Wikipedia’s Lamest Edit Wars
I found this Wikipedia page to be very humorous – and many items debated really had some valid points. Basically, these are issues which been debated over and over again on what would be correct for that Wiki page. For example, the spelling for the chemical element sulfur… is it “sulfur” or “sulphur”? I checked, and they both come up, but “sulphur” points to “sulfur” so apparently the “f” spelling won out, but both spellings are recognized in the page.
Here are some other wars which have occurred on Wikipedia:
Arachnophobia: Is it appropriate to include a huge pictures of a tarantula on a page about the fear of spiders? Although I find this is hilarious (I have no fear of spiders), it does have a very valid point. I checked and there is not a picture of a spider but rather a mild cartoon (left).
J.K. Rowling: Is it pronounced “rolling” or does it rhyme with “howling”? Rowling is on record claiming she pronounces her name like “rolling”. An irate editor argues that this is a “British” pronunciation and the “American” pronunciation of her name should also be noted. This is slightly ridiculous as she is English, and therefore of course will pronounce it in an English manner. Cue endless spats on talk pages over whose arguments are “more cogent”, and multiple reversions. Issue finally resolved (sort of) by very, very, very obliquely implying that she pronounces her name “rolling”, rather than stating that that is how her name is pronounced. Edit war was brief, but, astoundingly, other people have since logged on and made the same complaint. Perhaps it rhymes with “Trolling”?
Cow Tipping: Appropriate ot include a picture of a cow with the caption “An unsuspecting potential victim”? Wikipedia did not. They have an image of a cow laying on it’s side (below) and the caption says, “A cow lying on its side.” (yawn) I like the other caption better.
U2: Is it relevant that Bono plays the harmonica? Should it be mentioned in the lead paragraph along with vocals and guitar? Does this mean that we should also state in the same sentence that The Edge also plays piano, organ, and bass, in addition to background vocals, guitar, and keyboards? As an anonymous IP user kept adding “harmonica” as one of Bono’s instruments, other editors kept removing it. A discussion on the talk page took place and was closed, with the consensus that “harmonica” will not be included. Of course, the addition of “harmonica” continued. A second discussion was created following the first one, and the anonymous editor eventually got the hint after “harmonica” was removed following six previous attempts.
Preteen: Are they 8-12 years old? 9-12? 10-12? 8-13? Even 17 years old? Well, I don’t agree with 17 at all, but Wikipedia currently has preteen listed as two age ranges:
House, MD: Should we mention the show’s lack of asian diversity? What are they talking about with this one? I mean, should Wikipedia editors mention that “Seinfield” lacked Egyptian diversity? Why are they debating “asian diversity”? Seriously, it would be impossible for every show, any show for that matter, to properly represent every ethnicity of the planet.
Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith: Are Anakin Skywalker and Darth Vader considered one character or two separate ones? Do they deserve separate listings in the “credits” section? This seemingly trivial disagreement degenerates into a full-fledged revert war, complete with allegations of vandalism, 3RR violations, aggressive edit summaries and a week long page-protection.
Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope: Site of an edit war over whether Star Wars Episode III should be listed as the ‘preceding film’ in the infobox. Opponents argue that it’s crazy to say a film released in 2005 ‘precedes’ one released in 1977; supporters argue that it’s equally crazy for a series to begin with Episode IV! After an WP:RFC, consensus settles on listing the films in production (rather than in-universe) order. Much blame is placed on George Lucas for creating the mess in the first place. This one has always bothered me, too.
And there are plenty more. Feel free to check them out on the Wikipedia page Lamest Edit Wars.