Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Disambiguation

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WikiProject Disambiguation  
WikiProject iconThis page is within the scope of WikiProject Disambiguation, an attempt to structure and organize all disambiguation pages on Wikipedia. If you wish to help, you can edit the page attached to this talk page, or visit the project page, where you can join the project or contribute to the discussion.

Dry hole[edit]

Would another editor please have a look at Dry hole. My cleanup tag was removed despite 2 of the 3 entries leading to articles that don't mention the term. You'd need to be aware of Wikipedia:Redirects for discussion/Log/2021 March 3#Dry Hole. Thanks, Shhhnotsoloud (talk) 08:12, 15 March 2021 (UTC)

The page could be deleted, but I guess it doesn't hurt much. In the meantime I changed the first entry to link to where the term is mentioned, however briefly. Station1 (talk) 08:48, 15 March 2021 (UTC)
The removal of the bizarre cleanup tag was explained at Talk:Dry hole. – Uanfala (talk) 10:30, 15 March 2021 (UTC)
The cleanup tag, applied by me because 2 of the 3 entries fail MOS:DABMENTION, was not "bizarre". Ultimately, it's about WP:Verifiability. We cant just override policy with it's obvious. Shhhnotsoloud (talk) 11:07, 21 March 2021 (UTC)
Have you tried to verify those two uses and failed? For me, both meanings are given by the dictionary that's the very first result when I google the terms. How much easier could it possibly get? You don't need citations for commonly known facts, but if you prefer to have then, feel free to add them – the dab page would be a good place for those references (they can't sensibly be added to the linked articles without significant reworking of the existing text, and it's not haram to have them on the dab page: after all, don't policies like WP:V always trump the minor style guidelines that recommend against refs on dabs?). – Uanfala (talk) 12:47, 21 March 2021 (UTC)
No, if it is so common, it should be uncontroversial to add something to an appropriate target article that satisfies WP:DABMENTION. The onus for ensuring the entries satisfy criteria rests with those wanting to include entry. Else it is nothing more than a dictionary definition. olderwiser 12:57, 21 March 2021 (UTC)
The problem is that linked articles Oil well and Business venture have no significant information on literal or metaphorical dry holes. Hydrocarbon exploration#Terms used in petroleum evaluation and Business failure might just qualify as reasonable targets. Certes (talk) 13:31, 21 March 2021 (UTC)
Oil well#Abandonment is the relevant section, but as for metaphorical ones – yeah, Business failure seems like the better place to link. – Uanfala (talk) 13:38, 21 March 2021 (UTC)
Can "dry hole" describe an abandoned well, or only a site which never produced oil? Certes (talk) 15:22, 21 March 2021 (UTC)
Ah, good point. So, this particular section may not necessarily be relevant in that case, which means the link should just go to the article, as it currently does, and not this section. I don't think retargeting to the glossary is going to be of much of use to readers – the information it contains is more or less equivalent to what is already present in the dab page. – Uanfala (talk) 15:49, 21 March 2021 (UTC)
It's rare for an abandoned well to be actually dry: production ceases when remaining reserves are economical to exploit. It may even reopen if prices rise, taxes fall, new technology makes extraction easier or politics cut off alternative supplies. Certes (talk) 10:00, 15 April 2021 (UTC)

Institute for the Study of the Jewish Question[edit]

I believe the disambig page Institute for the Study of the Jewish Question recently created by The Anome (talk · contribs) should be a redirect to Institut d'étude des questions juives instead, but I'm not sure I'm aware of all the intricacies of WP:D.

There are articles about two WW2-era antisemitic propaganda organizations, one based in Germany, one in Occupied France, with confusingly similar names in English. Each article has a hat note to the other, and there are no other similarly named agencies. The two articles are:

The recently-created disambig page Institute for the Study of the Jewish Question is almost identical in name to the redirect, being singular instead of plural, and it lists just those two entries. I think that the hat notes at the two articles are sufficient, and optimal for user search and navigation. Having a disambig page at that title seems unhelpful, because the page name is an exact translation into English of the name of the Paris agency, with the exception of the '-s' at the end of Questions. Rather than becoming a disambig page, "Institute for the Study of the Jewish Question" should redirect to the article on the Paris-based article with the French name.

One goal in disambiguation or redirection I believe, is to get a user to the correct article as fast as possible, and imho, changing this page to a redirect saves one click most of the time (the French agency is better known), and is no worse (two clicks) the rest of the time. But I know there are some subtleties regarding disambiguation, so I thought I'd better ask here.

(P.S. There's an orthogonal problem which I don't think affects this question, but is worth mentioning just in case: I believe that the common name of the Paris agency in English books is in fact the English term, "Institute for the Study of the Jewish Question" (or, "Questions"), and the article ought to be moved to that title. But that is a separate issue from the disambig page question, and in any case would have to undergo an WP:RM#CM before it is moved.) Thanks, Mathglot (talk) 01:52, 5 April 2021 (UTC)

  • Keep: the two institutions have such similar names that either could be intended when a reader lands on this dab page, and page views since Dec 20 page move are very similar so neither is an obvious primary topic. There's probably scope to add several more variations as incoming redirects to the dab page, which could be intended for either organisation. The page history of the Nazi org shows the work done by Mathglot to disambiguate. This dab page serves a useful purpose. PamD 07:40, 5 April 2021 (UTC)
Perhaps reconsider Ah, just realised Mathglot is the proponent of the deletion ... no time to look further and reconsider, need to go out now. PamD 07:41, 5 April 2021 (UTC)
I'm no longer sure what should be done here. Maybe we should keep the disambig page, rename it by adding '(disambiguation)' to the end of it, and add this org as a new entry. Per WP:DABRED, we could add a red link for it somewhere, then add it to the disambig page; perhaps even via a {{ill}} to indicate the existing German article, which might spur someone to create it here. (Are you listening, User:Mathglot? This is up your alley for a translation, isn't it?) Note that the article Institute for Research on the Jewish Question already mentions this institute in plain text in paragraph two of the lead; all that is required to make a red link out of it, is to add square brackets. Mathglot (talk) 06:26, 6 April 2021 (UTC)
Okay, I think I've got it squared away, now:
Some d-page entries may need to be beefed up (they're still confusingly similar) and other pages need {{About}} to link them to the disambig page. I think this should do it, but feedback appreciated. Mathglot (talk) 18:43, 6 April 2021 (UTC)
Let's also redirect other attempts at an English translation of any of these confusingly similar titles (Institute for the Study of Jewish Questions, Institute for Study of the Jewish Question) to the dab. In particular, it seems wrong that Institute for Study of the Jewish Question redirects to Institute for Research on the Jewish Question when we have an article on a different organisation called Institute for the Study of the Jewish Question. The dab can also list near misses such as Institute for the Study and Elimination of Jewish Influence on German Church Life. Certes (talk) 23:07, 6 April 2021 (UTC)
@Certes: thanks for your comment. I was uncertain how to handle a couple of these cases, which is why they are currently redirects to articles. In particular, when there is common, established usage in English of an organization name that is French or German by origin, how do we decide whether to redirect them to the d-page, or to the article? That is to say: if someone is reading the words, "Institute for the Study of Jewish Questions" in a reliable English history or article, that organization is the IEQJ; if they search for that, shouldn't we just redirect directly to it, instead of forcing them to go via the Disambig page? Besides the extra click, mightn't that even make things worse, confusing the reader by confronting them with a disambig page listing all those confusingly similar names, where no confusion existed in their mind before, when they were just reading the reference? If somehow it actually is the wrong article (let's say the book's author or translator got it wrong (!) ), then the hatnote at the top will take care of that. I just don't know if we should go first to the d-page; at least if they land on some real page, even the wrong one, there's both the hatnote, and they can read the lead paragraph or so to figure out if they're in the right place. Just not sure what is best here. Mathglot (talk) 23:52, 6 April 2021 (UTC)
Good point. If reliable sources tie an English-language name unambiguously to one organisation then we should point that name at its article. Maybe, in practice, only Institute for Study of the Jewish Question needs to redirect to the dab (or could even be its title). Certes (talk) 23:56, 6 April 2021 (UTC)
@Certes:, yes perhaps, but there may also be some preparatory (or follow-up) work involved, regarding in-links that are or were all over the map before this began to be addressed. This is described near the bottom of this discussion. I definitely think we're making progress and getting closer to getting it right, but there's no doubt it's been confusing, and remains so in part, and one has to tread carefully. Mathglot (talk) 00:21, 7 April 2021 (UTC)
Just started to look at in-links; I've checked two so far, and they both got trapped by the confusion, and were wrong. They are now fixed. The very first one is Hans F. K. Günther, and was fixed in this edit. The second one is the Reichsleiter Rosenberg Taskforce, fixed in this edit. I suspect there may be more articles pointing to the wrong target if linked, or simply using the wrong words in plain text, as the Günther article did, reflecting the confusion we've described above. Mathglot (talk) 02:13, 7 April 2021 (UTC)
Same at Alfred Rosenberg; that's 3 checked, 3 wrong. Stopping for now. Mathglot (talk) 03:03, 7 April 2021 (UTC)
Yes, links need to be sorted out. It's tempting to do that now but we can do a better job once we're sure what the articles will be called. Certes (talk) 11:20, 7 April 2021 (UTC)
Actually, there's two different kinds of sorting out that needs to be done; getting the names right is one of them, and I think we're there or mostly there now, and the other is linking to the right "concept", irrespective of the name of the article. Given that the three articles I checked had links in them pointing to the wrong article (that is to say, the wrong concept; e.g., meaning to point to the Rosenberg-1934-Frankfurt org article, but pointing to the Goebbels-1939 one instead), I think it's more important to fix them so they point to the right place. If the name changes later, a move-redirect will track it to the right target. Mathglot (talk) 10:47, 8 April 2021 (UTC)
I agree that the links are more important, but they can't sensibly be fixed until we're confident that the titles won't change, so we have to do the less important job first. Certes (talk) 12:02, 8 April 2021 (UTC)
I agree with Mathglot: As long as each meaning has a different title, and all links are fixed to point to the current title of their intended target subject, then any later decision to change the name of one or more articles can easily be sorted out by Moving articles and letting double redirects convert to single redirects. PamD 12:10, 8 April 2021 (UTC)

Patient zero dab page[edit]

Excuse me if I'm ignorant, (having been on WP for 11 years perhaps I should know)Face-blush.svg, but aren't dab pages supposed to avoid the use of piping? I made an edit here and was reverted, here.
• I just want a second opinion. Regards, 220 of ßorg 09:24, 11 April 2021 (UTC)

  • Going through a redirect, which makes it clear why the term is in the dab page, is fine; it's not the same as piping. (If the link had been input as [[Patient zero (medical science)|Patient zero]], that would have been piping.) PamD 09:42, 11 April 2021 (UTC)
I think I actually meant redirects, not piping. :-/
Is my sentence 'structure':
"The index case, the first documented patient in a disease epidemic within a population, colloquially known as 'patient zero'.",
not appropriate for a dab page named 'Patient zero'? If so, is:
" 'Patient zero' is a colloquial term for the index case, the first documented patient in a disease epidemic within a population.",
any better? Just wondering. Regards, 220 of ßorg 07:00, 12 April 2021 (UTC)
The page now has a RM discussion. If the proposed move does not occur then I like the current dab entry:
  • Patient zero (medical science), or the index case, the first documented patient in a disease epidemic within a population
There's nothing wrong with using a (non-piped) redirect here, and it clarifies why the meaning is listed in a way that index case wouldn't. Certes (talk) 09:16, 16 April 2021 (UTC)
The relevant guideline is MOS:DABREDIR.—Bagumba (talk) 10:50, 16 April 2021 (UTC)


I would welcome some help with improving disambiguation page Bagha. Its history shows varying views as to what should be included. Certes (talk) 09:09, 16 April 2021 (UTC)

I'd suggest starting a discussion at its talk page.—Bagumba (talk) 10:40, 16 April 2021 (UTC)
Done; Talk:Bagha#Page contents open for comments. Certes (talk) 11:22, 16 April 2021 (UTC)

Set indices[edit]

Are set indices in the scope of this project? I assumed so as they are mentioned on its main page and they often contain "(disambiguation)" in their title as well, but then I found someone who removed the talk page banner and wasn't sure. 𝟙𝟤𝟯𝟺𝐪𝑤𝒆𝓇𝟷𝟮𝟥𝟜𝓺𝔴𝕖𝖗𝟰 (𝗍𝗮𝘭𝙠) 20:38, 26 April 2021 (UTC)

@1234qwer1234qwer4: Wikipedia:Set index articles are not disambiguation pages and consequently not included in this project. Set index articles should not have (disambiguation) in their titles, although some set index articles have (disambiguation) redirects to them (because they used to be disambiguation pages, and because they are disambiguation-like, those redirects aren't deleted). In this case Cyclone Hamish (disambiguation) should either be a disambiguation page, or it should be moved to something like List of cyclones called Hamish. This has happened with tropical storms before but I can't recall exactly where. In this particular case, the answer I think is to use the hatnote at Cyclone Hamish to point to Tropical Cyclone Hamish (1999), and delete (WP:PROD) Cyclone Hamish (disambiguation). Shhhnotsoloud (talk) 07:24, 29 April 2021 (UTC)
Thanks; I nominated the page per WP:ONEOTHER. Looking at Category:Set indices on storms, there is a set of pages using "List of", but quite a few is using "(disambiguation)" as well. Should they be renamed? ~~~~
User:1234qwer1234qwer4 (talk)
07:52, 29 April 2021 (UTC)
The advice in WP:WikiProject Tropical cyclones#Storm set index articles matches our own practices: with two topics, one being primary, no list or dab is needed. Where the secondary topic does not have its own article, that link advises a hatnote to its mention, but gives the example of Hurricane Andrew which lacks one. Certes (talk) 10:37, 29 April 2021 (UTC)
@Certes Thanks for the link. This seems to support my proposed renaming. ~~~~
User:1234qwer1234qwer4 (talk)
11:45, 29 April 2021 (UTC)
Other recent discussions: WT:WikiProject Tropical cyclones/Archive 45#List of storm names vs storm name (disambiguation) and Talk:Tropical Storm Abby#Requested move 13 February 2021 Certes (talk) 20:48, 29 April 2021 (UTC)


I made what I thought was a helpful improvement to the Scion page (although was a bit unsure about phrasing and formatting given the meanings), which was reverted by an experienced DAB editor. To my eye, the way it is at the moment is not helpful to the reader who is looking for the actual meaning(s) of the word. Unfortunately "Descendant" leads to another DAB page, but the botanical/horticultural usage is listed far down the page under "Other uses". I am aware of the Wiktionary box on the right, but it is not highly visible and the casual reader could easily miss this. Could the botanical use (which is fairly well known, and many dictionaries give this meaning first) not be used as the primary topic, and/or descendant/heir not be somehow explained near the top within the rules of a DAB page? Wikipedia rules should not be an obstacle to helping finding information, surely? I just cannot see why fictional entities and brand names get precedence over a perfectly common use of the word. Laterthanyouthink (talk) 10:45, 28 April 2021 (UTC)

If there's a lexical meaning that's common to most entries on the dab page, and if it's likely it won't be known to some readers, then it's usually helpful to include a brief definition on the first line of the dab page, as you have done. That's the 'heir' meaning, but I won't object if the grafting one is included as well. – Uanfala (talk) 21:23, 28 April 2021 (UTC)
@Laterthanyouthink: The reality is that the horticultural use is nowhere near being a primary topic by usage (see [1]). Entries on disambiguation pages are organised, not prioritised, unless there's a good case for putting a common use at the top. In this encyclopeadia (as you've probably noticed!) it's very common for fictional entities and brand names to get much more traffic than common use of the word: after all, it's not a dictionary. Shhhnotsoloud (talk) 07:37, 29 April 2021 (UTC)
Organization is based on MOS:DABORDER. If there is no WP:PRIMARYTOPIC, consensus could be to place a few main usages on top. It's not clear if the grafting one is one of them. Wikipedia is not a dictionary, so listing its common definition(s) is not directly a consideration for dabs.—Bagumba (talk) 11:20, 29 April 2021 (UTC)