Wikinews:Water cooler/miscellaneous

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Interesting listen/read on investigative journalism[edit]

From the excellent ProPublica: https://www.propublica.org/podcast/item/the-breakthrough-how-a-small-news-outlet-brought-down-the-state-hero. I've never listened to audio from them before but they're just as good at it as they are at the written word. —Justin (koavf)TCM 07:18, 18 August 2017 (UTC)

Tech News: 2017-34[edit]

18:00, 21 August 2017 (UTC)

Empty "Opinions/Comments" subpages[edit]

Seems that a lot of "Opinions"/"Comments:" subpages of published articles have been created with banners. However, most of them are lacking comments or opinions. I don't need to provide examples, do I? What to do with them? --George Ho (talk) 07:29, 25 August 2017 (UTC)

I agree that if they don't have comments after [x] days, then they should probably be deleted. Certainly, users can provide feedback on a news event from four years ago but no one is going to see it. Having a redlink will probably discourage any of those discussions. —Justin (koavf)TCM 16:27, 25 August 2017 (UTC)
On the contrary, one of my long-term projects is creating such pages for those archived articles that don't have them. There is no expiration date on discussion of an archived article. --Pi zero (talk) 21:22, 25 August 2017 (UTC)
@Pi zero: This is easily done if you want. —Justin (koavf)TCM 05:17, 26 August 2017 (UTC)
@Koavf: Tbh I'd rather not do it by bot. You know me, I have a thing about the human touch; various special concerns come up in specific cases. The one that comes to mind is that, occasionally, the reason an article doesn't have a comments page is that the article got moved and the user doing it somehow forgot to move the comments page with it; then one has to figure out exactly what happened and carefully move the comments page to rejoin the article page, fixing any multiple redirects. Getting that wrong could result in an article with two comments pages; and I have doubts that LQT would even make it possible to merge two such LQT groupings; I'd be afraid to try, as LQT can severely mess things up, and I'd rather not have to devote resources to trying.

Btw I also like to be sure, while I'm at it, that the article has a {{haveyoursay}} template (or one of the seldom-used alternatives); and if it does already have {{haveyoursay}}, I give the article a null edit after creating the comments page. I track all this stuff using Whatlinkshere for {{haveyoursay}} and its subtemplate {{haveyoursay/missing/link}}; the latter produces a list of pages that use {{haveyoursay}} but don't have a comments page, and after creating the comments page a null edit gets the article off that list. In principle, articles that don't transclude {{haveyoursay}} should have it added, but since there are hundreds of pages on the missing-link list I've never gotten around to that further administrative task. --Pi zero (talk) 12:16, 26 August 2017 (UTC)

@Pi zero: But that would be a trivially-easy problem to solve with a semi-automatic editor as well... —Justin (koavf)TCM 21:10, 1 September 2017 (UTC)
@Koavf: Yes, it seems in theory it should be straightforward to do with semi-automation. To be clear on how all these pieces fit together: I mean to make such things easy in practice to do via wiki markup. I've got most-or-all of the primitive wiki-markup elements needed; but I always knew there would be a later phase of development, in which I'd have to learn idioms for using the primitives, and I've been fascinated to discover this is much more true than I'd quite realized. Since I've got enough of the primitives operational, I've found that actually coordinating them to perform a high-level operation, even a seemingly straightforward one, can be extraordinarily difficult. The solution I have in mind is one of those things that can seem obvious once one has it in mind. I always meant to build semi-automation to help with difficult tasks, and it turns out that building semi-automation is a difficult task, so I mean to build a semi-automated meta-assistant, to help with building and maintaining semi-automation. No small design challenge, to thoroughly embrace flexibility so it doesn't limit what can be done with it. --Pi zero (talk) 22:22, 1 September 2017 (UTC)

Tech News: 2017-35[edit]

22:09, 28 August 2017 (UTC)

Germane thread on en.wp about writing on news events[edit]

See https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Wikipedia:Village_pump_(policy)&oldid=798423730#Creation_of_articles_on_criminal_events_particularly_claimed_links_to_terrorism_and_similar_incidentsJustin (koavf)TCM 21:11, 1 September 2017 (UTC)

Tech News: 2017-36[edit]

22:14, 4 September 2017 (UTC)

Proposal/technical: BlockerBot[edit]

It has been more than fifteen months since I requested admin rights to fight vandals and spammers. They come, they vandal, and they get blocked. One common patter can be observed that most of the helpline vandals are active when Pi zero is afk. Also to note, many usernames hint they might be the work of same user because most of the names had a Hindu origin, and some, Muslim -- indicating it is a good chance they operate during day time in India. While this is just as assumption, many a times, there is no admin available -- I ping Tom Morris on Twitter, i drop a message on IRC hoping an admin sees it when they are on-wiki, I leave talk page messages, or even request global blocks. But until they are blocked -- they are free to do anything they want -- though revision check prevents the damage. So, there should be a bot, which can block editors temporarily until an admin is available. Editors, who can be trusted for requesting the block can only request the bot to block someone. The bot would send a notification to admins on the project project, and if any admin sees it, they can clear the notification, and choose if there is a need for permanent blockage, or whatever. The thing is -- granting anyone admin rights just to fight vandalism might not be okay, and it is possible for a vandal to abuse editing rights while no admin is on the site -- but some editors might be -- and they can prevent vandals.
acagastya PING ME! 10:54, 5 September 2017 (UTC)

gpy could announce block and speedy deletion requests on live chat to ease the task for people who do not have the wiki open in a separate tab right now? --Gryllida (talk, chat) 11:00, 5 September 2017 (UTC)
If open in a tab, the wiki could show banners or do html5 notifications when a new speedy deletion or block request is added? --Gryllida (talk, chat) 11:00, 5 September 2017 (UTC)

Tech News: 2017-37[edit]

19:15, 11 September 2017 (UTC)

Tech News: 2017-38[edit]

15:31, 18 September 2017 (UTC)