Talk:L. Ron Hubbard

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Former featured articleL. Ron Hubbard is a former featured article. Please see the links under Article milestones below for its original nomination page (for older articles, check the nomination archive) and why it was removed.
Main Page trophyThis article appeared on Wikipedia's Main Page as Today's featured article on March 13, 2011.
On this day... Article milestones
November 7, 2006Good article nomineeListed
June 1, 2007Featured article candidateNot promoted
October 23, 2008Good article reassessmentDelisted
March 5, 2011Featured article candidatePromoted
April 2, 2020Featured article reviewDemoted
September 5, 2023Good article nomineeNot listed
On this day... A fact from this article was featured on Wikipedia's Main Page in the "On this day..." column on September 20, 2023.
Current status: Former featured article

Soup cans[edit]

@Herostratus: To answer your question, yes, soup cans—any and all. They were originally soup cans.

And I don't know whether it was Jim or whether it was me, but somebody thought of soup cans. By increasing the amount of electrode area we might be able to increase the mental read. And so we went out in the kitchen – and I think V8 vegetable juice or something like that; and we got awful tired of that stuff after a while, you know. Because, you know, American Can Company won't sell you just plain tin cans. You've got to go out and... If they do sell you tin cans, they cost as much as a can of soup anyhow, and you can't get them. For some reason or other these big can companies won't sell you cans. Sears and Roebuck at one time had home-canning outfits, and I hoped to be able to get spare cans from them, but we've never been able to run down just plain cans! We've always been going to the grocery store and buying a couple of new brands of vegetable juice or orange juice or something of the sort that were the right size, bringing them home, drinking the stuff down and washing them all out and hooking them onto the meter. Some day somebody is going to permanently paint cans, you know, and they won't have paper on them, and we'll be sunk. [laughter] They don't realize – they don't realize what scientific advance is hanging on this whim. Hey! We'd be out of business at once.

— L. Ron Hubbard, The E-meter : A lecture given on 19 July 1962

Grorp (talk) 03:18, 11 September 2023 (UTC)[reply]

@Herostratus: If you have other suggestions for ways the article can be improved, we need more eyes. Our recent Good Article reviewer had lots of good suggestions that we implemented, but we're a bit at a loss for a way to keep improving. Feedback greatly welcomed. Feoffer (talk) 05:14, 11 September 2023 (UTC)[reply]
I don't have any other concrete suggestions at this time, no. I did notice other some problematical passages tho. A few. It's a very good article. Sorry about being snarky. It is a very difficult subject to write about, and kudos and thanks to the editors who took it upon themselves to do so. It's difficult because the guy was a blackguard apparently, and his church or movement or whatever also sucks. I think that, and you all think that, because of course we do.
Still, we always want the reader to come away with no idea of how we feel about the guy. Let the reader decide what she thinks with no prompting from us. For instance, I recently redacted a lot of an overly-negative section in Jim Jordan. I despise Jim Jordan, but fair's fair.
Hubbard's dead, so we don't have to worry about his feelings or reputation or BLP. But still...
It's just, there's lots of little stuff, and sort of a general tone... "The basic content of Dianetics was a rehash of Psychoanalysis"... we probably wouldn't use that terminology for a guy we liked. "based on" or "similar to" or "a modification of" or something other than "rehash". I don't know if it's a quote, but even if it is, I'm sure there are also quotes available about how it was a "advancement of Psychoanalysis" or something.
I dunno. The guy was an extremely successful person, his book must have been reasonably good to have started all this off, a bunch of people think highly of him apparently... Sure Xenu is made up, but so is the Mormon histories...
The thing about the soup cans is, they were hollow metal cylinders. That is what matters, not what they might have been repurposed from. Lots of things are pretty jury-rigged in prototype. The Apple I had a wooden case. I'm sure the production models used tin rolled into a cylinder or something, soon enough. So why say "soup cans"? It is an actual fact, but maybe a cherry-picked one. If I was getting the vibe "ingenious use of available materials" that'd be one thing, but within the context of the article it feels more like "what a joke".
I dunno. If the reader doesn't form the impression "what an psycho asshole charlatan" then we probably haven't described him accurately, and we don't want to prevent the reader from forming that (accurate, I guess) impression. It's a hard line to walk. Herostratus (talk) 07:10, 11 September 2023 (UTC)[reply]
Fair enough, on the overall general impression and advice. I'd like to add however that people were using soup cans for decades. Each person being audited had to have just the right size of cans that fit their hands. The emeters were sold without cans, or sometimes just one pair of cans, so people were always collecting food cans to supplement their "collection" of different can sizes. Somewhere in the 1990s (I think that was the time frame) the Church of Scientology started offering "sets" of cans, maybe 5 or 6 pairs of cans in different sizes, but the cost of the set became quite expensive. Using food cans was neither unusual nor frowned upon. The "right size" was more important than the provenance of the cans. As long as they were clean, didn't have any sharp edges, and conducted properly, they were acceptable. Somewhere around the time of the Mark VII emeter, the connectors were changed from alligator clips to a push-in style, and store-bought cans went out of favor. The Mark VI still used alligator clips. Grorp (talk) 07:39, 11 September 2023 (UTC)[reply]
Huh. Well butter my buns and call me a biscuit. Soup cans. OK. I figured not, cos it seems that even the first production e-meters had to be made, wired up and soldered together on a breadboard or whatever (granted it was a quite simple circuit I guess), the dials attached, power supply, possibly a cabinet made (could have been from Radio Shack tho), and screwed together or whatever. I figured if you're going to that, you'd roll up a strip of tin to make your cylinders. But I guess not. OK. Well. Sorry. Herostratus (talk) 03:39, 12 September 2023 (UTC)[reply]
I really wanna thank you for your impressions -- I reworded the specific part you cited as biased verbiage ("Rehash of Psychoanalysis"). It's easy to see that that's biased once someone points it out to us, but it's not always easy to see your own blind spots without the aid of others.
Joseph Smith is a perfect analogy, and I would like this article to achieve similar quality, where it doesn't feel unduly "anti-Smith". It's hard needle to thread, but it can be done, and anything else you see that sticks out biases verbiage, please let us know. We have an open peer review request and need all the feedback we can get. Feoffer (talk) 05:09, 12 September 2023 (UTC)[reply]
Alright. It really is quite a good article as it stands. Herostratus (talk) 00:44, 15 September 2023 (UTC)[reply]

Reference 122 [at time of posting][edit]

This reference does not link to a source. A source for the claim that Jung had used an electropsychometer/e-meter "famously" is neither found on Jung's Wikipedia page nor the page for the 'electropsychometer/e-meter', so a link to some source is warranted. Eli.stroud (talk) 22:01, 10 October 2023 (UTC)[reply]

This is the citation which says simply "Jung 1906". I tried to identify what it is supposed to be, but it looks like there are several letters by Jung in 1906. This citation was added by Feoffer in this edit. @Feoffer: maybe you can recall, and can pad out that citation. ▶ I am Grorp ◀ 01:29, 11 October 2023 (UTC)[reply]
Thanks for the ping! Added the full 1906/7 source and also added Urban's 2011 citation of Jung. Feoffer (talk) 02:52, 11 October 2023 (UTC)[reply]

Clarifying lead text[edit]

Some registered user should clarify in the article lead that Mary Sue Whipp was Hubbard's *third* wife, as his first is introduced above her, and 2nd skipped. All that needs to happen is adding the word "third" before Mary Sue's name. 2601:196:180:DC0:F479:CAFC:EAC9:CB1F (talk) 16:12, 15 December 2023 (UTC)[reply]

I don't think that would work as well as you think it might. If we said "One of the indicted was Hubbard's third wife Mary Sue Hubbard; he himself was named an unindicted co-conspirator." then it sounds like he was divorced from her at the time. They were still married. If you were introducing Mary Sue in the article, you might say "Mary Sue, Hubbard's third wife". But this sentence isn't really introducing Mary Sue; it's introducing indictments... to someone near to him. "Thirdness" is introduced in the infobox (top right) and in the body of the article. There's no need to mention it in the lead. Just my opinion.   ▶ I am Grorp ◀ 03:46, 16 December 2023 (UTC)[reply]

Semi-protected edit request on 17 December 2023[edit]

Under Life, In the dianetics era, 3rd paragraph. Second instance of “Hubbard” has an extra b in the word. Giggittygoose (talk) 23:14, 17 December 2023 (UTC)[reply]

 Done Thanks. Liu1126 (talk) 23:18, 17 December 2023 (UTC)[reply]