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Over-representation of Romania in the newsEdit

There are far too many articles about Romania in the main news page. New British Airways flights between London and Bucharest is hardly newsworthy! -- 09:31, 15 Apr 2005 (UTC)

I disagree. I for one think that our Romanian contibutors provide great examples of good content and good editing! Instead of less Romanian content, we should have more other content: and that's something that you too can do! -- IlyaHaykinson 09:34, 15 Apr 2005 (UTC)
I agree wholeheartedly that Romania is getting far too much news coverage in the main page. It is excellent that Romanian users are proud of their country, but putting relatively unimportant stories like New British Airways flights between London and Bucharest on the main page where the space can be taken by more important stories is a bad thing. I am Italian, but I don't go around on the main page posting every little unimportant thing that happens in Italy!
When we have a flood of stories coming in, I could see a need to move pages with only local significance to a local subpage, but as it is, we have 15-25 stories per day. Is that too much to scan through? I, for one, welcome great contributions from distant (from me) lands, such as Romania and Italy. Pingswept 19:05, 17 Apr 2005 (UTC)
I think it is wonderful that someone from Romania has the time and energy for this project! I am from New Zealand, and my policy is only to put things up that are of international significance. Indeed I would say there are too many articles from the US rather than from Romania! Honeslty, "Levitra" ads pulled by FDA is probably not a major thing for most people in the US, yet alone outside of it.--GregStephens 03:44, 18 Apr 2005 (UTC)
I agree that it's over-represented when trivial things are posted most of the time. "MiniMax Discount to open inaugural stores in southern Romania", "Five anti-hail centres to be set up in Romania", "Romanian government to sell 10 percent of its shares in Romgaz" There is of course trivial stuff on the US as well, but these articles should not take up space on the main page.
I think Ilya said it best here - Instead of less Romanian content, we should have more other content: and that's something that you too can do! Some of these news are not more trivial than the US news, and currently Wikinews has the policy that ALL news are featured on the main page. Sometime later this may change, when we get something like 40+ articles a day. Ronline 12:14, 19 Apr 2005 (UTC)

<quote>trivial things are posted most of the time. "MiniMax Discount to open inaugural stores in southern Romania", "Five anti-hail centres to be set up in Romania", "Romanian government to sell 10 percent of its shares in Romgaz"</quote> Hey, i personally found the anti-hail centres fascinating. I think it's exrodanary that countries use missiles to divert hail storms (this is apparently standard practice across eastern europe), and i would never have found this out (or the controversy regarding hail damage during the NATO war on yugoslavia), if it werent for Roline's very fine article (and quick google search, once (s)he had wetted my curiosity). Now if other people want to write equally well written and interesting articles on other countiries, im sure that ill learn fasinating things about those countries too. So basicly; quit yo whinging - this is a wiki, its up to you (and me, and everyone else) to produce content ~The bellman | Smile 16:48, 20 Apr 2005 (UTC)

I for one think that Romania is strongly overrepresented. Today alone there is a whole stream of articles about: 1) a supermarket opening 2) A company reporting 7% increase in subscribers 3) Partial local elections to be held 2 months from now 4) Some privatization of Romanian electricity 5) Part of highway washed away, and 6-7) more articles about the Romanian journalists and EU accession treaty, probably the only really newsworthy articles in the bunch. While the articles are well-written and occasionally informative, I think the ongoing effort to make sure everyone knows about Romania is swiftly starting to look like a parody of news. I don't think the author of these articles really has Wikinews needs in mind. Given his obvious talent for writing news, it is a shame he is wasting it on trivial events when there is a whole world full of countries that is under-represented relative to the US. DouglasGreen 13:21, 30 Apr 2005 (UTC)

I don't think Romania is at all over-represented. I think Ronline does an excellent job. In particular, he always makes sure you know the story is going to be abouut Romania, so you can easily chose not to read the story if you don't want to.

We simply need more stories from other countries to balance things up, something Wikinews:Country of the Week aims to do. Dan100 (Talk) 15:21, 30 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Very well, I withdraw my criticism. Ronline is of course a welcome contributor and can write about whatever he wishes, so long as it is news. I will continue to help oversee and edit his articles, and will monitor other international sources including Romania to help improve coverage in all areas (just on the odd chance that Ronline misses something...) :-) DouglasGreen 17:06, 3 May 2005 (UTC)
Just my two cents: Many articles about Romania seem to be on trivial issues, but remember that Romania is a country in transition, so when a new company decides to invest in the country (be it a new supermarket or a new bank) - it is very important for the local population, investors, EU, and all countries in the region. Since I am from Serbia, I find Ronline's articles priceless, because they indirectly affect me as well. --Dcabrilo 04:44, 12 May 2005 (UTC)

Background ImageEdit

Earlier in Wikinews history, the background of the site had the cool swoosh image like the one on Wikipedia. What happened to that?

That "swoosh" was a book. Eloquence (the senior admin) decided that the book wasn't suitable for a news site, so it was removed. Look at the Wikinews Design Contest (link at the top of every page) for new ideas on the syle for Wikinews. Cap'n Refsmmat 21:49, 19 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Index 2Edit

I guess the simplest option is just to move it up in its column - User:Dan100/Main Page sandbox. That's the current Main Page with just the table cell the index lives in moved up. Would anyone object to that? Dan100 (Talk) 10:13, 16 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Seems a little unbalanced somehow. One grey ox left and another right, but much lower. Perhaps we can smere the box out over the entire page length so as to not ruin the symmetry? -- Redge (Talk) 20:46, 19 Apr 2005 (UTC)
I agree that it looks a little weird in Dan's sandbox, so in the meantime i've moved it to just below developing stories. Any objections? Anyway, in the longer term we really need a way of putting it near or at the very top, cause now that we have cats working properly it has become really freaking useful. ~The bellman | Smile 12:15, 26 Apr 2005 (UTC)
Thanks 'bell its definately an improvement. → CGorman (Talk) 20:52, 26 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Ass PusEdit

I just got this "Ass Pus" one on the Voyager1 article 25 May 2005 GMT). How can it be removed?

Is anyone else getting a message at the top of their screen saying "***Ass Pus*** It's everywhere more than anywhere else"? That needs to be taken down ASAP and the user banned! --GregStephens 07:50, 14 Apr 2005 (UTC)

  • It was on Template:Developing stories - I've removed it now. What astounds me is that it was up for 2 hours before being trapped! This wiki needs more eyeballs, and you can count me in as from today. Sjorford 09:39, 14 Apr 2005 (UTC)
  • When reverting this particular vandal, please go to the user's contributions section and undo all page moves and blanket revert all edits to the previous page versions. This is a known vandal, who is blockable on sight and whose edits are revertable on sight. For details, read Wikinews:Vandalism and the articles on Wiktionary and Wikipedia that the discussion of this vandal links to. I've done the blanket reversion this time. Uncle G 09:51, 14 Apr 2005 (UTC)
    • I'm getting the message "Pelican Shit" now. --Randolph 07:34, 15 Apr 2005 (UTC)
      • Well looks like whoever did it is striking again, why do people even do these things? I'll see what I can do to fix it. --Rastilin 07:43, 19 Apr 2005 (UTC)
      • I wasn't the guy who fixed it but kudos to whoever did.--Rastilin 08:16, 19 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Given that the mainpage is protected, ¿which admin added this?:

<div class="center"><font size="+2" color="gold">*** Got Ass Pus? ***</font></div>

Whoever did it needs to be banded and the line must be removed.

-- 09:47, 20 Apr 2005 (UTC)

It was a vandal who added this stuff to an editable template that shows up on the main page. The vandal has been banned. -- IlyaHaykinson 15:52, 20 Apr 2005 (UTC)
You can use Wikinews:Vandalism to highlight such issues and co-ordinate responses to them. Dan100 (Talk) 16:05, 20 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Berlusconi's caricature in the newsEdit

I am not his fan, but isn't this a violation of neutral point of view? 08:33, 29 Apr 2005 (UTC)

I agree, it seems to be taking the micky out of him. Photos should be used, not caricatures. --GregStephens 23:46, 30 Apr 2005 (UTC)
I think it is slight violation of the NPOV policy, but I like the caricature and do not see a problem with it. The main reason for was that a good photo of him was not available as public domain or GFDL. Also the best place to bring up issues with articles is on that articles talk page, since this page may not get read often. --Cspurrier 02:51, 1 May 2005 (UTC)

UK General electionEdit

The polls are open from 7am to 10pm BST which is 6am to 9pm UTC, not 6am to 10pm UTC as the main page currently says. 11:31, 5 May 2005 (UTC)

NOT the "Marine Logo"Edit

The pic of the road has the alternate text "Marine Logo", the actual image of which is below it. Can someone fix this? Thanx 19:55, 6 May 2005 (UTC)

Done. Thanks for the catch! Dan100 (Talk) 20:35, 6 May 2005 (UTC)
Thanx 00:45, 8 May 2005 (UTC)

Mars imageEdit

That can get extremely irritating (The zooming-in pic). Is there any alternative, or more sedate version of it? Thanx 17:18, 7 May 2005 (UTC)

Done. -Edbrown05 19:42, 7 May 2005 (UTC)
Thanx 00:45, 8 May 2005 (UTC)
Anon, you're doing great at catching stuff and edits... Why don't you grab an account too? - Amgine/talk 00:49, 8 May 2005 (UTC)

UK elections going backwardsEdit

"Voting takes place across the United Kingdom as 645 seats of the House of Commons are up in the 2005 general election. Polls predict that Labour"


Newsflash: Election is finished. Labour won with a greatly reduced majority. You actually reported this right at the time, then slowly over the last couple of days it keeps slipping back in time as if it is about to happen as a future event.

  • There's no text like that on the main page. As stated at the top of this discussion page, this is the talk page for Main Page. If you want to discuss an article, please use the discussion page for that individual article. Then others will, for starters, know which article you are actually referring to. Uncle G 13:22, 8 May 2005 (UTC)

Main Page Icon for North Korea Satellite ImageryEdit

Administrators- please replace the icon on the main page that depicts a political map of North Korea with the picture in the article of a satellite image of the Korean Peninsula. The satellite image is far more relevant to the topic than a political map.

Thank you

I am certainly no adminstrator. But I did see your post. I will replace the image, but would rather you do it yourself in the future if you feel so inclined. Mistakes are made, attempt to fix them if you see it go wrong.

Here are the steps:

1) open a separate browser window with the image you pointed to
2) in your Wikinews browser window, select 'article workspace'
3) find on table of contents 'lead stories' and select
4) select update 2nd lead
5) where the graphic code formating appears --> Image:NKorea nuke illustration.png|120px|right|North Korea nuke illustration <-- replace "NKorea nuke illustration.png" with "Korean Peninsula.png"
6) save it
-Edbrown05 22:07, 9 May 2005 (UTC)

Hey, I actually changed the image first! I just messed it up a bit :) Dan100 (Talk) 22:08, 9 May 2005 (UTC)

Thank you very much.

Funny! Now, whose the imaginative cookie with the 1st lead graphics changes? They're great! -Edbrown05 22:42, 9 May 2005 (UTC)

Novel and well done with 1st lead -Edbrown05 22:47, 9 May 2005 (UTC)

Thank you very much, Edbrown05. My real username is NGerda, and I just added the Firefox vunerability article to the third lead. I also scoured NASA's image database and found the image used in the Mars Opportunity article - 19:54, 10 May 2005 (UTC)

Need for a Fourth LeadEdit

I put my vote in for a fourth (and maybe fifth) lead article space on the main page. And it would be great if we could create a wikinews Local section where you could select a reigon (Country, State, County, City, etc.) and submit and read local news for that area. - 19:54, 10 May 2005 (UTC)

Local portalsEdit

I personally think three is enough, but thats just my opinion. There is already a local region area for more local news though. For regions there's North America, Asia, europe, ect. you can also go even more local through North America -> canada -> Category:Alberta
Bawolff 22:23, 10 May 2005 (UTC)
Even so, the local pages need to be more prevelent on the main page, and the local pages do not go as far as states in America (at least from what I can tell, and if they do, they need to be more prevelent). NGerda 22:27, 10 May 2005 (UTC)
In many pages, we don't have news for those sections yet. No one is writing it. Until we do, main page space is better used for areas where we have news. There are a "few" states pages.... PA, Texas, a couple others were started, but users stopped contributing. Lyellin 22:29, 10 May 2005 (UTC)

It's kind of chicken and egg. We don't highlight any 'Local portals' because none are active, but that could be because they're not highlighted... months ago I dreamed up the idea of a Local portals box on the Main Page, which would list active local portals. As I said, there were none to list, but I hoped to start one for my home town myself as a 'flagship' project. But that wasn't something I could commit to long-term, no-one else on here is from my town (Reading, UK) to also contribute, and I didn't want to start something only to watch it die in a few weeks. Would not have looked good! Further, just a box with a list in it won't scale, but we could've crossed that bridge when (if) we came to it.

I've been toying with the idea of starting a local portal for Boston though, as our sole (pretty much) local-reporter is from there, and there are also several active bloggers in the area who might want to join in. Perhaps it's time to revist the idea! Dan100 (Talk) 22:55, 10 May 2005 (UTC)

Local pages/categoriesEdit

We welcome people who are interested in building and maintaining local portals. Because of some software exansions, we use categories a bit differently on Wikinews to make local article feeds possible. For example, an article might be in Category:North America + Category:United States + Category:Massachusetts + Category:Cambridge, Massachusetts, allowing it to be automatically listed in pages using any of those categories in their article lists.

If we want local categories to be more prevalent maybe we should list them in the nvaigation toolbar. (if this is possible, which I have no clue if it is or not.) Bawolff 22:57, 10 May 2005 (UTC)
What we could do is put a "pizza-box" style banner near the top of the page that would list off the Continents (e.g. Africa | Asia | Europe | North America | South America...), and when you clicked on one of them, it would list off the countries within that continent with a number (in parenthesis) of articles for that country. The banner should go just below where it says Main Page From Wikinews beta, the free news source that you can write!. NGerda 03:13, 11 May 2005 (UTC)
When we get our new skin (m:Wikinews design contest) Its proably goining to be the wikinews one (wikinews:custom skin) which already has that listed at the top. Bawolff 05:22, 11 May 2005 (UTC)
The thing I don't like about the (wikinews:custom skin) as compared to Redge sandbox is the lack of headlines on the prior reference. On the other hand, the Redge page is jammed with headlines. That's what one would expect of a world paper. Also, the reader has no need to navigate away from the main page to find a topic of interest. -Edbrown05 05:16, 12 May 2005 (UTC)
But, perhaps a clean front page + easy navigation is possible using 'mouse-over' coding for a pop-up drop-down list that displays headlines when the mouse pointer hovers over a topic or region. -Edbrown05 16:19, 12 May 2005 (UTC)


I Photoshopped the Breaking News logo and created a new one called Special Report. I can be used if a lead story is no longer breaking news. NGerda 23:09, 12 May 2005 (UTC)

That's brilliant. Thanks a lot! Dan100 (Talk) 23:17, 12 May 2005 (UTC)
I agree this is a great idea. I was wondering why I had never noticed the Special Report logo before :) --Cspurrier 23:18, 12 May 2005 (UTC)
You are very welcome! NGerda 23:37, 12 May 2005 (UTC)
If you guys have any other ideas for logos, I'd be happy to make some more! NGerda 23:47, 12 May 2005 (UTC)
It looks like its about to be deleted at commons!!!! Bawolff 00:54, 13 May 2005 (UTC)
All the votes are for keep though. Don't panic. Bawolff 00:56, 13 May 2005 (UTC)
All logos are up for deletion.Bawolff 00:57, 13 May 2005 (UTC)
Commons doesn't like the idea of Copy-written material on their site. Ba humbug. NGerda 01:11, 13 May 2005 (UTC)
can't understand whose side they are are on, or what they are in the business of doing at commons. -Edbrown05 05:27, 13 May 2005 (UTC)

Issues with displaying Main PageEdit

I'm receiving reports of non-registered people trying to display the main page, and all they get is yesterday's page. NGerda 01:09, 13 May 2005 (UTC)

checking into this. Sounds like lag on the database servers. - Amgine/talk 05:49, 13 May 2005 (UTC)
You will have to log out of your account to see the lag. Also, there is a delay in updating the Developing Stories and today's news (e.g. May 13). NGerda 18:18, 13 May 2005 (UTC)

Article AuthorsEdit

I would like to see the author names of those who contribute to an article listed somewhere in the article, perhaps at the end after sources or something. Has this idea been discussed? -Tparlin 15:24 (EST) 13 May 2005

If you click on the history tab at the top of the article, beside the edit tab, you will see a full list of all people who have altered the page in any shape or form, if you look at the very last name on the list; that is the the original author. → CGorman (Talk) 19:27, 13 May 2005 (UTC)
Articles on Wikinews are written collaboratively, so authors are not listed in the article itself. Howevery, you can see who made each edit, when it happened, and what was changed using the [history] tab at the top of the article. Every change is stored in the database, so you can go back and observe the development. - Amgine/talk 19:28, 13 May 2005 (UTC)
Thanks for the info! -Tparlin

What About Editorials?Edit

I think WikiNews is an amazing step in the direction of civic journalism, probably the best I've seen. But what about opinion editorials and columns?

I understand the concept, and value, of being objective, but objectivity also has it's drawbacks. Some have made a compelling case as to why objectivity has made journalism irresponsible. When journalists write stories, they have to become experts on whatever topic they are reporting about. When journalists put the time in and study the history and facts of a story, talk to the participants, and learn from the experts, they become extremely knowledgeable about whatever it is they are researching (yes, I know this doesn't happen everytime). This gives the journalist an extreme advantage (and moral obligation for that matter) to offer their subjectivity on the issue. Jeremy Iggers, author of "Good News, Bad News: Journalism Ethics and the Public Interest," wrote:

Objective reporting can be irresponsible. The practices of journalistic objectivity severely restrict the accountability of the reporter for the truthfulness of the information he or she transmits, provided that the information is provided by an authorized knower. . .Howard Kurtz, in explaining why the press failed to alert the public to the impending scandals that took place at the Department of Housing and Urban Development in the 1980s, places the blame squarely on objectivity: "Trapped by the conventions of objectivity, most newspapers would simply quote both sides—Pierce Says Housing Shortage Nonexistant, Critics Disagree—even though one version was demonstrably false."

Objective reporting often fails to provide the reader with the story behind the news. I would be interested in hearing from others about this. - Tparlin 19:53, 13 May 2005 (UTC)

Wikinews does not do editorials. There have been many discussions about it, but there are currently not processes in place to allow them. We are very dedicated to NPOV, but this does not mean lacking judgement. We are also very firm about verifiability: our sources and notes must be online so readers can find where every factual statement is sourced, and opinion or analysis is ascribed to the person or organization it came from and not reported as fact. It would be very difficult to have collaborative editorials, and almost by definition an editorial cannot be written from a neutral point of view.
This has been the community's decision on the english edition of Wikinews. On the German and other editions, they do carry editorials, which only shows it *can* be done if the community chooses to do so. - Amgine/talk 20:00, 13 May 2005 (UTC)
Subjective news can often be biased, and please consider that many WikiNews reporters are not experts in the areas they are writing in. If there was a clear line drawn between objectivity and subjectivity, then WikiNews could support that. In the future, I could definitely see more opinion pieces, provided they are labled as such and both sides of an issue are able to contribute. Thank you for bringing your concerns to the WikiNews community. NGerda 20:02, 13 May 2005 (UTC)
The English Wikinews doesn't, but the German Wikinews does do editorials. -- 07:29, 19 May 2005 (UTC)

It's not so much that we don't or won't, we can't. The Wikinews:Neutral point of view policy is the No. 1 core policy - see m:Foundation issues. Editorials, by their very nature, depend on presenting one particular point of view. There's also no need for them on Wikinews - blogs already exist to allow people to publish their opinions. That's not what we're here to do.

Further, it's completely untrue that objective reporting 'fails to provide the reader with the story behind the news'. In the example above, the NPOV policy would not only demand we present both Pierce's and his critic's points of view, but also that we show if any side was, indeed, demonstrably false - if we did not, we would not be presenting the full facts in a NPOV manner. Dan100 (Talk) 21:02, 13 May 2005 (UTC)

Not to split hairs with you Dan, but some very bright folks (PhDs in the field of journalism ethics, like Iggers for example) have taken the view that objective reporting not only can be, but has been irresponsible. I've read the NPOV policy, and I just think that an experiment in civic journalism such as wikinews has a real opportunity, not just to put journalism back into the hands of people, but also develop and redefine some of the concepts found in journalism ethics. The point is that when journalists rely on a network of "authorized knowers," there's often an insistence on "quoting the experts," as Kurtz said in his book Media Circus, rather than taking the time to actually investigate the story. What you get, as the NPOV even states, is a representation of a dispute, rather than a subjective (read helpful) view, which a thoughtful editorial can often provide. This is an important discussion, thanks for taking the time to talk with me. - Tparlin 03:38, 14 May 2005 (UTC)
  • As stated at the top of this page, this page is for discussion of the main page. Please take this discussion to the Water Cooler where it belongs (as also stated at the top of this page) and where it has already been had. Uncle G 03:59, 14 May 2005 (UTC)


I Photoshopped a new Exclusive Interview logo for you guys. Hopefully it'll inspire people to do interviews of their own. NGerda 22:19, 13 May 2005 (UTC)

Absolutely wonderful! It looks superb! → CGorman (Talk) 11:51, 14 May 2005 (UTC)
It could be mistaken for the "breaking news" logo at a glance, though. Maybe it's possible to distinguish it more or somewhat changes the colors? MikeCapone 22:31, 14 May 2005 (UTC)== Atom instead of RSS ==

It's not a RSS feed, it's an Atom Feed.


Could someone please add link to on the main page? Thanks!

Done. → CGorman (Talk) 16:50, 22 May 2005 (UTC)

Site Status infoboxEdit

I've created a new Site Status box that can be put on the main page once it's finished. NGerda 20:02, May 24, 2005 (UTC)

Wikinews Status
Articles: 21,785
Edits: 4,693,647
Users: 2,851,498

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