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The Wikimedia Forum is a central place for questions and discussions about the Wikimedia Foundation and its projects. (For discussion about the Meta wiki, see Meta:Babel.)
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Wikipedia is not a democracy[edit]

When I try to discuss matters on Wikipedia it is very common for someone to come forward and tell me the following:

The community have already discussed this issues and settled it, so it does not matter what you say. We will not listen. You must comply with what has been decided by the community.

This talk can be acceptable if the community decisions were reached by democratic means (i.e. voting of all members of the community, or voting of democratically elected representatives of the community); but clearly this is not what happens in Wikipedia. The "community decisions" in Wikipedia are decisions reached by some little groups of Wikipedians who happen to be there when the discussions take place. Since administrators spend much more time on Wikipedia than other contributors, they have a bigger role in making "community decisions" than the rest of Wikipedians. When administrators consider such decisions as final and nonnegotiable, the situation that arises is close to an oligarchy, where a small elite controls the community.

This is especially true in some non-English versions of Wikipedia where the administrators are practically the only members of the community who are allowed to contribute. The admins write most of the articles' content (which is not a great content), and when others attempt to contribute they are practically not allowed because of some nonsensical rules. When those rules are challenged, the answer will be "those are the community rules and you cannot change them," which is absurd.--HD86 (talk) 21:15, 19 September 2016 (UTC)

It seems like some of what you're saying here is completely unfounded generalization. Admins write most of the content? I'm not sure that is the case now or has been the last eight years. With regards to bringing up prior points that are immediately dismissed because of previous discussions, I agree with you. Wikipedians can be mean and sticklers. However, there are some things that are brought up multiple times and still have value in being discussed. Do not be dismayed. As in life, cordially ignore those who warrant ignoring and continue to incite discussion and change. Killiondude (talk) 18:14, 20 September 2016 (UTC)

It seems like some of what you're saying here is completely unfounded generalization. Admins write most of the content? I'm not sure that is the case now or has been the last eight years.

I cannot scientifically prove it because I do not have the means, but given the rules of the Arabic Wiki and how it generally works, it is likely that most of the content there is written by the admins, because it is exceedingly difficult for anybody else to contribute on regular basis. Anyways, I did discuss the Arabic Wiki somewhere else and this is not my main point here. I just wanted to respond to the claim that we cannot challenge "community decisions." This claim has nothing to do with democracy because Wikipedia is not a democracy.--HD86 (talk) 16:21, 21 September 2016 (UTC)

I will try to get some update from somebody related to Arabic Wikipedia. --Muzammil (talk) 19:09, 25 September 2016 (UTC)
@HD86: You've been blocked on Arabic Wikipedia indefinitely. You were earlier blocked in 2009. Is this the reason for you to target the Wikipedia? --Muzammil (talk) 17:36, 26 September 2016 (UTC)

@Hindustanilanguage: I wrote the story in this page (the last two sections).--HD86 (talk) 04:51, 27 September 2016 (UTC)

Honestly, I do not think that anything in the Arabic Wikipedia can be fixed until they decide to adopt some of the basic principles of the English Wikipedia, especially the principle of resolving conflicts through consensus building. If you read the translations which I provided here and here, you will see that they do not follow that principle.--HD86 (talk) 05:03, 27 September 2016 (UTC)

@Hindustanilanguage: I see that you could not get any comment from the Arabic Wikipedia. This does not surprise me. What are they going to say? Are they going to deny that they said those things?

If you read what they told me, you will know why they have not responded. Consider this quote for example:

"I interfered in the discussion initiated by you in order to put an end to that farce which had been wasting people's time, and [in order to put an end to your] creating problems out of nothing. You as a person mean nothing to me and I did not even consider having a direct conversation with you"

They think that civil discussion is a waste of time and a cause for disorder. They also find it demeaning to have a direct conversation with someone like me. According to what they said, I am supposed to abide by their directions without asking questions. If this is how they work, then it is not surprising that they will not say anything here.--HD86 (talk) 06:24, 2 October 2016 (UTC)

@HD86: this is the reply I got from one of the admins on Facebook:
I asked also our community to notify his case and they told me that his main purpose or target is destroying Ar. Wiki and insulting admins.

They classified him as a troll.

For that, the decision is ignoring him and we won't interact without an official request.

--Muzammil (talk) 07:03, 2 October 2016 (UTC)

I have written so much about them here, but they still do not find it necessary to come here and defend themselves. Don't you find this strange? If they did not do anything wrong, then they should not be afraid from coming here and explaining their position. They actually should have welcomed this opportunity to defend themselves and explain how I am a troll and how I insulted them and sought to destroy the Arabic Wikipedia.

Just to make something clear, I interacted there with only 4 or 5 admins. There was only one particular admin whose language and behavior were quite uncivil. (This one was also bad, but I suspect that he was acting under the influence of the other one). There are general problems in the Arabic Wikipedia, but the problem of uncivil behavior was not general. I encountered it with only 2 admins, and particularly this one. Since I translated some of what he said and posted it here, he needs to come here and explain what he said more than anybody else in the Arabic Wikipedia.--HD86 (talk) 18:49, 2 October 2016 (UTC)

Message posted on the admin's talk page. --Muzammil (talk) 18:57, 2 October 2016 (UTC)

Still no answer. There is no surprise in this. This guy does not believe in the very notion of discussion, and he believes that the other Wikimedia projects have no influence whatsoever on the Arabic Wikipedia, so why would he bother to come here and discuss? He even does not allow anybody else from the Arabic Wikipedia to speak without his permission. (I am only assuming that he is the big boss there.)

Again, I demand that Wikimedia set up some general guidelines for all the projects, and the Arabic Wikipedia must be made to comply with those guidelines.--HD86 (talk) 06:24, 15 October 2016 (UTC)

@HD86: indeed Policy and guidelines for all the projects exist, and all Wikipedia languages must comply. All users can find them on the home page by clicking on Meta:About. --Luca Polpettini (talk) 12:26, 21 October 2016 (UTC)

Low New Project Proposal Speed[edit]

In the page for New Project Proposals, a lot of proposals are left unprocessed, which jams the list. Therefore, I suggest processing it within 3 months, regardless of anything, and to decide whether it would be accepted in 6 months. Thanks. Wetitpig0 (talk) 08:02, 29 September 2016 (UTC)

The problem is that there is no formal process to accept or reject new project proposals. Ruslik (talk) 19:03, 29 September 2016 (UTC)

Add new widget to cy-wiki[edit]

The following discussion has been retrieved from the Archives by User:Llywelyn2000 as it is not yet closed.

Our community at Welsh language Wikipedia has agreed to trial the Vocab widget. Where do I ask for this to happen? It means adding a bit of HTML code, but I'm not sure where it goes. The external link goes to the main standardised online dictionaries at the University of Wales, Bangor. The button to toggle Vocab on/off needs to appear on every page. Diolch! Llywelyn2000 (talk) 06:21, 6 September 2016 (UTC)

As I've detailed on the other page, the "snippet of HTML" actually loads an external JavaScript, which would allow a website not affiliated with the Wikimedia Foundation (in this case, it's the website of a UK entity) and with a different privacy policy to obtain access to user data. This has been consistently not allowed on Wikimedia websites. Snowolf How can I help? 15:19, 7 September 2016 (UTC)
Thanks User talk:Snowolf. When you refer to 'user data' which user do you mean? The reader of cywiki? Not sure how the university could gain any more data that they could without the widjet, even if they wanted to. Or maybe you refer to some other user? Llywelyn2000 (talk) 14:01, 13 September 2016 (UTC)
I've had only one person answering this question, over 4 weeks ago, with his or her opinion, which did not apply to the argument, as I stated in my last post. Therefore I take it that there's no problem with the trialling of the Vocab widget. That will now take place, as agreed by the cy-wiki community. Llywelyn2000 (talk) 04:12, 2 October 2016 (UTC)

Wikinews viewership?[edit]

Hi! I can easily find how many people look at any one specific page of Wikinews. But I'm having trouble finding the monthly reach of the website as a whole. Is that stat available? Thanks! -- Zanimum (talk) 22:31, 2 October 2016 (UTC)

@Zanimum: Have you seen Stats? —Justin (koavf)TCM 22:43, 2 October 2016 (UTC)
@Koavf: I had, but didn't find anything but edit counts, user counts, etc. Just found viewership here, and I'm a little flummoxed. I could believe at most a quarter million views a month, but none of the new articles get more than a couple thousand reads in their first month.
Are there bots to find the most popular articles on a wiki, like what Signpost uses to find EN.WP's most popular articles? I'm wondering if it's an even spread of old articles, or if there's some juggernaut of an old article bringing in thousands of viewers. -- Zanimum (talk) 04:23, 3 October 2016 (UTC)
@Zanimum: Did you see the methodology here? —Justin (koavf)TCM 04:29, 3 October 2016 (UTC)

Hello, Zanimum! Here's the most viewed pages in October. Number 1 so far is "US Airways jet recovered from Hudson River" with 3,800 views. --NaBUru38 (talk) 20:30, 22 October 2016 (UTC)

Looking for something[edit]

A couple months ago I came across what was either a WM policy page or essay saying that blocked users planning appeal should make "meaningful contributions to other parts of the project." I've tried to find this specific pages again, but I'm having a lot of trouble. I remember that I was clicking through blocking and unblocking rules at the time. It was here on WM, not on any of the 'pedias. Does anyone know where it is? Darkfrog24 (talk) 04:38, 5 October 2016 (UTC)

Creative Commons 4.0[edit]

Hello! I'm writing from the Wikimedia Foundation to invite you to give your feedback on a proposed move from CC BY-SA 3.0 to a CC BY-SA 4.0 license across all Wikimedia projects. The consultation will run from October 5 to November 8, and we hope to receive a wide range of viewpoints and opinions. Please, if you are interested, take part in the discussion on Meta-Wiki.

Apologies that this message is only in English. This message can be read and translated in more languages here. Joe Sutherland (talk) 01:34, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

@JSutherland (WMF): None of the links in your message are functioning, which is probably unintended. --Vogone (talk) 02:28, 6 October 2016 (UTC)
@Vogone: Thanks for the heads up. This is a quirk of MassMessage, alas, but I've fixed them now. Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 04:24, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

Updating the amount of articles on the Chinese Wikipedia.[edit]

In the Chinese Wikipedia, the number of pages have already reached 900 000. Please update that. Thanks.--1233 | Questions?| Tools | He left the message at 02:50, 7 October 2016 (UTC)

Google plus one.svg. --Liuxinyu970226 (talk) 11:29, 9 October 2016 (UTC)


An alleged "alluring new portal into Wikimedia projects and the Wikimedia movement" is proposed HERE and I'm seeking participants for reflection and comment. Credkudo would provide a new face and new fruit of the Wikimedia community's labors, focusing on the kernel of consensus underlying contentious issues. I would very much appreciate any observations you may have.

1 000 000 de pages corrigées / 1 000 000 proofread pages on[edit]

Bonjour. Une fois n'est pas coutume, l'un des jalons symboliques de l'histoire de Wikisource a été atteint non par les anglophones, mais par les francophones. Sur, nous avons corrigé 1 000 000 de pages !!! Cela est visible sur cette page, et c'est cette page qui est la 1 000 000ème page corrigée. Nous en parlons ici si vous souhaitez leur dire un mot. Bien cordialement. --Consulnico (talk) 15:52, 14 October 2016 (UTC)

Hello everybody. I know that Wikisource projects are far less known than Wikipedia projects. Nevertheless, on, we have reached the large symbolic amount of 1,000,000 proofread pages as you can see on this page !! The page in question is one from Anatole France, this one. If you want to tell them some words, here is the thread : fr:s:Wikisource:Scriptorium/Octobre_2016#LA_page_de_l.27ann.C3.A9e_sur_Wikisource. Bye, --Consulnico (talk) 15:52, 14 October 2016 (UTC)

Transalte of global main page[edit]

Hello! Our global main page for all Wikimedia Projects is only in english. Is good translate it. Can someboady do it? --MDsmajlik (talk) 13:01, 15 October 2016 (UTC)

You should ask at Talk:Www.wikimedia.org_template. Ruslik (talk) 19:32, 19 October 2016 (UTC)

Requesting some changes and additions to the Preferences[edit]

It's obvious (to me) that the list of locations for the time offset in Preferences was assembled by US contributors. I know that Americans want to make USA great again, and this shows that the time offset list contains places like Beula North Dakota, Yakutat Alaska, Monticello Kentucky, etc. where thousands of Wikipedians toil to contribute, but otherwise unaware of their time offset. Nevertheless, I think that "America/Montreal" meets the criteria for inclusion in that list. Aside from the fact that not everyone knows time offsets, we Montrealers are not from Toronto, nor from New York nor Buffalo. However, I admit my shameful ignorance that Rainy River is in Ontario, (which is also not Montreal).

I also suggest that any preference settings that are truly global like time offset, date format, image size limit, thumbnail size, edit area font style, should be global preference settings, and thus be applied to all of a user's wiki sites.

Thanks for reading,

Ineuw (talk) 18:46, 19 October 2016 (UTC)

@Ineuw: I agree, especially about global settings. Global preferences is a live issue which you can follow on phab:. —Justin (koavf)TCM 22:10, 19 October 2016 (UTC)
I disagree about the time offset settings. Many wikis use times other than UTC for signatures etc. and having time settings differring from the time formats used in signatures will only cause confusion. Instead, global settings should be optional. --Vogone (talk) 22:30, 19 October 2016 (UTC)
You are incorrect. The available values for the time offset preference are taken from the IANA time zone database, as reflected by PHP's DateTimeZone::listIdentifiers() method.
The tz database defines a "zone" as a region within a country (as defined by ISO 3166-1) where clocks have agreed since 1970-01-01 00:00:00Z. Typically each zone is named using the English name of the largest city within the zone. America/North_Dakota/Beulah exists because Mercer County, North Dakota switched from the Mountain Time Zone to the Central Time Zone on 2010-11-07,[1] so clocks there have not agreed with clocks anywhere else in the US for all times since 1970. Montreal doesn't have its own zone because its clocks have been the same as Toronto's since 1970. This is also why US cities such as Boston, Washington DC, or Atlanta don't have their own zones, since their clocks have all agreed with New York's since 1970. Anomie (talk) 14:32, 20 October 2016 (UTC)
@Anomie: Wow,thanks for the detailed info and much appreciate it, but your argument is incorrect when it comes to cultural sensitivity, and when searching for one's nearest city. Montreal and Toronto are far apart, in distance, culture, and language. Adding extra locations is not a heavy burden on the system. Your view is typical point of a programmer and not a user. None of what you wrote is relevant to users who simply want to set up accounts.Ineuw (talk) 20:14, 20 October 2016 (UTC)
Actually, adding additional locations would be a burden. Instead of just using the time zone database we'd have to maintain an additional database of aliases, map those aliases everywhere where the preference is used in code, and then all users would have that many more items to look through to try to find the right one. Anomie (talk) 22:03, 20 October 2016 (UTC)
My apologies, I thought that Wikipedia et al was about people. If you could assess objectively the thousands of silly useless ideas offered, programmed, linked and scripted into the variations of the wmf software, which use up contributors' time and wm resources, you would not say "additional". Please don't get me wrong, I am glad that in addition to the article contributors and editors, Wikimedia offers the opportunity for thousands of programmers to learn and improve their skills, but I wish that they would clean up the unused mess they leave behind.Ineuw (talk) 17:44, 21 October 2016 (UTC)

Global right Patroller[edit]

I have opinions for WMF Project. How if the wikimedia foundations have a global patroller or add right to member SWMT to global patroller? It make easy for patrol in small wiki is a not admin member. how your opinions?Murbaut (talk) 02:46, 22 October 2016 (UTC)

@Murbaut: Usually, stewards will fill this kind of role but that's not like the system can't be improved. Do you know of any small wikis that need more attention? —Justin (koavf)TCM 02:59, 22 October 2016 (UTC)
yes small wiki needs attention, if there is no board, highly vulnerable to vandalism. It easy to patrol for member SWMT to fight any vandalism. Murbaut (talk) 03:27, 22 October 2016 (UTC)
There are global rollbackers and global sysops as well. But you don't need either to help with the SWMT; you can join IRC and go to #cvn-sw to start patrolling edits! Hopefully someday we'll be able to integrate that more on-wiki as well, so external sites aren't needed. – Ajraddatz (talk) 03:35, 22 October 2016 (UTC)
@Ajraddatz oh. Do you know tools can show small wiki don't have member of admin right?:)Murbaut (talk) 13:51, 23 October 2016 (UTC)

Wikimania wikis[edit]

Hi. I was looking at Special:SiteMatrix and couldn't help noticing the whopping 14 separate wikis (and growing) for all the different Wikimanias, including a separate wiki for a "Wikimania team". Is there any current plans of a more sustainable or streamlined approach to running these wikis?

I am aware that this has been discussed a few times before, but no significant effort was put into it. Wikimania project domain is the most significant discussion which I could find, but participation was quite low on that, with no(?) WMF staff comments.

From what I understand from the above linked discussion, some key points against a unified Wikimania wiki was that:

  1. We will not be able to preserve old Wikimania wikis as a "time capsule"
  2. Older Wikimania organizers may face new organizers "steamrolling" over their pages
  3. Organizers will not have complete control over the site as old admins might interrupt for whatever reasons. (or vice versa)

My though for these points was:

  1. Why not have each Wikimania project branch their pages as page, or alternatively, have separate namespaces for each project (i.e. 2016:, 2017:, etc). We could then protect all pages under a project (i.e. 2016/ or 2016:) once a project is over.
  2. This could be avoided by protection, as stated above.
  3. Make it much less complicated. Once the project is over, all previous admin rights will be revoked, and the new organizers will get the rights. New admins can be advise to not modify previous project namespaces, or if better, if we can block previous projects' namespaces from editing? Furthermore, there could be a bot logging all changes made to old project namespaces, for transparency.

Is there any other views on this? Did I miss something obvious? Looking forward to your comments. Cheers, Rehman 08:53, 22 October 2016 (UTC)

Hi Rehman, thanks for the thoughts - they're well lined out. However, I'm not sure I agree with your conclusions or solutions. A few things also play a role here, I think:
  1. As Wikimania's are being prepared more in advance, the preparations will overlap more and more. This would be tricky if you have to work from the same wiki, which will potentially hinder the use of the wiki.
  2. A big argument in favor for the same wiki would be re-using a bunch of pages that carry over from the previous years. Information that remains valid. I'm not sure that is actually the case - the contrary might be true. It might get confusing for visitors, because they will find information through the search engine from previous years, while they think it is relevant for the current year. The more years we're talking about - the more likely we return to the same country at some point, and this might get tricky.
  3. Re-using the same space would also limit the ability to experiment with styles, with preferences for organizing information. It would force teams to some extent to use the same group of templates, which would be a pity. They will typically take templates from the projects they're most at home. Given our international nature, this might very well be a non-English Wikipedia project. This also counts for a level of bilingualism that they may or may not want to experiment with.
  4. One advantage of having a unified wiki would be that it would become easier to maintain those archived pages a bit with additional information, to link them to follow-ups a year later, etc. Information could be linked together. I'm not sure if we would use that oppportunity though.
All in all, I mostly see obstacles here, things that would make life (the way we live it) harder. The costs of unification should also not be underestimated (these old wiki's have not been maintained, I'm not sure how easy it will be to just transfer them into one place, interwiki links may no longer work etc), and I'm afraid that while there are some potential benefits, the actual use of them would be limited. Effeietsanders (talk) 09:30, 22 October 2016 (UTC)
Along with what Effeietsanders is saying, there wouldn't be much functional difference between your proposal and the status quo. As it is, when the Wikimania is over and the wiki is no longer needed, the site is locked and all permissions are removed. From a technical standpoint, it's frozen in time. If anything, it might be more of a hassle trying to accomodate it all on one wiki, especially since you'll have "common pages" (i.e. with the same title) that have different content based on the year. – Ajraddatz (talk) 09:46, 22 October 2016 (UTC)
(PS: I was working from the assumption that there is no technical need or desire to get rid of these wiki's. If there is, it becomes a different trade-off of course. I guess this is not a solution we would want to scale to every single conference we organize. Effeietsanders (talk) 10:03, 22 October 2016 (UTC))
Rehman hank for your post. I'm also an advocate of rationalization. So I'll follow this discussion when I have time. Other aspects are the flag system: when can recycle the old sysops directly if they're partially involved in the new wiki, so newbies can focus on content and we can create a real continuous expertise. The point is that even if it takes time to absorb the old ones, it does not take more time to start do thing right from now, for the future wikimanias. Offering a good new flexible infrastructure for the future is IMHO a good idea.--Alexmar983 (talk) 05:22, 23 October 2016 (UTC)
  • I don't think that bringing all the Wikimania wikis together is a good idea. Even with very good navigation prompts, the site would quickly become very confusing to potential attendees. (Example: is this great-sounding session proposed for the next Wikimania? the one two years ago? Why are there links for accommodations in other cities? How come the visa requirements are wrong - oh wait, that was for Wikimania Hong Kong...) The Wikiconference held two weeks ago in San Diego (formerly Wikiconference USA, now targeted at the Americas) re-uses the same site year after year. I found it so difficult to find things - my ten years of figuring out how to find stuff on wikis notwithstanding - that I can honestly say the website was a factor in my deciding not to attend. I wasn't certain, after more than an hour of looking, what the program was going to be or even what was proposed for it; when I'm paying full freight to attend something, the program is going to be one of the most important factors in my decision whether or not to attend. I would have much preferred not having to sort my way through years of past history to piece together this year's event (or worse yet, thinking I'd found the right page only to discover it applied to another year). No, I think it's pretty important to keep each Wikimania site separate. Risker (talk) 06:22, 23 October 2016 (UTC)