Wikipedia talk:Today's featured article/Archive 2

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Archive 1 Archive 2 Archive 3 Archive 4 Archive 5

Image Link

Should the image that accompanies the featured article on the front page generally link to the article rather than the image page?

  • You would expect clicking an image of the subject of the featured article would take you to the article, not a page which most probably just contains copyright info on the imaeg. Where the image page is more complete and informative, then perhaps linking to it from the front page would be ok. Richard Taylor 10:01, 2 Aug 2004 (UTC)


Italic "Recently Featured"

By having the recently featured articles in an italic format it is muche asier to distinguish from the main article and appears more stylish. Good usability starts from easy differentiation. This is a minor change which will only affect Wikipedia in a positive way.

I also modified the "Recent Days" section of the "Selected Anniversaries" in the same way. The italic text makes it easy to understand that this is not just nromal text part of the same thing, but a different body with a different purpose. Int his case the purpose is to list a few other days that have passed. This is consistent with the change I made for the "Recently Featured". Anotehr change I had made was to place 3 recent days instead of 2 because the recently featured has 3 as well and it looked od dto have 2 for the recent anniversaries.

Consistency and distinguishing charachteristics are key to excellent usability. Please consider what I am saying and do not rever mindlessly just because it used to be different. --Exigentsky 23:48, Jun 5, 2004 (UTC)

According to the manual of style, italicizing is reserved for titles. Needless italicizing does not improve the look here, and it's pretty obvious "Recently featured" means exactly that. →Raul654 01:13, Jun 6, 2004 (UTC)
  • Maybe the manual needs to be changed. Yes it is obvious what "recently feature" means, that's not the problem. The problem is that it actually requires you to read to understand that it is separate from the body text of the article. Great usability should not require this. Perhaps an indentation than? Anyway, I will revert the selected annviersaries italicized text as well if your sure that this is a bad idea.
    • ok I also removed italization from "recent anniversaries", however I left it to list 3 previous days in order to be consistant with the "recently featured" --Exigentsky 01:21, Jun 6, 2004 (UTC)

Internet censorship in China

May I suggest we immediately replace the current featured article with Internet censorship in China, and make mention of Wikipedia being blocked recently in the summary text? I think it's important that this issue gets as much publicity as possible. -- Tim Starling 09:03, Jun 13, 2004 (UTC)

An excellent idea, Tim. I fully support it. DO'Neil 09:05, Jun 13, 2004 (UTC)

Terrible idea. It's not a featured article. Markalexander100 09:32, 13 Jun 2004 (UTC)
This is pushing an issue far more than we are allowed to do on Wikipedia. Why don't you put it in In the news?? ✏ Sverdrup 09:40, 13 Jun 2004 (UTC)

Has Vannevar Bush had an feature? Might be interesting. -Kuni 18:37, 21 Jun 2004 (UTC)

It's not a featured article. It has to go through the Wikipedia:Featured article candidates page first. However, (IMHO), the article should be about twice as long as it currently is before it will make it. →Raul654 18:41, Jun 21, 2004 (UTC)

Revised Standard Version Blurb Addition

There needs to be a little more added to the blurb:

Current text:

The Revised Standard Version (RSV) is an English translation of the Bible that was popular in the mid 20th century and posed the first challenge to the King James Version as the most popular Bible in English. The RSV is a revision of the 1901 American Standard Version. In 1937, it was decided that a revision would be done and a panel of 32 scholars was put together for that task. The decision, however, was delayed by the Great Depression. The translation panel used the 17th edition of the Nestle Greek text. The New Testament was released in 1946, and the Old Testament in 1952.

This is what should be added:

Special editions of the RSV were released for the Catholic Church in 1965 and for Eastern Orthodox churches in 1977. Reader's Digest published an condensed edition of the RSV in 1982. Revisions of the RSV were released by different groups in 1989 and 2001.

The addition covers:

The different editions of the base text (Cath, Orth, RD) and the NRSV and ESV.

I'd do it myself, but i'm not sure I have the power or not.

Comments?

--iHoshie 09:47, 29 Jun 2004 (UTC)

Featured controversies

I do not think any controversy is qualified for a feature on the main page since controversies are usually only secondary articles. Plus, the particular example of how some software should be labelled is certainly completely irrelevant in the eyes of most people. Get-back-world-respect 13:24, 2 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Running out of articles

There is a very real possibility we will run out of articles on Wikipedia:Featured_articles to feature here; because we appear to be getting through them more quickly than we are adding them to the list. Is this something we need to worry about? Perhaps we could have an indicator somewhere of how many days worth of featured articles somewhere we have; in order to concentrate people's minds ;) Morwen - Talk 00:37, 4 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Then Raul will just have to pick ones he likes ;-)
I dunno. The intense heat of nitpicking on WP:FAC makes better articles, but not many make it to Featured. If FAC is to be the gateway, then it will need many more contributions ... so more will emerge at the other end.
At this point, Raul's head will explode and he will kill us all with an axe - David Gerard 01:26, 4 Jul 2004 (UTC)
"At this point, Raul's head will explode and he will kill us all with an axe" - well, I won't deny it - the thought definitely occured to me ;)
Seriously though, at the end of the calander year I had planned to start cycling back - that is, unbold everything on Wikipedia:Featured articles and start fresh. If we start running short of articles before then, I'll just go ahead and unbold them sooner. However, I eyed WP:FA and it looks like we about half of the featured articles have not yet been on the main page, and of those, about half half have a picture and therefore are eligible for the main page. →Raul654 01:33, Jul 4, 2004 (UTC)
Recycling shouldn't be a problem. We currently have something like 250 featured articles; most people probably wouldn't notice if we started over. Consider that the primary purpose of the featured article on the Main Page is to advertise ourselves to new visitors. Fredrik | talk 01:38, 4 Jul 2004 (UTC)
Ah - I was getting the impression we were running low on suitable articles because they've been tending to show up on the Main Page a couple of days after making it to FA ... - David Gerard 10:02, 4 Jul 2004 (UTC)
We won't run out -- the last three weeks we have elevated seven or more articles per week to featured status, keeping the cache of unused featured articles stable. We still have 150+ articles that haven't been on the main page yet - I'm very confident we'll reach a stable 7+ featured article production before that chache runs out. [[User:Sverdrup|Sverdrup❞]] 23:41, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Excuse a newbie question, but have you considered making this a weekly or biweekly thing, instead of daily? --Doradus 02:52, 4 Sep 2004 (UTC)

I think daily is probably the best way to do this. But this is all moot - we're promoting 7+ articles every week, and I'm resetting the count at the end of the year. Actually, a bigger problem is that we're promoting heavily in some categories, and almost-not-at-all in others -- this makes keeping variety on the main page difficult. Regardless, we can finish out the year without a problem, methinks. →Raul654 03:16, Sep 4, 2004 (UTC)
I don't think that everything needs to be reset at the end of the year. We should reset it only if we are in desperate need of articles. -- Emsworth 14:40, 4 Sep 2004 (UTC)

Martha Stewart, and whether Raul has legitimacy as dictator

I've just found out that Martha Stewart is a featured article. Seeing that she's in the news now, perhaps her article should be featured on the main page. 172 06:24, 19 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Quite the contrary: the featured article is *not* for timely/current events articles - that's what "In the News" (template:Itn) in for. I was planning to feature that article sometime after all the hub-bub dies down. →Raul654 07:23, Jul 19, 2004 (UTC)
Sounds like a good idea. Let's feature it some time this week if we can get a free image by then. Does anyone other than Raul object? anthony (see warning)
Yeah. Put her in "In The News" - David Gerard 16:45, 19 Jul 2004 (UTC)
I believe she already was "In The News". anthony (see warning)
To anthony: the only person whose objections matter is Raul, because he picks the feature for the main page! blankfaze | (беседа!) 01:17, 20 Jul 2004 (UTC)
Anyone can pick a feature for the main page. Just because Raul breaks Wikipedia policy trying to make himself the king doesn't mean that he actually is the king. anthony (see warning)
No, not anyone can pick a feature for the main page. Anyone can suggest one... but Raul is the only person that picks them. :-P blankfaze | (беседа!) 02:22, 20 Jul 2004 (UTC)
I didn't misword what I said. Anyone can pick one. Raul might edit war with you over your choice, but that doesn't give him the sole authority to choose. anthony (see warning)
I agree with anthony. Raul does have some say in what goes on this page, but this is a Wiki and anybody can change the page. Of course, there ought to be some guidelines so we don't end up with a fiasco of people adding articles that aren't even featured. Johnleemk | Talk 10:43, 20 Jul 2004 (UTC)
I don't have a problem with guidelines. I don't even have a problem with Raul being the main person updating the template. What I have a problem with is the concept that "the only person whose objections matter is Raul". Raul has protected this page when he and David Gerard disagreed with myself and Guanaco over content, and this type of coup should not be accepted. anthony (see warning)
I agree with Anthony. Eek. Ambivalenthysteria 10:59, 20 Jul 2004 (UTC)
To Johnleemk: I disagree. If everyone is allowed to edit the featured article template, then we'll have 30 different articles featured on the main page each day. The main page, and this template in particular, need to be managed differently than the rest of the wiki. The featured article template needs a de facto manager- else, it is chaos. blankfaze | (беседа!) 12:17, 20 Jul 2004 (UTC)
The question is not whether or not there is a manager. The question is whether or not that manager is the only person whose opinion matters.
Blankfaze, I agree with whoever posted above me. The issue is not that Raul is the manager of the page. The issue is whether he is the *only* person who has the final say in what appears on the page. Having a dedicated manager like Raul is good; the question is whether he has the ultimate right to decide what is featured on the front page. This is rather odd — I'm actually arguing in favour of anthony's ideas. As Ambivalenthysteria said, eek! Johnleemk | Talk 13:00, 20 Jul 2004 (UTC)
In all honesty, I don't envy Raul his job. Picking FA's, managing all the bickering on FAC, and dealing with all the crap that people give about the front page is a full time job. We've said many times that Wikipedia is NOT a democracy, and it makes sense that tasks that require the coordination of an individual be delegated, as done in this manner. Obviously Raul's opinion is not the only opinion that matters, but it is given extra weight, given the amount of responsibility he has taken on. - DropDeadGorgias (talk) 14:52, Jul 20, 2004 (UTC)

Protection

So ... is the feature template a part of the Main Page in need of protection? To avoid things like spurious blanking of the picture - David Gerard 14:50, 20 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Or, as I see having caught up with events, to prevent some foolish person thinking an edit war on the Main Page is a good way to make a point. I see the template is now protected, like the Main Page itself. Is there any convincing reason to unprotect it? - David Gerard 14:55, 20 Jul 2004 (UTC)
IMO, no. I don't really see a need for non-admins to be editing this template. If they have a concern, they can address it with an admin, just as they must do with the main page itself. blankfaze | (беседа!) 14:58, 20 Jul 2004 (UTC)
Less than five per cent of the edits to this page are vandalism. Whatever reason is there to prevent the 95% of good edits being made just because a few idiots choose to vandalise it? Why should non-sysops be made to feel like second-class citizens? They regularly make good edits to this page, and I see no reason to stop them doing that. Try editing on a Wikipedia where you are not an admin, finding wrong information and then realising the page is unnecessarily protected and you can't fix it. Yes, you could bring it up on the talk page, but would you really bother? Or would you think, "well they don't trust me to edit it, so I'll leave it to the admins to fix"? It's important the main page is free from errors, and all users, not just admins, do a good job of editing this template to ensure that is the case. Angela. 18:13, 20 Jul 2004 (UTC)
You are, of course, completely correct - David Gerard 20:28, 20 Jul 2004 (UTC)

I completely agree with Angela. We have these templates specifically for the purpose of allowing non-admins to edit these sections, because the Main Page itself is protected. It was protected briefly to stop an edit war. Since Anthony DiPierro was blocked for 24 hours, the protection is no longer necessary, and I have removed it. --Michael Snow 18:34, 20 Jul 2004 (UTC)

A simple proposal

In light of the heated debate/edit wars/blocking on the subject of how articles are selected for the Main page, adhering to the concepts of WikiLove and wishing to decrease the likelihood unfortunate incidents occuring again, I hereby propose the revision of the de-facto rules for the Featured Article:

  • Before an article is put on the Main Page, the Featured Article Director will list it as "tomorrow's featured article" for at least 24 hours. One article will be listed as tomorrow's featured article, and one will be listed as an alternate. Any editor can comment and discuss the choice. After reading the comments, the Featured Article Director will freely choose which of the two articles to feature on the main page.
Rationale: Ensuring that featured articles are cycled daily in an orderly manner, requires a commitment by a specific person. That person should have the power to do their job. OTOH, ensuring that the delegation of power doesn't cause frustration requires that other people are given a chance to say what they think about it, and not after the fact either. Zocky

Comments:

  • Sounds like an acceptable plan to me. blankfaze | (беседа!) 17:52, 20 Jul 2004 (UTC)
  • This sounds like more work for Raul when he already puts a lot of effort into maintaining this page. Is the advance planning of what will be on the main page necessary when the choice is so rarely disputed? Angela. 18:13, 20 Jul 2004 (UTC)
    • I personally don't think it's necessary... but I find the change acceptable if it's that important to others. blankfaze | (беседа!) 18:27, 20 Jul 2004 (UTC)
  • Support: I would like to be able to check for good captions on the featured article before it hits the spotlight. -- ke4roh 18:19, Jul 20, 2004 (UTC)
  • Support. I think it could actually serve to lessen Raul's workload. He just has to tell this page what the featured article will be, the template material will be created in wiki fashion by the community, and he just updates the the feature template. - DropDeadGorgias (talk) 19:40, Jul 20, 2004 (UTC)
  • I've been talking with over with Zocky on IRC since he proposed it, and I support it in principle - he and I have been working out the rules together. *IF* set up correctly, I think it could lessen my work load, if it doesn't become a VFD or FAC-like page. →Raul654 19:45, Jul 20, 2004 (UTC)
  • Support. It would be nice to do a final read-over, especially to make sure the template makes sense and is clear. [[User:Meelar|Meelar (talk)]] 19:54, 2004 Jul 20 (UTC)
  • The encroachment of bureaucracy. If Raul thinks it's workable, then good - David Gerard 20:33, 20 Jul 2004 (UTC)
  • I see someone change Dictator to Coordinator. I think the title should describe the position and the way things work, Rauls's completely independent in his choices (he can be deposed, of course, but I wouldn't want his job). Coordinator fails to describe that. Maybe Executive? Zocky
    • I changed it because I thought dictator was a highly undesirable choice of title. If people want to improve on coordinator, feel free, but if we start having dictators on Wikipedia I think it will convey the wrong message to people about how the project is operated. --Michael Snow 23:24, 20 Jul 2004 (UTC)
      • Here's what the thesaurus says, take your pick: absolutist, adviser, autocrat, baron, boss, caesar, caliph, chief, commander, czar, despot, disciplinarian, duce, emir, fascist, kaiser, lama, leader, lord, magnate, martinet, master, mogul, oligarch, oppressor, overlord, rajah, ringleader, sachem, shah, sheik, slave driver, strongman, sultan, taskmaster, tycoon, tyrant, usurper
      • I think Overlord has a nice ring to it ;) (That was a joke. Don't flame me) →Raul654 23:37, Jul 20, 2004 (UTC)
        • All hail the Featured Article Overlord! --Michael Snow 03:43, 21 Jul 2004 (UTC)
        • It shouldn't start with a C, anyway... FAC is already featured article candidates. Zocky 00:39, 21 Jul 2004 (UTC)
          • Director? Or if we want to keep something whimsical, I notice Raul calls himself a "Fieldmarshal" on his user page.
Of the four aspects of strategic analysis and definition, it is marshalling or situational organizing role that reaches the highest development in Fieldmarshals. As this kind of role is practiced some contingency organizing is necessary, so that the second suit of the Fieldmarshal's intellect is devising contingency plans.
  • Strangely appropriate :). --Shibboleth 01:21, 21 Jul 2004 (UTC)
  • I love the Featured Article Director. It retains some of the "dictator" sound, while not sounding too, well, dictatorial. And FAD is a good acronym :) Zocky 01:37, 21 Jul 2004 (UTC)
  • Director is good enough for me, so I've changed it again. --Michael Snow 03:43, 21 Jul 2004 (UTC)
  • Not keen on a formal director in a wiki but I support this. I suggest that people (any people) list candidate suggestions a week or more in advance if they like. 24 hours is very little time if there's debate and there would need to be a queue of alternatives to select from if there are objections. Jamesday 00:34, 24 Jul 2004 (UTC)
    • The articles that the Director choses from are all already Featured articles and have gone through the complete procedure there. I think 24 hours is generally enough to catch any critical issues. OTOH, a week-long queue might be a good way to work, but that's a whole new issue. Zocky 02:57, 27 Jul 2004 (UTC)
      • By agreement with Raul654, Mav has created a de facto 365 day queue, starting with the already-chosen articles, on this project page. If you examine Wikipedia:Today's_featured_article#Guidelines I believe there is a consensus process in place which addresses the SPF issue that was raised below. This thread could be a starting point for the guideline in Wikipedia:Featured article policy, a link to which is in Wikipedia:Tomorrow's featured article. The implied rights of all wikipedians are view, talk, history, on each choice. The FAD chooses, by convention. This has occurred each day since the beginning of the queue. A mechanism is in place which even addresses vandalism, but that takes the cooperation of everyone. By the way, an anonymous editor has already made a request on the talk page of the Aug 13 choice page, currently empty. As the mechanism stands, any wikipedian can now make the Featured Article choice, which solves the SPF issue. They just have to follow the guideline, in order to play by the rules. Ancheta Wis 12:29, 8 Aug 2004 (UTC)
  • How is the Featured Article Director chosen? anthony (see warning) 16:44, 24 Jul 2004 (UTC)
    • The featured article director isn't chosen; it's User:Raul654 until he is either deposed or decides to abdicate the throne. blankfaze | (беседа!) 16:59, 24 Jul 2004 (UTC)
    • Raul is obviously the defacto director. He's been doing it for quite some time. If anybody calls for election of the new director and gathers enough support, I'm sure that can be arranged. I know I wouldn't want a wikipedia job that requires daily commitment. Zocky 02:49, 27 Jul 2004 (UTC)
      • That it is obvious to you doesn't mean it's obvious to everyone discussing this change in policy. We don't need an election of a new director, because we never had an election of the original director, and we never even had an election to decide we need a director in the first place. anthony (see warning) 12:01, 31 Jul 2004 (UTC)
        • OK, let's have one! See below. - David Gerard 17:49, 31 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Wikipedia:Tomorrow's featured article

Zocky and I have worked together on this idea and Wikipedia:Tomorrow's featured article is what we have come up with. It gives people 24 hours to see tomorrow's article and tweak it as desired, and if something is very wrong, they can object. I think it should eliminate much of the bickering that goes on on the FAC talk page. Zocky and I would like to try it out for 2 weeks and see what people think of it. →Raul654 20:46, Jul 20, 2004 (UTC)

--- I am alone in thinking the current situation is rather odd? Having repeatedly raised his issue at Talk:FAC (also discussed above) without managing to exact any change, Anthony tried the more direct approach of editing the content page and gets banned for it. Yet this direct approach appears to be sufficient to get the rules changed - i.e. admittance there was something wrong with old system.

Is this to be the recommended course of action then? "Sacrifice" yourself into a temp ban in order to change a mechanism that is entrenched? Talk pages are after all, pretty ineffectual on busy pages.

Pcb21| Pete 22:18, 20 Jul 2004 (UTC)

I've opposed previous proposals for voting on stuff because it would add a helleva lot of work to the process (as people above have said). The reason I support this is because it contains no voting. As a result, unlike all previous proposals, it seems like it might actually reduce the work and the bickering. If this had been brough up before Anthony's vandalism spree, I would have supported it just the same. →Raul654 22:23, Jul 20, 2004 (UTC)
As I recall, back in February, spontaneity and surprise was a criterion for the selection of the Feature. This shift in position (to a 1-day queue) is welcome, from the POV of one who has spent some time on the 365-day queue of selected anniversaries. I honestly think the job of the Featured Article Director is made easier by the queue. Now, how about a longer queue length? ;-) Ancheta Wis 06:57, 23 Jul 2004 (UTC)
Now that this project page points to the Archive of Featured Articles on a monthly basis, there is a possibility for a 365-day queue of articles. I imagine that Raul654 will ultimately be riding herd on this. It seems that this mechanism could work to everyone's benefit; what would happen if this queue were filled with articles for the future as well as for the past and present. Ancheta Wis 17:39, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)


Yes please. That will make it easier for everyone else to comment, suggest changes or switches in the articles that will be featured, polish them so they have no last-minute spelling or grammatical or image-source errors, &c. +sj+ 18:54, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Highlighting "Recently featured"

I have often thought that the "recently featured" and "recent days" footnote text on the main page should be italicized. In Monobook, on Netscape, those footnotes are right below the paragraph text, and seem to be part of the day's entry, rather than footnotes.

I just noticed exigentsky's comments at the top of this page, so I am reposting that suggestion. Italics ar not only for titles; it is also a (not the) standard way to set out one block of text from another -- for instance, a quote embedded in a paragraph of prose, or text with some emotional or emphatic highlight, or (as here) a note being set out from the text above it.

see also articles with "see also" sections at top or bottom

Highlighting the Recently Featured and Recent days footnotes - by italicizing the whole, or by bolding those two-word phrases, or ? - has my vote. +sj+ 21:03, 21 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Semi-permanent protection

With the "Tomorrow's featured article" system in place, I'd like to semi-permanently protect this page. It's increasingly the subject of vandalism, and now that everything that goes onto it is checked for 24 hours, that should alleviate any need for major fixes (typos and whatnot). →Raul654 00:45, Jul 26, 2004 (UTC)

  • Makes sense to me. If somehow any typos slips through, any user can just ask an admin to fix it. Perhaps this is unwikilike, but I for one am getting tired of silly anon vandalism to this template that is visible to all who visit the site. blankfaze | (беседа!) 01:13, 26 Jul 2004 (UTC)
  • I strongly object to this. anthony (see warning) 01:26, 26 Jul 2004 (UTC)
  • I also strongly object. Guanaco 01:54, Jul 26, 2004 (UTC)
  • I don't think that "Tomorrow's Featured Article" will suffice to catch all the changes that people will want to make, because the Main Page has a much higher visibility. I'd recommend being cautious in doing this, and only if it's absolutely necessary. It's normal for Wikipedia to be editable by everyone, and we should only protect pages in extraordinary situations; how bad is the vandalism? — Matt 03:11, 26 Jul 2004 (UTC)
    • I count 6 vandalisms in 5 days (not counting Anthony's edit war). →Raul654 03:20, Jul 26, 2004 (UTC)
      That's much less than George W. Bush. Should that be semi-permanently protected instead?
      • George W. Bush doesn't get seen 100,000 times a day. The main page does. A vandalism that lasts 5 minutes there is likely to be seen by almost 100 people. →Raul654 03:29, Jul 26, 2004 (UTC)
      • I've had a look through the history for this week, and, while the exact definition of "vandlism" is fuzzy, there was only one edit that, in my opinion, was serious vandalism, i.e. one that made Wikipedia look daft on its main page: the Simpson image, and that was reverted in five minutes. There doesn't seem much of a threat right now -- possibly because it's hard for the casual vandal to find Template:Feature. It's easy for me to say (because I don't spend any time fighting vandals), but we don't seem to gain much from protecting the page. — Matt 03:35, 26 Jul 2004 (UTC)
      • I count 4. [1], [2], [3], and [4]. But three of the vandals were admins, so that wouldn't be stopped by this proposal. anthony (see warning) 20:15, 26 Jul 2004 (UTC)
        • Three of the vandals were admins? What the hell do you mean by that? blankfaze | (беседа!) 02:22, 27 Jul 2004 (UTC)
      • The users making vandal edits [5], [6], and [7] were admins. anthony (see warning) 11:50, 31 Jul 2004 (UTC)
  • I really don't know — on one hand, this is a wiki — on the other, vandalism on the main page makes us looks silly. I think that whether this page is protected or not ought to depend on the other Templates for the main page. ITN and DYK too should be protected if this is as well. It's inconsistent, and is just shoving the problem off to another Template if we protect just this page. In short, this is an issue that probably has a larger scope than just this page. Just my opinion, of course. Johnleemk | Talk 09:06, 26 Jul 2004 (UTC)
  • Support. Ausir 09:08, 26 Jul 2004 (UTC)
  • Object - I don't see that this is enough of a special case to justify being made an exception. In fact, having looked through the history, I can only find one example of genuine vandalism - the Simpsons image attached to Lollapalooza. All the others, including those by AnthonyDP, seem to be, at the very worst, bloody-minded disagreements about policy by people who are making well-intentioned edits. None of them spoilt the appearance of the front page for a casual reader. There's a mountain being made out of a molehill here. Harry R 11:16, 26 Jul 2004 (UTC)
  • Neutral — I see both sides of the argument. I do however object to Anthony's edits being called "vandalism". I disagree with them, and he was annoyingly persistent, but that doesn't make them vandalism. They were part of a valid difference of opinion between Wikipedians. — Chameleon Main/Talk/Images 14:19, 26 Jul 2004 (UTC)
  • I oppose semi-permanent protection. It would deprive non-admins of the ability to edit the template, and the whole point of having these templates for the Main Page is to allow non-admins to edit, because the Main Page itself is protected. There hasn't been that much real vandalism, and any that happens gets reverted very quickly anyway. --Michael Snow 17:53, 26 Jul 2004 (UTC)
  • Oppose. I don't think main-page vandalism is enough of a problem so far to protect the template. Same goes for other main-page templates. I know I would hate not being able to edit selected anniversaries. I think that current security by obscurity is enough. Zocky 02:44, 27 Jul 2004 (UTC)
  • Oppose. There isn't that much vandalism, and if it is visible then it will also be reverted quickly. It is not worth cutting out the non-admins. The security through obscurity also seems to work fairly well. Thue | talk 22:57, 27 Jul 2004 (UTC)
  • Oppose, purely on principle if nothing else. Others have stated plainly why. Radagast 11:40, Jul 31, 2004 (UTC)

Linking to article of the week

I feel that the article of the week should have a link here. It will give it more exposure (and therefore more contributors), plus it also improves the sense of community on Wikipedia. A line like this, below recently featured articles would be a good idea.

Article of the week: Medieval warfare

What do you think? [[User:Krik|- Norm | Green.png]] 10:48, 27 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Let's have a mockup...

The copyright symbol

A copyright provides its holder the right to restrict unauthorized copying and reproduction of an original expression (i.e. literary work, movie, music, painting, software, mask work, etc.) Copyright stands in contrast to other forms of intellectual property, such as patents, which grant a monopoly right to the use of an invention, because it is not a monopoly right to do something, merely a right to preclude others from doing it. Copyright also does not prohibit all forms of copying. In the United States, the fair use clause of the Copyright Act allows copying and distribution under certain limited circumstances. Copyright law is controversial, with some seeing it as essential to prevent abuse; and others, too restrictive. This has led to the concept of Copyleft and alternative licences.

Recently featured: SiegeLollapaloozaGalileo Galilei

Article of the week: Medieval warfare

More featured articles ...


Mmm...I think it'd look better if we didn't wikilink "Article of the week". Right now I'm neutral. Johnleemk | Talk 12:23, 27 Jul 2004 (UTC)

It's a bad idea. It would imply that "Article of the week" means "feature of the week", when it really means "Charity case of the week" - read Wikipedia:Article of the week - David Gerard 18:49, 27 Jul 2004 (UTC)

(Article of the week name discussion moved to Wikipedia talk:Article of the week)

Whether or not we link the article of the week on the main page is one question, but I definitely don't think we should link it within the featured article section. The featured article section is just something different completely. I'd like to give the article of the week exposure on the main page, as that will encourage people to fix it up, but the featured article section is not the place to do it. anthony (see warning) 11:53, 31 Jul 2004 (UTC)

It should probably be on Wikipedia:Main Page (i.e. the editors' portal page), but not on the public face to the world - David Gerard 17:49, 31 Jul 2004 (UTC)
Does anyone actually use the editors' portal page? anthony (see warning) 13:51, 1 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Ratification of User:Raul654 as Featured Articles Director

This has never been voted on. So let's see what consensus says.

Update: Closing 1 week from today, i.e. 2400 UTC 12 Aug 2004 - David Gerard 23:28, 5 Aug 2004 (UTC)

(the poll was changed, and some votes rearranged and removed; comments on those below.)

The role of the Featured Article Director should be more clearly defined.

  1. Johnleemk | Talk 11:17, 1 Aug 2004 (UTC)
  2. Zocky 11:23, 1 Aug 2004 (UTC)
  3. -- orthogonal 03:39, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
  4. Austin Hair 03:42, Aug 6, 2004 (UTC)
  5. anthony (see warning) 13:59, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
  6. +sj+ 19:40, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC) Where is it defined currently?

The role of the Featured Article Director is defined clearly enough now.

  1. David Gerard 17:49, 31 Jul 2004 (UTC)
  2. blankfaze | (беседа!) 17:51, 31 Jul 2004 (UTC)
  3. Neutrality 21:29, 3 Aug 2004 (UTC)
  4. Emsworth (I would like to see it renamed "Coordinator").
  5. →Raul654 00:30, Aug 6, 2004 (UTC)
  6. mav 03:33, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
  7. Mark 03:38, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
  8. James F. (talk) 12:11, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
  9. ke4roh 13:01, Aug 6, 2004 (UTC)
  10. Ancheta Wis 12:17, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC) (I would like to see it renamed Elector)
  11. Goobergunch 20:55, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)
  12. 172 00:52, 8 Aug 2004 (UTC) Just make Raul dictator (not just "director"). He was doing just fine without all this legalism and formalism.
  13. Markalexander100 00:45, 10 Aug 2004 (UTC)
    • I think deferring to Mark's judgement, without formalism, is effective and appropriate. The formalism, however, seems like a poor idea. It should not be possible for someone to blithely say "I don't care how good your idea is; you're not the FAD, so your opinion doesn't matter." +sj+

If the above poll approves the post of Featured Articles Director:

Ratify Raul654 as Featured Articles Director.

  1. David Gerard 17:49, 31 Jul 2004 (UTC)
  2. blankfaze | (беседа!) 17:51, 31 Jul 2004 (UTC)
  3. Antandrus 18:17, 31 Jul 2004 (UTC)
  4. Thue | talk 09:31, 1 Aug 2004 (UTC)
  5. Johnleemk | Talk 11:17, 1 Aug 2004 (UTC)
  6. Zocky 11:23, 1 Aug 2004 (UTC)
  7. Neutrality 21:29, 3 Aug 2004 (UTC)
  8. Emsworth 22:18, 5 Aug 2004 (UTC)
  9. →Raul654 00:30, Aug 6, 2004 (UTC)
  10. mav 03:33, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
  11. Mark 03:38, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
  12. James F. (talk) 12:11, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
  13. ke4roh 13:01, Aug 6, 2004 (UTC)
  14. 172 00:52, 8 Aug 2004 (UTC)
  15. Markalexander100 00:45, 10 Aug 2004 (UTC)
  16. Gregb 05:26, 11 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Don't ratify Raul654 as Featured Articles Director - hold an election.

  1. While I have great respect for Raul654, if this post is important enough to have a "Director", then it's important enough the Director be elected -- especially as the vast majority of wiki users have no idea this page, or this vote, exists. -- orthogonal 03:38, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC) (And besides, who are we, in the absence of an election, to ratify anyone for any position? -- orthogonal 03:45, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC))
  2. Agreed. While I approve fully of the job Raul's done thus far, others should be given the opportunity to have a say in the matter. Austin Hair 03:42, Aug 6, 2004 (UTC)
  3. anthony (see warning) 13:59, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
  4. I think Raul does outstanding work, but I don't want to speak for consensus. I don't think we really need to have some kind of legally defined position. But, once we take that step and say that the position is official, seems like we have to decide upon it transparently. Geogre 13:56, 9 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Have an election iff someone besides Raul indicates a desire for the job.

  1. [[User:Meelar|Meelar (talk)]] 14:27, 2004 Aug 6 (UTC)
  2. Goobergunch 20:55, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)
  3. Jao 10:28, Aug 11, 2004 (UTC) (Duh.)

Who moved my vote

Someone changed this poll and removed my vote. What's going on? anthony (see warning) 01:19, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Two distinct options were:

  • "Don't ratify Raul654 as Featured Articles Director, don't have a Featured Articles Director..." and
  • "We shouldn't have a Featured Articles Director"

Obviously, these options are redundant. Thus, I removed the former, and put everything into the third person. -- Emsworth 03:20, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)

  • It was completely inappropriate for you to remove my vote. anthony (see warning) 13:59, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
    • Having two options meaning exactly the same thing is unnecessary, and, moreover, confusing. I did not "remove" your comments in the sense you indicate. What good will come of voting on the same exact proposition twice in the same ballot? -- Emsworth 14:22, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
  • I voted in both (2) polls, yet someone removed my vote completely from one of the polls. Yes, the initial poll questions were chosen poorly, and this has (only to some extent) been addressed. But changing the questions and answers after people have already voted without even contacting them either before or after making the change is not the proper way to solve the problem. As for the poll questions being fixed, they still assume that we should have a featured article director in the first place. I guess I should have written that I haven't stopped beating my wife as my answer. anthony (see warning) 13:17, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)

On actively choosing single points of failure

If such a position is created, which continues to seem like a poor idea to me,

a) it should not be limited to one person, and 
b) its primary goal should be recruiting and training others to share the work.

It is one thing to have unintended SPF weaknesses in an organization; quite another to atively create them. Wiki is very robust in the former sense; it starts out with very few SPF weaknesses, since everyone and her mother is encouraged to fix anything that is broken. Actively creating bureaucratic structure with such weaknesses runs against the grain of wiki, and contrary to my intuition.

Everyone can agree that Raul is a greatly positive and energetic contributor, who among other things takes excellent care of our featured articles. The above FADdish vote is, however, more than a vote in favor of Raul, or even in recognition of his work. It is a vote to set in place a system with inherent weaknesses, with no clear compensating advantage.


Weakness 1: Single Point of Failure - Rather than developing a community of well-intentioned people, who have all learned how to effectively and peacefully maintain the main page, this suggests a system where a small group of people maintain the main page, with input from (and occasional rebuffs to) others. Writing a good main-page blurb takes practice, just as writing a good ITN one-liner does; there should be many active contributors at any given time who have done this and received feedback from the community about it.

Weakness 2: Inefficiency - The standard inefficiencies that arise naturally from consolidation of power can all come into play. In well-designed bureaucracies, this weakness is offset by the advantages of faster unilateral action and personal accountability to agreements and compromises; in this case, there are few such advantages. The inefficiencies include:

  • limited availability of people allowed to work on the main page ("That's a nice idea, but it would be too much work"),
  • limiting the actions of others to 'make life easier' for the group of privileged editors (cf. suggestions to protect this project page, above),
  • confusion in circumstances of absence (who will do the updates, when? what if there is a dispute? an edit conflict?)
  • jockeying to be "next in line" (since only one person at a time can be in control),
  • vertical consolidation of power across similar systems (Marking an article as "Featured" is quite different from choosing what goes on the Main Page, crafting a blurb about it, and updating the TFA template... but both would implicitly be handled by the FAD because the inaugural candidate is very active in both areas. More robust and more efficient would be a system in which different groups of people with different, complementary criteria handled these two tasks.)
  • &c. (openness of process, openness to change, the friendship of open ownership, the freshness of changing tasks...) The strengths of wiki are many and invisible, until one discards them.


+sj+, who thinks 654 is swell.

To have everyone merely vote on the featured article for the next day would encourage chaos. "Mob rule" would in some cases lead, for example, to a week of consecutive United States-related articles. Thus, I am absolutely opposed to have people vote daily on which article should be displayed. Rather, I would prefer having a single individual or a group of individuals randomly choose articles for the main page, so as to ensure a distribution over all categories.
I do not mean that a single individual must be responsible for the entire matter. Mr Raul could, of course, share his workload with others. These others would not have to be elected; rather, they would participate with the agreement of the users who participate in the FA nomination process. Of course, disputes would arise from time to time. They would have to be resolved by consensus. But whilst something appears on the main page, a provisional solution would have to be enacted quickly, perhaps by the directoral authority (whether that authority be a single person or a group of persons).
-- Emsworth 20:51, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)
This is a strawman. No one said anything about voting. Surely it is easy to find a single article each day that everyone can agree upon. Alternatively, if we want the article chosen randomly, as you suggest, then having a featured article director is actually counter to that goal. anthony (see warning) 01:44, 8 Aug 2004 (UTC)
The point is that the coordinator is the individual who is trusted to make a random choice (the requirement being varied from time to time to take into account considerations such as requests made by users). If, however, you can suggest another system whereby articles will be randomly selected, I would be most eager to consider it. -- Emsworth 01:53, 8 Aug 2004 (UTC)
Well, the choice isn't currently being made randomly anyway. If you want to select articles randomly, you put the articles in a pool, pick a seed and a random number generator, and then pick them randomly. There's no need for a featured article director to do that, unless you'd like Raul to pick a RNG and seed. anthony (see warning) 02:45, 8 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Link table corruption

I've reverted the addition of date variables to the template because as Tim Starling said at template talk:stub, "You can't make links like [[Category:Stub {{CURRENTDAYNAME}}]], there's a bug in MediaWiki which will cause link table corruption if you do." This makes "what links here" etc completely useless for any articles ever linked to from template:feature. The date needs to be changed manually each day, the same as for the Picture of the day. Angela. 01:39, Aug 9, 2004 (UTC)

Two questions: Are we sure this is not only related to Categories? The current system seems to have worked fine. If this is a problem, will it be fixed? Thanks. [[User:Sverdrup|Sverdrup❞]] 01:28, 17 Aug 2004 (UTC)