Wikipedia talk:Welcoming committee

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WikiProject Editor Retention
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User:LaurenbidsEdit

This user could do with welcoming as they are making random low quality edits and need pointing in the right direction. Britmax (talk) 19:51, 21 January 2015 (UTC)

This user has been blocked.
  Bfpage |leave a message  02:05, 17 February 2015 (UTC)

'"Welcome to Wikipedia!" - topic for November 21 Tip-Of-The-DayEdit

Greetings! On November 21, the Tip-Of-The-Day is about welcoming new contributiors. This November 21 tip is now added at the TOTD Schedule Queue and is also posted at the Tips library. Regards, JoeHebda (talk) 16:02, 3 October 2015 (UTC)

Adding new template to twinkleEdit

Hello to the welcoming committee! How does one go about getting a template added to the Wikiproject list on Twinkle? I'd like to add a "Wikiproject Anatomy" (WP:ANAT) template, {{WPANATOMY-welcome}}. --Tom (LT) (talk) 22:29, 25 January 2016 (UTC)

Welcome notification linkEdit

A page link is now provided with the Welcome notification sent to all new users at the moment they open an account. I'm suggesting in this VPP thread that we could benefit from more information and discussion about the way we're using this link, and proposing the Welcoming committee as a suitable venue. Anyone wish to chip in there?: Noyster (talk), 18:22, 3 March 2016 (UTC)

Welcoming studentsEdit

People here might want to look at the new Template:Student, which is meant to be a welcoming template for suspected students who are editing medicine-related articles. Ways to improve it are being discussed at Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Medicine#Advice to students. (not watching this page) WhatamIdoing (talk) 13:34, 14 May 2016 (UTC)

Move DiscussionEdit

There is currently a discussion taking place at Template talk:Welcome-COI#Requested move 12 September 2016 which may interest editors here. -- Gestrid (talk) 04:24, 12 September 2016 (UTC)

MediaWiki automatic welcome messagesEdit

Hello!

I have found out that whenever a user makes his or her first contribution to any Wikimedia project in any language, a notification pops up saying "you just made your first edit; thank you, and welcome!" It does this regardless of the nature of the edit, and makes me question whether such functionality is appropriate especially in the case of VOAs. Any thoughts?

Greetings, ««« SOME GADGET GEEK »»» (talk) 19:39, 18 April 2017 (UTC) ««« SOME GADGET GEEK »»» (talk) 19:39, 18 April 2017 (UTC)

I'd prefer that such automated notices weren't issued. Everybody probably realizes they're automated, so they're unlikely to make new legitimate users actually feel welcomed, but the flip side of that is that even the least intelligent vandals likely don't feel welcomed by them, either. So I'd say that in the grand scheme of things, it's not a big deal. Snazzy software function, meh. Much less to my liking is the not infrequent occurrence of a registered user welcoming a VOA. I've left a polite message or two about that, over the years. (Confession time: when I was a newbie, I mistook the welcome message left by a real human being on my talk page as being bot-generated.) RivertorchFIREWATER 21:21, 18 April 2017 (UTC)
Not only are they issued for users who make their first edit (and everytime in every language), they are also issued just for logging in. For some reason I logged in to the Hindi section of wikipedia and someone found it appropriate to put a welcome message in my talk page there. I can not read Hindi. Not even their script. I have no idea what they are saying about me. I'm sure none of the administrators of hi.wikipedia.org are active here and I have no idea who they are (not being able to read that wikipedia) but please can someone make sure that these kinds of automated welcome messages are stopped? They serve no purpose. I've been an active contributor of Wikipedia for years, I don't need that. It is condescending. Mdeen (talk) 13:30, 11 September 2018 (UTC)

Bot sectionEdit

I added a section on welcoming etiquette towards bots per the suggestions of Tigraan (talk · contribs) and Primefac (talk · contribs).-🐦Do☭torWho42 () 08:28, 1 July 2017 (UTC)

New welcome template helpEdit

I am building a new version of the welcome template as the ones others use are either too text-heavy or confusing to me, and while I have adapted it and borrowed / adjusted coding, I am hoping somebody here can help me move it onto a new welcome template page and then test it (neither of which I really know how to do as I am code-limited). Can anybody help? FULBERT (talk) 16:29, 3 February 2018 (UTC)

Sure, just let me know what needs doing. Primefac (talk) 16:34, 3 February 2018 (UTC)
Thanks, Primefac! I created a new version of the welcome template that I am calling Visual Welcome for now, and as I have added and removed aspects of coding from a variety of other templates, I think it needs to be ported to a template page and then I need help determining how to test it as a template. Can you help with this? --- FULBERT (talk) 15:00, 7 February 2018 (UTC)
Well, the first step would be to move it to something like {{welcomevisual}} (since most of the other welcome templates seem to have this naming convention). Next, I would move the "conversation" at the top into the <noinclude>...</noinclude> tags at the bottom of the page, create a /template subpage, and then start testing! Primefac (talk) 16:24, 7 February 2018 (UTC)
Thanks for your help on this Primefac. I moved this to a new template page and not sure what I am doing wrong, but the coding does not seem to work. I am trying to adapt the work from the Welcome_to_Wikipedia template but am not sure what I am doing wrong. Can you help me or suggest somebody who may be able to? Many thanks. FULBERT (talk) 13:45, 28 March 2018 (UTC)
Looks fine to me. What's "broken"? Primefac (talk) 13:54, 28 March 2018 (UTC)
That is the original template I was basing mine on; try it with the {{subst:WelcomeVisual}} itself and it does not work as smoothly Primefac ---- FULBERT (talk) 14:43, 28 March 2018 (UTC)
The diff I linked to is {{subst:WelcomeVisual}}. Primefac (talk) 14:50, 28 March 2018 (UTC)
The part that has me stumped in the template is that the end of it is not contained; when placed on the top of a Talk: page, it does not end so any later comments maintain part of the same formatting instead of beginning in newly formatted sections, Primefac. Thanks. --- FULBERT (talk) 19:38, 28 March 2018 (UTC)
You were missing a /div. Primefac (talk) 00:44, 29 March 2018 (UTC)
Seems to be working now, Primefac. Many thanks for your help!! --- FULBERT (talk) 13:33, 29 March 2018 (UTC)

User Creation LogEdit

Hello. I noticed on the User Creation Log that some accounts were created, but others were 'created automatically'. What is the difference between being 'created' and 'created automatically'? AllyGebies talk 23:53, 5 March 2018 (UTC)

Proposed change to Template:WelcomeEdit

Please see the discussion at Template talk:Welcome#Edit request: minor change, where a change to divide the list of links in Template:Welcome into multiple columns is being discussed. --Ahecht (TALK
PAGE
) 13:32, 2 April 2018 (UTC)

AutowelcomingEdit

Largely due to seeing the number of newcomers at AfC writing new drafts, but looking unaware of the nature of Wikipedia, I think autowelcoming new en.wikipedia.og registrants is important. The basic {{welcome}} template is good, giving newcomers a small number of recommended reading links, although an even shorter template linking just WP:5P might be better. I think it is important to do this BEFORE they have committed to writing their first draft, which means that existing welcoming services, manual welcoming and Hostbot, do not suffice. It was a perennial proposal, but I think it has been six years since the last serious proposal. Please comment at Wikipedia:Village_pump_(proposals)#Autowelcome_new_registrants. --SmokeyJoe (talk) 00:14, 29 June 2018 (UTC)

Welcoming at WP:AFCEdit

There has been some recent discussion on the AfC talk page here and here about opportunities to welcome new editors who choose to write a new article as their first Wikipedia contribution. Is there anyone here interested in intercepting and welcoming these new editors before they receive their first review? ~Kvng (talk) 01:17, 14 October 2018 (UTC)

New IP Welcome TemplatesEdit

Reducing number of links in the welcome messageEdit

This may have been brought up before, in which case please just point me to the relevant prior discussion, but it seems very clear to me that Template:Welcome and similar templates could use some streamlining so that new users aren't paralyzed by choice. For instance, for a new user with a question, the welcome template currently lists four (!) different places to go: the Teahouse, WP:Questions, the welcomer's talk page, and their own talk page. There's a lot of psychology research that shows that this sort of thing is bad, since new users don't know which of these places would be most appropriate for their question, so many just don't ask it anywhere. I think we'd be much better off just identifying the best option and removing the others. Similarly, there's a lot of overlap between WP:Introduction, WP:Getting Started, WP:Contributing to Wikipedia, and even the WP:Wikipedia Adventure. It's not fully clear before I click on them what some of the differences between them are and how they relate to each other even to me as an experienced user, let alone to a new user. I'd prefer ideally to see just one link to a "learn more"-style page, made prominent to establish a clear visual hierarchy, with links to ancillary pages (e.g. the Manual of Style) below or to the side. This would also have the benefit of allowing us to focus our work to make sure the unified intro page is the best it can be, rather than trying to maintain several pages that largely duplicate each other. I hope I'm not stepping on too many toes here (it's understandable if editors have some attachment to the resources they helped create/develop), but it's really at a point where this needs to be addressed. Cheers, Sdkb (talk) 18:05, 14 October 2019 (UTC)

I agree. An example of an effective welcome template is {{Welcome screen}}, because there are around 10 links in the table, organized into sections and accompanied with brief, helpful descriptions. Also, the design of the template is clean and inviting. On the other hand, {{WelcomeMenu}}, which contains about 60 links, is not as effective. It would take hours to read through these linked pages, and some of them are out-of-depth for new editors. We should encourage the use of clear and simple templates like {{Welcome screen}} and discourage the use of overly complex templates like {{WelcomeMenu}}. — Newslinger talk 21:35, 21 October 2019 (UTC)
I think the proliferation of welcome templates is itself a bit of a problem; I'd prefer we try to merge them into a single one that represents best practices. But yeah, I agree that there are much better options than Template:Welcome, even though it tends to be (I think) the most used. Sdkb (talk) 22:46, 21 October 2019 (UTC)
One of the great things about welcome messages is that you can test them, take a group of newbies, give half of them a standard template and half a modified version, 6 months later come back and see which group has more Wikipedians. I have been working on a training focussed version of the Welcome. May I suggest you create a version that includes your ideas and see if it works better in practice than the existing ones? I'd agree though that the talk instructions need revising to give an idea of which to use and when, for example you may get messages from others on your talk page and you can start conversations with others on their talkpages. As for the proliferation of versions, many are designed for particular types of newby. I doubt that a single generic design could be as good as getting the right design for the newby concerned. ϢereSpielChequers 14:00, 23 October 2019 (UTC)
Great idea! Anything that can lower the entry barrier would be great! Also when presented with so much info to assimilate at once, not only there is choice paralysis, but also there is a lower assimilation of the material to be learnt. I think this could also be an opportunity to prioritize and show what is most important to learn (eg, verifiability in a concise way such as WP:INBRIEF or WP:SIMPLE - ah I can see the latter is already in {{Welcome screen}}, great)! --Signimu (talk) 03:49, 25 October 2019 (UTC)
@WereSpielChequers: I certainly like the idea of A-B testing. Is there anywhere where we've compiled results and looked for patterns? Do we know which of the current designs is performing best? (I imagine it'd be possible to create a program that'd look at a large sample of users and determine the percentage of confirmed or extended-confirmed users by welcome template. The tricky thing would be controlling for the factors that lead to different users getting different welcomes.)
Regarding the proliferation, how many different types of newbie are there, really? And what sorts of differences might make a new user a better fit for, say, Template:Welcome screen vs. Template:Welcome menu? I can't really think of much. There are certainly a few specialized templates that are useful (e.g. Template:Welcome student), but many others could be merged and fields like IP vs. registered just turned into a parser function. This would help keep them centralized and up to date (many appear to have been essentially untouched for years). A lot of templates seem to be just the result of a user trying to redo the generic welcome template.
At a broader level, I tend to find that WP is very aggressive about merging/deleting overproliferated content in mainspace, but much less so in WP space. This is a huge problem for the welcoming committee, since one of the top reactions of newer users as they wade into editing is that Wikipedia is a labyrinth. I think we ought to do a lot of merging/streamlining, and we may as well start here. Sdkb (talk) 06:03, 25 October 2019 (UTC)
Hi Sdkb, I don't know of anyone currently compiling such test results, there was some testing a few years ago which indicated that welcomed newbies were more likely to stay around. The big divides among goodfaith newbies include: Are they creating new articles or amending existing ones? Are they using the V/E editor or the classic editor? My training welcome is clearly designed for the classic editor one and I haven't yet finished adapting a version for v/e. Are they an IP or have they registered? It would be nice if we could also easily differentiate between established editors from other languages/projects and newbies to Wikimedia. Then there are the problem issues such as sourcing, promotional language etc. There are also specialist welcomes created for particular events. I'd agree that we have a problem for newbies in Wikipedia being a labyrinth, but if that is your concern this isn't the place to start as newbies only get a maximum of one welcome. The problem of using parser functions is that you then restrict maintaining or adapting versions of that template to people who understand parser functions. While the problems of merging/amending templates include making it rather more difficult to monitor their effectiveness. I suspect the last big change to existing welcome templates came with the addition of the TeaHouse which has become a sort of "village pump for newbies". ϢereSpielChequers 07:09, 25 October 2019 (UTC)
  • Personally, I think the current Welcome is about right {{welcome2}} is a bit much, and {{W-graphical}} is way too much. The only thing I would seriously consider removing from Welcoem is thje link to the Five Pillars, particularly since it contains the link to IAR, which in my view is an unfortunate and dangerous concept for new editors. I would object to any other removal. DES (talk)DESiegel Contribs 02:46, 23 December 2019 (UTC)

Something possibly wrong with a welcoming templateEdit

Template:welcome-anon-t mentions a parameter "nothanks", to be set to y when it is desirable to skip the "thanks" part of the standard welcome. However, I believe that parameter doesn't actually do anything - look at this diff which shows the lack of difference when the parameter is left in/left out. Would someone from this committee be interested in fixing this? At any rate, I guess I should mention this at the template's talk page too. Airbornemihir (talk) 07:11, 11 November 2019 (UTC)

@Airbornemihir: |nothanks= is not supported by the template. I removed it from the documentation and added |notalk=, which was missing. —[AlanM1(talk)]— 22:08, 24 January 2020 (UTC)

@Airbornemihir: Thanks to PrimeHunter for pointing out that the doc page was used by multiple templates. I added the |nothanks= parm back to the doc and implemented it in {{Welcome-anon-t}} and {{Welcome-t-anon}}.

I also noticed that {{Welcome-anon}} does not implement |notalk= and does not have a need for it. Is there a preferred way to make the doc reflect this when being transcluded from that template?

Also, I now realize that I implemented |nothanks= using the {{Yesno}} template in the same way as |notalk=, which is different than the {{Welcome-anon}} implementation. In {{Welcome-anon-t}} and {{Welcome-t-anon}}, |nothanks=n (as well as other variations like "no") will not suppress the thanks, whereas in {{Welcome-anon}}, any value (other than no value) provided for |nothanks= will suppress the thanks. As I said, this is consistent with the |notalk= implementation. Should I change the |nothanks= implementation in {{Welcome-anon-t}} and {{Welcome-t-anon}} (i.e., suppress thanks if any value is provided) or should I change {{Welcome-anon}} to use {{Yesno}} instead? Here's a table of what currently happens:

Parameter Welcome-anon
suppresses thanks?
Welcome-anon-t
suppresses thanks?
(no parm) No No
nothanks= No No
nothanks=n Yes No
nothanks=y Yes Yes
nothanks=blah Yes Yes

I suppose a third option might be to implement |notalk= and |nothanks= in all of them the same way as {{Welcome-anon}} implements |nothanks= (without {{Yesno}}; any non-empty value causes suppression). —[AlanM1(talk)]— 01:57, 25 January 2020 (UTC)

Do new users know that welcome messages come from another user, not a bot?Edit

Thinking back to when I was welcomed to WP, I'm not sure I realized that the welcome came from another user who presumably noticed one of my edits, rather than a bot who welcomes every new user. Was this the case for others, too? Is there a change we could make to the template (e.g. saying "I came here since I noticed your contributions") to help this come across? Sdkb (talk) 23:08, 15 January 2020 (UTC)

I certainly assumed that my welcome came from an individual, though by the time I went to talk to them they'd been blocked. I think they came back later. Several of the people I have welcomed have come to me over the years, so it is safe to think that they assumed I was worth talking to. Most of the welcomes already include things such as "thanks for your contributions" so I think it is clear that we are welcoming people who we have seen edit. ϢereSpielChequers 16:47, 16 January 2020 (UTC)

Proposal for streamlining welcome templateEdit

I've brought this to the the Village Pump to establish further consensus. Please continue discussion at the centralized forum there.
The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

Following up on the concerns about the number of links from above, I dug through the maze of welcome pages and came away with these observations:

  1. Help:Introduction seems to be the most up-to-date, comprehensive, streamlined, and visually appealing introduction we have, with the Wikipedia Adventure also useful for those who prefer a more interactive structure (e.g. many younger editors).
  2. Pretty much all of the links that tend to get put into the welcome templates (e.g. pillars, MOS, new article wizard) get brought up in Help:Introduction at what I'd consider the appropriate point.

Given these, I made some edits at the sandbox to streamline the standard welcome template. Here's the result. What do you all think? Sdkb (talk) 20:53, 16 January 2020 (UTC)


Welcome!Edit

Hi Welcoming committee! I noticed your contributions and wanted to welcome you to the Wikipedia community. I hope you like it here and decide to stay.

As you get started, you may find it helpful to go through this short tutorial:

Learn more about editing

You may also want to complete the Wikipedia Adventure, an interactive tour that covers the same topics.

If you have any questions, we have a friendly space where experienced editors can help you here:

Get help at the Teahouse

Please remember to sign your messages on talk pages by typing four tildes (~~~~); this will automatically insert your username and the date.

Happy editing! Sdkb (talk) 20:53, 16 January 2020 (UTC)


I most often leave GF newcomers the {{Welcome!}} or {{Welcome-anon}} templates. I prefer the proposal by Sdkb as simplifying their choices to one of two, rather than a roster of policies and procedures. We may want to have a third choice for people who appear to be creating a draft article? - Bri.public (talk) 17:30, 27 January 2020 (UTC)
@Bri.public: Yeah, as I was looking around the new user welcome pages, I noticed that the WP:Article Wizard and Help:Your first article (which has a big bold link to the wizard) are both well-designed and useful. Users that seem to be creating an article should definitely be pointed there. I'm not so sure about including it in the standard welcome message, though, since I think it's a bad idea to encourage newcomers to create an article right off the bat — they're very likely to try creating an inappropriate article for a topic with which they have a COI, and when it gets rejected they'll feel bitten. Do you have a sense of how many new users try creating an article as one of their first edits? If it's something they're going to do anyways, we may need to point them to our resources by default, whereas if most new editors can be steered initially toward other types of editing, I think we're better just leaving it out. The edit notice when you try creating a new article points there anyways (although perhaps not quite boldly enough). Sdkb (talk) 21:30, 27 January 2020 (UTC)
Wow, this looks MUCH more approachable to me than any of the other welcome templates! I think it's very effective at directing new users to two main ways to learn more about the "hows" of editing Wikipedia. It's amazing how different it is vis-a-vis choice paralysis compared to the other options, especially the more "graphical" options, which tend to look overwhelming.
Having just praised the simplicity and restraint of the links included..... I find myself wanting to add a link to the Five Pillars, because I think the one aspect that's missing right now is an approachable entry point to the core goals and norms of Wikipedia. Of the resources intended to introduce that information, I think the Five Pillars page does the best job of hitting the key points in a visually approachable way. I wonder if it can be slipped in as a sentence or phrase that doubles as a wikilink somewhere? So it's not an immediate "call to action" but it's present for a newbie to find early in their process of exploring. Or -- could it be added to the Introduction help page itself? I think that helping newbies feel like they have a handle on the core principles of the culture and norms is as important as technical knowledge.
I'd be very happy to see this template in use, though, with further tweaking after it's entered the real works! Well done on the research and design work to build a compelling alternative. ~ oulfis 🌸(talk) 04:28, 30 January 2020 (UTC)
Thanks for the praise, Oulfis! Regarding the pillars, the second module of the linked introduction is titled "Policies and guidelines", and while it doesn't explicitly list the pillars, it does mention that the project is "founded on five fundamental principles" and goes on to cover them. Sdkb (talk) 05:24, 30 January 2020 (UTC)
This hasn't gotten enough discussion to reach too solid of a consensus, but since there's been some support and no strong opposition, I'm going to act boldly and go ask for it to be implemented. Sdkb (talk) 06:05, 11 February 2020 (UTC)

The discussion above is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

time limit?Edit

should there be an amendment to "etiquette" where it should state that it's discouraged to welcome users whose edit was over 10 years ago but their talk page still remains a redlink?--🐦DrWho42 (🔨) 21:26, 26 January 2020 (UTC)

Making the visual editor the default for new/IP usersEdit

One of the major barriers to editing on WP is the complex markup language. Fortunately, it's very easy for new users to get around it by using the WP:Visual Editor, but since it's not turned on by default, I'm guessing many potential new editors get scared away before they ever find it. I'm sure that at some point during the introduction of the editor there was discussion about whether to make it the default (and if anyone knows where that is, please share a link), but I wanted to bring it up here as a potential change that could make it a lot easier to get new users up and editing. Granted, it seems most experienced editors prefer to edit in markup, so a switch would have to include easy functionality for experienced editors to change their default preference back to markup. Sdkb (talk) 10:40, 27 January 2020 (UTC)

Frankly, I'm amazed that the visual editor isn't the default. I was stunned when I discovered it, because I assumed that if something so obviously newcomer-friendly existed, it would have been prominently suggested to me. I chalked it up to the fact that my account is old even if I haven't been doing "serious editing" until recently. Still -- what if we made it the default for just IP users? And/or for new users from now on? (Since anybody making a new account won't have a preference yet). Unfortunately I have no idea what the processes / procedures are for such a change, but I'd certainly support it. ~ oulfis 🌸(talk) 04:06, 30 January 2020 (UTC)
I agree making visual editor the default for new uses would be a big help, and believe this could be done as suggested by oulfis, by making it the default just for newly registered users, since experienced users would not want to see their preferences changed 21:45, 30 January 2020 (UTC)
The Foundation has been on a crusade for years to make VE the default editor, however they have collected a variety of data showing that a VE-default would be harmful. One of the takeaways of the mobile VE A/B test was that VE had a lower success rate than WTE(WikiTextEditor)[1] Also see this graph File:2018-10_Wikimedia_editing_interface_retention.png. The retention rate for VE is HALF the retention rate for wikitext. When users are given VE, they quickly either quit editing or they switch to wikitext. (The graph doesn't tell us which, but either way it is atrocious that VE has half the retention rate.)
VE was intended to be easier for new users, intended to increase contributions and editor-retention. It's a lovely sounding theory, but that theory has utterly failed in practice. The Foundation is still obsessed with the theory, but the data is clear.
I'm planning to open a Village Pump discussion on the broader VE-issue sometime soonish. It will cover the data on VE, and a lot more. Alsee (talk) 10:06, 26 February 2020 (UTC)
@Alsee: So what's the current status of the VE? I had thought that there was a pop-up when you first start editing inviting you to try it, but when I just tested in Incognito mode, the pop-up didn't include that option, so it seems you have to go into preferences and uncheck the "hide while in beta" box to get to it. Is that right? And how long has that been the case for? (The documentation everywhere seems to be out of date.) Whatever context you can give us would be helpful. Sdkb (talk) 20:56, 26 February 2020 (UTC)
Sdkb the short answer is that the current global status of VE is a chaotic mess. The long, too-long answer is: VE is unavailable on most non-wikipedia wikis, with varying status on a few non-wikipedia wikis. There are about 8 wikipedias, such as Chinese and Inuktitut, where VE is unavailable because VE interacts vary badly with unusual language-specific issues. There are two wikis, English and Spanish, where VE is deployed for logged-in users but not for IPs. On other Wikipedias Visual Editor is fully available to both logged in and IP users. In addition there is something called "Single Edit Tab" (SET). I spotted the project in Foundation workspaces half a year before they announced it. Instead of a link for each editor, it gives just one "edit" link. Knowing the Foundation I immediately knew it was going to be part of the VE obsession. I asked if the SET project was going to have a VE-default, and the manager assured me he wouldn't do that without asking the community first. Doing my best to assume good faith, I apologized for being paranoid. A half year later the upcoming deployment was announced. I investigated and found various indications that it was going to have a VE-default. I repeatedly raised the issue with the liaison. The liaison repeatedly told me it wouldn't be VE default, at least not on EnWiki. Initial deployment was to EnWiki, Polish Wikipedia, and a few dozen micro-wikis. The default is hidden for existing accounts, or if it finds an existing cookie. Making a new account isn't enough, you also have to also clear cookies or go incognito. And of course that default was VE. We tried to contact the Foundation in several places, I even posted on the managers user_talk page. We got no response for a week-and-a-half, despite the fact that the manager had clearly logged in and would have had NewMessage notifications. At that point I then escalated the issue to the Executive Director's user talk page, and citing the manager's assurance that he wouldn't deploy a VE-default without asking the community first. The Executive Director summoned the manager. The manager assured us that the default setting was an unintentional bug, and that he'd fix it. About another week-and-a-half went by with no response and no visible action. I ask the manager for a progress report. He said that it was always his intended goal to do it this way, and that he had no intention of changing it now. People got pissed, including calling him a liar. (Side note: An ANI discussion concluded that calling a WMF staff member "liar" was not a breach of WP:Civility, given the supporting diffs of the manager's words.) One of us then wrote a hack for the sitewide javascript that would change the default. We were acutely aware that this would risk repeating a superprotect type incident, but the general view was that it was warranted. There was a credible case to simply and immediately deploy the javascript, given that the manager had declared the issue a "bug" and that we would merely be deploying a "bug fix". Given the gravity of the action we decided to seek formal RFC consensus to deploy the javascript. At that point the manager declared us unreasonable, and agreed to fix it from his end. Polish Wikipedia and one of the small wikis also overwhelming rejected SET. One of them, I think Polish Wikipedia, actually did deploy a sitewide javascript hack to reverse it. SET was completely rolled back there. SET is still deployed with a VE-default on a bunch of microwikis. But microwikis are almost never able to engage or object to anything the Foundation does.
There's an IRC log where this same manager was discussing the very low percentage of people who choose to use VE, and how the foundation could increase VE adoption. He commented that the Foundation could either improve VE, or they could make wikitext worse. A joke... but that joke too often accurately describes what the Foundation has been doing. There's a lot more going on, but this has already become a wall of text. Alsee (talk) 06:29, 27 February 2020 (UTC)
Thanks for sharing all that! My ideal would be for the foundation to improve VE to the point where it could successfully be deployed as the default (they've had several years now; why has it taken so long?), but in the meantime, it looks like we're in a limbo realm. Sdkb (talk) 06:45, 27 February 2020 (UTC)

Teahouse HostBot Invites and ORESEdit

Dear all: Just in case anyone missed it, there has recently been a research study looking at whether the current method by which HostBot selects good faith editors to send an automated Teahouse invite is better, or worse, at ensuring editor retention than a selection process using the AI-focussed WP:ORES.

A short summary has been posted on the Teahouse talk page. The results, thus far, have proved inconclusive, and the researchers ask for feedback on whether to repeat the test, but this time ironing out two quite significant differences in the way that invitees were selected (different timing and different numbers of qualifying edits).

The full research is posted here. The 'Results' and 'Discussion' are well-worth reading. Regards, Nick Moyes (talk) 00:31, 30 January 2020 (UTC)

Discussion at Wikipedia:Village pump (idea lab)/Archive 31#Improving new article edit noticeEdit

  You are invited to join the discussion at Wikipedia:Village pump (idea lab)/Archive 31#Improving new article edit notice. I started it to follow up on the topic Bri.public brought up of new users who try to create articles as one of their first activities. Sdkb (talk) 05:12, 30 January 2020 (UTC)

Highlighting NewbiesEdit

Hello, your post on VPIL alerted me to your committee. I believe you’re doing very important work, given the many challenges new users face. Related to that, I wonder if someone has made the following suggestion, and if not, what you think of it. Namely to further help identify and assist Newbies, the following could be done:

In article Revision History, after the editor’s name, add a Newbie indicator - e.g. Jane Doe(N). Following the example of Student Driver signs, this could be further highlighted, since these are Student Editors, similarly in need of special consideration, e.g:
   Jane Doe N-Please be patient (talk|contribs) 
Then based on problems Newbie may be having, other editors could more readily respond (e.g. provide helpful advice on their user page, etc.) Thhhommmasss (talk) 22:08, 30 January 2020 (UTC)


I've definitely wanted on occasion for there to be a flag like this. One concern I have, though, is that I think the flag over time would come to signal less "this is someone I should be more patient with" and more "this is someone likely to be making problematic edits who needs extra scrutiny". That scrutiny could be useful, since a lot of newbie edits are indeed problematic, but it might make the project a less welcoming place for them. The other thing to note is that a lot of newbies out themselves even without a flag, namely through not having a user page or user talk page. I could definitely see something like this being implemented at some point, along with (on the opposite end) a flag for administrators, but let's just keep in mind that these changes would make the project a more hierarchical place, and that comes with some downsides. Sdkb (talk) 06:31, 31 January 2020 (UTC)

New template Welcome-anon-summaryEdit

Hello, I've created new template {{Welcome-anon-summary}}, as a mashup of {{Welcome-anon-constructive}} and {{uw-editsummary}}, for those anon users having made constructive edits, but not yet familiar with (or neglecting to use) the edit summary field. I've wanted this for some time, and could have used it dozens of times already, and finally decided to do something about it. To see a sample usage in the wild, see User talk:2604:CA00:16A:3F15:0:0:277:9434. Thanks, Mathglot (talk) 07:47, 8 February 2020 (UTC)

Just WP:Be bold and add it. BeenAroundAWhile (talk) 01:34, 27 February 2020 (UTC)

Discussion at Wikipedia:Village pump (proposals)#Proposal to streamline the welcome templateEdit

  You are invited to join the discussion at Wikipedia:Village pump (proposals)#Proposal to streamline the welcome template. Sdkb (talk) 23:29, 11 February 2020 (UTC)

Also pinging the previous contributors: @Oulfis and Bri.public:. - Sdkb (talk) 23:29, 11 February 2020 (UTC)
Update: The proposal hasn't gotten a ton of attention at the pump so far. It'd be helpful if more of you could weigh in to try to spur additional discussion and establish a clearer consensus. Sdkb (talk) 23:32, 24 February 2020 (UTC)

Let's get rid of Wikipedia:Welcoming committee/Welcome to WikipediaEdit

Should we redirect Wikipedia:Welcoming committee/Welcome to Wikipedia to WP:Getting started? Sdkb (talk) 02:57, 9 March 2020 (UTC) Note: The above added as a brief/neutral way to frame the question after this was turned into an RfC. My original opening statement is just below. - Sdkb (talk) 05:29, 13 March 2020 (UTC)

At some point, it seems the Welcoming Committee decided to create its own welcome. The result has been yet another instance of a page with a generic introductory name trying to serve as the starting point for new editors and mostly just linking to every other page trying to serve the same purpose. There's nothing to recommend this page over any of the others or to differentiate its function (it's a clear duplicate), and it's hidden away enough that it's not going to be adequately maintained (it hasn't received a non-minor edit since 2017). I propose that we move it to Wikipedia:Welcoming committee/Welcome to Wikipedia (historical), mark that page as historical, and then change the redirect to go to WP:Getting Started. Any objections? Sdkb (talk) 02:57, 9 March 2020 (UTC)

I would have no problem with this ....but best bring this up at the teahouse....as Wikipedia:Welcoming committee/Welcome to Wikipedia talk page redirects to the teahouse and does get them some traffic. Can't really redirect H:GS talk page as we would have no forum to talk about the page.--Moxy 🍁 04:10, 9 March 2020 (UTC)
Comparing their pageviews, it doesn't seem like any substantial percentage of their traffic. I did notice that unusual redirect — I agree that it's not something we'd want to implement elsewhere, and I think it also probably shouldn't have been implemented there, as because of it there's not really a good place to discuss that page other than here (which should really be for broader concerns). Putting a big notice at the top of the talk page redirecting editors who mistakenly click it seems like a better idea, and most of the main help pages seem to have that (albeit in varying formatting). Sdkb (talk) 06:50, 9 March 2020 (UTC)
Update: Searching for a standardized format led me to {{Talkpage of help}}, which isn't as widely implemented as it should be. I'll try adding it to more places as I come across them in the future. Sdkb (talk) 08:32, 9 March 2020 (UTC)
Technical discussion on retaining historical version
It looks like moving the page requires admin access. Could an admin kindly help us out with this? Thanks! Sdkb (talk) 08:32, 9 March 2020 (UTC)
@Sdkb: Strictly speaking, the RfC process is not appropriate for page moves, see WP:RFCNOT - the proper procedure is WP:RM. (puts admin hat on) You've used {{adminhelp}} but are not specific about what admin assistance you require. I guess that you wish the page Wikipedia:Welcoming committee/Welcome to Wikipedia moved, which does require an admin because it's move protected; but you don't need to use {{adminhelp}} for that - again, it's a WP:RM matter. --Redrose64 🌹 (talk) 22:26, 10 March 2020 (UTC)
I made a move request per your advice at Wikipedia_talk:Welcoming_committee/Welcome_to_Wikipedia (which required overriding the unusual redirect to the Teahouse). Sdkb (talk) 21:56, 12 March 2020 (UTC)
Update: The move request has failed, so it seems there is no interest in having a historical version. So if this passes, the page will just be turned into a redirect and editors interested in the historical version can check the page history. Sdkb (talk) 05:29, 20 March 2020 (UTC)
Every welcome template will need to be redone as most if not all link to the welcoming committee page. Bobherry Talk Edits 14:34, 10 March 2020 (UTC)
@Bobherry: the links would end up going to WP:Getting started, so it's not as though they'd be all that broken. (And it's not as though many people are clicking anyway — the page gets an average of only 100 daily views, among the lowest of any intro help page.) Here is the list of templates that link to it; we could change them as needed, but ultimately, this just needs to happen (and the longer we keep it around, the more cleanup there will be once we do get rid of it). Sdkb (talk) 18:46, 10 March 2020 (UTC)
  • Comment. This seems almost like a discussion for WP:MFD to me. –MJLTalk 14:50, 10 March 2020 (UTC)
    @MJL: should I move this there? Sdkb (talk) 18:13, 10 March 2020 (UTC)
    @Sdkb: I mean, it's a pending RFC right now... so probably not. It arguably could be a move request as well. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯MJLTalk 18:20, 10 March 2020 (UTC)
    @Sdkb: You ask "should I move this there?" - what exactly do you mean by "this" and "there"? Also, by "move", do you mean a cut/paste of part of a page, or using the WP:MOVE facility on a whole page? --Redrose64 🌹 (talk) 22:19, 10 March 2020 (UTC)
    @MJL: A pending RfC may be terminated early, see WP:RFCEND. --Redrose64 🌹 (talk) 22:19, 10 March 2020 (UTC)
    @Redrose64: I think our time will be better spent discussing and reaching consensus on the proposal than trying to figure out what's precisely the right forum. This seems fine enough. Sdkb (talk) 22:57, 10 March 2020 (UTC)
  • Comment Contributors here may also be interested in the proposal to redirect WP:Introduction and WP:Tutorial to Help:Introduction. Sdkb (talk) 18:37, 10 March 2020 (UTC)
  • Support redirecting per nom. I don't think moving this page to preserve it is strictly necessary. It'll always be in the history (and in our hearts). Even though it has existed for a long time, it doesn't have all that many edits. The last ten years of edits look like mostly technical maintenance and reverting vandalism. Ajpolino (talk) 17:02, 13 March 2020 (UTC)
  • Any analysis as to which welcomes worked for which people is going to be made more difficult by deleting or changing the welcomes that have actually been used. By all means change templates to try out new welcomes, and if testing shows that a particular welcome doesn't work well then mark it as defunct and only retained for historical reasons. But we shouldn't be deleting or redirecting templates such as this, especially as no-one has yet done proper AB testing to establish whether the latest designs convert more newbies into regulars than the old designs. ϢereSpielChequers 10:37, 20 March 2020 (UTC)
    @WereSpielChequers: I appreciate your commitment to A-B testing, but if you are going to insist on it as a precursor to making any changes to the help space without offering to conduct it or offering a solid explanation as to how others might do so (as has been the case so far here and at the pump), that's going to have the effect of blocking badly needed updates to a neglected area of the 'pedia. My support for the newer designs over this one is based on surveying them and seeing which ones look best across a number of criteria (links, design, conciseness, etc.), plus some positive anecdotal feedback (I've noticed more editors than normal replying with a variation on "thanks for the warm welcome" with the new streamlined template). If, at some point in the future, someone at WMF does comprehensive A-B testing and discovers that, against all odds, this was the welcome page that was retaining newbies, it'll still be here in the page history to resurrect. But my educated guess is that that's not going to happen, so I think we should move forward. Sdkb (talk) 18:53, 20 March 2020 (UTC)
    One other point: we should be no less aggressive about merging duplicate content in WP-space than we are in mainspace — keeping it around confuses newcomers by creating a maze and wastes editors' time improving/maintaining duplicate resources. Sdkb (talk) 18:53, 20 March 2020 (UTC)

Moving forward from hereEdit

Okay, so ronbot just removed the RfC tag, so it's unlikely this will be getting significant further participation. Pinging the participants, @Moxy, Redrose64, Bobherry, MJL, Ajpolino, and WereSpielChequers: how do you all assess the consensus here? The sibling RfC to this one, about WP:Introduction and WP:Tutorial, seems slated to easily pass, and I have a difficult time imagining that we'd want to get rid of that one but keep this one. Should we extend to try to get more participation, or ask for a formal close, or just go ahead and proceed with converting it to a redirect? {{u|Sdkb}}talk 06:38, 8 April 2020 (UTC)

Yikes. Seems like the topic is not of enduring interest to many editors. I'd suggest you just be bold and make the redirect (or move the page to Wikipedia:Welcoming committee/Welcome to Wikipedia (historical) and then redirect if you prefer). Anyone bothered by that can just revert, and no lasting harm done. It is a wiki after all. I'm glad to see your interest in streamlining the welcome process! I hope the changes make it easier for new folks to find updated guidance. Ajpolino (talk) 16:49, 11 April 2020 (UTC)
Okay! This message is notice that I'll go ahead and proceed with this (and WP:Introduction, where the consensus is very clear) in about 24hr. If anyone objects, please raise your concerns now. {{u|Sdkb}}talk 23:23, 11 April 2020 (UTC)
  Done {{u|Sdkb}}talk 05:08, 13 April 2020 (UTC)

Discussion of interest at ANEdit

There's a discussion on the recent influx of new editors and how to effectively welcome them to Wikipedia happening at the Administrators' noticeboard. Editors of this WikiProject may be interested in participating. See Wikipedia:Administrators' noticeboard#Influx of new editors and IPs. Wug·a·po·des 22:38, 25 March 2020 (UTC)

Discussion at Template talk:WelcomeshortEdit

  You are invited to join the discussion at Template talk:Welcomeshort. {{u|Sdkb}}talk 01:10, 5 May 2020 (UTC)

Discussion about template "Template:Welcome-delete"Edit

 You are invited to join the discussion at Template talk:Welcome-delete, which is about a template that is within the scope of this WikiProject. Naypta ☺ | ✉ talk page | 22:06, 7 May 2020 (UTC)

Discussion on whether to wrapperify welcome templatesEdit

  You are invited to join the discussion at Wikipedia_talk:Welcoming_committee/Welcome_templates#RfC_on_welcome_template_standardisation. {{u|Sdkb}}talk 08:47, 9 May 2020 (UTC)

Return to the project page "Welcoming committee".