[Wikimedia-l] default import sources

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[Wikimedia-l] default import sources

Amir E. Aharoni
Hi,

One of these oddly-working features of MediaWiki is import sources: from
which wikis can you import content into your wiki.

The default is none. Nevertheless, a lot of wikis in all kinds of languages
do want to import from other wikis, which makes a lot of sense. You can see
the full list here:
https://noc.wikimedia.org/conf/highlight.php?file=InitialiseSettings.php

(This page is huge; search for wgImportSources.)

Since there is no default, every new wiki has to create its own entry
there. It's not a part of the usual wiki creation process (
https://wikitech.wikimedia.org/wiki/Add_a_wiki ), so people only notice
this when they try to import something and nothing works, at which point
they often aren't sure who should they ask to fix this.

Does anyone object to having some sensible default for this, so that at
least something will work when people try to import?

Taking the most common sources listed in the file above looks like a good
starting point.

I proposed this almost a year ago (
https://phabricator.wikimedia.org/T214139 ), but the commetns there suggest
that a wider consensus is needed, so here I am.

--
Amir Elisha Aharoni · אָמִיר אֱלִישָׁע אַהֲרוֹנִי
http://aharoni.wordpress.com
‪“We're living in pieces,
I want to live in peace.” – T. Moore‬
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] default import sources

Effe iets anders
I remember bringing this up several years ago at Dutch Wikipedia, and from
what I recall, there were people that don't want the import function to be
active on their wiki for more fundamental reasons (they don't want old
versions to exist that were not created on their own wiki).

So I'm pretty sure that yeah, there would be people who are against a
sensible default.

It sounds like you want to do this as a workaround for poor access to
documentation (it's hard for people to figure out how the function works
and how to request stuff) - is that correct? If so, wouldn't it make more
sense to always link this kind of pages to a documentation page (ideally on
the same spot for all those special pages), and if the set of wiki's to
import from is empty, that we make that documentation even more explicitly
available?

Lodewijk

On Sat, Dec 21, 2019 at 2:39 AM Amir E. Aharoni <
[hidden email]> wrote:

> Hi,
>
> One of these oddly-working features of MediaWiki is import sources: from
> which wikis can you import content into your wiki.
>
> The default is none. Nevertheless, a lot of wikis in all kinds of languages
> do want to import from other wikis, which makes a lot of sense. You can see
> the full list here:
> https://noc.wikimedia.org/conf/highlight.php?file=InitialiseSettings.php
>
> (This page is huge; search for wgImportSources.)
>
> Since there is no default, every new wiki has to create its own entry
> there. It's not a part of the usual wiki creation process (
> https://wikitech.wikimedia.org/wiki/Add_a_wiki ), so people only notice
> this when they try to import something and nothing works, at which point
> they often aren't sure who should they ask to fix this.
>
> Does anyone object to having some sensible default for this, so that at
> least something will work when people try to import?
>
> Taking the most common sources listed in the file above looks like a good
> starting point.
>
> I proposed this almost a year ago (
> https://phabricator.wikimedia.org/T214139 ), but the commetns there
> suggest
> that a wider consensus is needed, so here I am.
>
> --
> Amir Elisha Aharoni · אָמִיר אֱלִישָׁע אַהֲרוֹנִי
> http://aharoni.wordpress.com
> ‪“We're living in pieces,
> I want to live in peace.” – T. Moore‬
> _______________________________________________
> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines and
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia-l
> New messages to: [hidden email]
> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] default import sources

Amir E. Aharoni
‫בתאריך יום א׳, 22 בדצמ׳ 2019 ב-8:20 מאת ‪effe iets anders‬‏ <‪
[hidden email]‬‏>:‬

> I remember bringing this up several years ago at Dutch Wikipedia, and from
> what I recall, there were people that don't want the import function to be
> active on their wiki for more fundamental reasons (they don't want old
> versions to exist that were not created on their own wiki).
>

Not a problem. If a community wants to disable the import function, it will
be possible to do this when a default is defined.


> It sounds like you want to do this as a workaround for poor access to
> documentation (it's hard for people to figure out how the function works
> and how to request stuff) - is that correct?


Not quite. I don't want to make the search for documentation easier. The
best software features are not those for which documentation is good, but
those for which documentation is unnecessary. So I want to make the search
for documentation as unnecessary as possible by making a default that will
provide most wikis' needs without even having to ask.

This feature is not only a matter of reading and applying documentation,
but also the need to write code and waiting for it to be deployed, being
dependent on far-away system administrators. This also should be as
unnecessary as possible.

The import function is mostly needed these days by smaller wikis that want
to import templates and documentation pages, and not for importing old
versions of pages. Every new small wiki that discovers this has to go
through this step of searching for documentation, and asking for
configuration changes. If there were some defaults, it wouldn't be
necessary.

(And when templates will be global, there will be even less need for
importing, but there's some time until that happens...)
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] default import sources

Andy Mabbett-2
In reply to this post by Effe iets anders
On Sun, 22 Dec 2019 at 06:19, effe iets anders <[hidden email]> wrote:

> I remember bringing this up several years ago at Dutch Wikipedia, and from
> what I recall, there were people that don't want the import function to be
> active on their wiki for more fundamental reasons (they don't want old
> versions to exist that were not created on their own wiki).

Does that mean that they don't want to give proper attribution when
they use others' work?

--
Andy Mabbett
@pigsonthewing
http://pigsonthewing.org.uk

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] default import sources

Amir E. Aharoni
‫בתאריך יום א׳, 22 בדצמ׳ 2019 ב-13:31 מאת ‪Andy Mabbett‬‏ <‪
[hidden email]‬‏>:‬

> On Sun, 22 Dec 2019 at 06:19, effe iets anders <[hidden email]>
> wrote:
>
> > I remember bringing this up several years ago at Dutch Wikipedia, and
> from
> > what I recall, there were people that don't want the import function to
> be
> > active on their wiki for more fundamental reasons (they don't want old
> > versions to exist that were not created on their own wiki).
>
> Does that mean that they don't want to give proper attribution when
> they use others' work?
>
>
Some people in several Wikimedia wikis think that importing versions is
necessary for attribution for legal reasons. As far as I know, it isn't. I
don't know what is the origin of this idea. I never saw a legal text that
require this. The Wikimedia Terms of Use say that a hyperlink to the
original in the edit summary is sufficient.
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