Wikimedia Forum/Archives/2017-01

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Set up a looking glass service for all Wikimedia datacenters

I don't know if it is appropriate to post a proposal here, if not, please let me know. English is not my native language, please excuse my mistakes.

I am from mainland China, where having one of the strictest internet censorship in the world, and sometimes, the internet connection through overseas websites are pretty bad. Recently, the landing point of a submarine cable system called TPE in China has out of order. That affects 35% of capacity from China Unicom, one out of 3 ISPs in China, to its US PoPs. Package loss and delay time increased, and some websites transit through ISPs like Telia, GTT are almost unable to load. In some extreme cases, ULSFO datacenter is under affect, too.

Since Wikimedia Foundation has no datacenters in Asia, I think such connecting problems are occurring not only in mainland China but also in many other Asian countries, especially southeastern Asian countries with slow internet connections.

So, I am considering if Wikimedia Foundation can set up an looking glass service for all its datacenters so that we can test the connection from WMF's datacenters to ISPs around the world. After the service is set, I also hope WMF can change the route from its autonomous system to a certain ISP for users' requests to achieve a better connectability.

--TechyanTalk) 13:42, 31 December 2016 (UTC)

There is a task in Phabricator about this topic: phab:T106056. Anomie (talk) 16:52, 1 January 2017 (UTC)

Top rank list of Wikipedias

Hi guys, I am contributing more and more in ta wiki and I have a doubt in standards of wikipedia. How the top rank list of wikipedias are created? I mean , What are criterias are considered in ranking wikipedias? please explain me. Thank you--Shriheeran (talk) 10:13, 4 January 2017 (UTC)

Do you mean on See Top Ten Wikipedias. --Nemo 10:43, 4 January 2017 (UTC)

Yes!Nemo--Shriheeran (talk) 11:53, 4 January 2017 (UTC)

Tools descriptions. Is there a right place to store them?

Hello. I've seen some pages about tools here on meta such as WikiShootMe (the one I was opening today and made me ask some questions). Often there is no great categorization, basically we have no category:tools. Do we need some sort or rationalization here? I am sure you can find other examples as well, as I can digging around. For example MaintGraph. I am even a little bit surprise we don't have a namespace for "tools". I am even more surprised we don't have a meta-level description of certain widely used cross-wiki tools. It's ok, I guess, if croptool is described only on commons, but DEWKIN for example should be described at a meta/cross wiki level here. I don't want a jungle of duplicates, but do we have some guidelines to prevent this? I spent hours presenting tools to newbies and when they are intrinsically crosswiki i feel that meta is the right place to start to summarize FAQs and keypoints. Am I wrong or right? What do you feel or know based on your experience? Should a presentation page be only on mediawiki in some cases (not sure, I know mediawiki much less than meta)? If so maybe we can just be sure to suggest to write there? Or only on some cases? I am curious to listen to other sides of this aspect.--Alexmar983 (talk) 08:22, 9 January 2017 (UTC)

Also the page on meta is easy to be one of the first on google or other search engine when present, not 100% sure but that's how I often discover it exists.--Alexmar983 (talk) 08:54, 9 January 2017 (UTC)
What would a namespace help? A page on a tool is always welcome on Meta when someone has a use for it, no need to worry about mass additions. If you don't have something meaningful to write or discuss about a tool, making it appear in Hay's directory is enough. Nemo 09:19, 9 January 2017 (UTC)
it help to rationalize. As it is a namespace for a grant, or any other type of specific namespace. In any case nothing to manage a little bit better? Good, less work for me. More for those who come next soon or later, probably. But not my fault...--Alexmar983 (talk) 17:37, 9 January 2017 (UTC)
We have a Tool namespace on wikitech that is one possible home for tool documentation. See as an example. The obvious downside of using wikitech for end-user facing documentation is that wikitech is not a Central Auth wiki and thus requires a separate user account for end-users to comment on or edit tool documentation. There are poorly documented plans to "fix" that problem by removing the need for LDAP auth on wikitech that myself and the Labs team are slowly making progress towards. I would be super happy to see the metawiki community carve out a space for tool documentation and would be glad to help promote its use with the wider Tool Labs maintainer community. --BDavis (WMF) (talk) 05:12, 10 January 2017 (UTC)
Thank you, I didn't know that. wikitech is not probably too much user friendly, if we assume the user is an average guy. The only reason why I started the discussion is because I wanted to write a page about a tool that uses both local platforms and wikidata. I showed it to more than 40 "simple" users and I have enough feedback to write a good page also for newbies. So the content is not a issue, the main issue is to find the "right" place, an area we all agree. That's where my question originated. Tools are important for nowadays users. I know friends who are making other tools, for example for user analysis. Of course wikidata and commons as crosswiki-oriented platform can host many of them, but not all of them. I was really surprised to discover that we had no designated space at the meta level. For example for wikimetric tools about users there is a good page on enwiki if I remember correclty, but it should be hosted here and translated leaving there a redirect IMHO. Even an index with links to other platforms here would be better than nothing, I guess. I simply don't have the expertise to propose something that works in the right direction, and I don't want to create a nth duplicate.--Alexmar983 (talk) 06:55, 10 January 2017 (UTC)

Elsevier Open Access articles may later change license

From doi:10.5260/chara.18.3.53, a worrying note that Elsevier's Gold Open Access articles, even when they are libre OA (in CC-BY), they actually transfer copyright to Elsevier:

This practice of author nominal copyright is important because Elsevier is in essence acquiring exclusive copyright for OA articles, even those that appear with the author’s name as copyright owner and use Creative Commons licenses. Elsevier (or in some cases society partners) is in effect the copyright owner and the Licensor under Creative Commons terms. Copyright owners are in no way obliged by CC licenses to continue to make works available under the terms of a particular license. If I own the copyright in a work, I can post a copy today under a CC-BY license, then take it down tomorrow and replace it with another copy under All Rights Reserved. If someone downloaded and used yesterday’s CC-BY licensed copy, I cannot revoke the terms, but if I did not make a copy yesterday, I am stuck with All Rights Reserved. For this reason my recommendation to all authors publishing works with Elsevier for OA is to actively make use of their third party rights to archive a copy of their work with the CC-BY license in their institutional repository. Maintaining a copy of paperwork proving that Elsevier and the author agreed to publish under CC terms also seems prudent.

Relevant these days due to [1] [2] [3]. --Nemo 14:54, 16 January 2017 (UTC)

@Nemo bis: Someone revoking the access is irrelevant in the sense that the license states that you cannot make it less free, only moreso. If someone tries to "take it back" and puts "© ALL RIGHTS RESERVED" then we can—and should—continue to make use of it under the original CC terms. Of course, the practical problem is that someone may not notice that it was originally CC-BY. We may want to make large batch downloads of CC articles to store and reproduce in the future? —Justin (koavf)TCM 17:35, 16 January 2017 (UTC)
Yes, every time we cite an Open Access article published by Elsevier we should make sure to republish it elsewhere. Mass-importing scientific literature to Wikisource or Commons was already proposed in the past but is IMHO too extreme. On the other hand, using existing OA repositories like is a sensible countermeasure (it's what the authors of the article propose). Nemo 19:25, 16 January 2017 (UTC)

Proposing WikiWrite

I changed the proposed project from WikiTalk to WikiWrite. Feel free to join the discussion. --George Ho (talk) 22:22, 18 January 2017 (UTC)

SUL broken

I accidentally pressed "log out" on and now my SUL no longer works there. I have changed my password but it still doesn't work. The login page claims session hijacking, but even after I reload, it still won't log in. KATMAKROFAN (talk) 02:41, 19 January 2017 (UTC)

Fixed (all cookies from deleted, logged out and then back in on Meta). KATMAKROFAN (talk) 02:48, 19 January 2017 (UTC)
Are you using Firefox 50+? If so, see phabricator:T151770. --Nemo 10:48, 19 January 2017 (UTC)
MobileSafari. KATMAKROFAN (talk) 14:52, 19 January 2017 (UTC)
@KATMAKROFAN: Can you try to see if you can replicate this with a different browser? That way we have an indication of whether it is the browser or the account that is problematic.  — billinghurst sDrewth 22:44, 19 January 2017 (UTC)

Martin Gottesfeld and Lauri Love

I see some people are using the Aaron Swartz day to raise awareness on some people prosecuted by the same attorney as he was, with the same CFAA:

Does any of us know more about this matter and does any friend org/group have some position on the matter? I checked EFF, EFFI and ACLU but found nothing. --Nemo 10:48, 19 January 2017 (UTC)

@Nemo bis: I have heard of Love before--he is supported by —Justin (koavf)TCM 16:27, 19 January 2017 (UTC)

New project proposal: posted here due to formatting issue

Hello. I want to promote a new project proposal here due to a formatting issue on the proposal page. "WikiMoon", a database of science-fiction characters, TV programs etc. etc. Please let me know what you think The brave celery (talk) 15:44, 22 January 2017 (UTC)

What formatting issue do you have? You can also look at Proposals_for_new_projects and estimate your chances. Ruslik (talk) 15:55, 22 January 2017 (UTC)

Wrong registration date

Why is my registration date showing as Sept. 2009 here, when it is Feb. 2004?
My 13th anniversary is almost here.
Varlaam (talk) 18:31, 22 January 2017 (UTC)

20 February 2004
This is the date I am not seeing here.
Varlaam (talk)
It is not the date of registration. It is the date of SUL creation. Ruslik (talk) 20:59, 22 January 2017 (UTC)

CIA Posts More Than 12 Million Pages of CREST Records Online

I guess most of these are innocuous reports of the kind "what's going on in country X on week Y", which could be integrated in some Wikipedia articles? Nemo 09:52, 24 January 2017 (UTC)


In Tamil wikipedia we are going to organize an online project. Can you give us some tips to promote our wiki as the best. Please give your tips (eg:bringing wikkipedia as the 25th wikipedia in the list)--Shriheeran (talk) 15:33, 29 January 2017 (UTC)

Pages MediaWiki

How can I get access to edit and create pages MediaWiki without administrator flag, directly in specific projects? Is it possible? Thanks!--Асилзода talk 13:30, 29 January 2017 (UTC)

@Асилзода: This is only available for admins. —Justin (koavf)TCM 03:14, 30 January 2017 (UTC)
Some wikis also have a special group for this. You can look for the "editinterface" right on the respective Special:ListGroupRights. --MF-W 15:00, 30 January 2017 (UTC)
Unfortunately there is no such group (w:tg:Вижа:ListGroupRights). Thanks!--Асилзода talk 15:11, 30 January 2017 (UTC)

Just to let you all know, we have the same topic under discussion here. --Stryn (talk) 16:03, 30 January 2017 (UTC)