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For pending merger proposals (2009 to date) see Template talk:Infobox person/Mergers

“Pronoun” parameter[edit]

It is 2023, and it is necessary to provide this in the infobox of those who wish to identify. Why? Today, for example, I got confused when an article referred to the subject as “They,” I reread previous lines and thought it was referring to 2 people only to find out on their Twitter that they use “They/Them” pronouns.

Regardless of your political affiliation or level of sensitivity towards gender, it’s necessary to put a subjects preferred pronouns in the Person Infobox so this won’t happen again. StreetKnockerzEnt (talk) 22:22, 3 February 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

@StreetKnockerzEnt, See the following previous discussions:
  1. Template talk:Infobox person/Archive 36#RfC: Adding a "pronouns" parameter
  2. Template talk:Infobox person/Archive 37#Request to add Pronoun parameters under Personal Information section
  3. Template talk:Infobox person/Archive 37#Perfered Pronouns
Archer1234 (t·c) 01:42, 4 February 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • The problem is that this parameter invites overspecifying, where editors will supply preferred pronouns even when the subject's gender identity (or non-identity as it may be) is not really a notable part of their life. If the article prose is confusing, then the infobox is not where it needs to be addressed, it should be clarified in prose. It can be as simple as the completely fictional example: "Jamie Bufford (they/them[1]) is a nuclear physicist at CERN[2] who headed the imaging program for the Large Hadron Collider[3][4]. They completed their doctorate in 2014 at the University of Chicago with a thesis on the detection of high-energy cosmic rays[5]." Or if their gender identity is a significant part of their notability, it probably belongs as a full sentence in the lede along the lines of the fictional: "Jay Charlston (born Jacob Charlston) is an actor and trans activist who rose to fame starring as Ensign Ricky in all five seasons of Star Trek: The Best of All Worlds[1]. They have used they/them pronouns since coming out as non-binary in 2011[2]." VanIsaac, GHTV contWpWS 02:51, 4 February 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    A number of parameters "invite overspecifying" (where the actual answer is unknown), including exact date or place of birth or death. One remains free to NOT specify in those cases, or to answer "unknown" if the field MUST be filled in (but what fields truly MUST be filled in)? – .Raven  .talk 02:06, 2 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    Is there editorial guidance about over-specifying in general? It seems like it happens a lot (as Raven points out). Maybe there's on guidance? Or there is, and it's just not enforced or understood? -- Mikeblas (talk) 01:05, 13 July 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    I don't know about broader policy off the top of my head, but good infobox documentation typically discusses when it's best to use/not use a parameter. Of course, many well-meaning editors don't read the infobox documentation... DonIago (talk) 16:40, 13 July 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

NYC, the center of the universe?[edit]

The documentation for the birth place states "Omit unnecessary or redundant details. For example, it is not necessary to state: New York City, New York, United States when New York City, U.S. conveys essentially the same information more concisely." However, that makes things inconsistent when people have the temerity to either be born somewhere else and die in the Big Apple or vice versa. This came up in Ivan R. Gates, born in Rockford, Minnesota, died in NYC. Why have the state in one field but not in the other? The first six deceased individuals in List of people from New York City are evenly split, while the List of people from Los Angeles, List of people from Chicago and List of people from Boston (from the samples I examined) all seem to have the state included. Is New York City really above other major American metropolises? Clarityfiend (talk) 01:10, 5 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Chicago, LA, Boston, Toronto, Vancouver, London, Moscow, Paris, Tokyo, New Delhi, Shanghai, Hong Kong, Beijing, Ho Chi Minh City, Cairo, Nairobi, Stockholm, Copenhagen, Amsterdam, Vienna, Berlin, Rome, Athens, Baghdad, Johannesburg, Rio de Janiero, Buenos Aires... etc. There are lots of cities in the US and around the world where it is probably pretty redundant for the infobox to include anything more than the city name. The litmus is somewhere around whether an average adult from the English-speaking world would almost certainly know the city name on sight. They may not know exactly where it is, but they would certainly recognize it as a major world city in any case. After all, calling it Boston, Massachusetts is as meaningful for someone in India as calling it Mumbai, Maharashtra to an American. Since the infobox is supposed to give you only the most important and salient details, it's only when people legitimately need that kind of clarification that it's appropriate to include things like state and country. VanIsaac, GHTV contWpWS 02:13, 5 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
You're not getting my objection. Why would you have the state in one field and not the other? It just doesn't look right. Clarityfiend (talk) 09:37, 6 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
And who gets to decide whether a city is famous enough? Clarityfiend (talk) 09:39, 6 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
To answer the questions, "Why have the state in one field but not in the other? " and "Is New York City really above other major American metropolises?" Because NY is the only name for a metropolis and its state; "New York, New York" is just silly in the eyes and ears of the rest of the world. -- Michael Bednarek (talk) 10:52, 6 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Beware pleonasm. Brevity is the sole of wit. Sometimes I think politicians should be taxed by the word. O3000, Ret. (talk) 14:21, 6 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Soul. Clarityfiend (talk) 10:59, 13 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Trimming fluff from infoboxes has become something of an obsession for me of late. "New York City, U.S." or even better, "New York City, US" is quite sufficient. Per MOS:INFOBOXPURPOSE, "The less information it contains, the more effectively it serves that purpose, allowing readers to identify key facts at a glance." Edwardx (talk) 14:47, 6 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@Vanisaac: @Michael Bednarek: @Objective3000: @Nikkimaria: Everyone seems to have ignored this rule for every other American city I've randomly sampled: Los Angeles, Boston, Chicago, Detroit, Dallas, etc. Only New York City gets a pass, and even that less than half the time. Of the eight people I checked from List of people from New York City, three had no state and five did, including Vincent Alo, who was born in ... wait for it ... Harlem, Manhattan, New York City, New York, U.S. Clarityfiend (talk) 08:11, 14 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Eight is a very small sample. Have fixed Alo. Even if one started removing California, Massachusetts, etc from those city names in the infobox field(s), I think that other people would soon re-add them. So, short of a clear policy diktat, it would likely be a waste of time. Edwardx (talk) 23:52, 17 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
That's the point. The vast majority of Americans will put in/expect a state. So why is New York City the only exception? Not Los Angeles, not Washington, not New Orleans, etc. Also, the sample size is larger than eight. Remember I also checked various other cities (about six entries each), all with states, plus my long experience browsing through bios. Clarityfiend (talk) 00:05, 18 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
See below. Also multiple "Los Angeles"es and "Washington"s. – .Raven  .talk 02:47, 2 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Note, there is a Chicago, Zimbabwe; a Vancouver, Washington; a London, Ontario; a Moscow, Idaho; a Paris, Texas, and a Paris, Ontario; several Baghdads; and numerous Amsterdams, Athenses, Berlins, Bostons, Cairos, Copenhagens, Romes, Stockholms, Torontos, and Viennas. There are also multiple "New York"s, just not multiple places named "New York City". – .Raven  .talk 02:39, 2 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
It's about conveying information concisely. These examples you listed are perfectly clear when the main city is meant. New York is just the most obvious example. -- Michael Bednarek (talk) 06:50, 2 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
> "... when the main city is meant." Are we to be mind-readers? If editors see that non-unique placenames omit the specific larger area (e.g. state), then why not for the smaller as well as larger referents?
"New York" (without the "City") is a "most obvious example" of ambiguity – it may then refer either to the city or to the state, or to any of nine other locations: one in Ukraine, three in the UK, five in the USA. – .Raven  .talk 09:09, 2 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I made a mistake. I meant to write 'New York City', which for all intents and purposes is unambiguous. Use of 'Paris, France' is justly ridiculed. -- Michael Bednarek (talk) 01:03, 3 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
1) As I indicated above, a day earlier: "just not multiple places named 'New York City'."
2) I remember fondly a cherished old lady who used to boast (in jest) that she had been "born in Paris"... always soon thereafter to admit it was the one in Missouri.
3) If in such cases we omit "France" after the name of the Paris there, don't be surprised or upset if others likewise omit the "Arkansas", "Idaho", "Illinois", "Indiana", "Iowa", "Kentucky", "Maine", "Michigan", etc. – .Raven  .talk 02:08, 3 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
You may be interested to read WP:OHTHATPARIS. ‑‑Neveselbert (talk · contribs · email) 19:41, 3 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Those nine other locations have no claim whatsoever to being primary. ‑‑Neveselbert (talk · contribs · email) 17:59, 2 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Nor with any of the other city-names. The point was not primaryhood, but ambiguity – as indicated by the need for disambiguation pages.
There's an anecdote that for a while some Japanese-made goods were stamped "MADE IN USA", which was utterly honest — they were made in Usa, Japan. How could customers have known that the "main" or "primary" referent for that name was NOT intended? – .Raven  .talk 22:45, 2 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I just noticed the guideline in the infobox documentation re: New York City and fully concur with User:Clarityfiend on this one. Whomever wrote that guideline is imposing a point of view unfamiliar to the vast majority of English speakers in violation of WP:NPOV (and WP:NOR (no original research) and WP:NOT (WP is not a soapbox)). North American English speakers are strongly conditioned to expect "city, state" (or province) when reading a profile (for example, an infobox in a traditional textbook) and would read "New York City, U.S." as wrong because the traditional usage is "New York, New York". Here is the relevant comparison on Google Ngram Viewer (scanning the entire English published corpus irrespective of dialect). New York, New York has always been very common while New York City, U.S. has always been very, very tiny in the published corpus. This infobox should not impose an arbitrary usage which violates strongly established usage in formal written English. --Coolcaesar (talk) 05:56, 5 July 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
> "New York, New York has always been very common...."
The 1977 song, film, and musical play of that title might have something to do with it.
But as a Wikipedia infobox entry, since we usually wikilink placenames there, saying "New York" twice just links us to a disambiguation page twice. Wikilinking the article names for both places gives us "New York City, New York (state)", unsightly unless we pipe at least the latter: ⟦New York (state)|New York⟧ → New York. Piping both names gives us your four-word result, using ten words of source text. I'm sure many editors feel it's safe to shorten it to just the unpiped New York City because (a) it's a unique placename as is, even in plain text; (b) the linked article details where the place is.
Addressing an envelope doesn't afford the advantage of wikilinking. – .Raven  .talk 14:52, 5 July 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
But your analysis is focusing solely on what's the simplest thing for WP editors to write with the least keystrokes/characters, not what's the easiest way to communicate a location in an infobox without making readers think "that looks weird." As an old boss used to tell me all the time years ago, "It doesn't matter what you think, it matters what they think!" Good writers composing formal written English always prioritize clarity for their readers, not the amount of work it requires of themselves. Also, for the benefit of foreign readers and younger readers not fully conversant in the complexities of New York geography, linking to both the city and the state helps readers distinguish between the two. --Coolcaesar (talk) 05:48, 6 July 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
> "your analysis is focusing solely on what's the simplest thing for WP editors to write with the least keystrokes/characters"
If that were the case, I would have stopped at "four-word result, using ten words of source text", and not gone on to say: "I'm sure many editors feel it's safe to shorten it to just the unpiped New York City because (a) it's a unique placename as is, even in plain text; (b) the linked article details where the place is." – .Raven  .talk 06:52, 6 July 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No, you're still not responding to the key point: the first thought of most native American English speakers, upon seeing a city with no state in an infobox (in a textbook, magazine, etc.), is going to be "that looks weird." Linking and pipelining isn't sufficient, because that requires too much work from the reader. Any time a writer throws their reader off track with an unconventional usage, they have already failed to clearly communicate. (As an attorney, I get paid to communicate complex legal concepts very clearly.) In computer science terms, you've already failed if you force readers to divert from regular parsing into exception handling. This is formal English, not creative English, which are completely different registers. (That critical distinction is pounded into freshmen in English reading and composition courses at top-tier research universities.) --Coolcaesar (talk) 02:33, 24 July 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Should in-laws be listed as relatives?[edit]

Per this edit, does the Relatives field encompass in-laws? The documentation doesn't clearly indicate one way or another, that I saw. Pinging Turo24 (talk · contribs) as the editor who made the addition. Thanks! DonIago (talk) 03:31, 13 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I would say they should not be included. A) It contributes infobox bloat B) There are maintenance problems. When a couple divorces the in-laws are no longer relatives so who is going to come back and remove the names. If consensus is to allow it I would say that it only applies to legally married couples. The are numerous other kinds relationships that expand a family but do not create in-laws. MarnetteD|Talk 04:01, 13 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Thanks Marnette. I've removed it for now. I admit that may be preemptive, but I'm about to go out of town for a few days. If a consensus emerges in favor of including in-laws, any editor is welcome to revert me. Cheers! DonIago (talk) 16:39, 13 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Thanks for your post, Doniago. I have wondered that same thing when I have seen in-laws listed as relatives in an infobox. I think they should not be included for the same reasons that MarnetteD expressed in her reply. Eddie Blick (talk) 01:34, 14 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The term you're looking for is "related by marriage". (That's a Google search link, for usage examples.) – .Raven  .talk 23:14, 2 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
relative: 1. Someone in the same family; someone connected by blood, marriage, or adoption. [underline added]
Does that suffice? – .Raven  .talk 23:08, 2 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I would say it's a big it depends. If their in-law is someone quite notable (maybe even the person's notability stems from being associated with that person), then sure - e.g. Edward F. Cox. If they have their parents, grandparents, children and uncles already in the infobox, then probably not. ITBF (talk) 01:46, 14 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

It can still be covered in prose, whether or not it's in the infobox. I'd be hesitant to open the way for arguments as to whether someone is "notable enough". DonIago (talk) 02:13, 19 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
If Jared Kushner is not a relative of his father-in-law Donald Trump, then it wasn't, strictly speaking, nepotism for the latter to employ the former at the White House, was it? – .Raven  .talk 23:02, 2 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I'd say no, even if the in-law is a royal or president. It's generally just a piece of trivia. This can be noted in prose, including the lead if the in-law is of high importance or significant to the subject's life or career. Lapadite (talk) 07:24, 14 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

How narrowly to read "city" of birth/death?[edit]

How narrowly to read 'city' of birth/death?

The infoboxes of Pearl Mackie, Peter Hawkins, Danny Kirwan, and Tony Sewell, Baron Sewell of Sanderstead read "Born... Brixton, London, England". For a short while, so did the infobox for David Bowie; then "Brixton" was removed from that last infobox, on the grounds that only a "city" should be named, and Brixton is not a city (though it has a larger population than 17 of the USA's state capitals, and in-real-life form fields marked "city" are routinely filled in with names of other place-types – town, village, etc. – where appropriate). How narrowly should that word "city" be read? This has been discussed by @Bretonbanquet and Nikkimaria: and me, at User talk:Nikkimaria#David Bowie. Should template documentation be changed? Or some other clarification be sought? How say you all? – .Raven  .talk 01:23, 2 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Point of clarification: the "until recently" above was for less than twelve hours, two months ago; "London" is the stable version. Nikkimaria (talk) 01:29, 2 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Thank you for that detail. It hadn't been mentioned at your talkpage. – .Raven  .talk 01:49, 2 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No problem, but also: if you want this to be an actual RfC, you will need to reword your statement. Nikkimaria (talk) 01:59, 2 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
And now? – .Raven  .talk 03:08, 2 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
You really want it to be like a sentence. How about just "How narrowly should "city" be read in the documentation for birthplace/deathplace"? Or propose a specific change if you have one. And then the rest of your explanation can go below your signature in a new comment. Nikkimaria (talk) 03:19, 2 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
> "How about just 'How narrowly should "city" be read in the documentation for birthplace/deathplace'?" – That's the section title!
> "And then the rest of your explanation can go below..." – That's the paragraph I put below the title! – .Raven  .talk 03:43, 2 June 2023 (UTC)
What gets listed is everything from the RfC tag up to and including your first timestamp, as per the explanation at WP:RFCBRIEF. So if the section title is what you want to use, that needs to be repeated in that span. Nikkimaria (talk) 03:49, 2 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
So I've moved the section title below the RFC tag. – .Raven  .talk 04:06, 2 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
... And then had to recreate the RFC tag because that got bot-deleted. So this time I'm following Nikkimaria's advice exactly. – .Raven  .talk 23:26, 2 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

The template documentation should be changed, it's a comparatively recently phenomenon for most people to born in cities at all. Also, it should be made clearer that administrative region is optional, as many smaller countries don't have functional lower-level subdivisions. Maybe: "settlement, administrative region (where applicable), country? ITBF (talk) 03:12, 2 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Sure! Or "city/town/village/etc.", since "settlement" can also mean a much larger area. Something that indicates smallest applicable jurisdictional placename; e.g. in the US that might be county/parish, for someone outside a municipality. John McCain's birthplace, Coco Solo, was a US Navy submarine base and naval air station, not a civil jurisdiction at all. – .Raven  .talk 03:48, 2 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I agree this should be broader, since lots of people are not born/die in cities, and in some cases a "city" in one sense (e.g. Greater London) is too wide an area to be as meaningful as we'd like.  — SMcCandlish ¢ 😼  10:37, 2 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Compared to the U.S. the UK has a somewhat different definition of "city". Several counties are highly populous, yet completely devoid of cities, such as Berkshire and Surrey; other counties are mainly rural yet have a fair sprinkling of cities - Cambridgeshire has a population density one-third of either Berkshire or Surrey, but has three cities: Cambridge, Ely and Peterborough. For Greater London, the relevant London borough may be given, and some of those are also cities like the City of London and City of Westminster. --Redrose64 🌹 (talk) 11:15, 2 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
RE historical subjects, I think the template instructions already capture that: For historical subjects, use the place name most appropriate for the context and our readership. What the place may correspond to on a modern map is a matter for an article's main text. voorts (talk/contributions) 11:41, 2 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • (A bot commanded me to come here) Per MOS:INFOBOXPURPOSE, the less information, the better (see also WP:DETAIL). Thus, keep City as City and do not expand the template instructions to include subdivisions of cities. As an example of how this would lead to TMI, Brixton had a population of ~79k per the 2011 census. Similarly, the Lower East Side of Manhattan had a pouplation of ~73k in the 2010 census. I don't think most non-UK readers would really need to know that someone was specifically born in Brixton as opposed to London, just as most non-NYC readers would not need to know someone was born in the LES as opposed to NYC. The infobox should remain broad, and more details can be in the body of the article if they're relevant and supported by reliable sources. voorts (talk/contributions) 11:55, 2 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    > "... most non-NYC readers would not need to know someone was born in the L[ower]E[ast]S[ide] as opposed to NYC." – In fact, Donald Trump's infobox, by telling us he was born in Queens, NYC, gives us very helpful information. Clicking on that borough link and reading through Queens#Ethnic groups – keeping in mind the ethnic hatreds Trump has expressed and acted upon throughout his career – shows conditions that must have infuriated him (and his KKK-member father before him) every day: a shrinking white share (now a minority) of the population, while other ethnic groups grow and prosper ("In Queens, the Black and African American population earns more than non-Hispanic whites on average"). Despite his family's wealth, he's acted like a man with feelings of inferiority (envy of those still richer, prioritizing resentment and revenge, boasting and displaying glitz like gold-plated accessories, even while systematically stiffing contractors) – and the other boroughs' stereotype of Queens as "lower-class" must surely have been a factor in developing those feelings. Had he been born and grown up in the Upper West Side of Manhattan (where I spent some childhood years), he might have developed differently, even with the same paternal influence. But of course we can never know that. – .Raven  .talk 16:35, 2 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    Using your example of Trump, if an RS establishes that being more specific than NYC is important, then I think that IAR would allow someone to list Queens instead of NYC. Thus, I don't see a compelling reason to change the template documentation. voorts (talk/contributions) 23:31, 2 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    Likewise see the above UK-related comments from SMcCandlish ("in some cases a 'city' in one sense (e.g. Greater London) is too wide an area to be as meaningful as we'd like") and Redrose64 ("For Greater London, the relevant London borough may be given, and some of those are also cities like the City of London and City of Westminster."). – .Raven  .talk 01:06, 3 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    For a variety of reasons (including the fact that some boroughs are recent inventions), people - including sources - don't necessarily refer to boroughs when talking about London areas. People are much more likely to refer to someone as living in/ coming from Harlesden, Willesden, Cricklewood or Wembley (all of which were historic towns, now swallowed by Greater London) than to 'Brent' - which is the borough in which they all sit, but which is largely unknown outside NW London itself. Pincrete (talk) 16:52, 10 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    That can be achieved with a link to Queens in the article text. No need to be that detailed in the infobox. Marbe166 (talk) 07:41, 3 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • (A bot commanded me to come here) I think that for the infobox, city is fine. The article can then expand on a more specific location. Infobox is more at a glance summary than the end-all be-all. — Preceding unsigned comment added by SomeoneDreaming (talkcontribs) 23:01, 2 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Broaden. As the discussion I am part of at the Pitt talkpage here shows, without broadening it from "city" to encompass for example Brooklyn, editors will absolutely insist that "Brooklyn" not be reflected as a place of birth in the infobox. We have to consider the purpose here. Helping the reader. If Brooklyn were an independent city, it would be the third most-populous in the U.S. after the rest of New York City and Los Angeles, and ahead of Chicago. (Meanwhile, Jemez Springs, New Mexico, population 250 would be reflected in an infobox (rather than the county it sits in), but not Brooklyn, population 2.7 million.)2603:7000:2101:AA00:F006:978E:29A3:A4B4 (talk) 04:39, 3 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Keep definition. Just because a bourough is big doesn't entail it to be equated to other cities/towns/villages, from an administrative point of view. Some cities are big, some are small. If you want to be detailed on where in the city a person is born, that can be done in the article text, but the infoboxes should be consistent. --Marbe166 (talk) 07:39, 3 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    The problem with "keep definition" (of the word "city") is that the word appears without definition in the template documentation, leaving us to either discuss its meaning – and perhaps reach consensus – or each apply our own, broad or narrow, reading of it... and end up with inconsistent or conflicting edits. As mentioned up top, in real life form fields marked "city" are routinely filled in with names of other place-types – town, village, etc. – where appropriate.
    Also, cities are typically within counties. New York City boroughs fill separate counties: Staten Island = Richmond County, Manhattan = New York County, the Bronx = Bronx County, Brooklyn = Kings County, Queens = Queens County. If we refer to them all by the single city name (NYC), that won't indicate the county (next administrative level up), so we must per documentation specify that separately: New York City, Kings County, NY; or New York City, Bronx County, NY; etc. Saying Brooklyn, NY, or the Bronx, NY, is more concise, while giving the same "full identification". – .Raven  .talk 10:24, 3 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Broaden It makes no sense that enormous boroughs are considered less important than tiny villages. We have a situation where a village like Brixton Deverill (pop.83) is vital enough to be named in the infobox, yet Brixton (pop. 78,000) is not. How can that be justified in any logical way? Two towns so close together that they are practically joined, like Tonbridge and Royal Tunbridge Wells, are considered separate; while Chipping Barnet and Sanderstead, 57 miles apart with millions of people living between them, are to be called "London". London also contains other cities, such as the City of Westminster and the City of London, yet they are not allowed to be mentioned. It defies logic in every sense. I understand that infoboxes are intended to be general, but why is it so selective? If the name of a borough consists of one or two words, I hardly think it's going to defile the infobox with unnecessary clutter, yet would cast a hell of a lot of light on just where we're talking about. Saying "London" is so vague as to almost be not worth mentioning. Bretonbanquet (talk) 09:49, 3 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I'd also remind people that, as far as I can see, it doesn't actually say "no boroughs" in the template advice. This does lead to arguments. If boroughs are to be disallowed then at least add wording to explain why a village of a dozen people gets named, while massive boroughs do not. Bretonbanquet (talk) 09:54, 3 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Broaden. There is no sufficient reason to be pedantic about only including the city. Some people aren't born in cities, and those that do sometimes are born in extremely large cities, where smaller subdivisions are necessary to distinguish. SWinxy (talk) 14:18, 3 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Broaden. There is absolutely no problem with including a specific place of birth/death. -- Necrothesp (talk) 09:04, 9 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Broaden.There is no sufficient reason to be pedantic about only including the city. Some people aren't born in cities, and those that do sometimes are born in extremely large cities per SWinxy and others. Also, sorry to complicate matters further, but two UK matters, firstly, Greater London, which most people mean when they refer to 'London', isn't (legally) a city although anomalously it contains two cities, one of which has a tiny resident population (The City - the financial district). Secondly UK 'boroughs' are not how London areas are commonly referred to, for various reasons. Brixton isn't a borough, nor are Notting Hill or Notting Hill Gate. Some London boroughs are recent inventions, that are little used outside local govt (eg Brent). The commonly used name for the district is much more useful than the borough or county in a UK context. Boroughs may be helpful in a NY context, I don't know. Pincrete (talk) 11:22, 10 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]


  • Proposal: Keep the main text as is, but add a note that says something like this: If reliable sources describe a person's place of birth as a borough or neighborhood of a larger city or municipal area, then the place of birth may reflect that. (I'm open to workshopping this language). Many editors have suggested that sometimes boroughs / neighborhoods are necessary for larger cities. But, we should go by what RSes say. I'm concerned about people including neighborhoods / areas of cities that wouldn't be relevant to a broad audience. For example, suppose we know that person A was born at X hospital, which is in Y neighborhood of Z city. RSes only describe person A as being born in Z, But not in Y. The "place of birth" in that case should be Z, not Y. I think this compromise balances the need to follow V while allowing for specificity in necessary cases. voorts (talk/contributions) 16:21, 3 June 2023 (UTC)—see modified proposal below. voorts (talk/contributions) 23:45, 4 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    In some cases RSs won't mention neighborhood because it really doesn't matter so much; in that case neither should we. On the other hand, for instance, Harlem is a neighborhood within the borough of Manhattan, and that might very well both matter and (therefore) be mentioned by many RSs; in that case so should we, rather than either borough or city. Being socially, culturally, or politically involved with that area's affairs as an adult – or reflecting it in their art e.g. performances – would certainly be good reason to name it as birthplace. So... Support as far as you've gone, but I think strong ties between exact birthplace and career would add WP:RELEVANCE. – .Raven  .talk 02:22, 4 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    Yes, I broadly agree with the proposal. If the neighbourhood in question and its relevance to the subject cannot be proven or verified by reliable sources, then it doesn't belong. If someone is born at a particular hospital and then moved away, and reliable sources barely mention that area, then it's hard to justify its inclusion in the infobox. But taking the example of David Bowie, he was born in Brixton, lived there during his early years and went to school there, and there's now a memorial to him there. That constitutes sufficient ties to a neighbourhood in London which has a unique identity anyway. It's all verifiable by reliable sources so should belong in the infobox. Bretonbanquet (talk) 11:44, 4 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Broadly agree w/the proposal. As to the Harlem example above, I think it's fine to also mention Manhattan or New York City, as not everyone would have that knowledge. 2603:7000:2101:AA00:FC4A:5AA2:216:CB58 (talk) 19:10, 4 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    Would wikilinking Harlem (or whatever) not address that concern? – .Raven  .talk 23:15, 4 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • I think one's perspective depends on if you're local to the area or not. For example, there's a lot of neighborhoods in List of districts and neighborhoods in Los Angeles, that locals would call a city, as it's what's listed on the postal address. But then Wikipedia gets quirky by calling everything on the Las Vegas Strip, which most everyone in everyday life refer to as part of "Las Vegas", as instead being in the unincorporated town of Paradise, Nevada. I'm not sure what standard we use on WP for locations, other than non-locals relying on whether the WP page calls that place a "city" or not.—Bagumba (talk) 13:41, 4 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    Ironically, Las Vegas Strip mentions: "the Supreme Court of Nevada struck down a 1975 Nevada state law that would have folded the Strip and the rest of the urban areas of Clark County into the City of Las Vegas." – But it seems Wikipedia trumps SCOTUS. – .Raven  .talk 23:20, 4 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Modified Proposal to avoid ambiguity and provide examples: If reliable sources describe a person's place of birth as a borough or neighborhood of a larger city or municipal area, then the place of birth may reflect thattake the form [[Neighborhood]], [[City]], [[Country]] (e.g. Harlem, New York City, United States or Brixton, London, United Kingdom). voorts (talk/contributions) 23:45, 4 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Modified Proposal No. 2 to address MOS:GEOLINK issue: If reliable sources describe a person's place of birth as a borough or neighborhood of a larger city or municipal area, then the place of birth may take the form [[Neighborhood]], City, Country (e.g. Harlem, New York City, United States or Brixton, London, United Kingdom). voorts (talk/contributions) 23:45, 4 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    Courtesy pings to @.Raven and @Bagumba. voorts (talk/contributions) 21:54, 5 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    • Support, per above discussion. – .Raven  .talk 22:45, 5 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    • Comment Resolves my previous MOS:GEOLINK concern. I've got no current opinion otherwise.—Bagumba (talk) 10:40, 6 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    • Support, per above discussion. 2603:7000:2101:AA00:612E:2FC6:2E46:C46A (talk) 17:44, 7 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    • Support, per the above discussion. Bretonbanquet (talk) 17:55, 7 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    • Oppose for the reason raised by Voorts above: this wording doesn't account for where a location "matters" to the person, but does open up the possibility of naming a tiny neighbourhood based on where a hospital is. Nikkimaria (talk) 01:34, 8 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
      We already could be naming a major city based on where the birth hospital (or birth back seat of a car or bus, e.g. "going down Highway 41") is, when that person's family home (and the entire rest of their life) may be rural – or even in another state or nation. There's never been any guarantee that birthplace will  matter to the individual. But sometimes it does, so we still report it if we can. – .Raven  .talk 01:50, 8 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
      We should not be doing something just because we can. While I agree we already could be including things that don't matter, that isn't a good reason to do that more. Nikkimaria (talk) 02:19, 8 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
      So should we not report birthplace at all, unless we can reliably source that this detail "matters" to the person ? – .Raven  .talk 04:57, 8 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
      Agree w/Raven's general stance here.2603:7000:2101:AA00:9C80:DDC1:DD09:88A0 (talk) 17:45, 8 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
      What is often forgotten is that these templates are meant to be limited to key facts; if in a particular case something doesn't meet that bar, it should be left out not included just because it is known. Nikkimaria (talk) 00:47, 9 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
      That was not my argument. My argument was that we should go by what reliable sources say. The example I gave was somebody finds out a person was born in X hospital, say by primary source research (e.g., a birth certificate). It's highly unlikely that for a notable person, RSes would list an insignificant neighborhood, and if they did, then we should go by the RSes. The rule has never been "what matters" to a person; otherwise, Wikipedia wouldn't have strict COI rules RE BLPs. voorts (talk/contributions) 12:03, 8 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
      Once this discussion ends, we will be left with the wording of the documentation, regardless of what the intention behind it might have been. And the wording proposed would certainly allow the example mentioned, even if that's not what you meant to do. Nikkimaria (talk) 00:47, 9 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
      What example are you referring to? voorts (talk/contributions) 00:51, 9 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
      "suppose we know that person A was born at X hospital". Nikkimaria (talk) 00:52, 9 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
      Here's the full context: For example, suppose we know that person A was born at X hospital, which is in Y neighborhood of Z city. RSes only describe person A as being born in Z, But not in Y. The "place of birth" in that case should be Z, not Y (emphasis added). As I noted, even if we know person A was born in Y (e.g., from original research or person A saying that off-handed in a podcast interview), if that is not reflected in RSes, we should not say that person A was born in Y neighborhood. If RSes discuss the neighborhood, then it is worthy of inclusion in the infobox per the proposal, and I'm not sure why there would be a problem. voorts (talk/contributions) 00:58, 9 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
      Well, to start with, consider the context you've just provided: the person has stated in a reliable source that they were born in Y. That meets the wording of the proposal, but not your intended exclusion of "wouldn't be relevant to a broad audience". Nothing in the proposal requires that sources discuss the significance/relevance of a location. It also doesn't address issues of weighting: again, in your example there is a source mentioning Y, even if every other source says Z. Nikkimaria (talk) 01:10, 9 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
      Nothing in the proposal says that policies like WP:DUE wouldn't apply. It also uses reliable sources, plural, not "a reliable source". voorts (talk/contributions) 01:43, 9 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
      In the majority of cases using neighbourhood wouldn't meet policies like DUE, but the wording of the proposal doesn't reflect that reality. (And changing the ratio from one:hundreds to two:hundreds doesn't fix it). Nikkimaria (talk) 02:35, 9 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
      Do we make that decision ourselves, or follow the RSs' majority usage? – .Raven  .talk 03:16, 9 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
      As always, follow the RSs. Avoiding individual editor leanings. BTW - time to close this and codify it and move in yet? Or wait a couple of days more? --2603:7000:2101:AA00:513A:C5BB:EADC:C6DD (talk) 19:49, 11 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
      Generally RfCs should run for 30 days and comments are still trickling in. Additionally, many editors who commented above haven't commented on my proposal. I'd give it some more time. voorts (talk/contributions) 19:57, 11 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
      I'm agreeing with the borough, not the neighborhood. Queens and Brooklyn have many neighborhoods ... I think the borough covers it. I actually know someone (non-member) who changed a Wikipedia player page, not quite knowing if it was Bed-Stuy or Canarsie. Too much to reference a neighborhood. No finger pointing here, I just know that NYC is a handful. Bringingthewood (talk) 22:30, 12 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
      I just ran across Mike Siani (American football) and after I removed NYC from the infobox, I put it back. No need to ruffle feathers. Many NFL players had it right to the point: Brooklyn, New York, U.S. -- Queens, New York, U.S. etc. When you look at the first line under Siani's career the only thing missing from his high school location is planet Earth. Actors and politicians who have only New York City, NY never made sense to me either. NYC covers all five boroughs, maybe someone really wants to know where he or she was born. Bringingthewood (talk) 04:51, 14 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
      This current difference of opinion is what happens in the absence of us further clarifying the language. 2603:7000:2101:AA00:A491:803D:ABC:2E20 (talk) 19:28, 15 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]


A discussion at Template talk:Age#Inaccurate age shown proposes a change to the way {{age}} behaves. Currently, it always shows a single number of years as a person's age. The proposal is to make |range=dash the default. The following shows an example where a person's birth date is known, but only the year of their death.

  • {{age|May 1, 1840|1925}} → 84–85 (current behavior)
  • {{age|May 1, 1840|1925|range=dash}} → 84–85 (proposed new behavior; "|range=dash" will not need to be entered)

If this change occurs, it will still be possible to use |range=no to show a single number for the date if needed, like this:

  • {{age|May 1, 1840|1925|range=no}} → 85

Please reply here or at template talk if this might cause a problem for infoboxes. Johnuniq (talk) 02:28, 9 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I'm not aware of any infobox problem with that. There may be editors who would have a stylistic problem with that (I'm not one), so perhaps it would help to drop a note at WT:MOSINFOBOX and WT:MOSBIO? – .Raven  .talk 03:27, 9 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Good idea, I have done that. Johnuniq (talk) 03:54, 9 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Eminently sensible. I was going to propose this myself (after encountering a case where a "certain" age was presented when no certainty was possible), but I forgot to.  — SMcCandlish ¢ 😼  23:05, 23 July 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Request to add 'Salary' parameter[edit]

Could we add a Salary parameter to the template? In some instances, a person's salary is encyclopedic information Jack4576 (talk) 01:59, 19 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

This parameter previously existed and was removed per this discussion. Nikkimaria (talk) 02:04, 19 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Hmm. I was not aware.
This is a very unfortunate consensus decision by a small number of editors.
Removing 'salary' on the grounds that it might be offensive to some seems to be counter to WP:NOTCENSORED.
Would support adding it back. Jack4576 (talk) 03:00, 19 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
It was removed more on the grounds of WP:NOT#INDISCRIMINATE and the near impossibility of keeping the information accurate and updated across zillions of bios. Feel free to open a WP:RFC about restoring it, but I can virtually guarantee you that the outcome will be "no".  — SMcCandlish ¢ 😼  23:07, 23 July 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Request to add 'Net worth' parameter[edit]

Could we add a Net worth parameter to the template? In some instances, a person's net worth is encyclopedic information Jack4576 (talk) 01:59, 19 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

This parameter previously existed and was removed per this discussion. Nikkimaria (talk) 02:04, 19 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Hmm. Was not aware, thank you. A regrettable discussion, and on my read, I don't agree with the closer's assessment of consensus, which appeared to come down to a simple numerical vote.
Would be good to have it added again, but a more thorough discussion may be required.
Its pretty baffling to me that Wikipedia has removed such a fundamental piece of information from the infoboxes of public figures. A very disappointing and regrettable outcome. Jack4576 (talk) 03:03, 19 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Courtesy ping to the closer in question. Nikkimaria (talk) 03:05, 19 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Looks like a good close of the discussion. Keeping a parameter requires good arguments and a solid majority. Removing a parameter is an easier decision, because the article body can carry the information. If the question came up again, I would oppose adding it. Binksternet (talk) 04:24, 19 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I disagree, looks more like no consensus to me.
I'm not persuaded otherwise by the presence of a numerical majority.
Why would you oppose adding it if it came up again ?
Jack4576 (talk) 04:28, 19 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I am against adding this. It is relatively uncommon to find RS on the net worth of public figures. The number is often arbitrary. Aquabluetesla (talk) 15:03, 19 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
That may be the case, however, the parameter can be best used where the number can be identified. It may also be possible to express the figure as a range.
These sorts of difficulties in obtaining information isn't unique to net worth; yet net worth is one of the main things want to find out when searching for information on certain public figures. Jack4576 (talk) 15:06, 19 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Citation needed for the last part of what you said. That said, I could maybe see it being an optional parameter to be used only when their Net worth was directly related to why they were considered a notable figure. But at best I'd characterize that as a weak support, in part because this may be information that's better characterized in prose, particularly given that net worth is a dynamic figure and $2M in 1975 isn't $2M in 2023. DonIago (talk) 01:28, 20 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I think its a fairly defensible claim, even without citation, common sense, etcetera etcetera. Perhaps that argument may not sway you, but that is okay Jack4576 (talk) 12:22, 21 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Really? Because it's not one of the main things I ever wanted to find out when searching for information on any public figure who I wasn't looking up specifically for reasons related to their net worth. DonIago (talk) 03:15, 22 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I'm curious as to the net worth of many influential political figures, prominent business people, oligarchs, and members of royalty.
When I navigate to such people's pages (such as when I looked up Gina Rinehart the other day), my reason for doing so isn't usually specifically to look up their net worth. Nevertheless, I would've been interested to see that figure in the infobox. Just as I was curious as to where they attended school, etcetera
Its an interesting piece of contextual information, especially for the bios of powerful people. I'm surprised your response to this is 'Really?'. It seems to me quite intuitive and normal. I'm sure there are many ip users that feel the same; but that's only a hunch. Jack4576 (talk) 06:11, 22 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
My point is that you claimed "net worth is one of the main things want to find out when searching for information on certain public figures." I don't think that's necessarily true, but also I think making it an infobox field would be problematic for the reasons I've already outlined above, which you haven't addressed. DonIago (talk) 19:29, 22 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I think the "on certain public figures" might refer to people either notable for being very very wealthy, or people for whom their level of wealth has recently been brought up in public (or even private) discussion — people do come here to settle their own curiosity, or even debates.
Cf. unresolved "Request to add 'Salary' parameter" above. Recently, watching news about a SCOTUS justice's accepting gifts from a wealthy person who had business before the Court, my wife burst out, "Why don't they just pay justices more?!" I told her SCOTUS justices are among the highest-paid Constitutional officers. She didn't believe me, so I looked it up to show her — here, not on Wikipedia. (They earn more than Senators, Representatives, or the Vice President.) – .Raven  .talk 21:02, 22 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I do think its true, and I'm surprised you don't think so as to me it seems obvious. Seems we're at an impasse.
Re: "making it an infobox field would be problematic for the reasons I've already outlined above", I don't agree with your reasons. The fact that the figure is dynamic isn't unique to net worth, wealth isn't necessarily all that dynamic, it depends on the person. In any event, a date qualifier like (2023) could resolve that sort of issue. Plus, for especially prominent figures, there are often Wikipedians that are happy to frequently update the figure, as experience has shown
I just don't think your concerns you've raised present all that much of a unique or substantial hurdle in the context of Wikipedia's features more generally; and where it does present a serious issue, the field could be removed as its ultimately optional. It would be a shame if exceptional problems would remove a source of information more generally.
Additionally, I fully agree with what .Raven has said above Jack4576 (talk) 09:56, 23 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Some people treat infoboxes as a form. In a way, this is true: but the perception as a form can be of one where every field needs to be filled in where possible. So the mere presence of a parameter for net worth could mean that an editor feels obliged to supply a figure, no matter how unreliably sourced. --Redrose64 🌹 (talk) 05:39, 24 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
That seems more to be a case of (a) new-user education, and (b) template documentation. – .Raven  .talk 06:42, 24 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
|known_for= could be used for cases directly related to why they were considered a notable figure.  — Archer1234 (t·c) 13:22, 21 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Possibly. I'd want a broader consensus on that. DonIago (talk) 03:16, 22 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
"Relatively uncommon" may well be true, but for an optional parm is not entirely relevant. Even if the only bios it's ever used on are "the ten righest people in the world"... for those 10 infoboxes, a net worth parm would be helpful. – .Raven  .talk 06:41, 22 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I feel like the "known for" parameter would handle that sort of situation just fine. I would be much more comfortable with those people having something like known_for = $53.6 billion net worth (5th richest in world)<ref>...</ref> than a "net worth" parameter that would elicit badly sourced information being added to inappropriate articles by editors who don't understand that parameters aren't prescriptive. VanIsaac, GHTV contWpWS 06:15, 24 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Oh dear. You want only parms that can't be misunderstood? Good luck. Perhaps a good approach might be working on the infobox template documentation to clarify that this swath of parms over here is optional, while those over there are mandatory (which comes down to... article subject name/title?) – .Raven  .talk 06:39, 24 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
This horse was beaten to a pulp in that RfC. By no metric can anyone say that there is consensus for such a silly parameter. ~ HAL333 02:00, 20 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I'm opposed, all I can see with this is a "Can of worms". - FlightTime (open channel) 02:04, 20 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I think it detracts from this debate to call the parameter 'silly'. There were plenty of well-respected editors in the last debate that saw good reason for its inclusion. You may not be swayed by their opinions; but they are at least, defensible ones. Jack4576 (talk) 12:24, 21 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Let's avoid adding back junk parameters to the box. Moxy- 01:07, 22 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Describing this parameter as 'junk' is not helpful. Well-respected editors are not of your view. Jack4576 (talk) 02:29, 22 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
And they are free to expound on why they don't consider it junk. But word policing isn't remotely helpful here.
And although the current discussion, which I don't really have a strong opinion of either way, seems to be moving towards rejection of reinstating this parameter, I did want to mention that in my AWB cleanup of the net_worth parameter last year, I retained a log of all of the deleted parameters and their pages. VanIsaac, GHTV contWpWS 03:32, 22 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Describing something as unhelpful is not to condemn it as improper, nor is it policing. Jack4576 (talk) 06:05, 22 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
It assuredly doesn't need to be used in every bio — as many parms don't — but for the sake of where that info is (and should be) included, having that optional parm in the infobox could be helpful. Unless we want to have one fill-in-the-blank-label parm that can be used for all parms not otherwise provided... which would mean editors must manually get the particular formats right.... – .Raven  .talk 05:14, 22 June 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • I would be happy to support its inclusion since it adds value to those wealthy indivdual's bio and can easily be sourced to Forbes, the decision to remove it was rather shortsighted.  Spy-cicle💥  Talk? 18:04, 13 July 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Same comment as in the thread above: It was removed more on the grounds of WP:NOT#INDISCRIMINATE and the near impossibility of keeping the information accurate and updated across zillions of bios. Feel free to open a WP:RFC about restoring it, but I can virtually guarantee you that the outcome will be "no".  — SMcCandlish ¢ 😼  23:07, 23 July 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Heads up re future RFC on revision to Template:Infobox person/doc on 21 November 2016[edit]

I wanted to give everyone a heads up that when I get around to doing the necessary research, I plan to initiate an RFC later this year (October or November) on this revision to Template:Infobox person/doc on 21 November 2016 which added this language: "Per WP:INFOBOXPURPOSE, it is preferred to omit unnecessary or redundant info. For example, it is not necessary to state: "New York City, New York, United States" when "New York City, U.S." carries exactly the same information for far fewer characters. Countries should generally not be linked per WP:OVERLINK." This text is the ancestor of the current text in the infobox documentation which states: "Omit unnecessary or redundant details. For example, it is not necessary to state: New York City, New York, United States when New York City, U.S. conveys essentially the same information more concisely."

The edit summary references a then-ongoing discussion at Talk:Donald Trump, which is archived here. The editors involved in that discussion at that time did not recognize that such a drastic change to this infobox's documentation should have been pushed through an RFC first (preferably, advertised on the village pump) to establish broad consensus. And now we have editors relying on this text in the documentation to put "New York City, U.S." in infoboxes (for people like J. Robert Oppenheimer who were born in or died in New York City) when the natural usage for most Americans would be "New York, New York, U.S."

To restate the relevant portion of the argument I expressed above in the discussion under the topic initiated by User:Clarityfiend: The first thought of most native American English speakers, upon seeing a U.S. city name followed by U.S. with no state in an infobox (in a textbook, magazine, etc.), is going to be, "that looks weird." Linking and pipelining isn't sufficient, because that requires too much work from the reader. Any time a writer throws their reader's parsing off track with an unconventional usage, they have already failed to clearly communicate.

Because the "city, state" usage is so strongly taken for granted in American English, I have never needed to research it. If anyone knows of a source that has already done the homework (as in compiling the prevailing styles prescribed in the various style guides), please feel free to post a link.

I intend to follow up on this at some point, because (1) I think it's preposterous to omit the state and (2) if there is yet another insidious movement afoot in American English style guides to borrow yet another bad idea from British English which I was unaware of, I should try to be aware of it. (By the latter, I'm referring to the Chicago Manual of Style's foolish decision to adopt the British English convention of dropping periods in abbreviations.) Coolcaesar (talk) 02:39, 31 July 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Not aware of a source reviewing this aspect of various style guides, but from what I've seen in the style guides themselves the present recommendations appear common - eg AP Style or ASA. Nikkimaria (talk) 03:20, 31 July 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The shortening causes too much churn from drive-by editors who, not knowing the technicality, expand it. Per WP:PROPOSAL:

Most commonly, a new policy or guideline documents existing practices, rather than proposing a change to what experienced editors already choose to do.

It'd be one thing if it was already common practice, but it wasn't (and still isn't?), hence the back and forth. And why was a specific infobox singled out. Why not all geo names, in all tables? The scope was too narrowly solicited and discussed.—Bagumba (talk) 04:00, 31 July 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

More on NYC[edit]

Understood the use of "New York City, U.S." in the case where New York City is the place of birth. Would it make sense as an exception to use the borough in NYC when it is known, like Brooklyn, New York, U.S., instead of the broader New York City? That specificity seems more useful for a reader glancing at info in the Infobox. Semper Fi! FieldMarine (talk) 20:21, 19 August 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Resting place is a softener[edit]

Jane Doe
Burial placeher backyard

We should change it to something like "grave site" per WP:EUPHEMISM. Connor Behan (talk) 06:13, 14 September 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

This has been discussed many times; see archives. Have you tried |burial_place=? -- Michael Bednarek (talk) 07:03, 14 September 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Hmm. That doesn't seem to acount for people in columbaria, above-ground tombs, and other options that aren't "burial". Not sure what a more generic term would be that isn't the obnoxious "resting place" emphemism.  — SMcCandlish ¢ 😼  07:34, 14 September 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Edit request[edit]

The instructions under "Inline lists" state: Do not use <br /> markup to create fake lists, as in: Item one<br />item two<br />item three.

The example of an infobox for Bill Gates uses <br /> in the boards parameter. Please replace this with a suitable inline list template.

Thank you.-- (talk) 02:30, 20 September 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

 Done * Pppery * it has begun... 03:28, 20 September 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Adding "union republic" notion to the doc[edit]

Hello. I've made a small additional detail for birth/death places regarding union republics, like in the USSR. As the regions were first subordinate to the union republic, then the union itself, both of them have to be shown. Like Moscow, Russian, USSR or Baku, Azerbaijan SSR, USSR Toghrul R (t) 07:24, 21 September 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I think you mean "Moscow, Russian SFSR, Soviet Union", since "Moscow, Russian, USSR" doesn't make sense in English (has a dangling adjective "Russian" with nothing to modify). That said, I think this change bears discussion. I can imagine both pro and con arguments for including this level of detail.  — SMcCandlish ¢ 😼  00:31, 22 September 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Placement of "Sir"[edit]

Currently the parameters mandate that the title "Sir" be placed in the honorific_prefix field. I am not a fan of this. It leads to, for example, Keir Starmer being described as "the Right Honourable Sir", which just sounds silly. "Sir" should go alongside the individual's name, just as "Lord" does in the infoboxes of peers (e.g. Lord Byron). Zacwill (talk) 11:06, 24 September 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

The Keir Starmer article doesn't use this template. Most of the peers appear to have their title instead of their name in the template header. Nikkimaria (talk) 13:23, 24 September 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
And there's nothing "silly" about grouping the titles/prefixes together. Just because you would casually refer to this person, in person, as "Sir Keir" doesn't mean that every mention of their name on Wikipedia has to be fused to a "Sir" prefix.  — SMcCandlish ¢ 😼  14:32, 24 September 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I think you've landed on the reason why these prefixes should be treated differently. "Sir" is widely used even in colloquial speech, whereas "the Rt Hon." and similar honorifics never appear outside of the most formal circumstances. Zacwill (talk) 17:34, 24 September 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
WP isn't written in informal speech. And there are other things used informally to formally, such as "Dr[.]", "Prof.", "Rev./Revd", etc., which we do not treat as "magically attached" to the name. I really don't understand what the obsession is with treating "Sir/Dame" as uniquely calling for special handling. There's nothing particularly special about it, and all this special pleading is tiresome (years and years of tiresome, without ever consensus going in the direction of giving those titles unique treament).  — SMcCandlish ¢ 😼  19:06, 24 September 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
This "obsession" is reflective of normal British usage. The 19th-century scholar Henry Yule, for instance, was a professor, a doctor, a colonel, and a knight; his ODNB article identifies him as Yule, Sir Henry, treating the "Sir" as part of the name but ignoring the academic and military titles. To be clear, I am not arguing for Starmer to be referred to as "Sir Keir" in every context in which his name appears; I'd simply like to see his title displayed properly in the infobox. He is not "the Right Honourable Sir ... Keir Starmer", he is "the Right Honourable ... Sir Keir Starmer". Zacwill (talk) 21:32, 24 September 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
"Normal British usage" in a running sentence has nothing to do with what infobox line a datum is put on in an infobox. In a normal British English sentence, all of the titles someone could have and which were used in the sentence would be put on one line, so there is no special exception to be made here.  — SMcCandlish ¢ 😼  01:17, 25 September 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]