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Wikipedia's Lamest Edit Wars

samzenpus posted about 4 months ago | from the from-the-depths-of-my-mother's-basement-I-stab-at-thee dept.

Wikipedia 219

Hugh Pickens DOT Com writes "Who says Wikipedians don't have a sense of humor? While perusing Wikipedia I recently came across an article documenting the lamest examples of wikipedia edit wars over the most trivial things. As one wikipedian says: 'Some discussions are born lame; some achieve lameness; some have lameness thrust upon them.' A few of the most amusing examples include: Was Chopin Polish, French, Polish–French, or French–Polish? Can you emigrate from a country of which you are not a citizen? Can you receive citizenship if you already have it? The possibilities for intensive study are endless. Next up, Are U2 an 'Irish band' or simply a band that happen to be from Ireland, since two of their members were born in the UK? A heated discussion took place for over two-and-a-half weeks that resulted in at least one editor getting blocked and many more getting warnings. Next, should members of the Beatles be listed in the 'traditional' order or in alphabetical order? Another edit war which flares up continuously in The Beatles involves whether to identify the band as 'The Beatles' with a capital T or 'the Beatles' with a lower case t. The issue became so contentious it merited an article in the Wall Street Journal. One such installment of this saga was brought before the arbitration committee (by an administrator, no less) where it was quickly declared 'silly.' Next, Is J. K. Rowling's name pronounced like 'rolling' or to rhyme with 'howling'? Rowling is on record claiming she pronounces her name like 'rolling'. An irate editor argues that this is a 'British' pronunciation and the 'American" pronunciation of her name should also be noted. 'This is slightly ridiculous as she is English, and therefore of course will pronounce it in an English manner. Perhaps it rhymes with "Trolling"?' Finally did Jimmy Wales found Wikipedia or co-found it? 'Not surprisingly, those who actually were around at the time and know the answer stayed far away from this one. The casualty list has yet to be compiled, but no doubt editor egos will be among the worst hit.'"

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219 comments

Next up: Slashdot's lamest submissions (5, Insightful)

Huntr (951770) | about 4 months ago | (#45679243)

Or do we really not have that kind of time?

Re:Next up: Slashdot's lamest submissions (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45679481)

Of course Slashdot has the time. Just look at Timmy playing with his new video camera or Samzenpus staring out the window. Loads of time.

Do the reader's have the time? After that summary, I'd say "No".

Hopefully, someone will now come along to yell at me for placing the final period in the above sentence outside the closing quote. Only way to save this thread I'm afraid.

Re:Next up: Slashdot's lamest submissions (3, Insightful)

TWX (665546) | about 4 months ago | (#45679843)

Hopefully, someone will now come along to yell at me for placing the final period in the above sentence outside the closing quote. Only way to save this thread I'm afraid.

My guess is that many Slashdotters, myself included, feel that the current convention for the use of punctuation vis-à-vis quotation isn't technically accurate enough anyway.

So, sorry that I couldn't save the thread.

Re:Next up: Slashdot's lamest submissions (4, Insightful)

foobar bazbot (3352433) | about 4 months ago | (#45680363)

My guess is that many Slashdotters, myself included, feel that the current U.S. convention for the use of punctuation vis-Ã-vis quotation isn't technically accurate enough anyway.

FTFY. It's my understanding that the Brits currently use logical punctuation placement.

(The thread's still doomed.)

Re:Next up: Slashdot's lamest submissions (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45680397)

Do the reader's have the time?

Apparently you high school dropouts do.

Re:Next up: Slashdot's lamest submissions (0, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45679503)

We can end this discussion with this. As it sums up pretty much all of those discussions.

http://xkcd.com/386/

Re:Next up: Slashdot's lamest submissions (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45680355)

Out of curiosity, would the parent's score be higher if it was prepended with "Obligatory" ?

Slow news day? (2)

cthart (163073) | about 4 months ago | (#45679255)

Slow news day?

Re:Slow news day? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45679465)

Pretty lame to be on /. front page.

Re:Slow news day? (5, Insightful)

TWX (665546) | about 4 months ago | (#45679889)

It's definitely news for nerds though. Only someone truly nerdy enough would actually give a damn.

I stopped giving a damn and I stopped contributing to Wikipedia. The few times I tried to add information, sources and all, my changes got reverted by some wikidiot that didn't like how I changed things.

They're complaining about not having money and begging for it with their own banner ads at the top; stop running the site like an unmoderated debating web forum and perhaps people will be more inclined to participate and to give money. That may mean having *gasp* an actual editorial staff, and cutting the wikidiots from edit privileges when they nitpick things that don't mean anything.

Re:Slow news day? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45679577)

Why yes, as a matter of fact, it is, you fucking faggot.

I have to laugh over the rolling vs howling... (4, Insightful)

DigitalReverend (901909) | about 4 months ago | (#45679263)

Sometimes people don't think too far past the end of their noses. I mean they don't pronounce bowling like howling in the U.S. so it shouldn't be much of a stretch to pronounce Rowling like bowling instead of howling. sheesh.

Re:I have to laugh over the rolling vs howling... (5, Funny)

UnknowingFool (672806) | about 4 months ago | (#45679287)

It's pronounced like howling because Chuck Norris pronounces it that way. Check-mate. :P

Re:I have to laugh over the rolling vs howling... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45679415)

But Bruce Schneier pronounces it like rolling.

Re:I have to laugh over the rolling vs howling... (1, Informative)

S.O.B. (136083) | about 4 months ago | (#45679427)

Chuck Norris doesn't pronounce words...words pronounce him.

Re:I have to laugh over the rolling vs howling... (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45679643)

Chuck Norris is a batshit crazy nut-bar who can't tell the real world from fantasy. The only real strength Chuck Norris has is that he has been able to parlay substandard martial arts skills into a career in which he beats up dark skinned people on television for money.

Re:I have to laugh over the rolling vs howling... (2, Insightful)

OzPeter (195038) | about 4 months ago | (#45679417)

Sometimes people don't think too far past the end of their noses. I mean they don't pronounce bowling like howling in the U.S. so it shouldn't be much of a stretch to pronounce Rowling like bowling instead of howling. sheesh.

Actually this one interests me a bit. Not that I care about JK's name (and BTW the end of the last HP novel sucked big time), but the way that the pronunciation/spelling of words are changed by "the media" to suit their audience.

One of the biggest examples of this is the terrorist group formally known as Al Qa'ida. If you listen to news reports from 10 years ago the name was given as Qa'ida and pronounced with 3 syllables, but over time it slowly morphed into Qaeda*, with only 2 syllables. I don't know if this is because the news media thinks their audience can't handle funny sounding words, or if there is some conspiracy to subtly change the name as a way of giving the middle finger to the members of the group.

* I'm going to go out on a limb and say that I think that the pronunciation change is more noticeable in US media.

Re:I have to laugh over the rolling vs howling... (4, Funny)

Longjmp (632577) | about 4 months ago | (#45679535)

* I'm going to go out on a limb and say that I think that the pronunciation change is more noticeable in US media.

Well, the British are famous for some pronunciations too, especially when it comes to town names.
Just look at the nice little town of Littlelancfordupstratdoushire, pronounced "oi".

Re:I have to laugh over the rolling vs howling... (1)

mrbester (200927) | about 4 months ago | (#45679563)

J K Rowling is on record (as are plenty of people who know her personally, like Stephen Fry) as saying her name is pronounced "Row", as in boat or table. Not "roll", "role" (though the French pronunciation of "rôle" is close), "row" as in argument or any other dumb, lazy, couldn't be arsed to say names right variant.

It's like Shrewsbury; Shrews as in, well, shrews, not "shrose" like Shrove Tuesday.

Re:I have to laugh over the rolling vs howling... (5, Funny)

daremonai (859175) | about 4 months ago | (#45679791)

Well, if she can't be bothered to pronounce her name correctly, why should anyone else care?

Re:I have to laugh over the rolling vs howling... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45679859)

Shrove it up yours, pronunciation Nazi!

Re:I have to laugh over the rolling vs howling... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45680273)

I actually used to live in Shrewsbury, and you're right, it's as in "shrews". Not, as certain old books claim, as in "shrose", and in all the time I lived there I only ever met two people who insisted on pronouncing it like that.

Shitty place, though.

Re:I have to laugh over the rolling vs howling... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45680307)

WTF? "Roll", "role", and "row" (your boat) all have the same vowel!

Re:I have to laugh over the rolling vs howling... (1)

Artraze (600366) | about 4 months ago | (#45679445)

Would you describe it as rolling on the floor howling with laughter?

I liked that the editorializing on the "British" vs "American" pronunciation proclaiming that it should, of course, be pronounced in an "English" manner.

Re:I have to laugh over the rolling vs howling... (2)

Rob the Bold (788862) | about 4 months ago | (#45679677)

Sometimes people don't think too far past the end of their noses. I mean they don't pronounce bowling like howling in the U.S. so it shouldn't be much of a stretch to pronounce Rowling like bowling instead of howling. sheesh.

I pronounce it the way that annoys Harry Potter fans more.

The problem is (0, Troll)

Big Hairy Ian (1155547) | about 4 months ago | (#45679269)

People get territorial about Wikipedia articles and don't like to be told they are wrong. Just try editing a Wikipedia article introduce a deliberate mistake and see what happens :)

Re:The problem is (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45679313)

http://xkcd.com/386/

Re:The problem is (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45679323)

Hell, trying editing a Wikipedia article and putting in a true statement. You have just as much a chance of that edit getting deleted.

Re:The problem is (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45679353)

Where's the Slashdot 'Delete Post' button?

Signed,
Wikipedia Editor

Re:The problem is (1)

Tim the Gecko (745081) | about 4 months ago | (#45679375)

Just try editing a Wikipedia article introduce a deliberate mistake

Maybe something subtle, like poor punctuation?

Re:The problem is (4, Insightful)

Wootery (1087023) | about 4 months ago | (#45679871)

Just try editing a Wikipedia article introduce a deliberate mistake and see what happens :)

Worth mentioning that, in seriousness, you should never do this. It's Wikipedia vandalism [wikipedia.org], and waste's everyone's time.

Instead you could just find a Wikipedia edit which corrected an error, and backtrack to see for how long that error was present on Wikipedia. No vandalism necessary.

Re:The problem is (3, Informative)

Wootery (1087023) | about 4 months ago | (#45680001)

Further, here [freelists.org] is some discussion on just this topic.

(I could've sworn there was an official mention of this on Wikipedia itself, but I can't find one.)

Jimmy Wales (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45679279)

...is the reason I don't donate money to WF.

Wow. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45679293)

Slow news day.

Re:Wow. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45679641)

Guess you'll have enough time to go out and suck some more cocks then, won't you, you passive-aggressive faggot.

WTF? (1)

Bengie (1121981) | about 4 months ago | (#45679351)

Rowling is on record claiming she pronounces her name like 'rolling'. An irate editor argues that this is a 'British' pronunciation and the 'American" pronunciation of her name should also be noted.

What would the purpose be to telling Americans how to pronounce her name the "American way"? They should already be incorrectly pronouncing her name that way already. You pronounce someone's name how they want it pronounced, assuming they don't have some strange sound that you can't reproduce, then you just try your best.

Re:WTF? (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45679365)

No no no, it's spelled, "JK Rowling", but it's pronounced "Throat Warbler Mangrove"

Re:WTF? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45679385)

I would like my last name pronounced as rhyming with "row board". Thank you.

Re:WTF? (1)

BenoitRen (998927) | about 4 months ago | (#45679587)

You pronounce someone's name how they want it pronounced, assuming they don't have some strange sound that you can't reproduce, then you just try your best.

Tell that to every English and French speaker pronouncing a foreign name. They don't even try.

Re:WTF? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45679711)

Rowling is on record claiming she pronounces her name like 'rolling'. An irate editor argues that this is a 'British' pronunciation and the 'American" pronunciation of her name should also be noted.

What would the purpose be to telling Americans how to pronounce her name the "American way"? They should already be incorrectly pronouncing her name that way already. You pronounce someone's name how they want it pronounced, assuming they don't have some strange sound that you can't reproduce, then you just try your best.

Turnabout's fair game. English (see, I didn't write British, just to annoy them into thinking I don't know the difference and get 'em all riled up) editors tend to correct or add "sic" to US proper names like "Department of Labour" or "Department of Labor (sic)". We do it do annoy them in retribution.

That and also because they think Ed Zern is an ignorant bumpkin.

Aluminium (5, Funny)

Reliable Windmill (2932227) | about 4 months ago | (#45679361)

I regularly replace misspelled "aluminum" with the correct "aluminium" whenever I see it in an article, but backwards people just revert my changes.

Re:Aluminium (5, Informative)

Mr Z (6791) | about 4 months ago | (#45679463)

I know your trolling, but here's the actual history behind the name. [grammarphobia.com]

Re:Aluminium (1)

WWJohnBrowningDo (2792397) | about 4 months ago | (#45679731)

Try taking off the aluminium foil hat once in a while, it's blocking the woosh sound from over your head.

Re:Aluminium (1)

Mr Z (6791) | about 4 months ago | (#45679769)

Oh, I got the joke. I still felt like injecting some facts.

MOS:ENGVAR (1)

tepples (727027) | about 4 months ago | (#45679931)

Fact is that articles about American subjects are supposed to use American spelling, and articles about Commonwealth subjects are supposed to use Commonwealth spelling. Otherwise, match the spelling already in the article.

Re:Aluminium (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45680009)

We'll all start using Aluminium as soon as we stop hearing Brits pronounce Diablo as "Dye-ab-low".

Re:Aluminium (4, Interesting)

jdavidb (449077) | about 4 months ago | (#45680251)

I will never forget the edit war over "yogurt"/"yoghurt." The ridiculousness was only eclipsed by the fact that the "yoghurt" guy won for years because everybody else realized it was ridiculous and didn't have the persistence to stay with it. IMO the system is broken when that kind of issue is settled by someone's personal passion and obsession.

Repost (sorta): we had this sort of article before (3, Insightful)

Mr Foobar (11230) | about 4 months ago | (#45679367)

I gave up on being a Wikipedia editor a long time ago, what a waste of time trying to be helpful and make the articles better. Even doing a simple edit like "its" for an incorrect "it's" got nasty emails sent to be almost immediately about it, and the edits reverted in no time. All I ever wanted to do was correct minor grammatical and typographical errors, which never would have gotten past an editor in a "real" encyclopedia, and make for better looking articles. The grief I got for it..., well, it wasn't much fun. They want editors, they get them, the editors give up in disgust. It's also why I haven't given them a dime.

Everything2 was what Wikipedia should have been. Much better class of people there.

Re:Repost (sorta): we had this sort of article bef (5, Funny)

serviscope_minor (664417) | about 4 months ago | (#45679623)

Your right about that. I always corrected minor errors and its really annoying when people keep on changing them back irregardless of weather their correct or knot.

Weather or knot (0)

tepples (727027) | about 4 months ago | (#45679961)

weather their correct or knot

...must resist urge to make pun about wind speed...

Re:Weather or knot (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45680103)

Ask not for whom the wind whooshes, it whooshes for thee.

Re:Repost (sorta): we had this sort of article bef (3, Interesting)

u38cg (607297) | about 4 months ago | (#45679821)

I lost it after an article I'd written, putting a fair bit of work into, was stolen and placed on another website. An editor found this site and accused me of copyvio and then refused to simply compare timestamps. No-one has ever apologised, despite ample opportunity, and until they do, I refuse to waste my time on it.

Re:Repost (sorta): we had this sort of article bef (2)

Xest (935314) | about 4 months ago | (#45679847)

Yes, many Wikipedia editors seem more obsessed with destruction of content rather than creation. I added something once that I didn't realise someone would be so absurdly anal as to suggest requiring a citation and they just removed the whole block of information, rather than spend literally 10 seconds searching Google to merely add the citation they so desperately wanted. I did one of those dispute deletion things and the tit who deleted it was overturned but it still put me off ever wasting my time there again.

Wikipedia is going to reach a fundamental limit of knowledge if these people equal or outweigh the helpful editors because their whole existence will be spent removing as much content as positive contributors add and worse, it's far easier to remove content than spend time researching, citing, and correctly formatting it so destroyers of content will always have the upper hand.

Years ago, I was involved in an edit war. (3, Informative)

Lord Kano (13027) | about 4 months ago | (#45679403)

Namely, this was in the page for Desiree Washington, the woman that Mike Tyson was convicted of raping.

In the section about the rape accusation, trial and conviction of Mike Tyson, I added information about a previous false allegation made by Ms. Washington against a high school friend.

Someone reverted my change with a cryptic comment about "BLP". I saw it a few days later and re-created my change. Again, my change was reverted with more comments about "BLP".

This was several years ago so I don't remember exactly what was said back and forth but the gist of it is that the other party thought that there was something in the wikipedia rules about the "Biographies of Living Persons" that prevented me from including the information about the false rape allegations Desiree Washington made in the past. I challenged the person to show specifically where BLP precluded me from including this information, they could not so I restored my change.

Apparently this other editor had wikipedia political connections because I received a "Warning" for making my edits. I was willing to be banned over this because for me it's about the principle of the thing. If wikipedia is a free encyclopedia that anyone can edit, I was going to make sure that this factual information was included. Hell, I can generate throw-away email addresses and wikipedia accounts. I'm not sure who resolved this but what happened in the end was that Desiree Washington's page went away and the information about the false rape allegations in her past were included on Mike Tyson's page.

After this, I stopped editing articles. I realized that situations like this are precisely why wikipedia isn't considered an authoritative source in the academic sense. People with more knowledge about a subject and with the supporting documentation can lose edit wars if the ignoramus on the other side has the political clout to have them blocked.

LK

Re:Years ago, I was involved in an edit war. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45679547)

>> Namely, this was in the page for Desiree Washington, the woman that Donald Duck was convicted of raping.

FTFY

Re:Years ago, I was involved in an edit war. (2)

Miamicanes (730264) | about 4 months ago | (#45679559)

If you want to see some real fun, find a way to post a sequence of example pics that supposedly show how people with anomalous trichromatic color vision see the world, then pull out the bowl of popcorn when actual deuteranomalous and protanomalous individuals scream, "WTF, these examples are just WRONG... but THIS is an example that works and is, to me, indistinguishable from the control picture" and the editors defend keeping the wrong pics as examples because the edits and new example pics made by actual individuals with anomalous color vision don't represent a "Neutral Point of View" (as if there can possibly BE a neutral point of view over something that is by definition about subjective sensory perception).

Re:Years ago, I was involved in an edit war. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45679605)

It's possible you were warned for the 3 revert rule, that you had made the same edit three times. If so, this is separate from adding negative but reliably sourced, neutral POV to a bio article. And assuming your edit was consistent with RS, NPOV, and BLP, the editor who kept reverting you was a turd.{{cn}}

Re:Years ago, I was involved in an edit war. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45680241)

After this, I stopped editing articles. I realized that situations like this are precisely why wikipedia isn't considered an authoritative source in the academic sense. People with more knowledge about a subject and with the supporting documentation can lose edit wars if the ignoramus on the other side has the political clout to have them blocked.

Welcome to the real world.

Re:Years ago, I was involved in an edit war. (1)

korgitser (1809018) | about 4 months ago | (#45680373)

Well the academia is no different. The same petty politics, the same self-serving nipple rubbing. People are the same everywhere. The only difference is that academia is more p2p - If your real work is outgunned, you can hopefully find another journal or university, get a second opinion. This makes a hell of a difference - because wikipedia seems to be a central authority, you outsource much of your critical thinking and then find yourseld pissed when people happen. In academia, because of the explicit p2p nature you are forced to do your own thinking and therefore learn to deal with it to the point that it becomes programmatic and you are not able to pause to see it to be the same thing anymore.
Also you should not underestimate the system of meta(data) you build in your mind to navigate the the academia. This meta is linked to the best and only true value system you can imagine (your's), is built on the most complete and competent data available to you (your experience) and is therefore the best you can imagine (this meta is _you_, afterall!). So you build your image of academia in the image of yourself, and then notice that academia navigates well, is predictably reliable and gets the job done. Just like you! Expect it to happen in any field though, once you invest enough brainhours.

Wikipedia's real nature (4, Informative)

Akratist (1080775) | about 4 months ago | (#45679435)

Wikipedia has become staffed with a sizeable number of edit trolls, who know a lot about a tiny slice of something, and think that gives them great and wise moral authority over the entire domain...somewhat like real academia. I found this out the hard way when I made an edit to an article, which was modest, relevant, and neutral in tone. Immediately, it got removed by someone who left a mini-screed about it. I checked the person's history and found that they had numerous arguments with other users, but apparently still retained their account because they managed to effectively play rules lawyer with Wikipedia's policies. Again, like real academia. That said, articles like this make me cringe, because it a) turns people off of what is really an excellent resource, and b) makes Wikipedia sound like it is somehow less worthy than traditional reference sources (where no one sees the bile and acrimony that goes into the production of some of those works). It's like anything, some people are bound and determined to play the chemically imbalanced turd in the punchbowl.

Owning articles (3, Insightful)

jones_supa (887896) | about 4 months ago | (#45679453)

One of the big underlying problems seems to be that when someone is a big contributor of some article, he ends up guarding it and the article just "feels wrong" to him when someone else modifies it, even if the contributions would objectively make sense. Let the information evolve and the words be shuffled around, it's not your precious snowflake thesis...

The Slashdot effect (1)

Hattmannen (658936) | about 4 months ago | (#45679497)

I'm sure all these editorial discussions will be promptly settled once and for all now that they have been slashdotted.

I remember giving up on Wiki (5, Informative)

sandbagger (654585) | about 4 months ago | (#45679521)

I'd been contributing to an article on a film. We'd sourced plenty of material and it was a really in-depth affair.

Then some ding-dong undergraduate deleted it and substituted his own 35,000 word essay. This boring shot-by-shot description written in stiff prose and sprinkled with gems from the thesaurus undid a year of work and good luck trying to get it repealed because his school buddies have plenty of time to wage an edit war when the rest of us are at work.

Re:I remember giving up on Wiki (2)

ProzacPatient (915544) | about 4 months ago | (#45680015)

I had a similar experience with theological articles I kept attempting to keep NPOV (Neutral Point-of-View) in regard to the way some denominations interpret certain scripture in their doctrine but my edits kept getting reverted and modified by some Southern Baptist and Quaker church members (Their usernames clearly identified them as such) who insisted their point of view was the end-all and be-all and that other major points of views didn't deserve to be even mentioned in an encyclopedia.

I remember informing Wikipedia's administrative staff of the problem but I don't think anything ever came of it.

Long story short I've tried to contribute to Wikipedia on a number of occasions but self-proclaimed editors and people insistent on pressing their philosophy and ideas on others make it very difficult to be a contributor.

Re:I remember giving up on Wiki (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45680295)

Well that is what you get for expecting zealots not to lie and cheat to cast their religion in the correct light. The administrators that looked at your request were probably among them. Of course even paid Wiki employees cheat their system, you just managed to hit the topic they are most likely to cheat on.

Remember UseNet? (4, Insightful)

minstrelmike (1602771) | about 4 months ago | (#45679553)

It's got nothing to do with Wikipedia and everything to do with
1. How people how argue and more specifically
2. What pedants argue about.
You want to argue about who's going to win the Super Bowl or be purged next in North Korea? Lots of good arguments and at the end, there is an actual measurable outcome.
Want to argue about which is the best operating system? Lots of arguing there but no measurable outcome. You can measure which is the most popular but that's like saying the most popular music is the best music. We argue about music and art.

But the arguments over word use and definitions of fact are the most vociferous because they are the most picky. And only picky, anal retentive types will argue so the arguments get more and more precise each time. When done well, we call it science.
But it's hard to use words and syntax well when arguing about word definitions and syntax. If you see no difference between French-Polish and Polish-French, well then there's no difference between African-American and American-African. It actually is debatable. Uninteresting to most but debatable to many.

State of the Modern Society (3, Funny)

lazarus (2879) | about 4 months ago | (#45679633)

I can't decide if I should be thrilled that we have achieved some kind of intellectual enlightened society evidenced by our capacity to be pedantic in a globally connected ecosystem of information, or appalled that people don't have better things to do with their time.

Perhaps we should have a discussion about this. On-line.

Final answers to stop all discussion (5, Funny)

mwvdlee (775178) | about 4 months ago | (#45679709)

1. Chopin was Prussian.
2. You can only emigrate from a countrybefore receiving citizenship while already being a citizen.
3. U2 are a UK band with Irish members.
4. It should be capitalized with a capital T as such: "the BeaTles".
5. J.K. Rowling's last name is pronounced "roo-ling".
6. Jimmy Wales co-opted Wikipedia.

Now can we finally stop the edit-wars?

Re:Final answers to stop all discussion (3, Funny)

serviscope_minor (664417) | about 4 months ago | (#45679775)

1. Chopin was Prussian.

No. It's a little known fact, but he was actually Spanish[citation needed].

Re:Final answers to stop all discussion (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45680095)

Citation [wikipedia.org]

Re:Final answers to stop all discussion (1)

slartibartfastatp (613727) | about 4 months ago | (#45680215)

Once I was in Toronto, ON, and watched a local band perform rock covers. When I asked for the name of the band for a girl in the audience, she just waved and said "it's just an irish band".

What is an irish band, other than and band from Ireland?

It is best just to overlook it (-1, Troll)

pigsycyberbully (3450203) | about 4 months ago | (#45679737)

They are endless and I think it is best just to overlook it like: America is a continent not a country that's why it is called the United States OF America, because it is OF. The other one the American bulldog it's an English Bulldog and the U.S. have no native breeds of dogs. They simply cross a Bull mastiff, which is half Bulldog with a English Bulldog. Likewise with an "American pitbull" it's an English breed favourite fighting dog of the black and tans British army who took them to Ireland during the occupation to entertain themselves with dogfighting it is an English, breed not British and certainly not a U.S. breed. The same again with the "American Staffordshire pitbull" it's an English breed from Staffordshire England. The U.S. is made up of many different nationalities it is an immigrant nation and they lay claim to what their ancestors would have naturally lay claim to as in English Scottish Irish and Welsh settlers. For example the U.S. has no official language the languages English and not British as in Scotland doesn't have an official language and the Welsh language is the official language of the Welsh. When you speak to somebody from the U.S. you know immediately what kind of education they have received. Most people in the U.S. are just plain ignorant and they don't know they are ignorant. I think it is easier to just leave them that way. It doesn't matter to some people the same as reading and writing doesn't matter to some people. It is their Internet as well leave them alone. I'm of neither nationality so I can just laugh about it.

BS (1)

tepples (727027) | about 4 months ago | (#45680147)

The other one the American bulldog it's an English Bulldog and the U.S. have no native breeds of dogs. They simply cross a Bull mastiff, which is half Bulldog with a English Bulldog.

So when an American Bulldog leaves a mess on your lawn, is it three-quarters bullshit?

For example the U.S. has no official language

True, the United States has no de jure official language. But because the Constitution, U.S. Code, Code of Federal Regulations, and all U.S. patents are in English, as are all state constitutions, it has a de facto official language. If you're claiming that the UK has a better claim to English than the USA because England is a country in the UK, then you also have to put down Austria, which speaks a language not named after itself.

Re:BS (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45680351)

What?

Your argument is bass-ackwards. That's like saying "Germany has no better claim to German than Austria does, because Austria also speaks it".

No. The clues are in the names. GERMANy. ENGLand.

The UK does not have a better claim to English than the USA - the UK (or, more accurately, England itself) is the home of English, beginning, middle and bloody end of story. The language you speak is called "American".

U2 is... (5, Insightful)

Fuzzums (250400) | about 4 months ago | (#45679765)

They evade their taxes in the Netherlands, so it's a Dutch band.

Re:U2 is... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45680393)

Yip, like Ikea is a Dutch company as well.

Britishisms (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45679803)

One thing I've always hated is Wikipedia's use of kilometre, instead of kilometer, etc. I nearly flipped when my search for Jewelry ended up at Jewelery. Really? If they just implemeted a hits counter for searches, they would see that the British usage is not preferred.

How to troll wikipedians? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45679867)

So it's basically a list of ideas on how to troll wikipedia?
They really do try to cover every topic you'd want to know about on there!

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