Wiktionary:Votes/pl-2010-03/Including particular individuals

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Including particular individuals[edit]

  • Voting on: Performing any of the following three actions concerning the inclusion of particular individuals, with an independent subvote for each of the actions.
    • Action 1: Renaming the section "Names of specific entities" to "Names of particular individuals" in WT:CFI
    • Action 2: Adding a new paragraph to the end of the section "Names of specific entities" or "Names of particular individuals" in CFI:
      • For the inclusion of a sense-line dedicated to a particular human individual under a space-free name or surname of the individual, it suffices that an inclusion-worthy adjective derived from the space-free name or surname can refer to the individual, his times, his work, or his thought, as is the case with Aristotle and Aristotelian, Pericles and Periclean, Newton and Newtonian, and Gogol and Gogolian.

    • Action 3: Adding a new paragraph to the end of the section "Names of specific entities" or "Names of particular individuals" in CFI:
      • For the inclusion of a sense-line dedicated to a particular individual—including people and places—under a space-free name, it suffices that the individual is invoked figuratively under that name.

    • The new inclusion rules state new sufficient conditions for inclusion, so they enlarge or keep the same the scope of included particular individuals, without having the power to exclude any individual included by another rule. This proposal says nothing about the inclusion-worthiness of all place names and all particular places under these place names, leaving this question open.
    • By giving his vote for support, the voter only supports the voting-on part while possibly disagreeing with the justification and the notes.
    • For reference, the current "Names of specific entities" section is a subsection of the "Names" section, and reads, in whole:
      A name should be included if it is used attributively, with a widely understood meaning. For example: New York is included because “New York” is used attributively in phrases like “New York delicatessen”, to describe a particular sort of delicatessen. A person or place name that is not used attributively (and that is not a word that otherwise should be included) should not be included. Lower Hampton, Sears Tower, and George Walker Bush thus should not be included. Similarly, whilst Jefferson (an attested family name word with an etymology that Wiktionary can discuss) and Jeffersonian (an adjective) should be included, Thomas Jefferson (which isn’t used attributively) should not.
  • Justification
    • It seems worthwhile--an unarticulated justification that gives up breaking down the justification into further components.
    • Some dictionaries include these classes of individuals, such as Merriam-and-Webster online including under "London" several cities and Jack London; Century 1911 has an appendix called Cyclopedia that includes numerous individual people and individual places, even individual events, with pronunciation.
    • The inclusion of these may seem a bit encyclopedic, but the lines or sentences so included are not largely encyclopedic, serving merely to identify the given individual and state some of the most notable features of the individual, without going into a detailed extensive biographical information as found in an encyclopedia; such a specifying line is typically no longer than a definition of a common noun such as "liquid". Let us recall that even definitions of concepts or classes such as "gold" contain some extra-definition elements such as the typical color rather than merely stating the atomic number of "gold".
    • The new inclusion rules are rather moderate in their further opening the gates of the Wiktionary city; they are much more moderate than an almost-passed 2007 vote to include several broad classes of place names. Nevertheless, the new inclusion rules do not in any way prevent a future addition of an allowance for a huge set of place names.
  • Notes
    • The intent of the nominator is to have as many of the three proposed actions accepted as possible.
    • The rule in the Action 2 is an analogue of the preexisting rule of attributive use, albeit for humans, for whom the reason why the name if often not used attributively is that there is an adjective for the purpose of attributive use, so it is "Aristotelian physics" rather than "Aristotle physics".
    • The rule in the Action 2 is constrained to human individuals, to prevent opening gates for obscure villages, in the hope that it makes the rule acceptable to a broader set of voters.
    • The rule in the Action 3 uses the term "figuratively" rather than "metaphorically", which makes it broader by including not only the figure of metaphor but also the figure of metonym and other figures.
    • The rules do not replace the preexisting rule about the inclusion of attributively used particular individuals; they add to the rule.
    • The proposed rules use the term "particular individual" rather than "specific entity", in constrast to a name and a class.
    • If you as a voter disagree with a particular formulation or choice of words, and you think the formulation can be improved, please consider proposing a specific correction to the wording of the formulation that would be acceptable for you.
  • Vote starts: 00:00, 8 March 2010 (UTC)
  • Vote ends: 24:00, 6 April 2010 (UTC)

Support action 1 - renaming the section on specific entities[edit]

  1. Symbol support vote.svg Support Dan Polansky 08:25, 8 March 2010 (UTC) as nominator. An explanation is missing: "entity" ambiguously refers to both classes and individuals, unlike "individual". While "individual" is often used to mean "human individual", there is also the broader meaning of "individual", by which "the cat over there" refers to an individual, as does "that car". --Dan Polansky 08:25, 8 March 2010 (UTC)
  2. Symbol support vote.svg Support —Stephen 12:07, 9 March 2010 (UTC)
  3. Symbol support vote.svg Support --Anatoli 07:50, 10 March 2010 (UTC)

Oppose action 1 - renaming the section on specific entities[edit]

  1. Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose all three. Wiktionary is not an encyclopedia, it should not include any encyclopedic content. Inclusion of these would not accomplish anything that a dictionary is supposed to accomplish. --Yair rand 00:55, 8 March 2010 (UTC)
    Wiktionary should IMHO include topical categories, and images. These are not a strictly dictionary content. General language dictionaries usually do not have images, and when they do, they include images only in a fraction of entries, for printing space constraints. However, images are useful for answering such questions as "what is cat" or "what does 'cat'" mean, an analogue of which are the questions "what is Socrates" and "what does 'Confucius' mean", to which the answer "'Confucius' is a given name" is not much more adequate than "'cat' is a noun". --Dan Polansky 07:10, 8 March 2010 (UTC)
    I also support having topic categories, as they are useful for sorting words (being words, not the concepts themselves), and also images, as they are often better at explaining the meaning of a word than a definition. Giving "definitions" of specific entities bearing specific names in the name's entry however, is completely encyclopedic, having nothing whatsoever to do with the word itself. It is, effectively, turning Wiktionary into a "mini-Wikipedia", giving information on a concept rather than the properties of a word. The word/name "Confucius" has nothing to do with anyone who happens to bear the name. If people want to know about a concept, an entity, a person, then they should go to Wikipedia, which was built for explaining concepts, rather than Wiktionary, which was built for explaining words. --Yair rand 08:01, 8 March 2010 (UTC)
    Re "they are useful for sorting words (being words, not the concepts themselves)": Topical categories sort the concepts or meanings, not the syntactic forms of words. Category:Trees does not sort words by the grammatical or syntactic properties, nor does the Category:Chemistry.
    Re 'Giving "definitions" of specific entities bearing specific names in the name's entry however, is completely encyclopedic, having nothing whatsoever to do with the word itself.' That is a bit of an overstatement, isn't it? Do you really think that "A long African river flowing through Khartoum and Cairo in Africa into the Mediterranean Sea" has nothing whatsoever to do with the word "Nile" itself? If this is not what the word "Nile" means, then the word "Nile" means nothing wahtsoever, if you ask me. --Dan Polansky 08:11, 8 March 2010 (UTC)
    I happen to think that place name definitions should have nothing more to them then "A place name", perhaps a little more if translations differ by place, such as in New York, but overall similar to surname definitions. So, in answer to your question, yes, I do think it has nothing to do with it. Either way, the question about Nile is not the same as the question being posed by this vote, because Nile is only the name of one place, AFAIK. --Yair rand 08:21, 8 March 2010 (UTC)
    Right, "Nile" is not directly discussed here, but Nile highlights your overall position on the senses of proper nouns more than "Confucius" does. You want every single individual excluded, including the river of Nile under "Nile" and the U.K. city of London under "London". You do not ask any delicate question about the delineation; you support the simplest delineation possible: "no individuals" or "no specific entities". General language dictionaries often do not take this extreme position. --Dan Polansky
  2. Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose.​—msh210 16:45, 8 March 2010 (UTC)
  3. Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose  This wording is unclear or misleading. Why would a reader look at this and not interpret individual in the usual way? Michael Z. 2010-03-09 20:50 z
  4. Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose Conrad.Irwin 00:38, 10 March 2010 (UTC) I do not interpret "individual" except as a human. Conrad.Irwin 00:38, 10 March 2010 (UTC)
    There is a noun sense as in “the sardines school, but the barracuda swims as an individual,” but the proposed wording doesn't read this way. Michael Z. 2010-03-10 00:59 z
  5. Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose EncycloPetey 01:23, 10 March 2010 (UTC)
  6. Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose Daniel. 15:27, 11 March 2010 (UTC)
  7. Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose I think "individual" is more confusing. --Bequwτ 15:43, 14 March 2010 (UTC)
  8. Symbol oppose vote.svg OpposeRuakhTALK 18:33, 16 March 2010 (UTC)

Abstain action 1 - renaming the section on specific entities[edit]

  1. Symbol abstain vote.svg Abstain No strong feelings – this is a minor wording change, unlike the more substantive other sections. —Nils von Barth (nbarth) (talk) 01:44, 14 March 2010 (UTC)

Support action 2 - inclusion based on adjectives[edit]

  1. Symbol support vote.svg Support Dan Polansky 08:25, 8 March 2010 (UTC) as nominator.
  2. Symbol support vote.svg Support —Stephen 12:10, 9 March 2010 (UTC)
  3. Symbol support vote.svg Support --Anatoli 07:50, 10 March 2010 (UTC)
  4. Symbol support vote.svg Support It's basically the same as the attributive use criterion. As others have said before me, proper nouns just aren't used attributively in some languages. In Finnish we would create an adjective: Helsinki - helsinkiläinen.--Makaokalani 16:13, 10 March 2010 (UTC)

Oppose action 2 - inclusion based on adjectives[edit]

  1. Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose Yair rand 00:55, 8 March 2010 (UTC)
  2. Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose  Words are defined in the dictionary, while people are described in an encyclopedia. Where people's proper names serve as etymons, they are mentioned in the etymology and may link to the encyclopedia. Also, “space-free name” has no lexicographical significance. Michael Z. 2010-03-09 20:57 z
  3. Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose EncycloPetey 01:25, 10 March 2010 (UTC) There is a principle here that I agree with, but the wording proposed would allow for any situation where an individual is referred to by surname, which would mean that every player on a professional sports team in the US would probably qualify, as newspapers routinely refer to players by surname only. The proposal is too broad. --EncycloPetey 01:25, 10 March 2010 (UTC)
    Can you give an example of what you mean? This option requires the existence of an adjective for inclusion. Are there surnames of players that give rise to adjectives? --Dan Polansky 08:32, 10 March 2010 (UTC)
    Let me highlight the bracketing, which I hoped was clear but maybe it was not: "...that an inclusion-worthy adjective derived from the space-free ( name or surname ) can refer to the individual, ..."; it is solely the adjective that can refer to the individual, an adjective that is derived from name or from surname. Unfortunately, natural language does not support brackets in this way. Maybe these should have been two rules, to make it clearer. --Dan Polansky 08:41, 10 March 2010 (UTC)
  4. Symbol oppose vote.svg I'm not entirely sure what the ramifications are of this proposal if passed, but I think I don't like many of them.​—msh210 16:24, 10 March 2010 (UTC)
  5. Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose Daniel. 15:30, 11 March 2010 (UTC) I prefer to use the Etymology section to explain who is the person. --Daniel. 15:30, 11 March 2010 (UTC)
    Just that Czech "Platón" for "Plato" may not get included at all so there will be no etymology section, because "Platón" is not a given name. In Czechia there is a regulation on the assignment of given names AFAIK. There is the adjective "platonický", but there is no such a thing as attributive use other than through adjectives. --Dan Polansky 15:39, 12 March 2010 (UTC)
  6. Symbol oppose vote.svg OpposeNewtonian” is fine, and can refer to Sir Issac in the etymology section – it neither requires nor justifies a “Newton” entry. —Nils von Barth (nbarth) (talk) 01:42, 14 March 2010 (UTC)
  7. Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose per others. --Bequwτ 15:09, 14 March 2010 (UTC)
  8. Symbol oppose vote.svg OpposeRuakhTALK 18:34, 16 March 2010 (UTC)

Abstain action 2 - inclusion based on adjectives[edit]

  1. Symbol abstain vote.svg Abstain Conrad.Irwin 00:38, 10 March 2010 (UTC) I would like to include people if they have citable charactaristics, I don't think an etymologically related adjective is the same.

Support action 3 - inclusion based on figurative use[edit]

  1. Symbol support vote.svg Support Dan Polansky 08:25, 8 March 2010 (UTC) as nominator.
  2. Symbol support vote.svg Support —Stephen 12:11, 9 March 2010 (UTC)
  3. Symbol support vote.svg Support --Anatoli 07:50, 10 March 2010 (UTC)
  4. Symbol support vote.svg Support This would justify biblical characters: A Daniel come to judgment. Major biblical characters should be, and have always been, defined, but I've never found out which part of the CFI refers to them.--Makaokalani 16:16, 10 March 2010 (UTC)
  5. Symbol support vote.svg Support. You don't need to be an Einstein to know that sometimes a person is a Benedict Arnold, while another person is a Mother Theresa. bd2412 T 17:22, 31 March 2010 (UTC)

Oppose action 3 - inclusion based on figurative use[edit]

  1. Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose Yair rand 00:55, 8 March 2010 (UTC)
  2. Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose As above. Words that come from the figurative use of proper names are already includable (e.g. babel, Casanova, utopia, Waterloo). Michael Z. 2010-03-09 21:02 z
  3. Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose EncycloPetey 01:27, 10 March 2010 (UTC) I can'r support the proposed wording, since its meaning (as worded above) is opaque. What does "invoked figuratively" mean? --EncycloPetey 01:27, 10 March 2010 (UTC)
    Would "invoked metaphorically" be cleared? That would exclude metonymical invocations. Or is the problem also with the term "invoke"? Would "... if the individual is referred to metaphoricallyinvoked figuratively under that name" be better? What phrasing would you propose, if any? --Dan Polansky 11:07, 10 March 2010 (UTC)
  4. Symbol oppose vote.svg I'm not entirely sure what the ramifications are of this proposal if passed, but I think I don't like many of them.​—msh210 16:24, 10 March 2010 (UTC)
  5. Symbol oppose vote.svg OpposeCasanova” is fine as noun meaning “philanderer”, and can refer to Giovanni Giacomo in the etymology section – it neither requires nor justifies “Casanova” having a sense or section devoted to Giovanni Giacomo. —Nils von Barth (nbarth) (talk) 01:44, 14 March 2010 (UTC)
  6. Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose per Nils von Barth. --Bequwτ 15:14, 14 March 2010 (UTC)

Abstain action 3 - inclusion based on figurative use[edit]

  1. Symbol abstain vote.svg Abstain Conrad.Irwin 00:38, 10 March 2010 (UTC) I cannot honestly say I understand the consequences of this. (It might help if our definition of figuratively could be read without a PHD in linguistics).
    Our definition of "figuratively" reads "in figurative manner", and our "figurative" reads "Metaphorical or tropical, as opposed to literal;...", which I would plainly specify as "non-literal", which includes metaphorical and metonymic. Had I known there were going to be a problem with the meaning of "figurative", I would have used "non-literal". "I arrived to New York at 22:06" is literal, while "The White House released its official report today" is non-literal reference to the building, as buildings cannot release reports. --Dan Polansky 15:49, 12 March 2010 (UTC)
  2. Symbol abstain vote.svg Abstain. This criterion seems like it might be going in the right direction, but I think it's too vague to be very useful. Is the intent that there be three citations of figurative use? If so, then do all three citations have to be using it the same way? Should the definition indicate what the figurative use is getting at? If so, then should we have separate sense-lines for distinct figurative uses? —RuakhTALK 18:48, 16 March 2010 (UTC)

Poll: include some individuals[edit]

At least some individuals such as the river of Nile should have a dedicated sense-line in the entry under their name.

  1. Symbol support vote.svg Support Dan Polansky 17:15, 8 March 2010 (UTC)
  2. Symbol support vote.svg Support —Stephen 12:11, 9 March 2010 (UTC)
  3. Symbol support vote.svg Support EncycloPetey 01:27, 10 March 2010 (UTC)
  4. Symbol support vote.svg Support --Anatoli 07:50, 10 March 2010 (UTC)
    Symbol support vote.svg Well I'm very confused as to what this poll is about and what it's for. For the record, I support having place names. Whether they should be somehow linked to some place they represent through a wp link, a WikiMiniAtlas button, a short description of attributes/location, some combination of these, or not at all, I don't know, but I do support having the names in some form or other. --Yair rand 05:04, 10 March 2010 (UTC)
    The question is about including individuals, and not just names. It is asking if you want to potentially include a sense line for every real and fictional person named Smith (cf. w:List_of_people_with_surname_Smith). Michael Z. 2010-03-10 05:20 z
    It is? The top says "At least some individuals such as the river of Nile should have a dedicated sense-line in the entry under their name." "Nile" is a place name, a unit of language, a word, and should be included, but lists of people named Smith (or even anyone named Smith) should not be included. DP, could you perhaps clarify what the poll is about? --Yair rand 05:26, 10 March 2010 (UTC)
    Yair rand, you should strike your support under this option, as you do not want to get the river of Nile included under "Nile", merely an entry "Nile" with a sense "geographical name", if I understood correctly. And that means that the individual of the river of Nile should not have a dedicated sense-line in the entry under the name "Nile", while the name "Nile" should be included. --Dan Polansky
  5. Symbol support vote.svg Support --Makaokalani 16:17, 10 March 2010 (UTC)
  6. Symbol support vote.svg Support All words should be included. But with a definition as an individual only when it's a specific meaning of the word (e.g. Confucius, yes, because the individual is a distinct meaning of the word), Churchill, no, because the individual is not a specific meaning of the word, the word just happens to be his surname). Pairs (France) and Paris (Texas) are also different, specific, meanings of the word Paris. Lmaltier 21:37, 10 March 2010 (UTC)
    If Paris, France and Paris, Texas are two “senses” of the term Paris, how is it that Winston Churchill and Odette Churchill are not? People and places are specific referents, not “senses” of a word. Michael Z. 2010-03-10 22:19 z
    Generally speaking, no specific linguistic data about a surname can be associated to each of the individuals sharing this surname (but there might be different surnames, with different etymologies but the same spelling), except in same particular cases, such as derived adjectives. Actually, surnames are not really proper nouns. On the other hand, placenames are proper nouns: each of the towns sharing this name may have its specific etymology and/or pronunciation and/or demonyms, etc. Lmaltier 22:28, 10 March 2010 (UTC)
    So specifically speaking, what is the basis for the statement that the two Parises constitute “different, specific, meanings?” I don't see where the logic comes from, but if we follow it then we will need to add about 20 to 30 “senses” for this name (see w:Paris (disambiguation)#Geography), all of which can be covered by a single phrase in the etymology “and other places named after the French capital”. Michael Z. 2010-03-11 17:33 z
    Exactly, and this is not a problem. Wiktionary pages often look like Wikipedia disambiguation pages, and this is normal. Several senses are required for Paris because of differences of pronunciation, demonyms, etymology...: all this may be different because they are not the same sense, these different proper names are related only etymologically. On the other hand, several people named Churchill because they are parents share the same surname, with the same pronunciation, etc. because the relation is not only etymological, it's really the same word. Lmaltier 20:56, 11 March 2010 (UTC)
    Either a city Paris or a person Churchill may inherit their name from another city or person, and we may pronounce the inherited name the same way or differently as the eponym's (in fact many toponyms, surnames, and indeed common nouns, are pronounced variously in the same language). No distinction.
    So if you were to answer my question, which of those “differences of pronunciation, demonyms, etymology” would you say apply to the case of Paris (France) and Paris (Texas)? Michael Z. 2010-03-11 21:33 z
    Is pronunciation the same? Probably, according to Paris, but I'm not sure it applies to all cities with this name. Is the same word used for inhabitants? I don't know (this is missing in the page). But there is a difference in etymology, of course: the name of Paris (Texas) has been suggested by Paris (France). In some cases, even when both etymology and pronunciation are common, there are many different words for inhabitants: see fr:Beaulieu for a striking example. Lmaltier 22:14, 11 March 2010 (UTC)
    to be clearer: Paris (Texas) and Paris (France) have different senses, this is obvious: people from Texas don't feel they live in France... On the other hand, everybody named Churchill know they belong to the same family, Churchill is not the name of an individual, but of the whole family sharing this surname. But Confucius is the name of an individual, not of a family. Lmaltier 22:24, 11 March 2010 (UTC)
    That information is already in the entry. You'd add another 20 “senses” because they share the etymology “after the French city,” or to spare the feelings of the residents? This is burying the entry with material from Wikipedia, while adding zero lexicographical information. It's a dictionary, not a gazetteer. Michael Z. 2010-03-11 22:57 z
    Not a question of feeling. I was only explaining that senses were different. And I'm 100% against being a gazeeter, too. Lmaltier 06:23, 12 March 2010 (UTC)
    Neither Odette nor Winston objected to being called Churchill, defined only as a surname, nor are those French or Texans bothered if you say they're from Paris, defined as a place name—we're not saying Texans are from France, we're saying the name of their Paris is Paris. The referents are different, but the senses of the term are the same: “surname (derived from church and hill),” “(place name (after Paris, France).” If there are individual details of etymology, then they would be mentioned in the etymology anyway. If there is a solitary difference in pronunciation, it can belong in a usage note. But there is not much lexicographical difference between a surname and a place name. A dictionary's entries and definitions represent terms and meanings, not individual things, people, and places. One entry & definition can link to a Wikipedia disambiguation page listing many referents, while a Wikipedia article about a thing links to a Wiktionary entry which may list many synonyms. Michael Z. 2010-03-12 20:36 z
  7. Symbol oppose vote.svg See my comments regarding this poll on the talkpage (search the page for Morse theory).​—msh210 18:57, 12 March 2010 (UTC)
  8. Symbol support vote.svg Support. I don't agree with the example given — I don't think the river of Nile should have any entry at all — but I feel that some entries should have sense lines for "individuals". For example, it seems ridiculous to define Mercury as a place name. —RuakhTALK 03:17, 18 March 2010 (UTC)
    I do not ask whether "the river of Nile" should be an entry; of course it should not. I ask whether the river of Nile should have a dedicated sense line in the entry "Nile". Your note on "Mercury" clarifies what you mean, and thus it seems that you indeed agree. --Dan Polansky 07:05, 18 March 2010 (UTC)
    Well, you ask only about "the entry under their name", so I do disagree with at least part: if we include an "individual" at a certain entry, it should not be because the individual warrants inclusion and that happens to be a name for it. Rather, it should be because the name warrants inclusion, and the only way to define it is by reference to the individual. (For example, the question of whether to include USA is independent of the question of whether to include United States of America, and the question of whether to include Persian Gulf is independent of the question of whether to include Arabian Gulf; but your poll seems to treat these questions as equivalent.) —RuakhTALK 20:29, 18 March 2010 (UTC)
    I fully agree with Ruakh. This is what I tried to explain. Lmaltier 20:59, 18 March 2010 (UTC)
    I don't see in the formulation what you are saying. My point was merely that "a geographic name" is an inadequate sense line of a geographic name, and that there is nothing wrong about referring to individual geographic entities on sense lines. But I have probably chosen a formulation that is not perfectly understandable to native English speakers. Can you please come up with a formulation of the question that would be clear to you, and with which you would agree? --Dan Polansky 09:03, 19 March 2010 (UTC)
    "At least some entries should have sense-lines dedicated to specific entities. As a possible example, maybe [[Nile]] should have a sense-line dedicated to the Nile." That is, I would present it as something an entry should have, rather than as something an individual should have. (If I wanted to be even more pedantic, I'd take it a bit further and write, "Wiktionary should have at least one sense-line, at some entry, dedicated to some specific entity. As a possible example, maybe it should have a sense-line at [[Nile]] dedicated to the Nile."; but then I start to feel like a logic puzzle rather than a person.) —RuakhTALK 14:18, 19 March 2010 (UTC)
    We should welcome all self-discovery. Cheers. Michael Z. 2010-03-19 15:54 z

Poll: exclude all individuals[edit]

There should be no sense-lines for particular individuals; in particular, the river of Nile should be excluded from the "Nile" entry.

  1. Symbol support vote.svg Support  Definitions define words. Although a definition might mention a thing, it never represents it. Once you start thinking that it does, you lose track of what the dictionary is. Michael Z. 2010-03-10 02:43 z


  • Vote fails. --Yair rand 05:42, 7 April 2010 (UTC)

In particular:

  • 1. Renaming the section on specific entities: fails at 3-8-1.
  • 2. Inclusion based on adjectives: fails at 4-8-1.
  • 3. Inclusion based on figurative use: fails at 5-6-2.

--Dan Polansky 07:38, 7 April 2010 (UTC)


This vote is horrendous, it took me a very very long time to wade through the introduction, and I still don't have a clear idea what it is supposed to do. There is a very good reason why "votes should not be called for on this page", mistakes like this highlight it brilliantly. Yes, I agree CFI is perhaps more of a mess than this vote, but much discussion is needed, not political attempts to force the problem to fit a particular set of solutions. Conrad.Irwin 00:38, 10 March 2010 (UTC)

I agree.​—msh210 16:23, 10 March 2010 (UTC)
Would the vote be improved by removing the parts "Justification" and "Notes"? Is the phrasing of the rules in the green boxes horrendous? How could the phrasing be improved to become more clear? --Dan Polansky 16:36, 10 March 2010 (UTC)
No, but they are a symptom of the underlying issues. If you discuss things first, then the justification and the notes are already understood by those who are interested. Conrad.Irwin 23:07, 10 March 2010 (UTC)
This non-specific feedback is really unhelpful. I realize that you wanted to have more time for discussion before the vote. But other than that, you have not told me what in particular you dislike about the vote as it is currently written. I can imagine that dropping the justification and the notes would make the vote so much shorter to read, and that now it is rather long, but is this the thing that you dislike? The vote was announced one week before it started, so there was some time for discussion. No one has made any specific proposal for the change of the wording of the vote during that time. --Dan Polansky 10:23, 12 March 2010 (UTC)
Two specific things then: The choices of topics seem arbitrary, though they are related, it's unconventional to list them all on one vote page. No attempt was made beforehand to find out what the actual issues are, it just comes from the thoughts and assumptions of one person (though that's not totally bad, I just find the reasoning and proposal a bit foreign). Conrad.Irwin 09:07, 13 March 2010 (UTC)
Dan, I appreciate what you’re doing here, and think in some ways names of specific persons (individuals) can be incorporated, but including names of individual persons/locations generally is a huge can of worms. Including proper nouns (names in general: “Michael”) OTOH, seems fine to me, as it’s a word, not an individual.
Names of specific persons and locations is useful information to have somewhere, but is largely unrelated to other functions of Wiktionary and has different requirements, which is why it has consistently been opposed by many people. Consider for example List of people with surname Smith – is it helpful for Wiktionary to have entries for all of these, or include them under “Smith”?
If you (or anyone) wishes to include names of specific individuals in Wiktionary, I’d suggest proposing a separate namespace, as in “Name:”, just as has been done for Wikisaurus and for protolanguages (Proto-Indo-European is in the Appendix: namespace).
Alternatively, this really might be better at a separate, small project: “Wikinames”, say – just as Wiktionary was spun off of Wikipedia to better handle dictionary definitions without conflicting with Wikipedia purposes, a separate project consisting of names (or commonly known) names of individuals or places may be useful (assuming it can’t be fit into ’pedia or ’tionary).
I think what is uncontroversial, and already common practice, is including names that are used metaphorically (Casanova) or as adjectives (Newtonian), but only mentioning the source name in the etymology, not including a separate entry for it. Thus, I think “Newtonian” is fine, but “Newton” is more fraught.
—Nils von Barth (nbarth) (talk) 01:40, 14 March 2010 (UTC)

We are never going to agree on how to treat Proper Nouns in Wiktionary. Never. The only thing we can do is to appoint me a dictator of Wiktionary and do whatever I say. --Vahagn Petrosyan 21:10, 17 March 2010 (UTC)

Why? On fr.wikt, there has been this kind of discussion a long (very long) time ago. Now, it's uncontroversial, we accept all proper nouns when they can be considered as words, and we provide linguistic data about these words, just as we do with all other words. Lmaltier 21:31, 17 March 2010 (UTC)
How do you define “considered as words?” Michael Z. 2010-03-18 01:59 z
I mean: word in its linguistic sense (e.g. pomme de terre is a word). This is about the same as CFI, but including set phrases. Proper nouns are not considered as an exception. Lmaltier 07:12, 18 March 2010 (UTC)
Does fr. treat sum-of-partness as for common nouns? E.g., would Winston or Carolina be an includable term, while Winston Churchill and South Carolina not? Michael Z. 2010-03-18 19:49 z
For full names such as Winston Churchill, yes, we exclude them. But we accept placenames such as New York or South Carolina, as they are the names of places with a precise sense (e.g. North Carolina is not the North part of Carolina but a state with precise borders. They are not sum-of-parts. We would refuse North Belgium. Lmaltier 20:21, 18 March 2010 (UTC)
Maybe I didn't choose the best example, but the dictionary's definition of a term or name isn't a surveyed boundary or a legal definition. The former may be undefined or disputed, the latter can change drastically over time. (The name South Carolina predates the state and the union, and it was even used before the establishment of a separate Province of South Carolina in 1663 (would Wiktionnaire include that proper name too?). “The territory of the southern Carolina colony”, although maybe not appropriate for a non-historical dictionary, is a better definition of the name South Carolina.) If you don't accept that, then I'm sure we can find names of water bodies or mountain ranges whose geographic bounds are far less precisely defined.
Which is a wordy way to say that legal boundaries do not explain South Carolina as being less sum-of-parts than Winston Churchill. In fact Winston Churchill (1874–1965) is a more precisely defined entity than many or most place names.
I'm just looking for a lexical justification to include individual places in the dictionary, but not individual people. I don't think it exists. Michael Z. 2010-03-18 23:04 z
I just wanted to explain that North Carolina is not SOP. Don't you understand that full names are composed of two (or 3) words (first name + surname), and that this is a general rule, while there is no such rule for placenames (most placenames can be considered as individual words, even when there is a space inside)? But this does not make “The territory of the southern Carolina colony” a word. Lmaltier 06:31, 19 March 2010 (UTC)
That's one definition of the name South Carolina.
I do understand that many, but not all, personal names have two main parts, and geographic names follow some other patterns. Nevertheless, Carolina, Winston and Churchill are proper nouns which constitute some proper names, including Province of South Carolina, South Carolina Colony and Sir Winston Leonard Spencer-Churchill. Just like South Carolina and Winston Churchill, these are names of a place and a person. I haven't seen anyone explain logically, in lexical or lexicographical terms, why we should create entries for the names of S.C. but not for the names of W.C. Michael Z. 2010-03-19 16:08 z
Assume that you've got two bicycles, you might call them the blue bicycle and the red bicycle. It's exactly the same: among all Brontës, you call your daughters Emily and Charlotte, but this does not make Charlotte Brontë a single word, no more than blue bicycle, that's a standard scheme. On the other hand, a placename is invented each time it's needed and, sometimes, e.g. in New York, there is a space in this name, but this space does not change anything to its status as a word. Lmaltier 18:58, 19 March 2010 (UTC)
Seems wrong. The red bike is a common noun phrase used as a proper noun (in a specific context). I could even capitalize it like a proper name to make it more significant: the Red Bike.
(Please don't think that personal names are only formed with family surnames: there are variations and completely different schemes; see w:Personal name. Also don't mistakenly think that every Smith or every Churchill is a member of a genetic or any other set of person identified by their surname.)
But Patrick Brontë (the sisters' dad) and New York are each a proper name signifying a particular entity. There may be more than one P.B. and there may be completely unrelated Brontës, and Patrick did not inherit this surname from any ancestors. There is also more than one w:New York (disambiguation), and plenty of w:York (disambiguation)s, and the Big Apple inherits its toponym indirectly from the town of York in England. The anthroponyms Patrick and Brontë, and toponym York (and qualifying new) already existed when these entities were named (renamed, in both cases). Lots of people and places also have newly-coined names.
All bikes are bikes. But neither all Brontës nor all Yorks necessarily share anything in common other than their name (although some Brontës and some Yorks do). I do not see a qualitative difference between the whole set of people's names and the set of places' names. Michael Z. 2010-03-19 20:25 z
You cannot disagree about the following point: full names are composed of several words, not placenames (except etymologically in some cases, but this does not make a difference in their nature). Lmaltier 20:59, 19 March 2010 (UTC)
I do not get it (I am not just trying to be difficult). w:Cher, w:Nefertiti, w:Charlemagne, w:O, w:Gollum, and w:Adam are one-word personal full names. In certain contexts, so are w:Stalin, w:Churchill, w:Obama, and w:Jesus. If New York is one “word,” then why aren't w:Mr. T, w:Jay-Z, w:Elizabeth II or w:The Edge.
w:North Atlantic Ocean, w:North America, w:North American Cordillera, w:United States of America, w:New York City, w:New York State, w:River Thames, w:Bay of Biscay, w:United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, w:Mount Everest, and w:Great Socialist People's Libyan Arab Jamahiriya are multi-word place names – some of these are sum-of-parts, some are properly named by a portion of the full name.
I just had a look at Wiktionnaire's handling of fr:Paris (how do I short-link that?). Paris (3) has a single definition line: “Nom de nombreux autres villes et villages du monde,” with an appended list of places. Michael Z. 2010-03-19 22:33 z
What I called full names are names of the form first name + surname. Your reply is about other kinds of names... The way Paris is addressed is better than nothing, but not he best way if you think to names of innahitants, pronunications, etc. This will be improved some day. Lmaltier 06:29, 20 March 2010 (UTC)
Well that's the point. There are all kinds of personal names, and various place names. Each person or place is a unique “individual.” For purposes of the dictionary, there is no special lexical quality unique to every place which should require us to write a definition for its every referent. The difference is encyclopedic notability.
And I see that fr. Wiktionary has found it perfectly adequate to write a single definition for over 40 Parises.
What specifically, are the problems you refer to regarding the Paris listing. Are the residents of Paris, Michigan rioting because Wiktionnaire says they live in France? Are there 40 french words for Parisians? Are there 40 pronunciations other than \pah-REE\? (Neither is this a special problem of place names: for example, anglophone Loewens and Smythes pronounce their own names variously, and we can handle this in our usual way.) I keep seeing people touting the important solution of listing a “definition” for every place, but none of them are pointing out any real problems requiring this. I remain unconvinced. Michael Z. 2010-03-20 16:22 z
Each person or place is a unique “individual.”, yes. But we deal with words, not with individuals. Individuals may be mentioned in definitions when they are the meaning of the word (or one of the few meanings).
"fr. Wiktionary has found it perfectly adequate...": no. There were more than 20 definition lines, and a user has recently (February 2010) provided a more complete list but, unfortunately, he has also merged all of them in one definition (except the French Paris, this is inconsistent).
I assume that inhabitants from some of these cities called Paris are never called Parisians in English. Just have a look at fr:Beaulieu (I've already mentioned this page) to see an example where mentioning each sense is useful (8 different names for inhabitants, depending on the place, despite the fact that these places share the name name, with the same etymology).
I'll stop arguing, others might convince you better than me. Lmaltier 18:07, 20 March 2010 (UTC)
Oh, I see that Paris had separate definition lines in a recent edit,[1] but was simplified a month ago. The current version is much clearer to me; and it doesn't risk losing other senses in a sea of senses for place names. The eponymous Paris is special by its etymological status, but I would probably just mention it in the etymology and/or definition rather than defining it separately from its namesakes. fr:Beaulieu demonstrates how we may need to subdivide derivatives, but this is not helped by adding a sense line for each referrent (nor would showing varying pronunciations be, I think). And of course, any Parises named after the Greek hero would belong under the other etymology. Michael Z. 2010-03-21 23:02 z