Forum:Capitalisation policy

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This thread was archived on 12 October 2011 by Suppa chuppa.

I propose a policy for capitalisation be added to the Style Guide under section 4: Grammar and spelling. There currently exists a policy for capitalisation regarding article titles, but not for article contents, and not everyone has the same opinion when it comes to capitalisation, so I think a policy should be created to which can be referred when correcting articles. It all comes down to determine what is considered a proper noun and what not.

This is a proposal Gaz Lloyd came up with that I agree with:

  • All item names, and most monster names, are normal nouns - that is, always lowercase (except at the beginning of a sentence etc): helm of neitiznot is the example, despite it containing the place name Neitiznot, it's still lowercase (may or may not have anything to do with the system Jagex uses to store names)
  • All place names, NPC names, quest names, task names, (etc) and skills are proper nouns - always uppercase, per ingame (also certain monsters, like Sigmund, Nomad, King Black Dragon ("the King Black Dragon is a black dragon")).
  • Care is to be taken in certain cases, in places where the name is a verb, like mining, smithing, fletching, etc. "The queen can be smooshed by mining the pillar, requiring level 10 Mining."
  • Other things should have UCS applied on a case by case basis. Normally easy to work out what to do.

My contributionsTHARKONSignatures I made 17:02, September 9, 2011 (UTC)


Support last three, oppose first - The latter three of your proposal are fine, but if I were to see helm of neitiznot on an article, I'd be jumping to capitalise it. It just looks completely wrong to me. Ronan Talk 18:32, September 9, 2011 (UTC)

That's how its done ingame, and the primary goal of what I do (which is the basis of the above points) is to follow what is done ingame. I believe we deduced/accepted/something that Jagex has similar system to us, in that the first letter of the first word is always capitalised by the software, not necessarily intentionally - hence the first point. Also, its nicer to the eye to not having every item mentioned uppercase. Quest.png Gaz Lloyd 7:^]Events!99s 19:33, September 9, 2011 (UTC)
Further evidence that items are only capitalised on the first word ingame: Grand Exchange - Morrigan. My contributionsTHARKONSignatures I made 15:11, September 10, 2011 (UTC)

Comment - I should note about point 4 that sentences like that can often be reworded to evade using "mining" ("The pillar can be mined..." etc), but good to make a mention of it. Also, if the skill has not been linked on the article yet/for awhile, only uppercase uses should be linked, if possible. Just some more thoughts. Quest.png Gaz Lloyd 7:^]Events!99s 19:33, September 9, 2011 (UTC)

Agreed. My contributionsTHARKONSignatures I made 14:36, September 10, 2011 (UTC)

Support -Per Above Hair 22:02, September 9, 2011 (UTC)

Partial Support - It makes me twitch how the casing is so mixed up sometimes, but I think we should go for true proper grammar. "Mining" is not a proper noun, skill or not, and should be lowercase. Here is a wonderful page that explains grammar capitalization in the english alphabet. In all honesty, though, helm of Neitiznot should be capitalized as such, I think, since grammar-wise, that's the correct way to do it, and I would say Jagex made a mistake. Though all in all, I definitely agree we need a policy about this. Hofmic Talk 22:24, September 9, 2011 (UTC)

Interesting how you capitalized Neitiznot but did not capitalize English. The helm's name might be a mistake on Jagex's part, but unless they fix it, we shouldn't either. "A proper noun or proper name is a noun representing a unique entity." (source) So you're saying there can be multiple minings? My contributionsTHARKONSignatures I made 14:36, September 10, 2011 (UTC)
Capitalization is not an aspect of grammar. (wszx) 01:43, September 10, 2011 (UTC)
That's still the best place to put it, unless you propose we dedicate an entire section to it? Also from a computer's perspective a and A are as different as a and b, one bit. My contributionsTHARKONSignatures I made 14:36, September 10, 2011 (UTC)
@Al - Mining might not be a proper noun, but it is the name of a skill, and all names are capitalized. But that would only apply when the word is referring to the skill, not to the action.  Tien  14:55, September 10, 2011 (UTC)
Fair enough to consider capitalization not being grammar: it's more of a section of its own. However, there are commonly accepted "rules" of capitalization:
  1. Capitalize all proper nouns. Proper nouns name a specific item; people, places, and things. Common nouns do not do that and should not be capitalized (eg, Guthix, pizza, Hofmic, Varrock, fairies)
  2. Capitalize titles when it precedes a name, but not when alone (eg, Lord Hofmic; lord)
  3. Capitalize compass directions only when they refer to a specific area, NOT when they're adjectives (eg, I live in the North; Go south three blocks)
  4. Capitalize all words in titles except small words such as "a", "as", "if", etc (eg, "Live Free or Die Hard"; "Pirates of the Caribbean")
  5. Capitalize names derived from proper nouns (eg, English, which is derived from England)
But the whole argument about skills, that is complex. Technically, "mining" would would generally be a verb, but as a skill, it is a noun. However, whether it's a common noun or proper noun remains to be seen. If it would be considered proper, it should be capitalized. Item names, suffer the same issue. So from the original proposal, we'd have to decide how exactly we'd define the difference between proper and common nouns. Personally, I suppose I'm fine with it as defined in that proposal. Knowing full well we are not wikipedia, they do have quite a nice capitalization guide (plus the page there on capitalization. As a totally unrelated comment, should we create such a policy, we should refer to "capitalization" with the British spelling in this policy. Hofmic Talk 22:49, September 10, 2011 (UTC)
I believe capitalization is the American one, cause my spellchecker is set to US English and considers capitalisation wrong and capitalization right. Anyway, yes, the main problem is deciding what nouns are proper, I don't think anyone would disagree the skillnames are nouns, although they have homonyms that are verbs. My contributionsTHARKONSignatures I made 00:21, September 11, 2011 (UTC)
Gah, fail me. You are correct. The problem with us Canadians is we can never decide if we want to speak "American" or "British". Lol Hofmic Talk 00:32, September 11, 2011 (UTC)

Comment - Although I don't agree with it, it has been decided on the Guthix page that pronouns referring to It also be capitalized. This might be worth mentioning in the policy. My contributionsTHARKONSignatures I made 15:03, September 10, 2011 (UTC)

Well, Guthix is a god. You'll note that it's considered proper to do so when referring to real life gods too. Hofmic Talk 22:49, September 10, 2011 (UTC)
Not that I know of, but I don't refer to deities that often outside of fantasy settings for obvious reasons, and other than the aforementioned page I haven't seen any document capitalize references to deities in RuneScape or in other games. "DISCLAIMER: The views of Saradomin do not reflect the views of Jagex Ltd or its employees. We tried to stop him saying anything controversial, but he is a god."[1] My contributionsTHARKONSignatures I made 19:25, September 14, 2011 (UTC)

Support all 4 - Also worth mentioning - while skills like Magic and Ranged should be capitalized, "melee" should not be. sssSp7p.pngIjLCqFF.png 19:01, September 10, 2011 (UTC)

Melee isn't a skill. My contributionsTHARKONSignatures I made 21:18, September 11, 2011 (UTC)
Hence my comment..sssSp7p.pngIjLCqFF.png 22:28, September 11, 2011 (UTC)
Also - I strong support naming items after their name in-game. I think #1 should say that instead of "all lowercase". sssSp7p.pngIjLCqFF.png 22:51, September 17, 2011 (UTC)
I don't think I made myself clear, so I'm starting again. Support the last 3, the first one, however, I will only support if it's changed to "All references should be based on the monster/NPC/item name". We name our files by the name of the item exactly. We name our articles by the name of the item exactly. The text within the articles should follow suit, having it different would just be stupid and terribly ugly. sssSp7p.pngIjLCqFF.png 21:29, September 27, 2011 (UTC)

Support all. I hate it when I see a sentence like "Bring the three Buckets to Reldo". But a question: what to do about Clan Chat, Friends List, Emotes, and other interfaces? There are several differences in this ingame. White partyhat old.png C Teng talk 19:08, September 11, 2011 (UTC)

My first thought would be that emotes are proper nouns when specifically referring to the emote, similar to skills. "The Clap emote allows you to clap your hands and the Bow emote allows you to make a bow." The bold words in this sentence would be, in order, proper noun, verb, proper noun, common noun. My contributionsTHARKONSignatures I made 21:18, September 11, 2011 (UTC)
Oh, right, agreed. But what about the interface titles themselves? For example, do we refer to them as Emotes or emotes? Perhaps we refer to the interface screen as Emotes but the items within the interface as emotes? And what about Clan Chat / clan chat, Worn Equipment / worn equipment, etc? White partyhat old.png C Teng talk 21:54, September 11, 2011 (UTC)
After a small discussion with some friends and a look at the ingame windows I'd say they're treated as proper nouns ingame since every word starts with a capital letter, not just the first. Examples: Quest Journals, Worn Equipment, and surprisingly Jump For Joy. These are even weirder though: Toggle Number of Mouse Buttons, Auto Retaliate and Manual Setup, and the following conflicting ones: Join Clan Chat channel, Join Clan Channel and Join your clan chat channel. and Toggle Accept Aid vs. Accept aid. Although in the latter it can be interpreted as that the Accept Aid function can be used to accept aid. I also noticed that items still start with a capital letter if another word is before it, like Take Tomato seed. My contributionsTHARKONSignatures I made 15:36, September 12, 2011 (UTC)
True, RuneScape has a lot of conflicting cases like that. I think when conflicts of the such occur, just go with lowercase. It seems more correct. For example, "Tomato" is an item in the real world, yet most certainly not a proper noun. Hofmic Talk 16:17, September 12, 2011 (UTC)
Hmm, we should go by the uniqueness factor, there are multiple tomato seeds but only one Accept Aid feature. And perhaps Clan Channel and Clan Chat are synonymous and since Clan Chat is a still a channel it could be the Clan Chat channel. Doesn't explain the Join your clan chat channel. line though. I wouldn't call Number of Mouse Buttons a unique feature though, but maybe Jagex does. My contributionsTHARKONSignatures I made 21:46, September 13, 2011 (UTC)
Let's be honest here, Jagex makes mistakes. They've had lots of spelling issues, grammar errors, and typos in dialogue, the game guide, etc in the past that went unfixed for months. I'm willing to bet they don't have any standard or guideline for casing either. Thus, I don't really think we have to follow their casing, which more likely than not is just what the programmer/translator felt like typing. Hofmic Talk 22:51, September 13, 2011 (UTC)

Support - I'm a dumbass when it comes to anything with writing/spelling/grammar... I'm an all out maths guy :P Per everyone, let's get everything fixed up RSN: Warthog Rhys Talk Completionist's cape... Coming soon. 21:59, September 11, 2011 (UTC)

Strong support, especially for #1. When I'm actively editing (which I'm not at the moment, mind you, I only saw this thread and decided that it really needs my contribution), I frequently have to correct editors who miscapitalize things, especially at the beginning of an article. You'll see things like "The Abyssal whip is..." all the time, when "abyssal" should be lowercase. The proposed rules are in line with those I abide by when I'm writing an article, and I'd be happy to see them institutionalized. --Andorin (Talk) (Contribs) 22:59, September 13, 2011 (UTC)

Support for the last three The first one is bad. It should be titled by the name as in RuneScape. Youdead0002:24, September 15, 2011 (UTC)

In-game, when the name is not the first thing in the "sentence" (if you count mouseover/right click as sentences"), most item names are lowercase (examples: [[:File:Casket Found.png|"casket"]] [[:File:Exhausted silver ore.png|"silver ore"]] :File:Glory recharge.png|"rings of wealth and amulets of glory" :File:Golden Cracker message.png|"golden cracker" [[:File:Golden Pyramid.png|"golden pyramid"]] - many more in this category if you care). As a counterpoint, some are not (:File:AdzeKingdom.png|"Inferno Adze"), though as usual Jagex is inconsistent with itself (the inferno adze itself has a lowercase a). How it is in-game varies with where you look, sometimes. Quest.png Gaz Lloyd 7:^]Events!99s 20:53, September 15, 2011 (UTC)
Wow. You are far less lazy than myself. White partyhat old.png C Teng talk 02:23, September 16, 2011 (UTC)
Even if Jagex is inconsistent we should come up with a rule, to avoid edit wars. It seems all items have one capital when in item form, but in other texts they are treated as being what they are, proper or not. I assume items like the Inferno Adze are items that are considered to be one of a kind (even though every player can get one, but that's just to keep the game fair), examples of other items that may behave like this are the Ivandis Flail, Godsword, Barrelchest Anchor and most ancient warrior's equipment. My contributionsTHARKONSignatures I made 23:13, September 16, 2011 (UTC)

Comment Not willing to vote on the policy in general, but regarding Mining v. mining: I believe Mining should be capitalized when used as a skill's name,as in"requiring 30 Mining," but not in cases such as "your mining skill," a consideration parallel to that of words such as Mom and my mom. — WTE80 talk 02:34, September 15, 2011 (UTC)

We probably should avoid phrases like "your mining skill" altogether. As it could refer to your ability to mine or your possession of a skill used for mining. My contributionsTHARKONSignatures I made 23:13, September 16, 2011 (UTC)

Partial support, as follows - Item names containing proper nouns, such as helm of Neitiznot (Neitiznot) and [[mask of Dragith-Nurn]] ([[Dragith-Nurn]]) mask of Dragith Nurn (Dragith Nurn) [A proofreader 09:47, September 17, 2011 (UTC)], should have the place or NPC name it contains capitalised, otherwise support. For the place, NPC, quest and task names, support. Verbs describing actions should be lowercase (except at the start of a sentence, obviously), but references to skills and skill levels should have the skill name capitalised as in-game ("You need a Mining level of 105 to open this door.", "Congratulations! You just achieved Firemaking level 75!", item skill requirement displays in the Grand Exchange that say "Requirements: Level 75 Prayer, Level 75 Defence" etc.) A proofreader 09:45, September 17, 2011 (UTC)

The problem is that this would create inconsistency between the article and its title since there already is a policy for article titles that dictates it should be Helm of neitiznot, otherwise I'd agree. My contributionsTHARKONSignatures I made 19:57, September 17, 2011 (UTC)
Yeah, that's a bit of a problem. But it can be fixed by having redirects like there are now, and having introductory paragraphs like "The Mask of Dragith Nurn (in-game: Mask of dragith nurn) is ...". Thoughts? A proofreader 20:42, September 17, 2011 (UTC)
Eh, oppose that. Items should be named after their in-game item inventory name. This would kill all confusion your case would create. sssSp7p.pngIjLCqFF.png 18:55, September 21, 2011 (UTC)
Is inconsistency a big problem, I don't like it, but it seems the most acceptable solution at the moment. My contributionsTHARKONSignatures I made 22:14, September 21, 2011 (UTC)
Orrrr we could just stay consistent with the article title. X_X sssSp7p.pngIjLCqFF.png 22:27, September 21, 2011 (UTC)
I get irked easily, I suppose. I see a problem when an obviously proper noun is not used correctly. The latest example of that, as of this writing, is Shards of armadyl (Armadyl). I agree that the article's title should be as in-game, with redirects as appropriate (Shards of Armadyl), but in the article's text, the wiki is not bound by the need to satisfy queries by name as much as it is for article titles. Also, Armadyl is a god, but what is an armadyl, and how do we make shards out of it? :)  a proofreader ▸  16:39, September 22, 2011 (UTC)
Agreed, but it doesn't seem we can get any right way of to do it without Jagex changing the way items are named, so we have to see which way is the least wrong. My contributionsTHARKONSignatures I made 18:39, September 23, 2011 (UTC)

Neutral - Wowee, what a heated discussion... EvilEvil I'd think Jagex is in charge of the names, and for the convenience of visitors it would be lowercase when it is in the game. (In game: Mask of draginth nurn)->(If this passes: Mask of Draginth Nurn). However, search results/SEO do not mind about capitalization ([[google:larry page|larry page]] is [[w:Larry Page|Larry Page]]), so it is okay to capitalize it, along with the grammar rules. --中亚人/中亞人 (Chinasian/Jeffwang16) 跟我谈话 00:33, September 25, 2011 (UTC)

  • Support most - per User:Hofmic - go with the WP capitalization guide. That would allow us to follow the in-game mis-capitalizations for article titles, if we so wish, per User:A proofreader. Rich Farmbrough, 12:24 26 September 2011 (UTC).
    I just remembered a previous discussion - one of the tricky points is that some stuff is putatively unique (therefore possibly deserving of a proper name) but actually can be owned by many people, sometimes even - by the drop trick - you can have more than one yourself. Rich Farmbrough, 12:31 26 September 2011 (UTC).
Despite the drop trick, things like Excalibur are from a legend or otherwise where the item is unique, and when talking to the Lady of the Lake to reclaim Excalibur, the chat option you must choose is "I seek the sword Excalibur." So you would have Excalibur, not "an Excalibur", but maybe you would have "an excalibur" if you used the drop trick. Or "another copy of Excalibur"... It would be very wise to define in the capitalisation policy what should be a common noun and what should be a proper noun!  a proofreader ▸  16:33, September 26, 2011 (UTC)
Well, Excalibur is a proper noun, so it'd be capitalized, even though you can get multiples of it (which is technically unintended), since it's the specific name of a sword. Likewise for Darklight, Silverlight, and Keris. Hofmic Talk 02:54, September 27, 2011 (UTC)
What about the Godsword? Only one blade exists officially, although multiple hilts. I wanted to mention this because it is one the few unique items to have a name composed of multiple words. My contributionsTHARKONSignatures I made 09:19, September 27, 2011 (UTC)

Comment - Looking at RuneScape from a purely narrative viewpoint, the island village of Neitiznot (named after King Neitiznot) is saved by a single adventurer who is awarded the very helm belonging to Neitiznot himself. But because this game is an MMORPG, multiple people experience the events that take place on Gielinor, and obviously these events have to "occur" many times to let multiple people play through them. Duplicates of unique items must be created for multiple people to obtain them. This is when Helm of Neitiznot becomes Helm of neitiznot; it is no longer a unique item once you realize you're playing an MMORPG and the helm is merely an object.

In case you haven't noticed, I'm only talking about items with proper nouns in their names (Helm of neitiznot, Mask of dragith nurn). Anyway, a possible guideline: when appropriate, capitalize the name of an item when referring to it in a historical article or section (e.g. Fifth Age). When referring to it as an in-game object, like in an item article or a guide, it would not be capitalized. For example:

In the Fifth Age, the adventurer saved Neitiznot from the ice trolls and was given the helm of Neitiznot as a reward.
Oh no! Should helm be capitalized here?
The helm of neitiznot provides decent Prayer and Stength bonuses.
Oh no! Do Prayer and Strength refer to the skills (in which case they should be capitalized) or to the actual bonuses listed in the equipment screen? If it's the latter, should they be capitalized?

This might be too confusing though. Plus, I don't know if items like Helm of neitiznot or Mask of dragith nurn are even mentioned in historical articles (I made up the sentence above), so this guideline might not be applicable anyway.

My two cents' worth of rambling.  Tien  23:02, September 28, 2011 (UTC)

This. White partyhat old.png C Teng talk 01:07, September 29, 2011 (UTC)
With "Prayer and Strength", you raise another valid point. Maybe "Strength bonus" should be for levels, like The super strength potion gives a 15% bonus to Strength, and "strength bonus" should be for the little bonuses in the equipment interface, like The abyssal whip gives an 82 bonus to strength?  a proofreader ▸  01:15, September 29, 2011 (UTC)
Okay, now we're starting to get silly. Strength, when being referred to as the skill (which includes bonuses), is capitalized. White partyhat old.png C Teng talk 01:12, September 30, 2011 (UTC)

Comment - It depends on what is capitalized, as pointed out earlier. If someone says: "Hey, do you have a tinderbox?" it is not capitalized. If someone says: "Take the Tinderbox" it is capitalized. Also, check quick chat to see if certain phrases are capitalized or not. Youdead0016:25, October 4, 2011 (UTC)

Support - Only problem I have, is that I think items with place/NPC names in their item name should have the proper noun capitalised (i.e. helm of Neitiznot). Apart from that, complete support. Small recharge gem.png AnselaJonla Slayer-icon.png 16:40, October 4, 2011 (UTC)

Notice of intent - There is a consensus for the last three points, but the first point (dealing with items) is a stickler. It seems that the following would satisfy the most people in dealing with items: When the item name occurs in the middle of a sentence, the first letter should be lowercase unless the first word is a proper noun or unless there is a case in which the item's name in-game in a sentence (such as in the images that Gareth linked to above) is capitalized. So, for example, an appropriate sentence by this rule would be "Players should bring a helm of neitiznot, a Bandos chestplate, an Inferno Adze, and an amulet of glory." Are you guys somewhat satisfied with that? --LiquidTalk 02:03, October 11, 2011 (UTC)

adze. --Iiii I I I 02:05, October 11, 2011 (UTC)
Okay, fine. For this, I suppose I should have used the in-game name. --LiquidTalk 02:10, October 11, 2011 (UTC)
wait, why is Adze capitalised? --Iiii I I I 02:11, October 11, 2011 (UTC)
That sounds good. sssSp7p.pngIjLCqFF.png 02:13, October 11, 2011 (UTC)
Adze is capitalized because its name is capitalized in a sentence provided by Jagex ingame. :File:AdzeKingdom.png --LiquidTalk 02:27, October 11, 2011 (UTC)
That rule is awful, as is the sentence. Not only is Neitiznot a proper noun, but are we really going to look for specific mentions of capitalized items in-game? That's not a good policy, because everything should be intuitive; this clearly isn't, especially looking at your example sentence. My bigger issue with this is that in almost all cases, including the example, the context is that these are items. They are not special objects, not unique items. If we were talking about the helm in the context of history, I'd be fine with it being capitalized, but we're not. The easiest, most intuitive thing we could do is either capitalize every part of the item name, or none of it (minus the beginning of the sentence) as it is in-game. I'd prefer the latter, because for the most part that's already how things are. If we have a complicated rule like the thing you cooked up, no one will follow it. Keep it simple. ʞooɔ 03:00, October 11, 2011 (UTC)
Sorry, I didn't understand correctly. As I've been saying this whole time, I support keeping their names the same as their in-game name. In the middle of a sentence, I'd use "helm of neitiznot", and at the beginning, "Helm of neitiznot". No capitalizing, as the item name has Neitiznot lowercased. Staff of armadyl, which has under gone lots of moves to capitalize Armadyl, should remain "Staff of armadyl"/"staff of armadyl". In-game name only please, that's the rule for article names, that should be the rule for paragraph styles. Don't make it complicated. sssSp7p.pngIjLCqFF.png 03:05, October 11, 2011 (UTC)
"Players should bring a helm of Neitiznot, a Bandos chestplate, an inferno adze, and an amulet of glory." Interesting how you did capitalise Bandos.  a proofreader ▸  19:11, October 11, 2011 (UTC)
I don't expect the list of exceptions (the one containing Inferno Adze) to be very long, and it could be included in the policy. As new items are discovered they could be added to the list, and afterwards corrected if it does not involve a new item. My contributionsTHARKONSignatures I made 21:13, October 12, 2011 (UTC)

Support, I agree with above. Regardless of what RuneScape does, we need some consistency here. ajr 02:19, October 11, 2011 (UTC)

Support last three. I dont like the first one, since we're trying to make this wiki about all thing ingame, giving in-depth information. If we aren't using it like it is in-game, its not the most comparably closest to a real game guide as it can go. Agree with first poster. 20080201180922!Purple_partyhat.png Hunter103 Talk My weapon of choice, only after a zamorak godsword. 03:11, October 11, 2011 (UTC)

Closed - This has gone on long enough. Item names are always lowercase unless they begin a sentence. Monster names are as they appear in-game, so mostly lowercase with a few exceptions. Skill names when referencing a skill specifically are uppercase. Suppa chuppa Talk 21:50, October 12, 2011 (UTC)