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Language links[edit]

@Johan (WMF): What are "language links"? What are "links to language settings"? (one would think Special:Preferences, but presumably that won't be it) — Alexis Jazz (ping me) 01:48, 29 May 2020 (UTC)

And indeed it wasn't. I think I fixed it. — Alexis Jazz (ping me) 02:16, 29 May 2020 (UTC)
Hi, yes, the links to articles in other languages were the main issue, but also UniversalLanguageSelector links and content translation links. See phab:T252800#6150958. I've tried to clarify this now. Thanks for pointing out it wasn't clear enough. /Johan (WMF) (talk) 15:03, 29 May 2020 (UTC)
@Johan (WMF): UniversalLanguageSelector is a cog that opens a menu. I wouldn't call that a link. It doesn't go anywhere.
"where you couldn't add links to the article in other languages" may be an attempt to simplify things for non-fluent speakers, but this is done at the expense of fluent speakers. The way I was reading it (but there are so many ways here) was that adding links in the article text while translating the article was broken. Or maybe that interwiki links like w:de:Artikel couldn't be added on English Wikipedia and vice versa. It should be easy to understand without following the Phabricator links. — Alexis Jazz (ping me) 16:07, 29 May 2020 (UTC)

This happened. It led to this. This also happened.[edit]

This moves more concepts into the same sentence. I understand why this looks weird, but the reason it's written this way is that it prioritises compartmentalisation of information to give people chunks of information they can digest if they are not fluent in English. This happened. It led to this. This also happened. [1]

@Johan (WMF): There was a problem with the Commons database 27 May. Commons could not be edited for eight minutes. Then there was another short read-only time when the database was moved 29 May.

Is impossible to understand, regardless of how fluent one is. To understand any of this, one is required to follow the links, which require even better understanding of the English language to be understood.

"There was a problem with the Commons database 27 May." stretching the truth, it was a server hardware problem. And what's that date? "I'm going to the movies 1 March", "I edited the article 5 April". On.

"Commons could not be edited for eight minutes." Okay clear.

"Then there was another short read-only time when the database was moved 29 May." Now why change it around again? If you're going to great lengths to allow non-fluent speakers to understand, stick with something. Commons could not be edited or it was read-only. Pick one! By changing it, you suggest there's a meaningful difference somehow and require readers to be able to understand two synonyms. And short read-only time? Technically correct but this should be avoided anyway. A short period, momentarily, brief moment, a limited time. Almost anything is better than "short time". If you really want to use "time" this way, you have to include an article. There was a time when.., This is the time to.., We only have a short time to..

It's also completely unclear that these events actually are related. The database was moved because of the event on 27 May. But that can't be understood from Tech news. If you are just going to revert everything I do, I think I'll just move on. Not every suggestion I make is perfect, but it's absolutely not all garbage to be reverted. If you disagree, I better leave. — Alexis Jazz (ping me) 15:47, 29 May 2020 (UTC)

Sorry if that sounds harsh. I'm just a bit.. sigh. Don't feel like this is any use. — Alexis Jazz (ping me) 15:48, 29 May 2020 (UTC)
Alexis Jazz: I'm just heading out the door, but I'll return to this. Just let me say that I do appreciate all this is made in good faith and that I'm in no way pretending I'm perfect either (I had reinstated the on before you wrote this, that was reverted by mistake), and I'll comment later. /Johan (WMF) (talk) 15:51, 29 May 2020 (UTC)
@Johan (WMF): I see, thanks. You reinstated the on at 15:44 and I posted the above at 15:47, it took me more than 3 minutes to write so I hadn't noticed. — Alexis Jazz (ping me) 16:14, 29 May 2020 (UTC)
Alexis Jazz: In no way meant as criticism! (: Just as an explanation that it was a mistake. /Johan (WMF) (talk) 14:46, 4 June 2020 (UTC)


You can soon turn them off also in the notifications you get.

Keep "turn off" close to "the notifications" and clarify you're still talking about the same notifications:

"You can soon also turn them off from within the notifications themselves."

Your version is technically correct, but leaving out information ends up being confusing. Simple English is a supported language for translation. It would be best to have both. — Alexis Jazz (ping me) 16:55, 29 May 2020 (UTC)

Alexis Jazz: I wonder if you want Tech News to be something else than we aim it to be when we write it. Tech News, by design, leaves out information, simplifies at the cost of precision, and tries to explain what happens rather than why. Not that we try to hide the why, but it often comes in the links, which, as you say requires more skill to read.
(It's not necessarily the entire explanation, of course.) /Johan (WMF) (talk) 21:25, 29 May 2020 (UTC)
@Johan (WMF): There's a balance to be struck. While translating, I find that I can't translate several items without reading the background, at least, no better than Google Translate could which also has no idea what it's translating. That means those items also can't be understood without reading the background. An effective summary conveys the information you want to convey without leaving the reader with questions.
I wonder if you want English to be something else than what it is. There is a reason why Simple English Wikipedia hasn't replaced English Wikipedia and never will. It's different. Why not just add a Simple English translation and have regular English as well? Simple English can be really annoying for people who do have a reasonable understanding of the language. It doesn't have the same flow.
Btw, if you're trying to me ping me I appreciate that very much, but linking my user talk page doesn't result in a ping. I only link my talk page in my signature because few people would be interested in my user page. — Alexis Jazz (ping me) 08:36, 30 May 2020 (UTC)
Alexis Jazz: Ah, yes, I've been habitually copying your username from your signature without taking a closer look, because that's what I normally do, not noticing. My apologies. I certainly didn't mean not to ping you.
Tech News definitely does – consciously – depart from how one would usually write an English newsletter, in aiming to include en-2 readers in the audience, which then come at a stylistic cost. This is not just my idea, or even originally my idea: Tech News has been developed over a fairly long period of time, in discussion with a lot of people. The way it's written is the most common feature to be pointed out both in positive and a negative feedback, and while there's certainly room for improvement within the confines of simple language I think the concept is unlikely to change, partly because the norm should be the simple newsletter – if not, that's not what'll get posted, untranslated. Tech News is at its heart a newsletter that tries to be a tech newsletter in English for a non-technical audience who aren't very good at reading English. This is the core description of what we've been trying to do. I take it that your argument is that the cost for this is unacceptable, that a lot of precision is lost even if done well, that there should be a more detailed technical newsletter and that this newsletter should be Tech News because it makes no sense to have two? /Johan (WMF) (talk) 14:58, 4 June 2020 (UTC)
@Johan (WMF): It would indeed not make sense to have two. Knowing that you've received complaints before, I suspect that if I really wanted to, I could start my own newsletter and chip away at Tech news subscribers on English Wikibooks/Wikisource/Wikipedia etc. because en-2 readers are quite rare on those projects. And for a translation source, you want normal English. Translating English into any other language is bad enough in and of itself. To cripple the English source first to appeal to en-2 readers means that the translation (without considerable effort of the translator) will be worse as well.
Ideally, but I don't know if this is technically possible atm:
  • There would be both an English and Simple English version (no problem so far)
  • The Simple English version is the default to display when reading the news on meta
  • The regular English version gets posted on English Wikibooks/Wikisource/Wikipedia/etc
  • Projects that are multilingual (like Wikispecies, Commons and Wikidata) or for which no translation exists have the Simple English version posted to them
Best of both worlds. — Alexis Jazz (ping me) 00:40, 6 June 2020 (UTC)

Already released[edit]

Should this be moved from "Changes later this week" since it is already available on all wikis since last week? Ainali (talk) 10:34, 1 June 2020 (UTC)

Ainali: Part of it (being able to turn the notification off from within the notification) is new, part of it was released (and reported) a couple of weeks ago. /Johan (WMF) (talk) 10:44, 1 June 2020 (UTC)
Ah, I missed that nuance. Thanks! Ainali (talk) 11:11, 1 June 2020 (UTC)

Next issue[edit]

Hello, Johan. I beleive you should urgently move the penultimate topic to the next issue. Somehow, the translation system does not recognize it, so it was not translated at all. Thank you. IKhitron (talk) 09:35, 1 June 2020 (UTC)

IKhitron: Done. It was added after the deadline, thus never marked for translation. /Johan (WMF) (talk) 10:44, 1 June 2020 (UTC)
Thanks. IKhitron (talk) 12:34, 1 June 2020 (UTC)

Commons app[edit]

It is only the opt-in beta version of the app that is updated, not the regular one. That might be worth pointing out. Or holding the news until it is released for everyone. Ainali (talk) 10:33, 1 June 2020 (UTC)

Noted. /Johan (WMF) (talk) 10:44, 1 June 2020 (UTC)