Social media plugins

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Social media plugins are easy ways of sharing content with other people via social media platforms. The most common way is a Share or Like button. This page discusses the possibility to integrate social media plugins into Wikimedia projects.

Solutions[edit]

Extensions (none currently used on Wikimedia wikis)
User Scripts
Wikimedia implementations
Semi-related

Discussions[edit]

Bugs/Tasks
  • 2011, phab:T29027: "Share" button (tools) in Wikipedia
  • 2012, phab:T35820: A Twitter button next to every article title
  • 2012, phab:T42456: UploadWizard: add social sharing feature after upload
  • 2014, phab:T64811: Review and deploy TwitterCards extension for proper display
  • 2017, phab:T142048: Add hover-card like image (og:image) to open graph meta data (which enabled image previews for links shared from MediaWiki on social media sites like Facebook)
Mailing list highlights

Arguments[edit]

This section lists some arguments that have been brought up in the discussions.

Pro[edit]

  • Share button allow easy sharing of Wikimedia's content; widely distributing the content serves our mission.
  • Some users enjoy sharing the content they read (or create!) with their friends, it's a feature often requested by both readers and editors.
  • Increasing readership, also increases the pool of potential editors

Con[edit]

  • Privacy concerns: This is only a problem if we were to embed the externally-provided JavaScript widgets, but nobody wants that.

Complexities[edit]

  • Placement. Where do the links go? It's another user-interface element – Wikimedia sites already have too much UI clutter.
  • Selection. It's difficult to define "a set of social media sites that Wikimedia will have plugins for". Excluding any social media services (out of the dozens-to-hundreds in existence) might be seen as contrary to our neutrality policies.
    • We already do something similar with tools like GeoHack and Special:BookSources (ISBN search).
      • You could even refine it by building a service like AddThis yourself, but under WMF privacy policies. Not too difficult.
  • Some users feel that we should not allow social media plugins because that would make Wikipedia itself a social network. This point is highly disputed.
  • Icons. The services' icons are the most recognizable element for users, but would be the most eye-catching/distracting addition in our mostly-text interface.

See also[edit]