Gets Banned 3rd Time

Why the Project on Alternative Medicine’s InfoBoxes are NOT Obsolete

Infoboxes share absolutely nothing in common with categories because Wikipedia:Categories, lists, and series_boxes does not cover infoboxes.

Infoboxes, as well as our latest revision, are a consistently-formatted table which are present in articles with a common subject that provide classification information.[1] Our particular infoxbox[2] references a well-annotated list to related articles, if and only if a viewer decides to click on an infobox hyperlink. Viewers are only taken to other related articles when they click on a hyperlink contained within our well-annotated list. Please note that offical Wikipedian guidelines state that:

  1. “Lists on Wikipedia have three main purposes:
    • Information – The list may be a valuable information source. … Examples would include … annotated lists.
    • Navigation… lists of related topics (also called list of links to related articles).
    • Development – Some lists are useful for Wikipedia development purposes. The lists of related topics give an indication of the state of the ‘opedia, the articles that have been written, and the articles that have yet to be written.”[3]
  2. “A well-annotated list may duplicate a category, but not be redundant with it.”[4]

I shall repeat that again: a well-annotated list is never redundant with categories, and our infobox has a single purspose which is not navigation.

Therefore, our infoxboxes are part of an offical Wikiproject, are informative rather than navigational in nature, are not redundant with categories per Wikipedian guidelines, and are thus not obsolete. — John Gohde 06:21, 19 Feb 2005 (UTC)

Critique on Wikipedia’s use of Categories

Categories don’t come close to replacing a well-annotated list to related articles.

Anybody casually familiar with searching on Wikipedia should know this. I only know what categories are, because I am an editor. New visitors to Wikipedia are most likely to be using the default user skin [5]. With the default skin, categories are listed at the very bottom of the web page. Hence, nobody not currently an editor would ever even be likely to see any of the various categories, let alone know what they are for. Once found by a new visitor to Wikipedia, categories are still extremely confusing and time consuming to use.

I am objecting to this specific category guideline.

  • “An article should not be in both a category and its subcategory.”[6], [7]

Take Category:Alternative medicine, for example. Every article on this topic can be put into some type of sub-category that would logically fall under this category. Yet, I see a whole bunch of articles listed in this major category when few if any articles should be listed per this category guideline.

Body work (alternative medicine) is a case in point. Note how alternative medicine is actually included in the title of this article. Yet, you wont find Body work (alternative medicine) in Category:Alternative medicine thanks to the editing efforts of editors following this Wikipedian category guideline.

Homeopathy is another case in point which has its own Category:Homeopathy. There are a number of articles in this category. But, not one of them refers to category:Alternative medicine. The only place category:Alternative medicine is found is within its sub-category Category:Homeopathy. My question is this. Why would a new visitor to Wikipedia reading homeopathy interested in finding other articles on alternative medicine ever click on Category:Homeopathy when they are already in the article on homeopathy? This assumes of course that they could find the link on the very bottom of the page that they are supposed to click on.

As an editor, I am familar with categories. There is a certain amount of logic to them. However, I am concerned only with the likely behavior of a new vistor to Wikipedia who is using the default user skin[8]. Suppose that visitor is trying to find articles on alternative medicine. That new visitor is not likely to find Category:Alternative medicine. And if they manage to find it, they wont find Body work (alternative medicine) on the list, thanks to this category guideline.

Visitors visit Wikipedia in order to obtain knowledge, but using the categories feature assumes that these visitors already have the knowledge that they are searching for.

Now image trying to do something really imagative with categories like creating a category in order to replace a well-annotated list to related articles. It would never work because of this guideline. Categories will therefore NEVER replace the value of a well-annotated list to related articles.

Further, categories do not work, unlike lists to related articles, during server problems. Categories are a real time feature that obviously puts a tremendous burden on Wikipedia’s limited computer resources.

The Paradox of Sub-Categorization

So, any and all editors are supposed to assign CAM articles at their own whim to a sub-category, without any advancing planning, guidance, or control from a Wikiproject? The science people like to say that all of alternative medicine is quackery, yet they seem to be failing to put articles in category:Quackery rather than in category:alternative medicine.

Wikipedia:Wikiproject:Alternative Medicine/Classification Systems has documented that there are at least seven different ways to classify CAM articles.

The WikiProject’s infoboxes currently classifies branches of medicine four different ways. That is NOT 4 categories. That is four parallel ways of classifying each of which requires more than one category.

To implement categorization by Classification by Standard of Knowledge and Quality of the Evidence alone requires 5 different categories: Real Science, Protoscience, Pseudoscience, Enlightenment, and the Supernatural. In addition to these 5 categories, two other categories have already been implemented: category:Quackery and category:Fraud.

Kindly, explain the difference between the category:Pseudoscience, category:Quackery and category:Fraud categories? What if someone decides to implement category:Health fraud?

The implications of this is that most branches of alternative medicine articles can be classified 5 different ways and could have up to 5 sub alternative medicine categories alone.

Currently, there are already 11 subcategories in category:alternative medicine. Should we add one on CAM stubs? Medicine already has Category:Medicine stubs. As time goes by, without guidance and more guidelines to follow the number of these subcategories in category:alternative medicine will get a lot bigger.

Now, exactly how does the use of categories enable visitors to find articles on alternative medicine? How do all these sub-categories help visitors find articles?

Time spent categorizing articles is a bottomless pit. Putting infoboxes in articles takes time, but at least the number of articles is finite. The way it is now, you could categorize articles for ever. And, somebody is sure to come along at a later point in time to undo what you have spent time doing.

This does not motivate me to spend any more of my limited time categorizing. — John Gohde 11:57, 20 Feb 2005 (UTC)

Project on Alternative Medicine Template Deletion History

I am interested in finding the deletion history for these Wikiproject on Alternative Medicine templates. Notes [9] on their respective talk pages indicate TfD noitces were posted Aug – Sept 2004, yet the Deletion Log for Sept has no record of anybody voting on these templates. What happened?

Template:CamMenu — TfD notice was posted in Sept 2004.
Template:CamBottom — TfD notice was posted in Aug 2004.
— John Gohde 08:07, 31 Jan 2005 (UTC)
They were some of the first things deleted on Wikipedia:Templates for deletion

Why am I not surprised? John Gohde 06:21, 1 Feb 2005 (UTC)
– and the archiving requirement for that page is only recent

The concept of fair play and consistency are not recent inventions. John Gohde 06:21, 1 Feb 2005 (UTC)
and still being trialled. The edit history will show the discussion –David Gerard 20:42, 31 Jan 2005 (UTC)

I already looked but did not see them. I will start looking again with the first edit. John Gohde 06:21, 1 Feb 2005 (UTC)

Jumping back to the previous 5,000 edits I came up with this.

September 13

  • Template:CamMenu – More MNH alternative medicine spamming and an attempt to put in a lever to edit lots of articles at once without it showing in recent changes. Redundant with the category, to say the least – David Gerard 11:06, 13 Sep 2004 (UTC)
    • Delete. Snowspinner 17:33, Sep 13, 2004 (UTC)
    • delete. —Jiang 20:36, 15 Sep 2004 (UTC)
    • Delete. CryptoDerk 22:50, Sep 20, 2004 (UTC)

May not be complete, as searching the history file is way too time consuming. I will say that the comments indicate a total and a complete lack of understanding as to how both infoboxes and projects work in Wikipedia. I also find them personally offensive due to the MNH and spamming comments. I will also add that categories don’t come close to replacing project infoboxes. Anybody casually familiar with searching on Wikipedia should know this. I only know what categories are, because I am an editor. A person totally unfamiliar with Wikipedia probably wont even find that hyperlink, let alone know what it is for. Once found, categories are still extremely time consuming to use. And, they fall far short of categorizing subtopics, which is precisely what infoboxes excel at. John Gohde 05:51, 4 Feb 2005 (UTC)

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Alternative Medicine
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The Project on Alternative Medicine was started long after projects were an accepted part of Wikipedia. Our Infobox was modeled after the long accepted infobox for the Project on Buddhism. This fact has been stated in a number of different places, such on our main project page. And on the original edit summaries and talk pages of each of the articles used in our project’s infobox. This fact is undeniable. Our infobox is actually better than the Buddha box because it is smaller and more compact. So, any of the vile comments directed against our infobox goes double for the Buddha box. I will ask this question. When will you guys get around to deleting the Buddha box and all the other project infoboxes? John Gohde 04:38, 4 Feb 2005 (UTC)

Project on Alternative Medicine

Thanks for your message on my talk page. The fact is, at the moment I have too little time to contribute anything to Wikipedia other than the occasional fairly random edit, and I’m trying to actively steer clear of anything more than that, such as working on particular projects or getting involved in wikipolitics. Good luck with finding others to help take the project forward. —ALargeElk | Talk 15:09, 31 Jan 2005 (UTC)

What do I have to do to totally piss the AC off?

Ah, I know. Never come back to Wikipedia!
Ha, … Hah, Ha!

I have other options which are a lot better.


— John Gohde 00:37, 24 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Arbitration case – final decision

A decision has been reached in the arbitration case relating to you. You have been banned from Wikipedia for one year. Should you return after this time, other remedies will apply. Please see Wikipedia:Requests for arbitration/John Gohde#Final decision for further details and the full decision. — sannse (talk) 16:20, 30 Apr 2005 (UTC)

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Published on January 24, 2008 at 11:55 pm  Comments Off on Gets Banned 3rd Time  
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