Wikispooks talk:Community portal

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Welcome to the Wikispooks Community discussion page.
This is the place for Wikispooks discussions which relate to the site as a whole, rather than just particular pages.
All Wikispooks editors are encouraged to contribute thoughts relevant to developing the software and community behind the Wikispooks project.


Requested features

Someday, maybe...

  • (Old) - "Export to PDF" (like Wikipedia has) could be good. I printed one of these pages once, and it came with a lot of unneeded fluff.
  • 2019 - Property:MaybeConstitutes - Not yet implemeted, to interpret '?' in the constitutes argument
  • 2019 September - VisualEditor - To ease the learning curve or new editors -- User:Sirjamesgray
  • 2020 February - I have no idea what kind of work is involved to enable this, but since deletion on Youtube is getting so severe, being able to use some more video platforms would be great. Especially Bitchute, which is established now in terms of capacity, security, reliability and which has a free-thought approach that is fair enough. Also to consider: Mike Adams Brighteon, which is younger but much in the same direction - Vimeo, since it has not the strongest monitoring and will allow HD content - also Dailymotion Sunvalley (talk) 15:53, 4 February 2020 (UTC) || "" I forgot, another viable source for video hosting Sunvalley (talk) 10:05, 8 February 2020 (UTC)


More standardisation might improve their utility.

  • Integration with SMW. e.g. A fixed set of subpages which could be interpreted by software if found ".../murder", ".../perpetrators" etc.
  • .../Quotes - for quotations relevant to an article, or quotes made by someone (perhaps this is better in a subsection)
  • The need for Template:SubPages is slightly counterintuitive, so perhaps the subpages should appear by default in the infobox?
    • My main concern is that sub-pages should always have an obvious link to them on their parent pages. I was thrown by the David Kelly one for a while this morning. I'm not fussed about exactly how it is achieved, hence my installation of the subPages extension when I was having problems with the issue a while back --Peter P (talk) 11:19, 21 September 2014 (IST) Sep. 2014 - Infoboxes now display a list of subpages.


Template:Video, Template:YouTubeVideo, Template:Image and Template:Document fulfill analagous functions, but have different usage patterns and evolved separately.

  • The semantic objects produced should be standardised for compatibility
  • Some thought about transcripts/translations is in order


The following developments are to be expected:

  1. Timeline pagenames will be standardised. i.e. Parent Event/Timeline
  2. All 'timeline events' should be upgrade to use the normal Template:Event ✓ July 2015 - All timelines were upgraded to integrate with SMW
  3. The earlier image strip has been replaced by a list of text links, which should be replaced in due course with a set of image links
  4. The timeline should automatically read data from the parent event
  5. All the hardcoded categories and forms should be replaced by dynamically generated ones
  6. No separate page for the two different timeline formats - they should be shown on a single page in a tabstrip
  7. A large proportion of the old events need upgrading since they are mostly little more than a label.

Semantic Mediawiki

All pages now have input from SMW. You do not need to know how to program SMW to use it, or to help develop it by suggesting new ways it could be used. Beginners to SMW should note that being precise is very important for it to work properly, so apparently small points from a human perspective can be of great importance from the point of view of SMW. If it's not working as expected, check syntax such as capitalization and singular/plural etc.


Ways to improve how SMW is currently implemented.

  • The "|perpetrators" field for events is too simplistic, since it doesn't distinguish, for example, the 'hired guns' from those who do the hiring.
  • The "|membership" field for groups is too simplistic, since it doesn't allow for dates and grades of membership (e.g. 'chairman')
  • Quotations by one person could appear on the page of whoever made them (or pointers to them) - Implemented in Template:SMWQ
  • ...

Known issues


  • It appears that |image_description=xxx does not render the text, cant get it to work here Foundation funding, not working here Libya ... I may have seen it in one place but that was possibly an older page that hasn't been updated in a while. -- Sunvalley (talk) 21:09, 16 September 2020 (UTC)
Use |image_caption instead. -- Robin (talk) 11:43, 17 September 2020 (UTC)


  • Some titles of page need "," in them ideally, but this conflicts with comma as a list separator. This will probably never be fixed, since "," is so useful as a separator, but please be aware of this and do not use commas in titles.
  • document incorrectly handles uploaded documents:- meaning that it is necessary to add File: after "|local=" to fix the PDF link. This is a small, but hard to diagnose problem for MW editors.
  • Object pages (e.g. Event, Person...) display examples, but only for the first 50. Clicking on the "next" button changes the SMW query, so that the images are displayed as text - and also, the pagename is doubled. e.g. See here
  • The coordinates parameter of Template:Event and Template:Place sets semantic data but does not display on the page. There is probably a useful template on Wikipedia that could be imported to fix this.
  • Some SVG images are not rendering here properly for unknown reasons.[1]
  • Sometimes the templates do not properly create page sections but display as ordinary text beginning with "==".[2]
  • Some pages have problems with displaying references[3]
  • Unique icons are missing from the year pages references on the coverpage -- Robin (talk) 18:54, 19 October 2019 (UTC)

Manifested by the June 2019 software upgrade:

  • Some items have no text on the coverpage, although they don't have
  • Some job icons not rendering correctly when they link to pages which exist but which have no icon. This may be connected to redirects.[4]
  • Ratings not rendering correctly at the bottom of pages.[4]
  • Some office holders not shown[5] -- Robin (talk) 18:59, 29 August 2019 (UTC)


  • The Export to RDF (e.g. ) prints a space character before the "<", causing it not to display properly in some browsers (such as Firefox) - Removed a stray newline from an earlier fix:-) -- Robin (talk) 01:22, 10 January 2018 (GMT)
  • The edit dialog which comes up after using the top right button to publish and entry states "Publish to {{SITENAME}}". - Fixed by editing the source file. -- Robin (talk) 02:35, 10 January 2018 (GMT)
  • The "Interest of" list has an upper limit on the #entries it will display. This doesn't affect many pages (probably only "Terrorism"), and is due to the #arraymap parser function in Template:ArrayMapBulletedList. - Fixed by adding |limit=200 to Template:Concept -- Robin (talk) 02:16, 10 January 2018 (GMT)
  • The infoboxes are not behaving with some unusual characters.[6] Fixed 2017-11-18 by tweaking the substring extension to use multibyte functions. -- Robin (talk) 16:24, 18 November 2017 (GMT)
  • Some government employment names are common between different countries[7] - Best practice here is to prefix the ambiguous jobs with "CountryName/" to make them unique.
  • Some pages sometimes do not display an infobox, but instead report "Lua error: Internal error: The interpreter has terminated with signal "24"." - this tend to be those people with several jobs, (e.g. Dominik Suter) so it is suspected to be a resource limitation.
  • Icons not displaying correctly on the coverpage
  • Junk text when Display properties are set.
  • Ratings:
    • The "highly rated" tab of coverpage is empty
    • Ratings not rendering correctly at top of infoboxes[4]


The design intended to be fairly staid but functional as befits an encylopaedia.

Space usage

  • Some of the labels in the infoboxes still appear as plural even if the matching data is singular.[Which?]
  • Some of the labels in the infoboxes might benefit from reordering.

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Community Portal discussion

IMO, this community portal is set up all wrong.

Firstly, it does not convey community. The utility is good (could be improved) but the community aspect needs promotion, and maybe a nice image for collective achievement.

The Wikispooks:Community portal page is not editable. I wanted to alphabetize it and update from 5 to 6 the Wikispooks:Projects list - which IMO Projects should be added to this other "Wikispooks Categories" list and maybe copied to the left margin menu:

  • About Wikispooks
  • Help
  • Semantic Mediawiki
  • Wikispooks Policy
  • Wikispooks Technical
  • Wikispooks To Do

Maybe add "Wikispooks SaidIt" below "Wikispooks Twitter" and "Wikispooks Reddit" in the left margin, under "Misc" or a new "Social Media".

Maybe make that "Wikispooks Categories" list into a template to add on Wikispooks:Projects somewhere, and elsewhere where appropriate.

The large icons list and the second short list are confusing. IMO, small icons in a vertical list would be good enough. But the categories and the page seem to be very different creatures. This is very confusing and may need clarification/cleaning/unifying - or more discussion on how to best present the content and rework thereafter as necessary.

I'm not really clear on what "Projects" means. It seems to mean "priorities" or "goals" and is very close to "To Do" which seems to be more about "maintenance", but not quite "webmaster administration". Generally projects could mean so much more too. Distinctions with a difference.

Part of my confusion is that, on a personal level, I consider the "Eric Ciaramella" page to be an active "project" that needs more clarity, sources, information, etc. (Maybe "Projects" and "To Do" could be merged and simplified with a "Priority" status added. Or not.) I also intend to bring some projects to Wikispooks to open up from being just my own to a collective effort. Maybe those "projects" will need a different term.

And now I've discovered this discussion page.

First, IMO, this whole discussion page should be moved to the main page below an appropriate header (maybe in a locked template) - then this discussion page can be deleted/locked. Sadly, many/most people don't even look in the talk pages. In this way it puts this community discussion front and center. Resultant goal: Easy access to community discussion. Perhaps in the future community divisions may be necessary. Presently this "Wikispooks talk:Community portal" seems more like another To Do list. Maybe all the To Do lists need to be consolidated, or not. Maybe there need to be several community discussions on different aspects of Wikispooks - the admin, the maintenance, the to do, the topics, the projects, the content, the design, etc. But until there is an overflow, it seems like one discussion might be enough, for now.

Second, I haven't even read this page yet.

Third, I'm shocked at how short it is. This is evidence that this "community" needs help. Or maybe it doesn't. While I'm not surprised it exists, I wasn't aware of the Wikispooks presence on Twitter and Reddit. (Now on too.) Maybe there are other forums where people discuss things. I know there's an email list that I have to catch up on too. While all of that is good, this seems like the most logical centralized place to start for community to check in. All the other social media, etc can be linked to in a dedicated header or sidebox list.

I don't mean to shit on Wikispooks. I'm just offering my first impressions. Maybe they can be addressed in time, no rush, or considered and solved in other ways. ~ JasonCarswell (talk) 23:02, 3 February 2020 (UTC)

Wikispooks talk:Projects discussion relocated here

I didn't want to take the liberty of saying what Wikispooks should or should not do until I get more acclimated. But I have a few ideas nonetheless.

I alphabetized the Wikispooks:Projects sections on the page (and made a couple minor grammar and punctuation adjustments). I saw no evidence that any were a priority above the others. There's no great reason to do this other than it might help a bit, and it might also make it more inviting to add more sections for more content needing attention, if necessary.

The PropOrNot/List was history to be sure. But is it a priority? "Reporting cases of censorship, particularly on the internet" could be a much larger expansion with many primary sections, ie: Reddit, YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, etc. as well as their funding sources: PayPal, Patreon, etc. Those lists must be huge. That's not even counting the "foreign agents" thing - like how RT News is called.

It may be worth adding to the Whistleblowers Suggested improvements for this project include: something like "the pros and cons" and "follow up". On one hand listing the cons of whistleblowers might frighten many - but it may also warn them of things to avoid. Also listing pros is good - for example they might have saved millions of lives. And follow up, IMO, is important to help publicize problems whistleblowers may be facing - and may even be helped with. It's also necessary to recognize heroes, etc.

I would like to see one more addition in particular, assuming it's cool with the Wikispooks people. I'd like to see a little "Wikispooks Community" section that lists things that exist and to do in order to build the WS community, including centralized information, centralized hangouts (ie., etc.

If this discussion should be in a better place (ie. A centralized Wikispooks community Tea Room or something) please feel free to copypasta move (and delete) this post there and please ping notify me. ~ JasonCarswell (talk) 22:04, 3 February 2020 (UTC)