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List of Wikipedias

The following discussion is closed.

- from: Proposals for closing projects/Closure of Volapük Wikipedia -- Hillgentleman 15:43, 23 November 2007 (UTC)

Relevant discussions at

Communication committee discussed this matter regarding to Public relation and concluded the current status was unacceptable. A project basically filled with bot-created stubs and without a real community, that is, Volapuk Wikipedia, shouldn't be listed on the list in the current rank. While everyone agreed the project itself shouldn't be closed in that condition.

During the discussion two solutions were proposed.

  1. The list will contain only projects whose size or speaker population, IIRC, is considerably bigger than a certain criteria. It means Volapuk Wikipedia will be removed from the list as a whole until its community reaches a certain size ... or if we use speaker population as criteria, it wouldn't be back to the list concerned.
  2. As Pfctdayelise suggested, Volapuk Wikipedia community can remove all those bot creations and stay in an appropriate place on the list.

It is up to the local community - but Volapuk Wikipedia community should realize they choose one of those proposals. --Aphaia 14:57, 22 November 2007 (UTC)

Can we see the minutes? Thanks. Hillgentleman 15:17, 22 November 2007 (UTC)
No sorry, the list is confidential. So I am hesitate to show who said what ... However if necessary, I'll urge the people who proposed those ideas to post it to the foundation-l. --Aphaia 22:39, 22 November 2007 (UTC)
How, then, is the communications committee authorised to decide on what to do with a page on meta, bypassing the community discussion? Hillgentleman 23:29, 22 November 2007 (UTC)
Do the Communication committee think the same about the other Wikipedias that are filled with bot-created stubs and don't have much of a community ? (lmo.wikipedia 100 060 articles - depth=0, te.wikipedia 37 687 articles - depth=1, new.wikipedia 37 561 articles - depth=2, ceb.wikipedia 33 530 articles - depth=0, bpy.wikipedia 22 092 articles - depth=1, to name the biggest).
The suggestion to remove all bot created articles in order to stay in the list seems utterly silly to me. If an article is useful it is an useful article, no matter who or what created it. To me it seems that the Communication committee are taking this list far to serious. It is just a silly list, not a proper measure of anything and certainly not the meaning of everything. --Jorunn 00:03, 23 November 2007 (UTC)
This has already been discussed. If you object to Volapuk (or any wiki) from ranking so highly by your chosen system of measurement, change your system of measurement. Don't try and artificially skew the results, or ban a wiki that has reached success by your (fairly meaningless) criteria. This has been discussed on this page already, and a good solution has been presented at List of Wikipedias by sample of articles. I think both of the proposals given here are unacceptable. I also think it is somewhat contradictory for a 'communications' committee to be 'dictating' what the community should do, rather than participating in the on-going discussion (i.e. communicating with the interested parties). --HappyDog 09:44, 23 November 2007 (UTC)
Hilgentleman - to answer your question, the page is an important publicity portal for the Foundation, rather than something "owned" by the Meta community (whatever that's defined as - the phrase seems to imply Meta as a separate project, which it simply isn't) - David Gerard 11:07, 23 November 2007 (UTC)
David Gerard, Nor does the communications committee. It is not right that the communications committtee can just simply look at any article, declare that "the page is an important publicity portal for the Foundation" and sieze its control, and does not even bother to ask the community for inputs or explain their discussions. It is analogous to a head of state declaring "State of Emergency", when there really is none, for political purposes. How is communications committee authorised to do such a thing? Hillgentleman 15:26, 23 November 2007 (UTC)
Many have said it. Let me say it again. Long ago some wikimedians decided that they wanted a list of wikipedias. Then at some point people decided to order the list in terms of NUMBEROFARTICLES. Then somebody came in and thought, hey, this is not bad, let us use it for marketing purposes. As time changes, the list has changed, and the marketing folks come in, and say, You list is wrong. Your list is misleading. Please correct it.Hillgentleman 15:32, 23 November 2007 (UTC)
I suggest that marketing folks take heed of what we have said, above and below. The simplest solution that satisfies everybody is:
--Hillgentleman 15:35, 23 November 2007 (UTC)

Don't you think that we should reconsider the method of evaluating Wikipedias? For example – we can calculate the "real" number of a given Wikipedia's articles by:

  • not counting articles created by bots only – if they were not touched later by any human
  • not counting ultrastubs – articles with very little text even if they contain infoboxes and other templates automatically added by bots
  • not counting articles in "clean-it-up" categories
  • other criteria of excluding completely useless articles...

Polimerek 11:20, 23 November 2007 (UTC)

A few comments on some of the above topics:

  • (David Gerard): "The list is an important publicity portal for the Foundation". I note that one of the criticisms on the Volapük Wikipedia was "advertising" and "publicity". Are you saying that the whole List of Wikipedias is "publicity" rather than simply raw data? Isn't the foundation violating its own principles then -- just in order to be able to say, "we have 2,000,000 articles" (the overwhelming majority of which are still very, very far from FA -- or even real "encyclopedic" -- quality)?
  • The proposals of the communications community: I agree with Jorunn, Hillgentleman, and HappyDog, both solutions are silly, because:
    a. Keeping Volapük off the list takes away the lists usefulness as a purveyor of raw data; one would have to start a new page (say, List of all Wikipedias) to keep this information available; and
    reducing its size to its "proper place" (without alternative criteria, isn't that a bit prejudiced?) only makes sense if you advocate deleting all stubs from all Wikipedias so that they all would be reduced to their "proper places".
  • Considerations about the minimum size of a community, or of a speaker population, don't seem to me to be of the competence of the communications committee -- isn't this in the area of the languages committee? Anyway, what are the arguments? What is the minimum size? What are the criteria? Shouldn't they be discussed, get perhaps their own page here at Meta, etc.?
  • If you want to see the projects occupying their "proper place" (by whatever criteria), you can always start a new page (like the List of Wikipedias by sample of articles, which corresponds better to your expectations -- though without the glamour of "millions and millions of articles"). Use new criteria, indicate them clearly, express your reasons for preferring them (+ criticism of the original List of Wikipedias), and then use this new page for publicity. I'm sure the intelligent people in the public will appreciate your sincerity.

--Smeira 17:03, 23 November 2007 (UTC)

If I remember correctly, List of Wikipedias used to be a purely alphabetical listing. That seemed like a reasonable way to comprehensively list the wikis: the front page links to the list, so people come to there looking for those really small languages that haven't made it onto the front page yet. It must be a pain to have to search through the entire list for such a language. Imagine a library where all the books were arranged by size. That's what we're doing. At least we divide the front page into four alphabetical lists, so you only have to look four places for the language. I have no problem with the by-size list's existence, but it should be at List of Wikipedias by size.

Anyhow, I'm not so much concerned about List of Wikipedias as I am the front page. It's pretty obvious that the list is raw data, but on the front page, appearing high up really matters. A wiki looks quite legitimate if it gets a spot in the very exclusive search box there, as Volapük and Lombard now do. (Users from the Russian Wikipedia wanted all 100,000+ wikis to be placed around the puzzle ball, but the search box was a compromise. Good thing, too.) Unfortunately, the by-size list and front page use the exact same criterion for arranging the wikis. It's a very simple, objective, easy-to-describe-without-words criterion, but it doesn't tell the whole story. I like List of Wikipedias by sample of articles very much, but how in the world do we use it at the front page, where we're not supposed to use any words because you'd have to provide upwards of 200 translations on the same page? Since lumping that many languages into one list would be annoying to use, how do you divide the top 118 (by sample of articles) into manageable lists?

 – Minh Nguyễn (talk, contribs) 10:12, 24 November 2007 (UTC)

In other words the issue is, as far as I understand, if it is good and rational to give a "legitimate look" to stub-covered projects, like Volapuk. While we have a problem of feasibility, I agree with Polimerek generally - a mere count of articles shouldn't be the measure to choose the projects we highlight globally. I have no idea what is different from the things which has happened on Volapuk Wikipedia and what happened once on Wolof Wikipedia - an external organization tried to use it just for advertise themselves. As for "sample of articles" the sample is too much Westernalized and not a good way to evaluate projects. For example, Asian langauge projects which are some of our most accessed projects are underrepresented on that list. --Aphaia 10:25, 24 November 2007 (UTC)
Surely nobody has said Volapuek wikipedia is a mature wikipedia. And it is true that putting Volapuek wikipedia on the front page is not necessarily useful. But do not mix such matters with the list itself. If I read you correctly, Aphaia, when you say the list of wikipedia by number of articles 'give(s) a "legitimate look" ', you are reading too much into it, i.e. putting your own point of view into the list and your interpretation into the raw data. We have seen that many do not read the list in the same way the communications committee do. Hillgentleman 17:18, 24 November 2007 (UTC)
And yes, alphabetical order makes sense. Hillgentleman 17:23, 24 November 2007 (UTC)
Good point. And I would like to offer an apology for my not well-described wording. It is better to separate 1) to have a list of Wikipedia by article number as genuine and raw statistic data and 2) to design portal pages (like or each Wikipedia project Main Pages) based on that page. As long as the issue 1 affects the issue 2 directly, and I understand that is the current status, I think my first report from Comcom discussion valid and appropriate. But of course we needn't be bound to that list and can find any other appropriate way to choose projects we display on that page.
Regarding PR effects, and specially psychological ones, I don't think it the best strategy to list all projects in a same way - it should be properly grouped, and the ideal number of elements in each chunks are seven plus or minus two (so between 5 and 9). And as maturity of Volapuk Wikipedia, we all seem to agree that it doesn't reach to the quality which deserves to be featured as representatives of 200+ projects, as interim remedy, is there any problem to remove it from that page? --Aphaia 21:26, 25 November 2007 (UTC)
Despite being the main Volapük Wikipedia contributor, I don't in principle oppose this remotion. But I note one problem: in its current form, the front page does mention number of articles; if you remove Lombard and Volapük from it without explicitly changing the criteria, then you fall back into the same "insincerity" problem I mentioned above: the page talks about "the Wikipedias that have reached a certain number of articles" but then excludes some of these Wikipedias without further comments. In order to legitimally remove Volapük and Lombard (which, I agree, aren't as "mature" as the other large Wikipedias), the wording should be changed: the "100,000+", "10,000+" and "1,000+" labels should be replaced with something else, maybe a more neutral wording ("best", "good", "average"; or "A-quality", "B-quality", "C-quality"; or something like that. To me, this would be morally necessary before one could remove any Wikipedias from the front page on grounds other than article count. (Aphaia, could you give me a link to a page that describes the Wolof event you mentioned? I'd like to see how similar they are to what I was trying to do.)
On using the List of Wikipedias by sample of articles: I agree that the sample list (List of articles) is Western-biased; yet the results are better than the mere number of articles for purposes such as Wikimedia portals. If Asian Wikipedians (or any other underrepresented group) complement the list, it will be more representative. As for groupings: (a) the first 6, English to Russian (score > 3 000), (b) the following 12-13, Portuguese to Catalan (and perhaps Chinese; score between 3 000 and 2 000), (c) the following 24-25, Serbian to Norwegian (Nynorsk) (score between 1 000 and 2 000), and (d) all the others (score below 1 000). If finding words in 200 languages to name these categories seems too much, one could use iconic titles: five, four and three stars, or five, four and three exclamation marks (!), or something like that. --Smeira 01:44, 26 November 2007 (UTC)
(A bit off topic) As for Wolof Wikipedia, I don't think there was a discussion on meta at that time (early 2005?). It may have been on IRC and e-mail exchanging but I don't remember which mailing list was used. Relevant discussions may be found on French Wikipedia, since the second language of Wolof speakers is French and those people were trained in French speaking community. But I don't think it was totally compatible with Volapuk Wikipedia - the Wolof project at that time put an advertisement of a certain external non-profit organization (promotion of Wolof language was their cause). They did on a good faith but it was never acceptable from our side. After it was found, they were trained on French Wikipedia to know how Wikipedia works. Anthere may remember where related materials are found ... I mentioned it as only an example "language promotion" became the main purpose of the project community and expect Volapuk project status is far better than that. --Aphaia 05:05, 26 November 2007 (UTC)

(Re-dedenting) I like Smeira's idea of using stars to hint at relative quality. Besides, all the other Web 2.0 guys are doing it. :^) It would work well if we decide to use the "sample of articles" measurement, though we'd still have to come up with a way to divide the list into three or so levels behind the scenes. (Right now we can group by scores – 2 000+, 1 000+, 500+, and 250+ – but I don't know how stable those scores will be.) Coincidentally, removing the front page's numeric headings in favor of icons will solve a technical issue that has some IE users seeing a horizontal scrollbar. We can implement the icon heading as a background image, so that it centers correctly yet doesn't force the scrollbar. – Minh Nguyễn (talk, contribs) 04:51, 26 November 2007 (UTC)

I don't know how stable scores will be either -- they're still ad-hoc. There has been some discussion on the talk page of the List of Wikipedias by sample of articles about language "correcting weights" (since a text in Chinese or Japanese has much fewer characters than the corresponding text -- with the same level of information -- in English, it was felt that these languages were being placed below their actual level of Wikipedia achievement; and indeed that seems to be true). Hm... Is it the case that a decision for the front page has to be final? Should scores be changed in the future, and a few languages change category because of that, then couldn't the page simply be adapted to reflect that? Is it the case that the front page has to be very stable? --Smeira 21:44, 26 November 2007 (UTC)
The decision doesn't have to be final, but we should avoid changing the criteria too often at the front page. Every time we bump a language up or down on the list, we force many of that wiki's users to hunt for the wiki again. The current system is quite stable because wikis' article counts generally go up, not down. Anyhow, I can wait to change up the front page until we come up with a good formula and whatnot. Just as long as Volapük doesn't dethrone English in the near future. :^) – Minh Nguyễn (talk, contribs) 07:35, 27 November 2007 (UTC)
Don't worry, that's a physical impossibility ;^)... Even if I wanted to do that, considering the growth rate of en.wp, my little laptop + python programs simply could not add stubs fast enough (even if I have a sufficiently large database -- say, the en:NASA/IPAC Extragalactic Database... Maybe the Lombardians can do it (they're currently adding asteroids, after all...), in case they have more than one computer to use for this purpose. --Smeira 15:30, 6 December 2007 (UTC)
On, the biggest Japanese social network website (imagine sort of Friendstar or Facebook) featured Volapuk Wikipedia in their column (membership required, so no link now). There are a bright side and a dark side. The language Volapuk is known thanks to that article, and originally the featuring on Wikipedia front page (perhaps Japanese in this context), it's the bright side. The dark side is, vowiki was commented "full of too short, less informative articles" "not deserved to be called an encyclopedia" "boosting with a bot and hence feature on the Wikipedia Main page may anger other Wikipedia version editors including esperanto" - shortly the article publicized the language itself but showed Volapuk Wikipedia something not serious. I don't think it is a good advertisement of the project itself and other Wikimedia projects. Also this article mentioned Lombard Wikipedia like "similar type boosted Wikipedia". I hope this trend is not spreading and think we need to remove them, at least Volapuk Wikipedia from the Wikipedia portal, just as Comcom recommended formerly. ---Aphaia 14:47, 4 December 2007 (UTC)
The Brazilian Orkut has also opened a Volapük group, and there's also a Volapük group in Facebook; both are much less negative. Now Aphaia, what you mention is something I had been thinking about since before I started adding stubs to vo.wp: people won't like it (especially those who pay too much attention to article count), and it's not really a model encyclopedia. I've said many things on both topics in the proposal for closure; I'll summarize it here like this: a wiki project for a very small language with very few (effective or potential) collaborators cannot be a true encyclopedia. None of them will ever be like the English Wikipedia. The Volapük Wikipedia -- and about 150 other projects -- will simply never be like the English Wikipedia. Unless thousands of very active collaborators appear out of nowhere, this is simply impossible. Their goals must be different, and the criteria for judging them must be different; or else, if the criteria can't be different, why were they created at all? (Which should these criteria be? I made a few suggestions in the proposal for closure of vo.wp; I'd love to discuss this further with anyone who's interested.) If the Japanese people who condemn the Volapük Wikipedia don't realize that, then they're simply making a wrong judgement, in my opinion. Someone should mention this to them. I would if I could speak Japanese! ;-) --Smeira 15:30, 6 December 2007 (UTC)
"Someone should mention this to them." And it should be someone who were persuaded with your argument. So It cannot be myself. Your argument seems to me pointless and only stick to the idea to place Volapuk Wikipedia on the Wikipedia portal to promote the language, even giving the disadvantage to the Wikimedia project at large. In my observation it is only you to support this idea (in twenty days no support has come from the community to your argument in this discussion), so if no objection is coming in a week, I'm going to remove it from the portal in accordance with the previous recommendation of Communication committee. --Aphaia 08:15, 24 December 2007 (UTC)
What a nonsense. Why do you ignore all the comments above? Personally, I have not added further to this discussion, because there didn't seem to be much more to be said. A list of 'Wikipedias ordered by article count' should contain all Wikipedias. Otherwise it is a list of 'Wikipedias ordered by article count (not including the ones that a small group of people have arbitrarily chosen to exclude by a private vote)'. If you don't agree with the high ranking of Volapuk in this list, then use a sensible method of ranking Wikipedias. It will be a sad day when the Foundation decides to 'spin' the statistics and disown one of its active projects in this way! --HappyDog 23:33, 7 January 2008 (UTC)

Local Meta

The following discussion is closed.

Was there ever any proposal or discussion or something about creating own per language Meta-wikis? This wiki is for all Wikimedia projects in all languages and that's a good solution. But I wonder, whether it wouldn't be useful to have per language Meta-wikis too. For example a for Meta-work regarding the French-language projects. For example, if the French Wikipedians want to give an introduction into the work of the Wikimedia Foundation, this page should not reside on fr.wikipedia, it would be useful for fr.wiktionary too. Of course such a page can be hosted on this wiki, but it would have many advantages, if such a page would be placed in instead. A user speaking French only can easily get lost in this multilingual, but English-dominated wiki. A French-only environment would be a place where that user would feel much "safer". Or even think of a lesser-used language. Like Sami. A Sami-speaker only speaking Sami or only interested in Sami content will have a very hard time in this wiki. There are very few Sami pages (when there are any, I don't know) scattered in a big m(a|e)ss of English and other language content. If Sami had an own Meta-wiki, even if that wiki would be relatively tiny, that project would be much easier to access for the simple user. I don't want to detract the decision- and policy-making from this wiki, but more static meta content would be in better hands on such local Meta-wikis. So: was this ever proposed? --::Slomox:: >< 17:50, 7 December 2007 (UTC)

I think this would be sensible, although it would take a lot of work to make it happen. Meta was, I believe, the second Wikimedia project ever, and was created in part to allow discussion of issues shared among Wikipedias in different languages. (I may be completely off-base on this; I wasn't around at the time.) The emergence of the second axis of diversity -- viz. Wiktionary, Wikiquote, Wikinews, Wikisource -- has made the exact role of Meta somewhat confused (and confusing). Also, in the past few years, much of the original Meta mandate has been hived off to the Foundation,, and others; IMO it is high time that Meta's role was rethought. Restructuring Meta as a set of language communities (perhaps with English remaining as the hub, or perhaps with English-Meta and meta-Meta separated) holds a lot of promise. There is already a considerable amount of content on Meta in various languages, but it remains an overwhelmingly English-driven project, which impairs our ability to serve non-English-speaking Wikimedians. -- Visviva 16:13, 29 December 2007 (UTC)


The following discussion is closed.

i writed here: i have writed: hello. why not to make something like but not with google because it is not gnu fdl or compatible but with nasa maps which are public domain, but they unfortunately dont have web api, i consider, do they?

Something like that exists. See OpenStreetMap. Angela 13:12, 8 December 2007 (UTC)

Chavacano de Zamboanga Wikipedia

The following discussion is closed.

Hello. Would you please help us. I have several questions and Im getting frustrated coz I cant find help over at meta. I cant get any help from any steward of beureacrat. At metapub, I was asked to find a developer whom I can ask these questions.

I would like to know exactly when was the exact date Meta approved the creation of Chavacano Wikipedia I have searched at the archives but I just really cannot determine what specific date it was approved for its creation.

When Chavacano wikipedia started last year, I didnt know how to go about translating the interface and the language file. I was just told by an admin of Spanish wikipedia to ask for admin permission and translate the messages here:

I got the adminship and translated most of the messages. The interface was indeed translater, but was I on the right track? I noticed a newly created wikipedia did not translate its

but its interface is translated! So how did it happen?

Another question is, how come cbk-zam or Chavacano is not an option in the language preference of a user in another wikipedia? For example, at the English Wikipedia or here in Meta, if you go to your user preferences, Chavacano is not included as an option for the language interface. How do we make cbk-zam a part of a user language option? In, cbk-zam is there as an option, but not in other wikis.

Also, I would like to know where I can have the wikimedia configure the user preference in our Chavacano wikipedia. Whenever we configure the language option in our user preferences in cbk-zam is listed as cbk-zam - cbk-zam which is wrong. It should be cbk-zam - Chavacano de Zamboanga. How do I do the correction? I am the sysop of And finally, where will I do the necessary translation of the wikipedia donation to Chavacano that appears on every page? Thanks. I would really appreciate if anyone can help us. Thanks. --Weekeejames 13:32, 8 December 2007 (UTC)

Most languages have an own message file which is hardcoded in the MediaWiki installation. You can easily export your messages from Allmessages into a file. I guess you should best ask on Betawiki: for help with this, Betawiki is about translating the interface and they are experienced in exporting messages and committing them to the file repository.
If that message file exists, cbk-zam wil be an option in the preferences on all projects too. --::Slomox:: >< 15:13, 8 December 2007 (UTC)
Hi, ah, now I understand that problem regarding cbk-zam cbk-zam, I just tried in I am asking in #wikimedia-tech since I don't think that this can be changed at betawiki (there the interface itself can be translated and additionally namespacenames, magic words, skin names and specialpage-aliases). I think for this we need to open a bugreport on bugzilla:, best regards, --birdy geimfyglið (:> )=| 15:34, 8 December 2007 (UTC)
I was just talking to Siebrand, a developer, who is one of the two devs running Betawiki. He told me that he could change this (since he is a developer), I will leave a message on betawiki:Process/tasks for him, and we do not need to open a bugreport :)
But before I would like to know if it should be "Zamboangueño" or "Chavacano de Zamboanga" because on other wikis it is "Zamboangueño" and in bugzilla:7581#c2 it was asked to change to Zamboangueño -> is it better?
Thanks, best regards, --birdy geimfyglið (:> )=| 16:02, 8 December 2007 (UTC)
Thanks for the response. Spacebirdy, the formal name would be "Chavacano de Zamboanga", so it should be that way. When I requested the Chavacano de Zamboanga wikipedia here in Meta last year, it was requested by the proper formal name as "Chavacano de Zamboanga". I don't know why everywhere, even here at Meta, I see "Zamboangueño" (which is an informal name for the language and actually kind of ambiguous. seeño ). I wish I could and be able to correct all references and interwiki links of cbk-zam as "Chavacano de Zamboanga" rather than Zamboangueño. But alas, I do not know where to start. BTW, I havent gone to betawiki for a full translation language file. I think the Special:Allmessages translations would be good enough for our wikipedia right now. But now at least I know where to go when the need for a full and complete translation arises. Regarding bugzilla:7581#c2, I don't know why Chris had to ask for a change. He is neither a native Chavacano speaker nor an admin or a regular user of the He is only one of those people who supported its creation, but right up till now, he doesnt contribute anything to our wikipedia. I hope cbk-zam will be reverted back to its full proper and formal name, Chavacano de Zamboanga. Thanks and kind regards. --Weekeejames 04:16, 9 December 2007 (UTC)
Hi Weekeejames, thanks for the response, I added Your request for Siebrand here, kind regards, --birdy geimfyglið (:> )=| 08:13, 9 December 2007 (UTC)
Many thanks for helping out the Chavacano Wikipedia. We appreciate your extended help. I'm keeping myself in touch with the developments on this issue. Kind regards. --Weekeejames 13:20, 9 December 2007 (UTC)
Hi Weekeejames, may I invite You to the discussion there, the reason for changing the interwikilink-name seems to have been a space problem, please feel free to suggest solutions there, thanks in advance, --birdy geimfyglið (:> )=| 23:31, 9 December 2007 (UTC)
I tried to register but I cannot. It always gives me an error "Login error:Incorrect or missing confirmation code." I tried to register almost 20 times using IE and Firefox. Maybe Betawiki is Bugwiki. It's such a pain. :( please just relay my message:

"Hello Spacebirdy and Siebrand. If Chavacano de Zamboanga is too long, Chavacano will just be fine. Also, please change the interwiki links of cbk-zam from Zamboangueño to Chavacano (if Chavacano de Zamboanga is also too long). Indeed, bugzilla:7581#c2 is invalid. cbk-zam everywhere should be either Chavacano de Zamboanga or simply Chavacano. Muchas gracias. Weekeejames --Weekeejames 13:12, 10 December 2007 (UTC)

Wow, I tried again and again to register an account at Betawiki, it still wont allow me in. The math is very simple for that thing against spam, it just wont let me register there. Why? :( --Weekeejames 13:22, 10 December 2007 (UTC)
This should be a temporary problem, I am having problems loging in right now too, Siebrand is not in IRC right now and Nike seems afk, I am quite in a hurry now and can't be online before tonight, so I'll try to contact them then, sorry for the inconveniance, --birdy geimfyglið (:> )=|
Hi, I could now post a comment there, can You please try again to create an account, it worked for me now link. Thanks, kind regards, --birdy geimfyglið (:> )=| 18:45, 10 December 2007 (UTC)
done. --Weekeejames 13:54, 11 December 2007 (UTC)

You posted the same question on my talk page, and I answered before I noticed you had also posted it here. Please notify any others you've asked about this discussion, to avoid duplicating work. My answer is quoted below.

Hello Weekeejames. Interface translations should be done on the translatewiki, and they'll be added directly to MediaWiki's translation files. "Special:Allmessages" should no longer be used for translations (since at least 2005), only for customizing the messages for a specific wiki. This is the reason Chavacano is not available as an option in other wikis— the Chavacano Wikipedia is using an English interface customized with Chavacano.

You will need to import the Chavacano translations into the translatewiki, and generalize them (make them apply to any wiki, ie remove Wikipedia-specific content like links to Chavacano Wikipedia policies). Contact Nikerabbit if you're interested in doing that. If they're already generalized, Nikerabbit can export them directly to the MediaWiki files from the Chavacano Wikipedia. He can also correct the language name while exporting the translations.

To help translate the donation box, please see Fundraising 2007#Pages_to_be_translated.

Determining the date of creation of the Chavacano Wikipedia is difficult. I know it was created sometime between 17 June 2006 (the date of the last vote on Requests for new languages/Wikipedia Chavacano) and 07 January 2007 (when the subcommittee merged it into the new process). cbk-zam:Special:Statistics seems to say 02 October 2006, which would fit.

{admin} Pathoschild 18:01:44, 11 December 2007 (UTC)

Thank you Pathoschild. I guess, I was too impatient then, I was posting same questions on different areas of meta. I am waiting for Siebrand at Betawiki to help first correct the name of cbk-zam and then from there, I will start working with the translations at betawiki/translatewiki.

Spacebirdy has been giving a great deal of help. Thanks. --Weekeejames 23:07, 11 December 2007 (UTC)

Hi, have You seen Nike's response regarding the interwiki-names here? It seems the shortening is not needed.
Please can You redirect the other discussions here, if You have started same threads in other regions, I found 2 :) You know better if there are some left, thanks. Best regards, --birdy geimfyglið (:> )=| 23:11, 11 December 2007 (UTC)
Hello Birdy. I have given my arguments there for Nike and all discussions related to this issue elsewhere here in Meta have been tagged as {{closed}} and have been redirected here. Thanks. --Weekeejames 12:06, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
:) thanks, --birdy geimfyglið (:> )=| 13:49, 15 December 2007 (UTC)

cbk-zam - update

Thanks. I'm in touch with these issues at Betawiki and Bugzilla. I really appreciate your help. After all these minor corrections are done, I will start translating the interface of at Betawiki. Currently, cbk-zam is using the English interface with translations on its Special:Allmessages page. I will soon work at Betawiki for this, I just have to wait for the interwiki links corrections of cbk-zam as Zamboangueño to cbk-zam as Chavacano de Zamboanga. Gracias. --Weekeejames 09:32, 16 December 2007 (UTC)
Can you also update the donation translation of cbk-zam per thanks. --Weekeejames 17:39, 16 December 2007 (UTC)
Done, thanks for the translations. Gracias, --birdy geimfyglið (:> )=| 19:39, 16 December 2007 (UTC)
Thank you. I did a minor correction on Can you please update it? It should be $1 maga persona ya quien ya dona and not $1 personas ya que ya dona. Sorry for the little trouble. Also can you help me create the meter bar with the text "maga persona ya quien ya dona" ? Thanks. --Weekeejames 05:44, 17 December 2007 (UTC)
Sorry, we can't create the meter, that has to be done by a dev. Best regards, --birdy geimfyglið (:> )=| 09:19, 17 December 2007 (UTC)
Ok, but can you please update ? Thanks. Do you know of any developer whom I can contact for the meter bar? --Weekeejames 10:59, 18 December 2007 (UTC)
Jup, I did update it already, or is there still an error? Just let me know then.
@meter: I don't think they will be added anymore. Please read this for understanding why some can't be created. About a month ago I suggested some possible solutions on foundation-I mailinglist but I don't expect anything is going to happen, I am really sorry. Brion Vibber created the existing bars afaik, so maybe You could ask him, best regards, --birdy geimfyglið (:> )=| 11:21, 18 December 2007 (UTC)
Thank you. The minor correction is now reflected at the Chavacano Wikipedia. Regarding the meter, never mind, if it's causing a lot of troubles. I am patiently waiting for the next software update on On its langauge preference option, cbk-zam is still listed as cbk-zam. Also, I am patiently waiting for bugzilla action on the interwiki link of cbk-zam. On cbk-zam is listed a Zamboangueño when it should be Chavacano de Zamboanga. As you see Birdy, that little mistake they did months ago reflected big mistakes everywhere. I hope it will be fixed soon. --Weekeejames 11:43, 18 December 2007 (UTC)
Hi, the portal page I could update, I did not know it was incorrect there also, it takes a while until the changes are shown on the website. Kind regards, --birdy geimfyglið (:> )=| 12:11, 18 December 2007 (UTC)
Thanks again. Kind regards, --Weekeejames 15:08, 18 December 2007 (UTC)
Why is it taking so much time for bugzilla to correct bugs? --Weekeejames 02:37, 2 January 2008 (UTC)
Because there are a lot of bugs (a lot of work) and those people are also volungary workers, You could try to go to #wikimedia-techconnect and ask if someone can help You, best regards, --birdy geimfyglið (:> )=| 15:43, 2 January 2008 (UTC)
I think the bug has been reverted back and corrected according to our discussion here. I just have one problem and I have posted this at the support page of betawiki
Hello. I'm just about to translate the interface of the Chavacano de Zamboanga wikipedia (cbk-zam). I used to do the old way of translating using the special:allmessages page right in our wikipedia, but I was advised at meta to come here and do the translation instead. I have been given translator rights and I have read some of the pages on how to go about. But since I went for a vacation for awhile, I was not able to translate and use betawiki right away. Now when I came back, I noticed that some of our interface have been translated to Tagalog. When I went to I saw that there have been exported translations from Tagalog to our wikipedia. Can anyone investigate how this happened and who did it? I want to have the exports of Tagalog to our wikipedia undone because as I will start working with Betawiki, the page will be my guide (as I used to translate the old way) and I will simply ask some of our already translated messages be imported to betawiki. The problem now is that some Tagalog messages have been infiltrated and exported to our wikipedia, so that what was once English messages are now in Tagalog. :( How did it happen? Who did it? Can anyone investigate and help the Chavacano wikipedia please. I will start asking for imports (and do the translations here) to Betawiki once will be reverted back and Tagalog messages are taken out of our wikipedia. Thanks.
Thanks spacebirdy. --Weekeejames 10:14, 7 February 2008 (UTC)
Oh, I am very sorry to hear this, I hope they can set it back soon :( Best regards, --birdy geimfyglið (:> )=| 12:23, 7 February 2008 (UTC)

add Auto-Review

The following discussion is closed.

For the process of reviewing I found a very nice tool to discover typos and formal mistakes. Especially after you read the article 15 times already and 20 persons changed some little contents again, it is very comfortable to use that tool to find easy mistakes like the use of ... isntead of . My request now is, is it possbile to intigrate that tool into wikiepdia for registered users. If a user is registered and enables the usage of it in his settings, than below every article he is browsing will be a line like this: This article is checked by Autoreview and its grad is 10.5. The aim could be to have all articles at least below 10. There are also "fillwords", I hope thats the correct word in English. The meaning is, that those words are always used without a special content. The toll also finds them and the author can check if they are really without meaning, or usefull at this time. In I just found a lot of unuselfull words. Here the tool: Autoreview with "Republic China" example 快樂龍contentquestionconsequence 04:52, 12 December 2007 (UTC)

It looks very promising :) However, it'd help a lot if it had a proper translation into english. From there it could be translated into many other languages. Waldir 04:57, 13 January 2008 (UTC)
The following discussion is closed.

I just realised this fairly important page hasn't been made. Should it be? It's likely to be fairly large, so any help/corrections to the page would be appreciated; info about templates will need to leak in, and PFs, etc. ----Anonymous DissidentTalk 21:27, 16 December 2007 (UTC)

Made it. Any improvements are very welcome. ----Anonymous DissidentTalk 06:32, 17 December 2007 (UTC)

Meta:Requests for undeletion

The following discussion is closed: Speedily done

I'd like to bring to attention my proposal to merge this with Requests for deletion, due to the little use of the page. Thoughts, Metapedians? --Anonymous DissidentTalk 06:12, 10 January 2008 (UTC)

Sounds good. —{admin} Pathoschild 06:28:13, 10 January 2008 (UTC)
Supported. --Thogo (talk) 07:51, 10 January 2008 (UTC)
Thirded. --Meno25 09:31, 10 January 2008 (UTC)
Sensible --Herby talk thyme 10:26, 10 January 2008 (UTC)
Therefore, done. ----Anonymous DissidentTalk 07:57, 11 January 2008 (UTC)

Change in the central .css file

The following discussion is closed: done

Dear all, we discussed here about changing the page layout for the next steward election (whenever that will be), learning from this year's experiences. This would include a new TOC without the subheadlines, just containing the names of the candidates. To manage this, a change in the common.css file would be necessary (to allow hiding subheadlines from the TOC). Since this is a change in the general surface of Meta it can only be done by community consensus. Thus, please write arguments for or against this change here so that we can find a consensus. --Thogo (talk) 14:50, 23 December 2007 (UTC)

  • Note that this change of allowing suppression of lower head levels in TOCs will be useful for more than just this particular usage. I plan to shortly carry this change out (unless someone beats/beat me to it), report on the results here and there, and prepare to revert it back if the community decides it's not a good idea. Support this change. ++Lar: t/c 03:57, 24 December 2007 (UTC)
  • I Support..the last format was too "ugly" and did take a lot of space unnecessarily though we could have followed a similar format to the Board elections as well :) ...--Cometstyles 14:27, 26 December 2007 (UTC)
  • I whole-heartedly support this plan. The way en.wp's RfA TOCs (enough acronyms for ya?) behave is ideal. This is decidedly non-controversial; can we go ahead and make the change? EVula // talk // // 17:13, 26 December 2007 (UTC)

Any admin here can make it. I'd said I would do it but I've slacked, so haven't gotten to it yet... no one should hold back just because I said I would :) ++Lar: t/c 21:20, 26 December 2007 (UTC)

Ok, I made it. The template to use is {{TOClimit}}. But it doesn't seem to work... Stewards/elections still shows 3 levels for me. Cache problem? --Thogo (talk) 20:38, 28 December 2007 (UTC)
Yes, was a cache problem. Works now. --Thogo (talk) 22:09, 29 December 2007 (UTC)
Awesome, thanks for picking up my slack! SO... now we're good to go on the new page format? ++Lar: t/c 16:02, 31 December 2007 (UTC)
Hm, I don't know if we want to let everything else as it was last year. I mean the election modalities. I would think yes. Changing to 6 months (or even permanent election) will probably not get consensus among the stewards. ;o) --Thogo (talk) 16:18, 2 January 2008 (UTC)
With respect consensus among the stewards being the criteria suggests a little too much detachment from the rather more overwhelming number of ordinary users? --Herby talk thyme 17:14, 2 January 2008 (UTC)


The following discussion is closed.

Could a Meta-Wiki admin asks to Arnomane stop with their uncivil behavior on Proposals for closing projects/Radical cleanup of Volapük Wikipedia? Asking to him on the mentioned page have produced no results. Thanks in advance. 555 16:07, 28 December 2007 (UTC)

If you come across a personal attack (attacks against the articles of vo.wp ("crap", "junk" etc.) are not nice, but of course not personal attacks), you may call an admin at WM:RFH. --Thogo (talk) 20:27, 28 December 2007 (UTC)
The following discussion is closed: not deprecated

There is no longer need to have this page, since deleted or non-existing pages can be protected directly now. --Thogo (talk) 09:49, 29 December 2007 (UTC)

I'd plan to post on this later. I agree that seems to be the case however I think it may still be worth using WM:SALT for some protections as it allows recording keeping? My thoughts (here too) is that spambot pages for example would be fine for the "new" protection. However I'm still inclined to the record/rationale allowed by SALT? Regards --Herby talk thyme 09:57, 29 December 2007 (UTC)
Hm, what exactly would be the advantages of WP:SALT in opposite to the log file protection? You can give reasons for the protection and you can specify a protection time there. What do you mean by "recording"? On dewiki we changed totally to the log file protection (I don't know if all pages are already done, but most are.) Grtx, --Thogo (talk) 13:21, 29 December 2007 (UTC)
I'm trying hard to put this in words! SALT gives someone a page with both the protected pages and a history of the activity of those pages and, via history, who put it there. Special:Protectedtitles only lists the page with no other info (sure the protection log is there but in another place)? I don't feel strongly but it might be worth not throwing away SALT for now (but I would certainly use the new way for bot pages). Regards --Herby talk thyme 14:10, 29 December 2007 (UTC)
Imho Special:Protectedtitles lacks an "acitvity log" and the protection reason (maybe the devs can implement this) like we have it on Meta:Protected against recreation. The next thing that disturbs me is that sysops don't get a warning when creating a preprotected page try [2], I suggest we use both possibilities :) best regards, --birdy geimfyglið (:> )=| 14:14, 29 December 2007 (UTC)
Hm, but the reason and who protected when, is visible in the log file of every page, and in the general log file. Why do we need that on another page, too? *confused* --Thogo (talk) 17:12, 29 December 2007 (UTC)
Because it would be handy to have it on Special:Protectedtitles, this list is imho not very useful without any further information, best regards, --birdy geimfyglið (:> )=| 17:30, 29 December 2007 (UTC)
With WM:SALT you can aslo do things like protecting a page periodically in selected time intervals. -- 17:42, 29 December 2007 (UTC)
I'm with Birdy - I shall probably use the new form on all & any spambot pages. It is simple, quicker and needs no explanation. However for other protections the grouping on the SALT page will tell people something as will the history available --Herby talk thyme 18:24, 29 December 2007 (UTC)
Hm, ok. I'm not convinced, but I can live with that, of course. :o) --Thogo (talk) 22:11, 29 December 2007 (UTC)
Maybe for the spambot thing MediaWiki:Titleblacklist is better (at least for the index.php thing), best regards, --birdy geimfyglið (:> )=| 14:49, 2 January 2008 (UTC)
Please see now also bugzilla:12484, thanks --birdy geimfyglið (:> )=| 15:23, 2 January 2008 (UTC)

Streamlined user rights management

The following discussion is closed.

I know I read about the change to have Special:Makesysop and Special:Makebot go away to be replaced with a more streamlined Special:Userrights page. Anyone remember where that was discussed? Reason I ask is that on Commons we have a very customised MediaWiki:Makesysoptext page (see it at commons:MediaWiki:Makesysoptext) which has instructions on what other housekeeping tasks need doing when someone is promoted. It is very handy, so I want to change the corresponding page for Userrights but I am not sure if it is MediaWiki:Userrightstext, or if it has some other name. I'm loath to just go in and start editing pages at random :) Any clues much appreciated! ... Thanks. ++Lar: t/c 16:09, 31 December 2007 (UTC)

Try asking at wikitech-l? The relevant bug is bugzilla:11645. Cbrown1023 talk 16:23, 31 December 2007 (UTC)
Special:Allmessages and Ctrl + F are your friend. I'm not entirely sure what you are asking. Is this what you're looking for? By the way, we need to update the same here. Majorly (talk) 16:52, 31 December 2007 (UTC)
I've added text at the bug itself. To reiterate, for this new rights manipulation interface, I would like to identify a page that stays visible from start to finish, where wiki specific things can be put, the same way that MediaWiki:Makesysoptext is visible from start to finish while using the Special:Makesysop interface. The page that you gave MediaWiki:Userrights-groupshelp isn't visible from start to finish I don't think... it's only visible during part of the process. The commons 'crats all feel that Commons:MediaWiki:Makesysoptext and its counterpart Commons:MediaWiki:Makebot-header have been very helpful at avoiding missing steps when making new sysops or when making bots (respectively), since the process is a bit complex due to local custom. ++Lar: t/c 18:09, 31 December 2007 (UTC)
As I noted in the bug, you want MediaWiki:Userrights-summary. – rotemlissTalk 19:09, 31 December 2007 (UTC)
There may be a bit more to it than that, as editing that page to paste in what we had before results in a vast blob of text all in a very large font, as if it were all part of the heading, and it does not honor any html or wiki markup. If that is unclear I'll provide a screenshot ... (you'd have to be a commons 'crat to see what it did :) ) Is that perhaps the heading and there is another page that has the body? ++Lar: t/c 23:00, 31 December 2007 (UTC)
Silly me. MediaWiki:Userrights is the heading and MediaWiki:Userrights-summary is the body. All sorted on Commons. I propose to do something similar here on Meta now, moving the old texts for makesysop and makebot over. ++Lar: t/c 23:55, 31 December 2007 (UTC)

Well color me confused, I went to make the same change on Meta and it didn't work. No text showed. So I checked on Commons, where last week it was showing the text of commons:MediaWiki:Userrights-summary at the top of commons:Special:Userrights, and then the rest of the page where you put the name in, etc... this week it is not. Did something change? ++Lar: t/c 22:59, 5 January 2008 (UTC)

Yes. I have now fixed the software to display the message again. Please wait to the software update in Wikimedia sites. – rotemlissTalk 16:56, 6 January 2008 (UTC)
Thanks! Where can I read about what markup is and isn't supported on those sorts of pages? I'm thinking it might be nice to allow use of show/hide type functionality so that the preface material doesn't swamp the page unless you want to look at it. ++Lar: t/c 17:20, 6 January 2008 (UTC)
Everything that is supported in the wiki articles, is supported in the "-summary" messages (but not in all MediaWiki messages! Some of them are HTML, and some of them are plain text). – rotemlissTalk 07:45, 7 January 2008 (UTC)
I took advantage of that to use a collapsible table to hide most of the help text so the form should fit on one page. ++Lar: t/c 23:18, 16 January 2008 (UTC)

Punjabi Wikipedia

The following discussion is closed.

the punjabi wikipidia is incompatible to Mozzila firefox, but works good on internet explorer. the text don't come out right on firefox. 17:42, 6 January 2008 (UTC)

You need to ask for help via the company that made your browser, you probably need to download a new language pack. Cbrown1023 talk 21:40, 7 January 2008 (UTC)

Picture of the Year competition

The following discussion is closed.

Dear Wikimedians,

Wikimedia Commons is happy to announce that the 2007 Picture of the Year competition will be held soon. Any user who is registered at any Wikimedia wiki and has more than 200 edits is invited to vote.

The competition is among the 514 images that became Featured Pictures at Wikimedia Commons between 2007-01-01 and 2007-12-31. There are literally hundreds of beautiful high quality pictures... please help us choose the best one!

Voting will be conducted through a tool on the toolserver (to make it easier to count compared to editing on a wiki). Users can request a voting token on . You will need to have email enabled for the user account you intend to vote from. You can only vote once, even if you have multiple accounts that meet the edit requirement. The voter log will be public although the actual votes themselves will be private.

There are two rounds of voting. In the first round, you can vote for as many images as you like, regardless of category. In the final (28), you can only vote for one image.

Thanks, Wikimedia Commons Picture of the Year committee --Herby talk thyme 13:07, 8 January 2008 (UTC)


The following discussion is closed.

Please reconsider this discussion. --Thogo (talk) 14:14, 8 January 2008 (UTC)

Voting open - Picture of the year Competition

The following discussion is closed.

Dear Wikimedians,

The 2007 Wikimedia Commons Picture of the Year competition is now open!

Please visit here to see if you are eligible and get a voting token: here

The images are presented in categories, but you can vote for as many as you like, in as many categories as you like. (The categories are just so you don't have to look at hundreds of images at once.) The top 28 images will make it to the final.

Before you cast your vote, you can preview them all at the galleries. Voting is open from January 10-17, so please take the time to have your say!

Thanks, Wikimedia Commons Picture of the Year committee --Herby talk thyme 11:07, 10 January 2008 (UTC)

Proposal: removal of several bureaucrats

The following discussion is closed: not done

(from RFA talk page)

Hi, I'd like to propose the removal of several bureaucrats. We now have a total of 6 elected bureaucrats, a particularly high ratio for the number of admins we have and the size of the wiki, and so I'd like to suggest removal of bureaucrats that were never elected to the position. The users are as follows: Angela, Anthere, Datrio, Fantasy, Jimbo Wales, Kph, Oscar, RobH, Shizhao, Sj, Snowdog, Tim Starling and Yann. Note in particular that Datrio, Fantasy and Snowdog seem to have been given bureaucrat rights as part of the steward "package", but now they are no longer stewards. I propose we remove them all in one go, but I'd like opinions on this. Thanks. Majorly (talk) 15:59, 13 January 2008 (UTC)

Maybe we can make a confirmation just like for sysops? I would propose to inform all of them *before*. Maybe some of them are interested in keeping the rights (and want to write a statement therefore), most of them will probably be not. --Thogo (talk) 17:38, 13 January 2008 (UTC)
None of them are even active, so I don't see why they'd need to keep the rights. Yes, we should inform them, it's only polite. However, I don't think a sysop-like confirmation would work: none of them were elected, none are active (as bureaucrats), so would surely fail a vote anyhow. Majorly (talk) 17:42, 13 January 2008 (UTC)
Yes, probably you're right. Hm, maybe they (or someone else) give good reasons to keep the access. --Thogo (talk) 17:53, 13 January 2008 (UTC)

I'd like to put forth a radical idea. I feel that what we did with Ausir was wrong. Unelected access does not need an election to be removed and I fear we set a bad precedent (which we should therefore ignore). The stewards should just have removed the CU access, and further should just remove the access of unelected crats ( Datrio, Fantasy and Snowdog ) that got it because they were stewards and are no longer stewards, instead of the community having to have had a vote on it... That's me speaking as a person, not a steward, of course. That said a confirmation process is in general a very good idea but I do think we need to be careful of defining "inactivity" too narrowly... we have some crats here who are active, and who regularly participate in our community, but whose actual number of crat actions is low (points at self, Majorly keeps beating me to EVERYTHING, he's too fast... I wish he'd wait just a bit once in a while instead of hogging all the fun :) )... so we should keep that in mind. ++Lar: t/c 04:06, 14 January 2008 (UTC)

OK, let me put it this way. As a steward, it's good to have log access for checkuser, so therefore stewards will retain log access on Meta. But why have the bcrat access? I can only think it would be useful for renaming if a user wanted to be renamed in a lot of places, and the steward could do it all at once, but they could always request it of another bcrat, or just temporary bcrat themselves to do it. Point is, I don't see the point in any of the above users keeping it. Yeah, sorry if you don't get to do much... maybe I should nominate some more people so I can't close it :D Majorly (talk) 09:35, 14 January 2008 (UTC)
Essentially I agree with Majorly. Furthermore current CU access for the log is pointless as the only log avilable is the Meta one - hardly informative. As such "log access" rights are redundant too --Herby talk thyme 09:48, 14 January 2008 (UTC)
Oh, I thought the log was global... Majorly (talk) 09:54, 14 January 2008 (UTC)
It was - it ain't! --Herby talk thyme 09:55, 14 January 2008 (UTC)
I agree with Majorly too; unelected and also unused access should be dispensed with after a certain amount of time, and unelection is porbably not necessary. --Anonymous DissidentTalk 10:01, 14 January 2008 (UTC)
Oh, so we should remove unelected checkusers too? (I'm in a removing sort of mood today...) Majorly (talk) 10:06, 14 January 2008 (UTC)
So you mean removing all non-elected bureaucrats and checkusers? Hm, would be quite radical, but anyway... --Thogo (talk) 10:19, 14 January 2008 (UTC)
If we had a lack of bcrats or checkusers, it may not be a good idea. But we clearly have plenty, so I don't see it a problem. Majorly (talk) 10:25, 14 January 2008 (UTC)

Given that the log is now not global, I support (as a person):

  • removing CU access from most non elected people (there are a few exceptions)
  • removing 'crat access from most non elected people (there are a few exceptions)
  • removing admin access from most non elected people (there are a few exceptions)
  • if the log becomes global, restoring CU access for log viewing purposes ONLY to all stewards and ombudsmen.

The few exceptions are the standard ones you'd expect, Himself, Anthere, Angela, people like that... As a steward I have no opinion, of course. ++Lar: t/c 22:13, 14 January 2008 (UTC)

OK... I don't see why Himself should retain bureaucrat rights here. I might sound tough here, but he doesn't have them on enwiki, and I don't see why he needs them here. OK, Anthere was just reconfirmed as an admin (she's going to be anyway), but why bcrat access? Same with Angela. I don't see them as exceptions. Sysop, well that's different, there's more use for sysops. But as we see above, the current elected bureaucrats are already plentiful. Majorly (talk) 22:57, 14 January 2008 (UTC)
To be clear, I wouldn't give them rights they didn't already have, but those are the few users I wouldn't take any preexisting rights away from, that's all. But I'd be fine with dropping all the exceptions altogether if that was consensus. Any of those people would handily pass an election if they stood. ++Lar: t/c 23:44, 14 January 2008 (UTC)
I hope they'd have the good judgement not to - it's pretty clear that we do not have the slightest need for anymore bcrats. Majorly (talk) 23:57, 14 January 2008 (UTC)
Well yes... because you have been a dervish. your log I've several times wanted to set a flag, promote a user, rename a user, and you always beat me to it. Although I'm glad you're so efficient, and it's a relief to know that requests won't get overlooked, it's actually starting to get a little frustrating, if you must know. There is no deadline, after all. I get the impression, fair or not, that it's almost like you're bound and determined to demonstrate that, yes, we have too many crats here... but as I said when I stood, or whe Herby stood, what if you're hit by a bus? Or just get bored... it happens. I think the "too many crats" argument is specious, really. That's different than whether any of our "special" users would or wouldn't stand for admin or crat, though. ++Lar: t/c 04:28, 15 January 2008 (UTC)
It's frustrating that I am punctual and get the job done sufficiently? I believe in getting tools and using them if the community shows a need for them. I ran for bureaucrat when the changing username backlogs were going back weeks, and the two elected bcrats were both semi active. You and Herby ran, well, I don't know why you did. That's why I opposed Herby. I thought it poor judgement to run for bcrat when the community clearly didn't need another (even admitting it himself). The community only supported him because of all his other hats. Now you are complaining I am getting the job done smoothly and punctually... what do you expect? I get the tools to do the job well. And really, I don't want to sound bitter, but you aren't exactly starved of things to do otherwise (steward, checkuser on 3 wikis, bcrat on commons, admin on several). If I'm hit by a bus, or get bored, then there would be need to elect another bureaucrat. But you're assuming too much. I'm not going to get bored, and hopefully won't get hit by a bus. Instead of getting a ton of bureaucrats before anything happens to me, and causing them to sit around doing nothing and getting frustrated they never get to do anything, don't elect them in the first place. Majorly (talk) 08:33, 15 January 2008 (UTC)
Apathy. Just ask them. If they think they don't need the tool, they are most likely to tell you so. Hillgentleman 03:33, 15 January 2008 (UTC)

I am not sure if we can remove Tim Starling and RobH access ... they are Foundation employees (however Tim may have got it even before WMF was founded as a trusted community member or developer). I am quite unsure RobH was elected ... he seems just to have given himself the access for some convenience we are not sure: it would be problematic on other projects, but in regard of meta mission, coordination about foundation issues, I am not sure we claim all accesses should be given with the community support and only. Foundation may also give those accesses to the people they employ to have them do some works on behalf of the Foundation .. --Aphaia 01:50, 28 January 2008 (UTC)

I'd like to suggest that we have a separate right (+audit?) for foundation employees and ombudsmen, for use on Meta, which allows them to view logs globally for restricted-view logs (checkuser and oversight at the moment) from one location. There's a severe lack of overlap currently between "foundation rights" and "community rights" that is starting to cause issues, in my opinion. We have "Foundation Stewards" and "Elected Stewards", people with +checkuser because they're ombudsmen and those who have it for Foundation use. Even better, perhaps, maybe copy a Wikia rights name, +staff, which would do nothing but mark that person as a Foundation employee or ombudsman and therefore beyond consideration by the Meta community? ~Kylu (u|t) 06:45, 7 February 2008 (UTC)
That's an interesting idea. It would save a lot of difficulty by making what we take implicit as explicit. The recent changes to how userrights are done make this a lot easier to implement. Maybe bat this around a bit to firm up requirements and then open a ticket. Probably should be a separate topic. ++Lar: t/c 12:22, 7 February 2008 (UTC)
Requests_for_comments/Wikimedia_Foundation_staff_permissions - Done. :) ~Kylu (u|t) 02:29, 8 February 2008 (UTC)


The following discussion is closed.

For information - I have started these off today with two stolen from en Wikibooks! Those who want them will be able to enable them in "my preferences" -> "Gadgets". If you have ever tried to selectively undelete a page you will be impressed with that .js.

The log filter is excellent if you want to find things in logs. It works on the CU log which is great. However it also works with other logs such as delete & upload very well indeed. Those who are curious may like to try it on the rights log - it allows you to be very selective about what you see. Hope these help - regards --Herby talk thyme 11:37, 15 January 2008 (UTC)

Cool! I added something to my monobook the other day for the rights log, and it's great. I'll have a look at them. Majorly (talk) 13:59, 15 January 2008 (UTC)
Thank you, Herby. These gadgets are very useful indeed. --Meno25 08:10, 17 January 2008 (UTC)
I added one from enwiki, MediaWiki:Gadget-UTCLiveClock.js. Cbrown1023 talk 03:25, 20 January 2008 (UTC)

Article history access

The following discussion is closed: not resolved

I am a graduate student at Northwestern University and have been a regular english wikipedia editor (Madcoverboy) since 2005. I am interested in using article histories on Wikipedia to conduct analyses of the structures and dynamics of social networks. I am particularly interested in how breaking news stories (Virginia Tech massacre, Bhutto assassination, Myanmar protests, London and Madrid terrorist attacks, etc.) emerge and evolve.

However, the constraints of the Special:Export feature on en-wiki and the ongoing failures associated with the enwiki-meta-history dumps have complicated easy access to and parsing of this history data. Likewise, I already know that crawling the namespace is discouraged. What other avenues or tools might you suggest for accessing and downloading complete article histories from en-wiki? 20:26, 16 January 2008 (UTC)

I find this very helpful and I know that our Communications Director has used it a couple of times. Cbrown1023 talk 21:28, 16 January 2008 (UTC)
Thank you for the reference, I will be sure to contact him/her! However, this doesn't reveal the iterated contributions (for diffs) or timestamps that the XML dumps/exports do. Is there any other way to get the whole article histories? 22:25, 16 January 2008 (UTC)

Suggestion of a new wiki project: Wikilaw.

The following discussion is closed.

Hi there,

This is the first time that I'm trying to collaborate with Wikimedia, but I'm not sure this is the correct place to send my suggestion or comment.

The idea that I would like to suggest is the creation of a database of laws within Wikimedia - a place where anyone can upload laws and the community of users would be responsible to assure the accuracy of those laws.

This idea occurred to me because of my work and my educational background. I'm from Brazil, where I went to law school, but I've been living in the US for almost 5 years. Currently, I work for a tax software company; my position is called Legal Research Analyst (I'm not an attorney in the US). Basically, I research tax laws of 50 different countries, and, in my department, the 5 of us research tax laws of about 150 countries. One of the hardest part of this work is to find the laws - and I always imagine how great it would be if every law was under one database. Also, I know that I could already be working to build such database: since I am already doing this work of finding so many laws, I could as well just upload them in a place where it could be easily available to everyone. I love Wikipedia so much, and I couldn’t think of a better media for such database as I imagine.

I believe that such project would have an EXTRAORDINARY value for DEMOCRACIES around the world, inasmuch that it would give people access to the laws of their countries whenever they want. The organization style of wikimedia would be just be perfect, since you could create a skeleton mirroring the legal system with all its layers - divided by subject (constitutional laws, labor laws, tax laws, etc) and also by authority level (country, state, county, municipalities, international treaties, etc.)

As the database grows by the collective work of the wikimedia community, I believe that, eventually, the authorities themselves (such as city halls or senates) would start publishing every new law in this wiki database - perhaps at some point transforming it into some sort of world Official Gazette, the place where the laws actually become public. I believe this would happen because of the request of the population, since governments have the obligation to make laws public - and because Wikimedia is the only media form that could have the credibility to have such public and official support (because of its non-commercial and volunteer nature). I myself would ask senators, mayors and other authorities to do that. Basically, wikimedia would be doing an immense public service, which I believe would be particularly instrumental in poorer contries, where the governments don't have the means to create such database by themselves.

Of course, there would be a difference between this and other wiki projects, since the content itself is not open for being edited by anyone (since the laws are written by lawmakers). But it would, nonetheless, require the same type of collective and volunteer work of publishing content (the law) and reviewing it (to avoid scams, inaccuracies, or even to notify about changes in the law). Perhaps that would not even be that much different, though. After all, Wikiquotes, for example, should be accurate to what the people actually said or wrote.

Well... what do you guys think?

Thank you,


p.s. (since I haven't used this before, how would I even know if someone is replying to my comment???)

New Wikimedia projects are only launched after extensive discussion by the community and the Board. If you would like this project to be part of Wikimedia, please see the information on project creation at Proposals for new projects where you will find instructions on how to propose a new project. Thank you for your suggestion. Cbrown1023 talk 19:33, 18 January 2008 (UTC)

Thank you for the lettign me know.

Proposal for interproject-links interwikistyle

The following discussion is closed: done

Dear all, I was searching for something like this on Meta, but I could not find it implemented here. On de.wikt or it works fine, see wikt:de:Benutzer:Spacebirdy/test (right under "Schwesternprojekte") as an example. It creates interwikilinks to other projects in the left navigation.

You can find the code here (below the headline: "// Interprojekt-Links (Bug 708)")

Imho it would be great if it could be implemented on Meta too.
Please let me know what You think about it, many thanks in advance, best regards, --birdy geimfyglið (:> )=| 14:19, 19 January 2008 (UTC)

I think this is particularly useful on multi lingual projects & I would support the implementation of this --Herby talk thyme 14:44, 19 January 2008 (UTC)

Generally support however I am not sure how it is feasible on meta (if we have everything in one box it would be annoying. If we give an appearance if it is an English project, well it would not be so a pleasure ...) But anyway visit Italian Wikiquote for example q:it:Leonardo da Vinci. I always want to have it on my home ... --Aphaia 16:09, 19 January 2008 (UTC)

Hi Aphaia, thanks for Your concern, I agree with You, I would not like to have those links used everywhere, this is just about the possibility to make a link like this, thanks, --birdy geimfyglið (:> )=| 17:02, 19 January 2008 (UTC)
I like this idea and would also support it. However, we might need a bot to run through and update any links that made become broken? (sent to the sidebar instead of staying in the text like they should) Cbrown1023 talk 03:24, 20 January 2008 (UTC)
No link will break :) since it does not affect existing ones, best regards, --birdy geimfyglið (:> )=| 13:04, 25 January 2008 (UTC)

Please see now Meta:SisterProjects (please clear Your cache before trying because MediaWiki:Common.js was updated), here is a testpage, best regards, --birdy geimfyglið (:> )=| 13:27, 25 January 2008 (UTC)

Meta Image Policy

The following discussion is closed: Fair use not allowed
Relevant discussion
Metapub#Images uploaded to Meta before 29 December 2006 without copyright license declared

Is there a page somewhere on Meta that outlines the file upload policy here? I have some non-free (but permission granted to use) pictures that I would like to use on Wikimania 2009/Bids/Brisbane, but the Upload File page is vague as to what is allowed. As it's not a free licence, I can't upload it to Commons, which is what I've been doing until now.

Thanks! Lankiveil 06:01, 20 January 2008 (UTC)

You are free to upload fair use images here. Regards, Majorly (talk) 21:56, 22 January 2008 (UTC)
Fair use is not allowed, all material has to be free per Meta:Inclusion policy which says content that is not free is not acceptable. If you wish to illustrate a bid then find freely licensed images or negotiate such permission on the image which you propose to upload. Fair use on WMF is based on the principal that it is necessary to use the unfree material, a free version isn't available and cannot be created. I doubt this is true and so fair use could be questionable even if it was permitted on Meta. Regards. Adambro 17:31, 24 January 2008 (UTC)
No, you can use some fair use images if you have no free equivalent, please, we must remeber that the bid needs undoubtedly a lot of "particular" images, it's practically impossible to find them free --Nick1915 - all you want 18:06, 24 January 2008 (UTC)
That is not true, you cannot simply use unfree images because you don't have a free image, it is more complex than that. Additionally, whilst I understand that images will be helpful for any bids I would dismiss your second point, if people are preparing a bid for a city it is reasonable to expect them to put the effort into finding free images or actually going out with a camera and obtaining some themselves.
Whist it is impossible to comment on specifics as Lankiveil has not said exactly what the images he is considering uploading are, we do not have an Exemption Doctrine Policy and the Meta:Inclusion policy says only free content is allowed. Also, even if we did, if these are simply photos of the venue then these couldn't be used under fair use per foundation:Resolution:Licensing policy which states that "An EDP may not allow material where we can reasonably expect someone to upload a freely licensed file for the same purpose". Per the resolution, we cannot host unfree images without an EDP so fair use is not permitted. Adambro 18:23, 24 January 2008 (UTC)
"An EDP may not allow material where we can reasonably expect someone to upload a freely licensed file for the same purpose"... that's right, and so? I'm sorry, but I don't understand your POV, this sentence is so clear for me: if you don't find any equivalent free-licensed image, you could upload another one with a different license. PS WM:IP said also: "Accettable: Documentation and discussion concerning the Wikimedia Foundation and its projects (see some current discussions).", I see that this policy was created and "based on current practice and What Meta is not", especially, made before the EDP... maybe we should update it...--Nick1915 - all you want 19:24, 24 January 2008 (UTC)
I would suggest that you misunderstand, it is not whether you can find a freely licensed image or not, rather is it would it be sensible to suggest that it would be possible for such an image to created and uploaded. Just because a quick search on the net doesn't turn up a free image does most certainly not mean you can use a non-free image. This is a fundamental point of fair use and one which you clearly don't seem to appreciate. I can't really understand your last comment but would note that we don't actually have an EDP and that unless one is created we can't have unfree images per the Wikimedia Foundation resolution. Adambro 20:20, 24 January 2008 (UTC)
Template:fairuse is redirected to {{delete}} upon inclusion.--Jusjih 01:32, 26 January 2008 (UTC)
This question came up on the wikien-l list [3], which led me to wonder what the policy is. Apparently it is the Meta:Inclusion policy. Is there any EDP on meta? CBM 16:32, 28 January 2008 (UTC)
No, Meta does not exempt itself from the Foundation licensing policy. I do not think that is necessary to fulfill Meta's goals, particularly since many cases (such as the letter mentioned in that discussion) do not qualify for fair use. Many of the content projects do very well without, for example. —{admin} Pathoschild 17:05:48, 28 January 2008 (UTC)
If the Meta community wants an EDP, discussion should be held on the precise provisions of it, and consensus sought. I do think there are a fair number of special cases at Meta where unfree images might be necessary, but it would be an interesting exercise to see if Meta could get by with only free images. Failing an EDP being put in place before the deadline, there are indeed a substantial number of images to review and delete. Even WITH an EDP in place there are still a substantial number of images to review (and certify as fair use compliant, or delete), I believe. ++Lar: t/c 20:46, 1 February 2008 (UTC)
Meta is not Wikipedia. Trying to claim fair use is unlikely to be "fair" without violating GFDL.--Jusjih 00:57, 6 February 2008 (UTC)

robot for notifying principal authors in requests for deletion

The following discussion is closed.

Are they running here or no? Hillgentleman 01:29, 26 January 2008 (UTC)

I don't think they are running, but if possible, better to mail them in addition? Not every editor may give a look to meta regularly. --Aphaia 11:53, 27 January 2008 (UTC)
Over on enwiki when you tag an article for deletion the notice includes wiki markup which should be placed on appropriate users talk pages. Perhaps a first step might be to look at creating some standard notification templates and explaining how to use them on the tags. However, as Aphaia notes, many editors won't be primarily active here so a quick look at their contribution pattern is appropriate to determine this then looking to find any WMF projects where they are active to leave them a message or finally emailing them if it isn't possible to find them. Adambro 12:45, 27 January 2008 (UTC)

Rewrite of Help:Template

The following discussion is closed.

I have been working on such a rewrite at User:Happy-melon/Templates. Discussion is welcome on the talk page. Happymelon 10:53, 26 January 2008 (UTC)

Hiding revisions

The following discussion is closed: done

I think a rename may be in order; Oversight just seems more appropriate to me, as, really, that's what this page is about, rather than the actual action of hiding revisions. --Anonymous DissidentTalk 11:52, 2 February 2008 (UTC)

Seems sensible.
Can we get away with redirects? Oversight currently redirects to Hiding revisions so ?? Hiding revisions is technically what is done. (but by that analogy we ought to call CheckUser "review logged information about editors and IPs and their IPs and edits" or something, so I see your point :) ) ++Lar: t/c 19:40, 3 February 2008 (UTC)
Just a note: currently many projects link to m:Hiding_revisions directly, so if a rename is performed, please remember to leave the redirect. Also, is there any of the documentation from en:Wikipedia:Oversight that might be helpful here? ~Kylu (u|t) 06:27, 7 February 2008 (UTC)
Done. —{admin} Pathoschild 03:48:49, 11 March 2008 (UTC)

Majorly has returned to being a Bureacrat at Meta

The following discussion is closed.

Please see this version of Meta:Requests for adminship... Majorly has decided to resume serving the community as a bureaucrat after a short break. ++Lar: t/c 20:25, 6 February 2008 (UTC)

international language support via special Gadgets

The following discussion is closed.
special:Preferences w:yi:special:Gadgets w:yi:special:Preferences
m:wikt:yi:special:Gadgets m:wikt:yi:special:Preferences
m:commons:user:I18n m:wikt:yi:user:I18n w:yi:user:I18n

Dear friends; Please add copies of w:yi:MediaWiki:Gadget-BiDiEditing, w:yi:MediaWiki:Gadget-BiDiEditing.js, w:yi:MediaWiki:Gadget-ShortLink and w:yi:MediaWiki:Gadget-ShortLink.js to this wiki. Please copy the relevant parts of w:yi:MediaWiki:Gadgets-definition to MediaWiki:Gadgets-definition.
In the image you will see some language tabs. Neither gadgets nor user scripts are active at special:Preferences. The language tabs can be defined with a code similar to m:s:yi:MediaWiki:Common.js. Good luck and best regards
‫·‏לערי ריינהארט‏·‏Th‏·‏T‏·‏email me‏·‏‬ 08:43, 14 February 2008 (UTC)

Thanks Meno25 for the help at special:Gadgets with Gadget-BiDiEditing.js and Gadget-ShortLink.js in the name of the BiDi workgroup. Best regards and greetings from Munich
‫·‏לערי ריינהארט‏·‏Th‏·‏T‏·‏email me‏·‏‬ 04:12, 16 February 2008 (UTC)

Esperanto keyboard support via special:Gadgets

m:wikt:yi:MediaWiki:Gadget-EoMagicalConversion and m:wikt:yi:MediaWiki:Gadget-EoMagicalConversion.js support the Esperanto magical conversion to the editor. (source 1source 2). Such an option would be very useful in order to be able to edit Esperanto texts at this projects from any device even without Esperanto keyboard. It is working also at w:ps:special:Gadgets. Please install the EoMagicalConversion gadget at this project.
‫·‏לערי ריינהארט‏·‏Th‏·‏T‏·‏email me‏·‏‬ 08:43, 14 February 2008 (UTC)

Done Cbrown1023 talk 04:13, 16 February 2008 (UTC)

Thanks Cbrown1023 for activating Gadget-EoMagicalConversion.js in special:Gadgets. Please feel free to edit the test page user:I18n/Esperanto. Best regards and greetings from Munich
‫·‏לערי ריינהארט‏·‏Th‏·‏T‏·‏email me‏·‏‬ 04:28, 16 February 2008 (UTC)

How can I help?

The following discussion is closed.

While I'm banned from English Wikipedia, I would like to contribute to Meta.

What do you need help with and what can I do that won't be reverted?

Is there any way I can help with anti-vandalism or copy-editing? Zenwhat 23:12, 14 February 2008 (UTC)

This is not really a suitable wiki. Try Simple English Wikipedia, perhaps, if you enjoy Wikipedia. Majorly (talk) 23:19, 14 February 2008 (UTC)

So, there's no way I can contribute here? Zenwhat 23:53, 14 February 2008 (UTC)

Of course. But I personally think you'd prefer Wikipedia - or perhaps, Wikinews? Majorly (talk) 00:04, 15 February 2008 (UTC)
There is a lot of things to be done. For example, see translations. Hillgentleman 00:33, 15 February 2008 (UTC)

I don't speak more than one language fluently, though. I took 3 years of Spanish in high school, so I know enough to say, "I want a cheeseburger, fries, and a soda. Thank you," and "Help me!" but not much more than that and the various native dialects and slang are extremely confusing.

Then again, maybe I can help. I know enough to read this: Translation teams/es. So long as there's a native speaker that can proofread my work, but then there's probably a lot of people working on translating the spanish stuff, right? Zenwhat 10:13, 15 February 2008 (UTC)

Aye. And you can help write the help pages. And test templates. And join in the debates. You will not be bored. Hillgentleman 21:26, 16 February 2008 (UTC)

No more sub-section edits?

The following discussion is closed.

I just had an odd thing happen. I went to update User:EVula/matrix, and clicked on one of the "edit" links, only to be told that the section number I was going for didn't exist. Er, okay, so I tried one of the lower numbers, like 2, and instead of getting one of my sub-sections, I got my Notes section. So, mildly pissed off, I just edit the whole "The Matrix" section so I can add a single line in the "Wikia projects" section. Then when it refreshes, I don't even have the edit links anymore.

I hadn't changed anything in my preferences, and had "Enable section editing via [edit] links" checked. I even just tried the "Enable section editing by right clicking" option, and it worked fine on the "full" sections, but not the sub-sections. The only thing I can figure is that the sub-sections aren't parsing properly, because they are hard-coded header tags (h3, h4), rather than wiki-syntax (=== and ====). Why the sudden change? EVula // talk // // 20:20, 26 February 2008 (UTC)

The new preprocessor, which was recently implemented on all Wikimedia wikis, doesn't recognize XML header tags as sections. This allows transcluded pages to easily add uneditable sections (for example, to prevent users from replying to talk page messages on template pages), although I'm not sure whether that's the reason for the change or just a nice side-effect. Changing the XML header to wikiML headers should fix the problem. —{admin} Pathoschild 21:40:49, 26 February 2008 (UTC)
To be blunt, then it looks like shit. That's the whole reason I went with hard-coded headers; I could manipulate the formatting better. "===<span style="foo">Header</span>===" doesn't sufficiently override the default margins on the headings, and also makes effects like User:EVula/matrix#Wikia projects (13) (where I've got a note in-line with the header) completely impossible.
I'd think there'd be a way to turn off that behavior... grr. EVula // talk // // 22:09, 26 February 2008 (UTC)
I agree with EVula, this needs to be fixed due to its wide ranging effects. --Anonymous DissidentTalk 22:14, 26 February 2008 (UTC)
You're presumably welcome to discuss the changes on the Wikitech mailing list or in the freenode #mediawiki IRC channel. This page isn't the best place to discuss technical changes, given its small user base. —{admin} Pathoschild 23:03:52, 26 February 2008 (UTC)

New babel templates

The following discussion is closed: transition in progress

I have been working on a new version of the babel template system called {{user language}}. You can see a comparison in my sandbox. I have been collaborating with users in #wikimedia-translation and elsewhere, and they have been very favorable so far. Do you have any comments or suggestions? —{admin} Pathoschild 04:26:35, 31 January 2008 (UTC)

I love it ... it fits our needs more. By the way how do you think to include links to user lang category as well Babel templates do? I found them missing right now and I think I miss those links ... (e.g. User:Aphaia/Babel). --Aphaia 05:14, 31 January 2008 (UTC)
It would be easy to add, but isn't that redundant with the category list? —{admin} Pathoschild 05:56:12, 31 January 2008 (UTC)
It is more intuitive and redundancy is not evil ... and a category list is only available on the bottom which sometimes not easily be accessed (see my user page :D). --Aphaia 07:01, 31 January 2008 (UTC)
Done. :) —{admin} Pathoschild 07:34:05, 31 January 2008 (UTC)
These look very slick. Will it become simpler for visitors to add their mother languages or tweak things on wikis going forward if these are adopted? As a steward I set up a fair number of accounts and I try to always add "boilerplate" to my account if I do anything much there so locals can contact me if they need to. see for example: ms:Pengguna:Lar or bg:Потребител:Lar (I suspect that more experienced stewards do this far more efficiently than I but half the time I find there is no userbox yet for de-1 :) or worse, <nativelanguage>-0 :) ) ... what would be really nifty was a package one could install that gave you a lot of templates and stuff all at once. ++Lar: t/c 19:36, 31 January 2008 (UTC)
Yes, that would be very simple to do. I'll add a section to the documentation explaining how to do it. —{admin} Pathoschild 20:48:13, 31 January 2008 (UTC)
Did you get a chance yet? Thanks! 16:40, 3 February 2008 (UTC)
Yes (hidden in the edit code), but the procedure is relatively complex. I'll write a script sometime that generates the appropriate code much more easily, similar to my createUser script. I'll talk to you on IRC about it. —{admin} Pathoschild 21:14:12, 03 February 2008 (UTC)
wow, I had never really given createUser a whirl, that thing is slicker than slick! However I want some small tweaks. Am I correct to assume that I can just "edit the properties" of the created bookmarklet to change behaviours? In particular (easy) I want the crosslink from the local user talk page to say more than just m:User talk:Lar ... that looks like a tweak to the line "cDoc.edit.value = "[[" + cUser.mainpageprefix + "user talk:" + + "]]";" in section 2 to add more content to what is stuffed in the edit.value variable... If that's the right approach I have more harder stuff to try too. But whoa that's a VERY handy script. (where's the right place to discuss further? your talk?) ++Lar: t/c 21:48, 3 February 2008 (UTC)
Format issue: (feel free to move this to the Template talk:User language page if appropriate) Please see [4], and compare to the older version which used the older style boxen ... for whatever reason these are now wider than the other userboxes in that stack. Aesthetically not pleasing. :) I'd prefer to force them to be the same width as a standard userbox... is that doable? ++Lar: t/c 16:39, 3 February 2008 (UTC)
I've added some flexible overrides, and adjusted your page. —{admin} Pathoschild 21:30:11, 03 February 2008 (UTC)
Nice. I think they're still a pixel or 3 misaligned with the boxes above/below them though. :) ++Lar: t/c 21:48, 3 February 2008 (UTC)
Fixed; I hadn't taken into account the other boxes' 1px borders and margins (1px left border + 1px right border + 1px margin = +3 pixels). —{admin} Pathoschild 22:02:51, 03 February 2008 (UTC)
Imho it would be great if the colour could be changed by the user (and a default one is given if someone is glad with the existing colour). :) Thanks, best regards --birdy geimfyglið (:> )=| 16:42, 3 February 2008 (UTC)
This can be done with the CSS overrides. For example, {{user language|de|N|css-left=background:black; color:white;}} outputs:
de-NThis user can read and write natively in German.
Dieser Benutzer hat muttersprachliche Deutschkenntnisse.

{admin} Pathoschild 21:30:11, 03 February 2008 (UTC)

I don't understand why the traditional babel templates have to be deleted. --Boivie 09:01, 8 February 2008 (UTC)

They are useless. It's nonsense to have a template for every single language and for every level. It's better to have one template for all. --Thogo (talk) 09:06, 8 February 2008 (UTC)

Okey, let me rephrase: I don't understand why fully functional traditional babel templates with text in the correct language are deleted before the new ones are completed. Why not do things in a proper order? Like:

  1. Create and translate everything
  2. Update the documentation in Meta:Babel templates
  3. Make redirects (or template inclusion) from the traditional templates
  4. Change userpages
  5. Delete old templates (if you have to)

And why the rush in deleting? Can't the two systems work in parallel for a while? --Boivie 09:35, 8 February 2008 (UTC)

Sorry for being a bit negative about this. But I mean, in almost all Wikimedia wikis you can show your language capabilities by simply writing {{Babel|da|en-3|de-2|es-1}}. That's what people expect to be able to do also at meta. Now they will be presented with redlinks (example), and are supposed to find some documentation about a new system that were created last week. Please, think about backward compatibility, and let the change take its time. --Boivie 12:03, 8 February 2008 (UTC)
Translating the template takes less than a minute, and the template even provides a convenient "Translate this template!" link if there is no translation for that language. It is far better in terms of quality to create new translations than to guess them based on existing babel templates. The transition will go much more smoothly if we do it consecutively, rather than have redundant systems in the long term while we wait around for translations.
Meta:Babel templates is for the babel templates; when the transition is complete, it can be redirected to the template documentation (which may be expanded). Making pseudo-redirects from the babel templates is certainly possible, and I'll do that. —{admin} Pathoschild 13:57:59, 08 February 2008 (UTC)

Hi, there is a problem for Icelandic: this: This user can read and write {{#switch:{{{2}}}|1=basic |2=intermediate |3=advanced |4=natively in}} [[:category:user {{subst:PAGENAME}}|native language name]] does not work because the language name in it's nominative can't be applied in such a sentence. "native language name" is therefore not really the "native language name", but a declensed and/or composed word (that might apply also to other languages). Best regards, --birdy geimfyglið (:> )=| 10:54, 8 February 2008 (UTC)

Maybe this could work: Þessi notandi hefur {{#switch:{{{2}}}|1=grundvallarkunnáttu á [[:category:user is|íslensku]] máli|2=miðlungs­þekkingu á [[:category:user is|íslensku]] máli|3=mjög góð tök á [[:category:user is|íslensku]] máli|4=[[:category:user is|íslensku]] að móðurmáli}}. ? --Boivie 11:07, 8 February 2008 (UTC)
Yes, it works ok (I think I already have it something like this), but I just wanted to make a note about it because íslensku is the inflected form of íslenska, just to avoid that people think that the linked text is the native language name (as it said in the template). Best regards, --birdy geimfyglið (:> )=| 11:33, 8 February 2008 (UTC)

Displayed languages

The following discussion is closed: English text removed
sxu-NDär Benutzor hior gann rischdsch dolle of Säggssch läsn un schreibm.
This user can read and write natively in Upper Saxon.
sxu-NDär Benutzor hior gann rischdsch dolle of Säggssch läsn un schreibm.

The new babel templates are bilingual (English + mentioned language). This provides a common text which can be understood by the vast majority of MetaWiki users without requiring knowledge of ISO 639 codes, Internet language subtags, and the template's grading system.

However, some users see the English text as imperialist and want it to be mentioned-language only. Do you prefer mentioned language only, or bilingual? (I've shown both along the right side for comparison.) —{admin} Pathoschild 05:31:25, 07 February 2008 (UTC)

I prefer bilingual. English is simply the most widely known language on meta; having it on the babel templates is more a matter of convenience than a conspiracy to impose English on everyone.--Shanel 05:38, 7 February 2008 (UTC)
Yup, I also prefer bilingual. It seems much easier (and probably helpful for a me) to have it in both languages. ;) --Az1568 05:56, 7 February 2008 (UTC)
Just a thought... why not wikilink the language code to the category or to its entry in the language-code list? Monolingual anglophones can then click the link and be educated while anti-imperialist forces can continue to have the templates appear as they had previously. Est-ce que cela fonctionne? ~Kylu (u|t) 06:37, 7 February 2008 (UTC)
I prefer bilingual. Kylu's solution sounds good but wouldn't it make the package of things to bring to a new wiki larger? Maybe I am misinterpreting. Or maybe you could always link to en:wp??? ++Lar: t/c 12:14, 7 February 2008 (UTC)
I would like propose to be able to hide the english text, if wanted, thanks, --birdy geimfyglið (:> )=| 18:52, 7 February 2008 (UTC)
This would be easy to do, but I'd like to decide the default first. If bilingualism remains, I'll add an option to do that. —{admin} Pathoschild 23:13:26, 07 February 2008 (UTC)

I think the colours are ugly and the English text need to go. Result: the current babel-templates with different categories. Ælsån 19:03, 7 February 2008 (UTC)

Perhaps we should remove the sentence in native language and add Chinese translation instead? This would make the templates accessible to one third of the world's population instead of only one sixth! Of course this proposal is not meant seriously. What's the use of the templates? To show to the readers of user pages: "Oh, wat fein, disse Keerl snackt miene Moderspraak, ik mutt mi nich op Engelsch verrenken!" ("How nice, this guy can speak my native language, I don't have to strain myself with English!") If I cannot read the template in the native tongue, well, then the template is not directed at me and contains no useful info for me...
understood by the vast majority of MetaWiki users: Well, that's true, but it is a vicious circle. As a matter of fact everybody not able to speak English is basically excluded from participating on Meta. So you only peg the Englishness of Meta. --::Slomox:: >< 19:46, 7 February 2008 (UTC)
"If I cannot read the template in the native tongue, well, then the template is not directed at me and contains no useful info for me..." That may be the case for you, but I and may other use the babel template for other reasons. If we find that someone speaks a certain language and we need something read and replied to or something needs to be translated, we can use these templates. Cbrown1023 talk 22:25, 7 February 2008 (UTC)
Which is why it should be decided by each user if an English text should be shown additionally or not imho, best regards, --birdy geimfyglið (:> )=| 22:33, 7 February 2008 (UTC)
@Cbrown1023: If you want to use it for this purpose, then why translation on the user pages? If I needed something read or translated in a specific language, I would go to the category and search for people. Why on the user page? Even when you want to find people speaking a specific language from the user page: Why English text? If you know how to find speakers, then you know that you have to go to the category. The English text adds nothing.
@:Spacebirdy: Agreed, let the users decide what appears on their user page. But of course you know, that 90% of the users will use the default. So the question is: What default should we use? I of course only can guess, but I'm relatively sure, that there will be more no-English opt-outs with English-too as default than English-too opt-ins with no-English as default.
The old system was created in November 2004 on Commons and was in use on Meta since January 2005. I never have heard anybody complain that he couldn't understand the meaning of the templates. If you know any cases, point me to it. On the other side, there are voices against the new solution right from the start. --::Slomox:: >< 00:04, 8 February 2008 (UTC)
To be honnest, I personally don't mind what the default is as long as it can be chosen. The colours already can be chosen, if both is available, the templates are imho an improvement, anyhow I know that one can never please everyone. I would like to thank Pathoschild and also Thogo for their efforts, best regards, --birdy geimfyglið (:> )=| 00:15, 8 February 2008 (UTC)

I've removed the English text. It can easily be re-added later if there is consensus for that. —{admin} Pathoschild 03:48:28, 08 February 2008 (UTC)

Is it really necessary to delete the old templates?

The following discussion is closed: fr-N

I don't see the point in deleting the old templates instead of just redirecting them. I don't know if it has been mentioned already, but if they are deleted, every single version of every single user page on meta until now will look totally horrible with red links instead of babel fields. I know that's not really important because what counts is the current version of the pages, but that's still a problem to consider. Nonetheless I find the new templates quite good, so nice work anyway. PieRRoMaN 10:53, 9 February 2008 (UTC)

I agree. Red links on all previous versions of pages really is a problem. Moreover, people who come to meta from any other project and try to set their babel box just as everywhere else will also get red links and this problem, which has the same cause (the deletion of all so-called obsolete templates) as the issue you point at, is imho even a bigger problem. guillom 19:23, 9 February 2008 (UTC)
No templates are being deleted. The template text is replaced with a message explaining how to use the new template, and all existing pages are updated before the template is even changed. —{admin} Pathoschild 20:05:53, 09 February 2008 (UTC)
Well, it's easy to reply "no templates are being deleted" when you actually deleted one and restored it just before your message [5]. That's neither a proper nor a honest way to proceed. guillom 21:20, 9 February 2008 (UTC)
Please assume a minimum of good faith. I deleted that template last week. I have restored those templates that I deleted over the last few days (many before you made your comments) because I decided that it would be less disruptive to have a placeholder message.
If you're going to assume that I'm bent on a conspiracy to deliberately deceive and disrupt, there's little chance that we'll reach a constructive conclusion. —{admin} Pathoschild 21:45:17, 09 February 2008 (UTC)
Please don't put words in my mouth. I never talked about any "conspiracy". I am saying that you should have admitted you made a mistake and/or changed your mind. You did delete the templates at first, saying in the deletion summary they were "deprecated". And until recently, some of these templates were still deleted, so PieRRoMaN's comment (and mine) was relevant. You could have simply said "Yes, I deleted them at first, but I realized it was a mistake, so I am undeleting them" or whatever. This is more accurate and more honest than a peremptory "No templates are being deleted". It doesn't hurt to admit one's mistake (it does sometimes hurt one's ego though). guillom 09:55, 10 February 2008 (UTC)
I apologize for my annoyed response; "That's neither a proper nor a honest way to proceed" seemed like an accusation of malice (and still does). I wouldn't normally respond in kind, but I was already frustrated by users suddenly objecting after we started for what seem to me like minor details we can change anytime.
So, I'll try again. I made a mistake last week, and have since fixed it. In fact, the number of redlinks is actually decreasing because the new templates support languages that the babel templates didn't (like Kara-Kalpak, Sranan Tongo, and Gronings). :) —{admin} Pathoschild 10:30:49, 10 February 2008 (UTC)
I admit my sentence was not ideal either. About objecting after it started, well, I'm sorry, I was abroad and without any internet connection :) guillom 10:34, 10 February 2008 (UTC)
(en) Templates are not deleted, but the categories used in those templates are deleted (before & after). In order to have no more red link in my « Babel zone » (to Category:User de-1) and to prevent the future vanishing of Category:User en-2, I had to replace the links to former categories to black text (langue maternelle + intermediate level + grundlegende – and other minor changes which have no sense in this discussion)... (fr) Il faut juste que je m'habitue à ces morceaux de texte en noir, là où il y avait auparavant des liens internes smiley. Hégésippe | ±Θ± 12:25, 10 February 2008 (UTC)
There should not be any redlinks unless you substitute the code on your user page (then there's not much we can do about it). You can use {{babelold}} to very closely imitate the old templates using the new text, so you won't have that kind of problem. How do these look?


Add fourth level

Proposal, three levels versus four

The following discussion is closed.

I would like to suggest bringing the fourth level of non-native language competence back.

I am active on Wikis in two languages. I am a native speaker of Polish and in English I am close to native (in my work I write and publish articles in this language). In my view "near native" fourth level is needed. Many users at intermediate to advanced levels will chose to indicate their fluency (sometimes only to boast, I'm afraid), but only some of them are at the level close to native (also, claiming it without much grounds is probably a bit more rare than describing own "fluency"). For people really advanced in non-native languages 3 is way too little, while N is simply not true. As far as 5th or 6th levels go - I don't think they are important and their elimination does make sense. But simplifying non-native language competences to 3 categories is definitely a bit ridiculous and harms the informational value of the babel tower.

Compare our babel tower with the Council of Europe scale (6 levels of non-native language competence). It is yet another argument to bring level 4 back: lang-3 signifies an ability to communicate, while lang-4 means also the ability to contribute to articles and to write in English with only minor slips. Pundit 23:08, 28 February 2008 (UTC)

As said beforehand, I oppose. Your argument sounds logical but not practical without an objective measurement. I saw many people who claimed 4 level but poorer in competence than their own claims. In current circumstance, that is, Babel is only based on the self-evaluation without any scientific evaluation (test, certificate etc), I strongly oppose to expand here on meta, which may harm the informational value of the babel tower here on meta. --Aphaia 00:06, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
Well, but then again: your argument is against the babel tower per se. You strongly oppose the idea of self-assessment, while admitting that the scope of available choices is too limited. If we are keeping the babel tower (and it is my understanding, that we do) let's at least provide a sufficient number of available choices. Furthermore, it is not about EXPANDING anything, but rather about not dramatically reducing the number of available levels, which clearly is harmful and detrimental to the informational and communicational value of the project. Pundit 01:17, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
Pundit, you attributed me what I didn't say and I am sorry you seem not to pay my previous argument. I oppose to make self-assessment system too refined, not the system itself. Also you don't give a sufficient argument why 3 is insufficient but 4 is okay except your emotional reactions. And I say, -4 hasn't been the integrated part of meta Babel system so it is a false argument to say it removed. Some added it without any consistency, and we've made it again standardized. As Transcom chair I think convenience and efficiency on this issue quite important, and oppose your proposal to increase complexity. -Aphaia 01:35, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
I have no opinion on whether or not to add a fourth level, but I will emphasize what Aphaia has pointed out. The fourth level has never been part of the babel system on Meta, although a fourth level was used in some languages alongside other nonstandard levels like 0.5, 4.5, 5, and 6. I think I spotted at least one seventh level, too.
So the question is not whether or not it should have been removed (it wasn't), but whether it should be added. —{admin} Pathoschild 01:54:22, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
Well, as you wrote that my argument sounds logical, I assumed you do agree with its logic. You don't give any argument whatsoever on why should we have 3 levels of language competence (why not just two? your line of thought could be easily applied to support such a concept). I will be most grateful for not trying to reduce my arguments to emotional reactions, as I believe you have not had any occasion to observe any. 3 is insufficient because there is a plethora of people who do speak some language fluently, but still are unable to contribute to articles (which is the fourth level). Arguing that -4 isn't part of meta Babel system makes no sense: we do not exist in an ivory tower here, but rather serve other Wiki communities. On many of them (if not most) there are at least 4 levels in babel tower. As a former professional language teacher and professional translator, as well as the co-author of 3 books on language learning, I think convenience and efficiency on this issue is quite important, and oppose your proposal to obfuscate the issue, so far quite reasonably dealt with on many Wikis. Pundit 01:56, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
I'm sorry you either intentionally or not to miss the part of my argument "but not practical without an objective measurement." Also I didn't say your argument "is" logical. It has a logical appearence, and it doesn't mean immediately it is logical. Also you failed to see my argument rejected your proposal because there is no objective measurement. As a Foundation coordinator who is working on meta to help out its public communications, I am sorry to say your proposal doesn't look to add any "convenience and efficiency". In my opinion you failed to argue how it adds such values. --Aphaia 02:42, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
Again - if you carefully read what I wrote, you'd easily see that the argument about the fourth level being "not practical without an objective measurement" has been already refuted by pointing to the fact, that this is an argument against babel tower, and not against some particular number of levels. Also, this argument can be easily applied also to levels 1-3. With all due respect to you as the Foundation coordinator (as well as to a user formerly active on jp-wiki) I must observe that you, sadly, refuse to discuss arguments (plentifully presented in the dialogue) but instead decide to jump in with the formal "authority". Let me repeat: 3 levels are not enough, because they do not cover the most typical four levels of non-native language competence. That is quite simple: we have users with very basic command of a language (1), users who are intermediate (understand a lot but also there is a lot they don't) (2), users who are advanced (understand most, but cannot write without major errors) (3) and users who are proficient in a foreign language enough to write articles. The problem of credentials clearly does not apply only to the fourth level, but to all of them. However, insisting on combining people from 3rd and 4th levels in one category is simply detrimental (it is by far too big a category, so makes it much more meaningless). Also, the argument raised by Greeves is plausible: users quite advanced will face a choice of either reducing their tag to level 2 (not really adequate) or choose the highest level available (which in some cases will mean a command of language close to native). It just makes no sense. Pundit 02:55, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
I strongly Support Support the addition of the near native (xx-4) level again. My French is by no means the next best thing to native and I think that a three out of four is appropriate. Out of three, however, I do not know what to do. I wouldn't call it intermediate, but by no means is it three out of three. Greeves (talk contribs) 01:27, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
Sorry to say Greeves, but you are the exact example I mentioned "self-claiming 4 but 3 in reality". See your french writing and corrections by native(s), I respectfully disagree its necessity and efficiency, for example, [6]. --Aphaia 01:40, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
If you read what he wrote, you'd see that he is not claiming he's at the 4th level. On the contrary: his argument is quite logical and says that although he is not close to native in French, level 2 does not reflect his competences. However, claiming level 3 when it is the highest one available may be way too much. Going down from 4 to 3 basically adds importance and weight to third level. Pundit 01:56, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
As I can read, the question is whether the levels can be concretely described so that a wikimedian can accurately assign herself one. As I can read, for example, "3=communicate, 4=contribute" is a valid starting point. Pundit, note also that native English speakers do write English with minor or major slips from time to time. Hillgentleman 02:20, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
Hillgentleman, of course you're right about slips (although the nature of non-native errors is different and usually you will be able to tell them apart). What I'm saying is that there is a non-reducible number of levels for language competence of non-native speakers. These are:
  1. basic understanding (e.g. somebody with high-school command of language, long forgotten: can understand very simple words)
  2. intermediate (somebody who is close to B1 level in Council of Europe scale, can grasp the general meaning of most sentences, but is confused by many unknown words)
  1. advanced (understands basically everything, could e.g. work as a waiter, as the interactions in this job are rather limited, still cannot write without errors)
  1. proficient (can write articles in the given language).
Going down from 4 to 3 is not just a quantitative move that clarifies the issue. It is a significant, qualitative deterioration of babel tower informational value. Although Aphaia and Pathoschild are right that 4-level scale has not been a part of meta, I'm arguing that 4 levels is the barest minimum we should use (and in the same time I agree that having more is probably not a very good idea - especially because they are used for "more than native" competence, which is much more arbitrary and ego-based than the 4 levels for non-natives). Pundit 02:32, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
I think your argument contradicted and non consistent.
  • I don't agree with you most of wikis xx-4 system. I am active on over 10 wikis (with at least 5 I have 10K edits, with 5 over 5K etc etc) but only one of them, enwiki does only have x-4 Babel system. "It is used on other wikis so it should be imported" is no logical argument in my opinion.
  • You said "3 is insufficient because there is a plethora of people who do speak some language fluently, but still are unable to contribute to articles (which is the fourth level). " I think it may makes a sense if we communicate orally. But here on wiki we can only communicate with writings. So writing ability only is concerned, so introducing such distinctions doesn't sound making a sense.
  • Also, the charcteristics of meta, multi-wiki coordintion, this wiki is used for highly organizational purpose. It is not a good idea imo to contaminate the currently going-well system with acceralation of "ego-based" self-estimation.
--Aphaia 02:53, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
Please, refrain from saying that your opponent's argument is contradicted and non consistent. Making a counterargument will be more than sufficient. Per your remarks:
  1. As you are so knowledgeable about other wikis, would you be so kind as to share your knowledge and write how many levels are available on the ones you're active at? By the way, en-wiki uses more than 4, some people are adding 5 and 6 (for professional writing and academic writing, both over native - in my view rather redundant).
  2. If you believe that oral communication is more difficult than written, in terms of possible errors, you're simply mistaken. What can pass in a conversation will not be acceptable in a written encyclopedia. Especially in writing distinguishing between someone who is advanced in some language and someone who is truly proficient in it is particularly important.
  3. Meta-wiki serves other wikis. It is not a good idea imo to obfuscate the system with a badly thought-through classification. The argument "let's just keep it because it has always been so" is rather weak, especially when you observe the clear flaws of three-level scale I pointed to. Not to mention that ANY self-estimation is ego-based (so again, your argument is against babel tower, and not against the fourth level).
Pundit 03:03, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
MetaWiki does not serve other wikis, it is a separate wiki that is used for crosswiki collaboration and organization (similar to the way Commons is useful for other wikis, but does not exist simply to "serve" them). Moreover, {{user language}} is a new system that replaces the babel templates on Meta; of course changes are welcome with consensus, but we should not add details simply because they existed in a system similar to the obsoleted one on another wiki. This discussion should focus on whether it's a good idea to add it on MetaWiki, regardless of how many levels are used in the deprecated system on other wikis. —{admin} Pathoschild 03:33:44, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
I'm interested in seeing this new template and scheme propagated to all 700+ wikis, especially those that don't have them now, but also to those that do. If the scheme can't do what the old one does, it should be tweaked here until it does. The old templates may now be deprecated but I don't see the meaning they carry as being deprecated too, so I'm not sure I agree that three levels are sufficient. If there are a significant body of users here or elsewhere that use more levels, this system should encompass that. ++Lar: t/c 03:54, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
Yes, that's the fundamental goal of this discussion; to determine whether the same meaning can be expressed in three levels (basic, intermediate, fluent) instead of four or more (basic, intermediate, advanced, fluent). :) —{admin} Pathoschild 03:58:52, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
I'm perhaps more descriptive in outlook... 700 wikis, and the ones that use these so far that I have checked almost all seem to use 0-4, or 0-5 even... not just 1-3. To argue about whether we CAN mash 6 levels (0 to 5) to 3 seems to miss the mark. Perhaps we can, but we should not. A few users on meta should not decide this, instead the scheme, the technology, should work for the users of 700 wikis, and in fact perhaps be extensible even beyond 0-5, whether or not we personally think that's a good thing or not. For to argue otherwise is way too prescriptive for my taste. ++Lar: t/c 04:10, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
The levels were based on the babel templates used on Meta before the transition. I'm not aware of any community discussion about the additional levels on other wikis; they were simply added. I think a community discussion about what the levels should be is a good idea. If we decide a fourth level is a good idea, great; if not, we should not add it just because some wikis used them before in an older system.
Please be very careful deciding whether other levels are standard on a wiki you're not familiar with. Even if they're used with some languages, they may still be nonstandard and not used with the vast majority of languages. I think it would be a good idea to run database queries based on the template names and determine what levels are available for how many languages on every wiki; that way we can easily see whether (for example) only 5 out of 200 languages have a fourth level.
And yes, I do think the MetaWiki community is entirely within its rights to determine what template standards are used on MetaWiki. :) —{admin} Pathoschild 04:31:40, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
You're surely right a discussion on this topic may be beneficial. However, please note that on the most active projects (listed farther below) at least 4 levels are present. These come up to probably way over 90% of active Wikipedians. Also, one considerable solution might be to allow more levels technically, but enable/disable them within particular projects locally (then Wikimedia may have 3 levels, while the same system elsewhere will use 4). Pundit 05:58, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
Yes, more levels are already technically possible. Based on User:Pathoschild/Crosswiki babelboxes, level 4 is used for roughly 38% of languages. Levels 5-7 are almost entirely unused. I'm still not opposed to a fourth level, as long as there is consensus on Meta for it. :) —{admin} Pathoschild 08:26:44, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
I guess I have to continue to disagree, or at least it seems I do. If this new scheme is for Meta ONLY, and there will subsequently be no propagation of it to new wikis or existing wikis, what is done elsewhere is less relevant, but that would really be a shame, I would LIKE to see it propagated elsewhere. If so, it needs to work as well and as broadly as what is done elsewhere does now. You say that more levels are technically possible. Can this template be set up and documented so that if Meta decides not to do 4 for itself, when I or someone else (not as skilled as you) propagates it to another wiki, 4 could be used? My concerns really are around what is done in the larger context. I'd love to see Meta itself support 4 and 0 but I'm much more concerned if a decision taken ON Meta, ABOUT Meta, ends up impacting every other wiki when this is, as it should be, taken elsewhere. So there are two facets here, one being technical vs. policy and the other being local vs. global ++Lar: t/c 11:51, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
Agreed, this was my purpose in starting this topic. I was trying to make an argument that 4 are not reducible (meaning that while we can have 10 or more levels, they can be harmlessly cut down to 4, while going beyond this point brings deterioration to the system). It is like with reducing colors - there is a fine difference between a situation of going from three-color picture to two-color picture, and a situation of going from 2 to 1, isn't there? ;) Pundit 04:09, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
"used for crosswiki collaboration and organization" - that's what I mean by "serving". I'm making an argument, as you may have observed, that 4 levels for non-native language competence is a bare minimum below which we're beginning to confuse rather than clarify. The argument of other wikis is relevant only in the respect that 95% of all Wikipedia community apparently favored at least 4 levels, and not three. Of course, the most important issue is the clear advantage of 4 levels over 3 (4 cover the typical levels we encounter, while 3 don't). Pundit 03:38, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
"would you be so kind as to share your knowledge and write how many levels are available on the ones you're active at? " I don't like these words. It may imply if I reject, I would not be kind. It sounds somehow personal attack. On the other hand, I am tied up with other wiki responsibilities as well as real life obligations, so there is little possibilities to do such works for you. I rather think if you are so interested, you should do it by yourself. --Aphaia 03:09, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
Perhaps you would be interested in reading what does the phrase "personal attack" mean. By kindly requesting you to share your knowledge (which to me comes as rather surprising and difficult to believe) I did not mean to offend you. While I acknowledge that you do not like my words for some reason, I find your refusal to verify your claims rather unusual. After all, on all Wikis we recognize the need to base all statements in facts. As I don't know which Wiki projects you meant in particular, it is rather hard for me to verify your words (not to mention that I don't speak the same languages). I can, however, assure you that there is 4th level on pl-wiki. Also, I checked de-wiki, which you're supposedly active on, and it seems there actually are four levels there. It is even more interesting to learn which wikis you're referring to. Additionally, I checked also the French, Italian, Spanish and Dutch wikis - they all have four levels available. These projects cover over 90% of Wikipedia content in all languages. So, are all these projects wrong? Pundit 03:28, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
Sorry I had no good update and on this point I was wrong. However you may realize you haven't replied my call for help for Polish editors to update WMF wikis and don't mind to leave them not updated since 2005 but now brings it up and make me waste my time otherwise it may have been used for other my responsibility. From my eyes you haven't been willing to collaborate with me, and ignored my request published several time. It is frustrating and hardly be called "friendly" in my opinion to talk to a person who almost apparently refuse to collaborate. Aphaia 03:36, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
Thank you for giving up the loosing battle on arguments and for making it personal instead. Apparently you see that you just don't have the means to defeat your line of thought. However, even your argument about my supposed unwillingness to cooperate with you is flawed. In no case have you asked me personally for any help whatsoever. You also never requested my assistance. What you're trying to insinuate is simply a blatant... diversion from truth, let's say. Considering the fact that I am only sporadically present on Wikimedia and I can be considered rather a guest than a regular contributor, I must say that I am surprised by the heat of the welcome I'm receiving. Congratulations, Foundation's Coordinator, you have just made another newcomer your friend. Keep up the good work. Pundit 03:45, 29 February 2008 (UTC)

Now you begin nasty name calling and prove your lack of willing collaboration. Sorry to see someone can become so mean . --Aphaia 03:53, 29 February 2008 (UTC)

I would ask that everyone comment on the contribution, not the contributor. There is no need to cast aspersions, Pundit, Aphaia, or anyone else. Let us instead work together to determine what will best meet the needs of the users without any of this non collegial interchange. I for one would really appreciate it. ++Lar: t/c 03:56, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
Thanks. Pundit 03:58, 29 February 2008 (UTC)

Lar, you said "meet the needs of the users”. I introduced Babel into meta primarily as a tool for coordination. While I aware Babel templates are used for other purposes today, as Trancom chair, I don't want the others to make obstacles for our activities, people who haven't worked in this area. I stated demerits of proposed addition, and you guys don't respond my concerns which I have faced with my own experience. --Aphaia 04:29, 29 February 2008 (UTC)

Aphaia, please believe me that I really don't understand what obstacles you're talking about. If your concern is credibility, I'm afraid that the problem stays the same irrespective of the number of levels you put into the babel tower. In what way will the fourth level hamper your activities as Trancom chair? Pundit 04:37, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
I have seen self-claimed xx-4 people couldn't reach native level, even if they are very close to this level. Honestly, for example, there is a clear hiatus between most of ja-4 people on enwiki and ja-n and the former have significant clumsy, even if the person claims he or she is "professional". Troubles happen some of them (not all, fortunately) act as if they were native, and the other who cannot have knowledge of the language release their works: and native later complain there is a crap on official website or other places as Foundation statement, or kindly attempt to copyedit and turn it into different meaning. To reduce misunderstanding as little as possible, and also to discourage overselfestimation, I don't want to encourage any possible overestimation of linguistic competence. I learnt from experience it is not enough to warn not to believe "nearly native" statement. In this point, for safety reason if I have to choose underestimation and overestimation, I prefer the former. --Aphaia 04:46, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
But clearly you realize that it does not have anything to do with the number of levels? With 1-3 you will have self-claimed overestimated 3s. It may be actually even worse: some users will be split between level two and level three and will opt for the latter simply because they will not want to be in the same category with the intermediate users (and they will end up in the same kettle with people speaking some language almost natively). Another group really confused will be people really really close to native - e.g. after dozen of years of living in some culture. Not to be in the same category with level 3 people they may choose to claim native competence, which will be the exact overestimation you're trying to avoid. Finally, as Lar pointed out, it would be useful to be able to propagate this system widely, and to do so it might make some sense to make it more compatible with the vast majority of other wikis. Pundit 04:59, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
As said I don't talk about hypothesis. I talked about my experience, while you may not realize "In what way will the fourth level hamper". It hampered us really and I don't want to be hampered again. You now try to cast me into the trouble I have tried to weed out. To have a user class "nearly native" hasn't helped us at least on meta. I am very sorry you don't try to understand this point. And it is right there is no a priori reason to keep them three, but the simpler, the better to manage. We see some projects which added xx-4 then go to add 5 or 6 or even 7. I think it reasonable to discourage this kind of indeterminative tendency to growth. Again, unless it is based on scientific and objective measurement, I strongly oppose to have four category set on meta. --Aphaia 05:06, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
Man, assume good faith, please. I do try to understand you, but I just don't. I don't see how changing the number of levels will prevent people with poor language skills but high self-esteem from editing pages. I don't even grasp how theoretically this could work. Do you really believe that the users you had trouble with will stop editing when they see the're no longer at level 4, but level 3? On the other hand, it is quite obvious that the less choices people have, the more inadequate and random differences will appear. Some users who are proficient and fluent in English will go for 3, and will be in the same category as people learning to pass CAE. Some, speaking at the same level, will opt for claiming their native language competence. The less levels are available, the bigger the gaps on the badges between the people at the same real level of competence. Pundit 05:19, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
Scientific objective measurement is not possible. That's it, just as scientific objective measurement of height of all Wiki users - it is practically beyond any discussion. So let's try to discuss how many levels we need to reflect the language ability of users. Nothing less, nothing more. I'm saying that 4 is the bare minimum. Virtually all Wiki projects have 4 or more. Do you have any arguments against 4 levels that apply specifically to them (and not to the general problem of credibility or self-assessment)? Pundit 05:23, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
Please notice we Transcom have interact with more than 30 language speakers groups even now, and the numbers are gradually growing (it is nice itself). Is there such standard measurement used globally all of us rely on? Also I said the problem is on also "the other who cannot have knowledge of the language release their works", and the expression "close to native" or sort of, but you missed both. Please pay attention to the whole of my text, not picking some, if you would really try to understand what I raised up. You have failed to convince me your proposal benefits our activities, and as for your argument "virtually all wikis" I would like to say I tend to disagree that the characteristics of Foundation level communications which the WMF may be legally responsible or its application is demanded to the community and ones of the wiki content which no one warrant is equally handled. Particularly, since you expressed you have no intent to help us, I would like you not to bother us in this issue anymore. --Aphaia 05:35, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
With most sincere apologies, I am not entirely sure what you wanted to say in the paragraph above. Pundit 05:39, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
Per your last sentence added later - please, refrain from calling your disputant's arguments "bothering", if possible. Also, I am not entirely sure if indeed you can speak for the whole Wikimedia community. As the babel tower will be promoted and potentially propagated also on projects I am more active on, I believe I should have the right to speak, don't you think? Of course you are more than welcome to apply for a block for me if you believe such an action is for some reason justified and then I will surely not be expressing my concerns. Oh, and by the way, I want to participate in Wikipedia and Wikimedia. It is only just that I don't want to do what you specifically tell me to, of personal reasons. Pundit 05:47, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
Interjection: Hey, Aphaia, relax. The babel levels exist for many reasons. Transcom is simply one of the users. Hillgentleman 11:00, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
Aphaia, On your question: Is there such standard measurement used globally all of us rely on? It is the starting point of this argument, see way-above: Pundit suggested why there needs to be a differentiation between "3=communicate" and "4=being able to contribute". Do you agree with it, do you disagree with it, have you not read it, or have ignored it? Hillgentleman 11:09, 29 February 2008 (UTC)

Sorry, but the whole thread looks a bit mixed to me, so I add this just as another subitile.

On our small wikipedias level 4 is needed. Many people are "near native" but not native because they grew up elsewhere. There is a huge difference between being just very good at a language and near native. Babel templates anyway don't reflect well whatever level, because when it comes to understanding I, for example, can read quite easily all neo latine languages, but I am not able to write.

I am all for the "near native level 4". scn, pms, nap, ksh ... and some others (have to look them up). Look at my babel which was "transformed" it does not at all reflect what I really know ... Neapolitan is level 3 like German now" the same is Italian ... that's plain stupid, sorry. I'll take that whole babel stuff out for now until I have time to fix it. or better do a roll-back. --Sabine 09:49, 1 March 2008 (UTC)

Crosswiki level compatibility

The following discussion is closed.

I didn't exhaustively check, only checked a few, here are a few... I spot checked languages so this is by no means exhaustive

I'll add more if there is interest but I think 0-4 are all commonly used. (de wikisource was the one exception so far found) Unless we want to be excessively prescriptive (not really a good approach) we should describe what people do. Which for the most part seems to be use at least 0-4 + N... I hope this data helps. Others should feel free to add more examples if this is helpful. ++Lar: t/c 03:14, 29 February 2008 (UTC)

Thanks for that, I actually did similar research and had an edit conflict here (I posted results above your post, as they are a reply). Pundit 03:28, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
No worries. maybe a subpage with a table if we need to do a lot more? ++Lar: t/c 03:39, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
I've done a much more comprehensive overview at User:Pathoschild/Crosswiki babelboxes, with estimates of the numbers of templates (excluding redirects) for every language and the percentage of languages that support each level. To summarise, the top 10 Wikipedias have the following level 4 coverage: 72% (de), 61% (fr), 51% (es), 55% (en), 39% (nl), 32% (it), 32% (sv), 24% (pl), 17% (ja), 0% (pt), for an average of 38%. For comparison, the averages for all levels in the top 10 Wikipedias are:
lvl histogram %
N ****************** 93.1%
0 ****** 29.1%
1 ****************** 94.5%
2 ***************** 83.9%
3 ***************** 82.9%
4 ******** 38.3%
5 * 7.4%
6 1%
It looks like levels N and 1-3 are standard across the top 10 wikis, with levels 0 and 4 nonstandard but widely used. Levels 5-7 are clearly nonstandard. —{admin} Pathoschild 08:19:32, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
Wow, impressive work! It definitely makes sense to standardize it across languages (I initially misread your post as the distribution of users declaring a particular level, but I soon realize it is a complex analysis across languages). Pundit 16:32, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
One more comment: the numbers of levels effectively introduced for each language may be dependent on the numbers of users speaking it proficiently (no fluent non-natives=nobody cared about level 4). The propagation of a much more advanced new babel system would eliminate this issue for good. But all in all the question stays the same: are 4 levels really necessary. One reading of the data you show is that on 100% of major Wikis there are languages that are used at 4th level Pundit 17:00, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
Yes, except Portuguese which only uses N and 1-3. —{admin} Pathoschild 06:04:48, 01 March 2008 (UTC)
Well, that explains why my ptwp userpage wasn't showing my fr-4 level. It was mildly perplexing as I had only encountered (as far as I could recall), wikis in which the levels went 0-1-2-3-4-N.
Personally, I like the 4-level system. I am admin on fr:wp and consider myself fr-4, which is to say that I can read, speak and write fluently in that language but am not a native speaker. Level 3, to me, means that you can read, speak and write a language, but not fluently: i.e., you stumble over some phrases or mix similar languages and are therefore not ready to contribute to wikis in that language.
I also agree with Aphaia and others who state that there are quite a few people who claim level 4 when they are really level 3. This is a problem when you have to deal constantly with well-meaning translators who need to be proofread by others every time they try to help. There's just no way to break it to them nicely; nobody wants to be seen as the meanie who told someone their translations are not welcome.
However, I also think that these people will not disappear in the three-tier system. Their egos will not magically diminish along with the number of levels. So in the end, I don't think it really matters whether we have three or four levels (or even five, or six, or seven). I'm actually a bit surprised to see so much ink being spilled (er, pixels being blackened?), over a relatively minor thing. Honest people will use the levels conscientiously (and yes, those who use the fourth level will have their egos taken down a peg to level 3, which will do them no harm and may actually encourage them to improve their language skills in the languages they previously pegged at level 3 in the old system), and those who overexaggerate their proficiency will continue doing so.
Arria Belli | parlami 14:01, 1 March 2008 (UTC)

Precise definitions

The following discussion is closed and will soon be archived: implemented.

It looks like most users are in favour of adding a fourth level. I think it is important to precisely define each level, which will mitigate the problems Aphaia has pointed out. The Interagency Language Roundtable scale (IRL scale) is very close to the levels proposed, so we could simplify some precise descriptions from that. (The Common European Framework of Reference for Languages is very close to the three levels currently used.)

A derived set of descriptions might be:

lvl description
1 Elementary; the user is able to write very simple questions and statements, and might be able to understand more complex sentences with difficulty. Their vocabulary is limited (excluding understanding based on similarity with other languages).
2 Intermediate; the user can participate in simple discussions using simple sentence constructions, but needs help with any complications or difficulties.
3 Advanced; the user can effectively participate in discussions with native speakers, and can participate in technical discussions with relative confidence. They have a good grasp of grammar and their errors virtually never interfere with understanding.
4 Professional; the user can read and write fluently and accurately at all levels of normal discussion, including technical discussions. The user can reasonably pass off as a native speaker in written discussion, and makes few grammatical errors.
N Native speaker; the user has spoken the language from birth, and has a large vocabulary and an intuitive understanding of grammar. The user can participate in all levels of discussions with ease.

{admin} Pathoschild 21:54:25, 01 March 2008 (UTC)

Simple yet comprehensive... me likes! ;-) The only problem is xx-4 is "professional". This could be confused with the English Wikipedia's strange xx-5 system. Something like "near-native" would be better in my opinion. Greeves (talk contribs) 23:46, 1 March 2008 (UTC)
How about "Native-like or nearly native-like"? This will also discourage non-native users from rating themselves as native. —{admin} Pathoschild 00:48:30, 02 March 2008 (UTC)
near-native or close to native sound definitely fine, and the whole table describes the differences really well!Pundit 04:12, 2 March 2008 (UTC)
I'm only thinking... perhaps it would make more sense to speak of "grammatical/collocations/vocabulary errors" or just generally language slips? I mean, in many cases non-natives make mistakes which are not necessarily grammatical per se, but may base on wrong collocations or result from vocabulary misunderstandings.... Pundit 04:18, 2 March 2008 (UTC)
The above proposition is fine with me. By the way, the xx-5 level always meant, to me at least, that the user in question was a professional translator (i.e. translates for a living). Arria Belli | parlami 01:28, 3 March 2008 (UTC)
A lot of native speakers cannot participate in all levels of discussions with ease. Some people simply cannot follow arguments. Hillgentleman 03:59, 3 March 2008 (UTC)
The boxes are used for communication and translation, so it might be better for native speakers with poor fluency to categorise themselves using one of the numbered levels. The levels are intended to measure fluency, and the Nth level is intended to be higher than 1-4. To that end, we could avoid specifying the numbered levels as non-native, and focus the Nth level's description on native fluency. What do you think? —{admin} Pathoschild 06:34:48, 03 March 2008 (UTC)
I see. We are to read that level-N indicates that all the requirements are satisfied, and that simply being a native speaker is not sufficient. Hillgentleman 14:54, 3 March 2008 (UTC)
Yes, I think that would be better. We could explain that in the description for level N. —{admin} Pathoschild 23:30:22, 03 March 2008 (UTC)
I very much like the idea of having more formal descriptions that work better as metrics to measure oneself (or others) against. These seem pretty spot on, taking the N requirements into account. Well done and thanks. Could we also get 0 ? :) It should be fairly easy to define. :) ++Lar: t/c 01:42, 5 March 2008 (UTC)

With very minor modifications, taking into account the suggestions above:

lvl description
0 None; the user is not able to communicate in this language.
1 Elementary; the user is able to write very simple questions and statements, and might be able to understand more complex sentences with difficulty. Their vocabulary is limited (excluding understanding based on similarity with other languages).
2 Intermediate; the user can participate in simple discussions using simple sentence constructions, but needs help with more advanced vocabulary or structures.
3 Advanced; the user can effectively participate in discussions with native speakers, and can participate in technical discussions with relative confidence. They have a good grasp of grammar and their errors virtually never interfere with understanding, although may be an obstacle in writing articles.
4 Near native; the user can read and write fluently and accurately at all levels of normal discussion, including technical discussions. The user can reasonably pass off as a native speaker in written discussion, and makes few errors, usually in collocations.
N Native speaker; the user has spoken the language from birth, and has a large vocabulary and an intuitive understanding of grammar. The user can participate in all levels of discussions with ease, as well as recognize and correct language blunders.

Ideas? Pundit 20:07, 9 March 2008 (UTC)

I don't agree with some of your changes.
  • You added level zero, but there's no consensus (or discussion) to do so. Currently the template does not support level zero; please propose it separately, as was done for level four.
  • You added "although may be an obstacle in writing articles" to level 3, which does not apply well to wikis that don't have "articles" (like Wikisource) or users who only translate pages on MetaWiki. I don't think it's necessary to add this clause at all, since the levels are already well-distinguished. I'd suggest removing it per Occam's razor.
  • You added "[errors] usually in collocations" to level 4, which is not necessarily true. For example, most non-native French users struggle with grammar (particularly conjugation), not word order or selection. Likewise, I'd suggest removing it per Occam's razor.
  • You added "as well as recognize and correct language blunders" to level N, which I think is unnecessary. The ability to detect errors is implicit in "[the user has] a large vocabulary and an intuitive understanding of grammar". Likewise, I'd suggest removing it per Occam's razor.
I have no problem with the remaining changes. —{admin} Pathoschild 03:33:33, 10 March 2008 (UTC)
Many thanks for your comments.
  • For zero level, as I wrote, I added the changes proposed in the discussion, but this does not necessarily mean that this is a final proposal of any sort. It is just that, for now, nobody seems to object to 0.
  • Good remark with the "writing articles" part! But do you think it should indeed be deleted? The statement is referring to the user's ability to write, and not to the nature of the project the babel tower is displayed on... I do not insist on this one, though.
  • Again, you're right that the nature of non-native errors may vary depending on the language. Therefore I suggest not pointing to any particular kind explicitly at all, as the previous proposal (referring to grammar as a typical source of slips) is very much language limited, too. I'm writing this in spite of the fact that I still do believe that collocations (finding the proper contexts for the words used, understanding nuances, etc.) are most difficult in most languages.
  • I disagree with the last one. Actually, the ability to recognize language errors is probably the single most significant difference between natives and close-to natives. Many non-natives after many years in a given country may have "a large vocabulary and an intuitive understanding of grammar". They even may, on rare occasions, make no mistakes at all in their own writings. However, they still will find it difficult to correct somebody else's text, just like they will find it impossible to truly appreciate a poem full of linguistic games (they will not know if what they see is a) an error b) a game c) just a phrase they're not familiar with).
Pundit 21:30, 10 March 2008 (UTC)
How about these adjusted levels based on our above points?
lvl description
1 Elementary; the user is able to write very simple questions and statements, and might be able to understand more complex sentences with difficulty. Their vocabulary is limited (excluding understanding based on similarity with other languages).
2 Intermediate; the user can participate in simple discussions using simple sentence constructions, but needs help with more advanced vocabulary or structures.
3 Advanced; the user can effectively participate in discussions with native speakers, and can participate in technical discussions with relative confidence. They have a good grasp of grammar and their errors virtually never interfere with understanding.
4 Near native; the user can read and write fluently and accurately at all levels of normal discussion, including technical discussions. The user can reasonably pass off as a native speaker in written discussion, and makes few errors.
N Native speaker; the user has spoken the language from birth, and has a large vocabulary and an intuitive understanding of grammar. The user can participate in all levels of discussions with ease, and can understand most errors in others' writing.
{admin} Pathoschild 20:39:25, 11 March 2008 (UTC)
excellent, great job! Do you think a separate discussion on level 0 should be started? practically, I don't think there is much scope for its use (it is not very likely that anyone is active on a project without some command of the main language of communication used there). Pundit 23:11, 12 March 2008 (UTC)
Great, I've implemented those descriptions. A zeroth level can easily be added later when we discuss it separately. —{admin} Pathoschild 01:06:05, 13 March 2008 (UTC)

Color change

I don't see any reason provided in the discussions why the colors were changed. The new colors really are counter-intuitive. Moreover, as it was already noticed, meta is the central coordination platform for all Wikimedia wikis. Having a different color code for babel templates will confuse everyone. I see the color code can be personalized in the new template, but I think default colors should be the old ones. Thanks. guillom 08:57, 9 February 2008 (UTC)

Ik ben het helemaal eens met Guillom. De kleuren die er nu op gezet zijn, zijn triest en ongelukkig gekozen. Het voelt zowat als een beschuldiging met het donkergrijs als je "slechts" een -1 hebt, terwijl het eigenlijk een complimentje hoort te zijn. De standaardkleuren dienen sowieso de oude te zijn wat mij betreft, en ook alleen in de taal waar het over gaat als het aan mij ligt. Mensen zijn intelligent genoeg om te snappen wat er staat, zeker als er meermalen onder elkaar hetzelfde staat. Ik zie dan ook niet de noodzaak in om nu na tien dagen discussieren hier dit botmatig dwingend te gaan wijzigen. Ik zie overigens ook niet in waarom de oude sjablonen niet naar de nieuwe kunnen blijven bestaan, en waarom dit nu weer allemaal onder "old" geplaatst moet worden. Dit soort veranderingen kan wmb beter langzaamaan gaan, zodat mensen er aan kunnen wennen en het zelf kunnen doorvoeren. Effeietsanders 14:26, 9 February 2008 (UTC)
Translation: "I totally agree with Guillom. The colors that we put on now are sad and unfortunate. It feels almost like an accusation with a dark gray if you "only" have a -1, whereas it should actually be a compliment. The old standard should anyway be what I am concerned, and only in the language it is about if it was up to me. People are intelligent enough to understand what it says, especially if there are several others on the page with the same standard. I therefore see no need, after ten days here discussing, for this mandatory bot work to go ahead. I also see no reason why the old templates cannot continue to exist alongside the new , and why now all of the "old" templates need to be placed. This kind of change can be made more slowly, so that people can get used to it and it can carry itself out." —translated by Pathoschild.
The new colour scheme was chosen as a progression of related colours. If you don't like the colours, suggestions are more than welcome. However, you are more than welcome to use the old babel format, and this is explicitly stated in the edit summaries when updating. Compare:
{{user nl}}
nlDeze gebruiker heeft Nederlands als moedertaal.
nl-N De moedertaal van deze gebruiker is het Nederlands.
{{user language|nl|N}}
nl-N De moedertaal van deze gebruiker is het Nederlands.
{{babelold}} contains the babel format in one template but uses the new text and categories. We could conceivably place it on every babel template page, but this would be more work in the future and most users would not even realize the templates are superseded. :) —{admin} Pathoschild 20:03:23, 09 February 2008 (UTC)
You say "However, you are more than welcome to use the old babel format". Well, you are the one declaring the "old" template is deprecated and using scripts on thousands of userpages to switch to your new template with colors you only have chosen. If you really want to let users choose, then don't replace the babel box by your new template, replace it by the "babelold" template, so that you don't change the appearance of every single userpage on this wiki. Besides, the "progression of related colours" may look like a good idea to yourself, but how does one know that a light green means a lower level than a dark green? At least, in most cultures it is commonly accepted that red means "not ok" and green means "ok". guillom 21:30, 9 February 2008 (UTC)
PS: I know you're trying to make things better, but I would really like to see more attention to the pursuit of consensus. guillom 21:30, 9 February 2008 (UTC)
This was discussed quite a bit before implementation. I invited comment repeatedly in several multilingual IRC channels, particularly #wikimedia and #wikimedia-translation, before I even posted the product of our discussion here. This proposal was to change the default templates, not to introduce a redundant system (which is a bad idea).
Ideally, there should be nobody at all using {{babelold}}. If someone switches to {{babelold}}, that means they're not satisfied with the new template, and I'm personally contacting them to discuss whether the template can be changed to their liking. So far, a very tiny percentage (much less than one percentage point) have expressed dissatisfaction with the new template.
With regards to the colours, there is a clear relation between the colours for every level ( 1 ,  2 ,  3 ,  N ), much more so than the old colour scheme ( 1 ,  2 ,  3 ,  4 ,  5 ,  N ). If you have suggestions for a better colour scheme, these are very welcome. This template is the product of a lot of collaboration and suggestions. —{admin} Pathoschild 22:00:14, 09 February 2008 (UTC)
The 4th and 5th level are almost not used on meta, and their color in the "old" color code is surely not ideal. Though, I see you don't propose any better color for these two levels though, your template actually doesn't even allow them, probably because the most used templates are the blue and green ones, and the one you forgot, the level  0 . I think this color scale ( 0 ,  1 ,  2 ,  3 ,  N ) is more intuitive: green means "ok, you can talk to me in this language", blue means "so-so" and red means "not ok, I am not able to communicate in this language".
The new color code you propose ( 1 ,  2 ,  3 ,  N ) makes sense when all colors are next to each other: once can understand that green means "ok" and the less green there is, the less ok it is. Though, "grey" doesn't really mean "not ok". Besides, there is no difference between  level 0  and  level 1 , though there is a real difference between these two: one means "I cannot communicate in this language" and the other means "I have basic knowledge in this language".
What about something like: ( 0 ,  1 ,  2 ,  3 ,  N ,  Pro )? This is probably not ideal yet, but we could work on it. You may note this fixes the inconsistency with the professional "babel-5" template which is supposed to be a better level than only "native". guillom 10:31, 10 February 2008 (UTC)
People interested in this discussion may wish to take a look at User:Pathoschild/Sandbox4 where a new color set was proposed : ( 0 ,  1 ,  2 ,  3 ,  N ,  P ) (knowing that the P level may not be implemented). guillom 13:13, 10 February 2008 (UTC)
Sorry for being a bit late, but I'd like to ask that some distinction between the colors for 0 and 1 be made. If we use the greening scheme, I would suggest that 1 be a very light grayish green or something instead of exactly the same as 0. Alternatively make 0 reddish and keep 1 at gray?? (I use -0 a lot on wikis where I do not speak the native language) Thanks. ++Lar: t/c 00:27, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
It makes a sense to give different colors to 0 and 1. While I don't know the proposal of Guillom is intuitive, it may be an option (at least it is more eye-pleasure). Red / Green scaling may be another option, I suppose. --Aphaia 00:56, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
The reason levels 0 and 1 don't have separate colours is that level 0 isn't recognized as a standard level; the template only allows English to bypass the level validation for 0, and without a category. —{admin} Pathoschild 02:48:02, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
I think there's a lot of value in recognising 0 as a standard level, (I tried 0 with ja and it seemed to work for me in a test edit so maybe I don't quite follow what you meant?) and in any case the color should be different than 1, standard or not. The old boxes worked that way on many wikis. ++Lar: t/c 03:04, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
No, using {{user language|ja|0}} should display something like "This user speaks Japanese at a level." (note the missing adjective), with the page categorized to Incorrect user language level. A more visible error message is possible, but that would require special coding to make an exception for English. I'm not strongly opposed to a zeroth level, but please wait until we finish discussing the fourth level before proposing it. :) —{admin} Pathoschild 04:08:18, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
Well since I don't read japanese, all I saw was that the template didn't throw an error. And it shouldn't. The old system has -0 templates. I would prefer not to discuss one digit at a time, but instead discuss the notion that the new system should be as powerful as the old system was, and not mandate a different, more restrictive way of thinking about things. That's what I allude to below but I'll reiterate it here, because that's what I do :). Many many wikis use -0, have categories set up for it, have old system boxes that use it, etc. and therefore the new system should support that, or it won't be portable. And portability, a single template, a single set of translated strings, etc., is a big selling point for me. It's basically the whole reason I haven't been opposing the change entirely, I was sold on the idea that a simpler, more regular system would be more portable. That doesn't mean it shouldn't be as powerful as the old one, as expressive... we need 0-5 and N because that's what existing wikis use. ++Lar: t/c 04:17, 29 February 2008 (UTC)

Add zeroeth level

The following discussion is closed: done

Per Pathoschild's request that we discuss this separately, I would like to propose that we add a zeroeth level. I think you'll find there are a fair few number of users of it across the wikis. I know I use it myself whenever I do a new crosslink at a wiki in a language other than en or de. (probably 90% of the wikis by number that I have IDs at are ones for which it is true that I don't speak the wiki's primary language) The description given above "None; the user is not able to communicate in this language." seems about right to me. ++Lar: t/c 19:36, 17 March 2008 (UTC)

Done. There's a specific use for a zeroth level for a wiki's main language, and I intend to set up Meta as the source for bot-multicast localization updates. Ideally, this will allow wikis to simply request the user language system, provide the default text, and have a crosswiki bot create and maintain the entire set of templates forevermore. —{admin} Pathoschild 21:30:11, 25 March 2008 (UTC)

Localization updates

The {{user language}} localizations need to be updated to reflect the recent changes. I've contacted all the translators, and most have already been updated. Please update any localizations in your languages listed at User:Pathoschild/User language update. —{admin} Pathoschild 22:29:48, 25 March 2008 (UTC)

Hidden Categories?

The following discussion is closed.

On 25 February 2008, BetaWiki/NukaWiki added the messages tog-showhiddencats, hidden-categories, hidden-category-category, and hiddencategories to the core set. This hints at a hidable-category facility in the wiki software (something the French Wiktionary has wished for), but I can't find anything about this on Wikimedia. What's it about? Urhixidur 13:21, 26 February 2008 (UTC)

__HIDDENCAT__ was recently added to the software. Adding it to a category page hides it on pages it is used on, including parent categories. Hidden categories can be made visible using CSS. —{admin} Pathoschild 18:39:13, 26 February 2008 (UTC)
Could you elaborate, or point to the appropriate Help pages? Specifically, we would like pages that are categorised under certain categories to not display those category listings at their bottom, while keeping the display of the Category pages themselves unaffected. An example is : we would like to hide all mentions of "Traductions en ..." from the category listing at the bottom of the page. Please help, we seem so close to a solution! Urhixidur 17:16, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
See help:category. As a general rule, you can check the recent contributions of user:patrick for documentations of new features. Hillgentleman 17:53, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
Unfortunately, the help does not elaborate on "they can be made visible or invisible through CSS" (a link to the details of how to do this would be expected in that sentence). How do we make hidden categories visible within the category namespace? Urhixidur 20:09, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
I think there's an option in your preferences, the "Show hidden categories" box under the "Misc" section. Cbrown1023 talk 20:54, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
I’ve tried the magic word out, and documented its use accordingly. Question: to specify the category sort key to use within the "Hidden categories" category, there is no other way but to double-categorise? That is to say, add [[Category:Hidden categories|<category sort key>]] below __HIDDENCAT__? Urhixidur 20:57, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
Use {{defaultsort:SORTKEY}} if you like; see Category:Hidden category demo with defaultsort. Hillgentleman 21:12, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
Thanks. I’ve added another demo showing how to specify the category sort key for just the "Hidden categories" category. Urhixidur 21:51, 29 February 2008 (UTC)

Advanced password checking for flagged users

The following discussion is closed.

After small discuss in russian wiki, I think, checking a user before changing status (adding +s, +b flags) for password compexivity may be good idea. #! 22:52, 3 March 2008 (UTC)

Do you mean trying to hackinto her account?Hillgentleman 22:57, 3 March 2008 (UTC)
Yeah, I think he means trying to crack it in a similar method to what happened on en.wp not too long ago. EVula // talk // // 23:23, 3 March 2008 (UTC)
Which discussion on ruwiki? — VasilievVV 13:57, 4 March 2008 (UTC)


The following discussion is closed.

I have set wrong e-mail adress on my User in Swedish Wikimedia. I have asked for new password and i dont get any. My Username is "Max Speed" and my e-mail is "". I have the same username at Swedish wikipedia and swedish wikibooks and there is the e-mail correct. Dont know where to go for help. Hope this is right place. -- 04:20, 7 March 2008 (UTC)

Unfortunately, you need either to know the password or to have set the right address. If neither of these is the case, there is not much that can be done to reclaim the account. If you are interested in having your account names unified, and that account doesn't have much in the way of contributions, it could be usurped (moved to a different name), perhaps. If that is of interest, make a request at Meta:Changing_username. Please be prepared to document that you control the accounts at sw:wp and sw:wb by crosslinking. Hope that helps. ++Lar: t/c 12:18, 7 March 2008 (UTC)

New gadget: Contributions Range

When enabled, lets you enter CIDR ranges (/16 and /24 - /32) in Special:Contributions as well as wildcard prefix searches, for example: "Splark*"

Thanks to User:Splarka for the gadget! ~Kylu (u|t) 16:54, 7 March 2008 (UTC)

Very good, thank you very much Splarka. --Anonymous DissidentTalk 08:21, 18 March 2008 (UTC)

I just want all metapedians to join the discussion there. Thanks — VasilievVV 14:32, 25 March 2008 (UTC)

Translating gadget descriptions

Is there a way to translate gadget descriptions? Like MediaWiki:Gadget-BiDiEditing/fr being a French version of MediaWiki:Gadget-BiDiEditing (or I suppose it might be MediaWiki:Gadgets-definition/fr translating MediaWiki:Gadgets-definition).

Also, is there a way to change the page so it uses labels on the text? On all other preference panes, clicking the text activates the check box as well. I'd love to see this extended to gadgets as well. EVula // talk // // 18:45, 25 March 2008 (UTC)

The extension currently does not allow localisation of dynamic messages... Maybe a feature request at mw:Extension talk:Gadgets could help. Siebrand 14:28, 26 March 2008 (UTC)


Just noting, I have flagged the above account as a bot, as it was flooding recent changes. If anyone feels this was a mistake, please reverse it, or let me know. Thanks, Majorly (talk) 21:55, 28 March 2008 (UTC)

Bah, majorly thanks for the flag. The bot does counterspam statistics, which will be useful for the folks working the blacklist. As I said to majorly I did not think it would be a big deal, as it should be doing only a few edits an hour, that is after it gets the initial statistics reports down. —— Eagle101 Need help? 22:04, 28 March 2008 (UTC)

Regarding Image:Imagepageexample2.PNG & Image:Imagepageexample3.PNG

Some assistance from users both cool-headed and legally-minded would be welcome. College IP law course attendance a plus. :) ~Kylu (u|t) 20:13, 7 April 2008 (UTC)

Now global title blacklist is live Wikimedia-wide — VasilievVV 03:54, 10 April 2008 (UTC)

Great news.. I love that title blacklist extension :-) --Meno25 19:18, 10 April 2008 (UTC)


Looking at the recent Recentchanges ... do we need to multiligualize {{test}} and so on? It seems pointless to put a warning in English in case a user wrote in Japanese or French and they give no sign they are capable to read English. --Aphaia 13:14, 13 April 2008 (UTC)

Definitely - "steal" from Commons maybe? --Herby talk thyme 13:15, 13 April 2008 (UTC)
Go for it! --Aphaia 19:49, 13 April 2008 (UTC)

Filtering the users' rigths log

How can I filter for getting the rigths of the users in huwiki? I want to get user:<anybody>@huwiki. Bináris 20:28, 14 April 2008 (UTC)

Have a look in preferences, and then gadgets. Under the interface section is an option to filter logs. Majorly (talk) 20:49, 14 April 2008 (UTC)
Thank you, I found it and switched on, but I still cannot write the query, beacuse I am very much beginner with regex (altough I have tried). Could you please help me to query the rights for anyusers@huwiki? Bináris 07:06, 15 April 2008 (UTC)
This filter seems to work wrong: it checks changed rights instead of target user — 12:53, 15 April 2008 (UTC)
Oh, that's why I couldn't do it! Bináris 15:06, 15 April 2008 (UTC)
You can use this tool to do it. For the rights changes of the users of huwiki, see [7] (note that this also includes users of huwikisource and huwikibooks). Korg 17:18, 15 April 2008 (UTC)
That's great, thank you very much! Bináris 20:31, 18 April 2008 (UTC)

SUL admins

I observed situation on SR/SUL. Since SUL was enabled, there were a lot of usurpation requests (~100) with I high request rate. When SUL is publically available, there most probably will be a big backlog. So, I propose so a new group (SUL admins) who will have access to Special:CentralAuth (or grant it to meta sysops), since it doesn't allow to make something really harmful, unrevertable or not logged and doesn't reveal private info — VasilievVV 13:09, 19 April 2008 (UTC)

I think it makes more sense (if additional hands are needed; and I agree the volume is large - whether it's beyond a reasonable workload for the stewards is for them to determine) to make this a 'crat right, rather than an admin one (or creating a new usergroup). Bureaucrats deal with user-account stuff - user rights, user renames... seems like administering SUL fits right in! – Mike.lifeguard | @en.wb 13:59, 19 April 2008 (UTC)
Agree with Mike. Majorly (talk) 16:13, 19 April 2008 (UTC)
Agree with both! Huji 16:27, 19 April 2008 (UTC)
On pl-wiki we responded to the higher volume of SUL usurpations by electing a couple of new bureaucrats (this is actually when I joined the club there, too). Pundit 19:51, 19 April 2008 (UTC)

See bugzilla:13810VasilievVV 16:28, 21 April 2008 (UTC)

Sounds good to me. Easier than holding an extra set of steward elections before SUL gets rolled out. :) EVula // talk // // 23:34, 21 April 2008 (UTC)
Will stewards still be able to deal with CentralAuth then? (Otherwise we'd need 30 additional bureaucrats when they enable SUL for all... *ggg*) --Thogo (talk) 11:09, 22 April 2008 (UTC)
Of course — VasilievVV 17:15, 22 April 2008 (UTC)

For those who may have missed it, there is discussion happening about global blocking over there. Input is always welcome. – Mike.lifeguard | @en.wb 14:02, 19 April 2008 (UTC)

Many tables can't be copied well

Please see

I sometimes want to copy wikipedia tables and lists into my web pages, or into my email. The standard table created by the table button in the Wikipedia editing form does not add the necessary bit of code to allow tables to show up easily outside wikipedia. So the tables lose their borders when pasted into my web pages, or into my email. A jumbled mess. A simple solution awaits! border="1" - See the above talk page link. --Timeshifter 20:55, 19 April 2008 (UTC)

Per a previous motion to close on 1 May 2008, MF-Warburg closed this interminable, two-year discussion today. He closed it as "keep". 64 editors supported closing the project, 56 opposed closure. While MF-Warburg did not elaborate on his decision, presumably he made it on the lack of sufficient consensus to eliminate a project.

In November 2007, a non-admin, Prince Kassad "closed" the discussion as "close", stating this was not a useful project. This was quickly overturned as an invalid action by a non-admin.

Today, Prince Kassad struck MF-Warburg's decision, calling it invalid since MF-Warburg gave no reason for his decision.

I believe MF-Warburg's decision was entirely proper and within his rights as an admin. I believe Prince Kassad's actions, while surely made in good faith, were invalid and inappropriate. I have temporarily protected the page for one week so that only admins can edit it and I have referred any further discussion to the talk page. Note that there was already a previous, robust discussion of this project on the talkpage.

Disclaimer: for the record, I am a supporter of keeping this project open. --A. B. (talk) 14:52, 2 May 2008 (UTC)

MF-Warburg is not an admin, at least on Meta. I'm not sure who has authority to close them, but I assumed it was Meta admins. Majorly (talk) 14:55, 2 May 2008 (UTC)
Oh, heck. Thanks for catching that, Majorly. I thought he was. Well then, this is just like Prince Kassad's invalid November closure all over again.
I feel OK stopping the discussion and protecting the page, however as a partisan of keeping that project alive, I think another, more neutral admin should make the final decision and close the discussion.
This matter needs to be settled now -- the closure discussion has dragged on for two years. --A. B. (talk) 15:37, 2 May 2008 (UTC)
I closed this discussion because of the "motion to close" that was there. Nobody objected and 64/56 is not enough support so the result should be of course keep. I made this decision although I am not an admin here (why should only admins be allowed to close discussions?). I have yet closed other project closing proposals and nobody ever protested (except Yaroslav Zolotaryov...). --MF-W 16:57, 2 May 2008 (UTC)
Probably nobody complained because the others were uncontroversial (except for Yaroslav Zolotaryov's and that's an entirely different, very long story!). Besides, you know more about our small projects than >95% of Meta admins. I always thought you were an admin; I hope you will consider becoming one here.
Perhaps an admin's not needed. We don't have a formal procedure and have not needed one before. In any event, VasilievVV has closed it as "keep" the same as you did. --A. B. (talk) 18:46, 2 May 2008 (UTC)

Disable local uploads on Meta

Since, as per the inclusion policy, unfree content is not allowed on Meta, I propose that we disable local uploads and instead use Commons for all images. Commons is much better set up to handle images and is in a better position to manage any issues. I'd welcome any comments on this issue and any suggestions as to why this might not be worth doing. Regards. Adambro 13:23, 3 May 2008 (UTC)

I suggest not to disable it at all, but limit to sysops for some rare cases, like it's done on Incubator — VasilievVV 14:05, 3 May 2008 (UTC)
I agree. The majority of uploads here are deleted immediately, but some images are uploaded. The policy is also wrong in practise, as Meta has several unfree images hosted. However, such images can be uploaded by admins only. It'll make less work in having to delete them. Majorly (talk) 14:12, 3 May 2008 (UTC)
Limiting to sysops seems sensible. Leaves the option open in those limited circumstances where it might be appropriate. Adambro 14:24, 3 May 2008 (UTC)
Meta is much used for marketing materials (see Presentations, etc.). Where are we supposed to upload these files, given that some people on Commons claim Commons shouldn't host text documents? Note that this is an open question: I am not really against disabling local upload on meta, I'd just like to be sure that all materials uploaded and to upload to meta will be accepted on Commons. I think this should be discussed with people from Commons as well, because Commons' scope is unclear about this. guillom 06:53, 4 May 2008 (UTC)
When we talk about "uploads" everyone starts with thinking about images. However, an important part of uploads are non-image files such as PDF documents, Powerpoint presentations, etc. Some of such things are only related to Meta and as long as there is no licensing problem, it is fine if they are uploaded on Meta, not Commons. So in short, I'm not sure if we should disable uploads. Huji 17:48, 4 May 2008 (UTC)

On another note, I open another discussion: Meta:EDP. Please provide feedback on this in the talk page. Thanks Anthere 23:35, 3 May 2008 (UTC)

I oppose this idea. Uploads to Meta need to remain available. Currently there are several proposals for new logos under discussion for both Wikibooks and Wikijunior, and there have been other similar proposals in the past for other projects. It's (a) inconvenient, (b) misleading, and (c) inappropriate to upload the images to Commons instead of Meta. It's inconvenient because of the delays in waiting for two different bureaucracies (please don't be offended, but if you're not an admin on both projects, it feels like you're dealing with a bureaucracy) to rename, delete, update, etc. Since Meta admins are often involved in the discussions, it's easy for them to handle those maintenance tasks "in-house". It's misleading because Commons is for free media. These proposals are not "free" - they are licensed exclusively to the Wikimedia Foundation for its eventual use (or non-use). It is inappropriate because Commons is the wrong place for them. Once approved, there would be no problem moving the selected logo to Commons, but until then, a slew of unapproved potential WMF logos would just confuse the heck out of people on the Commons. Perhaps instead of disabling uploads, it could be stated that uploads are only for material licensed for exclusive use by the Wikimedia Foundation and its related projects, such as proposed logos, marketing materials, etc. --Willscrlt (Talk) 06:41, 19 June 2008 (UTC)

I mostly agree with Willscrlt. That said, there are significant backlogs in Category:Images with unknown source, Category:Images with unknown license, and Category:Presumed GFDL images which require admin attention (and they've been there for months despite my trying to poke people towards them :-( ). giggy (:O) 07:47, 19 June 2008 (UTC)
What about a special upload right flag that can be granted and/or revoked. It could even be something that someone can turn on initially for themselves after reading an acceptable use page and agreeing to what is/is not accepted here. If someone uploads the wrong stuff, it can be turned off. Another alternative is that users who participate in a project or discussion in which uploading is necessary can request the privilege be turned on by an admin. It's not something that should be difficult to initially obtain, but it doesn't need to be automatic either. I think the problem is largely a matter of education. I remember that I mistakenly uploaded my first image to Meta. Somehow I got all confused between Wikipedia's uploads, Commons, and Meta. After a couple hours of frustration and some hand-holding by a helpful admin, I finally figured it out. I'm sure that much of the troubles here are similar. The change I just proposed won't solve 100% of the problems, but it should help -- especially if, instead of just blocking uploads, the user is redirected to the appropriate place to upload things. --Willscrlt (Talk) 08:46, 19 June 2008 (UTC)

If logos are not free use, and Meta allows onlt free use uploads, isn't there a contradiction?--Cato 18:31, 19 June 2008 (UTC)

Not really. Perhaps in the wording of the statement "Meta allows only free use uploads", because it does only allow those AND items that are copyrighted by the Foundation. For example, the Wikipedia and Wiktionary logos are not free use, but they can be used on any Wikimedia Foundation site. It's just copyrighted material that others own that can't be uploaded here. The proposed logos all have their copyrights transferred to the Foundation, so there's no problem. I would assume that the same holds true for presentations, etc. --Willscrlt (Talk) 04:09, 20 June 2008 (UTC)


I have flagged Erwin85Bot as a bot as it was flooding recent changes. I'm hoping this was a good move. Majorly talk 15:09, 22 May 2008 (UTC)

Yes it was :)  – Mike.lifeguard | @en.wb 22:39, 27 May 2008 (UTC)

Sandbox cleaning bot


Could a kind bot owner set up a bot to reset the sandbox? The bot that did this before, Uncle G's 'bot, is no longer running. Thanks in advance, Korg 11:02, 29 May 2008 (UTC)

There's a stack of these bots on sister projects (especially EnWP) if someone wanted to import the code. giggy (:O) 11:34, 29 May 2008 (UTC)
When should it reset the sandbox? At some given time or at a given time after the last edit? I've got a bot running on nlwiki that resets it twice a day. I could run it here as well or use a bot to reset it after a given time. I'll be gone until monday though. If anyone else wants to run this bot, be my guest. --Erwin(85) 13:43, 29 May 2008 (UTC)
The old one ran once a day at 0:00 UTC iirc. Twice a day would probably be good. Majorly talk 13:50, 29 May 2008 (UTC)
Looking into this. Would probably run once every six hours. Daniel (talk) 14:00, 29 May 2008 (UTC)
Once or twice a day would be good, but every six hours would be good as well :) (As a comparison, the Commons sandbox is cleared every six hours, although it is less actively edited than Meta's). Thanks, Korg 01:01, 30 May 2008 (UTC)
User:SoxBot has been brought over from EnWP to run. Soxred93 06:09, 2 June 2008 (UTC)
Thank you very much! Korg 11:04, 2 June 2008 (UTC)
I have noticed the Assessments template on Commons doesn't work properly. I'm referring to the "considered" button, which should direct you to the nomination page of he image. I have see that the Turkish Wikipedia is the only one for which this feature worked. What they have different is that the instead of having {{FULLPAGENAME}}, like all other Wikipedias, they have {{PAGENAME}}. This is in order to exclude the "Image:" prefix from the name, because all Wikis have another prefix for Images, and the way this template on Commons works doesn't allow for all of them to be defined.

Besides this, in order to work (cause this isn't enough), the names of all the nominations, at least from now on, should be changed to that they would include the actual name of the picture, for without the "Image:" prefix. For a better understanding see Image:Lightning over Oradea Romania 2.jpg, where the above mentioned feature works for the Turkish, but not for the English Wikipedia. Also see the source of trwiki, and of enwiki, where you can see the {{PAGENAME}} and {{FULLPAGENAME}} codes.

So, do you think this new change should be applied to all Wikipedias, in order for the template to work properly? diego_pmc 07:07, 6 June 2008 (UTC)

Hello?!? diego_pmc 09
22, 11 June 2008 (UTC)
It could just be me, I'm not sure what change you're asking for. If you want things to work the way {{FULLPAGENAME}} does, you just need to change {{PAGENAME}} to {{FULLPAGENAME}} at the appropriate page. Use {{editprotected}} (on Commons, obviously) to do this if you're not an admin.
If you're requesting something and it's painfully obvious or I've missed, feel free to ignore me. :-) giggy (:O) 10:08, 11 June 2008 (UTC)
I'm suggesting a solution to the issue with that template on Commons. 16:40, 12 June 2008 (UTC)

Promoting Meta bureaucrats access to Special:CentralAuth

Since many stewards feels that bureaucrats should not have access to it, I suggest to vote on it. Please, vote if you think Meta bureaucrats should have an access to it.

See Cometstyles' vote there have been many mistakes, and by the same people too. Majorly talk 14:02, 7 June 2008 (UTC)
  • Oppose Oppose, --birdy geimfyglið (:> )=| 14:03, 7 June 2008 (UTC)
  • Oppose Oppose as much per Comets as anything else. Frankly I am very glad I am not a 'crat here at present (& doubtless others will agree) --Herby talk thyme 14:04, 7 June 2008 (UTC)
  • Comment Comment. If CentralAuth were bug free and nothing irreversible could be done, I would see no problem with it being in the hands of meta crats. However, the fact that people can lose accounts if this is not done properly is troubling. Perhaps we should run a while with only stewards doing this and monitor the workload. If the stewards feel they are being overwhelmed with work, access can always be given to others (either to another usergroup or presumably individually). Ideally, if Bug #13507 could be fixed, there would be far fewer requests to process anyway. WjBscribe 14:11, 7 June 2008 (UTC)
    I removed this functions from Special:CentralAuth today — VasilievV 2 14:20, 7 June 2008 (UTC)
    I'd like to second WjB's comment. The ability to give the functionality to others of administrating global accounts and such may not be a bad idea. ----Anonymous DissidentTalk 15:20, 7 June 2008 (UTC)
    Did we have a clear consensus already? ++Lar: t/c 15:17, 7 June 2008 (UTC)
    VasilievVV means removing the ability to delete accounts from CentralAuth [8]. One of the problems here is that what exactly CentralAuth can do tends to fluctuate - either due to bugs or features being added/removed by developers. It is difficult to discuss sensibly whether a group should have access to a right without being utterly sure what that right will be able to do in the future. This seems another reason to limit access in the short term until we are sure exactly what CentralAuth is going to be able to do. WjBscribe 15:49, 7 June 2008 (UTC)
  • I'm not sure which way support/oppose means so I'll try to state my views unambiguously. I now (on reflection) Oppose Oppose meta 'crats being able to carry this function out and Support Support removal of the ability to carry out this function from meta 'crats. Note that if the backlogs build up, please feel free to beat up stewards (including myself) to get the work done... ++Lar: t/c 15:17, 7 June 2008 (UTC)
  • Oppose Oppose mainly per Cometstyles, but also because there was no real consensus on granting this ability to Meta crats. --Brownout(msg) 15:24, 7 June 2008 (UTC)
    We didn't, but now we're discussing this — VasilievV 2 16:26, 7 June 2008 (UTC)
  • I think the only problem now is that we (and by "we" I mean "you, collectively") are not able to play by the rules. Since that's not a problem with administering CentralAuth, let's keep this ability, but go with Majorly's proposal (gasp!) Crats who haven't done a "real RFB" may do renames and SUL, but not admin/bot promotions. The best of both worlds.  – Mike.lifeguard | @en.wb 16:19, 7 June 2008 (UTC)
    Erm, they shouldn't be allowed to the matematical stuff like sysop/bot promotions but the global serious account deletions, locks etc.? Sounds a bit strange. :-/ —DerHexer (Talk) 16:26, 7 June 2008 (UTC)
    Were there problems with crats handling that previously? Will there be in the future now that bugzilla:13507 is fixed? Depending on the answers, my view would change. But my current understanding leads my to the position above. I think this whole radical idea may have fallen apart. At this point, I'm of the view that it should be scrapped entirely, and all crats promoted since it was begun should be removed pending a proper RFB. This has actually been a tad embarrassing to watch. Seriously, how hard is it to not close RFAs early (etc)?  – Mike.lifeguard | @en.wb 18:34, 7 June 2008 (UTC)
  • Oppose Oppose - 'crats have been doing a sloppy job lately with closing Rfas early, etc. While that stuff can be removed/reverted much more easily, this can't be. Monobi (talk) 17:05, 7 June 2008 (UTC)
  • Oppose Oppose - we have a position for dealing with global matters: stewards. Meta bureaucrats were not chosen for this purpose (and in fact many of them were not chosen at all). — Dan | talk 17:24, 7 June 2008 (UTC)
  • Oppose. Any Meta administrator is eligible to become a bureaucrat, and these administrators were not elected with important global responsibilities in mind. They are elected locally, and do not represent the choice of the wider community. Furthermore, they do not have access to technical discussion and bug warnings on stewards-l. Stewards are capable of administering global account conflict resolutions themselves, and can create a global group with the rights if need be without giving access to every administrator on a project. —{admin} Pathoschild 17:27:01, 07 June 2008 (UTC)
  • Oppose - Pathoschild put it nicely above. Meta admins turned 'crats shouldn't really be dealing with global affairs external to the wiki in which they were given the trust. We have Stewards, who went through an election in which the wider community participated, for global purposes. --Anonymous DissidentTalk 17:35, 7 June 2008 (UTC)
    I think the spam blacklist, interwiki map and the portals are precisely why admins here do have abilities affecting more than meta, no? Of course, not at the same level as the stewards, but adminship at meta is different in this respect.  – Mike.lifeguard | @en.wb 18:34, 7 June 2008 (UTC)
    This is true, but this particular function should be particular to Stewards, I think, because it revolves around user housekeeping and user-based requests. It just seems like a duty that is related to Stewardship, not bureaucratship, even if it is on Meta. --Anonymous DissidentTalk 18:48, 7 June 2008 (UTC)
  • Oppose per Pathoschild. --Erwin(85) 18:13, 7 June 2008 (UTC)
Though meta has it is own community but i think most people here are representing other wikis ideas so i really think crat's here could deal with such subject and up to now i didn't see any abuse may some wrong action both have done by crats and steward due to the bug but now it seems bug has been fixed and would have this i Support Support meta's crat can deal with such subject.--Mardetanha talk 19:07, 7 June 2008 (UTC)
  • I see no real advantage to have meta crats here too as SUL administrators, I think it makes communication, especially in the startup phase with bugs etc, harder then when there is only one group with their own mailing list anyways and I agree with the election argument. I think that means an oppose. Effeietsanders 19:23, 7 June 2008 (UTC)
    • People are using this as an excuse to obtain crats on Meta which maybe another reason I have opposed this, and I'm not sure what the stewards have discussed regarding this and why it was brought up in the first place and I do know it has been abused by meta crats as well, so I'm sure it should stay with the Stewards for know, since they are forced to clean up the mess made by the crats, so for the betterment of the community (not meta, wikimedia)..that feature should only remain with the stewards...--Cometstyles 22:41, 7 June 2008 (UTC)
  • I concur with Dan and thus oppose. giggy (:O) 01:03, 8 June 2008 (UTC)

Regardless of the technical issues, if we shrink the pool of those capable of deleting global accounts without fixing the bugs that are making the requests necessary, we will see a rapid bottlenecking of the SUL process. The way the process currently works, anyone who encounters an SUL conflict that requires a usurpation using a pre-existing, differently named account is unable to complete this usurpation without a global account deletion (or lose all the edits made on the differently named account - I myself even have the problem with la:Usor:Andrus, though I don't care to preserve that contribution history). So, we have a lot of users who don't complete SUL unification, and due to language barriers or just general confusion, never make the proper request in the proper place. The problem with Pathoschild's reasoning is that, in essence, an SUL rename or usurpation is a local issue, which cannot be solved by local bureaucrats. Andre (talk) 01:44, 8 June 2008 (UTC)

I think we have enough stewards to handle this for now. If at some point it's not getting handled, beat up the stewards. Another alternative approach is to create a new group to handle this, some group with a bit more vetting than "meta admin from whenever, and then asked nicely to be a 'crat and some other 'crat that just recently got to be a crat by asking nicely turned it on for them". ++Lar: t/c 04:06, 8 June 2008 (UTC)
Done by brion. Nakon 19:17, 6 July 2008 (UTC)

Meta namespaces

Some mention has been made of reviewing Meta namespaces on the Foundation & Meta lists with a view to making Meta easier to organise & so allow people to find their way around better.

Specifically a Historical: namespace was mentioned to allow the "filing" of items that are of historic interest rather than current (there are a number lurking here!). However it seems sensible to consider whether others might also be appropriate. To me Translation: is a fundamental part of Meta and maybe warrants a namespace. Equally something in the form of Maintenance: (or appropriate other work) to cover areas such as SWMT & the black list etc may be useful.

Others may have other ideas & it would be good to open up a discussion that allowed Meta to be easier for people to find their way around. --Herby talk thyme 11:09, 11 June 2008 (UTC)

See also this email as a starting point. Historical: and Translation: make perfect sense to me. I don't know about Maintenance: but I don't oppose it. I think we should start by an inventory of meta's content ; it will be easier then to know how to organize it and what namespace we need. I think we should revive the Meta:MetaProject to Overhaul Meta. This should also be done in coordination with Meta:MetaProject to transfer content to ; we could probably get rid of all the translated help namespaces once everything has been transferred to guillom 11:50, 11 June 2008 (UTC)

While we're touching on the subject, it has always seemed a little hit-and-miss to me whether pages end up in the mainspace or the meta namespace. For example, requests to be renamed locally are made at Meta:Changing username whereas local requests for checkuser are made at Requests for CheckUser information. It seems to me that the latter page (being one about the running of meta itself) should also be in the meta namespace? WjBscribe 12:20, 11 June 2008 (UTC)

Yep, that's right. guillom 12:29, 11 June 2008 (UTC)
Certainly the content of the Meta: namespace (& what doesn't get in there is also in need of review. It will be messy for a while but not as bad as it will be if we leave it! --Herby talk thyme 12:32, 11 June 2008 (UTC)
Yes, the mainspace/meta namespace distinction has long been blurred & is in need of some defining & enforcement. The mainspace should be for pages about the WMF projects; the Meta namespace should be for pages about this project. As to a Maintenance namespace, that would be useful for coordination of maintenance activities which are not actually about the other projects, nor this one - think SWMT or External links policy. Neither one is really about other projects, but is rather about coordination of cross-wiki maintenance. As well, renewed efforts to move help content to mediawiki wiki would be most welcome.  – Mike.lifeguard | @en.wb 13:33, 11 June 2008 (UTC)
I to think that an historical namespace is a good idea, but what about the help namespace? What should be the distinction between the help mainspace and the main namespace? I'm think for example about Help:Unified login and Using the python wikipedia bot. It's not clear to me why these pages are in the namespace they are and not the other. --MiCkEdb 14:00, 11 June 2008 (UTC)
Err, please, rather than giving many examples of pages that are not in the namespace they belong to, please help doing the inventory, so that we know what we have and how to sort this stuff :) guillom 14:30, 11 June 2008 (UTC)

Support this notion, it seems like it would in the long term help a lot. For pages in mainspace that really belong in metaspace, I'd say please leave redirects behind for a while. But where I am a bit hazy is that there seems to be some conceptual blurring between what is purely (local) Meta: and what isn't ... For example, Interwiki map is administered locally, but has global effect. It's in mainspace because I think a lot of things have dependencies on it being there. Should all global things be in mainspace? Or should there be another prefix introduced for them? Another example is what of steward related things? Some of that seems blurry... stewards act globally but are selected locally... (as in the process is local but has global participation) Let me know if I'm all wet. As with all classification schemes it may not be possible to get a perfect classification. Document exceptions and be happy :) Note: I give examples to show there's stuff to talk about and clarify... Thanks to all who thought of this idea... ++Lar: t/c 16:19, 11 June 2008 (UTC)

I've always thought of it as global stuff (ie. stuff which can affect other projects) goes in the mainspace, and local stuff (stuff that ONLY affects Meta) goes in the Meta namespace. Where it's selected (eg. Stewards selected locally) shouldn't really have an impact on the namespace, IMO. giggy (:O) 10:03, 12 June 2008 (UTC)
I like the idea of Meta-specific pages being in the Meta: namespace, and global pages (such as as the interwiki map, essays like Don't be a dick, or informational pages like Table of Wikimedia Projects by Size) being in the main namespace. I also support a "Historical:" namespace. A "Translation:" namespace makes sense to help partition off work like that, but I can very easily see an argument being made that it remain in the main namespace (since translation work is, to a certain extent, a global activity). EVula // talk // // 19:24, 13 June 2008 (UTC)
Having just come on to Meta, and having been confused myself by what was in the different namespaces, I definitly think this is a good idea! Mike.lifeguard's description above really make sense, at least to me: "The mainspace should be for pages about the WMF projects; the Meta namespace should be for pages about this project." Beyond that, I don't think I'm familiar enough with the namespaces to make suggesitons, but that one part definitly feels like it would add some clarity. -- Natalya 02:59, 17 June 2008 (UTC)

Page move messages broken

I just noticed that, after you move a page, Template:MediaWiki revert link, Template:MediaWiki delete link 2 and Template:MediaWiki delete link 1 are not working fine any more. The link to $3 and $4's instead of the page names. I didn't have time to check what caused it (just played with the params, which didn't help) so thought maybe another admin will get a handle of it. Huji 22:16, 13 June 2008 (UTC)

Message parameters such as $1 don't seem to work anymore in templates inside mediawiki messages. Template parameters should probably be used instead (e.g. {{MediaWiki revert link|$3|$4}}). This will also make it possible to merge the deletion templates into one template, using different parameters each time. Note that in this message, $1 and $2 are links, while $3 and $4 are plaintext. – rotemlissTalk 06:42, 14 June 2008 (UTC)

Wikimedia merge/work with Firefox nonprofit, and their big bucks?

Please see: Wikipedia:Advertisements#Income from search tools on wikipedia pages

We could add more search tools to the existing Wikipedia searchbar. We can continue to use the existing open-source search tool, and also charge Google, Yahoo, etc. to place their search tools in the Wikipedia searchbar as a dropdown menu choice.

The nonprofit Firefox browser has a such a searchbar. Firefox received 61.5 million dollars in search royalties in 2006, and Wikimedia received no search royalties. See Mozilla Foundation#Financing

The searchbar would make even more money if it were moved to the top left of Wikipedia pages (above the wikipedia logo). Then the searchbar would be visible even to newbies to Wikipedia pages. Many people would use the searchbar frequently.

Better yet, I suggest we start negotiations with the Firefox people about merging with them. We are both nonprofits.

Or we could work with them on learning how to get a similar deal from Google search, Yahoo search, etc.. We could ask them to loan us some of their programmers, equipment, office space, and so on, too. --Timeshifter 03:39, 15 June 2008 (UTC)

Try proposing this on the the Foundation-l mailing list or contacting our Head of Business Development at Cbrown1023 talk 23:47, 15 June 2008 (UTC)
Thanks for the ideas. I don't do email lists, though, except for announcement lists mostly. I don't like my email address getting out. Plus I am interesting in discussing the issues and getting broader feedback from the wider wikimedia/wikipedia readership. Public message-board-type forums are good for that. Others might bring the resulting ideas to the places you suggested. --Timeshifter 08:00, 16 June 2008 (UTC)


Can an admin please go in and edit MediaWiki:Loginend so that it links to the secure login site, like it does on enwiki? Sorry if this request is in an odd place, I didn't know where else to put it (feel free to move it if you know somewhere better). Anthony 22:10, 21 June 2008 (UTC)

'tis Done. --Az1568 02:17, 22 June 2008 (UTC)