Template talk:Infobox country/Archive 5

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Archive 1 Archive 3 Archive 4 Archive 5 Archive 6 Archive 7 Archive 10


Native name

Can the bolding be optional? The bolding of the Ge'ez script in the Ethiopia and Eritrea pages renders the text unreadable as the script is by nature bolded (relative to the Latin script). I'm going to be bold and make this change now. If there are objections, it can easily be reverted (and it's not a major change), and pages where the native name should be bolded can easily have that done manually, as the native name cannot be unbolded within the page. — ዮም | (Yom) | TalkcontribsEthiopia 20:50, 17 November 2006 (UTC)

And how many nations use Ge'ez as their official script? While I understand your problem and sympathize, its effects are far too wide-ranging and result in patent absurdities. Especially when the native name of the country is in English, as with United States, United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, Nigeria, Guyana, New Zealand, Saint Lucia...Need I go on? It makes them look rather, well, weak. Even more ridiculous is the fact that the English name is more prominent for all nations whose scripts have a reasonable distinction between bold and not-bold, such as France, Italy, Germany, Egypt, Iran, Japan, South Korea, Russia, Greece and the People's Republic of China. So I'm reverting this until you can find a better solution. Lockesdonkey 22:35, 17 November 2006 (UTC)
Is Ge'ez the only script that can be rendered illegible by bolding? No one said that the other language pages have to be unbolded. I'm just asking that it not be part of the template so that individual country pages can have bolding or not. Sure it takes more work, but once it's done, there's no difference except a few pages don't have illegible script. — ዮም | (Yom) | TalkcontribsEthiopia 17:06, 1 December 2006 (UTC)

Patron saint(s)

Why? - Francis Tyers · 15:24, 1 December 2006 (UTC)

It looks a bit odd to me as well. Then again, I'm a Lutheran. Valentinian (talk) / (contribs) 16:47, 1 December 2006 (UTC)
I don't see the point, there can't be that many countries with Christianity as a state religion. I say it should be removed. - Francis Tyers · 16:51, 1 December 2006 (UTC)
In any case, the title of the infobox is the official name of the country, so the patron saint should not be included for countries that don't have official patron saints (nearly all of them). Historic or popular patron saints can be mentioned in the article body. Zocky | picture popups 16:54, 1 December 2006 (UTC)
Ahhh! EDIT Conflict...It looks a little odd in the infobox to me as well and I'm Roman Catholic. This kind of came up before here in September. To keep the infobox less cluttered, stuff like this would probably be best stated within the article —maybe in a religion section. —MJCdetroit 16:59, 1 December 2006 (UTC)
Sounds good to me. Valentinian (talk) / (contribs) 17:03, 1 December 2006 (UTC)
Agree. - Francis Tyers · 17:18, 1 December 2006 (UTC)
Agree; I've come here because the patron saint section was recently filled in for the Romania infobox, which I felt was a bit odd since Romania is not a Christian state (i.e. church and state are separated, there is no official recognition of patron saints). The whole inclusion of this into an infobox about political entities and states (i.e. official stuff) seems a bit Christiano-centric to me. Flag of Europe.svgFlag of Romania.svg Ronline 10:53, 5 January 2007 (UTC)
I removed it. Actually, I thought that we had removed that a while ago. —MJCdetroit 17:09, 5 January 2007 (UTC)
We never got around to doing it. Anyway, better now than never. Valentinian (talk) / (contribs) 17:15, 5 January 2007 (UTC)

Cosmopolitanism vs. Religious Understanding

I would support the idea of including the optional patron saint section in the template, because if some countries like Georgia, England, Ireland and etc. would like to include the patron saints in the article, they must be able to so without creating a separate template like template:Infobox England. In addition, it must be optional to fit the cosmopilitan policy of wikipedia for the countries who do not widh to include that section. Regards, SosoMK 15:26, 8 February 2007 (UTC)

My main concern is that somebody might pick up a copy of the Catholic Encyclopedia or similar and add this line everywhere. I for my part would very much like to avoid such material on the article about Denmark. Many of my countrymen would find it either a little insulting or at least nonsensical given that Denmark has been Lutheran since 1536. Come to think of it, I don't even know who Denmark's national saint was back then. Ansgar? King Canute? A second issue is that the infoboxes are already very big and we have to draw the line somewhere. Valentinian T / C 20:57, 8 February 2007 (UTC)

Use in Wiki-on-a-Stick

How would I go about implementing this template for use in a Wiki-On-A-Stick? Any ideas? 00:08, 6 December 2006 (UTC)

fixed problems with disambiguating to square metre

I've fixed the template so that it no longer links to the disambiguation page . Previously, the template linked to if any of the parameters area_magnitude, FR_metropole_area_magnitude, or FR_land_area_magnitude were undefined. However, simply changing "m²" to "square metre" would create red links, because articles on different orders of magnitude for area do not use "square metre" in their titles. Creating the appropriate redirects for every single article in that category would prove to be quite annoying. Therefore, I've used the #if: ParserFunction to counter this problem. If I broke anything, please let me know. Thanks. --Ixfd64 08:33, 12 December 2006 (UTC)

Cluttering the infobox with unnecessary optional info

I removed the geocodes section of the template as they just managed to clutter the infobox and are relatively unimportant. —MJCdetroit 17:22, 5 January 2007 (UTC)

I would disagree with them being unimportant, and when I floated the idea some time back the reception was rather positive. In any event, I don't really get the clutter argument considering they were if'ed. The Tom 21:02, 5 January 2007 (UTC)
For these codes, it is probably enough to have the fields in the syntax but do not display these fields, treating them as metadata, similar to what we do for {{Infobox German Location}}. - 52 Pickup 13:47, 8 January 2007 (UTC)
Except what purpose would they serve as metadata? These are important characteristics of countries, arguably just as useful to be summarized rapidly for reader's reference as, say, total area. The Tom 20:17, 9 January 2007 (UTC)
Agree with The Tom. We should keep these data. Valentinian T / C 00:14, 17 February 2007 (UTC)
I'd at least be in favor of adding back the ISO 3199 alpha-2 and alpha-3 codes, as I mentioned below. —Angr 00:35, 17 February 2007 (UTC)


what is the reason for the green arrow in most of the country boxes? Increase --Astrokey44 14:38, 9 January 2007 (UTC)

I think this (or alternatively the red downward-facing arrowhead) are meant to indicate an increase (or decrease) in the country's HDI since the previous year's evaluation... Which reminds me: maybe {{increase}} and {{decrease}} are more appropriate (more generic) names for these arrowhead templates... Regards, David Kernow (talk) 00:49, 11 January 2007 (UTC)


Wikitravel is a wonderful site for tourist-specific information. It also complies with Wikipedia's Guidelines and Policies. I was thinking of adding a link in the Infobox to the corresponding Wikitravel Page, based on the country's name. Like inserting a link to "http://wikitravel.org/en/{{{common_name}}}. Would that be a good idea? Danielsavoiu 19:44, 15 January 2007 (UTC)

I'm sorry if I was a bit too bold in adding my idea to the template already, but I wanted to see if it works, and seeing as it does, I ask of your opinion. Should it be left there, or taken out? I hope I didn't go too far. Danielsavoiu 20:12, 15 January 2007 (UTC)
I don't like this, but we'll see what others have to say. BTW - the link is broken for countries whose common name includes blanks (like the US). I suspect the fix for this is to feed either just the country name or the whole link through the pseudo template urlencode, see m:Help:Magic words. -- Rick Block (talk) 02:04, 16 January 2007 (UTC)
I reverted it. I echo some of the concerns of Rick's and also my argument above to start to limit the amount of data in the infobox. If the infobox becomes too cluttered then we may have a stituation where the standard infobox for all countries may fall out of favor with some editors. Thereby causing a return to many non-standard infoboxes. Remember it wasn't easy to get all the editors to agree/switch to this infobox in the first place. We should be careful in what additional information that we chose to install and decide through concensus. Until other editors say they do want this feature and it will work for all countries, then let's leave it off—MJCdetroit 04:18, 16 January 2007 (UTC)
I wonder, then if one could areate the link with another formula, say [http://wikitravel.org/en/{{PAGENAMEE}} {{PAGENAME}} at Wikitravel], with the use of {{PAGENAMEE}} instead of {{PAGENAME}} to use underescores instead of spaces. That would fix a lot.
As is visible here, the method described above works. Even though it doesn't correspond to any Wikitravel page, the link is now taking the spaces in the country name into account. Please reconsidere it's usage as it is an invaluable source of tourist information.Danielsavoiu 08:38, 16 January 2007 (UTC)
I don't like it but to be fair (IMO) it is more reasonable then some of the other things that have been added. If others like and want this feature then it could be added. I guess we'll have to wait and see what others have to say. —MJCdetroit 13:13, 16 January 2007 (UTC)
That would indeed be a good idea. Someone should start a poll. Danielsavoiu 07:59, 17 January 2007 (UTC)
Please see Wikipedia:Polling is not a substitute for discussion. It's sometimes quite difficult to get enough discussion going to determine a consensus. Rather than start a poll, I think it might be better to solicit more input on this (say, from the last 10 users who have edited this template). -- Rick Block (talk) 14:47, 17 January 2007 (UTC)
I did not say poll as in a special page designed just for the purpose of counting pro and con votes. I meant a local poll here in the discussion board, because clearly it's more effective than soliciting input, seeing as I might not be the only one supporting the Wikitravel-link, but merely the only one contributing to this discussion in its favour. I would like to see more input to this matter so a consensus can be reached. I urge everyone linked to this Infobox to contribute to this discussion. Danielsavoiu 18:17, 17 January 2007 (UTC)
  • I don't image it would add any more than one or two lines to the template (yes..?) so I'd say give it a try... Maybe place it just before the footnotes...?  Regards, David Kernow (talk) 05:50, 18 January 2007 (UTC)

Adding Income inequality / Gini Index

Re-opening my request to add a Gini Index.

Old request

Proposal: Add "Gini Index" below HDI (Please react)

I think that besides givin the GDP and a HDI which give average values over a whole country only, it's very important to also mention the inequality within the country itself. I think it's one of the basic facts to know about a country and deserves to be in this ttemplate. For one thing, it makes the figures GDP and HDI more weight, beacuse otherwise they may be so misleading for certain issues. Therefor I propose to add the often used "Gini Index" here.

Is anyone against this ? If no reactions, I would like to include this in couple of days / weeks. R U Bn @ e-builds 13:24, 24 August 2006 (UTC)

Bullet-green.png I second. I would make it exactly like the HDI (value, rank, high/med/low), especially since there are a number of countries which are ranked but have no Gini value. VodkaJazz / talk 12:33, 28 August 2006 (UTC)


So, if no one reacts, I will add this soon---—Preceding unsigned comment added by R U Bn (talkcontribs)

Bullet-green.pngThis seems to be reasonable. I guess we'll have to see what it looks like. In any case, the last time this was proposed it was lumped together with national bird and national tree and plant, and automobile codes, and patron saints. Unfortunatly, it may have gotten over looked because of those other things. —MJCdetroit 01:34, 17 January 2007 (UTC)
Bullet-green.pngI agree with this proposition. It should be added next to the HDI. The Gini index is a measure of how well-distributed the wealth of the country is. If a very rich country has all of it's rich people living in one city, then it would be misleading to only state it's degree of wealth. A very good idea, and usable indeed. Danielsavoiu 18:22, 17 January 2007 (UTC)
Bullet-green.pngNo objections from me! --Ixfd64 18:31, 17 January 2007 (UTC)
Bullet grey.svg"Gini" index is new to me, so, as other folk are endorsing it, add it and let's see what happens!  Regards, David Kernow (talk) 05:52, 18 January 2007 (UTC)

Trial & Suggestions

Gini ? ({{{Gini year}}}) {{{Gini}}} ({{{Gini category}}}) ({{{Gini rank}}})

OK, I guess something like this below HDI (without border then since it's also about human "equality" (Danielsavoiu agree). I also added the "?" which could be used in all fields of the infobox by the way... Suggestions, thoughts ??

  • Where can I find category ? Does this exist, VodkaJazz, since you suggested it ?

R U Bn (Talkcontrib) 15:59, 18 January 2007 (UTC)

Superscripted + "help cursored" the "?". P.S. You need to hover over it and check the hover tooltip. If you didn't guess, maybe it is too hidden? R U Bn (Talkcontrib) 17:45, 19 January 2007 (UTC)


Sorry for the long wait, but better late then never. And sorry for the cliché :-) --R U Bn (Talkcontrib) 22:01, 17 March 2007 (UTC)

Way cool! --ChoChoPK (球球PK) (talk | contrib) 01:33, 18 March 2007 (UTC)

I see that the Gini index already exists in Template:Infobox Economy. Personally, I don't think it needs to be repeated again in the country infobox. I'd actually prefer to see the HDI index moved to the economy infobox as well, to avoid cluttering the country infobox with composite data. And how is "high/medium/low" defined? Isn't that kind of subjective? — Kelw (talk) 19:36, 18 March 2007 (UTC)


I suggest adding a section about religions in the country. -- Walter Humala Godsave him! (wanna Talk?) 20:34, 15 February 2007 (UTC)

ISO 3166 codes

What about adding the ISO 3166-1 alpha-2 and ISO 3166-1 alpha-3 codes to the infobox? They could go right under the Internet TLD. —Angr 12:05, 16 February 2007 (UTC)

We've removed these in the past and I would oppose their addition again.—MJCdetroit 12:57, 16 February 2007 (UTC)
Why were they removed in the past? And why shouldn't they be there? —Angr 14:04, 16 February 2007 (UTC)


Is there any way someone could add a field "Unofficial flag" or "local flag" (and perhaps the same for coat of arms) to be used when the flag is unofficial (such as with overseas territories which use this template), so that it states underneath the flag "unofficial flag" or "local flag" (although it should still link to just "Flag of Common Name")? We're having some dispute over at Saint-Pierre and Miquelon.  OzLawyer / talk  15:03, 6 March 2007 (UTC)


Can a field for portals be added? Like the one in the saints infobox? --Howard the Duck 11:23, 12 March 2007 (UTC)

Airplane registration-prefix and Amateur-Radio (HAM) prefix

I hereby suggest that the prefix for airplane's registration-numbers in the country (eg. "LN" for Norway) - perhaps along with the nationa-emblem (eg. a circle with concentric red, white and blue circles for the USA), should be added in the Infobox.

I also suggest that the prefix used in the countries Amateur-Radio (HAM) call-signs to be added (eg. for Norway (AFAIK) LA, LB, LC and LØ (zero) - though I think all but LA and perhaps LØ are obsolete. We used to have LA for full, LB for limited and LC for technical license, and LØ used on Norwgian possessions(?) ) koppe 15:30 12 March 2007 (CET)

View, edit, talk links

Can someone please get rid of the part at the bottom of the infobox that reads "This box: view • talk • edit"? It's ugly and a waste of space. Let's keep the infobox devoted to actual content. — Kelw (talk) 00:29, 13 March 2007 (UTC)

I added these following a request; they're quite common on similar infobox templates (the "Politics of..." series comes to mind). However, they may be more useful if there's consensus for #Use Template:Infobox Countryname in articles...? below. Regards, David Kernow (talk) 07:30, 13 March 2007 (UTC)
I can see how the links would be useful if your suggestion below gets implemented, but right now the links are just taking up space without being very useful. Editors mostly want to edit the content of the infobox rather than the syntax of the template, so the links are not needed. Can you remove them for now and add them back later as part of your suggested plan? — Kelw (talk) 02:12, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
I agree with Kelw. Dump the links. —MJCdetroit 02:19, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
If the template is inline, there no need for these links (and I think the template should be inline). -- Rick Block (talk) 03:20, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
  • Gone!  If/when anyone queries their removal, I'll direct them here. Regards, David Kernow (talk) 06:00, 14 March 2007 (UTC)

Use Template:Infobox Country/territory_name in articles...?

Following this short thread, I'm wondering if there's a consensus to use {{Infobox Country/territory_name}} templates rather than the {{Infobox Country}} template in articles, to remove the space used by parameters for the latter in these articles' code. {{Infobox Fooland}}, for example, would consist of the {{Infobox Country}} for Fooland – i.e. something like:

{{Infobox Country
|native_name              = Fooland
|conventional_long_name   = Republic of Fooland
|common_name              = Fooland
|image_flag               = Flag of Fooland.svg
|image_coat               = Coat-of-arms of Fooland.svg
|image_map                = Location of Fooland.png
etc etc

– meaning that the Fooland article would only need to use the one-line

{{Infobox Fooland}}

rather than the full {{Infobox Country}} version. The view-edit-talk links recently added to the bottom of {{Infobox Country}} could then link to {{Infobox Fooland}} rather than {{Infobox Country}} itself.
What do folk think...?  Regards, David Kernow (talk) 07:30, 13 March 2007 (UTC)

Am I understanding you correctly, you want to create 200+ single use templates just to save a few kilobytes per article??? The reason we standardized all the country articles to use only one template was to give all articles an infobox with a similar appearance and controlled from a central location (here). Having the code inside the article also makes it easier for editors to update the infobox. Also, when we did standardized the templates the last hold outs against standardization were France, Australia and Western Sahara; who all had their own special templates. After, the fight they put up over the switch then a year later to just completely reverse ourselves. Just leave it status quo. I would be very much against such a reversal. —MJCdetroit 16:35, 13 March 2007 (UTC)
I agree, avoid single-use templates and keep the code in the article. --Golbez 16:43, 13 March 2007 (UTC)
And isn't it more convenient to be able to edit the infobox contents directly from the main article? If the editors do decide to keep the status quo, then I strongly suggest removing those "View, Talk, Edit" links in the infobox because they serve little purpose under the present arrangement. — Kelw (talk) 02:04, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
  • Thanks all for the feedback so far. I wondered if there might be a flaw in the idea, so I'm grateful to MJCdetroit for pointing it out – I guess it's something obvious I missed!  The Tnavbar links have also now been removed from the template. Yours, David Kernow (talk) 06:05, 14 March 2007 (UTC)

Area optional...why?

DK, why was this made optional? I could venture to guess but I won't. I am going to revert the change until it is explained for everyone. If it is for the reason that I am thinking I don't think anyone would have a problem with it. —MJCdetroit 16:43, 15 March 2007 (UTC)

  • On second thoughts, I agree, so thanks for revert and message!  Yours, David (talk) 05:13, 16 March 2007 (UTC)

Capital/Largest city

I was wondering if someone could add the option for largest city = capital to Template:Infobox Province or territory of Canada. I realize that template is simple while this one is complex, but perhaps someone who's template-savvy could do it anyway. Thanks. Lexicon (talk) 13:48, 29 March 2007 (UTC)

Coat of Arms images next to the names of cities

The following discussion was copied/moved here from Talk:Canada20:40, 29 March 2007 (UTC):

Lexicon has added icons of the flags of the cities and provinces for Ottawa and Toronto. I believe that there is no useful information added with the in/clusion of these icons, and furthermore it adds to the clutter of the infoboxes. What do other people think? Regards, -- Jeff3000 13:25, 29 March 2007 (UTC)

I agree. See Wikipedia:Don't overuse flags.--cj | talk 13:30, 29 March 2007 (UTC)
Talk to the editors of most countries, then, who put the coats of arms of the capital cities in infoboxes. See, for instance, Germany, Spain, Romania, Russia, Poland... Lexicon (talk) 13:34, 29 March 2007 (UTC)
That's not a compelling reason to use them. I think it's a bad idea to take an infobox which is intended to be consistent and apply to it something which is fundamentally inconsistent. These images (flags or coats of arms) cannot be applied for all countries; for example, Australia, for which city articles cover metropolitan areas that do not have equivalent images.--cj | talk 13:52, 29 March 2007 (UTC)
Couldn't work for largest city, but I'd suspect it could work for capital, which is what they're generally used for, since, from my understanding, Canberra is one city. But even if there was a problem, that wouldn't be a reason to abandon the protocol. One or two countries don't really have a coat of arms, but that doesn't mean we don't include such in our infoboxes. Lexicon (talk) 14:01, 29 March 2007 (UTC)
The difference is that they are by and large useful and are included in the infobox proper. There really isn't a good reason to decorate the infobox with these images in this inconsistent manner. On the other hand, there are several valid reasons not to.--cj | talk 14:09, 29 March 2007 (UTC)
Most of the arguments in that essay are completely irrelevant to the current use. Unless you are ready to remove the capitals' coats of arms from all the counties whose articles have them, then consistency with a growing trend is a reason to include the coat

of arms here. Also, while I understand that overuse of decoration is unhelpful, "prettification" of articles is a good thing. Lexicon (talk) 14:18, 29 March 2007 (UTC)

Sorry Lex, I tend to agree with the others. In country infoboxes, just list the name of the capital and/or the largest city and have them wikilinked to those cities. In the Canada infobox, I can not really tell what that blob is next to Ottawa anyway. If a reader wants to know more about Ottawa or Toronto or any other city on any other country infobox, they can click the wikilink to the city article. The infobox at the city articles have specific parameters to display the flag, logo, COA, and seal for the city. Also, I would say that displaying of country and province flags in the subdivision fields of the city infobox (like Toronto) is much more acceptable than displaying flags and coat of arms for cities in the country infobox. Although, in the city infoboxes, place the flags after the subdivision names. This keeps all the names vertically lined up. —MJCdetroit 16:23, 29 March 2007 (UTC)
Basically every country in the Americas and Europe has the coat of arms, I don't see why Canada should be an exception. Lexicon (talk) 17:00, 29 March 2007 (UTC)
Canada's coat of arms is displayed. It is to the right of the "flag" and in between "Canada" and "Motto". It is a very nice coat. —MJCdetroit 17:12, 29 March 2007 (UTC)
Er, I obviously meant the coat of arms of the capital city. Lexicon (talk) 18:01, 29 March 2007 (UTC)
This discussion should probably take place over at Template talk:Infobox Country instead of Talk:Canada. MJCdetroit 20:40, 29 March 2007 (UTC)
(Now it is here.) I think it is in general a bad idea to add the city CoA to the templates on any of those countries; as it adds nothing (the interested reader can click the city name and see the CoA in the article). IMHO it only clutters the infobox making it less pretty and harder to read. Arnoutf 15:37, 1 April 2007 (UTC)
I agree. Include the country's CoA, but not any city's. These images are too intricate to be recognizable at icon size, and including a larger version would be too intrusive. In addition, the CoA of the capital city has very little to do with the country. -- Rick Block (talk) 17:39, 1 April 2007 (UTC)
Yes, agreed. Jkelly 17:47, 1 April 2007 (UTC)
I agree with Rick Block; the images are too intricate to be shrunken down to be really necessary. The country's CoA is fine, since its the most important. We don't need a bazillion flags everywhere for every country. Leaving it unchcked could possibily get that way. Disinclination 18:08, 1 April 2007 (UTC)
I started at discussion at wikiproject countries regarding this issue I have removed the city coat of arms from all of the EU countries their inclusion serves no purpose whatsover and can make the infobox look messy. --Barry O'Brien entretien 02:01, 2 April 2007 (UTC)

Use of "style" attribute

I'm doing some experiments on how to best print Wikipedia content. For various reasons, I have to ignore the CSS style sheet that comes with Wikipedia. Instead, I apply a newly written style sheet. However, when disregarding the style attribute, I lose valuable information. Ideally, I'd like for there to be a class attribute onto which I can attach similar styling. For example, the current template generates numeous elements that have a style attribute, but no associated class. For example:

  <td colspan="3" style="line-height:1.2em; text-align:center;">

I propose adding classes to these elements. For example:

  <td class="anthem" colspan="3" style="line-height:1.2em; text-align:center;">

This would make the Wikipedia markup more semantic and help reuse.

Howcome (talk) 13:10, 2 May 2008 (UTC)

native_name for countries with multiple official languages

Can this template be improved somehow to better accommodate countries with multiple official languages? The Switzerland, India and South Africa pages all use somewhat inelegant solutions to the problem of displaying the native_name in multiple official languages. Switzerland displays all four using <br/> for line breaks, but having so much headline text is not good for the layout. India displays the two "main" official languages and links to a separate page for the other 21, which is a reasonable solution if some languages are more official than others. For South Africa, I've linked to a separate page for the 11 official names, but unfortunately the link appears before the heading of the infobox, which also isn't good for the layout. Zaian 20:13, 9 April 2007 (UTC)

  • Not sure if there are sufficient countries meriting further coding; anyone else...?  Regards, David Kernow (talk) 17:13, 11 April 2007 (UTC)
...On second thoughts, maybe it is worthwhile. I'll make a note to take a look. Apologies for vacillation!  Regards, David (talk) 17:17, 11 April 2007 (UTC)
Thanks. There are quite a few more with multiple official languages (Belgium, Belarus, Israel, Luxembourg - see list on the page official language), and many with the official name in a different script (Russia, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, China etc), although that is a different problem. Ideally the solution should also include the name of the language (e.g. Suid-Afrika (Afrikaans). Zaian 07:08, 12 April 2007 (UTC)
  • Had another look and reckon the approach you've adopted at South Africa may be the most effective; the link now appears after the "Republic of South Africa" heading. Yours, David (talk) 18:30, 17 April 2007 (UTC)
Thanks, that does look better. Regards, Zaian 08:27, 19 April 2007 (UTC)

Unrecognized countries?

A number of unrecognized/de-facto countries use this infobox, but the infobox itself does not clearly indicate this status at all, which places these countries on equal standing with recognized countries. This is an important piece of information, so what are your thoughts about introducing something to accommodate this? A simple way to do it would be if you make a new field such that if "|unrecognized=yes" then an extra row is displayed at the top of the infobox, stating clearly that it is unrecognized. For former countries, a status bar like this has proven useful - for example First Hellenic Republic (a more complex example is Irish Republic where the status bar text has been edited - this setup is still under development). What do you think? - 52 Pickup 09:35, 11 April 2007 (UTC)

I think that the number of unrecognized/de-facto countries should not use this infobox. --Des Grant 07:57, 12 April 2007 (UTC)
Sounds reasonable; I have no objections. —MJCdetroit 16:22, 11 April 2007 (UTC)
Make it more flexible, there are all sorts of non-countries using this. SchmuckyTheCat 16:48, 11 April 2007 (UTC)
I agree, although an entire separated row in large text seems a little much. I'd go for small text directly under the name (and just saying "unrecognized", not "unrecognized state"). This way, it states the actuality without pushing a POV that the state is "not real" that such a prominent "unrecognized state" would tend to be viewed as saying. Lexicon (talk) 16:52, 11 April 2007 (UTC)
  • I realize I assume that the Government/Sovereignty section of the infobox handles this aspect and/or the article's opening paragraph... if so, perhaps adding a further statement might be unnecessary...?  Regards, David Kernow (talk) 17:12, 11 April 2007 (UTC)
    PS I had renamed this template {{Infobox Country or territory}} in an effort to indicate that its use wasn't/needn't be restricted to "countries", but this was reverted.
  • Ah yes, I thought there was an indication of sovereignty type somewhere. As for the "Country or territory", yes, it might be better off over there, although there are still some problems with it being used for non-countries, such as, for instance, "capital" linking to a list of national capitals, which is of little use when you're on some article like Vojvodina that uses the template but does not have its capital listed on the linked page. Lexicon (talk) 17:24, 11 April 2007 (UTC)
Understood; since List of capitals redirects to List of national capitals, perhaps (1) a disambiguation page is needed; and/or (2) there needs to be another kind of list among those given at the start of List of national capitals...?  Regards, David (talk) 08:39, 12 April 2007 (UTC)

The presentation of this status bar is something that I am still not completely happy with. For some cases, it is not necessary to display the text, but it is still necessary for categorisation. The size and positioning of it is still something that I'm working on. At the moment I'm working on a rewrite of the former country infobox to look a bit more like the normal country infobox. For comparison, I've placed some samples here showing both the current and proposed model. Any feedback would be appreciated. - 52 Pickup 06:28, 16 April 2007 (UTC)

  • Looks like good work, i.e. combining the most effective features of both templates. Thanks! David (talk) 18:33, 17 April 2007 (UTC)

Thanks for the feedback. I have recently gone ahead with the changes to the Former Country infobox. Giving these entries a similar appearance to modern countries is one of the main things that I wanted to do with WP:WPFC. The status bar now only shows for certain values - reinforcing the idea that the status field is primarily for classification - and it's a bit smaller. Perhaps having such a feature may help with making any necessary distinctions for modern states. A new status that I just added is for exiled governments, allowing for when the state existed only in exile (eg. Free French Forces) or for when the government was driven into exile (eg. Belarusian National Republic). For exiled, provisional or unrecognised governments, or any other special case there doesn't really appear to be clear guidelines on what can be done to correctly represent them. Since former states are a little less politically sensitive than modern ones to most readers, I invite anyone to experiment with these former states first to work out suitable solutions. For anyone interested, it is probably better to discuss this over at the Extraordinary Governments task force of WikiProject Former countries. - 52 Pickup 13:42, 24 April 2007 (UTC)

Why Just "Official Language"?

How about "Other Major Languages?" Dave Runger 18:54, 12 April 2007 (UTC)

That would give a lot of problems with many of the European articls. E.g. Denmark: around 5,5 million speak Danish, but it is anybody's guess if Turkish, Arabic or whatever comes 2nd, 3rd and 4th place, since the national statistics might have a number for how many persons immigrated to Denmark, but they don't categorise children, grandchildren etc. by ethnicity. I'm afraid such a list would only result in revert wars between different groups. I have a bad feeling about this one. Valentinian T / C 19:06, 12 April 2007 (UTC)
Yes, I was thinking that such issues might come up, but I thought I would suggest the change because listing other major languages in addition to official languages might provide a slightly more complete picture of any given country. However, if you think the costs outweigh the benefits, I am not going to disagree. Dave Runger 09:29, 16 April 2007 (UTC)
Yes, I would agree with changing it from 'Recognized regional languages' because of spelling. The 'z' looks terrible and out of place on Namibia's article, which is a Commonwealth Country. BennelliottTalkContributions 10:41, 7 May 2007 (UTC)
And in the UK, hundreds of languages are spoken and seven (other than English) are officially recognised (PDF). I think infoboxes are generally too big as it is, because people feel a need to shoehorn every conceivable piece of information into it. If language is a notable feature of a country, it needs a section where it is properly covered. This allows the fuller use of sources to present the different points of view and controversies. And controversies there will be, for some articles! On the spelling: Infobox color has a parameter for choosing the style of English. Notinasnaid 10:45, 7 May 2007 (UTC)
Maybe it could be changed to 's' because Canada and the United States don't use the regional languages part of the infobox. Neither does the UK for that matter, but so far I've only come across one that does, and that's Namibia.
BennelliottTalkContributions 11:04, 7 May 2007 (UTC) Here's the list your looking for Notinasaid. BennelliottTalkContributions 11:06, 7 May 2007 (UTC)
Actually, the US should use regional_languages. It has no officially mandated language at the federal level, and has no less than 6 at the level of its states and territories, including Hawaiian in Hawaii and Spanish in Puerto Rico. However, at present, the regional_langauges argument isn't rendering at all when we try to use it there, which concerns me far more than the spelling. See below. MrZaiustalk 13:49, 24 May 2007 (UTC)

overriding default link names

Hi. As best I can understand, it seems that in the infobox of country X, if the symbol_type field is set to Y, the link will automatically read "Y" and will automatically link to "Y of X." Is there a way to perfrom some sort of pipe-trick equivalent, so we can have the link read "Y" but direct us to "Z" instead? Doops | talk 19:06, 27 April 2007 (UTC)

Could you leave a pointer/link to what you have in mind...?  Thanks, David Kernow (talk) 21:19, 30 April 2007 (UTC)
Consider Scotland, where there has recently been some discussion over the coat of arms. The little caption below the image currently reads "Royal coat of arms" and it links to Royal coat of arms of Scotland -- the parser automatically does this. But what if we want to keep linking to the same page, but change the precise wording of the link to some alternative we'd worked out. That is, we want to set up the direction explicitly, rather than letting the parser do it for us. Doops | talk 21:27, 30 April 2007 (UTC)
  • If I've understood correctly, the relevant part of the code at present is
<small>[[{{{symbol_type_article|{{{symbol_type|Coat of arms}}}}}} of {{{common_name|{{{linking_name|{{{name|{{PAGENAME}}}}}}}}}}} |{{{symbol_type|Coat of arms}}}]]</small>
If symbol_type were set to the desired wording, could some combination of symbol_type_article and common_name create the article's name...?  (Yes, there's also linking_name and name, although these are meant to handle redirects from {{Infobox Geopolitical organization}}). Hope this helps, David (talk) 01:03, 8 May 2007 (UTC)
Gosh, how Byzantine! Why isn't there just some way to override the automatic parsing and do it manually? (The issue seems to have gone away now, by the way, so I won't kill myself trying to figure it out; but thanks.) Doops | talk 14:49, 9 May 2007 (UTC)

Growth rate?

What about to put information of economic growth rate in the template? This could be a interesting information for many. Tiwonk 17:18, 30 April 2007 (UTC)

Request for comment (informal)

Opinions, please, on the following (copied from User:Guilherme Paula's talkpage):

...I've inserted [ {{Infobox Geopolitical organization}} ] at African Union and hope I haven't lost any of the information you included in the {{Infobox Country}} version... Yours, David (talk) 01:20, 27 April 2007 (UTC)

...in my opinion, the template is being with the same (or at least, near the same) appearance of Template:Infobox Country. Have you certain that needs create a new template for it ? ... Thanks - Guilherme (talk) 01:36, 28 April 2007 (UTC)
I think I may well agree; these thoughts have been in the back of my mind while using the African Union as a test article. Not all these organizations can or will have the country-like information carried by the "Statistics" parameters, so perhaps these can be handled by {{Infobox Country or territory}}, while the first set of parameters are used by a simpler {{Infobox Geopolitical organization}}... David (talk) 03:34, 28 April 2007 (UTC)
...I think now we can use Template:Infobox Country to African Union, Andean Community of Nations, etc. What's your opinion ?  [ User:Guilherme Paula ]
I'm not sure... Although one usually involves the other, I'd say there's a considerable difference between countries/territories and geopolitical organizations; also, I don't think the articles on all these organizations include (or will include) information such as areas, populations, etc. So, looking ahead, I'm thinking it might be better to keep two separate templates, i.e. {{Infobox Country or territory}} as a supplement to {{Infobox Geopolitical organization}}, rather than try mixing them together ...
PS Have just thought that it might be possible to call {{Infobox Country or territory}} from within {{Infobox Geopolitical organization}} in order to add area, population, etc data as part of a single continuous template. How about that...?  [ User:David Kernow ]
... Is a good idea call Template:Infobox Country from within Template:Infobox Geopolitical organization in order to add area, population, etc data as part of a single continuous template. But, despite that the appearance is not full consistent, I don't think that is more necessary since I modified Template:Infobox Country. If you really want that it is the correct, why not use too call the name, flag, map, anthem, motto and others semilars too, to avoid duplication ? ... Guilherme (t/c) 15:47, 29 April 2007 (UTC)
"If you really want that it is the correct, why not use too call the name, flag, map, anthem, motto and others semilars too, to avoid duplication ?"
I guess I'm cautious because geopolitical organizations aren't countries, don't have national mottos or anthems, don't necessarily have capitals or governments, don't carry sovereignty,... Do you see what I mean...?  As you may already have seen on various talk pages, some people's circumstances make them particularly sensitive to these kinds of issues, so I think it might be wise not to try using one template ({{Infobox Country or territory}}) for both countries/territories and geopolitical organizations, even though this might easily be done. In other words, my concern is not so much about the template itself, but people's possible reactions to its use. Hope you understand what I mean, David (talk) 01:31, 30 April 2007 (UTC)
Some organizations have also mottos, anthems or hymn (e.g.1, 2, 3, 4, etc). Really don't have capitals or governments, but carry headquarters, comission seats or other thing. Don't carry sovereingty, but establishment. All these are easily to change or adapt in Template:Infobox Country or territory). I can't understand why create another template only to say: "Editors, it's not a country or territory. It's an geopolical organization." because to the final reader if use one or other, is the same thing. I really don't know what more say to convince you. My last suggestions are, if the problem is the name of template, why not rename to a global name? And... What such to ask for opinions to one third person? Yours truly — Guilherme (t/c) 16:50, 30 April 2007 (UTC)
Yes, let's get some more opinions. I agree that the two templates can be used in similar ways, so, if other people think there should be no problem in merging them, I'll happily come along. To make a start, I've posted this request on Template:Infobox Country's talkpage. Yours, David (talk) 21:42, 30 April 2007 (UTC)

Thanks in advance for your comments!  David Kernow (talk) 21:43, 30 April 2007 (UTC)

Why don't you just have {{Infobox Geopolitical organization}} be an alais (and redirect) of {{Infobox Country or territory}}. This concept has worked very well for {{Infobox City}} which has several aliases like Infobox Settlement, Infobox Town, Infobox Village, et cetera. That way you keep the the code consolidated in one location and you will have a consistent look. The template can be #if to handle anything. —MJCdetroit 03:59, 1 May 2007 (UTC)
Thanks for your feedback, MJCdetroit. I agree that, as Guilherme suggests, combining the two infoboxes is a sensible solution, so {{Infobox Geopolitical organization}} now redirects to a revised {{Infobox Country}}. Best wishes, David (talk) 00:03, 4 May 2007 (UTC)

Utility Standards section

Any chance of a new Utility section and a few elements along the line of:
Utility Standards:

Could be useful when packing a laptop / hair dryer.


I'd like to add a Demonym field, any thoughts on where it should go? Vagary 07:41, 4 May 2007 (UTC)

Somewhere near the bottom, I think. Perhaps near the time zone of internet code. - 52 Pickup 10:21, 9 May 2007 (UTC)
Sounds good to me. Done. Vagary 00:09, 22 May 2007 (UTC)

Additional statistics

Why not add the Reporters Without Borders (press freedom) and Transparency International (corruption) ranks? Alepik 13:22, 5 May 2007 (UTC)

A good idea, but where do we stop wirh rankings? The navbar {{Lists of countries}} lists a stack of rankings. - 52 Pickup 10:24, 9 May 2007 (UTC)
I think there are already way too many stats in the box. Have a look at e.g. Belgium; the box is about 1.5 screen tall. IMHO no single infobox for any article should be more than full screen on a decent size screen. This box seems to have grown out of control. Do we, for example really need this many economic parameters. Arnoutf 17:45, 21 May 2007 (UTC)
I tend to somewhat agree with Aroutf. I think that we should be careful about what is added to the box. —MJCdetroit 18:10, 21 May 2007 (UTC)
Uh, yeah. Gini coefficient?! I don't think we need that in an infobox. Lexicon (talk) 18:25, 21 May 2007 (UTC)
Throw a WP:NAVFRAME around sections that are getting out of hand. Using infoboxes enforces a common style which makes reading and editing pages faster. In theory it also brings us closer to a Semantic wiki. I'd take a long infobox over a really long article any day! Vagary 00:02, 22 May 2007 (UTC)

Template:Infobox Israel

Why does it still exist? --ChoChoPK (球球PK) (talk | contrib) 08:28, 9 May 2007 (UTC)

Hopefully not for long. We worked too hard to get rid of these types of templates. All country and territory articles should use the same template. Its TfD is here: Wikipedia:Templates_for_deletion/Log/2007_May_10#May_10. —MJCdetroit 16:12, 10 May 2007 (UTC)
You can add Infobox Cape Verde to that list. —MJCdetroit 16:27, 10 May 2007 (UTC)

Highest/lowest points?

This has probably been discussed before, but how about an elevation section, giving the highest and lowest points? - 52 Pickup 12:42, 10 May 2007 (UTC)

Adding preceding entities

To be consistent with {{Infobox Former Country}}, I would recommend adding a row to the infobox below the title, indicating the year of the country's formation and its preceding entities. Clicking through former countries to see what they formed from and what they turned into is a nice feature, but I find it frustrating that current countries do not have where they formed from. For example, Germany would be proceeded by East Germany and West Germany, Japan would be proceeded by Occupied Japan and United States Civil Administration of the Ryukyu Islands, and United States would be proceeded by Kingdom of Great Britain, Louisiana (New France), Republic of Texas, and others. --Scott Alter 21:40, 23 May 2007 (UTC)

Nice idea, but I have to disagree. The guidelines that we have in place for what entries to link to are already hard to maintain for former countries, and I can see that it would be even harder to do for currently-existing states. Taking your USA example: since there are so many former territories that are now part of the USA (eg. would you include the CSA? Some would, some would not), following the former country guidelines (and i may be a bit biased since i wrote them), it would instead be prefered to link only to the single entity that originally became the USA, and that would be the Thirteen Colonies. However, others may disagree and try to put in every single one - leading to edit wars and a very big infobox. And, as you can see by other recent posts on this talk page, the infobox is getting too big already.
For other parts of the world, stating particular predecessor states could be considered POV. Handling entries for some former countries has to done very delicately, and I can see that tempers would be a lot higher with regards to current states. One obvious case here is PR China and Taiwan.
Also, the date and flags row in the Former Country infobox is set up to deliberately make that infobox look different to the Country infobox so you can notice straight away that the entry is dealing with a state that no longer exists (or a now-defunct version of a state that currently exists).
Sorry. It's a nice idea, but unfortunately not practical at this point. - 52 Pickup 09:44, 24 May 2007 (UTC)

Please no more rows

Several suggestions for additional rows were put up recently. I think the template as it is now is already far too long. IMHO an infobox should give at a first glance an overview of the key specifics. When an infobox is taller than one full screen height by definition it is no longer to get in all the specifics in one glance (as scrolling is needed). I would rather suggest dividing the infobox into two parts; one part with the bare essentials (to be placed on top) and a larger full width template with all the details, to be added at the back (wikilinked by the top one through for example a "see detailed information" link in that box). That box may as grow as big as anyone want as it would not hamper quick reading into the bodytext. Arnoutf 22:28, 23 May 2007 (UTC)

I think a better response to this problem is to split the country infobox into infoboxes for specific aspects. For example, the Government section of the infobox should appear on the Government of article (or at least subsection). Establishment should be on History of, Area should be on Geography of, Population should be on Demographics of, all the economic data should be on Economy of (mostly done), Official Languages in Culture of, etc. Then we can set a clear policy: no additions to Infobox Country unless they are general enough to not belong in any more specific infobox. If necessary, Infobox Country could provide some navigation to those articles. Vagary 23:18, 23 May 2007 (UTC)
Sounds like a fair idea as well. Arnoutf 12:07, 24 May 2007 (UTC)
While I firmly believe that the infobox does not need anymore rows, I don't think we should split the infobox up. That seems like a major step backwards. —MJCdetroit 12:38, 24 May 2007 (UTC)
Take a look at Template:Infobox Economy. Every country subpage/subsection should have an infobox like that. To speed navigation, Infobox Country could either include links to the standard subpages, or transclude them in navframes (see a kind of gimpy example for Economy). Every piece of well-formed data deserves an infobox, and the only way to keep bloat out of Infobox Country without discussing each extension is to find somewhere else for things to go. Vagary 20:25, 24 May 2007 (UTC)
That is a good idea, I really don't think the general country infobox needs more than a single economy indicator; or the official (ie legislation) languages, the rest can go to the XXXX language, or languages in XXXX pages. Arnoutf 08:10, 30 May 2007 (UTC)

spoken_languages & regional_languages missing

The United States has no official language, so I attempted to replace the clunky "English, de facto" entry for official_language with a spoken_languages entry, but it didn't ever show up on the page. What did I do wrong here? Could the template here be at fault? [1] - Thanks, MrZaiustalk 04:56, 24 May 2007 (UTC)

Ditto regional_languages - [2] - MrZaiustalk 05:07, 24 May 2007 (UTC)
I'm relucant to make the change, given that I'm not sure how to best handle the fonts and seperators and what not, but the problem with the regional_languages seems to be that its #if is only hit if official_languages is present. MrZaiustalk 05:27, 24 May 2007 (UTC)
The spoken_languages option mentioned in the /doc is entirely missing from the template. MrZaiustalk 05:30, 24 May 2007 (UTC)
Resolved - Thanks! MrZaiustalk 07:17, 26 May 2007 (UTC)

EU flag for member states

The flag documents an official symbol used by all EU member states [3]. It has almost a status comparable to the national flag. It is a vital part of the infobox and signalizes the degree of integration. Lear 21 16:52, 30 May 2007 (UTC)

The flag does nothing that the words around it don't do ten times better "Accession to the European Union" makes it pretty damn clear that the country is in the European Union. In addition, when we use flags in the way you are attempting to use the EU flag, they generally go in front of the name of the entity. You have it in front of the date, which makes no sense. There really is no reason for the flag at all here. If you can read, you know exactly what "Accession to the European Union" and then the date that that happened means. Lexicon (talk) 16:58, 30 May 2007 (UTC)
Lear 21, This is NOT the Berlin page! You can not just make changes because YOU want them and if they are rejected revert until YOU get your way. This is an infobox that is transcluded on hundreds of articles. This infobox is held together through something called consensus. If we can't agree on something, we discuss it, and if we still can't agree then it is status quo. Reverting here, the way you did/do on the Berlin article will not be tolerated. Nor will creating new special infoboxes only for the EU to your specifications. Your hap-hazard way of reverting happened to revert a very good edit by User:Guilherme Paula. In which G.P. attempted to fix the broken links issue. This was my original reason for undoing your first revert and had nothing to do with the EU flag thing. Now reading Lexicon's reply, I tend to agree with him. —MJCdetroit 17:47, 30 May 2007 (UTC)
I think addition of the EU flag is not necessary, per Lexicon. But even worse, if it increases the size of these already ridicolously large infoboxes the addition of a flag is (IMHO) outright harmful, hence I am strongly against addition of this flag. Arnoutf 18:51, 30 May 2007 (UTC)
I agree the EU flag and for that matter the EU parliament seats are totally unecessary --Barryob Vigeur de dessus 20:23, 30 May 2007 (UTC)
I think that it may be time to fully protect this template to force non-admins (which would include me) to discuss their changes first. —MJCdetroit 20:31, 30 May 2007 (UTC)

Flags are standard content of all country infoboxes. Even small flags (like the discussed one) are established in a number of minor political entities or city articles to signallize identification. Nobody would question the existence of the US flag in the USA article. This is exactly the same case. I repeat: The flag documents an official symbol used by all EU member states [4] on a number of occasions. It has almost a status comparable to the national flag. This must be expressed in the infobox. AND: it was a user other than myself who introduced the flag. Lear 21 21:08, 30 May 2007 (UTC)

The EU flag is comparable to the national flag but it is not one, it is the flag of the EU not the given country the US comparision is flawed the US article has the US flag but all the US states do not have a mini US flag in their infoboxes neither should the EU coutries. --Barryob Vigeur de dessus 22:58, 30 May 2007 (UTC)

Either both flags should be given or neither. - Francis Tyers · 23:14, 30 May 2007 (UTC)

The EU flag AND the national flag are representing the current status of interdependence. Nobody demands removing the French, British or German flag from the infobox. The EU/Nation relation must be expressed. The repair work to be done on the template should result to the inclusion of the flag. Lear 21 08:33, 31 May 2007 (UTC)
The EU flag is not an official symbol at all. It was to be such a symbol in the EU constitution; but as that will not become operational for a while (if ever). Furthermore the EU flaglet (which I understand is with the accession to EU date) clutters the template much like the CoA of the capitals did (which where removed) Arnoutf 11:58, 31 May 2007 (UTC)

The EU and its flag represents all member countries in trade talks. That is operational! [5] ,[6] ,[7] The EU flag appears on my driving license that is operational! My voting papers for EU parliament election include the EU flag, that is operational! The flag must be included. Nobody asks removing the national flags from the infobox. The EU is the defacto second nation to its members. Lear 21 16:29, 31 May 2007 (UTC)

As much as a sympathise, I would agree that it is not necessary. Although EU membership is extremely important to the member-states there is no need to stick the flag all over the place, to me it seems like over-compensatory patriotism, nothing to do with improving the encyclopaedia. All it would create is a nationalist backlash from some editors. There is no precedent on Wikipedia for adding it, if US states or Chinese provinces had them then I may consider supporting it but not like this. It's not a question of what the EU is, it's a question of what is appropriate to include in an encyclopaedia. Infobox, not flag box. - J Logan t/c: 18:01, 31 May 2007 (UTC)
(For example, where in the entire New York State article, is a US flag? Anywhere? Even in the navbox? The EU may have problems getting people to know it exists, but this is no way and no place to run a PR campaign) - J Logan t/c: 18:05, 31 May 2007 (UTC)
I think that J Logan gives a very good reason not to include the flag. If the EU flag is included than the US flag should be included on the state articles of the US, if alone for consistency of Wiki.
My second reason is that the template is already overfilled with irrelevant stuff, and the flag is irrelevant (as the ascension date text to EU already confirms membership)
The argument by Lear21 is not a very good argument. Unless the EU flag is an official (and I mean by treaty not de-facto) symbol of the EU, I think we have to be very careful to slap it on any template outside EU articles. If the EU logo is on, why not the logo's of NATO, UN, WHO, WTO, etc etc etc. The choice seems unreferenced POV.
A fourth argument not to place the flag is of course that of consensus which is clearly not achieved. Arnoutf 18:15, 31 May 2007 (UTC)

NATO, UN, WHO, WTO does not appear on my passport! NATO, UN, WHO, WTO does not appear on my number plate ! But the EU flag does [8]. The references are given. The degree of EU influence and integration created an unprecedented case not comparable to US identity. The national and EU symbol are equal (EU flag remains small in size compared to national flag at the head of the infobox). It is true that the US flag should be added to the US state infoboxes like the French flag to Paris. But this can´t be a precondition to this case. It´s a matter of decision. The number of comparable examples are endless: Italian flag/Milan, German and EU flag/Brandenburg. PLUS: the EU flag is official [9], [10] Lear 21 19:03, 31 May 2007 (UTC)

EU flag does not appear on my passport. The references are irrelevant as the do not say the flag is the official symbol. I am sure I can find a reference stating instructions for placing the McDonalds M.
None of that does adresses my second point; the box is too cluttered as it is; and the flag is only adding redundant information. In this light I would say that neither the US states, nor the EU countries should have their flag in the box.
Also your example of Paris and Milan are irrelevant, as they both use a national city template, while this template aims to be for all countries in the world. So where the use of seperate city templates allows lack of consistency (although it should be harmonised IMHO), this is clearly not acceptable within a general use template. Arnoutf 19:12, 31 May 2007 (UTC)

{{User:Ssolbergj/sandbox2}} Nowiki'd - it was slagging the rest of the page. Hesperian 23:55, 31 May 2007 (UTC)

You simply can't compare a NATO or UN membership to a nation's membership in this Union. I live in Norway, but I know that more or less all public bouldings etc. in the EU member states have the EU flag. The EU flag is anything but de facto.
When I started as an editor on wikipedia I could place a 300px image in an infobox and think it looked fine. Now i feel the opposite; "clean" text and compressed infoboxes are much better. There should be no small EU flag alongside the Accession to the European Union text. However, due to the fact that the EU flag virtually can be juxtaposed with a national flag,(I get your point with the USA states etc., but the relationship between the US states is completely different to that of EU states to the EU.) I think we could introduce somethink similar to what's done with the french flag in the Template:French commune template to the right. For example african union member states can have the AU flag. Just for close unions etc.; not for NATO membership. I think it looks good plus it doesn't take much space. It doesnt feel like something a nationalistic editor might have forced into the box.  S. SOLBERG J. / talk  19:15, 31 May 2007 (UTC)
I agree the flag is used, and even proscribed for all kind of official situation. However, there is no EU treaty naming the flag as an official symbol (this was part of the constitution that is not ratified). As de facto means in practice (so in the case of the EU, it is in practice the symbol of the union) but not in law; this is exactly what the status of the EU flag is at this moment.
Although I like your idea in principle, my overriding problem is that the template is overcrowed and way to long as it is. Even the addition of a single text line would (IMHO) be too much at this moment. If you can achieve consensus at limiting the total size of the box to that of the example you provided here, I would support addition, untill that time shorter is better. Arnoutf 19:33, 31 May 2007 (UTC)
The EU is not a country. It is a regional bloc in which members are free to leave. Stating that a member of the EU is equal to a U.S. state or a province in China is just not correct. The last time a U.S. state seceded, we had something called the civil war. Furthermore, Germany did not ask the EU for permission to send troops to Afganistan [11] and the state of New York (or any other state) has never declared war on say Canada. The EU is more comparable to CARICOM, NAFTA, and the AU.
Arnoutf makes a good point, should all NATO, CAPICOM, AU, OAS, NAFTA countries have their own symbols on the infobox too? No. A similar problem with city COAs was cluttering the infobox and it was agreed that they also had to go. This EU flag thing has been overwhelming rejected and it seems that an EU-centric nationalism/patriotism POV has replaced consensus and logic. Let a dead horse lay. —MJCdetroit 19:56, 31 May 2007 (UTC)
PLEASE just get the point!: Nobody has said that a US state is equal to a EU member state! I said the opposite. And please just realise that an EU membership in fact is "more dominant" than a seat in the UN. The laws of the EU have been weaved into the law of EU members. It's not just a regional bloc. The EU is virtually a semi-country. Sui generis. S. SOLBERG J. / talk  20:08, 31 May 2007 (UTC)
I understand the issue with space, but a line in this infobox saying how many seats in the European Parliament is important. It would in a simple way state how much influence this member has politcally. We could change Accession to the European Union into Accession to the EU, and by doing so sparing a line which we can use for the national number of MEPs. - S. SOLBERG J. / talk  20:15, 31 May 2007 (UTC)
I agree, you can't compare the EU to any other kind of organisation, nor can you really compare it to a US state. But is it still necessary. Yes it say something about the country but does it need to be said like this in the infobox? I would support adding the flag at the bottom, being far more clear than inline, but the boxes are huge, why yet another line? And on the point of the EU flag not being in a treaty, well neither is the UK flag, that flag is defacto just like the EU flag, in fact, the EU decided to adopt it, the UK didn't, so in fact it has more validity. - J Logan t/c: 20:24, 31 May 2007 (UTC)
And on MEPs, I'm not convinced, can you provide a precedent for that? If not, perhaps some kind of EU info box to be used in addition to the national infobox? - J Logan t/c: 20:26, 31 May 2007 (UTC)

A semi-country, correct! @Arnoutf: The many occasions, where the EU-flag is used, did create a defacto reality. I haven´t mentioned the Euro banknotes including the EU flag. Think about London which has no written constitutional capital status. Or UK ! Having no constitution at all. Nobody would deny saying London is THE capital. Same with EU flag status. @User:MJCdetroit: Read the EU article or the mentioned arguments first before you answer. Lear 21 20:28, 31 May 2007 (UTC)

Just on MJCdetroit's point about the US civil war. That was under historical conditions. Are you suggesting that if a US state declared independence today, troops would roll across the broder? And just on the MEP point, MEPs are allocated by population, so I'm not sure how much extra information about political influence that would give. - J Logan t/c: 20:39, 31 May 2007 (UTC)
"Accession to the EU" sounds good ! "MEP to EU Parliament" sounds reasonable! The flag could be integrated under the Map saying "European Union Flag of Europe.svg (camel)" Lear 21 20:44, 31 May 2007 (UTC)
Why? Why do we need the flag under the map? Sorry but it sounds as though you're trying to include it for the sake of it. Can't we keep the flags in the flag area? It really wouldn't look very good sticking it in the legend like that. I think if we have it on (and from other responses that's a big if) it needs to be with a clear purpose and place. - J Logan t/c: 20:51, 31 May 2007 (UTC)
And your examples of Milan and B.burg earlier. Milan was good as it was clear, at the top; Country = Italy, with flag. B.burg though was the Nuts region and you added that flag 7 days ago so I'm not sure how good of an example that is. - J Logan t/c: 20:57, 31 May 2007 (UTC)

You are right, the best place for the flag is under the national flags. Lear 21 20:58, 31 May 2007 (UTC)

I am afraid that would make the template again bigger. The flag at the bottom is least distracting. IMHO all relevant information should fit without scrolling within a single full screen browser (i.e. the box should in no circumstance being taller than about 700 pixels (leaving some room for task bars). The current template is about twice that size. In my opinion, it is not as much that freeing up room gives us room to add more stuff; freeing up room is essential to bring back the template to a manageable size. Only if you manage to cut by about 50% there is room for new stuff.
Not only with regard to the lenght, but also with regard to imagery I think we should strive for a layout that is as simple as possible. Ie. we should only add images if this does add content. The EU flag is redundant information as the ascension to EU line already links to EU (the flag is pictured there); so I see no need to add it, so (IMHO) every square millimetre used for that makes the template worse rather than better.Arnoutf 21:17, 31 May 2007 (UTC)

Thing is the box is about the country, not the EU. I don't think it would even look good doubling the size of the flag area. But how about this; either a separate EU Member State box (in addition to the country box), with details on the country's membership including MEPs etc. Or have an expandable box in the accession area (or elsewhere in the box), so below the accession date you can get basic information, headed by a flag, on the membership. That way it doesn't add the flag to the main text and doesn't expand the size while including all the information in the same box. What do people think about one of those as a compromise? - J Logan t/c: 21:13, 31 May 2007 (UTC)
Expandalbe box sounds good; that would solve my main objection (size); and also separate essential information (EU member) from detailed background (no of parlaiment seats, date of membership, flag, etc,). Can we also work such a expandable section in for the economic parameters (there are up to six, that only economists can tell apart, per country).Arnoutf 21:20, 31 May 2007 (UTC)
Reply to JLogan: The point I was trying to make above by giving the example for the U.S. Civil War was that members countries of the EU are in the union voluntarily and may leave the union at their choosing [12]. They are sovereign countries and they may do that. A sovereign country attempting to leave a voluntary union is not the same as a region of a sovereign country attempting to become independent of the country. I was trying use that example to show that the EU is not country; that it is a union of countries. Much like other countries that have formed unions (AU, CARICOM, etc.) for the mutual enhancements of one another, but the EU is unarguably more advanced. I was trying to reiterate Arnoutf point that if we allow a flag for the EU, why shouldn't AU, CAPICOM, etc, countries display the flag of their regional bloc? And why not place the coat of arms next to every capital and largest city? Why, because it clutters the infobox. As you put it the infobox is about the country and not the EU and the flag just becomes redundant to the accession date. Also, the maps of EU countries already have the EU outlined in Europe with a special click-able legend.
Many editors here have worked hard to present a decent uncluttered infobox. We have done this though consensus and discussion and not through the Lear21 method of constant reverting and trying to force unwanted changes into the template until other editors cave. From what I've read above there is still no consensus to include the EU flag in the template. Yet Lear21, despite objections and warnings has continued to try to force changes without consensus. Therefore, once again an editor (myself) will have to revert his changes until we have a consensus on what to do with the EU flag cluttering the infobox. There should be no changes to the template in respect to this issue.
I would accept a separate EU state member box outside of the infobox; perhaps in the government section. I do like the expandable box idea for the economic parameters. That would help unclutter the box. —MJCdetroit 04:17, 1 June 2007 (UTC)
There has been no real justification for putting the flag in the box look at Scotland or England do they have a mini Union flag or New York or Texas do they have the US flag no, and they have a far greater relationship with the the UK and the US than the EU member states does with the EU. --Barryob Vigeur de dessus 07:44, 1 June 2007 (UTC)
Reply to MJCdetroit; US states joined voluntarily, and practically speaking they could leave peacefuly - as was the point I made before. As regards EU states, legally they are bound to the treaty indefinitely and could only leave after either negotiations and agreement or unilateral declaration (and although the constitution provides for the first time a stated treaty method of exit, it works on the same principle) so the system is essentially the same.
Fundamentally, I don't think the question is the status of the European Union, we could argue all day about what it is like and what it isn't. The question is what should be in the infobox and is there space? As the infobox stands, it is about, say, France or Germany. Not the EU. Just as New York is not about the US and Nigeria is not about the AU or anything else. If the EU is mentioned, it should be in reference to that country, such as the accession line, and ramming the flag next to it does not appear to serve an immediate function in helping the user understand anything. If you argument is that it is a symbol, it should be with symbols - but we are talking about the symbols of the member. Yes the EU flag applies to France, but it is not the symbol of France just as the UK flag is absent from the Scotland box. I understand the reasoning for wanting to include it, but if it were to be included, it requires a major rethink of how the box works and what it is for. - J Logan t/c: 08:25, 1 June 2007 (UTC)


There's a discussion under way at Talk:Australia over whether or not God Save The Queen should be listed in the infobox. I don't want to bring that discussion here, but the discussion does highlight the following problem with the infobox:

The heading text "Anthem" is ambiguous in some contexts - in this case, Australia has both a national anthem and a royal anthem. However, the heading links to national anthem. So whatever we do is wrong - if we include God Save The Queen, then we are listing a royal anthem under a section whose heading links to national anthem; if we exclude it, then we are excluding a legitimate official anthem from a section whose heading text is "Anthem".

I can see two obvious ways to fix this: (1) link the heading text "Anthem" to Anthem or delink it altogether; or (2) change the heading text to "National anthem", as it was until May 5.[13]

I won't express my opinion here, as it will undoubtedly be interpreted in the context of the other debate. Can you guys come to a consensus on this and fix it please?

Hesperian 02:10, 31 May 2007 (UTC)

My neighbors to the south*—Canada had the same problem and their fix seems to be keeping everyone happy. Check out their page.
*And yes, where I live in the U.S., Canada is actually south of me. :) —MJCdetroit 02:24, 31 May 2007 (UTC)
Well it's not keeping anyone happy on Talk:Australia. But that's beside the point. Just because Canada has worked around the bug doesn't change the fact that there is a bug here than needs to be fixed. Hesperian 02:32, 31 May 2007 (UTC)
Hesperian has highlighted a valid problem with the template. He has also found that New Zealand has two national anthems, ranking equally in importance. One is God Defend New Zealand, the other is God Save the Queen, which in several other Commonwealth nations is treated as the royal anthem, to be played when the Queen is present, and is obviously not a national anthem for these nations.
However, I feel that template parameter names need not be overly restrictive, and in fact are often "overloaded" with extra information. Australia is a good example, where the template parameter named "capital" contains not only the name of the capital, but also its geographical coordinates.
The problem highlighted is, in my opinion, minor. Maybe a solution can be found, but maybe it's also not worth the trouble of fixing every instance of this template. The solution found in Canada, Bermuda etc, seems quite sensible and easily understood. --Pete 00:58, 1 June 2007 (UTC)

Giant space

Please fix the giant space I'm noticing at Karakalpakstan and elsewhere. Do not revert to newer versions without addressing this issue, or I will be forced to protect the page in the interim. Thanks in advance. El_C 13:13, 1 June 2007 (UTC)

This 6-month revert is a rather radical change. During this period, I'm sure a lot of new parameters are added (I did not follow every single one of them). With El C's revert, they are all gone for the interim..... --ChoChoPK (球球PK) (talk | contrib) 13:19, 1 June 2007 (UTC)
For example, now European Union shows {{{official_languages}}} in the box. --ChoChoPK (球球PK) (talk | contrib) 13:20, 1 June 2007 (UTC)

OK, I reverted and made some modifications. The white space has been reduced, but not completely. I believe the radical-revert approach is flawed. We must think: giant white space (e.g. Karakalpakstan) v.s. loss of data (e.g European Union), which one is worse? --ChoChoPK (球球PK) (talk | contrib) 13:28, 1 June 2007 (UTC)

I tried, but I can't figure out the rest.... Someone else please help. --ChoChoPK (球球PK) (talk | contrib) 13:57, 1 June 2007 (UTC)

Here's a screenshot showing the issue in question. El_C 14:16, 1 June 2007 (UTC)

Does this happen anywhere else? or only at Karakalpakstan? Something similar had happen over at Infobox City and blanks lines were the culprit. —MJCdetroit 14:34, 1 June 2007 (UTC)
I'm pretty sure I've seen it happen elsewhere, but I don't remember. Isn't there a way to automatically list all the affected pages? El_C 14:38, 1 June 2007 (UTC)
Found some of them, but I don't have time to edit the template. Some blank lines are exposed. I inserted some letters in blank lines in this sandbox and "g" and "i" showed up in a Preview of a modified Karakalpakstan. (SEWilco 15:46, 1 June 2007 (UTC))

This can be caused by imperfect template code on pages, and doesn't necessarily mean the template code itself (here) is the immediate problem. ¦ Reisio 23:48, 1 June 2007 (UTC)

Circumvented by modifying Karakalpakstan page code. ¦ Reisio 00:39, 2 June 2007 (UTC)
I'm not sure why but it seems to happen when the government_type field is filled in and the leader_title1 and leader_name1 are NOT filled in. Maybe the template should have all those editors' notes (<!-- -->) removed. At least with that removed, it will be easier to troubleshoot. An explanation table on the /doc page would work better than all of those Ed notes. —MJCdetroit 02:50, 2 June 2007 (UTC)

Basically, this template has become overly complex. ¦ Reisio 06:49, 2 June 2007 (UTC)

I think that the act of trying to make it more simple by explaining all aspects of the code in the editor's notes may have created this. I don't think complexity of the operations performed is to blame. There are other templates out there that 10 times more complex and work fine. One that comes to mind and is/was based on this template is Template:Infobox Former Country. I do admit that I am only guessing. —MJCdetroit 13:50, 2 June 2007 (UTC)

Thanks. Has the issue been fixed now on the infobox's end (as opposed to individual entries), because clearly the former could be implemented, somehow... [sorry, I'm just not sure if the latest edits here addressed it] El_C 09:50, 3 June 2007 (UTC)

One editor here mentioned that they have the ability to list several other entries that suffered from this defect... If these are fine now, then all is well. But if the problem remains, then the {{cleanup}} tag should be re-added. El_C 09:53, 3 June 2007 (UTC)
  • I'm hoping the current version ([14]) has removed these rogue lines. If, ultimately, the code layout and annotations are the culprit, I'm surprised not to've read about the problem until now or seen it myself. Regards, David Kernow (talk) 10:52, 3 June 2007 (UTC)
  • Earlier, felt it was too limited (time-wise, as per the then-edit war; and entry-wise) to bother. Then I forgot. I think (but am not positive) Palestinian National Authority was another affected entry. Hopefuly, SEWilco can list a few others so we can be sure. El_C 11:03, 3 June 2007 (UTC)

Reverted edit

                  --------Add capital/admin center:--------

-->--------Add largest_city or largest_settlement (if provided):-------- -->

The above was present above the LEAD on United States after the edits of ~3am this morning, CDT. Performed a temporary revert until the problem's fixed - sandbox please. :) MrZaiustalk 08:23, 3 June 2007 (UTC)

Hehe. Gettin' better. All I see now is --> in the LEAD of the US article. MrZaiustalk 08:40, 3 June 2007 (UTC)

"Then" rendering

Heeding the warning from the front page about the complexities of the template, I'm posting here first.

Under the Census section on Population, one of the thens is <-- instead of <!--, and therefore rendering on the Country pages. Can someone who is more competent with templates fix it? Thanks! --Matt 19:35, 10 June 2007 (UTC)

  • Found and fixed, I hope – thanks for spotting and reporting!  Best wishes, David Kernow (talk) 02:42, 11 June 2007 (UTC)
Thanks, I figured it was that easy, but I didn't want to FUBAR it. Thanks. --Matt 03:13, 11 June 2007 (UTC)

Greenlandic Template

Hi! I tried to fix kl:Template:Infobox Country, so that the latidude and longitude of the capital would be visible. But since I never edited templates before, it didn't function. Please fix it. Thanks a lot! --Saippuakauppias 11:23, 11 June 2007 (UTC)

Here you go, try this User talk:Saippuakauppias#Infobox_country_code. You'll have to transfer this to the Greenlandic wiki first. —MJCdetroit 13:09, 11 June 2007 (UTC)

Anthems: Italicized, quoted, or nothing?

According to MoS:T, songs should be presented in quotes ("God Save the Queen" and so on). Yet, quite a few country pages have songs in italics instead, which seems outright wrong to me. In fact, the example on the template uses italics, too. So is there something here I'm missing as to why italics would be preferred? Perhaps italics might be proper for song titles in non-English languages (as per MOS:ITALICS#Foreign terms, but I'm not even sure there.

I can see a solid argument for leaving the quotes off entirely, for what it's worth, on grounds of simplicity and the fact that it's in an infobox where some rules might be loosened. But the policy should definitely be consistent. My suspicion is that "quotes everywhere" is probably the most correct. Any thoughts? SnowFire 03:38, 15 June 2007 (UTC)

It seems pretty clear to me that quotes should be used, and italics if the title is not in English. I don't think “it's an infobox” is a very good reason to be inconsistent with the text. — The Storm Surfer 10:08, 5 August 2007 (UTC)

GDP per capita rankings

Some of the GDP per capita rankings on country infoboxes seem to be referring to the IMF rankings and some to the CIA rankings at List of countries by GDP (PPP) per capita (compare the UK and Netherlands articles). I would personally go for the IMF rankings, but we need to be consistent either way. Cordless Larry 23:10, 16 June 2007 (UTC)

I did rank them a long time ago using imf 2005 estimates but never bothered to maintain them. Many of the countries that see less editing activity might still have the imf rankings. --Polaron | Talk 23:22, 16 June 2007 (UTC)
It would be good to get broad agreement here on which one to use. Does anyone object to the use of the IMF rankings? Cordless Larry 16:38, 17 June 2007 (UTC)

Microformat bug in "name"

For the hCard microformat, it's required that class="fn org" appears once, and only once, on one of the name values, but subsequent edits have broken it. For example, it does not appear in Aruba. Can someone assist in fixing this, please? Thank you. Andy Mabbett 15:31, 4 July 2007 (UTC)

Is the co-ordinates section necessary?

I only just discovered that all country (and former country) articles where co-ordinates are given for the capital city appear in that point on Google Earth, and it doesn't really look right to have a whole country denoted by a single geographical point. This got me thinking about whether the co-ordinates section is really necessary at all for these country infoboxes. The article about each capital should have geographical co-ordinates anyway, so having the co-ordinates twice appears redundant.

What do others think about this? I've already removed that field from the Former Country infobox. - 52 Pickup 09:42, 20 July 2007 (UTC)

I think it helps locating the country on Google Earth; perhaps redundant for large countries, but how easily can you find Luxembourg or Liechtenstein without them. In other words: keep. Arnoutf 21:48, 20 July 2007 (UTC)

How does this work ? 04:41, 24 July 2007 (UTC)abc

See Google Earth Wikipedia Layer FAQ - 52 Pickup 12:57, 25 July 2007 (UTC)

Reverted edits

I reverted edits made earlier to this template, as they were causing the template to expand in width, and including all article text as well.--padraig 16:38, 31 July 2007 (UTC)

Very interesting, seeing that there was no edit possibly causing this… --Ms2ger 08:49, 1 August 2007 (UTC)

Hidden Template

How come the template is hidden.


I'm just wondering why there is no religion field in this infobox. In a geographic encyclopedia I have at home each country has a small box (much less detailed than this) and it always has religion. Surely it's possibly to list all the major religions of a country by percent, and if it isn't in any particular case, it can always be left blank (or a footnote used if there are other points to consider, e.g. lack of religious freedom). Richard001 22:50, 17 August 2007 (UTC)

Calling code as link

I would like the calling code as link, e.g. +33, +49, see Category:Redirects from telephone number. Sometimes (e.g. France) there is extra data beside the number in the variable "calling_code" so <td>[[+{{{calling_code}}}]]</td> does not work. Maybe just put the extra data to another variable? Do you know other examples like France that are problematic? NoGringo 19:39, 25 August 2007 (UTC)


Is HDI_year the year of the report or the year of the data? For example, the current report is from 2006 but Poland's data in that report is for 2004. Appleseed (Talk) 18:08, 29 August 2007 (UTC)

Democracy Index

I think a good addition to the Country Infobox would be the Democracy Index. This will allow users to kind of get an idea of the type of goverment of a country without having to read in detail (unless they choose to do so).

Agree / Disagree? --Rhykin 06:01, 4 September 2007 (UTC)

disagree. 2 reasons. there is too much in the template as it is. The index is not validated nor common in the scientific press, hence open to critique and possibly biasedArnoutf 17:42, 4 September 2007 (UTC)
Disagree - I think it biases towards the western viewpoint. --Matt 18:07, 4 September 2007 (UTC)
Disagree per Arnoutf. - I think this has come up here before (and voted down). —MJCdetroit 20:16, 4 September 2007 (UTC)
Disagree - The economist is far from neutral. A lot of what comes from that organization could be considered propaganda, especially regarding anything that opposes western views and values.Sbw01f (talk) 01:27, 6 March 2008 (UTC)
Agree - The Economist is a very responsible and balanced magazine, I would agree to see that index included.⇨ EconomistBR ⇦ Talk 16:47, 14 May 2008 (UTC)

RfC: Population growth/change

What about population growth? This has to be as important as population and population density. Often both a current estimate and a census population are given; if there are concerns about infobox size I would favour giving only one population figure in exchange for information on population growth data in the infobox. Richard001 05:53, 6 September 2007 (UTC)

Maybe population change. The birth rate in many countries is less than the replacement rate. But what is a meaningful figure? Total or percent change? Per month, year, decade, centennial? How should the info be annotated, such as if the numbers are from governments with different methods for producing the statistics? (SEWilco 20:27, 7 September 2007 (UTC))
Regarding change, see my comment at List of countries by population growth. I tend to agree with you that we should move away from using 'growth' and start using something more direction neutral, i.e. change. Richard001 (talk) 03:40, 13 January 2008 (UTC)

Most countries seem to be continuing to grow, though I believe the term is still used in cases of negative population growth. Percentage change would be the desired figure, on a per year basis. If there is any need of annotation just use a footnote or something. Richard001 03:54, 8 September 2007 (UTC)

Can someone go ahead and implement this? I find it appalling that information on population growth isn't even available in my own country's article (except that we seem to be aiming for a 1% exponential growth). Growth of the human population is probably the biggest problem the world is facing right now, but the absence of data makes it look like the subject is some sort of taboo. Richard001 (talk) 21:48, 3 January 2008 (UTC)
  • Should population dynamics as well as absolute size and density also be included in country infoboxes? It should be included only if someone adds it. Aatomic1 (talk) 22:47, 23 January 2008 (UTC)
  • Include - I am a rank inclusionist when it comes to infoboxes. I think they are awesome and should run down the entire length of the article.... well maybe not that much but I like it when they are packed full of info. MilesAgain (talk) 01:15, 24 January 2008 (UTC)
    • Maybe you should see my proposal at the bottom then. Richard001 (talk) 04:27, 24 January 2008 (UTC)
  • Do not include - I don't think demographic growth should be included in the infobox because this type of variable only makes sense over long periods, a figure for just one year doesn't mean much. It is IMHO akin to GDP growth or inflation, both of which are also measured annually and both of which don't say much unless you look at them over longer periods (say 5 or 10 years). Otherwise these figures might be influenced by short term phenomena (natural disasters, war, etc.). That's why it makes more sense to post them in charts under the relevant subsection or subarticle rather than in the infobox. --Victor12 (talk) 03:33, 24 January 2008 (UTC)

Failed States Index rank

The Failed States Index rank was recently added to the infobox. I would like to request comment on its inclusion or removal. I personally favour removal, for the following two reasons:

  • The template is already quite long.
  • This is a general-purpose infobox, but the FSI rank is largely irrelevant to stable countries like Norway or Ireland (indeed, to most countries in the latter half of the list of countries by Failed States Index rank).
  • The FSI is a relatively recent index (2-3 years old) and likely does not merit the same level of attention as the HDI or a variable like GDP.

Any thoughts? Black Falcon (Talk) 20:48, 2 October 2007 (UTC)

  • Inclusion: Since GDP has very little overlap with FSI and HDI is about 'quality of life'. FSI introduces institutional measurements not covered under either of these. Can another index within the Infobox subsume the institutional measurements covered under FSI ? Also a consistent change/trend in FSI parameters for those countries on the bottom of the list would still be relevant. Sinhala freedom 01:01, 3 October 2007 (UTC)
    • FSI is only one instutional index out of hundreds, including Freedom in the World by Freedom House, Polity democracy/autocracy scores by CIDCM, the Index of Economic Freedom, the Economic Freedom of the World Index, the Index of Democracy by The Economist, and so on. There is little reason to choose FSI rank as opposed to any one of the others. Unlike FSI (or any of the others listed), GDP and HDI are are well-established, widely-used, and universally-recognised. Black Falcon (Talk) 18:16, 3 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Inclusion: It makes sense to have a FSI index on the info box as it shows the other sides of countries (by other I mean the not-so-rosy picture). In my opinion I think that FSI is more broad than some of the other mentioned index. Furthermore, I believe that having more narrow index can cause problems. I agree for the inclusion. Watchdogb 02:05, 13 October 2007 (UTC)
    • FSI doesn't always do that (for instance, for a country like Denmark); moreover, it's not unique in its ability to do that. A low HDI rank also paints a not-so-rosy picture, so the question is: why choose a relatively new measure that lacks the near-universal acceptance associated with a measure like GDP per capita or at least a UN-sanctioned measure such as HDI. – Black Falcon (Talk) 17:02, 22 October 2007 (UTC)
  • No inclusion at the moment this is not a generally known measure (new); it is a fairly complex measure without as simple interpretation; which makes it (if included) not very informative for most readers. Furthermore, as Black Falcon remarks the templatie is already long (IMHO not 'quite' but rather 'ridiculously' long). So I am against including it at this moment.Arnoutf 16:38, 14 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Remove: this index is not well-established enough to merit inclusion. As Black Falcon said there are several other institutional indexes so why should we include this one. --Victor12 17:24, 14 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Remove: If we keep addding any "cool" index, we would fill the infobox with dozens of obscure measures unfamiliar to any reader. There should be an agreement that only very well established indices (which beside scholar papers and encyclopedias, are cited in average periodicals, school manuals, government publications...) Therefore, the FSI (as well as GINI coefficient but this is another discussion) should be removed. CG 18:43, 14 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Remove: I agree with the reason that if we continue to add more and more items, the infobox will be way too long. Infoboxes are designed to present the primary information for the topic/page/article. Rarelibra 14:20, 15 October 2007 (UTC)

Summary 2 votes for inclusion, 5 against. It should be removed as there is clearly no consensus for its inclusion. Arnoutf 17:05, 22 October 2007 (UTC)

While I voted for the inclusion, I see where the community by and large is coming from on this. Sinhala freedom 19:49, 22 October 2007 (UTC)
Looks like I missed the boat on this but for what it's worth I'd vote not to include this. —MJCdetroit 23:47, 22 October 2007 (UTC)
Mayve I come pretty late :D, but here's my opinion - Failed States Index is not even SERIOUS ENOUGH, to be included in the country infobox. But it's still there - why ? - Biohazard orange.svg Tourbillon A ? 14:40, 4 July 2008 (UTC)

Proposal: Removal of Gini index

I propose that we remove the parameters for the Gini index from the infobox. This is an already-long general-purpose infobox, yet the Gini coefficient is a fairly specialised statistic measuring income inequality. Compared to the other parameters (capital city, population, official language, and so on), the Gini index seems out-of-place in a template that is supposed to provide a brief overview of an entire country. Also, although it is arguably the best-known measure of income inequality, I doubt that many non-economists have heard of it or really understand what the numbers mean. Any thoughts? – Black Falcon (Talk) 20:45, 27 October 2007 (UTC)

  • I'd say keep. It's a recognized economic indicator, which complements GDP and HDI. It's relevant to all country articles, and has already been added to most (if not all?) --snowolfD4 ( talk / @ ) 12:37, 30 October 2007 (UTC)
I'd say remove from the main article infobox. If it is listed under economy of the country fine, but the main infobox is already too long for practical use. Arnoutf 14:43, 30 October 2007 (UTC)
  • I say remove it. The Gini index is really almost without value. True, it does measure income inequality in the state. However, the value depends on the basis used for measure: individual, household, or family. There is no way to compare across bases. Additionally, the Gini index is susceptible to population bulges. States with a higher proportion of youth will automatically have a higher Gini. The reason? Youth are paid less for their work, as they do not have the experience. Inexperienced teachers receive less pay than experienced teachers. Political Scientists and Econometricians recognized this. For these two reasons, I vote to remove it. Svyatoslav 22:33, 7 November 2007 (UTC)
  • I'd rather keep the Gini index. It is not perfect, but it is the best measure we have available for an important aspect. I expect that number to be in an information box for countries. Rl 08:54, 12 November 2007 (UTC)
  • I think we should keep it. It is statistically important in measuring the equity in a society, which is an interesting factor. Sumthingweird (talk) 11:54, 3 August 2008 (UTC)

HDI broken

This recent change seems to have broken the HDI part where additional templates (e.g. {{increase}}, {{steady}}) are present. The evaluation returns Expression error: Unrecognised word "expression" (see United Kingdom for an example). Rl 08:40, 12 November 2007 (UTC)

Template:Infobox Country considered in harmful violation of policy

Republika ng Pilipinas
GDP (nominal)estimate
• Total
$146.05 billion (33rd)

To the right is an illustration taken from the a cut-down version of the current Philippines article. The "33rd" links to List of countries by GDP (nominal), which currently ranks the Philippines either 47th with a GDP of $117,562B according to a cited IMF source or 38th with a GDP of $145,841B according a cited World Bank source. Perhaps some prior version of that page might have ranked the Philippines 33rd with a GDP of $146.05 billion, or perhaps not.

I perceive similar problems with links to other Wilipedia "List of ..." articles.

WP:V, a Wikipedia policy, says: "Articles and posts on Wikipedia should never be used as third-party sources.".

Comments? -- Boracay Bill (talk) 13:38, 12 December 2007 (UTC)

Problems with refs and footnotes

I've been trying to work with an infobox which I believe needs citations and footnotes to provide supporting sources for information therein. I'm seeing problems with this.

Three illustrative examples:

  • Example 1: Note how part of the footnote reference "[a]" is duplicated up by the geographical coordinates of the capital.
Example 1
• Total
[convert: invalid number] (72nd)
• Water (%)
a. Population density: value & ranking[1]
  • Example 2: Like example 1, plus gibberish.
Example 2
• Total
300,000[2] km2 (120,000 sq mi) (72nd)
• Water (%)
  • Example 3: Note undisplayed citation reference for the area_rank value.
Example 3
• Total
300,000 km2 (120,000 sq mi) (72nd [3])
• Water (%)

What I think is needed is some way for an editor to associate additional arbitrary wikitext with every infobox item, with that wikitext to be displayed immediately following the displayed item.

Perhaps this could be done by adding optional additional items (e.g., area_rank might have an optional area_rank_W which, if present, would render immediately following the "(72nd)". Is this reasonable? If so, is anybody willing to tackle this? -- Boracay Bill (talk) 03:11, 13 December 2007 (UTC)

Other possibilities: Before the additional info use HTML <br /> so the additional info will be in the table on the next line, or use <ref>...</ref> for additional info. -- SEWilco (talk) 04:28, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
As is shown in examples 2 and 3, <ref>...</ref> does not solve the problems. :I haven't yet tried the HTML approach. -- Boracay Bill (talk) 05:02, 13 December 2007 (UTC)

(outdent) I see that this this template contains two instances of "|type:country({{{area_km2|}}}", and that both appear to be intended as an unsupported seventh parameter to {{coor dm}}. Removing both of these instances solves the problem illustrated in example 1. -- Boracay Bill (talk) 05:40, 13 December 2007 (UTC)

(outdent again) I see that the template supports an undocumented parameter named area_footnote, and that wikitext supplied in that parameter is rendered following the wikitext supplied in the area_km2 parameter. I'm not happy about using info in such a footnote to supply additional info related to items which appear subsequent to the footnote reference (area_rank , area_sq_mi, etc. ), but it's probably workable to do that. I haven't looked at the other sections of the template code but, hopefully, similar undocumented footnoting parameters exist there. -- Boracay Bill (talk) 06:20, 13 December 2007 (UTC)

I see that those other footnoting parameters don't exist. I also see that a google search of en.wikipedia.org turns up no hits for area_footnote. That being the case, I propose to modify this template as follows:
  1. Move the display point for the area_footnote parameter to immediately after the Area :section identifier.
  2. Add corresponding population_footnote, etc. parameters.
  3. Add these parameters (and possibly other info) to the template documentation.
Barring objection within the next day or so, I plan to do that. Objections? -- Boracay Bill (talk) 07:06, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
After looking a bit more at the template code, I've decided not to make any changes. -- Boracay Bill (talk) 08:18, 14 December 2007 (UTC)
You may want to look at how {{Infobox Settlement}} does its footnotes. It could help you here. —MJCdetroit (talk) 18:55, 7 January 2008 (UTC)

Previous country?

Does anyone think this would be a good idea to have a previous country like Template:Infobox Former Country has? I am not sure how it should be positioned but it would be very nice, especially for countries like Yemen where they were merged from two other entities. gren グレン 08:31, 29 December 2007 (UTC)

I don't think it would be a good idea. The Netherlands for example should list (at least) the following: Roman Empire; Carolingian Empire; Holy Roman Empire; Seventeen Provinces (Burgundian Empire); Spanish Empire; Dutch Republic; Batavian Republic; Kingdom Holland; First French Empire; United Kingdom of the Netherlands; Kingdom of the Netherlands. And arguably state names between the collapse of Rome and Charlemagne, between Charlemagne and the Holy Roman Empire, between the de facto collapse of the Roman empire and the Burgundians (that would basically be all the independent provices) could be added, and possibly even Nazi German.
Unwieldy for the already overly long infobox: yes. Necessary: no. Again the example of the Netherlands. Al this is already treated in detail in the history section; and if not can easily be mentioned there; no need to further inflate the infobox, that in itself is getting close to a small article size, even further, that would only decrease its informative use (by clouding more important issues). Arnoutf (talk) 09:26, 29 December 2007 (UTC)

Legislature heads

...why not add them into the infobox? --PaxEquilibrium (talk) 21:40, 30 December 2007 (UTC)

As in Speakers, Presidents of National Assemblies, and so on? I can't say I think those are super-important, at least in the context of most countries with a parliamentary system. I suppose there's a better case for their inclusion in countries with a fully-separated executive--I think nobody would dispute that Nancy Pelosi is one of the more relevant politicians in Washington, for instance--but I don't know if it passes muster, really. There's also the clutter risk if you couldn't justifiably include the heads of one half of a bicameral legislature without the other. The Tom (talk) 22:32, 30 December 2007 (UTC)
Well, for most of Europe it is - it nicely gathers around all three primary statesmen in a country: President of the State, the Government and the Parliament. Supreme Judge could also be added but I think that's out of the administrative context. --PaxEquilibrium (talk) 12:29, 31 December 2007 (UTC)
I am not so sure the chairman of the Parliament is an important primary statesman in many European countries (it is not in the Netherolands, Belgium and France as far as I know). Arnoutf (talk) 14:19, 1 January 2008 (UTC)
At least it is in Eastern. --PaxEquilibrium (talk) 00:28, 4 January 2008 (UTC)
Don't make it a mandatory field, place a remark like "only to be used if this is an important post in the country" or similar, otherwise this already cluttered infobox will further expand, even for countries where this information is truly irrelevant. Arnoutf (talk) 10:42, 4 January 2008 (UTC)

Flag width

This template says: * If, on a particular page, the default widths provided for the flag and coat-of-arms/symbol images produce an unsatisfactory result, use flag_width (as % or px) to specify the width to be used for the flag image; the remaining width is then assigned to the coat-of-arms/symbol (if included)." This did not work for me so I looked at the template and "flag_width" was not found. --Henry W. Schmitt (talk) 21:58, 8 January 2008 (UTC)

I've created a modified version of the template which reinstates the flag_width parameter, it's currently at User:This flag once was red/sandbox, the change can be seen at this diff. Could someone with the permissions necessary to modify this template apply this change?
Example of the modified infobox in action can be seen here (Scotland) and here (New Zealand).
Cheers,  This flag once was red  00:18, 14 September 2008 (UTC)

 DoneMJCdetroit (yak) 16:34, 22 September 2008 (UTC)
Fantastic! I've already updated Scotland to use flag_width. Many thanks,  This flag once was red  19:43, 22 September 2008 (UTC)
Excellent! Just one minor point, and I hope I'm not being picky, but any chance the format/code/syntax (whatever) for the Infobox could be tweaked slightly so as to enable the images to display in the center of their individual cells? When viewed in Firefox, (and to a lesser extent MS Explorer,) the flags, (in the case of the Scotland article), appear to be 'justified' to the left of the cell. Is it possible for them to appear in the center? I've captured a screenshot of how they appear in Firefox, ("Current" view), and how they might appear if centered, ("Preferred" view). Scotland Infobox Flags.PNG Thanks in advance... Endrick Shellycoat 17:57, 24 September 2008 (UTC)
I have viewed it with FF 3.0.1 and Safari 3.1.2 and IE 7.0.5730.11; all on a WinXP pro system. I only saw a slight misalignment when viewing in IE; on my screen the spacing difference was 0.021 inches (0.53 mm) (I'm at work & have pair of calipers sitting here). It looks nothing like your screenshot. FF and Safari were perfect. My FF is usually up-to-date, however I never update IE (I don't use it). So maybe you just need to update your software. Best I can offer at this point. —MJCdetroit (yak) 16:37, 25 September 2008 (UTC)
I'm seeing it with FF 3.0.1, but only at certain zoom levels (I tend to browse zoomed in - my monitor is some distance from me). I checked the generated source code, and it looks like - despite flag_width and symbol_width both being set to 130px - the left-hand image has 125px as it's width (in a 130px TD) and the right-hand side image has a 130px (in an auto TD).
Cheers,  This flag once was red  19:16, 25 September 2008 (UTC)
I've just downloaded FF 3.0.2 and no change; Scotland infobox images still appear to me to be offset left when compared to those of other country articles. Perhaps, as  This flag once was red  pointed out both here and at Talk:Scotland#Saltire and Royal Standard, the width may be affecting the image position relative to the infobox margin. ??? P.S. This issue of position of image relative to margin does not appear to me on any other article. I also frigged the zoom but to no avail - see image: Scotland Infobox FF 2.PNG Endrick Shellycoat 19:39, 25 September 2008 (UTC)
I still don't see it and this time am at home using FF on my mac—see image to the left . I don't know what the problem could be. To quote Obama, "it's above my pay grade". Perhaps, you should take this up at the WP:HELPDESK. Or try asking User:Rick Block, he is pretty good at very technical questions such as this. —MJCdetroit (yak) 00:24, 2 October 2008 (UTC)

Extended infobox

Why don't we have an extended version of the infobox available as a separate page. Basically like an article on the country in infobox form. A lot of people aren't going to be looking for a prose article but just a quick, perhaps quantitative overview. A separate page with a much more detailed infobox would be ideal for this. Details not considered important enough for the main infobox or left out for other reasons could be included. Since we already have data-heavy content like lists of countries by population density etc, I don't see how this would be much different. The reader could access the page from the normal infobox, which would have 'view detailed version' or something like that on it. Richard001 (talk) 22:44, 17 January 2008 (UTC)

UN M.49

How about including UN M.49 codes? They can be used with RFC 4646 language tags for instance. (talk) 15:27, 19 February 2008 (UTC)

Country code

Is country_code a valid field? It's not in the template itself, but is shown as a blank field in the example and is also in use in a number of articles. (Adding a country's ISO 3166 code does not seem to display anything.) Socrates2008 (Talk) 09:05, 3 March 2008 (UTC)

Economist's country quality-of-life index

How about including the Economist's country quality-of-life index (http://www.economist.com/media/pdf/QUALITY_OF_LIFE.pdf)?


Why are -'s produced in lower levels? For example in Canada, in the "Establishment" cell of its infobox, it has:

 -British North America Act July 1, 1867
 -Statute of Westminster December 11, 1931
 -Canada Act April 17, 1982

Or something alone those lines. Why are these -'s (hyphens or whatever) created?Asrghasrhiojadrhr (talk) 01:37, 9 March 2008 (UTC)

Which GDP PPP figure?

The article List of countries by GDP (PPP) per capita lists three different rankings, with three different sources (International Monetary Fund, World Bank and Central Intelligence Agency). There are considerable discrepancies A Luxembourger's income according to the IMF is more than 18,000 international dollars higher than the World Bank thinks it is, Ireland drops from 2nd place to 8th depending on which column one looks at, and Kuwait's position varies from 4th to 38th, with a 61% per capita income drop. I have no strong feling over which is uused, but there must be clarity and consistency. Kevin McE (talk) 09:19, 9 March 2008 (UTC)

CSS Units: why is the width set in 'ex'?

The current template uses the 'ex' unit to set the width of an infobox. Is there a good reason for this? 'Ex' is a little-used unit which is dependent on the font. However, not all fonts provide information about the ex height, so it's -- in most cases -- better to use the 'em' unit. Howcome (talk) 16:18, 12 March 2008 (UTC)

Two-maps in Info box

Hello everyone! On talk:Scotland there has been various disagreements on which style of map we should have there and in Wales, and possibly for No. Ireland and England too. Then the idea of having two maps developed, and we found a style we are interested in on the Afrakaans wiki page for Wales and Scotland. As a compromise, most concerned there tend to favor this two-map option. It will prevent revert wars as both sides will have a map that they like.

But we need to know how to do this for our pages. The Afrikaans page is formatted differently from ours. Can anyone help us to make this possible?

We wish to have a European map of Wales, or Scotland, within Europe, and have the British Isles displayed below. This is an example of what we wish to make happen on our English language country pages: http://af.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wallis

Thanks!!♦Drachenfyre♦·Talk 23:13, 3 April 2008 (UTC)

  • 04-April-2008: To show two maps, use the 2 sets of parameters:
  • For map 1: image_map, map_width, with map_caption;
  • For map 2: image_map2, map2_width, with map_caption2.

Note the 2nd width is "map2_width" and using incorrect "map_width2" will be ignored. Remember to include "px" in widths (such as: map2_width=270px). -Wikid77 (talk) 16:31, 4 April 2008 (UTC)

Added parameters area_label, area_label2, area_data2

04-April-2008: For articles that report the area as 2 separate regions, I have expanded the Area section to allow parameter area_label (default: "Total") and added customized area fields as new parameters area_label2 displayed beside area_data2. For generality, area_data2 is just raw text, such as "161 sqkm (100 sq mi)" and not a numeric field. Thereby, area_data2 could be just an explanatory note, rather than an area measurement at all. To have an empty label, use a blank-code value (area_label=&nbsp;). I didn't add any other custom fields, since having 2 areas was the only limitation I noticed now. -Wikid77 (talk) 16:08, 4 April 2008 (UTC)

Wales country specific infobox

Hello, there are some interesting suggestions being made at Talk:Wales about the use of a coloured infobox. Input very welcome. --Jza84 |  Talk  01:40, 10 April 2008 (UTC)

Indeed, on the Wales artical, as well as Kingdom of Gwynedd, Kingdom of Powys, and Principality of Wales, thanks to the very talented Wikid77, we have been able to impleament a very neat info box border and title line that helps to bring the eye to the info box and in our opinion strengthens the over all deisgn of the page. It seems that others disagree with this, however, and are enlisting the aid of others who share their point of view.♦Drachenfyre♦·Talk 03:54, 10 April 2008 (UTC)

Every country having its own customized looking infobox goes against what has been discussed here and over at WP:Countries (which governs here & Wales) in the past. Changes like creating a fork of this infobox so that Wales can be customized can open pandora's box. Then soon after we're back to the mess that we had in 2005-2006 with every country having its own infobox. It was a mess! If a colored border is desired "to help bring the eye to the info box", then it should be discussed here and the change made to all via the template code. I am all in favor of improving the appearance and function this infobox. —MJCdetroit (yak) 12:47, 10 April 2008 (UTC)
You make it sound like the information will change, it will not. We are talking about styalistic bordrs and title headers, not changing information within. Consistancy is important, but not slavish consistancy. Infobox borders and title headers are a good thing as they will liven up a page, draw the reader to it. And why should editors "first have to discuss it here", we can not be trusted with editing info boxes? But can be trusted with content in a page? I have read nothing that says it absolutely has to be the same as others. Styalistic infoboxes are a very engaging use to bring distinction to a page... not every nation page editors will wish to use it. Chosing the colors of a border and title header is akin to chosing the style of map within the info box, nothing more. These are good-faith changes to the info box border and title header, and should not be treated as an aberation. And I am sure that some changes in color will occur (we are debating now which shade works best), but to deny editors these tools is in my opinion undemocratic and counters the spirit of Wikipedia. (talk) 20:41, 10 April 2008 (UTC)♦Drachenfyre♦·Talk 20:44, 10 April 2008 (UTC)
Why? because discussing stylist changes to the infobox here first and everyone being ok with it is called a consensus and that is VERY DEMOCRATIC and is EXACTLY what the spirit of Wikipedia is all about! Furthermore, ONE person actually creating a separate fork ({{Infobox Country styled}}); which is not a sandbox for experimentation but an actual fork of {{Infobox Country}} and having your fork transclude in an article goes against the consensus of WP:Countries to not have country specific infoboxes. It also goes against the Project's stated goals #2 & #3. That is, as you stated, "undemocratic and counters the spirit of Wikipedia".
Also, you clearly did not fully understand my last sentence in my first comment, where I hinted that I would favor some type of appearance upgrade for this infobox, but not undiscussed and not without censuses first. —MJCdetroit (yak) 02:56, 11 April 2008 (UTC)
I think you are seeking to impose excessive structure. Some variation in individual pages allows for evolution as Wikipedia as a whole. The following statement is made in this article "This structure is advisory only, and should not be enforced against the wishes of those actually working on the article in question". Right well several of us are working on that article, please respect the statement. --Snowded (talk) 04:53, 11 April 2008 (UTC)
"...enlisting the aid of others who share their point of view" is a rather colourful way of saying "informing those who have for a long time been responsible for maintaining these templates and considering the wide-reaching implications of such an action".
Yes, the colours do indeed draw attention to the infobox. The problem is that it draws too much attention with the mostly overly-garish colours so far used. With these colours, the infobox dominates the article, which is never the intention for infoboxes: they are to complement the text, not overshadow it.
Accessibility for colour-blind readers is also a problem with some of the colours currently used. See WP:COLOUR.
Another problem is the choice of colours. People will not agree on the colours used some articles. And then making sure that all colours used are acceptable for visually-impaired readers presents a new layer of necessary policing. By introducing this option, it is inevitable that a whole new series of edit wars will erupt over what colours to use.
It should be noted that the same editor has also introduced these changes to {{Infobox Former Country}}, also without consultation or discussion. That template is even more complicated than this one, and probably used in more articles.
This is an encyclopedia, not a colouring-in book. Improving functionality and appearance is always good, but not in this unilateral single-case manner. 52 Pickup (deal) 07:06, 11 April 2008 (UTC)

Chosing infobox border colors and title headers would not lead to "excessive edit wars", any more then the conflicts about which style of map to use in the infobox. In fact, choice of infobox colors and title headers is more akin to choice of maps for the info box. The colors of the infobox are not overly garish (which is anyway a point of view). Encyclopedias that do not adjust to the needs of its client base, that is we editors and readers, will stagnate. No-one suggested that infobox color and title headers should be a single-case manner, rather I suggest that it be open to all who so chose it for their respective infobox. Open it up for all country info boxes!. Dont be shortsighted, the infobox borders and title headers are sleek and professional, the necessary information held within the infoboxes remain unchanged. Infobox border colors and title headers do complement both the text of the main artical, and also the information contained within the infobox. I think there is a lack of faith and respect for the editorial community when I hear statements that they can not be trusted to edit a wiki page in their own right, and this extends to the choice of colors for info boxes.♦Drachenfyre♦·Talk 07:59, 11 April 2008 (UTC)

I couldn't disagree more. I too think the infobox colours are a) unprofessional b) ugly c) politicised d) add no value to the article. It clearly overbares the article, but I'd also have to go as far as to say it undermines the text. I see no strength in argument to keep these coloured infobox (other than "they are in good faith"!) and think at very least they should be removed now whilst we hold a discussion. --Jza84 |  Talk  12:16, 11 April 2008 (UTC)
It seems to me that there is nothing wrong in allowing country pages to use national colours for the infobox outline. Maybe setting the thickness might be an idea. To call such a minor issue unprofessional, ugly and politicised is surely an excessive response to what is an interesting experiment. Some variety is essential to evolution and at the heart of the wikipedia. --Snowded (talk) 07:31, 12 April 2008 (UTC)

Before continuing the discussion about the specifics of this change, I strongly suggest we first resolve the issue about the mechanism being used to introduce this change (per the thread below). I think keeping these issues separate will be helpful, and many folks seem to care about both. To that end I suggest we suspend discussions about colored borders until we resolve whether creating a fork for "live testing" is the approach we want to use. -- Rick Block (talk) 14:31, 12 April 2008 (UTC)

More general infobox Template:Infobox_Country_styled

12-April-2008: I have created this sub-topic about the "More general" because the upper title "Wales country specific infobox" seems to be begging the question "When will you stop using/beating the Wales-specific infobox?" That infobox is not "Wales-specific" but has been used in the "Wales" article. Perhaps calling it "Wales country specific" tends to slant the discussion, but the broader reality is that Infobox_Country_styled is, in fact, a more generalized template than Infobox_Country, due to generalizing the choice of border/background colours, rather than limiting to black & white. Wow, what a difference from "country-specific": {{Infobox_Country_styled}} is a more general infobox, with more font/color choices than Infobox_Country. Isn't truth amazing? -Wikid77 (talk) 20:08, 12 April 2008 (UTC)

Intent of styled infobox

Copied from user talk:Rick Block
12-April-2008: In attempting to categorize the intent of Template:Infobox_Country_styled as a sandbox or a fork, I suppose it is both. That answer is not intended as a confusing contradiction, but a recognition of the complexity of the situation. The problem revolves around the concept of testing "real-world" results versus a hypothetical change to an implied template-upgrade bureacracy. The apparent contradiction is a form of "catch-22" situation about testing: people want to test new Infobox styling on a real article, however, formal sandbox templates cannot be used on real articles, hence the testing would not be real, thus the "catch" in the system. The implied bureaucracy stems from the concept of pre-approving Infobox style before changing, whereas the reality is that hundreds of Wikipedia real mainspace articles are changed per minute without pre-approval, of course, even allowing anonymous changes. A simple solution is to create a limited-use fork template, as a type of sandbox-like non-sandbox. Users focus on changing actual template features, rather than the approval process for changing a template. As a result, Template:Infobox_Country_styled can be used in real mainspace articles, with the understanding that the usage is somewhat temporary, with the need long-term to reconcile new features with the standard Template:Infobox_Country, balancing Wikipedia's mode of non-pre-approved changes with the after-the-fact adjustment of changes to align with broader policies. Restating that concept: the usage of the template fork fits the reality that changes to Wikipedia are approved, just not pre-approved. Non-pre-approved changes can be made to T:Infobox_Country_styled without the danger of changing T:Infobox_Country, which is used in over 500 high-importance articles: in the major articles for each nation of the world. Those same 500 articles could each be hacked in many other ways, but using the variation Infobox_Country_styled attempts to find patterns and purpose to that change, without the widespread risk of affecting the prior Template:Infobox_Country impacting 500 articles. Note that changing anything can be approved by a "consensus" of perhaps 6 people, but agreement doesn't ensure real-world testing against mainspace articles for weeks, which a fork has allowed. Perhaps 80% of readers who comment about a real article, using a fork template, would not join the hypothetical template discussion to improve Wikipedia. I hope these viewpoints about configuration management for controlling uncontrolled changes with real-world readers make sense, in explaining the sandbox-like non-sandbox. I regret that most of Wikipedia is written by mere skeleton crews of volunteers, but that's why formal approval processes can be fatal in causing volunteers to quit. Wikipedia's mode of open changes creates upgrade clashes with pre-approved templates, and I guess I'll stop here for your opinions about the concept of balancing of non-pre-approved changes. -Wikid77 (talk) 11:54, 12 April 2008 (UTC)

If I'm reading this correctly, you're basically saying the intent is for it to be a permanent 'live testbed". I don't think this is remotely necessary. Major changes to this template have been made in the past, using a formal sandbox mechanism (see for example, User talk:Rick Block/Template:Infobox Country, which led to a significant change in the template's implementation). The point of using a sandbox is exactly the point you make about allowing editors to focus on the template features rather than the approval process. When you have something working you'd like to propose as a change, then you present it here. With your approach, you're setting up a fork for people to use who don't want to be bothered with the "bureaucracy" of gaining consensus for changes. What happens if there is a change in the fork that the editors of the "main" template disagree with (which I suspect might be where this is headed)? On an ongoing basis are editors here supposed to implement all changes twice - once here, and again in the fork? -- Rick Block (talk) 14:11, 12 April 2008 (UTC)
I haven't seen any consensus for this fork to exist or be used, and in this capacity, intend to remove it from mainspace soon if one is not formed per WP:BRD --Jza84 |  Talk  21:04, 12 April 2008 (UTC)
  • Avoiding permanent live testbed: I agree with the concern, based on 2 years past experience about template changes: a fork template would tend to become basically permanent, especially since deleting pages is difficult. Let's set a template termination date for Infobox_Country_styled: by 01-July-2008, if the features aren't approved for inclusion into Infobox_Country, then Infobox_Country_styled must be deleted (moved into a user space) where no mainspace article could use it further. I am sincere when I worry about editor burnout/quitting while debating how to gain approval for changes: typically, only 3% of people volunteer, and who would continue under unpleasant conditions to cleanup a mosquito-infested swamp, being attacked on all sides? I've witnessed the falling support in areas of Wikipedia over the past 2 years: it's obvious in analyzing talk-pages that the "Golden Age of Wikipedia" is a bygone era, in this phase. However, Wikipedia's coverage is still hollow: in computer science, where is the article on "string grammar"? (OMG, can you believe there has been NONE all during 2007?) I waited years, and then I created "World Riddle" and "Star quality" and "Merger mania" (etc.). Can you believe the major articles that still don't exist with WP 6 years old? Let's solve this template problem simply: finish using Infobox_Country_styled by 01-July-2008. Let the actual circumstances dictate whether dual-update would be needed for other changes to Infobox_Country. -Wikid77 (talk) 21:43, 12 April 2008 (UTC)
Wikid77, the basis behind your argument to keep this fork is all personal experience type stuff. Where is your announcement that you'd like to try these things? Where did you hold your discussion with the community as to what they want/don't want? Most importantly, where is the consensus to keep this fork? If you want a "termination date" for it, I say something more like 19-Apr-2008 is suitable. Discussion is a fundamental editorial process at Wikipedia, but as of yet, I've seen no proper historical discussion about this template in Wikipedia talk space and no policies or principles cited to support your preference. --Jza84 |  Talk  21:55, 12 April 2008 (UTC)
  • Color changes can wait: To User:Jza84: That's fine. I've read what other people have said, and we're in no hurry on this issue. I appreciate your many contributions to Wikipedia, and don't want this to become a mental condition. I can sense that the other people are not get-a-life types, and we are ALL ready to drop Wikipedia on a moment's notice. You've caught me on a slow rainy weekend, but I typically even work outdoors in the rain, and Wikipedia being 10% information & 90% deformation is a low priority for me. Good luck. Have a good time. -Wikid77 (talk) 22:23, 12 April 2008 (UTC)
  • ^ Value and Ranking taken from List of countries by population density, based on information from various sources cited therein.
  • ^ explanation or cite goes here.
  • ^ Ranking taken from List of countries by population density, based on information from various sources cited therein.