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Gnome globe current event.svg This project page documents a research project currently in progress.
Information may be incomplete and can change rapidly as science advances.

This page documents work in progress for Hosting improvements in phase 2 of the Teahouse project. This work on the Teahouse is intended to further engage and encourage host participation and activities and make it easier to get started as a host.

Improvements are planned for the host lounge space, a streamlined "host creation" process that will aim to attract interested Wikipedians to become hosts, and automating methods of surfacing active hosts.


  • Becoming a host is a cumbersome process, can feel a bit intimidating, there is too much to read, and annointing someone as hosts involves a manual review by one person
  • Often people who become hosts end up not participating, and people who aren't listed as hosts end up being some of the most active/awesome participants
  • We'd like easy ways to encourage people who are answering questions or doing other host-like activities to be hosts. Currently, it's a one to one recruiting system using a talk page comment by Sarah or Heather, with little positive results
  • We'd like to surface more of a lot of different lightweight activities for hosts to do so that everyone can participate as they are able
  • We'd like to encourage people answering questions to read the few basic tips before diving in, without this becoming a burden that blocks diving in
  • Guests appreciate seeing host profiles to get an immediate sense of the humans behind the activity, but the current display of host profiles isn't dynamic. Inactive hosts are listed until someone manually removes them, and some of the most active experienced editors answering questions in the Teahouse don't have host profiles


New host creation[edit]

Userflow for routing a participating Wikipedian into becoming a Teahouse Host can be done as follows:

  • The Q&A page design will be reworked to incorporate a clear invitation to anyone visiting Teahouse to answer questions
  • This invitation is a clear call to action, probably a button, along the lines of: Enjoy answering questions at the Teahouse? Please add yourself as a Teahouse host!
  • This button can also be made into something we can add to the Host page, Host lounge, and post on user pages etc.
  • Call to action leads to the Hosts page, and walks the user through a very small amount of text including
  • What is a host and what kinds of things do hosts do
  • Very short list of tips for how to engage with new editors in the Teahouse engaging in the Teahouse (greet, answer their questions with as little links and jargon as possible)
  • Confirm they're in good community standing (meet the basic qualifications to host) and agree to the engagement guidelines. This supports the concept of assuming good faith. Any problems with the new host(s) will be addressed and handled by fellow hosts
  • Create a host profile
  • They submit the profile, go to landing page with
  • Congratulations, you're now a host!
  • Suggestions on where to get started (link to host lounge calls to action?)
  • Info on how check-ins work?
  • Link to host lounge talk page and encourage them to introduce self to fellow hosts
  • New host profile appears on the Host page

Host check-in system[edit]

  • Host profiles will be automatically archived to the host breakroom after 2 weeks inactivity (defined by editing any Wikipedia:Teahouse page, including talk pages)
  • To reactivate a host profile, all you have to do is come back to the Teahouse and check-in again
  • Host check-in call to actions appear in places where hosts are doing host-like work - the host lounge invites call to action, Host page, Q&A page
  • Check-in process is ideally as simple as a logged in user hitting a couple of buttons
  • Recently active/new hosts should be listed towards the top of the Hosts page
  • Recently active/new hosts should automatically be in the 'featured hosts' gallery that displays on the Main Page
  • Still need to figure out where host breakroom is most logically linked from

Host lounge renovation[edit]

Please visit this page for the current next steps regarding the host lounge redesign.

  • Renovate the host lounge to be less text based and more big button, call to action based.
  • Pull influence from the "Visit the Teahouse!" buttons used on invitations and the Announcements box
  • These buttons could include actionable items such as:
  • Skill improvement and a "reminder" about how to be an awesome host (host tips, goals)
  • Invitations. Create a less text based invite guide, consider installing a invite scoreboard experiment (like dab solver)
  • Barnstars and badges ("Show some love - award a Teahouse barnstar to a fellow host or new editor for a job well done!)
  • Toolbox - make your job easier! This would include scripts and tools used by hosts (i.e. talkback) to make their jobs easier, with easy explanation on how to install and use these tools.
  • IRC or chat (with explanation on how to use it) link
  • Make a profile or update your profile for the host page
  • Answer questions
  • Welcome new guests
  • Wishlist - into coding etc? Check out our wishlist and help improve the Teahouse
  • Archive/delete pages that are underutilized or not used by hosts:
  • How-to guides
  • Five pillars
  • Project contacts (which can just be removed from the menu for now, until Sarah and Jonathan develop that further)
  • Glossary
This is pending discussion with current hosts to see what pages are felt to be unnecessary or seldom used.

Open questions[edit]

  • Do we want to surface any specific host activities (such as number of invites sent, number of users welcomed, and number of questions answered) automatically? If so, where would this be done?
  • How should hosts be reminded to check-in?
  • Host bot should ideally inform them when they're moved to the breakroom and invite them to come back, check-in, and become active again
  • Which pages in the host lounge aren't being used? Which ones can be removed entirely, and which should be improved?
Research Yes check.svg Done. Fine research here.

Technical Specs[edit]

New host profile creation Yes check.svg Done

  • Currently, hosts create a profile manually. A new, more structured host profile creation process will be designed along the lines of the Guest profile creation process. Structuring the profile creation process is intended to reduce intimidation and encourage editors to become hosts and also to make host profiles easier for HostBot to move automatically (see "Host profile ordering, and featured hosts", below).

Host checkins

  • HostBot will scan the edit logs daily, and will consider a host to be active if they have edited any Teahouse page or talk page within the past two weeks.
  • If a host has not edited a page in the past two weeks, HostBot will move their Host Profile from the hosts page to the Breakroom, and will leave a message on their talk page explaining what happened and why, and providing a link to the checkin page.
  • In order to have their profile removed from the breakroom, the host only needs to add their signature to the checkin page. HostBot will scan this page once a day, and will move the profiles of any host usernames it finds on that page back to the Hosts page. After checking the page, HostBot will clear all names from the list.

Host profile ordering, and featured hosts

HostBot will change the order of the profiles appearing on the Hosts page, and the hosts featured in the Featured Hosts gallery displayed on the front page. This is intended to keep the host list fresh and dynamic, and to feature new and recently active hosts.

  • Every week, HostBot will check for newly created Host profiles. All new hosts profiles will be moved to the top 5-10 positions on the Hosts page, in random order.
  • If the number of new hosts who joined Teahouse that week is less than 10 (as it will generally be), the remaining 'spots' in the top 10 will be given to a random selection of hosts who have made at least 1 edit to any Teahouse page or talk page within the past week. HostBot will update the Featured hosts gallery the same way.
  • Again, the exact ordering within the top ten will be random: this feature is intended to highlight newly-joined and recently active Hosts, rather than assigning individual hosts a rank or a score.

Add calls-to-action into host profile creation process Yes check.svg Done

To Dos[edit]

  • Discussions with current hosts about the proposed changes Yes check.svg Done
  • Flesh out technical specs to focus on what's actually feasible, refining ideas as needed Yes check.svg Done


  • Sarah Stierch - coordinating with hosts, working on the host lounge revamp
  • J-Mo - developing Host check-in system
  • Heather Walls - design of new host creation, including revamp of Teahouse page design
  • Siko Bouterse - planning, user experience strategy, testing, complaining...pretty much whatever is needed to move things forward
  • Hajatvrc - improvements to the host user-interface and host-to-host interactions
  • Moswento - I'd like to help with renovating the host lounge (although my creative skills are limited!)
  • Dalahäst – avid print/graphic/etc designer specializing in obsessively incorporating the golden ratio (and other mathematical goodies) into anything and everything. Testing/improvements to the interface are fine by me, too.
  • Technical 13 - improvements to Teahouse page designs, badges, and technical issue troubleshooting.


Host lounge renovation[edit]

The main host lounge page is still undergoing design renovations. However, a selection of pages, based on the Host suggestions, have been modified, merged, or deleted. Pages that have changed are:

  • Hosts has been updated with new host profiles, Your hosts now redirects there, and it's the main starting point to the call to action to become a host.
  • Expectations is a new page that stemmed from merging Host tips and Responsibilities, it's shorter and sweeter
  • Invite guide has been decluttered into a centered streamline delivery with the basics to inviting and where to find new guests.
  • Templates has been trimmed and language simplified.
  • User scripts page has been simplified by the Hosts.

Host process simplified[edit]

Now anyone can be a host, and the vetting process has been removed. Good faith is assumed and Wikipedians interested in being hosts can click one button and begin the simple process. Visit the host page and click on the call to action button (want to help at the Teahouse?) and see the new process!