Wikipedia talk:Signatures

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When not to use[edit]

I see that in the template Template:Requested move there is the option to use "|sign=no" to suppress the signature on the RM. Is this ok to do or is there a requirement that the signature be there? I was wondering because I created an RM this way and someone re-added my signature anyways. If it's not proper to use the "|sign=no" then why is it an option? Fyunck(click) (talk) 08:51, 17 September 2016 (UTC)

If you read Template:Requested move#Suppressing the signature or the section header, it says: "Requested moves are required to have a section header and signature, so these parameters should rarely be used, generally only by experienced editors repairing malformed requests." --David Biddulph (talk) 08:30, 21 October 2016 (UTC)


It keeps signing my signed comments, can you fix that? --Brynda1231 [Talk Page] [Contribs] 13:15, 15 November 2016 (UTC)

@Brynda1231: No; but you can. Your signature, as used in your post here, does not contain suitable wikilinks. Yes, it contains links; but they're formatted as external links (and not very well either, since there are too many square brackets), which don't count. So, instead of [[ Talk Page]] you should use [[User_talk:Brynda1231|Talk Page]]; and instead of [[ Contribs]] you should use [[Special:Contributions/Brynda1231|Contribs]]. --Redrose64 (talk) 20:17, 15 November 2016 (UTC)

could You please help me too? i am not sure what am doing wrong. Nector deorum et virorum 21:24, 11 March 2017 (UTC)

@Nector42: It's the same problem: your signature contains no links. Unless you understand what you are doing regarding WP:CUSTOMSIG, your best course of action is to go to Preferences, and make the following changes. First, blank out the box following "Signature:"; second, switch off the option directly below that; finally, click on Save. This will restore the default signature for you. --Redrose64 🌹 (talk) 22:56, 11 March 2017 (UTC)

Proposition regarding signature length[edit]


After one week of discussion, not one single user has supported the proposal except for its creator. Beeblebrox (talk) 21:17, 27 January 2017 (UTC)

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.

As WP:SIG#LENGTH is a guideline, not a policy, there is room for common sense regarding user signatures, as such I would propose the following:

Keep the signature length just as it is, but allow for a case-by-case review of the signature in question if it exceeds the stated maximum length. For example:
this signature (check Valley2city's colorful signature), is over 255 characters, but renders short and is not disruptive
this signature, (Nathanrdotcom's) which is below the 255 character limit, but it V - E - R - Y streched out and distracting.
this user's signature which is again over 255 characters, but is neither retinal burning, over large or disruptive.
this individual's signature which is over 255 characters, retinal-burning, long and definitely over-large!

Signatures like #1 and #3 would be allowed per this proposal and WP:IAR, not to mention that they're not disruptive, nor retinal-burning, nor distracting, and once again, due to the fact the WP:SIG#Length is a guideline, not a set-in-stone policy. Signatures #2 and #4 would be dis-allowed per this proposal, while #2 is not more than 255 characters, it's disruptive because it's stretched out and is taking a lot of horizontal space and #4 pretty much speaks for itself, a big, retinal-burning eyesore.

After all, we're not using Lynx to view Wikipedia, so we're not looking at raw code, we're looking at the rendered code for everything, including signatures.

In addition, consensus has repeatedly rejected proposals to do away with personalized signatures so often, that's it's now a perenial proposal. It's a fact, personalized signatures are popular, in fact so much so that in the actual perenial proposal itself the closer has actually written:
Most custom signatures cause little or no trouble. In addition, they are popular throughout Wikipedia, and forcing users to give them up would create more trouble than it would be worth.

So what do you say? Judge sigs on their own merit (not disruptive, hateful, retina-burning, over large, blinking...etc..), or judge them solely on length ? KoshVorlon 21:35, 20 January 2017 (UTC)

  • Oppose relaxation of the length rule. We are looking at raw code: the first bullet explicitly states "in the edit window". --Redrose64 🌹 (talk) 23:25, 20 January 2017 (UTC)
    Comment Perhaps I wasn't as clear as I should be, during normal operation of Wikipedia, we look at rendered code, for example, when you read this you're seeing that text as bold, that's the rendered version, you're not seeing '''read this''' which would be the raw code. Same thing with signatures, you see KoshVorlon when you look at my signature, not (by the way this is under the limit of characters ) [[User_talk:KoshVorlon|<span style="font-family:Script MT; color: black;text-shadow: #666666 0.4em 0.3em 0.2em ">'''Kosh'''</span><span style="font-family:Script MT;color:black;text-shadow: #0000FF 0.4em 0.3em 0.2em">'''Vorlon'''</span>]] that.
    I did see the bullet point your'e referring to, but bear in mind, some people are using the visual editor which means they never see Wikicode, they're using WSYSIG editing. Even for those of us that do edit in Wikicode,like myself, and you as well, I have yet to run into a situation where the code conflicts with the actual text | for example, this page which is a tutorial that shows signature do's and dont's, the last section in particular is full of don'ts and each is easily distinguishable from the surrounding text. Hopefully that makes my proposal a bit clearer. KoshVorlon 13:46, 21 January 2017 (UTC)
  • Oppose removing the length limit. Besides seeing the excessively-long code in the edit window, some of us regularly read the talk page diffs to see what's new rather than trying to find what's new in the rendered page. Anomie 20:05, 21 January 2017 (UTC)
    Also, as a side comment, @KoshVorlon: your signature is both extremely long in the edit window (despite being slightly under the length limit) and hurts my eyes to look at when rendered. Anomie 20:12, 21 January 2017 (UTC)
    +1 Beeblebrox (talk) 20:27, 23 January 2017 (UTC)
  • Oppose. Two specific points I'd like to respond to. One, in the proposal you present this discussion as a binary choice between judging sigs on their own merit or judging them solely on length. We've been doing both for a while, and it seems to work fine. Second, Visual Editor, while it's very convenient for articles and pages in the other namespaces it's enabled in, doesn't work in many namespaces in which actual discussion takes place. For example, it's disabled in the Talk, Wikipedia, Wikipedia talk, and MediaWiki talk namespaces. Enterprisey (talk!) 22:13, 22 January 2017 (UTC)
  • Oppose The proposal seems to suggest that the sig length guideline is outdated and unecessary. It isn't. The problems it is intended to prevent are still very present. That not every obnoxious customized sig technically violates the guideline is not a reason to get rid of it. Plus every word of what Enterprisey said just above. Beeblebrox (talk) 20:25, 23 January 2017 (UTC)
  • Oppose This limits clutter, and I don't see a reason to do away with that. Headbomb {talk / contribs / physics / books} 11:50, 24 January 2017 (UTC)
  • Oppose per above. Iazyges Consermonor Opus meum 12:55, 24 January 2017 (UTC)
  • Oppose per above (distracting, confusing, and/or waste of screen real estate in edit window and in diffs, unavoidable nuisance in important namespaces without VE, etc.). Also, "allow for a case-by-case review"—I can think of no more pointless invitation to strife and time-wasting than the creation of noticeboard discussions over whether or not a particular editor's needlessly long signature is 'sufficiently pretty to keep'. No one likes to be told that they have an ugly baby. (Incidentally KoshVorlon, per Anomie and Beeblebrox, your signature is probably more difficult to read on some displays that you might realize.) TenOfAllTrades(talk) 13:16, 24 January 2017 (UTC)
  • Oppose per above, and it's signature's like KoshVorlon's (maybe it was KoshVorlon's in particular, I can't quite remember) that led me to include the following in my .css file:
    /* Prevent text-shadow */
    * {text-shadow: none !important;}
    Hope that helps. –xenotalk 14:47, 24 January 2017 (UTC)
    That's so obvious, but I never thought to do that. Thank you for posting that. NinjaRobotPirate (talk) 15:16, 24 January 2017 (UTC)
    +1 Happy days, LindsayHello 11:33, 25 January 2017 (UTC)
    Thank you! Super! – Modal Jig (talk) 01:43, 27 January 2017 (UTC)
  • Oppose. Signatures are required to be non-disruptive. Signatures are independently evaluated in at least three areas: (1) technical concerns, (2) how they appear on the rendered page, and (3) how they appear in the edit window. A 255 character signature is already at the painfully high end of what I want cluttering up the page in edit mode.
    P.S. Kosh, I compressed your sig from 238 characters to 168 characters with no perceptible difference. A reduction of 70 characters. Please implement :)
    Old sig :KoshVorlon
    New sig:KoshVorlon
    Old code:[[User_talk:KoshVorlon|<span style="font-family:Script MT; color: black;text-shadow: #666666 0.4em 0.3em 0.2em ">'''Kosh'''</span><span style="font-family:Script MT;color:black;text-shadow: #0000FF 0.4em 0.3em 0.2em">'''Vorlon'''</span>]]
    New code:'''[[User_talk:KoshVorlon|<span style="font-family:MT;color:black;text-shadow:#666.4em.3em.2em">Kosh<span style="text-shadow:#00F.4em.3em.2em">Vorlon</span></span>]]'''
    Alsee (talk) 01:29, 26 January 2017 (UTC)
    Edited the above comment to eliminate 4 more characters. Alsee (talk) 01:39, 26 January 2017 (UTC)
    Sorry Alsee, but your second edit creates invalid HTML: quotes around attribute values may only be omitted if the value consists entirely of letters, digits, full stop and hyphen-minus. The values of the two style= attributes contain the following characters which are not among the 64 that may be left unquoted: colon, semicolon, and hash. Since it's not possible to construct a valid non-empty style= attribute that doesn't contain a colon, it follows that the value of a style= attribute must always be quoted. --Redrose64 🌹 (talk) 19:58, 26 January 2017 (UTC)
    Redrose64, it looked like it worked fine. Is the issue that some browsers might not show it the same? Alsee (talk) 08:31, 27 January 2017 (UTC)
    Some browsers allow the omission of the quotes in some circumstances; but not all browsers, and not all circumstances (for example, the presence of a space within the value (such as in the declaration font-family:Script MT;) will always make quotes necessary). Since you don't know the setup of anybody else, it's best not to assume that their browser will handle the omission of quotes; so it's best to include them. --Redrose64 🌹 (talk) 17:29, 27 January 2017 (UTC)
  • Oppose - Length limit is useful and stops unnecessary long sigs, –Davey2010Talk 17:57, 27 January 2017 (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.

Position of Signature formatting warning[edit]

Why is the paragraph beginning "Signature formatting has been the subject" in the Signature forgery section? --Redrose64 🌹 (talk) 00:45, 5 February 2017 (UTC)

Link required?[edit]

Nowhere in the text does it state that a custom signature must, or even should, include a link to the editor's user page. The nearest we get is "A customised signature should make it easy to identify the username, to visit the user's talk-page, and preferably user page.", which is a bit vague, but which I think is generally interpreted as meaning that a link should be provided. It would be helpful if the section on custom signatures explicitly told editors that they should include a link to their user page. I think this is the same problem mentioned by @Andrewa: further up this page, and the latest instance of it is on my talk page at User_talk:PamD#French_Island, where a user has "signed" twice with a non-linking sig. @Cormac Nocton: as I'm discussing his sig here. PamD 14:17, 15 February 2017 (UTC)

WP:SIGLINK says: Signatures must include at least one direct internal link to your user page, user talk page, or contributions page ​—DoRD (talk)​ 14:21, 15 February 2017 (UTC)
@DoRD: Thanks, and I'm really pleased to see that section. I think I was scrolling through the article, passed some quite obscure-looking stuff about "over-riding custom sigs", saw the heading "Links" and mistook it for "External links", ie "You've come to the end of the main part of the article, you're not going to find what you're looking for here."! Silly of me not to have looked further. Thanks. Will now return to my talk page and point this out. PamD 14:47, 15 February 2017 (UTC)
Yes, that's exactly the problem that I raised. The requirement is there but not nearly so prominent as I would like.
The previous discussion (well, my attempt at it anyway) is now archived at Wikipedia talk:Signatures/Archive 11#Custom signature problem. Andrewa (talk) 00:40, 16 February 2017 (UTC)
This edit is typical of those I was criticising. User:Bde1982 had in good faith set up a sig that did not comply (it not only contained no link, its text referred only to an obsolete account User:BDE1982 which they had abandoned), and this complicated an already problematic discussion regarding an article name.
I doubt that we can come up with a perfect guide that will avoid all such problems, but I thought (and still think) that some improvement is possible and highly desirable. But it attracted no interest before. Andrewa (talk) 15:56, 15 February 2017 (UTC)
I highly doubt that editors customizing their signature will read through this entire guideline or take it all in. Usually a pointer to WP:SIGLINK does the trick when an editor has come up with an invalid sig. If we want to cut down on instances of these then a UI change would be more effective. Change "Custom signatures should link to your user page or your user talk page." to "Custom signatures must link to your user page or your user talk page." --NeilN talk to me 16:12, 15 February 2017 (UTC)
Agree. Andrewa (talk) 16:20, 15 February 2017 (UTC)

I propose to add to the Nutshell the text If you set up a custom signature, it must clearly identify your user name and link to your user page or user talk page (preferably both).

I'd prefer to say and link to both your user page and user talk page but that would be a change to what the page currently says. I'd also like to make the paragraph When customizing your signature, please keep the following in mind:, which is not even a subheading at present, far more prominent.

But the nutshell is a start, and doesn't change anything, it just clarifies a little. Comments? Andrewa (talk) 16:20, 15 February 2017 (UTC)

Personally I think it should have to link to User and Talk page (unless one is a redirect to the other). I disagree with the real name bit, as if its linked it should be obvious who the real person is. Iazyges Consermonor Opus meum 16:49, 15 February 2017 (UTC)
Not quite sure why you've gone to such a deep level of indenting here (see Wikipedia:Talk page guidelines#thread), but no great harm, best not to change it now IMO.
This would be a change to what the page currently says, would it not? Currently it says either one or the other or both, which nicely covers the case of the user page redirecting to the user talk page (which is not discouraged or even uncommon, but I don't think the other way around should be permitted).
No, it's not at all obvious who the real person is. To find out, you need to go through the page history and then match the edit timestamp on the talk page to the edit timestamp in the history. This can be laborious even if the timestamps do match exactly, and they quite often don't. It shouldn't be necessary to do all this just to find out who signed a talk page post so you can send them a message.
Admins already do such detective work in unravelling the story behind some talk page discussions. Please, don't make it necessary any more often than it already is!
There is plenty of scope for individuality in sigs (yours for example) without making life more difficult for other users. Andrewa (talk) 22:13, 15 February 2017 (UTC)
I think I should add, there's no real name bit. Users are free not to give their real names, I do but that is my option, I'm not forced to and this is a very important principle here, see Wikimedia:Privacy policy. We are just talking about usernames. Andrewa (talk) 00:54, 16 February 2017 (UTC)

See Wikipedia:Village_pump_(technical)#Changing_Preferences_UI_interface --NeilN talk to me 16:59, 15 February 2017 (UTC)

Looks good. Andrewa (talk) 17:08, 15 February 2017 (UTC)

Comments on the UI change can be added here: MediaWiki talk:Tog-fancysig --NeilN talk to me 20:05, 15 February 2017 (UTC)

I don't see a section there... should I start one? Andrewa (talk) 01:05, 16 February 2017 (UTC)
@Andrewa: Look at the most recent discussion. --NeilN talk to me 01:18, 16 February 2017 (UTC)
Quite right... is there any reason that talk page doesn't use section headings? Fooled me for a bit, and will make archiving far less effective. Andrewa (talk) 01:35, 16 February 2017 (UTC)


The UI should read in part Your sig must contain a clear link to identify you, either to your user page, your user talk page, or your contributions.

I still think that a change to the nutshell in addition would be good, but the only comments that suggestion received above were negative. Andrewa (talk) 01:32, 16 February 2017 (UTC)