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Wikipedia:Village pump (idea lab)

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The idea lab section of the village pump is a place where new ideas or suggestions on general Wikipedia issues can be incubated, for later submission for consensus discussion at Village pump (proposals). Try to be creative and positive when commenting on ideas.
Before creating a new section, please note:

Before commenting, note:

  • This page is not for consensus polling. Stalwart "Oppose" and "Support" comments generally have no place here. Instead, discuss ideas and suggest variations on them.
  • Wondering whether someone already had this idea? Search the archives below, and look through Wikipedia:Perennial proposals.
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Notification system for files on Commons nominated for deletion

A typical concern with uploading files to Commons for use on enwp is that the files may be deleted without the uploader's and/or enwp community's knowledge. So, I'm thinking about building a service that aggregates Commons deletion nominations for files used on enwp. I'm currently considering two formats:

  1. A bot can post to a local noticeboard and ping interested parties (e.g. the original uploaders or editors who have elected to watch a certain file)
  2. A bot can leave talk page notifications on the uploader's talk page and/or affected articles (unsure of how to do this without being spammy for files with many uses)
  3. Other Suggestions?

Is this something that you would find useful? Any thoughts/suggestions are appreciated. Thanks, FASTILY 23:41, 16 November 2017 (UTC)

Ping for @Jo-Jo Eumerus -FASTILY 23:41, 16 November 2017 (UTC)
Er...notifications have been global since the echo system was overhauled in July 2016. If someone posts on your talk page at Commons, which they should do whenever they tag an image for deletion or start a DR, then you should get a notification here . No bot required. Check your preferences if this isn't happening. Preferences -> Notifications -> Cross-wiki notifications. --Majora (talk) 00:45, 17 November 2017 (UTC)
Sure, but how about the cases where: a) files have been transferred to Commons? b) the uploader is inactive but the file is used in an article? These are some of the specific cases that I'm interested in fixing. -FASTILY 06:38, 17 November 2017 (UTC)
Besides, I am not certain that cross-wiki notifications are by default on. Jo-Jo Eumerus (talk, contributions) 16:19, 17 November 2017 (UTC)
I believe that they are. WhatamIdoing (talk) 03:29, 1 December 2017 (UTC)
Those two cases are quite different from each other, but (b) and some of the common cases of (a) would be solveable by a bot that monitored commons and posted to en.wp. A heuristic could be monitoring "page creations of [[Commons:Deletion requests/*]]" in realtime or scanning "pages transcluded on [[Commons:Deletion requests/yyyy/mm/dd]]" at the end of each day. And (b) is easy after that: look for what en.wp pages use the image and post a note to its article-talk page. For (a), if the image description is well-formatted, can look for an en.wp user in the |source= or |author= field. And for files transwikied by certain bots or tools, there is an standard format of upload history that could be checked for an en.wp uploader. DMacks (talk) 21:16, 17 November 2017 (UTC)
...like User:CommonsNotificationBot. @ErrantX: any prognosis on your bot? DMacks (talk) 21:51, 17 November 2017 (UTC)
Its been dead for a bit so I'd have to re-write it, probably, given that it's based on a v. old pywikibot codebase. But yes, that's effectively what that Bot did. It was reasonably successful, in that it alerted to stuff; I am not so sure I have any good examples of people then fixing issues from it. And there was a tendency for certain talk pages to fill up with notices as masses of images were (correctly) removed from Commons. And then there was the influx of people asking me why I was deleting their images ;) I've got the code somewhere if anyone wants it, and technically the bot is still approved.... --Errant (chat!) 08:16, 20 November 2017 (UTC)
Currently part of the wishlist[1] with decent support. If this gets selected and User:Fastily wants to collaborate with Community Tech that would be cool. Doc James (talk · contribs · email) 21:34, 2 December 2017 (UTC)

Huh, I had the same exact idea when editing today and came here to post it. I'm glad people are already talking about/working on it! A bot like the one @DMacks: describes would be very useful, especially for pages with a lot of images. --HighFlyingFish (talk) 10:31, 14 December 2017 (UTC)

Time to call time on the Articles For Creation

Fundamentally, Wikipedia is about the wisdom of the crowd (providing such wisdom is sourced). Wiki's in essense are community-collaborated sites, But I surely can't be the only one who sees that the AFC process goes against these fundamentals; Instead of pages being created and edited collaboratively, new editors (who have been led to believe that AFC is the only way to submit a new page) have their creations scrutinised at the whim of one, maybe two editors through a process that is hidden to the rest of the Wiki. this is clearly not how Wikipedia is supposed to run.

If this was a case of mere spam and joke page prevention, then it might be understandable, but it seems that AFC reviewers are actually taking it upon themselves to assess articles by quality as if they were old media editors. One account tells of a page declined for "too many citations", only for the next submission of the same article to be declined for "too little citations".

We already have New page patrolling and Articles for Deletion, both of which are much more transparent than AFC. And yet for new users to the Wiki, AFC, which is by far the strictest of any of these three, is actually the first wall they face. If anything, the AFC wall should come after the NPP and AFD, not before.

What is a well-meaning attempt to help newcomers, has actually morphed into it's opposite. I've even seen pages on AFC being nominated for deletion, when all it took was a few hours googling to find notability and create a page that was worthy. AFC essentially is putting new articles at the whim of one editor, rather than a community consensus, which is what Wikipedia is supposed to be. Not only does it contradict the principle of Wiki-magic, but it is untransparent about it. We regularly see people at AFD helping out pages, this does not happen at AFC. Does anyone really think that given a transparent choice, new editors would rather submit their articles to one editor rather than a community at AFD?

As has been reported, since 2005, Wikipedia's editor numbers have been declining, and even going down. it may or may not be a coincidence that this is when AFC started.

I think a proposal is in order to either scrap AFC altogether or reduce the acceptance guidelines to basic notabiltiy and verifiability and stop editors from acting as quality gatekeepers which is something that can be cleaned up in mainspace by the community, as it is meant to be. Egaoblai (talk) 03:28, 3 December 2017 (UTC)

  • I definitely agree with your points. But I think that some form of the AfC process will still be needed as a way for new editors to specifically choose to request the community to evaluate the inclusion-worthiness of their article. – Uanfala (talk) 11:44, 3 December 2017 (UTC)
So I guess my reasoning here, is that AFD is already the way in which the community evaluates the inclusion process. My problem with AFC, is that it's not the community evaluating, it's one editor most of the time, which puts articles at the whim of one, rather than what wiki should be which is the community.Egaoblai (talk) 04:37, 4 December 2017 (UTC)
  • The basic acceptability criteria for AfC is already whether or not it meets notability. If it is reasonable to suspect that the article will be a keep if brought to AfD then the reviewer should accept it. Obviously for BLPs there is a second layer or scrutiny but beyond that, GNG (and the other notability guidelines) is what reviewers should be going for. If you find people who aren't doing that bring it up to them.

    As for scrapping it, absolutely 100% no. AfC was created after the restriction of article creation to just logged in accounts. Now with ACTRIAL where exactly do you think people are going to go? If you think we don't have enough editors now wait until there isn't any alternative to mainspace creation. --Majora (talk) 01:03, 4 December 2017 (UTC)

    • no, AfC was created in response to the original ACTRIAL being reject by user:Jorm - "do not fix". those editors who insist on no ip article creations, responded to that rejection, with an arcane bitey process that is a ban in effect, if not by consensus rule. the fact that people will not help you in your bitey process, does not mean there is a lack of editors to help in a not bitey process. and the anti-ip non-AGF "not everyone can edit" attitude never dies does it? 98.163.68.171 (talk) 17:33, 5 December 2017 (UTC)
      • " anti-ip non-AGF "not everyone can edit" attitude never dies." SImple numbers, if we let IPs make pages willy nilly we would need to "call in reinforcement from the Illinois National Guard". I work primarily in coutner vandalism and have plenty of AGF for IPs. That is why I don't have a dumb "This user wants to stamp out IPs and make everyone log-in" userbox on my userpage. IPs and then non-auto-confirmed users were restricted for a good reason. Some of which is germane to the discussion on whether or not to kill off AFC. L3X1 (distænt write) 18:15, 5 December 2017 (UTC)
      • For the record, AfC was around long before Jorm vetoed ACTRIAL. Julià Reig Ribó was an article I accepted as a part of AfC in 2007. AfC was originally created to allow IPs to create articles. Also, for the record since I've said this off-wiki plenty of times, in my opinion AfC submissions were of a much higher quality when they were mainly IPs. Along with Kudpung I was probably the driving force behind the implementation of ACTRIAL this time around, and I certainly do not have an anti-IP point of view: I hold the belief that IP editors probably do significantly less vandalism than registered but non-autoconfirmed users and I have threatened to block users for edit warring with IPs. Hell, I even have a userbox on my user page supporting IP editing. ACTRIAL has nothing to do with IP users, who have not been allowed to create articles in over a decade. It was designed to increase the quality of articles by limiting the number of creations that simply weren't appropriate for Wikipedia. TonyBallioni (talk) 05:42, 7 December 2017 (UTC)
        • Tony, ACTRIAL wasn't designed to change article quality. It was designed to "examine the effects of disabling article creation for non-autoconfirmed newly registered editors". It is entirely possible that the net result is no change in article quality, or worse article quality. For example, we might learn that the "new" accounts most likely to deal with these restrictions are paid editors. Several editors will no doubt recall the multiple reports at WP:AN, ANI and COIN about paid editing farms shifting to using autoconfirmed accounts shortly in the weeks before ACTRIAL began (e.g., here). If ACTRIAL disproportionately discourages innocent volunteers, then the better, less spammy articles will be lost (the volunteer will not bother creating it) or hidden in draftspace (and then quietly deleted next year), but the paid editors will continue as they are now. From the comments in this discussion, it sounds like we're also learning that reducing the backlog at NPP means shifting it elsewhere, which is also not exactly an improvement to either article quality or to volunteer efforts. WhatamIdoing (talk) 00:06, 14 December 2017 (UTC)
          • That is the purpose of the research, but the driving factor behind why the community wanted it in the first place was because articles created by new accounts were crap. I'm well aware of the paid gaming of it, but it is actually very easy to spot, and if anything ACTRIAL has made its detection easier than it was in the past. TonyBallioni (talk) 00:09, 14 December 2017 (UTC)
  • If you are concerned about TPTB of AfC, why not go to WT:WPAFC to discuss the process? Also, I see that you duplicated "Draft:Geological Society of Sri Lanka" into Geological Society of Sri Lanka, which was rejected three times (or four if counting first time rejected as duplicate). I disagree with the idea to scrap the AFC; AFC is needed for now, despite its flaws. Look at Draft:Bill Fink (see history and other discussions related to it); I even requested deletion of Draft:Edward Leung Yiu-ming because I figured it's too much of a risk after several rejections. --George Ho (talk) 02:16, 4 December 2017 (UTC)
    • Here's the problem, Draft:Geological Society of Sri Lanka was sitting in AFC, being constantly rejected, and in fact up for deletion as a draft. I stumbled upon it by pure chance, as I was going on a wiki-wander and saw that it was up for miscellaneous deletion. If it hadn't been submitted to that I would have never have found it. I adopted the page and very quickly found plenty of notability proving articles in English language media, about this organisation that has been holding high profile conferences for 30+ years, publishes a peer reviewed journal and works with the government on Geological issues. And that organisation was up for draft deletion! What's clear to me at least is that many articles on AFC either rejected, abandoned in frustration or deleted, when if that same article had been submitted to AFD, it would have easily passed, or at the very least saved by an editor.
      I shudder to think how many articles are currently shelved on AFC that would benefit from community input rather than one or two AFC editors rejected them. We've all seen countless submissions on AFD that have a balance of Keep and Delete votes. AFC basically puts articles down to the luck of the draw, rather than a community consensus. If people support the notion that Wikipedia is a community-written Wiki, then the current state of AFC does not match that and must be changed.Egaoblai (talk) 04:37, 4 December 2017 (UTC)
      • Time is the community's precious commodity, though. Sure, it'd be nice if all decisions could go through an efficient community consensus process. But at the rate incoming pages are created, ways to focus the community's time is needed. Screening articles created by IP addresses is one of the ways English Wikipedia has chosen to do this. isaacl (talk) 05:16, 4 December 2017 (UTC)
      • To fix the duplication issue, the draft revisions were merged into "Geological Society of Sri Lanka" per request at WP:REPAIR (diff). I still think scrapping out AfC process is a bad idea. BTW, there is meta:Research:Autoconfirmed article creation trial, which can intrigue you. George Ho (talk) 09:43, 4 December 2017 (UTC)
  • Support AfC doesn't work well, just like the Incubator and Nupedia didn't work. I am regularly involved with new content -- either creating it myself or helping others get started at outreach events like editathons. I avoid AfC completely because it's so slow -- it can take weeks for a contribution to be reviewed. I don't get the impression that it adds any value because its focus is too negative -- it's all about finding reasons to say no. If a topic is worthless then let the NPP despatch it with a speedy deletion. If a topic has merit then it should be in mainspace where anyone and everyone can find it. Andrew D. (talk) 08:12, 4 December 2017 (UTC)
  • Oppose Interesting how the support for proposals to kill off the horrible useless evil AFC mostly come from people who have never done any work there, or maybe they tried it once years ago... Yes there are some bad reviews, however reviewers who are consistently bad are removed. Some of the comments here demonstrate abysmal ignorance of AFC's workflow. Perhaps a better way can be found to reduce incompetent or erroneous reviews and the workflow can probably be improved too. What some folks here are losing sight of is the essential difference between NPP and AFC. AFC is fundamentally a mechanism to actually assist newbies to write an acceptable article, NPP's only mechanism is to summarily kill off anything that does not meet the standard. At AFC the draft writer is told; "We cannot accept this draft for this reason, here is a guideline on how to fix the problem. If you need further assistance the help page is here". At NPP the only message they get is; "This is crap. Kill it!". A basic problem with AFC is that some submitters arrive there with the idea that reviewing is an adversarial process, like a court trial, and thus they are already inclined to reject the review. Those who come with a collaborative mindset have a far better experience. Roger (Dodger67) (talk) 10:47, 4 December 2017 (UTC)
  • Support If an article is good it will stand on it's own. If it is bad it will either be deleted or improved based on the nature of it's problems. SpartaN (talk) 18:07, 4 December 2017 (UTC)
  • Comment-Except AFD and mainspeace (as is the point of wikipedia) is far better a collaborative space for wikipedians to better articles. I gave the example above of how an organisation was about to have their draft page deleted, when all it took was a quick google search to prove their high notability. The problem with AFC is that its rarely collaborative, because it's normally one editor against a submitter. We also have issues of admins threatening to revoke privileges for other admins if they "let in" borderline articles. This surely cannot go ahead. Consider this example:
    • a page on mainspace is mostly good but has a few problems, such as a few paragraphs written in a NPOV style. The community either corrects this via the talk page or project pages or if that doesn't happen...
    • the page is nominated for Deletion. The community recognise the page is worthy and either edit the offending paragraphs away.
    • Alternatively the page is submitted to AFC before mainspace. The gods roll a dice and the submitter is given a reviewer who rejects the article completly based on the NPOV paragraphs. The hapless submitter desperately tries to make changes, but then is told a second time that their isn't enough references by another reviewer. All the submitter wants to do is to get the page onto mainspace so it can be collaboratively edited by the community, but now the reviewers at AFC are demanding that he/she turn out a page that is not only notable and verifiable but is of high quality too!. Frustrated, she gives up and thus Wikipedia loses another potential editor.
    • I'm not saying this happens all the time, but even once is too much.Egaoblai (talk) 11:54, 4 December 2017 (UTC)
  • Some options are for complainants are to go in and review some pages. They could even go through the g13 candidates and rescue a few. When I go to delete these expired drafts, there is probably about 10% worthy of mainspace. I would also like a simpler way to accept a declined page, but we can always click on the move link and then cleanup. The final option is to review the reviewers who decline, or otherwise. Then talk to them or discuss at suitable venues. Even today I accepted an article that someone declined an article because it used primary research sources (not actually a real decline reason), when actually several of those sources were reviews. Graeme Bartlett (talk) 12:29, 4 December 2017 (UTC)
  • AfC reviewers need to be reminded that their job is to check for notability and verifiability only. If it is spammy or 'messy' it should only be declined if the problem is severe. Everything else should happen on the NPP side of things. I also see WAY too many articles that would pass NPP end up being declined at AfC because they are messy, formatted a little wrongly, or because the reviewer can't be bothered to do a 2 minute google search for the topic to check if it is notable independent of the sources in the draft (something we are required to do at NPP before taking it to AfD, etc.). Some of this stems from the opinion that AfC is a place to 'help out newbies'. this may have been the original intent, but it has failed spectacularly at this. I think it is time to recognise AfC for what it is: a gatekeeper for basic quality assurance. New Page Patrol fills a similar role, but not the same one. NPP has to be reactive, which puts a lot more pressure on reviewers to argue for deletion. This might be more 'collaborative' but it is also much more time consuming. A first pass by AfC for people who really have no idea what they are doing (i.e. new editors) stops attack pages, blatantly spammy stuff, etc from even being submitted by new users in the first place (most don't bother if they know it won't make it to mainspace without review).
    TL;DR: AFC need to simplify their workflow to just CSDable stuff, notability and verifiability. — Insertcleverphrasehere (or here) 17:54, 4 December 2017 (UTC)
    • That's already been kinda happening - though there is quite a bit of disagreement, people are pushing for lower standards and only checking if it is likely to survive AfD. Galobtter (pingó mió) 15:31, 5 December 2017 (UTC)
    • At least as an AfC reviewer myself, I don't do anything more than thse 3 core-tasks.But, it may be worth noting that the ambit of CSDable stuff varies across editors. Winged Blades Godric 15:32, 5 December 2017 (UTC)
  • WT:AFC has been notified of this thread. Primefac (talk) 15:24, 5 December 2017 (UTC)
  • And, Egaoblai, I shall expect that in future, when you undertake such massive actions, you have the basic courtesy of notifying involved projects et al in a seperate sub-section rather than sneaking them in...Winged Blades Godric 15:32, 5 December 2017 (UTC)
  • No. Just... no. And... before folks go criticizing a process and suggesting it be eliminated, it's probably beneficial to... get literally any experiences whatsoever in the process you're criticizing. GMGtalk 15:39, 5 December 2017 (UTC)
  • Echo GMG.As I once noted during NPR discussions, the most uninformed comments come from the least-experienced folks.And, I don't believe that someone with a net of 325 edits under the belt is an ideal user to reflect the community- a word that he/she frequently seeks to invoke/insert in his/her arguments over a lot of spheres at a lot many venues.I also see that there have been some attempts at metaphorization and hyperboles as a weapon of choice but most of them are typical BS like rolling a dice! Also, some folks apparently prefer that greeted with a deletion template is far more conducive to attracting editors than a decline at AfC and temds to think that AfDs almost always result in keeps!Winged Blades Godric 15:50, 5 December 2017 (UTC)
  • Weak neutral I've never found AFC particularly useful; in practice I have found many interactions I have observed between people who work there and the new editors who use it to be curt, bitey, and not at all helpful in directing new users towards improving their editing skills or in understanding Wikipedia's arcane rules, which is what it SHOULD be. I suppose if someone is finding it useful, that's fine. It's reason for existance, however, the reason it was created, was to improve the article creation process for new users, so their creations were not merely deleted outright. I'm not sure its all that successful in that direction. --Jayron32 15:53, 5 December 2017 (UTC)
  • Oppose. With no AfC I guess the suggestion includes to let everybody including IP's create articles directly. New page patrol may be handling the current load in reasonable time but would get a lot more to do if every IP could create an article in seconds. New articles are hidden from Google with noindex for 90 days but I'm not sure all complete junk creations would get a review in that time. And our own search function indexes all articles right away, and wikilinks to new articles also work. Many crap pages would be created by IP's clicking existing red links or quickly adding links to them. If there is concern about AfC reviewers having power to judge a page alone (a power admins already have to speedy delete articles but AfC reviewers may not be admins), then we could consider a system where AfC reviewers can request AfD-like community input on borderline cases. But it would be a waste of time to require community discussion for all pages. A lot of them are complete crap. There is a reason we have different processes CSD, prod, and AfD for mainspace articles. PrimeHunter (talk) 16:34, 5 December 2017 (UTC)
  • Oppose A couple of bad review(s|ers) does not mean we need to scrap AFC altogether. It's worth stating that AfC reviewers could sometimes be more helpful, but I assure you the vast majority are a lot more understanding and provide a gentler learning curve when compared to what a new editor would face when their article is dragged to AfD.. -- There'sNoTime (to explain) 16:35, 5 December 2017 (UTC)
  • Oppose note that a vote on the future of AfC was recently held and I fail to see how the arguments for deletion are any more advanced then they were in April. AfC is an important way for newcomers, those most likely to be deterred if their articles are tag bombed or immediately nominated for deletion to have a softer way they can seek feedback. Sure- some reviewers are bitey but still less so than if their article was immediately speedied. AfC offers good sound advice to those who reach out, and saying that some reviewers are unhelpful is not a damning indictment of the whole system. jcc (tea and biscuits) 17:42, 5 December 2017 (UTC)
  • Oppose I was originally going to sit this out, but as defacto head of the project I think I'm obligated to say something. Godric made a comment on a different talk page (in a related discussion) about how this proposal (and in particular some hyperbolic examples) fall within the Nirvana fallacy. Sure, we'd love to get the backlog down to a week (or maybe two). Sure, we'd love to be able to work one-on-one with every single editor who graces our doorstep. Sure, we'd love it if every reviewer was perfect and never made a mistake and could magically (and instantly!) tell if the subject is notable just by looking at two sentences and an IMDb reference. But that's not going to happen.
    • First point of contention (going off the example I linked above) - "new users don't get any feedback": we have a ton of resources for new users to ask questions. There's the IRC help line, the AFC Help Desk, the Help Desk itself, the Teahouse - all of which are linked on the decline notices. There are also of course the reviewers themselves. We had 55 reviewers do more than 10 reviews in the last month, and every single one of them answers questions on their talk page when a new user asks. Often there will be jaguars who will also comment on the situation, and people willing to contact WikiProjects to get more input (I personally have done all of the above multiple times in the last few weeks). Sure, they don't get access to every Wikipedian, but I've noticed over the years that the ones who ask questions are the most likely users to actually get their drafts approved, and the ones who refuse to listen to the advice given to them end up with a draft at MFD or themselves blocked for violating our TOS. Coincidence? I think not.
    • Second point of contention, per TNT's comment preceding mine: just because we have a handful of bad review(s|ers) does not mean the process is bad. I removed someone from the project two days ago because multiple people expressed concern about their reviewing capabilities. This is how feedback is supposed to work - you let people know there are issues and they get fixed. If someone sees a bad decline, tell someone (or just move it to the article space). If you see a bad acceptance, kick it back to draft. If someone is seeing a systemic issue with a reviewer (or the process itself), we need to know. There's no point in shutting down the factory simply because a light bulb needs replacing; I don't think we should go through the "shut AFC down" rigmarole every time someone screws up a review. We know there are issues (big and small), but hand-waving and (dare I say it) blowing hot air will not solve things.
      Could AFC be improved? Absolutely! There are things I see regularly that need discussing (or are discussed) which lead to a better understanding of how we should be handling the Project and dealing with new users. In the past that wasn't so great, but we've developed a core of really fantastic reviewers who are interested in collaborating and are willing to throw out crazy ideas to see what works. Our backlog has jumped mainly due to ACTRIAL, but I hope that in the next month or so (after the glut of student-project-garbage dies down) we'll be able to start cutting into that and getting it back to more manageable levels.
      I genuinely, honestly, truthfully want to hear constructive feedback on how we can improve the process, because if it's a good suggestion I'll spend less time writing diatribes like this and more time reviewing drafts. If you don't want to post it at WT:AFC or WT:AFCP, post it on my talk page or shoot me an email. We might not always agree, but I will do my best to be amenable to the suggestions. There are some things that are near-impossible to correct (how do we get more reviewers, or get the existing ones reviewing more? No one knows) but even small tweaks can be a net positive.
      Also, for anyone interested, I have been keeping detailed statistics of the review process for quite a while, and I'm happy to discuss them (in a separate venue). Primefac (talk) 17:51, 5 December 2017 (UTC)
  • Comment - There has been scope creep at AfC. It started out as a more friendly place for new editors to submit their first article. It has now become a gauntlet. It now differs from NPP in that nips at new users straight away instead of taking a huge chomp at some random point months after submission. There is a strong pushback at NPP and AfC against low-quality submissions. The Wikipedia that Uanfala supposes in proposing to abolish AfC is not the Wikipedia that currently exists (at least not from a new articles perspective). I'm neutral about abolishing AfC but either way this goes, the community is going to continue to reject partially developed new material. ~Kvng (talk) 18:08, 5 December 2017 (UTC)

Break 1

  • Oppose. I have never used AFC and never will. I know how to write an article to fit policy. But I didn't learn the policies overnight. I spent many months reading and learning from other peoples' work and mistakes what to do and not to do. The nom does not do a good job of explaining why we should abolish AFC. Yeah, if poor editors run it we will get bad results. But AfC is set up to aid the clueless (no offense) new editors who wish to write an article. L3X1 (distænt write) 18:20, 5 December 2017 (UTC)
  • Comment I wish there was a link between AfC and Teahouse (or some other space where you could go for coaching). I might be naive but I think many new editors who wind up at AfC are super motivated to do something that they imagine is a great contribution but know nothing about policies and the basics of what makes a good article. The current AfC process bludgeons them with templates (which point to policies, incomprehensible if you are new) and encourage them to ask questions on the AfC reviewers talk page (YMMV and also I don't think new editors even understand what that means). I think it we walked through this process with an actual new editor we would get some insights into the pitfalls (a big, new task I understand, but I'm a huge fan of user studies). I do appreciate that this could be a useful service and obvious more volunteers are needed for this type of work since the workload seems like it is pretty crushing at the moment. I think we should reimagine AfC as a force for possible good where new editors are encouraged to do better work, not chased off. Right now it seems like a place of "no". Merrilee (talk) 21:32, 5 December 2017 (UTC)
Agree. From what I have heard, AfC needs improving not removal. L3X1 (distænt write) 22:10, 5 December 2017 (UTC)
The AFC helper script has a default option to invite authors to the teahouse so the requested link already existed. AFC is structurally sound. I just think some reviewers have strayed a bit (perhaps due to pressure of a mounting backlog) and are behaving more like NPP patrollers than teahouse helpers. ~Kvng (talk) 18:47, 6 December 2017 (UTC)
  • support AfC is failing - 2 months for a review is too long, new editors cant be expected to wait that long and most dont. The "reviews" arent helpful when they finally occur because rather encourage a contributor they just throw a lot of technical terms generally as abbreviations at them and walk away. "NPP is backlogged at 13k", AfC at 2500 and teahouse says they should be sending people there and there is the technical pending changes options. What I see is divided resources doing the same task in different ways, saying just give us more contributors isnt a solution when the process is itself driving new contributors away. The first step is too look at what aspects are working, AfC working aspects are those which are already being done by NPP & Teahouse which makes AfC redundant. Gnangarra 23:57, 5 December 2017 (UTC)
User:Gnangarra If you think two months is too long, the place to fix that is here. And given that you don't appear to have ever made a single edit to the Teahouse, for convenience that's here. GMGtalk 00:41, 6 December 2017 (UTC)
I don't see what the Teahouse has to do with this, its an alternative/new editor Help Desk, not the AFC complain desk, right? L3X1 (distænt write) 01:55, 6 December 2017 (UTC)
I don't have the faintest of ideas about how AFC, pending changes and Teahouse--the trio of them can be seemed by someone to be doing the same task!Winged Blades Godric 03:45, 6 December 2017 (UTC)
Ngatti-ngatti-ngatti if you truly think I dont have the faintest idea about AfC and successfully creating community building projects then nows your chance to correct it. Gnangarra 06:08, 6 December 2017 (UTC)
And you need to look carefully at what I wrote....I wrote I don't have....Don't confuse pronouns and then misplace words in my mouth.Cheers!Winged Blades Godric 06:15, 6 December 2017 (UTC)
Sure. I'll bite (no pun intended). I definitely suspect that you don't understand how AfC works. Saying that AfC throws acronyms in user's faces and walks away is a pretty clear way of saying you haven't used the helper script either at all, or for long enough that you don't remember how it works, and pretty certainly that you haven't frequented the AfC helpdesk (or the teahouse, or the help desk), to answer any questions, or answered any questions at your talk page from AfC contributors for whom a link to your talk page is always provided, or for that matter responding at the IRC help channel, for which a link is too always provided. These are things that our regular AfC contributors actually do and it's part of the reason the entire process is so time consuming.
Pointing to NPP, backlogged as it is at three or four times the magnitude of AfC, as the solution that works, and why we don't need AfC, flatly makes no sense. It certainly doesn't reach the level of depth of addressing time-consuming borderline judgement calls that hamstring both projects, and the lack of volunteers that both projects suffer from.
Saying that the teahouse replaces AfC is just silly, not least of which because the teahouse is one of around a half dozen helping forums, is a general purpose forum for new users, and there already exists a specific help forum for AfC. Saying that pending changes somehow helps to replace AfC makes about as much sense as saying rollback does. Both are anti-vandalism tools and have basically nothing whatsoever to do with the creation of new articles.
So to recap, as I said above, if you want to criticize a project, or call for its elimination, it helps to have literally any experience whatsoever contributing to that project. GMGtalk 12:08, 6 December 2017 (UTC)
I feel that the brilliant comment/perspective that AfC ≈ Pending changes ought to be rewarded suitably.But sadly anything in the likes of WP:COMMENT OF THE MONTH is a red-link.Winged Blades Godric 16:18, 6 December 2017 (UTC)
  • Comment Where is the mechanism for the community to disagree or dispute AFC calls? I thought about going to "help" but the time stamp seems overly complicated and I'm not sure if it's only meant for the writer rather than concerned bystanders like myself. The current system pits the submitter against the reviewer, but what about people who wish to object? I was just looking through the teahouse and found a plea from an new submitter (actually there are many in the same boat) who has created an article with a stack of references to independent publications that are about the subject and is being told by the reviewer that the submission Draft:Anuraag_Saxena doesn't pass because:
"This submission does not appear to be written in the formal tone expected of an encyclopedia article. Entries should be written from a neutral point of view, and should refer to a range of independent, reliable, published sources. Please rewrite your submission in a more encyclopedic format. Please make sure to avoid peacock terms that promote the subject."
This is ludicrous and the reviewer seems to be treating AFC as if it was some kind of classroom for producing perfect articles! Is there really a rule for FC that articles must be in the right tone or completely NPOV? These things can be dealt with by the Wiki community. I am grateful to the above reviewers who commented that they pass articles on AFC for notability and verifiability, but it's clear that others aren't doing this. Tagging Majora Graeme_Bartlett Winged_Blades_of_Godric, as they commented earlier about this issue in AFC. Egaoblai (talk) 12:56, 6 December 2017 (UTC)
Ok. Well. Looking at the teahouse currently, I'm seeing three threads dealing with declined AfC drafts. There's this thread where the article was apparently such blatant advertising that it was speedily deleted WP:G11. There's this thread by a fairly obvious WP:COI user who has been given a username block, and related to Draft:Shen Wai International School, which I have now nominated for speedy deletion as WP:G12 because it was directly copied and pasted from the official website. Then there's this thread, which was already asked and answered at the AfC helpdesk, related to Draft:Amitagarwal3000, which consists of three youtube links, a track listing, and it probably blatantly advertorial besides.
Regarding Draft:Anuraag Saxena, the user did ask at the teahouse, and was given very detailed advice on how to improve the draft, which they have been actively working on since. In other words, exactly how the process is supposed to work.
To answer your question, yes, there is a requirement that articles be appropriate in tone, which can be found at Wikipedia:WikiProject Articles for creation/Reviewing instructions. GMGtalk 13:31, 6 December 2017 (UTC)
The rules for AfC, Egaoblai, can be found here Wikipedia:WikiProject Articles for creation/Reviewing instructions#Main task. They do indeed say that the only thing people should be looking at is whether or not it is reasonable to believe that it would survive AfD. Again, BLPs have an extra layer of scrutiny because they have to but if people are going far beyond that then you should bring it up to them or ask for additional assistance from someone else. --Majora (talk) 02:49, 7 December 2017 (UTC)
Hi Majora thanks for the response, however, GreenMeansGo says that tone is a requirement, which would seem to contradict the idea that survival of AFD is the "only thing". Personally I think the survive AFd rule is the best one, as it means that pages of poor quality but which are notable can be worked on by the community.
As for "people going too far" is there a mechanism for this when it comes to rejected drafts, a public mechanism apart from using their talk page? Egaoblai (talk) 02:58, 7 December 2017 (UTC)
Well tone does matter to the point that if it is speedable under G11 then it certainly wouldn't survive AfD. In that regards, yes, tone does matter a great deal and a lot of AfC submissions are by COI editors who can't tell the difference between an advertisement and an encyclopedia article. There are a few avenues for assistance. You can ask at the project's help desk. You can ask at the normal help desk. You can even ask at the help channel on IRC. Obviously I would ask the reviewer first. But if you aren't getting anywhere with them and you truly believe that there was a mistake in reviewing there are alternative avenues. --Majora (talk) 03:02, 7 December 2017 (UTC)
Being eligible for G11 is not the criteria listed at the instructions. The criteria listed at the instructions is that the article be written from a neutral point of view. GMGtalk 10:59, 7 December 2017 (UTC)
The main criteria is and always has been whether or not it would survive AfD. If you brought an otherwise good article to AfD for NPOV issues you'd be shot down so quickly due to a WP:BEFORE violation. It even says right on that page, The argument "non-neutral point of view" (violates WP:NPOV) is often used, but often such articles can be salvaged, so this is not a very strong reason for deletion either. If you are rejecting things simply because of NPOV that does not rise to the level of advertising then you are not doing your job at AfC. Simple fact. --Majora (talk) 00:44, 9 December 2017 (UTC)
Thanks for the response. It seems like those requirements are part of the reason for the problems then. Egaoblai (talk) 13:40, 6 December 2017 (UTC)
Unfortunately, those requirement are necessary, because a very large portion of the drafts that get submitted to AfC are from editors with conflicts of interest, and many are written in a way where they would need to be mostly or entirely rewritten to comply with our policies on neutrality and promotionalism. There are already 21,000 published articles that have been tagged as promotional, and have yet to be fixed, in a backlog going back almost ten years. That's exactly why AfC does not accept these types of articles on the ground that the community can fix them, because the community is already struggling to fix the ones we already have. GMGtalk 13:50, 6 December 2017 (UTC)
On a practical note, if you see a declined submission that shouldn't have been declined, then you can simply move it into the mainspace, remove the AfC fluff, and then inform the creator that it has been accepted. There's no need to try establishing consensus with previous reviewers. – Uanfala (talk) 13:51, 6 December 2017 (UTC)
If any AFC reviewer had moved Anurag Saxena to main-space, that would have been most likely the end of his journey as a reviewer.And if such blunders are repeated by any non-AFC user using the move-tool followed by manual cleanups, I could fairly forecast a topic ban from moving other's drafts etc. to mainspace.And, if you aren't arguing for the sake of arguing, that is an outright G11 candidate.Also, since from our prev. Comments, you managed to think, that we three would accept it, I would assume that you don't have any idea about what CSDable stuff means.Winged Blades Godric 17:08, 6 December 2017 (UTC)
I believe there are adequate checks on reviewer behavior. If an author wants to challenge a decline, he may resubmit the draft and it is AFC policy for a different reviewer to look at it the second time. We have other reviewers monitoring abandoned drafts looking for ones that may have been declined inappropriately. In my opinion, it would be better if promising drafts got to mainspace earlier but many reviewers are disinclined to approve lower quality drafts either because their own standards are higher than the AFC minimum or because they fear reprisals from other reviewers with higher standards. ~Kvng (talk) 18:56, 6 December 2017 (UTC)
Seems like a great idea to monitor abandoned drafts (is there any tool to find these?), although it's bittersweet as it doesn't solve the problem of editor retention and why people are abandoning those drafts. Egaoblai (talk) 01:33, 7 December 2017 (UTC)
@Egaoblai: We have Category:AfC_postponed_G13 ~Kvng (talk) 19:41, 7 December 2017 (UTC)
  • Oppose This is a case of Baby v. Bathwater. There are a few bad apples, and as people who asked for my guidance can attest, it's my (perhaps controversial) view that declining a review based on content, that the reviewer can easily fix, is lazy. I've harped on people for "too short" declines "reference error" declines and the like, and I feel that's the type of things you're opposing as well. I've come across submissions that are a barely longer than a title with no references, and I Improve and Approve™. As reviewers it's not our job to do people's work for them, but I think when an effort is made by the submitter, who better to improve it? When done correctly, the AfC process is a formal conversation between people who want the best for this silly project. When it's spam, well, it makes me that much happier that we have the AfC safeguard. Drewmutt (^ᴥ^) talk 05:47, 7 December 2017 (UTC)
  • Oppose I highly recommend that the editors who support elimination of the AfC process to please volunteer at AfC and NPP for at least 3 months and help reduce the backlogs. A firsthand look at some of the articles that steadily stream in for review may influence your decision. Atsme📞📧 16:45, 7 December 2017 (UTC)
  • Oppose-If AFC was abolished, there would be a effective article creation ban on IPs and new users. This goes against the principles of a Encyclopaedia that anyone can change- — comment added by Force Radical (talkcontribs) 09:28, 8 December 2017 (UTC)
  • Perhaps we are being too strict at AFC. When I look at my earliest AFC acceptances in 2007, they would be laughed at today, but have now turned out to be reasonable articles eg [en.wikipedia.org] vs Case Closed: The Fourteenth Target; [en.wikipedia.org] vs Jim Butterworth (entrepreneur); [en.wikipedia.org] which may be acceptable in today's rules. A few others were later deleted, eg Fragile (2006 film), Bruce Poulin and Gary Kent (but these did have references!) Graeme Bartlett (talk) 01:01, 9 December 2017 (UTC)
  • I recently found this research report: "Accept, decline, postpone: How newcomer productivity is reduced in English Wikipedia by pre-publication review" [jodischneider.com] and It makes for interesting reading if anyone hasn't read it yet. Essentially they identify some of the same problems people in this discussion have made about AFC; it's not collaborative, it chases away newcomers, etc and has some recommendations for newcomers. Since I started this conversation, I'm inclined not to support removing AFC as it's clear that many benefit from it and a lot of reviewers are doing great work, but I do think it's clear that it needs an overhaul.Egaoblai (talk) 08:10, 9 December 2017 (UTC)
  • Suggestion: Instead of reviewing the article once a lot of editor time has been spent on it, what about a two-phase process for AFC that could help serve as a mentoring process and a softer gate for good faith editors (teach them how and why to fish edit and all that)... and provide an easier job for reviewers, particularly in the case of conflicted editors (a few sentences with a few references can be easier to assess than a very weak long article with citation overkill)?
  1. The editor writes a dotpoint statement of claims against standards of notability, along with sources that support each claim. This is assessed against WP:GNG, WP:SNG, WP:RS, etc.
  2. Once claims and sources are solid, the editor turns this into at an acceptable stub (ideally with formatting, content expansion, references, cats, stubsorts, wikiprojects, ...) that avoids the need for further edits at NPP, and/or is provided with alternative options/guidance along the lines of WP:ATD.
Ultimately, if an editor at AFC really wants their article moved to mainspace despite deficiencies (eg: through repeated resubmission) despite assessment that it doesn't meet WP:CCS/W:N/WP:V, then (after having warned them) perhaps just do so but immediately initiate deletion unless there's a clear violation. ~Hydronium~Hydroxide~(Talk)~ 10:17, 9 December 2017 (UTC)
@Graeme Bartlett: Thats already being done, especially with the rule about translations. The whole reason some people want to be a wikipedias is to contribute their bilingual knowledge only to be turned off by the fact you must have 500 edits and have to be an extended confirmed user of 30 days. YuriGagrin12 (talk) 14:58, 10 December 2017 (UTC)
  • AfC is slow, bitey, very non-welcoming for the newcomer. I see it a lot with drafts sent to MfD (admittedly biased to the bad side), and with real-world acquaintances who came to the project with enthusiasm and were met with ... nothing. For the newcomers, AfC is a separate space of seclusion, and the reviews are pedagogy. Newcomers include professional mature people, and they are treated like children. It's not beyond fixing, and good stuff comes out of it, although I am not sure of the numbers. WP:ACTRIAL is great at stopping people with absolutely no idea from creating new (unwatched, orphan) pages, it should cover draftspace as well. Newcomers should get involved with existing pages, alongside editing editor, before jumping into writing their first page on their pet topic, at least for 10 edits and four days. It is very rare that a new topic, with no mention already existing in mainspace to be improved, needs to be written right now. Current affairs topics may be an exception, but experienced editors will create the new page within minutes. Wikipedia's principles ("Wikipedia is free content that anyone can use, edit, and distribute"; & WP:SOP #2 "Newcomers are always to be welcomed"; #3 "You can edit this page right now" is a core guiding check on everything that we do. We must respect this principle as sacred") do not imply that newcomers (< 10 edits, < 4 days) need to be able to create new articles. --SmokeyJoe (talk) 22:27, 10 December 2017 (UTC)
  • OK. I have an idea: encourage and make it easy for new users to add wikiproject templates to draft talk pages. At the moment, people in this conversation are generally taking issue with two things: 1) the few editors that are not doing a good job reviewing, and 2) the lack of 'collaboration' on AfC drafts. The first one is unavoidable to some extent, but can be addressed by reviewers talking to others if they think they have made a dodgy call. However, my proposal can largely help to deal with the second one. We need to make it easy for newbies to add wikiprojects to drafts so that users from those wikiprojects can view and help out with those draft articles. The submission template notice should prompt users to add wikiprojects to get more eyes on their drafts, and also have a box that you can type in that autofills wikiprojects and a big button that says "Add Wikiproject" (similar to how AFCH and the Rater tool do it). Adding wikiprojects via this box should add the relevant template to the talk page (rated as draft class), which will give a heads up to various wikiprojects that there are draft articles in their topic area that need review. The technical issue of how to modify the {{sumbit}} template is up to somebody more skilled than I, but if I get some support for this idea, I'll ask over at VPT. — Insertcleverphrasehere (or here) 00:19, 11 December 2017 (UTC)
    • WikiProject banners? WikiProjects are a great theory, and were a great reality in Wikipedia's growth phase, but aren't they mostly a remnant of the past? --SmokeyJoe (talk) 01:30, 11 December 2017 (UTC)
      • Well, quite a few have lively discussion boards, and they do serve as a great place to find articles for the improvement of users' subjects of interest. Some are definitely defunct, but many are still quite active. — Insertcleverphrasehere (or here) 01:46, 11 December 2017 (UTC)
        • If many are still active, then I strongly support your idea. Is there an easy way to sort WikiProjects by activity? --SmokeyJoe (talk) 01:49, 11 December 2017 (UTC)
          • Well, there is Template:WikiProject status, which can be found on many wikiprojects, and notes that they are inactive or semi active or whatever (I checked a few wikiprojects and found it over at Wikipedia:WikiProject Georgia (U.S. state). It lists the wikiprojects in categories of 'defunct', 'inactive', 'semi-active' and 'active'. I am pretty sure that Evad37 used these categories in his rater so that defunct and inactive wikiprojects aren't brought up in the dropdown. He might know more about the technical implementation of developing this idea as part of the {{sumbit}} template for AfC drafts. — Insertcleverphrasehere (or here) 02:29, 11 December 2017 (UTC)
            • Some are still active (people still like to co-ordinate in common areas of interest), but I think they're not exactly bursting with people who are able and willing to work with newbie editors. But I suppose there's no harm in trying. isaacl (talk) 05:12, 11 December 2017 (UTC)
            • You could use Wikipedia:Database reports/WikiProject watchers and Wikipedia:Database reports/WikiProjects by changes to create a list of the 10 or 20 groups most likely to be responsive. It wouldn't cover everything, but it would cover a lot (including articles about women, health, military history, video games, and several sports). It would be nice if the "watchers" list were updated to include active watchers again (or to use it exclusively). "WikiProject Contents" is long dead, but it was extremely popular back in the day. WhatamIdoing (talk) 00:19, 14 December 2017 (UTC)

Break 2

  • Oppose - for now. Very legitimate arguments from SmokeyJoe (although some professional mature people do behave like children - my talk page is full of them). I, for one, can think of several reasons why Wikipedia would be better off without AfC. However, ACTRIAL when Scott, Blade, and I first campaigned for it many years ago, was centred around the very fact that those who are not autoconfirmed would be forced through the Wizard and AfC and hence still have an opportunity to create an article - of sorts. This was the only way we could get consensus for it in the face of a nevertheless strong ideological contingent who religiously believe that Wikipedia was created so that every troll and spammer can tinker with it - a mantra based view that is so erroneously supported by, for example, relatively new user Force Radical who has as yet very little experience in these matters (I hasten to add however, whose initiatives in other areas are most welcome).
    Despite the amount of new content that comes through AfC, I have yet to be convinced that the number of approved new pages contains strictly necessary encyclopedic articles. Most of those drafts could be processed by a better performing NPP/NPR which is less personal, less bitey, and could be better if the reviewers would use the messaging feature that we provided them with in the Curation Toolbar, which could also easily have all the features of the AfC Helper Script added to it.
    To have a blanket ban on all non autoconfirmed creations to include drafts is of course therefore highly desirable, but it would need some very powerful and convincing arguments for it, and a backlog at AfC is not one of them.
    On a final note, this thread has been begun by the OP, another relatively new user (152 mainspace edits) ostensibly on the basis of their failure to understand our notability guidelines as illustrated at this AfD, and their draft that was declined here. Anyone wishing to discuss AfC vs NPP is recommended to see the dedicated project at WP:NPPAFC. Kudpung กุดผึ้ง (talk) 00:44, 11 December 2017 (UTC)
    • Hah! Absolutely do mature professionals sometimes behave childishly, and when they do, they are far more obstinate and persistent than any child. --SmokeyJoe (talk) 01:30, 11 December 2017 (UTC)
      • Hi Kudpung กุดผึ้ง thank you for your comments. You are right to say that there are some legitimate arguments here and I will do my best to summarise them. In retrospect, it was a mistake to advocate for dissolution of AFC of the bat, as it's clear that many feel it's useful and I have, due to a few recent experiences, over estimated the amount of poor reviewers. it's clear that a lot of people are giving time to work on the project and they should not be swept under the rug. On the other hand, I think my relative newness here can be an asset, as I can provide an insight into the mind of new editors. Firstly, it's really difficult to search for help on how to make a new article here, there seems to be a million pages, and often you find a page that you think might be the answer, but instead it turns out to be a meta page about the subject. Another thing is that the AFC process is offically an option, but the majority of new users working on drafts would never realise this, thinking it is mandatory. I think that not every new editor wants to make a perfect page from the outset; some are exciting about the prospect of working with others, but the AFC process can be overly adversarial, and essentially corrals a page in a single users domain. I've been doing a little bit of help in AFC with some new articles that are noteworthy but poorly written, for example, Draft:Saubhagya_Scheme, but the vast majority of rejected drafts languish and then are quietly deleted through g13 (sometimes indiscriminately). AFC is clearly needed for a lot of submissions, but there's a lot of good faith editors who have made a page that would never get deleted by AFD that are being held up in purgatory. I would love to help discusson WP:NPPAFC and have been looking through it recently. As for Draft:Aung Soe Min, That was quite a while ago and my first attempt at editing. Since then, I've read a bit more and as you can see have created around 4/5 new pages that have been reviewed. I hope you won't hold that first attempt against me!
        I'd be interested to know if there was a way that users could view recently declined submissions to AFC, that way users who wanted to help drafters could look through declined drafts to see if there was anything that they could help with (a personal area of expertise for example). Is there a page for this or a bot? Thank you for your comments.Egaoblai (talk) 05:22, 11 December 2017 (UTC)
        • Just a couple of points , Egaoblai: It is absolutely not difficult to find help and advice - the Wikipedia is awash with it. It might be more accurate if you were to say there is in fact too much of it. I do think however that the welcome template (without the thanks for the edits) should be automatically placed on the talk page of every newly registered user - but I digress. Admins are highly experienced editors, they rarely do anything indiscriminate; I have deleted hundreds of G13 and almost without exception they were all from people who breezed by, dumped something totally substandard and/or inappropriate on us and then cleared of with no intention of returning- we are not here to repair things thrown at us through our shop window by passers by, and very often the best thing we can do is throw it back. There is no proof that I know of, that suggests the majority of new users working on drafts think AfC is mandatory; there's nothing that tells them they must but if they do, then we have tacitly achieved what must surely be the best result Kudpung กุดผึ้ง (talk) 23:50, 11 December 2017 (UTC)
          • Kudpung กุดผึ้ง thanks again. I definitely think that quite a lot of users do think AFC is mandatory, especially when they have made a new account, that means they must go through the article wizard. This is from my own experience and other people I know (primary research for sure). I don't know what the split is, but looking through deletions and rejections there is roughly three groups of people 1) Those who don't read any guidelines and just write totally inappropriate drafts. 2) Those who write about notable stuff, but haven't really understood how to make a page. 3)those who have read about guidelines and have written about notable stuff, but for small reasons their draft isn't being passed. (4) those who pass. I think we need to focus on 2 and 3 and find a way to bring them into the fold more, like cross linking drafts to wikiprojects for instance, or letting no.3 editors know they can submit directly to mainspace (and potentially face AFD rather than AFC if they will).Egaoblai (talk) 00:19, 12 December 2017 (UTC)
            • Your characterisations of the 4 groups are probably not without merit. I would need to see some firm statidstics to support your conclusions, as I think you probably haven't been working in these areas long enough (e.g. hundreds or even thousands of reviews) to gather any substantial empirical evidence. I'm not saying you're wrong, but the longer you stay on Wikipedia, the sooner you'll notice that our community has a hunger for stats and generally refuses to do anything without them. Again, as I said above: There is no proof that I know of, that suggests the majority of new users working on drafts think AfC is mandatory; there's nothing that tells them they must, but if they do, then we have tacitly achieved what must surely be the best result. Kudpung กุดผึ้ง (talk) 02:05, 12 December 2017 (UTC)
              • I've heard, from more than one new editor, that they believed AFC was mandatory, or very close to mandatory, including editors from other wikis, who ought to know better.
                Egaoblai, you might be interested in some of the old discussions on this same question, such as this one. Even editors who have made tens of thousands of edits have wondered exactly what you're asking here. WhatamIdoing (talk) 00:31, 14 December 2017 (UTC)
    • Yeah I was going to comment on that. AfC is part of why people were fine with ACTRIAL. Galobtter (pingó mió) 08:13, 13 December 2017 (UTC)
      • I think more than a backlog at AfC, discouraging people by making them wait/ having their drafts 9/10 times declined is the real problem, and I think raising the bar for submitting drafts but keeping AfC as a help area for potential article could be useful, as it would prevent the discouragement of people who create a draft as their first edit. But then again, some people really want to create an article, and being able to create a draft could prevent discouragement.... Galobtter (pingó mió) 08:25, 13 December 2017 (UTC)
  • Oppose -- AFC works just fine; it could use more volunteers though. K.e.coffman (talk) 04:02, 12 December 2017 (UTC)
  • oppose per K.e.coffman. It helps keep the speedily deletable out of the main space. The trouble is we need more reviewers to bring the viable articles into the main space. -- Dlohcierekim (talk) 21:54, 12 December 2017 (UTC)
  • Oppose I have many concerns with AfC and find that the current culture of the project is something that I do not find enjoyable to work in at all: it treats the good faith new editors poorly because of bad formatting or because they want to write on notable topics that occurred over a century ago. Instead the users who are most likely to actually get help are the very users we want most to get rid of: the spammers. They are motivated to ask questions of the AfC reviewers and interact with them, and because of this are the ones who get the most assistance from us. These are both serious issues that AfC needs to address, but they are not a reason to get rid of the project at this point. TonyBallioni (talk) 00:16, 14 December 2017 (UTC)
  • Support Afc really takes to long for articles to be created. How about we just move it into the Article space as long as your a registered auto-confirmed user. There are just too many errors at this point, but we could do something like the articles for review are automatically moved onto the article space and Afc decides 2 weeks later to keep it or not. Also why is the translations restricted to extended confirmed users, I want to contribute but can't. YuriGagrin12 (talk) 23:15, 14 December 2017 (UTC)

Fixing AfC

So, given the issues acknowledged above, and others, how can AfC be improved? Andy Mabbett (Pigsonthewing); Talk to Andy; Andy's edits 15:38, 14 December 2017 (UTC)

Wikipedia: Requested articles

Would anybody involved with the above discussion like to clarify how Articles for Creation differs from Wikipedia: Requested articles? Vorbee (talk) 18:49, 5 December 2017 (UTC)

Vorbee Basically RA is a list of presumed notable subjects which need someone to research and write an article on them, while Articles for Creation is a submission handling and notablity/quality control desk. L3X1 (distænt write) 19:15, 5 December 2017 (UTC)

An issue with Special:BookSources

A reader wrote to Wikimedia (OTRS) and the belief that there was some error in Special:BookSources.

While I don't think it is broken, I think I know why they think there's a problem when I agree that it should be addressed.

If you go to the book sources page using the link I provided, the ISBN field will be blank, and the rest of the page below the search box will be empty. If you enter and ISBN, then click on "Search", the page will populate with a lot of links. For those that use this page in that way, I don't think it will occur to them that there is a problem.

However, if you are on some page which happens to have an ISBN and click on it you will be brought to the page with the ISBN filled in and the search already completed. For example, Special:BookSources/1401303714

If you are on that page and click "Search" you won't see anything visibly happening. You might think that the search button isn't working because it doesn't seem to do anything. What you have missed is that the search has already been completed and all of the links are displayed in the lower part of the page.

I think we should do something to make it clearer that the search has been completed and clicking on search isn't the right thing to do.

For example, if you are using the visual editor, and haven't yet made an edit the "save changes" button is in gray. As soon as you make a change, that button will turn blue, indicating that it can be used, and if you actually click on it, it will disappear. That convention guides the reader into knowing the three statuses (Stati?) of the button: 1 not yet available 2 available for action 3 completed

It would be helpful to do something similar. Perhaps a search button should be gray if the ISBN field is empty, turn blue when ISBN is entered, and turned back to gray after it is clicked (I wouldn't follow the convention of removing it as is done with "save changes" as the user might want to enter a different ISBN)

I think the next step is to file something at phabricator but I'd like some feedback from other editors before I take that step.--S Philbrick(Talk) 16:48, 3 December 2017 (UTC)

Note that for the majority of the content other than the button, you have to change Wikipedia:Book sources and do not require to file a phabricator ticket. —TheDJ (talkcontribs) 14:49, 6 December 2017 (UTC)
I think the whole concept of search is broken here btw. It's just a page with an ISBN that matches the ISBN pattern that will show a list of external search engines. —TheDJ (talkcontribs) 14:50, 6 December 2017 (UTC)

Does Wikipedia need an article that provides for some standardization of BLP articles?

Recently, I've been editing BLP articles (mostly adding cites, correcting grammar and occasionally adding new material). I've noticed that there appears to be no standardization of the sections in these articles. If you look at featured articles, the issue seems pervasive, but perhaps I'm being too anal. I searched the MOS for guidance but didn't find any. I wonder if there would be some value in an article that described how the sections of a BLP article should look? For example, if the LP's early life is important, a section titled ==Early life== should be included in the article. If the LP's career is important, a section titled ==Career== should appear, and it should be placed after the early life section. References should always be at the end. Notes directly before preferences, etc. I think it would be helpful to editors like me to have some guidance in the recommended structure and positioning of the elements of an article. Obviously, there will always be exceptions, and that should be pointed out, but when many articles follow no format at all, it's confusing trying to figure out how to write an article. I'm working on my first draft proposal for an article, and I'm not certain if the article elements are ordered correctly, or even if there is a correct order. Txantimedia (talk) 01:30, 8 December 2017 (UTC)

Txantimedia MOS:ORDER advises on the overall ordering of article components. As regards the content, MOS:BIO goes into a lot of detail about the lead paragraph, and for the rest recommends normally sticking to chronological order. Hope this helps: Noyster (talk), 10:35, 9 December 2017 (UTC)
I have read both of those. They are helpful, as far as they go. But the Body section isn't clearly defined, except that things should generally be kept in chronological order. I'm suggesting that an article explaining the body more fully and suggesting titles for the sections would be helpful to new editors. Some of the others aren't entirely clear. For example, what is publications? Is it books? Newspaper articles? Journal articles? And how many should be listed? How do you chose which ones? I think these are all things that editors struggle with, and some guidance would be useful. Txantimedia (talk) 16:57, 9 December 2017 (UTC)
I always find it strange to encounter a biography that contains a ==Biography== section heading. (I guess we're meant to believe that the rest of the page isn't part of the biography?) WhatamIdoing (talk) 00:33, 14 December 2017 (UTC)

Draft Articles Severely Backlogged

I suggest draft articles should not be able to be submitted for publication without any references. I also suggest that all draft articles without any references should be removed from draft articles submitted for publication. These changes will help Wikipedia with the severe backlog. Many of the articles submitted have no references. Some use external links as the only sources for their drafts.InternetFriend (talk) 07:06, 8 December 2017 (UTC)

If you're concerned about your own draft having to wait on the queue, you can simply dispense with the review altogether and simply move it to the article namespace yourself. – Uanfala (talk) 21:10, 8 December 2017 (UTC)
Rejecting a draft with no references does not take much time, so these are not deferring the backlog by much. Graeme Bartlett (talk) 00:49, 9 December 2017 (UTC)
I would advice against Uanfala's opinion and am reviewing your draft.Regards:)Winged Blades Godric 08:23, 9 December 2017 (UTC)
Could not decide about whether this fails BLP1E.Winged Blades Godric 16:14, 9 December 2017 (UTC)
It took a huge argument to get the BLPprod policy that required new BLPs to have references. I think the time might be right to broaden that policy and require another group of new articles to require references. But such a policy change needs a justification, a problem it would solve. It might be better to go for a policy change that one could justify as a logical next step - CORPprod for commercial organisations without an independent reference. I think we could justify that as a pragmatic antispam measure. ϢereSpielChequers 13:01, 9 December 2017 (UTC)
IMO, it would be not helpful by any considerable margin.All companies other than garage-startups manage to spam the article with considerable non-self refs but of near-zero quality esp. post ACTRIAL.To insert a huge bunch of refs (including blatant blogspam, PR Spam et al) in almost any CORP article is insanely simple (see Cunard's contribution to numerous CORP Afds and DRVs on the issue).We have paid-editing-companies that promises to publish a host of PRs, webentries, obscure business journal covg. etc. about your company in lieu of a certain amount and then source the WP artice with those! The field of CORP promotion is awfully bad and if we want to speed up deletion of CORP articles than currently achieved by a combinaion of A7, G11and normal PROD, we need the sysops to be able to properly review the quality of sources and take a decision.Notwithstanding the fact that not many are proficient at that and discussions etc. are parts of the AFD-zone, shall this proposal be ever put before the community, I don't think the community will grant the discretionary authority to sysops to judge the reliability or practical independence of sources (anything other than self-cites) and click the delete button based on such an assesment.Winged Blades Godric 14:43, 9 December 2017 (UTC)
A massive increase in the notability requirements at WP:CORP would help a lot. I've been wondering about a requirement for two sources that each use more than 500 consecutive words to describe the company. It might help clarify the notion of WP:SIGCOV in some people's minds. There are some other requirements that might help, such as requiring evidence that there was independent attention given over the space of more than X years (two, three, five?). We could also insist that the sources include significant coverage in the nearest regional newspaper (e.g., Los Angeles Times for anything in southern California, San Jose Mercury News for anything in Silicon Valley, etc.), and hope that these newspapers would resist the publicity campaigns.
Or we could just ban (nearly) all non-publicly-traded companies. And their staff. And their products. Because that's the main problem with piecemeal increases in notability standards: if you say "no more unimportant companies", you will get WP:COATRACKs that are nominally about their notable CEO. WhatamIdoing (talk) 00:43, 14 December 2017 (UTC)
  • The suggestion by WereSpielChequers for a CORPprod for commercial organisations without an independent reference, is not without merit. However, the contents of the New Pages Feed have changed dramatically since ACTRIAL, and this issue is no longer prevalent. Ninety-five percent of the junk at NPP has been stopped in its tracks; the major problem now is one of educating the reviewers to recognise artspam and paid editing which for all intents and purposes look like legitimate, well formatted, well referenced articles. The idea of a CORPprod might work on drafts, but only if experience has shown that drafts are generally dumped into AfC and not revisited by their creators for over a week. We need to know if this is a fact, and the percentage of submissions that meert this criterion and which contribute significantly to the backlog.Kudpung กุดผึ้ง (talk) 01:03, 11 December 2017 (UTC)
I don't think it'll really be useful - unless things that are described as trivial in WP:CORPDEPTH are somehow excluded, I'd say a very small fraction of company articles can really have no "independent" sources at all. Galobtter (pingó mió) 08:21, 13 December 2017 (UTC)
Galobtter the issue is not really CORPDEPTH but WP:ORGIND and WP:SPIP. The overwhelming majority of corporate articles at AfD are deleted for having no independent sources under ORGIND. TonyBallioni (talk) 03:36, 14 December 2017 (UTC)
TonyBallioni The main problem is that the line between what is or is not independent is in many cases not clear enough for a CORPprod - most corporation drafts I see at AfC usually have a few articles in newspapers that don't readily identify as press releases, but look to be based mostly off of interviews or press releases. Perhaps there are a lot of articles that get deleted at AfD without even that, but at least at AfC that's what I see. Galobtter (pingó mió) 03:50, 14 December 2017 (UTC)
Which are primary sources and aren't independent. Anyway, I support moving to an objective corporate standard along the lines that I think WhatamIdoing is suggesting. There's some brainstorming currently going on about that at the WT:CORP page currently. TonyBallioni (talk) 03:52, 14 December 2017 (UTC)
I'm not saying it should be kept on that basis. But BLPprod is very clear in that even one link that supports it is enough that it isn't applicable. A CORPprod would have to be similarly clear, or else I don't see how it can done. Galobtter (pingó mió) 03:54, 14 December 2017 (UTC) Godric put it well above - "manage to spam the article with considerable non-self refs but of near-zero quality". Galobtter (pingó mió) 12:01, 14 December 2017 (UTC)

Net neutrality protest

In light of today's vote, would anyone be up for a coordinated protest? Maybe one in silicon valley because that's where the tech companies are? I would say like a march or rally. Bardic Wizard (Tell your congressman to vote for net neutrality) 21:56, 14 December 2017 (UTC)

Look, guys, an American who thinks he lives in a functioning democracy! *runs away giggling* (((The Quixotic Potato))) (talk) 22:00, 14 December 2017 (UTC)
@The Quixotic Potato:What did you call me?!?!?</anger></humor> No, I'm serious here. There's been lots of Wikipedian meetups: how about a protest? Bardic Wizard (Tell your congressman to vote for net neutrality) 22:55, 14 December 2017 (UTC)
@Bardic Wizard: I agree completely, we protested for SOPA why not net neutrality, the internet providers could easily restrict pages that criticize it. YuriGagrin12 (talk) 23:17, 14 December 2017 (UTC)
Yeah. Coordinated protests would work, maybe in the next couple weeks? I'm open to ideas. Bardic Wizard (Tell your congressman to vote for net neutrality) 23:25, 14 December 2017 (UTC)
@Bardic Wizard: I thought like shutting the website down for a day like with SOPA because internet providers could just not show pages about net neutrality. YuriGagrin12 (talk) 23:36, 14 December 2017 (UTC)
  • Isn't it going to die in the courts like it did the other 2 times?really the only thing I got out of this is the knowledge of which senator won't be getting my vote in 2018. L3X1 (distænt write) 00:07, 15 December 2017 (UTC)

I like the idea raised at the Proposals Village Pump by User:Ckoerner: have an editathon on net neutrality-related subjects. It highlights Wikipedia's strength, collaborative editing, improves coverage of important topics, and generates publicity without blocking access to Wikipedia's content. isaacl (talk) 00:14, 15 December 2017 (UTC)

That sounds like a good idea, @Isaacl:; maybe this upcoming week (December 17 to December 20th (because people are prepping for Christmas then)). Bardic Wizard (Tell your congressman to vote for net neutrality) 00:36, 15 December 2017 (UTC)
Maybe after Christmas, but before the new FCC ruling goes into effect in January (17-20th is really soon IMO). SpartaN (talk) 02:30, 15 December 2017 (UTC)
Mmm, yeah. 27th maybe? — Preceding unsigned comment added by Bardic Wizard (talkcontribs) 03:06, 15 December 2017 (UTC)
  • We are doing everything we can to make sure Wikipedia and her sister projects reach as many people as possible. This includes partnerships with ISPs to be included in all package levels. Additionally, we have incredible support from launching and running the zero rated Wikipedia Zero initiative from users. In many places where Wikipedia Zero operates Internet access is expensive, generally costing in PPP$ 50% of an equivalent US plan. (ITU 2015)

    We are looking forward to bringing Wikipedia to more people in the coming years. Cheers, — Dispenser 07:40, 15 December 2017 (UTC)