Community Wishlist Survey 2022/Citations/Preventing VE from silently omitting co-authors

Preventing VE from silently omitting co-authors

  • Problem: When using the Visual Editor for adding citations (e.g. using a DOI), it only considers the first 5 (de.wikipedia) or 11 (en.wikipedia) co-authors. Hence, all other co-authors are silently omitted, i.e. no et al. draw attention to the fact that there are more co-authors.
  • Proposed solution: If the number of co-authors is considered too long so that some of them is omitted, et al. needs to be added by default.
  • Who would benefit: All readers of Wikipedia articles who would no longer be misled by incomplete listings of co-authors.
  • More comments:
  • Phabricator tickets:
  • Proposer: Leyo (talk) 09:23, 20 January 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]


  • As far as we can tell, this logic exists solely in the citation templates, for instance en:Template:Citation. It's not VisualEditor truncating the authors but the template, hence if you want more authors you need only to update the template (probably following some broader discussion with your community). As such I'm going to archive this proposal. Thanks for participating in the survey! MusikAnimal (WMF) (talk) 21:25, 25 January 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    I think I know what the problem is here: TemplateData doesn't support arbitrary authors, which I would guess Citoid is using to support the number of authors it is adding.
    There are two separate wishes here I think, which are both technical in nature:
    1. Citoid to use the presence of |display-authors= in TemplateData/Citoid configuration and equivalent to add a distinct et al (which is one of its keywords for a truncated list); so far as I know no task exists on this dimension;
    2. TemplateData to support enumerated parameters better (and Citoid to appreciate them), the former of which is phab:T54582.
    MusikAnimal (WMF), consider un-archiving? Izno (talk) 21:43, 26 January 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    @Izno Apologies for the late reply, and for my misjudgment of this proposal. I'm happy to un-archive this if we can iron it out into a single proposal. It sounds #2 is the better one to focus on? Pinging the proposer, @Leyo for input. MusikAnimal (WMF) (talk) 19:14, 28 January 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    I am not sure if I understood the technical considerations correctly. However, it isn't any template truncating the number of authors. VisualEditor does not add any authors above the numbers stated above to the source text of the articles. Should you wish to test it yourself, you may consider using doi:10.1021/acs.est.1c04158 (14 authors). --Leyo (talk) 12:49, 31 January 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    I don't think I fully understand the technical considerations either! Hence when Izno said it sounded like two wishes, I was hoping to narrow it down to one. But either way the reasoning for archiving was wrong, so I shall unarchive now. I apologize we misunderstood and this was so late to go into voting! Kind regards, MusikAnimal (WMF) (talk) 15:08, 1 February 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]