Requests for comment/Reduce Asturian web presence

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The following request for comments is closed. This is, at best, a technical issue, which cannot be solved by a Meta RFC. --MF-W 08:46, 30 May 2022 (UTC)[reply]


We've got a serious problem on Wikipedia as a whole. When people try to search for terms in Spanish online, a surprising percentage of the time the response that Google comes up with is actually from the Asturian Wikipedia.

Screenshot of Google results in Spanish

This happens a lot.

But why is this something we need to comment on?[edit]

Well, Asturian is spoken by less than a million people. Certainly, it's a real language and deserves a real Wikipedia, and its users work hard and should be praised. But it is a useful resource for, at most, less than a million people.

Spanish, however, is spoken by half a billion people as a native language. When someone searches for a term like "donde viven las cobras", the language that they are overwhelmingly likely to expect is Spanish, not Asturian.

Yet Google consistently returns Asturian Wikipedia over the Spanish Wikipedia for Google searches, at least those emanating from the United States (the second-biggest Spanish speaking country there is!). I personally find that about 30% of my Spanish google searches lead to the Asturian Wikipedia being the one chosen by Google as the top Wiki link, and this then blocks the Spanish one from appearing at all.

This is not just a Google issue, actually. Bing does the same!

Why is it happening?[edit]

Bro, beats me. I imagine it has to do with SEO that the Spanish Wikipedia doesn't do as well as the Asturian one? Maybe?

What can be done?[edit]

I'm not certain. I really want to see what happens.

What do you think?[edit]


— The preceding unsigned comment was added by Red Slash (talk)


@Red Slash: I'm wondering what's the reason you proposed as a RFC instead of waiting for Community Wishlist Survey 2023 and submit a wishlist. --Liuxinyu970226 (talk) 00:47, 2 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]

  • AFAIK, this is pretty much out of Wikimedia's control. The Spanish Wikipedia can certainly take actions into improving's SEO ranking, but putting down the SEO ranking for Asturian is unacceptable IMO, and also out of Wikimedia's control. A good way to increase eswiki's SEO ranking is to do a lot of copyediting – it's what we do on the English Wikivoyage to improve our SEO rankings from Wikitravel. --SHB2000 (talk | contribs) 07:35, 10 March 2022 (UTC)[reply]
  • Red Slash: This "problem" is related to Google's (and possibly Bing's) opaque algorithm for results personalization. For your example query, Spanish Wikipedia ranks first for me (Spain). I'm not sure if there's anything under our control here. MarioGom (talk) 18:16, 16 May 2022 (UTC)[reply]
  • I checked it myself. For me, it always renders Spanish and not Asturian. Even for the example question you made the screenshot for. So, this may also be related to your location or settings. --OosWesThoesBes (talk) 13:13, 18 May 2022 (UTC)[reply]
  • I tried two queries with and without "Wikipedia". astwiki came at the 8 place when I explicitly ask for results from Wikipedia and totally disappear in the latter case. Things like Google algorithms for ranking varies from user to user based on their previous queries, location, shopping history (yes, this too), et cetera. NguoiDungKhongDinhDanh 11:41, 29 May 2022 (UTC)[reply]