Talk:George Maharis

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Arrest (2006)[edit]

Okay, based on WP:BLP, the references to Maharis being arrested need to be either sourced or removed. My preliminary Google search comes up with an eBay item, an old magazine (Gay Scene: Intellectual Homophile Monthly, Volume 5 #7, December 1974) that mentions the 1974 arrest. The eBay listing itself doesn't sound like a reliable source to me, but the magazine itself could probably be used. The eBay listing does have a picture of the article, so the article does exist. Whether that magazine is itself reliable is not something I'm qualified to judge. For now, I'm going to remove both arrests as unsourced. If someone has a good citation (e.g. has seen an actual article) and wants to put the info back in with proper attribution, that's fine with me. Frankly, this article was largely negative in tone in early edits, with lots of words about failures, arrests, and alleged misbehavior, and relatively few words about his accomplishments. I've tried to rectify this a bit, but I understand that the negatives can legitimately appear here - if well sourced. Karen | Talk | contribs 00:18, 13 August 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

    • I wondered what was going on with this biography. Maharis' arrest was quite well known in the gay community of the 1970s, so I'm not sure why it's become such an issue for some of you. I entered the aforementioned information, and referenced the webpage which has a scanned image of the magazine article (probably the same one mentioned above as being sold on Ebay). I don't see anything "largely negative" in the part that's shown on the site, but it could be a partial scan. This incident was as well known back then as the George Michael arrest more recently. It's not some urban myth being cooked up to slander the name of a mostly-forgotten actor. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs) 8 July, 2007
Hi. A bot reverted your edit, and I'm guessing that is the reason; it may be on a list of problematic sources or something. To be honest, I haven't the expertise to evaluate the reliability of the sources provided, so I'm going to try to get some help figuring this out. The idea here isn't to whitewash the article or deny what happened, but to conform to WP:BLP and make sure any negatives are properly sourced and all that. I do stand by my earlier statement that at one time, the article almost completely ignored Maharis's career accomplishments (and his side of the story on his leaving Route 66), instead focusing almost exclusively on the "bad boy" aspects of his life. It's better now, and if the arrest information can be put back in in a careful and responsible way, it won't unbalance the article at this point. --Karen | Talk | contribs 08:22, 9 July 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
WP:BLP sasy that extraordinary claims which extraordinary sources. Gay Scene (NYC) appears to be a tabloid-style magazine, a type not known for reliability. Further, since the subject was not convicted of the initial arrest charge, it appears to have even less value. If this was mentioned in a better source, then it would be usable. On the while, this is a bit like reporting drunk driving charges or other misdemeanors. ·:· Will Beback ·:· 05:39, 14 July 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Both arrests were news. I was around then, and I remember them. From NNLB: "George Maharis Arrested in Men's Room", Gay Scene, December 1974: "Famous Hollywood actor George Maharis was arrested November 21 and charged with committing a sex act with a hairdresser in the men's room of a gas station in Los Angeles... He was booked on a sex perversion charge along with Perfecto Telles, 33, the hairdresser, and released on $500 bail, according to police." An earlier guilty plea for a Hollywood lewd conduct arrest on 15 December 1967 with a male is also documented." I honestly don't understand why people think this is unfounded gossip. It is not. Wikipedia needs to recruit older people to write the articles who actually recall stories like these. --SN 13 September 2015

If memory serves, all links to are blacklisted. A visual scan of an article from a publication whose track record is unknown to us shouldn't be accepted for a claim that would be considered negative under BLP. EdJohnston 20:35, 14 July 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I well remember Maharis was arrested. The arrest pretty much outed him as gay. From what I have read, he was arrested not once but twice involving alleged sexual misconduct, the first time in 1967, and the second time in 1974, according to NNDB. The arrests should be included in his bio.--2 March 2008 Susan Nunes —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:57, 2 March 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

It's been in there for a while now. Someone found usable sources for both incidents. --Karen | Talk | contribs 21:01, 2 March 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Can reliable sources be added to the arrest section. Is this materal even worthy of inclusion? -- (talk) 04:49, 25 December 2011 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I have no problem with this material being omitted under WP:BLP, for all the reasons given. Karen | Talk | contribs 01:55, 26 February 2012 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Moved to #Arrest (2021)


I just reverted the following addition:

It is not widely discussed, but Maharis has worn a toupee from the days of Route 66.

Under the WP:BLP guidelines, this sort of thing probably should not be added without a reliable source. If you can find a news article or published interview that mentions this, please provide the citation. To be honest, I find it a bit dubious. -- Karen | Talk | contribs 21:22, 10 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

WikiProject class rating[edit]

This article was automatically assessed because at least one article was rated and this bot brought all the other ratings up to at least that level. BetacommandBot 16:17, 27 August 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Article has been mentioned at the BLPN board[edit]

This article has been mentioned on the WP:BLPN board. -- (talk) 04:53, 25 December 2011 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Arrest (2012)[edit]

The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section.

A reliable source has been located and the info posted, with proper references. Associated Press ran at least two wire stories about Maharis's arrest, one about the arrest itself and a follow-up recounting his posting bail. These reports were published widely in American newspapers and can be accessed easily on Newspaper Archive or Google News, in which the pages of the newspapers have been fully scanned. The arrest was also documented in two articles in The Advocate at the time. Given the sources and the wide dissemination of the incident at the time, I see no reason why it should not be included in the article.Kitchawan (talk) 16:37, 21 August 2012 (UTC)Reply[reply]

  • Unfortunately, I don't know. I have removed the info because someone said that it is a titillating trivia and that, regardless of source, defaming him won't justify inclusion. Lately, there have been no interviews from the press. --George Ho (talk) 17:47, 21 August 2012 (UTC)Reply[reply]

The charge ended up as "no contest" to "trespassing" and I agree that it need not be in the BLP, though I removed the prurient bits in any case. Collect (talk) 20:38, 21 August 2012 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Regardless, Maharis made a private interview with one of Wikipedian editors in the past about his past crimes and sexuality. However, he omitted these things to the public press, so I'm afraid the only reliable source is an official source by Maharis himself, like an autobiography. --George Ho (talk) 21:28, 21 August 2012 (UTC)Reply[reply]
With all due respect, a person gets arrested, for whatever crime. That arrest is published in national newspapers, via Associated Press, with verification by the relevant police department and followed up, once more by AP, and published in national newspapers. How are these reports not considered reliable sources?Kitchawan (talk) 22:00, 21 August 2012 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Another question, George Ho, ie "the only reliable source is an official source by Maraharis himself, like an autobiography." What about a biography, in which the relevant documents are examined, sourced, and otherwise discussed? Would this still be out of bounds? Or is Mr Maharis receiving a special privilege from Wikipedia that is not extended to other subjects?Kitchawan (talk) 22:04, 21 August 2012 (UTC)Reply[reply]
There is no biography about him. (One Wikipedia editor tried it long ago, but it became halted.) I'm still unsure about re-adding it, but I have recently made notifications about it. --George Ho (talk) 22:35, 21 August 2012 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Please note that I am not trying to be difficult but merely to have this situation explained clearly and fully. From one article to the next, Wiki's editors and administrators can be inconsistent in applying/interpreting the rules.Kitchawan (talk) 22:30, 21 August 2012 (UTC)Reply[reply]
One person has replied about such content, so it will be watched for a few days. --George Ho (talk) 04:43, 22 August 2012 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Kitchawan, I don't doubt your good-faith efforts here, and I appreciate that you found this sourced in AP (what could be a more reliable source, right?), but my interpretation of the situation is that simply stating the charge (as it was phrased) constitutes a titillation. While the arrest is documented in a reliable source, the phrasing of the charges tells us just enough for readers to interpret that as whatever sort of "perversion" they can imagine. I think this fails WP:BLPGOSSIP (whether, even if true, it is relevant to a disinterested article about the subject. Be wary of sources that use weasel words and that attribute material to anonymous sources.), and then there is the problem of presumption of innocence in the absence of a reliably sourced conviction, per WP:BLPCRIME. If the arrest itself was the subject of a notable and widespread controversy (like the Henry Louis Gates arrest controversy) then the charges are relevant and explained in a context that clearly conveys that the arrest itself was controversial, but I don't see that here. There may be a way of including the arrest and charges if that was the case and reliable secondary sources show that the arrest itself was controversial, but otherwise, if the charges were dropped, it probably fails WP:DUE and WP:BLPCRIME. Thank you for your work in finding a source, even though I disagree that the source's content is appropriate for inclusion here. Wilhelm Meis (☎ Diskuss | ✍ Beiträge) 05:06, 22 August 2012 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Arrest - what is the issue?[edit]

I'm going through the discussions here and there seems to be disagreement as to whether or not it is appropriate to include a paragraph about this person's arrest back in the 70s. An IP user came to WP:BLP/N asking for guidance about this, and I replied that I didn't see a problem with adding it, so long as it didn't violate WP:UNDUE and was worded neutrally. Now I see the addition has been reverted. I'm trying to understand the rationale for this. Whether he was convicted or not, the issue is the arrest itself. As far as I can see there are plenty of newspaper sources that repeat the same AP story. What is non-reliable about AP? What was inappropriate about the wording that I suggested to the IP? §FreeRangeFrogcroak 00:27, 2 April 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Of course it is appropriate to list it. When Maharis goes to that big Corvette in the sky like his co-star Martin Milner did recently, ALL of the obituaries will list the arrest or arrests. The arrest pretty much outed him as gay, long before being gay was considered no big deal.--SN 13 September 2015 — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:49, 13 September 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]

George Maharis didn't make public about his own arrest. Even reliable sources don't make information well-justified to be included. It's just a low-profile arrest, that's all. You haven't seen past discussions here. --George Ho (talk) 00:38, 2 April 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

It was NOT a "low-profile" arrest. It was big news when it came out. This is what happens when people write articles on Wikipedia who are too young or weren't born when these stories happened.--SN 13 September 2015 — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:50, 13 September 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Sorry, but maybe I'm not understanding this. What does the user being 'public' about his arrest have to do with anything? And no, I've not seen past discussions here, but it doesn't really matter - I don't see a problem with this being included in the bio, and I'm trying to understand why you do not. Preferably, use some kind of policy or guideline-based rationalization. §FreeRangeFrogcroak 00:47, 2 April 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
WP:BLPGOSSIP and WP:BLPCRIME, I hope. --George Ho (talk) 00:49, 2 April 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Also, this past discussion could help. --George Ho (talk) 00:51, 2 April 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

The Associated Press is not a tabloid or a purveyor of gossip, and the person's arrest on specific charges and subsequent plea deal are a matter of public record, so neither of those apply here. The response you received at BLP/N is correct - but only as far as how that source worded the event. That is precisely why I recommended a specific wording to the IP, keeping in mind that things were much different in 1974. There is a difference between maintaining a balance in a BLP and simply omitting information because you don't like it. §FreeRangeFrogcroak 01:03, 2 April 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I hope that Collect's edit does better, so I reverted it back to Collect's version. --George Ho (talk) 00:57, 2 April 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I've removed it entirely. An arrest in 1974 and guilty plea for "trespassing" is not worthy of inclusion in the section entitled "Later career", and probably not anywhere else in the article unless the biographical part of this BLP is significantly fleshed out. This is giving undue weight to what amounted to a minor incident. As far as I can tell, the only reason for including it is to hint at Maharis' sexuality. Delicious carbuncle (talk) 15:58, 2 April 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Are other arrests also banned? For example, the DUI or drug arrests of celebrities? I don't see that. This seems to be banned because it is considered more "distasteful" than those, when it is of equal significance in the celebrity's life. Pee Wee Herman's entry has an entire section on his arrest for exactly the same reason! (talk) 16:56, 2 April 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Difference is profile level of every crime. Maharis's arrest is very low-profile. Also, giving hints about his sexuality is disgraceful. However, when he's dead, then re-add it. --George Ho (talk) 17:32, 2 April 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

It was NOT "low-profile." It was a HUGE deal because back then gays were not typically outed. By his actions, Maharis outed himself.--SN 13 September 2015 — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:53, 13 September 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]

WP:BLP applies to living and "recently deceased" people, despite the obvious contradiction with the name of the policy. §FreeRangeFrogcroak 19:09, 2 April 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Re-add "arrest"?[edit]

There are concerns about re-adding an arrest of George Maharis, a former star of Route 66. There are two versions that may or may not violate WP:UNDUE: one that omits too much detail and other that infers his sexuality. Should either version be preferred, or no versions? --George Ho (talk) 21:36, 2 April 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

  • Inferring sexuality is a BLP violation in the first place. If we mention the arrest at all, it must be done without making any inferences, which means with minimal "detail" as Wikipedia is not the National Enquirer. Unless, of course, somene gives a solid reason for using higher WEIGHT n the BLP - but such has not yet been done. We can, of course, decide that zero weight is proper here. Collect (talk) 22:07, 2 April 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    • I take it we're talking about implying his sexuality? Writers and editors may imply things (rightly or wrongly), but it is the reader who infers what we imply. Wilhelm Meis (☎ Diskuss | ✍ Beiträge) 20:19, 19 April 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Comment If an actor today had been arrested under the same circumstances as this man was in 1974 (as say, George Michael was at some point), it would be in every single news website in the planet. There would be 500 people rushing to add that to his bio, we would have protected the article, arrived at some proper wording of the incident using reliable sources, and then maybe in a few months when he had pleaded guilty to "trespassing" we would have made note of that as well, and that would have been the end of that. And we do not include the information because 500 or 5,000 people want us to, but because we are here to document facts. Yet this gentleman went through what is essentially the exact same thing 39 years ago, and that cannot be documented? And that's regardless of whether he 'came out' or not. We do not pass judgement, we do not republish gossip, we do not make assumptions about events. We merely document them. My advice to the IP that came to WP:BLP/N was based on that assessment of our policies, and I stand by that. I am not even offering a yes or no opinion here, because after seeing the WP:IDONTLIKEIT-like opinions of other editors, I feel that maybe there is something here I'm not understanding. I've seen WP:BLPCRIME, WP:UNDUE and WP:BLPGOSSIP bandied about so far, and as far as I'm concerned none of those are relevant here. We are also not inferring or assuming anything about his sexuality merely because we document an event with neutral wording and link to sources that reported it. Regardless of when it happened. Notability, and the events that generate it, are not temporary. Quite frankly, I don't care about this one way or another, and I will freely admit that the bio is better off without that paragraph - in fact any bio is better off without any negative information. Wouldn't that be awesome. But I strongly feel that we are being disingenuous about our purpose here when we do these types of things. Being courteous and mindful of our responsibilities as stewards of other people's life stories should never be above the mission to document facts. §FreeRangeFrogcroak 23:17, 2 April 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Comment I don't see how that makes inferences of his sexuality. The statements seem to be made in a very neutral manner. Dreambeaver(talk) 20:17, 3 April 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
As is there are very few sources for the page, so it's tough to qualify the weight given as undue.Dreambeaver(talk) 20:24, 3 April 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Since there is an adequately reliable source that the arrest, together with a prior one, affec his career, I do not see how we can omit it. Of all the profession in the world, this is the one where there is the least expectation of privacy (I am not very happy I found this ref. ) DGG ( talk ) 02:38, 15 April 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    • That source was dated 1988. In that source, a letter by some reader and the recipient's response to the letter were published. In no way it is comprehensively accurate or reliable. Also, how did the recipient research these arrests? --George Ho (talk) 04:03, 15 April 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • There seems to be an agenda here to suppress this arrest by someone named George. A Google news search shows that reports of the arrest and the plea bargain appeared in many newspapers source. So it is clearly documented. Why should this arrest be censored, when similar arrests for Paul Rubens and George Michaels are included? It certainly was considered significant news at the time, judging by the number of papers that carried it. And the arrests may have negatively affected his career, making them even more significant. (talk) 08:11, 15 April 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Add info on the arrest with all the gory details - I'm not trying to be sensationalist, and I don't want to slander anyone or turn Wikipedia into a tabloid, but the fact simply is that this dude got arrested for allegedly having sex with a male hair dresser in a public bathroom. There are slew of reliable sources which verify this. At the end of the day, the most important guideline is simply that we present verifiable facts in a neutral manner. It strikes me as both verifiable and neutral to simply state "In 1974 George Maharis was arrested for indecency after allegedly committing a sex act with a male hair dresser in a West Los Angeles public restroom". I'm against worrying about being too politically correct or sensitive to peoples' feelings here. Just state what can be verified in a straight forward way, and you'll be OK. (summoned by the RfC bot) NickCT (talk) 13:35, 19 April 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Closing (and relisting)[edit]

I came here from WP:AN. Consensus clearly favors mentioning the arrest in some form. I leave the execution of this closure to someone else, i.e. the regular editors of this article who will know the correct sources to cite. Chutznik (talk) 03:26, 17 April 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Closer should note that the consensus is for, at the very most, a brief non-specific mention of the arrest and the fact that he was found guilty of trespassing only. There is no consensus for inclusing any mention of sex at all here, and per WP:BLP lack of consensus for inclusion of a contentious claim is sufficient to bar it. Collect (talk) 11:26, 17 April 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Consensus is to add that someone was found guilty of trespassing? Sorry, but that is ridiculous. Policy trumps talk page consensus and I will happily be removing it should it be added. You know where to complain. Delicious carbuncle (talk) 14:38, 17 April 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I have relisted the RFC based on above comments. --George Ho (talk) 17:35, 17 April 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Not being an expert on the specifics of the factual dispute, I am not in a position to comment further. It appeared to me that consensus was in favor of mentioning the arrest; it was unclear to me that there is a secondary issue on what the arrest was for. You will have to carry on without my assistance. Chutznik (talk) 18:36, 17 April 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Consensus is to add information on an arrest and plea bargain that was widely reported at the time and that many have negatively affected his career, in light of the fact that similar arrests are included in the bios of other celebrities. What is Wikipedia policy for resolving this? (talk) 20:15, 19 April 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
If we have reliable sources documenting how his career was negatively affected by the arrest, we can include that. Per WP:BLPCRIME, we can include the crime(s) of which he was found guilty. What we do NOT want to include, however, are titillating allegations or speculations about someone's sexuality or alleged (but not proved in a court of law) sexual behavior. For instance, if another celebrity was accused of sexual assault and sodomy of a minor but convicted of a lesser offense, we do write into their BLP that they assaulted and sodomized a minor and got off on a lesser offense. The concern is not the comfort of the article's subject, but the potential liability of the project. Libel is something we need to take very seriously, hence WP:BLP policy. Wilhelm Meis (☎ Diskuss | ✍ Beiträge) 20:36, 19 April 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The conviction was for trespassing. The arrest was for "indecency." We can include the arrest charge and conviction caharge. And we would not write into a BLP that a person committed a crime for which they were not convicted -- your example is errant per policy. Collect (talk) 21:46, 19 April 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I don't want to get off topic with hypothetical examples. I agree with your position, Collect. We can include the charges but should avoid titillating implications. Wilhelm Meis (☎ Diskuss | ✍ Beiträge) 22:19, 19 April 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
This would seem to present the widely reported facts, simply and clearly: On November 21, 1974 Maharis was arrested in a West Los Angeles public restroom and charged with indecency. He pleaded no contest to trespassing and the indecency charge was dismissed. (talk) 17:10, 25 April 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Thank you for that suggestion. I would say that satisfies all BLP policy requirements. Wilhelm Meis (☎ Diskuss | ✍ Beiträge) 04:12, 3 May 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The "restroom" tidbit is not needed -- all the reader needs here is the cite and the fact the charge was "indecency." Cheers. Collect (talk) 07:17, 3 May 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
And so we arrive at: On November 21, 1974 Maharis was arrested in West Los Angeles and charged with indecency. He pleaded no contest to trespassing and the indecency charge was dismissed. I'm usually the one pulling these things out of articles (see my comments above from when this came up last year), but I would fully support this phrasing as compliant with WP:BLP policy. DC, care to comment? Wilhelm Meis (☎ Diskuss | ✍ Beiträge) 14:49, 3 May 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Re-add "arrest" again?[edit]

The consensus above agreed to have the arrest incident added again. However, others, like Delicious carbuncle and Cirt, believe that it violates WP:BLP and WP:UNDUE and that it implies this person's sexuality. Two versions come in mind: one about restroom; other that omits it. Probably we need a clearer consensus, and we need different people from above to vote either in favor of or against addition of such content. As for the subject, he is known for appearing on Route 66, along with Martin Milner. --George Ho (talk) 18:32, 3 May 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

  • Note: Multiple comments by different edtiors at ANI think this is a violation of WP:BLP and WP:UNDUE and should not be included. — Cirt (talk) 19:31, 3 May 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • I believe this material is a violation of WP:BLP and WP:UNDUE and should not be included. (Not even sure the mention of UNDUE is necessary; it plainly shouldn't be included on BLP grounds alone.) --Demiurge1000 (talk) 20:05, 3 May 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Keep out. Seems to certainly be a BLP violation but is it even relevant nearly 40 years later in an article that doesn't have a Personal Life section? Winkelvi (talk) 20:25, 3 May 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • WP:BLP and even if not a BLP, keep out under WP:NPOV if the sexuality aspect is even hinted at and its not a crime or detail of note in scope to the subject's life. Wikipedia is not a collection of dirt on subjects. ChrisGualtieri (talk) 20:46, 3 May 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Inferring sexuality is a BLP violation in the first place. If we mention the arrest at all, it must be done without making any inferences, which means with minimal "detail" as Wikipedia is not the National Enquirer. Unless, of course, somene gives a solid reason for using higher WEIGHT n the BLP - but such has not yet been done. We can, of course, decide that zero weight is proper here. Collect (talk) 22:07, 2 April 2013 (UTC) and iterated here Collect (talk) 21:11, 3 May 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Absolutely keep out. We are not a tabloid and this almost involves gravedigging for such a trivial bit of dirt. Please, he's 84 years old. Let the poor man have some peace. Fylbecatulous talk 00:15, 4 May 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Unless we can show through reliable sources that his conviction for trespassing had an impact on his career it does not belong in the article. The charges do not belong ever because he is innocent of those charges because he was never convicted of them. GB fan 12:24, 4 May 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Comment: I don't really care if any mention is included or not, as long as whatever does get included adheres to BLP policy, but I don't see a violation in the following wording, because it does not imply his sexuality and puts the incident into perspective in that he pleaded no contest to trespassing and the rest was dropped. "On November 21, 1974 Maharis was arrested in West Los Angeles and charged with indecency. He pleaded no contest to trespassing and the indecency charge was dismissed." To me as a reader, that reads as minor stuff. That being said, I am only saying I don't feel this wording violates BLP policy, not advocating that it should be included necessarily. WEIGHT is another issue, far more subjective than BLP policy, and I think there is thin ground here for including this at all. If consensus is to exclude it altogether, that sounds good to me. Wilhelm Meis (☎ Diskuss | ✍ Beiträge) 15:33, 4 May 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Keep out: (Outside view invited by RFC bot.) I don't think it violates WP:BLP or WP:NPOV, but simply Wikipedia:Editorial discretion; there is no reason to repeat this claim in a high-quality encyclopedia. (Of course, if you think WP is more a tabloid than encyclopedia, then...) -Nathan Johnson (talk) 15:08, 6 May 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Keep out. This is really trivial. GoodeOldeboy (talk) 06:47, 8 May 2013
  • Question I've been asked to comment here from a talk page request. Before opining, can I ask a question please: a few people above have said that the proposed text for inclusion "is a violation of BLP". I've just read through that policy in detail and I can't see what this is referring to. Please could someone expand on this point, and quote the part of BLP that inclusion would violate? Thanks AndrewRT(Talk) 19:47, 10 May 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    • First - implications as to sexuality are a "contentious claim" and the use of the "arrest" has been viewed by many as being such a claim. Second, WP:BLPCRIME would be held to require that allegations of a crime must have some reasonable relationship to the person's biographical entry in an encyclopedia - since the only conviction was for a misdemeanor, there is an issue as to how much weight, if any, should be given. Editors may assign zero weight to claims which do not have strong relevance to the BLP. Both arguments are well-represented above. Collect (talk) 20:08, 10 May 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
      • Thanks for responding. I haven't made up my mind entirely on this but the arguments here don't seem very convincing. BLP does not mean we should treat sexuality as a taboo and avoid any mention of it. I don't think either Wilhelm's text or the referenced older version are sensationalist or involve innuendo or insinuation. On the contrary, they are dispassionate, factual and disinterested, as BLP states it should.
      • On the second point, I can't see the bit from WP:BLPCRIME that you are referring to. The quote I can see is "For people who are relatively unknown, editors must give serious consideration to not including material in any article suggesting that the person has committed, or is accused of committing, a crime unless a conviction is secured". Firstly, a conviction was secured. Secondly, I'm unsure whether this subject counts as "relatively unknown". Thirdly, the way BLPCRIME is written means that in some circumstances you could mention an accusation in an article, even if no conviction results. On that basis, BLPCRIME itself would not seem to be much of a basis for excluding this information. AndrewRT(Talk) 23:26, 10 May 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    • "Biographies of living persons ("BLP"s) must be written conservatively and with regard for the subject's privacy. Wikipedia is an encyclopedia, not a tabloid: it is not Wikipedia's job to be sensationalist, or to be the primary vehicle for the spread of titillating claims about people's lives: the possibility of harm to living subjects must always be considered when exercising editorial judgment." Delicious carbuncle (talk) 20:28, 10 May 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
      • I genuinely don't get this point. Criminal convinctions are not minor things - I've never been charged with any offence myself (traffic offences apart) let alone convicted. If I ever was I would certainly see it as a "big deal". I wouldn't agree that they are trivial or titillating. Reading this article, I would actually think it quite odd if someone wrote a biography of this person and made no mention of the incident. AndrewRT(Talk) 23:26, 10 May 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
        • I guess we disagree about how important this detail is in the context of Maharis' entire life. Delicious carbuncle (talk) 03:24, 11 May 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
        • Tresspassing is a minor offense. In California, "tresspassing" can be anything from taking oysters from someone else's land to avoiding security screening at an airport. If you think a bare mention of a charge of "perversion" is not titillating, perhaps you should consult a dictionary (here's one). Wilhelm Meis (☎ Diskuss | ✍ Beiträge) 05:56, 11 May 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
        • Actually, criminal convictions can be minor things. All depends on the conviction and the circumstances. Making a blanket assertion that "criminal convictions are not minor things" because "I've never been charged" does not qualify as a compelling or a rational argument. Factchecker25 (talk) 13:23, 21 May 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Keep out. An arrest for a minor offence has no place in a BLP. Whether or not there was a conviction or whether or not it was a misdemeanor is irrelevant. What encyclopedic benefit is served by including this information? Editorial discretion is of paramount importance for BLPs. Unless someone is notable for a crime, or the criminal act received extensive media coverage, the information need not be included in an encyclopedia as it will inevitably carry undue weight by its inflammatory nature. Factchecker25 (talk) 13:07, 21 May 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Include. This seems relevant to me, not only for the probable effect on his career due to the fact that it was widely reported, but also since it is indicative of these types of arrest in the 1970s. But above all, the wide reporting of the event warrants its inclusion. To exclude it seems overly protective.Marknyc (talk) 04:29, 23 May 2013 (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.

Arrest (2014)[edit]

I don't want to reignite any flame war or anything, but . . . I'd never heard of George Maharis, until he was reference in Arrested Development. George Michael Bluth wants to dissociate himself from the notoriety of the famous George Michael, so he changes his name to George Maharis, not knowing that his new namesake had a similar history. I wouldn't know that either, if I had only read Maharis's Wikipedia entry, and not the talk page also. ~JC. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 12:07, 9 April 2014 (UTC)Reply[reply]

There's been a persistent campaign to suppress this information, and I'm disappointed that editors with such a clear POV-pushing agenda (e.g. calling any implication that Maheris had sex with a man "defamation" and "disgraceful") have prevailed. -Jason A. Quest (talk) 18:21, 8 August 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Hi, Jason. Yes, spreading implications is very tempting, but consensus said no. I suggest waiting until... we'll see what happens to Maharis. You can do another RFC if you want, but I wouldn't recommend doing it now. --George Ho (talk) 06:07, 20 December 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Facts aren't "implications". Nor are they "defamation". And "disgraceful" is just a POV. For the record, the "consensus" was not as clear as you seem to imagine. But it's been over four months since my comment, so it should be obvious that I wasn't opening another RFC then, and I'm not doing it now. I was just commenting on the sadly judgmental mindset behind the arguments for suppression. There was no need for you to refresh them with more of it. -Jason A. Quest (talk) 15:12, 20 December 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
At least, Jason, I added the DS banner on top of the page. Would that be enough? George Ho (talk) 23:57, 20 December 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Pol098, may you please explain why you accepted this edit? The consensus did not agree to include such info; see all of the discussions above. --George Ho (talk) 04:49, 30 July 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

This article came up on the list of pending changes awaiting acceptance when I was going through it. I checked the source quite carefully (I think it was a list of several old news pieces) and found it supported the text, so accepted it. I didn't look at Talk. Pol098 (talk) 09:21, 30 July 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
All right, Pol098. I'll accept your excuse. However, the info is subject to WP:BLP policy, even when such papers published such stories. The last discussion ended with the info suppressed, but both sides were divided and presented valid points. Meanwhile, I removed the addition. --George Ho (talk) 15:31, 30 July 2017 (UTC); mostly struck, 17:18, 30 July 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
It's not an excuse, it's plain fact. Kindly don't condescend to me, and find out what you're talking about first. Reviewers do not take responsibility for the correctness of edits they accept. A reviewer only ensures that the changes introduced to the article are broadly acceptable for viewing by a casual reader. In fact I often do a little checking (as I did in this case), but that is not required. Later editors removing or changing accepted revisions for any reason is perfectly acceptable. Best wishes, Pol098 (talk) 15:44, 30 July 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I mostly struck out what's considered "condescend[ing]", Pol098. My apologies for that. I know you mean well did your best, but I should have treated you well with good faith and compliments, but... Well, I concentrated more on suppressing gossip and all that without considering other editors' feelings and all that. I'll be careful on what to say to reviewers next time. Meanwhile, I'll contact that IP address responsible for that edit. --George Ho (talk) 17:18, 30 July 2017 (UTC); amended, 17:19, 30 July 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I just saw Maharis on a '70s show last night, and looked up his bio today. As part of the generation who considered him a huge hunk, as someone who had all of his albums, and as a neighbor, I need to throw in my two cents. I can't believe how incomplete this bio is. I guess Wikipedia has changed its policy, which may be for the best. But those arrests were huge news when they occurred, and he himself said that the casting agents stopped calling. I remember thinking it was a sad thing because his talent deserved better.Chandler75 (talk) 03:12, 13 June 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]

marines, early bio[edit]

was he in the marines? there's so little info here re his background. but if this is kosher, it should be in the article: (talk) 01:25, 21 July 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

To me, if he said it himself, there is no reason to judge it as untrue. If you watch his interview with Skip E. Lowe on YouTube with Season Hubley, you will hear him talking about being married "a long time ago" and having a son. I have tried adding this to IMDb, but they have repeatedly turned it down because of "improper formatting", no matter how strictly I follow the rules.
There is nothing salacious about his being in the marines or being divorced - what star isn't? - and I think both these should be included in his biography. He is certainly not ashamed to speak of them.
Unless we have to prove these statements made by George Maharis himself, I think they should be part of his biography. CaddoArts (talk) 06:13, 18 May 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Arrest (2021)[edit]

Moved from #Arrest (2006)

I just added this item as an edit and saw it had been reverted immediately and came here to see this. I think it should be added. It's not about slandering an obscure actor from the past, it's a piece of pop culture trivia and to be frank it's probably the only thing people born after 1990 would know about Maharis. The only reason I came to this page myself is from the reference in Arrested Development. If the source given and the NNDB are unreliable, can't that be noted? If he was found not guilty, that should definitely be said too. An obscure arrest itself isn't the point of interest here - the fact that it was widely discussed at the time, and that to this day it is referenced and fodder for jokes (i.e. Arrested Development) is... I really don't understand why we are hiding this.Sxygrl2k1 (talk) 01:12, 16 June 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]

There is an editor who seeks to prevent any reference to this being included in the article. He apparently believes that a discussion 8 years ago that came to no clear conclusion establishes a permanent "consensus" for him to enforce. -Jason A. Quest (talk) 16:51, 16 June 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
There was a clear consensus to omit the arrest; see #Arrest. --George Ho (talk) 20:14, 16 June 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
When you read everyone's opinions in all the "arrest" sections on this page, it doesn't seem like a clear consensus in my opinion. What we end up with, is an obscure actor from decades ago who most people today are only familiar with because of references to this arrest, and who himself said the arrest basically ended his TV/film career, and who wasn't even really found "guilty" of anything - which can be said in the article - doesn't even have this included in his article. It's a glaring omission and seems bizarre to me, as the reasoning is unclear. Is it simply because the sex was homosexual? Have similar arrests not been included in other public figures' articles?Sxygrl2k1 (talk) 22:35, 16 June 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]

IMB says it as fact. Why Wiki wont mention it in the main article could be George/s people delete it? — Preceding unsigned comment added by  (talk) 18:22, 28 September 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Would there be an admin or moderator willing to rule on this matter?-- (talk) 23:33, 29 March 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Arrest (2023)[edit]

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.

Now that this person's recent death is confirmed, shall Maharis's 1970s arrest be reinserted? George Ho (talk) 00:39, 29 May 2023 (UTC) (for the RfC); 23:35, 27 May 2023 (UTC) (original)Reply[reply]

No, the rules that apply to living persons stay in place for a while after death. See WP:BDP --Nat Gertler (talk) 23:56, 27 May 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Here's coverage in the New York Times obituary: "Mr. Maharis was arrested in 1967 on charges of 'lewd conduct' and in 1974 on charges of 'sex perversion' for cruising in men’s bathrooms." Seems straightforward. Rutsq (talk) 23:50, 28 May 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yeah, the ref is here [1]. Thats enough that I am comfortable adding it. A consensus from 2012 holds little relevance a decade later, especially now that the person is deceased. Hemiauchenia (talk) 00:24, 29 May 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes, it should have been added ages ago, Wikipedia is not censored. ITBF (talk) 04:28, 29 May 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Oppose for now. As NatGertler mentioned per WP:BDP we need editorial consensus for an indeterminate period beyond the date of death—six months, one year, two years at the outside. It's only been a few days. That seems a little too soon, right? I have no objection to the information being included after whatever consensus is on the beyond death date. Nemov (talk) 15:08, 29 May 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Keep: Alive or dead, these are simple facts that should hold little shock value in this day and age. But I do think isolating this info under its own heading misses the point. This information should sit right in the middle of his career. The reader can then understand the context: it explains why his career appears so limited while one can also be surprised at how much work (rarely high caliber, to be sure) he continued to get despite these arrests. Rutsq (talk) 19:05, 29 May 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Of course it should be kept: reliably sourced, germane to his biography, neutrally worded and not unduly emphasized. Unless enough reliably sourced information comes out to justify a "Personal life" section, such as about a partner, I believe it has to be a separate section, since there are no reliable sources stating that the arrests affected his career. See further discussion in the "Sexual orientation" section below of what reliable sources exist for the arrests other than the NYT, since the NYT cites a blog. I was able to find the second arrest in a UPI snippet news report that came up on Google News Archive search: "Maharis Charged". The Bryan Times. Bryan, Ohio. UPI. December 23, 1974. p. 10. (top right of page). But not the first. And the wording of course reflects the intolerance of the authorities at the time. Yngvadottir (talk) 02:44, 30 May 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Oppose - The NYT obit quotes a blog post by Karen Blocher, and if you read the entire article she wrote, she writes about Maharis' article on WP, and after the arrests were removed from the article, she writes:
And frankly, I'm in no hurry to find a reliable source and put that stuff back in the article. The man is a (retired) actor, a singer and a painter. His profession should be his claim to fame, not a few incidents for which he was fined a few bucks. There was a time when George Maharis was a very successful actor in a very good tv show. That should be what's celebrated about him, not what happened in a men's room in 1974.
So the question for me is, were these arrests significant or notable events in his life that defined who he was. No, they are not. Leave this tabloid garbage out. Isaidnoway (talk) 12:28, 30 May 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Comment. It's not "tabloid garbage" when it's in the New York Times, and was reported by both major wire services and ran in numerous papers at the time. And the standard for inclusion is not "what the person is known for, and nothing but that"; in fact we are tasked with filling out a biography as much as reliable sources permit while observing WP:UNDUE, so that we give the reader a rounded portrait of the person and not a mere cv or directory entry. Moreover, WP:NOTCENSORED. I have accordingly restored the two arrests. However, I've shortened it a bit and rolled it into the same section as his death, under the heading "Personal life and death", to give it less prominence. I've also shortened the material about his leaving Route 66 that is based on Blocher, and clearly attributed all of that to Blocher, so that we are no longer saying in Wikipedia's voice that he was gay (as the NYT reporters do in their voice). I hope that allays the concern. I haven't looked through the history to see what account Blocher used to remove the arrests, but note that I've added a UPI report from 1974 that covers both arrests. It's no longer unsourced. Yngvadottir (talk) 10:01, 1 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
So what if it's in the NYT. It's still tabloid garbage. And the NYT leaves out (as does this article), that the 1967 arrest was dismissed, and it was adjudicated as a misdemeanor count of disturbing the peace, with a $50 fine. That important context is missing from this article, and the NYT obit. A misdemeanor disturbing the peace is not notable or significant. And what about the 1974 arrest, how was it adjudicated? Was there a conviction? Was it dismissed too? Did he serve time in jail? Were the charges reduced to a lesser offense? Accusations and arrests do not amount to a conviction. And "filling out a biography" doesn't mean we are required to include decades old (1967) allegations of purported sexual misconduct, and what appears to be a consensual 1974 sexual encounter. But he's dead, and can't defend himself, so who cares, right? Just because something can be reliably sourced, doesn't automatically mean it's suitable for inclusion, and as far as I am concerned, this tabloid garbage is not suitable for inclusion. This garbage does not help me one bit have a better understanding of the now deceased subject, but rather, leaves a bad taste in my mouth as an attempt to smear a deceased subject.
Re "attempt to smear". That's a throughly inappropriate attack on the motivation of other editors.
The arrests enlighten the reader about the challenges Maharis faced, in terms of seeking sexual partners when maintaining a tough guy public image and contending with police entrapment. What I believe is most significant is that the entertainment industry seems not to have noticed. Maharis appeared on Police Story in 1973 and then after the 1974 press attention appeared on that series twice more in 1975 and 1977. That his career proceeded uninterrupted informs the reader about the societal context. Rutsq (talk) 19:59, 2 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
In my view, it is "thoroughly inappropriate" to add both arrests without adding the required context that both charges were dropped and/or dismissed.("Charges Dropped". The Albany Herald. Los Angeles. UPI. March 27, 1975. p. 5A. —AND— "Judge hits actor with $50 fine". Los Angeles Evening Citizen News. December 21, 1967. p. 8 – via Both arrests turned out to be big nothingburgers (upon closer examination, reveals to be of little to no real significance). And as you accurately point out, the "entertainment industry seems not to have noticed", as evidenced by his lengthy career. So since the judicial system didn't take the initial arrests serious enough to prosecute, and the entertainment industry didn't care, as it didn't affect his career, what's the point of adding a misdemeanor disturbing the peace (1967) and a misdemeanor trespassing (1974)? And besides the initial coverage at the time (which were undeniably short newspaper blurbs), there has not been any significant in-depth coverage or analysis by reliable sources (that I'm aware of) that puts these two misdemeanor events into context for the reader. And just because the coverage by reliable sources after his death, have refused to acknowledge the arrests were adjudicated as nothingburger misdemeanors, doesn't automatically mean WP should follow suit. So yeah, in light of these aforementioned facts, I stand by my comment that (especially as it's presented in the article right now), it is tabloid garbage that leaves a bad taste in my mouth as an attempt to smear a deceased subject. Isaidnoway (talk) 08:33, 3 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
And finally, I agree with George Ho that the disputed content should be left out per the status quo, while there is a RfC underway. What's the point of having a RfC, and asking for other editor's opinions, when a few days into it, the disputed content has already been added to the article, as if it's a settled matter. The correct procedure would have been to make a proposal on the talk page about what content, if any, should be included, but instead, it's already been shoehorned into the article, during an ongoing RfC. Isaidnoway (talk) 12:38, 2 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@Yngvadottir: Concurring with what Isaidnoway has said just hours ago about reinserting disputed content amid ongoing discussion (no opinion about the material itself, honestly, at this time). Well, until now, I didn't wanna raise the matter of reinserting the material about the said topic amidst this ongoing discussion. I even didn't wanna revert your reinsertion of it. I mean, why reinserting it amid this discussion? George Ho (talk) 19:22, 2 June 2023 (UTC); clarified, 19:23, 2 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@George Ho: I and others disagree with Isaidnoway's position, and I consider I have sufficiently answered it. Your removal while discussion was ongoing was inappropriate in my view, and I took the opportunity to add the additional reference and reduce the emphasis on the arrests (and remove presumably inadvertent copyvio). Yngvadottir (talk) 19:45, 2 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I didn't mean to make the removal come across as "inappropriate". I just thought reinserting the material amid discussion wouldn't be a good idea in my view. If you insist on keeping that material, well... I found one of past revisions detailing when the charges were dropped and whether there was a trial and conviction or acquittal. George Ho (talk) 20:45, 2 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@Yngvadottir: No, your re-insertion of the content after it was challenged was inappropriate. You shoehorned in your preferred version of the content while a RfC discussion to decide if it even should be included was underway. We are not on a deadline, and the RfC should be allowed to run its course to determine a consensus, and then if there is a consensus to add it (and only then), a determination/discussion on how much, or how little, of the content should be added. You don't get to unilaterally decide to add disputed content, when it has now been objected to, by two editors, and there is no clear consensus to add it in the first place. Isaidnoway (talk) 08:33, 3 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Keep. (Summoned by bot). On first inspection this appeared to be trivial gossip. I read the previous discussions on this page, and now I'm inclined to think of this as less of a BLP/BDP issue, and more of a WP:DUE issue. The reference in Arrested Development leans me towards Keep: including this incident here helps our readers understand that running joke. But now that the incident has been included in the NYT obituary, I think it's hard to deny its significance. Barnards.tar.gz (talk) 12:36, 1 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Comment: I just approved and pending change to remove the arrest. I thought on it for a while, and I feel that since there are good faith WP:BLP/WP:BDP concerns, this is an issue where WP:BLPRESTORE comes in. There's no pressing need to include it, and there should be resolution to this RFC within a month at which point we'll have consensus to include or not. This is an entirely separate concern from the WP:DUE arguments. ScottishFinnishRadish (talk) 14:42, 9 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Include: This is the only thing a lot of people know about George Maharis through word of mouth and/or the Arrested Development references. Frankly I find it baffling that certain editors are apparently going out of their way to hide this well-referenced and established event, which has been previously worded neutrally enough. Kind of sad. This is what ticks people off about Wikipedia - the selectivity and agendas of certain editors. Should we also remove certain sections of George Michael and Pee-wee Herman's articles? Let the neutrally-worded facts be presented! User:DuckshotMcDuck (talk) 09:57, 17 June 2023 (UTC)DuckshotMcDuck (talkcontribs) has made few or no other edits outside this topic. Reply[reply]
  • Comment and analysis — Besides the initial coverage at the time (which were undeniably short newspaper blurbs), there has not been any significant in-depth coverage or analysis by reliable sources in the last 49 years. Both charges were dismissed, and turned out to be big nothingburgers (upon closer examination, reveals to be of no real significance). Now in 2023, we have one sentence from the NYT obit, cherry-picked as an argument for inclusion, however, the weight of the sources indicate it is not a significant viewpoint, as evidenced from the overwhelming majority of reliable sources, which makes it WP:UNDUE to include these dismissed charges. The views of tiny minorities should not be included at all.
Furthermore, Wikipedia policy dictates that Maharis is innocent, which is evidenced by WP core policy. It is also a bedrock principle of the US judicial system. The charges were dismissed. Including the dismissed charges in the article implies wrongdoing, would be sensationalist, and spreading titillating claims about Maharis' life. Isaidnoway (talk) 13:31, 18 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Weight of the sources

Maharis obits, no mention of dismissed charges, used AP or THR or independent

  1. USA Today
  2. Associated Press
  3. Washington Post
  4. LA Times
  5. Chicago Tribune
  6. Orlando Sentinel
  7. Seattle Times
  8. Denver Post
  9. Chicago Sun Times
  10. Toronto Sun
  11. The Palm Beach Post
  12. ABC News
  13. US News & World Report
  14. Fox News
  15. Hollywood Reporter
  16. NPR
  17. People
  18. NY Post
  19. Vulture
  20. The Wrap
  21. ET
  22. Deadline
  23. Variety
  24. Yahoo
  25. DC News
  26. Bluefield Daily Telegraph
  27. Daily Inter Lake
  28. Antelope Valley Press
  29. Yuma Sun
  30. Elyria Chronicle Telegram
  31. Standard Speaker
  32. Syracuse Post Standard
  33. Winnipeg Free Press
  34. Altoona Mirror
  35. Frederick News Post
  36. Gettysburg Times
  37. The Times-Tribune
  • (+ 61 other newspapers, no mention of dismissed charges from ProQuest)

Maharis obits, included dismissed charges - all used NYT obit

  1. Buffalo News
  2. New York Times
  3. Seattle Times
  4. Windy City Times
  • Oppose sadly per WP:BDP and (everything by) Isaidnoway. I thought about being neutral about this, but if there's insufficient reliable sources significantly covering the arrest(s), then we should omit it for a long while. Also, let's not give in to speculations about this man, shall we? I can predict more certain editors after this discussion trying to push inclusion of the material just because it exists (as a fact). Nonetheless, whatever this decision will have been made must be enforced for a long while, if not very long, and editors must follow the results of this discussion. --George Ho (talk) 23:38, 22 June 2023 (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.
  • Just so we are clear, I was not "describing" the New York Times as "tabloid garbage", that is a gross mischaracterization of my comment, I was referring to the content under discussion (the dismissed charges) as being "tabloid garbage". Furthermore, it goes without saying, that the overwhelming majority of reliable sources that have gained site-wide reliability consensus, did not include the dismissed charges. And it is also noteworthy that the NYT obit is only used one time in the article as a reference, and out of 887 words, only 24 words, one sentence, is used from that NYT article. Isaidnoway (talk) 01:28, 3 July 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Sexual orientation[edit]

The New York Times obituary is here at, for those who hit the paywall. (After I post this I will replace the subscriber-only ProQuest link with this free alternative for readers who, like me, want to be able to read more than one NYT article a month without shelling out for something. Basically, WP:V.) We're currently using it for the two arrests mentioned in all the above sections, and in addition as one of two references for Maharis being gay: Maharis biographer Karen Blocher identified Maharis' homosexuality as the issue is our wording. The NYT quotes Blocher: "George was gay, it turned out." as well as a passage by her that we are quoting in the article: the producers felt betrayed and duped when they learned of Maharis's sexual orientation. We are describing Blocher as a biographer of Maharis, but I'm not sure that's strictly accurate: the quotes are from this interview-based blog entry from 2006. However, we have the New York Times, pretty much the gold standard of American press sources, clearly labeling Maharis as gay. The allcaps hidden note at the top of the page has been considerably cut down in recent edits, but still reads: "EVEN IF SOURCES, LIKE NEWSPAPERS, MAY BE RELIABLE, TITILLATING ALLEGATIONS ABOUT HIS PRIVATE LIFE ARE UNDER DISCUSSION AT THE TALK PAGE." "Titillating" is not an appropriate adjective for a statement of gayness cited to the New York Times. And "allegations" has been overtaken by the NYT corroborating the statements about the two arrests, which apparently have been sourceable all along by searching for the AP reports.

His sexual orientation is not mentioned in the AP obituary, nor in Variety, which we are citing. And I see no indication that he made a public pronouncement on the topic. So clearly the standard at WP:BLPCAT is not met for adding him to Category:American gay actors‎, until he's no longer recently dead and ideally, additional reliable sources have appeared supporting the point.

But I believe it's important to push back against any suggestion that being gay is in itself embarrassing or wrong. The law has changed radically on the issue since the 1960s (although on the 1974 charge, not so much). I suggest replacing that hidden note with a note at the bottom, above the categories, something like: "Do not add any LGBT categories. Wikipedia policy on living and recently dead persons forbids it unless the person has self-identified as LGBT." Yngvadottir (talk) 09:00, 29 May 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

@Yngvadottir: While it seems like articles usually don’t use a specific label if someone doesn’t use a specific label, it seems like the broader LGBT label is used if there’s referenced evidence for that label. Blaylockjam10 (talk) 07:18, 1 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@Blaylockjam10: It seems like a no-brainer if it's adequately sourced, but see WP:BLPCAT: for living people, policy is that we don't add an LGBT category unless the person has come out (and teh same goes for religious affiliation; a statement by the person is required). And the BLP rules still apply for a while after the person dies. Plus it turns out only the New York Times mentions his sexuality in the obituary, and they do so based on a specific person whom they quote. We'll need stronger sourcing for it, in a year or two, if we're to add him to such a category. Yngvadottir (talk) 10:01, 1 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Addendum: As mentioned above, the Karen Blocher source cited by the NYT is not a book but a two-part blog entry: Part One, to which they link, and Part Two. It should be noted that she recounts there how she herself edited early versions of the article, including removing the two arrests because she was unable to find a reliable source. In view of this intertwining of the history of the article with a major source for the NYT, we should probably find and reference those contemporary Associated Press references. Yngvadottir (talk) 09:23, 29 May 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

This is about the arrests as far as I'm concerned. Orientation is a separate issue. You can access many versions of the story at and then registering for a 7-day free trial to access stories. I don't know of any other likely access path.
  • November 24, 1974
  • Times-Advocate
  • Escondido, California
  • page 28
  • agency: UPI
  • dateline: Los Angeles
  • Title: Actor arrested for second time on morals rap
  • Full text:
    • Actor George Maharis was arrested Thursday for the second time on charges of homosexual conduct.
    • Police said Maharis, 46, who costarred in the "Route 66" television series in the 1960s, was arrested by vice squad officers.
    • He was booked along with Perfecto Telles, 33, a hairdresser, on a sex perversion charge. They were released on $500 bail and arraignment was scheduled for Tuesday in Municipal Court.

This version from the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle (NY), which does not credit AP or UPI, is comparable, but describes the current offense as "committing a sex act with a hairdresser in the men's room of a gasoline station" and adds this paragraph:

    • Maharis was arrested for lewd conduct on Dec. 15, 1967 by a vice squad officer who said the actor made a pass at him in the men's room of a Hollywood restaurant. The charge was dismissed when he pleaded guilty to a count of disturbing the peace and was fined $50.

The account re 1967 is true to the 1967 source here in the Los Angeles Evening Citizen News on Dec 21, 1967.

Thanks for tracking those down! So it was the UPI, not the AP. Google News archive may have preserved a version, although it's been gutted in recent years. But I understand a subscriber can also create a permanent "clipping" with a citeable URL? As to his sexual orientation, that's why I started a new section. I think it's useful to have a place for discussion in advance of the categories issue arising. (I moved your signature up so there won't be a gap, I hope you don't mind.) Yngvadottir (talk) 21:08, 29 May 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
There's an AP version of the 1974 story as well. Very similar. So far haven't found one that reports the earlier incident as well.
Rutsq (talk) 21:22, 29 May 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I scoured what's left of Google News Archive several times, and found only the 1974. Putting it above with a pointer down here. Yngvadottir (talk) 02:44, 30 May 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Here's a generous set of refs, inlduding yours from the Google Archive, with the others using clipped images from [1][2][3][4][5]


  1. ^ "Judge hits actor with $50 fine". Los Angeles Evening Citizen News. December 21, 1967. p. 8. Retrieved May 31, 2023 – via
  2. ^ "Actor arrested for second time on morals rap". Times-Advocate. Escondido, California. UPI. November 24, 1974. p. 28. Retrieved May 31, 2023 – via
  3. ^ "Maharis Charged". The Bryan Times. Bryan, Ohio. UPI. December 23, 1974. p. 10. Retrieved May 31, 2023 – via Google News.
  4. ^ "Maharis, Hairdresser Arrested". The Macon News. Macon, Georgia. AP. November 22, 1974. p. 12. Retrieved May 31, 2023 – via
  5. ^ "Geo. Maharis arrested on morals count". Rochester Democrat and Chronicle. Rochester, New York. November 22, 1974. p. 28. Retrieved May 31, 2023 – via

Rutsq (talk) 02:18, 31 May 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Thanks; the last of those was perfect to buttress the NYT, so that we're not relying on the one newspaper (albeit the NYT) and ultimately on a blog entry. Yngvadottir (talk) 10:01, 1 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
George Maharis was gay or homosexual it is not a secret despite the AP, NTY, VF, etc. erasing this. (talk) 22:46, 17 September 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]