Wikipedia:Notifications

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"WP:ECHO" redirects here. For the WikiProject, see Wikipedia:WikiProject Echo.
Notifications (formerly Echo)
Logo of the Notifications project, Wikimedia Foundation Engineering
Developer(s) Wikimedia Foundation
Type Notification system
Website Echo @ MediaWiki.org

Please note - the notifications system went through a major overhaul in July of 2016. This page has not yet been updated to reflect those changes. Thus, some of what is written here no longer applies to the way that the system works.

Notifications (formerly known as Echo, commonly called Pinging) is a Wikipedia web-service designed to inform users about new activity on Wikipedia in a unified way. It provides notifications to users for a number of events related to their account, including new talk page messages, edit reverts, mentions or links.

It is intended to augment (rather than replace) the Watchlist, by highlighting key user interactions that includes users being mentioned in posts and new messages on a user's Talk page.

Notifications are displayed to the right of the username and user-talk links in the top link bar of the page for logged-in users, displaying two coloured squares ("badges"), each with a number representing the number of recent notifications. Email notifications can be set up for some or all types of notification as a user Preference.

Notification messages

The notifications popup informs you of new activity on Wikipedia that concerns you.

You can find recent notifications not only by clicking on the coloured squares ("badges") in the top link bar of every page, but also in a special archive containing up to 2,000 of your past notifications on one page: Special:Notifications. For other tips on how to use this tool, visit this FAQ page.

Triggering events

The current iteration of the notification system uses a split-template design, with "Your alerts" on the left, and "Your messages" on the right. A yellow highlight is shown for new messages on your user talk page.

As of November 2014, eight types of events can trigger an "Alert" or "New message" notification. You can customize which notifications you receive by turning each type of notification on or off individually at the Notifications tab of your Preferences.

You can also trigger notification messages for another editor by mentioning that editor's user name in those of the following events to which you have access. This is known as {{ping}}ing the user.

This replaced the full-width orange banner stating "You have a new message from another user", but by default a small orange tag will be displayed next to the notification to highlight it.
Talk page messages are the only type of notification which cannot be disabled; a web notification will always be sent.
  • Mentions: When your user page is linked to on any talk page or on a page in the Wikipedia namespace by another user.
A number of templates are used for this – {{User}}, {{Ping}}, {{Yo}} and {{Reply to}} are common examples – which will all trigger notifications. Plain links to user pages will also work to notify the mentioned user. An example of a "plain link": [[User:Example]].
This is one of the most popular uses of notifications; often used to inform other people about ongoing discussions of interest to them, or to let them know of a reply to a message on a page they may not be watching.
Registered users can be notified by other users and by IPs, however, an IP cannot be notified by any templates or links.
Note that the post containing a link to a user page must be signed; if the mention is not on a completely new line with a new signature, no notification will be sent. It must also be in the page text; links in the edit summary do not create notifications. More details are available at mw:Help:Echo#Technical details.

Blacklist and whitelist

There is a site-wide list of accounts that cannot trigger notifications at MediaWiki:Echo-blacklist which can be overridden by users at Special:MyPage/Echo-whitelist. As of November 2014, it contains one entry; SineBot (talk · contribs). SineBot adds signatures (including linking to usernames) of users who don't sign their posts; if it were able to trigger notifications, it would be notifying hundreds of people daily without real benefit. If you wish to be notified that SineBot has signed one of your posts, you can whitelist it.

Spamming

If you mention more than 50 users in a single post, then notifications for mentions will not be sent to any of the users in question. This is done to protect people against possible spamming.

Known bugs

There are a number of bugs currently known with the notifications system:

  • Failure to spot signatures. In some cases (usually when changing another, recent, comment with a signature) the parser does not realise that a user has made a new signed comment, and so does not trigger a notification. The technical requirements for notifications to work are described in mw:Help:Echo#Technical details.
  • Confusing section titles. On pages with complicated markup, or after edit conflicts, the notification will sometimes give the wrong section heading for a message.
  • Transclusion. Because a notification is generated whenever a page is linked to, accidental transclusion of other pages can cause a sudden flurry of unintentional notifications through links on the transcluded page.

For all open Notifications related bugs, see the list on Phabricator.

History and on-going developments

This tool was developed by the Wikimedia Foundation's editor engagement team, originally under the name "Echo", and was released on the English Wikipedia on 30 April 2013 after extensive testing on mediawiki.org. For more information on the development of Notifications and its features, see this Wikimedia blog announcement and the editor engagement team's Echo FAQ page.

The team plans to develop a few more features and notifications, based on community feedback. The editor engagement team expects this notification tool to be an integral part of future engagement projects, such as the upcoming Flow messaging feature. In February 2016 the Beta-test for Cross-wiki notifications started.

Newsletter

To sign up for a newsletter about updates to Notifications, please add your name to WP:Notifications/Newsletter.

Reporting feedback or bugs

If you have any feedback on existing features or suggestions for new ones, please suggest them on the Editor Engagement talk page.

If you would like to report a bug, you are welcome to leave a message on this article's talk page, the Technical Village pump or post it on Phabricator. Be sure to include your operating system's type and version, your web browser's type and version, and a screenshot and/or URL for the page where your bug can be found. For example,

Microsoft 8.1, version "Home edition" on Internet Explorer, version 11

Technical details

Moved to Manual:Echo § Technical details on the MediaWiki website.

See also

  • {{Interwiki talkback}} – a "you have new messages" notice to put on other users' talk pages for interwiki purposes
  • {{You've got mail}} – notifies of an offsite e-mail