Talk:Cretaceous baby snake fossil found in Myanmar

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Review of revision 4421182 [Passed]Edit


@Darkfrog24:, when @Pi zero: rewrote the sentence xe placed the period outside the quotes. This is a correct form, and one which is (or should be) used consistently on wikinews because it most accurately conveys the quoted text. I know you disagree.

Even if you were right and quotation marks are always tied to an English variation, the topic of this article involves people from around the world - more outside the US than in it - so there's no reason to require this US punctuation for this article. Ca2james (talk) 06:21, 22 July 2018 (UTC)

@Ca2james: the style you see on Wikinews is decided by the author, not the topic of the article. Sometimes, a reviewer can also decide (since there is information loss in the US variant, and if the reviewer is not comfortable with that, they can switch to the UK version. But since the author and the reviewer used US version, it is a simple call.
•–• 07:12, 22 July 2018 (UTC)
Ca2james, American English does require tucked-in commas with quotation marks. I can provide you with sources showing this if you feel it's necessary. Wikinews, unlike Wikipedia, does not have any rules banning American English punctuation. I do not believe American English really does cause information loss. If it did, professional publications would have stopped using it and there would be some evidence of information loss. I've been involved in many discussions of this issue and even looked for such evidence myself, but I've never found any sign that American punctuation confuses the reader or causes errors in subsequent editing or anything like thatss. Darkfrog24 (talk) 11:49, 22 July 2018 (UTC)
Though you are not stopped from using US style, Darkfrog24, don't group the problem with what "professional publications" are doing. BBC, for example, has been not answering "when" for news articles for so many months, to get started with; dismissing your claims that Wikinews cannot be better than MSM. Adding periods and other punctuation marks despite the fact that it was not there at the first place is an information loss as now nobody can accurately say that the punctuation mark was there or not. For example, in this case, the US style would say, "Im NOT ok with what’s happening to him." while the UK style would say "Im NOT ok with what’s happening to him". In that way, one knows whether the period was there in the original statement or not.
•–• 13:06, 22 July 2018 (UTC)
I've had some version of this conversation many times, but the short version is because the British system does not include the punctuation and since the American system treats the punctuation as part of the quotation process, neither system says how the original was punctuated. It's not that your reasoning is bad. I can see how it would look like the American system would cause problems, but it's been something like 170 years for us to observe that it doesn't. Darkfrog24 (talk) 23:00, 22 July 2018 (UTC)
Sigh. That reasoning again. Doesn't hold water. Just because people have been doing it for 170 years does not mean it's the best way to do it, just that force of habit, resistance to change, unwillingness to pay the price for changing, and (for good measure) a certain satisfaction in doing things differently from the Brits, were together able to overcome any motive for change provided by awareness of drawbacks. People have done some Really Stupid Things for longer. Right off hand, that absurd rule about not ending a sentence with a preposition springs to mind. --Pi zero (talk) 02:00, 23 July 2018 (UTC)
It's less force of habit and resistance to change and more lack of evidence that the other way performs better. I am absolutely not giving you "this is how we've always done it." I'm giving you "we've had [always] to look for evidence, and there isn't any." I feel like you're trying to frame me as a slave to habit when what I'm actually doing is thinking like a scientist. Darkfrog24 (talk) 19:04, 7 August 2018 (UTC)
Ah I thought the reviewer's style choice was the one that should be kept. Thanks for the clarification, @Acagastya:. Apologies for the confusion, @Darkfrog24:. Ca2james (talk) 13:51, 22 July 2018 (UTC)
  • There are official style requirements for quotes: Wikinews:Style_guide#Quotes when the author follows them wrongly, the reviewer may correct it in the article and let the author know, for instance, by linking them to the history of changes made during the review.
  • These requirements do not appear to include anything about where the full stop or quotation marks need to be placed. However I think that such a requirement exists somewhere, perhaps documented on another page. Perhaps Pi zero has an idea of it, as I think they are the person with whom this was discussed previously. Gryllida (talk) 00:48, 23 July 2018 (UTC)
I believe there are no specific guidelines on quotation punctuation on Wikinews. For my part, I very strongly disapprove of destruction of information in quotation (Darkfrog24 and I spent a great deal of time, some years back on en.wp's MOS talk, respectfully disagreeing with each other about this), from which it follows I use what the en.wp MOS calls "logical quotation" (there are things about the en.wp MOS I deplore, but this is one I agree with), where trailing punctuation doesn't go inside the quotes unless we're confident it reflects what was originally said rather than editorial presentation by a news site. That style seems to me to be fundamentally consistent with journalistic dedication to delivering as much accurate information as possible, and I encourage Wikinews reporters to adopt it; but if a writer is vehemently opposed to it (and, rarely, I've encountered such people) I wouldn't force it on them. We are not, when you get right down to it, a bureaucratically inclined project; a great deal of what we do is based on improvisational interpolation and extrapolation from principles (some deep principles and some shallower ones), and in this case major contributory factors for me are on one hand accuracy, and on the other hand choosing one's battles. I strongly disapprove of Darkfrog24's position, I frankly think they're just plain wrong on various key points... and I'm convinced there's no point trying to convince them of that because I've spent a really excessively large number of words trying. --Pi zero (talk) 01:52, 23 July 2018 (UTC)
Pi zero, there is no destruction of information, and frankly the assumptions you make about my and other people's motives for preferring American style to British are a bit insulting. The bottom line is that there is no evidence that either style outperforms the other either on project Wiki or in the real world—with the exception of computer programming and some forms of literary criticism, neither of which we do here. There is no destruction of information. If there were, someone would be able to point to cases of that actually happening sometime in the past 170 years. You just like British style more. You're allowed to just like it more, but you're right that forcing it on other people would be a mistake—just look at what's been happening on Wikipedia for that exact reason. I feel like there's a certain, I don't know shyness about all of this. Like some of the people defending the ban are too insecure to say "I matter as much as everyone else. What makes me comfortable and uncomfortable is important and people should care about it" so they feel more comfortable pretending that it's not only a personal preference, that there's some rule or universal principle involved. "You have to put the toilet paper clockwise because that's the right way to do it!!" instead of "Please put it clockwise because that's how I like it and what I like matters as much as what you like."
You've seen that I care about how uncomfortable American punctuation makes you. I put in a lot more work than I should have to writing around the issue so you won't have your teeth set on edge. But I treat it like what it is: part of your personal package of needs and wants.
@Gryllida: Wikipedia's rule requiring British style only (basically requiring American English articles to be punctuated incorrectly—and yes you can get dragged to ANI and sanctioned for using American punctuation!) is the single most frequently challenged part of the MoS. People keep showing up with reactions to "Hey, what's this?" and "You know you're doing it wrong, right?" and someone sent me a link of a teacher saying "I don't let my students use Wikipedia because your punctuation is messed up" and then a lot of the regulars just gang up and bully them until they go away. I'm topic banned on Wikipedia in part because I defended one of these people (or at least that's what I was accused of; it's complicated). There are a lot of bad feelings associated with this, and Wikinews is better off not importing that kind of drama.
For that reason, I categorically oppose any rule requiring American forms in British articles, British forms in American articles, etc. etc. Let people write in the way that they were taught was correct. Ban no correct form of English so someone miffed about not getting to use British style in one article can just start another one and Brit it up all they want. Darkfrog24 (talk) 18:59, 7 August 2018 (UTC)
One format makes assertions about the final punctuation. Another format does not. Saying that the one that asserts more information doesn't do so is saying something false. --Pi zero (talk) 19:40, 7 August 2018 (UTC)

(ec) "Look for answers within your questions". I read it some a couple of days ago. And actually, you have answered it yourself. If you do a quick search on the internet, you would find the reason you have stated above, in favour of English (UK)'s style and good examples using that reason. Thinking about the US style, I actually laughed because it is followed blindly — it is more like "do it because the rule says so". More like a notorious orthodox religion. You rhetorically asked someone should have raised the concerns: well sorry to burst your bubble, people have raised the issue multiple times. But well, it is same as trying to convince an entire civilisation to use the long s, Wynn, Ethel, and Yogh. You can make use of it, but others are not going to follow your words (shoot, they did not, allegedly follow Jesus' words while he was alive). But actually, I don't know how to respond to your rhetorical question — just like you said MSM will always be better than Wikinews yet there are a number of articles which suggests otherwise; only that you are not ready to accept it.
•–• 19:46, 7 August 2018 (UTC)

We appear to have two equally accepted (for publication) options here. Is this correct? Do both these methods need to be described in the the style guide so that a foreigner can choose one and follow it? Gryllida (talk) 23:37, 7 August 2018 (UTC)

No, I don't think this should be in the style guide. Our SG mostly prefers general principles rather than getting into details (though not consistently so). We don't want to be tied in red tape. --Pi zero (talk) 00:03, 8 August 2018 (UTC)
On that, Pi zero and I are agreed. We should only make a rule about this if there's some kind of problem that necessitates one. Wikipedia's rule about this has caused no end to trouble.
Acagastya, if my choices are "do what the rule say(s)" or "no, do what I say instead," then I'm going to do what the rule says. But on a more serious note, when you say people have "raised the issue," do you mean they provided evidence? Have you seen real-world problems attributable to American style? (As opposed to just hypothetical problems.) That would be very significant. Darkfrog24 (talk) 14:41, 8 August 2018 (UTC)
Would you recognize a real-world problem if you saw it? What would it look like? The real-world problem addressed by Wikinews, indeed by the whole wikimedia sisterhood, can only be described in broad, abstract terms, and is an urgent, burning problem; it is by no means less real for affording only a broad abstract description. --Pi zero (talk) 15:13, 8 August 2018 (UTC)
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