Talk:Australian Stingers stung by US at FINA World League Final gold medal match

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Reporter notes[edit]

Credibility of Twitter sources and original research[edit]

I've met the one person, Lynn, who is the source of many of these tweets when doing the OR for my first wikinews article. I also met the assistant coach and we have his picture on Commons from that first session. The Twitter accounts are linked on the Australian Water Polo website. --LauraHale (talk) 12:32, 3 June 2012 (UTC)

The individual twitter accounts referenced are followed by the assistant coach and the official water polo related accounts. They are also referenced by the Australian Olympic Committee account. They are linked to Instagram accounts with team pictures that only some one affiliated with the team could take. Thus, it is my judgement that these are the actual player accounts. Because of this, and my need to check Twitter again and again, I am kind of treating this like original reporting rather than needing second hand accounts from news sources that would be required of a synthesis type article. Ditto with the blog post. --LauraHale (talk) 13:19, 3 June 2012 (UTC)

Definitely OR; lots of the investigation in this is clearly beyond the realm of synthesis. --Pi zero (talk) 15:10, 3 June 2012 (UTC)

Article name[edit]

The team's official name is the Australian Stingers. Their twitter account and their website reflects this. Hence the title is a play on words for their official team name. --LauraHale (talk) 13:21, 3 June 2012 (UTC)

Water polo results[edit]

Live match updates were posted on results.fonbet.info/?locale=en . The site is a gambling site but I checked the live results against ongoing Australian Football League results so they appeared to be accurate.

18:20 Russia (w)-Germany (w) 16:3(1-1 4-2 7-0) as of 19:19.

19:40 China (w)-Greece (w) 21:00 USA (w)-Australia (w)

This game had not started. --LauraHale (talk) 09:22, 3 June 2012 (UTC)

At 19:20: Russia (w)-Germany (w) 18:4(1-1 4-2 7-0 6-1) final Goal Ord.:1212111211111111111112

--LauraHale (talk) 09:22, 3 June 2012 (UTC)


oddsportal.com gave the following odds for the game: Today, 03 Jun 2012 - Play Offs 1 X 2 B's 11:40 Australia W - USA W 2.35 6.00 1.90 4

These odds mean the USA was expected to win but they expected the results to be close.

19:44 China (w)-Greece (w) 0:1
19:50 China (w)-Greece (w) 1:1
19:54 China (w)-Greece (w) 1:2
20:03 China (w)-Greece (w) 1:2
20:08 China (w)-Greece (w) 5:4(1-2 4-2)
20:20 China (w)-Greece (w) 5:4(1-2 4-2)
20:21 China (w)-Greece (w) 6:4(1-2 4-2)
20:23 China (w)-Greece (w) 6:6(1-2 4-2)
20:31 China (w)-Greece (w) 7:7(1-2 4-2 1-2)
20:40 China (w)-Greece (w) 7:7(1-2 4-2 1-2)
20:45 China (w)-Greece (w) 7:8(1-2 4-2 1-2 1-2)


20:59 USA (w)-Australia (w) 0:0
21:02 USA (w)-Australia (w) 0:0
21:10 USA (w)-Australia (w) 1:1
21:24 USA (w)-Australia (w) 2:2(2-1)
21:35 USA (w)-Australia (w) 3:4(2-1 1-3)
21:39 USA (w)-Australia (w) 3:4(2-1 1-3)
21:44 USA (w)-Australia (w) 4:4(2-1 1-3)
21:47 USA (w)-Australia (w) 4:4(2-1 1-3)
21:51 USA (w)-Australia (w) 5:4(2-1 1-3 1-0)
21:56 USA (w)-Australia (w) 5:4(2-1 1-3 1-0)
22:03 USA (w)-Australia (w) 5:4(2-1 1-3 1-0)
22:08 USA (w)-Australia (w) 6:4(2-1 1-3 1-0 2-0)

--LauraHale (talk)

Misc Australian stuff[edit]

Boredom led assistant coach Ryan Moar to play with a remote controlled helicopter in his hotel room during the competition.

The team warmed up pool side before their games.

Assistant coach Ryan Moar shared pictures with friends and family back home in australia using Instagram.

Nicola Zagame was in Singapore on 16 May before leaving for China for the competition.

Nicola Zagame enjoyed the pool while in Singapore.

Jane Moran tweeted on game day: Final of World League Super Finals today v USA - goooo Stingers! ‪#stingerspride

Rowena Webster had been actively tweeting until the time that the team was, according to the date stamps on Zagame's tweets, in Singapore. She did not tweet during the Super League Finals.

Zagame stopped tweeting after the team left Singapore.

Melissa Rippon stopped tweeting after the team left Singapore.

The team arrived in Shanghai and the Shanghai Institute of Sport a week before the start of the FINA Super League Finals. During their week long preparation, there was a focus on strength and fitness training. During this period, the players did not have access to Twitter, Facebook or television. They did not get an opportunity to explore the city until they had been there for six days.

Bronwen Knox took and shared a picture of the venue using Instagram on May 27.


The team cooled down after the June 1 game.

The game started at 9pm Australian local time. Water Polo Australia tweeted a picture of players from Facebook 10 minutes before the game started saying the team hoped to celebrate like in that picture.

Team USA had team branded k tape. The Australians found this funny.

Channel 9 ran a story about the women's water polo team on television on 3 June afternoon.

Players did a variety of things during the pre-game including playing with their phones, warming up and getting their arms taped.

Players talked during the pre-game. It was business as usual for them.

The team's last training session before playing the United States took place 8 hours before the game.

At the end of the first quarter, Australia was behind 2-1 with the team's lone goal scored by Bronwen Knox off a Kate Gynther pass. The quarter ended around 20:12.

"Halftime was 4-3 to @AussieStingers and at 3/4 time it's 4-4 #gostingers"


"@AussieStingers go down 6-4 to @USAWP #london2012revenge #stingerspride"

NPOV question[edit]

It seems to me that the headline is a violation NPOV. Basically it says Wikinews is following the Australian team and was disappointed by the loss. Crtew (talk) 18:51, 3 June 2012 (UTC)

Proposed headline[edit]

US water polo team takes gold at FINA World League Final

It's been suggested —rightly imho— the difficulty has to do with emphasis on the Stingers; no mention of their opponents. Mention the US and make it active voice, and that should fix the problem. I'll try that in a minute or two... --Pi zero (talk) 19:16, 3 June 2012 (UTC)
Ah. But as I get closer to the decision I can see I spoke too soon. This is in fact an article about the Stingers and their loss, with the events leading up to it, not about the US and their victory. Yes the reporter follows the Stingers rather than the US, and makes no secret about it; there's nothing wrong with the topic of the article because the headline is honest about it. So neutrality and newsworthiness go together. --Pi zero (talk) 19:45, 3 June 2012 (UTC)
As a random aside, the USA did not have any Twitter updates or any Facebook updates that I could have used even had I wanted to. It just does not exist. Given the size of the USA and the relative importance of water polo to the country's Olympic goals, this makes sense. I think we've had a similar discussion in an earlier article about the Olympics with the Opals when we discussed press coverage. Er. And these articles in main stream media coverage tend to have that perspective of writing about it of selecting a side. Despite writing from the Australian perspective, every effort was made to be as neutral as possible by not using pffery and cheerleading phrases. --LauraHale (talk) 20:03, 3 June 2012 (UTC)

Basic Questions[edit]

I have basic questions like who did the US beat to get into the finals? What did the Americans do to win (game details)? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Crtew (talkcontribs) 19:10, 3 June 2012‎

There's been a dearth of coverage of these matches in the msm, which is why the reporter resorted to this awful tangle of social networking (that's not just my assessment, the reporter said something similar, but worse, about it on IRC). --Pi zero (talk) 19:21, 3 June 2012 (UTC)
Even though I played water polo for fun in college and have some interest in the game, I'm clueless about this match and I suppose I'm not alone, and I'm not getting just the basics from the story.Crtew (talk) 19:26, 3 June 2012 (UTC)
Clueless in what sense? Australia lost the game, 4-6. They were behind at the start, battled back to take the lead, ended up tied at the end of the third only to lose. Going into the game, they had beaten several other teams. Prior to the competition, they spent time in Singapore and then came to China where they had rather intense training and could not use social media or watch television. During the competition, several of them were busy on Twitter. In other news, some one finished third in the competition. --LauraHale (talk) 20:06, 3 June 2012 (UTC)
But that's what I'm talking about. Usually the results are reported 6-4 and you learn something about how the winning team also performed. It's pretty much all from the Australian POV, which makes it biased and doesn't give US fans any knowledge of how the team actually won by two points. Crtew (talk) 20:36, 3 June 2012 (UTC)
It's from the Australian perspective, rather than the Australian POV (so to speak). I see no bias in telling that part of the story; it doesn't hide anything. An example of real lack of neutrality due to structural bias is an article I flunked about the last US combat troops leaving Iraq, that never once gave any hint that the war had been controversial, even when talking about Obama's previous position on it. That was the result of having used only VOA and BBC as sources, and leaving out what little evidence of such things had occurred in BBC. It hid the fact that a whole set of issues existed. --Pi zero (talk) 20:54, 3 June 2012 (UTC)
This was the final article in a series of articles about Australia's performance at this event. I can't tell you how the winning team did because at the time I wrote it, the national team had not updated their Facebook or Twitter accounts and had not issued any news on the results. The article is also in many ways about the Australian national preparation for the Olympics through this tournament. Additional details, where available, are provided to give a more neutral point of view... such as saying who won the bronze medal match which also occurred and that the win was the USA's seventh win in this particular competition. I cannot figure out how to write about the Australian team performance at this event in a way that could be neutral because the article's scope was about Australia's performance. The article's ultimate scope was not Team USA. I honestly cannot see the POV issues on this article that was written about Australian performance at the World League Final. --LauraHale (talk) 21:12, 3 June 2012 (UTC)
LauraHale, I think it's fantastic that you are covering Australian sports! I've learned a lot about sports and about Australia and the passions of its people from reading your stories. The one I loved the most was actually about aboriginal participation in softball. There I learned about Australian culture that I didn't about before! I wish the winning team wasn't from the US because it makes it seem I'm coming from a nationalistic perspective. But I'm more interested in neutral reporting before the Olympics. Wikinews has a real opportunity to cover this event from a non-nationalistic point of view. In the US, all we get is news about the US team, unless somebody from another country manages to capture the media's attention. The coverage here is BAD, as bad as can be!!!! We can do something better than that. In this case, I would have waited until I had some press on the game just to give the basic details. The game itself sounded really interesting with the back and forth going on between the two teams. That's drama! So much attention to the Australian team honestly dissipated that excitement.Crtew (talk) 21:24, 3 June 2012 (UTC)
For whatever reason, it seems you want a different article. Looking for the problems you claim, I don't find them here. The headline well represents the article, and the article presents its story without bias using available facts. As has been pointed out, this is the last article in a series about the Stingers. We're ever-vigilant about neutrality, but we should be ever-vigilant not to let our notion of neutrality become encyclopedic. --Pi zero (talk) 22:41, 3 June 2012 (UTC)

Review of revision 1518854 [Passed][edit]

How did the US team score the last two points? You would think that after the Australians took the lead that the United States did something to pull out a victory. But I don't know what happened from reading this article. This is a basic question that I think anybody who reads it is going to want to know.Crtew (talk) 20:55, 3 June 2012 (UTC)

We should have discussion about bias in sports reporting elsewhere ahead of the Olympics. I myself am not a huge sports fan, but you hardly ever see the main lead being about the losing team. It seems to me that main info that someone wants from an article is to know overall what happened in the game to achieve the outcome between two teams or (more players if a different sport). When attention is given to the losing team so that you don't even learn the basics for the outcome, like who scored the shot that ultimately led to the victory as one example, there something is wrong. If we don't straighten this out before the Olympics, I can see people being upset by our coverage. Like I say, I have a hard time covering sports because of a lack of interest, but it really matters to die-hard sports fans everywhere.Crtew (talk) 21:03, 3 June 2012 (UTC)

I don't think this is a problem. I did a quick Google News search for "Yankees lose". The following headlines exist:

  • Yankees lose, 4-3, in bottom of ninth, Newsday - 17 hours ago
  • Yankees lose wild game on walkoff home run, Norwich Bulletin - 5 days ago
  • Yankees lose again, slip to .500, Chicago Tribune - May 21, 2012
  • Yankees Lose 3rd Straight to Fall Into Last-Place Tie in AL East‎ BusinessWeek
  • For struggling New York Yankees, 2012 seems a lot like 2008‎ Washington Post
  • Keidel: Yankees Lose With Hughes In Rotation, CBS Local - 2 days ago
  • Yankees lose to Cincinnati, 6-5, despite two-run, ninth-inning rally, The Star-Ledger - NJ.com - May 19, 2012
  • Nova strikes out 12 but Yankees lose to Reds 6-5‎ Fox News
  • Yankees lose third straight, fall, 4-1 to Blue Jays in Toronto, The Star-Ledger - NJ.com - May 17, 2012
  • Yankees Lose To Blue Jays 8-1‎ ESPN Florida

These are but a FEW of the many stories that mention a team and that they lost in the headline. This to me is not a neutrality issue, and if the article is about Australia or the USA, and not so much the results of the actual game they played, then it makes sense to focus on them in this way. This is a norm in how sports is covered. --LauraHale (talk) 21:18, 3 June 2012 (UTC)

As a side note, this writing from the perspective of a team that lost is worse if you write about the Chicago Cubs. Poor Cubbie Bears. :( --LauraHale (talk) 21:20, 3 June 2012 (UTC)

Focus[edit]

Now that we can look back on this from a bit of distance, I have two thoughts.

  • Although the headline of this article does suggest that the focus is the Stingers, and the body of the article focuses on the Stingers as they prepared and ultimately lost the final game, the lede does not well prepare the reader for what most of the rest of the article will be about. That, I think, is the weakness of this article. The lede should have been rewritten to reflect the focus of the article. (As reviewer, I regret I didn't pinpoint this problem and ask for lede revision before publishing; live and learn.)
  • Although there is certainly a place for articles like this, I do think team-oriented storytelling like this could get overused pretty quickly. Usually we will want to write an article about a game, rather than about a team's experience.

--Pi zero (talk) 13:49, 6 June 2012 (UTC)