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Oct 16th 2020 at 10:58:47 AM •••

I think there should be note about not adding preemptive commented out ZCE.

May 19th 2020 at 12:26:44 PM •••

Am I the only one who thinks part of this comes across as a case of Viewers Are Morons?

For the hypothetical examples, they say that \"Alice is a Corrupt Politician\" only tells you that Alice is a character in the work, but I\'m pretty sure most people using this site know what the words \"corrupt\" and \"politician\" mean, and can put two and two together. (Not saying an example like that shouldn\'t have more context, I\'m saying that it\'s kind of condescending to assume people don\'t be able to figure out the meaning of certain tropes based on the name alone.)

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May 19th 2020 at 8:42:45 PM •••

No. Being a Corrupt Politician is about what that character does. Even if everybody know what Corrupt Politician is, \"Alice is a Corrupt Politician\" still doesn\'t tell why she counted as one.

Obviously named trope help, but you still have to explain why the character is example.

Edited by Kuruni
Dec 29th 2017 at 3:51:08 PM •••

So something I noticed a lot with the RWBY pages, Character in particular, is that people are accusing some tropes listed as Zero Context Example. When I read the lines being accused of such, they explain the trope adequately enough in a single sentence. Most of the tropes on those character pages feel like paragraphs with maybe a little too much detail added. For example, one trope was Extra Eyes and simply stated that the creature in question has six eyes, three rows on either side of its head. Does it still count as a Zero Context Example if it provides the example in a short sentence?

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Dec 3rd 2018 at 8:45:53 PM •••

I agree. The standards on what is a Zero Context Example have become too pedantic. The idea that a trope description isn\'t specific enough if it\'s not a full paragraph makes no sense. When I first came to this wiki, I came across a fuckload of these supposed \"Zero Context Examples\" and had no trouble understanding anything.

Mar 22nd 2016 at 12:17:44 PM •••

Are there exceptions where it makes sense to have a zero-context example?

For instance, I saw one entry under a character page where the trope Cat Girl was listed, with nothing else on that line besides "Cat Girl". The essential meaning was that the character is a Cat Girl...and I'm not sure there's anything beyond that to really say in that case that doesn't look like Word Cruft.

If we are supposed to have more than just the trope name in cases like this, what should we add after the trope name?

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Mar 23rd 2016 at 9:17:43 AM •••

Nope. There should be an explanation of what attributes this Cat Girl has, for example.

Mar 23rd 2016 at 9:33:09 AM •••

Thanks for the clarification; I really didn't know what ought to happen in that context.

Mar 23rd 2016 at 10:34:12 AM •••

Does she have cat ears? Tail? Feline behavior? Punny Name? Like to drink milk?

What about the character is cat-girl-like.

Dec 4th 2015 at 3:49:13 AM •••

What if how a work/character fits a trope is already explained in their description? Should you repeat the explanation again next to the trope, even when (which it usually is) listed right under the description on the exact same page?

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Telcontar MOD
Jan 6th 2014 at 12:41:24 PM •••

Done. In the future, please make edit requests in this thread.

Dec 12th 2013 at 10:21:46 AM •••

Is it just me or are a lot of classic game pages prone to Zero Context Examples? Even though many of those pages were written ages ago when ZCE's weren't as frowned upon, it looks extremely tacky to see five examples with no context, and nothing else.

Oct 24th 2013 at 7:15:10 AM •••

As this is an Administrivia/ page, I don't want to alter content without asking first, so here goes:

  • A few weeks ago someone pointed out that just putting "Natch" as the description is very common; unless the list is felt to grow too long, should this be added?
  • The "[Name], and HOW!" line had a note that sarcastically replied with "'How', indeed?" that was recently removed. I personally liked the note, but putting it back would be instigating an edit war. Would it be acceptable to reinsert the note in some form or other?
  • I realise that plural redirects are a big no-no on this site, but Zero Context Example is, in my experience, almost never used in singular form. I noticed someone put up a redirect for the plural form; is it alright to use it? As I mainly proofread around here, I constantly link to this page in the edit reason box, and writing "Zero Context Example entries" or "Zero Context Example s" is kind of awkward.

Edited by Hide/Show Replies
Oct 24th 2013 at 10:13:23 PM •••

  • No comment on "Natch," but if the list is too long, we can always put it in a folder.
  • Two edits don't constitute an edit war. It's the third edit you need to watch out for. I'm not a big fan of that note, though.
  • {{Zero Context Example}}s produces Zero Context Examples. That's probably what you're looking for.

Oct 25th 2013 at 2:26:59 AM •••

From what I've seen, the curly braces don't work in the edit reason box. I might be wrong, though. Regardless, someone made a redirect for the plural form a few months ago.

Telcontar MOD
Oct 25th 2013 at 6:06:56 AM •••

Curly braces do work in the edit reason box, but they're trickier than wiki words so people are more liable to mess them up accidentally.

Sep 28th 2013 at 10:50:26 AM •••

What is the forgiveness rate for those tropers who are trying to help expand the size of a page by adding in as many tropes as they can spot but are generally poor at explaining them?

Spotting a trope and marking it down is a lot simpler than trying to explain how it is appropriate. For those with a bit of a mental block on writing clear explanations it is simpler to let others help fill in context without worrying that their work will be snuffed out whenever it is not filled out quickly enough.

For admins to block incomplete work can come across as being petty to those editors who have put their effort in. If a work is becoming too heavy with zero context examples is a request for more wiki magic love not an appropriate first step? Can there not be a timed period of grace for allowing new content to settle through collaborative effort before the dreaded percentage signs come out?

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Sep 28th 2013 at 12:07:39 PM •••

Some tropes lend themselves better to zero content than others. Some really, really need an explanation. For instance Alliterative Name isn't too bad. However some tropes like Metroidvania, which was posted to the Antichamber page and removed make almost no sense to people who haven't read the trope.

If a person sees a trope, identifies it and can take the time to post it to TV Tropes, they can certainly put that thought in their head into a few words - or say why they are putting in a ZCM in the edit reason.

Yes, some folks aren't good at that, but we also have tropers who are rushing to be the first to "tag" a page with the trope before anyone else does and are posting Zero Context Examples not because they can't, but because they are in a "race".

Edited by
Sep 22nd 2013 at 8:56:50 PM •••

I keep typing "Zero Content Example" instead of context. My brain keeps using it because there is no content or context - the two words have similar meanings here. Maybe we should have a redirect on Zero Content Example?

Edited by Hide/Show Replies
Telcontar MOD
Sep 23rd 2013 at 12:40:53 AM •••

I do this too. I'll set up the redirect.

Sep 14th 2013 at 12:46:20 AM •••

Okay, the admins are getting WAY too overzealous about these "zero-context examples." I've seen an admin on a character page comment out Alliterative Name even though it was on a CHARACTER PAGE and the name is just a couple lines up! I've also seen them comment out appearance-related tropes on character pages even though the entry is accompanied by a picture that makes the applicability of the trope clear. Can the admins please stop treating tropers as if they're complete idiots?

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Telcontar MOD
Sep 14th 2013 at 1:52:11 AM •••

There is, or should be, more to appearance tropes than just a picture of a character. You need to explain how that aspect of the character's appearance ties in with their characterisation or whatever, because that's what the trope is.

Sep 14th 2013 at 6:44:55 AM •••

Some tropes do lend themselves better to Zero Context Example, but even though we are all supposed to leave high school with knowledge of alliteration some folks may have gone a few or many years without thinking of alliteration. Also, we have teens and newer tropers who may see the ZCE's and think they are acceptable and saves them a bit of typing. You're educating by putting the explanation, and saving folks from a Wiki Walk.

It looks like Captain Obvious, but it doesn't take much to say something like:

And you know what? If this sort of thing really annoys you, when you see a Zero Context Example and you think "Well, the admin is going to axe that one" simply add the needed content. It's our job as Tropers to not only add things, but to improve.

Admins are busy, have lives off of TV Tropes and are volunteers, and they have a lot of site here to monitor. It's a lot easier for them to simply cut out ZCE's than look up the trope and write up an explanation.

Edited by
Sep 23rd 2013 at 1:36:57 AM •••

I can imagine a case where Alliterative Name isn't a ZCE: Stan Lee used a lot of them, to remember the Loads and Loads of Characters better.

In other cases, though...

Sep 23rd 2013 at 2:24:16 PM •••

It could be - if there are Loads and Loads of Characters, and just one Alliterative Name the reader shouldn't have to review all the characters in their head for the one.

Oct 27th 2013 at 10:59:52 AM •••

Given how often an alliterative name has some significance to the story, even if it's just a significant monogram, then note that down and explain any other context that can be added.

Sep 16th 2014 at 12:34:31 AM •••

The entire "Wrong!" part of the description is subjective in the first place and comes across less as an educated statement and more "because I say so" and feels more like an enforced case of Viewers Are Morons.

Pages are being absolutely hacked apart into a wall of %s in recent months to the point some character pages are almost damn near empty. Working to append examples with context is one thing, black holing them entirely is pointless.

In fact, the main purpose of the constant renaming of tropes was supposed to be for the very purpose of letting their title better explain themselves.

Edited by
Sep 16th 2014 at 2:25:17 AM •••

It's wiki policy. I would not mind a rewrite of the initial section though.

Anyhoo, the reason why we catalogue trope examples at all is because they can give us insights on how the trope is used. But a trope name is never enough information for that purpose.

Edited by
Sep 12th 2013 at 11:28:27 PM •••

It seems that this would be a great article to start off with a Self-Demonstrating Article of:

Zero Context Example, just Zero Context Example

Edited by
Aug 24th 2013 at 7:35:48 AM •••

So let's you say you're working on a Character page and for whatever reason the weapons have their own section. If the weapon has a name, and the name is clearly the title of their own section, couldn't you put Named Weapon without anything after it?

Come to think of it, this page only has specifies guidelines for works and trope pages, not Character pages.

Edited by Hide/Show Replies
Aug 24th 2013 at 7:54:38 AM •••

For what reason ever should weapons be treated as characters?

Telcontar MOD
Aug 24th 2013 at 8:36:36 AM •••

That's as bad as having a photo of a character and then just listing Significant Green-Eyed Redhead with no justification. Try explaining how it earned its name.

Sep 28th 2013 at 10:20:26 AM •••

To answer Lord Gro; Universal Person is referring to the character pages for the Roosterteeth web animation RWBY.

All the significant characters have decidedly strange, mix and match, personalized, named, weapons. I felt that it was neater and more appropriate to list the tropes relating directly to those weapons in a separate section under the characters wielding them. The main character's weapon - Crescent Rose - has over twenty tropes relating specifically to itself and not it's wielder, as such it is a lot like a character in of itself. Keeping the two sections separate but together is both appropriate to the work and well organized. They are extensions to the characters which reflect their personalities. Tropes such as Small Girl Big Gun remain with the character whereas Ace Custom, Blade On A Stick or Theme Naming are listed under the weapon.

There is the question's context but whether it helps the discussion is another matter.

Edited by
May 26th 2013 at 11:13:11 PM •••

EDIT: What would separate a Zero Context Example from an example that doesn't need context? It goes without saying that someone on a work's page may not be familiar with the work, but for examples that can be spotted even by a complete layman (i.e., BFS when describing a character that's shown using a sword as big as they are in promotional material, Hot Chick In A Badass Suit when talking about a female lawyer in a crime drama, what have you), does context still need to be added?

Edited by Hide/Show Replies
Jul 4th 2013 at 8:26:22 AM •••

I agree. For example, what happens if there is an example like this on a work page:

What else can you add? "[character name] likes to fight"? That's the description of the trope. "[character name] killed 352 people throughout the work in swordfights"? That seems like an unnecessary detail.

Or even better, what about genre descriptions? Let's say the work is Steampunk, so you list it on the work page. What else do you need to explain? If you read the description of the work, you should probably have deduced the genre, else there is something wrong with the description, not the example.

Jul 26th 2013 at 1:11:20 AM •••

^^ There's no such thing as "an example that doesn't need context". In both cases you mentioned the reader would have to leave page they're on to see those tropes play out. We don't want that. It's a distraction, there's no guarantee they'll actually do that, and the reader shouldn't have to leave the page they're reading to understand what you're saying.

^ Well, yes you would add detail like that. Every trope can be used a magnitude of different ways. We want to document those cases to show that. Also, when writing an example it's best to assume that the reader hasn't read the work or the trope you're listing, that way it's clear to everyone. Stuff like this is covering in our How To Write An Example page, please read it.

As far as Steampunk goes, it's largely defined by the technology in the work so give a brief overview of that.

Edited by
FastEddie MOD
Oct 27th 2013 at 11:07:20 AM •••

There is always context. For example;

  • Action Girl: Pauline demonstrates this when she is tied to the railroad tracks by Dick Dasterdly, a scenario typically ending in her being rescued by Dudley Doright. This time, however, she works her own way loose (dislocating her shoulder in the attempt), then hops up and kicks Dudley square in the family jewels.

You claim she is an action girl. Show some evidence.

Edited by
Dec 8th 2012 at 10:08:20 AM •••

How about this, people? If you see a Zero Context Example, why not try *adding some context*?

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lu127 MOD
Dec 8th 2012 at 12:16:13 PM •••

Because not everyone knows every show in existence and not everyone is sure how exactly the trope applies?

Nov 18th 2012 at 7:17:08 AM •••

What about physical description tropes, like Dark-Skinned Blonde or Bob Haircut? I mean, do we really need entries on character pages like:

Isn't that really self-evident?

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Telcontar MOD
Nov 18th 2012 at 9:15:43 AM •••

The trope isn't just the physical appearance, though. Something like Alliterative Name has to be an alliterative name with meaning or it's not an example. Bob Haircut needs expansion like "she cut her hair like this to rebel" or "it shows that she's still living in the twenties".

Feb 20th 2013 at 7:44:43 AM •••

Even if the character just happens to have a bob haircut? There are a lot of physical tropes that can't help but be Zero Context Examples because no explanation for them is given in-universe.

Telcontar MOD
Feb 20th 2013 at 12:28:12 PM •••

If the character just happens to have a bob haircut, with no reason like her or the writers wanting to express something, it's not an example of a trope and should be removed.

Feb 23rd 2013 at 12:25:41 PM •••

Then the majority of the characters in the Anime section of Bob Haircut should be purged. And what about something like Pointy Ears, the laconic for which is simply that they have pointy ears.

Edited by Arawn444
Aug 10th 2012 at 6:31:28 AM •••

I've noticed some examples on various tropes where a person, date, or even location ("local") is not identified. Would that be zero context (or close)?

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Sep 3rd 2012 at 2:05:43 PM •••

Are the missing details relevant to where or how a particular trope appears or functions in the work? If so, then yes.

Edited by SeanMurrayI
Apr 6th 2012 at 9:57:33 AM •••

You wouldn't normally leave a link to Rule Of Cautious Editing Judgement in a page description unless there was a reason to remind editors to be cautious when editing a page. And if there is a reason, you should convey that very reason to readers.

Reminding editors to be cautious when editing a given page without explaining what exactly they need to be cautious about doing isn't very helpful to anybody.

Edited by SeanMurrayI
Jan 15th 2012 at 10:38:55 AM •••

Just a FYI reminder that this article was previously known as X Just X, one of its common manifestations.

I've also taken the liberty of adding Weblinks Are Not Examples and "Type A/B/C" as additional variants, among others.

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Dec 12th 2013 at 10:21:24 AM •••

(oops, meant to start new thread)

Edited by
Jul 24th 2011 at 9:15:36 PM •••

Need to add "'nuff said." ... 'nuff said.

Feb 21st 2011 at 4:00:03 PM •••

Is this going to get deleted anytime soon?

Feb 18th 2011 at 8:53:04 AM •••

Wasn't this redlinked before? Why was it blued?

Nov 21st 2010 at 12:23:30 PM •••


"Why is it here?" Really? Because it's part of the administrative policy and a predefined message.

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Nov 21st 2010 at 12:50:49 PM •••

But we have a bunch of other pages that do that like Not Self Explanatory.

Nov 21st 2010 at 1:05:12 PM •••

Then we'll combine them or we'll work on the titles or something. But what this page is not is a page that we do not want on this wiki or a page that we would not take down without discussion and the appropriate action to a cut being declined is not putting it back on. Just think about it and you might discover why that is not going to work.

Also Not Self Explanatory describes a different sort of information. Is there linkage between them? Yeah, there's also a discussion above this, why don't you try using that.

Edited by SomeSortOfTroper
Nov 22nd 2010 at 7:22:48 PM •••

If you shouldn't pothole to it why does it exist?

Aug 13th 2010 at 12:46:47 PM •••

I took the liberty of deleting a large number of lines that linked to this page. The undetailed entries are gone, while I kept the ones with detail. I've also found a few pages which use this trope as a person's name; eg, 'Jack. Just Jack'. I left those alone as well.

Must we keep this trope? Or can, for a compromise, like This Troper, make this article redlinked?

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Aug 13th 2010 at 1:25:52 PM •••

The page is supposed to tell tropers that they should avoid using, not only X Just X, but anything in that form — the X could be replaced with any trope or work, and it's equally bad potholed or not. And at least this one can't be openly abused like Please Elaborate was — it can only be potholed...

FastEddie MOD
Aug 13th 2010 at 4:56:43 PM •••

Cut request denied because we need somewhere to explain why we hate this.

Aug 13th 2010 at 8:12:09 PM •••

Could we give it a new name that doesn't lend to potholing? No Example Is Self Explanatory? You have to admit that the bluelink is contributing to the problem.

Aug 14th 2010 at 2:45:48 PM •••

We seem to have these recurring meta-meme problems where generic phrases (I Am Not Making This Up, Take That!, So Yeah, X Just X, maybe Incredibly Lame Pun) are being shoehorned into Pot Holes because some people think it's funny, even though for all practical purposes it's a lazy in-joke.

I think having an explanation somewhere to explain "why we hate this" is a good idea if we want to put a stop to this cycle, but localizing it to X Just X will only work until that meme is completely eradicated. Then it will come up again with another innocuous phrase and once more we will get angry shouts of "the wiki is RUINEDFOREVER"!

So, new idea- I just wrote up a page called Potholing Policy, with a section for X Just X and whatever other tropes we want to put down there. What if X Just X redirected to that, or for that matter, we can link that page to anything else to assist in curbing these memes. How about it?

Aug 12th 2010 at 4:50:03 PM •••

Has to be one of the most annoying things on the Wiki. Cut.

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Nov 25th 2011 at 9:44:04 PM •••

This page is warning against X Just X. Cutting would do more harm than good.

Aug 12th 2010 at 1:02:40 PM •••

In light of the fact that So Yeah was cut, and this page literally consists of nothing but instructions to the effect of DON'T POTHOLE THIS, yeah, let's send it to the Cut List.

Aug 8th 2010 at 1:24:17 PM •••

Would it be fine to Pot Hole here if we give a description afterward?

Aug 4th 2010 at 5:21:11 PM •••

Should there be a message that discourages potholing to this article (e.g. Bob. Just Bob)?

Edited by SantosL.Halper Hide/Show Replies
Aug 4th 2010 at 7:21:36 PM •••

The article already pretty much says that any way but directly.

Eh, adding a direct discouragement can't hurt.

Edited by SomeGuy
Apr 8th 2010 at 6:25:36 PM •••

Please, delete this. It was accidental.

Edited by
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