Vlad (Basarab) of Wallachia profile not meeting pre-1500 profiles standard

+9 votes

On 28 Oct 2020 Andreas (Basso) West wrote on Basarab-11:

The page is done nicely, I fully agree but I wonder where the sources are for the dates and locations. Am I wrong that this profile is sub-standard for pre-1500 profiles? If all it takes is to link to a Wikipedia article then anyone can add hundreds of pre-1500 profiles as well. I think we're giving the wrong impression with this profile here on how much has to be done in the sourcing of pre-1500 profiles.

WikiTree profile: Vlad III of Wallachia
in Genealogy Help by Andreas West G2G6 Mach 7 (77.9k points)
retagged by Andreas West
Please add pre-1500 to the tags on your question so that the appropriate eyes see it.

2 Answers

+5 votes
I think you may be missing that Wikitree and Wikipedia being "cousins" they are not finding a need to relist all the primary and secondary sources that are found under "References" on the Wikipedia site .  Many of those seem to absolutely meet pre-1500 qualified.
by Loretta Morrison G2G6 Pilot (182k points)
Again, it that's all what it takes then why do we have such a demanding pre-1500 certification?

Exactly, because pointing to a Wikipedia article isn't enough, even if that article has a link to sources.

Certainly on Wikipedia itself, Wikipedia (or MEDLANDS for that matter) are not acceptable sources.

I think in practice Wikitree has often accepted Wikipedia articles as a source, and I think this is not totally crazy, though it should indeed raise some concerns.

As I think there is no clear policy, I'll explain what I tend to do.

  • I would only think of using Wikipedia if the article was clearly well-made and researched and had good-looking sourcing etc.
  • If I could check the sourcing myself, I would do that instead. In fact, I would probably then edit both Wikipedia and Wikitree while I am looking at a group of sources.
  • I would tend NOT to use Wikipedia for specifically genealogical information. Because Wikipedia is definitely not focussed on genealogy (this is even a policy, so as a Wikipedia editor I also do not add much of such information) but Wikitree is. So I would be tempted to use Wikipedia for basic historical events, like the date of a battle. 

I'm sure I've broken these principles, but this would be with the idea that the article needs better sourcing in the future.

+9 votes
You can't see it directly because the profile was renamed but this profile was initially created in 2011, five years before pre-1500 certification was required.

I agree that this profile would not pass muster now, but since it exists the (rare) volunteers who are willing to work on this profile had to make do with the sources they could find.
by Isabelle Martin G2G6 Pilot (586k points)
Ok, but again this doesn't stop us (or me in this case) from flagging this article for insufficient sources.

Especially as this was a featured article and read by many, Abby even left a comment one week ago but it seems no one checked it or made improvements before publishing it.

Hi Andreas, when I see something as a featured profile, I take it to mean the profile is one that our members are or have been collaborating on. Remember, this is a wiki, so profiles are never "complete" or "published"—I'm sure those working on the profiles of Vlad the Impaler and his family would be grateful if you can point them towards other useful sources. There's a G2G discussion about him here if you are interested.

It can be a challenging task finding sources for profiles like this that were created before the current guidelines and standards for pre-1500 and pre-1700 profiles. And medieval Transylvania isn't an easy topic to research. I think our members do a great job!

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