Community Wishlist Survey 2017/Reading/Visually indicate if a page has been edited since loaded

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Random proposal◄ Reading

Visually indicate if a page has been edited since loaded

  • Problem: When viewing a wiki page (article or talk) and the page is edited, people currently reading the page must manually refresh the page or check the page history to see if it has been updated. People may read incorrect information (in the case of vandalism or breaking news) or miss important updates.
  • Who would benefit: This would be particularly useful:
    • For readers who are reading a vandalized page, to be informed that it has been corrected
    • For readers who are reading a topic of breaking news, to be informed that information is rapidly changing
    • For users who are on a talk page, to be informed when a topic is actively being discussed.
  • Proposed solution: For this proposal I suggest a simple visual indicator, similar to how many email or task management websites (e.g. Gmail, Phabricator) display small growl notifications in the bottom corner. "This page has been edited since you opened it. Refresh to see changes."
A long-term solution could be to visually show the edits as they are made, like visual diffs or Google Docs/Etherpad.
  • More comments:
    • I'm not sure if there's already a gadget for this? Even if there is, I think this could benefit logged-out readers.
    • There should be some logic for circumstances of when the indicator should not appear (e.g. if ORES think the edit is probably vandalism, when an edit is marked as minor and is not a revert, etc.)
  • Phabricator tickets: couldn't find any.


  • There are semi-related tasks, but mostly concerned with edit-conflicts, at phab:T120882, phab:T136815, and phab:T94918. I don't believe there's an existing task for this idea (which I think would be a great feature!). Quiddity (WMF) (talk) 21:38, 16 November 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • For vandalism it would make more sense to not show probably-vandalized revisions in the first place (Community Wishlist Survey 2017/Miscellaneous/Implement deferred changes is one way to achieve that). For talk pages this would be quite nice. (A similar suggestion for StructuredDiscussions: T98047) --Tgr (WMF) (talk) 01:24, 20 November 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    • Personally, I wouldn't like this for talk pages. It seems likely that I'd miss when someone made a reply in a part of the page I had already read, because I'd be reading a later part of the page by then. Anomie (talk) 14:34, 20 November 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • No... This is completely the opposite of an encyclopedia. That's a news site... Plus auto-reloading pages is a horrible idea in general. I want to know what I am readin, I do not want a machine to tell me what to read, or guess when to "turn the page" for me. No... This is deal breaker...- Nabla (talk) 22:09, 2 December 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Wouldn't the constant popups from when an editor is overhauling a page with hundreds of edits be annoying? How about along with not popping up for likely vandal edits it also wouldn't pop up for when several edits are being made(except for when one of those several edits is a revert which would suggest removal of a vandal that edited several times). -glove- (talk) 06:23, 8 December 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]