Template talk:Find sources

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Please be more careful with this template; it is an AfD and bio-stub tool[edit]

Resolved: The two very different versions are now separate templates.

What the heck happened to this once-functional template today? It used to be succinct and useful. Now it is full of a bewildering array of options, some of which don't convey anything useful (what does "a9" mean?), and spits out 'you must add "+" between words for phrase search', which might be useful as part of the template documentation, but is just gibberish as part of the output. Reverting. This template is newly but increasingly used in AfD (it's a "hit", but please be gentle with it), and in a number of biographical stubs' talk pages. Please do not alter it so radically without discussion. — SMcCandlish [talk] [contrib] 06:28, 16 February 2007 (UTC)

If a radically different version of this template is desired, create a FindSources2 (but experiment in your sandbox please, not with live templates). If the new version is of sufficient interest, I'm sure it can be merged here after a consensus discussion. — SMcCandlish [talk] [contrib] 06:32, 16 February 2007 (UTC)
I'm rather baffled and taken aback by your scolding tone as well as you lack of investigation of the actual links in the new template. A9 is the Amazon search engine and the link went to the book search (which covers many newer books not covered in google books; there was a string error in the last version which has now been fixed). The MS equivalents refers to the Microsoft equivalents of Google Books and Google Scholar - they do not cover the same ground. A differentiation was introduced between Google archive news (the only option in the original content) and Google current news (which is not covered in the same way by the Google archive news). Google is not the be all and end all of search options. As for the suggestion that the vital piece of advice to add "+" for phrase searches is "gibberish" - I really don't understand your point. I've created an alternative template as you've asked, but I don't see why I should be held off from live, useful template creation because you say so. I don't think there's a "bewildering array of options" - compare Template:Search - though perhaps you think that's gibberish too. Bwithh Join Up! See the World! 07:06, 16 February 2007 (UTC)
Sorry, wasn't meant as a "scolding" but as a red-flag that stuff is breaking while you sandbox with a "live" template.
Re: "A9", well, OK, so it exists. Doesn't mean it means anything to the people seeing it (in retrospect, now that I go look at their site I do recognize their logo). Perhaps this term is out-of-context, but is A9 "notable"? I.e. is there any real reason to give their results a headline? There are hundreds of Web search engines, but few demonstrate any actual utility. Or, re: "Google is not the be all and end all", it is at least pretty reliable and makes its paid search results and honest ones easily distinguishable, which is vitally important for WP:RS purposes and related. I am not a search engine industry expert and am not objecting to non-Google search results by any means. I'm just confounded by the loss of topical results simplicity that this template exemplified a day ago, is all.
Re: MS equivalents, etc.: I'm skeptical that anyone here (from a legit NPOV standpoint) cares that this search or that is sponsored by MS or Google or whoever. The immediate value of the original template was that it categorized the searches by type not by ultimate corporate sponsor. Categorizing them by $ponsor just instantly polarizes debate as to potential value.
The "gibberish" point I thought was clear, and I'm sorry if it wasn't and was misinterpreted. Template usage instructions never appear in template rendering results on target pages. Ever. It just is not done. Or to put it a radically different way, it looks like an error message, and implies that something inside WP is broken. (Actually, I can think of a marginal exception: {{Prod}} pretty much freaks on you if you don't "subst:" it. But after that it is quiet.)
DIfferentiation between Google Current News and Google News Archives sounds like a great idea, but the (sensible, don't get me wrong) differentiation was lost in the tumult of unexplained changes ({{Summary}} comes to mind...), and isn't particularly clear in the rendered results that the user sees (in the new version I mean)
"Because I say so" hasn't a thing to do with it. I'm not a WP Bureaucrat or even Admin, just some random editor who was using this template widely and found it useful one moment, and literally felt I had to retract recommedation of its use an hour later because it was radically different by that point, without any explanation. Leading to:
I and others try out new templates all the time. Some of them suck, some of them are great, but it's better to sandbox first and set up an alt. template, and/or establish a dialogue about changing the extant one, because it is very hard to accurately predict what uses people may already be putting to a template and what unintended effects sudden changes to it might have. The TfD debate about {{Death date and age}} is a good case in point. Just the TfD-related tagging of it made a wreck of many, many articles' infoboxes. This "cascading effects" problem recently nipped me in my own butt, so I swear my horse is not high here (see my talk page regarding {{Vietnamese name}}).
And yeah, with regard to {{Search}}, bewildering is certainly the term.
SMcCandlish [talk] [contrib] 09:13, 16 February 2007 (UTC)
By the way your "Robert+Smith+Engineering" example was a poor change to the template page. It doesn't work very well because of the way the search template works. May I also suggest that this template is not exclusively intended for your use in bio-stubs. Bwithh Join Up! See the World! 07:18, 16 February 2007 (UTC)
I honestly don't follow your first comment; if the you think the change is for the worse, revert away! I thought it helpful because it demonstrated that +terms might need to be added for the search results to be useful; that's all. Addressing the second point, I didn't at all mean to suggest that it was exclusively used by bio stubs. Rather, that its principal use thus far is in AfD, and that use is principally for WP:BIO issues, hence the addition of the the academic search by someone else (which I'm not too happy about, really, as it rarely applies). I think the entire thing needs to be forked into a bunch of more customized variants, e.g. FindSources-academic, FindSources-band, etc., with some basic variants also existing, such as, FindSources (for really generic things like "celluloid" or "automobile") and FindSources-bio for biography searches that are not particular to topics that already have their own customized nuances or criteria. Perhaps a side discussion, but I hope the idea resonates with you. — SMcCandlish [talk] [contrib] 09:13, 16 February 2007 (UTC)

Bullet no good[edit]

Resolved: Changed as requested, and change hs been stable for over 1.5 years.

Very strongly suggest removing the bullet. I noticed that the "Comment" has already been removed. This template should be usable inline, like {{User}} and a zillion others. It would be much more versatile that way. As it stands as of this writing, it is only useful if put on a line by itself, which is a bit limiting. — SMcCandlish [talk] [contrib] 06:47, 16 February 2007 (UTC)

Ok, I'll remove the bullet. Addhoc 09:44, 16 February 2007 (UTC)
It now works inline. Some AfD archives may need to be formatting-fixed (i.e. the occurrences subst'd, indented properly and preceded with "Comment:, which was removed from the template), but I think an admin should be asked to do that, given that they are AfD archives. Heh. — SMcCandlish [talk] [contrib] 20:50, 16 February 2007 (UTC)

Suggested merge with Template:Findsources2[edit]

Stale: No further discussion in over 1.5 years. No consensus for merge, but template not improved with features from other one either.
  • Oppose for now, possibly two different uses. The short version for putting into a paragraph, and being unobtrusive. The longer version for a more exhaustive search. Addhoc 09:44, 16 February 2007 (UTC)
  • Semi-oppose for now per Addhoc, and see also above ideas with regard to forking this into several more topical templates. Some of the features of version 2 might be great additions here. — SMcCandlish [talk] [contrib] 20:50, 16 February 2007 (UTC)
  • Comment: To clarify the above, I thinkt that some of the new features of the #2 version should be merged into this one. — SMcCandlish [talk] [contrib] 15:43, 24 February 2007 (UTC)

Free vs. pay sources[edit]

Resolved: Now an optional feature.

Was unpleasantly surprised by this edit [1] which changed the template to only search for free sources by default. As mentioned above, a big purpose of this template is to make it easy to point to sources for AfD. An option to the template to make it search for only free sources is fine, but by default it should give links to searches which return all sources. cab (talk) 00:39, 20 February 2008 (UTC)

I've self reverted. Addhoc (talk) 16:39, 21 February 2008 (UTC)
Coded it in as an optional feature, and documented. — SMcCandlish [talk] [cont] ‹(-¿-)› 22:59, 30 August 2008 (UTC)

Use in stubs[edit]

Resolved: Documented to distinguish appropriate and policy-noncompliant use.

I think this template should not be used on stub pages. It suggests that if your free encyclopedia has run out of useful content, Google will somehow provide something better. It is clearly intended to help editors, not readers. The only place therefore where I could imagine it being useful is on talk pages. JFW | T@lk 14:05, 7 July 2008 (UTC)

I have asked Mrg3105 (talk · contribs) to clarify his extensive use of this template (outsite its usage) on pages dedicated to military history. These are the namespace articles that presently display this template. JFW | T@lk 14:32, 7 July 2008 (UTC)
There is a relevant guideline - Wikipedia:EL#Links normally to be avoided. I'll remove the template from article space, and clarify the template documentation. PhilKnight (talk) 00:18, 9 July 2008 (UTC)
I've modified the template to be invisible in article space. PhilKnight (talk) 15:00, 9 July 2008 (UTC)

Added functionality for addl. search parameters[edit]

I added a boatload of stuff for up to 4 additional parameters, which can include quoted search terms and negatives (and both in same value). Tested it a bunch in my sandbox, and it appears to work exactly as intended. Also improved the documentation, and also made the display show precisely what would be the manually-entered Google search terms (other than "-wikipedia"). — SMcCandlish [talk] [cont] ‹(-¿-)› 22:35, 30 August 2008 (UTC)

FindArticles.com[edit]

Is it possible to add FindArticles.com to the search string? Thanks. -- Suntag 21:17, 2 October 2008 (UTC)

Well, sure, it's possible. What's the rationale for doing so? (I'm not saying there isn't one.) What's compellingly useful and unique about that particular search site? — SMcCandlish [talk] [cont] ‹(-¿-)› 07:12, 3 October 2008 (UTC)

added one[edit]

  • Examiner.com

This is not the San Francisco Examiner, which is a reliable source.

Launched in April 2008 Examiner.com links
  • Have no editorial oversight (see WP:RS) and articles are essentially self-published
  • Offers its authors financial incentives to increase page views
""Examiners" are paid a very competitive rate based on standard Internet variables including page views, unique visitors, session length, and advertising performance. "
  • Fails Wikipedia's core content policies:

--Hu12 (talk) 22:41, 20 October 2009 (UTC)

"Icon" as publisher[edit]

Why does the books search exclude "icon" as a publisher name? Is there some undesirable publisher named Icon Books? --Metropolitan90 (talk) 05:03, 20 August 2009 (UTC)

  • Apparently there is a publisher named Icon Group that publishes reprints of Wikipedia content. --Metropolitan90 (talk) 01:44, 10 October 2009 (UTC)

Regular google search needs to be included[edit]

Kinda incomplete without it don't you think?--Patton123 (talk) 20:24, 15 September 2009 (UTC)

Yes check.svg Done by User:Gigs. Stifle (talk) 08:11, 22 October 2009 (UTC)
It actually was included before this change. It's there twice now. Phil Bridger (talk) 21:07, 22 October 2009 (UTC)
I've removed the duplication. PhilKnight (talk) 13:24, 24 January 2010 (UTC)

Google News archive search excluding too much[edit]

I've noticed two instances today where this template has returned no results from the Google News archive search, even though there are perfectly valid hits. See Find sources: "Bodil Mårtensson" – news · newspapers · books · scholar · JSTOR · free images and Find sources: "Keith Kenniff" – news · newspapers · books · scholar · JSTOR · free images and compare with [2] and [3]. It's important to get this right because the tiny minority of AfD participants who actually bother to look at the sources presented to them on a plate rely on the results of this template. Phil Bridger (talk) 21:16, 22 October 2009 (UTC)

I've reverted the last change to the template, because that seems to be what broke this. Let's not let paranoia about spam get in the way of building an encyclopedia, which is what we are supposed to be doing here. Phil Bridger (talk) 23:21, 22 October 2009 (UTC)

num=50[edit]

I note that User:Anakin101 has added this parameter to the web search. I would like to voice my support for this and also urge that it (or preferably num=100) should be added to the other searches too. I tend to avoid clicking on the links provided by this template because doing so resets my Google preferences to the silly default of only giving 10 results at a time. I know that there may be concerns about the effect on readers with slow links, but a results page with 100 links only uses about 30KB, which is well under the limit we try to keep to for articles. Phil Bridger (talk) 21:49, 5 November 2009 (UTC)

I was expecting swift reversion, rather than support :) I never really used the other links, but I have no real objection to making their pages bigger too. This template is used on thousands of pages though, so let's see who notices and pipes in. • Anakin (talk) 22:14, 5 November 2009 (UTC)
I think they should all be as big as possible. Google, you'll notice, carefully structures their pages so browsers can begin rendering the pages long before the download is complete; if you don't need the whole thing, then you click on what you do need and away you go. By making the page longer, we in effect make people look at more hits - or make it easier to look at more hits - and this leads to better results; and we cost them very little time to do so. (What if someone opens the tabs in the background as they read the AfD and look later? For them, the time-cost of the extra 30/80 hits is only however long it takes to scan through most of them.) --Gwern (contribs) 17:23 23 November 2009 (GMT)

Excluding wikis[edit]

Would it be possible to add something to the Google searches along the lines of "-wikipedia" or "-wiki"? An old article on AfD could have thousands of Wikipedia references, mirrors, and whatnot cluttering up the results, none of which are at all helpful to someone looking for independent sources. (The Tao of Programming drops from ~160k to ~140k links with '-wikipedia', and this filters out many of the worst & most useless top hits.) '-wiki' would be even better, since it'll catch mirrors which aren't so compliant, and since essentially no wiki is acceptable to WP:RS partisans, one doesn't lose anything regardless. --Gwern (contribs) 17:26 23 November 2009 (GMT)

Sounds like a good idea, thoug of course it should be made sure that only Wikipedia and wikis are excluded from the search, and not pages which contain "Wikipedia" or "wiki" within their text. --The Evil IP address (talk) 10:55, 2 May 2010 (UTC)

Why are the "search" and "images" parameters missing?[edit]

I have just applied {{Findsourcesnotice}} to Talk:Beer in Scotland, and I notice that (contrary to the Template documentation) the "search" and "images" parameters are missing. Why? Thanks. --Mais oui! (talk) 09:55, 27 November 2009 (UTC)

The {{findsourcesnotice}} doesn't include the recent changes to this template. I think adding images was a good move, but agree with Phil Bridger about the search link being a duplication. I'll remove the search part from this template, and include an images search in {{findsourcesnotice}}. PhilKnight (talk) 13:18, 24 January 2010 (UTC)

Should a link to a commercial search engine be included in article templates[edit]

Should a link to a commercial search engine be included in templates that are placed outside the "External links" section of an article?

There is a an RFC at talk:Refimprove, on whether this should be done for that template, and by implication also a retrospective on the inclusion of such links to other article templates. --PBS (talk) 10:12, 5 December 2009 (UTC)

Are there any non-commercial search engines out there? All of the major ones are commercial entities. ···日本穣? · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 07:06, 22 February 2010 (UTC)

Smallcaps[edit]

I've removed the smallcaps from this as they do not look good (nor are they very readable) when enclosed in small tags. I suggest adding a |sc=y switch that allows people to choose if they want the output in small caps. ···日本穣? · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 07:04, 22 February 2010 (UTC)

Exclude Books LLC[edit]

Similar to the Icon Group International, material from Books LLC has been showing up in search results. All they do is republish Wikipedia articles. See Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Unreferenced articles#Books LLC. Is there a way to get these entries excluded easily and safely? The problem I foresee is that there is likely a lot of publishers what go by the name of "Somethingorother Books LLC" and may get caught in the exclusion. -- Whpq (talk) 17:22, 26 July 2010 (UTC)

It ought to be possible to exclude these because Google Books lists the author as being "Books, LLC" as well as the publisher. Some of the books are listed under publisher "General Books".[4] Phil Bridger (talk) 17:38, 26 July 2010 (UTC)
Or maybe it's not so easy - I just found this potential false positive if we are to go by author. Phil Bridger (talk) 17:40, 26 July 2010 (UTC)
Yes, that was what I was afraid of. Is there a way to tell google that that the field must be a full text and full field match? -- Whpq (talk) 17:42, 26 July 2010 (UTC)

Put quotes around other parameters too[edit]

{{editrequested}} Quotes should be placed surrounding the 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th search parameters as well. SharkD  Talk  00:17, 10 September 2010 (UTC)

{{#switch:{{NAMESPACEE}} |{{ns:0}}=<br><font size="+2" color=red>Please do not use the findsources template in articles.</font><br><br> |#default=''Find sources:'' <span class="plainlinks">[http://www.google.com/search?as_eq=wikipedia&q={{urlencode:"{{{1|{{SUBPAGENAME}}}}}"}}{{#if:{{{2|}}}|+{{urlencode:"{{{2}}}"}}|}}{{#if:{{{3|}}}|+{{urlencode:"{{{3}}}"}}|}}{{#if:{{{4|}}}|+{{urlencode:"{{{4}}}"}}|}}{{#if:{{{5|}}}|+{{urlencode:"{{{5}}}"}}|}}&num=50 "{{{1|{{SUBPAGENAME}}}}}"{{#if:{{{2|}}}| "{{{2}}}"|}}{{#if:{{{3|}}}| "{{{3}}}"|}}{{#if:{{{4|}}}| "{{{4}}}"|}}{{#if:{{{5|}}}| "{{{5}}}"|}}] – [http://news.google.com/archivesearch?{{#ifeq:{{{free|}}}|yes|&as_price=p1|}}&as_src=-newswire+-wire+-presswire+-PR+-press+-release+-wikipedia&q={{urlencode:"{{{1|{{SUBPAGENAME}}}}}"}}{{#if:{{{2|}}}|+{{urlencode:"{{{2}}}"}}|}}{{#if:{{{3|}}}|+{{urlencode:"{{{3}}}"}}|}}{{#if:{{{4|}}}|+{{urlencode:"{{{4}}}"}}|}}{{#if:{{{5|}}}|+{{urlencode:"{{{5}}}"}}|}} news]{{·}}[http://books.google.com/books?as_brr=0&as_pub=-icon&q={{urlencode:"{{{1|{{SUBPAGENAME}}}}}"}}{{#if:{{{2|}}}|+{{urlencode:"{{{2}}}"}}|}}{{#if:{{{3|}}}|+{{urlencode:"{{{3}}}"}}|}}{{#if:{{{4|}}}|+{{urlencode:"{{{4}}}"}}|}}{{#if:{{{5|}}}|+{{urlencode:"{{{5}}}"}}|}} books]{{·}}[http://scholar.google.com/scholar?q={{urlencode:"{{{1|{{SUBPAGENAME}}}}}"}}{{#if:{{{2|}}}|+{{urlencode:"{{{2}}}"}}|}}{{#if:{{{3|}}}|+{{urlencode:"{{{3}}}"}}|}}{{#if:{{{4|}}}|+{{urlencode:"{{{4}}}"}}|}}{{#if:{{{5|}}}|+{{urlencode:"{{{5}}}"}}|}} scholar]{{·}}[http://images.google.com/images?safe=off&as_rights=(cc_publicdomain%7ccc_attribute%7ccc_sharealike%7ccc_noncommercial%7ccc_nonderived)&q={{urlencode:"{{{1|{{SUBPAGENAME}}}}}"}}{{#if:{{{2|}}}|+{{urlencode:"{{{2}}}"}}|}}{{#if:{{{3|}}}|+{{urlencode:"{{{3}}}"}}|}}{{#if:{{{4|}}}|+{{urlencode:"{{{4}}}"}}|}}{{#if:{{{5|}}}|+{{urlencode:"{{{5}}}"}}|}} images]</span>}}<noinclude>{{documentation}}<!--Place interwiki and category links on the documentation subpage, please.</noinclude>

Never mind. I see now why they are not used. It's kind of weird though. SharkD  Talk  00:29, 10 September 2010 (UTC)

Why only Google links?[edit]

This template was recently embedded in several templates, e.g. to {{Unreferenced}} on the 24 September 2010, and thus visible in thousands of articles.

Currently this template looks like a hidden Google commercial. We should rely on more companies than one, and if possible to open content.

A suggestion: Replace the Google images link by a link to open Flickr content or Wikimedia Commons. Google images should not be recommended since most illustrations available on the web are protected by copyright.

Another suggestion: A "More" link should also provide a list of good search engines useful in finding sources related to special topics, such as imdb.com for movies, etc. Which search engine list is best?

More suggestions for good alternatives or supplements to the Google links? Mange01 (talk) 15:16, 26 September 2010 (UTC)

The Google images link only searches for images with compatible licenses, including compatible flickr images.
Personally, I'd remove direct transclusion from all mainspace maintainance tags, it's not what those are for. The "images" link in particular is useless in an {{unreferenced}} tag, and adding similar topically specialized links like movie searches would in my opinion be more distracting than helpful (IMDb in particular would be a bad idea since it's user generated content, thus not reliable).
Anyway, if we're having search engine links they should go to the most widely used services, and that tends to be Google. That doesn't make it advertisement. Amalthea 20:29, 26 September 2010 (UTC)
If someone wants to create a facility by which editors can choose their search engine, that would be acceptable. That seems overly complicated, and Google's a better choice than e.g., Bing. Jclemens (talk) 23:28, 26 September 2010 (UTC)
I don't think Bing is an option since it does not provide search in scanned books like books.google.com (but http://Amazon.com does that), and it does not provide search in scientific scources like scholar.google.com (which http://citeseerx.ist.psu.edu, which is free, and ISI web-of-knowledge does to some extent).
IMDB is very common as source in movie articles — my impression is that wp practice seems to consider it as a reliable source allthough it is user contributed and does not state its sources. Am I wrong? Mange01 (talk) 09:36, 27 September 2010 (UTC)
Concerning IMDb, it may be sometimes used as a source, and it certainly is a good resource (which is why we routinely link to it from every actor or film article), but it certainly isn't a reliable source per WP:RS. See also WP:RS/IMDB for a very brief note and WT:Identifying reliable sources/Archive 25#IMDB as a source? for a semi-recent discussion. Amalthea 18:54, 27 September 2010 (UTC)
Agree with Amalthea, this shouldn't be directly transcluded to mainspace templates, but instead substituted, which allows for customisation. Also, there's a findsources3 template that doesn't rely exclusively on Google, which is used in the BLP PROD template. PhilKnight (talk) 03:42, 1 October 2010 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── See Template talk:Refimprove#RFC: Should a link to a commercial search engine be included in the template Refimprove the consensus was overwhelmingly that Google should not be used on these templates. If there is to be another survey please inform me on my talk page. -- PBS (talk) 22:53, 4 October 2010 (UTC)

Beginners really need help understanding what we mean by good sources. Including this template in several quality templates was a great idea!! Why not try it for a while?
I suggest we add one of the following non-Google links to the template:
Mange01 (talk) 20:42, 6 October 2010 (UTC)
I suggest you create a new template - perhaps {{findsources2}}, and include them. PhilKnight (talk) 20:47, 6 October 2010 (UTC)
Well now I have already added the "Free texts" search. Sorry, I did not see your comment until now. Mange01 (talk) 21:14, 6 October 2010 (UTC)
I've reverted your edit, but also copied your version across to {{findsources2}}. PhilKnight (talk) 21:18, 6 October 2010 (UTC)
Thnx. Why not accept findsources2 as the new version of Findsources? Now it looks like the authors of Findsources are affiliated with Google. Mange01 (talk) 23:42, 6 October 2010 (UTC)
If you're not joking, then I advise that I'm the author of this template. By the way, I don't even have a google email account. PhilKnight (talk) 01:51, 7 October 2010 (UTC)
I'm happy to hear that. I was seriously worried, especially since before I revised the help text it was very much Google oriented.
Why not accept {{findsources2}} as the new version of Findsources?Mange01 (talk) 11:59, 7 October 2010 (UTC)
I would prefer to keep {{findsources}} as unobtrusive as possible, while obviously {{findsources3}} is very different and takes up nearly a whole line. I guess {{findsources2}} is somewhere in between. But I think we should provide a choice, instead of merging them. PhilKnight (talk) 12:46, 7 October 2010 (UTC)

[Outdent]I'm happy to see that Find sources still is embedded in about 20 other templates, according to this list of templates that currently are calling Find sources. Thus it is visible in a huge amount of articles. But I'm worried that someone might remove it since it only links to Google.

The new template Findsources2 is currently not embedded in any other template according to this list. Findsources3 is only embedded in one other template ({{Prod blp/dated}}) according to this list.

The acronyms in Findsources3 make it too difficult to understand, and som of the provided links do not work.

I think avoiding linking to only Google might increase the acceptance of the embedding of these templates. Replacing Findsources by Findsource2 in most of the 20 templates where it is embedded might be an approach. Or?

Mange01 (talk) 02:58, 8 October 2010 (UTC)

None of the findources templates are to be used in main space per the RFC mentioned above, and as far as I can tell none of them are actually transcluded there. The templates you mention aren't mainspace templates, and the articles listed in Special:WhatLinksHere/Template:Find_sources are actually false positives that have yet to make their way through the job queue.
If you want any kind of external search link in a mainspace maintainance template, you'll need to start a new RFC.
Personally, I find it largely useless. All experienced editors looking to source an article knows how to use the various search engines anyway, and I'd be happy if new editors would first find out what a reliable source is then to jump right into google.
By the way, I also think that our maintainance templates have way to many useless links, most of them violating WP:EGG. One or two focused links would be much more goal-oriented. Amalthea 11:03, 8 October 2010 (UTC)

Unintentional template error?[edit]

I'm not sure if it's just me, but pages that have templates that also use this one (for example, {BLP unsourced} display "Please do not use the findsources template in articles" in large red letters. See IU (singer) for an example, although it shows up on all unsourced BLPs that I checked. Any way this can be fixed? Is it possible that it's only me that sees this? SKS (talk) 20:12, 19 October 2010 (UTC)

No, it's not just you, I'm seeing it too. Since that template uses {{findsources}}, I'd take a wild guess that this will appear on every article with {{findsources}}. Not much help. 1ForTheMoney (talk) 20:45, 19 October 2010 (UTC)
Was removed from the template, per apparent consensus from Template talk:Refimprove#RFC: Should a link to a commercial search engine be included in the template Refimprove it shouldn't be used in mainspace. Amalthea 22:12, 19 October 2010 (UTC)

Additional filtering of self published sources[edit]

Per the discussion [5] I would like to filter out additional on-demand and self publishers such as "-inpublisher:Lulu" . Is there any objection? or anyone with more experience with the template who would like to make the change? Active Banana (bananaphone 21:53, 6 January 2011 (UTC)

Bug?[edit]

When using the Google Books search, link, the template adds the "-inpublisher:icon" options which brings zero results, while if you search just with the "keyword", you find what you need. Did Google Books search params changed in mean time. Please do a test at the Krobyzoi Talk:Krobyzoi/to do, clicking on the books link for any of the items. Removing the "-inpublisher:icon" will bring the results. Any help would be appreciated. --Codrin.B (talk) 23:14, 13 January 2011 (UTC)

I've noticed this too. You need to manually click "Search Books" on the resulting Google Books page to get any search results. Qwfp (talk) 14:26, 14 January 2011 (UTC)
Looks like the template needs to push more parameters to the Google Books search to actually invoke the search: 'http://www.google.com/search?tbs=bks%3A1&tbo=1&q=%22Costoboc%22+-inpublisher%3Aicon&btnG=Search+Books', as opposed to just 'http://books.google.com/books?as_brr=0&as_pub=-icon&q=%22Costoboc%22'. --Codrin.B (talk) 16:39, 20 January 2011 (UTC)

Please remove the namespace switch[edit]

Please remove the switch clause surrounding this template. The template should be used in {{rescue}}, so that when we have to change the Google links (I can tell you this will be necessary soon when we get protocol relative URL support) or other maintenance, this can be done straight in one edit. The sandbox contains the necessary code. Thanks, --The Evil IP address (talk) 16:38, 15 September 2011 (UTC)

The last discussion on this (2009-10) concluded that this template should not be used in articles. Unless there is evidence that consensus has changed, I would not feel comfortable making this change. Sorry, I don't know what you mean by protocol relative URL support. — Martin (MSGJ · talk) 16:31, 19 September 2011 (UTC)
Protocol relative URL support is one of the MediaWiki 1.18 features, allowing you to put [//www.example.com/] which is treated as if it were either [http://www.example.com/] or [https://www.example.com/] depending upon whether or not the user has logged in via the Secure server. --Redrose64 (talk) 20:50, 6 January 2012 (UTC)

The Find sources template is currently linking to the main Google News site, sans the search criterion[edit]

The {{Find sources}} template is currently linking to the main Google News site, sans the search criterion. Here's an example:

Hopefully a solution can be found for this matter. I've also posted this matter at Village pump (technical). Northamerica1000(talk) 08:38, 6 January 2012 (UTC)

Would an admin change http://news.google.com/archivesearch?{{#ifeq:{{{free|}}}|yes|&as_price=p1|}}&as_src=-newswire+-wire+-presswire+-PR+-release+-wikipedia&q={{urlencode:"{{{1|{{SUBPAGENAME}}}}}"}} to http://www.google.com/search?q={{urlencode:"{{{1|{{SUBPAGENAME}}}}}"}}&tbm=nws&tbs=ar:1{{#ifeq:{{{free|}}}|yes|,apr:f|}}? Thanks, Goodvac (talk) 18:05, 6 January 2012 (UTC)
Done please reactivate if it doesn't work --Redrose64 (talk) 20:44, 6 January 2012 (UTC)
  • Comment - The template is functional again, but at this time doesn't automatically disinclude public relations press release coverage in searches as it did before. Is there any way to reinstate these parameters? Northamerica1000(talk) 08:29, 7 January 2012 (UTC)
    • The &as_src=-newswire+-wire+-presswire+-PR+-release+-wikipedia portion of the query hasn't been working for a while. The link would always redirect to a url without the &as_src... portion. The only option I see is to add -newswire+-wire+-presswire+-PR+-release+-wikipedia directly to the query, yielding a link like this, which is rather clunky. In my opinion, it's not worth it, as it's not difficult to recognize newswire sources just by looking at the result snippet. Goodvac (talk) 08:49, 7 January 2012 (UTC)

JSTOR[edit]

Would it be worthwhile to add a JSTOR parameter to this template? I've seen a number of AfDs on academic books and subjects that don't necessarily get a lot of hits in GNews or even GBooks but that have plentiful coverage in journals, and perhaps this would be useful. (On the other hand, we can't add every useful source. Is JSTOR preferable to Wiley, etc.? What about PubMed?) Roscelese (talkcontribs) 05:44, 1 August 2011 (UTC)

I'd like to revisit the discussion of adding scholarly journals to this template in the hope of getting more response than last time (which would be any response at all). In the past few days and weeks there have been a number of articles I've seen PRODed or nominated for deletion where a short JSTOR search would easily have dispelled qualms about notability. So, again: should we add a template for journal article databases? If so, is JSTOR the best choice? Should we choose a different one instead or add more than one? –Roscelese (talkcontribs) 01:17, 13 January 2012 (UTC)

The problem I'd have with JSTOR is that I can't access most of the content they have; is there a journal search service that is more open with its content? Amalthea 09:44, 13 January 2012 (UTC)
Not that I know of - I'm just thinking it would solve the problem of "this hasn't been reviewed anywhere" when it clearly has, even if not everyone is able to access the reviews in order to do something with them. Similarly, some stuff in GNews is behind a paywall, but we can tell it's there. –Roscelese (talkcontribs) 16:45, 13 January 2012 (UTC)
Well, if nobody objects I say just add it. Amalthea 23:01, 13 January 2012 (UTC)

OK, still not sure about JSTOR vs Wiley, Muse, etc. but here goes with an edit request:

Please add a parameter to this template that would search http://www.jstor.org/. –Roscelese (talkcontribs) 19:43, 19 January 2012 (UTC)

Could we get a code sample, please? Editprotected requests should ideally come with implementations and some testing; that keeps CAT:EP's backlog down. Chris Cunningham (user:thumperward) (talk) 15:42, 1 February 2012 (UTC)
Sure thing.

Please add JSTORto the template. –Roscelese (talkcontribs) 06:50, 4 February 2012 (UTC)

As requested just above, please show us how exactly you are requesting this to be added. Your best bet is to copy the current version of the template to Template:Find sources/sandbox and then make the needed changes there, and to be extra helpful you could create Template:Find sources/testcases with examples to prove that the new version works as well as the old for reasonable input. Anomie 03:55, 11 February 2012 (UTC)

Please find a version of the template, with a JSTOR parameter added, at Template:Find sources/Jstor-edit-request. Have tested, it works, see link in previous edit request for example. –Roscelese (talkcontribs) 23:48, 12 February 2012 (UTC)

Done Not sure why you didn't just use Template:Find sources/sandbox, but that worked. Anomie 01:48, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
I didn't want it to accidentally be undone by someone making their own tests or requests in the main sandbox. Anyway, am speedying the test page now. Thanks! –Roscelese (talkcontribs) 05:23, 13 February 2012 (UTC)

I see this has already been added, for JSTOR only, but isn't there a way to do this more broadly? I note that the Citation/core family of template already have code for JSTOR, PubMed, etc., lookups; can it be borrowed? And how about making this optional, for science/academic topics? This template is already very over-inclusive and cluttered. The results for something like {{find sources|John Doe|basketball}} are already kind of stupid; its highly unlikely there will ever be academic search results for a basketball player, much less through JSTOR. — SMcCandlish   Talk⇒ ɖ∘¿¤þ   Contrib. 21:02, 12 March 2012 (UTC)


Find sources template custom search not working for Google News (again)[edit]

Looks like Google changed their parameters again. The custom search aspect of the {{Find sources}} template isn't working at this time for the Google news link on the template.

  • Example

Click on Google news link; the search criterion is only "Agriculture". Northamerica1000(talk) 15:21, 17 January 2012 (UTC)

Ah, they didn't change anything. The code I suggested placed the additional parameters at the end, making them not be part of the search. Will post a solution shortly. Goodvac (talk) 18:38, 17 January 2012 (UTC)

Please change [http://www.google.com/search?q={{urlencode:"{{{1|{{SUBPAGENAME}}}}}"}}&tbm=nws&tbs=ar:1{{#ifeq:{{{free|}}}|yes|,apr:f|}}{{#if:{{{2|}}}|+{{urlencode:{{{2}}}}}|}}{{#if:{{{3|}}}|+{{urlencode:{{{3}}}}}|}}{{#if:{{{4|}}}|+{{urlencode:{{{4}}}}}|}}{{#if:{{{5|}}}|+{{urlencode:{{{5}}}}}|}} to [http://www.google.com/search?q={{urlencode:"{{{1|{{SUBPAGENAME}}}}}"}}{{#if:{{{2|}}}|+{{urlencode:{{{2}}}}}|}}{{#if:{{{3|}}}|+{{urlencode:{{{3}}}}}|}}{{#if:{{{4|}}}|+{{urlencode:{{{4}}}}}|}}{{#if:{{{5|}}}|+{{urlencode:{{{5}}}}}|}}&tbm=nws&tbs=ar:1{{#ifeq:{{{free|}}}|yes|,apr:f|}}. Thanks, Goodvac (talk) 18:45, 17 January 2012 (UTC)

Done see here --Redrose64 (talk) 22:50, 17 January 2012 (UTC)

Is this template protected?[edit]

Is this template protected? I can't find a way to change it.

I want to add Google Blogs search as an option, since that search often finds publications with a review process and professional staff that don't appear at Google News and are quite handy for sourcing obscure music stubs. News sources that publish in a "blog" style format may be as reliable as a traditional newspaper, and this search is a good way to find those. I would also add a caveat so the user remembers to check wether the sources found with "Find sources" have an editorial process like Wikipedia:RS suggests. Diego (talk) 18:23, 12 March 2012 (UTC)

Yes, it's protected; you can tell because instead of an "Edit" tab, there is a "View source" tab. The red padlock icon upper right also suggests this; see WP:REDLOCK. I really don't think that adding a search facility for blogs is a good idea, because I don't know of any way that such searches can be restricted to the "reliable" ones. --Redrose64 (talk) 20:18, 12 March 2012 (UTC)
Agreed. This template is meant to be a shortcut for finding presumptively-reliable sources, not for finding all possible sources. I personally think it is already over-inclusive. That said, there's nothing wrong, that I can think of, with a Template:Find all sources that was much more inclusive; it would be a good {{subst:Find all sources}} tool in one's own sandbox for making short work of getting links to potential source material to manually dig through. It just shouldn't be used at XfDs. In fact, I'd propose some namespace/pagename tests in it to throw up a red warning instead of normal output if it were used in XfDs. — SMcCandlish   Talk⇒ ɖ∘¿¤þ   Contrib. 20:55, 12 March 2012 (UTC)

Exclusion of WP:Republishers from books search[edit]

Per #Exclude Books LLC above, I think adding -inauthor:"books llc" -inpublisher:"Hephaestus Books" to the books search string will be helpful. --Paul_012 (talk) 07:13, 7 July 2012 (UTC)

Please add WorldCat query[edit]

Can you add a link that queries WorldCat? The syntax to query for the phrase word1 word2 word3 is http://www.worldcat.org/search?qt=worldcat_org_all&q=word1+word2+word3. Thanks! Woz2 (talk) 13:27, 21 July 2012 (UTC)

DuckDuckGo[edit]

Please add DuckDuckGo search link: this search facility seems to filter some splogs and PR stuff quite efficiently, and it often requires less time to spend in cases when there are reliable sources. — Dmitrij D. Czarkoff (talk) 14:37, 14 August 2012 (UTC)

X mark.svg Not done. Could you work up a version in the sandbox so that it's obvious what exactly needs to be changed? Also, is this change supported by consensus somewhere? If not, it might be a good idea to notify some higher-traffic talk pages about this, perhaps WT:RS or WT:CITE? Best — Mr. Stradivarius (have a chat) 07:06, 15 August 2012 (UTC)
This change is not supported with consensus anywhere, but I can't see connection between this template and WT:RS or WT:CITE. I'll post a link to this discussion to WT:AFD before re-activating edit request. — Dmitrij D. Czarkoff (talk) 11:37, 18 August 2012 (UTC)

Replace news search link[edit]

I find that the link http://news.google.com/newspapers brings up a greatest number of source material via the search archive button over a search using http://news.google.com . Please consider changing the news link in the template to http://news.google.com/newspapers or adding http://news.google.com/newspapers as an archive news search. Thanks. -- Uzma Gamal (talk) 21:22, 15 December 2012 (UTC)

Not done for now: Sorry, but we'll need you to add the actual template code to the template sandbox and demonstrate that the code is working on the test cases page before we can update the template. And even then there needs to be a consensus for the edit. It seems like a sensible idea in theory, but it's hard to be sure about this without being able to see some numbers. And the newspaper search doesn't seem to give the number of hits returned, unfortunately. In short, this should be discussed more widely and undergo testing before it is implemented. Let me know if you have any questions about this. Best — Mr. Stradivarius (have a chat) 10:23, 17 December 2012 (UTC)

Edit request on 7 March 2013[edit]

Please make this change from the sandbox allowing source links to be placed in the template per consensus at Wikipedia:Templates for discussion/Log/2013 February 26#Template:NotabilityRyan Vesey 06:15, 7 March 2013 (UTC)  Ryan Vesey 06:15, 7 March 2013 (UTC)

Journal Storage[edit]

Template's locked but could an admin maybe make a mention that JSTOR stands for Journal Storage? I'm assuming that Scholar/Journal are the ideal links to find references, with Books/News coming in second place in terms of ideal sources to cite? Also because they are the best, could we maybe either list them first, or else move the 'free images' link to the front by books/news so that reading left to right we go from worst to best? Scholar and JSTOR should stand out to make them of prominent notice to readers. Ranze (talk) 23:01, 24 May 2013 (UTC)

Google News search is completely useless[edit]

Google News these days does not give any reliable indication at all as to what news sources are out there – neither the Archive nor the Any time parameters actually find news articles that were published more than a few weeks ago. This has been the case for some time, so the search is more than useless for assessing notability (which is what this template is typically used for in AfD discussions). The link should be removed, and people instructed to use Google web search to locate news articles. (To give an example, try searching for "bicholim conflict" wikipedia in Google News and the standard Google web search. Google News finds nothing at all, while Google web search locates dozens of news articles in major publications.) Andreas JN466 09:33, 25 June 2013 (UTC)

Google news search works fine when the subject is not in Wikipedia:List of hoaxes on Wikipedia--Salix (talk): 09:58, 25 June 2013 (UTC)
No mate, it doesn't. For another random example, take this article, "January Jones, Her Own Feminine Mystique". It appeared in the New York Times in May this year. In a Google web search for January Jones, Her Own Feminine Mystique, it appears as the very first hit. In a Google news search, it does not show up at all, even if you select "Any time" or "Archive". Same with "Bright Colors, Grown-Up Concerns and Bruises Jon Caramanica’s Top 10 Albums of 2012", from December 12, 2012. Search for Bright Colors, Grown-Up Concerns and Bruises Jon Caramanica’s Top 10 Albums of 2012 in Google News, and no can do. Search for it using the Google web search, and it's the first hit. For yet another example, search for Gibraltarpedia in Google News. Zilch in "Archives", zilch in "Any time". See Google_News#News_Archive_Search and Google News Archive for why. Basically, Google seems to have stopped adding articles to the news archive in 2011. It should be obvious that this is absolutely fatal if you make a Delete argument on the basis of "Nothing shows up in Google News". Andreas JN466 10:53, 25 June 2013 (UTC)
Well, now, sadly, it does seem almost completely useless -- or at least, vastly less useful. As of today, Dec. 6, it seems as if the good folks at Google Inc. have decided to kill off Gnews archives searches, for anything older than 30 days? I've started a discussion at Wikipedia:Village_pump_(miscellaneous)#Google_news_archive_search.3F. Shawn in Montreal (talk) 17:00, 6 December 2013 (UTC)
Another sign of the impending apocalypse. As I've also mentioned on the VP thread, Google does have some limited guidance about how to search for old news content here: Find news archive content. Assuming this change remains, we'll have to adjust the find sources templates accordingly. --Arxiloxos (talk) 17:42, 6 December 2013 (UTC)
I've removed the Google News link. If we can find a way to make it return meaningful results in the future, we can add it back in. — Mr. Stradivarius ♪ talk ♪ 01:34, 15 December 2013 (UTC)
Hey, you said you could add Google news back in if it gave meaningful results, and its now fixed, so how about putting it back now? Dream Focus 08:09, 18 June 2014 (UTC)

Add Google News and Google newspapers searches to the Find sources template[edit]

To compensate for the loss of the Google News Archive Search that was previously in the Find sources template, the standard Google News search (http://news.google.com) and the Google newspapers search (http://news.google.com/newspapers) can be added to the template. The newspaper search functions similarly to the previous archive search, and provision of these links would provide users with significant and valuable resources for source searching. NorthAmerica1000 07:37, 18 June 2014 (UTC)

I've enabled the newspaper search in Template:Find sources multi, and added the necessary code to the sandbox here. So you can see what the search results would look like by using {{find sources/sandbox}}. — Mr. Stradivarius ♪ talk ♪ 09:06, 18 June 2014 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── Below is a substituted preview of the present sandbox version at Template:Find sources/sandbox. Looking good! How about the notion of adding the main Google News search to the template (at http://news.google.com)? This would work well as the first link after the general Google search topic link, linked just left of the newspapers link, titled "news". NorthAmerica1000 13:43, 18 June 2014 (UTC)

Find sources: "Find sources" – newspapers · books · scholar · JSTOR · free images
  • Comment  I came to take a look at the newspaper problem several weeks ago and saw that the template had been taken over by VIPs.  I'd suggest starting a new template.  Unscintillating (talk) 22:07, 19 June 2014 (UTC)
    There's no reason we can't change this template if there's a good reason for it, and adding the newspaper search sounds like a good reason to me. I've also added a regular Google News link to the sandbox. — Mr. Stradivarius ♪ talk ♪ 23:24, 19 June 2014 (UTC)
Find sources: "Find sources" – news · newspapers · books · scholar · JSTOR · free images
  • Support - the updated version directly above with both Google News and Google newspapers links. This would significantly benefit Wikipedia. NorthAmerica1000 10:02, 20 June 2014 (UTC)
  • Support: given that this template is used in WP:AFD, this change has potential to increase thoroughness of discussions. — Dmitrij D. Czarkoff (talktrack) 17:39, 20 June 2014 (UTC)
  • Done seeing as there were no objections in three days. Please check that all the links are working as expected - it's possible that some of the subtemplates at Template:Find sources multi may need tweaking. — Mr. Stradivarius ♪ talk ♪ 00:16, 21 June 2014 (UTC)

Google[edit]

This template should really have alternate versions for different search engines. I avoid using Google, but that shouldn't mean I can't get sources! --UserJDalek 23:49, 17 September 2014 (UTC)

Lua version[edit]

I've converted this template to Lua, using Module:Find sources. You can see the Lua-ised version at Template:Find sources/sandbox. It should function the same as the existing template, but please let me know if you notice anything wrong with it. Unless there are any objections, I'll put this up live in a couple of days' time. — Mr. Stradivarius ♪ talk ♪ 15:56, 29 September 2014 (UTC)

The Lua version is now up live. Let me know if you notice any problems with it. — Mr. Stradivarius ♪ talk ♪ 23:35, 30 September 2014 (UTC)