User talk:George Swan

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upgrade happening soon, new accounts allowed

Hi George! In response to your message, we certainly are accepting new accounts. Currently that request is made via a Google Docs form linked on the main page. However, since the wiki is on the verge of upgrading its software any day now (probably later this week, for sure), I recommend that you have him wait a few days, because the user interface is likely to look a bit different. And hopefully when we upgrade, account requests will also be easier and won't require us to use Google Docs at all. Our software is over ten years old at this point, so upgrading is important. Please bear with us as we make this transition. I am so glad to see you active in here again!Pat Palmer (talk) 15:15, 28 February 2022 (UTC)

  • Thanks for the prompt followup. Cheers! George Swan (talk) 15:44, 28 February 2022 (UTC)

porting from Wikipedia

George, It is perfectly acceptable to port articles from Wikipedia and then work on them here. Be sure to mark the flag on the /Metadata page as coming from Wikipedia when you first bring them over. After a number of changes have been make, you can then undo that flag. It might be useful also to note on the Discussion page for the ported article that you brought it from Wikipedia on a certain date (and why, if you like--such as, that you wrote much of it anyway). That can be helpful for future reference.Pat Palmer (talk) 02:11, 4 March 2022 (UTC)

subpages not working yet

Hi George! Thanks for testing the new wiki. Thanks for your report in the forum. It is not currently possible to create articles with subpages; we're working on that. If we can't get it working, we'll find an alternative option for those who want it. Pat Palmer (talk) 08:41, 18 March 2022 (CDT)

  • Thanks for getting back to me. George Swan (talk) 11:36, 18 March 2022 (CDT)

articles about living people known to the public

George, For any articles about living people who are in the public eye (as in politics or famous for any reason), we now need to add them explicitly to the Topic Informants workgroup. This has to be done, at present, manually by adding the appropriate directive at the bottom of the article, which would be: [[Category:Topic_Informant_Workgroup]]. Formerly, the metadata page took care of this. I added directives to the bottom of the Sara Moonves article, which you can look at as an example. For Sara Moonves, I also added [[Category:Journalism_Workgroup]]. Pat Palmer (talk) 08:08, 23 March 2022 (CDT)

  • Okay...
Stephanie Mack - done
Laurie Sandell -done
Clayton Trivett - done
Nina de Gramont - done
Catherine Hooper - done
Finding new BLPs is trivial for the period between now and March 17th. I ported a dozen or more in early March. Do you have a suggestion on how to find them? George Swan (talk) 09:10, 23 March 2022 (CDT)
Pat - I found the following through the new pages special page. It seems to go back to 2022-02-27, with a few items from early this year, and late December. Were there only a few additions over those months? Is it only capable of showing the last 500 edits? George Swan (talk) 09:48, 23 March 2022 (CDT)
Kate Macdonald Butler - done
Kate Armstrong (memoirist) - done
Rochus Lokinap - done
Leo Nuia - done
Robert Porter - done
Nick Luna - done
Park Eun-Mi - done
Peter Gornstein - done
E.J. White - done
Jeremy Boxen - done
Rachel Ricketts - done
Wayne Clarkson - done
Maxine bailey - done
The Metadata subpages still work. You just need to add 'Topic Informant' to one of the 'cat' entries at e.g. Template:Laurie Sandell/Metadata and it will display Category:Topic Informant Workgroup on the article. We don't generally add categories to the article itself. John Stephenson (talk) 09:45, 23 March 2022 (CDT)
  • Okay, I manually added Topic Informant here as cat4. Are four cats allowed? George Swan (talk) 10:03, 23 March 2022 (CDT)
Three is the maximum, so in that case you would have to add [[Category:Topic Informant Workgroup]] to the article itself. John Stephenson (talk) 10:07, 23 March 2022 (CDT)
  1. Template:Stephanie Mack/Metadata
  2. Template:Laurie Sandell/Metadata
  3. Template:Clayton Trivett/Metadata
  4. Template:Nina de Gramont/Metadata
  5. Template:Catherine Hooper/Metadata
  6. Template:Kate Macdonald Butler/Metadata
  7. Template:Kate Armstrong (memoirist)/Metadata
  8. Template:Rochus Lokinap/Metadata
  9. Template:Leo Nuia/Metadata
  10. Template:Robert Porter/Metadata
  11. Template:Nick Luna/Metadata
  12. Template:Park Eun-Mi/Metadata
  13. Template:Peter Gornstein/Metadata
  14. Template:E.J. White/Metadata
  15. Template:Jeremy Boxen/Metadata
  16. Template:Rachel Ricketts/Metadata
  17. Template:Wayne Clarkson/Metadata
  18. Template:Maxine bailey/Metadata

workgroup designation

George, the correct way to add an article that has subpages to a workgroup is via the metadata page. And note, do NOT add the word Workgroup in the metadata page; there, you only need Topic Informant. But with the category directly on the main article, you need [[Category:Topic_Informant_Workgroup]]. Open up the editor for some existing articles and look how this is done. If there are no subpages on an article yet, then please continue to use the [[Category:Topic Informant]] kind of code at the bottom of the page. Topic Informant is a workgroup, just like Mathematics is a workgroup. To see if it's done correctly, look at the bottom of the main article and see if the link to the workgroup is working. Thanks! Pat Palmer (talk) 12:37, 25 March 2022 (CDT)

adding links to articles

George, I love that you are adding links to your articles. Well done! To make them more accurate, there are two methods. The old way was first to search on the term and then go copy the exact spelling of the article name. The new method is to let the "Popup" extension show you article names. Just type [[term, and the popup feature will offer to complete the link for you. That way, you'll get more accuracy. And the last step, or course, is to look at the linked word after the Edit is complete to make sure it works. Thanks a bunch. I mention this because in looking at your articles, I found several links that did not reach a real article, where just a tweak of spelling would get the link right. These things are case sensitive. Pat Palmer (talk) 12:40, 25 March 2022 (CDT)

about subpages

George, I benefited from your comments on the instructions for how to create subpages clusters. Just want you to note, however, that it is normally NOT acceptable to go and comment on anything in a user's sandbox unless you have been invited by that user to do so. I had invited John S, and I guess you saw it in the Recent Changes and just jumped in. In this case, it was helpful, but people might not like it unless you ask them first. In fact, technically, it's bad form even to LOOK at what's in a user's sandbox unless they tell you to. Of course, being a wiki, we can always peek anyway, but maybe don't let them know you did! Sandboxes are not collaborative areas except by special invitation :-) Now that the house training is done with, let me reply to the questions you posted about subpages today.

You wrote, "People who can't figure this out - we want them to feel okay about not using subpages, correct?" And the answer is, not exactly. Citizendium still has a policy of requiring the use of subpages on major articles (beyond stubs that were just created). We actually kicked a person out last year because he was going around undoing subpages article clusters because he didn't like them. But you're right that not everyone can be expected to learn this cumbersome manual process, in which case they will need to ask for help in getting it done for them. We'll try to get it automated at some point in the future. I'm working on it. And yes, the old form that automated filling out the metadata page is too old to work. The original extension was in PHP (version 5) and we're now on PHP 7 (which is not at all friendly to code written with PHP 5 in mind), and many other things have changed as well. I'm impressed that you've figured out how to do it. I worked in this wiki for many years with no understanding of how subpages worked, nor did I really like them. But now, I've grown used to them and for consistency, I hope we can stick with them for the long haul.Pat Palmer (talk) 15:36, 31 March 2022 (CDT)

there is a template for archiving User Discussion pages easily

Hey George, I just found the {{Archive box|auto=long}} template. If you name the archive subpages like this: User:George_Swan/Archive 1 (and just change the digit at the end for additional archives), then put the template in the top of your User Discussion page as well as the archive, it will establish links back and forth from the Discussion page to all the archives. I just moved and converted mine to use this. I found the instructions here. Pat Palmer (talk) 16:07, 31 March 2022 (CDT)

images MUST have license information (and copyright holder, if applicable)

George, Every image uploaded to Citizendium must clearly have permissions. Lacking staff, we have been lax about enforcement, but it's important and images without correct licensing are subject to removal. The license must either be in the public domain (with one of the PD licenses from MediaWiki:Licenses shown in curly braces underneath the "Licensing" section) or we must have permission from the copyright holder, usually via an email copied to a subpage of the File: page. So just for example, this image File:Rainbow_in_Prince_Rupert_Harbour.jpg shows neither a copyright holder (who is presumably the person who made the photo) nor a license. Below is an example of how a File: page should be formatted:

== Summary ==
|description = The Laughing Philosopher: American poet Walt Whitman (1819–92)
|author = George C. Cox
|copyright = Public domain
|source =
|date-created = 1887
|pub-country = US
|notes = This image was made in 1887 in New York, by photographer George C. Cox. The image is said to have been Whitman's favorite from the photo-session; Cox published about seven images for Whitman, who so admired this image that he even sent a copy to the poet Tennyson in England. Whitman sold the other copies
|versions =

== Licensing ==

Also, look on the Forum technical page to see how to get the old description from the new server by looking in history. I would appreciate your help fixing up images that lack licensing. Pat Palmer (talk) 08:38, 20 April 2022 (CDT)

I seem to have uploaded about 300 images on the old server. I'll have to go over them a second time to see which ones lost the license info I supplied when it was first uploaded. George Swan (talk) 22:51, 22 April 2022 (CDT)

capitalization of article names

George, I moved the "Maxine bailey" article to "Maxine Bailey". By convention, proper names are both capitalized. So the name of an article about a TV shows would be, for example, "Red Dwarf", whereas the name of an article about a star less massive and dimmer than the sun would be capitalized like this: "Red dwarf". Pat Palmer (talk) 08:47, 17 May 2022 (CDT)

If our conventions require ignoring her choice, should there at least be redirects, so search engine efforts that use what she regards as the correct spelling, find her article? George Swan (talk) 23:05, 17 May 2022 (CDT)

I may delete this stub article; do you have plans for it?

George, I propose to delete Nikolas Cruz, which is a mere stub unlinked to anything else, and which reflects news stories readily available in search engines. Do you have further plans for this article? If not, I would like to delete it. For one thing, I don't think the names of these mass killers ought to be publicized. Anyway, asking before I zap it. Please let me know your thoughts.Pat Palmer (talk) 06:12, 5 June 2022 (CDT)

We could, of course, attempt to write about mass shootings generally. But I know in advance that this would be a frought topic and would require lots of work to get it balanced. So personally, I am not particularly interested in starting that right now. If someone else wants to and can bring enough objective evidence, I'd allow it--in which case, an article about this guy (who's about to go on trial after four years) could be useful. Pat Palmer (talk) 06:20, 5 June 2022 (CDT)
  • I did have plans. I marked it with __NOINDEX__, because it is potentially controversial. Nevertheless, I consider it a topic worthy of expansion. Shortly after the shooting the wikipedia process concluded it should be a redirect to the aticle on the shooting. A similar conclusion to that reached for Steven Dale Green.
The reasoning there, such as it was, was that they were known "for only one event". I argued, in Green's case, that (1) he was known for more than the Iraqi rape-killing; (2) he was the target of considerable coverage in reliable sources that was devoted to him, personally, not the rape-killing. A well-known playwright wrote a play about him. Scholarly articles talked about him. He was seen as the poster child demonstrating the foolhardiness of the Bush administration to drop its standards for who was qualified to enlist and go through basic training. Green had a criminal record, and an IQ low enough he would not normally have qualified.
I haven't looked into Cruz's background, as much, and there have been less time for scholars to focus on him, but he too seems to be an individual scholars will write about over and above the shooting.
I'll tell you what. I'll set myself a reminder. If you agree not to delete it now, and time goes by and I don't add those references and expand it, I'll come back and ask you to delete it. Will three months be an okay time frame?
One of my most influential lessons came from a panel I attended, when I was a young man, about forty years ago. I thought this one speaker, a historian, would end up being boring. The first minute or two of his talk seemed to confirm that. But he played a trick.
He started off by saying there was huge holes in what historians knew. Why? Because so much of what goes on in people's lives, moment to moment, they consider "beneath hotice". IIRC he offered, as an example, the question did the average peasant, of 1000 years ago, get to travel? Or was the farthest they ever got from the hut where they were born, was a ten km to the nearest market town.
He said he and his team could help provide some answers to these questions, after they had examined a series of documents that had eeen archived, for one cluster of villages, in France, for a decade or so. There had been a problem in that cluster of villages. So, the authorities had done more or less what we would do today. They sent a commission, kind of like a Royal Commission, "but with rather greater coercive powers".
In fact, they sent the Inquisition. Inquisition interrogators had grilled the surviving villagers, sometimes using actual torture, when scaring the bejebus out of them didn't seem enough. And scribes were sitting there, writing everything down.
This lecture has strongly covered my choice of what topics merit articles, and what are worthy topics for photography. I started about a dozen articles, over on the wikipedia, on early Canadian photographers. In general, no one paid much attention to these guys, at the time they took their photos, but, to the people interested in such things, their work is highly celebrated, or at least highly republished. I didn't start the wikipedia article on Arthur Goss, Toronto's first official photographer. But I contributed to it. People celebrate his monumental photographs. What is less celebrated are the thousands of photographs he took documenting urban poverty.
Another of those fine photographers is known for his thousands of surviving photos. The heartbreaking thing is that when he was old, or shortly after his death, most of his negatives, presumably of equally valuable images, were lost. I can't remember if he donated them, after he retired. But old fashioned negatives were bulky, heavy, and difficult to store, because the negative was an emultion on a glass plate. Someone made the decision that his old images had lost their value, but the glass plates they were on could have the emultions washed off, and could be re-used for new negatives. George Swan (talk) 01:19, 6 June 2022 (CDT)
  • Pat, following my reply, above, I ported Steven Dale Green. The automatic generation of an article's Metadata, used to ask if it was being ported from wikipedia. Although I did make a big update to it, when I re-instated it years after it was first deleted. But over half of it is the work of other wikipedians.
I can't figure out how we mark it as such.George Swan (talk) 01:38, 6 June 2022 (CDT)
Change the metadata status to a normal one and use {{WPAttribution}}; see an example with elaboration at Molten salt reactor. Let's see how this goes; I won't delete for now. Pat Palmer (talk) 08:44, 6 June 2022 (CDT)
Not quite! But I fixed it for you this time. NEVER put anything extra on the Metadata page. All I did was change the status of the Metadata page to 2 ("developing), and then to the main article, I added the WPattribution template at the top.Pat Palmer (talk) 14:30, 6 June 2022 (CDT)
Im my opinion, to make these two articles "keepers", there needs to be a clear statement near the beginning of the article about why these men's cases are of interest. In general, it is not deemed a good idea to write about murderers and mass killers' lives, but it seems that the legal wrangling in both instances is worthy of interest, and so the article would do well to make clear why the information about these cases may be of abiding interest. It means a little more than just "stating the facts" (he killed XYZ and was convicted). I'll try to help you with this, but I need to learn more about the cases myself first. Or you can give it a try.Pat Palmer (talk) 14:34, 6 June 2022 (CDT)

Let's create a list of all the fireboat articles

George, I notice your interest in creating articles about fireboats. Nice! Let's create a list of all these articles here: Fireboat/Related_Articles. And also, let's figure out a naming convention for these articles. I notice that one starts with the word Fireboat, but the others do not. Some have (fireboat) after the names; I like that option. I will work on renaming the existing articles to have (fireboat) after the name if that is okay with you. Pat Palmer (talk) 10:31, 10 July 2022 (CDT)

Naming convention for Fireboat articles

George, I am seeing quite a few of the new articles about Fireboats which do not have (fireboat) at the end of the name; an example is Deanna_Jo. Could we please use the suffix on all the articles? If they are not ONLY fireboats, then use (boat), because most of them are named for people, making it possible or likely there could be need for disambiguation some day. I am not sure if you can rename the existing articles yourself (I may have to do it), but could you please stick with this naming convention going forwards? Or let me know what standard you are using to decide so that I'll understand. And P. S. --the main article is now Fireboat (singular), with the plural article redirected to the singular one. And I deleted the /Definition for the plural one so we won't have duplicate, competing /Definition pages out there. Also, the links are case sensitive. So for any new links to fireboat, you might need sometimes to use [[Fireboat|fireboat]]. If necessary later, we can add redirects from the lower case versions, both singular and plural, to make all the links work, but a better thing would be to make the links as accurate as we can. Pat Palmer (talk) 10:15, 14 July 2022 (CDT)

P S - I am liking the work you are doing, so please don't take this as any sign of displeasure. I find many of the articles that are not just stubs to be quite interesting. Pat Palmer (talk) 10:46, 14 July 2022 (CDT)
Cheers! George Swan (talk) 11:17, 14 July 2022 (CDT)
And, I just got around to renaming Deanna Jo to Deanna Jo (fireboat). Pat Palmer (talk) 10:09, 1 April 2023 (CDT)

ATTENTION! you are creating flawed metadata pages

George, Please look at Bright_Leaf_(disambiguation) and you will see that the rpl template is not displaying properly for two of the articles (there is no icon showing article status). This is because you have adding spaces (and have perhaps other formatting flaws) in the Metadata page for those articles. Please look at the first two articles that display properly and use their Metadata page as your example. Do not add any spaces and do not add the other stuff at the top. I will leave it to you to correct the metadata on those two pages. Thanks! Pat Palmer (talk) 10:19, 1 September 2022 (CDT)

George, PLEASE STOP CREATING NEW PAGES until you obtain a good example of the Metadata page. The ones you have been creating do not work with the "rpl" template. I have corrected this article:,_1900) and it has a good Metadata page. I don't know exactly why your others are failing, but please copy and paste from this good one until further notice. Do not change anything, not even adding a blank line, except the title and workgroup names. If you do not stop creating articles with Metadata that is incorrect, I will be seriously displeased. Maybe you didn't see my notice yesterday, but today is your last warning lest we have to suspend your account temporarily until you get the word. I appreciate the work you are doing, but you are also introducing errors that proliferate across the wiki. Please stop! Pat Palmer (talk) 08:36, 2 September 2022 (CDT)
If for example you look at this list:, note all the articles that EXIST (are not red links) but lack the yellow/white icon to their left. All of those have some kind of error in the /Metadata page. We should correct all of these before you create any new articles. I know it's not going to be fun, and I'm willing to help. I've allowed you to create new articles on your own (and was grateful for it) but now that we've found this problem, we need to correct it before creating any more new articles. The only way to see that problem, right now, is to look at the link to an article created by the "rpl" template as on /Related_Articles subpages. But those same links are also used on disambiguation pages, which is why I noticed the problem in the first place.Pat Palmer (talk) 08:52, 2 September 2022 (CDT)
The yellow/white icon in the rpl template indicates the status of the article, so one can easily see which are stubs, which are developing, and which are developed. Most new articles (unless mature and copied from elsewhere) will be stubs, status = 3. Pat Palmer (talk) 08:58, 2 September 2022 (CDT)
  • No, I didn't see your notice of 2022-09-01 until just now.
I know Metadata pages need a <noinclude>{{subpages}}</noinclude>. A lot of existing pages have that at the bottom. When creating these pages - i've created over one hundred in recent months, I paged down to the bottom. They are long. Added the <noinclude>{{subpages}}</noinclude>. Then paged up to the top, to add the other stuff. A few days ago I started putting the <noinclude>{{subpages}}</noinclude> before the initial {{#switch: {{{info}}}
Is that what I did that broke things? No, it never occurred to me that this could be a problem.
That saved about 30 seconds per page, but, it was clearly a mistake, if it silently broke things.
I have never seen the name of this internal language mentioned. What is it called, and where is it documented?
Cheers! George Swan (talk) 12:56, 2 September 2022 (CDT)
I have to go out right now, but I will review all the metadata pages I created sometime in the next 48 hours...
  • A couple of weeks ago I started creating the /Related Articles or /Definition subpages first. When instantiated they offer a link to create metadata, which does bring up a mostly complete empty metadata skeleton ... except it is missing that essential <noinclude>{{subpages}}</noinclude>. I don't know where they get that skeleton, or why that part is missing. George Swan (talk) 13:03, 2 September 2022 (CDT)
The ones you created yesterday still are bad. I'm not sure what-all is wrong--but some items are in the wrong place. Whoever wrote the rpl template expected things to be a certain way. To test the /Metadata template, you'll need a page in your sandbox which refers to new articles you created with the "rpl" template, like the list below. You can see in the list that some are okay and some are not. Be sure and copy the contents of Template:Alpha_II_(fireboat,_1900)/Metadata and use it exactly, changing only title, sort order and workgroups. The code for each line looks like this: Pat Palmer (talk) 10:09, 3 September 2022 (CDT)

{{rpl|USCGC Oliver Henry (WPC-1140)}}

And the list looks like this:

Welcome back George, left you a message on my Talk page

George, I am truly delighted to hear from you as I feared something untoward might have happened. I have left you a response about the deleted articles over on my Talk page. Pat Palmer (talk) 09:41, 29 November 2022 (CST)

And we moved the whole discussion over to Forum_Talk:Content Pat Palmer (talk) 12:32, 4 December 2022 (CST)

Question about Bright Leaves and the Wikipedia attribution notice

Hi George! I see that you added the {{WPattribution}} template back to the top of Bright_Leaves. I had moved the WPattribution template down into the article just above References, under a section header called Attribution. I guess you didn't notice i there. The reason I did that is, that when the template is at the top of the page, the preview feature doesn't work (i.e., when I mouse over Bright Leaves, the first sentence will then read "Some content on this page may previously have appeared on Wikipedia". I know we need to have that text, but if it is the first sentence of the article, our mouse previews will always be overwhelmed by it, so I hoped we could get away with putting into the lower part of the article itself. What do you think about possibly having it lower instead of at the top? Will that offend the wiki gods, or get us into legal trouble? The Bright Leaves article currently has it both ways, so you can take a look there and decide which one to have. But I think we should remove either one or the other. Pat Palmer (talk) 07:27, 20 December 2022 (CST)

  • No, I didn't see you moved the template. I thought I had somehow forgotten to place it. Okay, it merely has to be present, somewhere.
I am not sure what this mouse-over feature is. George Swan (talk) 09:03, 20 December 2022 (CST)
Not sure if it works in all browsers. I'm using Firefox on Windows, and when I mouse over a wiki link, it shows in a popup the first maybe 50 words of the article. Is it not functioning on your computer? I love the feature when I'm reading a wiki article. They seem to have it turned off over in Wikipedia, probably for loading reasons.Pat Palmer (talk) 09:33, 20 December 2022 (CST)

I will now restore Efforts to impeach Ronald Reagan

George, I have decided to restore the stub for you. Please do the following for me:

  • make sure to add the provenance of the information
  • please post on the stub's Talk page about the reason for keeping it separate; just a brief statement will do
  • please link Ronald Reagan to it in the way you think best, and link the stub back to Ronald Reagan
    • and, one of us needs to remove the stub's text and its now-scattered refs out of Ronald Reagan; let me know if you want ME to do that, or else I'll leave it to you

Next time I do something like this that you hate, don't panic. Just post a brief description of your reasoning on the best Talk page, or mine if none fits, and I'll get back to you. And in return, I'll promise to check with you first before doing something like that again.Pat Palmer (talk) 09:57, 20 December 2022 (CST)

George, I am inexperienced at this sort of wiki admin and I messed up the deletion log somehow. I have always relied on User:John Stephenson to do this kind of work and he's not available. So, I had to manually copy the text back from Ronald Reagan. Very very sorry about that; I will study up on how to work with the deletion log. Anyway, it's back. We'll need something on the Talk page to explain what happened to history--if you care--or you can just go forward from here. Also, it looks like I've screwed up your beautiful rendering of the references at the bottom (some of them are now inline and thus cluttering the article text). I'm going to leave it for you to clean up if you wish--and again, I apologize for the inconvenience.Pat Palmer (talk) 10:16, 20 December 2022 (CST)
  • I'm an admin at wikialpha - granted those bits some years ago, as one of the two most senior and most serious editors there, basically so I would not have to wait for the site administrator to do those things for me. I did almost no vandal fighting, until recently. Most articles there are self-promoting puff pieces, written by the article subjects, or someone they hired. To a casual reader it looks like a real wikipedia page. I've been told that people pay $50 to have an article that looks like a wikipedia article put up on wikialpha. Well, those people who get paid $50 to write puff pieces also vandalize the pages other people were paid to write. I only recently discovered how nasty a small number of those guys are. It is very time consuming. Time consuming and almost certainly a waste of time, as the vandals, and their friends and enemies, are almost certainly the only people reading those puff pieces.
No one showed me how to restore deleted versions, either. With the version of the software at wikialpha I found out how I could successfully restore an article's entire history. Clicking restore, with all the boxes to restore selected revisions unchecked, restored all versions. But my efforts to restore only selected versions failed.
I was cross with myself when I didn't find a Talk:Efforts to impeach Ronald Reagan#provenance, as I had added that section to one hundred other articles. Is it possible I did add a provenance field to Talk:Efforts to impeach Ronald Reagan, but it didn't get restored? It doesn't really matter, as I restored it now. George Swan (talk) 10:21, 21 December 2022 (CST)

I just put some responses to your various topics on my Talk page

See User_talk:Pat_Palmer starting with "indenting to clarify who is responding to what" and below. Thanks for your comments!Pat Palmer (talk) 13:37, 20 December 2022 (CST)

duplicate articles now exist about the Bright Leaves documentary film

Please see the note at Talk:Bright_Leaves. Of the two articles, Bright Leaves and Bright Leaves (documentary), please tell me which to keep and which to delete. And after that's done, I think the one that remains should be Bright Leaves (documentary), with Bright Leaves being a redirect to Bright Leaf (disambiguation).Pat Palmer (talk) 14:52, 21 December 2022 (CST)

consider Bot Ton for deletion

Hi George, I see you created Bon_Ton here 6 months ago and gave it {{WPattribution}}, but nothing links to it, nor does it say you wrote it yourself. Thus, I propose deleting it. Please let me know if there is some reason it should NOT be deleted. I'm trying to clear out things from Wikipedia that are not in the act of being improved. If you wrote it over in WP, please make a note on the Talk page here and let me know. Pat Palmer (talk) 13:15, 27 December 2022 (CST)

Are you getting Watchlist notifications from this wiki?

George, I just private-messaged you from the wiki, and I'm also leaving a message here to find out if the wiki is able to email you. I'd like to start up some policy discussion and have you involved in them if you are available due to your deep wiki experience. Please let me know if you see this! Pat Palmer (talk) 11:02, 9 October 2023 (CDT)

I am getting emails when articles on my watchlist are moved.
I did not get an email specifically from you.
My other wikis email me at my current email address. Citizendium still emails me at an old email address I check less frequently. I should probably go to my preferences and change that.
I've tried emailing you recently. Hmmm. I would have asked the email bot to send me a carbon copy. And I don't see that. So, maybe my email to you didn't get through?
Cheers! George Swan (talk) 23:51, 23 December 2023 (CST)

Please add {{subpages}} to new articles and their Talk pages

Hi George, I love the work you are doing on Great Lake islands. I would very much appreciate it if you would go ahead and Please add the {{subpages}} template at the top of new articles and their Talk pages. I don't mind coming along later and creating the /Metadata for these new articles, but if you have omitted subpages, I have to do two additional manual edits for each new article. So help me out if you can and just put it there to start with! Thanks a bunch in advance - Pat Palmer (talk) 14:05, 19 December 2023 (CST)

This is weird, as I spent a couple of hours looking for articles without the {{metadata}}. And I thought I added {{subpages}} to the top of every single one that didn't have one, and yet I see you added {{subpages}} to several of those. I wonder if I just thought I had saved those, and didn't notice a "session lost" warning?
There is still no workaround for the session loss?
I have a strong memory of adding several articles related to Stephanie Farrow, the night I ported that article here.
I remember learning, that night, that the Beetles song Dear Prudence was written about her sister Prudence Farrow. I remember finding references to document this.
I wonder what happened there? False memory cause I was working late? Computer crashed with open first drafts? Am I mixing up the Farrow family with another family? Session loss? George Swan (talk) 00:09, 24 December 2023 (CST)
It might have been session lost. It's driving me crazy also. Session lost seems to have been introduced in the last set of upgrades either to MediaWiki or PHP. We'll be due for new version upgrades before much longer, and I sure hope that fixes it. My guess is it's related somehow to PHP but I haven't had any luck tuning things so it doesn't happen. There are like one million tunable parameters in Mediawiki for things like session management and performance. Any one of them, or a combination of them, could be the culprit. I'm sorry! I'll ask the developer to take a look at this after the holidays. Pat Palmer (talk) 07:46, 24 December 2023 (CST)
Hi George! I moved the list of pages needing Metadata to CZ:Pages without metadata. Please add your newly created articles to that list going forwards. I will get to them as I can (was sort of taking a break during the recent holidays, so they've built up). Pat Palmer (talk) 12:01, 2 January 2024 (CST)
Holidays are a good thing. George Swan (talk) 12:42, 2 January 2024 (CST)


Hi, George. It would be a great help if you could complete a Metadata page each time you create an article. If you should be having difficulty with the concept, I might be able to help you.

The best way to handle a form like a Metadata is to use a model of the template in which you have everything pre-set except for the handful of parameters which will be specific to the new article. If you look at Template:39 Commissioner Street/Metadata, which I created earlier today, most of it is the model I keep in TextPad, my offline page editor. The only variables I needed to add were to the pagename, abc, cat1, and cat2 parameters. Variant might change between BE, AE and CE, of course.

It's reasonable to take everything between cat_check and cleanup as a given, unless the article is more than a stub and you want to change status from 3 to 2. All other parameters are incomplete although you might need sub1 if there is a subgroup, but that's not important. You should not actually remove anything or change the layout in any way because that can cause problems, hence the instruction at the end to have the noinclude command immediately following the closing braces.

Please think about this and try out the model on some of the no meta articles. You'll probably find that with a bit of practice it becomes second nature. Let me know if I can help in any way. Thanks and all the best. John (talk) 10:41, 8 January 2024 (CST)

I am planning to get Metadata creation automated again (where people can select options from a form, at least on new articles), but it's taking a while to find the right developer. In the meantime, I will eventually create the pages for any articles you leave on the list. Sorry I'm so slow about it. Pat Palmer (talk) 09:53, 17 January 2024 (CST)


Well done, George, on your new appointment. Best of luck. John (talk) 08:55, 20 January 2024 (CST)

there might be several Superior Creek streams in the world; might you rename it?

Hi George! Superior Creek should, I think, ideally be moved to Superior Creek (Toronto), with no need for a redirect left behind (it pops up easily if you search for it). Would you like to try it, now that you have Sysop powers? That needs to be done before I add the /Metadata subpages template. I have been doing this to some of your Toronto, Ontario articles (which I am enjoying!) before now, but I would rather you do it so that you're in the loop about that. Pat Palmer (talk) 10:56, 20 January 2024 (CST)

Mission accomplished, I think.
I'll try my best to use the new permission bits very carefully.
Cheers! George Swan (talk) 23:20, 20 January 2024 (CST)

The coke (fuel) article, and redirects to it...

George, you just created Redirects from Anode coke and Petroleum coke to an article which doesn't exist yet Coke (fuel). I really don't want you to do that. There is no need for it. If you need to use the phrase "Anode coke" in an article and want to link it, you know how to alias that to Coke (fuel). Please, just stop creating redirects for now without checking with me first. I'm trying to sift through them and make sense of which are needed and which are not and find you creating them pointing into thin air. Just. Don't. Pat Palmer (talk) 13:21, 21 January 2024 (CST)

@Pat, yes, I created redirects to Coke (fuel), which were going to be redlinks for about ten minutes, because I wanted to see which existing articles had passing mentions of coke, any kind of industrial coke, and that seemed to be a good way to do it. George Swan (talk) 13:31, 21 January 2024 (CST)
"If you need to use the phrase "Anode coke" in an article and want to link it, you know how to alias that to Coke (fuel)." I think you mean a "piped link". Sure, I use them all the time. I was planning on discussing with you and John whether we need to reach an agreement on when links should, and shouldn't, be piped links. But, first, let me put some references in the article on plain ordinary coke fuel.
Cheers! George Swan (talk) 13:35, 21 January 2024 (CST)
(ec) Redirects are okay if they are a commonly used alternative to the article's title, George, but I agree with Pat they should be kept to a necessary minimum. Having said that, drawing the line is difficult because there's a grey area between necessary and desired. There's no doubt that Hitler, for example, is a much-needed redirect but I'm finding that some of the HCB ones especially are a waste of space (I had to clean up some his earlier today). Give Pat or me a shout if you want a second opinion on any redirect. John (talk) 13:37, 21 January 2024 (CST)
Please see item 19 above about another set of duplicate articles you created and have not cleaned up. I request that you to remove one of those duplicates, as well as either Boat nerd or Boatnerd, before you continue creating any other new articles in this wiki. Also, I still see no need for the two new redirects you have created. If you want to know if any other articles mention "Anode coke", search will show you. Pat Palmer (talk) 14:22, 21 January 2024 (CST)

a question about a marsh project in Toronto

Hi George. I saw this: and wonder if the area they planted is what was being proposed in Cherry Marsh (Toronto). I don't know enough about the city to be able to tell, but this planting was near a bridge that, apparently, crosses Cherry St.Pat Palmer (talk) 14:02, 22 January 2024 (CST)

The Cherry Street loop lies immediately north of a large railway berm.
Thank you very much. This is interesting. The two projects are close - a couple of hundred meters - but not related.
The Cherry Street loop was finished in 2015. The site is 1-2 acres, and it was the terminus of a new spur, about 600 meters long, of the streetcar system. It serviced two new residential neighbourhoods, the Distillery district, and the Canary district.
The funny looking building, built in to the berm, has the control room for railway switches for the five or so lanes of train tracks. It will be moved a couple of dozen metres eastward when the streetcar route is extended south. When it emerges from the south side of the berm it will cross about 50 metres of land that is being turned into an artificial floodplain, for a renaturalized mouth of the Don River. It will cross the Don, and serve another new residential neighbourhood that is to be constructed on Villiers Island, an artificial Island in the Portlands. So, your reference is related to several articles, or potential articles, including Don River (Ontario), Villiers Island, 514 Cherry.
I live about 500 metres from this development.
Cheers! George Swan (talk) 13:31, 23 January 2024 (CST)

Creek names and waterbody names usually need to place in parentheses after them

George, I was a bit frustrated today to find that you have created many creek names without (Ontario) or (Toronto) after them. This is the same problem that we had with fireboat names--they generally need to be made quite specific. For example, Tomlin's Creek. You can't just assume that there is not another stream named after Tomlin somewhere in the world. Please do not create any more place names without appending the city or state in parentheses after the name. It is a huge amount of work to repair any one of these, since there are all the links from other articles that must be corrected, the metadata, and the article itself moved. I think the creek articles are great, but they need to be named quite specifically. Pat Palmer (talk) 12:29, 31 January 2024 (CST)

  • I'm sorry to frustrate you. It is not intentional.
  • I'll follow any already established conventions, so long as I understand them - even if I don't agree with them.
  • Forgive me, but, if new conventions are being introduced, may I request a chance to offer my opinion on them, prior to their introduction?
  • Disambiguation (and categorization) are tricky problems. There are multiple approaches to disambiguation. The usual approach, on the wikipedia, is to delay disambiguation as long as possible, and to only move pages to disambiguated names when the creation of articles on namesake topics makes it necessary.
  • Consider the Churchill River, that created the estuary where we find Churchill, Manitoba... If Citizendium were to add an article on the river what disambiguator would we add to this Canadian river? Churchill, Manitoba (Canada) maybe? It we delayed disambiguation for it, we'd find that its rival namesake is also in Canada. Wikipedia uses Churchill River (Hudson Bay) and Churchill River (Atlantic)
  • What about major rivers, like the Mississippi? I don't think we would disambiguate Mississippi River to Mississippi River (USA). Would we disambiguate Danube River to Danube River (Europe) or Danube River (Black Sea)? Would we disambiguate Nile River to Nile River (Africa) or Nile River (Mediterranean)?
  • Pat, I am leaving you this reply now, because I don't want you to think I am ignoring you. I spent a long time, working on a much longer response, but reason prevailed, when I woke up. Pat doesn't have time to read all that, and I want to complete a reply within a day or so, to show I am not ignoring you.
  • Pat, I know I said this before. I never do things just to annoy you.
  • If we are making new conventions, I want to offer my input. If you are asking me to follow an exising convention, one that was formed without my input, I would like that convention to be clearly described. As per the Mississippi example, how would I know which rivers are big enough or have unique enough names, that they don't require disambiguation?
  • If there is a convention I didn't follow, you don't have to clean up after me. You have given me the tools to clean up after myself, so long as I have a clear description of the convention. George Swan (talk) 10:52, 1 February 2024 (CST)
Creeks and ponds are inherently local and should always have the location in parentheses, no exceptions. Larger rivers and lakes, use common sense and web searches. For example, there are many Big Sandy rivers in North America, so a name like that should always include locality. This is common sense more than official policy. Rivers that mirror state names rarely have namesakes elsewhere that I know of (except, for example, there are two Colorado rivers), so usually they do not need locality. Pat Palmer (talk) 08:52, 2 February 2024 (CST)

Naming conventions, again

George, Charlotte Wise needs a less ambiguous name. Please rename it with some kind of qualifier in parentheses. A quick Google of the name "Charlotte Wise" shows photos of 6 different living women, and who knows how many have lived in the past, with exactly that name. Please name articles that are based upon human names very specifically unless that person is enormously famous (i.e., somebody like Abraham Lincoln). Please don't make us have to rename these things later on; it's an enormous amount of wasted work to have to rename an article because the name wasn't made specific enough in the first place. Pat Palmer (talk) 08:58, 5 February 2024 (CST)

Also please rename David Brant. These are everyday people, and titles of articles about everyday people need qualifiers after them. You do NOT need to rename Alan Greenspan, as he is a widely known public figure. Pat Palmer (talk) 09:01, 5 February 2024 (CST)
Now I've come across all of these that also need a qualifier after their names, or maybe, these articles don't neeed to exist at all. We are not going to provide an article about everyone service in the government. However, if they DO exist, they need more specific names: Alberto Mora, Michael Lohr, Michael Gelles, Peter Murphy. Pat Palmer (talk) 09:10, 5 February 2024 (CST)
Actually, WP is a useful guide here because, if it uses a qualifier, we can assume one is needed. If not, then we're probably okay without one. I'd also say that if WP doesn't have an article on a person, maybe that person isn't noteworthy. Newsworthy, perhaps, but we really should be presenting our readers with articles on noteworthy subjects. John (talk) 17:46, 5 February 2024 (CST)
George, WP's policy has no bearing on what we do in CZ; please try to refrain from creating unlinked stubs about ordinary people unless there is a compelling reason, and when you do, please add a qualifier to the article title as requested. Pat Palmer (talk) 10:33, 8 February 2024 (CST)
CZ:Naming conventions. Peter Jackson (talk) 04:57, 10 February 2024 (CST)


George, I notice you have been getting the Metadata added such that the list is winnowed down to almost nothing. I appreciate that very much. Also, the renamings you have done. I appreciate all you are doing. Again, thanks. Pat Palmer (talk) 11:04, 13 February 2024 (CST)


  1. The articles I have deleted are those which could potentially open what we in Britain call a can of worms, while Pat referred to stirring up a hornet's nest. These are sensitive, contentious, controversial topics (use whatever adjectives you like) and writing about them at all could cause problems for Pat who is the owner of CZ and is ultimately responsible for its content. While there are people who are obsessed with terrorism, torture, the Taliban, and all the other ills of this horrible world, most people everywhere treat such things as news only and hope they will soon become yesterday's news.
  2. The outrages perpetrated on the people of Afghanistan are still raw and much about the conflicts there remains unknown. Which means it has not yet become history. This Worthington you seem to like is a pseudo-journalist who talks complete shite and is full of sensationalist claptrap (like Johnson when that was a so-called journalist).
  3. You need to get into your head that if someone, somewhere, should seriously object to your articles about torture and terrorism it will not be you who gets it in the neck but Pat, who has done her utmost to save this site. I have been asking around for feedback and have been in touch with someone who was at Bagram, the son of an old friend, although he was there on USAAF business only. His advice, see it at the Forum, is to delete that article because it could cause issues for Pat. Some subjects are "Beyond the Pale" on a site like this.
  4. Apart from anything else, we want people to READ our articles and pass the word that they are worth reading, so that CZ can grow and thrive. People do not want to read yesterday's dismal news stories all over again because certain editors are obsessed with them. They want subjects that interest them and articles they can learn from. As I said elsewhere, if you like Afghanistan so much, why haven't written about the spectacular Hindu Kush instead of some garbage about someone in the Taliban who is believed to have been seen in Quetta back in 2008 (and was probably out doing his weekly shopping)?
  5. And then there is the not-so-small matter of careless, annoying errors. Princess Charlotte, for example. Only a short article but, frankly, her younger brother could have made a better job of it. He would at least have got her name right and known she is Charles' granddaughter.
  6. I think I've said enough now. John (talk) 16:01, 14 February 2024 (CST)
    1. Are you sure that angry individuals would or could sue Pat, personally, or sue the Citizendium, for material Howard wrote? I'll look into this further, but I honestly believe you are mistaken.
    2. Larry Sanger played a big role in writing the wikipedia's very first policies. The original core policies were a gem. And one of them was to aim for verifiability, not truth. Maybe you could spend some time explaining, somewhere, what you, yourself, John Leach, means by "recentism", and why you have such a strong objection to it. I think you mean something by it totally distinct from what other people mean. I offered the example of heroic pilot Chesley Sullenberger, and how some good faith people wanted to delete the new article about him, after he saved all his passengers. Most people would think that creating an article about him, less than a day after he became prominent, was "recentism".

      The whole thing about aiming for verifiability is that you can aim to write neutral articles, based on verifiable, authoritative sources. You let the readers decide what to believe. If I write an article that relies on something Andy Worthington wrote, and Worthington's conclusions or speculations are clearly attributed to him, then readers can decide for themselves, whether they trust Worthington, or not.

      Encyclopedia articles can be written from a neutral point of view, even when they rely on writers who are voicing just one side of the story, because the good contributor looks to see if there are opposing views, and, if they aren't fringe views, gives them coverage too. Encyclopedia articles can be written from a neutral point of view, even when they use articles written by writes who are "shite", whatever that means.

      I don't know which Johnson you refer to. Was Boris Johnson a "shite" journalist, before he was a politician?

    3. As in my response to your first paragraph, I honestly believe you are mistaken that Pat would need to pay if someone wanted to sue about something Howard wrote, or I wrote. Consider YouTube, consider Twitter, consider facebook, full of material that could trigger a litigious person. But those people don't sue Elon Musk, or Mark Zuckerbert - or Jimmy Wales. If and when those litigious people sue, they sue the creator of the content, not the carrier.

      So, you have asked around your friends, and you know a guy whose son worked at the Bagram Airbase, and he doesn't like the article on the Bagram base...

      Okay, (1) did he work there in 2002, when captives died while being "softened up" for interrogation? (2) did he work in the Prison, itself? So why do you think his opinion should trump what we know from verifiable authoritative sources?

      You asked me go see the forum, to see more details of his opinion, right? Was this what you wanted me to look at?

      You used the phrase "beyond the pale"... (1) I am going to ask you to explain further what you mean by this; (2) I am going to point out you, in case you don't know, this term could be considered anti-semitic. See [1]

    4. With regard to getting people who aren't familiar with the Citizendium to read the Citizendium, I am going to ask you to re-read my recently started Forum section Forum Talk:Content#Which articles are going to draw new readers to the Citizendium.... You wrote: "People do not want to read yesterday's dismal news stories all over again because certain editors are obsessed with them. They want subjects that interest them and articles they can learn from." I think I pointed out to you, already, that the wikipedia's article on Ahmed Shah Massoud has been read something 3.5 million times in the last 9 years. So, yeah, people are interested in these topics.

      With regard to the missing article on the Hindu Kush, which you mentioned here, or the missing articles on Cleopatra and Lake Baikal, which you mentioned elsewhere... May I remind you, just like you, I am a volunteer. Ironically, I thought about creating an article on Lake Baikal, a month or so ago, but I started an article on Lake Superior, instead.

      Here is my offer to you, if you commit to create a certain number of good substantial articles, drawn from a list of articles missing from Citizendium, I'll match you. I'll create the same number.

      Please don't ask me, or expect me, to create more than my share of new articles from a list of "important" missing articles.

    5. I am subject to normal human fallibility. So are you, so is Pat. You are/were a computer person, right? Did you read Gerald Weinberg's famous bit about "ego-less programming". The key part here is that everyone is more productive when they refrain from insulting one another.

      So how about making more of an effort to not insult me?

      You have been escalating in the number of times you have left insulting comments for me. I don't like it. Here you used the word "obsessed" when talking about people who work on topics I am interested in and have worked on in the past. On Talk:Bagram Theater Internment Facility you called me "sick", because I wanted to create "distasteful, negative, sensationalist, recentist claptrap".

      You even wrote that my efforts "has made me think better of HCB".


    6. John, you said something about having practically zero patience for the kinds of discussions one sees on the wikipedia.

      I share (some of) your impatience. Those discussion can be a waste of time -- but only when the parties in dispute don't respect one another enough to really listen to the other party.

      Here is something that I do, that I think I am pretty good at. I try my best to really understand the other guys point of view. I am subject to normal human fallibility. I might be wrong, they might be right. If reading their position carefully convinces me they are right and I am wrong I will say so.

      I am going to encourage you to try to do that with me, with everything you have written about me.

      John, you agreed to tagging things you think should be deleted with {{PropDel}}. But you have restarted deleting things without discussion, even when they have been here for over a decade.

      I suggest that this looks like you have lost your temper. I suggest that you should stop deleting things while you appear to be letting your anger interfere with your judgement. George Swan (talk) 19:19, 14 February 2024 (CST)

Ok. Both of you have spoken. Let us stop the bicker and allow me some time to respond. It might be a couple of days. George, I saw your list. Pat Palmer (talk) 21:27, 14 February 2024 (CST)
  • Okay.
Because not "responding in kind" is hard I have started multiple responses to some of John's comments. I am going to assume you want me to hold off on finishing those, and posting them?
Should I continue to go ahead and, carefully, add to User:George Swan/propdel discussions? That was the list you mentioned, right?
John, I am going to assume you will return to your other work, and pause your speedy deletions, while Pat updates herself? George Swan (talk) 21:49, 14 February 2024 (CST)
George, yes, please refrain from further disputation on article amd User Talk pages on this matter. There is enough that I can get a grasp of the main issues. Feel free to email me privately in the meantime if you wish. Pat Palmer (talk) 22:11, 14 February 2024 (CST)
George, I think you'll find the phrase "beyond the pale" is older than the 18th-century Jewish Pale, which was called that by analogy with the much older Irish Pale. Peter Jackson (talk) 04:59, 15 February 2024 (CST)

Please stop creating articles about living people; also, naming again

Given the bicker that just happened (as per above), I would like to explain my priorities about Citizendium, which are very different than those which Larry Sanger likely had when he created this wiki. I'll start with this request: please delete the article about Slawko Klymkiw altogether. Citizendium is not in the business of cataloging every person who gets a job. Any info about this guy should probably be under an article about the Canadian Film Centre, if you want to create that, but this person does not warrant an article just because his name was mentioned in the press. George, please stop thinking of normal professionals, mid-grade military people, and people with minor YouTube channels as if they deserve encyclopedia articles about them. This wiki is not a media outlet, and it is not its purpose to preserve the myriad of details that the media publishes. Mid-grade bureaucrats, however interesting aspects of their lives may be because they were alleged to have given Colin Powell false information or whatever, are already documented in the press whose editions now remain online in perpetuity. Most of them are also documented more thoroughly in Wikipedia. In my view, the only reason for duplicating any article from WP in CZ is if we think CZ can somehow substantially improve it with better writing or additional information. I wonder if you may have been in a mode where you are in the process of copying out of Wikipedia everything you ever wrote there in the belief that it is your personal intellectual property. If that is the case, I urge you to stop it, or at least, to move the information under your User page and keep it there unless it can be used to flesh out and improve some of CZ's quality articles. I place the most value on substantial, nearly complete articles with better quality writing than Wikipedia has (sadly, not a very high bar). It looks to me like you have not taken a few minutes, for most of these stubs, to link to related and parent topics, nor have I seen you come back to any of them to improve them and flesh them out. Given that CZ is likely to remain highly incomplete (unlike WP), the presence of many unlinked stubs about living persons is not helpful and may in fact deter potential contributors from perceiving any value in CZ. I gave John Leach Sysop power because he shares my desire to clean up older material that is like this--much of which, as you noted, is written by HB. We are not cleaning it up and deleting it because HB wrote it, but because of quality issues, of its not being objective, and of possibly stirring up a hornet's nest of living people willing to kill others. (As an aside, I am not deliberately overlooking that John seems to have lost his patience with you and did in fact treat you less than respectfully; I will be taking that up with him, possibly offline. I like what he did, but not always how he went about it.)

I request that you STOP creating articles whose titles are the names of living persons. Just don't do it at all without checking with me first. It is not a trivial matter to create online articles about people who are living. They can sue, but more importantly, they can--and have--come after me in various unpleasant ways. Back in 2020 soon after I took over the domain, a smear campaign against me was conducted online by someone using a name which in Pakistan is associated with the terrorist group that bombed the hotel in India. They tracked me onto Facebook and threatened me personally. Then, they got an account on CZ and harrassed me and got banned. Then they contact the hosting company and tried to get CZ shut down, claiming copyright violations and racism and what not all. They threatened me with legal action. They published information online about what they thought was my home address, income, etc. It's not something to joke about lightly as you have done above. Remember that we are all using our real names, unlike the anonymous writers in Wikipedia, and in this country, with our lack of privacy laws, it is almost trivial to track down an individual. There have been numerous cases in the press by people who have been targeted in hate crimes, sexual blackmail, etc., because someone got mad at them. This doesn't mean I'm afraid to run Citizendium, but making fun of the risks I am taking is not going to win you my admiration.

Today you created several new articles (about places and people) that need to have qualified names. Place names NEARLY ALWAYS need to be qualified (by the city, state, country). Thus, please rename Horseshoe Moraine, Paris-Galt Moraine, and Fraser River. Except for world-famous figures such as heads of state, the same applies to normal people. Thus, please rename Caroline Kepnes, Aimee Bessada and Lewis_Burwell. You also created Insula dell'Ara Coeli, which is a brief description of a kind of insula. Please rename this article as simply Insula and revise it to where the dell'ara Coeli is an example of one. It doesn't make sense for us to create a stub about one example when we lack the umbrella article about what an insula is.

I expect that this post will leave you feeling upset, but please know that I don't want to lose you from this wiki. But I also don't want to become exhausted and impatient because I have to spend a lot of time bickering with you over naming conventions and content policy and your resistance to deleting material that is of highly questionable importance (and that you did not yourself create), that is already well represented otherwhere online, and which might well, 30 years from now, have failed to make it into any history book at all. Pat Palmer (talk) 14:18, 15 February 2024 (CST)

An example of why I am urging writers to disambiguate article names about living persons

George, Please see the comment I just left on Talk:Charlotte_Martin, which I have proposed for deletion. That short article is getting lots of hits every month from Google, but it is pretty clear that the searchers are hoping to find info about a contemporary singer of the exact same name rather than a groupie from the 1960's. Pat Palmer (talk) 08:48, 17 February 2024 (CST)

Deletion is an easy option.
So, can I ask, if the singer is getting lots of hits, should the Citizendium have an article on her?
Did I read you say, somewhere, that you would discourage adding any new articles to the Citizendium, when Wikipedia also had an article, if the new Citizendium article wasn't superior to Wikipedia article?
  1. This rule, if Citizendium made it a rule, would preclude creating a Citizendium article like...
    • Okay, Jeff Zients and , James A. Baker are/were POTUS Chiefs of Staff. The JZ article says there have been something like 39-40 individuals holding this post, since it was invented. If Citizendium covered just two of these individuals, then each should link to an article entitled something like President's Chief of Staff.

      I suggest, even if it were created as just a stub, having a stub, inferior to the Wikipedia version, that stub would still be worthwhile, so that President's Chief of Staff wasn't a redlink in the articles about actual Chiefs of Staff.

    • Hold the presses. Howard created White House Chief of Staff/Definition in 2010. John slightly expanded on Howard's Definition, and made it a stub, about 5 weeks ago. I just now added some references, and some more material. It's still a stub.
  2. more numbered points to follow... George Swan (talk) 11:19, 17 February 2024 (CST)
In fact, WP has a long and well-organized article on the singer Charlotte Martin, so I don't think we should try making our own version. If people were indeed searching for an article on the groupie, I still don't think we should host an article about such a person. Pat Palmer (talk) 12:53, 17 February 2024 (CST)
George, in this case, I think the thing to do would first be to make a list or table (on the WH Chief of Staff article) of all the people known to have held the office in the past maybe 40 years, along with which president they served. If you do that, you'll find out there are some rather famous ones who should be first to get an article. But truly, I would suggest looking first at WP's version. Sometimes the WP version is so bad that a smaller, shorter, well-written version here might make sense. I felt that was true, for example, on Donald Trump; WP's is more complete (about Trump) but jumbled and unfocused, and only people who spend a lot of time studying the whole long magilla over there will end up grasping what I feel are the main points, because one can't see the forest for the trees most times in WP. The WH Chief of Staff article has tons of room for expansion and improvement. A lot of what I know about that job I learned, in fact, from watching the great West Wing TV series years ago, because for the most part, WH Chiefs of Staff keep a fairly low profile in the public eye. And, sometimes, there are Deputy Chiefs of Staff; that's what Karl Rove was in George W. Bush's first term, and at the time, it seemed to the public like Rove was running the country while Bush was playing a lot of golf. But in his second term, Bush sent Rove home and definitely took back the driver's seat. WP has a giant-sized article on Rove, and Rove's role in the Bush administration, while it is covered, is buried in the bowels of the article. But Rove's influence over both Bush presidents really ought, in my opinion, to be clarified better in the intro of the article--all WP does is list a bunch of titles without making the matter of Rove's perhaps too strong influence explicit. But writing an article like that would take, probably, weeks of long reading and careful research, and that doesn't seem like what you like to do. Pat Palmer (talk) 12:51, 17 February 2024 (CST)
One last point about duplicating articles here that are in WP: we currently have 676 articles marked as External_Articles, which means, they were likely brought from Wikipedia and have not yet been substantially improved. I really want to work through those in the next few months and decide on a case by case basis if each one is a keeper or not and compare it to the current WP version. Some may have been improved but the Metadata was simply never updated. Given the huge backlog of old articles brought over from Wikipedia years ago, I advise restraint in duplicating WP articles here unless they are going to be substantially better here in some way. This is not a hard and fast policy, and if in a specific case you want to do it, I'm not saying you can't. I have brought, shortened, and restyled a number of articles from WP to CZ, sometimes because they were being trolled in WP so that no actual improvement can be made to them there, so in a case like that, it might make sense. Articles about living people are especially sensitive, because in the past they have not had the article titles disambiguated, and because many seem to be out of date and poorly written. Let's take a long look at the Topic Informant Workgroup before making any kind of hard and fast policy about this. I'm still in learning mode about it. Pat Palmer (talk) 13:06, 17 February 2024 (CST)

Why move a Talk page to a further subpage?

George, I noticed that you moved the contents of page Talk:Sarah Elizabeth Coyne to Talk:Sarah Elizabeth Coyne/Rationale and then included that with a template in the Talk page. Can you explain why you did this? I think it would make it more difficult for others to locate the discussion and comment. I've never seen that before. Also, I would like to do a speedy delete on this page, but I'm asking first what objections you have. This person is a relation to high-level politicians but is not noteworthy herself in terms of having an encyclopedia article, and I feel that having it is somewhat of an invasion of privacy. But, you may have written it so I'm asking. It's been here for years, but it is also being found in search engines. Usually, I like that, but in this instance, it concerns me because this is not something I believe should really be here. And, there have been multiple instances in the U.S. of family members of politicians being attacked by bad actors. Pat Palmer (talk) 08:38, 18 February 2024 (CST)

OK, now I see that it's so you can add it to your list. But those Talk subpages are will need to get deleted if the article gets deleted, so be aware of that. Pat Palmer (talk) 08:40, 18 February 2024 (CST)
  • Pat, the whole point of separating the discussion over whether an article is going to be kept or deleted into a separate page is so that the reasons for keep or delete can be read, by anyone, even if the actual article and its talk page are deleted.
That separate page doesn't have to be a subpage of the articles talk page. It could be kept at CZ:PropDel/Sarah Elizabeth Coyne/Rationale, or just CZ:PropDel/Sarah Elizabeth Coyne.
But keeping the discussions, and keeping them visible to all contributors, is very important if deletions are going to be kept consistent.
People participating in a new discussion should be able to say, "your deletion rationale is not consistent with the rationale you offered in CZ:PropDel/John Doe." Or, "see the excellent deletion arguments offered in CZ:PropDel/Jane Doe. Those arguments apply here, too." George Swan (talk) 22:11, 18 February 2024 (CST)
  • I moved the page, rather than just cutting and pasting your deletion justification, in order to preserve the history of your edit, in case that history turned out to be important. George Swan (talk) 22:11, 18 February 2024 (CST)
George, I need you to dismantle your list. All of the /Rationale subpages must be moved back to the Talk pages they once were on. If we delete an article, its Talk page MUST also get deleted, but you have preserved them anyway in a non-transparent manner. Not acceptable. Those discussions MUST disappear if an article gets deleted. The last thing I want is for these sneaky vestiges of allegedly deleted articles to remain undeleted where you can point at them a year from now or in 10 different places and bring up the same old arguments. These are not Forum discussions. You may copy your own arguments to your user pages, or put them in a Forum if you must, but please do not use this method of saving them. Since you did this, please undo it immediately before doing any other work. The rationale pages for already deleted articles must be deleted. It took me a while to realize the implication of how that works. Pat Palmer (talk) 21:53, 20 February 2024 (CST)
Also, never do this kind of thing again. I understand you may have intended well, but I consider this a borderline abuse of Sysop power because, in wikis, Talk pages belong with articles. They are not yours to squirrel away, and they are not public forums. Pat Palmer (talk) 22:16, 20 February 2024 (CST)

Do you mind if we speedy-delete John Mark Dougan?

Hi George, See my comments at Talk:John Mark Dougan. I apologize for wanting to speedy-delete something you've worked so hard on, but would you hate it terribly if we get rid of this article now? I don't think we should be giving this person any publicity. Pat Palmer (talk) 12:05, 18 February 2024 (CST)

Pat, I'm sorry, may I remind you, that, 18 months ago, when I started the articles on Dougan and Daria Dugina, I pinged you, to draw them to your attention?
Surely, after not responding to that ping, for 18 months, it is reasonable for me to think we have time to discuss the article, prior to its deletion?
You referred to him as "this person", here, and you called him a "conspiracy theorist", on Talk:John Mark Dougan. Over on the wikipedia there is a WP:HOAX. I used to find people using that wikidocument to justify deleting coverage of hoaxes, when it actually said the encyclopedia shouldn't be used to perpetrate hoaxes.
I think you and I and practically everyone else agrees that online encyclopedias shouldn't be used to trick people and promote hoaxes or conspiracy theories. However, there are conspiracy theories so important, and so well covered by responsible authoritative sources, there is really no excuse why they shouldn't be covered, as the topic of an article, or as a subsection within an article - rather than to promote them in a tricky way.
  1. Senator Joe McCarthy spent years claiming the US Government, particularly the State Department was riddled with clandestine cells of active communist traitors.

    There wasn't a lick of truth to his claims.

  2. In the late 1970s, and into the 1980s, there were huge numbers of Americans who believed that thousands of GIs the DoD listed as MIA - missing in action - were being held in hidden brutally run camps in North Vietnam.

    There wasn't a lick of truth to it.

    It was a particular point of bi-partisanship that both Republican John McCain and Democrat John Kerry, both veterans of Vietnam, stood together to urge the family and friends of the GIs who never came home to accept that there was no hope of rescuing them from those hidden brutal camps, and accept their deaths.

I am sure if we spent more time thinking about it we could think of a lot more conspiracy theories with such profound impact that there could be no argument they weren't worth covering.
I wouldn't characterize Dougan as a conspiracy theorist. Is he a renegade? Is he a "whistleblower"? Is he a less than honest whistleblower? Is he a hoaxster? I think the article I wrote, spent a lot of time writing, was written from a neutral point of view. I think it did not put any of that in the Citizendium's voice. It quoted or paraphrased reputable journalist's opinions.
Pat, you are the editor-in-chief. You are also the one doing the heavy lifting in terms of keeping Citizendium in operation. I recently thanked you for that. I'll thank you again. Those are two separate reasons for you to have the power to tell all the other people working on the Citizendium that you are implementing a new policy. You have the passwords, etc, so you could block me, block John, block every other contributor you considered disloyal.
But if the Citizendium is going to remain a going concern you need the cooperation of as many of the remaining volunteers as possible.
I strongly urge you to use the power to have the last word on policy changes as lightly as possible. I suggest the best approach is, if you think a policy change is required, to call for the input of the other stakeholders, prior to making the change.
  1. Other stakeholders may, actually, talk you out of the policy change...
  2. Other stakeholders may figure out ways to make the policy change more acceptable to them, or work better than your initial suggestion...
  3. You may convince other stakeholders, who would have been upset if you new policy was introduced without any discussion, that there was sound reasoning behind it, and thus secure their cooperation...
  4. At the very least, if you introduce your plans, give everyone a chance to voice their opinion, and show you understood their points, even if you found them unconvincing, they would say, "Well, I had my say, I gave it my best shot."
I suggest there is a limit to how many times you can impose policy changes on everyone else, without discussing it, while still retaining willing volunteers.
With regard to the current round of deletions? I suggest you suspend all current deletion efforts. Why? Because the basis of those deletions is extremely unclear.
When other stakeholders know, or can look up, the basis for retention, or deletion, and figure out from that document, whether new material they are thinking of adding will not be retained, that is when deletion efforts should recommence. When other stakeholders can figure out, from that document, whether to argue for the retention of material we had a stake in, or whether, given the clear new document, that would be pointless, that is when deletion efforts should recommence.
Please don't react in anger, and cobble together a new inclusion policy overnight. Ideally get other people's input. I want my input to be heard. You said you want me to keep participating. Please show that by listening to my input on the general concerns that triggered your plans to change the inclusion rules. George Swan (talk) 21:53, 18 February 2024 (CST)
George, I speedied those two articles last night. I did not do because Pat ordered it but because she requested it and I agreed with her that the two were counter-productive. There has been more than sufficient discussion about the need for, and value of, articles that are essentially news stories with sensationalist overtones. You have had your say, and you have been heard, but the decision taken after discussion is that we will delete articles that are seen to serve no useful purpose towards achieving site objectives, especially if they publicise extremely controversial people such as criminals, terrorists, conspiracy theorists, publicity seekers, and so on.
I am not aware of any decision by Pat that was not the result of discussion or, as with title qualifiers, the application of plain common sense. I feel that I can freely discuss anything with Pat but, at the end of the day, she is the one carrying all the responsibility and she is the one who makes the final decision. I fully accept that she might decide against my point of view and I fully respect her right to do that. John (talk) 03:21, 19 February 2024 (CST)

JMD is a conspiracy theorist living in Russia and working against the interests of the U.S.; he now has a Russian website; why should we give him any publicity?

We had a bit of a "race condition" where John may have deleted the article before George was able to read my comments. That is my fault, sorry. Here's what I said there: "This guy and the article about him has just come to my attention. I believe we ought to delete the article. He is a conspiracy theorist and is actively working against the interests of the country he was born in. Let's do a speedy delete. And yes, this article is getting some hits in search engines; not even Wikipedia has an article on him. He now has website in Russian; a real piece of work." George, it seems that I missed your ping a couple years back, or maybe I didn't but had not yet determined to rid the wiki of certain kinds of materials. Pat Palmer (talk) 08:36, 20 February 2024 (CST)


Please see my comments at Talk:Ashbridge's Creek (Lake Ontario) Pat Palmer (talk) 08:29, 20 February 2024 (CST)

some reasons for article deletions based on common sense and my judgement

A large number of the recent speedy deletions have been articles about living persons. As for the claim that you don't understand the reason for deletions, I'll repeat myself yet again. The following kinds of topics do not deserve to have encyclopedia articles written about them. Most of these are questions of common sense or judgement (mine). These are just some examples.

  • articles about groupies of rock musicians (and children of those musicians), lacking noteworthy accomplishments of their own; the info, if it exists, belongs in the articles about the rock musicians themselves
  • articles that seem to invade the privacy of public figures (i.e., the article sharing every tiny detail about the death of Robert Plant's young son who passed away in 1975)
  • articles about relatives of politicians, lacking noteworthy accomplishments of their own
  • an article about a woman who had an affair with with a wealthy man, broke up his marriage, used his money to start a business, styled herself as an "entrepreneur", and whined when she didn't inherit his money because it was gained from a ponzi scheme (and they never married)
  • article about a conspiracy theorist and defector to Russia actively working against his birth country, the U.S., and who has his own website in Russian blasting the U.S.; why should we give him any publicity at all?
  • stub about a director of one city's theater; an article about the theater itself, and maybe its directors included, would NOT get deleted
  • a long list of articles about individuals who are/were active in the Taliban or Al Qaeda and got written up in the press for it (with the exception of folks like bin Laden who affected a change in the world and can't be ignored)
  • a long list of defintions and stubs about conservative U.S. special interest groups, and many stubs about people working for them, especially those who oppose gun control (yes, these stubs were created by HB); these groups have their own website and we need not do PR for them; they also have articles in WP that are far better then CZ's versions; although they cross-link with each other, they are not integrated with any other material on this wiki; because there was no balance provided mitigating the extreme views of these folks, they are unobjective
  • unlinked stubs that are poorly written (present tense if about people, for example) have not been improved for a long time (and yes, this is written policy); these range widely in topic

Four new categories - would you please use these?

Here are the new Categories I am starting to use. Could you use them too, for now? Pat Palmer (talk) 14:30, 21 February 2024 (CST)

Merger of Maxine Bailey and Slawko Klymkiw into Canadian Film Centre article

George, Just so you know, I merged all the info from Maxine Bailey and Slawko Klymkiw into a new article about the film center, which seems to be primarily engaged in education for media, and then deleted the article about individual people. That is the appropriate way, in my opinion, to handle biographical information about successful professionals who are not noteworthy in a worldwide sense but who are relevant because they are leading an important organization that likely will endure beyond their individual lifetimes. Pat Palmer (talk) 10:26, 29 February 2024 (CST)


Please exercise due diligence when moving or redirecting pages. Double redirects cause problems that can escalate, and can result in completed loops, as I have found while I have been clearing the doubles. Please do not redirect or move one of your own workspaces into a livespace article; instead, create the livespace as a new article and then copy-and-paste your content into it. John (talk) 11:18, 6 March 2024 (CST)

Double redirect

So you know, I deleted User:George Swan/sandbox/Eliza Griswold/Approval because it was a double redirect. The problem was that you created an approval subpage in your own workspace, which is unnecessary. Also, please do not redirect your work pages to live articles. Thanks. John (talk) 02:11, 1 April 2024 (CDT)

Bullingdon Club has a couple of ref problems; could you please see to them?

Hi George - I have removed the deletion proposal from Bullingdon Club. Would you please not fix the broken refs on that article? Thanks a bunch. Pat Palmer (talk) 09:19, 25 April 2024 (CDT)

A suggestion to archive Talk page

George, Would you consider archiving the oldest part of this Talk page? It's getting quite long and cumbersome to edit. Your choice, of course. I appreciate the work you are doing. Pat Palmer (talk) 09:21, 25 April 2024 (CDT)

About Kongsberg Penguin missile and other defense-related military articles

George, Saw your comments on the Kongsberg Penguin missile article, and about the Yemen coast guard. These were not bad articles per se, but I'm in the process of removing a large amount of military material that 3-4 people (including HCB) had added, including extremely detailed information about missiles used by the U.S. military, as well as far too much intimate details about the chemistry of a number of plastic explosives, which in my opinion, should never have been posted to start with. You might notice that the article includes things like where the missile is manufactured. And you might realize that there are two major wars going on in the part of the world where Yemen and Europe are, in which U.S. weaponry is involved. Probably the powers that be in Russia, for example, already know everything about these weapons, but as a reasonable precaution, I don't feel that it is helpful at this time to include details about specific weaponry that could be being used in these wars on the WWW where anyone, including people the U.S. may be fighting such as rebel groups funded by Iran. Also, most of these articles have not been updated in more than a dozen years, but they are generally written in present tense as if everything they say will never change. Yes, other websites include the material also, but that still does not make it wise. Because I know you watch this, you will also see that I am removing a number of essays the HCB posted about U.S. foreign policy. He had no qualifications to write about such topics and I did not find the writing to be neutral, but instead, focused heavily on fear of Islam, Zionist perspectives, and he had also posted literally thousands of articles about interest groups associated in particular with defending Israeli policies. As a result, I have changed the Citizendium policy to ban almost all articles about political interest groups, of which in the U.S. there are large numbers, and which are used to go around campaign finance laws that were intended to limit how much money a specific group could give to a specific candidate. The project of removing this material is extremely stressful and unpleasant to me, but I feel it is necessary. Please continue to post objections on specific articles you feel have been marked in error. I will read them and mull. I too found that JL was working too quickly, and he marked a number of articles that I decided NOT to delete. I will take a look at each case individually; this process is going to take a long time. Pat Palmer (talk) 13:27, 7 June 2024 (CDT)