Community Wishlist Survey 2021/Watchlists/Link watchlist

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Link watchlist

  • Problem: There are people on wikipedia interested in self promotion. There are many ways to self promote on wikipedia. The most obvious is to create an article about oneself, but for others who already have an article, they may try to add their name to irrelevant or inappropriate places. This may fly under the radar of recent changes patroller. There are also many vandals who engage in sneaky link vandalism. Finally, there are many people who create inappropriate redirects to articles.
  • Who would benefit: Everyone except vandals and those with coi.
  • Proposed solution: A watchlist for when something is linked from another page on wikipedia. It could be separate from the regular watchlist or could be integrated into it.
  • More comments: This is similar to The watchlist for categories idea under the categories section.
  • Phabricator tickets:
  • Proposer: Ghinga7 (talk) 03:09, 17 November 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]


  • If the links are worth watching, surely they are worth blacklisting too? --Izno (talk) 18:05, 17 November 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Am I right in thinking that edit filters can be used for links which might be worth patrolling, but that you don't want to blacklist? — Bilorv (talk) 20:10, 17 November 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Sorry everyone, let me clarify. What I mean is internal links. An example would be if I was John Smith, and I was the Head of a foo factory. While that is my claim to fame, I wouldn't necessarily belong in the foo article. My link watchlist idea would, if implemented, alert people on their watchlist who are watching John Smith's article that User:John Smith added the link John Smith to the article Foo. Sorry that I was unclear before, @User:Izno and @User:Bilorv. Ghinga7 (talk) 23:05, 17 November 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • So specifically, is this tool about adding an option in the watchlist to see when a page you are watching is linked from another page? Presumably you'd want to choose to opt out of this, on a per-page basis, and also choose which namespaces trip this filter (e.g. if I follow the article "Wikipedia" on the English Wikipedia then I don't want to hear about every time a bot lists it in the most-viewed pages of the week in WikiProject Wikipedia). — Bilorv (talk) 00:29, 18 November 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • @User:Bilorv Yes, that is correct. I was thinking that it would be opt-in rather than opt out. I didn't think of an option to do it for only specific links, but yeah I think it would be wise. Again, didn't think of only specifying namespace. I guess you could disable it in different namespaces... honestly, I probably wouldn't use it at all, but I would see why some people would want it. Thanks for responding and asking detailed questions; I'm grateful that somebody is willing to think through my (possibly) half-baked ideas :) Ghinga7 (talk) 01:46, 18 November 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • There is already a preference which allows you to receive a notification when a page you created is linked to from another page. Could extending that feature to any page you selected be sufficient, or is the watchlist presentation particularly helpful in some way? Samwalton9 (talk) 09:32, 18 November 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Yeah @User:Samwalton9, something like that. Thanks for pointing out that this similar tool exists. I would use this, but, of course, I still haven't created anything useful on wikipedia. I would prefer it to be on the watchlist, as it directly relates to watched pages. Besides, some people have thousands of pages on their watchlist, some of them very popular, and I don't think they would want to get a notification every time someone linked to, say, Earth on another page. Ghinga7 (talk) 18:38, 18 November 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Hey @User:Cabayi, maybe. I find those feeds incredibly techy looking and possibly offputting to some users (like me, the one who hates wikitext and uses visual as often as possible. I know. I'm that guy. :) But anyways, it might be an easier but less effective fix. Cheers, Ghinga7 (talk) 17:04, 19 November 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • I'd use this. I currently bookmark "Related changes (linked to)" for an image which vandals often insert inappropriately but has a few legitimate uses. With my current method, most changes are false positives (good edits to a page which already contained the image). Certes (talk) 13:38, 19 November 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • This is something I've wanted at times in the past, too, when cleaning up spam/listspam/promotion. My big question would be how many links are there that have problems which span a long period of time. The times I've wanted it were really about a pretty short span of time (until the spammer gave up, which does usually happen). — Rhododendrites talk \\ 02:23, 29 November 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • @User:Rhododendrites, I don't see how that's relevant. If you're able to stop this kind of disruption, whether long term or short term, it helps the wiki. That's the main point of it. Regards, Ghinga7 (talk) 18:26, 29 November 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Another use case from enwiki: wikilinks to certain lists are almost invariably intended for a particular entry. For example, links to Schoenberg are never about the surname but refer to Arnold Schoenberg. With this tool, we could spot and fix them as they arrive rather than having to check manually whenever we remember. These are good-faith errors rather than vandalism to be blacklisted. Certes (talk) 21:36, 8 December 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]