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RFC discussion: March 2015[edit]

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The following discussion has been moved from Wiktionary:Requests for cleanup (permalink).

This discussion is no longer live and is left here as an archive. Please do not modify this conversation, but feel free to discuss its conclusions.

The same problem as before, it's non-standard in British English, and Oxford are behind the times. The category British English forms needs to be removed somehow. Donnanz (talk) 14:39, 18 March 2015 (UTC)

This is not a clean-up issue - these pages cannot be fixed individually, and there's not much point listing them separately. This is about how {{standard spelling of}} works, and would be better discussed in the Beer Parlo(u)r or Grease Pit. Smurrayinchester (talk) 16:19, 18 March 2015 (UTC)
Maybe that's how it works, but it's still incorrect treatment. These entries stick out like sore thumbs in Category:British English forms. Donnanz (talk) 16:43, 18 March 2015 (UTC)
What Smurrayinchester said. @Donnanz, please stop tagging these individually. - -sche (discuss) 00:13, 19 March 2015 (UTC)
Too late now, I think I've done them all. So how else would they be dealt with? Donnanz (talk) 00:19, 19 March 2015 (UTC)
It would seem then that about 40% of usage at BNC is non-standard. How will we get them to change? DCDuring TALK 18:00, 18 March 2015 (UTC)
Prescriptivism and public shaming. Equinox 14:32, 19 March 2015 (UTC)
Can't we get {{standard spelling of}} to put these in a different category, like Category:Oxford English forms? Calling them "non-standard in British English", though, is simply untrue. Less common doesn't mean nonstandard. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 14:46, 19 March 2015 (UTC)
In fact, that would be easy to do: just go to Module:labels/data and change
labels["Oxford British spelling"] = {
	display = "[[w:Oxford spelling|Oxford]] [[British English]]",
	plain_categories = {"British English forms"} }
aliases["Oxford"] = "Oxford British spelling"
labels["Oxford British spelling"] = {
	display = "[[w:Oxford spelling|Oxford]] [[British English]]",
	plain_categories = {"Oxford English forms"} }
aliases["Oxford"] = "Oxford British spelling"
Any objections? —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 14:49, 19 March 2015 (UTC)
I was a little economical with the wording; these words are non-standard in British English usage, they are only standard in Oxford for some weird reason. Any solution is acceptable as long as it rectifies the current situation with the words RFC'ed here. Hopefully there's no more to be found. Donnanz (talk) 15:11, 19 March 2015 (UTC)
So is 40% of BNC content "Oxford"? Does that mean generated in Oxford? provided by Oxford faculty, students, graduates, residents, visitors? DCDuring TALK 15:27, 19 March 2015 (UTC)
I believe this is the style mandated by Oxford University Press (who produce a lot of dictionaries, textbooks, etc. so are quite influential). See Oxford spelling and note it's also used by other major non-OUP publications such as Nature and the Times Literary Supplement. Equinox 15:39, 19 March 2015 (UTC)
Thanks. I should have followed the link in the template-generated label. DCDuring TALK 17:05, 19 March 2015 (UTC)
Agreed, I'm not sure I'd call these non-standard in the UK. Less common, but perfectly acceptable and used in lots of important publications. Ƿidsiþ 15:45, 19 March 2015 (UTC)
Nonstandard? I say prove it. The most prestigious English dictionary lists these as standard in British English, so I have no idea what evidence you could possibly come up with to show that these are nonstandard. Renard Migrant (talk) 17:22, 19 March 2015 (UTC)
  • @-sche I don't mind the RFCs being undone, as long as the template is fixed.
As for calling them non-standard - well, we can differ on that issue. Donnanz (talk) 17:28, 19 March 2015 (UTC)
You're entitled to your opinion, just don't force it on to everyone else. Renard Migrant (talk) 17:34, 19 March 2015 (UTC)
On your bike, I haven't done anything to merit that comment. Donnanz (talk) 17:48, 19 March 2015 (UTC)
So to get back to the issue, does anyone object to my creating Category:Oxford English forms (or equivalent, does anyone prefer a different name, e.g. Category:Oxford spellings?) and editing Module:labels/data to populate it? —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 21:00, 19 March 2015 (UTC)
Hmm; Oxford English "z" spellings? Would that be more appropriate? I imagine the proposed category would be confined to those. Donnanz (talk) 21:56, 19 March 2015 (UTC)
I would go with Category:Oxford English forms, as that fits how the other categories are named (Category:British English forms, Category:American English forms, etc). - -sche (discuss) 05:11, 20 March 2015 (UTC)
That's exactly why I'm reluctant to use it. "Oxford English" isn't a regional variety of English like British and American (well, it is, but not in the sense relevant to us at the moment); this category is just about spelling. Strictly speaking, words in -ize/-ization aren't the only things that are Oxford spellings; centre, behaviour, and for that matter dog, cat, and bird are all Oxford spellings as well. But maybe we can interpret Category:Oxford spellings to mean those Oxford spellings that have more common equivalents belonging to other British spelling conventions. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 12:10, 20 March 2015 (UTC)
  • Why isn't vulgarization the main entry instead of vulgarisation? It is has almost all COCA usage, 40% of BNC usage, almost twice the usage at google ngrams, 60% of the usage on the Web (GloWBE)? The presentation we have is not only ugly but it would seem to discourage the nearly universal US spelling as well as imply that Wiktionary is not for US users, exacerbating enwikt competitive position relative to MWOnline, etc. DCDuring TALK 09:50, 20 March 2015 (UTC)
A flat "no" to that idea, if it's only the template that's causing problems. The dictionary is already weighted far too heavily in favour of American users and spellings, and I contest the notion that US spellings (and terms) are nearly universal. The very idea! But if big corporations like GM and Ford had their way they would be. Wiktionary should be fair to all users, not just Americans, and you can't just quote figures in support of your argument. Donnanz (talk) 10:18, 20 March 2015 (UTC)
I didn't know that British English needed some kind of "weighting" to compensate, nor did I know that Wiktionary was in the business of remedying the injustice of the position of British English. I don't think a factual analysis would show that Wiktionary is "weighted" in favor of American spellings. Perhaps the instrument you are using to detect such favour is overly sensitive to departure from idiolect (Mine has been from time to time.). Wiktionary should be "weighted" in favor of the most common spellings in world English, of which vulgarization is one. DCDuring TALK 11:53, 20 March 2015 (UTC)
The idea that British English is in any way underrepresented at Wiktionary is utterly laughable. How many comments a day do we get from anons wondering why our logo gives the pronunciation /ˈwɪkʃənrɪ/ instead of /ˈwɪkʃənɛri/, and we have to explain that our logo reflects only the Received Pronunciation of that word? Most of our pronunciation info and a large portion of our orthographic info gives precedence to British English. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 12:10, 20 March 2015 (UTC)
From day one I've favored 'lemmatizing' US rather than UK spellings, and I'm British. For one, I think international learners learn American English. A good way to test, ask them to pronounced z and they say zee. And most importantly, in some cases an arbitrary rule is better than no rule at all. As long as we're consistent it makes us more usable. Renard Migrant (talk) 11:04, 21 March 2015 (UTC)
Thanks very much, Angr. It solves that problem. Donnanz (talk) 23:24, 21 March 2015 (UTC)
Already "depopulated" by one particular busybody. Donnanz (talk) 15:47, 22 March 2015 (UTC)
No, it's not. It's still got 21 entries in it, which is as many as it ever had. Not every -ize spelling is marked as being an Oxford spelling yet. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 18:35, 22 March 2015 (UTC)
There was 22. Look at this entry. Donnanz (talk) 18:39, 22 March 2015 (UTC)
Did you mean to add a link? —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 19:21, 22 March 2015 (UTC)
Sorry, I didn't think that was necessary - vulgarization. Donnanz (talk) 19:29, 22 March 2015 (UTC)
It is possible to categorize full entries as well as alternative forms, see diff. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 19:39, 22 March 2015 (UTC)
OK, good, I'll leave it to you to enlighten a certain personage (?) Donnanz (talk) 19:44, 22 March 2015 (UTC)
  • Too bad that the work didn't go into making the 'ize' forms the lemmas, with the 'ise' forms being "UK, non-Oxford spelling", which would be much more in line with our practice for spellings that are nearly universal in one realm of English and sufficiently common in the other. DCDuring TALK 19:46, 22 March 2015 (UTC)
    There are enough people who (even if incorrectly) consider the ize forms to be as American as center and favorite that it would take a whole lot of consensus-building to get the community to agree to lemmatize the ize forms in all cases. Having a category for Oxford spellings is ultimately less effort and less drama. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 20:12, 22 March 2015 (UTC)
    The facts can be taken one entry at a time. I've presented it for this case. I'd love to see some contrary evidence or is this more "democratic" tyranny-by-vote? DCDuring TALK 23:02, 22 March 2015 (UTC)