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Help talk:Naming conventions/Archive 2

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Conflicting sources

I don't think it's happened yet, but I'd just like to raise this issue because with our luck, it will happen sooner than later. :) I'm thinking of "experts" in the world of Heroes (Mohinder and Chandra, the Company and Assignment Tracker 2.0, possibly Hiro as a manga guru, and perhaps the individual who actually holds the ability), and the situation of two "conflicting" sources. For instance, if we use a quote from an episode to name a power, but then an "expert" names it differently in a secondary source. Example: suppose Lukas Bahn shows up in an episode, and somebody says, "Wow! You have the power to detect evolved humans!" We would naturally name his ability "evolved human detection". But if he also has an accompanying Assignment Tracker 2.0 profile, suppose it says something different, like explicitly naming the power "ability sensing". I'm not sure our naming conventions cover such a situation, but may I posit that we use in-world "experts" over others, regardless of the source? -- RyanGibsonStewart (talk) 17:44, 13 October 2008 (EDT)

  • Good question. My opinion on this is when we look at how the name is given in a canon source. When the AT is shown on screen, it gives an explicit name to the ability, whereas someone else on the show can give a description of the same ability. I think if there's an explicit name, we use it, but if it's based on a description or coined term, we go with the explicit name. I do agree that there should be some difference between scientific/expert versus comic/manga knowledge. An example of this is with Mohinder naming Monica's ability versus Micah naming it. Micah and Hiro have a deep knowledge of comics/manga, so their terminology may differ with a more scientific name, such as something Mohinder or the Company would name it. I would say that the Company and Mohinder have devoted great amounts of research on abilities, so their terminology would be the most accurate. Hiro and Micah's terminology is better than a descriptive one, but since they're knowledge comes from comics/manga, it shouldn't be trumped by a respected source like Mohinder or the Company. --Bob (talk) 18:00, 13 October 2008 (EDT)
    • Couldn't agree with you more. So experts trump descriptions, even if they're in a near-canon source. As well, the Sureshes and the Company trump comic geeks...but do comic geeks trump the users themselves? For instance, if Hiro says to Daphne, "You have super speed!" (which he pretty much has, but not with that exact quote), and Daphne says later, "I have enhanced speed," what do we use? I guess it would depend on the context (I say, as I answer my own question). For instance, if she said something silly like "Did you see how enhanced my speed was?", well that would be debatable. But if she said something like "My speed is enhanced by the power of the sun," that would be her demonstrating that she knows a bit about her own ability. Context. -- RyanGibsonStewart (talk) 18:39, 13 October 2008 (EDT)
      • That's a good note to make is context. Monica, for instance, had no clue about her ability, so her description would most likely be way off. However, Sylar has a great understanding of what his ability is, so his description of it is very accurate. As for the near-canon source, I wouldn't want to say that something from Heroes Evolutions is valued more than something from an episode, but explicit names given in the AT's or GN's should be valued over vague descriptions given in episodes. I would want to say that if an ability is given an explicit name versus a descriptive name, then the explicit name should be valued. I don't really want to say that a near-canon source trumps a canon source, but if the canon source is a name derived from vague statements versus a Company AT that explicitly names an ability, I would prefer the explicit name.--Bob (talk) 18:53, 13 October 2008 (EDT)

Hierarchy redux

So with the above section, we've determined that Scientific experts (Suresh, Company, possibly Pinehearst) trump Comic book geeks (Hiro and Micah), which trump descriptions by user, correct? Do we need to re-examine the conventions template and modify it to reflect our new standards? If we do, how would this be as a hierarchy?
Canon Expert (Sci and Comic book)
Canon Description Derivative
Common name
Possessor --SacValleyDweller (talk) 01:34, 15 October 2008 (EDT)

  • Ryan and Bob were debating scientific vs. comic book experts as regards to ability names, but I'm not sure it's really a new standard. They're just clarifying the existing viewpoint of scientific over comic book names when the status level is equal. I agree agree with that and the info. could probably be added to the help.
    However, I think the point Admin was making on Talk:Gravitational manipulation is a different issue, and that the following line of Help:Naming conventions#Ability names could be clarified/corrected: Names derived from a canon or near-canon description (invisibility from "Nobody sees me! I'm invisible!", flight from "I think I can fly!") should be treated as though the name is from a canon or near-canon source.
    We are not following this in the ability which was originally named "vortex creation", which is a name derived from an episode (canon) source that described Stephen Canfield's ability as to "create vortexes". Instead we are using the assignment tracker, a Heroes Evolutions (near-canon) source that explicitly named it as "gravitational manipulation". According to the existing guidelines, derived names are supposed to be treated as though they have equal level, but we are not doing that. Instead, we are using a reference that was explicitly made at near-canon level over a derived canon name.--MiamiVolts (talk) 03:46, 15 October 2008 (EDT)
    • Well said, Miami. I don't think we need to redo the entire hierarchy or even to modify the guidelines very much. The guidelines are pretty clear and are well thought out. The above section simply takes the idea that in certain situations, a near-canon source would take precedence over a canon source. Canfield's ability is a perfect example: Meredith (reading from Company files) said in an episode (a canon source) that Canfield can create vortexes, so we used the name "vortex creation." Then the assignment tracker profile (a near-canon source) was released, and we used the name it gave instead of the name from the canon source. However, the reason for this is because the canon source never explicitly gave the name--we used a description based on words from a reliable scientific expert (the Company files) in a canon source. But the near-canon source is also a reliable scientific expert, only the name of the power is explicitly given, so we ended up using that name instead.

      As for modifying the help page, at the very most, we could add a bullet to the Guidelines for names derived from Heroes sources section. But even that is not necessary, in my opinion, so long as we look at each name individually and consider it on its own, which we do ad nauseum. :) -- RyanGibsonStewart (talk) 03:54, 15 October 2008 (EDT)

      • Ok, good that we agree on the issue being discussed. However, I would like to note that I disagree that being explicitly given should mean that a higher-level source gets trumped by one of lower level. I think one reason that line of help guidelines I am referring to was written that way was because names/terminology based on words spoken in the episodes would be more familiar to viewers. Imho, that's one of the compromises made to make the wiki more accessible to those who only watch the show and that's more important than using an explicitly-cited name.--MiamiVolts (talk) 04:37, 15 October 2008 (EDT)
        • Just want to add here (mainly for those of us just joining us) that we do a similar thing with actual people's names. If there's a more commonly used name for someone, we keep using it even if a more explicit name is available later. That's why Sylar is still Sylar and not "Gabriel Gray", why "Eden McCain" didn't become "Sarah Ellis", and why Bob Bishop's name wasn't changed to "Robert Bishop".--MiamiVolts (talk) 00:53, 16 October 2008 (EDT)
        • I understand where you're coming from, but the problem comes from when we assign "levels" to how canonical a name is, and I'm guilty of this as well. In general, people use the words from a canon source, and form them as a description of an ability, then claim it's a canon source. It's true, it's from a canon source, but it's still a description, which would make it a level 5 on our little scale. However, the secondary sources from HE and GN's may explicitly state what an ability is called, which would be a much higher level. The issue lies with how we define these levels, which is discussed above. I feel that some abilities aren't named explicitly in a canon source (such as Stephen Canfield's ability), but are described in canon sources. This doesn't mean that it's a level 1 definition, it means that it's still a level 5, but from a canon source, which means it's a better description than something from a GN. However, if it is clearly defined in something higher (i.e. an explicit name or a name given by the user/Company/Mohinder, etc) then it has more precedent, and outranks it in importance. So, even though Stephen Canfield's ability is described in a canon source, it is not explicitly named, as it is on his assignment tracker. Similarly, Peter has called lightning by name in canon sources, even though there's the assignment tracker map tip that names it otherwise. If Peter described it as something else, then we would take into account the explicit name. However, Peter names the ability as such, so that is a canon source. Like I said, I'm guilty of stretching our rules for naming something based on canon sources (see precognitive dreaming), and that is still being highly discussed for what the name is. Ultimately, an ability should be named explicitly by the highest source. If a canon source doesn't do this, then the next highest source should be used. Hope that long explanation helps.--Bob (talk) 04:50, 15 October 2008 (EDT)
          • Ditto. -- RyanGibsonStewart (talk) 04:55, 15 October 2008 (EDT)
          • I understand where you're coming from, Bob, but there's a difference between (1) describing an ability yourself, (2) taking words from a source and converting their tense to form an ability name, and (3) taking words from a source and using them to come up with a descriptive ability name. The first and third are descriptions (level 5), but the second could be level 1 as I still maintain "vortex creation" was. The name "body insertion" is a good example of level 5 paraphrasing as Future Peter saying he put his current self inside the body of Jesse Murphy is an example of a descriptive name since the term "insertion" cannot be directly derived from "inside" ("insertion" comes from "insert").--MiamiVolts (talk) 05:24, 15 October 2008 (EDT)

Checking to see what the 2 cents chipped in looks like and it looks like I got $5! ;) On topic, With regards to this, the hierarchy appears, at first glance, to imply that we favor we favor information from the canon source of eps. But then again, we have a few exceptions to that rule which seem to cause some battles on the talk pages. Im thinking, for clarity sake and more clearly establishing what we favor in deciding ability names, we need to revamp the hierarchy as I outlined above. Looking above and below, Im now thinking for clarity we might want to have the hierarchy look like this:

  1. Canon Expert (on screen AT's & Company/Pinhearst, Mohinder, Comic book geeks, user descriptions in that order)
  2. Near-Canon Expert
  3. Canon Description Derivative
  4. Near-Canon Description Derivative
  5. Common name
  6. Description
  7. Possessor

I think some of the debates generated by new abilities would be quickly solved if our hierarchy was modified like that. --SacValleyDweller (talk) 01:45, 16 October 2008 (EDT)

  • Thanks, SVD. Due to reasons stated on this page, my preference is something like:
  1. Canon Expert (on screen AT's & Company/Pinehearst, scientists, comic book geeks, other characters who explicity name an ability in that order)
  2. Canon Description Derivative
  3. Near-Canon Expert
  4. Near-Canon Description Derivative
  5. Common name
  6. Description
  7. Possessor

I changed the order, removed user descriptions from the canon expert category, added other characters to that category, and generalized Mohinder into scientists.--MiamiVolts (talk) 02:09, 16 October 2008 (EDT)

2nd reason

A second reason, and just as important, is that the levels themselves define a line of trust. A good example is if someone wrote a hardback novel in which the Company explicitly called Nathan's ability aerokinesis, we probably would not rename his ability such cause such novels are often much less canon than the show. We would most likely note it, but not use it as the name itself. The trust issue is also present with the assignment tracker. We don't know who writes all of the entries, but we do know from interviews that at least some of them were written by writers who are not main staff of the show. Thus, imho, aside from entries that are displayed on the show, the tracker remains near-canon and info. from it should be treated as such and not override names from descriptions voiced in the show of equal scientific authority.--MiamiVolts (talk) 05:06, 15 October 2008 (EDT)

  • I don't think there's a question about using a hardback novel over an episode, or even Heroes Evolutions content. I think it really boils down to trusting near-canon sources more. I think the hierarchy helps us if there's a conflict with two explicitly named abilities in a canon and a near-canon source. For instance, in an episode, Mohinder says to Monica "I've identified your power as adoptive muscle memory." Three days later, her assignment tracker profile comes out and the power is listed as "photographic reflexes." Well, in that case, I think we would use Mohinder's description because it's from a canon source. On the other hand, in an episode, Sylar described one of his powers as being able to freeze things, so we call it freezing. However, Sylar never explicitly named the ability--if an assignment tracker for Tracy comes out and calls the power "cold manipulation", we would use that, despite the fact that it's not from a canon source. It's less about canon vs. near-canon, and more about explicit vs. descriptions. -- RyanGibsonStewart (talk) 05:27, 15 October 2008 (EDT)
    • Actually, that's not the same situation cause Sylar is not as authoritative a source as the Company when it comes to knowledge about abilities. Thus, there is an additional reason there. If it was the Company doing the describing in the first case instead of Sylar, we might have decided differently.--MiamiVolts (talk) 05:33, 15 October 2008 (EDT)
      • I'm not so sure Meredith was reading an actual description from the Company files when she was describing Canfield's ability, or if she was was simply telling what he could do. -- RyanGibsonStewart (talk) 05:37, 15 October 2008 (EDT)
        • Deciding on the individual example is a separate issue from deciding on the guideline, Ryan. However, the files are right in front of Meredith and Sandra and we see them reading them. I don't think it needs to be clearer than that. It is still the Company's information being relayed, and also I was corrected that it was Sandra that did the talking.--MiamiVolts (talk) 05:54, 15 October 2008 (EDT)
          • But I could read Canfield's assignment tracker profile and say the exact same thing after reading it: "He creates vortexes and makes people disappear forever." It doesn't say that in the file, but that's the conclusion I could come up with.... Yes, an explicit canon name should win over an explicit near-canon name, but a description based on canon words should not win over a explicit name given in a near-canon source. -- RyanGibsonStewart (talk) 18:09, 15 October 2008 (EDT)
            • 1) It's not the assignment tracker entry that Sandra read, it was Noah's copy of their Company files which presumably is more authoritative than the brief summary listed in the assignment tracker; 2) It is not just a description based on canon words, but canon words of changed tense. As I explained in the previous thread, there is a difference (this is not the same situation as "body insertion" which is a descriptive name).--MiamiVolts (talk) 18:19, 15 October 2008 (EDT)
              • Who is to say that one set of files is more authoritative than another? I'm sure there is more there, but all we've seen are fingerprints. Sandra said, "He creates vortexes. Makes people disappear forever." That is a description of what he does, not a name for what he does. "Gravitational manipulation," despite its flaws, is a title for what he does. One is explicit, the other is not. -- RyanGibsonStewart (talk) 18:25, 15 October 2008 (EDT)
                • First off, Company file info. supposedly contains the most up-to-date information on a character, and new info. could mean a new name. The assignment tracker is someone else coming back later and creating a summary of that information and putting it in the computer. What Sandra said is a description of what he does, but it's info. from the Company and her words can be changed in tense to become a title for what he does. It is that principle to which I think that line of the help refers to, and I continue to think that a title being explicit doesn't give it priority over information that can be trusted more.--MiamiVolts (talk) 19:08, 15 October 2008 (EDT)
                  • Her words can be changed to become a title, but her words are still not a title. "Gravitational manipulation" is, and nobody is changing any words around or messing with tenses. Thus, "vortex creation" is a title that comes from fans but derived from a description in a canon source; "gravitational manipulation" is a title that comes from a near canon source. If a title is given explicitly, why wouldn't we trust it? -- RyanGibsonStewart (talk) 20:46, 15 October 2008 (EDT)
                    • Cause the title comes from a near-canon and not a canon source--that's why I don't trust it as much.--MiamiVolts (talk) 23:24, 15 October 2008 (EDT)
                      • So you would rather take a description from an episode and change it into a title than trust a title given in an assignment tracker profile simply because it's from Heroes Evolutions and not from an episode? Wow.... Thank goodness they showed several assignment tracker profiles in The Butterfly Effect! -- RyanGibsonStewart (talk) 00:07, 16 October 2008 (EDT)
                        • Yes, a description someone said; thank goodness indeed! :) BTW, there is a secondary reason, which I mentioned in the prior thread--that doing so is a kind of compromise that helps to keep the wiki accessible to those that just watch the show.--MiamiVolts (talk) 00:10, 16 October 2008 (EDT)
                          • I disagree on both points. I don't think we should compromise. I also don't think we should favor descriptions (spoken or written) of abilities over explicitly given names for those abilities. -- RyanGibsonStewart (talk) 00:27, 16 October 2008 (EDT)
                            • Let's agree to disagree then. I've posted on Talk:Gravitational manipulation for others to come read this thread, and I asked Ted to weigh in on the change Bob and you proposed so that we can get some other opinions, and then check consensus if necessary.--MiamiVolts (talk) 00:40, 16 October 2008 (EDT)
                            • I agree with Ryan definitely. I don't think we should favor descriptions over explicitly given names, it doesn't make sense to me. As for "keeping the wiki accessible to those that just watch the show", I don't know what you're talking about here. We document the show, the graphic novels, and virtually any other source of information. Everything is fair game and we have policies to determine which information is most reliable. If we were only interested in the show itself we wouldn't be documenting the abilities displayed in the graphic novels... and for instance Hana Gitelman's article would be much shorter.--Admin (talk) (01:26, 16 October 2008 (EDT))
                            • I agree with Ryan. I believe an explicit name should trump and descriptive name. Even if the description is canon.--Invareday (talk) (15:20 23 October 2008 (EDT))

2nd reason (part 2)

Just to be clear, this is not about normal descriptive names but names that are derived from spoken descriptions being trumped by an explicit name of less canonicity. I agree we shouldn't favor descriptions over explicitly given names. Descriptions are level 5, but to be clear level 5 is for descriptions users make and that is not what this discussion is about. "Flight" is a good example of an ability with level 1 in name origination. Peter says "I think I can fly" to Nathan in Genesis, and from fly we derived the name flight. Thus, we have a title which comes from a spoken description but is canon (level 1) nonetheless.--MiamiVolts (talk) 01:43, 16 October 2008 (EDT)

Same source conflicting with itself

  • What's the protocol for the same source conflicting with itself? In the GN Golden Handshake Part 4, it is explicitly stated in the blurb that Fusor was actually the woman with the Dehydration ability. Two pages later, it is implied that she is not (she refers to Rollo in response to Haram mentioning the name Fusor), and that her patsy was actually Fusor. Based on the discussion about experts trumping non-experts with naming conventions, shouldn't the blurb, which is effectively a narrator, and so 'outside the world and unbiased,' trump what the characters in the novel say, especially since two of themn were being actively fooled in the story? The only character I can see trumping the blurb in terms of expertise in this situation is the woman herself, but she never actually states that Rollo is Fusor...she merely mentions that Rollo was her distraction in response to Haram commenting on it not being Fusor all along. That's more of an impication than an explicit statement, and so shouldn't the actual statement take precedence here? There's also the idea, which is speculative I admit, that the woman is actually more of a main character than Rollo and, since it is not clear otherwise, 'deserves' more than him. What I mean is that since there is conflicting information, the deciding factor could be that she is an evolved human and a main character whereas Rollo is neither? I have no problem leaving things the way they are (though I do feel the evidence warrants switching them), but I was curious what we do about this type of discrepancy in general. --Stevehim 23:13, 26 October 2008 (EDT)
    • I think what you're asking is what happens when we are told some assumption about a character and then later learn it was a lie? In that case, we do revise things per the new information, but in the histories/synopsises we try to preserve the story to make the revelation meaningful. A simpler example is with Isaac when the police barge into his place thinking Simone is dead, only to find what appears to be a living breathing Simone. It's really Candice pretending to be Simone, but Isaac and the viewer don't learn that until the police leave, Noah enters and Candice turns off that illusion. Thus, Candice is not mentioned in his history until the point of the revelation. I hope that clarifies things.--MiamiVolts (talk) 00:19, 27 October 2008 (EDT)
      • That's good to know too, and is part of what I was asking, but I also was curious about sources of equal canonical value (in this case, the same exact source) conflicting with each other. From what you've said here (and what has been discussed before), it seems that we should try and determine what information is more reliable within the context of the story, since the sources are equal. If that's the case, I think we should definitely consider calling the woman 'Fusor' and the man as her accomplice named Rollo. --Stevehim 00:37, 27 October 2008 (EDT)
        • As for what happens when two conflicting sources arise that have equal canonical value, it is correct that we try and determine what information is more reliable within the context of the story. If both are correct (i.e. Bob and Robert for Bishop's first name), we've been using the name that is more commonly referenced. However, in the Rollo Fusor example the lady never got an identity (in the story, she's never directly referred to as Fusor, so to do so would be speculative). If you disagree or have other questions about Rollo Fusor or his accomplice, those issues can probably best be raised on their respective pages.--MiamiVolts (talk) 01:20, 27 October 2008 (EDT)
          • Thanks for the responses. I was going to, but I don't think it's that big a deal, especially since the discrepancy is already in the notes section, and it would likely just result in people posting the relevant quotes and things staying as they are. I do have a quick follow up to something you said though. If the blurbs are not considered part of the story, do they hold equal canon value to the panels in the GN (or did I misinterpret your comment about not being referred to as Fusor in the story)? --Stevehim 02:04, 27 October 2008 (EDT)
            • No mistake. From what we've heard, the blurbs are written by NBC's promotional department, and not the featured writers. Thus, they are noteworthy but not as trusted.--MiamiVolts (talk) 02:15, 27 October 2008 (EDT)
              • I actually didn't realize that. In light of that info, I would actually rescind my entire argument with regards to Fusor.  :) --Stevehim 02:31, 27 October 2008 (EDT)

Nicknames...what qualifies

I was discussing whether a specific designation qualified as a nickname here, and I got to wondering what criteria we're using to have something qualify as a nickname. It seems that anytime someone is called something by another character, even once, it gets listed, and I was curious if this is what was originally intended. For instance, with regards to the aforementioned discussion, Hiro has listed as his nicknames: Carp, Timewarp, Pikachu. Are all of these really nicknames? I would submit (ie - agree with Bob) that only 'Carp' truly qualifies, but the de facto convention seems to be to list anything that the character has been called (in which case I think Spock should be added to Hiro's page, as Ando calls him that in Genesis). Basically, I'm just asking: what are the criteria we are supposed to be using to list something as a nickname? --Stevehim 00:09, 10 November 2008 (EST)

  • I'm not sure there is definite criteria for nicknames, but it'd probably be easier to just list those that have been used on more than one occasion. I'm not opposed to using anything a character has been called, if that's what was decided before. Maybe Bob can elaborate?--MiamiVolts (talk) 00:46, 10 November 2008 (EST)
  • Stevehim, didn't mean to step on anything at the Usutu page; I didn't realize there might have been a legitimate nickname for Usutu when I corrected some vandalism. To answer the question, I would say any nickname used repeately in the show is acceptable, especially if it's used consistently by someone ("Carp" by Adam, for instance). One-off nickname's probably don't belong. --Ted C 12:38, 10 November 2008 (EST)
    • No problem at all. I've been trying to undo the vandalism, but it seems to be several people working together (or one on several accounts) and so I may have missed some stuff, and wasn't sure if the removal was separtate or due to that. As for the nicknames, I agree. Maybe I'll try and start fixing that up later today too (and we can leave Usutu's off, as it was used only once). Maybe I'll move the one-time uses to the notes sections. Thanks for replying.  :) --Stevehim 12:43, 10 November 2008 (EST)
      • A lot of the nicknames are really just judgment calls. For instance, if Nana calls Monica "Mon" even once, I'd say that's a legitimate nickname. If it's Bob saying it jeeringly, I'd say it isn't. However, if someone (even Nana) says "Listen, Sweet Cheeks, I don't want fries with my burger," then no, I don't think that's a legitimate nickname. It's a judgment call. It's not something that's overly important, and I'd personally rather err on the side of including too much than too little...but I don't think Elle's nickname is "The Bitch", I don't think that Hiro's nickname is "Spock", and I don't think we should include every single name that's ever been used for a person. That's my two cents. -- RyanGibsonStewart (talk) 16:55, 10 November 2008 (EST)
        • What about Pikachu and Timewarp for Hiro. To me, they're the same thing as when Ando calls him Spock. --Stevehim 16:58, 10 November 2008 (EST)
          • If you want my judgment, I don't think they're nicknames that Hiro goes by, or nicknames that persist. I've seen those names on the page and I've never edited them out (implying my consent), but I won't add them there, either. Again, it's one of those things that I think really doesn't matter too much in the end. If somebody feels strongly about it one way or another, we can make a policy...but I think until then, we can just use our best judgment. If you're asking my judgment, I don't think they're legitimate nicknames. -- RyanGibsonStewart (talk) 18:05, 10 November 2008 (EST)

Canonicity revisited

I was typing this out on the lightning talk page, but it got too off topic for there so I decided to move it here. Since the other sections were so long and we seem to be revisiting the issue, I figured I'd start a new section as well.  :)

My opinion is that we should always strive to get all powers to the top level of canon and then leave them there, though only when they have been definitively identified as names, as opposed to descriptions. Further, conflicting information from lower canon sources should be relegated to (and absolutely included in) the notes section or, in cases where it is very "reliable" information (like the A.T.'s), cited in the opening description as 'also known as,' or 'known by the Company as.' The only time I think lower canon levels should trump higher ones is when it's absolutely definitive that the higher level offered a description and not a name. To be honest, I've always thought that the 'viral' parts of Heroes (GN's, Evolutions, Webisodes) should be considered canon, and not near-canon (especially since so much of the information in those sources never appears in the show (ie - there are no such people as Fusor, Santiago, Echo (yet), etc in canon as we have it currently defined, but I consider them as canonical as (and moreso than some) other characters that have been shown in canon)), but I can understand why it was split up. As a final side note on the discussion above, I'm not sure that I'd necessarily rank the Company over Mohinder/Chandra in terms of canonicity either...I'd put them as equals. While the Company may have been at it longer, they plainly don't know more about the powers, as they went through great lengths to get Chandra's information and recruit Mohinder. As a final side note on this post, I think that 'community consensus' should be added to the top (or tied with the top) of the list.  :) --Stevehim 02:29, 28 November 2008 (EST)
Regarding making the content from graphic novels and Heroes Evolutions canon instead of near-canon: I disagree. The information in those sources goes through a lot of scrutiny and editing and review from the writing and production staff, but not nearly the same amount as the content from the episodes. Therefore, if there is an explicit name given in a canon source, it should trump an explicit name given in a near-canon source. That said, I think explicit names in near canon sources (like the assignment tracker profiles) should outrank descriptions from canon sources. For instance, Sylar has described his abilty in more than one episode as a "hunger". However, his AT 2.0 profile lists the ability explicitly as intuitive aptitude. I think the name of the power should stay as "intuitive aptitude" (and I'm glad to see that it is). -- RyanGibsonStewart (talk) 10:41, 28 November 2008 (EST)
I understand and accept the distinction; I just disagree with it, though if that's true (that a lot more thought goes into the episodes) I might be tempted to rethink my position.  ;) I do agree that episode names should trump all else (save, possibly, a unanimous community consensus). As for Sylar, I don't recall him referring to his ability as the hunger (though I certainly could be forgetting something). I always took his comments about the hunger as being a symptom of his ability (which it, of course, is), not as describing the actual power itself. I am very fond of intuitive aptitude as a name (possibly my favorite of all), and would not like to see it changed...ever (of course, if events occurred forcing our hand, I'd support it...I just wouldn't like it). --Stevehim 12:42, 28 November 2008 (EST)
Ryan, I agree. I think in the past we've gotten way too hung up with canonicity and ignored the explicitness of the name. It's very simple to just believe that canonicity should be the single determining factor, but when you take a step back it doesn't make sense to rely solely upon that. Since we're striving for the name of an ability, we need to determine when that name is explicitly given to us and when we're relying on some degree of interpretation in picking the name. Assignment trackers are verified to be written by the writers and very explicitly name the ability. With the exception of files/documents/assignment trackers shown in episodes or them explicitly saying, "Your ability is called..." the very explicit name in the assignment tracker is what we should use. The majority of people seem to feel this way, too, and while a majority does not imply consensus it's an important component to me when it comes to having to make an important decision that does not have full consensus. Short of what I feel are any really good reasons not to, the policy will be amended to this end. (Admin 11:40, 9 December 2008 (EST))
So based on this new policy of explicitness being the priority, shouldn't electromagnetism be merged with electric manipulation for consistency? Please see the discussion at Talk:Electromagnetism. Thanks.--MiamiVolts (talk) 13:51, 9 December 2008 (EST)
I replied there, but as far as I know nothing is changed concerning the Electromagnetism article except that there seems to be discussion as to whether to merge it with Lightning...and now instead the name of the article it might be merged with is Electric manipulation rather than Lightning due to the rename. (Admin 13:58, 9 December 2008 (EST))

Reliability of assignment trackers

Just a few quick comments on this, since the issue has been hotly contested in recent days.

Evidence that the assignment trackers are not updated regularly with information the Company has, and thus of somewhat questionable reliability (though I think they are still very valuable and should, generally, be trusted):

  1. Richard Drucker and Hana Gitelman are listed on their respective assignment trackers as having different abilities, but they were decided to be grouped as one, ignoring the "explicit naming rule."
    • I see them as synonyms, not different abilities. Two names for the same thing. The decision was a blend of multiple sources: one said their abilities were the same, one said their abilities had different names. I interpret that to mean they have the same ability, but they're called different names. Others have added on the fact that Drucker died in 1992, before "digital" communication was popular. That's disputable, but makes sense. -- RyanGibsonStewart (talk) 19:47, 13 December 2008 (EST)
  2. Echo is listed on Jesse's tracker as having a similar ability, but Jesse is not listed on Echo's.
  3. Nobody is listed on Knox's assignment tracker under 'Persons with similar abilities,' even though the Company knows of several.

--Stevehim 19:05, 13 December 2008 (EST)

  • I don't think updating regularly negates explicitness or even reliability, as you alluded to. -- RyanGibsonStewart (talk) 19:47, 13 December 2008 (EST)
    • The explicitness was in reference to Hana and Richard, since they are explicitly named differently, but we decided to group them together. As to the reliability, if they're not updated with new information, that (to me) indicates a lower level of reliability than if they were. For instance, if we found out more information about Stephen Canfield from the show or a GN that renamed his ability to dimensional displacement (eg - Noah discovered new evidence that the power really just placed someone in a pocket dimension, and commented that the Company had gotten it wrong), and this was not updated to the assignment tracker, then we'd have to conclude that the A.T. was not providing reliable information about Stephen's power. --Stevehim 19:56, 13 December 2008 (EST)
      • Then let's cross that bridge when we come to it. I don't want to assume that the abilities that are explicitly named are not reliable just because some biographical data is not updated. -- RyanGibsonStewart (talk) 22:17, 13 December 2008 (EST)
        • Sorry. I should have composed this section better so as not to cause misunderstandings. I didn't mean that the names we're given aren't reliable. I just wanted to note that the A.T.'s are not infallible, and that this should be considered when we engage in the hotbed of controversy that is naming abilities.  ;) I realize (between this and the enhanced strength post) it may seem like I'm stirring up trouble for no reason, but I just wanted to note this point on the discussion page. Despite my recent arguments against several of the names derived from the A.T.'s, I consider them a very valuable source of information. I just felt the point should be made that they do contain errors and inconsistencies, and that should be beared in mind when discussing whether the information contained therein should trump less explicit canon. --Stevehim 22:30, 13 December 2008 (EST)

Suggestion to re-evaluate

I would like to suggest we re-evaluate our present process of retaining 'noname' as the default for ability names. (Presently the following 10 and counting)...

We should be able to arrive at a process for each of these, that is based on the attributes of the ability as we've been shown, that is not grossly speculative, and that would be much better than retaining no-name as the default, and keeping it for lengthy periods of time (ie: Alejandro's been dead for a year and a half. We have plenty of sound information on Alejandro's power to have named it by now.) Even if it came down to something like we start out with a noname ability as the default for an ability that is vague or unclear, and after a reasonable amount of time, (say a month), if a valid consensus name hasn't been determined, then the admin team makes an group executive decision to pick a name to replace the initial noname default. With the expansion of new people with abilities via iStory, GNs, and Evolutions...beyond the episodes themselves, we really need to establish a better default naming scheme than noname, when a clear consensus isn't arrivable. I personally, would be fine with the quality of Admin members we have hear making an executive decision upon a name when the membership as a whole cannot reach a clear and obvious consensus.--HiroDynoSlayer (talk) 04/22/2009 15:17 (EST)

  • FYI: that had been the policy initially, and was used to decide the name for Guillame's ability, which is now "Bliss and Horror". Then, Admin decided that shouldn't be the way things are handled, because he could always decide there isn't a consensus and impose whatever name he wanted. That's how we got to the current situation where names default to the possessor's name if there is no general consensus.--MiamiVolts (talk) 15:36, 22 April 2009 (EDT)
    • Then why not the one with the least complaints becomes the name, rather than the one everyone agrees on, since many people forget that they've voted and won't change it. --345tom 15:47, 22 April 2009 (EDT)
      • Cause in a consensus, opinions don't count as votes. They count as arguments that are supposed to be proven or disproven in discussion in order to reach an agreement. If you are interested in using voting as a means to decide names, then that is a separate discussion.--MiamiVolts (talk) 15:53, 22 April 2009 (EDT)
  • And I would say then, a return to the orignal process would be best, albeit slightly alter it. Instead of Admin alone making the decision, the entire Admin-Team (all 5 of you guys) should discuss and come up with a name when a group consensus cannot be reached. Surely we can trust you guys as a group to come up with a valid name together, when the membership as a whole is uncertain or unsure. That would allow the present consensus policy to remain in place for most all cases, but it then would also prevent lingering noname examples from remaining and lingering without resolution, like the 10 examples above. --HiroDynoSlayer (talk) 04/22/2009 16:19 (EST)
    • I guess you didn't understand me. The only time I recall this being done was for Bliss and Horror, and then it was all of the administrators, not just Admin, who gave their opinions. However, later, Admin decided that shouldn't happen again and that the possessor's name should be used if no name consensus is possible amongst all the users. I can't speak for him, but my impression was that he didn't think his or the administrators' opinion should supersede that of the other users.--MiamiVolts (talk) 16:44, 22 April 2009 (EDT)
      • MV, OK, now I understand what you were saying. I can agree too, with Admin's desire not to want to superceed the opinion's of other users. That a very admirable approach. However, in this particular case, we're looking at a situation where there is no user opinion being superceeded; rather, a situation where the membership has been unable to either decide between multiple viable choices, or to come up with a viable choice. In this case, it shouldn't be considered superceeding for the Admin group to be a final court of arbitration, so to speak...or perhaps consideration for LDBs suggestion of holding a vote only after the present consensus process has generated acceptible options. --HiroDynoSlayer (talk) 04/22/2009 16:50 (EST)
        • It's Admin's choice as to whether or not he reinstates administrator consensus checks as a possibility, because if the administrators don't agree that means it would fall to him to make a final decision.--MiamiVolts (talk) 17:26, 22 April 2009 (EDT)
          • Ah, the "nuclear bomb" route. :) As an administrator who was involved in the famous bliss and horror debate of '07, I can say it really pained me to make an administrative decision which ultimately placed my opinion above the opinions of other community members. (I'm being dramatic, of course. There was no pain, just some minor injuries.) One can look at it in a few ways, so maybe I'm a bit biased about the situation. But we were a younger site back then, still finding our footing. We had also never really been presented with a situation like Guillame's, where we couldn't name his power, or where the name suggested by the graphic novel was just so weird. I mean, we even had a debate about the influence cultural should play in the naming process (hence the birth of "the drunken monkey's kiss" and "stench of a thousand corpses"). We're a little more established now, and our naming conventions really do guide our process for naming new abilities. In fact, if I'm not mistaken, the naming convention came as a result of the bliss and horror discussion. We really don't have to need for the admins, as smart--and handsome--as those guys are, to make executive decisions. In fact, I think the only other time the "nuclear bomb" route was used was in determining explicitness (read: Assignment Tracker 2.0) over canonicity. Consider those two examples to be our Hiroshima and Nagasaki. :)

            Regarding the suggestion to revisit abilities named for their users, I think for the most part we don't need to. Once every so often, somebody suggest a new name for Alejandro's ability. I am not opposed to renaming the ability. But I also have never heard a name that covers all aspects of the I make no secret of the fact that I am often the one who opposes names for that ability. Show me a name that covers all aspects, and I'm on board. On the other hand, an ability like the Future terrorist's ability really can't be named since we know so little about it. Though there have been some good attempts over time, every name I have heard is based on some bit of speculation. Again, if I heard a name that didn't speculate, I'd be behind it. Until then, I'll oppose (much to the chagrin of some community members, I know...) I won't go into a discussion about each of those ability names here, but for the most part, pretty much all of those abilities listed above fall into one of those two categories: names either don't cover the ability's limits (either too broad or too narrow), or the names are too speculative. -- RyanGibsonStewart (talk) 19:14, 22 April 2009 (EDT)

Voting for ability names

  • I personally think that we should use the new consensus to find the unsuitable names, then actually vote for the ability name we want. So the ability with the most the majority of votes would then have the ability named that. Then that way no one can complain, as it would be done democratically. whereas with the current system even if one person disagrees then the possessors name is used. Is that fair? --posted by Laughingdevilboy

Talk 16:27, 22 April 2009 (EDT)

    • That's another good idea. We just should have some process in place to finalize these nonames. Whether a group vote of the highest two concensus names (after a specific amount of time), or whether the Admin-team itself makes the choice, I would be fine. I think we just don't need to continue to leave these no-names out there indefinately...(like the 1 & 1/2 years for poor old Alajandro). --HiroDynoSlayer (talk) 04/22/2009 16:37 (EST)
    • What if its a group vote then goes to the admins? I think a week is the longest the consensus vote should be held for, especially on older ones like Alajandro. Maybe 3 days for ones that have already had a fair amount of discussing, a week for new ones then an elimantion of all but top two (or more if they are tied) then if its still a draw it goes to admins? --345tom 16:47, 22 April 2009 (EDT)
      • A form of polling has been brought up before. In effect, it introduces voting to the process, which Admin decided when starting this wiki would not be used. I'm not opposed to adding voting into the process, but it's not my call alone. That's why this is a separate discussion and why I've made this into a separate thread. Depending on whether we use a polling extension or a simple tally on the ability's talk page, both methods have their own drawbacks in terms of how it affects the server. One of the polling extensions has the capability of enabling polling using a system offsite, but that would mean that our users would have to register offsite and we would technically be borrowing someone else's poll in addition to likely not getting a lot of participation. A simple tally would tend to encourage people to obtain multiple accounts to cheat the poll, which needlessly taxes our server with those extra accounts and makes Admin's job of trying to locate the multiple accounts all the more taxing for him. I'm not opposed to seeing if we now have consensus for using one of these systems. I just want everyone to know there are broader issues at work here.--MiamiVolts (talk) 17:13, 22 April 2009 (EDT)
  • OK, good explanation to why pure voting creates a downside. And again, I'm not saying punt our existing consensus model...I'm just saying we need finality to it, so that we don't continue to stay stuck with nonames as defaults for any lengthy period (more than a week or two, month max). If later evidence arises, we can always adjust a name to reflect new info (as we've done in the past). We just need something to finalize the name after the consensus period runs it's course, and no single name has been determined. Something or someone to make a final decision instead of the perpetual nonname default. --HiroDynoSlayer (talk) 04/22/2009 17:33 (EST)
    • I think that's a good desire (to want to arrive at a name for an ability). And although I personally wouldn't mind exploring them or seeing if there is consensus for one, I don't think the current suggestions are good enough to get consensus to change from just having the ability be possessor-named. Keep the suggestions coming, though. That's how we find something better.--MiamiVolts (talk) 17:47, 22 April 2009 (EDT)
      • What I really don't like is the fact one person has more weight than 20. If one person says I want this to stay as nonames ability then it will (I know an exaggeration and that includes both the new and old consensus). --posted by Laughingdevilboy

Talk 17:52, 22 April 2009 (EDT)

        • Yeah, that's an exaggeration. The nature of consensus is to go by the arguments presented. This does allow a minority opinion to block the majority, but in such situations everyone is mutually unhappy. I think the idea is that this will encourage people to compromise and not oppose names that may not be their favorite but are nonetheless valid.--MiamiVolts (talk) 18:03, 22 April 2009 (EDT)
  • It worries me that we are trying to create a process of deciding on names for abilities just to "get rid of" abilities names that are named for their users. I would rather have a hundred "So and so's ability" names than to have speculation on the site, or to have names that are too broad or too narrow. That said, I think our new way of holding consensus checks will involve a fair amount of more traditional voting. Suppose after a session of our Consensus Check 2.0 is through, we have three ability names. If one name does not emerge the clear "winner", I think it would be appropriate to vote on one of those names. However, I am still in full support of having consensus checks in which every person is given the chance legitimately voice his or her opinion, and oppose a name. We are a community, and as such, we should work as one. Again, with CC 2.0, it hopefully makes it a bit easier for people to express disinterest in an ability name without explicitly opposing it, which is so often the case. It's not a perfect system, but I think it's definitely more in line with what I see as true consensus, which is not so much everybody agreeing on one name, but nobody opposing a given name. That's an important element in our community. From there, I think it's fine to take the names that are not opposed and to hold a vote of some kind to determine the best of those names. -- RyanGibsonStewart (talk) 19:23, 22 April 2009 (EDT)