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Ashkenazi SurnamesEdit

I am removing this entire section for now. Almost everything in it is either inaccurate or flat-out false. To wit (comments in italics):

Until a few hundred years ago, Ashkenazim (Jews from Northern and Eastern Europe) Italy, too!

followed no tradition of surnames, Except for rabbis and their families

but used patronymics within the synagogue, and matronymics in other venues. There was no such distinction, and matronymics were rarely used.

For example, a boy named Joseph of a father named Isaac would be called to the Torah as Joseph ben Isaac. That same boy of a mother named Rachel would be known in business as Joseph ben Rachel. I'd love to see a source for this.

A male used the Hebrew word "ben" (son) and a female "bat" (daughter). Some males used the Aramaic "bar".

When northern European countries legislated that Jews required "proper" surnames, Jews were left with a number of options. Many Jews (particularly in Austria, Prussia and Russia) were forced to adopt Germanic names. No. Certainly in Prussia, plenty of Jews adopted names derived from Hebrew, Latin, Polish, French or other languages.

Joseph II The Emperor of Austria, or some other Joseph?

issued a law in 1787 which assumed that all Jews were to adopt German names. The city mayors were to choose the name for every Jewish family. For names related to precious metals and flowers a fee was gathered, Evidence of this fee-based naming practice would be most welcome. Hint: it's a myth.

while free surnames were usually connected to animals and common metals. Many took Yiddish names derived from occupation (e.g. Goldstein, 'Gold-smith') 'Goldstein' means 'Gold-stone.' 'Goldsmith' would be 'Goldschmidt.'

, from their father (e.g. Jacobson), or from location (e.g. Berliner, Warszawski or Pinsker). The "Ekelnamen" myth deserves its own page, but should not be repeated on a page devoted to facts. The whole idea of "buying" names is undocumented and comes from a few unreliable sources.

That makes Ashkenazi surnames quite similar to Scandinavian and especially Swedish ones. What does? The '-son' suffix, I suppose.

In Prussia special military commissions were created to chose the names. True only in South Prussia and New East Prussia, which were Prussian only in 1795-1807. In the rest of Prussia, fixed surnames were adopted in 1791 (Silesia), 1812 (East Prussia, Pomerania, Brandenburg) or later (other parts).

It became common that the poorer Jews were forced to adopt derogatory, offensive or simply bizarre names. No, it didn't. Where's the evidence? Where are the derogatory, offensive or bizarre names?

Among those created by Ernst Theodor Amadeus Hoffmann were: Part of the myth. There's no evidence that he did anything of the sort.

   * Ochsenschwanz - Oxtail
   * Temperaturwechsel - Temperatureglitch

No--means "temperature change."

   * Kanalgeruch - Sewerstink
   * Singmirwas - Singmesomething 

The Jews of Poland adopted names much earlier. Then why did the Prussians have these commissions? South Prussia was the heartland of Poland.

Those who were adopted by a szlachta family usually changed the name to that of the family. How many Jews were adopted by szlachta???

Christened Jews usually adopted either a common Polish name or a name created after the month of their baptism (that's why many Frankists adopted the name Majewski - after the month of May in 1759). All of which has nothing to do with Jewish surnames.

Both the given names and surnames of Ashkenazim today may be completely European in origin, though many will also posess a traditional Hebrew name for use only in the synagogue. Or they may possess a traditional non-Hebrew name, such as Kalonymus or Alexander (Greek), Mordechai (Persian), etc.

I think a link to a few pages over at Wikipedia would be far more worthwhile than the above.Silesius 16:51, 31 March 2007 (UTC)

As for an evidence of derogative names, please look at Meyers Conversationslexikon 1888 which I think is a reliable source. And there is even a jewish joke based on the name "Kanalgeruch". Another respected newspaper, Die Welt, in an article about Einstein, calls this process an excess and that it was restricted to Galicia (southern Poland/western Ukraine). Those who dare read more German, view this article (citing another one). It lists the names, how many (or few) there are (8 in Berlin 1929) in contrary to those in Jewish jokes (67), and restricts the case to western Galicia and the year 1805. May I conclude with that author that the case exists, but not to a great extent, and that it lead to a trauma or, if you like better, myth. Ahnenfan 23:59, 1 April 2007 (UTC)

OK: let's look at the evidence. Meyer simply states that names such as Pulverbestandteil and Kanalgeruch were "of course" imposed on Jews. Doesn't show evidence that this ever happened (a "where" or "when" would be most welcome, or even a mention of a single person who had an "aufgedrungen" name).

In general, that's the objection to the "Ekelnamen" myth: where *are* these names? Why don't we see them in any of the voluminous records that survive? Western Galicia's Jews are well-documented, their vital records preserved on hundreds and hundreds of microfilms. I would be utterly grateful to anyone who could show me where and when people bore these names.

Die Welt: no source for the assertion; just a repetition of the "Ekelnamen" myth with one of the usual jokes for support. (Completely irrelevant to the topic, I might add; the article is about the family name of Albert Einstein, which derives from mid-17thC southern Germany, not late-18thC Galicia or Prussian/Russian Poland.)

The w-akten.de item, is a little tendentious (Humboldt had little to do with surname-adoption in most of Prussia--couldn't have, in fact) and obscure (how could "Pergamenter" be derogatory--"Parchment-man" is a sofer, a Torah-scribe; "Leichentritt" looks like a typo for "Leichtentritt", i.e., "Lightfoot"). But it does get one fact right: the "Ekelnamen" exist primarily in jokes (Jewish, anti-Semitic and otherwise), and some of the names in question were at least as common among Gentiles.

(As a corrective to these notions I can only suggest a good browse through a German telephone directory. Wacky names are quite easy to find.)

Now, there seems to be some disgruntlement re: my deletion of the (utterly unsourced, internally contradictory) article above, and my failure to provide something better. Well, I originally did something similar over at [[1]]; but there, there was another article, full of facts, references, etc., to which I could redirect the reader who got to that section. I believe the page is still set up that way. Can't say as how I've checked over here to see whether a similar article has appeared; if so, let's link. (If not, let's link over to Wikipedia!)Silesius 03:40, 9 October 2007 (UTC)



I have no particular stake in this discussion, but if someone is going to delete a substantial portion of an article, because of its perceived errors, particularly without prior discussion, I think they need to replace the deleted material with an "improved version". it's been five months since the Ashkenazi section was deleted, and no obvious effort having been made to replace it. Given that time lapse, I don't see a reason for not restoring the deleted material. This is especially the case since the otherwise nice discussion above by Silenius does not document the positions taken. Saying it isn't so is an expression of personal belief that anyone can make, without having anything to base it on. It is, I grant, much harder to show that something is not the case. The question is "what are these conclusions based on?" I'd like to suggest that Silesius provide a comprehensive rewrite to this section, and document the basis for the conclusions stated. If, after a suitable period has elapsed (not months) the article remains as it currently stands, we'll revert to the previous version, with a pointer to this discussion in case someone is moved to upgrade the article. Bill 00:36, 26 September 2007 (UTC)


Good plan, Bill. Robin Patterson 01:05, 26 September 2007 (UTC)



This seems to be based on the notion of "anything is better than nothing." Sorry, but unsourced, internally contradictory, factually incorrect (like, anyone can check the meaning of German words in a dictionary if they don't believe me) stuff like that is *not* better than nothing. As to the "Ekelnamen" myth that's perpetuated in the text, you're right, Bill: it's hard to "disprove" an assertion like that--but the burden of proof is on the one making the assertion; and for the last 125 years, the assertion and its attendant jokes, insinuations, inventions, etc. have been accompanied by a remarkable lack of "show me"--that is, of actual evidence that these ugly names a) existed and b) were assigned in the manner described.

So: why is the burden of documentation on me, and not on the author of the original text? As I note above, there are better discussions of this stuff elsewhere in WikiWorld. Check 'em out at [[2]] -- yes, the Ekelnamen appear there too, albeit with a reference to the primary source of the whole story (Karl Emil Franzos). Why not just link there or copy/edit it? Silesius 03:40, 9 October 2007 (UTC)

I believe you have a fundamental misunderstanding of the nature of this wiki. It is NOT the wikipedia. The wikipedia has some very admirable rules two of which are (paraphrased) a) all information derived from verifiable sources, and b) no original research. That's fine for the Wikipedia. As a practical matter, it doesn't really work that way in genealogy. Yes, people should source their information, and that's something that I personally encourage. But the reality is that most people doing genealogy don't understand why that's needed, and don't do it. If we insisted that they do, there would probably be a half dozen articles on this site. (As to "no original research", genealogy by its nature IS original research. Apply that rule and th site would be completely empty.)
But coming back to the point, this is NOT the wikipedia. I have no problem with your discussion, and would welcome a replacement article. However, you made a decision that this piece of the article was unfounded, and though you provided your reasons, you did not, I think, seek out any particular discussion of the article with the original author.---instead, you arbitrarily deleted it. That left you with, as I see it, an obligation to fill in the blank you left. If you'd like to do that, we'd be happy to have you formalize your thoughts on the subject and insert a replacement. I, however, am not going to attempt to judge whether your views are better than someone elses. If this is important to you, you'll take the time to write the replacement. If not, you won't, and we'll restore the original version, leaving your comments appended for the benefit of anyone else who might feel inclined to deal with this subject. Bill 12:38, 9 October 2007 (UTC)
Bill said this well. Much of genealogy is based on flimsy evidence- and we have to keep contradictory information and explicitly not delete it, but note that Source X said someone was born one year and Soure Y said they were born another year. It is true that folks could come in here with feuds or centuries old grievances against various families and carry their disputes into this area.
The other thing that makes genealogy different is that the information is about such minute details that are difficult to authoritatively establish. This sort of information is at an extreme granularity that is not widely collective as wikipedia is. Sure, someone could come in with some beef about a massacre that happenned in the Balkans 400 years ago. Well, ok, in such collectively establishable cases, we can simply request folks to take their dispute to an authoritative venue where there are enough folks that care about the details to arbitrate the issue. Then genealogy wikia will simply accept the Wikipedia version of the truth. There is this case of american indians who have historically been referred to by outside people as Anastazi descendants. Well they hate the term because it is pejorative- it means enemies of the Apache or something- but in a very offensive way. You get the picture. Folks really get upset about it because it is their heritage. So as a process thing, I think it is better to hammer that stuff out where there are 20 people in the room that cares about the issue- then we just accept that version.
But that process solution doesn't scale to the enormity of the details that genealogy has to grapple with. As a process thing, we know that this is going to break down when there are only about 100 people total in the world that care about the issue, and only maybe one or two of them are online, much less on genealogy.wikia.com. What do we do when the material is about some factual matter that no one on WP cares about, or for that matter any other authoritative web site? Well, regular contributors can't arbitrate it. We have no way of knowing that the alternate version presented is ludicrous or not, and we shall not be put in the position of being thought police over it. The choices are: 1)Version 1 of the truth, 2)blanked article 3) an improved version that points out both sides of the dispute in an NPOV kind of way.
Bill and Robin have pointed out that while option 2 may be the correct one for WP, it is not for genealogy wikia except in the case of common sense rules regarding stuff like racial slurs or slander of living private individuals. Is there an awful lot of hate information that can fit in the grey area? You bet. But if you can't be bothered to offer option 3, then we have no choice but to go with option 1, even if what you say about it's distortions may be true. Sorry- but you've spent more time arguing for zero than it would take for option 3. ~ Phlox 16:52, 9 October 2007 (UTC)

Let's see if I have this straight:

1) This isn't Wikipedia. Fair enough--but remember that the article in question was copied from Wikipedia, and the section I removed there, I replaced with a link to a different article. Shall we copy that other article and do the same here?

If that's your solution, fine with me. As long as there's something there to replace what was there. Then if someone has a problem with that, they can continue the discussion here as needed. Bill 00:49, 11 October 2007 (UTC)

Who will monitor Wikipedia to find all the changes to either article? Or do we think that either article has reached some state of perfection? Silesius 02:57, 11 October 2007 (UTC)

2) Genealogical data can't be sourced the way Wikipedia facts are supposed to be. Or at least, people don't do sourcing. Perhaps true, but utterly irrelevant. The page in question does not contain genealogical information. Rather, it contains findings from geography, history, cultural anthropology and more. Note that there is a source for Jewish surnames given in the references section; I shall add some more links to the same site. Nor is the "granularity" argument to the point, as the Family Name article is quite general in its tone.

Actually, the article does contain genealogical information of use to people on this site. It may not be what you think of, but information about surnames and the like is an important component of genealogy. And yes, there are more than a few articles on this site that contain "geography, history, cultural anthropology and more". All important for someone's genealogical research. Robin's point about granularity was also right on, though not something I'd previously thought of. The wikipedia culls out the bad through a massive community wide effort that depends on the collaboration of a great many people. Its probably not perfect, but by shear force of numbers, and as a rule, a concensus of opinion will develop driving out the bad. We don't have that luxury. Bill 00:49, 11 October 2007 (UTC)

"An important component of genealogy" is not the same as "genealogical information." Physics involves a lot of math, but that doesn't mean that math is physics, or that physics is math. And even if something that isn't "genealogical information" is important to genealogists, does that mean that it's OK to treat it in a cavalier manner?

As to the "granularity" argument: how is this article more "granular" for having been copied from one Wiki to another? And if you're not looking for a larger group of people to address issues such as "family names," why bother with a Wiki at all? Luxury has nothing to do with the case. Silesius 02:57, 11 October 2007 (UTC)


3) Genealogical research is by its nature original research. Not particularly true--plenty of published genealogical sources, on-line databases, etc. out there--and again, irrelevant to the topic. While the passage I removed could be accused of originality, "research" isn't part of it. Nor, as noted in 2), is it genealogical information.

That is a view shared by many novice genealogists. In all the myriad areas covered by the Wikipedia ultimately all articles are founded on something that could be said to be authoritative. There is no such thing as an "authoritative source" in genealogy. There are primary records that a good genealogist relies on, and there are secondary sources that novice genealogists rely on. In the case of the use of primary records that by its nature is original research. Try spending a few weeks in the musty basement of a courthouse trying to decipher and transcribe 18th century documents just so you can figure out if your ancestor John was married to Nancy. If you don't think that's original research. And as to the secondary sources that many genealogists rely on, there are few that could be regarded as truely authoritative. If you don't believe that, we can discuss the details of that perspective as well. Bill 00:49, 11 October 2007 (UTC)

Does your response bear any relationship to the thing you were responding to? I didn't say anything against original research in a genealogical context (or in the context of this wiki), for one thing. Nor did I claim anything about "authoritative sources". Your claim that there are "no authoritative sources" in genealogy is odd, unless you mean that there are no authoritative historical sources for *anything*. Genealogy, whatever its special challenges, is a form of history.

Nor do I appreciate your references to "novice genealogists" or any assumption that I haven't done primary research myself. As to my point, you missed it entirely: the passages I deleted didn't reflect any research, original or otherwise. The author didn't even compare the text to itself.Silesius 02:57, 11 October 2007 (UTC)

4) What do we do when there's a heated argument about a topic that only a few people on earth care about? My answer to that would be: something appropriate to that situation. This isn't that situation, though.

Robin is explaining one of the concerns that we have about the nature of a collaborative efforts in genealogy. Yes, that is a global question we have. While this discussion is not heated, its something common enough among genealogists. Its even common enough I understand on the Wikipedia. Hence the need for the Neutral Point of View Rule. As a problem it probably does not apply here, as for the most part we are all taking a neutral point of view. Very Wikian. And I believe we do have an appropriate solution here, which we are discussing. Bill 00:49, 11 October 2007 (UTC)

On this we totally agree. But Robin's explanation was not germane to the topic, which was: what belongs in any wiki, and how should we deal with less-than-useless contributions?Silesius 02:57, 11 October 2007 (UTC)

5) If we insisted on sourced information, there would only be half a dozen articles here. Note that most of the article in question is sourced, and that that's as it should be. Why have articles like this at all if they're likely to contain information that will mislead the naive genealogist? There is nothing in the article--not now, not in the past--that would not benefit the casual user more if it were done the Wikipedia way. Presumably that was the thinking of whoever borrowed the article from WP in the first place. Trouble is, improvements over there don't show up here. If an old version of the WP article is good enough, why not the current version? Why not take advantage of that vast resource?

Well, the answer to that is simple enough. Fix the article. Bill 00:49, 11 October 2007 (UTC)

As a courtesy, let me propose my fix before implementing it: deletion and replacement with a link to the WP article of the same name. I'd like to hear from anyone who considers this article to be superior to the WP one in some way. Silesius 02:57, 11 October 2007 (UTC)


Perhaps we have stumbled upon a larger question: If there are to be multiple Wikis in this world, with overlapping interests and articles that warrant inclusion in more than one Wiki, how should this be managed? If there's a hot discussion of this topic already underway, I'd love to hear about it. Silesius 22:05, 10 October 2007 (UTC)

Perhaps there are those who'd share that interest. Its not, frankly, an item on my list of primary concerns, but it probably does have some interest for others. Bill 00:49, 11 October 2007 (UTC)

At anyrate, you have now probably spent more time discussing the problem than it would have taken to fix the article to your satisfaction. So, either fix the article, or not as you choose. Bill 00:49, 11 October 2007 (UTC)

Again, I'd like to hear comments re: my proposed fix. And no, any other repair would take far longer than I've done here.Silesius 02:57, 11 October 2007 (UTC)


A bigger issueEdit

If we're going to have articles here that were copied wholesale from WP, shouldn't we either correct the article links (which the author(s) intended to point to other WP material) or remove them? If they do link to something on this Wiki, they're probably not pointing to where the author wanted them to; and if they don't, they're either merely a distraction or an unresolved link to something that doesn't belong in this Wiki in the first place.

For that matter, the intended templates aren't available to the article.

The authors of the article obviously had no problem with people using their prose. Nor is it wrong to borrow text from one Wiki for use in another. But this version here is unfair to the authors and to any users who come upon it, because the authors' work included their links, their formatting choices, and so on. Moreover, they hoped that people in the WP community would add to and improve their work. Given the enormous difference in size between one Wiki and the other, what we have here is an old, broken version of a larger effort.

Shouldn't this article be deleted and replaced with a link to WP? Any intended efforts to maintain it via updates, local improvements, appropriate links and editing have failed, I'd say. Silesius 22:21, 10 October 2007 (UTC)

As of late some have started adding backlinks to the original wikipedia articles via a template notificaiton. I'll admit to drawing on the wikipedia myself for information, though I usually rewrite it totally for my own purposes. Other than that, I usually include a link to any relevant Wikipedian article that I think contains useful information for the subject at hand. I would think that would be sufficient. I suspect in the present case the article in question was written prior to thi practice being adopted. Other than that I will leave this to anyone else who wants to discuss the matter. Bill 00:49, 11 October 2007 (UTC)
"But this version here is unfair to the authors and to any users who come upon it, because the authors' work included their links, their formatting choices, and so on. Moreover, they hoped that people in the WP community would add to and improve their work."
I get it, Gnu licensing is unfair. GFDL material can be reused regardless what the original authors think regardless whether it is improved upon or not, regardless whether it is degraded. If authors don't like the terms of GFDL, then don't contribute to any of the foundation wikis.

Please don't put words in my mouth. I said nothing about the fairness of GNU licensing. I specifically wrote: The authors of the article obviously had no problem with people using their prose. Nor is it wrong to borrow text from one Wiki for use in another. My comments were limited to "this version here" and were based on the effects of doing what had been done here.

GNU licensing is terrific. Poor use of the opportunities it provides is not terrific. Even if someone puts up material for anyone to use, there's a difference between using it fairly and otherwise. Allowing misleading links to propagate at random is not considerate, if you ask me.Silesius 02:57, 11 October 2007 (UTC)

I agree there is no point in copying material if there is no intention to integrate it into a genealogical treatment and fix any broken links and template omissions. My personal view (which some don't agree with) is that genealogy is more than biological breeding statistics. It includes far more depth on the personal lives of individuals which really has no place in a wikipedia article. A biography on genealogy is both different in focus and in breadth. Is it a good idea to include 10 photos in a wikipedia article? No- only those that illustrate the content of the passages. But in a genealogy article? You bet- scans of baptism records, group family shots- this kind of granularity is essential. It's true if the figure is you grandfather or FDR. In FDR's case, we have a very handy place to start, and copying the wikipedia article provides an excellent starting point. A lot of stuff is going to wind up on the cutting room floor as Bill points out. Consider the William I, King of England (1027-1087)/ biography article. Acknowleged GFDL at end. So what do you cut?
  • Opening paragraph- Can't cut that- gives a summation of why he is important to history.
  • Physical appearance? Nope can't cut that either- It's even a required field in gedcom databases.
  • Early life? Heck- this is perfect- birth location, dates, family relations.....
My opinion is that there is a heck of a lot of material to add without worrying about what to cut.
Speaking of wasting time talking rather than doing.... I'm outta here. Just fix the article and let's move on....~ Phlox 01:50, 11 October 2007 (UTC)

Phlox--what a coincidence! I was just browsing this wiki today and found your William I piece. Nicely done! Properly done, if you ask me. Good links to WP where needed, internal links otherwise. Even before coming back to this talk page tonight, I had bookmarked it as an example.

Now, as to your particular comments:

--we can argue about the meaning of "genealogy". As commonly used, it means "family history", as you seem to; but I prefer to call family history just that. No matter.

--Does all genealogical/family-history info belong in a genealogical wiki? I have my doubts. Why not link to an external site where the many (undoubtedly interesting) docs are kept?

--"required field in gedcom databases"--I hadn't heard. Of all the gedcom databases I've prepared, and believe me, there's a ton of them, physical appearance is noted for exactly three people: brothers who, respectively, had black, light-blond and red hair, thus making them look like the Imperial German flag. There are no "required fields" in a gedcom--not even "name." http://homepages.rootsweb.com/~pmcbride/gedcom/55gctoc.htm for more.

But then, your William I piece isn't a general essay on family names. There was only one William I--however many descendants he may have or have had--but almost everyone has a family name of some sort, not to mention a whole raft of them in their family history (or genealogy). The facts about family names are the same, no matter what type of research you're doing; only the focus will change. Facts about family names that are of particular interest to genealogists should be highlighted in a genealogy-oriented wiki, by all means.

Of course, the passage I deleted did quite the opposite: it told nobody where to look, provided red herrings, and generally muddied the waters. What genealogist would have been better off for having read it?

Robin: having reviewed the history of the Family Name article, I realize that you're the one who brought it over from WP. I understand that you intended to enrich the current wiki's structure, and can only compliment you for that. But the large number of links, interrelations, etc. within the article, plus its somewhat inchoate structure, make it unfortunate that it appears here or anywhere in an orphaned form. If it was worth writing for a big Wiki, isn't it worth having it maintained by a big Wiki? In the event, the number of modifications to it in the 2 years (as of this coming Saturday) since you added it here suggests that it's not getting whatever treatment it does deserve.

Barring further discussion in the next day or so, I shall (as requested) fix the article. That is, I'll replace it with a link to the WP article of the same name.Silesius 02:57, 11 October 2007 (UTC)

That doesn't satisfy Robin or Bill's request. Personally I think Bill and Robin have already wasted enough time on this matter. As have you.
  • See field "Attribute" in Gedcom 6.0. [3] You are required to support input of this field or you are not 6.0 compliant. See also the structures on events. Gedcom6 is merely recording what is already in databases. It's just transfering it in a cleaner structure.
  • The historical articles of Wikipedia are a tiny subset of family microhistory. If your logic is correct that it is unfair to have ideas expressed in more than one place, then move the entire article here and have their article link to ours. ~ Phlox 06:42, 11 October 2007 (UTC)

Some final Comments to SileniusEdit

  • First, I'm pleased that you will revise the item. I'm sure the article will be much improved.
  • Second, the issue about concordance of articles in the Wikipedia, with articles here---particularly articles drawn from the Wikipedia, is interesting, and probably merits reflection. I suppose those who are particularly interested in specific articles will update them as needed. In all probability, some articles will not be updated routinely. That does not trouble me in particular as all genealogy is pretty much a work in process---just like the wikipedia. People should cite their sources when creating articles. Presumably that includes articles from the Wikipedia. Presumably those who come after will check the sources of anything that's of critical importance to them. If they see a discrepancy, they can update accordingly.
  • Third, with regard to many of your continueing comments on sources, granularity, and the differences between the Wikipedia and the Genealogy Wiki: So far your particpation on this site has been confined to a single article written sometime ago, and then revised by yourself. I have no idea whether or not you are a highly experienced genealogist, someone simply interested in certain nameing ways, or something in between. The reality is that you have not shown any particular interest in working on this wiki other than what you did sometime back with this article. That is to say, you are not currently what I would describe as a member of this Wiki community. I'm sure an extended debate with you on the nature of genealogy would be enligtening, but at the moment I don't see any particular reason for engaging in such a debate. Bill 13:15, 11 October 2007 (UTC)

The idea of not editing this page ourselves Edit

Phlox said our version was out of date - how true! The Wikipedia original has had 50 edits in the last 3 months. As was suggested above, maybe we should just link to it. Or for readers' convenience maybe we should transclude it here or regularly copy it? — Robin Patterson (Talk) 07:25, 30 July 2009 (UTC)

A walk down memory lane! Forgotten all about this discussion. Rather than link, perhaps an automatic transclusion would do the job---where the article is automatically copied, and updated periodically. Bill Willis 11:25, 30 July 2009 (UTC)
Bill, nice to see a post from you. Long time. I agree and further that we should do this not just with such documentation but with most of our WP sourced material. The challenge is, there is no such transwiki transclusion facility. It must be done via bot, which is not completely reliable due mostly to WP's reliance on tidyhtml. Secondly, the bots that are capable of doing this have proven to be far too complicated for even the more gifted technical contributors to use. So it's a long term maintenance issue. ~ Phlox 00:33, 31 July 2009 (UTC)
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