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The Ten Golden Rules for opposing in Featured picture candidates
- Oppose now. Tomorrow there may be a long stack of support votes or the picture may be already promoted.
- Don’t vote if you don’t like the picture but don’t know why, or don’t care about the subject.
- Be solid. Before opposing, calibrate your monitor, be sure you are familiarized with the guidelines and technical terms, and take a close look at existing FP's of the same subject.
- Be consistent, especially on technical grounds. Invoking poor dof to oppose a picture and support another with the same weakness works against your reputation.
- Be didactic. Better say nothing than commenting no wow, nothing special or don’t like it. Explain why you oppose and, if you can, give some advice on how to do better next time.
- Be helpful. If there is something wrong with the image that can easily be fixed, instead of opposing, attempt to fix the problem or notify the nominator.
- Be ruthless. Don't restrain yourself from opposing a picture of a newbie or a less experienced creator. We learn much more from the opposing than from the supporting votes.
- Be brave. Don't restrain yourself from opposing a picture of a sacred cow, or when there is a long stack of supporting votes or when there are nominations of yours in the page.
- Be humble. Change your vote as soon as you recognize that you were wrong.
- Be fair. Oppose the picture, not the author. Arguing that some author can do much better is no valid reason for opposing.
The Platinum Rule
- Don't vote after a bad night, if your dog pissed on the carpet or after receiving the garage bill.
Revising the paradigma
- Three years have passed and I'm no longer happy with these rules. Quality has improved dramatically and we are now faced with the problem of rejecting excellent pictures just because they are only excellent, not exceptional or ... magic ... or inspiring. Three years ago I considered very important to explain why I opposed a nomination; now I consider more important to justify why I'm supporting it. Three years ago I considered inappropriate to justity an oppose vote with "no wow" or "don't like" it; now I found it the least of evils. As I said elsewhere, the default state in FPC is "not promoted". It is the ultimate goal of the forum to identify the nominations whose original state should be changed to "promoted", based on good and consensual reasons; it is not the ultimate goal of the forum to justify why all the others are not worth the star. Of course, pictures can be quickly rejected because of technical shortcomings. But those are just the easy cases...
- In the following days (or weeks or months), I will be preparing a fresh set of "opposing rules" (or maybe of "supporting rules") based on what I believe should be a new paradigma of FPC. Join me if you are interested. Alvesgaspar (talk) 19:33, 24 February 2013 (UTC)
Alvesgaspar, are you still interested in refining your rules? There is some utility I think in sharing them with others. There is much I agree with.
- In addition to looking at FPs of similar subject, it is also worth looking at all similar images on Commons -- i.e., the category. Dschwen's excellent tool for identifying QI/VI/FP images in a category is useful for that purpose. Perhaps this can be summarised by "Review the competition on Commons, and potential peers in FP"
- I'm not keen on the advice to fix someone else's image, and would consider it rude if someone that to my nomination without asking. Most minor technical flaws are better fixed by the photographer, for example in Lightroom, than by someone else opening the JPG and saving it again. And I've seen too many over-enthusiastic noise-reduction "fixes". Fixing the colour temperature, for example, certainly shouldn't be done in the JPG if someone can fix it from raw.
- The corollary to your last point is "Support the picture, not the author. Arguing that the author is much improved is no valid reason for supporting."
- How about something like "Look at the picture: an amazing photograph maybe permitted to have minor technical flaws, but a dull photograph cannot be redeemed by technical competence."
- Thank you, Colin for the comments above. Please remember that this rules are (or were) just a couple of personal notes for helping myself in the reviewing process. They were made in a time when I was much more involved than today. The additional comment I made last year is much closer to what I think now: that a FP is, or should be, an outstanding image among a large number of otherwise just excellent pictures. Thus, rejecting a nomination should be the default. And a support vote should have some kind of rationale behind it. Please go ahead and use the above rules anyway you consider useful for the project. -- Alvesgaspar (talk) 16:25, 17 May 2014 (UTC)