We are careful when reporting on science to make a distinction between an opinion and a fact. When there is a consensus of opinion on scientific matters, providing an opposite view without consideration of 'due weight' can lead to 'false balance meaning that viewers might perceive an issue to be more controversial than it actually. This does not mean that scientists cannot be questioned or challenged, but that their contributions must be properly scrutinized. Including an opposite view may well be appropriate, but we must clearly communicate the degree of credibility that the view carries." — bbc trust 's policy on science reporting 2011 4 see updated report from 2014. 5 While it is important to account for all significant viewpoints on any topic, wikipedia policy does not state or imply that every minority view or extraordinary claim needs to be presented along with commonly accepted mainstream scholarship as if they were of equal validity. There are many such beliefs in the world, some popular and some little-known: claims that the earth is flat, that the Knights Templar possessed the holy Grail, that the Apollo moon landings were a hoax, and similar ones.
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Wikipedia aims to present competing views in proportion to their representation in reliable sources on the subject. This applies not only to article text, but to images, wikilinks, external links, categories, and all other material as well. Paraphrased from Jimbo wales ' september 2003 post on the wikien-l mailing list : If a viewpoint is in the majority, then it should be easy to substantiate it with reference to commonly accepted reference texts; If a viewpoint is held by a significant minority. Keep in mind that, in determining proper weight, we consider a viewpoint's prevalence vba in reliable sources, not its prevalence among wikipedia editors or the general public. If you can prove a theory that few or none currently believe, wikipedia is not the place to present such a proof. Once it has been presented and discussed in reliable sources, it may be appropriately included. See " no original research " and " Verifiability ". Balancing aspects An article should not give undue weight to minor aspects of its subject, but should strive to treat each aspect with a weight proportional to its treatment in the body of reliable, published material on the subject. For example, discussion of isolated events, criticisms, or news reports about a subject may be verifiable and impartial, but still disproportionate to their overall significance to the article topic. This is a concern especially in relation to recent events that may be in the news. Giving "equal validity" can create a false balance see: False balance "When considering 'due impartiality'.
How much detail is required depends on the subject. For instance, articles on historical biography views such as Flat Earth, with few or no modern proponents, may briefly state the modern position, and then go on to discuss the history of the idea in great detail, neutrally presenting the history of a now-discredited belief. Other minority views may require much more extensive description of the majority view to avoid misleading the reader. See fringe theories guideline and the npov faq. Wikipedia should not present a dispute as if a view held by a small minority deserves as much attention overall as the majority view. Views that are held by a tiny minority should not be represented except in articles devoted to those views (such as Flat Earth). To give undue weight to the view of a significant minority, or to include that of a tiny minority, might be misleading as to the shape of the dispute.
3 giving due weight and avoiding giving undue weight means that articles should not give minority views or aspects as much of or as detailed a description as more widely held views or widely supported aspects. Generally, the views of tiny minorities should not be included at all, except perhaps in a "see also" to an article about those specific views. For example, the article on the earth does not directly mention modern support for the flat Earth concept, the view of a distinct (and miniscule) minority; to do so would give undue weight. Undue weight can be given in several ways, including but not limited to depth of detail, quantity of text, prominence of placement, and juxtaposition of statements. In articles specifically relating to a minority viewpoint, such views may receive more attention and space. However, these pages should still make appropriate reference to the majority viewpoint wherever relevant and must not represent content strictly from the perspective of the minority view. Specifically, it should always be clear which parts of the text describe the minority view. In addition, the majority view should be explained in sufficient detail that the reader can understand how the minority view differs from it, and controversies regarding aspects of the minority view should be clearly identified and explained.
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Some article titles are descriptive, rather than being a name. Descriptive titles should be worded neutrally, so as not to suggest a viewpoint for or against a topic, or to confine the content of the article to views on a particular side of an issue (for example, an article titled "Criticisms of X" might. Neutral titles encourage multiple viewpoints and responsible article writing. Article structure further information: wikipedia:Manual of Style/layout The internal structure of an article may require additional attention, to protect neutrality, and to avoid problems like pov forking and undue weight. Although specific article structures are not, as a rule, prohibited, care must be taken to ensure that the overall presentation is broadly neutral.
Segregation of text or other content into different regions or subsections, based solely on the apparent pov of the content itself, may result in an unencyclopedic structure, such as a back-and-forth dialogue between proponents and opponents. 1 It may also create an apparent hierarchy of fact where details in the main passage appear "true" and "undisputed whereas other, segregated material national is deemed "controversial and therefore more likely to be false. Try to achieve a more neutral text by folding debates into the narrative, rather than isolating them into sections that ignore or fight against each other. Pay attention to headers, footnotes, or other formatting elements that might unduly favor one point of view, and watch out for structural or stylistic aspects that make it difficult for a reader to fairly and equally assess the credibility of all relevant and related viewpoints. 2 due and undue weight neutrality requires that each article or other page in the mainspace fairly represent all significant viewpoints that have been published by reliable sources, in proportion to the prominence of each viewpoint in the published, reliable sources.
Remove material only where you have a good reason to believe it misinforms or misleads readers in ways that cannot be addressed by rewriting the passage. The sections below offer specific guidance on common problems. Naming see the wikipedia:Article titles policy for more on choosing an appropriate title for an article. In some cases, the choice of name used for a topic can give an appearance of bias. While neutral terms are generally preferable, this must be balanced against clarity. If a name is widely used in reliable sources (particularly those written in English and is therefore likely to be well recognized by readers, it may be used even though some may regard it as biased.
For example, the widely used names " Boston Massacre " teapot Dome scandal and " Jack the ripper " are legitimate ways of referring to the subjects in question, even though they may appear to pass judgment. The best name to use for a topic may depend on the context in which it is mentioned; it may be appropriate to mention alternative names and the controversies over their use, particularly when the topic in question is the main topic being discussed. This advice especially applies to article titles. Although multiple terms may be in common usage, a single name should be chosen as the article title, in line with the article titling policy (and relevant guidelines such as on geographical names ). Article titles that combine alternative names are discouraged. For example, "Derry/Londonderry "Aluminium/Aluminum" or "Flat Earth (Round Earth should not be used. Instead, alternative names should be given due prominence within the article itself, and redirects created as appropriate.
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When editorial bias towards one particular point of view can be detected the article needs to be fixed. Indicate the relative prominence of opposing views. Ensure that the reporting of different legs write views on a subject adequately reflects the relative levels of support for those views, and that it does not give a false impression of parity, or give undue weight to a particular view. For example, to state that "According to simon wiesenthal, the holocaust was a program of extermination of the jewish people in Germany, but david Irving disputes this analysis" would be to give apparent parity between the supermajority view and a tiny minority view by assigning. Achieving neutrality see the npov tutorial and npov examples. As a general rule, do not remove sourced information from the encyclopedia solely on the grounds that it seems biased. Instead, try to rewrite the passage or section to achieve a more neutral tone. Biased information can usually be balanced with material cited to other sources to produce a more neutral perspective, so such problems should be fixed when possible through the normal editing process.
For example, an article should not state that "genocide is an evil action but it may state that "genocide has been described by john x as the epitome of human evil." avoid stating seriously contested assertions as facts. If different reliable sources make conflicting assertions about a matter, treat these assertions as opinions rather than facts, and do not present them as direct statements. Avoid stating facts as opinions. Uncontested and uncontroversial factual assertions made by reliable sources should normally be directly stated in wikipedia's voice. Unless a topic specifically deals with a disagreement over otherwise report uncontested information, there is no need for specific attribution for the assertion, although it is helpful to add a reference link to the source in support of verifiability. Further, the passage should not be worded in any way that makes it appear to be contested. A neutral point of view neither sympathizes with nor disparages its subject (or what reliable sources say about the subject although this must sometimes be balanced against clarity. Present opinions and conflicting findings in a disinterested tone.
the information contained in them fairly, proportionately, and as far as possible without. Wikipedia aims to describe disputes, but not engage in them. Editors, while naturally having their own points of view, should strive in good faith to provide complete information, and not to promote one particular point of view over another. As such, the neutral point of view does not mean exclusion of certain points of view, but including all verifiable points of view which have sufficient due weight. Observe the following principles to achieve the level of neutrality that is appropriate for an encyclopedia: avoid stating opinions as facts. Usually, articles will contain information about the significant opinions that have been expressed about their subjects. However, these opinions should not be stated in wikipedia's voice. Rather, they should be attributed in the text to particular sources, or where justified, described as widespread views, etc.
All encyclopedic content on wikipedia must be written from a neutral point of view npov which means representing fairly, proportionately, and, as far as possible, without editorial bias, all of the significant views that have been published by reliable sources on a topic. Npov is a fundamental principle of wikipedia and of other wikimedia projects. It is also one of wikipedia's three core content policies; the other two are ". Verifiability " and no original research ". These policies jointly determine the type and quality of material that is acceptable in wikipedia articles, and, because they work owl in harmony, they should not be interpreted in isolation from one another. Editors are strongly encouraged to familiarize themselves with all three. This policy is non-negotiable, and the principles upon which it is based cannot be superseded by other policies or guidelines, nor by editor consensus.
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"wikipedia:Point of view" redirects here. For resume the essay on how to describe points of view, see. Wikipedia:Describing points of view. For raising issues with specific articles, see the npov noticeboard. For advice on applying this policy, see the npov tutorial. For frequent critiques and responses, see the npov faq. For the template, see, template:pov.