This page is for requesting input on possible fringe theories. Post here to seek advice on whether a particular topic is fringe or mainstream, or whether undue weight is being given to fringe theories.
Questions related to articles on fringe theories may also be posted here.
The purpose of this board is not to remove any mention of fringe theories, but rather to ensure that neutrality is maintained.
There is ongoing major editing that will require auditing. I've removed a book promotion url earlier which was reinserted and I won't be able to check it again until tomorrow. There may also be a copyright violation (a huge quote transcripted from a youtube video I think). Likely undue weight to fringe claims as well. Thanks, —PaleoNeonate – 08:50, 25 August 2018 (UTC)
Well I'm still here: thanks to Bishonen the potential copyright violation was fixed since; I have just removed again the book ad. —PaleoNeonate – 12:07, 25 August 2018 (UTC)
Is this article titled correctly? It's not about scientific foreknowledge itself, but instead it's about the belief in scientific foreknowledge, surely. It's already a mouthful, so I'm not sure how to adjust it. jps (talk) 12:24, 25 August 2018 (UTC)
Yes, like "Claims of scientific foreknowledge in sacred texts", or "Scripture revisionism postdiction". —PaleoNeonate – 13:24, 25 August 2018 (UTC)
I am wondering if the Ayurveda or the Vedas is related to the subject. These texts had claims to scientific/medical knowledge. There is also the context that in the ancient times, the concepts of religion and science are not distinct from each other. A Wiki page states: "Most scientific and technical innovations prior to the scientific revolution were achieved by societies organized by religious traditions." - Darwin Naz (talk) 03:21, 18 September 2018 (UTC)
The article was about claims that verses in the Bible and Quran revealed impressive knowledge of the world that was not available at the time (or predictions of eventual scientific discoveries), to convince the reader that the texts are sacred, of divine origin and inerrant, etc. —PaleoNeonate – 11:35, 18 September 2018 (UTC)
That article exists because the relevant section in Big Bang was getting absurdly unwieldy. It is definitely a topic that has both wide interest and a surprising number of sources (including not quite a few that poo poo the entire notion -- Stephen Hawking famously did so). No doubt the article could be improved. jps (talk) 00:08, 26 August 2018 (UTC)
Hello. I am well aware of WP:OR. I did not cite the verses directly, rather, I stated that some people cite (interpret) the verses as such. My secondary source for this was Encyclopedia.com ("Contemporary American Religion COPYRIGHT 1999 The Gale Group Inc."). The excerpt is:
The traditional theology of the Sunni community teaches that Allah is above all one, unique, transcendent, creator, distinct from creation, eternal and permanent, and worthy of worship. Allah has, according to Sunnis, seven essential attributes: life, power, knowledge, will, hearing, sight, and speech. Of these attributes, power means absolute omnipotence, while knowledge, hearing, and sight indicate omniscience. Omnipresence is not stressed to avoid confusing Allah with His creation. Some of the more mystical trends in Islam have emphasized His nearness and presence everywhere (Qur'an 50:16; 57:4), causing others to accuse such mystics of pantheism. The traditional Sunni position explains verses referring to Allah's nearness as meaning He is everywhere near in His knowledge (6:59, etc.), not that He is immanent in His creation.
A later editor modified the citation order, which I pointed out to them on the talk page of the article. I hope this clarifies my edits. – Batreeq (Talk) (Contribs) 21:05, 30 August 2018 (UTC)
The NICAP website, which is used as the principal source for the article, looks fishy to me. They appear to have some sort of editorial team, but they're all unaccredited - a bunch of like-minded people curating a website does not a reliable source make. I'll take it to RSN to see what others make of it as a source. GirthSummit (blether) 20:35, 3 September 2018 (UTC)
NICAP is not ideal, to be sure. My hope is that someone can find some better sources. Sometimes this does happen. jps (talk) 22:37, 3 September 2018 (UTC)
Menzel and Campbell are good WP:FRIND sources. NICAP, not so much. Large footprint in fringe and sensationalist sources indicate this 50s ufo report is beloved within ufology. - LuckyLouie (talk) 16:35, 4 September 2018 (UTC)
Besides websites devoted to the UFO, there are actually books that cite this event in detail (e.g. The UFO phenomenon by Time-Life Books). Also this could be significant because the event occurred during a period where UFO sightings were unusually high in the United States and such reports came from different parts of the country. Many sources cited, for instance, that from July to August of 1952 (Nash-Fortenberry UFO sighting was dated July), there were more than 800 reports, which included official Air Force official accounts of unexplained sightings over Washington, D.C. in the same month. - Darwin Naz (talk) 23:42, 16 September 2018 (UTC)
┌────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────┘Oh, I have NO DOUBT that Time Life books focused on this particular incident. I've read that (what can most charitably be called) grey literature. The authors of that series haven't met a first-hand account they haven't loved -- these are the intellectual ancestors of the producers active on the History Channel these days. The problem is that while some UFO incidents have been the focus of serious WP:MAINSTREAM consideration for their cultural importance (think Roswell, Barney & Betty Hill, or Jimmy Carter), the vast majority of them are your fifteen-minutes-of-fame types of tales. Incidentally, the reason Project Blue Book was shut down (or, at least, shunted off from public view) was because the sensationalism of these accounts made it nearly impossible to use most of them as anything but campfire stories. Even what believers hail as their "most incredible" incidents have "evidence" of such low quality that we're just left shrugging. All this is to say, we need sources better than Time Life Books. jps (talk) 11:45, 17 September 2018 (UTC)
Emil Kirkegaard has been editing this article. Problem is that he attended this controversial conference and was involved heavily involved with it. There appears to be little to no criticism in the article, it is not neutrally written in relation to the sources. Mainstream news sources have described the conferences as far-right, eugenicist and racist , , . These were not conferences promoting mainstream science. The ideas were very much on the lunatic fringe. Kirkegaard has tried to counter-balance this by adding a source written by the attendees who do not like the word "eugenics". The paper is online  - problem with this paper, it was co-written by Richard Lynn (a white supremacist) and a bunch of other racist kooks (Michael A. Woodley of Menie, Edward Dutton (who is associated with the Mankind Quarterly) etc.
Rationalwiki has a large run-down of the speakers at the conferences. Practically every speaker is some sort of kook associated with "race realist" community and controversial views from the far-right, alt-right, white nationalism, racism, eugenics, sexism, homophobia etc. They all seem to hold unorthodox views about "race". Toby Young attended the latest conference and ended up describing the speakers as "right-wing fruitcakes". Any ideas what should be done with this? I suggest that criticism should be added to the article, there is a false balance. Also see the talk-page for a discussion Vihaan Khatri (talk) 15:29, 1 September 2018 (UTC)
It seems the conference article has become the target of a lot of sockpuppetry recently; eyes over there are definitely in order. IntoThinAir (formerly Everymorning)talk 22:31, 3 September 2018 (UTC)
If this sock harassing Deleet prevents Deleet from editing articles related to intelligence or race, then this sock is improving the project.ᛗᛁᛟᛚᚾᛁᚱPantsTell me all about it. 19:40, 5 September 2018 (UTC)
I would tend to agree with you ᛗᛁᛟᛚᚾᛁᚱPants, but the Wikipedia party line (such that it is) requires me to remind you that matters like that should be taken up by either WP:AN or by WP:AE with a requested topic ban on the subject of Race and Intelligence for Mr. Deleet. I would do it myself, but I hate the process. jps (talk) 16:42, 6 September 2018 (UTC)
As for the Intelligence (journal), a number of notable racists are involved with it  - Richard Haier, Richard Lynn, J. Philippe Rushton, Gerhard Meisenberg, Arthur R. Jensen etc. 184.108.40.206 (talk) 17:33, 7 September 2018 (UTC)
A topic ban on the subject of Race and Intelligence for Mr. Deleet and his sock-puppet Godotskimp would be most appropriate. 220.127.116.11 (talk) 17:42, 7 September 2018 (UTC)
IP, my comment was, in fact inapropriate. It was an off-the-cuff remark made in passing in the absolute wrong forum. Though I stand by the sentiment, this is not the place to hold that discussion. If you want to get the ball rolling, make a case (with diffs and other evidence) at WP:ANI or WP:AN. But we should not discuss this, here. I'm striking my comment above. ᛗᛁᛟᛚᚾᛁᚱPantsTell me all about it. 18:39, 7 September 2018 (UTC)
I'd like to draw more eyes to Black Sun (symbol). While this symbol has received little attention outside of Germany to date, it is becoming increasingly visible in alt-right and neo-Nazi circles (particularly in the Trump era U.S. political landscape and evidently even in some official context in Ukraine, see Azov Battalion). The article has historically propped the symbol up as "ancient", yet all indications are that the symbol was produced by a Nazi artist during the Third Reich with the intention to glorify the SS in some manner or another (it only occurs during the era on a floor mosaic at Wewelsburg). I'm working on a rewrite of the article, but in the mean time more eyes would be appreciated. :bloodofox: (talk) 01:38, 5 September 2018 (UTC)
Used to be a redirect to Petrodollar recycling which was recently reverted. There were previous AfDs but without consensus, I think. I'm not sure if this is the best place for it, but eyes welcome. Thanks, —PaleoNeonate – 02:49, 6 September 2018 (UTC)
I'm writing this kind of in anticipation because there's not exactly an edit war here but there is concerning material relating to WP:BLP and fringe theories.
Zina Bash is being accused on the Internet by non-notable pundits of making a white supremacist gesture, one that isn't actually a white supremacist gesture but one that was invented by 4chan to make liberals look like over-reacters to banal things. See here from the ADL This is a highly harmful allegation with very little substance to it, you wouldn't mention Pizzagate on the biography of Hillary Clinton, for example.
The point is this is fringe to discuss, just like people who accuse pop stars of having Illuminati symbols in their videos. That shouldn't be mentioned on pop stars' biographies, because it's another conspiracy theory but anonymous people on the Internet. This shouldn't be within a million miles of Bash's biography (unless I am gravely mistaken), but how should it be summed up on the OK (gesture) article?
Fringe conservative theories about social media censorship
This is something to be on the look-out for. I've noticed that a number of editors have sought to add content falsely claiming that this or that conservative figure has been "shadow-banned", "censored" or blocked by social media platforms. In most of the cases, the claims of bans and censorship turn out to be false and/or unsubstantiated. As you may be aware of, this is a new talking point among rightwing conservatives, so we can expect more bad edits along these lines. I've encountered this type of fringe content on Diamond and Silk, Ronna McDaniel, PragerU and Shadow banning. Snooganssnoogans (talk) 15:40, 8 September 2018 (UTC)
I've been treating some of the recent editing as a political conspiracy theory, falling under American politics sanctions. --Ronz (talk) 15:46, 8 September 2018 (UTC)
It's not been too visible an issue, because the sourcing used for these claims is non-existent or entirely unreliable. But I've seen it, myself. ᛗᛁᛟᛚᚾᛁᚱPantsTell me all about it. 17:42, 8 September 2018 (UTC)
Not so fast... Sometimes the shadow ban hits an engineer who understands what is and isn't evidence, and sometimes the shadow ban is reported by a reliable source. Of course there are also a bunch of bullshit claims of shadowbanning where there is no evidence. --Guy Macon (talk) 17:58, 8 September 2018 (UTC)
I'm gonna go out on a limb here and say that the Dilbert guy doesn't have any special insight into Twitter's search engine. Vice News did find that Twitter algorithmically limited the visibility of accounts that appeared to be engaged in trollish behavior, by removing them from the list of automatically suggested accounts that popped up in the search bar when entering a name. They didn't find that Twitter was systematically targeting conservatives, and they didn't find that Twitter was doing anything more than making these accounts ever-so-slightly less visible. Other tech journalists have disputed characterizing this as a "shadow-ban", and the claim of censorship is still a conspiracy theory that is not supported by any reliable source. Nblundtalk 18:34, 8 September 2018 (UTC)
He's a Trump fan. His opinion may safely be ignored. Guy (Help!) 20:52, 8 September 2018 (UTC)
Scott Adams in not an engineer, as much as he likes to pretend. He has a BA and MBA and worked as a mid level manager (no idea if his hair was pointy) before becoming a full-time artist in 1995. ApLundell (talk) 18:44, 8 September 2018 (UTC)
As the years have gone by Adams has become a bit... odd. I wouldn't use him as a reliable source for anything but his own views. Shock Brigade Harvester Boris (talk) 20:16, 8 September 2018 (UTC)
So when he says "I don’t have confirmation that Twitter is shadowbanning me. All I know is that my followers say they don’t always see my posts unless they go to my feed directly. Hundreds of people might be wrong (it happens) but the odds are against it." do you think he imagined it, is lying, or that hundreds of people are lying to him? --Guy Macon (talk) 22:42, 8 September 2018 (UTC)
Could be any of those. But it's more likely to be the issue explained in the last paragraph of Shadow banning, which wasn't actually shadow-banning at all. Black Kite (talk) 22:46, 8 September 2018 (UTC)
I have a hard time understanding where you ever got the idea that Scott Adams is "an engineer who understands what is and isn't evidence" when his first foray into the topic of "evidence" came with him defending intelligent design. Oh, and he's also a climate change denier. Really, he's pretty terrible on the matter of what constitutes evidence. jps (talk) 23:05, 9 September 2018 (UTC)
In a universe where non-trivial algorithms control the visibility of everyone and everything, "shadow banning" is probably too absolute of a concept to be easily defined. There's now a continuum between "Promoted" and "Shadow Banned", and everybody's on it.
For instance, what those republican lawmakers linked above are complaining about is not "shadow banning" as it's traditionally understood, they're complaining that they're not far enough to the "Promoted" side of the continuum compared to allegedly analogous democratic lawmakers.
We're probably going to see lots of increasingly wild claims about this. From anyone who's not as famous as they think they should be. ApLundell (talk) 18:44, 8 September 2018 (UTC)
There are two things going on I think. One is XKCD 1357. The other is that "conservative voices" tend to be vastly over-represented in opinion and discussion but vastly under-represented in factual reporting, for the simple and obvious reason that they are wrong. Sources don't say that climate change is a hoax, that massive tax cuts for the wealthy boost the economy, that giving people affordable health insurance is communism, because the evidence very clearly shows these things not to be true. Conservatives are still banging on about Benghazi and Hillary's emails, as if she won the election (well, she did, but you know what I mean). Guy (Help!) 20:51, 8 September 2018 (UTC)
With all due respect, you keep making that claim as if only th right promotes pseudoscience. They certainly do, but it is the left that promotes pseudoscience when the topic is GMOs, the blank slate dogma, power lines causing cancer, or nuclear power. There is plenty of bullshit on both sides if you look. --Guy Macon (talk) 22:42, 8 September 2018 (UTC)
Hmm yes I know people part of a conservative religious cult who are very into "organic" foods... —PaleoNeonate – 06:29, 9 September 2018 (UTC)
There is pseudoscience on the left, but it tends to centre on diet and medical woo, which is not so much in the news. Antivaxers complain every bit as loudly about being "censored", and indeed censured (see Australian Vaccination-Skeptics Network) but they have less powerful vested interests working on their behalf. The core of the complaint under discussion, as far as I can see, is the claim that neutrality must lie somewhere between what the mainstream media say and what Fox say. That is the fallacy of the false middle. So much of what "Conservative voices" say is objectively false, it is reaosnable not to give it any kind of equivalence to objective fact. Guy (Help!) 08:44, 9 September 2018 (UTC)
Shadow banning is when a member's contributions are entirely hidden from other members, but their ability to log in and make contributions is not affected, and they are not notified of the change in their status. This only happens on small internet forums, and the "evidence" cited by literally every single conservative mouthpiece to support the claim that they've been shadow banned completely fails to evince this. All it would take to prove shadow banning is someone taking a video of them using two devices; one to post using their account, and another with no account or possibly a sock account to prove that the posts aren't visible to others. But none of these so-called "victims" have ever done that.
The problem is not that they're being shadow-banned. It's that their contributions only appeal to a niche audience, and so the sites have declined to commercially exploit them in a way that also works to the "victim's" advantage. ᛗᛁᛟᛚᚾᛁᚱPantsTell me all about it. 21:04, 8 September 2018 (UTC)
Indeed, and victimization is the next step... —PaleoNeonate – 06:19, 9 September 2018 (UTC)
WP Cryptozoology: The Forbidden Topic...
So I've noticed for a while now that there has been a massive purge of articles from WikiProject Cryptozoology and everything related to it. Now I know that it seems around here that simply ADDING an article to the project or categories related to it seems to be a soft point for some people around here. I am not trying to start an argument but why is it that this needs to happen. Why can they not be a part of BOTH Folklore and Cryptozoology (in most cases this is correct). Adding it to the crypto category is not an avocation that the subject is real or not, it only acknowledges that it has been classified as a cryptid by some Cryptozoologists or has reports of something similar in real life. Cryptozoology is the study of animals that have yet to be verified of their existence, it may not be a legitimate science but completely ignoring reports/info on this seems very much like POV Pushing although I may be wrong. Now I'm not here to advocate for certain sides here, but it seems to me that people have forgotten/misread the guidelines of Wikipiedia around this subject. It NEVER says to ignore fringe theories all together or not show them (after all we are just an encyclopedia-type site), so completely ignoring or purging such topics seems s bit extreme an action. True, the source needs to be legitimate and I'm all for that (been an advocate for reliable sources since day 1), there should be no references from blogs on unlegitimate sites since THAT is in violation of Wikipiedia's policy. Books on the subject are very helpful and it would be a shame not to take advantage of the information they yield. I just want to know what people here think of that idea.--Paleface Jack (talk) 21:44, 8 September 2018 (UTC)
The problem is, and always has been, quality of sources. The vast majority of cryptid sources are basically fanfic. Guy (Help!) 22:14, 8 September 2018 (UTC)
So? We have plenty of articles on made up crap.Slatersteven (talk) 22:32, 8 September 2018 (UTC)
WP:OTHERSTUFF. An article based on sources that think chupacabras are real is not going to be very credible, is it? Guy (Help!) 22:41, 8 September 2018 (UTC)
OSE, and sometimes we have clear policy and enforcement in place to prevent more made up crap. --Ronz (talk) 22:43, 8 September 2018 (UTC)
I think JzG's comment illustrates the the problem, at least, so far as there is one. People sometimes have a tendency to evaluate sources as though "reliable source" is some absolute universal quality, but of course it's not. A source written by someone who thinks chupacabra are real is very unlikely to be a reliable source for scientific facts, but may well be a very reliable source for details of the chupacabra legend and the people who believe it.
Sometimes people remove sources because they're fringe sources, which makes a lot of sense if they're being used to establish whether a cryptid is real or not, but is the wrong thing to do if they're being used to define a fringe belief or establish its notability. ApLundell (talk) 02:33, 9 September 2018 (UTC)
Academics who discuss the subculture/pseudoscience of cryptozoology frequently comment on how common misrepresentation and deception is in the subculture. It's a hallmark of the subculture today, particularly as it grows increasingly close to, say, Young Earth creationism. Cryptozoologists are not reliable sources, even for their own claims, which require context and often involve some level of deception. There's a long history of certain users on this site aggressively pushing to inject cryptozoology sources in the project. Fortunately, this stuff is finally receiving a lot of scrutiny, and we've got guidelines like WP:PROFRINGE to keep them at bay. :bloodofox: (talk) 07:11, 9 September 2018 (UTC)
I think your response may be more indicative of the problem. It is not remotely controversial to say that a source written from the perspective that sasquatch, chupacabras or Nessie is real, is not a reliable source. Guy (Help!) 08:28, 9 September 2018 (UTC)
I have the impression that something worthwhile for the WikiProject would be collecting a list of sources that are considered reliable about the topic (if that doesn't already exist, of course). —PaleoNeonate – 06:31, 9 September 2018 (UTC)
"We have plenty of articles on made up crap." I agree. See for example most articles on category Category:Christian theology of the Bible. They are more fringe in subject matter than anything fokllorists can come up with. Dimadick (talk) 09:23, 9 September 2018 (UTC)
I think it's pretty clear from policies like WP:FRIND and WP:FRINGE that coverage of a fringe theory should be based in independent sources. Books by people who believe in Sasquatch are not independent of cryptozoology, and so generally they should be used carefully, if at all. In this encyclopedia there are some quite a few articles about "made up crap", but the good ones rely on independent sources to give an overview of the topic, and less independent sources for details or specific points of view. There's only a problem when article about made up crap are sourced mostly or entirely to people who believe in that made up crap. Red Rock Canyon (talk) 14:29, 9 September 2018 (UTC)
There are actually adherents who do not merely make up things but adopt methods to investigate whether a source is erroneous or inaccurate. When I searched for this subject, for instance, I came across the work of Thomas Williams, who in 1985 investigated the marine cryptid Ri and found that it was a dugong (his work: Identification of the Ri through further fieldwork in New Ireland, Papua New Guinea). - Darwin Naz (talk) 23:05, 14 September 2018 (UTC)
It would help if you could give some examples of articles you say have been "purged" or suppressed and which editorial policies have been violated. - LuckyLouie (talk) 20:05, 9 September 2018 (UTC)
Give me a moment to finish my coffee and I'll get back to you.--Paleface Jack (talk) 15:59, 10 September 2018 (UTC)
Just a forewarning, I might be a little bit grumpy in this message due to constantly having to deal with this issue, along with a particular user who has a habit of badmouthing edits that people do in relation to cryptozooology, regardless of whether or not the edits are legitimate. This (possibly) doesn't reflect anyone but I'll try to be as emotionless as possible. Looking at some of the comments here, it seems like some people didn't read my original post which clearly stated that I don't agree with putting "fanfic" sources into articles as they are not reliable. Secondly I NEVER stated that we should be working information to sound like something that has yet to be proven to exist to make it sound that they do. Equally bad is the rewording information on something that has no basis into biology or any pseudoscience (namely purported sightings and such that have not been proven to be misidentification, or a hoax). I can think of several such articles that were previously classified under the crypto banner that had no reason for being there. I was thinking about the "independent" sources that we are suppose to use and realized something. The amount of "independent" is minuscule at best and are not exactly done by those with a neutral standpoint (neutral standpoints are everything in science as one with preconceived notions tend to base everything on that notion, whether they advocate or detract from their opinion). I do think that if we don't at least acknowledge both arguments in the articles we are not being a true encyclopedia as this site was meant to be. If we can work together in finding neutral, independent sources that don't favor one side of the argument then we'd be in much better shape. Finally, I never saw any answer to my question on why the WikiProject Cryptozoology has been mass removed from articles. I did get BloodofFox's adamant opinion that it constituted as FRINGE but I'm not exactly sure that's the case. Not to mention that there was one reason that stated that since the sources didn't use the word cryptid (some used purported), it didn't fit with the project. I will have to take some time gathering up a few examples of this so bear with me.--Paleface Jack (talk) 16:30, 10 September 2018 (UTC)
Again, if you can find academic sources on the topic, we can use them. Stuff like genesispark.com or whatever Loren Coleman source you dig up isn't going to fly as a reliable source for anything on this site. Additionally, WikiProject Cryptozoology has clearly been employed by editors over the years primarily as a means of promoting fringe theories (it appears to have operated in a shamelessly WP:PROFRINGE mode since its inception). This went essentially unchecked for at least several years.
If the WikiProject is going to stick around in some form, it needs to dedicate itself to improving articles on the subculture of cryptozoology using reliable sources, not as a venue for promoting pseudoscience and fringe theories on the site. That said, the WikiProject Cryptozoology appears to be quite dead, so this discussion is evidently pointless. :bloodofox: (talk) 16:45, 10 September 2018 (UTC)
Wording things a bit nicer when talking to people will go a long way BloodofFox. Although I do agree (partially) on your point. There has been kind of a tenancy to add every single source one finds, which is not helpful in establishing the legitimacy of the WikiProject. I tend to find that the "academic" sources really don't have an extensive research on the subject since they usually don't feel it's in line with what they feel is a real science (technically its not) and any info to come from it they discount. I'm still wondering if Dr. Greg Meldrum (an anthropologist) would be a good enough source for Sasquatch info...--Paleface Jack (talk) 22:16, 10 September 2018 (UTC)
Of course, as academics highlight, anti-academic sentiment also happens to be a major element of the subculture. :bloodofox: (talk) 22:49, 10 September 2018 (UTC)
I suspect that the issue may be that the pro-fringe types search for biologists, botanists, etc. to support the notability of cryptids and find nothing. And they never think to look at folklorists or anthropologists or mythographers. Whereas, the denizens of this grumpy corner of Wikipedia are disinclined to find folklorists who write about the myth of the Jersey Devil because they'd rather less of that nonsense on the encyclopedia anyway. As this is a voluntary project, whether you think it's neighbourly or not, that's entirely their right.Simonm223 (talk) 16:02, 11 September 2018 (UTC)
I don't want this to turn into a big long argument with people insulting differences in opinions. I've had enough of that dealing with with BoF. I just want to clarify the parameters of sources since it's been severely limited by the Fringe and Profringe people. All of that aside, I find that it IS an issue finding only academic sources for Cryptozoology articles since there are so few and some that are get classified as Fringe (something that happens quite a bit). It just makes the expansion of such articles extremely frustrating when you have such a limited amount of what the Fringe and Profringe people accept as good enough sources.--Paleface Jack (talk) 18:30, 11 September 2018 (UTC)
I'm only trying to reach an agreement since I was told by someone experienced with these kind of antics that it was more POV pushing than anything else. Can't say I din't try though (sighs).--Paleface Jack (talk) 16:37, 13 September 2018 (UTC)
Those alternates have a tendency to not cite sources and are poorly structured. I just feel that, by saying ONLY academic sources are allowed, it severely restricts the amount of expansion we can give to those articles since there is just not a lot of academic sources out there on the individuals. There's more on cryptozoology as a whole, mostly detractors, but that's pretty much it. Not at all ideal when one wants to expand those articles to their fullest extent.
I still haven't received any satisfactory explanation for the mass removal of the crypto wikiproject banner and categories from articles. All I've gotten is that, since sources doesn't mention the specific word "Cryptid" it doesn't count. Looking at these sources, some say "purported" or "mysterious", and since cryptozoology is the study of the purported and mysterious I think it fits. All I ask is why does it have to be that specific in terms of wording?--Paleface Jack (talk) 18:30, 20 September 2018 (UTC)
Fringe should not be used as a bludgeon to disallow anything that is not "accepted knowledge".Slatersteven (talk) 18:33, 20 September 2018 (UTC)
Slatersteven What is Wikipedia for if it is not a repository of "accepted knowledge". Surely that's our raison d'etre - don't we strive to get rid of anything that isn't accepted knowledge? I'm genuinely not meaning to be snarky/rhetorical/sarcastic, I'd be interested to hear your views on this. GirthSummit (blether) 18:51, 20 September 2018 (UTC)
Indeed it is the absolute essence of this encylopedic project per WP:NOTEVERYTHING - not just that we have "accepted knowledge" but that we summarize it. Alexbrn (talk) 19:00, 20 September 2018 (UTC)
You will note I wrote "accepted knowledge" not accepted knowledge, the idea that only knowledge that certain eds consider real knowledge can be accepted konwledge. There is nothing that says that something that is a Fringe (but widely held or written about) subject can only have an article (or entry in an article) if academic writers have written about it. Fringe does not say we cannot have articles (or content on other articles) that a Fringe. Only that we cannot give an impression that such views are mainstream. Articles on Crypto subejcts must be written with care to ensure it is clear that they are not scientifically accurate or academically accepted. That does not mean that if we cannot find academic sources that discus them we should exclude them (for example).Slatersteven (talk) 19:26, 20 September 2018 (UTC)
WP:VALID is policy. The bit about omitting stuff is pertintent when it isn't (or cannot be contextualized by) accepted academic scholarship. Otherwise we'd risk become an uncritical compendium of UFO abductions, quack cancer cures, conspiracy theories and so forth. Wikipedia is not a compendium of arcana but a summary of accepted knowledge, as every WP:CLUEful editor knows. Alexbrn (talk) 19:35, 20 September 2018 (UTC)
And as I said as long as we do not claim it is real or equally valid we are obeying this. This is about writing about it to make it clear it is pseudoscience, not legitimization of it by giving it spurious mock academic credibility. This is not an issue of inclusion, but of style.Slatersteven (talk) 08:01, 21 September 2018 (UTC)
Someone is recently adding material to related articles asserting that FMS was pseudoscience and conspiracy theory to justify sexual abuse. I've not reviewed the literature but I remember reading about it years ago and there were trials which demonstrated personnel incompetence, including using questionable therapies like suggestive hypnotherapy (pseudoscience itself), which would have caused vulnerable people to claim (or admit under possibly coercive circumstances) they were abused, causing a type of moral panic at the time. —PaleoNeonate – 06:40, 9 September 2018 (UTC)
False memory syndrome is a very charitable name for the coaching of vulnerable people to destroy numerous innocent lives. Guy (Help!) 08:27, 9 September 2018 (UTC)
You are absolutely correct. In fact it was a major driver for modern study of false memories. This looks like a walled garden issue, though. Far too much emphasis given to the work of the Freyds. Guy (Help!) 10:26, 9 September 2018 (UTC)
Ah, I remember that one. Recovered memory researcher makes a bunch of dubious claims based upon a case study of "Jane Doe" whith parents who live in "Momstown" and "Dadstown". Skeptics track down what actually happened, and it wasn't even close to what the researchers described -- some of which is directly contradicted by public records. Researcher responds by accusing skeptics of a patient privacy breach.
User:WLU was highly informed about this general subject, and used to follow these articles. I don't know if anyone has reached his level since he got too busy to edit frequently. WhatamIdoing (talk) 05:53, 10 September 2018 (UTC)
Of course, there's a distinction between false memory syndrome and false memory - that false memories occur is overwhelmingly well supported, but the existence of a syndrome "in which a person's identity and interpersonal relationships center on a memory of a traumatic experience that is objectively false but that the person strongly believes occurred" is another matter. It's pointed out in this article that "But false memories aren’t a disease. We all have them. Having them is healthy and normal. We may not like our false memories, and they can have disastrous legal repercussions, but even in the worst cases they are still just the products of healthy brains." I think a lot of this content could simply be merged into other articles (where it isn't simply duplication of existing content). --tronvillain (talk) 16:43, 10 September 2018 (UTC)
Wee Care and McMartin are both core parts of the Satanic ritual abuse moral panic. Both of those were incidents where people were accused of (frankly bizarre) abuse of children, based on supposed "recovered memories" of adults, while the children were led to give answers the investigators wanted to hear. So less of a walled-garden, and more "these are examples of the panic in action." — The Hand That Feeds You:Bite 21:04, 14 September 2018 (UTC)
A merge to a section of false memory seems reasonable. I think the "false memory syndrome" portion of the lede in false memory could probably be folded into that as well - it currently makes up most of the lede and that isn't supported by the amount of text it has in the body. --tronvillain (talk) 15:31, 11 September 2018 (UTC)
I'm very doubtful about this claim that false memory syndrome and false memory are actually the same thing. There's no "syndrome" behind someone mis-remembering something, or even being firmly convinced that their memory of an event is the true one, even if someone else insists that they remember it differently. That's just an everyday thing.
However, it still might make sense to handle them in the same article. It might make it easier to keep the FMS content neutral. WhatamIdoing (talk) 22:06, 18 September 2018 (UTC)
A 2018 paper in “Results in Physics” by Y. Zhu a scientist in China have proposed a possible thrust from the gravitational field varied by strong magnetic/electric field. The gravitational redshift well showed that the energy of photon can be varied by gravity. From the law of conservation of energy, the energy of the gravitational field is accordingly varied by the photon. Therefore, the gravitational and electromagnetic field can be varied by each other. The equations for the interaction between gravitational and magnetic/electric field were obtained. The equations show that, the varied gravitational field could be manipulated in practice, including space propulsion.
"I have also received rejections from Elsevier journals with an option to transfer. The journals which they suggested were recently started open access journals such as Heliyon, Results in Physics etc. Those journals collect open access fee from authors. Hence, I declined the transfer offer."'
The relevant passage in the Yin Zhu PDF cited is:
Electromagnetic and gravitational field are two very important fields. It is very significant to know the interaction between them. Eqs. (14) and (17) show that, the gravitational field could be manipulated with a magnetic or electric field just as that the electromagnetic field is done with the Faraday’s law of induction. For example, gravitational communication  should be possible with them. And, a GemDrive  could be designed by varying the gravitational field with a strong magnetic/electric field in one part of a spacecraft to produce a gravitational potential difference between two parts of a spacecraft which propels this spacecraft to move. It shall lead to use the gravitational field as used the electromagnetic one. In astronomical observation, many electric and magnetic fields are very strong. Eqs. (15) and
(18) are useful for the observation.
Ref 32 in the Yin Zhu PDF is Yin Zhu citing Yin Zhu:
Not defending the source; just reiterating my comment from the reliable sources noticeboard that it's pretty common for post-graduate level academics to be CPC party members, and it's pretty common for bored CPC party members to get assigned random directorships where somebody feels having a Dr. So-and-so as the listed director will look good but where the administrative work involved in the directorship is insufficiently complicated to require specialist attention. (And I say this as someone with at least one in-law who might resemble that statement.) Simonm223 (talk) 15:03, 11 September 2018 (UTC)
I don't know if anyone is interested in this, but it gives too much credence to "the claim of a Megalithic era discovery of axial precession, and the encoding of this knowledge in mythology."
It also for some reason leaves out the importance of numbers to the author. Jason Colavito wrote on this recently saying "Hamlet’s Mill, published in 1969, is one of the foundational texts of the “alternative archaeology” movement because its writers mined global mythology to hunt out factors and multiples of 72 in order to claim that such numbers proved that world myths all encoded scientific data from a lost civilization about the precession of the equinoxes, in which the stars rotate backwards through the zodiac by one degree every 71.6 years, roughly 72 years to the nearest integer. Thus, numbers like 12, 36, 72, 432, 36,000, etc. all become important “precessional numbers” suggesting remnants of this lost science."
Good catch with this. Many editors may not be aware that a fringe subculture exists around this stuff, and I've noticed a lot of archaeoastronomy pseudoscience slipping through the cracks on the site over the years. I'll take a look. :bloodofox: (talk) 17:07, 10 September 2018 (UTC)
I really appreciate everyone's help here. Thanks. Doug Wellertalk 08:26, 11 September 2018 (UTC)
An expert on the subject of conspiracy theories says...
This just in: an expert on the subject of conspiracy theories says creationism is wrong, man-made global warming is real, and the US government wasn't involved in the the 9/11 terrorist attacks.
Sorry to break it to you Sunasuttuq... but you have it exactly backwards ... you live near the edge. Everyone knows that rock is heavier than water, and thus will be precipitated towards the edge by centrifugal force. The so called "northern hemisphere" has more land mass, and so is obviously nearer to the edge. (see: here for a correct map). Blueboar (talk) 14:15, 11 September 2018 (UTC)
But according to the report above "Antarctica as a ring of mountains strung around the edge." and this map, both from the Flat Earth Society, I'm at the centre of the world. CambridgeBayWeather, Uqaqtuq (talk), Sunasuttuq 15:43, 11 September 2018 (UTC)
I hate to break it to you, but everyone feels that way. Oh wait, the map, yes. Yes, you are at the center of the world. The Flat Earth Society is an unimpeachably reliably source, after all. ᛗᛁᛟᛚᚾᛁᚱPantsTell me all about it. 15:53, 11 September 2018 (UTC)
"Any fool can look out his window and clearly see that the world is flat". Is not The Guardian a reliable source? --Guy Macon (talk) 12:10, 11 September 2018 (UTC)
Perhaps this will clear things up: --Guy Macon (talk) 10:29, 13 September 2018 (UTC)
I just noticed an IP removing an "unreliable sources" tag from this article, which has a number of UFO sites as sources as well as "From flight plot by Bruce Maccabee" whatever that is (there's an article used as a source by this author but with a different name). Doug Wellertalk 08:02, 11 September 2018 (UTC)
This looks to be one of the more credulous UFO articles, breathless prose cited to sources like "ufocasebook.com" and the serious-sounding but bogus "narcap.org" coupled with OR from primary sources etc. Needs WP:BLOWITUP. - LuckyLouie (talk) 18:44, 17 September 2018 (UTC)
So much wrong with this article about a "former satanist". Considered just nominating it for deletion, perhaps somebody here can cut it to a policy-compliant version without removing all of the references. power~enwiki (π, ν) 04:13, 12 September 2018 (UTC)
I think AfD for non-notability would work (seems to be self-promotion or non-notable ministry-promotion)... The sources are either religious magazines or blogs. —PaleoNeonate – 06:12, 12 September 2018 (UTC)
The Truth Is out There... --Guy Macon (talk) 10:24, 13 September 2018 (UTC)
And it's pretty mundane. Someone made a credible terroristic threat and since it is federally owned and operated, this triggers a shutdown. But the "evacuation" is also something of an exaggeration because there is no science staff at Sunspot anymore, only a caretaker and his family as they are in the long process of decommissioning the observatory. jps (talk) 13:11, 13 September 2018 (UTC)
Sources, please. The story in the Albuquerque Journal appears to tell a different story.
I'm just letting you know the real deal because I have astronomy community connections. Take it or leave it. It's not surprising to me that the NSO website is out of date or that Wikipedia is wrong. jps (talk) 20:49, 13 September 2018 (UTC)
Who are we going to believe, jps's "astronomy community connections", or the New York Times, Newsweek, ABC News, Science magazine, Space.com, and c|net, and dozens of other sources? --Guy Macon (talk) 13:24, 15 September 2018 (UTC)
Um... nothing I wrote is contradicted by any of those sources, Guy. But time will tell. Of course, I won't expect an apology because you are never wrong. You can check our history for evidence of that. :P jps (talk) 15:43, 15 September 2018 (UTC)
The Sunspot Solar Observatory has been closed for more than a week. Authorities remain tightlipped Friday, saying only that an undisclosed security concern was behind the decision to abruptly vacate and lock up the remote facility on Sept 6. Yeah, the NY Times only has this to say, and none of the other sources give any more information than that, just quotes from various people who have no idea what's going on. Red Rock Canyon (talk) 16:42, 15 September 2018 (UTC)
Aliens? Not likely. Government overreaction? Very likely.
Groan... this was mentioned on the Today Programme (UK, BBC Radio 4) this morning. Just a short passing mention, but implying that there was some sort of mystery and jokingly referring to the proximity to Roswell. They really ought to know better...GirthSummit (blether) 10:05, 15 September 2018 (UTC)
It's on Drudge, with the headline "UPDATE: FBI silent about sudden closing of solar observatory...", the New York Times,Newsweek,ABC News,Science,Space.com, and c|net.. --Guy Macon (talk) 13:13, 15 September 2018 (UTC)
Come on guys. No-one is saying it's aliens. But it's definitely aliens.
Regarding the status, the most recent announcement from the NSO says "There are approximately nine New Mexico State University and AURA staff employed at the observatory." which suggests to me a caretaker and a handful of NMSU folks. Also, Guy, that staff list covers all ten NSO sites, not just this one. Finally, their sites page says "As of 2017, the DST is no longer under NSO’s remit and is being operated by the New Mexico State University." So I think jps might well be right about this. ᛗᛁᛟᛚᚾᛁᚱPantsTell me all about it. 21:25, 17 September 2018 (UTC)
These edits added a couple of categories which I am rather dubious about. I have to doubt whether Summit University is a real "university", or whether Summit University Press is anything other than self-publishing which doesn't really merit calling her a publisher. Opinions? Mangoe (talk) 16:13, 13 September 2018 (UTC)
Yeah... Summit University doesn't appear to be a university in any real sense of the word. It "serves as the educational arm of The Summit Lighthouse, a spiritual organization based on the teachings of the ascended masters." As seen here: "Summit University® Online is a post-secondary certificate-granting institution. It confers non-degree certificates, not academic degrees" and "Our programs are organized and conducted by Summit University’s School of Theology and Spiritual Studies, and they take place almost entirely online." It seems likely that anything it publishes itself would be considered self-published. --tronvillain (talk) 21:52, 13 September 2018 (UTC)
"a spiritual organization based on the teachings of the ascended masters"
It was a sentence penned by a rather notorious acupuncture POV-pusher some time back. Her actual work is much less demonstrative of any mechanistic claims (since health outcomes of that "tingly" feeling are lacking) and, because of that, somewhat more interesting than some discovery of "how acupuncture works". It's no exaggeration, however, that this line of inquiry is the absolute best hope that acupuncture believers have going for them if their goal is to turn into something like chiropractic "mixers". But because of this it shows precisely how based in wishful thinking acupuncture really is. jps (talk) 11:32, 17 September 2018 (UTC)
The sole goal seems to promote eugenics as science, despite long-standing consensus. This is very disruptive and prohibits discussing any of the real issues, and has totally stalled any improvement of the article. Carl Fredrik talk 15:45, 17 September 2018 (UTC)
Also surprised this wasn't on my watchlist before. Simonm223 (talk) 14:32, 19 September 2018 (UTC)
It's not impossible that we've been feeding a troll once again by not enforcing notforum enough... Will see. —PaleoNeonate – 18:18, 19 September 2018 (UTC)
I usually try to humor people who want to argue a point rather than pull up diffs (unless that point's been argued to death already), but the editor arguing the point with me seems to lack the necessary competence to address this subject. I'm not even entirely sure they understand how eugenics differs from selective breeding. They even quoted a conspiracy theory author (writing about something the Chinese government did) to try to evince the argument that eugenics is scientific.
Someone has added "new information" to the Mantell UFO incident article. It's a NICAP report from a ufologist named Francis Ridge, who claims to have "proven" that the object Mantell spotted couldn't have been a balloon, and essentially argues that the case is still unsolved. Someone has also removed Philip Klass's finding that weather balloons were launched in Ohio on the day of the Mantell incident. Just thought I'd mention it here in case someone wants to check and see if it looks like a credible addition. 18.104.22.168 (talk) 22:58, 18 September 2018 (UTC)
A clue as to its credibility is the PDF subtitle: "A 60 year old cover up", alleging a conspiracy to hide the Truth, plus a load of what-if conclusions by UFOlogist and "biblical archeologist" Brad Sparks. Reverting nonsense written in Wikipedia's voice is never amiss. - LuckyLouie (talk) 23:45, 18 September 2018 (UTC)
If a registered/experienced editor wishes to delete the "new information" (it looked sketchy to me) then by all means please do so.22.214.171.124 (talk) 10:17, 19 September 2018 (UTC)
This section has become a collection of pseudoscientific theories. I propose renaming it "possible sources of errors", keeping the "Noise or experimental error" material, and nuking the sections on "Radiation pressure", "Vacuum energy", "Quantized inertia", "Photon leakage", "Mach effect", and "Warp field".
Suggest using a scalpel rather than a nuke in order to avoid some of the inevitable edit war over which permanently dead-linked PDFs are in fact "reliable sources" but have at it if you like. That's way into WP:DUE territory. Simonm223 (talk) 17:32, 21 September 2018 (UTC)
Make it so. Guy (Help!) 21:47, 21 September 2018 (UTC)
Done. Please monitor the article for potential edit warring. --Guy Macon (talk) 18:26, 22 September 2018 (UTC)
Reverting your edit would not be edit warring. It would be legitimate part of the WP:BRD cycle. It would only become edit warring if someone reverted, and you refused to wait for consensus before restoring your WP:TRUTH. ApLundell (talk) 20:49, 24 September 2018 (UTC)
I think it is a good idea to delete these sections but I disagree with the style. You should have put a notice on the talk page. --mfb (talk) 21:20, 22 September 2018 (UTC)
For this article? No. Guy (Help!) 21:30, 22 September 2018 (UTC)
So long as he doesn't later argue that this discussion counts as a consensus that allows him to edit war to preserve his version, then it's all good.ApLundell (talk) 20:49, 24 September 2018 (UTC)
Another editor is claiming that this ref constitutes a fringe theory. I am uncertain how a British politics professor writing about British politics in the London Review of Books could possibly constitute a fringe theory; which seems patently absurd to me but I thought it best to bring it here and get some other perspectives. Simonm223 (talk) 21:06, 21 September 2018 (UTC)
I reverted the edit that removed that source and the material. Note that I'm not weighing in on whether this letter is WP:DUE or not, or whether including it induces a POV shift in the article or section; I reverted because the justification given for reversion was ludicrous. I also will not say anything about the factual accuracy of the quote, though it seems to me that it could just as likely be false as true. I'm not interested in learning enough about British politics to make an educated guess about that, however. ᛗᛁᛟᛚᚾᛁᚱPantsTell me all about it. 21:18, 21 September 2018 (UTC)
It's definitely an opinion, but it's at least as notable as all the other opinions on that article; I'd honestly be happy to pull most of the antisemitism section and most of the reaction section as my personal opinion is that it's far more about sour grapes within the Labour establishment, Tory smears and Israel wanting to call anyone who thinks their treatment of Palestinians in Gaza constitutes institutional racism an antisemite, rather than anything actually, you know, there. But the truth is that, at least until all this nonsense dies down there will be a section on the controversy which will be full of opinions of politicians and political scholars. And if that's the case, hers is a notable position to take, sourced to her, not in Wikipedia's voice. Simonm223 (talk) 21:25, 21 September 2018 (UTC)