Template talk:Orphan/Archive 1

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Archive 1 Archive 2

Date= as an optional parameter

Would be good if the template accepted |date= as a move towards uniform tagging. Rich Farmbrough, 15:31 27 December 2006 (GMT).

Done. Eli Falk 10:08, 28 December 2006 (UTC)
Belated thanks. Rich Farmbrough, 13:54 16 March 2007 (GMT).

{{editprotected}} These tags need to accept Date with a capital D for the date. Capitalization is not a lost art, but it will become so if there is further neglect of it by programmers who write templates. It is just habit for me and others to use an initial capital letter, since we do a lot of writing. Sloppily written templates than don't have good input checking (one of the first rules every programmer is expected to learn) just makes more work all round when a person easily and naturally puts an initial letter. Hu 03:28, 18 June 2007 (UTC)

N Not done; see my comments on Template talk:Notability. --ais523 14:00, 18 June 2007 (UTC)


I would definitely suggest this template go at the top of the article. Why put it in the references section? If an article needs external references, that's a different tag entirely. --Vossanova o< 16:34, 8 January 2007 (UTC)

I'm against putting this at the top of an article. It is not a warning to readers it is merely an invitation to add content and should go at the bottom like the stub notices. If no one has strong feelings about this then we should change the guidelines for this template. Is there a general guideline on positioning these templates? Filceolaire 20:27, 8 September 2007 (UTC)

I agree with Fil; I think that the template should go at the bottom, say under a 'see also' or 'external links' section. We don't need to make this template the most important part of the page it's on. —ScouterSig 16:11, 19 November 2007 (UTC)


The template contains instructions:

"After links have been created, remove this message."

I think it would be helpful to add a link pointing to [[Special:Whatlinkshere/{{PAGENAME}}]]. This would make it easier for an inexperienced editor to know how to determine that the template is no longer needed, and remove it in such a case. Maybe something like this at the bottom:

"A list of inbound links can be found here".

(Of course this would be much better if it could be filtered to &namespace=0)

I'm not saying it will put a dent in the "11324 transclusions" figure overnight, but it might help slow the increase anyway. On a slightly different note, maybe we could get a bot to check for new incoming links and remove uses of this template that are no longer appropriate.

CharlotteWebb 08:26, 11 January 2007 (UTC)

I snuck the link into the existing text in the first sentence to avoid lengthening the template. Hope that's ok. --CBD 12:30, 11 January 2007 (UTC)


It's now possible to change that link to {{fullurl:Special:Whatlinkshere|target={{FULLPAGENAMEE}}&namespace=0}}. — CharlotteWebb 05:51, 9 June 2007 (UTC)
Done. — Carl (CBM · talk) 13:01, 9 June 2007 (UTC)

Why have this template?

In the original wiki concept, walled gardens and such were frowned upon.

But this is an encyclopedia. Most people, I suspect, arrive at an article via either the little box to your left, or via a search engine--not by navigating from other articles.

In other words, having an orphan page strikes me as completely harmless. If other pages have reason to link to a particular page, fine. But there shouldn't be any reason to insist that such links be created.

If the page weren't protected, I might have been WP:BOLD and sent it to TFD. As it is, I'll just gripe here :). My preference would be to nuke this template; I'd be happy if it were moved to article talk pages instead.

--EngineerScotty 00:43, 19 January 2007 (UTC)

Yeah, just ran into this one myself. I tend to think orphans are undesirable, but only mildly so, and in any case, this is not a warning to our dear readers about a problem with the article that follows. Talk page. Abu-Fool Danyal ibn Amir al-Makhiri 03:24, 23 January 2007 (UTC)
I disagree. Pages with no links to them are a sign that the subject is somehow detached from our "web of knowledge" - the reasons for no links are usually either that the people writing the other articles didn't know about this one (a site:en.wikipedia.org Google search will find the other pages, and linking is easy), or that the article lacks notability, and should be considered for deletion. Either way, it's a danger sign worth noting. --Alvestrand 21:20, 15 March 2007 (UTC)
As proved by the two other above users, I am probably in the majority of users who think that the best way to get to an article is to use the search box. This means that Orphan tags are a waste of time in most cases, as you can directly search for what you are looking for rather than having to sift through other articles as your above statement suggests. --Dreamweaverjack 22:03, 15 March 2007 (UTC)
I agree with their lack of purpose, but on another note where is the guideline page for their usage (ie: how many links should a user see/not see before inserting this tag)? I've seen it on pages with quite a few links, and have been tempted to remove it but would like to know the guidelines. If they exist, they aren't linked from this page. I'll keep looking. If it's a matter of 'common sense' or something, it would quite a subjective one, and I think some loose rules of thumb may be useful. Thx --Keefer4 | Talk 21:03, 1 April 2007 (UTC)


Shouldn't this template feature a blue background? It looks weird and stands out way too much when it's used at the top of an article, especially with other blue cleanup templates. Of course, I happen to think that this intrusive message might be better on talk pages, which would call for a tan background. In either case, a change in background color is needed. BuddingJournalist 03:27, 30 January 2007 (UTC)

What color blue would you like it? ---J.S (T/C/WRE) 02:46, 4 February 2007 (UTC)
Readd the editprotected tag when you've decided. Proto:: 18:55, 5 February 2007 (UTC)
I agree. And obviously he means (as do I) the same colour blue as the other cleanup templates, such as {{cleanup}}. The way to change it, though, is to edit the definition of the "linkless" class in Common.css to match the definition of the "cleanup" class, not to edit the template itself – Qxz 20:12, 5 February 2007 (UTC)
Thanks Qxz. And yes, obviously I meant the same blue as the other templates. However, I tried searching on MediaWiki:Common.css for the "messagebox linkless metadata" class that this template apparently uses, but couldn't find anything. Quoi? BuddingJournalist 03:03, 11 February 2007 (UTC)

How many links?

Is there a consensus on how many links an article should have before removing this tag? Fsamuels 22:36, 1 February 2007 (UTC)

As many as is appropriate, depending on the article. 2-4 at the very least IMO. ---J.S (T/C/WRE) 02:45, 4 February 2007 (UTC)

Please give you opinion on the Orphan tag below

Should categories be counted as links?

Would anyone else agree with me that categories should count towards links? --Dreamweaverjack 22:06, 15 March 2007 (UTC)

Raising this to its own topic, as I think it's important. I disagree - I think categories should NOT be counted towards links. --Alvestrand 22:25, 15 March 2007 (UTC)
If, as stated above, the purpose of this template is to flag up that Pages with no links to them are a sign that the subject is somehow detached from our "web of knowledge"", then yes, categories should be included surely? L.J.Skinnerwot|I did 23:59, 15 March 2007 (UTC)
The way I use Wikipedia, I read articles, and navigate using either search or links. Having categories doesn't help me navigate the web of knowledge. So I'd consider them at best second class links. --Alvestrand 00:15, 16 March 2007 (UTC)
Nope. An article with categories but no wlinks to it is a different animal than one with wlinks, whether or not the latter has cats. The absence of wlinks to an article is an indicator that related articles either need more wlinks or are older and need updated wlinks. I suppose it's largely a matter of semantics, but if we count cats to eliminate an orphan tag, then we need a new tag for articles with cats but without inbound wlinks. --Butseriouslyfolks 01:41, 16 March 2007 (UTC)
I would also say no, because the systematic categorising of things does not mean that the "orphan" problem has been resolved. However I am prepared to consider that there might be pages which don't need incoming links, and that this would not be a problem with the 'pedia. Rich Farmbrough, 13:51 16 March 2007 (GMT).

Edit request

{{editprotected}} Hello, I would like an admin to add URL address here so it makes the bit was says Related topics not have the external links icon in the corner and makes it look tidier. Thank you. The Sunshine Man 11:20, 5 May 2007 (UTC)

Since that is an external link, it should have an external link icon. CMummert · talk 15:22, 8 May 2007 (UTC)
I think it should not be an external link; it should link to a Wikipedia search. Althepal 04:16, 17 May 2007 (UTC)

Fixing the "link to this one" link


The "link to this one" link does not work; instead of [[Special:Whatlinkshere/{{PAGENAME}}|link to this one]], it should be [[Special:Whatlinkshere/{{FULLPAGENAMEE}}|link to this one]] Dtrebbien 15:01, 8 May 2007 (UTC)

done. CMummert · talk 15:22, 8 May 2007 (UTC)

Fix categories


The categories included in this template should have {{{category| }}} around them so that they don't categorize pages that simply link to them.


<includeonly>{{#if:{{{1|}}}|[[Category:Orphaned articles from {{{1}}}]]|{{#if:{{{date|}}}|[[Category:Orphaned articles from {{{date}}}]]|[[Category:Orphaned articles]]}}}}[[Category:All orphaned articles]]</includeonly>

Requested change:

<includeonly>{{#if:{{{1|}}}|{{{category|[[Category:Orphaned careories from {{1}}}]]}}}|{{#if:{{{date|}}}|{{{category|[[Category:Orphaned categories from {{{date}}}]]}}}|{{{category|[[Category:Orphaned categories]]}}}}}}}{{{category|[[Category:All orphaned categories]]}}}</includeonly>

-- Gudeldar 18:27, 26 July 2007 (UTC)

 Done but not exactly the same as your requested change, since I found a few typos. Thanks for making the request! Tra (Talk) 22:19, 26 July 2007 (UTC)

Edit request


Any chance someone can adjust the width of this template so that the "one" doesn't wrap onto another line. Cheers! PC78 18:49, 12 September 2007 (UTC)

Or, perhaps adjust the text, replacing "since" with "as"? PC78 19:05, 12 September 2007 (UTC)
It doesn't wrap on my screen, but would removing the word "very" solve your issue? I'd say that is the least important word in the template, and should probably be removed regardless. I'd recommend "This article is considered orphaned, since there are few or no other articles linked to this one." It removes "very" and "that". - auburnpilot talk 19:18, 12 September 2007 (UTC)
That would be fine. PC78 19:31, 12 September 2007 (UTC)
 Done - auburnpilot talk 19:34, 12 September 2007 (UTC)

Shouldn't this template read "This article is orphaned since there are few or no other articles link to it." Poor grammar otherwise. Civil Engineer III (talk) 17:46, 7 January 2008 (UTC)



Please add ones around the second line, as it's done in other article message boxes. — Kalan ? 16:44, 10 October 2007 (UTC)

Do you mean that the font of the second line should be smaller? (sorry, a bit confused) GracenotesT § 17:18, 10 October 2007 (UTC)
I have disabled the editprotected request for now because it's unclear what the change is to be (and because there's CAT:PER backlog). Please re-enable it with a description of the change to be made. Nihiltres(t.l) 22:39, 12 October 2007 (UTC)
Yes, Gracenotes is right. — Kalan ? 03:48, 13 October 2007 (UTC)
YesY Done - Nihiltres(t.l) 16:01, 13 October 2007 (UTC)

Spacing error

This template seems to be missing a space in between "related topics." and the date in parentheses. On the article Correspondence rules it is showing up without a space and is also introducing two }} brackets randomly after it. If anyone knows why this is, and wants to look in to fixing the template or the article, that would be great. Bonus Onus 19:08, 13 October 2007 (UTC) (edit: Just checked-- both of these problems seem to come up on every page this template is used on) -Bonus Onus 19:11, 13 October 2007 (UTC)

I believe the correct template text should be (edit this to see formatting):

Template documentation[create]

-Bonus Onus 19:20, 13 October 2007 (UTC)

Extra }}

This template produces the characters }} directly after it. Octane [improve me] 13.10.07 1911 (UTC)

Yes, I just noticed. An extra set of braces must have been introduced in the last edit. Fvasconcellos (t·c) 19:33, 13 October 2007 (UTC)

{{editprotected}} This is caused by the line {{#if:{{{date|}}}|{{{category|[[Category:Orphaned articles from {{{date}}}]]}}}|{{{category|[[Category:Orphaned articles]]}}}}}}}, which should be {{#if:{{{date|}}}|{{{category|[[Category:Orphaned articles from {{{date}}}]]}}}|{{{category|[[Category:Orphaned articles]]}}}}}. Please update the template. –Ms2ger 19:48, 13 October 2007 (UTC)

Wording change

Hi there,

Recently, the de-orphaning team was turned into a WikiProject, WikiProject Orphanage. As part of this, we might be adding a new category, "lonely" articles, with few links to them. This would make orphans articles with very few or no other articles linking to them. Please give your opinion on this change either here or on the project talk page.

Thanks, Davidovic 05:13, 26 October 2007 (UTC)

A little extra

You have an extra /noinclude tag that is showing up on the page Rgoodermote(Talk Page) 00:49, 12 November 2007 (UTC)

simpler google link

I propose changing the url in "related topics" from

  • http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&as_qdr=all&q=+site%3Aen.wikipedia.org+%22{{PAGENAMEU}}%22


  • http://www.google.com/search?sitesearch=en.wikipedia.org&q=%22{{PAGENAMEU}}%22

I also propose unprotecting this template. Is it such a target for vandalism? Waldir talk 14:49, 2 December 2007 (UTC)

Will someone please look into this? An admin preferentially... Waldir talk 02:45, 18 May 2008 (UTC)

I would oppose unprotection, since this template is transcluded on over 10,000 pages. See Wikipedia:High-risk templates. However, I do like the related topics link change, and I don't see anyone objecting to it. So: {{editprotected}} Please edit the url linked to by "related topics" in the template from

  • http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&as_qdr=all&q=+site%3Aen.wikipedia.org+%22{{PAGENAMEU}}%22


  • http://www.google.com/search?sitesearch=en.wikipedia.org&q=%22{{PAGENAMEU}}%22

Thank you.--Aervanath's signature is boring 08:04, 19 May 2008 (UTC)

Not done for now - what's wrong with some variation on Special:Search?? As for unprotection, don't even think about it (29,270 links) Happymelon 08:46, 19 May 2008 (UTC)
I'm not sure what the original reasoning was, but for me it just makes it easier to go through the 2nd step of the de-orphaning process: first, you search wikipedia to see if there are any related articles that already mention the subject of the article, but aren't wikilinked in. Then you do a net-wide google search to see if there are any related topics that might tie into the article, but haven't yet been added. The change suggested above means that step 2 is just one click away. Very convenient for de-orphaners.--Aervanath's signature is boring 19:42, 20 May 2008 (UTC)

internet death penalty

Is there a problem with this template? There's unnecessary space below this template at internet death penalty. Please fix this problem. (talk) 00:04, 18 May 2008 (UTC)

I looked at the article, but I can't see any unnecessary space. It may be a problem with the way your browser is formatting the articles.--Aervanath's signature is boring 00:15, 18 May 2008 (UTC)


{{editprotected}} Please add the following line:
<noinclude>[[Category:Templates for orphaned articles]]</noinclude>
Thank you.--Aervanath lives in the Orphanage 05:22, 5 June 2008 (UTC)

 Done for this one. However, categories should go in the template documentation and not on the template itself. Anyone can edit the documentation. Best, PeterSymonds (talk) 07:11, 5 June 2008 (UTC)

Proposed usage change

The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

I initiated a discussion [1] about using templates and the point was brought up that perhaps this particular template should be used on the talk page as opposed to in the article itself. The basic line of argument is that being orphaned isn't a critical problem that your casual reader needs to be informed of, in fact most of them probably don't understand what it means. Since only active editors are going to be the ones fixing such problems and they know to look at the talk page, the project would be better served by putting the template there and not cluttering up the article needlessly. Thoughts anyone? Beeblbrox (talk) 19:39, 21 August 2008 (UTC)

I oppose this change. First, an article being orphaned is a quite important problem - namely, these articles often get little attention by editors (and are not found by readers!) because no one can navigate there. Second, I can't see why casual readers should be negatively affected if we require them to scroll 1 cm down. Third, basically all of our maintenance templates are used in article space, and from a technical perspective it's better not to make single exceptions for "prettifying", because processes that involve more than one cleanup tag will be affected. See for example Template:Articleissues and User:B. Wolterding/Cleanup listings. I'd also think that editors want the important problems listed in one location, not split across two locations (article and talk). --B. Wolterding (talk) 23:14, 21 August 2008 (UTC)
Oppose per same reasoning. Deamon138 (talk) 23:28, 21 August 2008 (UTC)
Oppose as well. I agree with B. Wolterding's reasoning, and I also have something further to add: {{orphan}} is the inverse of {{deadend}}. The whole point of having the deadend tag there is to let all readers and editors know that the page needs to be wikilinked so that there are outgoing links to other articles, and that this problem needs to be fixed. The orphan tag is letting readers and editors know that there are probably other pages out there which are insufficiently wikilinked, since they don't link to the article in question, even though they should. This is also a problem that needs to be fixed. The problem may not actually be in the article itself, but it is a problem relating to the article, and therefore should be kept where it is. Also, putting the orphan tag on the talk page would allow experienced editors who are specializing in de-orphaning to find the articles, but most editors don't really just go through trying to fix types of problems, they try to fix up all the problems an article has. Even those of us specializing in one problem area will probably try to solve the other problems an article has if we can see a convenient way to do it, or are interested in the topic. Cheers,--Aervanath lives in the Orphanage 06:45, 22 August 2008 (UTC)
The orphan tag is letting readers and editors know that there are probably other pages out there which are insufficiently wikilinked, since they don't link to the article in question, even though they should. That is the case, in my experience, only in the minority of instances. In many more, there is not an article around from which a link can usefully be mounted. You can argue that the tag alerts us to these missing articles, but in reality, we know that this tag is gong to hang around for years before anyone starts List of Yorkshire County Cricketers and the several thousand articles we'd need before we could get one link to each orphan. And the Orphan project is demanding no less than 3 incoming links before they remove the orphan tag. That is just nonsense. --Tagishsimon (talk) 04:49, 4 February 2009 (UTC)

Oppose. Let's not clutter up the page more than we have to. I would be in favour of putting something at the end of the article however. An invitation to users to help us out should be placed at the end, after we have given him an article. Make it just text with no box, like the stub template. Only warnings should go at the top.Filceolaire (talk) 06:58, 22 August 2008 (UTC)

clarification I didn't mean to say that being orphaned is unimportant, but it doesn't strike me as something the casual reader must be informed of, as opposed to informing them if they are reading an article that is disputed or unverified. I really like the idea of making the tag more unobtrusive like the stub tag, and using it at the bottom instead of the top, that seems like a good compromise. Beeblbrox (talk) 14:45, 22 August 2008 (UTC)

Yes, but I don't see it as such an intrusive template at the top. Templates really only get intrusive if there are multiple tags on one article, which is why we have {{articleissues}}. Unless there is going to be a concerted effort to move a whole set of tags like this to other places, I don't see the need to single out {{orphan}} at this time. So I'm still opposed to moving it anywhere, even the bottom of the article. Also, I think that tags like this, which don't require a lot of work to fix up, serve to entice readers to contribute as new editors: "Hey, I know an article that should link to this..." Cheers, --Aervanath lives in the Orphanage 15:58, 22 August 2008 (UTC)
While a reader might not need to be informed of an orphan problem, editors do, and the best place to inform them is at the top pf the page. If editors are informed, then editors try to fix problems, if problems are fixed, then the readers benefit. I also disagree that readers, "probably don't understand what it means" since it clearly says "This article is orphaned as few or no other articles link to it." I like to give most people the credit to know what "link to it" means, the only people that wouldn't know that would be first-time internet users, and not understanding the orphan tag would be the least of their troubles then! Deamon138 (talk) 19:38, 22 August 2008 (UTC)

Agreed - being orphaned is irrelevant to the casual reader. This tag should definitely not be on the front page. IMHO, regular editors like us have gotten so used to seeing these big ugly tags that we don't realize how much they turn off readers. They should be used for important information for readers, not casual notes to other editors. - DavidWBrooks (talk) 11:52, 23 August 2008 (UTC)

You're right, it is irrelevant to the casual reader...of a paper encyclopedia. However, when you're Wikipedia, "the free encyclopedia that anyone can edit" (emphasis mine), part of our goal is enticing those casual readers to contribute something. {{orphan}} and other tags accomplish just that. I agree that sometimes articles become over-tagged, which is why {{articleissues}} was created. However, most articles that have the orphan tag don't have any other tags on them. Of the last seven articles that were tagged with {{orphan}} when I was writing this, only two of them had other tags on them: one had two other tags, and one only had one other tag. I don't see {{orphan}} as the huge deterrent to our readers that it seems to be viewed as.--Aervanath lives in the Orphanage 13:17, 23 August 2008 (UTC)
ok, ok DavidWBrooks hates all tags and Aervanath really really likes the orphan tag the way it is, i think we can all see that, let's let it go and see if anyone new has something to add. Beeblbrox (talk) 17:42, 23 August 2008 (UTC)
Hey, you never know with these metaphorical horse carcasses...one minute they look dead, and then the next they've reared up and kicked you in the...head. Better give it another smack, just to be sure...ORPHAN TAG AT TOP!! RARRR! ... Ok, I'm finished now. Enough silliness for today. :)--Aervanath lives in the Orphanage 09:52, 24 August 2008 (UTC)

4 ways of looking at it:

  • Orphan templates are somewhat similar to Stub templates – they alert the reader that there may be content issues – in this case, because the article has not yet been incorporated into the web of connections that Wikipedia's articles form. This could indicate that nobody except the original author (and the orphan-tagger or bot) has seen the article.
  • Like a stub template, it encourages the reader to become an editor (by one of the easiest entry routes possible, adding links).
  • It's just as relevant/irrelevant as {{wikify}}, or many of the other style-class ambox templates.
  • The "related topics" link in the template is often both fascinating and useful. It might help or intrigue many a casual reader, as well as editors. (eg Ark of bulrushes)

Hope that helps. -- Quiddity 18:17, 23 August 2008 (UTC)

I think that all of those are good reasons to keep it where it is. (Just making sure the horse is well and truly dead. You never know,) Cheers,--Aervanath lives in the Orphanage 09:52, 24 August 2008 (UTC)
Funny - they struck me as good reasons to not keep it where it is. Stub templates are a great example of searchable/indexable information for editors that don't interfere with readership. - DavidWBrooks (talk) 20:52, 26 August 2008 (UTC)
  • Oppose I'd suggest leaving the Orphan template where it is. Although it doesn't mean there is necessarily anything wrong with the article, a large proportion of articles tagged as Orphan's do have other major problems, such as hoaxes, spam, incoherence and lack of ref's, that have not yet been addressed or tagged. Having something slightly obtrusive on the article which indicates to casual viewer that perhaps not many people have dealt with article yet / its not fully integrated into the encyclopaedia, I think is better than not. Would suggest that for articles that have been checked by an editor other than original author and couldn't be de-orphaned that the Template:Do-attempt could appropriately be moved to the talk page though. Would that work in terms of bots and categories? -Hunting dog (talk) 08:28, 27 August 2008 (UTC)
    • {{do-attempt}} is meant to replace the orphan tag, so wherever the orphan tag goes, that's where do-attempt should go. Since I count more "oppose" than "agree" !votes above, I don't think orphan is going to be moved. Putting do-attempt on the talk pages, then, would just be an extra tag: we'd have to leave the orphan tag on the page (because it's still an orphan) and also put the do-attempt tag on the talk page. So I'm going with the status quo all the way here.--Aervanath lives in the Orphanage 12:17, 30 August 2008 (UTC)
  • Agree On the grounds that the article space is for the readers and talk pages are for the editors. Showing the user a lot of tags they are not intended to read will encourage them to ignore even the tags that are intended for readers. (POV, for example.) APL (talk) 18:10, 29 August 2008 (UTC)
  • When it comes to the "wikify" and "expand" tags, I fully agree with Mr. Brooks that they are more or less pointless. If you know enough to know an article needs to be wikified, you can do it yourself in about 2 minutes in most cases, and if an article is a stub, it's already rated as an article that needs expanding. I think APL makes a good point as well. Beeblbrox (talk) 23:17, 29 August 2008 (UTC)
  • Support What is particularly shocking about this tag is the statement by the responsible project that the tag might have to remain indefinitely in some cases - presumably due to the esoteric nature of the topic. So, in addition to the good arguments above, this indicates that the tag belongs on the talk page, like other permanent tags such as the project templates. Note also that the What links here link is on every readers page and this addresses the linking issue for those readers who care. Colonel Warden (talk) 15:15, 10 October 2008 (UTC)
  • Support Deorphaning is an important editing function that does not really impact the reader. Editors that have an interest in the project could pickup the need from the tag on the talk page or as a hidden category. Presentation is important to Wikipedia being accepted as a serious information resource rather than a sandbox for aspiring writers/editors. --Sultec (talk) 12:48, 24 October 2008 (UTC)

The discussion above is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

Do-attempt merge

I think it would be reasonable and possible to merge {{do-attempt}} here. There have been some objections above that do-attempt doesn't belong on the article page, as the fact that the de-orphaning has been attempted isn't really relevant to the reader. The only reason for do-attempt's existence in the first place is to make it easier for the editors at WikiProject Orphanage to organize their work. This could still be done with {{orphan}} alone. We would just change it so that {{orphan}} could accept an optional "att=" parameter. If that parameter existed, then the article would be categorized as an attempted de-orphan, instead of as a regular orphan. However, the displayed language would stay the same. I've prepared an example at Template:Orphan/Sandbox, and an example of what the transclusion would look like is at Template:Orphan/Sandbox 2. You can see that the transclusion uses the "att=" parameter, and categorizes it as such, but that this is not reflected anywhere in the article unless you have the ability to see hidden categories.--Aervanath lives in the Orphanage 03:22, 24 October 2008 (UTC)

  • Support See my reasoning in the section above. --Sultec (talk) 12:48, 24 October 2008 (UTC)
  • Support This makes it easier for bots and such to find the orphan tags. I also propose merging all the orphan tags into one tag. Also, a page should be made which shows all of the orphan tags for people who want to know which one to use. ManishEarthTalk 08:45, 26 October 2008 (UTC)
  • Support Anything that makes de-orphaning easier is good. Beeblebrox (talk) 20:35, 15 November 2008 (UTC)

Style edits


I've started a sandbox for this template with some tweaks to the wording and layout. Just needs synced. Chris Cunningham (not at work) - talk 19:22, 25 November 2008 (UTC)

 Done - Rjd0060 (talk) 19:27, 25 November 2008 (UTC)

Template direction

This template directs users first and foremost to the project page which contains this information:

"The Orphanage is dedicated to clearing the immense backlog of orphaned articles and images. There are thousands of articles and images on Wikipedia with few or no links to them. While it may seem simple at first, de-orphaning is a difficult task, and this project aims to make it easier.

Building the web is a big part of Wikipedia, so join in the project and give those articles a home!

This is a recruiting poster for the project and will give editors, especially noobies, no clue as to why the tag is there and how to fix it. If you're going to use the tag to recruit project members it should go on the article talk page, not on the article. If it's for prescribing what to fix it should link first to how to fix what's wrong with the article. --KP Botany (talk) 23:02, 16 February 2009 (UTC)

I am inclined to agree that it should link to something more targeted at explaining what orphan is, how to correct the problem, and why links to an article are valuable. Of course the page linked to does have much of that, but should get more directly to the important bit. Zodon (talk) 07:50, 19 February 2009 (UTC)
This is a reasonably suggestion. Maybe we should move the criteria to a separate page, like WP:What is an orphan? or WP:Orphan criteria. Then this template couldn't be perceived as an advertisement, which it was never meant to be.--Aervanath (talk) 01:24, 20 February 2009 (UTC)
Aervanath, you must have forgotten that the template only points at the WikiProject because it follows a redirect that you created from Wikipedia:Orphan. I've now reverted that redirect, so now that link no longer takes noobs to the WikiProject. I suggest restoring the definition and criteria to Wikipedia:Orphan, where it was originally. Hesperian 10:37, 20 February 2009 (UTC)
I had completely forgotten that I'd done that. At the time there were a large amount of different pages about orphans scattered around project-space; it probably seemed more efficient at the time to have it all in one place. Obviously there was a good reason for keeping that particular one separate! :) I totally agree that the criteria and definition should be restored to Wikipedia:Orphan. Thanks for starting that for us.--Aervanath (talk) 15:39, 20 February 2009 (UTC)
I think reverting the redirect may have been premature. Although the orphanage article had some problems as a target (both in content, and evidently as a policy matter), it had more helpful material than the reverted redirect article does.
We might want to consider (temporarily) going back to redirecting to the orphanage page while we put together something a little more orderly for it to direct to. Especially since we have all these new orphan tags out there, might be better to have a fairly stable page for them to link to, rather than something undergoing construction.
I think the material linked to should include not just what an orphan is, but suggestions of how to find related articles, and background on why de-orphaning is beneficial (as well as cautions about overlinking).
If the page linked to is to be a separate page than the project page, then the project page should be reformulated to use that page as well (without duplicating it). If we have multiple versions of the definition, instructions, etc. they will tend to drift apart, not be kept up to date, etc. Zodon (talk) 00:43, 21 February 2009 (UTC)
As I said on Wikipedia talk:Orphan, by way of explaining my revert: "The first link, in bold, on {{orphan}}, a heavily used mainspace template, is to this page. There is a longstanding rule that we don't insert WikiProject links into the mainspace. For example such links are not permitted on stub notices. The redirecting of this article was causing that rule to be broken." Hesperian 04:00, 21 February 2009 (UTC)

Merging geo-orphan code into this template

I was looking at {{geo-orphan}}, seems like the code is almost identical. Had a go at merging the geo-orphan code into orphan at the sandbox here. (Added a geo parameter - if it is defined, then a geo orphan.) With that, then geo-orphan would just copy it's parameters and call orphan. (e.g. {{orphan|{{{1}}}|geo=yes|date={{{date|}}}|att={{{att|}}}}})

The code for Do-attempt-geo is a little more different (mostly in the display, think the code in sandbox may do most of the category changes already). Zodon (talk) 09:30, 17 February 2009 (UTC)

To be honest, I don't even see the point of {{geo-orphan}}, or the associated category. I'd rather we simply replaced all transclusions of {{geo-orphan}} with {{orphan}} and deleted all the "orphans about a place from X date" cats. Chris Cunningham (not at work) - talk 10:30, 17 February 2009 (UTC)
It does seem to be little used so far. As I understand it, it was largely created to help deal with a bot Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Orphanage see item titled {{geo-orphan}}, but I don't know the status of the bot, whether WP:Orphanage has particular plans for it, etc. Zodon (talk) 11:49, 17 February 2009 (UTC)
I created the template in response to the possible creation of thousands of geo-stubs last year by User:FritzpollBot. See the history of Wikipedia:Village pump (proposals)/FritzpollBot for the discussion there. However, since the bot never went into operation, the geo-orphan template and do-attempt-geo template are superfluous. If there are no objections, I think we can just replace them all with {{orphan}} and then delete the templates. If there aren't any objections in the next day or so, I'll just go ahead and delete them myself.--Aervanath (talk) 16:41, 17 February 2009 (UTC)
Why would you be less specific? This could categorize geo orphans in a way where they were accessible to a specific group of knowledgeable editors. I don't see orphan editors editing plant articles. Addbot's owner had a click here link to see what project orphan is doing, and it turned up a bunch of de-orphaned articles. I clicked on one "Brain type," and it was a disaster. Someone appears to have made links to that article simply to remove the orphan tag, and all of the links were improper links about Jungian typology, implying that brain typing is Jungian typology. I'm not impressed. --KP Botany (talk) 08:31, 21 February 2009 (UTC)
Maybe should hold off on deleting it until the direction on orphan tagging, etc. gets ironed out (might wind up being useful). Would be well to note proposed removal on the template's talk page, and bring it up in Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Geography (noting of course the availability of {{lonelypages}} tool). Though they don't seem to have used it much, they should have opportunity to discuss if they want. Zodon (talk) 23:51, 21 February 2009 (UTC)
There are 12 of these articles. I will make Geo-orphan a redirect, it can be reverted if it is ever needed. Rich Farmbrough, 09:24, 25 June 2009 (UTC).

New Template Version

I propose to change the current template to the version I have edited here. Comments are welcome. ·Add§hore· Talk To Me! 20:37, 26 February 2009 (UTC)

 Done ·Add§hore· Talk To Me! 07:33, 27 February 2009 (UTC)

Style tweaks, again


Addshore's recent changes undid the work to bring the template styling in line with that proposed at WT:TC#Standardisation of template styling. I've edited the sandbox again to bring it back in line; just needs synced. Chris Cunningham (not at work) - talk 11:15, 27 February 2009 (UTC)

 Done, Sorry I was un aware of WT:TC#Standardisation of template styling. ·Add§hore· Talk To Me! 12:20, 27 February 2009 (UTC)

Proposal to make orphan tag zero-article links only

Recently it has come to light (from my work on the new Lonelypages) that over 750,000 articles qualify as orphans under the WikiProject Orphanage criteria. That's over 25% of all articles in Wikipedia.

As it now stands, that means it's OK to put this template on all of those articles. Before, no one knew that so many articles qualified for this tag. Now that we know, I think we should scale back the qualifications to prevent over-tagging.

I'd like to propose that we change the first sentence of the template to "This article is an orphan, as no other articles link to it." and restrict the placement of this tag to articles with zero article links. (But please note that per the Orphanage criteria, a link from a "List of .." or chronological article is not considered a valid article link. So an article with no links except one from List of companies in Atlanta would still qualify for an orphan tag. Otherwise we would be aiding and abetting over-listing.)

Currently, there are over 135,000 articles with no links from the article namespace at all, and an additional 90,000 that are only have links from lists. So that would still cover a lot of articles, and help focus our de-orphaning efforts on the neediest articles. If/when we overcome that backlog, we could revisit this tag. --JaGatalk 04:01, 2 March 2009 (UTC)

I fully support this idea. ·Add§hore· Talk To Me! 06:25, 2 March 2009 (UTC)
So your idea is to improve the situation by making a tag that goes on 225,000 articles that says nothing to the reader of the article? --KP Botany (talk) 06:29, 2 March 2009 (UTC)
Orphaned articles are typically low-interest subjects which don't receive very much direct traffic either; anything which can be done to get more eyes on them is helpful. Chris Cunningham (not at work) - talk 10:36, 2 March 2009 (UTC)
You think a collection of 225,000 articles will make it more likely that an editor will edit it? I'm still waiting for this Wikipedia project to come up with a sensible wait of de-orphaning obscure species. I think a task that is never ending and beyond the capability of the editing group while it interferes with using the articles is bad. --KP Botany (talk) 11:19, 2 March 2009 (UTC)
I think that these things should at least be tracked on Wikipedia itself, as opposed to by some external tool. There's little point in having an {{orphan}} tag for cleanup purposes at all if it's deployed on only a small fraction of applicable articles. If we didn't have obscure automatically-generated content dumped into articles in the first place this would probably not be an issue. Chris Cunningham (not at work) - talk 12:35, 2 March 2009 (UTC)
KP, the tags on zero link orphans are already placed. The Orphanage isn't placing any more tags until we work through the current backlog. This proposal will result in less orphan tags, not more, because I could then change my Adopted orphans script to remove the tags from all articles with at least one article link. You complain about a task that is "never ending", and when I make a proposal that would make removing orphan tags much easier, you oppose it. --JaGatalk 16:17, 2 March 2009 (UTC)

I have mixed feelings about this proposal.

  • What to tag: At this point I don't think we should automatically tag articles beyond those with no incoming links.
  • Tag removal: As to automatically removing tags with one incoming link, not sure about that.
    • Automatic removal for tags at the project threshold (whatever agree isn't orphan) is fine.
    • I would rather see more basis (theoretical or experimental) for determining what that threshold should be. Even if this is intended as an interim measure, it may become viewed as the de facto standard for what is an orphan.
While I suggested something similar, my idea was that the items automatically tagged would indicate the basis used for the automatic tagging, and leave to the discretion of the editor how many links to introduce before removing the tag.
  • How long will it take:
    • That is a lot of pages, but how fast are orphans being created or removed? (i.e. how long will it take to deorphan all those pages?)
    • A major change has just taken place in efforts to wp:build the web - i.e., this tag has been introduced on a lot of articles. Do we have even preliminary results on what the effects of this change are? (Is there baseline data from before the recent change so we could estimate effects of the intervention? Is data being gathered now to monitor trends/progress? Has there even been time to gather statistics about the effects of recent changes? Preliminary results?)
    • Most of the edits affecting orphan status are done by people who are not part of orphanage project. The most impact on orphan status by the orphanage project may be by providing tools and assistance, direct edits by the editors in the project may be of secondary impact.

I think that offering a way to hide the tagging on an article might deal with much of the current objection to this tag.

    • The orphan tag removal might interact poorly with an orphan tag hiding parameter. (e.g., team A decides item can't reasonably be deorphaned, adds hide parameter; link to article is introduce, bot removes orphan tag (and hide parameter); link is removed (e.g. was overlink, article deleted, ...); article is once again tagged, members of team A have to check it again and put hide back)

While I think revision of the definition may be in order, think we should get more information before changing. Changing the bots is the easy bit - it is changing people's expectations, all the documentation, etc. Zodon (talk) 21:34, 3 March 2009 (UTC)

Proposal - add deorphan attempt option that hides message box

Propose adding a parameter that when set to one of a particular set of values would suppress display of the orphan tag, and would change the categorization to indicate that the orphan appears to be unadoptable. (i.e. there is no prospect for introducing appropriate links to the article from other articles). (See Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Orphanage#This is an important issue for initial suggestion and other discussion of this idea.)

The parameter could be further augmented by other parameters to provide supplementary information about the attempt and the hide decision and facilitate review of such decisions by bots or other editors. (For instance a date parameter could be filled in by smackbot, so that old hide decisions could be revisited as the encyclopedia matures. The reviewer could indicate their primary wikiproject background, since editors from other projects might bring different perspective to potential for deorphaning.)

Examples of articles where the use of such a parameter might be appropriate include areas involving lots of members of a highly structured category, like individual species (particularly plants, 2,000 orphans (not all are species) out of 30,000 articles in project), minor astronomical objects (Category:HD and HDE objects (of the 1,000 or so, 200 are orphans), minor planets), people of minor note, minor geographical divisions.

There is value in having people review these items (as compared to suggestions that such categories should not be tagged at all) since, in many cases, reasonable links are possible (or other treatments, such as merging, deletion, etc. are appropriate), and review facilitates error discovery and correction (see Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Tree of life#Orphan tags on species stubs).

The proposed parameter would give a facility for reviewers to mark particular articles who's orphan status has been reviewed (like att), so other reviewers can focus on things that haven't been checked (or that have, as they prefer). However, rather than using the date, which can easily be added by a robot, the reviewer provides something that a robot can't do - a reason (from a set menu of reasons) why the article does not appear to be de-orphanable.

I haven't come up with a name for the proposed parameter that seems satisfactory, or particular set of values to start with. But think that using values that indicate what sort of a thing this is and why it is hard to de-orphan would facilitate review. In addition to comments on the proposal in general, would appreciate suggestions for parameter name, and ideas of values. Thank you. Zodon (talk) 22:33, 3 March 2009 (UTC)

  • Support. Taken from a seed of an idea I proposed, Zodon has filled this concept out nicely. It should be very workable and address many of the issues that have recently cropped up. Bantman (talk) 03:44, 4 March 2009 (UTC)
  • Weak support. Orphans cause various problems (most notably in terms of not getting noticed by editors which might improve them), and most orphans are adoptable (for example, species linked from genus articles, minor people linked from other minor people, geographical articles linked from a geographical article for a larger area) or should be merged anyway. Having said all that, it is kind of pointless to get editors frustrated about needing to "shut up the bot" (for example by making pointless links or whatever), so I suspect the benefits of this parameter would outweigh the downsides. I do like the idea of picking a reason from a list - that's not much work but would be helpful in sorting out things later. Kingdon (talk) 19:02, 4 March 2009 (UTC)
  • Comment The problem is the way the articles were tagged I don't see how it can be made useful. Where is the list of plant orphans? --KP Botany (talk) 07:15, 5 March 2009 (UTC)
List of orphans by project is generated by a tool that is still in development, there is some discussion of the tool on the orphanage talk page, but as far as I know the tool isn't ready for release yet. Zodon (talk) 08:30, 5 March 2009 (UTC)


If it helps any, I put together a demo of how this could be coded and could appear. The code is in the sandbox (added ook parameter, with possible values of "minor species", "minor person", "minor place", and ookdate for optional dating). To see it in action - if leave out the ook tag, or set to something other than pre-determined values, the orphan box still shows, if set ook=minor person the orphan message disappears. In actual operation the categories assigned by the tag would (probably) be hidden, just as the current orphan categories are hidden. (Details of category hierarchy, etc. to be determined. As noted above, don't have a good name for the parameter, so ook was just a placeholder.) Zodon (talk) 08:30, 5 March 2009 (UTC)

"checked"? Agathoclea (talk) 09:36, 5 March 2009 (UTC)
Agathoclea - please clarify, not sure what you are asking. Thanks. Zodon (talk) 20:30, 5 March 2009 (UTC)
As for the name of the parameter, agree that ook is just a placeholder, and I'd suggest "checked" as a name for the parameter. Kingdon (talk) 14:50, 6 March 2009 (UTC)

Soster origin.

Family name Soster can have differen origin. See Giulio Pizzati: "Bartolomeo Soster". —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 04:58, 20 March 2009 (UTC)

Add link to tool

{{editprotected}} Please add a link to http://edwardbetts.com/find_link in the same fashion that Nickj's Link Suggester tool is linked from {{deadend}}. --Waldir talk 10:52, 30 April 2009 (UTC)

Can you get consensus for this before adding the {{editprotected}}? It sounds like an interesting idea but I am not familiar with this tool. Also there are already four links in the current template which is quite a lot. — Martin (MSGJ · talk) 12:11, 30 April 2009 (UTC)
I didn't think the issue could be controversial. But you're right, there are already four links in the template -- regarding this, I think the one pointing to Help:link is not that useful for the purposes of this template, perhaps it could be removed. But let's wait and see what others say about these two suggestions :) --Waldir talk 22:34, 30 April 2009 (UTC)
I'm reactivating the editprotected template. I came across the tool again today and it once again proved very handy. Try it, it has a list of articles that can be used as examples. Since noone commented, I am asking you to be bold and remove the help:link link and add this one. I'm sure it will benefit users of this template. --Waldir talk 10:05, 12 December 2009 (UTC)
Could you be a little more precise? Do you want to add "Suggestions are available." to the end and link the word "suggestions" to this tool? — Martin (MSGJ · talk) 13:10, 12 December 2009 (UTC)

[restored indentation] Sorry for the delay. Yes, that would be a good change, but now I'm wondering if the "related articles" should be linked to the google search. That kind of endorses Google's results. I know those are good :), but they provide basically the same functionality as this tool. Not only this change would create a biased text, as it could confound people. I see a few options here:

I would prefer versions 2 or 3. What do you think? Btw, maybe it would be a good idea to replace "introduce links" by the simpler yet equivalent "add links". --Waldir talk 18:11, 20 December 2009 (UTC)

 Done Since no real consensus on the version was created, I boldly and stupidly added a version of the "suggest" text. Feel free to drop a line on my talk page if the text can be improved and I'll re-edit it. tedder (talk) 20:06, 28 December 2009 (UTC)

Problem with categorizing, can someone please fix this?

Quote from template doc:

"If the "att" parameter is set, the article will still be in Category:All orphaned articles, but instead of placing the article into "Category:Orphaned articles from {{{date}}}" (e.g. Category:Orphaned articles from April 2008), it places it into "Category:Attempted de-orphan in {{{att}}} (e.g. Category:Attempted de-orphan in April 2008)."

The problem is, it's NOT still in Category:All orphaned articles. Once the att= parameter is used, the article gets removed from the "All orphaned articles" category entirely, making the date= parameter (which marks the original date the orphan tag was placed) completely useless. See this diff for an example of what I'm talking about. -- OlEnglish (Talk) 01:50, 1 June 2009 (UTC)

Should be fixed now.--Aervanath (talk) 18:33, 5 June 2009 (UTC)
Awesome, thanks. -- œ 11:15, 7 June 2009 (UTC)

{{Surname}} pages

I'm concerned about {{Surname}} pages being tagged as {{Orphan}} inappropriately. These pages serve two functions: as a disambiguation-like way to navigate to articles on holders of the surname, and sometimes as an article about the surname itself. The article should be in a category, but there are no appropriate incoming links - it will be found using "Go" or "Search". See discussion at Wikipedia_talk:WikiProject_Orphanage#.7B.7Bsurname.7D.7D_pages, rather than replying to this here to fragment the discussion. Thanks. PamD (talk) 08:47, 10 June 2009 (UTC)

These are WP:SETINDEX pages and I agree they should not be tagged. Perhaps a change in the orphan tagging bot is needed. -- œ 00:41, 11 June 2009 (UTC)
THere's now a consolidated discussion at Wikipedia_talk:WikiProject_Disambiguation#Surname_Pages_.26_Orphan_Criteria. PamD (talk) 15:27, 5 July 2009 (UTC)

Rewording proposal

I would like to propose that part of this template be reworded. At the moment, it says:

This article is an orphan, as few or no other articles link to it.

This could potentially be confusing, as "few" is subjective, and doesn't make clear the amount of links necessary for an article not to be considered an orphan. Therefore, I would like to propose that the wording be changed to:

This article is an orphan, as fewer than three articles link to it.

This allows editors to see at a glance how many links are required, and makes it easier to tell if the article has been mis-labelled. Any thoughts?--Unscented (talk) 18:31, 5 July 2009 (UTC)

At Wikipedia_talk:WikiProject_Orphanage/Archive_1#Suggestion_-_no-link_orphans_tag, we decided to give up on tagging articles with three or less links and just go with those with NO links, since there were so many of them. Perhaps just modify the template to say that "This article is an orphan, as few or no other articles link to it." If we ever get anywhere near linking all the ones with no links, we can slowly upgrade the template.--Aervanath (talk) 19:12, 5 July 2009 (UTC)
And I doubt that will happen anytime soon, if ever. But we can hope. :) --Aervanath (talk) 19:13, 5 July 2009 (UTC)

More rewording proposal

The worse part is the trouble caused by the blunt instruction, "Please introduce links to this page from other articles related to it." Well-meaning but misguided editors randoming adding links to worthless stubs and such is causing a lot of trouble, e.g. see Wavelength (talk · contribs · deleted contribs · logs · edit filter log · block user · block log).

How about "Please introduce links to this page from other articles related to it, if appropriate, or improve the article until it is worth linking to." or something to that effect? Dicklyon (talk) 05:19, 4 August 2009 (UTC)

I'm currently trying to give Wavelength some advice on his talkpage regarding how to de-orphan but he seems set in his ways. -- œ 05:28, 4 August 2009 (UTC)
I think he's just simple minded and is following instructions. That's why changing the instructions might help. Dicklyon (talk) 06:09, 4 August 2009 (UTC)
No he's a very intelligent person, just stubbornly not following the instructions properly, that's the problem. I don't think changing the instructions would make any difference. -- œ 16:52, 4 August 2009 (UTC)

Time to welcome orphans with open arms

Please see: Wikipedia:Village Pump (proposals)#Time to welcome orphans with open arms.
V = I * R (talk to Ω) 15:03, 19 November 2009 (UTC)

The proposal being floated at that discussion is to not have the template message appear anymore, but simply have the template add the appropriate category - I support this proposal. Knowing that other pages don't link to the page they are looking at is of no use for a reader, as it doesn't affect the readability or credibility of the article. A category is still valuable for maintenance. Fences&Windows 15:06, 24 November 2009 (UTC)
I agree, but it would be better off on the talk page as that is what talk pages are for. See Wikipedia talk:Orphan#This maintenance template should be placed on the talk page -- PBS (talk) 08:12, 3 March 2010 (UTC)
This issue needs much broader input than will ever be found here. For all the users that place orphan tags (many of which are done through automated edits) they need to have some input, and I would have had no idea about this discussion absent a very helpful message from PBS. Before any major changes happen regarding this tag, it needs to be put to a much wider audience. Shadowjams (talk) 08:26, 3 March 2010 (UTC)
Discussions about alterations to a template should be made on the talk page of the template. Who else would you like in the discussion?-- PBS (talk) 09:01, 3 March 2010 (UTC)
This is a wide issue that requires further discussion. Shadowjams (talk) 09:32, 3 March 2010 (UTC)
The proposal failed anyway, so there's not much to discuss here. Chris Cunningham (not at work) - talk 10:00, 3 March 2010 (UTC)
The link is not working for me. Where is this discussion? -- Magioladitis (talk) 10:04, 3 March 2010 (UTC)
Archived, four months ago. Chris Cunningham (not at work) - talk 10:22, 3 March 2010 (UTC)

<--Not sure how you (Chris Cunningham) come to the conclusion.

Wikipedia:Village pump (proposals)/Archive 55#Time to welcome orphans with open arms

>== Time to welcome orphans with open arms ==

The policy of trying to "build the web" was appropriate when WP was 10-100,000 articles. Now coverage is wider it is unreasonable to expect Bulbophyllum abbreviatum, for example, to have more than one link, and I am perfectly certain that almost all people looking for the article will find it by search rather than link. Moreover for species, asteroids, stars, planets, genes, chemicals and pharmaceuticals, at least, we are in danger of creating, or indeed have created, main-space lists either as stand-alone article, or as dominant parts of articles, whose function is performed as well or better by categories - just to get that all important what links here. Time to stop deprecating orphans. Rich Farmbrough, 22:01, 18 November 2009 (UTC).

I don't really think that means we have to stop identifying and integrating orphans, and I'm not sure why having lists would be a problem. The reason we have lists is because some people do navigate that way, and expecting people to be forced to the search box for the obscure ones seems silly to me. --Izno (talk) 22:33, 18 November 2009 (UTC)
I, for one, like the webyness of wikipedia, and think that making connections between articles with the use of [[links]] is important. IMO of course. Tim1357 (talk) 23:02, 18 November 2009 (UTC)
Many articles are massively overlinked. Wikilinks should be used when there is a reasonable probability that a typical reader would want to follow them, not simply because the target of the link exists. As a general rule, add a wikilink when the target is either closely related to the current article, or else obscure.
It is especially important not to wikilink extremely broad topics from articles that are either only tangentially related, or are much more specific than the broad topic. As an example of the first, in an article on Albert Einstein, when mentioning a visit to the California Institute of Technology, there is no need to wikilink California. (OTOH California probably should be wikilinked in the article on the California Institute of Technology.)
As an example of the second case, in the article on the Stone–Čech compactification, there is no need to wikilink mathematics. --Trovatore (talk) 23:13, 18 November 2009 (UTC)
Identifying them is fine -- though I would have to agree with what Rich is saying, in that having them isn't inherent BAD or at all an indication or no notability. Sometimes there's just very little that COULD link to something, because of its specificness. ♫ Melodia Chaconne ♫ (talk) 23:10, 18 November 2009 (UTC)
Yes, encouraging sensible linking is fine, but it's "time to stop deprecating orphans". I can endorse that. --Kleinzach 23:27, 18 November 2009 (UTC)
Agreed. A category is fine, but a big ugly tag isn't helpful. Why does the reader need to know that other articles don't link to the one they're reading? Fences&Windows 02:51, 19 November 2009 (UTC)
Maybe a simple change to {{orphan}}, making it just a category, would work?--Unionhawk Talk E-mail Review 02:59, 19 November 2009 (UTC)
Good idea. Sometimes the editor needs a reminder that an article that might be linked isn't — but it should be unobtrusive to the reader. --Kleinzach 09:02, 19 November 2009 (UTC)
I like this plan, with the proviso that the category be given some name meaningful to non-insiders - "Articles linked to by very few other articles" or something similar but less clumsy. Pseudomonas(talk) 10:59, 19 November 2009 (UTC)
I wanted to offer support for this plan as well. Note that I've also linked to this discussion from Template talk:Orphan.
V = I * R (talk to Ω) 15:04, 19 November 2009 (UTC)
I wasn't aware that tagging orphans for cleanup was mandatory. We try to de-orphan articles because it is helpful to readers. We stop if that's not possible. So it has been, so it will be. There are no changes required here. I'm especially opposed to any changes to the display or placement of {{orphan}} itself. Chris Cunningham (not at work) - talk 18:46, 19 November 2009 (UTC)
"De-orphaning" articles may be very helpful to readers, but that's a large generalization. No one can really agree on what puts an article into the "orphan" category anyway.
Anyway, the intent with all of the cleanup tags is that none of them are required to be used. Unfortunately, the reality for all of them in actual practice seems to be that there are many people who seem to think that they are required. I don't have any real statistics or anything, but the impression is that there are many people running around looking for articles to tag (an activity often referred to as "drive by tagging". The existence of such a phrase ought to give a somewhat empirical sense of the size of the problem). This sort of activity is at least marginally helpful, but... Personally, I'm very ready to support any proposal to move cleanup tags onto talk pages, but no one really seems willing (or able) to step up and make it happen.
V = I * R (talk to Ω) 21:26, 19 November 2009 (UTC)
As I'm wont to point out, I'm in the top 250 contributors by edit count and I direct my work almost exclusively by "drive-by tagging" articles that have problems and coming back to them later to fix them. That the tagging system is so advanced at this point suggests that I'm hardly alone in this regard. I'm happy to have a discussion on the intricacies of what makes for an orphan, but not on the general principle of tag-first-fix-later which results in huge improvements in Wikipedia every day at the cost of offending the aesthetic sensibilities of those who dislike tags as flags. Chris Cunningham (not at work) - talk 01:33, 20 November 2009 (UTC)
Let me ask you this then, what would be the objection to placing the tags on the talk pages? I don't care how you work, honestly (and I really don't care what your edit count is, to be blunt), but it does bother me that your editing activities get in the way of my reading and sometimes even editing. Again, I'd like to reiterate that this has very little to do with aesthetics, and I frankly find it somewhat insulting to have my concerns in this dismissed as a minor aesthetic problem.
As for the orphan tag itself, I don't think that anyone really needs to pontificate on it's deeper meanings, but if you'd like to do so feel free. Rich seems to be making a good point though in that this particular classification has probably outlived it's usefulness.
V = I * R (talk to Ω) 13:26, 20 November 2009 (UTC)
They can't be targeted to sections, we already have a separate tagging system for talk pages, it's more effort both to add and remove them. "I'm all for dismissing the weighting of an argument on the basis of edit count in general, but in this case it is intricately tied to the outcome of the discussion (because I'm heavily in favour of tags because I place a large number of them, and this demonstrably makes me more productive). If you want to hide all cleanup tags it's trivial to do so with a bit of code in your monobook.css; it is somewhat less trivial to suggest a workaround in the opposite direction. Chris Cunningham (not at work) - talk 15:04, 25 November 2009 (UTC)
Rich, I'm not clear on what you are proposing here. If you want to reduce the number of lists through some deletion campaign, then that needs to be handled with some sensitivity. Some lists are useful, & could be valuable contributions to Wikipedia. A list of species in a genera -- to refer back to your example -- could be seriously considered for FL status if it included a discussion of the various schools of thought on the taxonomy of a given genus -- authorities differ, sometimes quite radically, over what belongs to a given genus, & old classifications persist in non-biological works. Some lists are, well to be kind, relics of the old days of Wikipedia when we were all concerned about sufficient coverage & preserving orphans. (List of Egypt-related topics would be an example of that, although it is useful for its "Related changes" link.) If you want editors to stop reviewing lists of orphan articles to find ways to link to them from other articles, that shouldn't be done, because it serves as a useful tool for finding problems with existing articles; to provide one example (exaggerated for effect), if I discovered Bill Gates was an orphan, I'd immediately start looking at a number of articles I know that exist & ought to mention him to see what was changed. Or are you proposing something different from these? -- llywrch (talk) 21:57, 19 November 2009 (UTC)
No I certainly don't propose a list-purge - although the dynamic nature of categories is better for some lists. And explicit reciprocal link lists are often useful Dariusz Szlachetko maybe should link to the Bulbophyllum example above. "a useful tool for finding problems with existing articles" well so does "random article" or any of the cleanup categories. Rich Farmbrough, 11:04, 28 November 2009 (UTC).
Ohms law: "I'm very ready to support any proposal to move cleanup tags onto talk pages . . . ." Good, I'm not for putting all cleanup tags on talk pages, but this particular (orphan) tag would be better there. --Kleinzach 01:51, 20 November 2009 (UTC)
If anyone does decide to move forward with a proposal in this area, we should talk about the different cleanup templates individually as well as the group as a whole. It's generally a bad idea to paint whole groups of items with the same brush, after all.
V = I * R (talk to Ω) 19:49, 20 November 2009 (UTC)
Yes I agree, that is why I focus on the Orphan tag. Being an orphan is sign, not a symptom or a problem per se. I suppose a simple solution would be an <ok> paramter - that would simply hide the tag, remove it from the clean-up category, stop anyone re-tagging and leave an implicit message "we have spotted that this is an orphan but it's cool". Might also be applicable to some other tags. Rich Farmbrough, 11:04, 28 November 2009 (UTC).

As it seems to me that the majority who took part were not in favour of the current setup. -- PBS (talk) 20:31, 3 March 2010 (UTC)

The consensus on that discussion was about whether or not to "cleanup" orphans by adding links to them, or alternatively changing the orphan system into a category. The discussion about putting them on talk pages was mentioned by two people, Ohms_law's response to Chris, and then Kleinzach's endorsement. That was the extent of discussion about that proposal.
Tellingly, after that discussion I see no rush to move orphan tags to talk pages.
I can only assume you would like to revive that discussion. That's fine, but it should be explicitly stated and have wide input. A village pump or an RfC specific to that goal would work. Shadowjams (talk) 21:09, 3 March 2010 (UTC)
The options, to remove the text from the template so that it only shows in a hidden(?) category, is one option. But presumably if an editor wants editors who review the page to add links, and the visiting editor has not come to it via a specific category link, then the editor who wants more links would also have to place a request onto the talk page. The other option is to move the template to the talk page and not place it in article space at all. The point is that is an editorial decision for what is most convenient for editors, it has nothing to do with readers. The current implementation may be the most convenient for editors, but it is also the most intrusive for readers. -- PBS (talk) 00:14, 4 March 2010 (UTC)
Please expand upon this list if I've missed things, but I see the arguments like this:
Disadvantages with current system
  • The orphan tag is intrusive and at the top of the page; orphan status is not easily fixed with automated techniques (unlike categorization) so they tend to stay longer than many other tags
  • Orphan status does not indicate problems with the article per se, especially if it's easily visited by off-wiki links or searches
Advantages of current approach
  • A category or less visible method (like the talk page method) of indicating orphan status would result in less fixing
  • Tags aren't disruptive because the articles are scarcely visited; when de-orphaned and visited more, the tag is removed
I think everyone agrees that articles should have at least one or two incoming links to them.
Please expand on the pros and cons. Shadowjams (talk) 01:15, 4 March 2010 (UTC)
As you said yourself, this isn't the place for this conversation. If for some reason you want to continue to discuss it please take it to a different venue so that this can be archived; it's not the purpose of this template talk page. Chris Cunningham (not at work) - talk 12:49, 4 March 2010 (UTC)
If the talk page of a template is not the place to discuss where to place a template then where is? I can see the point of advertising a discussion somewhere else to include a larger audience, but it was discussions about guidelines in forum other than on the talk paged of the guidelined that led to "Amendments to a proposal should be discussed on [policy or guideline's]] talk page (not on a new page)" in WP:policies and guidelines. -- PBS (talk) 20:25, 8 March 2010 (UTC)

google search

Could we replace google search with internal search? Not sure if it's a good idea to link to commercial third-party sites in these widely used templates. --rainman (talk) 14:50, 1 December 2009 (UTC)

Can you give a link to a proper internal search? The reality is that Google searches are generally better than the internal searches. tedder (talk) 20:07, 28 December 2009 (UTC)
The result of the RfC Template talk:Refimprove#RFC: Should a link to a commercial search engine be included in the template Refimprove is that links to Google are depreciated. See for example see this edit to Template:BLP unsourced so I propose we replace
-- PBS (talk) 08:48, 3 March 2010 (UTC)
Half Support-For one thing, having a direct link to Google (or any other outside company, website, etc.) could essentially be conceived as advertising and possibly even a POV towards Google. (If Wikipedia uses links to Google to search for its information, then it is OBVIOUSLY must be better than other search sites like Yahoo for finding information!)
Also, how well does the search itself actually work. What if the name of the article was extremely broad or was in general a bad search term (i.e. Blog)? If you put the word "blog" into a search bar you would get thousands of links to actual blogs, instead of information about blogging. And also, Wikipedia is also usually one of the first links that come up during a search, so then you're right back where you started!
However, whether we should replace it with an internal link or have no link at all depends on what de-orphaning actually means. If "orphan" means it just has no internal links, then an internal search is better. If you HAVE to have external links to be considered de-orphaned, then just have no link, or have a link to a "WP:" page with tips for de-orphaning. That way, people can use their own search engine, with their own search terms to find relevant pages.
-- (talk) 22:35, 8 March 2010 (UTC)
Support Since a similar request already passed through RfC I think it is uncontroversial enough so an admin can do it without much more further delay? --rainman (talk) 03:34, 9 March 2010 (UTC)
I made the change, but I suspect it will need fettling to only look at article space -- PBS (talk) 01:32, 10 March 2010 (UTC)

"Suggestions are available" when they aren't

It can be frustrating for the tag to say "Suggestions are available" when the link turns up no suggestions. Would anyone object to changing this to "Suggestions may be available", or else to have a parameter that suppresses display of the suggestion link, or perhaps both? I assume that detecting an empty suggestion set automatically and dynamically changing the display to fit the result is not feasible. DES (talk) 21:54, 16 March 2010 (UTC)

No objections here. Go for it. -- œ 13:28, 23 March 2010 (UTC)

This template keeps appearing on airline destination list articles

Is it possible to prevent bots from adding this template to airline destination lists? These articles aren't meant to be linked from any other article except the article of the airline itself, but this template seems to appear about three or four times a year on each article. Any way to stop this? --Footyfanatic3000 (talk  · contribs) 22:53, 4 June 2010 (UTC)

Example? -- Magioladitis (talk) 23:40, 4 June 2010 (UTC)
Examples are here and here and here, however I'm after realising on closer inspection that these templates are being added using AWB rather than actual bots. This still is a problem, however, with this template constantly being used unnecessarily. --Footyfanatic3000 (talk  · contribs) 00:14, 5 June 2010 (UTC)
In the first case there is 1 incoming link so AWB shouldn't tag it as orphan. Probably editor was running an older AWB version. Let's wait for AWB's new version for that. Now for the main problem: Are we sure that these articles should be completely orphan? What about creating an article linking to them? I don't see any reason why these spefici lists can be orphan. -- Magioladitis (talk) 00:18, 5 June 2010 (UTC)
I see your point, however I can't imagine how any other article would link to them except the article of the airline itself. These lists are really only used when the list would be too long to put on the airline's article. --Footyfanatic3000 (talk  · contribs) 09:49, 5 June 2010 (UTC)
I am not sure neither. Anyway. Since they have 1 incoming link the next version of AWB won't affect them as long as "Restrict orphan tagging to linkless pages" is activated. In worst case we have to create a SIA-like template to add in the page and then AWB can ignore them but I don't recommend it. -- Magioladitis (talk) 09:58, 5 June 2010 (UTC)
Great then that update should solve the problem, if not I'll inform the users that continue to tag the articles. --Footyfanatic3000 (talk  · contribs) 22:52, 5 June 2010 (UTC)

Discussion about new tagging bot

This message is being sent to inform you of a community discussion regarding a bot proposal. The bot would automatically tag new articles with matinence tags, such as this template. More details can be found at the proposal. Thank you,  ock  16:53, 23 October 2010 (UTC)

"Suggestions are available"

I believe this should say suggestions may be available, as the tool may give 0 results on some articles.----occono (talk) 19:29, 25 October 2010 (UTC)

Edit request from Msrasnw, 25 October 2010

As mentioned by several other editors above I think it would be a good idea to change suggestions are available to suggestions may be available. (Msrasnw (talk) 22:12, 25 October 2010 (UTC)) Msrasnw (talk) 22:12, 25 October 2010 (UTC)

Done. -- Magioladitis (talk) 22:14, 25 October 2010 (UTC)