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As a Judge for the recent PLS, I was asked to give my top five from the articles submitted in the Best Alt. Namespace Article category. This page gives some feedback on the articles, and possibly explains some of the reasons why I picked the order I did...

Firstly, let me say this was BLOODY difficult. I had no idea how hard this was going to be when I agreed to judge. For me, I found it particularly difficult to pick my favourite as I did not find that one in particular stood head and shoulders above the rest... I have only included my top 5 as required for the competition.

edit MrN's Results...

  1. User:Modusoperandi/UnTunes:White trash girl - Actually made me laugh out loud. So it wins.
  2. User:Cajek/Polar Express
  3. User:Mhaille/How To:Survive a Japanese Game Show
  4. User:Orian57/UnBooks: Lyle Crump's Guide to starting secondary school
  5. User:ShuaDaddy/HowTo:Be a surfer

edit Feedback

I'm sorry if anyone is offended by my comments, or considers me blunt. This is not a Pee Review, so I have dispensed with the normal pleasantly. I'm just trying to be as honest as I can. Also, Modus agreed to split the $20 with me, so the rest of you fuckers can go screw yourselfs. Did I just say that? Whoops. Anyway, maybe my thoughts might be useful to someone someday...

User:Enzo Aquarius/Burger Prince, son of Burger King, is Born

  • I did not get any laughs from this one. I think the concept is OK, if a little obvious. It's nicely written, and a worthy front page UnNews, but nothing here made me want to put this in my final 5...


  • I liked the quote at the start, and the introduction really caught my attention making me think that the rest of the article would be great. Unfortunately I was a little disappointed. There were some parts of the article which I did enjoy but I felt that some of the sections were a little too obvious, and did not add to the humour. I think if you were to strip out the less good parts and keep it to the good stuff this would work a lot better. The henchmen pic was really not a good idea, and was probably the thing which kept this out of my top 5. The huffed your kitty and All your base are belong to us were also a big turn off for me. Strip out the pants and this can be a lot better...

User:Cajek/Polar Express

  • This has Cajek's signature style plastered all over it. Although I did quickly spot that it was going to be paedophile thing from the first few paragraphs, I did not expect the ending. I liked the "Christmas had always been a time of lame presents for Thomas." section a lot, but felt the article in general had too much build up in places which was not really adding a great deal to the overall effect. A few funny lines were sprinkled here and there to liven things up, but I did find the middle of the article a little less fun than the start and ending. I chuckled reading this, but I did not get the actual laugh out loud I got from Modus' piece, so this comes second... Probably strip out some of the middle section, and do some more things to enforce the illusion that it's a kid, so as to build up the joke at the end more. When you deliver the end line, be more blunt.

User:Knucmo2/Political Matchwinners

  • To me this might have been better as an normal mainspace article than a book. In places it read more like a history lesson, and at its worse it bordered on being a bit of a rant in which the author gave their views on the people in question. I find that rants can be really funny if done in the correct way, but I did not really see a theme behind it all, and I found it lacking in a coherent style. I feel that if I could have detected an amusing undertone of an opinionated author it would have worked a lot better. Stuff like "They are often called a mighty force, but one must ask how mighty they were to let Cromwell, a man of no military experience, rise to the top of their ranks in a matter of months? Nevertheless, with his efficient-sounding army, he scored a series of consecutive victories 'gainst the Royals" just made me think I was reading a history book. I am a fan of this style of writing, but I think the author missed the point that this was meant to be funny in enough places to turn me off...

User:Kip the Dip/HowTo:Polish a turd

  • Nice try. ;-) If I gave this first place I would be shot and you know it! Also, this joke has been done to death... I do think it's a great idea for an article, and it would work really well if you did it from the point of view of someone actually trying to convince people that polishing a turd was a good idea. Maybe this article just needs a polish eh?

User:Orian57/UnBooks: Lyle Crump's Guide to starting secondary school

  • Some parts of it were very good, whereas others slipped into the author giving their own personal opinions at the expense of the article. It's also uses a lot more words than it needs to. Strip it back. Basically it's too long. Keep the concept the same, but use less words. I did not get the pics. Why are there cartoons if the author is a working man. Loved the word search. Although this is obviously something we can all relate to, there was not enough funny for it to score higher.

User:Dexter111344/HowTo:Find your name on a list

  • I found it a little short on concept. You took on a tricky one here... I liked the bit about getting someone else to check the list first, but mostly I think you were struggling for subject matter. It did not come last (I'm not telling) but I suggest you pick something with a bit more meat on the bone next time you start writing an article... Pictures of Bush are probably not a good idea... Dam, we are going to have to re-write the wiki when Bush is not president any more...

User:So So/HowTo:oTwoH

  • Sorry dude. I know you are a great writer (better than me for sure) but I missed what you were trying to do here. I read it 3 times and still don't really understand. Maybe you could explain it to me some day... I'm sure it's brilliant, but I can only go by what I see and I just missed it. Also... I ain't mad at ya. ;-)

User:Zombiebaron/wip/UnPoetia:T.S. Elliot Is Dead

  • Well, I gave up nominating Poems for VFD a while back when I realised that my judgement regarding them was not great. I suspect the same is true here. I just missed whatever you are trying to do here dude. Sorry. I was not sure if it was a poem he wrote about dying or something written about his death. I translated the German, and still missed the point. I would love it if you could explain this one to me...

User:Modusoperandi/UnTunes:White trash girl

  • Dodgy audio, questionable singing, the lyrics don't exactly match the text and it breaks down before "We went to the strip mall And laughed at all the shoppers" in a way that I don't think was on porpoise... I managed to find the youtube video for these guys and listened to their song a few times before listing to parody. You are a smart one Modus. A great choice of parody. That's why I sing Dylan when asked to perform in public... ;-) Had I not listened to the original, I don't think I would have appreciated it at all. I suspect this might struggle if put onto VFH for this reason... Oh, why did it get my number 1 spot? This was the only one of all the articles which I judged which actually made me properly laugh out loud. Easy eh? I giggled at the "make fun of France" line, and laughed out loud at the "Oh my God, we're screwed!" line.

User:Mhaille/How To:Survive a Japanese Game Show

  • Amusing in places, but not laugh out loud funny for me. Mostly it was building up to the ending which was kinda a bit predictable, but still very enjoyable. I found that it did not say more than it needed and it was refreshing to read something concise. I found that most of the text was just telling me things about a Japanese Game Shows which I already knew, and I thought it would have worked better if you had exaggerated some of the events more. It's a quality article, and is polished to a higher standard than some of the others articles I judged, so it scored well.

User:ShuaDaddy/HowTo:Be a surfer An enjoyable read which started well, but kinda began to run out of ideas and repeated the same joke perhaps once to often. That said, I did really like it, so it made it into my top 5. I'm not absolutely sure specifically why it made it above some of the others into my top 5, but I just felt better about it being there. The writing style was refreshing to me as I'm all in-favour of articles taking a more encyclopaedic tone. There needs to be more mention of VW Camper vans... ;)


  • This was my number 6 article. It's short, but I did giggle a bit reading it. I voted to keep the article on cat skinning so... No I like animals! Really! Fried. ;) Some nice ideas in addition to the main concept and contained nothing which was not fun to read.

edit Closing comments and my experience as a Judge

Knowing who has written something does not help the judging. Regardless of what anyone says, thinks or feels, that fact is simple truth. I hope that for the next PLS, we can have the submitted articles moved to a PLS sub-page so that judges find it easier to avoid finding out who wrote what.

Judging Alt Namespace is dam tricky, as you are not comparing like with like. I found it easier to pick my favourite between the HowTo articles, but judging if a parody of a song is better than an UnBook? Dam, that's tricky...

If anyone wants any further feedback on any of this, feel free to contact me on my talk page. Modus: As agreed, wire the cash to my Swiss bank account...

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