Wikipedia:Pro and con lists

A number of Wikipedia articles contain pro and con lists: lists of arguments for and against some particular contention or position. These take several forms, including lists of advantages and disadvantages of a technology; pros and cons of a proposal which may be technical Wi-Fi or otherwise; and lists of criticisms and defenses of a political position or other view (such as socialism or creationism; lists on those articles have since been removed).

In some cases a "pros and cons" list is appropriate, in others not; where inappropriate, the template {{Pro and con list}} can be added as a preliminary to rewording the article without such a list. Criteria on the appropriateness of pro and con lists include:

  • Is a pro and con list likely to be factually useful to a reader, rather than simply listing opposing opinions?
  • Does the list concisely summarise brief specific and uncontroversial points?
  • Does the list include objective facts that most people agree upon, rather than the expression of different opinions?

Listed pros and cons must, as for all content, be sourced by a reference, either in the list or elsewhere in the article.

(A "criticisms and defenses" list is a backwards pro and con list. The opposing side is presented first, followed by the responses of the defending side. Lists of this form seem to grow out of more contentious articles.)