Template talk:Cv-unsure

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Does not work?[edit]

This template seems to not work. If I follow the instructions, I see:

[[]] suspects that this article (specifically [{{{2}}} this version]) is a copyright violation, but without a source this can not be definitively determined. If this article can be shown to be a copyright infringement, please list the article on Wikipedia:Copyright problems. If you are certain that the article is not a copyright violation, you should give evidence below. Please do not remove this tag without discussion.

I have put the URL in question after the second | character, but it doesn't link properly. 03:18, 1 January 2007 (UTC)

The instructions are wrong. You need to type 2= before the url because the equals sign in the url screws it up. Also it double links the sig--you should just type your username. I've left this unsubsted so you can click "edit this page" to see what I've done and that it works.

Copyright query[edit]

I went ahead and changed the instructions about the url. I think the template itself should be modified to prevent it trying to link my already linked sig. NickelShoe (Talk) 17:59, 4 January 2007 (UTC)

Proposed edit[edit]

I propose to change the portion of the template that says

(specifically <span class="plainlinks">[{{{2}}} this version]</span>)


{{ #if: {{{2|}}} | (specifically <span class="plainlinks">[{{{2}}} this version]</span>) |}}

in order to allow for the possibility that parameter 2 is empty. I hope this will get people to be more bold in using this tag. (If this will make more work for those who screen articles that are thus tagged, a compromise might be to leave the instructions unchanged.)

sources[edit] (talk) 03:04, 28 May 2008 (UTC)

Needs category[edit]

This template needs to be edited so that it generates a category on all pages on which this template is placed, so that all suspected copyvio pages with this template can be easily viewed. —Lowellian (reply) 20:00, 5 April 2010 (UTC)


What does it matter who the editor is who placed the tag? I have not yet seen another maintenance template that requires one to sign inside the tag itself. Can't we do without that, and replace {{{1}}} suspects by It is suspected? Especially since the talkpage history will always retain information as to who was the editor who placed the tag. In addition, using ~~~~ results in adding a full date signature. I agree with the editor in one of the sections above who said that one should just write ones name there, if anything at all. Debresser (talk) 00:27, 3 July 2011 (UTC)

In the mean time, till somebody will reply to this post, I'll change the code to use "It is suspected" in case the template was used without signing. And to remove the words "specifically this version", with the link to a specific version, if none is specified. Debresser (talk) 00:55, 3 July 2011 (UTC)
 Done Debresser (talk) 01:24, 3 July 2011 (UTC)
Yes this is best removed. Rich Farmbrough, 19:34, 3 July 2011 (UTC).
 Done by Rich in this masterly edit. Debresser (talk) 21:23, 3 July 2011 (UTC)

I've reverted these changes. As far as I can see they've not been discussed with a single editor actually active in copyright investigation and I think they are not necessary good changes. The nature of copyright, especially in this instance where an editor suspects there may be a problem, means a lot of it is a very subjective so it is useful to know who placed the tag. As I discuss on Rich's talk page (where I discuss the date issue) these tags are expected to stay around a long time so searching the history could be difficult. Dpmuk (talk) 10:58, 4 July 2011 (UTC)

The reason is far more useful than the person, who after all, may no longer be active on WP. Indeed a fair number of these templates were placed by IPs. Rich Farmbrough, 11:14, 4 July 2011 (UTC).
Why did you reverse category handling also? And parameter handling? This is only one of the many maintenance templates, in which both of us are experts, and the changes match those. Both in the area of category handling, as well as the removal of this unheard of signing inside a template. In addition, it seems to me that your are more against the edits of SmackBot to talkpages, than against the changes in the template themselves. In this regard I actually agree with you, that the tag should remain on top of the article page, and no section should be created. But that was no reason to indiscriminately revert all changes to the template. Debresser (talk) 11:20, 4 July 2011 (UTC)
As to your argument, that the issue might be subjective. I'd say that Rich's arguments that a user might be no longer active on Wikipedia or an IP user, are heavy arguments. In addition, I think that if a page reeks of copyvio, any discerning editor will be able to notice that, and that the matter is less subjective than you think. Also, since this tag is only about suspected copyvio's, without hard proof, I do not think it would be so harmful if the tag were later removed by another editor. And in addition, if an editor placed a tag and afterwards doesn't participate in discussion for such a long time that it becomes hard to find record of who placed the tag, then apparently 1. the issue wasn't serious enough to warrant discussion right away, and/or 2. the tagging editor isn't interested in participating in discussion. Debresser (talk) 11:31, 4 July 2011 (UTC)
As to your argument, on Rich's talkpage, that "I also query the usefulness of a date tag - these tags are placed when someone has investigated and can't find a source but still has reasons for suspecting a copyvio. Dated tags suggest that it's something that needs dealing with and that there is a "backlog" That doesn't apply in this case." Why shouldn't a suspected copyvio need dealing with? And therefore have a backlog? If an article was tagged a few years ago, and nobody came up with anything, why not remove the tag, using the argument that if there indeed were a copyvio, it would have been noticed after a year or two? And I think other arguments can be brought forward in favor of dating maintenance templates, of which almost 100 are dated. Debresser (talk) 11:40, 4 July 2011 (UTC)
(edit conflict)Copied from Rick's talk:
Can I ask where consensus for any of these edits was obtained? I'm active in copyright work and have not seen these changes discussed anywhere and only noticed them when lots of your edits appeared on my watchlist. I'm particularly unhappy about the addition of a header above the tag. I think these should be treated the same way as a wikiproject tag and kept at the top of the talk page so as they're obvious, don't get archived etc. I also query the usefulness of a date tag - these tags are placed when someone has investigated and can't find a source but still has reasons for suspecting a copyvio. Dated tags suggest that it's something that needs dealing with and that there is a "backlog" That doesn't apply in this case. Dpmuk (talk) 10:42, 4 July 2011 (UTC)
Also please see discussion at Template talk:cv-unsure. Dpmuk (talk) 11:02, 4 July 2011 (UTC)
I have sympathy with the idea of keeping a record of copyvio investigations, as is indicated inthe aboce discussion, however the scope of this tag does not allow that. The actual use of the tag is quite varied, from simply a lone tag, which really says nothing (not why a cpoyvio was suspected, nor of what, let alone what investigation has been done) to a fairly common usage where the url is of the suspected source, to part of a section that outlines comprehensively one some or all of the reason for the suspicion, the suspected source, the investigation carried out. For that reason I would suggest a more comprehensive workflow is required than simply tagging a talk page with "Fred thinks that this version of the article may have been a copyvio". Rich Farmbrough, 11:10, 4 July 2011 (UTC).
Your unhappiness was no reason to revert all of the changes to the template, including category handling and parameters. Your problem seems to be with SmackBots edits rather than with the changes to the template. In this regard I actually agree with you, that the tag should remain on top of the article page, and no section should be created. But let's keep the discussion on the template talkpage, shall we? Debresser (talk) 11:21, 4 July 2011 (UTC)
End copy
Firstly I'm happy to keep discussion here - you'll notice I posted to Rick's talk before I noticed there were changes here as well. I'd hope the reason I don't think we need dated templates is obvious from the discussion I've copied above. As far as I can see there were two major changes to the template, the lack of name and the dating, both of which I disagree with and reverted, both per WP:BRD and the complete lack of discussion with people working in the area. Yes a minor change (the url bit) got caught up in that but as that was relatively minor I didn't re-insert it. I've reverted back to the stable version (with the inconsequential url change kept). Please discuss with people who work in this area before changing. Yes standardisation of templates is a good thing but in doing so you have to make sure that they still do what the people who use them want. I don't doubt your expertise in this area but you have (as far as I can see) little or no expertise in copyrigth investigation so you need to discuss your changes. Yes the multiple to edits to pages is my larger problem but I am unhappy with both. And what is SmackBot? As far as I can see the edits were made by Rich using AWB. Dpmuk (talk) 11:41, 4 July 2011 (UTC)
Well I still think having the person who placed the tag is useful. There may be better ways of doing it but removing it entirely is something I'd be unhappy with. Likewise I don't like the addition of the date to the template as I think it's entirely appropriate that these stay around a long time. I suggest we wait and see what the views of other people who actually work in this area are. I'll post at a couple of relevant places. Dpmuk (talk) 11:47, 4 July 2011 (UTC)
Dating is something which is done over the board (the standarisation you mentioned) and even f you don't think it is necessary, I don't see you have given any reason not to apply it. And Wikipedia:I just don't like it is no argument. SmackBot is a bot operated by Rich who would continue that type of edit. You may work in the area of copyvio's, and we work in the area of maintenance templates, and they are just not signed. In addition, if you don't think a date is needed, why do you keep the signing, which also add date and time? These two arguments are mutually exclusive. Debresser (talk) 11:50, 4 July 2011 (UTC)
I think the signing is for the who rather than the when and so the time is a side effect. My concern with the dated categories is that I can easily see someone working on the "backlog" and inappropriately emptying categories. As I state there is no reason that these tags shouldn't be around for a long time - we're effectively hoping that someone comes across something that solves the issue one way or another. Often times people have already looked but that doesn't mind that some thing will never be found and so the tag should stay indefinitely unless, for example, there's been a masive rewrite which has removed the section with concerns. "Maintance templates are just not signed" sounds very much like a I just don't like it arguement from you. Standardisation is great as long as it doesn't make life more awkward for other editors. I'd like to see more input on this so am now waiting to see if other copyright people pop in. Dpmuk (talk) 12:02, 4 July 2011 (UTC)
I think your unwillingness to have people work on these articles from a backlog, is very un-Wikipedian, and borders on WP:OWN. And now that I think about it, so does your reverting all changes. And please note that you haven't countered even one of my many arguments why I disagree with you and think that it does not matter who placed the tag. Debresser (talk) 12:07, 4 July 2011 (UTC)
(edit conflict)I'm not going to get into an edit war over this but WP:BRD suggests we leave it at the stable version, by which I mean the version before you two changed it (and which had been stable for six months) while it is discussed. You boldly changed it, I reverted it, now we discuss. You shouldn't be continuously changing it back to versions you prefer. Dpmuk (talk) 12:10, 4 July 2011 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── I'm not unwilling to have people work on them - indeed the help would be much appreciated. My concern is over having people that don't understand copyright feeling lime they should work on them to help get rid of a perceived backlog, or similarly someone removing such a tag because they see it was tagged several years ago. Both of these I would consider bad. I've explained above (when we were edit-conflicted) while I reverted - it's not WP:OWN, but rather WP:BRD. Can I suggest you assume good faith and not accuse other editors. We obviously disagree and I think it's best if we wait for more input. Dpmuk (talk) 12:16, 4 July 2011 (UTC)

The thing is you reverted some four different things in one edit, and that sits badly with me. Part of them were outright technical improvements, and should never have been reverted. This includes, by the way, the change of the text if no parameters are used, to which surely one cannot object. Debresser (talk) 12:18, 4 July 2011 (UTC)
Well it sits badly to me that people come along and substantively change templates, especially in a specialist area like this, without any discussion with the people that use them. No I do not have a problem with no parameter issue. The one to do with the person tagging I missed because it had already effectively been reverted when you removed it entirely. So as far as I could see at the time of my reversion I reverted two substantive changes - one the dates, the other the person - and one technical change (the url stuff). I was aware of some collateral damage but thought it was minor enough (especially given that it had only just been added) that it wasn't worth worrying about why we discussed changed to the template - I never expected my revert to be the final change and the url change could have been added back in once we'd agreed on other changes. Dpmuk (talk) 12:33, 4 July 2011 (UTC)
The massive re-write is actually bigger problem. We still have the (potential) copyvio in history, but we can't delete the offending revisions without destroying attribution we need for GFDL/CC-by.
As for the "backlog" mentality there are problems with it. We see this with speedy deletion sometimes, in the desire to achieve an empty CSD category people sometimes get carried away. Two points to consider further:
  1. We have other dated categories that are not backlogs.
  2. This category does have some of the elements of a backlog. For example I just looked at Bronchopleural fistula - tagged sine November and determined it to be a copyvio of http://www.cuhk.edu.hk/med/ans/Trainee%20Manual/Respiratory%20Problems/BRONCHOPLEURAL.pdf within a few moments. Meanwhile many copies of the text have propagated to WP mirrors across the net.
Rich Farmbrough, 12:17, 4 July 2011 (UTC).

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── We've left actual copyvios in history for a long time and before RevDel it was normal to revert and leave them there so I don't think there's a particular problem in the history (I believe we have had legal advice that a copyright version in the history isn't a problem although I'll leave it for someone else to confirm that) - obviously we'd still have a problem if the new version was a derative of the old but that's not what I was referring to.

You raise some interesting points about the "backlog" type nature. I suspect this is because people use it in two different ways. People active in copyright use it when they've searched, can't find a source but it still appears a copyvio whereas others may well use it when they suspect a copyvio but haven't even looked. Think we may well need a massive overhaul of copyright templates at some point. Will give that some thought. Dpmuk (talk) 12:26, 4 July 2011 (UTC)

(edit conflict) I have used this template several times in WP:CP procedure; in cases where a user placed a {{copyvio}}, {{copypaste}} or {{close paraphrase}} on an article and didn't cite a source and I couldn't find it. The tag serves as a record and maybe another editor will have a suspicion later and notice the tag. Until now, I was unaware of user's placing it based off their own suspicions. In my uses, citing the user who placed it is good for communication/networking purposes. Sometimes I have to ask the editor who placed the tag what source they saw the text in. Date and version IDs are important in comparing a source and article version. With that, I have never used the signature portion just 1=User field. If any editor suspects a copyright violation, they can use one of the template tags above or address it on the talk. If it just looks like a copyright violation w/o probable cause (i.e. source), I think that is copyright paranoia. Some people are good writers on Wikipedia, some people write their own articles and some are so enthusiastic it comes off like a promotional piece.--NortyNort (Holla) 12:30, 4 July 2011 (UTC)


  • (edit conflict) Hi. :) It matters to me who places the tag, because it gives me a clue whether the tag placer is likely to have done his homework and checked carefully for matches before placing it or simply slapped the tag up there because of red flags without checking. I have found the tag used on articles when the source was not only immediately visible via google, but turned out to have been cited in the article. Is there a good reason for removing this long established parameter other than that no other template does it?

    I would support adding a date parameter, although I think that the url to the suspected version should remain. It certainly facilitates investigation to be able to click on that link. :) Sorting these by date to prioritize cleanup seems like a good idea. Can the date be automated in any way? I don't know that much about templates, but if the ~~~~~ could be worked in, that seems like it would keep it simple to use but still functional? (I'd support switching from the "name suspects" constructions to a signed template except that I frequently replace {{copy-paste}} templates on article faces with {{cv-unsure}} when I investigate the former and can't find an issue. In those cases, I use the name of the person who placed the tag.) --Moonriddengirl (talk) 12:37, 4 July 2011 (UTC)
Nobody wants to remove the url. The issues are the date and the signature. I raised the signature issue above and the change was made when another editor agreed with it, especially since it is very out-of-the-ordinary. The date I added as part of standarisation, and I still think that should be uncontroversial. Debresser (talk) 12:53, 4 July 2011 (UTC)
I understand why you moved forward, but in typical WP:BRD fashion, there is now disagreement, and we need to iron out consensus. :) I would like to retain the username, as explained. Is there a reason to remove it, beyond its being out-of-the-ordinary? It's been part of the template, evidently uncontroversially, since it was created in 2006. --Moonriddengirl (talk) 12:57, 4 July 2011 (UTC)
Not really. Although it would be nice if the code would place only a link to the user talkpage, and not a full-fledged signature. Something like [[User_talk:Debresser|Debresser]] -> Debresser. Btw, I do understand about WP:BRD. That is why I restored other changes to the template, all but one technical improvements, but not this one. Debresser (talk) 13:01, 4 July 2011 (UTC)
I usually place the user name in the template like you did above. I always thought the template would be better if you just typed a username in the field and it was converted to a link to the user talk/user page.--NortyNort (Holla) 13:43, 4 July 2011 (UTC)


Right, some concrete proposals (I admit these will take some time to get through, but at least then we'd have a target):

  1. We deprecate this template and create two new templates (or two versions of one template), one for use by anyone with any concern, one for use after a proper investigation (i.e. searching etc) where concerns still remain (and probably only for use by the normal WP:CP crowd).
  2. The "any concern" one is dated and is considered a backlog (and should probably automatically be added to WP:CP - although if it is it may not need to be dated). Has the placing users username in it somehow.
  3. The "proper investigation" one is dated but not considered a backlog. Has the username of both the person raising the concern and the investigator in it somehow.
  4. We get a bot to convert any existing tag that give a non-wikipedia url to copypaste tags with that url. This could be an ongoing task.
  5. We slowly convert the rest manually as I'm not sure a bot could would work it out.
  6. The new templates would be developed via discussion between the two groups of users - copyright people and the template people.

Dpmuk (talk) 13:18, 4 July 2011 (UTC)

As a bit of an aside, and a much longer term goal, I think we may well need a general copyright template for use on talkpages which lists what's happened to the article in copyright terms (e.g. concerns, investigations, reversions, revdels etc) but that seems like an even longer term goal. Dpmuk (talk) 13:23, 4 July 2011 (UTC)
  • Oppose. 1. There are no "copyright people" and "template people" on Wikipedia. All editors can make any edit anywhere they like. 2. Why complicate things with two templates? 3. Consensus seems to be that all but you are in favor having dates. 4. This looks again like you trying to establish a corner of Wikipedia that you can WP:OWN. 5. Didn't you say that we should wait for input from other editors? Now that you see people disagree with you, and Moonriddengirl's attempt to reach consensus might be successful, only two hours later, you yourself come with a new proposal. That is not serious. Debresser (talk) 13:25, 4 July 2011 (UTC)
  • In reply to your points:
    1. I'm aware of that, I was merely trying to suggest that when developing them we should ensure we have input from people who most use them (so they're useful) and those who regularly work with such templates (so they're as close to standard as possible) - I wasn't meaning it to be exclusive or anything else, rather just confirming the wikipedia way of collaborative editing and make it more likely the new template would satisfy everyone. I could probably have worded that point better.
    2. It seems clear to me, from the above, that the current template is being used in two different ways. One where someone suspects a copyright issue but hasn't tried finding the source (as in the example by Rich Farnborough) and the other where someone's made good faith attempts to find a source, hasn't, but still has suspicions. It seems clear to me that these are different situations and tagging them the same is confusing and complicates copyright investigation.
    3. And you're notice that both my proposed templates have dates (I'll happily admit consensus is against me on that one).
    4. No, I'm not trying to WP:OWN it, I'm just trying to make sure that the views of people who use these templates are taken into account - that's quite different.
    5. Two people (Moonriddengirl and NortyNort) who are very active in this area have commented. It's as a direct result of their comments that I made these proposal, so yes I did wait for more feedback.
Dpmuk (talk) 13:39, 4 July 2011 (UTC)
Sounds like a plan. Bearing in mind that there are only about 250 uses of this template the conversion will not be a major task.
Templates might be {{Copyvio possible}} (or we could continue to use this one) and {{Copyvio investigated}}.
Rich Farmbrough, 13:29, 4 July 2011 (UTC).
Couldn't we use the same template and different documentation to support different uses?--NortyNort (Holla) 13:35, 4 July 2011 (UTC)
Dpmuk, I am sorry not to have noticed that you agree to dating. That and the other edits, which were of technical nature, are the most important things for me here. As to signing, I already agreed with Moonriddengirl that it can stay, since such seems to be consensus. I see no real gain from splitting between serious and non-serious editors and tags, and consider it quite needless, but frankly don't care too much about that. Debresser (talk) 13:45, 4 July 2011 (UTC)
Yes it would be possible to, for example, have something like
And then change this to
Rich Farmbrough, 13:47, 4 July 2011 (UTC).
Debrasser - Apology accepted. My reason for suggesting two different uses (be they different templates or the same one with a flag) is that if someone is suggesting it may be a copyvio but not having searched for it we really should ensure such a search is done. I can understand why some users might not want to do the searching themselves (personal experience means I know how difficult it can be) but, so as to limit the possibility of legal problems, it really does need doing. At the moment there is no easy way for a user to flag this up as {{copyvio}} is for when the source is known and this template is being used for two different things and so probably being ignored more than it should be. By creating a template and listing uses at WP:CP we make it less likely that copyvios will slip through the net. Dpmuk (talk) 13:57, 4 July 2011 (UTC)

Proposal to add version param[edit]

I propose we add param version to the template and phase out use of url which serves the same purpose.

Besides being wordy, a full url seems to depend more on whatever method WMF is using at a given point so has less forward compatibility. In any case, having version as a param is briefer and can employ {{oldid}} or Special:Permalink to implement it.

My preference would be to encourage use of the new param by having the doc altered so that it only documents version and drops mention of url entirely, although we'd still have to handle it in the code for backward compatibility, at least until a bot or editors can upgrade all the old occurrences of it. (Alternatively, one could have the doc include both params but make it clear that it's an either-or, which could be enforced in the code.) Mathglot (talk) 22:23, 20 May 2017 (UTC)

It's also odd that there isn't a reason or a talk param with the usual meaning and usage, and they should be added, too. I've written one template before, and I might be able to manage this, but I'd prefer someone else do it, or at least collaborate on it. Pinging Debresser, Dpmuk, and Rich Farmbrough. Mathglot (talk) 23:33, 20 May 2017 (UTC)
I added a talk parameter, to the template and the documentation. Regarding a reason parameter: the text of this template is rather detailed. I am not sure there is need for a reason parameter. What text would you propose to replace by the reason parameter? Debresser (talk) 23:49, 20 May 2017 (UTC)