Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Council

Active discussions
WikiProject Council
This page relates to the WikiProject Council, a collaborative effort regarding WikiProjects in general. If you would like to participate, please visit the project discussion page.

Frequently asked questions (FAQ)
Q1: What's a WikiProject?
A1: A WikiProject is a group of people who want to work together. It is not a subject area, a collection of pages, or a list of articles tagged by the group.
Q2: How many WikiProjects are there?
A2: There are 880 WikiProjects and task forces tagged as "Active" (see Category:Active WikiProjects), and 238 WikiProjects and task forces tagged as "Semi-active" (see Category:Semi-active WikiProjects).
Q3: What's the biggest WikiProject?
A3: Nobody knows, because not all participants add their names to a membership list, and membership lists are almost always out of date. You can find out which projects' main pages are being watched by the most users at Wikipedia:Database reports/WikiProject watchers.
Q4: Which WikiProject has tagged the most articles as being within their scope?
A4: WikiProject Biography has tagged about 1.29 million articles, making it more than three times the size of the second largest WikiProject. About ten groups have tagged more than 100,000 articles. You can see a list of projects and the number of articles they have assessed here.
Q5: Who gets to decide whether a WikiProject is permitted to tag an article?
A5: That is the exclusive right of the participants of the WikiProject. Editors at an article may neither force the group to tag an article nor refuse to permit them to tag an article. See WP:PROJGUIDE#OWN.
Q6: I think a couple of WikiProjects should be merged. Is that okay?
A6: You must ask the people who belong to those groups, even if the groups appear to be inactive. It's okay for different groups of people to be working on similar articles. WikiProjects are people, not lists of articles. If you identify and explain clear, practical benefits of a merger to all of the affected groups, they are likely to agree to combining into a larger group. However, if they object, then you may not merge the pages. For less-active groups, you may need to wait a month or more to make sure that no one objects.
Q7: I want to start a WikiProject. Am I required to advertise it at Wikipedia:WikiProject Council/Proposals and/or have a specific number of editors support it?
A7: No, there are no requirements. However, new WikiProjects, especially new groups that are proposed by new editors, rarely remain active for longer than a few months unless there are at least six or eight active editors involved at the time of creation.

Suggested updateEdit

WhatamIdoing has kindly let us know on the Women in Red talk page that WikiProjects by number of changes to all its pages has recently been updated. Even though the new version contains identical figures in the "count" and "no bots count" column, I think it would be useful to substitute it for Wikipedia:Database reports/WikiProjects by changes (dated 11 July 2016) which is linked from Wikipedia:WikiProject Council/Directory under "Lists and reports".--Ipigott (talk) 11:20, 17 January 2020 (UTC)

  Resolved: in this diff undo using a local (enwiki, not meta) Quarry interwiki. –84.46.53.188 (talk) 00:43, 18 February 2020 (UTC)

Please reviewEdit

Am I seeing this right? Wikipedia talk:WikiProject History#Request help with new Council for WikiProjects.--Moxy 🍁 05:44, 26 January 2020 (UTC)

Laddy. I lost track of what that fellow's doing & where he's going with it, some time ago. GoodDay (talk) 16:26, 26 January 2020 (UTC)
My observations are being proven accurate. GoodDay (talk) 21:59, 10 February 2020 (UTC)
JFTR, archived by the proponent. –84.46.53.188 (talk) 03:09, 18 February 2020 (UTC)

WikiProject activityEdit

I think there may be disagreement about how to define a WikiProject's status as active/semi-active/inactive. Is there even a consensus for what constitutes a WikiProject activity. I propose the following as WikiProject activities:

  • Assessment of articles within the project's scope
  • Establishing or redefining project objectives
  • Coordinating the expansion and improvement of some articles according to an established project objective
  • Coordinating the maintenance of GAs and FAs within the project's scope
  • Peer reviews
  • Greeting users who have signed up as project members
  • Culling the member list
  • Employing and maintaining WikiProject reporting tools
  • Assisting editors who are working within the project's scope, regardless of whether they are project members
  • Monitoring and responding to inquiries on the project's talk page
  • Monitoring the new articles feed for content within the project's scope

Any thoughts? Oldsanfelipe2 (talk) 16:00, 28 January 2020 (UTC)

"Assessment of articles within the project's scope" is something I've done a lot of, and after hundreds (and hundreds and hundreds) of hours doing this for thousand (and thousands and thousands) of articles, you'd think I would think it was important. However:
  1. Dead WikiProjects frequently have no/few unassessed articles, because nobody tags articles with them.
  2. Highly active WikiProjects frequently have dozens/hundreds of unassessed articles, because everyone tags articles with them.
  3. People who update ratings usually update ratings for all WikiProjects at once, so completely dead groups look like they're changing their ratings.
  4. Much of this (especially labeling stubs and statuses like redirects) can be done by bot these days. WhatamIdoing (talk) 17:29, 8 February 2020 (UTC)
Excellent start; I would add:
  • (Relevant to new WikiProjects): completing Project "setup" activities such as creating project templates and categories (surprising how many projects have not done this)
  • Maintaining the portal associated with the subject (if there is one).
  • Monitoring the results of deletion sorting for the project.
  • Developing and maintaining the categories and templates that relate to the subject.
  • If appropriate, developing guidelines for the structure and style for articles within the project scope
  • Providing links to external data/archives/publications that can be used as sources for articles within the project.
And to @WhatamIdoing:'s comment on assessments, I would note that the talkpage banners for inactive/defunct wikiprojects should be set to suppress assessments (most such templates are).
Thanks, UnitedStatesian (talk) 19:07, 8 February 2020 (UTC)

Quality log reporting botEdit

I have attempted to improve the functionality of the page pages of WP:HOU by installing the quality log reporting bot. Please bear with me if am not proficient in tech-language. I scraped the code from the WP Texas assessment page, pasted it into my sandbox page, and changed the target. It appeared to be working: only Houston articles were being reported. I created a new page for the reports and pasted the code into that file. I attempted to further test it by creating new events: I changed the status of some articles in two ways. First, I added Henry Howell Williams to WP HOU. Second, I assessed some unassessed articles and reassessed others. All of these events should have appeared on the quality log, but none of them did. Does this bot need to be customized for each project, or do the data objects need to be restructured, and how would I obtain help for this? Thanks, Oldsanfelipe2 (talk) 22:21, 30 January 2020 (UTC)

  Resolved
In case you ever need help with that: assessment work belongs to Wikipedia:Version 1.0 Editorial Team, and User:Walkerma is my favorite contact there. WhatamIdoing (talk) 17:22, 8 February 2020 (UTC)

WikiProject LouisvilleEdit

I've asked if WikiProject Louisville should be converted into a task force of WikiProject Kentucky at Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Louisville. ---Another Believer (Talk) 20:51, 1 February 2020 (UTC)

Hi Another Believer. that is very good to know. I appreciate your efforts on that area, and your updates to us here. could you please keep us posted? thanks!! --Sm8900 (talk) 18:33, 4 February 2020 (UTC)

Merger proposalEdit

On 29 January, I posted an inquiry at the talk pages of the various subprojects of WikiProject Texas in order to gauge interest in these WikiProjects. So far I found only one other editor to indicate that they intend to help coordinate WikiProject Texas or any of its subprojects. As a result, there is no other choice than to convert all of the subprojects into Task Forces in order to reduce the administrative responsibility. These subprojects include: WP:ATX, WP:DFW, WP:HOU, WP:TAMU, WP:Texas Tech, WP:UH, Wikipedia:WikiProject University of North Texas, and Wikipedia:WikiProject University of Texas at Austin. For the sake of simplicity, I suggest that all of the university projects convert to direct children of WP Texas, such that WP Texas will be the direct parent of all of these subprojects and will result in a two-level structure.

Below I have included a few assessments statistics for the subprojects as of 3 February 2020: (x): x is the total number of articles within the project

  • Texas (40,386): 122 unassessed, 783 not rated for importance
  • Austin (1,259): 0 unassessed, 0 not rated for importance
  • Dallas-Fort Worth (2,713): 352 unassessed, 604 not rated for importance
  • Houston (3,837): 424 unassessed, 595 not rated for importance
  • University of Houston (419): 1 unassessed, 20 not rated for importance
  • University of North Texas: marked as inactive; assessment chart is not posted
  • Texas A&M (719): 1 unassessed, 74 not rated for importance, marked as inactive
  • Texas Tech University (727): 1 unassessed, 160 not rated for importance, marked as inactive since 2014
  • University of Texas at Austin (659): 7 unassessed, 336 not rated for importance, marked as inactive since 2013

A merger of the various subprojects could result in a stronger WikiProject Texas: with a merger, the backlogs of the various subprojects for assessments and reassessments all go away. As task forces, the subprojects can share the burden of assessments, spend more time on other project functions, or spend more time in main space.

Benefits of a stronger WikiProject Texas:

  1. Provide support for editors who are interested in Texas-related content.
  2. If assessments and peer review are taken care at the WikiProject level, this eases the demands on overworked Wikipedia departments, including Peer Review and GA-Review.
  3. Assessments offer a feedback mechanism for newer editors.
  4. We know that many editors want assessments based on the number of requests at the more active WikiProjects, so improving the assessment process might help with retaining editors.

Today I am notifying the various subprojects of this proposal. Oldsanfelipe2 (talk) 16:54, 7 February 2020 (UTC)

that sounds fine. I think it is very helpful that you are willing to come here to this talk page, to initiate discussion, and to provide updates of this type, on your current efforts and ideas. I appreciate this note. thanks!! --Sm8900 (talk) 17:08, 7 February 2020 (UTC)
I'm the other editor mentioned in the proposal, and I support simplifying the structure. I'll work to help make a plan of action for whatever project results from this process. -Bryan Rutherford (talk) 18:12, 7 February 2020 (UTC)
@Bryanrutherford0 and Oldsanfelipe2:, thats sounds excellent. If I can help, please feel free to let me know any time. you are also welcome to visit my user page or talk page any time if you wish. thanks. --Sm8900 (talk) 19:14, 7 February 2020 (UTC)
Did you mean Wikipedia:WikiProject University of Texas at Austin instead of WP:UT? The latter is a disambiguation page. davidwr/(talk)/(contribs) 21:03, 7 February 2020 (UTC)
  • I support converting these WikiProjects into task forces, as long as the assessment/talk page banners allow editors to designate pages to these specific task forces under the WikiProject Texas umbrella, which may require an overhaul of Template:WikiProject Texas. Oh, and for what it's worth, I'm not a super active editor on any of these projects but as a native Texan I do sometimes edit articles related to Houston, Texas at large, and the University of Texas at Austin. ---Another Believer (Talk) 18:43, 7 February 2020 (UTC)
  • Comment San Antonio is organized as a Task Force despite its legacy page name: Wikipedia:WikiProject San Antonio. The San Antonio Task Force has the ability to designate an importance level through a parameter under the WikiProject United States banner, such as "SATF=low". The Baltimore Task Force is another example: Wikipedia:WikiProject_Maryland/Baltimore_task_force. I like the way that WikiProject Maryland set up tabs for each Task Force page. Oldsanfelipe2 (talk) 20:41, 7 February 2020 (UTC)
    Oldsanfelipe2, In case my comment above was unclear, I'd like to see a similar feature for WikiProject Texas, where editors can designate quality and importance ratings for task forces, such as "|Austin=yes|Austin-importance=low|", "DFW=yes|DFW-importance=low" (or similar), etc. This would help reduce the number of talk page banners. ---Another Believer (Talk) 21:07, 7 February 2020 (UTC)
    Another Believer, Are you concerned about too many banners cluttering the talk page or is this about reducing the number of templates to keep track of? Oldsanfelipe2 (talk) 00:19, 8 February 2020 (UTC)
    Oldsanfelipe2, Maybe both? But my initial thought was talk page clutter. Just seems a single WP:Texas template with parameters for task forces would be better than tagging applicable articles with, say, a WikiProject University of Houston banner, a WikiProject Houston banner, and a WikiProject Texas banner. (This may be a bad example if these projects don't have standalone templates at the moment, but I'm just trying to make a point. There's similar redundancy with WP University of Texas at Austin and WP Austin. ---Another Believer (Talk) 00:39, 8 February 2020 (UTC)
  • Neutral I can speak from the A&M's project point of view. We already are part of WP US. I am not sure why adding us to Texas would make much of a difference. I wasn't a big fan of merging a&m into the united states. I personally believe that universities should be merged into the WP:UNI. From what I understand, most of the A&M articles are already in WP Texas, so I don't see the point in changing anything. But, heck, if someone feels strongly about it and is willing to take care of a project that clearly isn't active, go for it. Oldag07 (talk) 18:56, 7 February 2020 (UTC)
    • Oldag07, nobody here is interested in forcing any group to merge with any other group. If you like where you are better, then please feel free to object. The level required for an objection is very low. (Think about this decision in the emotional range of "Eh, I don't really feel like cooking today" – no reasons required, and nobody gets to tell you that your opinion is different from what it really is.) Similarly, if you think that TAMU should be merged to UNI, then please feel free to start that discussion. We want every group to end up in the place that the group thinks best. WhatamIdoing (talk) 17:49, 8 February 2020 (UTC)
  • Comment WP:TAMU is already a subproject of WP:Texas. This is a proposal to convert the WikiProjects currently under the Texas umbrella into Task Forces, which reduces the administrative duplication for each subproject. Task forces will not have their own talk pages or be responsible for quality assessments, for example. Since there are not many editors who are active with the projects, reducing the number of talk pages to monitor will ensure that queries are not ignored. Oldsanfelipe2 (talk) 20:24, 7 February 2020 (UTC)
  • Support as most or all of these are semi-active at best. davidwr/(talk)/(contribs) 21:03, 7 February 2020 (UTC)
  • Administrative point: The hard part is what happens next. You have to wait for a v-e-r-y long time, to see whether anyone has objections. You want to wait so long that even if someone has decided to go on a round-the-world cruise, they still won't be able to say "You rushed through this process!" without wondering whether other editors will be laughing because the claim seems so absurd. WhatamIdoing (talk) 17:21, 8 February 2020 (UTC)
    WhatamIdoing, so what sort of very long time are you thinking would be appropriate? Weeks? Months? Years? · · · Peter Southwood (talk): 18:02, 8 February 2020 (UTC)
    I think that somewhere between one and two months is a sufficent amount of time. There's no deadline for merging groups, and an angry response can take a lot out of unsuspecting editors. WhatamIdoing (talk) 20:31, 8 February 2020 (UTC)
    Perhaps imagine our hypothetical editor going around the world by various means of transportation, and setting the waiting period at eighty days? Oldsanfelipe2 (talk) 20:56, 8 February 2020 (UTC)
    Perhaps we should have a special rule for any merger involving groups that support articles about French novels, that require their discussion opportunity to last for exactly 80 days. ;-) WhatamIdoing (talk) 04:58, 9 February 2020 (UTC)
    I was thinking between 1 and 3 months when I asked, but did not want to push that range. More than 3 months would be stretching the point, less than 1 could be considered hasty. An integer number of months is easy to check - same date 1, 2 or 3 months later. When I propose a merge or split in article space I generally wait 1 month if there is no response (and I remember the proposal - sometimes I only rediscover it by accident years later). So far I have had no comebacks using a month. Occasionally there will be a support after several months that gets back to me via my watchlist and reminds me to do the merge or split. I guess I am saying that in my experience 1 month should be enough in almost all cases. · · · Peter Southwood (talk): 06:13, 9 February 2020 (UTC)

Support mergers: The Houston and DFW areas are entirely in Texas, and so a single poor of statewide editors can serve them. There is not as much editing traffic on WP as there used to be, so I think we need some consolidation. Also I don't see a problem with TAMU already have been put in the WPUS family as WPTX is within WPUS. WhisperToMe (talk) 22:33, 2 April 2020 (UTC)

Support —¿philoserf? (talk) 22:40, 2 April 2020 (UTC)

Requiring a groupEdit

Most of us can quote it: "A WikiProject is a group of people that wants to work together."

But some of the (mostly newer) folks proposing groups don't know it, or they don't quite believe it. Over at User talk:Sm8900/item draft 2#Be aware of similar efforts, User:Bluerasberry suggests five as a minimum number for a viable group. I've said before that sustainable groups need half a dozen editors to survive the first year, based on some preliminary head-counting I did in the past. I believe that we've arrived at our estimates independently.

First (most important) question: Does anyone think we're wrong? Can anyone think of a thriving WikiProject with just two or three people in it?

Second (contingent) question: If (and only if) our estimates are correct, do you think that the community should (for the first time ever) require people to produce a minimum number (perhaps four/five/six?) of named participants to start a new WikiProject? WhatamIdoing (talk) 17:40, 8 February 2020 (UTC)

I think it's hard to consider what two or three people agree upon to be a meaningful consensus, and discussion in that case ought to go further up the hierarchy to a large group of potentially interested editors. Specifying a minimum number would help reinforce the message that is already currently given: make sure there are enough interested editors willing to engage in prolonged discussion so that a separate talk page is warranted. That being said, although it may help with the most obscure subjects, I think for most topics, the head count is easily padded with editors who'll express an interest, and maybe show up occasionally, but not truly engage with the project. (Almost all projects start with a huge surfeit of initial signups that never edit the project pages again, after all.) isaacl (talk) 18:08, 8 February 2020 (UTC)
To your two questions: (1) I think you're right. If 2 or 3 people want to coordinate, they should use their userspace instead of project space. (2) I'm not sure. I tend to think not, as I'd like to avoid creating extra bureaucracy here if at all possible. Inactive WikiProjects really aren't that problematic, they just sit quietly not bothering anybody. The only downside is the theoretical risk that empty projects draw new editors who, upon finding the project pages abandoned, either leave the site entirely or aren't as productive here as they could've been. The extent to which this happens is probably not measurable, so I'm not sure how extreme of measures we should take to avoid it. I do think we should feel more free to userify or defunct-ify single-editor projects that have gone inactive though. I'd prefer we shut down projects that never got off the ground, rather than prevent those projects from trying. Ajpolino (talk) 20:11, 8 February 2020 (UTC)
What constitutes "just two or three people in it"? A project that currently has two or three members actively building the topic? A project that has only two or three signed up members who are currently active on Wikipedia in any way? Something else? Members who only have project topics on their watchlists are of value for maintenance, even when they are no longer creating or building articles, but it can be a lonely place to be the only one working on the overall scope of a project most of the time. Do such projects thrive? I would say as long as there is one person dedicated to the expansion of the content within the scope of the project it is viable. When that person stops actively building, someone else may take over, or the original may come back and pick up where they left off. As long as there is useful information in the project pages, the project could revive, and the project pages provide history and continuity. · · · Peter Southwood (talk): 06:39, 9 February 2020 (UTC)
I agree with Pbsouthwood--Sm8900 (talk) 06:41, 9 February 2020 (UTC)
To expand on my previous comment: I am listed as a member of several projects, because they cover topics I am sufficiently interested in to occasionally or potentially create a new article within their scope. I usually sign up because I have just made some significant edits in a tagged article, or have just created an article which I tagged as obviously within scope of a project. In many cases I have no idea how often I will edit on similar topics, but consider it highly likely that I will do so some time. Most of the projects are not very active by the edit counts on the project pages, but that has no obvious correlation to what is going on on actual articles tagged for the project. I would consider myself very active in WP:WikiProject Underwater diving, moderately active in WP:OSH, and occasionally active in the rest, often incidentally as a side effect of another project. For example I have edited many medical, physiology, physics, technology, occupational safety, nautical and education articles which are also within the scope of WP:SCUBA. I use the project pages of WP:SCUBA to plan the structure of the coverage of that project, and the others to occasionally notify the projects of something that they may find interesting or ask a question. Sometimes I get an answer. Mostly I am out in mainspace editing. I am here to build an encyclopedia mainly by adding content and making that content findable. I like to collaborate, but do not need to be part of a coordinated group. Sometimes I do gnomery like adding short descriptions, for which I think I actually started the project WP:WikiProject Short descriptions which is fairly active, when I see damage I fix it, if someone asks for help I see what I can do, and when I see governance issues I observe and when I think I have something relevant to say, I say it. I have no idea how common this scope of activity actually is. I find WikiProjects are useful tools, even when not very active, but sometimes they tend to lose the plot a bit and become little empires. · · · Peter Southwood (talk): 07:45, 9 February 2020 (UTC)
Also, what is out metric for "thriving"? Sorry to be so pedantic, but communication on Wikipedia often fails because people interpret things differently, and sometimes will not recognise when this is happening. · · · Peter Southwood (talk): 07:51, 9 February 2020 (UTC)
If a group of one editor produced a consistent improvement in a topic and recorded their plans and activity relating to that topic over a reasonably long period in the format of a WikiProject, would there be cause to object? Should it make a difference if this is how the project starts, or what happens to it after a long period of activity or inactivity? I am assuming that the hardware and data overhead is trivial. Obviously this can be done in user space, but then it is less likely to attract other interested parties, and to a group of one, a single additional member is a big deal. · · · Peter Southwood (talk): 08:11, 9 February 2020 (UTC)
In reply to WhatamIdoing's initial query, while almost all Wikiprojects are dead or dying, there are certainly some with only a handful of regular participants that are still reasonably active; the WT:WikiProject UK Railways model, where there isn't much actual collaboration as such but where the project talk page still serves as a place for casual editors to ask questions which the handful of regulars try to answer, still serves a useful purpose. There are others like the horses project where to judge by the talk page you'd think there were no active members, but are actually still quite active and it's just that by now all the participants have each other's talk page watched so the discussions take place on user talk or article talk pages. Going back further, we once had one WikiProject (now deleted, but its talk archives survive) which was set up with the express purpose of being restricted to its three founding members. ‑ Iridescent 08:47, 9 February 2020 (UTC)
Peter Southwood, "a group of one person" does not sound like a group of people.
I'm not thinking of this as a retroactive rule. I'm thinking of it as a way to stop creating more failures.
Wikipedia:WikiProject Directory/Description/WikiProject UK Railways says that group has 17 people who have made multiple edits to the group's talk page during the last 90 days. Some of them may be non-members who had questions, but that's still a substantial group of people. Wikipedia:WikiProject Directory/Description/WikiProject Equine names four people active on the talk page. There are 40 registered editors who have edited articles tagged by that project (including three of the four participants on the group's talk page). This does not strike me as strong evidence of "a group of people that wants to work together". A few, yes, and no need to bother them. But if they asked today, I don't think that I'd recommend that they bother spending hours (and hours) setting up all the infrastructure. Just watchlisting each others' user talk pages would probably be more efficient for a group of two or three people. WhatamIdoing (talk) 20:04, 9 February 2020 (UTC)
I guess it comes down to how you define a group. After some thought and research I chose to consider a group to exist if it contanes a minimum of 1 member. Other definitions exist depending on context, for example a peer group requires a minimum of three members. When referring to an unknown or variable number it is common practice to use the plural as a generic, it is less verbose than the more precise one or more (people), or none, one or more or at least two (people), or any of the many other options.
To avoid failutes, it may help if we define failure for the purpose of the discussion. (if it has already been defined, a link will do). My first impression would be that it is a result less useful in the long run than having done nothing, but that brings up the question of how long the run must be before making the assessment.
Predictions can be difficult, particularly about the future. Sometimes the only way of finding out is to do it. History is written by the survivors.
There are still a couple of unanswered questions above.
  • What constitutes "just two or three people in it"? and
  • Also, what is out metric for "thriving"?
I need this to answer the original questions. · · · Peter Southwood (talk): 11:56, 10 February 2020 (UTC)
As someone who is pretty much the only active member of a task force (WP:BATS), I don't really see what the harm is. Occassionally other editors cycle in and out of the project space, but it is largely me. Even though there aren't many editors collaborating with me, there are sustained results to the topic area. I think it's fine to encourage editors to have a certain amount of engagement to create a new project, but I'm not sure it should be required. Enwebb (talk) 20:32, 9 February 2020 (UTC)
I think the only "harm" that I can see coming from a mal-formed new WikiProject would be through that project starting to place project templates onto article talk pages which, through a failure of that new project to maintain momentum, ends up leaving a trail of an incomplete set of pointlessly templated pages, which someone else will either have to continue or rollback. Having just looked at the admittedly somewhat moribund WP:BATS Wikiproject, I can see two wonderful things there, and I have no need to care whether or not one person or one hundred are actively editing: Firstly, it has a Hot Articles feed, showing me what's currently being edited within that Project's theme (be it improved or vandalised!) and, secondly, the incredibly useful Quality Assessment table. The latter might well give some lonely, flitting chiropterist or wikignome an opportunity to find articles to improve or reassess, without ever needing to joining the project, or even announce their presence there at all. Other than that, the only harm would be through misleading a few people into believing there is, or was, an active wikiproject on that topic, when there never actually had been one.  That said, we've seen what happens when one misguided person rises to the challenge of enlivening Portals, only to go too far and create a myriad of pointless, trivial such portals. Their enthusiasm then causes a near-vendetta against all portals by a handful of other equally committed individuals. I would hate to see their destructive efforts, tirades and walls of intolerant text being directed towards WikiProjects on the same grounds. So, it would therefore seem prudent to require some evidence of a (quite low) minimum number of committed editors willing to support a new WikiProject before that Project were 'approved' and set running. Nick Moyes (talk) 00:45, 10 February 2020 (UTC)
Nick Moyes, do we have any idea how frequently new projects are created? That would lend some credence to the thought that "this is a problem that needs to be addressed"--if we had numbers of how many projects have been created in the last year, how many editors they started with, and how many "failed" within a certain time period.
As an aside, I'm curious as to how you're defining moribound in relation to WP:BATS. There aren't many editors, there never have been, but the number of GAs has more than doubled since the project started and has had a net decrease of more than 200 stubs, going from ~75% stubs to <50%. Enwebb (talk) 01:55, 10 February 2020 (UTC)
@Enwebb: I have no data at all, sadly, though I doubt very few new WikiProjects have been createdly recently. I, too, would be interested to know. As for defining 'moribund' I meant no insult to your project or your own activity - it was based solely on your own remark that you are the only contributor. I believe I read a rationale somewhere that said it was ok to mark a W/P as inactive if there had been no talk page activity, bar automated posts, for a year. But I think that's a very poor metric to use. At WP:ALPS we have very little TP actvity, yet individuals are still working on relevant articles. Nick Moyes (talk) 02:14, 10 February 2020 (UTC)
I agree with Nick Moyes. All WikiProjects have some value, if they were set up to address a core topic of some importance. we can rework some, if that helps to foster greater interest or activity, but a mere decline in the number of editors does not mean the whole WikiProject is invalid. --Sm8900 (talk) 02:19, 10 February 2020 (UTC)
Edits on the project pages are a poor metric of anything except development of the project pages.
I would not like to put obstructions in the way of a person who has already created and developed a substantial number of articles in a topic worthy of a project from creating a project for the topic in the hope of getting more contributors, or even just keeping track and planning further development. One dedicated editor can produce more quality content on a topic that a moderate size group of occasional dilettantes.
We do not need another portal fiasco. Some checks and balances are desirable. Not sure what they should be though - One energetic and skilled person can produce more quality content than a much larger number of less productive editors. Maybe the criterion for project creation should be linked to combined content creation history of the proponents, with some specific reference to work in the proposed topic area, rather than a number of people who claim interest? Then there is the matter of maintenance projects. Some work just needs to be done, and a prolect is a good way of coordinating it. I started WikiProject:Short descriptions because it was useful and I considered it necessary. I did not wait around to find a group. It seems to have helped get a lot of work done, though we are still some way from reaching the primary goal. · · · Peter Southwood (talk): 11:37, 10 February 2020 (UTC)
Great question WAID - discussions with Sm8900 brought me here by the way. I don't think WPs need an enforced minimum number of active editors (which also requires some definition of activity, and potentially in what scope, etc., which is needlessly bureaucratic). However such a statement is helpful as general guidance to help editors understand what a WP is about, which is a central venue to discuss topics - which means it's not going to be successful on one's lonesome. --Tom (LT) (talk) 06:49, 10 February 2020 (UTC)

To expand on my previous comment: by all means, if you want to work on anything, you should proceed, whether or not you've made a group to work on it. If this means making some pages in Wikipedia space in order to lay out the work, great! If it's just you so far, though, rather than take on the extra overhead of creating a new WikiProject page and then recruiting specifically for that project, I think you'd be better off finding a home in an existing WikiProject, and looking for other editors with similar interests there. Some editors seem to think that if they create a WikiProject, participants will come, but I believe the reverse is far more common: find enough interested editors, and the need for a new WikiProject will emerge.

As discussed in another thread, WikiProject activity is difficult to measure. WhatamIdoing suggested a possible metric might be responsiveness to questions on the WikiProject talk page. I do think projects can do a lot of useful work establishing consensus on various issues, and then mostly be in maintenance mode, where there won't be a lot of activity on the project talk page. But when there is something to discuss, there should be enough people offering up a reasonably diverse set of viewpoints in order to have a broad discussion. If it's just an occasional person posting with no responses, eventually they'll get tired of posting, and the WikiProject will no longer serve as a central discussion point for editors interested in that area. isaacl (talk) 18:26, 10 February 2020 (UTC)

Couple of points:
  • Yes, let's avoid the Portals fiasco. What constitutes a topic of "importance" is always going to be debated.
  • Setting up WikiProject pages is not always valuable. In addition to slightly increasing the maintenance burden on the rest of us, it can often by harmful to the very editors who are trying to start the group. They often leave Wikipedia soon after creating the WikiProject pages.
  • Peter, if a WikiProject is a group of people that wants to work together, then it can't be a "group" of one person. You can't "work together by yourself".
  • I asked for an example of a "thriving" group that was small, because if it's a good idea to have small groups, given that we have so many (a few thousand) WikiProjects, there ought to exist an example of a group with just a couple of editors that was worth the hassle of setting up and maintaining the infrastructure.
  • I won't speak for the metrics used by anyone else, but when I looked into it, I was looking at the number of people who said they would participate during the proposal, compared to whether anyone at all (whether in that group or not) was replying to comments or questions left on the group's talk page. "Failure" meant zero replies. Most WikiProjects failed within a year. Many failed within a couple of months. Inexperienced proposers of failed groups had usually stopped editing entirely a year later. WhatamIdoing (talk) 22:06, 10 February 2020 (UTC)

WikiProject Women in GreenEdit

Thanks to considerable support, WikiProject Women in Green which has been a task force of WikiProject Women is now a wikiproject in its own right. Anyone interested in upgrading articles about women to GA status or higher is welcome to participate in the project.--Ipigott (talk) 11:40, 10 February 2020 (UTC)

€ 0.02 from the IPs: This can be confusing for outsiders (example), so if there are absolutely no reasons whatsoever to do something else it would be nice to have WIG + WIR as daughter projects of women, with the latter mostly on auto-pilot to collect article alerts created by bots etc., WIG for anything better than stub, and WIR for anything worse than start. 84.46.53.188 (talk) 03:22, 18 February 2020 (UTC)

Inactive WikiProjects, should be deletedEdit

If anybody has the know how & patients, they could/should make a list of inactive WikiProjects & any inactive WikiProject branches. Have them all nominated for deletion. GoodDay (talk) 22:58, 11 February 2020 (UTC)

As I replied when you suggested this at the proposals village pump: The work done by the WikiProject can still be of use, even if the project is no longer a central hub of activity for the topic area, such as style advice and guidance on article content and format. Additionally, preserving the historical record is important to ensure that future work can build on the past and that blind alleys aren't unnecessarily retaken. Marking them inactive may be useful to set expectations on responsiveness, but deleting them is not required. isaacl (talk) 23:13, 11 February 2020 (UTC)
Basically what Isaacl said. If you scroll through WP:MfD archives (or just use the searchbox at the top to search for "WikiProject" and sort by date created), you'll see that WikiProject pages are rarely deleted unless they were created in bad-faith or by a sock-puppet. For an example of a defunct project currently being discussed, see Wikipedia:Miscellany_for_deletion#Wikipedia:WikiProject_Deletion. Ajpolino (talk) 23:37, 11 February 2020 (UTC)
I realise that Wikipedia has unlimited space. Just don't see the point in keeping WikiProjects & related pages, if they're no longer used. GoodDay (talk) 23:39, 11 February 2020 (UTC)
The projects are categorized by status, so the lists you are looking for are at Category:Defunct WikiProjects (and subcats) and Category:Inactive WikiProjects (and subcats). But I agree with the normal process NOT to delete these, for the same reasons as the above commentators point out. UnitedStatesian (talk) 23:46, 11 February 2020 (UTC)
@GoodDay: Strong NO at least not in bulk. Individual ones can be nominated at WP:MfD. That said, the only reasons to delete it are 1) it is somehow harmful, 2) it was created in bad faith or by a banned user or otherwise "in spirit" eligible for CSD, or 3) it has zero useful information, including meta-information such as "there was a wikipedia project named foo that was active from DATE1 to DATE2 before petering out, its participants included USER1, USER2, ..., etc. etc.". Almost every WikiProject except only-1-user-participation or other created-and-abandoned projects will meet my "has useful [historical] information" "keep" criteria and should be kept unless there is a compelling reason to delete them. Marking them as historical or inactive and categorizing them as such is the proper course of action. Even the "1-user-participation" ones could be moved to User-space of the user isn't long-gone. davidwr/(talk)/(contribs) 15:51, 12 February 2020 (UTC)
The |importance= ratings of inactive projects can still be useful to the WP:1.0 work. That's why merging them (even of the blank-and-redirect variety) is often preferable to outright deletion of the pages for formerly active groups. WhatamIdoing (talk) 03:32, 14 February 2020 (UTC)
Please don't delete wikiprojects - I find their assessment grids very useful - e.g. Wikipedia:WikiProject_Birds/Assessment#Statistics Cas Liber (talk · contribs) 10:56, 14 February 2020 (UTC)

Oppose The defunct status is sufficient. —¿philoserf? (talk) 22:43, 2 April 2020 (UTC)

Is this uglier or less ugly?Edit

Hi all. Based on Sm8900's suggestions, I've made a mock-up of a slightly tweaked look for the WP:COUNCIL page with the hope of making it less ugly and more accessible to edit. Differences:

  1. Replaced the blue section headers with normal wiki-markup headers (the old blue headers have a confusing "edit" link that actually edits the template instead of the section).
  2. Moved the navbox up to the top-right (you couldn't do that before because it interfered with the old blue headers.
  3. Added a navigation bar to the top (I nabbed this from WP:GA. Idk if this is really a good idea, but my hope is that it'll clarify to folks who are at the proposals page, WikiProject guide, or directory that these are WP Council-related pages. Also these pages' talk pages already redirect here, so this sorta clarifies the page structure I hope).

Theoretically I'd add the navbar to the top of all the pages it's linked to. See the WP:GA-related pages to get a sense of how that looks and would work. The current version is at User:Ajpolino/sandbox3 (and the header is at User:Ajpolino/sandbox2 in case you'd like to play with it; it's easy to understand and to edit, which is a big plus). Thoughts are welcome. I won't be offended if you think it's ugly. Thanks all! Ajpolino (talk) 21:35, 13 February 2020 (UTC)

Less ugly! Support update to your version. Enwebb (talk) 23:00, 13 February 2020 (UTC)
Ajpolino, the tab-thingy at the top is largely inaccessible on mobile devices. I recommend skipping that. I've no objection to the rest of your plans. WhatamIdoing (talk) 03:35, 14 February 2020 (UTC)
Agree looks fine..also agree no tabs.--Moxy 🍁 03:46, 14 February 2020 (UTC)
this looks really good. very pleased to see this here. thanks!! --Sm8900 (talk) 05:18, 14 February 2020 (UTC)
@WhatamIdoing and Moxy: I'm not particularly tech savvy, but if there's a particular way it looks strange on your mobile device, let me know and I can see if it can be fixed (it looks fine on my phone in the app and on the browser, as do the WP:GA pages). If you just prefer a tabless version, that's ok too. This is completely a question of personal preference. Thanks all for your comments! Ajpolino (talk) 16:58, 14 February 2020 (UTC)
It's a table. It therefore doesn't adjust to a small screen width. You have to scroll sideways to see past the third tab, and because it sets the width for the whole page, you then have to do that for all the text on the page. As a result, reading the first sentence works like this: "The WikiProject Council *scroll* is a group of Wikimedians *scroll back* that encourage and assist with the *scroll* development of active *scroll back* WikiProjects."
(Also, I just don't like the way it looks.) WhatamIdoing (talk) 17:20, 14 February 2020 (UTC)
  Done I implemented the changes (minus the tabs). I left the 1px-wide border from the old page, but colored it blue like it was in my sandbox. I don't feel strongly about the border though, so if folks feel its more distracting than appealing, feel free to remove it (or return it to gray by changing the colorcode "#4682B4" back to "silver"). Thanks all for your comments. Ajpolino (talk) 20:13, 17 February 2020 (UTC)

Less ugly Nice layout. —¿philoserf? (talk) 22:46, 2 April 2020 (UTC)

Major change to History projectEdit

Wikipedia:Miscellany for deletion/Wikipedia:WikiProject History/History Town Hall. I noticed before but didn't realize to what extent till now because of this nomination....the history project has been overwhelmed by what seems to be a brand new editor despite them being here for a decade. Perhaps a review of what has happened to the project overall is warranted. This editor is all over the map with things of this nature.--Moxy 🍁 06:09, 16 February 2020 (UTC)

well, I don't know if I am a new editor, but yes, anyone is welcome to come by and to add any comments or input. and also, if you are editing any area or topics within history right now, it would be great to hear from you. Please feel free to let us know about any projects or activities of interest that you may have, or else please feel free to let us know simply what your interests might be. History is an art form, and Wikipedia is the canvas for multiple ideas and interests, of every type. So please feel free to visit the page any time. We appreciate the input and ideas of everyone here. thanks!!! --Sm8900 (talk) 11:25, 16 February 2020 (UTC)
by the way, if anyone here is editing ancient history, we would like to hear from you. there seem to be a lot of knowledgable editors in this area, who have greatly expanded this vitally-important area of Wikipedia historical topics. I am highly interested in this area, but I don't have any particular expertise in it. so I have not edited this area very much at all. if any editors who are active in this area wish to point others towards their efforts, that would be most welcome. we would appreciate any insights or input on this. thanks!!! --Sm8900 (talk) 11:28, 16 February 2020 (UTC)

Q6 reviewEdit

Please check that I got Q6 right on WT:WikiProject Internet culture#Project YouTube + WT:WikiProject YouTube#Closing shop? Notably, does that bot exist? Assuming too much instead of good old MASM assume:nothing is one of my weak spots. –84.46.53.188 (talk) 04:31, 18 February 2020 (UTC)

You've asked, so the first part is okay. Now you wait a couple more weeks. WhatamIdoing (talk) 04:10, 9 March 2020 (UTC)

Absent assessment class ("draft") WikiProject EstoniaEdit

We couldn't figure out how to add class "draft" here Wikipedia:WikiProject Estonia/Assessment. The discussion in question is here: [1]. Maybe someone can solve the problem?--Estopedist1 (talk) 12:03, 21 February 2020 (UTC)

Estopedist1, try QUALITY_CLASS=extended —¿philoserf? (talk) 06:12, 3 April 2020 (UTC)
@Philoserf: no, then we are again at the beginning, see first row in Template_talk:WikiProject_Estonia#Template-protected_edit_request_on_15_February_2020--Estopedist1 (talk) 06:46, 3 April 2020 (UTC)
Estopedist1, I recommend asking that question at Template talk:WPBannerMeta. If you get no response there (after a few days), then take your question to Wikipedia:Village pump (technical). WhatamIdoing (talk) 04:11, 9 March 2020 (UTC)

WikiProject NewspapersEdit

I have tried to revive the Wikipedia:WikiProject Newspapers by updating the content, instructions and monitoring the unassessed articles. There are now alerts and popular articles for this project. It has been broadened to include all newspapers, worldwide. It should be listed on this page below the Media project.

G. Moore 17:28, 1 March 2020 (UTC)

User:G. Moore, your next step is to make wiki-friends with editors who are interested in that area. Look at WP:WikiProject Directory/Description/WikiProject Newspapers and leave friendly notes asking them to put the page on their watchlists. WhatamIdoing (talk) 04:13, 9 March 2020 (UTC)
G. Moore, See Wikipedia:WikiProject Council/Guide#Recruiting editors

Bots no longer calculating WikiWork and Relative WikiWorkEdit

The bots have stopped updating the WikiWork and Relative Wikiwork. User:WP 1.0 bot/WikiWork/all stopped updating in June 2019. So even though the assessment tables for a project are up-to-date on the distribution of classes, the statistics at the bottom are very old (I've been manually calculating them). I'm not even sure who to tell about this. Thoughts? Enwebb (talk) 03:14, 3 March 2020 (UTC)

@Kelson: and @Audiodude: operators of the bot.--Moxy 🍁 03:32, 3 March 2020 (UTC)
Are these missing stats useful? Who uses them and for what? · · · Peter Southwood (talk): 07:09, 3 March 2020 (UTC)
Pbsouthwood, I use them! I keep track of trends in article quality. I got the idea from WikiProject US Roads. It is also useful to compare related WikiProjects, like here with the side table. Enwebb (talk) 13:50, 3 March 2020 (UTC)
Enwebb, I like this. I will have a look and see if I can work out how to do it for WPSCUBA. Not sure how useful it is, but coolness factor is fairly high. Brings out ny inner geek. Cheers, · · · Peter Southwood (talk): 19:02, 3 March 2020 (UTC)
@DatGuy: Actually it looks like that WikiWork table was updated by User:DatBot. I don't think it was ever done by User:WP_1.0_bot which is the bot we operate. audiodude (talk) 22:14, 4 March 2020 (UTC)
@Kelson and Audiodude: User:WP 1.0 bot/Tables/Custom/Roads-1 and User:WP 1.0 bot/Tables/Custom/Canada-Roads-1 have also not been updated since August. Please fix them? Imzadi 1979  22:58, 3 March 2020 (UTC)
August was when we shut down the automated table creation from the old version of the WP1.0 bot. Unfortunately, so-called "custom" tables did not get migrated in the first pass. We would need to work together @Imzadi1979: to figure out how these operated and incorporate them in the new bot. audiodude (talk) 22:14, 4 March 2020 (UTC)
See the corresponding issue on the WP1.0 bot github source code page. audiodude (talk) 22:16, 4 March 2020 (UTC)
@Audiodude: for the two tables I mentioned, it shouldn't be that hard. Looking at the second table for Canada, there are 15 rows, one each for each province/territory plus one for the TCH task force and one for the overall project. Looking at the first row specifically, it links to Wikipedia:Version 1.0 Editorial Team/Alberta road transport articles by quality statistics and then pulls the total articles for each assessment class (FA, A, GA, B, C, Start, Stub). The last three columns are the total articles and the two WikiWork factors (cumulative, relative). Each province/territory has a separate assessment categories. The other table is basically the same for the US; it just has more rows because we have more states and territories, plus some other task forces by topic. Each has its own assessment categories.

(Long ago, I had requested some other similar tables for other road projects, so if we can get one of these built, it should be an easy matter to recycle the code.) Imzadi 1979  23:21, 4 March 2020 (UTC)

@Enwebb and Audiodude: See User:DatBot/WikiWork/all and the related pages. Do the results seem accurate? I made a few improvements. Dat GuyTalkContribs 11:00, 9 March 2020 (UTC)
DatGuy, the relative WikiWork values seem too low. I just manually calculated the WikiWork and relative WikiWork for WP:MAMMALS and got ω = 45019
Ω = 5.29, compared to 34240 and 4.02 for Datbot. What changes did you make? If it's from removing "A-class" then that's probably fine--most projects don't use that except MILHIST and a few others. Enwebb (talk) 13:10, 9 March 2020 (UTC)
@Enwebb: should be fixed, I'm running it entirely again to make sure. Dat GuyTalkContribs 13:50, 9 March 2020 (UTC)
DatGuy, that looks right! Thank you! Enwebb (talk) 14:54, 9 March 2020 (UTC)

Dead toolserver linkEdit

Hey team, as many of you know the link that is at the bottom of many WikiProjects, that begins with [[tools:~dispenser/cgi-bin/transcluded_changes.py, has been dead for quite some time. Any objection to my reaching out to a bot operator to begin automated removal of the busted link from every project where it appears? If it ever magically comes back to life, we can have the same bot put it back. Let me know, and thanks, UnitedStatesian (talk) 02:46, 10 March 2020 (UTC)

Sorry just to clarify, is that the tool that used to be the "project watchlist" that showed all changes to project-tagged pages? I thought there was a replacement tool, but maybe I was just thinking of the "tool" described here which requires a bot to maintain a list of tagged pages. Anyone know of a better way to get a similar result? If not, I'm happy just having a bot pull the links. Like you said, if the tool comes back we can mass-readd them. Thanks! Ajpolino (talk) 04:05, 10 March 2020 (UTC)
Yes, I'm referring to the external tool described as "Project Watchlist" and located on toolserver; that's the one that is busted. UnitedStatesian (talk) 03:25, 11 March 2020 (UTC)
There seem to be several options. User:Kaldari supplies Wikipedia:WikiProject Medicine/Hot articles, which is enough for editors who want to see what's active. You can use Special:RecentChangesLinked if you want everything, or you can divide up "everything" into multiple lists (WPMED example). There's Wikipedia:WikiProject Medicine/Discussions, which does something similar with tagged talk pages. Other people might be more interested in Wikipedia:WikiProject Medicine/Tools#Article Alerts than a watchlist per se. WhatamIdoing (talk) 05:02, 11 March 2020 (UTC)

WikiProject COVID-19Edit

I've created WikiProject COVID-19 as a temporary or permanent WikiProject and invite editors to use this space for discussing ways to improve coverage of the ongoing 2019–20 coronavirus pandemic. Please bring your ideas to the project/talk page. Stay safe, --Another Believer (Talk) 17:24, 15 March 2020 (UTC)

Wikipedia:WikiProject Royalty and Nobility listed at Requested movesEdit

A requested move discussion has been initiated for Wikipedia:WikiProject Royalty and Nobility to be moved to Wikipedia:WikiProject Royalty and nobility. This page is of interest to this WikiProject and interested members may want to participate in the discussion here. —RMCD bot 13:47, 19 March 2020 (UTC)

To opt out of RM notifications on this page, transclude {{bots|deny=RMCD bot}}, or set up Article alerts for this WikiProject.

Update recommendation for WPBannerMetaEdit

Today Template:WPBannerMeta uses {{Category TOC}}. I recently created the required category pages to support article assessment. Then I saw another editor updating all those pages with {{CatAutoTOC}} because of the number of pages in each category. The system and instructions should be updated for the, perhaps newer, template. I explored the update in WPBannerMeta's supporting sub template—see the diff link that follows. I am not familiar enough with the system yet to know what the right 'fix' is and where it might need to be updated. See the diff. —¿philoserf? (talk) 22:44, 29 March 2020 (UTC)

Another editor has updated the template. —¿philoserf? (talk) 22:37, 2 April 2020 (UTC)

Helping someoneEdit

I need help expanding Wikipedia:WikiProject Inca Empire. I didn't create it, but I've been working hard on it. I was wondering if I could get some help. It is very short and I barely know anything about WikiProjects. Koridas (Speak) 06:47, 5 April 2020 (UTC)

Return to the project page "WikiProject Council".