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We've had a number of discussions on whether the navigation boxes housed in category:Aliens Navigation templates should stay or go. They've persisted, it seems to me, because none of the preceding discussions were concluded. As I switch over navboxes to their new and more flexible format, I'm stumped as to whether I should do the work on converting these templates, because opposition to them in the various threads seems to have been reasonably high. It's an awful lot of work to do if we, as a community, don't even want the boxes in the first place.

For your review, here are the previous discussions on this issue that are giving me pause:

I think that some of the objections raised in these threads have been answered by the new format allowed by {{navbox}}. One major bone of contention in the previous thread was where the navbox was to be placed. I had argued for a placement under the infobox, but this new template neatly stows things above the category strip. Fine. That issue is settled. TD had hated, as do I, the bulkiness of a number of different navboxes on top of each other. That also has been solved by the new navbox system, since multiple navboxes can now be nested inside a single container. (See Sarah Jane Smith for an example of this in action.)

What remains, then, are three central questions. And, as we've already had a ton of discussion about this, it's time to have a clearer vote on these issues. Thus the questions are asked in a series of polls. These polls will remain open for one week from today, at which time the aliens and enemies templates will either be revamped in the new format, or redirected to a blank template, which will neatly make them disappear from all pages.
czechout@fandom   15:33:33 Tue 29 Mar 2011 

This poll is now closed. However, you can still help shape policy by contributing to the implementation discussion, below.

Examine the following navbox:


Should we keep navboxes like the one above?
 
19
 
7
 

The poll was created at 15:17 on March 29, 2011, and so far 26 people voted.

If you answered "yes" to the above question, then continue on to the following question. If you answered "no" please do not answer the following question.

If the answer to the above question is "yes", then do we keep the templates as "aliens and enemies" or do we divide it into SEPARATE "enemies" and "aliens" templates?
 
5
 
15
 
2
 
0
 

The poll was created at 15:09 on March 29, 2011, and so far 22 people voted.

If you answered to keep "aliens" then continue to the next question. If you answered "keep only the enemies part", above, do not answer the following question:

If we keep "aliens", who counts as an alien?
 
0
 
12
 
5
 

The poll was created at 15:31 on March 29, 2011, and so far 17 people voted.

Discussion

Keep navboxes, they make the wiki richer, divide into aliens and enemies, both are important to note but should not be conflated, aliens are anyone not human (Alzarians count for Season 18, Time Lords for Season 6 and Season 15, etc.), otherwise the navbox omits the fact that a species was introduced or focused on. -- Noneofyourbusiness 13:59, March 31, 2011 (UTC)

I think they should be kept in principle but modified somewhat. Splitting them into separate aliens and enemies would probably solve the problem since they're a bit overfilled and unwieldy at the moments. Otherwise, concentrate on the main villains/races rather than listing every henchman or minor species. Skteosk 14:24, March 31, 2011 (UTC)

Just a point of clarification here. Splitting into two templates will mean that the total area on the page will be increased. Two templates, when fully opened, will cover more vertical space than one combined template.
czechout@fandom   21:22:33 Sat 02 Apr 2011 

I might be missing something here in the discussion but when I make a distinction between the terms 'aliens' and 'enemies' I tend to think of them as (alien to human) 'species' and 'individually-named' enemies. The Librarian 14:58, March 31, 2011 (UTC)

Keep the navboxes, but divide into enemies and non-humans it will make it more understandable and the problem will be solved. The mysterious 13:22, April 2, 2011 (UTC)

Just a question about this thought, though. If we divided into "non-humans" as you say, won't we then logically have to put Time Lord in every single story, except Mission to the Unknown? Or won't we have to put "Alzarian" in every story featuring Adric?
czechout@fandom   20:23:30 Sat 02 Apr 2011 

How about instead of "Non-human" it was "Non-terrestrial". I think, to sort this all out, we need to look at it from say (this will make me sound stupid) the Time Lord's point of view. I mean, to them, we are alien (non-terrestrial) and they are terrestrial. I was just looking at The Librarian's last comment, and that helped me a bit. Enemies are not nessecerally aliens, so that sort of covers both Aliens and Enemies. I know that somewhere that's already been mentioned and an admin has come up with a negative result, but isn't it time we do the rational and easy solution. There are other things on this wiki that need doing. --Ghastly9090 12:42, April 3, 2011 (UTC)

Well, I'm afraid that other users don't appear to see a "rational and easy solution" the same as you do. For instance, from my point of view, as the person who will probably end up actually implementing the results of the vote, the "rational and easy solution" is to redirect all these damned things to a blank template and thereby instantly remove them from the wiki. That's 15 minutes of work, versus the hours and indeed possibly days of work involved in moving these navboxes to the new format. But that's my view. The point of this final vote is just to end the discussion that's been going on for about a year so that we can, as you say, get onto "other things".
czechout@fandom   21:17:01 Sun 03 Apr 2011 

Closing vote

Voting is of course not the same as seeking consensus on a wiki. However, there are times where an issue has been knocked around so long without decision that a simple up-down democratic vote can be useful in making progress. Such was the case this time, and the results have been mostly conclusive. However, I'm still maintaining the spirit of consensus, as I feel the majority reached a potentially problematic decision.

Unfortunately it's not actually possible to "close" the vote though a code setting — all polls are infinite — so I'll record here the results of the vote.

  • Voters confirmed by a 2:1 margin (15:7) they wanted to keep the navboxes. Thus we shall keep them.
  • Voters expressed a clear desire to divide into two navboxes, one for aliens and one for enemies. (5:15:2:0) Thus it is so ordered.
  • Voters expressed a desire to consider an alien as anyone who is not human. (11:4). In this instance, I'm siding with the minority, because the majority clearly haven't thought this through. The titular character is a non-human. At various points, the companions have been non-human. It would be nonsensical to put "Alzarians and Trakenites" in the aliens section of Black Orchid. Or to put "Time Lord" down for Planet of Giants. Thus, aliens are people who aren't the same species as the Doctor and/or companions. The only stories for which Time Lords and/or the species of companions can be listed in an alien box is when there are more than our regular cast in the story. Thus, it's fine to list Alzarians in Full Circle, or Time Lords in The War Games.
    czechout@fandom   14:20:29 Tue 05 Apr 2011 

Implementation

I created a selection of navboxes to illustrate three different versions of this box. I'm not sure if this is what people had in mind. Feel free to modify them if not.----Skittles the hog--Talk 13:39, April 3, 2011 (UTC)

I like Skittles's idea. We should seperate into two seperate templates ("Aliens" and "Enemies") and have only species listed under "Aliens" and individuals and groups (and rarely, enemy species) under "Enemies". "Time Lords" (and Alzarians) would be listed only on episodes where Time Lords (or Alzarians) other than the Doctor/Romana/Adric appear.
The implementation process would be like this:
1. Someone write up all the seperate "alien" and "enemies" under "Template:Series X enemies" and "Template:Series X alien species" (for lack of a better term). This would take place over a series of hours at most, but I can handle it if agreed to, having upgraded all the other templates (admittedly, before seeing this).
2. The "Template:Series X aliens" pages should be edited to simply transclude "enemies" and "alien species" for now. This would be done as the other templates are being created.
3. There is a bit of overlap, but we could then edit other pages to replace the "aliens" template with the correct one (or both, as in the case of the Daleks or Sontarans). The idea here would be getting rid of all links to any "Series X aliens" template.
4. Eventually, once we've gotten rid of all the direct "aliens" template (that's just transcluded "alien species" and "enemies" templates), we can then redirect all the "alien species" to "aliens" (with a bot), change the wording on all links to an "alien species" template (with a bot), and delete the alien species pages (all 42 of them).
Here's an example of new Who:
--99.29.140.149 05:58, April 5, 2011 (UTC)
First of all, can I send out a big "thank you" to 99.29.140.149 for reading the vote and just getting on with the conversion. You have no idea how happy I am not to have do the conversion on this one. Those who say IP users shouldn't "count" in discussions — and unfortunately there are some who do — have no idea what they're talking about. Really, truly, from the bottom of my heart: thanks.
Moving on to a discussion of some of the points raised in this implementation discussion. Y'know, I initially thought that these boxes were too similar. But now that I look at it in greater detail, I think you're precisely on the right lines. The enemies box is for individuals, while the aliens box is for species. That's cool. Done deal. I really like that there's no alien for The Empty Child, as some might've been tempted to really shoehorn something in there. As long as we accept that there won't always be an alien for every story, we'll be fine. The only thing I'd suggest is that there is no alien for The Long Game either, since we don't actually know Max's race. And, of course, the Space Pig isn't a race, as explained in the narrative. It's an actual Earth pig, animated by the Raxacoricofallapatorians.
In fact, now that I'm thinking about this, it might be more helpful to rename the box into what you've obviously turned it into. This isn't an "aliens" box, it's a "species" box. If you turned it into species, you could then quite easily keep individuals of unknown species by saying, "species of Hop Pyleen" or "species of the Moxx of Balhoon".
As for actually getting the boxes onto the pages, your points 3 and 4 are the long way round the island. You make 'em, I'll get 'em onto the pages. Don't do any kind of hand-editing, either in removing the old template, or in putting on the new ones. Here's what you do. Create two new pages on the wiki. Call one of them, I dunno, SpeciesAdd and the other EnemiesAdd. On the SpeciesAdd page list every single page to which your species boxes link. Don't put any sort of punctuation. Just the raw, linked names, as in:
[[Nestene Consciousness]]
[[Gelth]]
[[Dalek]]
Do the same for the enemies box. When you're done with your lists, lemme know, and I'll take care of the rest.
czechout@fandom   14:52:24 Tue 05 Apr 2011 
Yeah, Czech's species idea is quite good. This seems to fit better with the results of the vote.----Skittles the hog--Talk 17:14, April 5, 2011 (UTC)
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