RationalWiki talk:Duplicate articles

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This is a proposed noticeboard for highlighting duplicate articles around RationalWiki, and other pages which should be merged. At present it's in my userspace as I'm testing for community approval before setting it up as a project page. I intend to design a template (similar to Wikipedia's merge template) to put on each duplicate article that is identified, but redirecting to the duplicate articles page for discussion concerning the merge rather than the talk page.

Please comment here on what you think of this proposal. If you want to comment on any of the specific duplicate articles I have identified, or add to them, please do so on the User:Weaseloid/Duplicate articles page itself, as per the note at the top. Thank you. weaseLOIdWeaselly.jpg~ 14:55, 7 October 2008 (EDT)

I say you should move this to the RationalWiki: namespace? Oh, and try to make that template simple and small, so as not to piss off teh assfly! ħumanUser talk:Human 17:57, 7 October 2008 (EDT)
I was about to suggest/second the idea of moving it when I suddenly realised I was editing RationalWIki talk: ArmondikoVd hominem 15:40, 8 October 2008 (EDT)
:-D I figured I might as well start the ball rolling. I've roughed out a very basic template (dup), but haven't started adding it to the duplicate pages yet. It could do with being improved by somebody who knows how to do templates - i.e. draw a box round it, all the fancy tricky stuff. I was trying to figure it out, but then gave up. weaseLOIdWeaselly.jpg~ 15:49, 8 October 2008 (EDT)
Well, fantastic idea and worth keeping an eye on, I'll have a quick scan through the rest of the stubs to see if there's anything else that could be merged.
The other thing is that while some articles may not neccessarily be "duplicates", some could be better merged into one. Like, rather than 5 articles that each have 2 lines about one person, we merge them them to one article that links them (say, philosophers of whatever subject). Would that work here or would we need a more specific template? ArmondikoVd hominem 15:57, 8 October 2008 (EDT)
I'm going to sulk until someone tells me they like my automated nav box thing. SusanG  ContribsTalk 20:10, 9 October 2008 (EDT)
Maybe no one knew that you made it? PS, I stuck a table inside the "div" to create some buffer betwixt text and border. ħumanUser talk:Human 20:26, 9 October 2008 (EDT)
Mm. better like that, I'll remember that next time. SusanG  ContribsTalk 20:30, 9 October 2008 (EDT)
Glad you like it... oh, it is a very nice box. ħumanUser talk:Human 21:19, 9 October 2008 (EDT)

Before we get ahead of ourselves[edit]

Do we actually have the "merge history" ability enabled on RationalWiki? Because I don't think we do. (The "merge history" option enables us to preserve the entire revision history of both articles to when merging them into one.) Star of David.png Radioactive afikomen Please ignore all my awful pre-2014 comments. 20:38, 9 October 2008 (EDT)

If we don't, then we would have to laboriously delete article A, move article B into A's former location, then resurrect the revision history of article A again, thus merging the histories. Star of David.png Radioactive afikomen Please ignore all my awful pre-2014 comments. 20:38, 9 October 2008 (EDT)

Or Trent can take 60 seconds to enable merge history (it's already in the system, but it's default setting is "off"), and we don't have to delete anything like that again. Star of David.png Radioactive afikomen Please ignore all my awful pre-2014 comments. 20:38, 9 October 2008 (EDT)

We aren't losing any history - material is moved from one article to another, and the empty one is edited to be a redirect - so its entire history remains. I know it would be nice for the complete histories to be all at the final version, but, as I said, we aren't removing any history (we don't delete the redirect...). I think we may have lost Trent being busy here to school for a bit... ħumanUser talk:Human 21:17, 9 October 2008 (EDT)
But the history of one article is covered up by a redirect; its revision history is isolated and forgotten. I feel that it violates the spirit of the site to quasi-memoryhole a page's history like that. Star of David.png Radioactive afikomen Please ignore all my awful pre-2014 comments. 15:10, 10 October 2008 (EDT)
I don't see it as a major issue. As long as the duplicate article is changed to a redirect (rather than being deleted & recreated), then anybody who is that desperate to see the whole history can go find it. Likewise, when the articles are merged, we should make it clear in an edit summary that this is what we are doing (this can be written into the instructions at the top of this page if needed). That way anybody checking through an article's history can see where they can find the rest of it at the original duplicate's location. weaseLOIdWeaselly.jpg~ 15:16, 10 October 2008 (EDT)
Good point. Perhaps we should directly link to the "redirect"'s history at the top of the "master article"'s talk page? At least until we get the merge history thing set up? PS, Trent and I were yakking last night and I did bring it up, so he might get it activated soon if we're lucky. ħumanUser talk:Human 15:18, 10 October 2008 (EDT)
Thank you, Human. And I support the idea of linking to the other page's history at the top of the talk page in the meantime. Star of David.png Radioactive afikomen Please ignore all my awful pre-2014 comments. 15:37, 10 October 2008 (EDT)
See template:merged and template:unmerged. Hopefully this sorts out keeping a permanent record of merges & proposed merges. weaseLOIdWeaselly.jpg~ 16:33, 10 October 2008 (EDT)

The dpl list...[edit]

...ain't working. Did someone change the category name perhaps? ħumanUser talk:Human 17:39, 11 February 2009 (EST)

Um... oops? Star of David.png Radioactive afikomen Please ignore all my awful pre-2014 comments. 17:50, 11 February 2009 (EST)


Someone added a couple of similar userboxen (book of the month club ones) which I thought was silly since they used different images, and there's no big deal to having multiple similar userboxi. But I did note that they did not turn up here. Does the "dupe" template only function in the mainspace?

Oh, I figured it out. No I didn't. Might have something to do with the noincludes on template though, since this page's list in generated from the dupe templates catting. ħumanUser talk:Human 04:57, 25 March 2010 (UTC)

The only transclusions listed in "what links here" are the two Holland articles. Have the templates been removed from the userboxen now? €₳$£ΘĪÐWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 22:22, 25 March 2010 (UTC)
Yes, I had already removed them before putting up this comment. It might matter down the line, though. Feel free to experiment with a userbox or other template though! ħumanUser talk:Human 00:51, 26 March 2010 (UTC)

Can someone please stop the merging fetishists before they f*** up everything?[edit]

The guiding principle for a wiki like this should be usefulness. It would be possible to have a wiki with one single article with headed "Stuff you might want to know", but a wiki like this would not be useful since it would be f***ing impossible to find the information you are looking for. Here is the thing: If I need information on something, it is useful to find articles with information pertaining to that specific topic. It is far less useful if I have to dig through a huge article on all sorts of related things to try to find the information I need. To take the most recent example, if I need information about hydroplate theory, it would be incredibly useful to have an article on all aspects pertaining to hydroplate theory, and not have to sift through a huge article on flood geology to find the information I need. Of course, the article on hydroplate theory should link to the article on flood geology and point out that hydroplate theory is a branch of flood geology, but a separate article is much more convenient for those of us who actually use information from rationalwiki elsewhere. The Flood Geology article could then, in turn, have a briefer subsection on hydroplate theory that encouraged readers to consult the separate page. The same point applies to more or less every suggestion made on this page, with the exception of duplicate articles (i.e. different articles under different names for the very same phenomenon). Having separate articles for separate phenomena makes everything way clearer and more convenient to use, even if those separate phenomena are related in terms of some super category (as long as that super category also has a separate article.)

Yes, having separate articles means that there will be some duplicate material around. But so what? Can anyone give me a non-stupid reason to think that it is a problem that some information is presented in more than one place on the wiki? Server space?

If there are any good arguments for merging, I don't see them, but some users are apparently confused about what such an argument would look like. Take for instance the argument, on fusion woo, from Reverend Black Percy:

"I think that it's extra important that we cover all the fusion crankery into one article, not only because it's got a great shot at front page if we do, but also because we explicitly do not cover actual fusion in any major article, only the woo surrounding fusion (in accordance with the mission statement). Splitting our articles up into "cold fusion" and "fusion woo" drives a wedge right through the middle of the exact same topic - crank claims regarding fusion - in a way that I don't think is necessary."

Yes, Reverend Black Percy gives a good argument for why there should be a main article on fusion crankery that also says something about cold fusion - one could, for instance, copy (and then adjust) some material from the cold fusion article. But what he gives is in no way an argument that there shouldn't also be a separate article on cold fusion. Now, he does suggest that he doesn't think having separate articles "is necessary", but that is wrong and dumb. If I need information on cold fusion in particular, an article on cold fusion will be much clearer and much more useful than a big article on fusion crankery. You can, you know, have both.

The pathological drive some editors and writers have to merge articles seems not to be based on good reasons. I therefore suggest that it is rather a function of repressed sexual issues [actually, the explicit reason seems generally to be a desire to "create front page articles", which is a bad reason but would anyways not be prevented by my suggestion to copy stuff instead]. I thus suggest that these people ought to find a different outlet for their drives, get help, and stop merging articles to make rationalwiki less clear and easy to use. — Unsigned, by: G.D. / talk / contribs

Having a bit of trouble[edit]

I created RationalWiki:Duplicate articles/Archive15 but it isn’t showing up on the archive box, can someone fix that? --Andrew5 (talk) 20:40, 23 February 2022 (UTC)