Wikinews talk:Neutral point of view

From Wikinews, the free news source you can write!
Jump to: navigation, search

Limitations to points of view mentioned[edit]

As far as I am aware, there are no a priori limitations to points of view to be mentioned, so long as they are appropriately ascribed. Likewise, there are no requirements to mention other points of view. - Amgine 07:52, 9 Mar 2005 (UTC)

I didn't make up anything. I excerpted directly from the Foundation issues:

"(Of course, there are limits to which points of view are worth mentioning, and this can be an area of conflict.)"

Please tread carefully and make sure you are really on solid ground before you go around reverting non-negotiable policy imported from Meta.
If you think the definition of NPOV as provided on Meta is incorrect, you'll have to take that up with Jimbo, not me.
The excerpt I provided is from a page that is linked directly from the Foundation issues page, which is sacred text, that begins with the admonition, "People who strongly disagree with them sometimes end up leaving the project".
I'm going to restore my verbatim quote of this sacred text back to our copy here on Wikinews.
If you continue to revert me, you will end up causing a page which describes a non-negotiable NPOV policy to have a "neutrality disputed" tag, which would be quite ironic.
DV 08:02, 9 Mar 2005 (UTC)
You are referring, of course, to Meta's copy of the policy for Wikipedia. The discussion here is for Wikinews, which has been given rein to create its own policy. Hence the Adapted from w:Wikipedia:Neutral point of view. As far as I am aware the foundation has not stated, anywhere, a limitation on points of view for Wikinews, minimal or maximal, nor stated that your quote is an element of the non-negotiable policy. Period and/or full-stop.
But I will ask jwales and other board members for specific clarity. - Amgine 08:20, 9 Mar 2005 (UTC)
Amgine, be careful what you wish for, if you really think we should represent all points of view.
I hate Illinois Nazis. I also hate any other white supremacist group which dares to show its face. I grew up on the South Side of Chicago and saw a lot of racism and bigotry during that time, which made me sad and fearful when I saw some of my friends victimized by it. The concept of "diversity" was still pretty new for some of my neighbors back then.
So, if we ever have a story where we have to fairly present the point of view of the Illinois Nazis, or some other group of the same ilk, NPOV will have gone too far, and I will either be banned as I revert articles which present their point of view one too many times, or I will quit this site in disgust.
If you truly think that any point of view is entitled to an equal airing on this site, no matter how odious or hateful, I think we better find Jimbo and ask him to clarify this point before we continue this discussion.
I've had my differences with Jimbo Wales in the past, but I'm optimistic that he will tell you the same thing I've seen him tell others on Wikipedia - that advocates for hate groups must not be able to use NPOV as an excuse to present their vitriol on these sites.
There are limits to which points of view are worth mentioning.
Amgine, I am disappointed that you, of all people, cannot see that without going to the Board for a "clarification".
DV 08:35, 9 Mar 2005 (UTC)
I believe any point of view may be presented as the point of view of someone. You seem to feel we must write sympathetically with any POV; I have no such opinion. But I do not feel we may exclude a viewpoint, either.
For example, I am perfectly willing to write an article about the Illinois Nazis which would, factually, present their viewpoint. It would not be written from their POV, but about it. It is very likely, should I write such an article, it could be attacked as being biased against the Illinois Nazis but it would be factual and without either opinion or analysis. - Amgine 08:52, 9 Mar 2005 (UTC)
Sorry, there are simply some groups who do not need any more publicity than they manage to scrounge up for themselves on their own. By even mentioning some groups in a story, they move up in Google, and we provide a search term which makes it easier for others to find their sites. So any mention of such groups must be made in the proper context, as they cannot be treated neutrally.
If I present the POV of a hate group without context or analysis of why they're wrong, I'm guilty of providing them with free publicity that helps to advance their cause.
Bringing this discussion back to today's article on Newmont Mining's environmental crimes in Peru - if we merely present the dry facts about the story, with zero context or analysis of how it fits a larger pattern of recklessness in that region, and why they should be brought to account, then we have done no better than to present another press piece which Newmont can pass out to their supporters to show that they really aren't all that bad after all.
If you think this is a "meaningless" and "confrontational" point, I won't waste any more of your time discussing this subject, and I apologize for wasting your time.
Regards,
DV
"If you cannot see what you are doing as a process, you do not know what you are doing." If you insist on inserting analysis and context which is not neutral into an article, you cannot oppose others doing so in a manner which you find misleading or obfuscating - they probably find your analysis/context to be misleading and/or obfuscating. If Newmont Mining chooses to have a "volunteer" write an article which points out the lack of scientific evidence, the lack of specific proof of culpability, etc., you would have no basis for complaint.
This is one element of why I feel we cannot discriminate in the *presentation* of a viewpoint, and why we must attempt to maintain an NPOV, or risk becoming (or becoming viewed as) a PR mouthpiece. - Amgine 09:29, 9 Mar 2005 (UTC)
I think we'll have to wait for clarification from deeper thinkers on this topic, as we seem to be at loggerheads over a point which is not clearly reconciled between the sacred Foundation texts and the writings of Jimbo Wales.
I deeply appreciate that you've used your valuable time to attempt to reach a greater understanding about this subject.
Happy sailing,
DV 09:46, 9 Mar 2005 (UTC)

Seeking "clarity"[edit]

I spoke with jwales and asked the following: "Is there a specific limitation on what is a point of view deserving of mention? And, is this limitation a part of the "Non-negotiable" elements?"

His response was "Well, that's a problem of drawing lines, drawing boundaries, and I think that philosophically it is not possible to specify it fully a priori. We do have some techniques to help with that... For example, "no original research" can frequently be used to limit what's included." "A: On Wikinews? "Well, "no original research" does still have a place on wikinews of course, although the application can be different." End response.

"Terrorists"[edit]

What are we supposed to call them? My vote goes for citing people who have described them, and prefferably citing opposite opinions to balance it out as best we can. This means using "terrorists" in headlines and citing someone else somewhere (even if it's in another article if covering the same event.) What does eveyrone else think?

"Neutrality and Nonprofits"[edit]

I submitted an article on the work that Open Studios engages in. This article was layed out as a descriptive news item about Open Studios. Amgine immediately deleted it. I have attempted to resolve the issue of that person's objection/reason for deleting it, without success. I now want to raise the issue of Wikinews policy regarding neutrality and that policy's impact on nonprofit organization news items.

As you know, most nonprofit organizations struggle to maintain budgets from year to year. In the operation of a nonprofit organization, there are few differences between forprofit corporations and not-forprofit corporations. One striking difference, however, lies with the marketing departments. A nonprofit organization must tread a thin line when allocating precious resources to marketing their product/service, as opposed to using the same monies to deliver their product/service. Now, my question to you all, here at Wikinews, is, why would you insist that Open Studios submit their article about the work they do to a mainstream media controlled by money changing hands at all levels, in order to then pay someone, or convince one of you, to write an article about Open Studios? Why wouldn't you have a policy that says, if a nonprofit wants to submit a news item about the work they do, and help get the word out to those who would benefit most (think Wikinews, folks), then Amgine, and the rest of you could fight over who gets the honor?

Here's the article: Recording Studios Now Sit On Your Kitchen Table From Wikinews, the free news source you can write! Jump to: navigation, search

November 15, 2005

Up until just a few years ago, recording studios, whether for music or broadcasting or film making, required huge investments in equipment and facilities. Today, with the advent of the Digital Age, all one needs is a low-end PC, appropriate software, a microphone and digital camera. Open Studios has organized an approach to building and operating community based recording studios, that require no money out-of-pocket. This extremely low-cost approach makes it possible for low-income neighborhoods and villages to compete with international corporations by allowing users to create CDs, DVDs, tv and radio shows, public service announcements, even full-featured films.

Tom Poe, who is responsible for the day-to-day operations of Open Studios, says, "We use low-end PCs and Free or Open Source Software (FOSS) from Stanford University's Center for Computer Research in Music and Acoustics, for a couple of reasons. First, it's free. There are no license fees. Second, the software will always be state-of-the-art, and allows users to progress from beginner to expert, without having to move away from the applications they learned." This approach has taken advantage of the Open Source movement, in that the users that become experts in the applications they use, tend to become contributors to improving those applications.

So often, even today, "we expect entertainment centers to be providing entertainment for us to watch or listen to, when, in reality, they can be used to create entertainment.", Poe said. He cited examples of people who like to take movies while they travel to new places. Those movies can now be edited on a computer, and graphics can be added, such as a title, credits, insertion of photos, text, all combining to create a tv show or film. A child can sit in front of one of these computers, and play a tune on her Kazoo. She then can bring up Rosegarden4, click and hear her tune played back to her. She can click and bring up her music displayed as a score sheet, edit the notes and change her tune. She can click, select an instrument, and her tune sounds like a piano, or trumpet. She can add tracks, and soon, an entire orchestra is playing her tune. "The best part, is the computer being able to let anyone participate, and not have to be restricted to an expensive recording studio facility. Just use your kitchen table.", said Poe.

It's nice to know that the day is coming, when every community will have such computers available for the residents. Culture is a community proposition, and certainly, with recording studios, our world community will benefit. Open Studios invites everyone to stop by and learn more about how your community can participate. [edit]

Sources

   * "Open Studios". w:, November 15, 2005
   * "[ ]". w:, Mmmmm DD, YYYY

Retrieved from "http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Recording_Studios_Now_Sit_On_Your_Kitchen_Table"

Categories: November 15, 2005 | Published

Tom, there are a couple points about this article which you have recreated in several places here on Wikinews:
  • It is a review about a product.
  • It is provided by the organization creating this product.
Wikinews does not do reviews at all. We just don't. There have been many discussions about this particular subject, and it usually comes down to a belief that authors cannot be neutral and balanced about a review.
Wikinews does not accept press releases *as articles*. We do use press releases as sources in articles.
If you have a news event related to your product, such as a new product release or a community agreement, perhaps the opening of an Open Studios installation, anything which is a discrete "event", we would be more than happy to write an article about it. Our reporters can and have done interviews and stories like this, and First Swahili office suite released in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania was just such a story.
While I applaud your efforts on behalf of this article, it seems to me you would be better served - and more likely to gain support - if you would respect Wikinews for what it is and accept the advice people have offered to you. It's unlikely you would want us arriving at your project full of advice for how you should do things because we have something we would like inserted into your Open Studios. - Amgine 22:52, 15 November 2005 (UTC)

Ratio of POVs in articles[edit]

I strongly object to this policy statement, particularly the bolded parts:

"If we are to represent the dispute fairly, we should present competing views in proportion to their representation among experts on the subject, or among the concerned parties."

I strongly disagree with this policy, as it means things like the Chinese invasion of Tibet and subsequent massacre should be portrayed overwhelmingly as a good thing, since there are so many more Chinese than Tibetans (especially after the massacre). But, since it seems to be policy, I guess we are stuck with it. Of course, if Australia (20,000,000) ever has a dispute with the United States (300,000,000), this means that 93% of the article should be written in support of the US POV and only 7% from the Aussie POV.

I believe that opposing POVs should be represented equally, that is 50% in support of each POV in a two way dispute, with an exception for "extreme minority views", which should receive less support, or even none.

The subject has come up several times, and there has been no easily implemented compromise developed. Here on Wikinews we generally consider the first portion of the sentence, we should present competing views in proportion to their representation among experts on the subject, on its own. That is, there is still a flat earth society, but their representation among astro physicists of the world is vanishingly small and thus do not have mention in every article about the earth which suggests it may be a globe. The second element, or among concerned parties does not refer, in my personal interpretation, to the population but rather to the number of concerned parties. For example, a recent vote in the United Nations had 180 countries voting one way and two voting another - the majority coverage should clearly focus on what the majority is interested in achieving, but Wikinews coverage instead focused on what one of the two, the USA, had voted for.
Allowing for a 50% requirement in any dispute would leave Wikinews vulnerable to abuse by very marginal POV's. A certain US Baptist church makes considerable amount of press coverage for its hate speech at the expense of the larger Baptist churches' communion since they have uniformally repudiated the actions of this one church and are not associated with it. Should every article on Wikinews which mentions the Baptist churches refer to this dispute? Probably not. - Amgine 07:02, 23 November 2005 (UTC)
Hence my exception for extreme minority views. I also think a ban on hate speech should exist here, like "we should all go out and kill blacks", since even reprinting such a call to violence could potentially get people killed. I think your interpretation should be added explicitly to the policy, so this statement can be understood more clearly. Not everyone agrees with this, though, as Al-Jazeera regularly broadcasts calls from Al-Queada to perform acts of terrorism, saying it's "not their job to censor the news, even to save lives".
Perhaps we could add "This does not mean in proportion to the population holding each view, but in proportion to the number of groups or organizations holding each opinion." StuRat 10:55, 23 November 2005 (UTC)
But again there are circumstances which would lead to a w:tyranny of the masses circumstance. For example, it would be very difficult to imagine an article about the upcoming holidays focused on Solstice celebrations without bringing up Christmas. This even though the former is unrelated to the latter (the reverse is argued about), but there are many groups and organizations about the latter while relatively few for the former.
I really wish there were a way to codify it, to write a program which would instantly determine the POV/NPOV value of a sentence or article, but I do not believe there is a way to objectively measure bias. This is where people, and discussion, have to enter and though it is not always pretty the community will need to make determinations where two or more individuals disagree over interpretation. One "tool" I've found very important in my own writing is not look at what happens to it afterward. I can give my best opinion and writing initially, and if others determine it is in need of change of focus, or wording, which I feel harms the article ... well, I agreed to submit my writing where it might be mercilessly edited and altered. - Amgine | talk 19:29, 23 November 2005 (UTC)

making the intro less hostile[edit]

User:Cranbourne has proposed that the intro be changed to:

News is about neutrality. Contrary to what you may have been taught, we aim to report news not from a objective point of view, since that simply does not exist, but instead from a neutral point of view (NPOV). This does not mean without sympathy, but actually, with sympathy towards all parties concerned. If you feel a story is unfair in some way, you should be encouraged to do whatever you feel is necessary -- within the bounds of accuracy -- to help to re-balance it. Nothing is ever perfectly balanced and static, but together we can create a dynamic approximation.

The current intro is:

Wikinews policy is that all articles should have a neutral point of view. According to Wikimedia founder Jimbo Wales, NPOV is "absolute and non-negotiable".

I see nothing wrong with expandding such a short intro, and making it more friendly and useful. His wording is just slightly verbose for my tastes, and eliminating Jimbo's statment isn't good, but its clearly worth discussing the matter further. Nyarlathotep 16:10, 23 March 2006 (UTC)

I do. The policy is not negotiable; this should be made clear up front. I also really dislike the attempt to make the intro "cute", but that is much more a personal style difference.
The point about balance is incorrect; wikinews articles need not be balanced. The do need to fairly represent the views of subjects relevant to the news event of phenomenon being covered by the article. Were Wikinews to interview Pamela Jones of Groklaw, we would not expect to give balanced coverage to the CEO of SCO - at least not in the interview article.
The discussion regarding how to repair the article is inappropriate, and is out of place in the lede for the NPOV policy. Ditto for stating we cannot achieve perfection in the lede; yes it's true, and it will be discussed, but it does not belong in the opening sentences of the policy.
The first purpose of this policy is to define, as briefly and succinctly as possible, the requirements of Wikinews for NPOV, and the criteria which might be used to apply this in a common sense manner to articles on the site. It is not intended to be friendly, but to be useful. - Amgine | talk en.WN 02:55, 30 March 2006 (UTC)

Anglo-american-centric point of view[edit]

I'm not going to dig into how that "interesting" and extremely partisan piece found it's way into the NPOV policy, it is self-serving to those who have a desire to accuse other contributors of being government agents or cheerleaders, and I have seen it used as such. --Brian McNeil / talk 22:04, 29 March 2006 (UTC)

  • Comment; Reference above might be read to imply self serving insertion of this section. Nothing could be further from the truth. It seems as if it was there when this page was created by Dan100 Jan.19,2005, under the section head "United States" centric; then it was changed in the Jan.23,2005 edit by Daveodd to "Anglo-american". Neutralizer 03:24, 30 March 2006 (UTC)
  • Indeed. It has been used more as a weapon than a guideline. I believe some IP's have set up a Water Cooler discussion on this, I do not believe they thought to check this first. --MrMiscellanious (talk) – 22:25, 29 March 2006 (UTC)
I have rolled back to the version without this extremely partisan text. Please form a reasoned argument as to why it should be included. It allows for unreasonable attacks on articles by any contributor based on interpretation. It is my considered opinion that accusations that my edit was out of order are unreasonable and brought by those who would seek to use this section to suppress news that did not meet with their approval. --Brian McNeil / talk 22:47, 29 March 2006 (UTC)

I oppose this change of policy. It is not a partisan text. It clearly define a problem and remind us to edit accordingly. Im afraid that the deletion is based on POV and very serious as it is Wikinews policy. I will revert the deletion and expect it to be there. If we reach a concensus to change it or remove it we do so. Untill that, and now when the discussion is going, it is not "good faithed" to delete it again. International 23:20, 29 March 2006 (UTC)

I agree with International. Wikinews does have a problem with Ameri/Euro-Centrism. The section which has been deleted, however, doesn't really define policy -- it's more of a guide on what our ideal should be. This text has been included on WN:NPOV for a long time and with good reason. Editors shouldn't use this section to defend slash-and-burn tactics as concerns articles, but we, as editors shouldn't forget that we are writing for a world audience and we should try to provide adequate coverage with as little localized POV as possible. --Chiacomo (talk) 00:09, 30 March 2006 (UTC)
Agree with chiacomo. Bawolff ☺☻Smile.png 00:28, 30 March 2006 (UTC)
I agree that the section shouldn't be removed without discussion and consensus. It has been there for at least a year. - Borofkin 00:32, 30 March 2006 (UTC)
I don't object to its removal without discussion -- that's being bold and is perfectly acceptable. Had I done the same, I would have removed the paragraph and posted a note on the water cooler explaining my actions. If it had been widely accepted as a good idea, no problem. In this case, it is not widely accepted as a good idea so it should now be discussed. No big deal. No reason to get angry or to shout. Obviously we should discuss it and compromise (if there is really a problem with the para). --Chiacomo (talk) 00:36, 30 March 2006 (UTC)
Sorry, you are quite right. We are all entitled to edit the policy pages correct, but if there is a dispute it should remain on the previous revision and discussed. - Borofkin 00:41, 30 March 2006 (UTC)
I agree with International and Chiacomo about the merits of the section. It tries to address a real problem with our coverage, although the remedy suggested isn't one that an Anglo-American editor can do much about, and doesn't follow the advice of preceding paragraphs, so maybe we can improve this.
Brianmc's initial removal of the section with a note here was bold, which is fine. It has prompted some discussion - good. However his subsequent reversion of Neutralizer's reversion of the deletion (just 22 minutes later) seems aggressive to me. Surely it was clear by then that there wasn't a clear consensus for its removal, and a decent pause for discussion would have been more productive. -- Avenue 02:06, 30 March 2006 (UTC)
  • This section was here when this page was created by Dan100 Jan.19,2005, under the section head "United States" centric; then it was changed in the very next edit by Chiacomo to "Anglo-american" Neutralizer 03:24, 30 March 2006 (UTC)
I'll be glad to take credit for it, but there are several edits between Dan100's and mine -- I think you misformed your diff or something. The section was in the original page created by Dan100. I've never edited this page except for today when I reverted the change. --Chiacomo (talk) 03:30, 30 March 2006 (UTC)
comment; yes; it was Daveodd that changed it on jan23,2005; don't know why Chiacomo's recent shows up at that dif. Neutralizer 03:38, 30 March 2006 (UTC)
I think it is a foundation stone of real NPOV for a global english news reporting platform, what with all the brainwashing coming out of the anglo/american governments,corporations and media; no wonder Dan100 is at Oxford; he's 1 smart cat. If the community ever wants to get rid of me; one way to do it is to just get rid of this section and I will disappear. Neutralizer 03:24, 30 March 2006 (UTC)
As can be seen from this revision, the one from January 19, 2005 on Wikipedia, Dan100 had modified the section he brought over to Wikinews to a specifically Anti-US view, removing any mention of Anglo bias. He is, of course, from the UK and it is far simpler to see the bias of another than to acknowledge your own. However, please keep in mind that policy must be applied in a common-sense manner. It does not appear to me that you are doing so, nor does it appear to me you are considering your personal biases in your efforts to twist NPOV policy to your bidding. - Amgine | talk en.WN 03:51, 30 March 2006 (UTC)
  • Comment; Amgine, it is not constructive to turn policy discussions into nonsensical personal criticism. You are the most hypocritical in terms of "twisting" Npov policy as shown by your support of the notnews sentimental photo essay of the vietnam wall. Also, you and and MrM use NPOV to suppress any news which shows the Bush/Blair admin's bad deeds while staying mum when articles negative toward non-allied governments fly through the publishing process. I do not think it's intentional on your parts but simply the natural ango-american centric pov this policy asks us to remember exists.Neutralizer 12:53, 30 March 2006 (UTC)
What if it were changed to more general wording, something like Ethno-nation-centric point of view heading with the text modified to reflect that change. Maybe ethno- is a poor choice of words. -Edbrown05 05:03, 30 March 2006 (UTC)
edbrown05, am not sure how that will help. the existing guideline is meant specifically to address the Anglo-US bias which is believed to be present in our articles, i haven't seen any allegations of other biases, which might call for the rewording that u suggest.
incidentally, the anglo-US bias is not solely a "pro anglo/US" bias, most of the criticisms of things anglo-US (and everything else) are also from the anglo-US viewpoint - stemming from anglo-US sources, from anglo-US cultural/ideological views. on other occasions, non-anglo/US views are simply left out. eg. Australian_Prime_Minister_visits_India (talk page) where even the australian greens [ :_) ] get a say, but the indian government doesnt.
if the issue here is the alleged misciting of this guideline on some occasions, the reasonable thing to me is, on those occasions, to discuss with the user citing it, whether their interpretation/use of this guideline is appropriate, rather than removing the guideline altogether. Doldrums 05:45, 30 March 2006 (UTC)
Doldrums is right. There have been no occassions at all where I have brought in this section of NPOV where it was considered a completely frivolous concern by the other editors of a story; in every single case there has been an NPOV improvement agreed to by other editors and the articles are all the better for it; and we all know that were I to be disrupting by reminding us of this tendency(which has not been the case), that I would be blocked accordingly. I fear that some of us simply do not want to be reminded when our national patriotism influences our editing because we do not want to deal with our personal biases so it's easier to pretend they don't even exist. This is quite normal for human beings. Neutralizer 12:53, 30 March 2006 (UTC)
After digging into the history and cross-checking with Wikipedia I see this is established and part of the page from the beginning. However, it was the use of it which prompted me to question the validity of its inclusion. See this talk page for the dispute that prompted my actions. This struck me as twisting the policy in an effort to prevent publication of a disliked article. It may need some sort of revision to avoid that usage, or encourage its use in a more civil manner. In hindsight it looks like I'd been trying to make a point that extreme interpretations of policy are inappropriate. --Brian McNeil / talk 16:19, 30 March 2006 (UTC)
  • For the record in response to Amgine - I removed the "Anglo" bit when I installed this page from Wikipedia as at the time, there simply weren't any UK stories around (as, apart from me, there weren't any British contributors), so it was the correct thing to do - update policy pages to reflect reality. PS it would have been nice if someone had just asked me why I made the change, instead of coming up with their own, incorrect, theories :-) PPS anyone else notice the dreadful typo I put in which was not fixed until TOR spotted it? LOL! Dan100 (Talk) 21:03, 4 April 2006 (UTC)
I'm a Wikinews editor from India and I believe that the reason Wikinews seems America-centric is because most users are American/European.I think that the best way to solve this issue is for more people from other nations to contribute.PVJFlag of India.svg 04:44, 22 April 2006 (UTC)

One example[edit]

This story started out with this alarmist and wrong title "Ricin found in University of Texas dormitory"; based on alarmist US media reports. By being on guard for the AAPOV, we were able to keep the article somewhat reserved throughout it's development and the final,accurate title is "FBI confirms that ricin was not found at the University of Texas". Neutralizer 13:16, 30 March 2006 (UTC)

Good work there. Dan100 (Talk) 21:05, 4 April 2006 (UTC)

Challenge Issued[edit]

I'd like to challenge those few who would like to remove this section to show us some articles whose final state was negatively effected through use of this section. Neutralizer 13:21, 30 March 2006 (UTC)

  • How about every single article you tagged and refused to collaborate on? That should be quite a list. --MrMiscellanious (talk) – 16:17, 30 March 2006 (UTC)
  • I could put in an Anti-US bias section for when you decide to drag the Skull and Bones guys out the closet again, or the six-degrees-of-separation between the President and Adolf Hitler, or...
Or you could bring up the issue in a less hostile way. I've read WN:NPOV in the past and that section didn't stand out to me as unreasonable until you brought it up in conjunction with what you perceived as faults in an article. --Brian McNeil / talk 16:52, 30 March 2006 (UTC)

Brian, the Wikipedia section has survived considerably worse than the fights between Neutralizer & MrM. The section, as written, is actually an excuse for our existing bias. Neutralizer may have been obnoxious by copying MrM's obnoxious filibustering tactics, but this isn't a problem with the policy. Our only problem is that editors are filibustering one another instead of editing. Nyarlathotep 17:14, 30 March 2006 (UTC)

I agree somewhat although I really don't feel my "filibustering" efforts have been substantial at all. Several admins have no problem immediately dismissing any of the few tags I've placed and blocking me if I put them back. Otoh, MrM and Amgine have all the protection/blocking tools at their disposal; so I really have to say those 2 editors have major league experience in "filibustering" while mine is quite little league if it exists at all. There has never been 1 article here that I do not think should have been written at all; at least I can't think of any. Brian's "skull and bones/Prescott Bush " reference might relate to .1 % of my edits; certainly less than worth mentioning,it seems to me, unless one is extra sensitive to such taboo topics. I have also stopped using the "boxes" as Brian might have noticed as it seemed that when I use them they are seen as "hostile" by some who had no complaints when MrM uses them. Neutralizer 17:30, 30 March 2006 (UTC)
BTW, Its not filibustering if you *first* make an article edit accomplishing the correction, and only then tag the article after you get reverted. I have not looked closely at you, but I was quite happy to notice that you followed good procedure on the Ricin article a month ago, i.e. your first edits were improvments to the article. That is the only case which really sticks in my mind, but I've not gone into the other article you and MrM were fighting about much. Nyarlathotep 19:08, 30 March 2006 (UTC)
Also note the section does not support tagging, but rather collaboration. I personally give less weight to tags which are applied without an explanation giving specific an actionable issues, but I support tags where the contributor discusses issues cogently on the talk page and/or is actively involved in efforts to improve the article. By "improve the article" I do not include "rewrite the article to cover a different story tangentially related to the original article/headline." - Amgine | talk en.WN 22:57, 1 April 2006 (UTC)

News is rogue[edit]

Policy implementations should facilitate the sniffing out of news, not the snuffing. -Edbrown05 04:58, 9 May 2006 (UTC)

The very first sentence of the policy — "one should write articles without bias, representing all views fairly." — seems problematic, because it can and is being used to tag stories and delay publication. Representing all views fairly in a news story is, from my recollection, an old debate in the community. One that has been discussed with merit from both sides of the issue arguing both for and against it, but it has never been fully resolved.
Yet, "representing all views fairly" remains written in policy and is being used as a tool to block story publication. This has resulted in community friction. The most recent example of that friction occurred on the Amnesty Report 2006: disadvantaged pay price of war on terror story. Does the community want this? -Edbrown05 17:45, 29 May 2006 (UTC)

Yes, we need to be able to run stories about biased reports, our job is to keep the langauge in line and add opposing opinions if they are not too hard to find. Such stories will faire better if they briefly describe the methodology used, as there are plenty of "think tanks" who just spout bullshit. And people object if they think your just repeating someone's bullshit. Nyarlathotep 18:57, 29 May 2006 (UTC)

Nyarheliosotop, erm Yarliallincomeski, uh Nyar-chou!... how does one spell Nyarlothotep? (I can't) Anyway... opposing opinions are easy to find, write one, rather than cite "policy". -Edbrown05 07:38, 30 May 2006 (UTC)
Then user input, rather than wikilawyering, will do for an article what hasn't been accomplished by arguing about it. -Edbrown05 07:53, 30 May 2006 (UTC)
Less policy = more news.
I don't, and never have had a problem with NPOV as currently written, but evidently some other users have. When NPOV is used to spike story publication, then something is wrong. -Edbrown05 08:21, 30 May 2006 (UTC)

No, its not good to just write your own opposing opinion, we'd fill up with crackpots!! Some effort is involved in finding one. Yes, I oppose this "cite NPOV policy as a filibuster" algorithm used around here. IMHO, langauge and content both make up the dividing line:

  1. If a stories langauge is NPOV but its content is POV, then its your (complainers) job to fix it since your likely more familiar with the opposing opinions than the original author.
  2. If a stories content is NPOV but its langauge is POV, then its your job to fix the first paragraph as an example, tag the story, and ask the author to fix the rest.
  3. If both langauge & content are POV, then you may tag the story without making constructive edits, but you must still describe the langauge and content problems on the talk page.
  4. If you feel a story is not news, then you should tag it as not news, and quickly list it on WN:DR, so others can voice their opinion.

Or something like that. Thoughts? Nyarlathotep 13:22, 30 May 2006 (UTC)

It's not an issue of protocol, because the internet will not respond to that. -Edbrown05 07:02, 4 June 2006 (UTC)
::Catch fish, but don't eat them... does that make sense? -Edbrown05 07:52, 4 June 2006 (UTC)

A proposal for a change[edit]

I think it is good if this document offers some clarifications.

  • To write a story that would work in favor of some person, entity, group, or position is not necessarily a violation, if that is the result of covering relevant set of facts in a neutral way as defined in this document.
  • Accumulation of such a coverage, taken together, might create an appearance of editorial bias for readers, because even though each story is written neutrally, the stories are mostly about those facts that work favorably to one side and not the other. (Readers might feel, for example, "wow, Wikinews publishes a lot of pro-XYZ stories while little of anti-XYZ stories") So it is encouraged to abide by the spirit of NPOV by covering controversial issues that by selection do not cast favorable or unfavorable light disproportionately more than neutrally selected set of stories would do.

Wording could be improved (a lot), and perhaps the substance, if many disagree. Tomos 03:53, 1 August 2006 (UTC)

Huh, have you lost your mind? Wikinews ain't in it for the short haul. -Edbrown05 05:42, 10 August 2006 (UTC)
Very very bad idea, people work on what interests them & you can't change people's interests. Nyarlathotep 12:25, 17 August 2006 (UTC)
i agree that tomos' concerns are valid, and agree to "encouraging" neutral coverage and selection, but nothing more. there shld be no scope for blocking an article over its alleged non-neutral scope. those who object to an article are free to alter its scope, if the article is in development, or write other articles on other events to balance coverage. this is what we do, for instance, with the anglo-american coverage (not pov) bias. as Ed puts it, time will heal some of the bias in coverage (hopefully!). Doldrums 12:44, 17 August 2006 (UTC)
I agree with Nyarlathotep. You can't change people's interests. FellowWikiNews (W) 12:47, 17 August 2006 (UTC)


Value-Laden Words[edit]

How does the issue of value-laden words fit into NPOV? For example, if one uses the word 'terrible' to describe an accident, has NPOV been violated?

Yes; we should not be using "terrible" to describe things. However, if a person said something was terrible, we should report it in the article. MESSEDROCKER 15:13, 27 December 2006 (UTC)

I suppose that would depend terribly on the context in which the word were used.Tuoder

The uses of honey[edit]

Toward the end of the page there is a recommendation that one be polite because, "one gets more bees with honey". Shouldn't this read instead, "one gets (or catches) more flies with honey"? That's the expression I've always heard.

Would someone with edit rights on this locked page please correct this? David Merrill

Done --Jcart1534 18:20, 26 December 2007 (UTC)
The actual expression is "You can catch more flies with honey than with vinegar," if we want to get it completely right. --SVTCobra 18:28, 26 December 2007 (UTC)
Isn't that what I changed it to? :) (or at least pretty close) --Jcart1534 18:31, 26 December 2007 (UTC)
'Twas close. I made it exact now. --SVTCobra 19:33, 26 December 2007 (UTC)
"No, you don't" - Amgine | t 18:58, 29 August 2013 (UTC)

Is Wackynews NPOV?[edit]

Please see discussion at Wikinews:Water cooler/policy#Is Wackynews NPOV?. Confusing Manifestation (Say hi!|Stalk me!) 01:20, 11 January 2008 (UTC)


About POV and NNPOV[edit]

From wiki.en:

'As the name suggests, the neutral point of view is a point of view, not the absence or elimination of viewpoints. The neutral point of view policy is often misunderstood. The acronym NPOV does not mean "no points of view". The elimination of article content cannot be justified under this policy by simply labeling it "POV". The neutral point of view is a point of view that is neutral, that is neither sympathetic nor in opposition to its subject: it neither endorses nor discourages viewpoints.'


So wikipedia,en does not discourage nor endorses viewpoints. It's not really correct to say that there must be no POV at all. And i do not know any journalist capable to do so, AFAIK.

Funny thing about that picture[edit]

He, he, in the picture, POV means Privatly Owned Vehicle a.k.a. a vehicle owned by a civliilian--216.118.68.193 01:52, 7 November 2008 (UTC)

Wikinews:NPOV#Dealing_with_biased_contributors[edit]

The dash seems to be an mdash, which should not be spaced. Kayau (talk · contribs) 03:39, 30 August 2010 (UTC)

Em dashes should always be spaced; it makes them much easier to read (and far superior to those egregious "spaced en dash" em-dash wannabes). You're probably thinking of that lamentable rule in Wikipedia's MOS (at least, it was still there last time I was caught up on my WP watchlist). Wikinews is, thankfully, not Wikipedia. It was even noted, I believe, during the discussion at the time that rule was introduced into WP:MOS, that more people's natural instinct for aesthetics led them to space their em dashes. --Pi zero (talk) 05:24, 30 August 2010 (UTC)
Personally, I prefer a spaced hyphen or n-dash if one must use any form of dash to delineate a parenthetical phrase. Certain traditional MoS suggest all dashes be used without whitespace if within a sentence; the presumption being the parenthetical phrase is included as a stream-of-consciousness style element with the least disruption to the reader's progression. I don't believe the WN:SG addresses this specific picayune issue. But why are we arguing elements of style on the NPOV talk page? - Amgine | t 23:40, 31 August 2010 (UTC)

Deeply flawed policy[edit]

Wow. This policy page's representation of NPoV is about as far away from true NPoV as Fox News is. NPoV isn't about representing all sides fairly (that's "fair and balanced" not "NPoV"), it's about unbiasedly reporting the facts of the situation, and letting the readership decide the implications for themselves. That's it. That's all there is to NPoV. This page should be 1 paragraph long, rather than being an incredibly wordy mishmash of verbage.Gopher65talk 23:33, 1 December 2010 (UTC)

I think the article could use more examples of how[edit]

I just read this article, and years ago I read "Wikipedia:Neutral point of view" a few times. I understand to not advocate a point of view and instesd say "so and so thinks or said" instesd of "it is" and things like that. Yet I was accused over and over again of point of view pushing on Wikipedia, which I do not believe I was doing. So, this article might have more examples of what "neutral point of view" sounds like. As far as representing all opinions, I think the article should point out this might only be possible by collaboration. In other words I, as a writer, might not be able to find out what all the various points of view are while more than one writer might have more of a chance to find all the views. I'll put a link on my page to this article to remind me to check it again later. The article could also use some tips on how to do research, or should I say I think it could?--Chuck Marean (talk) 06:07, 7 April 2011 (UTC)

  • This isn't an 'article'; it is a policy. I think I understand the point you're raising, but good/bad examples of NPOV would be something for a complimentary essay instead of within the policy. (It's hard enough getting people to read this stuff in the first place!) --Brian McNeil / talk 10:32, 7 April 2011 (UTC)

Sigh[edit]

This rambles. As someone recently remarked off-wiki, this should punch the reader hard right at the start, and not let up. I've always hesitated to send people here; atm I'd rather send them to WN:PILLARS#neutral, even though that's too short. The historical stuff might have made sense when the project was new, but news neutrality is different, and the project and its particular form of neutrality are long since well established. I'm going to try to work up a proposal to concentrate this page. --Pi zero (talk) 16:20, 29 August 2013 (UTC)

++Pi zero. "support with extra special sauce" - Amgine | t 18:54, 29 August 2013 (UTC)