Talk:Letter Never Sent

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Redirect target[edit]

Re: [1] I don't even think this needs a disambiguation page. Anyone typing this into the search box in 2012 and not also including a band's name is NOT looking for a 30-year-old non-single by REM, but is looking for this recently re-released film.

BEFORE you make this change to the redirect, 1. disambiguate at the film page (hatnote back to REM song) . ALSO reccomended 2. An account 3. 1. change the article title (as it seems to be the main usage, and not the literal translation) 4. you need to not discriminate against other articles, whatever your personal views are Widefox (talk) 20:46, 19 March 2012 (UTC)


So now the title of this page needs to become "Letter Never Sent (Disambiguation)". How does that work? (talk) 07:34, 20 March 2012 (UTC)

No, this is the correct title (as there is no primary topic), and there is a redirect at Letter Never Sent (disambiguation). Please see why at WP:MOSDAB. Widefox (talk) 11:45, 20 March 2012 (UTC)


Seriously, dude. It's you that has the NPOV problem. You can't have two entries for a single song, unless you are disambiguating between the title of an album and the title of a single. "Letter Never Sent" does not have that problem. I don't care if R.E.M. is your favorite band on the planet; there does not need to be a separate entry for every live version in existence. (talk) 07:52, 20 March 2012 (UTC)

I wish to put in the permanent record that Widefox is behaving dishonestly and hypocritically -- claiming vandalism when each edit was individually summarized and justified, mass-reverting entire suites of reasonable edits (three times!), and even creating multiple entries for one song so as to highlight his "preferred" disambiguated meaning! He has now "warned" me and threatened to block me repeatedly, though I have been editing in good faith for years. He does not appear to be responding in good faith, but to be abusing his editing/warning privileges! (talk) 08:34, 20 March 2012 (UTC)
I clicked the wrong button, as explained here. Error was caught at the time - i.e. no user warning was given, and a revert is a revert.
there are two entries for the song, as there are two articles. We disambiguate to aid reader's article navigation. So to answer, we can have two songs and if we have them, we must disambiguate between them. Widefox (talk) 11:45, 20 March 2012 (UTC)

Style as per WP:MOSDAB, and ordering[edit]

I remain ambivalent about ordering of these DAB entries - as there is no set way to order them in WP:MOSDAB - I normally don't bother ordering alphabetically too strictly (others sometimes fix that after me), but this time I put them in in the order I found them (being as I wrote the whole thing, unusually), combined with keeping the spelling variants together (which is important IMHO), and keeping the common ones at the top (most important aspect). As of this minute, the style is not as per WP:MOSDAB 1. single nav. link , 2. minimalist text (my last version is correct). The ordering is of secondary importance and can be done after that problem is fixed. Widefox (talk) 11:45, 20 March 2012 (UTC)

Misuse/misinterpretation of WP:MOSDAB, and duplication absent notability[edit]

From WP:MOSDAB: "The description associated with a link should be kept to a minimum, just sufficient to allow the reader to find the correct link," further clarifying that "usefulness to the reader is the principal goal. For every style recommendation above, there may be pages in which a good reason exists to use another way; so ignore these guidelines if doing so will be more helpful to readers than following them."

It is fundamental to the success of the Wikipedia project that overly wonky interpretations of style guidelines NOT get in the way of the accuracy/clarity of the information or the utility of the site.

In your version of "minimalist text", by failing to provide any guiding information whatsoever about the film Letter Never Sent/The Unsent Letter (not the director, not the country of original, not the decade of production), you leave in the dark any Wikipedia user who is seeking the film but does not ALREADY KNOW the other title. This is shockingly unhelpful!

Now let us look at the duplicate R.E.M. entries for a second. You are, I presume, aware that the 1984 song and the 2007 live version are the exact same song. The song has been played many thousands of times live, and the simple fact that the band happened to record one performance and release it on a live album in 2009 does not give that version any particular notability, nor is it give rise to any particular confusion or ambiguity.

Having a second entry for a single song, in fact, is likely to cause confusion, not to resolve it! The song is from 1984, it is on Reckoning, it is not even notable enough to justify its own article anywhere on Wikipedia. The existence of the live version is totally extraneous information in the current context and a violation of the principle of minimalism that you yourself cite. (Anyone looking for further information on the compete R.E.M. discography can easily find it at R.E.M. discography.)

Here's a good analogy: Pearl Jam has released quite literally hundreds of official live albums. Following your model, you might see hundreds of individual links to each performance of, say, the song "Black" at the "Black" disambiguation page. But for good reason, Black (disambiguation) contains just a single Pearl Jam-related entry.

If you are unable to provide defensible evidence for the specific notability of the Live at The Olympia recording, then I will be deleting that line item tomorrow, with prejudice.Portunity (talk) 20:24, 20 March 2012 (UTC)

1. There is only one film film article here. 2. It doesn't need disambiguating from other films. 3. The reader reached here using this name 4. alternate names are irrelevant to guidance (see 1.) 5. 2x REM song entries = guidance to the two articles *not* duplicate articles 6. entries need not have own articles, just mentioned (as long as blue link (and can have a red and blue links - like the one you removed) 7. you have a point about a DAB page not having to list *every* possible entry 8. "Black" example - if there are hundreds of separate articles yes we would have hundreds of DAB entries. Yes! 9. You have removed a valid redlink - either show where in WP:MOSDAB that is correct, or I shall put it back 10. "of the very same" does not read well - it reads like you do not want another entry! - I will remove it 11. (10.) already covered by indent 12. don't understand/or agree to your reasoning for removing live song entry (it is OK see 6.) - discuss further before removing 12. Observation: the difference from the current to my original version is getting smaller and smaller [1] 13. Considering the big picture of (12.) a revet to my previous version and editing from there would be quicker and easier - do you agree? Widefox (talk) 16:50, 21 March 2012 (UTC)

1. There is only one R.E.M. song here. 2. It doesn't need disambiguating from other R.E.M. songs. Can you point me to a single Wikipedia guideline that suggests that there must be a disambiguation entry for each and every instance of a given song appearing in a separate article? Your interpretations routinely deny common sense and contribute to the increasing public revulsion with the Wikipedia user experience!Portunity (talk) 22:12, 21 March 2012 (UTC)

1. let me be more clear - instead of "film" read "film article" 1. There are two articles with the REM song, hence two entries (although I do take your point that the live one is less significant - this is just a DAB page - please take your notability issue to the live album article. 2. Of course the two articles with the song variants do need disambiguating - why not? No other REM songs are mentioned - I don't understand Widefox (talk) 15:58, 22 March 2012 (UTC)
The fact that you "don't understand" is the very essence of the problem. You seem to consider yourself an expert in the minutia of Wiki policy, but you have ignored to basic premise of Wikipedia -- that policy wonks who "don't understand" the content and have absolutely no sense of proportional relevance should not have absolute veto power about how information is presented or accessed. There is not a "notability issue" regarding the existence of an article about the REM live album, nor is there a "notability issue" with that live album's article containing a tracklisting. It is, however, absurd for a disambiguation page to need to treat every appearance of a given song's title in any article anywhere as requiring separate attention and linking. Black Sabbath (disambiguation) would be a good example of a situation where one actually does need to differentiate between multiple uses of a title by the same band: the band itself, its eponymous first album, and the eponymous song on that album are each notable enough to deserve a separate article and disambiguating link. But it would be insane for Black Sabbath (disambiguation) to also include links to Reunion (Black Sabbath album) and Live at Hammersmith Odeon simply because both of those live albums also contain versions of the eponymous song. Doing so actually adds to confusion and therefore violates the very mission of a disambiguation page. That is what you insist on doing by linking to a thoroughly unremarkable version of an REM song released on a live album 25 years after the notable album on which that song first appeared. Do you understand now?Portunity (talk) 00:57, 23 March 2012 (UTC)
See below. Widefox (talk) 13:25, 23 March 2012 (UTC)


Please discuss this version (as justified above), to see if you like it: (I will blank it after discussion to prevent confusion here). In particular, please refer to MOSDAB in your comments, and try to keep it concise:
Letter Never Sent may refer to:



See also[edit]

Widefox (talk) 19:07, 21 March 2012 (UTC) Widefox (talk) 15:58, 22 March 2012 (UTC)

I'm over it[edit]

Whatever. Have your way. Include multiple entries for a single song (despite not being able to point to any other examples of the same). Make it really hard for someone who just wants to search for a film to actually find that film. Accuse people who register an account at your suggestion of "sock puppetry." Deny logic. Be the very definition of a "difficult user." I don't care anymore.Portunity (talk) 22:00, 21 March 2012 (UTC)

We don't justify edits based on other stuff WP:OTHERSTUFF (but going along with you on ones I know, e.g. Chrome and Chromium (disambiguation)). We all try to follow the can you point out in MOSDAB where "derivative works" in separate articles should not be listed?
You did not comment on the version above, do you only have 1 change then? (objecting to the live version entry - note your notability argument is better taken up Talk:Live at The Olympia than here).
I prefer to only talk about the article here, reach consensus and implement. Widefox (talk) 16:03, 22 March 2012 (UTC)
While your approach to dominating this process has frustrated me, I do think that your suggestions above improve it over the status quo. Most helpful has been your creation of the Letter Never Sent (film) redirect page -- I heartily approve of that development. As you suspect, my only major change would be to delete the separate entry for the live version of the REM song. A live version, for the record, is not a "derivative work" in the way that a film adaptation of a novel is a derivative work or a cover of one band's song by another band is a derivative work. Please read my extensive explanation above of why your approach creates confusion for no good reason.Portunity (talk) 01:06, 23 March 2012 (UTC)
I don't find your arguments persuasive - the Black Sabbath example is irrelevant 1. As I said before, other stuff exists - going along with you anyway... 2. we guide the reader to the only Black Sabbath song article, unlike this song where all we can do is guide to one or both of the album articles. The song's live version is minor (I'm repeating myself), so in order to reach consensus (which is the *all* we should be doing here), let's remove it.
back to the big picture...we agree this is a minor issue! consider this...although "apples and oranges" due to "alternate-title vs mention-in-article comparison" ...The album article is currently ~10x more popular than the film, and the live album ~2x more. This DAB page previously was the song redirect (to the popular article). These facts mean I'm happy to help users find all three articles (others I didn't check). I'm gunna leave it at this for now thanks due to the style of this interaction. Widefox (talk) 13:25, 23 March 2012 (UTC)
Widefox, the reason that this all came about is that I, as a plain old Wikipedia user, attempted to look up a film title that I had only heard in passing, using the only English translation of which I was aware. I was shocked that such a search could in no way allow me to reach my intended destination, defeating a basic intent of Wikipedia (to allow someone to look something up in order to learn more about it). Despite some of the unpleasantness of our interactions, that initial problem has been solved, so I think we can consider the outcome a qualified success.Portunity (talk) 02:19, 25 March 2012 (UTC)
While neither of us may be happy about the "style" of this interaction -- I would argue that you that you were unhappy that your lording of rollback rights over me led to the suspension of your rollback rights, and that you ratcheted up your stubbornness in retaliation -- I think it is important not just to reach consensus on this page, but to understand the importance of balancing best practices (otherwise known as precedent, which WP:OTHERSTUFF in no way deems inappropriate), interpretations of Wikipedia policy (WP:PTM, incidentally, disagrees that you should include the REM live version, since the implicit modifier contained therein -- "Letter Never Sent, 2007 live version" -- means there is little risk of confusion between versions of the song), and logical reasoning about what will and won't be helpful in a given search situation. If you learn nothing from this debate, then you are likely to continue to make the same logical error and to insert confusing and redundant line items elsewhere on Wikipedia.Portunity (talk) 02:19, 25 March 2012 (UTC)
Simply put, someone that is types "Letter Never Sent" in search of the REM song will have no trouble finding it if a single link exists to the primary album on which that song appeared. The "article popularity" argument is absurd on its face: the REM live album article is 2x more popular because it is a complete article for a major-label release by an American band, whereas the film's article is a stub for a film that until recently had been out of print in the English-speaking world since before the internet existed. However, the REM live album's article is only popular for the totality of its content, and not because droves of users are specifically seeking out every possible version of any given song. Again, if "Letter Never Sent, 2007 live version" had been released as a single, it might have been notable enough for its own article. In that case, one would want a disambiguation link here. But as a non-notable track on an only-notable-as-part-of-the-band's-larger-discography live album, 25 years after its initial, more-or-less-notable appearance on a studio album, there is no ambiguity that is resolved by a separate line item on this page. The Black Sabbath comparison (in which neither the disambiguation page nor the song's own article feel the need to link to every secondary live or compiled appearance of the song), is both apt and instructive.Portunity (talk) 02:19, 25 March 2012 (UTC)

Really, this disambig page is a mess...[edit]

Honestly, you should blank the whole page and keep only two entries:

  • Never Sent, an album by Carly Simon
  • Letter Never Sent, a film directed by Mikhail Kalatozov, also known as The Unsent Letter

Want to know why? Because those are the only two that actually have their own article, which also makes them the most notable out of the lot in Wiki's standards. I'm not really against keeping them all, however, but do think the page could be helped with category divisions (music, film & television, literature; those three categories would cover all the entries). Finally, why is the same song listed twice? The song isn't notable enough in the first place (as evidenced by the fact that it doesn't have its own article), the live version is even less notable and I doubt anyone on wiki is searching specifically for the live version. I know you're not supposed to claim OTHERSTUFF, but come on? What other song on wikipedia is ever listed twice? If one is, you can be sure that the alternate version has established independent notability (and even then would just be treated in the original versions article instead of having its own).Flygongengar (talk)

I agree with the sentiment, but the entries without their own article are allowed per WP:MOSDAB, and common on DAB pages, so pls provide more reasoning for this bold suggestion. Have you considered the above popularity stats? This isn't a big DAB page, and the live song entry is the only one previously questioned. The version I proposed above and left for months for consensus has sections, and the only objection was the live song. I have commented that out, and merged it with subsequent changes so it conforms to WP:MOSDAB, with more reasoning in my edit summary.  Done Is that better? Widefox; talk 12:20, 8 November 2012 (UTC)