Wikimedia Forum/Archives/2012-04

Proposal: Moderators and their actions must be held accountable

Well, I feel it overtly offensive that so many of these great Wikipedia pages have pejorative or threatening stamps at the top. I understand that Wikipedia is a "social experiment" and thus a socially edited encyclopedia, yet why do apparent Wikipedia staff put stamps that say, e.g.: the page for "Freakazoid!" is Fancruft? Or that on many more wiki pages "if challenged they will be removed"; is this without a warning?

My suggestion would be like YouTube and so many other well done sites to have users be able to log in and vote for or against a moderator's opinion. Furthermore, these mods should post there screen name so that they are not above being questioned or even removed from position themselves.

All these are truly important in the progress of any social-based site.

If your issue is specifically with the English Wikipedia you will need to discuss it there. There are no "moderators" on the English Wikipedia and the tags you are referring to are placed by ordinary contributors whose "screen name" is clearly identifable from the page history. Wikipedia (or Wikimedia) staff do not carry out the actions you are describing. Any other editor is entitled to remove the tag if they feel the issue has been addressed or is not valid. Wikipedia operates by consensus so if a page is tagged as "Fancruft" then that is the majority view of contributors. Every contributor to Wikipedia can express their view on an article talk page to try and influence the consensus. They can also provide feedback on the page via the reviewing system. As such I'm not sure there's a specific issue here that needs addressing. Regards, QU TalkQu 12:17, 4 April 2012 (UTC)
Thank you, I'm sorry, you are right. I just checked. Though, the reason behind my post needs to be said out, so for this purpose I shall keep this post up.

Whether it's television or religion or whatever; users should be allowed to express their love for a topic accurately and well worded and to the general consensus of like minded individuals descriptions, as long as they are unbiased in their overall approach. Biased is not being overtly negative, and just because a wiki page is written from a fan's point of view does not mean it is "fancruft" as long as they are objective. Fancruft is by definition (on Wikipedia to be exact) "pejorative" and thus should be used with discretion. I hope we can stay positive on Wikipedia, thank you all for improving this site and the world as we know it.

Applications for free, full access, 1-year accounts from HighBeam Research officially open

1000 free accounts are available from the internet research database HighBeam Research. HighBeam has full versions of tens of millions of newspaper articles and journals and should be a big help in adding reliable sources--especially older and paywalled ones--into the encyclopedia. Sign-ups require a 1-year old account with 1000 edits. Here's the link to the project page: WP:HighBeam (account sign-ups are linked in the box on the right). Sign-up! And, please tell your Wikipedia-friends about the opportunity! Cheers, Ocaasi (talk) 13:57, 4 April 2012 (UTC)

proposal for personal wikipedia service

I always collect the information and knowledge from wikipedia, but most of the time the materials from wiki are not perfect for me. So I copy and paste the orignal article and edit it and save it to my own knowledge database, such as evernote. Why cannot I do this directly on wikipedia?

What is personal wiki service?

Personal wiki service is to use the wikipedia website to store and organize personal collection of knowledge, information, ideas, personal thoughts, or annotation of the wikipedia article. People can choose to make them private, or public to everyone, or only share with friends.

Wikipedia can do this better than other similar service provider because

  • The cloud service provided by wikipedia is reliable. The tool provided by wikipedia is powerful. For example, I like the support for latex input, and wikibook export, which I cannot find in evernote.
  • It is easier and more convenient to build the personal knowledge database on the public knowledge database. The terminologies are organized in a decent way in wikipedia, and they can be found easily. If I can put my own stuff together with them, then I will have them classified and sorted decently.
Serveral reasons for wikipedia to open this service
  • People need a tool to organize personal collection of information & collections, especially a cloud tool. See the success of Evernote. When people read wikipedia articles, they also want to do annotation or raise a different opinion.
  • Wikipedia usually stands for the majority opinion, which does not mean it is the truth. So People who have different opinion may want to supplement and improve the original article for their personal purpose or share wahtever they think is right and let others to compare and discuss. Other viewers can choose to read these comments or not.
  • Since this is a personal service, it does not have to be free. People can use the basic service for free and advanced users should pay. I believe wikipedia can provide an excellent product, and people would love to pay for it. This can also help to solve the funding problem of wikimedia.
Thanks for the suggestion, but Wikimedia doesn't have a funding problem - our current fundraising model works very well. Wikipedia's strength is in having one article per subject per language, and trying to keep that article up-to-date, factual and neutral. We find this works well for us, people are free to copy our articles elsewhere provided they comply with the license, however such copies will degrade over time as they won't benefit from the article improvements that we continually make on wikipedia. There are other other websites out there which have different policies, I wish you luck in finding one that would be interested in such a commercial opportunity. WereSpielChequers (talk) 21:10, 7 April 2012 (UTC)


I have created a proposal for a new system for cross-project validation of qualified experts in various fields, which will ultimately allow us to validate materials on the encyclopedia with these experts and ultimately improve the projects of Wikimedia to a citable resource. The proposal can be found here. Wer900 (talk) 19:10, 8 April 2012 (UTC)

Wikipedia -- the ultimate search engine?

To whom it may concern at the Wikipedia Foundation,

Would you please consider competing with Google?

To me it sounds like an utterly logical next step for Wikipedia anyway, and now I'm wondering if it might be our only remaining hope of privacy.

To me, "Imagine a world in which every single human being can freely share in the sum of all knowledge," while it might mean a world of education, does NOT mean a world of shared knowledge, without privacy protection in a search engine.

Google is a business after all, and any commercial entity simply has a different set of marching orders than "share the sum of all knowledge."

In closing, I'd just like to say that in my personal opinion making a goal of the genuinely free flow of all understanding would actually be the single most powerful thing we could do as a species to shape our own evolution going forward.

Very sincerely,

Katrina V.V Smith Carpinteria, CA

If Wikipedia were a search engine then, under the likely terms of pending United States legislation being developed, we might be required to enforce, on behalf of and at the direction of the Justice Department, the blocking of links to copyright infringing sites. Although it is our policy not to link to those sites, it is quite beyond our mission to undertake this sort of law enforcement role. ~ Ningauble (talk) 18:32, 17 March 2012 (UTC)
I'm not sure what you're talking about. The same type of legislation that affects search engines + user content also (generally) affects sites such as Wikipedia. --MZMcBride (talk) 14:55, 20 March 2012 (UTC)
Are you familiar with w:Wikia and its search efforts? It hasn't gone very well. There are outside organizations such as w:DuckDuckGo that seek to provide private search. Most rely on the major search engines for their infrastructure/crawling, though. --MZMcBride (talk) 14:55, 20 March 2012 (UTC)
  • What's with this never-ending crusade against Google? They're a great company with a great search engine. They also happen to donate millions to the WMF.  ono  22:47, 4 April 2012 (UTC)
    • Google is evil. --MZMcBride (talk) 04:56, 5 April 2012 (UTC)
      • Google was good — but it became evil after crawling AN/I. ;-) -- Proofreader77 (talk) 05:21, 5 April 2012 (UTC)
        • That's one for the quote bin ;) SJ talk  02:04, 10 April 2012 (UTC)

Going ons

Hi. Template:Main Page/WM News is severely lacking in new information about up-coming events. Does anyone know of any upcoming events that could be added? Thanks. Killiondude (talk) 20:45, 21 March 2012 (UTC)

It's not Meta focused, but Wikimedia Conference 2012 is in session right now. :) --Maggie Dennis (WMF) (talk) 16:49, 29 March 2012 (UTC)
That seems to have been added, but more additions are welcome. *bump* Killiondude (talk) 04:53, 10 April 2012 (UTC)


There are millions of images and lots of other content that is currently copyright protected, or licensed too restrictively for our use but which it would be good to be able to use in the future. How about we create a project to act as a digital vault, perhaps as a media wiki extension so that this could be an additional feature of Commons and the various WikiSources. Things imported into the Archive would either have an out of copyright date when they would be automatically released, or would be stored as so many years after the death of x. The actual contents would only be viewable by the uploader and admins, but the metadata, including categories and descriptions would of course be available. I'm pretty sure that this would be compatible with information on a NC or ND license as we would not be making any commercial use of it or derivative works till the license ran out. Which other licenses this would be compatible with I leave to the lawyers, but I would hope that this could be organised in such a way that we could archive much that might otherwise be lost before it falls out of copyright.

Some of the data deposited might come out of copyright next year, others longer, the very longest perhaps not for 150 years.

I appreciate that we maybe able to retrieve some of this via the wayback site, but that isn't organised to release data as it comes out of copyright, WikiArchive would be. WereSpielChequers (talk) 12:00, 9 April 2012 (UTC)

It's an old proposal, you might want to contribute to it if you have something new to say: strategy:Proposal:Nonfree media vault or time capsule. --Nemo 13:16, 9 April 2012 (UTC)
Great idea - old but good. SJ talk  01:59, 10 April 2012 (UTC)
Thanks Nemo, that was one of the sad and depressing things about the Strategy process, lots of great ideas were proposed but not actioned. In hindsight it is a great shame Strategy wasn't run as a project on Meta. Maybe that would have resulted in more critical input and maybe more of those projects would have been implemented. Anyway two and a half years later lets see if there is enthusiasm to make this happen. WereSpielChequers (talk) 14:23, 10 April 2012 (UTC)

Sister projects committee

Recent discussion on foundationwikimedia-l led to the creation of a page about a proposed committee to work with sister projects, including some of the suggestions listed above. This group would work with people suggesting new project ideas, help them organize their thoughts (on strategy, meta, mailing lists), and help shepherd them through a review and approval process. It would also review existing sister projects to see what support they need, and would review requests to shut down, merge, or spin off sister projects.

Suggestions for this committee, or people interested in taking part, are welcome on its page. SJ talk  01:59, 10 April 2012 (UTC)

Default to Auto signature

I'm a big fan of Mediawiki, for me it has the right balance of code and text and fixing the occasional table feeds my inner geek. But the arrangement re signatures does seem wrong to me. It also seems wrong to newbies, despite a large part of every welcome message being an exhortation to sign ~~~~ on their talkpage posts, we get loads of newbies getting it wrong. So why not flip things the other way? If every time you posted on a talkpage the default was for the system to add your signature then wouldn't life be a lot more intuitive for newbies? You'd need an option "Don't sign this time" because sometimes you genuinely don't want to sign a talkpage edit. You'd also need a user preference for users who are habituated to always typing ~~~~ and want to opt out of the change. The programmers would presumably have the nouse to code things such that any posting ending ~~~ didn't have another signature added on the end. Now I appreciate that some will say that liquid threads would solve this problemt, but liquid threads does a lot more besides and has a few problems of its own. But autosigning would save us all a few key depressions and make mediawiki a bit more user friendly without any of the complications of Liquid threads. More importantly it would mean we could take a whole sentence out of every single welcome message and maybe replace it with something more useful. WereSpielChequers (talk) 14:41, 10 April 2012 (UTC)

bugzilla:19110 --MZMcBride (talk) 22:17, 10 April 2012 (UTC)
I'm not surprised that I'm not the first to suggest this. But it has stalled at Bugzilla with a low priority, I think this is actually worth doing. WereSpielChequers (talk) 22:48, 11 April 2012 (UTC)

Creating a Wikipedia page

My name is Kyle Brackman and I'm wondering how to create a Wikipedia page and how to get the things I need to make it into an offical Wikipedia page because I need links to other articles, interal links, a picture, and whatever else I need to make the page better. Can anyone help me out? I would be really happy. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Kyle Brackman (talk) 20:18, 11 April 2012‎

You can get started by reading the w:WP:TUTORIAL and "your first article" page. There's no "offic[i]al" approval of pages. To link to another page use [[target page]], which becomes target page. (you can also display links as other words, [[target page|example]]). Infoboxes (thing on right side/top of many articles) are explained here. The YFA page will help you with anything else. For live help see #wikipedia-en-helpconnect, this page is kinda unrelated for this (also w:WP:NCHC is on-topic) πr2 (tc) 20:23, 11 April 2012 (UTC)
The topic must be notable, you must include reliable sources, and you should write from a neutral point of view. The w:WP:WIZ might be the best way to start. πr2 (tc) 20:27, 11 April 2012 (UTC)

Proposal about Meta-Wiki's future

Hi. Please see and mailarchive:wikimedia-l/2012-April/119713.html. Killiondude (talk) 06:32, 12 April 2012 (UTC)

Wikimedia Highlights, March 2012

Highlights from the Wikimedia Foundation Report and the Wikimedia engineering report for March 2012, with a selection of other important events from the Wikimedia movement
About · Subscribe/unsubscribe · Distributed via Global message delivery, 04:01, 13 April 2012 (UTC)

Spelling error???

I found this parameter (repeated twice) COMMONS_PARAMERTER=LOCAL_PARAMETER. Is this correct or is this a typo??? — Ineuw talk 18:29, 15 April 2012 (UTC)

Sorry, I should have been more specific: talk 20:56, 16 April 2012 (UTC)

CISPA blackout?

I suggest we do another blackout against CISPA but a plain blackout won't convince them. We need to come up with something convincing. We're also discussing at Uncyclopedia's forum. 02:24, 15 April 2012 (UTC)

  • I completely agree with you. Kraŭs (talk) 17:12, 26 April 2012 (UTC)

Creating a new Wikipedia page - Translating Information from English version of Wikipedia page to another language

Hello, I apologise in advance for not knowing whether this is the correct place to start this disscussion but I was recently asked about the names of Wenlock and Mandeville but in Chinese. I have tried looking for their Chinese names on other websites however there is no name yet for these Olympic Mascots.

I was wondering whether it would be alright if I started a new Wikipedia Page by translating Information from the English Version of Wenlock and Mandeville. In the process I will have to give the Mascots a Chinese name.

Personally I want to make a close translation of the information and names thus I think it is important that I choose the Chinese characters for the Mascot's names wisely. However as the information I would like to help begin to translate is so important and could potentially be used by many people around the world (especially since we are already within 100 days to the 2012 London Olympics) I was wondering if I should even think about starting to translate as well as giving a properly thought out name for the Mascots.

If I am allowed to begin the new page and give names to the Mascots, I aim to translate their names so that not only does their Chinese names sound similar to their English names but hopefully their Chinese meaning is also closely related the the original meaning of their names. --Densebrains (talk) 17:09, 26 April 2012 (UTC)

Help, I am an administrator at the Esperanto Wikisource but I can't delete pages

How do I fix this? Kraŭs (talk) 17:11, 26 April 2012 (UTC)

Nevermind, figured it out. Kraŭs (talk) 17:13, 26 April 2012 (UTC)

Header for Special:Export

How i can use Special:Export for my purposes. I send next header from my app:

string request = "POST HTTP/1.1\r\n"
		 "Content-Length: 32\r\n"
		 "Content-Type: application/x-www-form-urlencoded\r\n"
		 "Connection: close\r\n\r\n"

but it render to me page about error:

  • HTTP/1.0 400 Bad Request Server: squid/2.7.STABLE9 Date: Mon, 23 Apr 2012 14:45:12 GMT Content-Type: text/html Content-Length: 3111 X-Squid-Error: ERR_INVALID_URL 0 X-Cache: MISS from X-Cache-Lookup: NONE from Connection: close

I need to create tools to replace inwiki links to help in translation. I'm sure what some such tool already exist, but i want to do it myself.

Your HTTP request is wrong. It should be either "POST /w/index.php..." or "POST". You should also take a look at Platonides (talk) 15:13, 29 April 2012 (UTC)