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Troping Real Life on Useful Notes

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phoenix Relationship Status: Yes, I'm alone, but I'm alone and free
Aug 1st 2015 at 12:57:07 PM

I recently stumbled across some Useful Notes pages that contained trope lists concerned entirely with the Real Life event, person, war, etc. rather than with fictional portrayals. While there is already a cleanup thread dealing with real life people, there does not appear to be one to cover everything else. After briefly skimming random pages on the Useful Notes index, real life troping appears to be fairly common, particularly on pages related to cultures, countries, and events/wars.

I propose a systematic cleanup of the Useful Notes (which the Article Count tool informs me number 1695): We could check each page for any tropes referencing real life, remove those while leave any tropes which concern fictional portrayals, and leave a comment on the page warning against troping real life in the future.

phoenix Relationship Status: Yes, I'm alone, but I'm alone and free
Aug 3rd 2015 at 9:32:19 PM

I started at the bottom of this list and am working my way up. Finished through the letter X. Cleaned up the following:

edited 3rd Aug '15 10:39:09 PM by phoenix

phoenix Relationship Status: Yes, I'm alone, but I'm alone and free
Aug 4th 2015 at 12:34:43 AM

Now finished through U. I think I won't keep listing each page cleaned, though I'll still list the ones concerning people here.

Aug 4th 2015 at 6:12:27 PM

Is there anywhere that says Useful Notes pages can't have trope lists? Because Useful Notes itself does not say that.

And do these edits make the pages better or worse? A trope list for Wars of the Roses existed for at least 2 1/2 years and was edited by dozens of people who found it useful and interesting. Now we have a pointless two-paragraph summary. Why come to that page, as it currently exists? What do the two paragraphs at TV Tropes do that Wikipedia does not do a lot better?

Gaon Smoking Snake from Grim Up North Relationship Status: Above such petty unnecessities
Aug 4th 2015 at 6:47:03 PM

It's due the policy (in my opinion, frankly idiotic, with all due respect) of not troping real life at any costs, which means nuking any tropes from any real life pages, regardless of how informative, creative or interesting those pages were and reducing them to a bare summary.

edited 4th Aug '15 6:49:43 PM by Gaon

"Cobras Fumantes eterna é sua vitória!"
Aug 4th 2015 at 6:56:07 PM

[up]Probably so. We might as well delete the Wars of the Roses article and save the bandwidth.

phoenix Relationship Status: Yes, I'm alone, but I'm alone and free
Aug 4th 2015 at 7:30:36 PM

If I had to guess the reason behind the policy, it's likely that the idea is that some topics are too likely to end up with arguments, political bickering, etc. to allow real life troping or subjective pages. Also, many tropes are impossible to apply to real life because they require narrative intent. As I understand it, the troping of real life is off-mission and is tolerated on tropes pages to an extent, but it gets cut as soon as it becomes a problem. Since the idea behind Useful Notes is to provide useful information to writers, the pages should stick to the facts and tropes as used in fiction. The reason behind the blanket ban on troping real life on Useful Notes pages probably boils down to the fact that it's too complicated to allow it on some topics but not others. In theory, consistency makes the policy easier to enforce and violations easier to spot. Of course, it seems it hasn't typically been enforced very strongly.

Edit: [up]We don't need to do anything better than Wikipedia. We're interested in how things like the War of the Roses are portrayed in fiction, not in shoehorning the details of the event into fitting tropes. Rather than cutting the page, ideally we should be encouraging people to add more examples of how writers use this particular event as a backdrop or plot in fiction and how characters are typically portrayed in works about the event.

edited 4th Aug '15 7:39:13 PM by phoenix

Aug 4th 2015 at 8:26:01 PM

[up]Well, let's be candid. You deleted all the content that people edited for at least 2 1/2 years. Now we have two paragraphs explaining how the Wars of the Roses played out. We don't need to do anything better than Wikipedia, but in this case we don't do it 1/100 as well as Wikipedia, much less better. Now we have two pointless paragraphs, and a short list of fictional works that serves little purpose besides providing one more link to each of the work pages listed on Wars of the Roses.

And, again, as near as I can tell there actually is no policy stating that Useful Notes pages can't have trope lists.

The page currently serves no point, and should be put on the Cut List. I would further suggest that every and all Useful Notes pages that have their trope lists gutted should be put on the Cut List, as they serves no purpose. Wikipedia will always do the factual explanations much much much much better than we do, unless we want to radically make over the wiki in order to conform to Wikipedia's standards. Honestly, look over the page as you left it, look here, then tell me which page is more useful for someone wanting to learn about the Wars of the Roses.

edited 4th Aug '15 8:28:23 PM by jamespolk

phoenix Relationship Status: Yes, I'm alone, but I'm alone and free
Aug 4th 2015 at 8:54:33 PM

I promise, I'm not just making it up. It's come up more than once in Ask the Tropers. I don't if it's possible to link to an ATT discussion, but here's an exchange from Sept 2014:

Logo P: I have to ask, are Useful Notes pages (specifically, Forces With Firepower) allowed to have tropes?
Fighteer: Useful Notes articles may discuss mentions of the subject in media, but they should not have tropes themselves.

And another from Aug 2014:

Logo P: Why does North Korea have tropes listed on it? Are modern day countries, let alone North Korea, even allowed to have tropes on their pages?
Septimus Heap: In theory, we don't trope Real Life subjects like that, but we've been slow at implementing that policy.

And just today there was a discussion about whether tropes on Useful Notes about sports are allowed, or whether they fall under the category of real life. The answer to that was that tropes related to advertising or production (in this case, the rules of an event/sport) can stay, but everything else should go.

Edit: Also, just because something has been there a long time doesn't mean it's allowed. Policies change, things get overlooked, etc.

edited 4th Aug '15 8:56:09 PM by phoenix

Aug 4th 2015 at 10:06:28 PM

[up]There is no policy stating that Useful Notes pages can't have tropes. If you can find it written in Administrivia, or anywhere else—not an ATT discussion from who knows how many years ago, but an actual policy—that would be different. I suggest again that you consult the Useful Notes page again.

Wars of the Roses has been rendered useless and should be put on the Cut List. I would ask any neutral observer to decide if that article is now better or worse than it was a couple of days ago.

edited 4th Aug '15 10:07:43 PM by jamespolk

ObsidianFire Relationship Status: Not caught up in your love affair
Aug 4th 2015 at 10:14:15 PM

[up] Wars of the Roses is useful as it is. The summary says what happened, makes a note of how the war got the name and lists a bunch of works that contain or were inspired by the historical event. What's not to like?

phoenix Relationship Status: Yes, I'm alone, but I'm alone and free
Aug 4th 2015 at 10:42:43 PM

[up][up]I've posted a question in Ask the Tropers, so hopefully we'll soon get (A) pointed to a page with the policy, (B) told there is no such policy, or (C) get confirmation that said policy exists but isn't written down, which I believe does happen on occasion. Pending an answer, I'll stick to cleanup of pages about real life people, where troping of real life is pretty unambiguously prohibited. I don't want to be more harmful than helpful; I was just following the rules as I understood them.

Edit: There's a thread about it here.

edited 4th Aug '15 11:03:47 PM by phoenix

SeptimusHeap from Switzerland Relationship Status: Mu
Aug 5th 2015 at 1:47:30 AM

Or maybe we need to put this process on hold for a policy discussion in Wiki Talk.

"For a successful technology, reality must take precedence over public relations, for Nature cannot be fooled." - Richard Feynman
Morgenthaler Angelic.
Aug 11th 2015 at 10:53:48 AM

The article for the RMS Titanic has a whole slew of real life troping, including a number of plain misuses like Anyone Can Die, Fanon Discontinuity, Vindicated by History, and What an Idiot!.

In the year three-thousand and thirty, everybody wants to be an MC.
Morgenthaler Angelic.
Dec 9th 2015 at 7:54:15 AM

Any update on this? Is it ok to cut real life troping from articles like Iran–Iraq War, is it just cleanup the tropes designated as No Real Life Examples Please, or do we need to hash all this out in Wiki Talk?

In the year three-thousand and thirty, everybody wants to be an MC.
Larkmarn Relationship Status: Hello, I love you
Dec 9th 2015 at 8:03:48 AM

Useful Notes are allowed to have tropes lists, but only in a sense of "tropes commonly associated with this in fiction" sense.

We don't trope it like it is a fictional thing. However, we would add, say, Bad Boss to a historical figure's page if he's always shown in fiction as cutting off the heads of his subordinates.

Found a Youtube Channel with political stances you want to share? Hop on over to this page and add them.
crazysamaritan Could we just... not have Death anymore? from Lupin III
Could we just... not have Death anymore?
Dec 9th 2015 at 11:58:01 AM

Such an example would also reference one or more works to find that portrayal in. The real life person isn't troped, but some of the tropes associated with the portrayals of the real life person are.

Link to TRS threads in project mode here.
Apr 21st 2016 at 4:17:23 PM

I just removed every No Real Life tropes from the Titanic's page.

TheOneWhoTropes FUROR APOCALYPTUS! MAGUS CALAMITOSIS! from Newton-Le-Willows, England (Quaint Town) Relationship Status: With my statistically significant other
Apr 24th 2016 at 4:35:54 AM

[up]Could you please use Edit Reasons when making large changes - (a link to here might be useful) otherwise it looks like it was done arbitrarily. People who make arbitrary changes nearly never use edit reasons. I know you're a good troper, but it could confuse newbies as to why certain people are allowed to make large changes supposedly arbitrarily and others aren't.

edited 24th Apr '16 4:36:03 AM by TheOneWhoTropes

Goblin King of the Darkstorm Galaxy.
Apr 24th 2016 at 1:20:24 PM

Sorry about that. I should have put No Real Life Examples, Please! as the edit reason.

Morgenthaler Angelic.
Aug 9th 2016 at 7:07:35 AM

Siege of Vienna has a bunch of issues, mainly using good and evil tropes like The Alliance, The Federation, The Empire, and Evil Chancellor. There is also a huge What an Idiot! entry.

In the year three-thousand and thirty, everybody wants to be an MC.
Larkmarn Relationship Status: Hello, I love you
Aug 11th 2016 at 6:53:52 AM

That's bad. Along with the ridiculous natter. Axe the whole section.

Found a Youtube Channel with political stances you want to share? Hop on over to this page and add them.
Morgenthaler Angelic.
Aug 11th 2016 at 8:05:20 AM

This project has generally lagged a lot. Reading through the other associated threads, we do have license to cut all tropes on Useful Notes pages that aren't about media depictions, so I'm reviving this in full.

Starting with a sampling of historical war pages, all of which have huge trope sections:

Most of those should be cut, I think. The only one I'm hesitating on is the Trojan war article, since everything we know about that war comes from myths like The Trojan Cycle. ETA: And does in fact specify "Tropes as portrayed in fiction" — nvm.

edited 11th Aug '16 8:17:54 AM by Morgenthaler

In the year three-thousand and thirty, everybody wants to be an MC.
TPPR10 Thinking Tiget from Olympia Relationship Status: Squeeeeeeeeeeeee!
Thinking Tiget
Aug 11th 2016 at 8:08:31 AM

Finns with Fearsome Forests not only has bunch of tropes (and I am pretty sure no other Forces with Firepower pages has them), but for some reason has a laconic page.

Either thinks too much or thinks too little
blkwhtrbbt The Dragon of the Eastern Sea from Doesn't take orders from Vladimir Putin Relationship Status: I'm just a poor boy, nobody loves me
The Dragon of the Eastern Sea
Aug 16th 2016 at 9:46:21 AM

Are they not allowed them?

Say to the others who did not follow through You're still our brothers, and we will fight for you

Total posts: 55

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