Wikipedia:Good article reassessment/History of Japan/1

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History of Japan[edit]

Article (edit | visual edit | history) · Article talk (edit | history) · WatchWatch article reassessment pageMost recent review
Result: Consensus is to delist this GA article, determined from the comments. This is a temporary status; a few editors are expected to improve this article according to the sources then renominate it back to GA in due course. This is important, as this is a critical article. At that point, when the article is truly GA, the article will be a good resource for all readers coming to learn the history of Japan. Prhartcom (talk) 03:27, 21 October 2015 (UTC)

In August this article went through a massive, one-user rewrite with almost all of the sources being replaced and much of the wording of the article being altered.[1] It passed GA ten days later having been reviewed by a user who had never edited this area before and apparently didn't examine the article very closely (see below), with the only other input being from the user who rewrote it and nominated it.[2][3][4] The sourcing of the article was only briefly touched on in the context of whether every sentence should have a citation.[5] This seems like failure to properly assess for GA purposes, given that one of the criteria for GAs is that they be "verifiable with no original research".

There are many sourcing and verification problems with the article, as demonstrated by the examples below:

A small sample of the OR/SYNTH and factual errors in the article
  1. The article claimed that the eighth-century anthology of Chinese verse known as the Kaifūsō was a collection of "Japanese poetry", an obvious error that does not appear in the cited source, which the Wikipedian responsible quoted on the talk page as not supporting his edit.
  2. The rewrite also mirrored an error that did appear in the source by saying a work that was compiled at some point after 759 and not published until the ninth century was compiled "in 759" (a more accurate source is currently cited in the article).
  3. The rewrite also changed the cited source's "around 1004" for the date Murasaki Shikibu wrote The Tale of Genji to "in 1004" -- a claim that it's unlikely any source makes, given that the author herself wrote in 1008 that it was not complete, and to complete such a monumentally large work in the space of a year would make Murasaki a more prolific author than Isaac Asimov. That's three major factual errors and/or misleading remarks in two sentences, and two of those are extrapolations that are not directly supported by the cited source.
  4. The same thing was done in changing the source's "immigration" to "invasion".[6]
  5. There were also several citations to a fringe source written by a non-specialist for a popular magazine.

In the space of three weeks there have been several protracted edit wars, a lengthy talk page dispute and even two ANI threads over this article. This in my opinion should not be the case with a GA-class article.

Pinging involved users: @CurtisNaito: @Nishidani: @Sturmgewehr88: @Curly Turkey: @Rjensen: @Calvin999: @Vivexdino: @MSJapan: @Phoenix7777: @TH1980: @Signedzzz:

Virtually every sentence the above users and I have checked was found to contain a factual error or a misrepresentation of a cited source. It would be an enormous project to check every such instance and bring the article to legitimate GA status. Not pretending it already is a GA is the simplest and most realistic place to start, especially given that preserving the text as it was at GA review was likely an impetus for the recent edit-warring.

Hijiri 88 (やや) 06:32, 20 September 2015 (UTC)

  • The GA review was totally inadequate. Obviously a lot of work has gone into the article, but it has issues with focus and scope—it's a long article on an topic that has a lot to be covered, and the editors don't seem to be able to agree on how much detail is too much at this scope. The article should give a birdseye view of the topic and not dwell on details such as disputed numbers that belong in the (many, many) subarticles; such detail at this scope only hampers readability and detracts from much more important details. The prose needs a very thorough copyedit: as a random example, there's "Following the death of Emperor Meiji in 1912, Emperor Taishō acceded to the throne."—which is at least twice as long as it needs to be, and perhaps is another big reason the article is so long Note: this is a single random example to demonstrate a kind of problem the article suffers from in general. The lead has gotten a lot better than it was, but it needs more than tweaks—it needs to be rethought and refocused. I won't comment on the sourcing issues as I haven't looked at them, and judging sources at that level is beyond my expertise. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 08:41, 20 September 2015 (UTC)
Regarding article length, Wikipedia recommends that articles be between "4,000 to 10,000 words". At the time it passed good article review, the article was 8,800 words and while it has expanded over the past month to 9,180 words, it's still below the limit of 10,000 words. Although there may not be a current consensus on how much detail to include, the large majority of users who have edited the article since it passed good article review have been trying to expand it in some way rather than reducing its size. Apparently there is some consensus for expanding the article, which I think should not be a problem provided we stay under 10,000 words.CurtisNaito (talk) 18:17, 20 September 2015 (UTC)
No the article is longer than it needs to be because of out-of-scope details and verbose writing, and this hampers readability. The length in itself is not the issue I'm indicating—if it were 12,000 of focused meat there'd be no issue. I was trying to improve the prose myself, but—well, things happened and I've withdrawn my services, an experience which only convinces me the problems won't be solved easily. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 21:46, 20 September 2015 (UTC)
Wikipedia recommends yes, but naturally for an entire history of major country article you'd expect it to be easily 10,000 words. The most important thing is "Does the article provide a neutral, balanced, accurate summary of each period of Japanese history which is very informative and easy to digest?" If 12,000 words are really needed to effectively do that, and no section is too big and difficult to read, so be it.♦ Dr. Blofeld 06:37, 22 September 2015 (UTC)
  • It does need work, as it seems the GA was somewhat "forced." I am in the process of combing my library for material, and I know we have editors asking for access to JSTOR, etc. for other materials. We can definitely reassess this ourselves, but I have a feeling the final product is going to be very, very different, so it might be wise to delist anyway, because it's not going to be a short process. Ideally thisd should be a survey-type article, and it isn't at the moment. MSJapan (talk) 16:20, 20 September 2015 (UTC)

Keep - No one has yet found any actual problems with the sourcing used in the article, neither the current sourcing nor the sourcing that was used when the article passed good article review. Most of these alleged errors are actually just the inevitable result of summarization of the sources' content. Henshall dated The Tale of Genji to 1004, so I simply opted to go with that date rather than explaining the other possible dates which are already discussed in the novel's own Wikipedia article. Such a minor issue, which has already been changed through editing, is no reason to downgrade the article. Though the overwhelming majority of Hijiri's criticisms are just these sort of minor quibbles, others can't even be explained by this. Hijiri objected to the article saying that "the Yayoi culture was established by invaders from the Asian mainland", even though both Jared Diamond and Kenneth Henshall, the sources which were cited, concur with this. Henshall says, "Around 400 BC... Japan was effectively invaded. Immigrants arrived in number from the continent, immigrants different in appearance and culture from the Jomon people." Regarding Jared Diamond, a majority of users on the talk page, including Hko2333 who was not pinged, concurred that his article was a reliable source. Given how blatantly inaccurate or trivial all of Hijiri's criticisms are, we have to ask whether he nominated this article for reassessment more out of anger than reason.

Hijiri's initial declaration that he would reassess the article was appropriately dismissed with the comment Deliberate harassment of Curtis by Hijiri88. Even before Hijiri88 had even checked the references he had already somehow concluded that "I'd bet that every single reference to Japanese literature in your rewrite of the article contains an obvious error or misreading of a source that I could point out". He made harassing comments on the article talk page concerning the good article nomination.

Because of his behavior, Hijiri was explicitly warned that "the goal of a reassessment is to not to punish those responsible as you may be hoping, but rather to improve Wikipedia by helping the article deserve its GA status."CurtisNaito (talk) 17:44, 20 September 2015 (UTC)

Please refrain from making personal comments here. Nothing in my delisting rationale is based on a desire to "punish" anyone. Pinging User:Prhartcom to correct the above misquoting of them -- they didn't comment on "behavior" and neither did I above. Neither should you. The misquoting of me does not even merit a response. Hijiri 88 (やや) 18:01, 20 September 2015 (UTC)
I didn't misquote you. The problem is that you haven't found any problems with the article as it stands.CurtisNaito (talk) 18:17, 20 September 2015 (UTC)
I concur. This will probably be remembered as the most frivolous good article reassessment in Wikipedia's history.TH1980 (talk) 20:56, 20 September 2015 (UTC)
You took the words "I'd be that every single reference to Japanese literature in your rewrite of the article contains an obvious error or misreading of a source that I could point out" out of context by saying that this was "before [I] had even checked the references": I had clearly already checked the several references I listed above. Also, by repeating your previous IDHT "you haven't found any problems", you are explicitly violating Dennis Brown's moratorium on ANI. I have informed another user of this and it will soon be investigated. I have no intention of violating the moratorium myself, so I'm keeping this user-conduct discussion to the bare minimum, and will not reply more than twice. I'll leave it to the community from here. Farewell. Hijiri 88 (やや) 18:28, 20 September 2015 (UTC)
@CurtisNaito: are you kidding? We bickered for weeks and had an ANI thread over the sourcing issues of this article. And that was just over the sourcing used for the GA review. Since it centered on Jomon-Yayoi sources, I'm sure we haven't even scratched the surface yet. You should stop the WP:IDHT behavior before you dig an even deeper WP:HOLE, and don't bring up Hijiri's "harrassment" without owning up to your own faults. ミーラー強斗武 (StG88ぬ会話) 18:45, 20 September 2015 (UTC)
There was no problem with the way the original sources were cited, but there was disagreement over certain dates and details and so ultimately the original sources were replaced with different sources. Just because one reliable source doesn't give the exact same date as a different reliable source is no reason to reassess the article, especially since the article has already been changed to reflect what the objecting users wanted. In a reassessment, discussion should focus on alleged problems with the article as it is, not alleged problems which no longer exist.CurtisNaito (talk) 20:58, 20 September 2015 (UTC)
@CurtisNaito: again, seriously? Evidence was presented, here and at the talk page, and we argued and edit warred over it for weeks, and you're still denying it? And about those "alleged" problems which no longer exist, since they were present in the assessed version of the article, the article shouldn't have been passed in the first place and doesn't deserve GA status. And the sourcing issues were from only two sections of the whole article; once we start looking through other sections I'm sure we'll find more. ミーラー強斗武 (StG88ぬ会話) 04:07, 21 September 2015 (UTC)

Keep - I have checked most of the citations in the article myself and I didn't see any problem with them. It is Hijiri, rather than CurtisNaito, who has been misreading the sources here. At any rate, the purpose of a good article review is to point out existing problems with the article in question and fix them. Hijiri is only pointing out "problems" which he already "fixed" through editing. If any real problems have crept into the article since it passed the good article review, then we should work together to fix those. But no one has found any actual problems with the article as it is.TH1980 (talk) 18:09, 20 September 2015 (UTC)

@TH1980: again, your dispute with Hijiri is blinding you. We found plenty of problems with the sources used in the GA reviewed version, which were solved with no thanks to you or CurtisNaito. The article "as it is" has not been investigated outside the initial focus of the Jomon-Yayoi period, but is sure to have similar sourcing issues. Saying that "[you] have checked most of the citations... and didn't see any problem" (after it was proven that there were sourcing issues) means your opinion of the current article's sourcing has no merit. If you wouldn't pick the wrong side simply because it isn't Hijiri's side every time, maybe we could actually "work together to fix" the article. ミーラー強斗武 (StG88ぬ会話) 18:45, 20 September 2015 (UTC)
Well, we should be working together to improve the article, and changes of varying quality have been made to the article since the good article review. However, it was more a clash of opinions than a clash of sources. I myself checked the book by Kenneth Henshall and can attest that it was cited properly. Vaguely claiming that the article is "sure to have similar sourcing issues" is not a basis for good article reassessment and not likely to be true in any case.TH1980 (talk) 21:33, 20 September 2015 (UTC)
No, Henshall was not cited properly: "about 1004" became "in 1004", "[Chinese] poetry" became "Japanese poetry", "immigration" became "invasion", Henshall's dubious summary of the scholarly consensus on the Man'yōshū's date was taken at fact value. 100% of references to Henshall I checked involved him being misquoted; how many of the places I was unable to check misquoted him? There are almost certainly several dozen more such instances that could be found. Hijiri 88 (やや) 02:20, 21 September 2015 (UTC)
Well, I think that your errors here have been corrected enough times already, but based on Henshall the year 1004 was accurately cited and Henshall did mention the invasion of peoples from mainland Asia. I think even CurtisNaito mentioned that "Japanese poetry" could have been replaced with "Japanese-produced poetry", but whether or not that change was for the best it has already been made and so it is not relevant to this review. I checked the same book you checked, but my conclusion is that 100% of the citations (which I have looked into so far) are accurately represented in the article.TH1980 (talk) 03:15, 21 September 2015 (UTC)
TH1980, your disruptiveness is going to bite you one of these days. No-one here believes you've read the sources. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 06:48, 21 September 2015 (UTC)
The book by Henshall is not hard to acquire and is available in many libraries. I've been going through and checking the citations, but I haven't found any of the alleged problems stated above.TH1980 (talk) 17:25, 21 September 2015 (UTC)
Thank you for verifying the accuracy of the citations TH1980. If the sourcing issue has now been dealt with, I suppose the only issue remaining to be resolved is a little copyediting.CurtisNaito (talk) 18:01, 21 September 2015 (UTC)
If no one else is going to step up to the plate then I will do it. I think another user already started copy editing the first part, so I'll give the remaining two thirds a thorough copy edit.TH1980 (talk) 22:03, 21 September 2015 (UTC)
If Henshall is available on JSTOR I will look it up myself tomorrow. Either way, if the source says "about 1004" and you put "in 1004", you're making stuff up. ミーラー強斗武 (StG88ぬ会話) 03:18, 22 September 2015 (UTC)
TH1980, "about 1004" and "in 1004" are not the same. Henshall said "about 1004", a rough date with which no mainstream scholar disagrees; our article, at the time of its GA review, misquoted Henshall as saying "in 1004" -- an overly specific and very narrow date with which no mainstream scholar agrees. And yes, you and CurtisNaito have claimed several times that "Japanese poetry" was meant to be read as "Japanese-produced poetry", and that it is my fault for misreading it as saying "Japanese poetry"; but the fact is that even if that was the case, wording that is vague enough that the most intuitive reading is the wrong reading is just as much of a fault as being outright wrong. Regarding 759: the article cited an inadequate, tertiary source and so contained misleading information, which should have come up in the initial GA rebiew. The fact that the initial GA review failed to recognize these and many other blatant errors and misrepresentations of sources means it needs to be undone pending an actual thorough examination of the article and its sources. Hijiri 88 (やや) 10:45, 21 September 2015 (UTC)

Keep - I don't know why anyone objected to the use of the Jared Diamond article, but it doesn't seem to matter anymore. The rest of the article is in good shape and I don't see any reason to change its status. Hko2333 (talk) 20:10, 20 September 2015 (UTC)

@Hko2333: Did you even read the above discussion? Jared Diamond isn't even mentioned, except briefly as a fringe source written by a non-specialist for a popular magazine. And yes, such sources are inappropriate for Wikipedia in general and unbecoming of GA-standard articles in particular. But what about all the places where good sources are being misquoted ("about 1004" became "in 1004", "[Chinese] poetry" became "Japanese poetry", "immigration" became "invasion") and the factual errors that were introduced by using such sources when they were less-than-ideal (Henshall's dating the Man'yōshū's compilation to exactly 759 is not accepted by mainstream scholars)? How many more such instances of misreading of sources exist that we haven't located yet? I checked only references to classical literature and every place I checked had such an error. Also, can I ask who you are? You made several edits to Japan-Korea disputes back on September 22, 2008, and then disappeared for seven years -- you wouldn't have anything to do with the massive sockpuppet problems in the Japan-Korea historical dispute area, would you? Hijiri 88 (やや) 02:17, 21 September 2015 (UTC)

I'm not a sockpuppet. I read the above discussion, I just didn't see any decent evidence for what you're saying. I don't know whether every single citaiton is accurate or not, but the only ones you mentioned are either minor quibbling with dates or else have already been changed.Hko2333 (talk) 19:33, 21 September 2015 (UTC)

Revoke GA status - given that the single reviewer, who never edits in this topic area, appears to have reviewed this article as a favor and had obviously missed the glaring sourcing issues, and the only other supporter of the GA review was the editor who rewrote and nominated it, this article shouldn't have gotten GA status in the first place. After weeks of arguing, edit warring, and two ANI threads, the sourcing issues in one section have been resolved. If, and only if, the sourcing issues are completely fixed and the scope of the article is corrected before this GAR is closed, then it may keep its GA status. ミーラー強斗武 (StG88ぬ会話) 04:15, 21 September 2015 (UTC)


While I agree that for such an important, extensive article the GA review should have been a lot more thorough, in looking at this article it does appear to have the basics in place and is adequately sourced for GA. I'd need to read it fully to judge the prose quality and examine the sources to assess whether or not User:Hijiri88 is right about the sourcing issue, but given the hostility here I'm not sure I want to. He seems to be an experienced editor, so might well be right. I'm not very knowledgeable about Japanese history so couldn't say if it is truly an effective or accurate overview, but other than the sourcing issue it does seem to have a summary of each period, and for the main article you'd not expect any real detail anyway as it's a basic outline of the entire history. It is for Good article too, the articles don't need to be really that comprehensive. I agree with Hijiri though that for such an article it would be better for more editors to collaborate, and rather than rush towards promoting it, that it is done in a way different editors can all approve of it. All I can say is that it is a core article which really does need to be brought up to GA status, so if there are sourcing problems I'd urge towards fixing them rather than an immediate delisting unless the problems are genuinely so extensive they'd take months to fix.♦ Dr. Blofeld 06:33, 22 September 2015 (UTC)

Dr. Blofeld: Thank you for your input. I do think that fixing the article's problems with sourcing (as well as scope -- the article at present is woefully bare and tilted towards 20th century international relations) will take months at the current rate. The reason for that is that even minor tweaks are immediately reverted my the user who initially submitted it for GA, with the rationale that the changes don't have "consensus". Talk page discussion with said user is fruitless, as he keeps bringing up the fact that his version of the article passed a GA nomination. Most of the problems with the Jomon/Yayoi period coverage were solved, but that took weeks of edit-warring, talk page gridlock and even two ANI threads. As long as the original nominator keeps repeating that his version is a GA the only way problems can be solved is with incredible strain. Revoking the present (unwarranted, I must stress) GA status is therefore the first step to facilitating actual improvement of the article. Hijiri 88 (やや) 08:28, 22 September 2015 (UTC)

Thanks '88. So you think there's OWN issues at stake here as well? That can make it very difficult to correct things and see progress. Perhaps the best thing would be for somebody to work on a new draft at Wikipedia:History of Japan without interruption and then a neutral administrator can review the changes and update the article without being reverted? I appreciate the effort gone into promoting it, but no editor should dismiss the concerns of other experienced editors on an article as high profile as this.♦ Dr. Blofeld 09:07, 22 September 2015 (UTC)

Agreed. Is there a reason you favour the Wikipedia namespace over Talk:History of Japan/redraft, though? Posting the rest on your talk page. Hijiri 88 (やや) 10:00, 22 September 2015 (UTC)
Either will do.♦ Dr. Blofeld 13:29, 22 September 2015 (UTC)
As far as I know, the only edit warring ever to take place in the article regarded whether or not to use a single article by Jared Diamond. The majority on the talk page were clearly in favor of including the source, but ultimately it was replaced with other equally reliable sources. No other edits wars ever occurred. I think a major problem here is trust issues. I verified the accuracy of all the citations, but Hijiri doesn't believe me. Another editor named TH1980 also verified the accuracy of many of the citations, but Hijiri doesn't believe him either.CurtisNaito (talk) 16:55, 22 September 2015 (UTC)
@CurtisNaito: cut the WP:IDHT act. We edit warred over removing the Diamond source, then over tagging the source as unreliable [7], then whether Henshall should be used for that sentence as well, then over you adding Diamond to another sentence [8], and then over verification of Weston and Kofun [9]. The majority was not in favor of keeping Diamond because there was no majority, and Nishidani, from the "minority", replaced the unreliable source with a reliable one [10]. You say you verified the sources, but you're also the one who misrepresented them. TH1980 is simply saying or doing anything that he thinks would frustrate Hijiri88, and is only a part of this discussion, and your "side", because of Hijiri88. Stop trying to make this an "us vs them" dispute. ミーラー強斗武 (StG88ぬ会話) 17:51, 22 September 2015 (UTC)
Please assume good faith. The only real edit war involving numerous reverts was over the Jared Diamond source. Though there was good reason to believe that Diamond was a reliable source, the alternative sources that were used instead are good enough.TH1980 (talk) 20:35, 22 September 2015 (UTC)
The diffs are there for others to decide what a "real" edit war is, and the sources that replaced Diamond weren't "good enough", they were better by far. And I did assume good faith, of course until disruptive editing was proven. ミーラー強斗武 (StG88ぬ会話) 03:15, 23 September 2015 (UTC)
Comments from the GAN reviewer, Calvin999

Keep I deemed this article as worthy of being passed during its good article nomination process; it is well written and very focused. I think there is a case of harassment going on here by the GAR nominator, of which I know cases have been raised at ANI. I haven't read the barrage of text on this reassessment in detail, but Sturmgewehr88 your comment about me caught my eye. I have reviewed many, many history related nominations had you bothered to check, thank you very much, as I am interested in history. And I am insulted and offended that you have implied that my review was done as a favour.  — Calvin999 09:43, 23 September 2015 (UTC)


When I first noticed the factual innaccuracies in the article I just started correcting them as usual, and advised on the article talk page that a GAR would be an unnecessary distraction. I have since changed my opinion, based on the large amount of work it has taken to correct most of just the first two sections, which leaves me in little doubt as to the magnitude of the task remaining, and the review was not ideal. zzz (talk) 15:58, 23 September 2015 (UTC)

Delist – The article needs the attention of an expert. I did a quick source review spotcheck (and can provide details on request). This article does have some sourcing and verification problems. After reading the comments of editors Curly Turkey, MSJapan, Signedzzz, and many more whom I trust above, I believe it is possible the article is not GA worthy. There is no shame in delisting; one mistake does not a failure make. Many more opportunities to improve this article exist. My thanks to those that are committed to improving it. (Note: If it is helpful: Diff of old and new version) Prhartcom (talk) 00:41, 28 September 2015 (UTC)

Comment - I finished my copy edit of the article a few days ago. I corrected the spelling and grammar and improved the clarity of the text.TH1980 (talk) 20:55, 2 October 2015 (UTC)

  • Check out the edit history for the last couple weeks to see just how much effort TH1980 has put into this supposed copyedit. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 21:13, 2 October 2015 (UTC)
As the old saying goes, what is your problem? If you want the page copy edited to your exacting standards, do it yourself. Be my guest, in fact.TH1980 (talk)
Everyone on this page knows what the problem with you is. What are you trying to provoke? Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 03:36, 3 October 2015 (UTC)
Quite a number of users, including Curly Turkey and TH1980, have made improvements to the article and, as far as their copy editing goes, I think that the large bulk of the article has already been quite well polished.CurtisNaito (talk) 02:52, 3 October 2015 (UTC)
@CurtisNaito: except for the sources. @Prhartcom: which sources did you check? Have they been corrected? ミーラー強斗武 (StG88ぬ会話) 05:09, 3 October 2015 (UTC)
I am re-checking my spotcheck now. I have just completed formatting all of the book sources in the References section as {{cite book}}, providing their ISBN and Google Books links. As nearly all of these books are partially available online, will others please spotcheck also? Prhartcom (talk) 07:17, 4 October 2015 (UTC)
I have completed some new spotchecks. When the topic of reassessment was raised, this was the diff from the old article to the version that was inadequately reviewed and needed to be delisted. Since then, this much work as been done to the article. Much work has been done on this article since the reassessment took place, and therefore there may be hope for this article. During the hour or so I did these new spotchecks I came up with a few observations and questions. I don't necessarily need answers to my questions; I am generally trying to find out of the article deserves its GA.
Why are references 1 through 21 to sources that are not books listed in "Select works cited", then references 22 onward are mostly to the books listed in "Select works cited"? Why such a clear dividing line? Is it solely because the books listed in "Select works cited" not cover the Paleolithic and Jōmon period and the Yayoi period? Why aren't the books listed in references 1 through 21 in the "Select works cited" list? Why is it a list a "select works" instead of the article's entire bibliography? For example, the bibliography could acutally list Richard Sims' book, Richard B. Frank's book, and Janet Hunter's book.
Why is reference 77 "Henshall, 75–101, 217" referenced eight times? Are eight passages of the article really sourced on page 217? When I cite a source as pinpoint specific as "75–101, 217", I am probably referencing something like that only once or twice, and for the other six or seven passages I would create new citations that reference the actual page numbers. The same thing with "Henshall, 15–17, 22, 228" that is referenced six times and "Totman, 576, 580–584" that is referenced four times.
When I tried doing spotchecks of specific facts stated in article passages, I found a combination of possible laziness, possible deception, and accurate citations, as much of the time I could not find the facts claimed in the article passages in the cited sources. Other times I could indeed find the correct citation. I spotchecked just a few examples. (I spotchecked others last week but regretably, I lost those notes.) It would be better for readers wanting to learn more and for editors doing spotchecks if the article's citations of specific pages really referenced that specific page of the sourced fact, without so much sharing of the citation with multiple article passages (in other words, customize each cited reference, as this is being implied).
  • "The population working in agriculture shrank from 75 percent in 1872 to 50 percent within a decade of the end of the Meiji period.[86]"
    • The facts from this passage were indeed located in the cited source (Hunter p. 3), although the source said "1920" instead of "within a decade of the end of the Meiji period" (which may be correct?).
      • Meiji ended in 1912, so "within a decade of the end of the Meiji period" is not wrong. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 22:40, 4 October 2015 (UTC)
  • "Their government devised and implemented the far-reaching Taika Reforms which nationalized all land in Japan, to be distributed equally among cultivators, and ordered the compilation of a household registry as the basis for a new system of taxation[26][30]"
    • "Taika Reform", "nationalize", and "household registry" are never mentioned once in Perez, let alone on pages 18-19 as cited. The concept of reform, nationalized equal distribution, and registration by household is not mentioned on pages 18-19 (What is mentioned on those pages has nothing to do with what is in the article passage).
Perez was accurately cited. As noted on page 19, "Using the Chinese model, the imperial government instituted the Equal Fields System that reapportioned agricultural land every six years according to a national census." According to Henshall, who gives more details, this was known as the Taika Reform.CurtisNaito (talk) 23:27, 4 October 2015 (UTC)
  • "One particularly large and well-known Yayoi village is the Yoshinogari site which began to be excavated by archaeologists in the late-1980s.[19][20]"
    • "Yoshinogari" is not mentioned on Henshall, pp. 11–15 as cited but is mentioned on p. 227 as cited.
  • "The Yayoi technologies originated on the Asian mainland. There is debate among scholars as to what extent their spread was accomplished by means of migration or simply a diffusion of ideas, or a combination of both. The migration theory is supported by genetic and linguistic studies.[2][19]"
    • "Yayoi-derived" is mentioned on Henshall pp. 11–15, 227 one time on page 12 but "Yayoi" is otherwise not mentioned in the reference as cited. Mention of a scholars' debate or disagreement is not mentioned in the cited source.
This is accurately cited. Henshall page 12 says "Around 400 BC... Japan was effectively invaded. Immigrants arrived in number from the continent, immigrants different in appearance and culture from the Jomon people. They were lighter and taller, with narrower faces. Their culture included technology such as bronze and iron, and was also more rice-based than that in Japan. There is great diversity of opinion over the nature and scale of this immigration, and even the motives and origins of the immigrants... Genetically, in modern Japan 54 per cent of male lines and 66 per cent of female lines show Sino-Korean origins, reflecting this influx. In material terms, both Korean and Chinese artefacts are found at this time. The period when this change started takes its name from the Yayoi district in Tokyo..." See also the other citation, which says, "Vigorous debate about the nature of the transition between Jomon and Yayoi continues. Given the locations of the earliest sites and the similarities between their contents and those of contemporary sites on the Korean Peninsula, the mainland provenance of the Yayoi technologies is clear. But scholars disagree about whether their spread was the result of the introduction and diffusion of new ideas or of the migration of large numbers of people. The latter explanation is supported by anthropological and genetic studies of modern inhabitants of the areas in question and by the work of linguists examining the origins of the Japanese language."CurtisNaito (talk) 23:27, 4 October 2015 (UTC)
I'd like to take a moment and recognize the tremendous work done to this article. I regret that it appears I am nitpicking it with my spotcheck.
Based on what I've seen in the endless discussions over this rewrite and subsequent GA, I recommend that the GA reviewer of this article take a break from reviewing articles to GA for awhile and I recommend the re-writer and nominator of this article take a break rewriting and nominating articles to GA. As editors, we are better off if we put our ego aside and listen to and respect the advice of challengers, who may be abrasive, but are ultimately only trying to help the article. It's the article, not the protection of our reputation or ego, that is the most important. If our work is ever challenged, we need to recognize that the challenge is ultimately going to help the article. We should respect the challengers. We do not resist a challenge simply because we feel we must protect ourselves. Doing so does our reputation no good, stirs up a lot of bad blood, and wastes a lot of people's time.
Challengers should respect the writers/nominators and reviewers as well. They should not be intentionally abrasive. Doing so will not achieve the purpose they seek. In a perfect situation, all three editors trust each other and work together to produce a greatly improved article. This takes place daily on Wikipedia.
The article may still need to be delisted, if those editors who I know are experts in this field say it should be. On the other hand, much work has been done to improve this article during the reassessment. I am in favor of keeping it a GA article if possible. Therefore, I suppose I recommend that it keep it's GA. Prhartcom (talk) 22:11, 4 October 2015 (UTC)
Prhartcom: I think the answer to your first question is that there are multiple editors on this article, and that the sources to the prehistory section were done by editors who focused only or primarily on that section, and added references in the way they found most convenient or familiar. I don't think uniformity of citation style is required for GA. I asked CurtisNaito about the "Selected works" this, too, and didn't really get an answer I understood. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 22:37, 4 October 2015 (UTC)
@Prhartcom:I'm often criticized during good article reviews for including too many citations for certain sentences, so this time I grouped my citations to many sources like Henshall together by time period. I used one group of citations for Meiji, Taisho, Showa, etc... in order to reduce clutter. However, I will separate out the ones which you recommend separating, such as Yoshinogari. I will also add the rest of the books to the bibliography.CurtisNaito (talk) 22:45, 4 October 2015 (UTC)
Curly Turkey thank-you for that; I agree with you. As we all know, what's important is good, neutral, stable, broad, well-written, and especially verifiable prose; every passage of the article correctly cited to a verifiable source. I wonder if the article is there yet? Prhartcom (talk) 23:22, 4 October 2015 (UTC)
CurtisNaito, I absolutely believe you, and I agree that if you believe a citation to a source is correct, it absolutely is correct. Please double-check and ensure that each of the citations in this article are correct. You've done a lot of research and writing on this article and I respect that. I can help you with citation format (here is one example) if you wish; just ask me. Prhartcom (talk) 23:22, 4 October 2015 (UTC)
So far I haven't found any example of improperly cited sentences, but I'll continue working on the article. Incidentally, TH1980 has access to a copy of the work and verified most of the citations already.CurtisNaito (talk) 23:27, 4 October 2015 (UTC)
CurtisNaito, it's good to hear that you believe Verifiable is being handled. Now let me ask about Broad in its coverage. The title of this article is certainly broad. Is the article? Curly Turkey and Signedzzz, is it? Prhartcom (talk) 23:34, 4 October 2015 (UTC)
It's certainly broad—the question is whether it's comprehensively so. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 00:22, 5 October 2015 (UTC)
Do you know of anything specific which needs to be added? I should have time to make the additions today, if you know of any.CurtisNaito (talk) 00:24, 5 October 2015 (UTC)
A couple editors were making lists of things on the talk page. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 01:21, 5 October 2015 (UTC)
Well, for a while I was thinking about just adding in everything from MSJapan's list, but then you said that "Many of the proposed and actual additions are totally out of scope". Did you think most of the list or all the list was totally out of scope? I intend on adding in the ones which are not totally out of scope.CurtisNaito (talk) 01:30, 5 October 2015 (UTC)
Well, I guess so far: copy editing-mostly Done, source verification- Done, broad in scope- Done, comprehensive-?
For the record, I think the article is comprehensive enough already, but if anyone has an idea for expanding it, I or another editor will get on it.CurtisNaito (talk) 01:36, 6 October 2015 (UTC)
I also am interested to hear if the article is comprehensive (a Featured article term; we really mean the GA term Broad in its coverage). The article does appear to have broad coverage in many topics as CurtisNaito says, but I am not an expert. What do others think? We can wait and hear from others such as @Signedzzz:, @MSJapan:, @Sturmgewehr88:; any involved editors. Is the article covering all of the topics that a GA-quality article with this title should cover? Prhartcom (talk) 02:56, 6 October 2015 (UTC)
but then you said that "Many of the proposed and actual additions are totally out of scope": that wasn't specifically in reference to that list, was it? The point is, the list was proposed, and then utterly undiscussed. Why are the proposed additions going totally undiscussed? I mean, look at how much "discussion" is going on on that talk page, and how almost none of it is discussing the validity or apporpriateness of the proposed additions, etc.
Also, copyediting is not done. I began merely a first run and had it sabotaged. The copyedit didn't come anywhere close to being finished (and TH1980's was superficial at best).
Prhartcom: some editors feel there are important topics that have not been touched on at all, particularly pre-20th century topics, giving the article a decidedly Western perspective. I don't think I have quite strong enough a handle of either Japanese history or the cutoff of GA criteria to judge whether it has achieved sufficient balance for GA. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 07:15, 6 October 2015 (UTC)
I concur with CT, copy editing is far from finishing and there are missing pieces still. Also, source verification is Not done. ミーラー強斗武 (StG88ぬ会話) 02:23, 7 October 2015 (UTC)
Sturmgewehr88, it is  Done as much as possible. You are free to also do your own spotchecks. Prhartcom (talk) 15:28, 7 October 2015 (UTC)
  • Comment - Until my edits just now, Ryukyu was mentioned once ("Japan consolidated control over Hokkaido and the Ryukyu Islands") and Okinawa was never mentioned. I've just now added most of the relevant information about Ryukyu, but there is still no mention of Okinawa, which I will probably add soon. The Battle of Okinawa and Okinawa's reversion to Japan need to be mentioned at a minimum. This is is yet another example of why this article should be delisted from GA status. ミーラー強斗武 (StG88ぬ会話) 03:56, 7 October 2015 (UTC)
Let's try to keep it GA if possible, if more work can be done to address the concerns. I doubt the situation is absolutely hopeless. CurtisNaito, the article is mostly in good shape, so can you address the gaps mentioned here? As for copy editing, why not immediately submit the article to the Wikipedia:WikiProject Guild of Copy Editors? Prhartcom (talk) 15:33, 7 October 2015 (UTC)
I submitted the article. Concerning the recent additions related to the Ryukyu Islands, I didn't think to add this information earlier because it's not mentioned in most general histories of Japan. I consulted several dozen general histories, but few of them, including Henshall and Perez, mention these facts. Still, the article is not yet at its word limit, so I won't oppose the additions as long as space for more material remains. Concerning the Battle of Okinawa and Okinawa's return to Japanese control, these are briefly mentioned in some of the main sources cited in the article, so I will add this in myself.CurtisNaito (talk) 23:55, 7 October 2015 (UTC)
There is no "word limit", only a guideline, and further tightening of the prose will provide a lot of wiggle room. I removed over 5kb without even completing a first run of my copyedit—this is with removing hardly even any information. The topic is so broad it could easily go to 60kb (from its current 47kb) or even more without anyone raising a fuss. Reign in the prose and there will be no problem. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 00:11, 8 October 2015 (UTC)
CurtisNaito, everyone should see that you are clearly demonstrating a willingness to create the best article possible. You are willing to take the suggestions of the challengers and I believe this will improve the article even more. Soon the article will be copy edited; although it will take a little over a month to wait in the Guild's queue. Curly Turkey, that is good to hear that there is no problem increasing the size of the article where necessary. Would you like to provide the first pass at an article copy edit? I mean, you live there and you have produced featured articles about Japan, so I, for one, trust your judgement (if you have time, of course). I am not an expert on this subject at all, but I did enjoy reading the article and I am happy to see that work is being done to make the article deserve it's GA status. Prhartcom (talk) 00:29, 8 October 2015 (UTC)
I've made multiple attempts, and they keep getting interfered with, so I've given up. There's a lot of bad will going around on this article that is hindering improving it. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 00:41, 8 October 2015 (UTC)
And if you can't tell, I am trying to do something about that. No one will interfere with you this next time. Will you please give the article a good copy edit? Prhartcom (talk) 04:24, 8 October 2015 (UTC)
When all the other issues are sorted I'll consider it. There's a lot of work to do and I'd hate to waste my time on text that's going to undergo great changes anyways. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 04:47, 8 October 2015 (UTC)
Can anyone give Curly Turkey the assurance he deserves that, were he or the Guild to copy edit now, the article is close enough that his efforts won't be wasted? It sounds like later 20th century sections are the only areas that need trimming (See zzz's comment below). Prhartcom (talk) 11:37, 8 October 2015 (UTC)

Thanks for your efforts, Prhartcom. Unfortunately, it seems clear to me that while the later 20th century sections could probably be reduced to a more reasonable length, the earlier periods are far too short and perfunctory for a "history" article, even before the removal of surplus verbiage. zzz (talk) 06:03, 8 October 2015 (UTC)

I was wondering about that. We need to resolve this while keeping the GA Status. zzz, do you have the sources, the will, and the time to expand those sections? Prhartcom (talk) 11:37, 8 October 2015 (UTC)
No, I don't have any good sources. Apparently my A Brief History of Chinese and Japanese Civilizations is not a particularly RS.zzz (talk) 11:48, 8 October 2015 (UTC)
If I had an approved list of topics which need to be added to the article, I could do the work myself.CurtisNaito (talk) 15:31, 8 October 2015 (UTC)
Let's get CurtisNaito what he needs, below, please. Prhartcom (talk) 16:01, 8 October 2015 (UTC)
For a good example, see the Featured Article, History of Gibraltar. zzz (talk) 05:33, 10 October 2015 (UTC)
This article is currently similar to Gibraltar#Early_history. zzz (talk) 06:30, 10 October 2015 (UTC)
History of Gibraltar is 74kb in length. History of Japan is currently 47kb. I don't think we have to worry about not having enough room to add stuff. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 07:18, 10 October 2015 (UTC)
Well, if no one else has any ideas, then I support adding material on the 1964 Olympics and on recent popular culture trends like anime and gaming.TH1980 (talk) 17:59, 13 October 2015 (UTC)
People have plenty of ideas. There are entire lists of ideas on the talk page. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 05:00, 14 October 2015 (UTC)
 Done Once the Guild of Copy Editors goes to work, we can probably wrap this review up.CurtisNaito (talk) 19:31, 13 October 2015 (UTC)
Nice work; keep it up if you can. The Guild's queue is moving pretty fast; they just got to my (unrelated) article; maybe just a few more weeks. They are good people there; be sure to give them all the thanks they deserve. Prhartcom (talk) 12:59, 14 October 2015 (UTC)

Further comment I read through the above, but it seems no one has yet addressed the sourcing issues. You're all rearranging chairs on the Titanic at this point, it would seem. Hijiri 88 (やや) 13:17, 14 October 2015 (UTC)

Hijiri 88, if you read through the above, you will see I did a spotcheck of the sources as best I could. If you have better accesses to these sources then by all means, please proceed to do your own spotcheck as well. Otherwise, the sourcing issues can be considered resolved. Prhartcom (talk) 14:24, 14 October 2015 (UTC)
Prhartcom, your edits to the article don't seem to have changed the text of the article at all. Did you check the sources and find that there was absolutely no misinterpretation or misrepresentation of the sources? As demonstrated above, it would seem that this was a fairly rampant problem in the places where I was able to check the sources. (I live in Japan, so English-language offline sources are hard for me to access in general, and on top of that I recently moved to a new city and am still finding my way around.) Is it possible that when you checked the sources, you interpreted them in light of what our article already said? The only reason I was able to notice such errors as the description of the Kaifūsō as a collection of Japanese poetry and the dates on both the Man'yōshū and The Tale of Genji was because I was already familiar with these topics -- have you already familiarized yourself with all of that material by checking multiple sources? I don't think anyone here is a subject expert on everything that has ever happened in Japanese history and pre-history, so copy-editing and checking to verify that the sources could be interpreted in a manner that supports the material as it appears presently is not sufficient. Sources that "could be interpreted" in such-and-such a way are not really appropriate for a definitive statement in an article to begin with, and actually interpreting them in that way is a violation of WP:NOR. Articles containing such OR are explicitly rejected under the GA criteria. Hijiri 88 (やや) 11:27, 15 October 2015 (UTC)
Hijiri 88, you are absolutely right to remind us how important the "2. Verifiability" criteria is, although I am sorry you were absent when we last discussed it. The only way to find out if the article meets the verifiability requirement is: Be in possession of at least some of the sources, go to the page number that a citation references, and do a spotcheck to ensure that the source states exactly what is being stated in that cited passage of the article. I have repeatedly stated that I am no expert on the subject of this article, but I know how to cite sources, so I volunteered to try to do this for part of this article. It wasn't easy, as I only had some online versions of some of the sources, and even those were very incomplete, but for the most part I was able to perform my spotcheck and have my questions answered. The most important part of the spotcheck, to me, was to ask the nominating editor who is in possession of all the sources to please double-check and ensure that they themselves have not accidentally or purposely misrepresented any of the sources in any passages of the article. I received an acceptable response to this request and I am assuming good faith that, if this person is happy with the article's verifiability, then I am happy with this article's verifiability. I have repeatedly asked others to also step up and do their own source spotcheck (I went through the bibliography and provided the online links to the books). Of course, anyone who is not willing to personally check the article's verifiability should not have a verifiability complaint. If you agree, let's move past this point. We are currently checking the article against the "3. Broad in its coverage" criteria. Prhartcom (talk) 17:50, 15 October 2015 (UTC)

CurtisNaito, there have been multiple suggestions to you for expanding the article, such as in the earlier periods (those sections are "far too short and perfunctory for a 'history' article"). You have added a few sentences, but I think some folks here are waiting for you to fill in these sections even more. Do you agree this would help the article and help it deserve its GA? If so, please get with editor Signedzzz and others above who would like to help you with useful feedback of this kind of expansion. Prhartcom (talk) 18:57, 15 October 2015 (UTC)

Yes, I could do that work. However, I already inserted everything into the article which I personally thought it needed, and I don't personally think it requires further expansion, so I would rather that other users suggest additional topics for me to add. I would like other users to post on this good article review a list of the additional topics which should be included. TH1980 is so far the only user who had named any specific topics, but I'll wait for additional suggestions.CurtisNaito (talk) 19:04, 15 October 2015 (UTC)
I'm flabbergasted. How could you say that TH1980 is "the only user who [has] named any specific topics"? Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 21:36, 15 October 2015 (UTC)
Well, since Prhartcom asked other users to put down their ideas on October 8, TH1980 is the only user who had put down a single idea. By the way, if you have any good ideas for expansion, please list your ideas on this good article review below, and I'll take care of it.CurtisNaito (talk) 21:43, 15 October 2015 (UTC)
Sorry to comment on behaviour, but this has been dragging on for months for one very specific reason, and continues to do so.
CurtisNaito, you were told on ANI that if you engaged in IDHT behaviour you would be blocked for 72 hours. I was one of at least four users who listed specific ways in which the article needs to be expanded. The article still does not mention Fujiwara no Teika or Minamoto no Yoshitsune, for instance. Past experience has taught me that if I do it myself I will be immediately reverted by either you or TH1980, so I should not be expected to "put my money where my mouth is" on this point.
Curly Turkey: Curtis is violating a final warning -- any idea what should be done?
Hijiri 88 (やや) 22:05, 15 October 2015 (UTC)
I was only asking people to put their ideas on the good article review. I wasn't violating any warning of any sort. Furthermore, neither TH1980 or I have ever reverted any of the additions you have made to the article. The only time anyone reverted you was when you were removing highly reliable sources from the article without bothering to replace them with anything else. At any rate, I've added information on Teika and Yoshitsune to the article, and if anyone else has an idea for expanding the article, they should list off their ideas on this good article review.CurtisNaito (talk) 22:47, 15 October 2015 (UTC)
CurtisNaito, you are well aware of the very long list of items on the talk page of the article, and if you somehow weren't aware of that stuff (!!!) then I've pointed it out at least twice on this page. There are no excuses for this IDHT. That should be a reason enough to delist right there. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 00:44, 16 October 2015 (UTC)
Well, I think the list of items to be added should be put here, partly because of the lack of clarity on the talk page over what should be added. Most of the lists on the talk page were composed almost entirely of things which were already in the article even before the lists were composed. Similarly, you yourself made a list but then immediately said, "interesting selection that likely won't match ours". What I want listed here is not a selection of things which have already been added to the article or a selection of things which should not be added to the article. All I want is a list of things which should be added. If you can think of anything, just mention it below. So far, only TH1980 has made any suggestions, but I already implemented those.CurtisNaito (talk) 00:51, 16 October 2015 (UTC)
You mean, TH1980 parroted a single suggestion of mine that nobody else supported, and thus you'll ignore everything else on the talk page? Not how it works, I'm afraid. Moreover, the discussions I've called for repeatedly on the talk page have yet to happen. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 01:16, 16 October 2015 (UTC)
CurtisNaito, you know perfectly well that both you and TH1980 have reverted me countless times on numerous articles, and that the only thing all of these edits have in common are that they were all made by me. Furthermore, your referring to Teika and his father as "Zen Buddhist monks" (!) and placing Shunzei in "this period" (the paragraph began "Japan nevertheless entered a period of prosperity and population growth starting around 1250") when he died in 1204-5, and claiming that this edit made the article better and not worse has been duly noted. Did your cited source actually refer to them as Zen Buddhist monks? When did it say Shunzei lived? Or did you put these words in Totman's mouth? Heck, even Teika died when Nichiren was in his teens, so including him in "this period" was problematic. @Prhartcom: Can you not see why these kind of edits are a problem? The problem with people being placed in the wrong historical period or the ordering of dates being radically inconsistent (see my edit here) is yet another factor that is unbecoming of a GA, and it was radically compounded immediately before the article was promoted. Hijiri 88 (やや) 10:41, 16 October 2015 (UTC)
  • Delist — Shockingly little effort is being put into dealing with longstanding issues, and the IDHT attitude suggests these issues will simply be ignored. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 01:16, 16 October 2015 (UTC)
  • Comment Those that have spoken out have a valid point. But we're not going to escalate this. Let's keep it positive. We're 70–90% there, with this article already, compared with the GA criteria. I agree with CurtisNaito; please get him what he needs below. It's not asking too much: Please summarize, in a brief list below, only the most important items from the Talk page list. Thank-you. Prhartcom (talk) 02:42, 16 October 2015 (UTC)
Prhartcom, you earlier talked about assuming good faith in regard to whether this article should be delisted, but while AGF is a good conduct policy, it is irrelevant here for three reasons. First, you said you asked the nominator if he thought the article misrepresented sources, he said no, and you "assumed good faith" -- but the same user also claimed he thought the article didn't misrepresent sources in August. It's not an AGF-violation to say this simply is not an accurate description. Second, AGF could only apply if someone was alleging without evidence (i.e., assuming) that such-and-such user was deliberately behaving in bad faith; it does not apply to accidental misinterpretation of sources (something that demonstrably occurred here) or accusations of deliberate misrepresentation of sources made with evidence (i.e., they are not assumptions of bad faith). Third, and most importantly, AGF is a conduct policy, and has no bearing on whether this or that article is GA status. We assume good faith in the behaviour of other users -- we most certainly do not assume that an article contains no OR or unverifiable/inaccurate material before promoting that article to GA status -- or preserving ill-granted GA status that has been challenged.
Now you are talking about being 70-90% there, but you are still only talking about rearranging chairs on the Titanic. The iceberg in this metaphor -- the sourcing -- remains. And like a real iceberg, the ones that have already been addressed represent only a small fraction of what is probably there if a legit topic expert were to properly review the article in comparison with its sources.
Hijiri 88 (やや) 09:44, 16 October 2015 (UTC)
Hijiri 88, I recognize your ability to complain. I saw it applied all the way to ANI and back again. I've acknowledged that you have a valid point. Now let's switch for a moment from AGF to due diligence. As you know, Wikipedia was built by editors who are willing to work to get the job done. Are you, or are you not, willing to do anything about this, other than repeat a clever metaphor? If you have spotted an issue with sourcing, please join hands with us and work to get the issue resolved.
All editors: Please provide CurtisNaito what he needs below. Prhartcom (talk) 11:45, 16 October 2015 (UTC)
I am willing. The problem is whether or not I am able. I have worked to improve a sentence or two over the last coupla hours, but my efforts must of course be focused on defending myself against CurtisNaito's amazing friends continuing to request that I be blocked for posting here.
My attempts to improve even the smallest portions of this article have been met with "This edit does not have consensus. Revert!", so how can I reasonably be expected to go through the entire article and radically overhaul it? The user who reverted me has said numerous times that he believes the article has no significant problems and will revert any edits of which he disapproves. I (and numerous others) say the article does have problems and needs to be improved. The fact that the GA status has not yet been revoked is being used as an excuse to revert edits and ignore legitimate concerns raised both here and on the talk page.
This is why I believe the first step to improving this article is to delist it in the short run.
It is entirely unclear what CurtisNaito still feels he needs -- several detailed lists of what is missing from this article have been provided both on the talk page and here. He failed to address these (even going so far as to deny they had been provided) and then when he tried to address two of the items, one resulted in a laughably inaccurate line of text and the other completely missed the point (see below).
When I said I wanted the article to discuss Yoshitsune, I meant his flight to Hiraizumi, his tragic death, and the fact that for most of the rest of history he has been treated as the Japanese national hero. The fact that Hiraizumi itself is not mentioned is questionable. And the original King in the North (couldn't resist the GoT reference) and his clan. And the Abe clan. And Sakanoue no Tamuramaro. And Aterui. And the names of the major wars in which several of these figures were involved (Zenkunen and Gosannen). Date Masamune isn't mentioned anywhere. The 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami are taken as important enough to be mentioned in the lead, but the entire history of the whole of northern Japan prior to 2011 seems to have been rejected as unimportant. Whether this was deliberate or not is beside the point -- a proper GA review would have taken note of this fact.
(And please don't try to say I never mentioned this until now -- the diff given above clearly shows I did so on September 9, and my concerns were not met even when CurtisNaito specifically claimed he had done so today.)
As for your commenting on ANI, I would appreciate you not discussing such things here. This page is for discussion of whether or not the article should be delisted as a GA, and why; the user conduct problems should be dealt with elsewhere.
Hijiri 88 (やや) 12:07, 16 October 2015 (UTC)
I thought of the three heroes of Iwate, but I guess I'm kind of biased in favour of one of them and I don't really know how many Japanese outside Iwate over the age of fifteen remember reading him in elementary school; another -- well, while I like his poetry more than that of the former, I think he was probably included to make it an even three, without regard to his importance. But Inazo Nitobe was on the 5,000 yen note, and is not mentioned anywhere in the article. I checked, and found that of the five people who have appeared prominently on Japanese bank notes in the last forty years (Nitobe, Higuchi, Natsume Soseki, Noguchi and Fukuzawa), only one is mentioned in the article proper. Considering why they are considered so important to modern Japanese society and adding them in or deciding not to based on that would be a good idea.
But again. Chairs. Titanic. Iceberg.
Hijiri 88 (やや) 12:17, 16 October 2015 (UTC)
  • @Prhartcom: you're not accusing Hijiri of not working to improve the article, are you? According to the page history, Hijiri's actually made more edits to the article than Curtis Naito. In fact—and here's a shocker—it appears CurtisNaito made no edit to the article before 15 August 2015, and yet has claimed credit for its promotion to GA ten days later with no more than five edits made out of the article's total of over five thousand edits. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 12:26, 16 October 2015 (UTC)
Curly Turkey, you're usually right about what you say. CurtisNaito, would you like to get started right away on expanding the early history sections? You could pick any item from the talk page list. Prhartcom (talk) 13:07, 16 October 2015 (UTC)
Shouldn't someone else do it after CurtisNaito made such a mess of the two short passages I specifically requested he add here? Again, Shunzei and Teika were not Zen monks, nor were they men of the late thirteenth century, and "the forms of waka poetry" is nonsense... I'm extremely skeptical that a large addition to the article made under the present circumstances will look much better. Hijiri 88 (やや) 13:28, 16 October 2015 (UTC)
Hijiri 88, let's watch what we type from here on. We're trying to turn a page from the days of endless bickering. Is that all right with you if we give him another chance right now? Please feel free to provide a suggestion of exactly what you would like to see expanded and any encouragement you wish to provide. Prhartcom (talk) 14:07, 16 October 2015 (UTC)
Sure. But I'm watching the changes, and I reserve the right to either (a) fix any problems I see (again -- the one arguing the article should not be delisted is actively making the article worse in response to our requests to improve it) or (b) point out such problems on this page if I don't have the time to fix them myself (posting comments on here is a lot easier for me than tracking down sources that will allow me to fix the article directly). Hijiri 88 (やや) 14:18, 16 October 2015 (UTC)
(edit conflict) Um, no. If, after every request we make, someone has to go in after him to cleanup his edits, then I don't think he should be the one doing it. Like when I pointed out the lack of mention of Okinawa, and that I would add it in the near future, he gives an American guesstimate of the dead Japanese soldiers at the Battle of Okinawa (which probably ignorantly included Okinawan conscripts or civilians) and gave no number for the more significant Okinawan civilian deaths. I have since fixed this instance, however it only makes me doubt the accuracy of other things he's added that he barely looked into. ミーラー強斗武 (StG88ぬ会話) 14:20, 16 October 2015 (UTC)
I see your point, guys. CurtisNaito has the sources and has expressed a willingness to do whatever work a challenger poses to him from this point forward. Is that right, CurtisNaito? A multiple-editor team effort may be required to get this work done correctly, so those corrections may be what is necessary to get the work done. Sturmgewehr88, do you have the sources? Who does, and who is willing to do the work necessary to get this article to deserve its GA? Prhartcom (talk) 14:57, 16 October 2015 (UTC)
It never said in the article that Shunzei and Teika were Buddhist monks. According to Totman, Zen Buddhist monks popularized waka poetry like renga which were then "revitalized" by Shunzei and Teika. Since the previous sentence mentioned Zen, it seemed like a good segway. Also, Henshall does state that "110,000 Japanese troops" were killed in the Battle of Okinawa. The only reason why I didn't include civilian deaths or American deaths is because it seemed like too much detail. But okay, I will add in more information on Yoshitsune, plus information on Fujiwara no Hidetada, the Abe clan, Sakanoue no Tamuramaro, Aterui, Date Masamune, Kenji Miyazawa, Takuboku Ishikawa, Inazo Nitobe, Higuchi Ichiyo, Natsume Soseki, and Hideyo Noguchi. As I said before, when I was writing the article I focused on the events and people which are prominently mentioned in general histories of Japan. The reason why I did not initially mention Sakanoue no Tamuramaro, Aterui, and Date Masamune is because very few general histories of Japan mention these figures. However, I will add them in today. For the record, TH1980 has access to Henshall's book, one of the main sources used in the article, so he may be able to help also.CurtisNaito (talk) 15:18, 16 October 2015 (UTC)
Curtis, if Totman refers to renga as a form of waka (poetry), then he is not a reliable source on Japanese poetry. He is either oversimplifying to the point of misleading his reader (you) or his area of expertise is far enough removed from Japanese poetry that he is simply wrong. And neither Teika nor his father were notable for their contributions to renga, which really only came to prominence in the Muromachi period (!). (I'm not familiar with the contributions of Zen monks to renga, though.) And please don't try to claim that your edit didn't imply that the two men were Zen monks -- I asked you to add a reference to Teika, and you added the words "During [the late 13th century] Zen Buddhists monks also promoted renewed interest in the poetic arts, including the forms of waka which were composed by the influential poets Fujiwara no Shunzei and his son Fujiwara no Teika" to the article. Furthermore, the timeline of your above post is even more wonky than the one you presented in the article: Zen was apparently introduced to Japan around 1191, when Shunzei was already an old man and Teika was already a prominent poet; renga (and probably Zen -- I'm not all that familiar with it) only came to prominence some time after Teika's death; waka composition had been consistently popular since the Nara period, with a brief lull in the ninth century; saying it was "popularized" (specifically as opposed to "revitalized") by Zen monks is completely anachronistic; Shunzei and Teika revitalized the art before Zen and renga were even a thing; and (I can't stress this enough) renga are usually not considered a form of waka. I don't know who "Fujiwara no Hidetada" is, but I hope you aren't saying you will add a reference to Hidehira if you are unable to read his name. And I specifically stated that you should not add any reference to Takuboku. I am ambivalent on Kenji (there are about a dozen other 20th-century novelists who should be added first). And you are absolutely wrong in claiming very few general histories mention those three figures. While I'm not much of a Sengoku/Edo buff, Masamune is one of the better-known generals of the period. If there is a general history (that covers the political/military developments of the Nara period and very early Heian period, and/or the title "seii taishougun") that doesn't mention Sakanoue no Tamuramaro by name, then it is insufficient as a general history -- every general history I have read does so, except possibly a popular work or two written in English in the 1890s. As for Aterui, I think it's up in the air whether he should be named specifically in the article, given that we don't know what his actual name was; but you can't mention Tamuramaro with implicitly referring to his opponent. Hijiri 88 (やや) 16:24, 16 October 2015 (UTC)
It was never implied in any way that they were Zen monks. Zen monks revived interest in many forms of Japanese and Chinese poetry around the same time as the appearance of Shunzei and Teika. Totman notes this, and the information made a useful segway from the previous sentence. All you did was delete a reliable source without replacing it with anything. I think Conrad Totman can be counted as a reliable source on this matter until you find a better source. Also, Sakanoue no Tamuramaro is not mentioned by Perez, Henshall, Totman, or Hane, so I wouldn't say he is widely mentioned in general histories. Many of the other figures you mentioned are also not dealt with in these books, though I will incorporate them into the article anyway.CurtisNaito (talk) 16:38, 16 October 2015 (UTC)
Again, Zen monks basically didn't exist yet in Japan "around the same time" as Shunzei and Teika. Both Chinese and Japanese poetry were popular throughout the Heian period, so there was no "revival" in anything other than the quality of the poetry. And why are we suddenly talking about Chinese poetry? Waka, renga and kanshi are all distinct poetic forms, and confusing them will not improve the article. Mentioning Teika (but not his father) in the Kamakura section makes sense, but the place you put it made no sense the way you wrote it, since both men were dead before 1250. (Listing a whole bunch of prominent poets in the late Heian and early Kamakura period kind of works, but would be better placed earlier.) I deleted a source that had either contained inaccurate information or had been misquoted as giving inaccurate information. I replaced it with information I got from an earlier (this spring) reading of Keene 1999 Seeds in the Heart (Columbia University Press), which is arguably the best source of its kind ever published in English. I don't have time to hunt down all the page numbers right now, but if you want to you can. We need the pages that clarify that these are essentially the four most prominent poets of their age (with the possible exception of Sanetomo, who I included because of his connection to the shogunate), and that Shunzei and Teika in particular are credited with revitalizing a stagnant art form. Finding these would involve reading through about 50 pages of text. If Tamuramaro is not even mentioned in those books, then those books do not give an adequate picture of the political/military climate of the late eighth century, and better sources should be located, simple as that. I'm a fan of Sansom -- he's old, but he probably still has broader acceptance and use an undergrad textbook and reference work than any of the more recent books you list. And you must understand that the "general histories" you consulted are not in fact general in terms of covering the same scope we should be covering: either they are introductory textbooks (and give only bare details because of length restrictions), or they deal with a particular area of history (mostly, I would guess, political) to the exclusion of important cultural figures who everyone in Japan has heard of, and no doubt the authors you name have heard of, but didn't think it necessary for their purposes to cover them. Keene, for instance, doesn't mention Tamuramaro either, but that's because Tamuramaro's escapades have almost nothing to do with Keene's area of interest (literary history). Hijiri 88 (やや) 16:57, 16 October 2015 (UTC)
I'll use Sansom, but his book is three volumes and only covers to the mid-1800s. It's natural that not everything mentioned in Sansom's book will be in this article. Virtually all recent general histories of Japan which are less than 800 pages do not mention Tamuramaro. Furthermore, the Totman source should be restored unless you can find a better source. You're trying to rebut Totman with just your own opinion, but we should be citing reliable sources here.CurtisNaito (talk) 17:50, 16 October 2015 (UTC)
I had already added a better source before you posted the above. I've got an hour-long train journey to make this morning, so I'll try to find the page number then. Hijiri 88 (やや) 01:11, 17 October 2015 (UTC)
I would however like it noted that CurtisNaito said he would do the work to improve the article, then when he made it worse by adding blatantly inaccurate information I had to step in and fix it. I cited a source (which has a convenient index) and said the page numbers could be checked later. I.e., I did 80% of the sourcing. CurtisNaito then explicitly threatened to reinsert the inaccurate information if I didn't do the remaining 20% myself first. Hijiri 88 (やや) 02:21, 17 October 2015 (UTC)
None of the information was inaccurate. All I said was that the information should be accurately cited. Totman is a reliable source which was accurately cited, but your source didn't have a page number and you were just recalling it from memory. I added the information on Teika upon request in order to expand the article.CurtisNaito (talk) 02:29, 17 October 2015 (UTC)

The information most certainly was inaccurate, as you have already been told repeatedly. Recalling the names of important poets from memory and giving the name of the book one knows one got them is entirely appropriate -- claiming that Shunzei was a Zen monk of the late thirteenth century with a single dubious source is not.

And it should be noted that the above user made good on his threat to reinsert inaccurate and poorly-sourced text placing Fujiwara no Shunzei, who lived from 1114 to 1205 (Gregorian calendar), into the late thirteenth century, and I was forced to revert him. He also removed all reference to the important poetry of Sanetomo, so that the article represented him solely as an impotent statesman even though he is primarily remembered as a poet, and removed the descriptor of Saigyo as a travel poet, replacing it with the meaningless epithet "Buddhist". I still haven't examined the other recent changes, but this does not look promising.

The WP:BURDEN should be on those who oppose delisting to fix these disastrous problems, but instead they are edit-warring to make them worse.

Hijiri 88 (やや) 03:45, 17 October 2015 (UTC)

The article never said Shunzei was a Buddhist monk, nor did it say that he lived in the late thirteenth century. The text never indicated anything like that. The only reason why I removed Sanetomo was because Totman didn't mention him. I needed to use the reliable source that I had until you managed to locate the one that you had. I only added Teika on request, and all the information I inserted was accurate and properly cited.CurtisNaito (talk) 03:51, 17 October 2015 (UTC)
The exact wording of your original edit was Japan nevertheless entered a period of prosperity and population growth starting around 1250. [...] During this period Zen Buddhist monks also promoted renewed interest in the poetic arts, including the forms of waka which were composed by the influential poets Fujiwara no Shunzei and his son Fujiwara no Teika. That speaks for itself. Since you are apparently claiming your recent edits have contained no inaccuracies, could you explain what you meant by "the forms of waka"? You weren't actually referring to kanshi and renga as "forms of waka", were you?
Anyway, you removed a reliable source and replaced it with a less reliable one. If you believed my citation of Keene was inappropriate, the burden was on you to find another source that either contradicted him or covered the same material; instead you removed well-written, relevant, sourced material, and replaced it with what an irrelevant source you happen to have read just happened to say. Sanetomo is best-known as a poet, not a statesman; Saigyo is best-known as a travel poet, not a Buddhist poet.
Hijiri 88 (やや) 06:14, 17 October 2015 (UTC)
You just quoted the text correctly, which does not say that Fujiwara no Shunzei and Fujiwara no Teika were Buddhist monks. All the information was accurate and it was accurately sourced to Totman. Naturally, an accurate citation to Totman was preferable to your earlier, improperly cited book.CurtisNaito (talk) 06:19, 17 October 2015 (UTC)
Just noticed you putting words in my mouth. I never said Shunzei (whose dharma name was 釈阿 and who was apparently also known as 五条三位入道) was not a Buddhist monk -- I think describing him as a monk rather than an aristocrat would be atrocious, and descibing him as a Zen monk is wrong. No one here is talking about "Buddhist monks" -- a description which with reference to this period is so broad as to be useless -- except you. And everyone here can see your prose clearly implying Shunzei and Teika were among the late Kamakura Zen monks who revived "the forms of waka". And on that point, you still haven't answered my question: what were "the forms of waka", and were you misinterpreting a source by inserting this inaccurate wording? Hijiri 88 (やや) 06:34, 17 October 2015 (UTC)
No, the source mentioned the existence of difference styles of waka. In one passage Totman noted that "In place of waka, however, linked-verse forms were developing and these in due course acquired many of waka's qualities." There was nothing incorrect about the previous text, though the current version is decent as well. As I noted, Totman does not say that they were Buddhist monks, nor did the text of the article say that.CurtisNaito (talk) 06:45, 17 October 2015 (UTC)
So your source said "styles of waka" and you changed it to "forms of waka". The different forms of waka (chouka, sedouka, bussokusekika, katauta) had all been extinct since the eighth or ninth century, and there was no attempt by Shunzei, Teika or the Zen monks of the thirteenth century to revive them -- can you see why someone who understood what a "form of waka" was would find your original wording so outrageous? Furthermore, please stop putting the meaningless epithet "Buddhist monk" in my mouth and the mouths of your sources. Both Teika and his father entered religious orders, but this is an obscure factoid, so your trying to make this an argument over whether or not they were "Buddhist monks" is completely irrelevant. What is relevant is your responding to other users' legitimate concerns about the article by inserting unverifiable, misleading information and edit-warring to keep said unverifiable, misleading information in the article even after other users made the effort to correct you. This page clearly has little hope at the present rate. Hijiri 88 (やや) 07:23, 17 October 2015 (UTC)
Well, you have a unique way of interpreting words, but I don't think most people would have come to the same conclusion. A word like "style" is not so technical that we need to quibble over it. At any rate, I already pointed out by quoting from the book and the article that all the information was perfectly accurate and reliably sourced, and accurate and verifiable information is a key requirement for good articles.CurtisNaito (talk) 07:31, 17 October 2015 (UTC)
Where did you provide a quote from the source? All I see is you admitting above to misquoting him by changing the acceptable "styles" (Nijou/Mikohidari, no doubt) to the very anachronistic "forms". The term "forms of waka" is correctly defined in the eponymous section of the relevant Wikipedia article. I know because I put it there. My way of interpreting your clearly accidental but nevertheless disruptive wording is not unique -- if it was, everyone else wouldn't agree with me. I wasn't going to bring it up here, but your changing "the Northern Fujiwara clan's territories" to "the Fujiwara clan's northern territories" (which implies the northern estates of a courtier family in the capital, rather than the all-but-independent kingdom run by a warrior clan of mixed Emishi heritage that happens to share the same name) and "tragic hero" to "fallen hero" (which implies Yoshitsune had once been considered a hero before his "fall from grace" -- I strongly recommend you read up on the term 判官贔屓/ほうがんびいき, by the way) are equally concerning, and I don't know why you couldn't find a better source for Date et al. than one of Turnbull's popular books. You need to step back and let other users fix the problems with this article, since (even though there is no doubt in my mind of your good intentions) your own recent edits have only made the problems worse. Hijiri 88 (やや) 08:27, 17 October 2015 (UTC)
None of the sources currently cited referred to them the Northern Fujiwara. Furthermore, "fallen hero" is a direct quote from the source. Stephen Turnbull is one of the world's leading experts on the samurai, so I certainly see no reason not to use his books. As I've noted, all the edits I've made have been accurately sourced to reliable sources. You've been quibbling a lot with words, but so far you haven't yet found a single instance of inaccurate information being inserted into the article.CurtisNaito (talk) 08:38, 17 October 2015 (UTC)
Virtually all Japanese sources refer to them as the 奥州藤原, and most good English sources follow this convention. The only reason I chose translation over romanization was because typing an upper-case "O" with a macron on my phone is almost impossible. "the northern territories of the Fujiwara clan" is inaccurate, anyway, and I highly doubt you took it directly from your source.
"fallen hero" doesn't look good. If your source didn't allow you to use the preferable "tragic hero" you should have found another source, rather than expecting me to do it.
Stephen Turnbull is not regarded as one of the world's leading experts on "the samurai" in scholarly circles. All of his well-regarded scholarly works are in the field of religious studies, wherein lie all his academic credentials. He is well-known to American and British popular culture for his work as a historical consultant on various American films and video games, and for his popular books all of which feature the word "samurai" prominently in their titles. In the place where you cited him, neither you nor he appear to have been factually wrong, though you somewhat redundantly described Date Masamune as being based in an area whose technical definition is "the area controlled by Date Masamune". (Yes, I know you had a solid excuse for not saying "Mutsu Province", but it still looked silly.)
As for quibbling over words: you worded a sentence so as to imply that two men who entered religious orders at the ends of their lives but are almost never described as "monks" were Zen monks; you either referred to the stylistic tastes of different schools of waka composition or to the separate genres of kanshi and renga as "forms of waka"; you removed my accurate description of Saigyo as an itinerant poet and replaced it with the meaningless epithet "Buddhist", as though there were any non-Buddhist monks in Kamakura Japan; you actively removed all references to Sanetomo's poetry from the article in order to imply he is best known as a statesman; (with those last two you actually reverted to keep your misleading version in) you described Yoshitsune as a "fallen hero"; you described "the territories of the Northern Fujiwara clan" as "the northern territories of the Fujiwara clan". I'm not mentioning "Sendai domain" since that actually is just quibbling over awkward wording, but the rest are serious content concerns. I should again stress that I DON'T think this is the result of any malicious agenda or intention to mislead our readers. I believe you when you say you are only changing your sources' words for copyright reasons. But your carelessness in doing so, or your lack of knowledge of the topic at hand, seems to result in inaccurate summaries more than half the time. None of the above are in my opinion as bad as bad as the Kaifuso incident, but they are in the same league. Simply clicking around Wikipedia would have allowed you to put your edits in the right context (I'm pretty sure our Kaifuso article would have told you the poetry in question was in Chinese), but you seem unwilling to go to that effort.
I don't see why I or anyone else here should put the work into bringing this article to GA standard if you are going to continue to not only claim full credit but actively claim everyone else is hurting the article and should be blocked and/or banned.
Hijiri 88 (やや) 13:17, 17 October 2015 (UTC)
I'm not claiming anyone should be banned for their edits here. Certainly, I think you have been wrong to call into question the reliability of experts in Japanese history, and to change the wording of the article into text which is at variance with the sources. Indeed, so far you have expressed almost no disagreement with me personally, but as in your points above, only disagreement with leading scholars. However, I'm not saying you should not be editing the article just because of these issues with your editing. You can add in new material to the article if you have an idea. Otherwise, just list your own ideas and I'll add them in myself.CurtisNaito (talk) 13:27, 17 October 2015 (UTC)
I have nowhere either here or in my edit summaries or comments expressed any personal opinion on the views of leading scholars. Virtually everything I have said is cited to Keene, a HIGHLY reputable source whose credentials in the relevant area of historical research are much better established than those of any of the scholars you have cited. Furthermore, most of my disagreements with your recent edits are in relation to your original misinterpretations of what the scholars in question wrote, not with the scholars themselves. Hijiri 88 (やや) 14:44, 17 October 2015 (UTC)
@Prhartcom: I have dozens of sources on my area of expertise if that's what you mean, but I'm less inclined to hand them over rather than just adding/correcting the relevant information as well
@CurtisNaito: Well where did Henshall get that number I wonder? He obviously doesn't make the distinction between Okinawans and Japanese. And civilian deaths are one of the most significant aspects of the entire battle. Maybe you shouldn't rely so heavily on a general history source made by a Westerner (it probably focuses on things well-known in the West rather than things well-known in Japan). Besides, we're not rewriting Henshall here, so we should be using the most accurate information available. Use Henshall as a guide, not holy scripture. ミーラー強斗武 (StG88ぬ会話) 15:42, 16 October 2015 (UTC)
The number of 110,000 Henshall cites is surely a legitimate figure because, for one, the exact same number is used in Wikipedia's own article on the Battle of Okinawa. "significant" is a subjective word though. The source you cited doesn't say that the civilian death toll was "one of the most significant aspects of the entire battle", nor does the source I cited. Similarly, I didn't think the other information you added about the Ryukyu Island was overly significant for this article because it is not mentioned in any general-purpose histories of Japan. However, if it turns out that you personally think it's significant, there's no reason to delete it.CurtisNaito (talk) 21:25, 16 October 2015 (UTC)
@CurtisNaito: since you looked at the article I'm surprised you missed both the label "U.S. estimate" and the accurate figure I used (from Okinawa Prefecture's Peace Memorial Park list). The Americans counted bodies indiscriminately; it gives a figure of "roughly" 77,000 Japanese and 20,000 Okinawans fighting in the battle, then says 7,000 surrendered and 110,000 died. Now where did that extra 20,000 come from exactly? And the source I cited was only for the number of dead; I can gladly add a few more sources if you're disputing the "significance" of 120,000 people dying. And the reason the Ryukyus aren't mentioned in any English general history is because they are not thought to be part of Japan Proper (although that should be surprising given Japan's attempts to either sweep them under the rug or rant that they are an integral part of Japan and always have been). I am surprised that you don't find a lesser daimyo vassalizing a foreign country significant. ミーラー強斗武 (StG88ぬ会話) 01:31, 17 October 2015 (UTC)

Okay, I took care of all the suggestions listed. As Prhartcom said, we are already 70–90% finished, so if there's anything left that needs to be added to round things off, then post it below.CurtisNaito (talk) 21:25, 16 October 2015 (UTC)

I have access to Henshall's book plus several other sources on Japanese history. I may not have the same expertise on the subject as CurtisNaito, but if anyone needs me to make additions to the article, I can handle it.TH1980 (talk) 21:27, 16 October 2015 (UTC)
No, that's okay, TH1980—気持ちだけいただきます。 Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 21:39, 16 October 2015 (UTC)
It's true that the article has been expanded some more recently. It should be okay if TH1980 wants to also expand it. CurtisNaito is willing to expand it as much as the subject matter experts here believe more expansion is needed. If so, please list what you want, below, or say that expansion is done. Prhartcom (talk) 21:26, 18 October 2015 (UTC)
@Prhartcom: Did you read the above or look at the recent edits? The recent expansion has consisted largely of yet more misreading of sources resulting in some honestly quite funny bloopers. Those bits that are not unverifiable OR are poorly-written/awkwardly-worded ("Date Masamune, based in the Date domain"). If specifically commissioned edits resulting from a GAR look like this, then how can we possibly assert that the sections of the article that haven't been checked yet contain no factual errors, unverifiable material or OR? Hijiri 88 (やや) 23:23, 18 October 2015 (UTC)
Hijiri 88, then what should be done; what do you propose? Prhartcom (talk) 00:24, 19 October 2015 (UTC)
The article should be delisted as a GA, since clearly no one is both willing and able to fix its massive problems. I could in theory throw out everything past the Kofun period and rewrite it based on careful reading of sources I have access to, but that would be a massive undertaking, I would be setting myself up for yet more abuse (CN, Calvin999 and TH1980 have put me through quite enough already), and per Wikipedia's voluntary nature among other things that's not my job. Hijiri 88 (やや) 04:23, 19 October 2015 (UTC)
If TH1980's "expansion" is anything like his purported "copyedit", I think we'd be better off without it. Several of us here know that TH1980 is WP:NOTHERE and is actively trying to throw a monkeywrench in the works. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 23:42, 18 October 2015 (UTC)
May I ask why you think there was something was wrong with my copy-edit? I corrected all the typos and grammatical errors. I'm willing to do more work, but we need to assume good faith and create a friendly environment for editing first.TH1980 (talk) 01:04, 19 October 2015 (UTC)
I can't tell you how happy I am that you made this ridiculous comment. I'm saving it—it will be one of the prime pieces of evidence that you're here to disrupt things. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 01:31, 19 October 2015 (UTC)
You never found any inaccuracies. It's perfectly acceptable to say that Date Masamune was based in Sendai, because he was, and that's what the source said. If you think it's not important for the reader to know where Date Masamune's territories were located geographically, then we can leave that out, but in the all the paragraphs you wrote above you never found a factual inaccuracy. As I said, if you do have ideas for improving the article which another user can act upon, then just state it below.CurtisNaito (talk) 23:30, 18 October 2015 (UTC)
You can't be serious. You don't actually think that Sendai and Sendai domain are the same thing, do you? That's like saying Seattle and Washington State are the same thing! Sendai domain was a broad area of land that was called Sendai domain or (unofficially, but more commonly,) "Date domain" because it was governed by the Date clan who had their headquarters in Aoba Castle in Sendai. Saying that "Date Masamune was based in Date domain" is redundant and silly. The actual name of the region Date Masamune occupied was Mutsu Province, or more specifically the south-central part of the province corresponding (very roughly) to modern Miyagi Prefecture (which also isn't the same thing as Sendai). I actually laid all of this out in my edit summary, in which I presented a number of possible solutions to the problem to which I would be amenable. You have roundly ignored my suggestions, instead focusing on the false accusation that I "think it's not important for the reader to know where Date Masamune's territories were located geographically". Hijiri 88 (やや) 04:23, 19 October 2015 (UTC)
There is nothing inaccurate about saying that Date Masamune was based in Sendai Domain, and anyone who clicks on the link to Sendai Domain can conveniently learn where the domain was located. You deleted that information as well as all the other provincial bases of other daimyo. If you don't think it's important for readers to know this, then you can leave it out, but no one can say that any information was inaccurate or redundant.
The point of good article reviews is to improve articles, not to delist. I am the primary author of numerous good level articles on Japanese history, so I certainly have the experience in this field necessary to expand the article. As Prhartcom and Dr. Blofeld noted, this article already generally meets the criteria needed for good articles, so there is no reason to delist. I certainly am able and willing to improve the article, and if anything else still needs to be done, I can implement those ideas.CurtisNaito (talk) 04:56, 19 October 2015 (UTC)
@CurtisNaito: "You never found any inaccuracies." I would say that claiming waka is renga is a fairly obvious inaccuracy. If it weren't for ArbCom I'd immediately bring you to ANI for your continuing WP:IDHT behavior. And now you're a self-proclaimed expert in Japanese history because you've managed to get "numerous" articles to GA status as the "primary author"? That only begs the question of how many of those articles are actually GA quality. You may be an expert in a specific field, but you have shown that you aren't an expert in "Japanese history" in general. And if the sole point of a GAR was to improve an article, then why is delisting even an option? And even if the article is "70–90% done" that still isn't 100%. An article doesn't deserve GA status unless it has GA quality. ミーラー強斗武 (StG88ぬ会話) 18:02, 19 October 2015 (UTC)
I highly doubt any third parties could be bothered reading further into this, and it would seem even CurtisNaito has stopped actually reading my comments before reposting the same talking points, so I'm collapsing my response. Others who wish to continue this thread for whatever reason should post inside this collapsed section. Hijiri 88 (やや) 08:33, 19 October 2015 (UTC)
Curtis, it is very difficult to consistently assume good faith when you repeatedly refuse to actually read my comments. I never said it was "inaccurate" to say that Masamune was based in Sendai domain. I said it was redundant, since no one who understands what "Sendai domain" is would have any use for it (the definition of Sendai domain is that domain ruled by Date Masamune). For someone who doesn't understand what Sendai domain is, it would be better to say "based in Sendai". Or maybe "based in central Mutsu Province". Or we could just leave it out, since all options are based on the assumption that our readers will click the wikilink to find more information, and our Date Masamune article presumably gives the same information.
I am open to any of these options, and I don't have a strong opinion either way, but I don't appreciate your repeatedly assuming, despite my specifically telling you otherwise, that my goal is to hide reference to Sendai domain from our readers.
Furthermore, listing two warlords as being based in X Province and Y Province, and then another lord as being based in Z domain, is obviously awkward.
As for "inaccuracies", what do you call claiming that Good_article_reassessment/History_of_Japan/1&diff=686032743&oldid=686030211 "According to Totman, Zen Buddhist monks popularized waka poetry like renga which were then "revitalized" by Shunzei and Teika."? Waka and renga are different things, and Shunzei and Teika were both long dead by the time "Zen Buddhists popularized renga". You have claimed that you provided a quote from Totman, but you have claimed on this page variously that Totman talked about "styles of waka", which would no doubt be a not-anachronistic reference to the Nijō poetic school and their rivals, and that Totman claimed renga to be a "Zen Buddhist monks popularized waka poetry like renga". I'm inclined to believe that the latter was your reading and had no basis in what Totman said, since I don't want to believe that Conrad Totman would write or Wiley-Blackwell would print such an error as "which were then "revitalized" by Shunzei and Teika".
Hijiri 88 (やや) 08:33, 19 October 2015 (UTC)

Necessary break[edit]

  • I just got access to WP:EBSCO, which gives me access to Japan Forum, Japanese Studies, and other journals. If anyone needs a particular source from there, let me know. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 23:42, 18 October 2015 (UTC)
Cool, Curly Turkey, possible new sources. Do you see anything in that library that looks like a good suggestion for this article? Prhartcom (talk) 00:24, 19 October 2015 (UTC)
We're talking decades worth of specialized journal articles. I'm offering my access to those who know what they're looking for and can't access it. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 01:29, 19 October 2015 (UTC)
  • Note Over the last several days, CurtisNaito has been continuing to edit-war by reinserting the same misrepresentation of sources that he has been called out for numerous times, as well as bludgeoning this page with IDHT justification of such. The majority of the text he inserted upon the request of me and Sturmgewehr88 was highly problematic and Sturmgewehr88 and I had to go over it and rewrite most of it. Basically the ones who are actually working to improve the page all agree that it should be delisted, and the only one who thinks it is GA-worthy is the one who is actively working to make it worse. Hijiri 88 (やや) 11:25, 19 October 2015 (UTC)
I wasn't edit warring. I only deleted the invisible comments while changing the text to deal with the concerns mentioned. None of the text I added needed to be rewritten, and I don't think your version is as faithful to the original text as what I had written. However, most individuals who have been working on the article have said that it should be kept as a good article. If any further improvements are recommended, there's still plenty of time to implement them as we wait for the guild of copy editors to undertake their copy edit.CurtisNaito (talk) 11:32, 19 October 2015 (UTC)
Your source said (though not in these exact words) "virtually all members of the Ise branch of the Taira clan were killed" and you changed it to "he had every member of the Taira clan killed". Your source said that the real power lay with the shogunate but that they allowed the nobility to participate as part of the shogunate, and that they left the bureaucratic and religious institutions of the capital intact, and you changed it to "there was dual government". And that's just the last 12 hours, not even touching on your slightly earlier equating Sendai with Sendai domain, making strawman arguments against me, referring to kanshi and renga as "forms of waka" and directly asserting that Shunzei (died 1205) and Teika (died 1241) "revitalized" waka after the art had been "popularized" by Zen monks! How on earth would a copy edit fix such problems as these? Hijiri 88 (やや) 13:19, 19 October 2015 (UTC)
The sources said that the Taira clan was exterminated, so that's what the article also said. None of the sources mentioned the Ise branch. Henshall said that during the Kamakura period Japan had "cooperative government", whereas Perez's encyclopedia calls it "dual government". Henshall says in a restrained way that "it is probably fair to say that... the greatest real power of government was now with the bakufu". However, in spite of the bakufu's key control of military affairs, both sources make clear that power was shared. As Perez's encyclopedia notes, the shogunate merely "supervised its retainers while the imperial court in Kyoto administered the rest of the country. The two governments shared power." Both in these cases, and in the other cases, you changed the text in a way which did not match the original sources as closely as what I had written. In general, I think we should stick closely to the wording of the sources which is what I have been doing.CurtisNaito (talk) 13:31, 19 October 2015 (UTC)
  • Question There is stronger support to delist this article than there is to keep it GA, including from uninvolved editors Signedzzz, MSJapan, Curly Turkey, and myself. I saw Dr. Blofeld show an interest in keeping it GA if possible and I agreed that the GA could be saved if the sources could be verified, the extraneous text removed, the early history sections expanded, and a copy edit completed. I tried to verify the sources and saw no one else also willing to do so; until others step up I believe we can call the source review complete. I saw the extraneous text was properly removed and I'm not sure if that process is complete. A formal copy edit is on it's way and I'm sure it will be of good quality. As for expanding the early history sections, much has been done but I am not sure how much of that process remains; I had guessed that the entire project is 70–90% complete. I see a lot of disharmony, as usual, from the two challenging editors Hijiri88 and Sturmgewehr88, who of course all care deeply about the article but who are not happy with the work of the nominating editor, CurtisNaito, whom I believe is willing to do what is necessary to get this project complete. It seems like the two challenging editors are locked in an endless content war with the nominating editor, and may feel that a WP:COMPETENCE issue is involved. Can the two challenging editors tell me: If we delist immediately as you are requesting, then what will happen next? Will you both commit to improve the article? Will you soon nominate it for GA? Or will you let the article remain partially finished? What exactly do you want to see for this article? Prhartcom (talk) 15:48, 19 October 2015 (UTC)
Update to all editors: CurtisNaito continues to look to you for suggestions for expansion. I believe he will expand whatever topics you ask him to expand. Please provide your suggestions below. Prhartcom (talk) 16:37, 19 October 2015 (UTC)
@Prhartcom: It's not so much a CIR issue as a WP:IDHT and WP:GAME issue. He got GA status for an article that didn't deserve it and now a) wants to save face and keep his other GA articles out of the spotlight or b) feels that he's a know-all expert because he single-handedly wrote "numerous" GA articles and that his edits are faultless.
As for this article, even if it has reached 70–90% done, close doesn't count. An article needs GA quality before it has GA status, not the other way around. After the article is delisted, I will still be here to help to get it back to GA status. Once my area of expertise is properly covered I'll probably do a full copy edit of the article. ミーラー強斗武 (StG88ぬ会話) 18:02, 19 October 2015 (UTC)
I have to agree. The IDHT issues simply aren't coming to an end, and CurtisNaito keeps insisting that the large number of improvements listed on the talk page don't count unless they're copy-pasted here—that's not the attitude off someone doing their darndest to make this article the best they can make it. This from an editor who made a grand total of two edits to the article before it went to GA, and a grand total of three more during the review.
The article was obviously not adequately prepared in the first place, and the work yet required requires lengthy and in-depth research and discussion, which the nominator has made remarkably little effort to engage in. The article should be delisted so that its GA status cannot be used to bludgeon efforts to improve it. Perhaps that should be followed with a collaboration of the month at WP:JAPAN to get the article to the GA status it was never at. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 21:18, 19 October 2015 (UTC)
I second Curly Turkey here; WPJ will gladly lend a hand here. And again, keeping the GA status when the article still doesn't deserve it is only magnifying CurtisNaito's IDHT/GAME behavior. ミーラー強斗武 (StG88ぬ会話) 22:12, 19 October 2015 (UTC)
There was considerable lack of clarity in the talk page over which items were serious suggestions for expansion and which were just vague ideas. I was certainly confused by the fact that the first list of items proposed was largely comprised of topics already mentioned in the article. Other users posted items, only to seemingly suggest later that they did not actually want them in the article. I would have added anything into the article which was concretely requested.
However, in order to demonstrate that I can expand the article further as necessary, I will add in every single item mentioned on the talk page before the end of the day, though up to now I was not assuming that every item on the talk page was actually desired by users to be in the article.CurtisNaito (talk) 22:20, 19 October 2015 (UTC)
@CurtisNaito: If you WP:POINTily throw "every single item mentioned" into a sloppy mess I'll straight-up revert you; no one here has the patience to play that game. ミーラー強斗武 (StG88ぬ会話) 22:37, 19 October 2015 (UTC)
Well, I might as well start off with all of them. You can delete the ones which you don't think fit in. Alternatively, if you present a list below of the items which you do want in the article, I'll stick with those ones alone.CurtisNaito (talk) 22:40, 19 October 2015 (UTC)
  • @Prhartcom: Why would you have any reason to doubt my commitment to such? I've put more work into improving the article in the last week than anyone else. I know it doesn't look that way if you assume Curtis's edits were all well-researched and accurate and my edits were spiteful attempts to undermine him. But anyone with access to Google Books can clearly see that Curtis's sources don't say the same thing as his edits do. I think completely undoing all the damage that has been done to the page would be a massive undertaking -- one your 70-90% estimate radically underestimates, but one to which I am most certainly willing to contribute. (Now, if Curtis's still-ongoing attempts to get me SBANned succeed, this will of course be difficult, but that's beside the point.) Hijiri 88 (やや) 23:48, 19 October 2015 (UTC)


  1. Jomon
  2. Yayoi
  3. Asuka
  4. Kofun
  5. Nara
  6. Heian
  7. Kamakura
  8. Muromachi & Azuchi-Momoyama (because the latter is short and doesn't fit with Edo)
  9. Edo
  10. Meiji
  11. Taisho
  12. Showa
  13. Heisei


  1. Genpei Wars
  2. Meiji Restoration
  3. Pacific War
  4. Sino-Japanese War
  5. Russo-Japanese War


  1. Toyotomi, Nobunaga, Tokugawa
  2. Emperors (in general); we should probably link to a list somewhere as well
  3. Murasaki Shikibu
  4. Sei Shonagon
  5. Fujiwara clan
  6. Takeda Shingen
  7. Miyamoto Musashi
  8. Yoshitsune
  9. Minamoto and Taira clans
  10. Basho
  11. Natsume Soseki
  12. Murakami Haruki
  13. Edogawa Rampo
  14. Commodore Perry
  15. Kurosawa
  16. Mizoguchi Kenji

Notable things to mention in context

  1. Yasukuni
  2. Samurai/bushido
  3. Hagakure
  4. Rise of literature in Heian period
  5. Mass publishing in Edo
  6. Modern pop culture, especially internationally known authors, artists, anime, manga, video games, Vocaloid, etc.
  7. Daimyo/clans/crests
  8. Tale of Genji
  9. Tale of the Heike
  10. Manyoshu, Kokin Wakashu (see Japanese poetry article)
  11. Nihongi
  12. Bakufu
  13. Prefectural system
  14. Political systems
  15. Industrialization
  16. Economics
  17. JSDF
  18. Castles
  19. Japanese calendrical system (there's an article on this, but it's clunky)
  20. Poetry (tanka, waka, haiku, etc.)
  21. Battleship Yamato (the real one)
  22. Development of chounin
  23. Geisha
  24. Yoshiwara
  25. Major cities through history
  26. Kamikaze (as far back as the Mongols)
  27. Ryukyu/Okinawa

Here is the list that CurtisNaito wanted pasted here (I added the very last item although it's now covered). Anything here not mentioned in the article should be added. ミーラー強斗武 (StG88ぬ会話) 22:58, 19 October 2015 (UTC)

As far as I can tell, most of this list was already fully covered in the article even before the list was made, including the entire first two sections. However, I will add in whatever is not already mentioned.CurtisNaito (talk) 23:02, 19 October 2015 (UTC)

 DoneOkay, that appears to be everything.CurtisNaito (talk) 03:54, 20 October 2015 (UTC)

Fast work, decent effort, I have another response prepared. Comments? Prhartcom (talk) 11:04, 20 October 2015 (UTC)
(Edit conflict) I feel ill today (earlier than usual work schedule meant I didn't get as much sleep as I would have liked) so I haven't even looked at this edit yet. And I'm not going to until some other editor I trust weighs in. I think I've corrected enough of CurtisNaito's errors in the last four days four a break from doing so, and given that Sturmgewehr88 specifically said he would revert this edit before CurtisNaito made it, I'd rather wait until he gets back from his wikibreak. Also, I changed the section headings above to standard bold text because they were clearly not meant to be sub-sections of "necessary break" as they appeared in the contents table. Hijiri 88 (やや) 11:09, 20 October 2015 (UTC)
The items on the list were presented as items for discussion, and have yet to be discussed. Slapping them in willy-nilly without discussion is the wrong thing to do. The list pasted above was a single list by MSJ, and they were not the only items brought up for discussion. I stick by my delist as discussion continues to be avoided and held in contempt. The discussions should be in-depth and time-consuming and cannot possibly be worked through properly at this GA reassessment. Purporting to "fix" everything in one go like that is an insult to the intelligence. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 11:37, 20 October 2015 (UTC)
I included in the expansion both the items on the list as well as, I think, all other suggestions made on the talk page. I had been concerned earlier that you thought that some of the items on the list were "totally out of scope", but you clarified above that "that wasn't specifically in reference to that list". However, any of the items I added can be deleted or expanded further depending on the views other users express here. If there are any further ideas for expansion, I'll leave it to other editors to post them. It's possible that this reassessment will not be closed until after the guild of copy editors finishes their copy edit, so I think we have time to wait for other users to make additional suggestions for expansion or deletion of content.CurtisNaito (talk) 11:46, 20 October 2015 (UTC)
So you're confirming what I said—you've slapped everything in from the list willy-nilly in one go so as to avoid even the pretence of discussion. In the face of this sort of contempt, my delist stands. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 11:50, 20 October 2015 (UTC)
However, any of the items I added can be deleted or expanded further depending on the views other users express here. Yeah, except that then if you disagree with the removals or expansions you'll do exactly what you repeatedly did to me in the section above and claim that other users' edits "do not match the original sources as closely as what you had written", even though no reasonable reading of your sources could come to that conclusion. Hijiri 88 (やや) 12:22, 20 October 2015 (UTC)
Well, that was my view, but I still didn't revert your edits. The only thing you added to the article which I deleted were invisible comments, after I had changed the visible text in such a way that made the invisible comment unnecessary.
Concerning the list, Sturmgewehr88 told me directly above to add in anything from the list which was not in the article, and I saw no objection to doing that. If an objection is raised later, we can remove what needs to be removed.CurtisNaito (talk) 12:28, 20 October 2015 (UTC)
Curtis, contrary to what you seem to believe, comments made on the talk page and in the Wikipedia namespace actually count. You accused me of misrepresenting my sources, something for which you have never presented any evidence, while at the same time insisting that you yourself have not done such despite all the evidence to the contrary. You still have not explained what exactly you meant by "forms of waka", forcing the rest of us to draw our own conclusions, by the way. Your source didn't use these words. Hijiri 88 (やや) 12:39, 20 October 2015 (UTC)
I don't believe I ever used the word "misrepresenting" here. I think I generally stick closer to the original wording of the sources than you tend to, and I did quote the relevant passages above to demonstrate that. But rather than talk about article text which has already been changed, why not offer suggestions for article text which can still be added.CurtisNaito (talk) 12:46, 20 October 2015 (UTC)
I know you didn't "use the word". You said exactly what I quoted you as saying: you changed the text in a way which did not match the original sources as closely as what I had written. (And yes -- I know I changed the verb tense and pronoun. You don't need to point that out or claim that I am "misquoting you", either here or elsewhere.) How exactly is "changing the text in a way which did not match the original sources" different from misrepresenting those sources?
Regarding the offering of suggestions for article text which can still be added: My above comment was completely relevant to this. Why would anyone make suggestions for you to expand the article, when your epansions cannot be challenged without false accusations of misrepresenting sources being made against them? Given your track record on this matter, I don't want to actively contribute to making the article worse and thus create more work for me or (worse still) the other users here. I do not think the article's coverage level is the main problem, and virtually everyone else agrees with me on this point.
Hijiri 88 (やや) 13:33, 20 October 2015 (UTC)

The article has been delisted. Consensus is to delist this GA article, determined from the comments. As an uninvolved editor, I am calling this now, as I've heard enough of this 30-day discussion and know there is no hope of resolution between these challengers and this nominator.

I believe that this is just a temporary status; I am expecting a few editors to improve this article according to the sources then renominate it back to GA in due course. This is important, as this is a critical article. At that point, when the article is truly GA, the article will be a good resource for all readers coming to learn the history of Japan.

There is some good work here in the current version of the article. I saw the old version of this article and was surprised when it had been completely transformed. There's nothing wrong with that—I too have deleted and rewritten a GA article—it can be done, as long as the sources are properly represented. If you would allow me to take a moment and applaud the nominator. Whatever you may think of his work, you have to admit, the nominator is a researcher who intends no ill-will; he wishes the best for this article. He has never been very argumentative in comparison to the fierce attacks of the challengers; he is fairly low-key. I would like to ask all challengers to consider the benefits of being low-key.

The challengers have indeed been fierce. Always accompanied by a supporter or three, thier point of view is that the GA process let one article slip by. This turned out to be decided in their favor; the GA process did let one slip by. The strongest discussions have shown a clear consensus to delist, and there is no shame in that. What is most important is the article must meet the GA criteria if it has the GA icon. If it doesn't, then no problem, we just remove the GA icon during this time; a temporary situation.

We have established that more work is needed to ensure this article be an accurate and fair representation of what the expert sources say about the history of Japan. Specifically, I believe that more work is needed in: WP:GACR #2 Verifiable with no original research and #3 Broad in its coverage. I believe the article is fairly well-written, neutral, stable, and illustrated.

I applaud the challengers. They care deeply about the article and want it to succeed. When I asked, they expressed their plan to edit the article and restore it to GA. I understand they have access to sources that are necessary for a project with a scope of this size (remember Curly Turkey's source offer, above). These new primary caretakers of the article deserve a chance to work freely on this project then, without distraction, to accomplish this. If that can be done, the community gains another high-quality article. Best, Prhartcom (talk) 03:27, 21 October 2015 (UTC)