Jacqueline Trimble

Jacqueline Trimble is President of the Alabama Writers' Forum. She is chair of the Department of Languages and Literatures and an associate professor of English at Alabama State University. She is the author of a forthcoming collection of poetry (her first), titled American Happiness, to be published by New South Books in October 2016. 

Presently Jacqueline doesn't satisfy Wikipedia notability guidelines for either poets or academics to justify an article (BLP). The first because authors should normally have produced a substantial body of work that has received critical attention in multiple independent sources, and the second because she doesn't satisfy any of a number of closely defined criteria (for example she does not hold a named chair appointment or a distinguished professor appointment).

Nevertheless a BLP was submitted for her. It was quickly deleted. However the circumstances are of interest here because the BLP was canvassed and edited by Aaij, who must have known that Jacqueline didn't satisfy notability guidelines.

We became aware of the BLP too late to archive a copy (an article is lost once it it is deleted). However we were able to take a snapshot from a Google cache and reproduce it below:

Links to the sources quoted are as follows: 123, 4, and 5.

The circumstances appear to be that Aaij organised a reading of  Jacqueline's work on 11 April 2016 at the Booker T. Washington Magnet High school, a reading that high school students were encouraged to attend. Aaij attended with his ten-year-old daughter and waxed lyrical (well, more like lavatorial frankly) about it on his Talk page the following day. He asks whether one of his page followers might write Jacqueline up, acknowledging that he has a conflict of interest, and canvasses fellow admin and love interest LadyofShalott directly. That individual says she'll put the new book on her reading list. Later the editor and fighting knives expert Xanthomelanoussprog (the name plausibly translates to "auburn child": we believe this account is a sock of the Wikipedia Arbcom member Doug Weller) posted on the subject of lavatory seats, code we assume signifying that the BLP had been duly created.

The Edit history is lost to us, but it seems clear from the Article for Deletion (AfD) debate that Xanthomelanoussprog provided the start, offering the first three sources, and Aaij subsequently stepped in offering the last two sources. Xanthomelanoussprog  was rather sullen at the AfD (if he didn't care about the article's fate, why did he supply it in the first place?) Aaij was certainly disingenuous in his claim that all the sources provide biographical information. Source 3 for example, the Guardian obituary of Harper Lee, does nothing of the sort. It merely quotes Trimble and is transparently a cosmetic attempt at suggesting  notability.

The plain fact of the matter is that this was a grace and favour BLP. It doesn't reflect well on Aaij and it was unfair on Jacqueline as well, who in the first place stands open to ridicule and secondly runs the risk of her reputation being tarnished by association, and that especially because the red-linked entity in the article refers to a fund raising organisation for a Magnet school (Baldwin Arts and Academic Magnet) in Montgomery whose planning committee she sits on. Of course such an organisation could never be notable enough for an article to itself and one has to wonder what Aaij's motivation can be to seek to favour it in that way.

Indeed, the internet being what it is (a public sewer), it's not hard to locate another potential conflict of interest. Since there's a reasonable expectation of  privacy involved (the sites involved scarcely committed to that cause), we decline to name it, but it's real enough. The fact is Aaij is too involved with public education in Montgomery to be disinterestedly contributing to articles like this.

Nor does canvassing an article in this way release him from his conflict of interest. His fellow admin LadyofShalott was too sensible to take up the offer, but Aaij has more than 800 Talk page followers of which more than 350 are currently enumerated as watching recent edits. He was effectively canvassing each of these, and inevitably one obliged.

We have already noted Aaij's scant regard for notability and conflict of interest at the Barbara Wiedemann article. The device of getting another to start an article is not new. John Veres  has been chancellor at Auburn since 2006 (that splendid portrait on his BLP, which indeed has real merit, was provided by Auburn University photographer Frank Williams on a single purpose Commons account and "welcomed" to Wikipedia by dear Michel himself). Veres somehow managed to struggle on at Auburn as chancellor for some four years without the advantage of a Wikipedia BLP until Aaij thought to remedy the grave omission. Perhaps discerning that a prospective professor providing a BLP of his chancellor might be thought to involve more conflict of interest than providing one of a mere daft old old bat wannabe poet, Aaij set a student to work on the grand project. Nevertheless he micromanaged the edits and eventually edited on his own account. That this was genuinely an educational exercise is offset by the thought that in that case Aaij certainly wouldn't have set a BLP on a subject where secondary sources were not likely to be available and indeed the student editor had difficulty. In reality this was brown nosing on a grand scale and Aaij shouldn't have been engaged in it.