News and notes

News and notes

Brief outage

Wikipedia was down for about 25 minutes on Saturday, 17 February. One of the servers that handles text load balancing failed and service was restored after this function was moved to a different server.

Verifiability + No Original Research = Attribution?

Work has been done to merge Verifiability and No Original Research into a single policy, Wikipedia:Attribution. Discussion is underway on Wikipedia talk:Attribution; the proposed move/merger has sparked significant discussion.

Commons Picture of the Year competition

The Wikimedia Commons Picture of the Year competition has reached the second and final round. For the second round, which lasts through Wednesday, 28 February, the 321 pictures on the shortlist have been narrowed to the top 11 (due to a tie). Users with at least 100 edits on any local project or Commons can vote on their favorite of the 11 photos. The finalists can be seen below:

WikiProject meta-template up for deletion

After the creation of the meta-template {{ArticleHistory}}, which was designed to reduce the number of talk-page notices relating to the featured and good article processes, (see archived story), its proponents created another template, {{WikiProjectBanners}}, meant to combine all WikiProject-related templates into one. The template's creation and usage has been supported by many users involved in the featured article process, including Raul654, Dr pda, Gimmetrow, Kirill Lokshin, and SandyGeorgia. An example of the template's usage can be found at Talk:Jogaila.

The template, which was created on 5 February, was nominated for deletion on 19 February. Ned Scott said in nominating the template for deletion, "We all agree some talk pages have gotten out of hand with their template banners, but not all ideas are good for how to clean up the situation. This template basically just shoves all the WikiProject templates of a given talk page into a drawer, rendering the banners useless. If you're going to do that then you might as well just not use the banners in the first place. The hide-and-forget method is a sloppy way of dealing with this situation."

In the template's defense, SandyGeorgia noted that "While there are a few exemplary WikiProjects that keep up with the articles they have tagged, these projects seem to be in the extreme minority. Not only do most Projects not contribute to writing or maintaining the articles they tag; months of experience at WP:FAR shows that most of the Projects make no effort whatsoever to preserve featured status on articles that have fallen into neglect in spite of repeated notifications to the Projects when articles come up for review. ... If an editor needs to locate the Projects, they are in the banner, and full functionality to the Projects is retained. I often am restricted to a slow dialup (when I travel); another reason to consider the need to clean up extreme talk page clutter." In response to a comment about how the template hides WikiProject assessments, Raul654 replied, "It hides them by default because there is no good reason they should be displayed by default. The majority of talk page visitors do not need or want that information. They do need and want a clutter-free talk page. The ones who need them know damn-well where to find them." Discussion on the TFD is currently heavily against the template's deletion; on the template's talk page, a change to another version of the template that shows the names of all WikiProjects seems to be preferred.


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