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Disproved Theory Deletion

I think it would be more useful to keep a theory that has been disproved or illogical but just note that as a sub point. This would prevent someone from reposting the same theory again. --Latca 17:06, 1 December 2006 (PST)

Maybe.. We could have two parts on every theory page, one half with the normal basic theory, and another with proven theories, it could work. --lewisg 16:49, 8 December 2006 (PST)
  • Thanks for saying this, lost of people are just deleting this stuff then the just the next guy comes along and posts it again. --Victorcoutin 10:40, 11 June 2007 (PDT)

policy suggestion

I'm suggesting we change the theory policy to the following format:

  • The theory itself should be stated factually -
  • "Ben is *Him*" rather than "Is Ben Him?" or "Maybe Ben is Him".
  • If there is only one supporting piece of evidence, it should be stated witha link to the episode in parenthesis -
  • Ben is *Him* (2x23 Ben gives orders to the group of Others)
  • If there is more than one supporting piece of evidence, or if there is contrary evidence, each piece of evidence (one for each episode) can go on an indented bullet point - note that I think that rebuttals of theories *should* be allowed if there is supporting evidence -
  • Ben is *Him*
    • For: 2x23 Ben gives orders to the group of Others
    • For: 3x1 Ben tells Ethan and Goodwin to make lists
    • Against: 3x6 [Jacob] is mentioned as a list maker by Pickett
  • If there are a large number of sub-theories they can be organised into sections

--Jackdavinci 13:17, 6 December 2006 (PST)

Disagree

  • I disagree with the use of indented bullet points on article pages. They are simple to use, but they look sloppy, and encourage long-winded discussions that constantly need cleaned up. The use of sub-headers should be actively encouraged. I'd like to see something like the following added to the Theory Policy page:
Worst
Discussion is always bad.
Bad
Needs supporting evidence.
Ok
These are ok, unless a lot more similar points are made.
Best
The use of sub-headers, and references to other sections/articles is encouraged.
  • Ben is him.
    • That is stupid, dude, I think maybe him is a she!
      • Maybe Him is the Monster.
        • I knew a guy in high school nicknamed Monster.
  • Ben is him.
  • Ben is not him.
  • Ben is him, because he told Ethan and Goodwin to make the lists in "A Tale of Two Cities".
  • Ben is him, because he has repeatedly given orders to the Others.
  • Ben is not him, because Jacob was mentioned as a list-maker in "I Do".

Ben is Him

Some fans believe that Ben is Him. Supporting evidence:

  • He told Ethan and Goodwin to make the lists in "A Tale of Two Cities".
  • He has repeatedly given orders to the Others.

For other possible identities of Him, please see Him/Theories.

I don't mind if sub-bullet points are used temporarily by editors to quickly get their points across, but I think we should strive to clean that stuff up and organize into sub-sections, and add references to other pages, etc.--Dagg 13:55, 6 December 2006 (PST)

I think I agree with you stylistically. I was trying to condense things a bit, being used to when theories were at the bottom of the main article page and space was at a premium. But now that theories have their own tab it probably is best organizationally and stylistically to do something like what you suggested. The only question I have is whether to have a section for each theory, or to bundle related thoeries into sections, or to do both and have subsections. And whether to make each point a run on sentence of facts or whether to separate each fact, or each set of facts per episode. I still think it's important to give specific references for supporting evidence with a wikilink to the episode. And I still feel it's important to have both for and against evidence (not that it should take the form of a conversation). In terms of contrasting the current policy, the main changes besides creating a style guide I was going for is to *allow* rebuttal (as evidence points not as a conversation) and to word the speculations policy as pro(must include evidence=theory) rather than anti (looks like speculation=we'll erase it). --Jackdavinci 14:38, 8 December 2006 (PST)
I don't have a chance right now to reply to each of your points, but I do agree with you that supporting evidence is necessary. A theory without supporting evidence is only speculation. I've asked the admin to install Cite.php to help us add these required references to episodes. Once that is installed, then the Template:ref ep template will become very powerful in these regards. Using that new template, editors can just say: "Locke lost the use of his legs when he got hit by a car.{{ref ep|1x19}}", and that would show up as "Locke lost the use of his legs when he got hit by a car.1". After Cite.php is installed, the linked "1" would link to an automatically created footnote at the bottom of the page.

Delete all theory pages for articles?

I have a question in regards to managing "Unanswered questions" and "Theories" for article pages. Captain Insano said he believes that episode articles "shouldn't have a theory page." He has also removed the "Unanswered questions" section I added to an article page, using the argument that they are "stupid" and belong on the character pages instead.

I'd be happy to go with the consensus, but I personally believe that episode pages deserve their own "Unanswered questions" section, and their own "Theories tab". In the past, users were encouraged to put their theories on the article theory pages, so making this decision would be a drastic change in site policy. What do you guys think? Should we delete all the theory pages for articles, and prevent users from creating them in the future (possibly via protection)? --Dagg 22:19, 14 January 2007 (PST)

I never said the questions where stupid they just don't belong. The questions and theories that are on there are about individual events or characters in the epsiode. Which are already on their respected pages. Most of the questions were very broad. I am by no way saying that theories shouldn't be allowed, like you are presenting, but I am saying they don't belong on episode pages. For example, let me break down the I_Do/Theories page:
  • These are the section headings:
  • Jacob
  • Alex
  • Intercom
  • Ben
  • Him
  • Eko's Stick
  • Kate and Sawyer have sex
  • Ben's Surgery
  • Kate makes her choice
  • Jack vs. Sawyer
  • Miscellaneous Kate theories
  • Miscellaneous Theories

Now you can't tell me each one of those headings couldn't fit on a character(s)'s main page. *For example let me show you:

  • Jacob->Jacob/Theories page
  • Alex->Alex/Theories page
  • Intercom->The_Hydra/Theories#Intercom
  • Ben->Ben/Theories
  • Him->Him/Theories
  • Eko's Stick->Eko's Stick/Theories or Mr. Eko/Theories
  • Kate and Sawyer have sex->Sex/Theories and/or Kate/Theories and/or Sawyer/Theories
  • Ben's Surgery->Ben/Theories and/or Others/Theories
  • Kate makes her choice->Kate/Theories
  • Jack vs. Sawyer->Rivalries/Theories and/or Jack/Theories and/or Sawyer/Theories
  • Miscellaneous Kate theories->Kate/Theories
  • Miscellaneous Theories (you have to look at this one)->Other/Theories and/or Hanso Foundation/Theories

Hopefully now you understand what I am truely presenting. If anyone needs any clarification just ask.--CaptainInsano 07:21, 15 January 2007 (PST)

Thanks for helping to clarify your opinions. When you deleted my questions, I was under the impression that you were enforcing a rule on the site or something, but now I see that isn't true. Can you clarify what you are proposing? I am interpreting that you want to move all the article theories to other articles, and then protect the article theory pages. I think this will make it difficult for new users to find a place to add their theories, and they will just repeatedly add their theories to the episode article pages. I think we can save editors a lot of work if we add a link at the bottom of the episode pages that tells people where to add their theories (e.g.: [1]).--Dagg 08:06, 15 January 2007 (PST)
No I am saying that: Episode pages, like "I Do", shouldn't have a unanswered questions section, and shouldn't have a theories pages. Like I have shown above, all the theories have other pages they can be placed if not there already.--CaptainInsano
That is fine, you want to forbid episode theory pages. That seems like a lot of work to enforce. I think it is easier to funnel the new users to a single episode theories page where they can type their theories (this is how the site works now). Every editor who has deleted dozens and dozens of fan theories from the main article pages would understand. This problem is going to come to a head when all the newbies start pouring in next month.--Dagg 08:35, 15 January 2007 (PST)
Okay apparently you don't understand: I DON'T WANT TO FORBID ARTICLE THEORY PAGES, but I DON'T BELIEVE THAT EPISODE PAGES SHOULD HAVE THEORY PAGES. I don't think anyone can argue that I have deleted more theories than anyone. How will this problem come to a head next month? If all the theories are deleted on Episode Theories pages, and then the page is protected. There will be no problem what so ever. Do you know how long it takes to protect a page, couple of seconds. So it will only take a couple of minutes to do it. Are you saying it is easier to have all the dead beat theories one page so they can just be picked off? Because that isn't true. Most theories on espiode theory pages are located on other theory pages as well. How do we funnel new users to a single episode theories page? I have been here longer than you and never have I seen this happen.--CaptainInsano 08:55, 15 January 2007 (PST)
You lost me, because you are yelling something I already understand, and that is what I said. We both have the same goal I think: "reduce the number of theories added to the article pages". Can we agree on that?--Dagg 09:29, 15 January 2007 (PST)
No that isn't what I am saying. I guess I am going to have draw you a picture. I believe the theories on the following pages should be deleted and then the page should be protected:

As you can tell a lot of the pages don't exist, but we can't do to one and not do to another. Do you understand now? Before you answer first try to understand, because my next step of explaining this evolves talking to you like you are a five year old.--CaptainInsano 11:09, 15 January 2007 (PST)

How is that different from what I said?: you want to forbid episode theory pages. I made a mistake when I first hit submit with my earlier post; but you clearly read my corrected text before you submitted your response. I can only conclude that you are having a bad day, or you dislike me for some reason. I am very sorry. I understand it is vey common for misunderstandings to escalate in this medium, so no hard feelings from me. Best of luck, sir.--Dagg 11:49, 15 January 2007 (PST)
Yes you did but still when you know someone is responding to you. Never change something you type. First off it makes them type it again. Second off it really pisses me off.--CaptainInsano 12:02, 15 January 2007 (PST)
This discussion about your mental state is irrelevant. Let us continue the real discussion at hand below. --Dagg 12:16, 15 January 2007 (PST)
I'm not sure I understand the need to get rid of those pages, either. I thought we created those pages as a defense against the barrage of "theories" that were being added to espisode articles- simply because that's the first place people were looking. This way, they don't clutter the main articles, and stay out of sight until someone takes the time to clean them up. If you protect the pages, won't we run into the same problems as before? -BearDog 11:27, 15 January 2007 (PST)
Yes and it used to be like that. But when people add their theories to all the theories pages it is in reference to it sort of takes away the point.--CaptainInsano 11:30, 15 January 2007 (PST)

Straw poll to delete episode theory pages

I think Captain Insano has clearly made his proposal and arguments above. Should we do the following?: "the theories on the episode theory pages should be deleted and then the pages should be protected". Captain Insano has given the full list of episode theory pages above.

  • Disagree - End users are clearly using these pages. When a new episode airs, these pages are some of the most visited and edited pages on the whole site. --Dagg 12:27, 15 January 2007 (PST)
  • Diagree - Some theories relate to events, things, and situations in episodes not easily covered by other articles. Furthermore, it is my opinion, that the freedom to theorize is one of the biggest drawcards of Lostpedia (as opposed to rigid Wikipedia). We don't want to be too anal and turn prospective contributors off. I think theories have anough rules already. --Kivipat
  • Disagree - There are many theories that *are* episode specific, and the ones that are not are already taken off the page as in "For theories on Alex not related to this episode, please see Alexandra Rousseau/Theories." All theories already have their own page/tab and are organized into subsections. There's no need to further nitpick them. Let it go already. Lost is a *mystery* show and theorizing about the mystery is half the point in watching. Lostpedia does not equal Wikipedia. --Jackdavinci 14:19, 15 January 2007 (PST)
  • Disagree- What has already been said is correct. Plus some theories on episode pages, while they could fit on the character or other articles, a person would not know where to look for them and would not immediately see them if looking at a certain episode page. Plus certain theories relate to numerous characters and their actions in a certain episode. Theories like that would seen out of place on individual character pages as they are not just for one character.--Mr.Leaf 14:22, 15 January 2007 (PST)

Consensus - No change in current policy. Given the comments above, and given Captain Insano's comment that other people have already disagreed with this idea in the past. The episode theory pages will not be deleted, and will continue to be used as before.--Dagg 11:29, 22 January 2007 (PST)

Theory talk subpages

This subject was slightly touched upon in the discussions about the creation of the theories subpages, although it was not really discussed. In the end, there seems to be a sort of informal consensus and/or policy to the effect that we don't need a second set of separate talk subpages for the discussion of theories. In other words, discussion of theories takes place on the article talk page, not on a different talk subpage. The theory page template is formatted to that effect: through a link, it directs the discussions of theories to the main talk page. I think I agree with that informal consensus/policy, because having two sets of talk pages might become a mess. However, it's still technically possible to create theory talk subpages and a few such subpages have been created, although that was very probably by error in all cases, mostly from relatively new users not realizing that the discussions go on the article talk pages. As of yesterday, throught the search function, I counted exactly 32 such subpages (a few more may have been added since then). That is a very small number when compared to the number of articles and to the number of theory subpages, so it is a marginal problem for now and easy to fix. But it could get more problematic if we don't pay attention. I suppose we should move the comments from those 32 talk subpages to the appropriate corresponding talk pages, and then delete the 32 talk subpages. That can be done easily. I just wanted to check here if the informal consensus is clear for everybody. -- Cheers 09:20, 8 February 2007 (PST)

I think it is better to use separate talk pages for the main article and the theory pages. The template used on theory pages could easily be modified to direct talk for theories to the correct talk page. Another similar template should be created for the theory talk pages.    Jabberwock    talk    contribs    email   - 07:21, 9 February 2007 (PST)
I don't know. That would bring us back to where we started until sysops apparently decided we should have only one page (which I think is a good idea) and modified that link to direct to the already existing discussion page. I'm afraid that spreading discussions on multiple sets of talk pages would make matters too complicated. I'd rather stick to what we have now and just fix the few pages that have been created while it's still a small number. Otherwise, we would have to do the opposite and start going through all discussion pages to separate stuff relating to theories and move it to theory talk pages. That would be difficult and messy.-- Cheers 07:29, 9 February 2007 (PST)

Rule 6

(Moved from Main Page Talk by BearDog)

I am posting this on the main page simply because I can think of no other place it may go. If you find a place please move it there. A you all know I am vermently opposed to breaks of Rule 6 regarding theoy pages. It seems to be constantly broken by new user who I really feel need to real the rules before they touch something like that, especially seeing as said rules are right on that page. Is there someway to make rule 6 more visible because I'm terrified I'll one day fly off the handle and start a massive flame war and live the rest of my life as a troll. Princess Dharma (banned) 15:19, 20 February 2007 (PST)

You can make a post ten feet tall and blinky, but that won't make a determined theorist read. Why rule 6 more than 3? I'm just curious. Just blow them out as you find them, and try not to take it personally. They'll figure things out if they stick around long enough. -BearDog 15:32, 20 February 2007 (PST)

There isn't even really a rule 6. If you read the theory policy page there is no numbered list of rules. The theory side bar is just one user's attempt at boiling down the theory policies into an easy to digest form. I still think it's better to have good examples than arbitrary proscriptions. --Jackdavinci 17:43, 20 February 2007 (PST)

Rule 6 is the one EVERY NEWB breaks. It states (in case you were unaware that one must not discuss a theory on the theory page. --Princess Dharma (banned) 04:15, 21 February 2007 (PST)

If that's what rule 6 actually said, I would agree with it. As it stands now though, it has the more nebulous wording of "theories should not respond to other theories". In the case of this meaning all theory discussion should go on the theory talk page, of course I agree. In the case of disallowing pros and cons for theories I have to disagree. I think a bigger problem causing theory diarhea to run rampant is that there's no style standards. I'd like to see experienced users writing a few good theories in consice and properly worded formats as good examples to others. --Jackdavinci 05:32, 21 February 2007 (PST)

I definately agree. I am getting sick of seeing theory pages being abused and filled with useless information that is either completely guessed; in response to someone else's theory or just plain giberish. We need to think of a way of stopping this from happening IMHO Princess Dharma (banned) 11:58, 21 February 2007 (PST)

Actually you just go through and delete anything with two *s, most of the stuff isn't a discussion.--CaptainInsano 12:02, 21 February 2007 (PST)

That's kind of what those pages are for. That used to happen to the article pages, so separate theory pages with their own tabs were created to vent that flood away from the articles. You're just noticing the increase, because traffic picked up when the show finally started back up. That's a good thing, because it means the theory tabs are working! :) -BearDog 12:15, 21 February 2007 (PST)

The stuff I deleted was in discussion with other theories. Yes I did look particularly for stuff with more than 1 *. I don't reall care now anyway people are free to screw up theory pages if they so wish. Princess Dharma (banned) 15:29, 21 February 2007 (PST)

Parody

I'm thinking of removing the last line, "While parodic articles are welcome in Lostpedia...". While we might retain existing parody articles by "grandfather clause", as this Theory policy article gets more attention, we should continue adjusting it to keep up with the changing nature of Lostpedia as it evolves. -- Contrib¯ _Santa_ ¯  Talk  14:54, 21 February 2007 (PST)

I agree. I've always said we should document notable external parody, but not be an original source.    Jabberwock    talk    contribs    email   - 14:56, 21 February 2007 (PST)
Not that I'm itching write one, but out of curiousity, what's the concern about having original parodies? -BearDog 15:02, 21 February 2007 (PST)
We want to keep the site encyclopedic. There are other fan sites out there where someone could post or share their own parodies. Allowing original parody just opens us up to having a ton of youtube articles that contain no value.    Jabberwock    talk    contribs    email   - 15:08, 21 February 2007 (PST)
Agree. We can have an encyclopedic article listing notable external parodies, but parodies themselves shouldn't be articles in the regular section. I don't see a problem with people putting parodies on their userpages though. Or something like a Lost drinking game. But if someone makes out of ignorance, we should copy it to their user page with a note about where it belongs rather than just deleting without comment. --Jackdavinci 16:28, 21 February 2007 (PST)

I honestly don't see why any of the theories should appear in as great a detail they do not least the parody ones. Some of that just isn't funny who is Chuck Norris??? Princess Dharma (banned) 16:35, 21 February 2007 (PST)

*GASP* You don't know who Chuck norris is? --Marik7772003 21:09, 22 February 2007 (PST)

Unprotect the page

Why is the page protected if it is nominated for a rewrite? It should be rewritten to have short concise examples. -- Dagg talk contribs4 8 20:59, 21 February 2007 (PST)

  • I did a rewrite a while ago that removes a lot of the unnecessary information about what is canon and what is not. -- Paladine<c.t> 08:31, 22 February 2007 (PST)

No need to protect this page is there? As far as im aware any user is allowed to propose changes to the policy? --lewisg 08:43, 22 February 2007 (PST)

Protected and Needing a Rewrite?

Can someone with the privileges to do so (I believe only a SysOp) either unprotect the page, so I can try to rewrite it, or remove the rewrite nomination from the top? It seems silly (for lack of a better word) that it is nominated for a rewrite, yet 99.9% of the people who could view the page could not rewrite it. Thanks David 17:12, 8 April 2007 (PDT)

  • Yes, as someone who tries to work through the articles nominated for rewrites, this bugs me too to see it sitting there. Having said that, I think that this job is probably best suited to one of our Sysops anyway. Maybe one of you guys could have a crack at it? Or else remove the tag - or simply unlock the page so anyone can have a stab.--TechNic|talk|conts 16:20, 16 May 2007 (PDT)
  • This has been an issue for awhile, I did a rewrite in November and it was protected and in need of a rewrite before that. -- Paladine<c.t> 17:30, 16 May 2007 (PDT)
    • Your rewrite is very good. Concise and tidy - exactly as it should be. Nice work. Hopefully someone will replace the current content with this soon, or at least use it as a model to expand upon. (By the way, I've just noticed what the current version's rewrite tag says: "This page needs: Messy and disorganised to improve it." - made me chuckle)--TechNic|talk|conts 17:48, 16 May 2007 (PDT)

Rewrite

Since the article has been in need of a rewrite for a long time I've applied my update. It was written just after the theory subpages were added. The rewrite contains mostly the same information regarding theories that the previous version did. It removes the parts about what is canon, point of view, and spoilers since these sections were focused on articles not theories. -- Paladine<c.t> 18:59, 16 May 2007 (PDT)

Discussion & Debates on Theory pages

There is still far too much discussion on the theory pages themselves, to the point that it's impossible to keep policing it to remove the debates. As it is, most theory page degrade into being nearly incomprehensible. Suggestions? Perhaps the box needs to be bigger, or people warned on their talk pages? -- LOSTonthisdarnisland 09:13, 29 February 2008 (PST)

Tricky isn't it? A good thing would be to promote the forum more, so maybe a link in the 'rule' box to the forum would be helpful. It's the place for these sort of discussions anyway and they have something of a low profile on this site.--TechNic|talk|conts 15:17, 29 February 2008 (PST)
I think the better thing to do would be to shift discussion about theories to theory talk pages. Everybody's permitted to place their theories on the theory pages (so long as they are logical and consistent), but if a debate gets going that clutters up a theory page, it should be moved over to the talk page for that theory page. Robert K S (talk) 19:32, 9 March 2008 (PDT)
  • I think it's time to accept discussions SHOULD be in the theories page. simply because it's easier to respond quickly that way. maybe we can make a bullet like the one in the begining of my comment, only in red instead of green, to indicate a disscusion rather than a theory. maybe even a way to automaticaly hide them all - like the Contents box in articles. cheers --CharlieReborn 09:27, 21 March 2008 (PDT)
I don't agree. All the discussion makes things a mess. Theores on the theory page, discussion on the theory talk page. --Minderbinder 09:29, 21 March 2008 (PDT)
did you read what I wrote? or just stopped after the first line? I'm suggesting a way to have them on the same page AND keep it organized. so you're wrong, it won't make things a mess. --CharlieReborn 09:32, 21 March 2008 (PDT)
Yes, I read what you wrote. No, I didn't stop after the first line. And I don't agree that your idea would keep things organized, or that discussions are appropriate for a theory page. Please don't assume that just because someone doesn't agree with you, that they didn't read your full comment. --Minderbinder 11:29, 21 March 2008 (PDT)
I didn't assume it becuase you disagreed, I assumed it because you didn't give any supporting explaintion to your disagreement. you just stated you dont agree and repeated what the policy currently says --CharlieReborn 15:50, 21 March 2008 (PDT)
the term "discussion" should be defined more clearly! very often I see theories deleted with replies that someone is considering "discussions", but in most cases they are NOT. a person places a theory, and somebody else responds with a question, or a concern; then the author responds again with explanations or evidences - this is not a discussion, this is a way to polish a theory, and make it easier to understand. in any case, there must be a time, for a content related to new episodes, in which a theory page is not edited for "discussions" (like, a month, or so) untill all theories and views are polished enough. --V-vk 23:28, February 15, 2010 (UTC)
I think more guidance in the Theory template describing the nature of the theory pages would definitely help. A lot of people assume that they are talk pages, which is natural. Some points we could potentially emphasize are:
  • This is not a discussion forum, it is a wiki article. All the content can be freely edited by everyone. You can help improve this page not only by adding theories, but by editing existing theories, combining redundant theories, removing disproven or confirmed theories, or reorganizing.
  • Discussion of the theories on this page should take place on this article's Talk page.
  • Answering Unanswered Questions is a good place to start when developing theories.
  • Keep theories simple; they should be plausible predictions based on available evidence, not fan fiction.
  • Try to cover several possible alternatives, not just what you personally think will happen.
  • If a theory clearly contradicts known information, do not point out the flaw, just remove the theory. Debate over a theory's merits can occur on the talk page.--Hylas 17:47, 25 April 2008 (PDT)
"Discussion of the theories on this page should take place on this article's Talk page." We might want to reword this to make clear that theories are not to be discussed on an article's talk page, but on the article's theory talk page. Article talk pages should be for improvement of the article. Article theory talk pages should be for improvement of the theory pages. And all other discussion can go on the Lostpedia forum. :-) Robert K S (talk) 19:21, 25 April 2008 (PDT)
Yes, definitely. Linking from that point to the theory talk page would help as well.--Hylas 20:19, 25 April 2008 (PDT)
Moving contributions that aren't related to improving the article from the main article's talk page to the theory article's talk page might also be a beneficial practice. It would clean up article talk pages, and at the same time potential get theory article talk pages to be a bit more active.--Hylas 20:25, 25 April 2008 (PDT)
Certainly plugging the forum as a place for general debate would be a good thing.--TechNic|talk|conts 00:32, 26 April 2008 (PDT)

Theory discussion on article talk pages

A number of new users have been posting theories to article talk pages, usually posed as questions. "Do you guys think [X] is Ben's man on the boat?" etc. I made minor edits to the policy page that help to clarify that theories should go on theory pages, not on article talk pages. Does anybody disagree? I'm also going to work on a {{talkheader}} talk page signpost template that may help to notify new users of this point of etiquette. Robert K S (talk) 19:32, 9 March 2008 (PDT)

To the or not the?

"The majority of people who visit the Lostpedia take Lost theories seriously...". Is this "the Lostpedia" or "Lostpedia"? --Blueeagleislander 01:41, 4 June 2008 (PDT)

Empty Theory Pages Linked?

I found a couple of episodes in season 2 where the theory pages are empty. And, linked improperly. Should the links be removed entirely, or corrected to point at the (empty) theory page for that episode? (see Lockdown#Unanswered_questions for an example.) 73rd survivor 07:22, 8 June 2008 (PDT)

Hmmm. Tricky. Those links are created by the Unanswered Questions navigation. So to remove the redlinks, we'd have to remove the whole UQ thing. So my guess is that the simplest solution is to create empty theory pages (just add {{Theorytabtop}} to the pages).--TechNic|talk|conts 07:38, 8 June 2008 (PDT)

Apophenic?

Should extremely apophenic theories, such as this:"The code to Ben's safe - 36-15-28 - is a clue to Annie's identity. Re-group the numbers as 3-6-15-2-8, and use the substitution A=2, B=3, etc. Then we get B-E-N-A-G, Ben AG, where AG stands for Annie Goodspeed." be allowed. --Blueeagleislander 23:40, 15 July 2008 (PDT)

I'd say that the one above doesn't qualify as a theory. It doesn't come with a "because," a "due to," a "therefore," or anything else to lead the reader from premise to conclusion. It is also too subject, unless someone has a copy of the printed script, to the director having said, "Michael [Emerson], dial three numbers and open the door."--Jim in Georgia Contribs Talk 05:56, 16 July 2008 (PDT)

Logical Fallacy

The example of a logical fallacy is incorrect. "Everything that swims in the ocean is a fish" is incorrect, a fact disproved by the final statement about whales. Basically, the example shows that a false statement can be disproved with facts. A real example of a logical fallacy would be:

  • 1. Wood floats.
  • 2. Ducks float.
  • 3. Ducks are made out of wood.

or

  • 1. Ducks float.
  • 2. Boats float.
  • 3. Boats and ducks are made out of the same substance. Jack Dutton 20:03, 18 April 2009 (UTC)

Episode Theory Pages

It is clear that the theory pages for each episode in season 6 are getting out of hand immediately the episode has aired. The problem is they are being used for discussion. Now while this is a good thing in itself, the discussion pages to the theory are not being used. One way to deal with this is to actively remove all rebuttals to theories which do not propose a counter-theory, and at the same time open up a section in the discussion tab where the rebuttal should go.

In addition, we appear to have at least one editor who thinks that no material should be placed on the episode theory page which could conceivably be placed elsewhere. Now while this is a laudable aim, and would certainly clear a lot of material from the episode theory pages, it is clear that this argument could potentially (at this stage) be used to remove everything from the episode theory pages, leaving them completely blank.

What we need is a sensible set of rules for doing this, and in the absence of such a set, I propose:

  • 1. Theories about episodes should effectively be new theories, or at least enhancements of old ones, and not have appeared elsewhere (goes without saying...)
  • 2. The theory should make reference to exactly what, in the episode, has been an instigation for the theory
  • 3. the theory should provide some supporting evidence, or some rational argument and not just be an 'off the top of the head idea', which in fact can be disproven by something which occurred in Season 2.
  • 4. The author of the theory should clarify how this new theory relates to, modifies, nullifies or enhances existing theories about the subject being theorised about. In other words, if this is a new theory about Jacob, the author should ensure that they have read the appropriate theories about Jacob, and can say whether or not this now contradicts what has been said, or whether it has been said before, but now we know it to be true.

If such rules were adhered to, then it does not matter that the theories could be placed elsewhere, what is retained is a record of people's thinking after each episode, and how theories are developing. I think, for future Lost literary archaeologists (of which I believe there will be many) that would be a valuable tool.

Any Other suggestions?

--Sean Sheep 16:46, February 15, 2010 (UTC)

I've created a set of rules that would go on new episode theory pages. It would be removed after a week or two. In regards to your comments:
1. Pictogram voting support We shouldn't just be restating theories.
2. Pictogram voting neutral Not necessarily, if the policy is folowed, most theories would be on character pages, not the episode theory pages.
3. Pictogram voting support That's always been a rule.
4. Pictogram voting oppose This will make the theory page unusable and 3 times as long, with all the justifications that need to happen.
Just some thoughts, cgmv123TalkContribsE-mail 16:59, February 15, 2010 (UTC)
You are still saying what should NOT be on these pages, However, I was trying to say what SHOULD be on them. What, in your view consitutes a legitimat entry on an episode theory page?--Sean Sheep 19:24, February 15, 2010 (UTC)
In my opinion, nothing should be on episode theory pages, but we could put theories about events in the episode that don't go on any one theory page. For example, if someone had a theory about why Jack let Kate go in "What Kate Does", that would be better suited for Jack's page. But, theories about the interactions of Kate and Claire could probably stay on the theory page. (Just a point, it took me five minutes to figure out that example.) Most theories have more appropriate locations than episode theory pages. cgmv123TalkContribsE-mail 23:12, February 15, 2010 (UTC)
Theories about the title of the episode (i.e. LA X) are also acceptable. cgmv123TalkContribsE-mail 23:43, February 15, 2010 (UTC)

Proposed New guidelines for ensuring a coherent episode theory page

Below I propose some amended guidelines specific to episode theory pages


This is an episode theory page, and should contain new material directly relevant to that episode, or material dependent upon events which occur in that episode. The test is "Could your theory have been proposed prior to the episode airing?"

If it could, then your posting may be removed from this page to a more appropriate theory page.

  1. If you wish to create a new theory on this page, create a duplicate heading on the discussion page, so that people can post comments there.
  2. If you wish simply to rebut, refute, agree with or comment on any theory on this page, without actually posting an alternative theory, do so on the discussion page.
  3. If you have evidence which augments the theory, add this evidence to the theory page in a manner which respects the original author's intentions.
  4. If you have an alternative (or completely different) theory about the same topic, post it directly underneath the original. This should be given a separate title to ensure that other readers understand that it is a different theory from the one above.
  5. Original authors should monitor the article they have created. If there are comments and/or other responses appearing on the theory page, move them to the discussion page and reply to them there.
I have placed this on The Substitute/Theories page so that people might conceivably read it before they start posting.
The notice should be removed once we start to get a large number of postings on the page.
I would suggest creating a separate template for episode theory pages, which combines this stuff with theory guidelines.

--Sean Sheep 11:38, February 16, 2010 (UTC)

Pictogram reply I have removed this from the episode theory page as most of it is covered by Template:NewEpTheories. My hope is that if there is less discussion on the theory page, I won't have to move as many theories. cgmv123TalkContribsE-mail 13:02, February 16, 2010 (UTC)

What Exactly constitutes a Theory?

According to Wikipedia:

A theory, (...), is an analytic structure designed to explain a set of empirical observations. A scientific theory does two things: it identifies this set of distinct observations as a class of phenomena, and it makes assertions about the underlying reality that brings about or affects this class.

There have been several occasions when theories have been removed on the grounds that they are not theories, and people have objected. Using the above, it might be useful to have a discussion about how the definition above might relate to theories on Lostpedia.

(1) The identification of 'distinct' observations.

This would seem to suggest that several 'observations' are necessary to form a theory. For example, theories about why Claire called FLocke her 'friend', would need to make reference to other 'observations', presumably either about Claire's behaviour, or Flocke's. Not that these observations should be just that, observations, rather than speculations as to what Claire might be thinking, or what Flocke is trying to achieve. Both of those would be theories in their own right, and would in turn need to be based on observations.

(2) Making assertions about an underlying reality.

The theory should either be 'stand-alone', i.e. be self-sufficient in its own terms, or be consistent with currently accepted norms of behaviour, explanations and/or other conventions, as they appear in the show. That is, the theory should not propose something which totally contradicts something that has gone before, unless it replaces it with a viable alternative. For example "Claire calls FLocke her friend because she is a faerie", is unacceptable because faeries have played no part in the show thus far, so the use of the term here is incoherent. However, if the Theory said: "The voices in the forest are faeries - the souls of the departed; the entire show is a Shakespearian fantasie, a cobbled together amalgam of a 'Midsummer night's dream', 'The Tempest', and "Twelfth Night" with Jacob as Prospero/Orsino, MiB as Arial/Malvolio, and Claire as Viola. Claire was shipwrecked and had been lost in the faerie forest for some time, but has now been taken in by Titania(Danielle) & Oberon(Eko) who are queen & king of the faeries. Danielle(Titania) lost her daughter some years ago, and on finding Claire, assumed this was her, transforming her into fairie form (a nice euphemism for murder if there was one). Both MiB and Jacob (also faeries - no laughter now, keep up!) are attracted to Claire. One day, Jacob meets with Eko in dead seriousness, to ask whether he can approach Claire as a suitor. Eko agrees, but is also aware of MiB's grave feelings towards Claire. Together Jacob & Eko hatch a plot: Eko arranges that MiB finds a (forged) note from Claire, in which she declares that she is 'fatally attracted' to men with facial scars, who carry knives, and have a propensity to leg injuries, and most especially if they are good at making cribs. Following this, Eko administered a sleeping potion to Claire, with the knowledge that upon waking, she will see FLocke hovering over her with a large knife, clutching the upper part of his thigh, grinning inanely. The pair's plan was that Claire would be so horrified by this, thet she would run (or swiftly glide) headlong through the forest (central feature of most Lost episodes) and into the arms of Jacob. However, Danielle overheard the plot, and subverted it by administering a potion of her own, which spiritually bonds into eternal friendship the first person that the sleeper sees on awakening. When she awoke, Claire saw MiB in the guise of Locke, and recognised him, but only as a friend". "Now, that's", as Crocodile Dundee might have said," a theory". Total rubbish, of course, but not totally inconsistent with what has gone on so far in the show. i.e. it cannot definitively be shown to be a false interpretation of events, even thgh it hypothesises events & occurrences not seen, and which are extremely unlikely.


Whether a theorist uses weak/strong/circumstantial evidence should not be at issue here. The hallmark of a theory to me is: "Does it explain stuff I have been watching?" , and, "Is it consistent with what I know and understand?" If the answer to both of these is Yes, then it's a theory as far as I am concerned. If the answer to the first is no, then it shouldn't be posted at all, as it serves no purpose. If the answer to the first is yes & the second is no, then I would expect the theorist to at least give some explanation/justification as to why I should change my current viewpoint to accommodate their new theory. If they can't do that, then the theory should not be posted. And before you write and tell me there is a Theory Policy, yes I have read it, but it only addresses relatively trivial issues, such as not posting "I think... ", making sure you link in to the events of Lost, and stuff like that. The stuff by Blue Eagle Islander is good, but it really only helpful to editors like me in merging/removing/improving all the theories that have been posted in the first place. As far as I can see, we have no clear guidelines as to what is, and is not, a theory. I hope my somewhat perverse example will help in illuminating this discussion. I think it is a theory, but I can hear many others shouting at me that it isn't. If it is not, why not? What is it that disqualifies it as a theory?

--Sean Sheep 15:22, March 1, 2010 (UTC)

Mass renaming of debunked theories (March 2010)

Tonight, as a bit of random housekeeping, I've gone through all the old theory articles. Many of them were written during the summer 2006 hiatus between seasons 2 and 3 and have been heavily, thoroughly debunked by the show's canon in the years since. The majority of these articles need to be renamed to (debunked theory) or deleted outright. A list of theories that have been clearly debunked by seasons 3-6:

These are just the theories that, at a quick glance, are obviously debunked. Several other theories have been largely debunked but are also somewhat true or could be true. These are just the ones I found that need obvious renaming. ShadowUltra 00:55, March 12, 2010 (UTC)

Will get on it. --Blueeagleislander 14:31, March 12, 2010 (UTC)

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