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Essay talk:Effectiveness of birth control

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"Percents are exact"[edit]

Where are you actually getting these percentages from? WëäŝëïöïďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 13:28, 11 February 2012 (UTC)

By "exact", I meant "precise" (compared to the vaguer "somewhat effective", "very effective", etc.). The percents were from the article on birth control before I edited it. Whenever I made changes to the percentages, I provided a citation showing where I am getting my data from, to show that I'm not just pidooing it. Go ask the individual editor(s) who made the birth control article before I edited it as to where they got their numbers from. I guessed if they were wrong, they would've been removed. The Heidelberg Kid (talk) 19:55, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
I think you need to take a physics class and learn all about accuracy, reliability, and error. Peter Monomorium antarcticum 20:03, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
So what's the point of this fork, if all you've changed are the section headings? And "Grade A", "Grade B", etc. aren't precise, just arbitrary. WéáśéĺóíďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 20:37, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
I want to include percents, you think it's a bad "tone" or whatever that is supposed to mean. Also, by your argument, getting an A or B on your report card is not precise, but just arbitrary. All we need to do are define the categories with enough precision to suit our purposes. It is arbitrary, but so are most things in our lives. Not a very strong argument. The Heidelberg Kid (talk) 21:43, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
Getting an A or B or a numerical percentage on your report card is arbitrary, and there are longstanding debates in academic circles about how useful or fair these grading systems are. Nevertheless, education systems require assessment, and a grade scale is more expedient in assessing overall performance than a bunch of descriptions of how good a student's work is. I don't see how the same argument applies to non-academic things such as birth control. If somebody described something to me as "reasonably effective", yes it's vague but it does convey some meaning. If somebody described the same thing as "Grade C", it means nothing to me; I get that it means "better than Grade D but not as good as Grade A or B", but without some context those are just meaningless markers. WëäŝëïöïďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 22:41, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
In my last few years at the uni, we were under serious pressure not to give out C's D's or F's unless the students didn't show up in class. At that point, those grades really did mean nothing.  :-) Pink mowse.pngGodotGrow a vagina 00:58, 12 February 2012 (UTC)

Meat is graded with letters, at least in America. When you see "Grade A", you don't know exactly what that's supposed to mean, and you may think it's arbitrary. It is. But, we can find this "context" just by looking around a bit. In my fork, I include the needed context (the percents) right by the letter-grade. I added this context, so your argument does not apply. The Heidelberg Kid (talk) 22:52, 11 February 2012 (UTC)


"Tone, whatever the hell that is". Tone is the underlying style we are using to convey messages. Certainly, any article's tone will change over time, and that's teh way Wiki's bounce. But in this context, the "tone" is that - while we do give basic statistics, it's more light, less medical, less formal to say 'pretty good' instead of "within 100-90% effective". Numbers are cold. That's kinda a known fact about politics or medicine or anything. The headers in this article kept it from sounding like a review or study on the effectiveness of birth control, but a serious yet silly look at the variety of ways BC is used, misused, and controlled. --Pink mowse.pngGodotGrow a vagina 22:16, 11 February 2012 (UTC)

Well, I feel that's not the tone we should use. I don't find numbers "cold". I find them precise, concrete, definite. I heard someone on here say before that they wanted to "learn to speak in mathematics to avoid the clusterf**k known as language". Language has many shades and ambiguity, and although this can be good in some cases, in this case, I feel the numbers are best. If I ask, "how effective is a condom?", I find "98% effective" tells me more than "pretty good". We aren't a couple guys in a pub talking to Bob to my right: we want to genuinely inform people as to the truth. In the community guide (which I read), the scientific point of view trumps the snarky one. The Heidelberg Kid (talk) 22:45, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
P.S. It helps me that a lot of times, I tend to anthropomorphize concepts. I read the "Basher Science" series, which takes various scientific concepts and illustrates them with cartoon characters who give first-person descriptions of themselves. One of the reasons why I watch Once Upon a Time...Life a lot is because it anthropomorphizes the bodily concepts, making it less gross and more interesting without removing accuracy (within reason). I recognize that analogies and cartoons are just those: if I didn't, I'd be pro-life, not pro-choice, as I'd get into a big uproar about Maestro in that zygote's nucleus. But because of these associations in my mind, I don't see things like numbers as dry and boring. The Heidelberg Kid (talk) 22:49, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
Then you are missing the point -- we aren't really talking about the efficacy, in teh way you are thinking. this is NOT a medical page. we are talking about issues like control, issues like why people ignore birth control, etc. This page isn't about people saying "use this not that for birth control". that's for planned parenthood or web md. Pink mowse.pngGodotGrow a vagina 01:00, 12 February 2012 (UTC)

I guess that disclaimer went right over your head. Also, why do we say "homoeopathy has no efficacy beyond that of a placebo"? Why not just remove that sentence and just add a link in our external links to some medicine website? The Heidelberg Kid (talk) 01:28, 12 February 2012 (UTC)


Since you're trying to be precise, maybe you should add, that a vasectomy only becomes effective after about 2 to 3 months after the procedure. To be on the safe side, post-operation testsperm test should be made to confirm that the person in question is indeed sterile. Also: Where did you find the information that vasectomies tend to reverse themselves? It ususally takes a very costly operation to reverse a vasectomy, which has a limited success rate. Btw: Shouldn't abstinence be somewhere in the F-Grade category, since as you reflect yourself, it's 100% effectiveness is purely theoretical. --Th. Bernhard (talk) 16:22, 25 February 2012 (UTC)

I mainly got these percents from the mainspace, so you'll need to take it up with whoever added that datum in the mainspace article by digging through its fossil record. Also, abstaining is technically 100% effective, if you are able to resist every urge and pressure to have penile-vaginal intercourse. By your logic, we should also put condoms in Grade-F because they work only in the "theoretical" situation that they're brought and put on correctly. The letter grades are simply classifications by percentage: Grade-A is 100, Grade-B the nineties, Grade-C the eighties, and Grade-F everything below 80. The Heidelberg Kid (talk) 17:33, 25 February 2012 (UTC)
That is an interesting "essay", where I have to take things up with people who wrote the main space article...
As for your comment about the condoms: the big wiki lists a perfect-use failure rate and a typical-use failure rate. The perfect-use failure rate for the condom is 2 percent (i.e. 98% in your "essay", which would mean "B-Grade") while the typical-use failure rate is 15 percent (85% percent, which would give it a "C-Grade"). As you can see there is quite a big difference between perfect and typical use. Which would also apply even more for "abstinence".
Btw: Whta happened to grades "D" and "E" in your "essay"?--Th. Bernhard (talk) 18:15, 28 February 2012 (UTC)