Talk:List of articles every Wikipedia should have/Archives/2005

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Some old talks are removed. See history [[1]].19:19, 10 Mar 2005 (UTC)

List of (partial or full) translations in local Wikipedias

Why is this section <nowiki>'d? - Dcljr 03:47, 10 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Meta or Simple?

Just wondering, this list and the one at simple seems to have diverge quite a lot. Which one am I supposed to follow? Aurora 06:56, 12 Jan 2005 (UTC)

  • The list on simple was brought on the early of last July. The list here has been updated. Hence comes differences. In my opinion we are better to synch them based on meta list, but perhaps much better after we elaborate this list. --Aphaia 05:03, 22 Jan 2005 (UTC)


Should we include Desiderius Erasmus in the list?--Caesarion 23:03, 8 Mar 2005 (UTC)


Harry Truman detones on the list. He was far less important than F.D. Roosevelt, Lincoln and Washington. Is there any good reason to maintain him?--Caesarion 23:17, 8 Mar 2005 (UTC) ~

He dropped the atomic bomb on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. While the program had started earlier, under Roosevelt, he had been in the dark until then, and made this pivotal decision, for better or worse, on his own. Seems like a pretty important reason to me. 07:58, 13 July 2005 (UTC)

Isn't his importance/inclusion somewhat POV? I would say an article about "Nuclear Bomb" is much more neutral candidate than the human person (which cannot be separated from their actions and are always controversial). -- 13:02, 8 November 2005 (UTC)


From User talk:Hapsiainen: I my opinion, Amsterdam IS important and well-known enough to be included in the list. Brussels is on it, so why not Amsterdam? It might even be better known among people oytside Western Europe than Brussels. The city of Amsterdam is bigger than the city of Brussels (though smaller than the state of Brussels). Jerusalem, being smaller as well, is also included. I will put it back now and I beg people not to remove it unless they have a very good reason to do so.--Caesarion 12:58, 8 Mar 2005 (UTC)

I really thought that your edit was a joke or a test if anyone watches this article, because your edit summary sounded like that. More comments: Brussels is in the list because of its governmental (EU) importance. Jerusalem is in the list because it is an important city in the Abrahamic religions. Do you have any other reason for the inclusion than the size? If not, then we would also had to add e.g. Birmingham, Budapest and plenty of other cities because they are larger than Amsterdam. (en:Largest cities of the European Union by population and en:Largest urban areas of Western Europe) The list would grow too much and lose its value. "Better known" is a subjective reason. -Hapsiainen 15:51, Mar 9, 2005 (UTC)
Agreed. I removed it again because I think you didn't show the reason. You only said you had a reason but it was unclear for us what kind of reason. --Aphaia | WQ2翻訳中 | talk 18:13, 9 Mar 2005 (UTC)
This is the sort of thing I wanted to avoid. The time spent on arguing whether Amsterdam should have been on the list, could have been used to actually write an article about Amsterdam.
I've now rewritten Minipedia as an actual project. I invite you all to write Minipedia pages (500 char. max.) about Amsterdam and Brussels, and to vote for the page you find more important. The pages will be ordered according to the votes. Aliter 19:41, 9 Mar 2005 (UTC)
This isn't about writing articles ourselves, this is what articles we recommend the others to write. You have missed the point of this page. -Hapsiainen 22:41, Mar 9, 2005 (UTC)
The article can be read in more than one way, but the now archived top of this discussion page really discussed the place of the stub-like article to go with the list. But regardless, come write an article on Brussels: How long can it take you to write 500 characters or less on where it is, what it's the capital of, and what it is best known for. As soon as you do, any Wikipedia can use that as a starting point, even if they've never heard of Brussels. Aliter 13:54, 11 Mar 2005 (UTC)
Well, Hapsiainen, your arguments certainly do make sense. However, I had other reasons than size to include Amsterdam. First, ask a thousand Americans, Chinese, Japanese or Argentines or whatever non-Europeans if they know Amsterdam, Brussels, Budapest or Birmingham. I would be very surprised if Amsterdam did not do best of those four. Second, for a long time it had more significance than Brussels. In the Middle Ages and Renaissance, Brussels was important (and during the MA far more so than Amsterdam), but not more significant than competitors like Brugues, Liege and Antwerp, successively. Amsterdam, in the seventeenth century, did exceed its neighbours in size and significance by far, and was the third town in Europe (after London and Paris), and indeed one of the biggest seaports. Similarly, The Netherlands during this so called Golden Age were a powerful entity and a serious competitor for France and England. Please consider this, and then consider including Amsterdam again. This will do for now.--Caesarion 11:59, 10 Mar 2005 (UTC)

...and some other cities

But there are some more cities I miss. Maybe we should expand the list to some 50 elements. I do not think that would be too big an inflation for the towns that are already on it (and of all of which I agree they must be maintained. I think these cities, apart from Amsterdam, would be useful to be included:

Alexandria, Baghdad, Buenos Aires, Casablanca, Delhi, Johannesburg, Kyoto, Lahore, Lima, Nairobi, Nanking, Prague, San Francisco and São Paulo. Many of these are more urgent than Amsterdam, as both Africa and South America are underrepresented with only one city.--Caesarion 17:46, 10 Mar 2005 (UTC)

Disagreed on expansion to 50. There are almost 200 entries to each country already. That is one five of this list (this list will provide 1,000 basic entries to start points to build an encyclopedia). For this purpose 250 entries to cities and countries seem however too many: one fourth of the list: we have to list other things, like science related matters, historical events, and so on. On the other hand, it is a nice proposal this list has to have some cities additionally, but some of cities your listed couldn't be included in the reason the above, I think. --Aphaia | WQ2翻訳中 | talk 05:18, 13 Mar 2005 (UTC)

Minipedia cities

Ok, there are now two city pages in the Minipedia (though they could be improved): Amsterdam and Brussels, and of these Amsterdam is ahead by one vote. Aliter 14:11, 20 Mar 2005 (UTC)

And what is minipedia? It is not relevant to our discussion which article all Wikipedia should have at least in its early stage. Please don't bring irrelevant matters here.
If no one oppose within a week, I'd like to ged rid of all Minipedia related talk from this page to keep our discussion on topic. Cheers. --Aphaia | Translate Election | ++ 03:55, 23 Mar 2005 (UTC)
You want my opinion? I do oppose. You'd better appreciate someone else's work as well instead of just your own. Thank you! Caesarion 15:11, 29 Mar 2005 (UTC)

I thank Aphaia for expressing the opinion that Minipedia will grow to a stage where it might be relevant to the discussion of the articles all languages should have. I find it a bit sad that that will not happen as part of thís project, but there may prove to be advantages to such a two-track approach. Still, as the discussion here clearly shows the cultural(?) gaps are not easy to bridge, I hope everyone here will on occasion spend a few minutes on Wikimedia, if only to vote for what they consider an article all languages must have. But of course, Wikipedia functions best when articles are written, so I can only hope some also can spare five minutes to write or improve a stub article on a subject they feel is important. And to tie up the last loose end: The answer to Aphaila's question is on the Minpedia page. Aliter 22:56, 3 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Why should we have a minipedia when we can just create an index of articles in the simple English Wikipedia? I don't see how the length, complexity, or topics of articles should differ between the two. Davidstrauss 00:43, 4 May 2005 (UTC)


This list is too broad in the computers section; articles on "Motherboard", "Boot loader" and "Keyboard" are not important, IMHO. --Romanm 18:35, 10 Mar 2005 (UTC)

  • I think keyboards are interesting, especially across languages. Keyboards represent the linguistic characteristics of languages and countries. Davidstrauss 08:27, 10 May 2005 (UTC)
I agree the computer section is to large compared to other sections. Røed 20:24, 26 April 2006 (UTC)

interlanguage links

ast:Wikipedia:Llista d'artículos que toa Wikipedia tien que tener
bs:Wikipedia:1000 članaka
ca:Viquipèdia:Llistat d'articles que totes les llengües haurien de tenir
cs:Wikipedie:1000 nejdůležitějších článků
cy:Wicipedia:Rhestr erthyglau sy'n angenrheidiol yn holl ieithoedd
da:Wikipedia:Liste over artikler vi bør have
de:Wikipedia:Artikel, die es in allen Wikipedias geben sollte
el:Βικιπαίδεια:Κατάλογος άρθρων που όλες οι γλώσσες πρέπει να έχουν
en:Wikipedia:List of articles all languages should have
eo:Vikipedio:Listo de havendaj artikoloj
es:Wikipedia:Lista de artículos que toda Wikipedia debería tener
fa:ویکی‌پدیا:فهرست نوشتارهایی كه باید به همه زبان‌ها ترجمه شود
fi:Wikipedia:Luettelo keskeisistä tietosanakirja-artikkeleista
fr:Wikipédia:Liste d'articles que toutes les encyclopédies devraient avoir
fur:Vichipedie:Liste dai articui che dutis lis vichipedîs a varessin di vê
ga:Vicipéid:Liosta de ábhair is gá ag gach uilig Vicipéid
gl:Wikipedia:Lista de artigos que toda Wikipedia debera ter
gu:વિકિપીડિયા:દરેક ભાષાના વિકિપીડિયામાં હોય એવા પ્રારંભિક લેખોની યાદી
hi:विकिपीडिया:कुछ प्रारंभिक लेख जो कि हर भाषा के विकिपीडिया में होने चाहिए
hu:Wikipédia:Ezer fontos cikk
hy:Wikipedia:1000 հոդվածներ, որոնք կարևոր են բոլոր լեզուներով հանրագիտարանների համար
id:Wikipedia:Artikel yang perlu dimiliki Wikipedia seluruh bahasa
it:Wikipedia:Lista degli articoli che tutte le Wikipedie devono avere
ku:Wîkîpediya:Gotar ku ji bo hemû Wîkîpediyayan pêwîst in
la:Wikipedia:Articuli quos omnes Vicipaediae habeant
li:Wikipedia:Lies van artikele die elke Wikipedia moot höbbe
lt:Wikipedia:Sąrašas straipsnių, būtinų visomis kalbomis
lv:Wikipedia:Raksti, kuriem vajadzētu būt visu valodu Vikipēdijās
ms:Wikipedia:Senarai artikel semua bahasa perlu ada
nb:Wikipedia:Liste over artikler vi bør ha
nl:Wikipedia:Artikelen die elke Wikipedia zou moeten hebben
nn:Wikipedia:Liste over artiklar vi bør ha
pl:Wikipedia:Strony, które powinna mieć każda Wikipedia
pt:Wikipedia:Lista dos 1000 artigos essenciais
ro:Wikipedia:Listă de articole pe care ar trebui să le aibă fiecare Wikipedie
ru:Википедия:Список статей, которые должны быть во всех языковых версиях
scn:Wikipedia:Articuli nicissari
simple:Wikipedia:List of articles all languages should have
sk:Wikipedia:1000 najdôležitejších článkov
sl:Wikipedija:Članki, ki bi jih morala imeti vsaka Wikipedija
sr:Википедија:Списак чланака које српска Википедија треба да има
uk:Wikipedia:Статті які повинні бути у всіх вікіпедіях
tr:Wikipedia:Her vikipedide olması gereken makaleler
  • The list of articles should be computed much more neutrally, by sorting articles that have the greatest number of interwiki links. This would better prove that these articles are expected in most wikis, because it already exists in lots of cultures. So why not starting by getting interwiki statistics from English Wikipedia (with which most other wikis have made interwiki links, the other links being much longer to propagate between other wikis), and from a few other major wikis in the top-10 (to avoid the bias in favor of occidental culture, i.e. European languages written with the Latin script, where some important topics are well covered for example in most Asian wikis, but not very well in occidental ones).
So I would suggest checking the list of interwiki links with at least the major languages of each major script: English, German, French, Spanish and Portuguese (Latin-written), Chinese (Han-written), Russian (Cyrillic written), Arabic, Hindi (Devanagari-written), and create an effort so that these top lists are unified by resolving and completing interwikis between them. This should be a permanent maintenance effort to check that this list of top-interwikified articles synchonized in those wikis. In some cases, you will notice that a singlewiki has lots of interwikis to some regional languages, but not in other major wikis. The solution is to create at least the article stubs in the other major interwikis, to import the interwikis (the creation of stubs in other major wikis can't be automated, but a bot can still maintain a list of most-wanted articles in these wikis, and cite the other major wiki which has the greatest number of interwikis).
All interwikis found in major wikis should be counted (including interwikis to regional languages)
This list should be updated regularly (monthly?), because of ongoing efforts and evolution on all projects. There are already existing tools to help this maintenance task, notably the interwiki checker tool.
If the list becomes too large, another useful statistic can be used to help sorting it: onecancount the number of links with "Special:whatlinkshere" on the major wikis.
For now, the proposed list is clearly too much biased in favor of US-English culture, and there are lots of more important subjects to cover (for example, is it really needed to have "Marylin Monroe" in all wikis? I don't think so, this subject is really secondary for Arabic or Chinese users, and local culture really have their own "stars" that don't match the US profile.) Verdy_p 21:21, 27 December 2006 (UTC)
In my opinion the idea of choosing by (possibly weighted) number of interwiki links sounds like an ingenious way to generate a nonbiased list. --SLi 14:44, 7 January 2007 (UTC)
There's a nice and probably useful list at Common Interwiki links. --SLi 15:47, 7 January 2007 (UTC)

Necessity of "women in history" section

Special headings are unnecesary for oft-persecuted groups, let alone the single, arbitrary choice of women. The women in the category should remain on the list, but they should be filed under their respective categories. Separating the women implies that gender is more important than their accomplishments. The grouping also creates issues for figures like "Rosa Parks," who, while a woman, mostly fought for racial minority rights. Why focus on her womanhood when she focused more on her African heritage? The women on the list who worked for women's rights should be grouped under "human rights" or a new "women's rights" category. Davidstrauss 21:56, 25 Apr 2005 (UTC)

  • I'm going to move the people out of the "Women in History" section and into others if I don't see any counter-arguments soon. Davidstrauss 08:11, 10 May 2005 (UTC)
    • Well David, women were always a suppressed group, and those who have risen to any significance according to traditional (male based) standards at all are special. That is why this category exists and why it contains people that would probably not be listed if they had been male. Caesarion 19:32, 31 May 2005 (UTC)
      • I think we would be justified in listing every woman in that section using gender-neutral standards. Like I said, I don't seek to remove any of the women from the list, I just think the categorization is contrived and nonconducive to good interlinking of the articles. I'd rather see more categorization based on the fields of achievement than primarily "Categories: Women in History." How we classify the articles here affects how they will be organized in target Wikipedias. --Davidstrauss 00:11, 20 Jun 2005 (UTC)
  • I agree with David that special section for women is belittling. Sappho, Marie Curie, Joan of Arc, Queen Elizabeth I, Queen Victoria, Cleopatra and Catherine the Great would definitely be listed, although they were in other sections. I don't know about all the listed women enough to say if they were important enough. Here is my idea of new addition: Harriet Taylor should be next to John Stuart Mill. She influenced his works a great deal, John Stuart Mill wrote that it is impossible to say which part of them is from her, which part from him. And Murasaki Shikibu must be there, because "The Tale of Genji" is allegedly the first novel in the world. -Hapsiainen 12:07, Jun 1, 2005 (UTC)

I agree with both sides here. Yep, it's possible. On the one hand, it's helpful to have a section that focuses on women *trailblazers*, those who may not have been able to change the entire world, but certainly made headway for their gender before more enlightened times, as Caesarian said.

I.e. Elizabeth Blackwell did not find the cure for cancer, and therefore is not on the same level as Pasteur, for instance... but she was one of the first women to become an MD and practice medicine in the US; Mary Lyon likewise transformed education by opening Mount Holyoke college, arguably the first college for women. Yes, women outnumber men now in medical school, and in colleges and universities - but half a century ago (which is a blip in human history), women couldn't attend Princeton, Amherst, Dartmouth or enter the University of Michigan student union by the front door!

But the others are also right in that women who *have* made a significant impact, regardless of their gender, need to be normalized in the rest of the work - eg Marie Curie, Queen Elizabeth I, Jane Austen, etc. If I may further editorialize, these articles are going to be read by girls *and* boys. It irritated me to learn later in life that all the interesting women who had done work in science and the arts were often covered only in "women's history" work, or footnoted because their work covered "feminine" pursuits, eg Mary Cassatt painted women and kids, so her work wasn't "serious" - pfft - but imagine the young men who utilize this information, and get the wrong impression about what women have achieved and are capable of. Many young men aren't going to be dawdling around a "women's history" section, but will be more interested to read about a woman who studied and achieved in their own field. 06:22, 13 July 2005 (UTC)

Isn't listing women separately an affront and offence to that which they strove to achieve? Wasn't the original problem that women were perceived as different, lesser and not able to compete with men on an equal footing that they were oppressed into segregation in all things? Wouldn't segregating women into their own separate list be a further discriminatory offence? Doesn't it give the impression that they are listed because of their sexual organs rather than because of their work? Won't this mean that when someone chooses to look up "mathematicians" or "scientists" they will find an entirely male only list because women have been moved into their own separately "lesser category" of not being quite as important for what they did, as their importance for being able to give birth to children? Is not the whole entire purpose, rationale and spirit of the equality they fought so hard to achieve, the very fact that special treatment - positive or negative - ceases to exist? That all great mathematicians are great mathematicians for their mathematical prowess (end of story), not "he was great, despite being black" or "she achieved many things in a relative sense, considering she was just some lowly woman without a brain"?

Sorry but I'm unable to find this to be a trivial issue. Because it seems to undo what they worked to achieve, it appears to restore the very injustice that some of them risked and sacrificed their lives to rectify, by calmly putting the women away in a separate little box where they can't do any harm. That the women are "kept" to one side, away from the serious stuff of the men. This is simply wrong on many levels. It saddens me to see that such prejudice still exists to still insist on keeping women out of "men's affairs". It perpetuates the injustice. These women were great. Not great because they were women. But great because they were human beings who achieved great things.

Put the mathematicians in the mathematician category. No, I didn't say put the women mathematicians in the male mathematician's category. I said put all the mathematicians of whatever gender, skin colour, disability or whatever else in the mathematicians category because that what they were. Anything else is prejudice and prejudice was the very injustice many of these women wrongly suffered and fought against. You insult them by listing them separately, in my humble view. It mocks them.

Regards the women who's achievements were specifically in the cause of women's rights then add them to a "human rights" category and list them there (alongside Rev.Martin Luthor King). Think about it. You're listing the women differently because you're listing them by what they are. For everyone else, they are being listed by what they achieved. That's not equal treatment.

Further, I'd point out that this is a major violation of NPOV too, from a practical point of view. Please can this be voluntarily corrected on agreement of principle. I'm sure it's unintentional but, as it stands, this separate list for women is a form of mockery of them. An insult to exactly that which they fought so hard against. It gives out entirely the wrong message. Men are listed as "mathematician" or "physicist". Women are listed as "women". Putting them to one side and keeping them away from the "real" stuff. It's just not on. Not on at all. PetrochemicalPete 03:28, 25 October 2005 (UTC)

In addition, there is a further practical problem. I've just noticed that at least Cleopatra exists twice in the list. This has been no doubt caused by this sexist double standard in the categorisation. Orwellian double-think. Cleopatra is added because she's a woman to the "harmless little box away from reality we put women in" mockery list. Then she's added elsewhere correctly for her historical importance. The duplication has been caused exactly because of what I was saying above that the rest of the list is by achievement but the women are listed by what they are. That's two modes of contradictory classification at the same time, which logically overlap, and it's hardly surprising that it has driven contributors to error, asking them to quite literally maintain a double-standard (as that is what the term double-standard directly refers to) in adding names to the list. I can see that this is meant with goodwill in order to avoid under-representation of women but this is too much of an over-compensation that's leading to error and comes across as belitting and mocking. Which I'm sure was the opposite of the original good but misguided intention for the "special list". PetrochemicalPete 03:56, 25 October 2005 (UTC)

Lee Kuan Yew and Mahatir Bin Muhammad

Frankly I don't understand why Lee Kuan Yew and Mahathir M. (who some considers to be antisemitic) are on the list while other influential regional figures such as Soekarno or Soeharto are not. Meursault2004 14:55, 27 Apr 2005 (UTC)

You could add them (and other can remove them vice versa). As for Lee and Mahatir I think they are still influencial. Other two are not; they seem to belong to the past days. --Aphaia | Translate Election | ++ 15:49, 27 Apr 2005 (UTC)

There seems a continual misunderstanding that being listed is some kind of endorsement of a person or concept. It is not. I note that no-one has complained of Adolf Hitler being on the list. But you could not have anyone more anti-semitic than the systematic murderer of 6 million Jews, who was intent on no less than complete genocide (and not only of Jews alone either). No-one mentions the listing of Adolf Hitler because it's understood that an article on Hitler is not an endorsement of anything he did. It is understood that the preservation of the Auschwitz concentration camp as a Holocaust museum is not an endorsement of the Holocaust. But, on the contrary, a means to ensure future generations are aware of what happened that no such thing ever transpires on this Earth ever again. A biography of Hitler can act as a warning to future generations because Hitler did play on people's fears and charm them with his euphamistic rhetoric to get himself voted into power to commit his evil crimes. Should another Hitler rise, pray otherwise, then education of the people about Hitler and the Holocaust is the means by which it never happens again. Because the people will learn to recognise the rhetoric and see through any charm or euphamism to what such people really are, denying them power or any means to carry out their genocides.
This list is a minimum list, not a maximum list. The appearance of an article (such as that on Adolf Hitler or George W. Bush or Osama bin Laden) does not represent any form of endorsement or celebration of the person. As always, every article should be NPOV. Those on persons that of neutral biography. That of concept, netural explanation.
This is further reason to normalise and eradicate the special "women" section because this is positive discrimination and might be partially responsible for the false perception that this is a list of celebration and endorsement, rather than a neutral list of neutral articles (based only on historical or cultural significance, be it good or bad). I understand that some cultures feel that the positive discrimination by segregation of women or blacks is some form of compensation for previous injustices against them. But this is not the place for that and it only introduces a confusing double-standard. Some articles are given a special section of "positive celebration" on the strength of what someone is / was, while every other article follows a different classification of neutral listing on the strength of what they did (in purely NPOV historical significance terms). This double standard is conspiring to ruin this list, introducing a confusion as to how our classification is being derived. PetrochemicalPete 06:26, 29 October 2005 (UTC)

what about interlang table?

I mean something like ->

simple en sk
Johann Sebastian Bach + +
Ludwig van Beethoven + +
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart + +
Richard Wagner + +

where '+' means article exists and '-' means article doesn't exists. It could help find missing articles and translate it from other language(s).

Liso@talkcontrib 07:33, 4 May 2005 (UTC)

  • Are you willing to work on this table (or these tables)? In that case it is a good idea :-) Meursault2004 09:58, 4 May 2005 (UTC)
  • If list will be stable, why not? :) But I mean this is COOPERATIVE work So I dont like to control every language if they have or not appropriate article! I could do it for simple, en and sk. :) Liso@talkcontrib 08:37, 5 May 2005 (UTC)
  • I said here above that it was a good idea. It ìs still a good idea, but remember that there are already some 100 active wikipedias and another 70 or so slightly active wikipedias. Let's say we just take the 100 active wikipedias, then we will require at least 100 colums for these informations. Well what are the opinions of other users? Meursault2004 10:10, 6 May 2005 (UTC)
  • I think it's a great idea. This would help with inconsistencies between the tables, too. We just need to make sure the talk page doesn't turn into multi-lingual babble. I can read (and write to a good degree) German, so I can help with the two biggest Wikipedias. I would do pages by language family to foster communication and have far less than 100 columns. A Germanic language page, a romance language page, etc. Every page would still need EN and SIMPLE because they're sort of the foundations. A different strategy would be to do one page for the top Wikipedias and some subdivision for the rest. 100 columns would be unreadable. Maybe this calls for a dynamic, non-wiki tool. Davidstrauss 08:21, 10 May 2005 (UTC)

Rafael Sancho? Who he?

The artists list is rife with mistakes. Presumably this mystery artist is supposed to be Raphael (Raffaello Sanzio)? I would also like to see Albrecht Dürer, Diego Velázquez, Francisco Goya, Johannes Vermeer and Henri Matisse considered for inclusion. Ham 18:52, 6 May 2005 (UTC)

This may be currently discussed at the #wikilist channel on the Freenode IRC network

  • je n'ai jamais vu personne sur ce canal irc. et toi ? Alvaro
  • ich habe niemals jemand bemerkt in diese Kanal. und du ? Alvaro
  • i never met someone on this channel. and you ? Alvaro 15:25, 2005 May 28 (UTC)


...must surely be on the list under writers? -- Blorg 22:22, 15 Jun 2005 (UTC)

In general, if you think some topic deserves to be listed, the best way is, to edit the page directly. As for Cervantes, I agree with you. Among modern literary, Cervantes should be one of authors we should consider to list him or not at least. --Aphaia | Translate Election | ++ 23:40, 15 Jun 2005 (UTC)
  • Cervantes is only famous for writing Don Quixote, which is already on the list. Kappa 11:35, 17 Jun 2005 (UTC)
No, he is the biggest figure in the Spanish literature, and his entire work prepared and refine the modern Spanish language. It is not our concern someone is just well-known or not. His or her significance can't be valued not only if well-known or not. --Aphaia | Translate Election | ++ 11:42, 17 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Leonardo da Vinci

I'd like to suggest including Leonardo da Vinci in the List of Persons. He can be listed as an inventor, researcher, engineer, painter. As most link him with his painting "Mona Lisa", I assume, painter would suffice most. If he is not well known in continents foreign to me, I'll withdraw my proposition. --Purodha Blissenbach 12:00, 2005 Jun 29 (UTC)

Cola -> Lemonade

I'd like to propose replacing Cola by Lemonade.

  • Imho there is no need to unnecessarily concentrate on a specific kind or brand.

--Purodha Blissenbach 12:00, 2005 Jun 29 (UTC)

Well, "Cola" isn't a brand. There are many different manufacturers of cola drinks (and in fact there are two types of cola drink -- the ubiquitous brown one and the less common red one which actually tastes of cola). But if we want to be more generic it would be better to call this article "carbonated beverage" or something similar.

Added literature section; changed another section to social scientists

Before, there was a section on "writers and thinkers," heavy on the philosophers and social scientists, with a few dudes like Shakespeare and Alighieri thrown in. The social science of how and why we are, is a bit different than the literature and drama showing us who we are, so to speak. I tried to come up with a list of people who are still influential today, or who led a great literary movement, but it's heavy on American and European writers. Since there might be some arguments, I want to first back up why I chose what I did:

  • Isaac Asimov (prolific, popularized science fiction and science for many readers; also, member of the seminal Futurians, a 20th century group of science fiction fans who went onto greatness in their fields)
  • Jane Austen (novels and romances, in the literary sense, differ in that novels are supposed to be realistic/true to life, romances are not; which is why Jules Verne and HG Wells were said to write "scientific romances" even though they weren't about necking lovers. Anyway - the gist - Austen changed the format of novels, she was one of the first to write about love, family and money; and her work was not crap, unlike most of the novels circulating at that time in lending libraries.)
  • Bertolt Brecht (broke the fourth wall; explicitly ideological)
  • Lord Byron (Romanticism)
  • F. Scott Fitzgerald (epitomizing the Lost Generation, post WWI)
  • Hildegard of Bingen (a polymath who was influential in both music, religious and secular writing)
  • Victor Hugo (Romanticism)
  • Edgar Allan Poe (furthering horror, gothic, short stories)
  • Jean-Paul Sartre (existentialism)
  • Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley (creating the horror/science fiction genre)
  • Murasaki Shikibu (first novelist, as stated earlier) 06:59, 13 July 2005 (UTC)

Additional literary articles

Again, tried to come up with people who continue to be influential, who permanently changed literature in some way, or were vital to growth of their country's literary heritage... etc. Anticipating disgust (grin) with some of the seemingly fluffy choices ... more explanation ...

  • Arthur Conan Doyle - Sherlock Holmes was then, and is still one of the most popular literary creations of all time, an early mass media hero jumping to multiple mediums. Arguably, Edgar Rice Burroughs also belongs on the list for this reason (perhaps under popular culture) since Tarzan and his Mars books also popularized mass media heroes.
  • Emily Dickinson - influential, great poet
  • Alexandre Dumas - less influential as a writer per se, than for developing the "roman feuilleton" - serial novels. They were the then-contemporary equivalent of dime store novels, with audience-pleasing characters and plots. Without Dumas, maybe no Sherlock Holmes, comic books, soap operas - or Rocky movies.
  • Dashiell Hammett - with Poe and Doyle, key influence on the mystery genre - invented "hard-boiled" school, and with it much of noir and pulp fiction genre.
  • Langston Hughes - the greatest of the Harlem Renaissance, enormously influential in African-American circles
  • Sylvia Plath - a woman trailblazer, but also influential in creating the poet confessional school
  • JRR Tolkien - His work led to the mass popularization of fantasy
  • the brothers Grimm and Hans Christian Andersen - the first for compiling fairy and folk tales; the second for turning these myths into a new literature explicitly for children.

Why so few? why were some of these important women bios hidden?

Okay, I've come in late here, but I'm surprised at what's been left out in several key areas. Musicians (which I added composers to) is very short (5 people?), there are three times as many computer scientists listed, there are no military leaders in bios (although Osama bin Laden gets to be listed as a terrorist), and many pivotal women have been edited out with formatting.

Bottom line - is the point really to limit everything to a set number of articles, even if it leaves out someone or some topic that's important?

The women in history (debated above) list is especially limited. With some of the omissions made with editing (the only section in which this is rampant - with 10 names hidden ... with none of the names appearing in other lists)... did someone omit the people because they were not convinced of their importance, or did not know who they were, and assumed that they were not important?

Ie. Amelia Earhart is on the list, although she is more famous now for her disappearance than her disputed gift for flying ... (Amy Johnson, Nancy Love, Jackie Cochran arguably did more for women in aviation AND were known as better pilots) but Sojourner Truth, Harriet Tubman and Helen Keller are now hidden? Truth and Tubman were two of the most important people, period, in the American abolition movement and 19th century America, with Tubman the "Moses" of the Underground Railroad. I could understand omitting Truth because her fame was largely as a speaker; but Tubman's achievement is unique. Essential? yes, to American and African history.

I note also that there are a dearth of Africans and African-Americans on the list, period. The point here is not to be "politically correct," but to cover people who would be key to any encyclopedia of the world. A reader might find Stravinsky jarring to the ear, for instance, but there's no doubt that he had an incredible influence on modern music, and thus would appear as a major bio in any section on music. (Although he doesn't appear here in the list of five musicians...)

Meanwhile, no one has ever come close to publicizing the experience and special needs of the disabled as Helen Keller - without benefit of sight or sound. It's extraordinary that someone would want to omit her.

Also hidden was Emma Goldman, an influential socialist; Germaine Greer has been eclipsed, while "Feminine Mystique" author Betty Friedan, as well as Elizabeth Cady Stanton, are not even listed ... but world leaders Indira Gandhi and Golda Meir stay on? 08:51, 13 July 2005 (UTC)

Yes, the point is to limit it to a set number of articles. This is set as a minimum goal, not an exhaustive list. -- Cyrius 19:53, 23 July 2005 (UTC)
Helen Keller is an inspirational figure, certainly, but she's had little impact on the world otherwise. She was mostly active in ineffectively promoting socialism. She doesn't deserve special inclusion just because she was severely disabled. And, sorry, but Tubman's underground railroad work does not qualify as African history any more than my family's graphic arts work (which happened in America) counts as Hungarian or Russian history. African history is, by definition, what happens in Africa. Only the slave capturing or initial transport would qualify. Otherwise, you're using a double standard where African history follows former Africans but European history doesn't follow former Europeans. Finally, approaching the list from the perspective "Are there enough women?" is intellectually dishonest. We should be looking at facets of the human existence and deciding on who (or what) affected each area most, not forcefully including women so this list has its own affect. Affirmative action isn't NPOV. --Davidstrauss 18:08, 1 August 2005 (UTC)

minor languages

while it doesn't do any harm to any WP to have all these articles, I do think that especially for minor languages, it is much more important to concentrate on local of folkloristic issues that will not be on any other WP. On als: for example (Alemannic; there are no speakers of Alemannic who do not also read and write German), I will not be motivated to write about Nelson Mandela or Leif Ericsson, since anybody can read about them on de: or en:, while topics of regional Swiss or Swabian notability are much more likely not to be on one of the 'big' 'pedias. 08:38, 19 July 2005 (UTC)

I don't see why we'd put such issues first into the minor language Wikipedias. If a concept is "folkloristic", it's already more likely known by the speakers of the minor-language Wikipedia. I don't really turn to Wikipedia to learn about my own culture. I use it to read about other cultures. --Davidstrauss 18:11, 1 August 2005 (UTC)
I agree totally with This list does not make much sense for many smaller languages, who have their own history and their own important figures, who perhaps have no other mention in the larger wikipedias. And not everyone who speaks a minority language already knows everything about their own history and culture, but they are more likely to want to read about it. Stettlerj 18:59, 8 October 2005 (UTC)
In this respect I would like to add, that young and new members of a minority society today NOT know too much about their own culture, and that they are often quite eager to learn more. For this, a minority language Wikipedia is excellent.
Furthermore it might be considered, that such a Wikipedia may reveal facts, yet unknown by scientists, that are important for wider areas. So the remarks about plants by Brokesales in the Saterfrisian Test-Wikipedia (see request) may be of importance for the etymology of plant-names. That etymology may learn about facts from dark periods of history. And according to Santayana (missing in the list!), knowledge of history may prevent us from being forced to repeat it! --Pyt 15:51, 5 October 2006 (UTC)

Inclusion of homosexuality

In this edit, an anon removed homosexuality from the list, saying:

definitely NOT something that "ALL languages should have"; in many countries it translates as "perverts" and is illegal to promote; whose agenda is to put this in "all languages"??

As I thought that this might be a rather... contraversial move, I've reverted and am now asking for input.

James F. (talk) 09:41, 26 August 2005 (UTC)

We well know the "American way" is to want to force the miserable perversion of homosexuality to be promoted in a positive light, on every other language and culture in the world, but I'm warning you now, this will be answered with the stiffest and most widespread resistance, if that is your ultimate eventual agenda, so just give it up.
[ Anon ]
Reverted again. --Palnatoke 06:34, 27 August 2005 (UTC)

OK, you would not heed my warning. You insist on having an official policy that says you're going to ram homosexuality down the throats of people who really don't want to hear anything about it, and in countries where doing so is illegal. It's exactly for stuff like this why you are rapidly getting a reputation as "jokipedia".

It's a shame really. This site had so much potential. But now it looks like it's going to be used as a tool for spreading unhealthy and immoral perversion to the innocent. Now prepare for WAR.

[ Anon ]

Wikipedia aims to present information from a neutral point of view without making moral judgments. We also include articles on many other things that many cultures find distasteful or immoral. If you find this unacceptable then I suggest Wikipedia is not for you; you are welcome to take the content you do find acceptable and make your own fork. Mindspillage (spill yours?) 07:33, 28 August 2005 (UTC)

You can not use the pretext of "neutrality" when you are trying to preach homosexuality in contravention of local law and decency. That pretext works in your country, but we are determined not to let our countries get like yours. Leave it up to the language and do not have pages dictating what they "must" have when the agenda is only to push homosuality as something "normal" and "healthy" which it is not.

[ Anon ]

Now, hold on. This page is just a suggestion and in no way an obligation made to any project. This page is not dictating anything to anyone. Each community itself decides what is in its project. So, please keep cool and stop screaming. Anthere 08:46, 28 August 2005 (UTC)

That is reassuring. But if I may have any input on this list at all then, for the record I am strongly against including "homosexuality" on any list of topics to be "suggested" (with "suggested" wordings no less) to every wiki in every language in existence, and will continue to resist such inclusion. You have no idea what the conditions are in every population of speakers of every language in the world. But what you consider appropriate for your condition in your country, will not match the conditions in another country that uses another official language, with a completely different mentality. To suggest otherwise is nothing less than Cultural Imperialism. To disguise such an Imperialist policy as "neutrality" displays the exact mentality of the gaudiest of dissipate Roman Emperors with their faces covered in make-up. You may well live in a bubble, but others in the world has been studying your every move for 2000 years, and know well how quickly a "suggestion" can turn into something a little more forceful. And by the way, the argument above "without making moral judgements" happens to be the argument of child molesters and pornographers. They don't want anyone to make moral judgements either, and will readily try to use the concept of "neutrality" (their version of it) as a mechanism for doing away with moral judgements and substituting their own.

[ Anon ]

What coutry do you come from, and what wiki do you work on?
Li-sung 17:08, 28 August 2005 (UTC)

I'm not sure it would be prudent to reveal what wiki(s) at this juncture; you can just put me down as a native Hasmonean...

[ Anon ]

Hasmonean? Then the inclusion of non-male homosexuality passes because the wording is for a man to lay down with another man. Which following the underlying logic of your pedantically literalistic interpretations excludes women and animals. This modifies the content of the article but doesn't yet justify its removal. PetrochemicalPete 15:00, 25 October 2005 (UTC)
I've reverted, again. Anon, for want of a better term (please consider registering), if you continue to remove it without anyone else backing you up we will be forced to either lock the page or block you, neither of which further the goals of meta.
James F. (talk) 21:58, 29 August 2005 (UTC)

Re the comment line:

An article on homosexuality does not imply it should be pro-homosexuality

People's Republic of China recently declared that homosexual behaviour is not a disorder, as have some other countries. But not every country in the world has done so, or is ready to do so. If you ask every language to have an article on the subject, some of them are going to be a little more frank, and not as flattering, as others might like! Those wikis represent cultures that would probably just as soon not have such an article in the first place, since the body of their knowledge, that they are trying to capture here, is not relevant to it.

Did you realize that at no time in history have all cultures shared the same "body of knowledge"? There have always been areas that one culture had better knowledge of, like medicine, etc. This is true even today. That's what makes wikipedia so important, and really, the next step of the internet. Never before has such exchange and correlation of data as a group effort been feasible. Especially for the "smaller" languages, such a tool can prove valuable in promoting diversity, and even in rejuvenating the vitality of the language by providing a databank for each language's speakers to take stock of its entire field. In respecting diversity, we must respect that diverse cultures have diverse directions and methods and outlooks; we must not even dream of attempting to use lists like this one as a tool to enforce that "everyone is on the same page" as YOU happen to be on, especially with controversial agendas. Such attempts would only backfire, and would likely be viewed as a monster coming from afar through the lagoon to swallow one's city. Blockinblox 15:08, 1 September 2005 (UTC)

Anyone else notice that Anon is using AOL? Open proxy or American Christian fundamentalist? 04:28, 20 October 2005 (UTC)
There is no more shame in my being on AOL, then there is if I were on open proxy, American, Christian, or fundamentalist. But there IS shame on those who would presume to limit my legitimate freedom to be any of those things, or insinuate any wrong on my part for being so. Shame on you, if that's what you're trying to do. Blockinblox 12:52, 20 October 2005 (UTC)
Alan Turing, a mathematician who's work is the foundational principles upon which all computers operate and who was highly instrumental in helping to break the Nazi Enigma code, was a homosexual. At this time, homosexuality was also illegal in Britain (this is no longer the case) and Turing was arrested for illegal homosexual practices. He was experimented upon (as it was deemed that homosexuality was a disease and they used living human beings as guinea pigs to try to find a means to "cure" their homosexuality), to the point where he committed suicide by biting into an apple laced with cyanide preferring death to their experimentations.
This is historical fact. The history and eventual death of this man is bound up to his homosexuality. It is not possible to provide a proper biography of this man without referencing to the fact that he was a homosexual. Therefore, the question becomes should Alan Turing be edited out of certain wikipedias completely in order to censor his homosexuality?
Unfortunately, as mentioned earlier, Turing developed the foundational mathematical basis of computer science. In artificial intelligence, the basic test of whether to classify a machine as intelligent or not was defined by Turing and is therefore named after him, called "the Turing Test". In the very foundational theory of computers, there is something called "Turing equivalence" which defines whether a machine conforms to being a "universal Turing machine". Together with Church, there is also the "Church-Turing theory". Because he was so instrumental in developing the underlying mathematical theory of computers, it basically becomes impossible to discuss the subject without mentioning Turing.
Therefore, the question becomes whether such censorship should cascade? If Turing is not included and not allowed to be mentioned for his homosexuality then a great many computer science articles must also be removed. If computer science articles are removed then on what basis can articles explaining what hardware and software is be written (when the definition rests heavily on Turing's shoulders)?
If homosexuality is not allowed to exist then Turing can't be allowed and if he is not allowed then computer science disappears. This is only considering one homosexual man. There were many more and goodness knows what other large sections of wikipedia disappear, if they are edited out.
Looking at it solely as a practical matter, the difficulty is that homosexuals might or might not be regarded as perverts by certain individuals and cultures. But they still have contributed to the body of human knowledge and achievement. If we cannot provide biographies of these people because these must include the facts of their homosexuality then how can any contributions they've made to the world be referenced? If you cut off the wrist then the whole hand is also cut off too.
Further, in sections on nature, are we to edit out the fact that many species of animal besides humans are known to engage in homosexual activity? It is factual from observation that homosexuality occurs perfectly naturally across all sexually reproducing species. You might deem such observable evidence as pro-homosexuality that it should not be included. Therefore, you ask an encyclopedia to not just censor information but also change the facts from their reality to your chosen fantasy, simply to suit your moral preferences.
In many countries and cultures, male homosexuality is illegal but no laws exist regards female homosexuality (infamously in British history, a past Queen disbelieved that lesbianism could even exist and, by this, female homosexuality was never illegal at any point, even when male homosexuality was made illegal). Therefore, we must ask the question of you: Could an article on homosexuality exist if it only makes reference to female homosexuality or to observations of natural homosexuality in animals? In every country and culture I know of, animals are deemed incapable of being charged with a crime. Their homosexuality is not guided by any known conscious endeavour and neither is it in any way illegal.
You would also need to clarify the exact details of this policy. Is it the act of sodomy which is the perversion or sexual attraction to a person of the same sex? Because if it is the act of sodomy then must we also censor the anatomical fact that the female clitoris partially extends into the anal area that heterosexual sodomy would be a perversion for the same reason? Even if it is factual and completely naturally occurring, the factual truth must be altered and ommitted?
The Ancient Greeks practised homosexuality as a bizarre form of contraception (a relationship with another man satisfying sexual urges but with no risk of pregnancy, as they would have with sex with their wives). It was considered in no means perversion or illegal in that ancient culture. It's not entirely known who did what to whom but names such as Pythagoras (his theorems are fundamental to geometry and the Western scale of music is based on his mathematics. Geometry is fundamental to topology. Topology is fundamental to chaos theory. Chaos theory is fundamental to weather forecasting and fluid dynamics. Geometry is fundamental to Einsteinian relativity. Relativity is fundamental to astrophysics and cosmology. Edit this man out of history because he might have engaged in homosexual activity and you catapult human knowledge straight back to prehistory), Aristotle (which kills the scientific method and, therefore, all of science in its entirety), Socrates, Plato (no Atlantis mythology, his Republic never written), Archimedes (yet more mathematics, water displacement, engineering disappears), Euclid (nevermind, that's just killed mathematics completely) and so forth.
Like it or not, people who've engaged in homosexual activity have contributed massively to the pool of human knowledge, science and technology (if not directly then by "Standing on the Shoulders of Giants", as Newton called it, that one science depends on another, one technology on another that if you hack away the tree's root then the whole tree falls).
From a practical point of view, whether the homosexuality is placed in a positive or negative light, it cannot be ignored and it cannot be edited out or altered to a truth that it not born out by the observable natural evidence without committing an act of intellect dishonesty. None of which abandons a NPOV at any point to make a single moral judgment on homosexuality itself.
If you wish your policy to be accepted then it is only prudent that you supply the necessary exacting details of what is objectionable, what should be done specifically and what-not for policy review. So that the exact justification can be reviewed before we tell you to **** off. PetrochemicalPete 14:42, 25 October 2005 (UTC)
Well you have committed several fallacies of logic here, and with all these false premises, naturally enough you have arrived at a false conclusion. First of all, I have never in this conversation discussed "editing out" any existing articles. I merely stated that certain language wikipedias may have better things to write about than the article "homosexuality", and by no means should they be coerced or pressured into having such an article. It does not logically follow from that that there would necessarily be no references to famous homosexuals whatsoever on that wiki. And that last paragraph is very arrogant of you, because it assumes that there is a body of pro-homosexual people in control here, who have authority over me, and that I have to attempt to justify myself to before they tell me to "**** off". I recognise no such authority or hierarchy here, and if you do tell me to **** off, I likely won't. Just so you know. I have every bit as much right to stay here here as you do, Pete, and just because I recognise homosexuality to be deviant, does not give you the right to exclude me for my opinion that you happen to disagree with.
Each wikipedia must be independent and set its own criteria internally as regards POV / NPOV, and not have it dictated to them by a tiny left wing group, if this project is to remain credible to most people.
Oh yeah, and as long as I'm still entitled to my opinion, I don't feel sorry for the guy who bit the apple one little bit. Blockinblox 15:53, 25 October 2005 (UTC)
The exclusion of an article on homosexuality is exactly a conscious means of editing the information provided. It would introduce non-netural systematic bias to the information, violating NPOV. For example, if I consciously made the decision to write about Darwinian evolution but then insisted I had better things to do than write about the corresponding Creationism from all the religions of the world then that would be a case of systematic bias against Creationism. Note that subjects such as genetic algorithms in artificial intelligence are based on an adaptation of evolutionary theory (the same mechanisms of evolutionary theory are re-applied to an artificial situation, in order to "evolve" practical answers to complex problems by emulating nature's method of doing so). Implicitly, the mechanisms succesfully exploited in genetic algorithms are an (artificial) evolution in microcosm and therefore you can't cover this subject without either writing of evolutionary theory in general and linking to that or, if it is deemed that evolution should be excluded for cultural reasons, that you end up writing about all the mechanisms of evolutionary theory inside the article on genetic algorithms (and it is left up to the reader to back-trace that if it factually works to useful purpose in this artificial situation then it's existence in nature, to one degree or another, must be guaranteed. Note, as an example that this is not necessarily contradictory and I'm remaining NPOV, the last Pope John Paul II gave recognition to the existence of the evolutionary process, whilst retaining his religion's Creationist beliefs). Further, we have subjects such as genetics, memetics, the Human Genome project and others which again are dependent at least historically on evolutionary theory.
If we allow this on homosexuality then you open the flood gates. Creationists can systematically bias evolutionary theory out of their wikipedias. Noting Rosa Park's sad death yesterday, racists could decide that they have better things to do and systematically bias blacks and the Civil Rights movement in America out of their wikipedia. Sexism could systematically bias all women out of the wikipedia (or place them in their own "harmless" section away from the men, creating a gender apartheid and double standard in the classification).
It exactly follows that if one article may be excluded by cultural belief then any and all ultimately could too. Logically, if the one is permitted then the others are justified by the same rationale. You say you have better things to do than include an article on homosexuality and this opens the flood gates that racists have better things to do than write about Rosa Park's death, sexists have better things to do than write about famous women, creationists have better things to do than write about evolution (or any of its dependents). This exactly logically follows. Unless you propose that only you are exempted with solely your beliefs while everyone else follows a different standard.
You talk of arrogance but what if a different contributor to your language's wikipedia wants to include the article? You arrogantly presume that a language's country of origin has cultural rights over that language's wikipedia. What if I was to learn your language? Would I not have the right both to speak your language and the right to my own beliefs, here in the country I now reside where homosexuality is not illegal, to contribute to your language's wikipedia? Culture and language is most certainly linked in linguistical terms but it does not follow that all speakers of your language come under the authority of your lands, your laws and your cultural beliefs.
The reverse example is the perfect example. You converse with me here in English. This does not mean that you come under the laws and culture of England, does it? In fact, with the use of English as a Lingua Franca globally as well as being the main language of more populous countries such as America then most people speaking English here would, on average, not come under the laws, culture or otherwise of England. It's not that clear cut that your language defines your culture and laws.
If you are stating that language defines cultural immutably then this list is written in English. The laws of England do not hold homosexuality illegal. It stays on the English list by your own reasoning but feel free to drop it during translation to your "culture". Though it is very arrogant to assume all those who speak your language share your lands and culture. If I were to speak your language then there is no cultural or legal impediment to my contributing an NPOV article on homosexuality to your wikipedia.
You also misunderstand my final humourous comment. I'm more than aware (as I've just tried to explain to you above) that wikipedia has no authority over its contributors whatsoever. Anyone may edit any page. If I learnt your language then I can contribute to your wikipedia and if you learnt mine then you could do the same in return. The wikipedias of all languages are not the possession of any culture or any religion or any land. There exists no authority here but reality (and the clauses of the GNU FDL). You misunderstand the nature of my comment that I was not suggesting you'd be overruled but I was suggesting that I believed you cannot factually prove your case for the exclusion of an NPOV article on homosexuality. My comment was conveying the pre-destined and pre-ordinained conclusion that your justification would prove to be lacking (which I base on my belief that you are simply wrong). I in no way meant that it wouldn't be fairly listened to (in fact, I exactly was encouraging you to compile your justification and present it. It is simply a personal belief that it would be lacking and your freedom of expression will be retained fully exactly because my beliefs do not override yours. But, by the same token, your beliefs do not override mine either). It is also merely a colloquialism to say "**** off", as I in no way meant to imply that you have no right to be here. On the contrary, I welcome you to stay and I am not of the politically correct mentality that I do not believe that you should be censored from expressing your opinion on any grounds. But I do believe personally that you are wrong. I presume you respect that I am just as entitled to that opinion and expressing it here as you are with your opinions, yes?
But, in the interests of reaching consensus instead of simply fighting, you are in agreement that homosexuality exists? It might be deviant and illegal to promote it in your culture and jurisdiction but you do not deny its existance. Is that assertion correct? Then write an article on homosexuality that reflects this. Write an article which states that homosexuality is deviant and which does not promote it but condemns it. It is a subject which exists. You have a passion to write here of its deviancy. Then write the article in that exact same spirit. Consider that even though it may be illegal and deviant that your culture and country does have deviants and criminals, yes? Homosexuality exists and maybe others in your culture are homosexuals. You could consider the article to be information to the homosexual in your culture about why their behaviour is deviant. Help them back on the right path. Try to maintain an NPOV within the context of your culture (so if the prohibition on homosexuality comes from a Holy Text then quote this Text to do as an encyclopedia should in providing such details of when laws were passed, who passed the law and so forth) but, yes, write the article within the context of your culture.
Is that a fair compromise? The article is not the promotion of homosexuality but its recognition as existing. You can look at it in the same light as writing an article about any other deviant behaviour. Murder is against the law but this does not mean that you cannot write an article about it. Would not an encyclopedia be the correct place for the law to be explained? How can people know and follow the law if it is not explained to them? If it is in the body of law then it must have been legally passed into law officially at some point. Write about the history of when this happened. That law must have an official definition of what does and doesn't constitute homosexual behaviour in the eyes of the law, so include that definition (if there are homosexuals in your culture then reading this article will tell them what they must or mustn't do to be keeping with the law, so you could consider it the upholding of the law).
Is that compromise acceptable to you? PetrochemicalPete 01:12, 26 October 2005 (UTC)
My friend, in 99.9% of the Earth's surface, homosexuality is likened to bestiality. Just because it is something that YOU practice, or that YOUR culture glorifies, and you claim to be "civilised" and "progressive", does not mean we are not going to resist your forceful spread of it by any means possible. The 1% of the earth's surface where it is considered a "good" thing are the places where you have forced yourself, not where you have been welcomed, and we have noticed this and are determined to stop it. Why don't you insist that all wikipedias have an article on bestiality while you're at it??? Every sngle argument you have used or can use in defense of the one, you can similarly use for the other. What? Does that disgust you??? Well that is how people in most countries look at your culture. We don't want any part of it, and we do not want to devote articles to bestiality any more than homosexuality, just because those things exist in places where they are tolerated. If you are still capable of thought, think about it for a moment and you will see I am right. There are different standards in different regions of the world, you cannot impose your own local standard which is the lowest common denominator, across the board on the rest of us that have higher standards, and all I am doing is fighting against and resisting such cultural imperialism. I am not saying we should delete the English article on homosexuality, because that is obviously what English speaking countries glory and revel in. I'm just saying put your missionary agenda aside and leave it alone at this point, because it's only going to backfire in your face more than it has already. Blockinblox 01:32, 26 October 2005 (UTC)
Rather than continuing fighting where neither of us are ever going to change our opinions, I've made a change to the list that it now lists "sexuality" rather than "homosexuality". This probably serves both of us better because, from my point of view, the failure to recognise heterosexuality and bisexuality (also, non-sexuality can exist as well as covering related issues of celebacy - religious and non-religious - plus even fetishism, swinging, threesomes, pornography. It's really a wider "human issue" than only homosexuality) would be as wrong as leaving out homosexuality. But, from your point of view, it's not promoting any particular sexuality (or, if you prefer to see it that way, "deviancy"). Content can then be entirely neutral, as no more than explanation of what constitutes what, remaining purely informational. Adapt as necessary for your culture and laws (I still don't agree philosphically but if it is against the law of your land then we can't ask you to break the law and must recognise that on a pragmatic level).
Would this serve as an acceptable compromise? Sexuality as a general concept. So it would also rightly include other forms of sexuality without bias. From heterosexuality to bisexuality to non-sexuality (rarely mentioned but some people really ain't interested, irrespective of gender). Also a convenient place to mention celebacy (both religious - monks or other religious equivalent - and cultural - no sex before marriage - and conscious decision - movements promoting celebacy as contraception / disease prevention in teenagers) or even monogamy / polygamy or fetishism, if an article wants to go that far into the subject. Drop or alter those sections which might be breaking your laws (though I still disagree philosophically, you can't be asked to break the law for the sake of one Wikipedia article).
As I say, the more I think on this topic then listing only "homosexuality" isn't really meeting my approval either but for alternate reasons. There's a massive subject here and only mentioning one sexual preference does seem biased. The more I think, the more examples come to mind. For example, in some cultures, Mormon and some Arab, then polygamy - having many wives - isn't a problem or against the law. Does that not also deserve a mention as gay marriages in the Netherlands (who, alternatively, allow that but do not allow polygamous marriage)?
If we take a wider view then that satisfies me more as it covers the subject properly in a NPOV way. While it gives you scope to edit as is appropriate to your culture's laws, so as not to be breaking them. I still retain my philosophical stance on the issue but, in the end, it's a pragmatic compromise of some kind that suits everyone which we actually need here. We also can't ask you to break the law, which must be recognised on a pragmatic level. PetrochemicalPete 07:30, 29 October 2005 (UTC)
Actually, what would really satisfy me is if you make it absolutely crystal clear, at the top of the entire list, with a message in very simple English, that this whole thing is just a list of suggestions (from one tiny group of likeminded people), and in NO WAY is it a requirement or official policy. Also, the page should be moved ASAP from "List of articles all languages should have" - because the ambiguity of the English word should is proving misleading to many - to something more along the lines of "List of 100 suggested starter topics for all languages". No one likes being told what they "should" do. The whole idea of this page smacks of pure colonialism, and the idea that English speakers are smart enough to decide what the whole world needs to know about (like how many varieties of sexual deviance they can come up with, for example)... I'll bet if the list had been drawn up in Chinese or Hebrew or Turkish or Bushman, it would look somewat different. Blockinblox 14:44, 29 October 2005 (UTC)
Minor point; you say "the idea that English speakers are smart enough to decide what the whole world needs to know about" above. Again, many people attribute language as equivalent to culture. It is not.
All of us here are speaking English because we need a medium through which to communicate with each other. English, for historical reasons (including, yes, past colonialism), has become the practical main Lingua Franca for international communication. Yes, not the sole one or the best one or anything else. This is just a practical fact for us to get this project done, it's not intended to be a judgement call or moral diktat or anything else of that nature.
This list is in English for the purposes of international distribution. A pragmatic reason only.
In other words, you can be an English speaker in any land, under any culture, with any set of beliefs and expert knowledge in any subject within the whole realm of human experience.
This list, if anything, is entirely to encourage that diversity, not cut it off. But some language needed to be used for communication purposes. English happens to be the pragmatic choice. Not the only choice or a better choice (Esparanto might be less biased but I bet most of us can't communicate in it and it could still be accused of Eurocentricism anyway), but a purely pragmatic choice.
If it helps, I come here from the Welsh Wicipedia. We're the first (and likely to also be the last) colony of the English empire. In the past, the English tried to delibrately destroy the Welsh language and culture. The Welsh language has been fighting for survival against the invasion of the English language for centuries.
From a cultural POV, I adopt the language of a colonial oppressor and past direct and active enemy of my culture and its language, solely to ensure that we might communicate with each other. It'd be nice to have that appreciated and that it's not assumed that there is a flat "European culture" with a singular "conspiracy theory" (a bizarre concept for what has the most diversity in the smallest area on the face of planet Earth, where nearly every country speaks its own separate language and where, as the EU shows, we rarely agree on even the most trivial of issues like units of measurement or whether we should or shouldn't have a constitution. Such suggestions, which I've also heard Americans express, frankly threatens being a paranoid delusion. The idea of a flat homogenous Western culture is a bit ridiculous too. Europe and America hardly come close to agreeing on everything either) or that it's automatically "colonial" or that you can claim to be the sole cultural "victim" that's ever existed.
Give and take. Showing understanding of others, even if tolerance or agreement can't be offered. That's how we make this work. And I do believe that this list can be fully made to work that all can agree on it and work together. That won't necessarily always be easy on contravertial issues but if we are willing, it is certainly possible.
Disagreement is not in itself a problem. It's natural, it's expected and it's the whole ethos of the Wikipedian editing process, in fact. But we have to be flexible in dealing with that disagreement or it all grinds to a halt and that would suit none of us, right? PetrochemicalPete 11:14, 24 January 2006 (UTC)

James Clerk Maxwell

The creator of the unified electromagnetic theory and major contributor to thermodynamic theory should really be on this list.

Globality and the Global Village

I don't know if globality is actually a real word.

But I feel this could make the best litmus paper test for which articles - especially regards cities and personalities - qualify. Then what this list comes to represent is a minimum set of core subjects of global significance that all wikipedias share because they are subjects that humanity and the world shares.

Jerusalem would pass the test because of its significance to the Abrahamic religions, which are global. Newton would pass the test because his work altered the scientific world and the perception humanity has had of its world globally since. I'd also say Rome would pass this test because through both the Roman Empire and later the Catholic Church, it is a location of global significance. Mathematics is completely universal so it passes the test without any hesitation at all. We're all human so human anatomy should be included.

The idea being that qualification of articles is based on its global significance. That it is an article which deserves to be in every wikipedia regardless of language because it is a subject that has no less significance in one wikipedia than it does in any other.

Then this project could come to represent what could be considered a core of global subjects that are relevent to all of humanity, whatever language, whatever nationality, whatever religion. Which makes sense as a minimum list of articles to expect to be found in all wikipedias, irrespective of language. Those subjects to which everyone in the global village can relate to.

Note that this test would be tough in places because Bill Gates almost seems to qualify more than Rev. Martin Luthor King or Gandhi, in terms of only globality rather than notoriety or achievement. But I feel it both makes the most sense as the foundation for a set of core subjects that spans all languages by being those threads that bind us all together and also because it should involve less contraversy about which subjects to include and which to leave out. Subjects of global significance should be present in all wikipedias anyway. This list formalises that and makes a handy checklist for all contributors to ensure that the coverage on these basic global subjects is there.

The nature of this project seems implictly to be about binding our wikipedias and communities together that it seems to make sense to me that the subjects selected for the list share that exact same sentiment. PetrochemicalPete 02:54, 25 October 2005 (UTC)

Adding to this, it is indicative, that movie stars and makers are vastly overrepresented, and nearly exclusively represent Holliwood. The same can be said about authors - I haven´t seen one African, as if Chinua Achebe never wrote anything. I am a great fan of Aretha Franklin, but would she really make top 1000 in, say, the Hindi or Arabic Wikipedia? I do agree with Petrochemical Pete, that every contributor to this list should try to assume the pont of view of a Chinese, Paraguayan or Kenyan person interested in gaining knowledge about universally relevant topics. EMaraite 18:04, 11 January 2006 (UTC) from the German Wikipedia

Sports confusion

Under the sports section, there is football world cup as well as soccer. I presume that football world cup refers to the global international soccer event here (as it would be the Superbowl for American football, yes? And the Superbowl is not listed because it's not an international event, even if a very big deal inside America itself?).

If so, then shouldn't American football be listed, when the other American-origin sports baseball and basketball are there (even if this always represents potential confusion that football refers to different sports - e.g. American football, soccer, Australian rules football, etc. - they should still be listed if deserving of an article, of course)?

And without wanting to introduce any politics to this, soccer is understood but is not its natural name in most locations of the world, where it's football. Soccer disambiguates, true, but it seems to threaten NPOV to not refer to it by its most neutral international name, which I believe would be football before soccer (though I may be wrong and would be happy to be put right on that. I'm not a sports fan and say this only with NPOV in mind, as I actually don't care personally which is used).

Also, gymnastics seems absent and wouldn't it be perhaps more universal to list martial arts rather than Judo specifically (or we risk an explosion of each martial art being listed individually e.g. Karate, Judo, Jujitsu, Kendo, etc.)? PetrochemicalPete 05:27, 25 October 2005 (UTC)

Overlapping topics

I have noticed that oil, gas and coal appear under both Science/resources and Technology/Electricity. They both fit under these headings, since the topics overlap. However I think it is redundant to have a topic appearing twice, even if the topic heading implies different aspects which an article could cover. After all, this is functioning as the first starter list, showing major arteries rather than every vein in the body! I wonder whether it would be useful to users of the list to have a cross-reference between different topics in brackets after the topic heading eg. ‘Resources (see also Technology/Electricity/Depletable energy sources and fossil fuels)’ and ‘Depletable energy sources and fossil fuels (see also Science/Resources) – but see amendments to Technology topic below. Then if an article heading appears only on one list the cross-reference may encourage the inclusion of the different aspects related to the different topic headings in the one article, without repeating the article title itself. Lloffiwr 17:40, 30 October 2005 (UTC)

Amendments to technology

I have introduced two new sub-headings for Technology: Food production and Harnessing energy. My rationale is: Food production is generally considered to be fundamental to human survival and development. This topic could potentially include the technology of agriculture, hunting, gathering, storage and cooking. There should also eventually be a fair amount of overlap between this topic and the topics of ecology and food.

Harnessing energy has always been a major technological goal. This topic includes much that was included in ‘common technology’ and ‘electricity’. I found it a little misleading to have energy resources as a sub-heading of electricity when in fact all of the energy sources mentioned can be used as energy sources without having to be converted into electricity eg. windmill-operated water pumps, combustion engines.

By the way, how close is the list to hitting one thousand articles? Lloffiwr 17:42, 30 October 2005 (UTC)

Criteria for inclusion - NPOV

OK, I do agree it started as a project in US. I can also easily agree many of its contributors are US/UK/Commonwealth. However the list is way too much filled with Anglo-American people. I already suggested (sorry, forgot to register a user on meta) to replace Truman with Nuclear Bomb. Similarly people from the last 50-100-200 years should not be mandatory, let leave each Wiki-team to decide. Is G. W. Bush more important than French President Miteran, or founders of European Union less important than the founders of United States?

One can use something like "Include at least five local rulers and five international heads of states, and describe them with 3 phrases". -- Bggoldie 13:23, 8 November 2005 (UTC)

But an important component of this project is also its capacity to increase interwiki links between individual Wikipedias. If each Wikipedia diverges from the list then we lose that interlingual linking and the whole purpose of standardising a set of "core" articles to be found in all Wikipedias.
Alternatively, I suggest that as we simultaneously have the problem of far too many cities and people on the list (the cities alone were taking up a fifth of the whole "1000 articles" limitation at one point) then we work to cut the list down to just those cities and people which arouse no cultural contraversy.
So, yes, is Bush really deserving in a wide historical and global context? Perhaps not and we should strike him from the list. Repeat with all cities and people in the list. Solving both our problems - too many articles about people and places, as well as articles whose inclusion is contravertial - at the same time.
To achieve this might take a lot of haggling and disagreement and editing, true. But isn't that somewhat the point of the Wikipedian editing process? Yes, the initial list was perhaps too American. Then it was edited but was still a bit too Western. Please, edit it further so that it loses that Western bias too.
No edit on Wikipedia is ever final. That's the whole point of this process.
On a purely intellectual level, it would be great if we could all work together and edit this over and over to edit each other's biases out of the list. What would an ultimate final unbiased list of NPOV articles look like? I'd love to know.
It's also a good Wikipedian selling point. No paper-based encyclopeadia (e.g Britannica) can come close to offering anything similar, as we're exploiting an internationalism they can't really duplicate. Why merely emulate paper-based encyclopeadias when we can potentially exceed them?
We will disagree. That is not a problem in itself and we shouldn't automatically divide and go our separate ways at the first sign of a disagreement. Let us divine out of the confusion what we can agree on. Let us edit it and alter it and change the wording or whatever is necessary to make it fit.
Our disagreement is what keeps us honest. We shouldn't be frightened of that but should be celebrating it. If I add Eurocentricism to the list then come here and tell me where I went wrong and we'll edit it back out of the list. We can work to keep each other honest and that step-by-step takes the biases out of the list one-by-one.
Please also can we not be divisive and suggest that "Western culture" is to blame. I've had to pick up on a discrimination point about women (which I believe had an American origin) and argued about sexual discrimination (with, if I understand the reference he made correctly, has Israeli origin). Westerners are equally picking up biases that other Westerners are introducing too.
We're all biased. We can't help that. But - how shall we put it? - Wikipedians by their nature of contributing to this project aren't necessarily representatives of the wilder internationally negative policies of their governments. Have I put that diplomatically enough for everyone? It's very likely many of us are here to learn about things we don't know (seems logically enough for an encyclopeadia, yes?), such as about other cultures, to help correct and rectify our ignorance. The whole point of knowledge and education is to correct the problem of ignorance in some way.
As one of my fellow countrymen, the founder of Britain's National Health Service, Aneurin Bevan, once said: "This is my truth, tell me yours". PetrochemicalPete 11:55, 24 January 2006 (UTC)

Inclusion/Ranking Criteria

I would recommend that the determining factor on where things are ranked or whether they warrant inclusion be search frequencies, if such are available. Words that are searched for the most frequently (and over multiple languages, if possible, to diffuse language bias), should be made highest priority for inclusion in new wikipedias. Is it possible to obtain these statistics? Jade Knight 19:05, 16 November 2005 (UTC)

Nice idea. I'd resist making it solely based on searches alone because the fact that no-one has recently searched for differential calculus or Plato doesn't mean that the subjects aren't important or that they won't see a lot of searches made on them in the future.
For example, Iraq or George Bush might get a lot of searches at the moment because of contemporary events (people looking to better inform themselves over the issues in that day's news stories).
Being based on searches alone might bias things to contemporary events more than it should. This is an encyclopeadia rather than a news service, after all (though, yes, one of the advantages of Wikipedia is that it can update incredibly quickly to not necessarily be that distant to a news service but it isn't the prime purpose here).
But a list of searches could help prioritise and, on a purely practical level, search terms might show up topics that we never thought of. It might help expose holes and biases in the list. You never know. PetrochemicalPete 12:15, 24 January 2006 (UTC)

Suggestions for the list:

  • Ramkhamhaeng the Great - King of Thailand who also developed the Thai alphabet.
  • World Trade Organization Weird that it's not on the list yet.
  • Magic (illusion) A theatrical performance that spans many cultures.
  • Photography
  • Mail We have email listed here, but not regular mail?
  • House or Home probably in the architecture section.
  • Citizen Kane maybe a little bit Amercan-centric, but I think it's more important than the Marx Brothers.
  • Monopoly (game) is a game featured in dozens of languages, and is certainly the most popular board game of the last 100 years.

Also, simple has a "basic concepts" section, which has (among other things in the meta list):

  1. Human being
    1. Man
    2. Woman
    3. Child
    4. Boy
    5. Girl

Also, we lack basic information about families:

... and so on. -- Yekrats 13:53, 29 November 2005 (UTC)

With film - I agree, I would mention a few most important movies. But which one - good ones like Citizen Kane or 12 Angry Men or the most popish ones? Aegis Maelstrom 05:00, 29 December 2005 (UTC)