User talk:Whatamidoing (WMF)

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Great news! I'm so happy.[edit]

Congratulation WAID!. I just saw Philippe create this on recent changes and I can't tell you how happy I am. I was going to suggest something similar on enwp, but never got around to it. Ever since Maggie joined, I was thinking you'd be a great addition. Really happy. Can you tell I'm excited? Anyhoo, I just wanted to say congratulations and I'm very pleased to have you helping the WMF. Thanks for joining up. 01:34, 17 June 2013 (UTC)

Thanks! It still seems a bit unreal. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 02:55, 17 June 2013 (UTC)
I hadn't thought of that. I bet it does feel different, but you're in good company with Maggie, Oliver and more recently Marc over at WMF Labs. I remember Oliver said something like "The Foundation should give us a t-shirt with a bullseye on it when they bring us on board." shortly after he joined. I'm sure it was tongue-in-cheek, but there's also some truth to that. You know how the community is. Anyhoo, I'm really glad the Foundation is continuing to bring on board people from within the community—and you certainly top the list of helpful and knowledgeable editors. I know people keep saying there's a rift between the community and the Foundation—and they've been asking about it in the Board elections too. I never felt that was the case, but the either way, bringing people from the community on board will certainly answer those concerns. And I'm really happy you were chosen. I'm going to take a guess that you're a liaison between the community and engineering for Echo and VE. Are you allowed to confirm that at this early stage? I don't want to jump the gun if there's an announcement planned. It was just sheer luck that I happened to see Philippe create your account, so I know I'm a bit early here. I'm just really excited that you're helping the WMF. Thanks much. Woo Hoo! Go Team! 03:17, 18 June 2013 (UTC)
Just saw en:User:Whatamidoing (WMF) which answered my question. Thanks again for all the help you've provided to the community. Kind Regards. 03:31, 18 June 2013 (UTC)
There's supposed to be an announcement, but I'm not sure exactly who is making it or where. So far, all I've gotten to do is paperwork, and there's still more to do. It's possible that they're waiting until the paperwork is finished, or they might be hoping to announce several at once. (Or it may have been announced, and I just didn't see it yet!) I think there are three or four of us joining just for this project. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 14:45, 18 June 2013 (UTC)
3 or 4? WOW! That's great news. Go Team! Obviously, I went digging around to see what I could find I'm curious that way but didn't find anything. I'm sure you can't say much, but are you allowed to say if they're veterans from enwp? I don't want to spoil the surprise, but my curiosity has been piqued. Best. 02:23, 19 June 2013 (UTC)

outdent It was in this weeks Signpost and the maillist. I knew 3 of 4, so that's great. 04:00, 21 June 2013 (UTC)

+1 on the matter of happiness. Good luck in this role. Try not to let it keep you from enjoying your own wikiwork. :) SJ talk  07:40, 25 June 2013 (UTC)
Thanks, and congratulations in your re-election. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 08:20, 25 June 2013 (UTC)

Congratulations. I hope you enjoy your new work here. --Michaeldsuarez (talk) 02:59, 29 June 2013 (UTC)

Thanks. The current plan is to deploy VisualEditor as the default at the English Wikipedia next Monday afternoon (California time), so I'll probably find out next week whether or not I'll enjoy it. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 05:17, 29 June 2013 (UTC)
You're welcome. --Michaeldsuarez (talk) 14:46, 29 June 2013 (UTC)

Caught in filters[edit]

I see that you got caught by one of my anti-spambot filters. I will have a look to see what I can do to resolve that matter. — billinghurst sDrewth 12:58, 19 June 2013 (UTC)

Thanks. May I also suggest that the error message provide a link to an explanatory page? Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 13:12, 19 June 2013 (UTC)

Category:Wikimedia Foundation staff[edit]

Hi, Whatamidoing (WMF), just to let you know on this category, it seems as if your User talk is a member of the Wikimedia Foundation staff. Should this be changed? Lotje (talk) 03:33, 29 November 2013 (UTC)

Thanks for the note. I hadn't noticed, but I've fixed it. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 18:06, 29 November 2013 (UTC)

Selective archiving[edit]

If you're going to archive a page to make it shorter, do it in a content neutral manner. Shoving stuff you'd prefer to ignore onto a separate page is unacceptable and hostile to the community. -- 17:34, 1 September 2014 (UTC)

I'm not really "archiving", because I hope that these discussions will continue in their proper places. I do hope that we can agree that it's silly to have comments about VisualEditor in the middle of a discussion about Media Viewer. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 17:38, 1 September 2014 (UTC)
But that's not all you were doing. You were also moving talk about the very reasonable position that the WMF should disable Media Viewer by default as per community consensus in three RfCs. Just because the WMF has rejected this doesn't mean discussion about this is off-topic. I must insist you restore such conversations or do a topic-neutral archive. -- 17:42, 1 September 2014 (UTC)
And you keep on doing it! STOP -- 17:48, 1 September 2014 (UTC)
(edit confliect) Yes, you're right: in order to get the talk page down to a reasonable size, I'm splitting discussions into two types: suggested technical changes for people who are actually using it, and discussions about procedural stuff (including, but not limited to, stuff that can only be changed in a technological sense through the invention of a time machine). If you had read what you kept reverting, especially the words "begin with", you'd know this, of course.
We need to have both of these discussions. There is no obvious reason why they have to happen on the same page. The main alternative is to put everything on one page and set a 24-hour timer on an archiving bot, in which case nearly everything will get lost. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 17:56, 1 September 2014 (UTC)
Or we could leave things as they were. I don't think the page was too long to begin with. The front page of meta is 642 KB alone. If you really cared about slow load times, there are bigger fish to fry than large chunks of text. -- 18:01, 1 September 2014 (UTC)
I'd be happy to keep you in mind the next time someone complains to me that they can't join a discussion because the page is too long; perhaps you will be willing to explain to them that it's all just fine.
I guess you didn't know this, but mobile uses a different main page to keep the size under control. At en.wp, for example, it omits DYK and a couple of other sections. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 18:44, 1 September 2014 (UTC)

Edit wars[edit]

To my understanding, and each wiki can establish its own policies, edit warring is always a policy, with a discussion of what an edit war is and how to approach disputes. Normally a bright line is set at three reverts by the same editor in 24 hours, but that is only to take direct action and does not define what an edit war is. The word war, of course, refers to an act of war, and that is only one action, which would be not the first revert, which is more like a questioning of an edit, but the second revert, and the first revert that restores the "bold edit". How many reverts make up an edit war? Well by definition, two. By policy? Not normally specified. Normally a policy on edit warring will say that waiting 24 hours to make a revert does not make it not an edit war, and you are still in an edit war without yet making three reverts yourself. We often restrict pages or editors to 1RR - only one revert. Hope this helps. Saying that "BRD is not a policy", is to me like saying "the sky is not really blue". Not really relevant. Meta can be expected to not have a whole lot of policies, because it has relatively little use, and everyone coming here is more familiar with the policies of their own home wiki. The Golden Rule, though, always applies everywhere. Apteva (talk) 17:46, 2 September 2014 (UTC)

So let me reply as a volunteer, because as a volunteer, one of my main areas is writing policies at en.wp. Each wiki can and does establish its own policies. Meta has very few. For better or worse, a policy against edit warring is not one of them here.
On the English Wikipedia, I can tell you that there are at least two admins who believe that a single reversion can constitute an edit war, and that there is one who has stated that every single edit (after the first one to create a page) is a revert. (Yes, he actually means that if I write a stub, and you correct a typo I made, then you have "reverted" my misspelling, and that you may be an edit warrior for doing that.) I believe that this is nonsense, but efforts to more precisely define the terms were rejected. The idea that reverting every 24 hours is okay has been rejected by en.wp's policy: a slow-motion edit war is still an edit war.
BRD is not a policy because it actually shouldn't be used in every case. If you read BRD at en.wp, you'll see that it describes itself as a technique that is not apprppriate for every circumstance or every editor. In this particular case, it's a bit silly to be promoting BRD as the ideal, because if you'll check the page history, you'll find that the first action was "D", not "B". The original source of the reversions was that the logged-out editor didn't read the talk page before he jumped to conclusions and started reverting. WhatamIdoing (talk) 18:05, 2 September 2014 (UTC)
The page grew way to fast to keep up with it. A lot of pent up anger, apparently. The English Wikipedia has millions of users and has relatively well developed policies, but some are clearly nothing but garbage, yet we all still have to follow them. What concerns me the most is that since 2007 we have been gaining readers but losing editors. And even though that is when I started editing regularly I certainly can not be blamed for the change. And I hope that as WMF staff no one is being fooled by the decline in readership this year - people are just getting our content from Google, instead of having to get it directly from us - and Google has no content other than what we create for them. Many enclopedia accesses do not require reading the whole article - you just want to find the author of a book, or the year someone was born or died, for example, and you can get that from the snippet that comes up when you google the subject.

Like this:

Ernest Hemingway
Ernest Miller Hemingway was an American author and journalist. His economical and understated style had a 
strong influence on 20th-century fiction, while his life of adventure and his public image influenced later 
generations. Wikipedia
Born: July 21, 1899, Oak Park, IL
Died: July 2, 1961, Ketchum, ID
Spouse: Mary Welsh Hemingway (m. 1946–1961), More
Children: Jack Hemingway, Patrick Hemingway, Gregory Hemingway
Movies: The Killers, Hemingway's Adventures of a Young Man, More
Some of the policies and guidelines though, are extremely well written and well thought out, and are more like feature articles in their quality. Others are nothing but the product of constant edit wars about them, and are just the flavour de jour. That lack of editors troubles me, but I am an example of a good editor who is blocked there for no reason, and I am certain there have to be thousands of editors who have been driven away for many reasons. It would be very interesting to discover exactly what happened though, in 2006 or 2007 to see why an exponentially increasing number of editors suddenly became an exponentially decreasing number of editors, while the number of readers was continuously increasing (Who left and took all their friends with them? Did editing become pointless after all the Pokemon articles were created?). As to edit wars, though, I would agree that a relatively small number of reverts is an edit war - and by definition two reverts by different editors is an edit war - but what you do about an edit war is where policy comes in. I do prefer to follow the BRD cycle and would simply call it common sense, rather than a policy or guideline. And I would caution against even bringing up that it is not a policy because that is nothing but Wikilawyering and completely misses the point of whoever brought it up. Apteva (talk) 03:06, 3 September 2014 (UTC)
Well, I agree with you that people are getting what they need from Google, although that isn't necessarily filled by our content. Google's infobox-style summaries on disease-related searches appear to come from the NIH, for example.
There's been some research done on the editor decline. Perhaps you've seen some of it? Anyway, it appears that one of the biggest drivers of the editor decline is automation. Consequently, "the editor decline" mostly happens at large projects like the English Wikipedia, where bots and scripts are commonly used. Projects like Hebrew, Estonian, and Catalan do not seem to have this problem.
The overall story works like this: I'm new and screw up. In 2007, when I screwed up (as a new editor, I thought that [[Category:Example]] and {{Example}} were duplicates), Arcadian just quietly cleaned it up, usually taking the opportunity to refine one or the other. Eventually, I noticed what he was doing, I learned the difference between templates and categories, and I stopped screwing up. Today, I probably would have encountered another editor, someone focused on anti-vandalism rather than wikignoming, who would have just reverted my change (producing an Echo notification to make sure that I noticed it) and given me a warning about "test edits" or "non-constructive" edits without trying to help me or to improve the article. I think I would have been discouraged by this impersonal and unpleasant response, and apparently that reaction is not unusual.
Also, since a good deal of the obvious work is done by bot now, there's actually a need for fewer edits by wikignomes and anti-vandalism patrollers. ClueBot reverts poop vandalism faster than humans; back in 2006, just months before ClueBot began anti-vandalism work, we had hundreds of editors whose main activity was reverting obvious vandalism. ClueBot effectively put many of them out of a job.
There's no easy solution for this. If we use bots and scripts to maintain quality on the large projects—the projects that are too large for a couple of people to personally review all the changes—then we have a better product now, but shaky future. If we don't use bots and scripts to maintain quality, then we have a mess now but a stronger future. What we really want is a better product now and a better future.
BTW, if you're interested in this, one approach that might help is to try w:en:WP:SNUGGLE as a more encouraging way to clean up mistakes created by promising newbies. WhatamIdoing (talk) 16:51, 3 September 2014 (UTC)
I would look for some "critical mass" phenomenon. Look for a similar pattern of rise and fall of editor participation at all other projects, to see if it is just related to the maturity of the projects - when there are less red links are there less editors? Define 10,000 essential articles, and compare the size of those articles in every Wiki. Do the number of editors start to decline when those articles reach a critical mass of maturity? As to my editing EN, I will have to wait until I get unblocked there. I do not even check to see if I am unblocked though, because there are hundreds of other projects to work on. I do a lot of RCP, but eschew automation of any type, and prefer to issue personalized warnings instead of canned ones. I look for more nuanced issues that cluebot is unable to identify. Some of the routine tasks that I perform that could be automated but only with a relatively high level of automation are repairing dead or broken links and formatting external links. I noticed that there was some unfortunate blowback when one of our more prolific bot writer was blocked for a year for using a spreadsheet to format some data. How that was construed to be "automation" is beyond me. Were they only supposed to edit Wikipedia with paper and pencil, and not use a keyboard? It is true that you can look at a Wiki, and think there is nothing left to do, but look more closely, and there are tons of things that need to be done. We have four million articles, and many of them are just stubs, ten years later. We could probably delete half of them with no loss of content, actually. I would say that mostly I am a content creator and copy editor, though, and spend a great deal of time updating out of date articles. I actually have a list of calendar dates throughout the year to update certain pages monthly and annually based on when certain sources tend to update their information. Unfortunately many of those are now sorely in need of updating, due to the fact that they have not been noticed by anyone else, and I can not fix them. I recently discovered one error that has been there since 2012, and who knows how long it will be there until I get unblocked and can fix it. But personally I think the editor decline is due to one major factor - the editor climate - treating editors as if they were scum, instead of welcoming them. Even the worst vandal can learn to contribute positively, and that is the approach that is necessary. Helping them learn how to contribute instead of vandalize. Apteva (talk) 18:19, 3 September 2014 (UTC)
You do seem to have accumulated a bit of a block log. I think you're right about the climate. Automation isn't inherently evil, but I think it tends to promote that climate: Don't waste your time leaving a personalized message or thinking about what the user might have been trying to accomplish; just hit the Twinkle button and move on.
There is a correlation between size and editor decline, but this seems to be (to the extent that I've heard about the studies; I'm not an expert in it) more correlation than causation. Bigger projects—bigger in people-size, not number-of-stubs-size—have more automation and worse retention of new editors. (The decline is almost entirely due to losing promising new editors; once someone has thousands of edits, s/he almost always sticks around until real life intervenes. That's why meatball:GoodBye manifestos are so often met with skepticism.) Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 01:19, 4 September 2014 (UTC)
That "block log" that you are referring to is all complete BS. I was blocked once early on for 3RR, before I knew about it, and a warning would have sufficed, and been more effective. I am only here to help the project and have done nothing but that. Most of the blocks are because I noticed that we were not following proper protocol - the MOS does not affect content, article titles is content, and can not in any way be influenced or affected by the MOS, something that I went through proper channels to point out. The correct response would have been "thank you for the suggestion, we will consider it", instead of spending half a million characters deciding whether I should be blocked (trust me if it takes over 2,000 characters you are wasting everyone's time by even asking, and the answer is no). I have a list of many necessary edits that I can not do because I have been blocked. And the allegations Sockpuppetry are totally false. Yes I use an alternative account - and have since 2007. The tagging of sockpuppetry is very recent and simply "discovered" that I have an alternative account - I do that to maintain my privacy, and can not edit certain subjects from my main account, so I created this alternative account, and have been happily making those edits for years (maybe 3,000 edits from one account and 8,000 from the other). Until some one thought I needed to be watched more carefully to see if I was changing hyphens to endashes or vice versa - which is total, sheer, nonsense. The only affect being that I was locked out of my main account on that Wikipedia and so hundreds of articles that I would have maintained got more and more out of date. Yes some people have picked up the slack on some of them, but there are many edits that are simply not getting done without me there to do them. I could make a list of all the edits that I see that need to be made but it is better for whoever sees them to just make them, unless they have a conflict of interest. So I wait patiently to be unblocked and to have all restrictions removed so that I can get on with updating them and creating more articles. I always follow all guidelines and policies. That has never been an issue. The issue was that editors were raw from yelling at each other about the MOS issue - and just wanted to silence my legitimate concerns without taking them up.
Blocking me, and putting restrictions on what I can do, just makes no sense at all, and only hurts Wikipedia. Nothing else. It is as if someone is terrified that I might bring up the fact that we have the wrong name for the Mexican-American War article, which is totally preposterous (98% of books and encyclopedias call it the Mexican War, and of the 2% that call it the Mexican-American War, 98% use a hyphen, while we use an endash, putting us in the extreme minority, so there is absolutely nothing wrong with bringing it up anyway). But I only want to be able to update pages that need updating and correct errors that everyone agrees on. If they want to call it the Sasquash***War I would not make any comment on the subject. I have long ago moved on. Someone else can pick up the torch of noticing that the MOS has absolutely nothing to do with article titles, other than it says to make the article title bold in the first sentence of the article, if convenient.
I have found hundreds of other things to do in the meantime while I am blocked on that one project, but that one project is making a huge mistake to not let me participate there as well - I find something that was copied from EN to SV, and I can fix it on SV, but not on EN???? How is that supposed to make any sense? Apteva (talk) 05:04, 7 September 2014 (UTC)
It's complicated, isn't it? We also have editors that get kicked out of one project for being rude, but fit right in with another project, where rudeness is just more common (or their skills are more needed, so people are willing to put up with more). Then there's the inconsistency: multiple editors can take the same type of action, and some get blocked, some get warned, and some get ignored. And that's just for new-ish people, not counting the people for whom there seem to be "special rules". I don't think that we'll ever be perfect, but I do hope that we'll get better. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 00:07, 8 September 2014 (UTC)
The way we treat our editors certainly needs to change. We have rules about how blocking is used, but do not follow them. We have a rule WP:IAR, that says that if it benefits the project, you ignore all rules, which is what anyone who is blocked does if they create a sockpuppet to make a necessary edit. Yet instead of being thanked, they are blocked and chastised. Blocking is preventative, not punitive, and the fact is that we need all changes for the better no matter by who, where, or how they are made. I am not blocked for any legitimate reason, and any reasonable person would have looked at the witch trial that blocked me and immediately unblocked me, and chastised everyone who voted to block me. But now I have so much other work to do that I would have only made less than ten edits in August on En:wiki even if unblocked, but those edits would have been valuable, undeniably valuable. They were not made, so there are half a dozen or more errors, broken links or whatever that are still there simply because of - nothing but the fact that a good editor is inappropriately blocked. Apteva (talk) 22:40, 8 September 2014 (UTC)
The question on my mind at the moment is why you stay at all. Most people, when they're treated very unfairly (according to their own assessment, regardless of what you or I might make of their situation), just leave. What do you think is different about you, that you haven't given up entirely in disgust? Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 22:45, 8 September 2014 (UTC)
To me that is a pretty silly thing to ask. You might as well ask why does Wikipedia still exist and why has it not vanished into antiquity? As long as there is a body of knowledge for people to use, and as long as I am alive and able, I will always help to improve that body of knowledge. It is impossible for me to leave and say, it does not matter if a word is wrong in Wikipedia, or that there is a broken link to a reference. If I see it, I will fix it. "Leaving" is not an option. Not for me at least. Leaving would mean that someone would not find what they were looking for, or what they found might be wrong. You might not care about that but I do. And unfortunately not everyone cares as much as I do about others, and does not mind if errors exist (the only possible reason I am blocked, is not caring about that). Bear in mind that there are real life constraints to how much volunteer time anyone has available, and there are months or even years where everyone has no time at all available, but there are other months or years when some time is available. So while it is impossible to drive me away by treating me like dirt, neither is it appropriate for anyone to try to do that. There has never been anything wrong with any of my edits, or my ability to collaborate/cooperate/contribute and so on. The only issue was some editors simply did not want to hear the truth. We are spelling things wrong because we are not following our own policies. The MOS does not affect content, and article titles are content. Fix that one itsy bitsy thing and we will go back to spelling things correctly. Like a Bald Eagle is a Bald Eagle, it is not a Bald eagle or a bald eagle. Look it up if you doubt me. The references in the article say it is a Bald Eagle, and not a bald eagle. Does capitalization and punctuation matter in a name? Obviously. Do we cater to all the goofy capitalizations or punctuations that people use when they name things? Not in the title, but we always note them in the article. No where do we note that a bald eagle is actually called a "Bald Eagle". This was a recent long fought battle that went on for almost a decade, and was very poorly resolved by forcing the non-correct but more common name, bald eagle. There may only be 1,000 bird experts in the world, but they are the ones who get to choose what birds are named, we only report what that name is. And having a vote on Wikipedia to decide the name is ludicrous and violates our own naming policy. Basically, if you want anyone who knows anything about birds to help with our articles, you will let them use proper names for birds, meaning capital letters, in articles about birds, and use lower case in the rest of the encyclopedia, which is what we have done for years. As a minimum, we absolutely need to indicate the correct name in parentheses along with the species name: The bald eagle (Bald Eagle, Haliaeetus leucocephalus, from Greek hali- = sea, aiētos = eagle, leuco- = white, cephalos = head) is found mostly in North America. It would help to use the correct name at the top of the info box too, "Bald Eagle". Apteva (talk) 08:30, 11 September 2014 (UTC)
On the contrary, it's an important thing to ask if I want to figure out how to keep editors who feel mistreated.
I spoke to someone else about some of the editor research. There were (I think) four categories of editors, and the only one I remember was the "something is wrong on the internet" category. I remembered that one because it describes me. Do you think you'd put yourself in the same category? Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 17:09, 11 September 2014 (UTC)
Without knowing what the other three choices were I would not be able to select any of the four choices. Wikipedia needs to recognize that it has an obligation to accept corrections no matter where or how they are presented. They can not block anyone from contributing. What they can do is block people from causing destruction, but if that person indicates that they are going to stop doing that, they must be unblocked - and have an opportunity to prove themselves right or wrong. We can not have any standards for who can contribute, but we can have standards for how they can contribute. For example, we often require COI contributions to be made on the talk page, where they can be made by someone who is not influenced by that COI. We simply have a responsibility to our readers to invite all contributions, or we fail to present correct and complete information.
The category that I can say that I am in, is a quality editor who was inappropriately blocked, to the detriment of the project. That must not be allowed to happen. Wikipedia can not consider itself to be a little club of 500 people who all know each other and require a secret handshake before entrance to the club is granted to anyone else. Wikipedia is an open website that is edited by millions of contributors, and everyone needs to be encouraged, not discouraged, from editing. Apteva (talk) 21:33, 11 September 2014 (UTC)

"The original source of the reversions was that the logged-out editor didn't read the talk page before he jumped to conclusions and started reverting." Don't make assumptions about what I did and didn't read. If you had bothered to read the page you were sanitizing, you'd see that the kinds of edits you made had already been made by another WMF employee and there was pushback. Despite this, you went ahead and cut out stuff you deemed off topic. And you continued after I objected to your edits without a chance for discussion. Yes, I read your stated motivations. That still doesn't justify anything beyond a topic-neutral archiving. Your selective archive, no matter your real motivations, served to segregate a class of opinions the WMF has chosen to ignore. You should not make it any easier for your bosses to ignore the very real opposition to Media Viewer. -- 23:14, 3 September 2014 (UTC)

Despite the link being duplicated in the 'archive' box, Talk:Community Engagement (Product)/Media Viewer consultation/General discussion is not an archive. There are a couple of discussions happening there now. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 01:19, 4 September 2014 (UTC)
You retroactively declared a discussion off topic and moved it to where it can be hidden from sight. The only discussion there consists of a comment by you and someone elaborating on an earlier discussion that you apparently didn't read when you moved it about how actions similar to yours were inappropriate. You basically killed any chance of the discussions you moved continuing in any meaningful sense. Maybe the term archiving doesn't strictly fit, but you really should stop shunting things away to places where they'll be ignored. -- 04:34, 4 September 2014 (UTC)
Nor did it help to link to those pages only in the "Archive" box, indicating that no edits could be made to them. That at least has been corrected, but it has long been known that if you move a discussion to a subpage you effectively kill it - not always, but often. Apteva (talk) 05:04, 7 September 2014 (UTC)
As far as I'm concerned, the date-based archives created by ArchiverBot are archives (the first even said so at the very top, and I confirmed that this was the plan on the talk page). The non-archive pages are the other two–the two that this logged-out editor didn't want to exist, even to avoid the necessity of rapid archiving for page size control. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 05:23, 8 September 2014 (UTC)

Imputation of motives[edit]

This comment [1] is untrue and unacceptable. Please withdraw it as soon as possible. Deltahedron (talk) 19:09, 4 September 2014 (UTC)

Deltahedron, did you really like with the answer you received? Are you actually happy that the WMF is leaving mathematics software entirely to volunteers? Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 20:59, 4 September 2014 (UTC)
You know perfectly well what I meant, so don't waste my time by pretending you don't. Of course I did not like the result, but I am prefectly capable of distinguishing the process, or lack thereof, from the answer. The fact that I had to go all the way to Jimmy Wales to get a response is not a process, and I cannot believe that you seriously maintain that it is. Your comment was intended to denigrate my response, and to offend me. This is not how a responsbile member of WMF staff should treat a member of the community who has put, and is continuing to put, a lot of effort into doing things that staff members could and should be doing.
Well, you have your wish. I will not continue to put in any more effort into suggesting ways to fix the broken relationship between the WMF and the users. Congratulations. I hope you're happy. Deltahedron (talk) 21:10, 4 September 2014 (UTC)
Okay: I said that you didn't like the answer you received, and you say that you didn't like the answer you received, and the problem is that telling the obvious truth offends you? That acknowledging the existence of months of previous discussions and your persistence in promoting your vision for WMF control of mathematics development offends you? Most of the people participating in that discussion have a particular motive or goal, and there's nothing discreditable about your goal. A response from you along the lines of "Of course I didn't like the answer I received, and I think the WMF is making a mistake" might be more sensible than "How dare you acknowledge the obvious fact that I didn't like the answer I received".
You didn't actually need to go to Jimmy Wales to get an answer. What Jimmy told you is what you had been told several times by other people. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 21:33, 4 September 2014 (UTC)
I'm not going to argue further. You know what you said, you know why you said it, you know why it was dishonest, and you know why it was offensive. You should be ashamed of yourself. Deltahedron (talk) 21:39, 4 September 2014 (UTC)
I'm sad that you think that saying obviously and admittedly true things is dishonest. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 21:46, 4 September 2014 (UTC)
On your user page, you say "The major part of my job description is to support these changes by 'ensuring that our community is represented in the decision-making process and that our planned software adequately reflects user needs'". In your comment linked above, you say "I have previously told you exactly what my job entails: supporting exactly one product, and specifically supporting a product that is not mathematics rendering." I think it would help avoid misunderstanding if you harmonized the statement on your user page with what is said in your comment, because they are very different. Short Brigade Harvester Boris (talk) 19:25, 6 September 2014 (UTC)
I do make sure that our community is represented–for the one product that I'm currently assigned to. (It would be more accurate to say "multiple communities", because there isn't just one.) Deltahedron's main complaint is with the other half: CLs work on "planned software", not "all software", and his complaint is that improving mathematics support is not currently planned at all by the WMF. Nothing that I write on my user page is going to resolve his actual complaint. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 23:54, 6 September 2014 (UTC)
  • I do not have time to pursue this issue with you. I am willing to accept that we have different opinions on the subject if you are, and drop the issue. If you contradict me again, I shall conclude that you are deliberately harassing me, and formally complain to WMF management. On second thoughts, I don't care. I have things to do which are actually important, as opposed to trying to fix things here. Deltahedron (talk) 19:00, 8 September 2014 (UTC)
    • We both agree and disagree, depending on the question. When the question is "Did you get the results you want?", we both agree that the answer is obviously no. When the question is "Does math support need to be improved significantly?", we also fully agree that the answer is yes. We even agree that what you want is not entirely unreasonable. It is only when the question is "Did you get an answer about the WMF's role in mathematics software support when you followed the usual, de-centralized, community-based process?" that we appear to disagree. You have received answers, and the answers have been the same from every source and at every stage: The WMF does not currently have a program or a plan for mathematics editing, and does not have the capacity to take this on any time soon, but they'd be happy to fund it if you wanted to apply for a grant to hire external developers to do it. I wish you would reconsider your refusal to pursue an IEG to make this happen, but, as you say, you have other things to do, and I admit that the IEG process requires a significant commitment. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 19:06, 8 September 2014 (UTC)

Change in renaming process[edit]

Hi! I changed the corrected message since there is a Hungarian translation for it (and it is the Hungarian speakers' noticeboard). Best regards, Samat (talk) 17:32, 9 September 2014 (UTC)

Thank you! The MassMessage script unfortunately believes that everything at Commons should be in English. I really appreciate you doing that. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 17:38, 9 September 2014 (UTC)

Community organisers![edit]

Hi! I was wondering where I might find people interested in being community organisers for this potential IEG: Grants:IdeaLab/Tools_for_using_wikidata_items_as_citations. Any ideas? Also contractors who are half-time or less are eligible ^-^ Mvolz (talk) 18:51, 26 September 2014 (UTC)

I saw a discussion on this a while back, and now I can't remember who was in it. I'll look around and let you know. Feel free to ping me again if I don't get an answer to you in the next day or two. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 16:05, 29 September 2014 (UTC)
Marielle, here are some of the discussions on this subject during the last year or so. I think you'll be able to find the names of several supporters in them: [2][3][4][5] There's at least one more discussion that I couldn't find today, so perhaps I'll have another link for you later. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 21:23, 13 October 2014 (UTC)

Bad day?[edit]

[6] makes me think you may need a break. Take care, Nemo 15:31, 14 October 2014 (UTC)

New VisualEditor special character tool[edit]

Hi! I would like to help test the special character tool. I know that my language doesn't have many diacritics that need to be specially inserted, but we do have to insert a lot of em dashes and German quotation marks („“) by hand, which has always been a hassle. So if you think this is needed, please feel free to contact me. --Gnom (talk) 09:33, 3 February 2015 (UTC)

Yes, thank you! I will be sure to let you know when it is ready. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 18:39, 3 February 2015 (UTC)

Help request from Marathi Wikipedia[edit]


From Marathi language wikipedia I have filed a bug T87771 There is a request from offline Marathi Wikipedian community to expedite implementation of the said bug on priority. Please guide me to whom to contact for this purpose.

Thanks and Regards Mahitgar (He who knows ,wants to know and and loves to keep others informed) (talk) 11:09, 7 February 2015 (UTC)

Thanks for the note, Mahitgar. I'll ask around and let you know if I can find a way to move this along. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 07:12, 9 February 2015 (UTC)

Process ideas update?[edit]

Hello, is there any update on what people are thinking about Community Engagement (Product)/Process ideas? Lots of good ideas there, and I know there was some work to sort ideas through an editor survey in at least en/es/de. Have any other communities started organizing their thoughts this way? Is there a synthesis of the public discussion & what out of that seems worth trying? I know some sister projects have organized similar feature lists in the past.

The most practical & scalable things that could be implemented may be ones that don't require new tools, and don't require staff to monitor and organize the resulting pages :) Warm regards, SJ talk  19:15, 22 March 2015 (UTC)

Hi SJ,
User:Quiddity (WMF) was hoping to sort through that page, but then the strategy consultation soaked up all of his time for several weeks. I don't think that he's been able to get back to it since then.
I've not seen any good summaries. I'm not aware of any communities with an organized, unified discussion on this particular subject, although I'm mostly stuck at en.wp right now, so I'm probably the least likely to see it. The conversations I see mostly happen in dribs and drabs, in association with some other project. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 21:32, 23 March 2015 (UTC)

Questions regarding VE on German Wikipedia[edit]

Hi Whatamidoing, could you stop by at de:Wikipedia:Technik/Text/Edit/VisualEditor/Rückmeldungen some time these days? Thanks, --Gnom (talk) 07:20, 22 April 2015 (UTC)

correction for your user page[edit]

Hi, We moved to phabricator ... :) just a freindly nudge! Matanya (talk) 19:12, 17 June 2015 (UTC)

Thanks, Matanya. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 19:24, 17 June 2015 (UTC)

Talk:Community Engagement (Product)/Process ideas[edit]

Please read and respond as a matter of urgency. Rogol Domedonfors (talk) 12:10, 21 June 2015 (UTC)

Translation tags[edit]

When you set up the translation tags like that, it breaks the edit links (phabricator:T58838). We're trying to do it the way described in the documentation (and as recommended by Nikerabbit). Ryan Kaldari (WMF) (talk) 21:14, 30 November 2015 (UTC)

When you leave the markup inside the translation tags, then the translators have to mess with it, and you risk malformatted wikitext if they're not careful. It's a question of whether you are trying to make it easier from the perspective of the original author (who should be done editing by the time the page is marked for translation) or from the perspective of the translators.
If the documentation recommends marking whole lists and long paragraphs in a single chunk, then the documentation needs to be changed. Small chunks are easier for the translators to deal with. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 21:21, 30 November 2015 (UTC)
This is an old thread, but for the sake of logging and for those who may randomly stumble on this section while passing by, the documentation does contain a good way to split the lists to small chunks. Personally I do split the lists all the time. And what was probably pointed by Ryan is how you marked the heading title. The new line before the closing translate tag is crucial there. As to the translators: some markup is necessary to show them in order to point them what they are dealing with. Like In English It Is Common To Write Headers Like This some other languages may have some nuances to consider as well. Same goes for lists. Besides we had that documentation for many years. It is better for translators when everyone follows the same way so there is no need to adjust to each and every specific page. Changing the documentation would mean changing all the existing pages using the current one. That is very very very tiresome and mostly manual work which would take months if not more of volunteer time (I am not exaggerating unfortunately, I have rather much experience retagging pages to know how much time it takes). Some parts could be automated probably a tiny bit but it still is an immerse amount of work even semiautomatically. --Base (talk) 12:41, 8 July 2016 (UTC)

Office hour regarding informational Wikimedia video[edit]

Hi Whatamidoing and Jdforrester (WMF), I would like to invite you to the office hour that I mention in this draft blog post that will happen on Monday. --Pine 23:08, 22 January 2016 (UTC)


Murano Coffee.jpg

Thanks for your participation in the office hour about instructional video! --Pine 03:31, 27 January 2016 (UTC)

Demonstrate the functionality of the new ce tag[edit]

Hi, I realized your potential interest in If you have questions regarding this, please let me know. I'm happy to provide input, but I'm not planning to write a blog post on that as suggested here Since this is the first new tag, I'm courious to see what will be going on. Until now, I have the feeling that not too much is going on. --Physikerwelt (talk) 20:25, 15 February 2016 (UTC)

Thanks, Physikerwelt.
Is there any chance of w:en:Structural formulas being possible in the future? Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 20:50, 15 February 2016 (UTC)
In the future defenitely, but not yet. --Physikerwelt (talk) 12:59, 16 February 2016 (UTC)
Thank you for your note. I am willing to wait. I hope that drawing the structural formulas will be more accessible for people who use screen readers. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 19:35, 16 February 2016 (UTC)


Phantom Open Emoji 1f478.svg

You're precious. --Elitre (WMF) (talk) 11:03, 14 March 2016 (UTC)

Regarding Editing/Publish[edit]

Hello. How can I translate the title of the section for this message? I really don't want this message to be posted with an English title in our wiki... Guycn2 · 01:18, 2 August 2016 (UTC)

Unfortunately, it can't be done, because it'll be delivered via MassMessage to Village Pump and similar talk pages, and MassMessage is incapable of coping with translated ==Section headings==. (That's why there's no section heading on the page.)
However, I'd be totally happy to have you manually replace the section heading as soon as you see it posted. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 16:18, 2 August 2016 (UTC)
I will change it manually, but people may see it in English before I change. Thanks for the answer. Guycn2 · 18:49, 2 August 2016 (UTC)
I'm not sure what time it will be sent out, or I'd let you know in advance (and I won't be the person sending it, because I don't have MassMessage rights here). BTW, it looks like some of Verdy_p's recent changes have invalidated some of your translation work. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 19:07, 2 August 2016 (UTC)
Thank you. I will take care of it now. Guycn2 · 19:10, 2 August 2016 (UTC)


A notice was just posted, from your account, that the "Save page" button is to be renamed to "Publish page". In the English Wikinews context, this would be blatantly wrong, extremely confusing, and actively misleading. For new users it would be especially confusing. Is there any way we can prevent our standard editing interface from being damaged in this way? --Pi zero (talk) 19:02, 9 August 2016 (UTC)

Hello, Pi zero. Thanks for the note. I believe that it can be done, and that Wikinews (with its separate "publish" process) was on the list of potentially complicated setups (alongside things such as private wikis). This isn't going to happen for a couple of weeks, so I'll put it on the list for next week's regular meeting. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 19:08, 9 August 2016 (UTC)
Okay. Thanks. :-) --Pi zero (talk) 19:09, 9 August 2016 (UTC)
New question for you:
Are you familiar with the page status system for Wikisource? See this book as an example. Click any page number that's red or yellow, then click the edit button (and click past the VisualEditor dialog). The colored radio dots underneath the editing window are what I'm talking about. If you do a basic proofreading run, for example, then you tick the next one up. If you haven't done enough, then you leave it alone. Would something like that be useful or interesting at Wikinews?
(I have no idea how complicated it would be to set up, etc.; I thought I'd find out what you thought before I looked into it.) Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 15:04, 16 August 2016 (UTC)
This message is to follow up on your original question: There's currently nothing in the interface at Wikinews that clearly says that the instant you touch the Save button, your article (or changes to it) is going to be published (i.e., "made available to the public", to use the formulation in the policy at w:en:WP:SOURCES) immediately, in whatever form it's currently in, in the mainspace at Wikinews.
Do you think that the Wikinews communities could find a prominent place in the user interface to provide that information to the users, and to ensure that it is maintained permanently? I don't know if they'd actually let us add a sentence about this to the end of MediaWiki:Wikimedia-copyrightwarning, but something similarly prominent and difficult to overlook would probably work. What do you think? Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 19:02, 18 August 2016 (UTC)
On en.wn, the word "publish" does not mean merely "make available to the public". "Publish" refers to a vastly more energetic event, and it would be deeply confusing and misleading to suggest to users that by committing their edits they would be "publishing" what they had written.

I can understand why lawyers would want people to be aware that when they "save" their changes the results become instantly visible to other people (not that I have unlimited patience with it; but I do understand the CYA attitude involved). However, the word "publish" would be a spectacularly wrong expression of this, in the en.wn context. Some other wording is called for. Two questions for you: can you suggest a hook whereby some acceptable words to the desired effect could be injected into the interface (since it probably couldn't be done by a simple change to the word on the save button); and do you have any suggestions on what such alternative wording (not using the word "publish") might be? --Pi zero (talk) 20:21, 18 August 2016 (UTC)

Yes, I understand that Wikinews reserves that term for a different meaning. My point is that "saving the page" seems to truly be publishing in the sense that (AFAICT) the lawyers care most about, which is the "made available to the public" idea. And I think that they care more about making the idea clear than the exact word used to describe the idea (even though publish as a term is important because of the its use, e.g., in copyright law, etc.). So I'm thinking that it might be possible to get a sentence added that says that the information will be made available to the public immediately upon saving the page, and then see if we could stick with "Save page" for the actual button. But that sentence would have to be easily visible, and the Wikinews communities would have to agree that they'd rather have this "unnecessary" sentence than have a change to the label on the button itself. As for what exactly to write, how about something like "Your contributions on this page will be visible to the public immediately upon saving. If you do not want your contributions to be available to the public immediately, then do not click the 'Save page' button."? That seems clear to me, but please feel free to propose alternatives.
On the technical end, the easiest thing would be to let us spam it into the copyright warning, because it's right there by the button. I'll ask if we could do that. The worst that can happen with that question is that someone says no.  :-) Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 21:12, 18 August 2016 (UTC)
The copyright notice (I think it's on that hook) says "If you don't want your writing to be edited mercilessly or redistributed by others, do not submit it." Either those words mean something, or they don't; and if they don't, then it would seem all words are a waste of time. If the lawyers think something more than that needs said, what more is it they imagine needs said?

To be clear: In the en.wn context, telling the user the button would "publish" their edits would be, patently, lying. Lawyers, we hope, don't want users to misunderstand; would lawyers want to deliberately lie to users? I'm inclined to believe lawyers get a bad rap, but if they would deliberately lie to users I would revise my opinion, precipitously downward.

I really do (btw) appreciate your help in untangling all this. --Pi zero (talk) 22:20, 18 August 2016 (UTC)

Help me understand this, so I can explain it to other staff if I need to. Do we agree that clicking this button (whatever it's labeled) makes the user's contribution available to the public? Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 22:55, 18 August 2016 (UTC)
The button does do that, yes. I'm having some... difficulty, with the idea that anyone could reasonably claim to be taken by surprise when it does so, although I would not suppose that people filing ludicrous lawsuits has anything to do with reason.  People at their worst (as any wiki admin knows) are awful. I — who am not a lawyer — would consider the passage I've quoted above to be fair warning. Nor can I imagine how anyone could claim any sort of hardship caused by their edit to a wiki page being saved to the page when they told the software to do that.

That said, I am all for things like changing a word in the interface in a way that makes things clearer; clarity is good. In this case, changing the label on that button from 'save' to 'publish' would not be clarity, it would be... falsehood, something broken that would need to be fixed. But a change that would actually make things clearer instead of making them blatantly wrong, sure. --Pi zero (talk) 00:34, 19 August 2016 (UTC)

So here I think is one of the "real world" things: in the newsroom, "publish" means this complicated thing involving some separation between the three main roles of reporters and editors and publishers. In the "real world", which in this (perhaps rare ;-) instance happens to be where the lawyers live, "publish" means something much less involved. In the real world, to "be published" only requires that the material be made available to the public. Example: In the newsroom sense of the word, if some kid posts a rhyming couplet about a political candidate on Twitter, then that's cute. In the real-world sense of the word, that kid truly did publish that couplet, and all sorts of legal and practical consequences ensue, e.g., effects of publication on copyright law and the possibility of a reporter contacting the kid to "newsroom-publish" something about it. What the kid did is no less "publishing" just because the news industry uses the same word to mean something else. And what this hypothetical kid did on Twitter is what all contributors are doing every time they hit the "Save" button here: They are making their changes available to the general public on the internet.
I understand that it seems strange for new contributors to be surprised by the effects of this button. After all, our first edits were a long time ago, and we figured it out. But I've had a couple of months to think about what "Save" means these days, and, as a result, it no longer seems strange to me. When you click "Save" in a word processor, do the contents get posted on the Internet? How about the "Save" button in your e-mail software? "Save" in your web browser makes a private copy of the web page on your hard drive. "Save" in your address book makes a private copy of someone's contact information. "Save" in photo editing software saves your changes to the photo; there's a separate button for sharing the picture on the internet. The "Save" button in WordPress and Blogger save a private, unpublished copy of your blog post. The "Save" button in Facebook's feed creates a private bookmark. None of these "Save" buttons make your information available to the general public.
When stuff is going public, there's a wide variety of labels used. E-mail services have standardized on "Send", and all sorts of similar actions fall under the category of "Sharing". Amazon's reviews and the NYT's comments section both use "Submit", which seems to imply professional review before actual publication – perhaps even the sort of review that might result in merciless editing. Comments may get "Post", "Comment", or "Reply" – but never "Save", unless you're able to make a private copy and come back to it later. WordPress, Blogger,, and others use "Publish". Twitter famously uses "Tweet". There are very few things (mostly MediaWiki software and its derivatives) that use "Save" to mean "immediately provide this content to the general public on the internet". So given that "Save" means "make a private copy" on basically every program and every website that most people have ever encountered, I think it is not unreasonable for some people to be surprised that "Save" here means "post this forever on the internet". Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 09:07, 19 August 2016 (UTC)
Sorry to be blunt, but I don't think this conversation can support anything less direct.

What you say about users misunderstanding things is true and reasonable and all that, entirely in line with what I've been saying. What you say about the meaning of the word "publish" in the "real" world versus the newsroom is unmitigated bullshit, completely unhinged from reality and raising a rude finger to it. Simple fact: using the word "publish" on the button in a news setting would be lying to the user. Making believe it's not so, well, is just make-believe.

I am not advocating use of the word "save"; I don't care about it (actually, the phrase that comes to mind is that I don't give a rat's ass about it); but the worst I've heard anyone say about it is that it might be misunderstood. While I'm not excessively exercised about that, for the reasons I've explained (and could explain further, but find it a distraction here), I'm fine with a change that might be less misunderstood. Misunderstanding is irksome to users and therefore reducing it is a plus for the wiki. My point is that, factually, the word "publish" would be actively purveying a falsehood: lying. The chance of understanding correctly would go practically to zero, a problem in a whole different league from some piddling confusion over the word "save". The word "save" would be nice to improve on. The word "publish", were it foisted on us, would need to be fixed.

Frankly, I find most of this conversation just sad. Useful would be devoting energy to finding ways to improve things. Wasteful is unproductively pointing out that some lawyer's misconceived change would be destructive. Although it's true that the WMF has consistently, over the years, done damage to the sister projects (even Wikipedia) by failing to comprehend that those actually on a project know more about it than the WMF does, telling the WMF so is a waste of everyone's time not only because the WMF is unpersuadable but because even if they could be persuaded, doing so takes time and energy that would be better spent on devising actual improvements. So:

Can you think of another rewording, that doesn't use the word "publish", that would be less misunderstood than the current wording? The current wording, I see, is, exactly, "SAVE PAGE". I'll try to scrape up some time to consider this conundrum myself. --Pi zero (talk) 11:24, 19 August 2016 (UTC)

(It bothers me that the above could be interpreted to accuse you of BS, which was not what I was thinking; I took you to be presenting the lawyers' perspective and addressed it as such. If the WMF's lawyers think publishing in the newsroom sense isn't legally distinct from "publishing" in the blog sense, they don't know about news; calling the blog sense "real" in contrast to the newsroom sense shows underawareness of the legal situation. Anyway, sorry if my phrasing on that point came off badly. --Pi zero (talk) 22:34, 19 August 2016 (UTC))

Since the Wikipedia articles on the subject aren't the greatest (IMO), perhaps you and I should collect some sources and clean them up. It'd be interesting to explain how "publication" differs between various types of law: a private letter can be "publication" for libel (or is it defamation? You can tell that I'm not a lawyer ;-) but not copyright; a blog post is "publication" for copyright but not news, etc. (Also, I'd personally be happy if the articles talked less about book publishing and more about news media. The last time I worked on them, which was yearsr ago, it seemed practically like an ode to vanity presses, with a sideswipe at book publishers whose marketing departments didn't satisfy their authors.)

In the meantime, I think I have good news you! It looks like our compromise will work. The product manager will remove Wikinews from the list if and only if we add a warning about the contents being visible immediately to wikinews:MediaWiki:Copyrightwarning. The Save page button will remain exactly as it is now, and acquire a new Save changes option, for subsequent edits to the same page.

Nobody has (so far) dictated the exact content of the necessary statement. Therefore, I conclude that the statement does not need to include the word publish – and I think we should avoid it if we can. Something like "Your contributions to this page will be visible to the public immediately. If you do not want your contributions to be available to the public immediately, then do not click the 'Save page' button." would probably work. I'm totally open to your suggestions, but please let me know soon so we can get moving on this.

We'd need to get translations basically a week from now, for all ~33 Wikinews languages. Do you think that's feasible? I can ask at translators-l as soon as you and I have agreed upon the ideal text, and either you or I can spam the Village pump pages for all the Wikinewses with this information. That could help with both getting translations and also making sure that nobody blanks the statement. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 13:45, 22 August 2016 (UTC)

Well. Several thoughts.
  • The wording you suggest seems reasonable to me, in English.
  • This problem presumably doesn't exist on all Wikinewses. At a guess it probably doesn't exist on most Wikinewses, and it may even be unique to English Wikinews. It's tied to both the word usage and the project workflow. Some Wikinewses use flaggedrevs, others don't. (I suspect most don't; as I recall, somebody started to assemble a table of such cross-language-comparative data for Wikinewses a while back, which ought to be around somewhere but is probably incomplete and perhaps somewhat behind the times; basically the Foundation's institutional dissing of Wikinews eventually led to that user's giving up and leaving Wikinews.) And the subtleties of the English word "publish" might not be relevant in any given non-English language. So it's entirely possible English might be the only language where this concern actually arises.
  • If there's something to be done across all-language Wikinewses, I don't think I'd be competent to do it, particuarly. That's just not within my repertory.
  • If it seems like I had a rather violent reaction to the bit about contrasting Wikinews with the "real" world, I expect I've been sensitized over the years. Most of the sister communities recognize that different sisters are fundamentally different; it's mostly in Wikipedian communities (especially the very big ones) where one finds wikimedians who think the way their project works is the One True Way. I've gotten mortally tired of listening to some of the more rabidly anti-Wikinews Wikipedians blathering about how Wikinews articles are crappy because, in essence, they wouldn't be considered very good if they were Wikipedia articles. I can't help thinking, when I see that, of how extraordinarily low-quality any Featured Article on Wikipedia would be if measured by the criteria that matter on Wikinews. We generally don't waste our time objecting to such arguments, of course; I actually tried to engage one of those folks in rational conversation, once upon a time, and was rather disgusted when it became clear they weren't looking to think about the issues but rather to find excuses to turn any fact offered to them into a weapon against Wikinews. (What was really appalling was that they didn't seem to be aware they were doing that; but, water over the dam.)
  • I am, of course, not a lawyer either. I reckon this is legal territory that hasn't been fully articulated — the law is a living thing, which we constantly struggle to grow in a healthy direction as it spreads into the new and hotly contested realms opened up by our new technologies. It's my understanding that in fact a letter would be under copyright of its author, actually, though I wouldn't expect that to be the area of law usually pursued in such cases; that under international law, everything is copyrighted unless one explicitly says otherwise (which also means that almost everything on the internet is under copyright). As for the difference between "publishing" on a blog (which I tend to see as usually more of a toy sort of "publishing" — but, keep in mind, Thomas Paine was essentially a blogger, just a blogger in an age with less ubiquitous technology for blogging) versus publishing on a news site. In my comments I had my eye on legal practicalities. It's a relatively unremarkable practice on blogs, for instance, to use rather large block quotes from news sources; then there's a somewhat stricter standard that applies to Wikipedia, and an even more stringent one we aspire to on Wikinews. Then there's the matter of legal action: commercial news sites have a vital economic motive to shut down blog sites that undermine their exclusive rights to their content; they make their livings off that content, after all. And then there are other legal responsibilities, including but not limited to libel (unless I've misjudged the legal sense of "libel"); there was a case... maybe, if I'm remembering right (I know who I'd need to ask to get the specifics right)... within the past few years where a news site in the UK had some image up for quite a short time when they first published an article and they were ultimately held by the courts to be legally culpable for that image even though they took it down quickly (not sure but may have involved polluting the potential jury pool for a murder case by planting some idea in people's minds). Presumably the standards would have been different if the party who put that image up had not been recognized by the courts as a news site rather than a blog, though of course a blog with a sufficiently massive following might start to take on some of that added level of legal responsibility. Still, that sort of thing should make clear why it's a very big deal to us on English Wikinews that we distinguish clearly between stuff some user saved onto a page on our project, and something we have certified as having passed our review process.
--Pi zero (talk) 17:26, 22 August 2016 (UTC)
  • Then we can go with this wording unless and until someone suggests something else. I can ask a few people on my team, if you'd like to have more eyes on it.
  • I don't know whether it makes more sense to treat all Wikinewses the same, or to try to pick apart the linguistic issues. Let me think on it for a bit (or ask around to find someone who knows more about these things than I do).
  • It'd be interesting to do something like Tell us about your Wikipedia for other projects.
  • I send messages to multiple projects all the time, so I can do that. It looks like 27 Wikinewses have a Water cooler page (per d:Q16503#sitelinks-wikinews). We'll have to figure out which ones (six?) don't.
  • I haven't talked to Legal about this, but I believe that copyright law distinguishes between published and unpublished works. Otherwise, if you write a book and schedule it for publication 100 years after your death wouldn't have any copyright protection, and I understand that it does. So a letter is under copyright of its author, but it's not published for copyright purposes until it is actually disseminated to the public. (And there's even a provision, at least in some places, for retroactively declaring that something wasn't published, e.g., if it was distributed without the consent of the copyright holder).
Update: I pinged you to the en.wn message. I figured that you didn't really need 25 more pings, so I left your name out of the others. I've posted an update to every Wikinews that's linked in Wikidata's "Water cooler" list (and not closed. The actual list of wikis is at m:User talk:Whatamidoing (WMF)/Wikinews). We've already got a few translations, so the next step is probably waiting a day or two to see whether anyone has questions. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 19:49, 24 August 2016 (UTC)

More translations[edit]

From eml.wikipedia: Please, Mr. Whatamidoing, let us know the right link to translate in Emilian-romagnolo language these two words "Publish page" and "Publish changes" in TranslateWiki, because it would be better, for our eml.wikipedia, to have all our keys in our specific language. Thank you in advance, --Glo (talk) 20:09, 9 August 2016 (UTC)

From min.wikipedia: Thanks for your notification. I added at translatewiki, "Publish page" would be "Tabikan laman" for the Minangkabau language. Regards, XoXo (talk) 05:52, 10 August 2016 (UTC)
Thank you for your messages. The links for translation are here: [7] and [8]. You must have an account at to add translations, and it looks like both of you do.
XoXo, I see that you have added the min. translation for the first one, but not the second. Can you add a translation for "Publish changes" as well?
Yep, it's done! Thanks, XoXo (talk) 09:55, 10 August 2016 (UTC)
Glo, I think that these links will take you directly to eml translations: "Publish page" and "Publish changes". It should show the label in Italian, and if you click the "Edit" button, it should be set to get the eml translation. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 09:09, 10 August 2016 (UTC)
Really good. Now it's done! Thank you, Whatamidoing, --Glo (talk) 09:54, 10 August 2016 (UTC)
Thank you both! Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 10:02, 10 August 2016 (UTC)

Save/Publish page[edit]

Hi Whatamidoing,

Could you please, fix Yoruba language wikipedia here. Thanks. Wikicology (talk) 20:58, 9 August 2016 (UTC)

Wikicology, if you can tell me the best translation for "Publish page" and "Publish changes", then I can add it to the system. I don't speak Yoruba, and I would not trust machine translation. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 08:29, 10 August 2016 (UTC)
Ṣàtẹ̀jáde ojú ewé (publish page) and Ṣàtẹ̀jáde àtúnṣe (publish change). I'm a translator at Transwiki. Keep me posted anytime you want to translate contents into Yoruba language. Wikicology (talk) 08:40, 10 August 2016 (UTC)
If you've already got an account at TWN, then I would prefer that you added the translations. That way, if anyone wants to ask a question, they'll be able to reach you directly. I can do it if you prefer (and I offered because it's often not worth the effort to create an account for a one-time translation), but since you already have an account, it's ideal for you to do it directly. "Publish page" and "Publish changes"
Also, are you on the translators-l mailing list? That seems to be the main way to reach translators these day. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 09:30, 10 August 2016 (UTC)
Yes check.svg Done. Yes, I am on the mailing list. Wikicology (talk) 10:00, 10 August 2016 (UTC)

additional powers[edit]

greeting, Since more than two months, i became the sole editor of the ar.wikiquote, I'm having a problem with vandals, who are pushing hard to empty pages, as well as the deployment of pages of no literary or scientific value, i asked Mr. Abdullah & called him for additional powers, to prevent vandals or delete pages, but did not respond to my request yet, regards --Uaemediaexpert (talk) 05:14, 10 August 2016 (UTC)

Thank you for your note, Uaemediaexpert. I understand that it is very frustrating. I recommend that you do two things:
  • Leave a note explaning the problem and asking for help at the page for the volunteer Global sysops. They will be able to help you by giving you some advice, by blocking active vandals, and probably by telling you more about how to become a sysop (which is something that the volunteer Stewards handle).
  • Leave a note at the Arabic Wikipedia (at their "Village Pump" or a similar popular page for announcements) that asks for editors to help you.
Good luck, Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 08:34, 10 August 2016 (UTC)

Discussion regarding Save/Publish[edit]

There has been some discussion regarding Save/Publish at Swedish Wiktionary. Could you have a look at it, please? "85" 21:55, 11 August 2016 (UTC)

Hi, am from Tamil wikipedia. the Save/publish have not been translated to Tamil. How do I do it on Taranslate wiki ? --Rsmn (talk) 22:08, 11 August 2016 (UTC)
Also on ang: (Old English Wikipedia) - better translations suggested.
I tried to get onto Translatewiki but while it lets a user log on, it does not seems to let me go any further! It is not an intuitive website. (It did let me try providing translatins, but I think they went onto the wrong language, so I will be barred there! Still, since I seem to be blocked even from the support page, I will assume I am not welcome.) Hogweard (talk) 23:05, 11 August 2016 (UTC)
Hello, Rsmn and Hogweard: It's sometimes difficult to get started at I'll check both of these later. If you don't have an account, then you can give me the correct ones, and I'll add them. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 12:42, 12 August 2016 (UTC)

Regarding listing buttons in the toolbar of smaller Wikivoyages[edit]

Hello Whatmaidoing. Regarding the listing buttons in the toolbar of Spanish Wikivoyage, as you said in Wikivoyage Lounge, are showing the wrong icons and I don't know how fix this. Could you please tell us if you found a solution for this? Regards. --Zerabat (discusión) 01:38, 13 September 2016 (UTC)

I have not found a solution. We might have to ask at w:en:WP:VPT or a similar forum for help. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 19:24, 13 September 2016 (UTC)

2016 Community Wishlist Survey[edit]


You’re getting this message because you participated in the 2015 Community Wishlist Survey and we want to make sure you don't miss it this year – or at least can make the conscious choice to ignore if it you want to. The 2015 survey decided what the Community Tech team should work on during 2016. It was also the focus of Wikimedia hackathons and work by other developers. You can see the status of wishes from the 2015 wishlist at 2015 Community Wishlist Survey/Results.

The 2016 Community Wishlist Survey is now open for wishes. You can create proposals until November 20. You will be able to vote on which wishes you think are best or most important between November 28 and December 12. /Johan (WMF) (talk) via MediaWiki message delivery (talk) 11:17, 14 November 2016 (UTC)

Global CentralNotice of Tech/Server switch 2017message[edit]

Hello,Will this message appear on the CentralNotice?——星耀晨曦 (talk) 16:09, 13 April 2017 (UTC)

Hello, 星耀晨曦.
Yes, there will be a CentralNotice for two hours before each read-only period, from 12:00 to 14:00 UTC. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 17:45, 13 April 2017 (UTC)

Editing News #1—2017[edit]

17:59, 12 May 2017 (UTC)

Wikidirectory and other proposals for new projects[edit]

Hello. You may want to vote on Wikidirectory, [[Wikijournall], and other proposals for new projects. Join in those discussions. --George Ho (talk) 08:29, 21 June 2017 (UTC)