Template talk:RationalWiki MainPage/About

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This is an archive page, last updated 14 October 2016. Please do not make edits to this page.


This is now transcluded in a few places, like at the RationalWiki article and the Community Standards, so that if there are any further changes to the missions or wording, it'll still appear consistently in these locations. But there are other places, like the newcomers' guide and the {{mission}} template, where the missions are written out again in full, with some slight variations from the wording used here (analyzing instead of documenting crank ideas, #1 on {{mission}} is "Analyzing and refuting the anti-science movement, ideas and people" instead of "pseudoscience and the anti-science movement" as here.

These differences are pretty trivial but if any further changes are made to the mission statements (here or any of these other locations) it's going to be hard to keep them consistent. What I suggest is to have one central template for the mission statements (i.e. this one, but ideally moved to a better template name) and use it on all pages where & templates where the missions should be displayed. We could add optional noinclude parameters to it so that it can be transcluded either with the "Our purpose here" and "We welcome contributors" parts, or without them in locations like the mission template where we want to present the mission statements with different text before & after them. ŴêâŝêîôîďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 19:11, 31 March 2011 (UTC)

Sounds like a good idea to me. ТyTalk. 19:12, 31 March 2011 (UTC)

expand this/elaborate[edit]

so we don't have arguments over what's mission or not--User:Brxbrx/sig 23:36, 6 November 2011 (UTC)

A very serious answer that has nothing to do with our supposed "history". When you read something here, ask yourself, "why is it here". "why am I at RW and not at WikiPEdia, or a site devoted to Medicine, or a site devoted to philosophy. What am I trying to learn, and as an editor, what do I want to say." When I look at articles from that point of view, I find entirely new ways to present information, highlight important aspects, and focus the article. It's not (at least for me) just "this is anti science, so i want to debunk it", it's "why does society put so much weight on Woo", "what effects have the perception of women had on the access to abortion", "why is the history of Jesus a critical matter for both modern religion and modern a-religion". being "on mission" isn't about what check boxes you can make, but about why you want to write the article you want to write, who you are writing it for, and what you want to say. and we won't always agree. I got into a heck of a sillyness with AD or ADK (now, can't remember which) over my overly dead-horse pounding on Eve. But that's how I ask the question of "mission" --Pink mowse.pngGodotGet over it!. 23:46, 6 November 2011 (UTC)
(ec) yeah, because adding more crap here will solve all arguments over missionality. -- Nx / talk 23:48, 6 November 2011 (UTC)
(EC also) This is already elaborated on in quite a few places. E.g. RationalWiki, RationalWiki:Community Standards, RationalWiki:What is a RationalWiki article?. There will always be arguments because there are some grey areas & things open to interpretation, as with any constitution or set of guidelines. ωεαşεζøίɗWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 23:51, 6 November 2011 (UTC)
RationalWiki is not a general encyclopedia; it does not require articles on every known subject. However, the wiki's mainspace welcomes many articles that do not relate to the primary missions of RationalWiki providing that they are factually accurate and of interest to the community at large. These include articles on general science, historical events and important individuals throughout the world.
community standards

This clause is why "off-mission" is a terrible reason for deletion. "Irrelevant to the rest of the site or to its users," or "horrifically written," are better. Blue (is useful) 02:11, 16 November 2011 (UTC)

Thank you, Blue, for your support. That is a very compelling point and I hope it will sway people. I also like my proposal, though.--User:Brxbrx/sig 02:18, 16 November 2011 (UTC)

I propose we add a mission objective about controversy within science. It would certainly be related.--User:Brxbrx/sig 01:03, 16 November 2011 (UTC)

Opposing SOPA?[edit]

Sure, it's a good thing to do, but is it really RW's mission? What has RW, as RW, done to oppose the Bill? Our articles are there to refute pseudoscience, but having an article on SOPA isn't really opposing it.

I don't think that forms part of our mission and should be here. --PsyGremlinПоговорите! 12:46, 19 January 2012 (UTC)


Should this be included along side authoritarianism and fundamentalism? When we started out i remember those being big topics, but these days we seem like we are more concerned with attitudes which would be better described as regressive, such as the hyperlibertarian atheists and MRAs. - π 05:06, 25 May 2015 (UTC)

I don't think I've ever encountered the term regressivism on RationalWiki (& quite possibly not anywhere else either), so it would strike me as odd if it were suddenly written into the site missions. WēāŝēīōīďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 13:51, 25 May 2015 (UTC)
Indeed, no search results for "regressivism". "Regressivist" was used once in a Saloon Bar discussion four years ago where it doesn't really seem to relate to what you're talking about here. ЩєазєюіδWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 13:56, 25 May 2015 (UTC)


This discussion was moved to RationalWiki:Saloon bar.

Present mission statement:

Our purpose here at RationalWiki includes:
  1. Analyzing and refuting pseudoscience and the anti-science movement.
  2. Documenting the full range of crank ideas.
  3. Explorations of authoritarianism and fundamentalism.
  4. Analysis and criticism of how these subjects are handled in the media.
Noun phrase includes:
  • gerund phrase
  • gerund phrase
  • non-gerund noun phrase
  • non-gerund noun phrase

  • Proposed mission statement:

    Our purpose here at RationalWiki includes:
    1. Analyzing and refuting pseudoscience and the anti-science movement.
    2. Documenting the full range of crank ideas.
    3. Exploring authoritarianism and fundamentalism.
    4. Analyzing and criticizing how these subjects are handled in the media.
    Noun phrase includes:
    Gerunds across the board!

    I don't see this in any way changing the meaning of the statement; it only creates parallelism, which is good. Thoughts? WalkerWalkerWalker 19:42, 28 November 2015 (UTC)

    I support. Since this is technically changing the mission (even if in an insubstantial way), you should prolly get majority support. Saloon Bar it! Herr FüzzyCätPötätö (talk/stalk) 20:48, 28 November 2015 (UTC)