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A recent wiki of mine (10k link here) was rejected, but I am still quite unconvinced with the rejection reasons.


The wiki read

An old conspiracy theory postulates that the Earth is partially or mostly hollow. Reasons and evidence for this belief vary, as well as what's inside - many supporters believe the Earth harbors a miniature sun.

This theory has been long been debunked, but it is an interesting idea to use in fictional worlds. Questions with this tag focus on terrestrial planets - which include, but are not limited to, Earth - that have a similarly empty internal structure.

Relevant tags include , , , , , and .

More extreme variations on planet structure fit under .

The first rejection reason was

This lacks any usage guidance AND questions tagged hollow earth are not about conspiracy theory, but about building earth-like habitat-planers.

The second reviewer approved, and the third wrote

Not a conspiracy theory, taken up later, more bad science. History inaccurate.


Was the rejection justified - meaning this is truly inaccurate or unclear - or is the wiki fine as-is? I want more opinions because this was rejected 2-1 with only three readers, a narrow margin. Additionally, I thought it was fine, which brings the count to 2-2.

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As the third reviewer, I am prepared to clarify my reasons. Frankly, the tag as written and edited was OK for anyone without any depth of background knowledge of the concept of a hollow earth. Basically, it was adequate, though slightly misleading, and needed improvement.

About improvement, the tag review doesn't allow for comments or suggestions to edit it for improvement. What choice I did have? (a) I could have approved your tag then gone back and edited, or (b) rejected it because, in my opinion, it needed to be improved.

Obviously I chose (a). Now I sympathize with Zxyrra for feeling aggrieved. If I was in his circumstances I would feel so too. Perhaps, more so, and with more justification.

Why you may ask? Because I have read and own a copy of David Standish excellent popular history on the subject.

David Standish, Hollow Earth: The Long and Curious History of Imagining Strange Lands, Fantastical Creatures, Advanced Civilizations, and Marvellous Machines Below the Earth's Surface (Cambridge, MA; Da Capo Press, 2006).

The hollow earth concept has only been added to conspiracy theories in fairly recent times. Roughly, late twentieth century, but prior to that has mainly had a reasonably long history as a piece of pseudoscientific nonsense and the stuff of fantastic adventure romance novels like those of Edgar Rice Burroughs. Originally, it was proposed as a scientific hypothesis by Edmund Halley, no less, for the nature of the interior of planet Earth. (That's right, Mr Comet himself.) Since little was known at that time, this was a reasonable hypothesis to make. If Physical Review had been published back then, it would have easily been published in that august publication.

Sorry, Zxyrra, the weight of history is on my side. The conspiracy theory twaddle is only in current fashion, but it didn't start out as a conspiracy theory. Those wackos have recently abducted it in their Swastikaed flying saucers. My dilemma was whether I should let your tag go through and do an edit myself or give all too brief reasons suggesting, inadequately, where improvement was needed. I recognize the failings and inadequacies of the latter. I acknowledge you were doing the best your could with the knowledge and resources available.

Standish's Hollow Earth is great read. There a lot of fascinating stuff in there including the early history of polar exploration, and he is sympathetic to many of the addle-minded folk who, over time, have embraced various versions of the hollow earth.

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I don't think it's justified.


The first rejection has two main reasons: no guidance usage and these questions are not about conspiracy theories.

However, the following line from the wiki is the "missing" guidance usage:
Questions with this tag focus on terrestrial planets - which include, but are not limited to, Earth - that have a similarly empty internal structure.

and the wiki does not say the questions are about conspiracy theories:
This theory has been long been debunked, but it is an interesting idea to use in fictional worlds... Questions with this tag focus on ... similarly empty internal structure
The question uses similar theories as a base, but it clearly says that this is about "similar structures" and does not claim the tag is about conspiracy theories. It isn't crystal clear, but the meaning can definitely be discerned with more than a skim.


The second rejection also has the not about conspiracy theories arguement, disputed above, and also says history inaccurate.

While sites covering the history of the subject may not be entirely reputable, it is clear that some conspiracy theory does exist with this base. See here.

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I think you should concentrate efforts on how to make the edit better. And I guess it is one of the things you trying to do, at the end.

The problem is how people, who are different than you perceive what you write, and if you would like their approval, you have to write for them, not for yourself.

conspiracy theory - have a strong contextual connotation, and just by striking out one word it will make the edit much better. (All guys pro- and contra- they know who's theory it is)

An old conspiracy theory(belief might fit better) postulates that the Earth is partially or mostly hollow. Reasons and evidence for this belief vary, as well as what's inside - many supporters believe the Earth harbors a miniature sun.

This theory has been long been debunked, but it is an interesting idea to use in fictional worlds. Questions with this tag focus on terrestrial planets - which include, but are not limited to, Earth - that have a similarly empty internal structure.

Relevant tags include physics, gravity, , earth, , and , artificial constructions.

More extreme variations on planet structure fit under .

Probably would strike out that entirely, as I'm not sure if it fits in the nonspherical-worlds tag. The problem is the same as with previous tags, is your description more about theory or about artificial construction or about a magical world where such things can be formed naturally.

I have to say that description is funny enough, and I would be more concerned about tags you think it fits, real word it fits only in artificial constructions

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  • $\begingroup$ I'm gonna run this back through the review que with edits, thanks. However I still think the physics and gravity tags are relevant because at least half of the questions with this tag ask about its feasibility to some extent. $\endgroup$
    – Zxyrra
    Feb 4 '17 at 5:25
  • $\begingroup$ @Zxyrra I doubted to strike the gravity tag, but at the end, it is probably irrelevant, do I really need to see hollow earth questions when I choose to see the questions about gravity itself? Artificial gravity maybe, that would be relevant. Physics, rather not, I see why you may think it is relevant, and it kinda is, same way which physics defines the existence of magic. But do I need hollow earth questions when I select question by tag physics, and if a question about HE specifically asks for physics OP will add the tag not because it is about HE, but because it is about physics. my opinion. $\endgroup$
    – MolbOrg
    Feb 4 '17 at 5:40

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