the rest of the book being about physical damage.
Okay, it's an EERL report; I was using the pdf version and I assumed that there was a book version. But surmising whether or not other editors have read the source is an ad hominem, and a speculative one at that. — MarkH21talk 04:51, 10 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Again, if you’re neutral on the actual sentence being there, why does this even matter? You’re neutral on it and I don’t think it should be there, so we can leave it out. There’s no point to this. — MarkH21talk 08:07, 10 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]

RfC on "Ceased to exist"[edit]

There is a clear consensus for the second proposal.

Cunard (talk) 00:57, 5 April 2020 (UTC)

The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

Should the lead article have the sentence In minutes the city of Tangshan, an industrial city with approximately one million inhabitants, ceased to exist.? Please decide on one of the three following proposals:

  1. Keep

    In minutes the city of Tangshan, an industrial city with approximately one million inhabitants, ceased to exist. Eighty-five percent of the buildings in the city collapsed or were unusable, all services failed, and most of the highway and railway bridges collapsed or were seriously damaged.

  2. Replace with

    In minutes, eighty-five percent of the buildings in Tangshan, an industrial city with approximately one million inhabitants, collapsed or were unusable, all services failed, and most of the highway and railway bridges collapsed or were seriously damaged.

    (with or without the an industrial city with approximately one million inhabitants sub-clause)
  3. Replace with

    In minutes the city of Tangshan, an industrial city with approximately one million inhabitants, ceased to exist as a functioning entity. Eighty-five percent of the buildings in the city collapsed or were unusable, all services failed, and most of the highway and railway bridges collapsed or were seriously damaged.

Thanks in advance. 07:16, 3 March 2020 (UTC); converted talk-quotes to block-quotes and completed the quoted sentences in the proposals after unusable 00:23, 6 March 2020 (UTC)

  • Support #2: The words ceased to exist without any other context can carry the connotation that Tangshan was no longer any kind of entity, that Tangshan was no longer an item in history after July 28, 1976, and that the approximately 1 million inhabitants were wiped out. This is unnecessarily imprecise writing (besides being potentially idiomatic per Wiktionary list of English idioms and Farlex Dictionary of idioms), when the physical destruction is quantified in the subsequent sentence and human life loss is quantified later in the same paragraph.
    While the phrase is literally taken from the dramatic opening in the prologue to one of the sources (Housner-He), the phrase ceased to exist is imprecise here due to its other connotations. It's unnecessary dramatic writing made redundant by the direct later literal quantified sentences per WP:IDIOM and general MOS guidelines for precision. Just because a source says it doesn't make it automatically worthy of inclusion.
    The third option is slightly better than the first but still suboptimal, but it is still somewhat imprecise by what a functioning entity really is. The ceased to exist sentence doesn't add much value anyways given the subsequent sentences. — MarkH21talk 07:25, 3 March 2020 (UTC); fixed typo 01:22, 4 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
for what it's worth I'd agree most with option 2 - the phrase 'ceased to exist' strikes me as a mild variant of peacock/weasel words, I'd have the subclause changed to a stand alone sentence - something like 'Prior to the earthquake Tangshan was an industrial city which had approximately 1 million inhabitants' EdwardLane (talk) 11:30, 3 March 2020 (UTC) - editted in an additional comment the comments below by MikeNorton and Dawnseeker2000 seem a good solution too EdwardLane (talk) 16:27, 3 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I think that the quoted phrase is unnecessary and doesn't provide any more information than is already given in the two following sentences, but the quotation marks would be an improvement if there is consensus that it must be included (perhaps without the an eminent authority on earthquake engineering and just leave the name as a blue link). — MarkH21talk 00:17, 6 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Support #3, okay with #1, but not #2: As you all can see from the preceding discussion, MarkH21 and I have been having quite a set-to on this. He takes "ceased to exist" as applicable to all forms of existence, whereas it is clear in the source that it this meant as a functional entity. To the extent that could be considered imprecise I have suggested adding that clarification (the 3rd option), but for reasons he has not explained he considers that "worse than other alternatives." To the contrary, I argue that "nearly completely destroyed" is quite imprecise, and even something like "85% destroyed" is imprecise in the sense that it does not convey the essence of the matter: Tangshan ceased to function as a city, was not able to provide any municipal services. This is not "made redundant" by the following sentences, as they do not state the consequence of all the destruction.
Mark's principal stated objections to "ceased to exist" are that it is too "dramatic" (for which no policy or guidance is cited), and forbidden by WP:IDIOM. A search of article space show 7,615 instances of "ceased to exist", with (as far as I can see) no objections on the basis of idiom. I argue that this shows this is an acceptable term, sanctioned by broad usage.
I am fine with some qualification or explanation, or even explicitly quoting "ceased to exist", which seem quite reasonable. ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 01:00, 4 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Quick note: nearly completely destroyed is not in any of the proposed texts here.
Also if your objection is that the essence of the matter is that Tangshan was not able to provide any municipal services, notice that the sentence already says Eighty-five percent of the buildings in the city collapsed or were unusable, all services failed, ... (bolding mine). Insert municipal there if you’d like.
Also regarding your claim but for reasons he has not explained he considers that "worse than other alternatives.", I gave reasons in the last paragraph of my comment above. — MarkH21talk 01:13, 4 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
"[N]early completely destroyed" is what you initially suggested instead of "ceased to exist".
The reasons you gave against #3 in your "last paragraph" above (at 07:25, right?) are
  • "suboptimal, [...] still somewhat imprecise by what a "functioning entity" really is", and
  • "doesn't add much value anyways given the subsequent sentences." (What you described in your preceeding paragraph as "made redundant by the direct later literal quantified sentences".)
The subsequent sentence (singular) is the "Eighty-five percent of the buildings ...." Such quantification of the scale of destruction is a very crude measure that only roughly correlates with the effects, and, just as I have already said: does not convey the essence of the matter: Tangshan ceased to function as a city, was not able to provide any municipal services.
I consider "functioning entity" to be ordinary English. But if "entity" is not in your vocabulary I suppose we could replace it with "city". Is that clearer? Or do you require an enumeration of municipal functions? ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 23:07, 4 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
And I didn’t mention nearly completely destroyed after the second comment or so in the previous discussion and didn’t mention it here at the RfC. It’s moot.
Is failed to provide any municipal services substantially different from the all municipal services failed? No.
Your inclination to comment on contributors, what you think they like, what you think they find boring, and what you think is in their vocabulary is grossly inappropriate. Cut it out, you’ve been warned multiple times now. — MarkH21talk 23:17, 4 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I rather doubt that the editors present for this discussion are much interested in our squabbling in the preceeding discussion. But as you have raised that here, and misrepresented the situation, I believe a comment is in order. In the first instance I asked (@ 00:32, 1 Mar) if perhaps – please note: qualified as only a possibility – you found history to be boring, and therefore so should WP. If, just perhaps, that should be the case, then I would have a better understanding of the basis of your viewpoint, and we could discuss that. If not, then so be it. At any rate, you are perfectly free to not answer, and I neither make nor take any imputation of your beliefs. In the second instance ("Why am I having to explain this to an experienced editor?", @ 21:25, 1 Mar), that seems to be a very reasonable question, given that we seem to have a disconnect in our understandings of basic WP concepts. At any rate, it seems that you have missed that I allow this could be as much a misunderstanding on my part as anything to do with you. That in both instances you have claimed these as comments about you seems to me to indicate a failure of WP:AGF. I could as well complain that in your comments at 02:45, 29 Feb. ("Can you see what I mean here?", bolding added) and 00:50, 1 Mar. ("Do you not see...", ditto) you are saying that I am blind. (GAWK! A PERSONAL COMMENT!!!) Can you see why such a complaint would be just petty squabbling?
As to substantive comments: you seem quite ambivalent on whether the preceding discussion is part and parcel of this one, or not. At any rate, your explanation of why qualifying "ceased to exist" with "as a functional entity" is "worse than other alternatives" seems to be only that it is "somewhat imprecise" (huh?) and "doesn't add much value". On the contrary, I have argued that is a precise, succinct statement of the most significant aspect of the situation immediately following the quake. ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 22:42, 5 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Your comment Why am I having to explain this to an experienced editor? comes off far stronger as a pointed vent of frustration at me than a genuine question. Do you really expect anyone to interpret it as a genuine question and to somehow answer with a oh you have to explain it to me despite my experience because I don't understand WP policies like you do! It's a pointed comment about another editor that doesn't help anyone. I never pointed to AGF, but I pointed out that those two comments, in addition the comment my vocabulary, are about contributors and not content. These don't help anyone. If you can't acknowledge that, you should still stop making such comments because you'd be hard-pressed to find an editor to whom those comments are useful.
The comment Can you see what I mean here? (not bolded as quoted) was part of me actually asking you if you agree to some part of what I wrote. It's quite a stretch to interpret that as me claiming that you are blind or claiming anything about you.
My point is and has been that the discussion of nearly completely destroyed is moot because it is not part of any of the proposals in this RfC. And yes, it's still imprecise (a functioning entity does not clearly connect to the point about municipal services) and we can also see that I'm not the only one who finds ceased to exist as a functioning entity imprecise and awkward. The comment doesn't add much value means that the phrase ceased to exist doesn't provide any more information than is given in the rest of the lead, particularly the subsequent two sentences.
Again, your most significant aspect is already in all three proposed sentences in the bolded three words of Eighty-five percent of the buildings in the city collapsed or were unusable, all services failed, ...MarkH21talk 23:57, 5 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Option 2 (uninvolved editor) "ceased to exist" is hyperbolic language not well-suited to WP's encyclopedic tone. It'd be fine if we were writing a script for a History Channel special, but here, we should be as specific as possible, and "ceased to exist" or even the awkward "ceased to exist as a functional entity" don't communicate the extent of destruction as clearly as the data point about the percentage of buildings destroyed. I'm not a huge fan of the clause describing Tangshan, but that's a tougher call. Still, it seems like the sort of thing we'd only do for an article about a foreign-to-westerners city; users can click the blue link if they need to. If we have the data, some less awkward phrasing that still gets across how big Tangshan is might be "in minutes, 85% of the XXX buildings in Tangshan collapsed". Oh, and also, if we can specify the number of minutes, that'd also help give this a more neutral tone. Sdkb (talk) 18:51, 4 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The essence of the matter is NOT the extent or severity of the damage per se or how long it took everything to collapse (neither of which can be known "precisely"), but that there were (effectively) no services available locally to help. Precise quantification – such as the number of buildings or minutes – is meaningless. The significant information to be conveyed is the consequence of all the destruction.
I firmly disagree that "ceased to exist" is "hyperbolic language not well-suited to WP's encyclopedic tone." In the first place, that specific term is used over seven thousand times' on the 'pedia, which shows widespread, strong acceptance. Second, WP:TONE says:
        Formal tone means that the article should not be written using argot, slang, colloquialisms, doublespeak, legalese, or jargon that is unintelligible to an average reader; it means that the English language should be used in a businesslike manner.
I maintain that "ceased to exist" is none of those (let alone "unintelligible to an average reader"), and is used here "in a businesslike manner". Indeed, it is the precise term used by two respected engineers in what is arguably the most authoritative source in English on the Tangshan earthquake. ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 23:17, 4 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The phrases ceased to exist, ceased to exist as a functioning entity, ceased to exist as a functioning city all do not describe anything precise with respect to there were (effectively) no services available locally to help. The very next sentence also says that explicitly in all services failed. — MarkH21talk 00:11, 6 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
"Ceased to exist" (with or without qualification) is a succinct summary of the situation; the sentence following provides (following the source) the briefest amplification of several aspects of the disaster. Your #2 version does not summarize, and buries the "all services failed" in the middle of the compounded sentence. At any rate, your comment is irrelevant to the point Sdkb raised here, which is whether the phrase is hyperbolic language. ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 23:08, 7 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
My comment was in direct response to the first paragraph of your comment immediately above it starting The essence of the matter. My comment wasn’t a response to Sdkb’s point about hyperbolic language (with which I agree).
If the essence is that there were no municipal services anymore, I think that the subsequent compound sentence that states that there were no municipal services communicates that essence. Its also fine to split that phrase off into a separate sentence, if its emphasis is so necessary. But there’s no real need to summarize all municipal services failed via ceased to exist if another lead sentence says all municipal services failed.MarkH21talk 04:53, 8 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The cessation of municipal services is not the only element of "ceased to exist". Destruction of 90 percent of the residential dwellings meant that, to a very large extent, Tangshan no longer was a place of shelter. Highway and railway bridges are not municipal services, but their loss is significant in this context, as it meant that Tangshan was largely cut-off from externally supplied services. "Ceased to exist" is the central concept here, as supplied by an authoritative source, which the sentence following illustrates. ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 23:26, 8 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Support #2 According to the article about Tangshan, it continued to exist and has been rebuilt since the earthquake. Therefore, "ceased to exist" is a colorful overstatement and should not be used in an encyclopedia. I suppose it's debatable whether it was a "functional entity" immediately after the earthquake, but millions of inhabitants survived somehow. Antipocalypse (talk) 01:03, 14 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Sure, it was rebuilt, but to a different plan. In that regard the former physical manifestation of the city no longer exists, except as landfill somewhere.. Even if you argue that the regenerated city continues, in the moments following the quake its state of being was, definitely, and per other sources: destroyed. A small point to note: only about three-quarters of a million of Tangshan's inhabitants survived.
The core issue here seems to be the issue of whether "ceased to exist" is too "dramatic", or more exactly (in your words) "colorful overstatement", and therefore "should not be used in an encyclopedia." A recent search shows that 7,614 articles use "ceased to exist", and the 'only complaint about that term I have found is here. On that basis I say that the WP community has accepted "ceased to exist". 7,613 times. ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 19:08, 18 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
In many other cases in the encyclopedia, I wouldn't dispute the use of 'ceased to exist' because it's literally correct. Example: the USSR has 'ceased to exist' although Russia still exists. Antipocalypse (talk) 21:03, 22 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
In a legal sense, yes, the USSR "ceased to exist" (it was replaced by other entities), while "Tangshan" as a legal entity continued. So are you saying Housner & He are liars? From their perspective – and it totally baffles me why that perspective is not clear with even the most cursory reading of the source – Tangshan did cease to exist, as a functioning city. (A qualification I am open to but Mark rejected.) Sure, a good part of the population survived, but so did the population of the former USSR. In neither case is the existence of the entity contingent on the existence of the population. The significance of this term is that for the surviving population there were no municipal services, which is the reason for existence for cities. ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 23:19, 23 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Support #2. Even if Tangshan were completely destroyed and abandoned, it would still exist as ruins. In this particular case while most of the city was destroyed it was rebuilt and is inhabited. #2 factually describes the scale of the devastation--Eostrix (talk) 10:17, 28 March 2020 (UTC).Reply[reply]
  • Support #2 The whole "ceased to exist" seems a little unencyclopedic. ~ HAL333 20:18, 29 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]

The discussion above is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

Don't miss the fun at ANI[edit]

Mark was perhaps too shy to mention it here, but I would not want anyone to miss the fun we're having at ANI. ♦ J. Johnson (JJ) (talk) 21:57, 13 March 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Magnitude 7.6 vs 7.8[edit]

When whoever wrote that this earthquake's magnitude was remeasured to be 7.6 on the Chinese scale or whatever in the first paragraph, the cited source does not say that at all?? In fact I cannot find the value 7.6 anywhere in there??? Other sources are corroborating that it is 7.6, but this is a poorly done citation unless I'm blatantly missing something. (talk) 04:46, 26 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]