Research talk:Teahouse/Invites

Active discussions

Open questions for experiment 1Edit

We've got a few open questions for people who want to participate in the Teahouse Invites Experiments - please let us know your thoughts!:

  1. To encourage the invitee to visit the Teahouse rather than try to have 1:1 discussions on bot or hosts's talk page, Siko/J-Mo/Heather/Sarah are thinking that version A, even though bot-delivered, should link to a real hosts's user page, but should not link to their talk page. Does that make sense to other people too?
  2. Instead of linking to an individual hosts's talk page, we're thinking about a link to the Hosts page of the Teahouse. Seem reasonable? Does "I'm a Teahouse host" seem like good text for that link?
  3. If you'd be willing to have your name used in version A, please sign up here. J-Mo is going to rotate the names, and it would be great to have lots of hosts represented in the invite that the bot delivers!

Siko (talk) 22:41, 18 July 2012 (UTC)

I disagree about #1. I've finally done the homework that Kim Bruning assigned to me at Wikimania about Esperanza, and the thing that struck me about it was the separation between Esperanza and the rest of Wikipedia. With that in mind, I am uncomfortable with the idea that we should encourage the Teahouse at the detriment of other ways of helping people. Writ Keeper (talk) 21:06, 19 July 2012 (UTC)
I disagree with #1. I don't generally use the Teahouse invite and leave personal notes instead. I prefer giving the editor the option of requesting assistance from me personally on my talk page. I dislike the idea of discouraging that.
I do like linking to the host page, I like the concept of the host page, but right now there is a huge discrepancy between the page views of the host page and the Q&A page. I think that would help with the community atmosphere we are trying to build. If we did link to a user's talk page, I would still like to see a link to the host page. (Also note that I fixed the links, if we are planning on using ones other than these, we'll need to fix the links there too or create a redirect).Ryan Vesey (talk) 21:35, 19 July 2012 (UTC)
Writ: are you uncomfortable with the template signature (the human one) linking to a hosts' userpage instead of their user talk page? What if I included both links in the template? I do like the link to the hosts' page, though, and would not want to remove that. Jtmorgan (talk) 00:39, 20 July 2012 (UTC)
Well, to be honest, it was kinda more a general observation. I'm pretty indifferent about user pages vs. user talk pages for this template. It's fine to just like to the user page; many people's user pages have a more personal feel to them (mine's not a great example of that, but most other people's user pages are pretty personalized). I am just not totally comfortable with the logic behind it being that we want to encourage people to post to the Teahouse and not to someone's talk page. That way madness lies. Writ Keeper (talk) 01:20, 20 July 2012 (UTC)
Any changes we could make that would make you more comfortable? Jtmorgan (talk) 01:23, 20 July 2012 (UTC)
I like option #1. I want to introduce as many new users as possible to the Teahouse, more so for the user experience (positive, cool, friendly wiki culture) than the question/answer opportunity. So, I say 'yes', to linking to the real host's userpage, but all other linking (i.e. the logo, etc.) should point to the Teahouse. --Rosiestep (talk) 02:38, 20 July 2012 (UTC)
@JMo: Nope, I'm perfectly comfortable. Just wanted to express what I was thinking. Carry on. :) Writ Keeper (talk) 03:36, 20 July 2012 (UTC)
@WritKeeper: I'm really glad you brought this up - we definitely don't want TH be distanced from the rest of Wikipedia! @Ryan Vesey, do you think that linking to the user page + host page is enough, or should a link to the talk page be added back in too? Sarah and Rosie send out a TON of invites and I think as a result they get hit up with lots of direct requests for help, at times perhaps more than they have time to respond to. This is where I think we were coming from in the idea to keep the talk page link out, since lots of these invites would be delivered every single day. Though if there are lots of names rotated through the invites maybe this won't happen? Siko (talk) 17:02, 20 July 2012 (UTC)
For this experiment the key is identical invites except for the personalization of A versus impersonal B. Does the addition of a nick/name make a difference? How much? Worth the effort? Once results of the experiment answer key questions, several minor variations of personalized invites may be created if that seems sensible. For this experiment, at least the first round, keep it simple; stick with userpage and Teahouse host page. Perhaps a later round will compare invites from Teahouse guests versus invites from Teahouse hosts. Are we less intimidating? Might a new editor prefer to correspond with other relative newbies? Doctree (talk) 03:20, 21 July 2012 (UTC) (Who drops Teahouse invites here and there.)

The Teahouse Logo needs to link to the TeahouseEdit

This experiment targets new editors. Most (all?) are accustomed to buttons that take them to web pages. Clicking on the Teahouse logo and ending up on an unfamiliar image page is likely to be confusing. I suggest that the logo link to the main Teahouse page. Make visitors right-click to get info on the image, the behavior that's expected on most web sites. Doctree (talk) 04:04, 19 July 2012 (UTC)

  (Image created by Heather Walls)
Hey Doctree. In the image I created, you can see how we could link to the teahouse in the image. There is one problem. Unless Heather is willing to release her image into the public domain, we must figure out a way to attribute her. The reason images currently link to an image page is because that fulfills the attribution requirements. There appears to be room at the bottom of the template to do this if that is the way we want to go. I'll follow this with an example of the template. I'm not a huge fan of how it looks, particularly because I'm unsure of how to slide the text over a couple pixels to the right. I'll talk to heather and see if she can make it PD.Ryan Vesey (talk) 04:54, 19 July 2012 (UTC)
Image created by Heather Walls

Hi Research talk! Thanks for contributing to Wikipedia. I’m inviting you to join other people who edit Wikipedia at the Teahouse! The Teahouse is a friendly space on Wikipedia where new editors can ask questions about contributing to Wikipedia and get help from peers and experienced editors. I hope to see you there! heather walls (I’m a Teahouse host)

This message automatically delivered by your friendly neighborhood HostBot 2 21:02, 18 July 2012 (UTC)
What magic is this? Heather, you are amazing.Ryan Vesey (talk) 05:08, 19 July 2012 (UTC)

Hi Doctree and Ryan, too true. They were originally linked, but the attribution issue caused someone to delink them. I have taken J-Mo's cue and added the attribution to the link itself. Think that is sufficient? I have no precious feeling about releasing the images, I just think we had an early talk about making the logos free and not being sure if that was a good idea. They also have reference to other images within them which I am fairly certain means I cannot make derivatives public domain. I have just noticed I need to clean up the derivation links there, too. Thank you! heather walls (talk) 05:14, 19 July 2012 (UTC)

I'm no lawyer but:
  1. The image remains linked for attribution since one has to right-click to copy the image and that leads to the image properties including Heather as the source. In my non-expert opinion, the required attribution still exists. I also think that sufficient attribution can be embedded in the images' metadata. Embedding informtion into images is trivial with GIMP. Few people realize how much information is already hidden in their digital photographs. Is there a page somewhere in the WMF universe that discusses what constitutes adequate attribution?
  2. Definitely retain rights to the images rather than releasing them to the public domain. However small, there is a potential for the images to be misused if no rights are retained. In my view, Heather's artwork constitutes an unregistered Trademark of the Teahouse and Wikimedia Foundation. The title or word Teahouse alone can't be a trademark because it's a common term. Heather's artwork is unique and, along with the term, identifies the Wikipedia Teahouse.
Thanks, Ryan, for teaching me the "link=". I wasn't sure how to create the wikilink to a page rather than the image. Doctree (talk) 16:52, 19 July 2012 (UTC)
From what I see, the image would need to be attributed through the tooltip method that it looks like we'll use. When the image is linked through this method, there is no way to get to the image description page (which is what Wikipedia uses to satisfy attribution requirements). Right clicking the image will bring you to the upload page, but not one that provides attribution. It is amazing how much information is stored by the way.Ryan Vesey (talk) 18:12, 19 July 2012 (UTC)
Or how about this:

Hi Research talk! Thanks for contributing to Wikipedia. I’m inviting you to join other people who edit Wikipedia at the Teahouse! The Teahouse is a friendly space on Wikipedia where new editors can ask questions about contributing to Wikipedia and get help from peers and experienced editors. I hope to see you there! heather walls (I’m a Teahouse host)

This message automatically delivered by your friendly neighborhood HostBot 2 21:02, 18 July 2012 (UTC)
The image gets attributed in the tooltip, so it's a bit less obtrusive. I do think DocTree's right, though, in that it doesn't need more attribution that what's already there. Writ Keeper (talk) 17:19, 19 July 2012 (UTC)
Heather's solution on the project page for this should be exactly what is needed.Ryan Vesey (talk) 17:28, 19 July 2012 (UTC)
By the way, would one of you check to make sure I haven't mucked this up? I've been making changes to the template which were necessary from a development standpoint, and not bothering to check whether others were actively editing the template (d'oh! sorryz). The template is currently living here. It's parameterized now, so you leave a personal message and sig by adding |personal=your message goes here, and you can add in a signature on the "friendly neighborhood" line by including the parameter |signature=type four tildes. This isn't very useful for a person, of course, but this template is meant to be bot-delivered; I added in the parameters to keep Sir HostBot happy. Jtmorgan (talk) 00:51, 20 July 2012 (UTC)

Categorization of peopleEdit

Can we re-add the category. It is useful for research purposes and my interpretation of the bot policy was that it didn't affect categorization of users. The policy refers to bots adding categories to biographies and it seems to only refer to the article space.Ryan Vesey (talk) 23:12, 19 July 2012 (UTC)

Thanks for the clarification, Ryan. I've added the category back into the template. I'm being perhaps overly careful about not violating community policy on this experiment :) Jtmorgan (talk) 00:42, 20 July 2012 (UTC)


Can the invitation please say please? To me, that's a bit more friendly and natural, a bit less clunky and stilted.

Hi {{namespace}}! Thanks for contributing to Wikipedia. Please join other people who edit Wikipedia at the Teahouse! The Teahouse is a friendly space on Wikipedia where new editors can ask questions about contributing to Wikipedia and get help from peers and experienced editors. I hope to see you there! Host link (I’m a Teahouse host)

Or am I just too old and old fashioned? Doctree (talk) 04:30, 20 July 2012 (UTC)

I think your version is much better, Doctree - much less old-fashioned and formal sounding, a "please" never hurts :-) Let's update it! Siko (talk) 16:52, 20 July 2012 (UTC)


I think we are back to the less active and more impersonal voice that we were trying to change (based on the EE experiments). I hope that later we can try versions based on that research. "You are invited" is extremely different from "I am inviting you". Hey wait, that's not even in there anymore... I mean "decreasing the number of directives". heather walls (talk) 22:54, 22 July 2012 (UTC)

The experiment has begunEdit

I set HostBot loose on today's batch of Teahouse invitees. You can see the outcome here. The experiment is set to run through 8/5/2012. The script will run every day at about 4:10 UTC, and will update the invitee report accordingly (to avoid double-invites). If you see anything odd, let me know right away! Cheers, Jtmorgan (talk) 00:19, 24 July 2012 (UTC)

Great news, and great work Jonathan. Thanks! SarahStierch (talk) 00:21, 24 July 2012 (UTC)
Yay results! <3 bot. Thanks, J-Mo! heather walls (talk) 20:28, 9 August 2012 (UTC)


Really we need proper statistical analysis of the results to give us a confidence level of the pronouncements that are being made. It's (pardon my saying) typical Wikipedia to think you can just compare two figures and reach a conclusion. Rich Farmbrough 23:29 8 September 2012 (GMT).

Valid statistical analysis requires a larger n than we had available to us when I ran the first set of results. I'm running additional analyses on September 15th, which will include results of a Chi-square test for significance. Jmorgan (WMF) (talk) 21:24, 9 September 2012 (UTC)
Good stuff. What where the results? Rich Farmbrough 05:31 3 November 2012 (GMT).
Heh. A whole lot of nothing, as it turns out. So we decided to just make all invites personalized. Jtmorgan (talk) 03:12, 14 November 2012 (UTC)
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