Fanlore talk:Issues/Complete

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Link Errors (Wiki articles that don't exist yet)

I'm glad to see fanlore open. However, I noticed that a number of the internal links are set to take users directly to the editing mode of that page. Users who are not logged in or who do not have accounts then go to error pages instead of the internal links intended. I believe this is how I should let editors know?

Examples from my first few minutes of browsing: >> "fanlore" in the first paragraph >> "fanart" and "vids" in the first paragraph >> "challenge", "", and "pinch-hitter"

Beet 00:26, 29 September 2008 (UTC)

Hi Beet!
Welcome to the world of wiki editing :) This is one of the features of wikis - wikilinks are used to link to other internal pages on the wiki, and are typically used around every relevant term to appear on a page. Putting wikilinks around a term for which a page doesn't yet exist makes the link red - i.e. clicking on it will take you to an edit box that'll let you create that page. As only registered users are able to edit, this is why an error message appears if you try to click on a red link while not logged in.
In other words, "pinch-hitter" is a red link because it should (or will) be a page on the wiki; clicking on it will take the user to where they can create that page. It's all part of the magic :)
Hopefully that clears things up - let me know if I can explain further.
Cheers, --Hope 02:12, 29 September 2008 (UTC) [Wiki Committee Chair]
Thanks, Hope. It answers a LOT of questions. Clearly I am new to the wiki scene. I assumed that there would be some kind of "this page doesn't exist yet" message. Thanks for explaining.
Would you like me to delete my comment or leave it up? I'm fine with either. :)
Betrue 03:32, 29 September 2008 (UTC)
I've actually gone in and changed those error messages that come up when clicking on a red link - hopefully they're a bit more friendly and explanatory, now! I've also got it on the 'to-do' list to have a mouseover message that tells the user why the link is red.
I'm happy for you to leave the comment there; might be useful for other readers :)
Cheers!! --Hope 04:42, 29 September 2008 (UTC)
Answering Hope: It's much clearer now, what the situation is, so thanks. However, for wiki newbies, I think telling them that they can create a page makes more sense then editing a non-existent page. -- Msilverstar 19:41, 1 October 2008 (UTC)

Alt/Mouseover Text

--Elfwreck 17:45, 1 October 2008 (UTC) The alt/mousover text for "View Source" for protected pages reads:

This page is protected. You can view its source. [e]

That should probably be, "you can't view its source." --Elfwreck 06:13, 1 October 2008 (UTC)

Hello Elfwreck! Actually, you can view a page's source when you're not logged in - you just can't change any of it. So the alt text is accurate :) Cheers, --Hope 09:12, 1 October 2008 (UTC)
Perhaps the text should say "you can only view its source" which is clearer for the implication (..but not edit it)...--anatsuno 17:24, 1 October 2008 (UTC)
Ah. I think I tried to look at a couple that were blank (usernames that didn't exist yet), so the source text box didn't show anything, and all I noticed was the "you're not logged in or have tried to edit a page that is protected" warning. Is it possible to mark pages as "protected" beyond "only logged-in users may edit this?" The warning, "It looks like you're not logged in. You need to be a registered user in order to edit or create pages on Fanlore" is incredibly annoying when I am logged in, and just don't have edit permissions for that page. (And "you can only view its source" would be helpful, yes.) --Elfwreck 17:45, 1 October 2008 (UTC)

Could someone please pretty pretty please put mouseovers on the editing icons? Apart from B and I, I find them completely impenetrable, and I'm sure other newbies to wikis do too. What does the rocket going up and left mean? how about the square root symbol and the scrawl? Text is far easier to understand. Soon please? Whoops, this is from me - Msilverstar 17:49, 1 October 2008 (UTC)

I see mouseovers on the editing icons. They are:
Bold text - Italic text - Internal link - External link (remember http:// prefix) - Level 2 headline - Embedded file - File link - Mathematical formula (LaTeX) - Ignore wiki formatting - Your signature with timestamp - Horizontal line (use sparingly) --Elfwreck 22:07, 1 October 2008 (UTC)
Then maybe it's the Firefox mouseover thing, I don't see them on xkcd either. Thanks. -- Msilverstar 05:03, 2 October 2008 (UTC)


I'd really love a disambiguation template, in whichever form (box, colored marker) because disambiguation pages come in all shapes right now and are not categorized, so they also skew the 'uncategorized pages' list. --Lian 09:35, 1 October 2008 (UTC)

There is one now! :) --anatsuno 17:30, 1 October 2008 (UTC)
Awes! :D --Lian 22:46, 1 October 2008 (UTC)

Alphabetical order of usernames on Fanlore Contributors page

I categorised my user page under [[category:fanlore contributors]], and it's coming up under the "U" section (for "user", I presume) as opposed to the "R" section, as it should be. There are a few others there too. - --Rheanna 22:05, 1 October 2008 (UTC)

Hah, I know this one. That's a sorting issue -- if you categorize it as [[Category:Fanlore Contributors|Rheanna]], it'll know to sort it under "R".--Arduinna 22:08, 1 October 2008 (UTC)
Thanks! --Rheanna
I think the system does it for us, when I look at Category:Fanlore Contributors, it says "user" before every name, but it sorts alphabetically by user name. Also, I added nowiki tags around the category example, because the system was treating it as a category for the this page. Meta weirdness. -- Msilverstar 22:55, 1 October 2008 (UTC)
User:Rheanna was right, I was wrong. Everyone on that page sorted correctly had done the special pipe & name thing. Though it seems to be sorting me before the other 'm' names, possibly because I capitalize the first S, some sorting algorithms do that, even though it's not displayed that way. Anyway, the system should do this for us, that's what computers are for. -- Msilverstar 23:16, 1 October 2008 (UTC)
And I was right about the sorting capital letters first. WTF, is this 1971? This may be a mediawiki issue, but if we can fix it, we should! -- Msilverstar 23:20, 1 October 2008 (UTC)
Yep, sounds like a MW issue. To jump back in the conversation a little and go on a wee tangent, if you want to link to a category but not categorise the page you're editing by having a category tag on it, put a colon after the first set of brackets - eg. Category:Fanlore Admin = [[:Category:Fanlore Admin]]. --Hope 09:19, 2 October 2008 (UTC)

Discussion page comment signatures

I'm seeing a lot of Discussion page comments that aren't signed. The current instructions are "press the second-last formatting button above the text box to enter the wiki code that will automatically insert your name and a timestamp." Can we just tell people to use ~~~~, and have that comment (sign your name by typing ~~~~) appear on each Discussion page?Sherrold 17:02, 2 October 2008 (UTC)

Sherrold, sorry to be so ignorant but can you tell me where you are seeing that instruction so that I can edit it? In the meantime, I'll push a link to Help:Editing which explains what the text editor buttons do very well, imo. --anatsuno 09:54, 3 October 2008 (UTC)

That instruction is the first text on this page, right underneather the Fanlore Issues header: "To add your suggestion to this page, simply press the + next to the edit link. Don't forget to sign your comment so we can contact you if we need to - press the second-last formatting button above the text box to enter the wiki code that will automatically insert your name and a timestamp." Once you know where that is, it makes sense, but it was Mandarin to me the first couple of times I read it, and like I said, I just used tildes till I figured it out.--Sherrold 19:10, 3 October 2008 (UTC)

I've reworded that a bit for this page - better? --Hope 06:04, 4 October 2008 (UTC)

Lodged on Fanlore:Issues

Additional technical & formatting additions/changes

  • Remove numbered list format from TOC.
  • Add categorisation documentation/protocol for images to Fanlore:Categories & image upload page
  • Add some sort of timeline extension.
  • Dynamic Article List Extension
  • Sort out heading styles for pages vs. categories etc.

--Hope 05:14, 26 September 2008 (UTC)

  • Perhaps a "random page" feature/link on the sidebar? Etothepii 04:47, 1 October 2008 (UTC)
I would so like to see that numbered list in the TOC go, or the bullets. Either way works for me. - Msilverstar 17:51, 1 October 2008 (UTC)

Subcat creation

- under Fan Activities and Websites: Archives

(there's an Archive glossary page, and there are individual archives pages, but would a subcat not be useful for creating a list of archives out there?)

People/User/Contributors confusing

Here is a link with some feedback. Quote: huh......can I have both? or only one? how do I switch/change? I think there needs to be a better overview of this part. I read over the faq several times and finally gave up. personally, I wish the default 'self created' bio was not set to User - I want my name to appear as my name and not User:Morgan Dawn--Doro 17:22, 30 September 2008 (UTC)

Discussion pages

I'd like some way to know if the "Discussion" page for an entry is blank; perhaps it could be colored differently, or italicized, if there's no content to look at? --Elfwreck 20:01, 30 September 2008 (UTC)

I second that. --Lian 09:35, 1 October 2008 (UTC)

Search feature

(This will be rambly, sorry! I'm trying to phrase it so it makes sense.)

When I search for "John Sheppard," I get a "this page doesn't exist yet - want to create it?" page. But! I have created a John Sheppard page - as a subpage for "Stargate Atlantis." The page I created lives here: I'm assuming when I search for "John Sheppard" from the Search bar, it's searching for Is there any way to set it up so that any search for "John Sheppard" will lead to that subpage, or... any suggestions? All help appreciated. I realize I could set up a "redirect," and I don't mind doing that, but do I need to?

This probably ties into the "Users:Apple_pi" versus "Apple_pi" issue mentioned above...

--Apple_pi, 30 Sept 2008, 1630

Hello again :) I think the solution to this one is redirects - we can create a page for John Sheppard that redirects the user to Stargate Atlantis/John Sheppard, so when you type it in you'll get right there. Would that be satisfactory? (and of course, making this practice as clear as possible so editors can follow it easily.) --Hope 09:11, 1 October 2008 (UTC)

OpenID email validation

When I login with OpenID, the system is requiring me to re-enter and re-validate my email address every. single. time. This is going to make it incredibly frustrating to do much editing on an OpenID account. Is there any way it could be fixed? --Duelist 19:12, 1 October 2008 (UTC)

I have the same problem, and besides the frustration, I also wonder whether I will get the email notifications for pages I watch while I'm logged out, if the wiki forgets my address constantly. So far I've only gotten notices while logged in, but it could be just coincidence. Is there maybe a way to turn an OpenID account into a standard one that works? I tried setting a password in the preferences, but that didn't work. --ratcreature 23:30, 1 October 2008 (UTC)

This is something for OTW's Systems Committee to look into for us - I've submitted a request that they do so. Fingers crossed it gets sorted soon, it sounds like a total pain! --Hope 09:19, 2 October 2008 (UTC)

Watched Articles Visited Status

My Watchlist page says Pages which have been changed since you last visited them are shown in bold. But I can't see or force a distinction between visited and unvisited pages: they're all bold. Even if I click "Mark all pages visited", nothing changes. I refresh, get new entries, and they're all the same bolding. I'm using Firefox on a Mac: I tried Safari and had the same problems. It's not a big deal, could just delete that line until you have time to fix whatever and test it properly. -- Msilverstar 21:58, 1 October 2008 (UTC)

I think it's in the style sheet - all hyperlinks are styled bold. I think I'll change it so it works in cases such as this. --Hope 09:19, 2 October 2008 (UTC)

(more and better) Categories

There was a request for more specific Categories: I want to second that, and I strongly want to urge a Zine or Fanzine category separate from Print Media. There were 30 years of fanzines in media fandom, and the current structure doesn't do them justice. ahem. --Sherrold 23:10, 2 October 2008 (UTC)

I agree. To add to the request, better sub(-sub)-categories for Fan Communities/Activities, like place, e.g. mailing list, LiveJournal, etc., and type of community, e.g. newsletter, noticeboard, fiction, multi-purpose, etc. --wistfuljane 23:21, 2 October 2008 (UTC)
And a way of distinguishing between "communities" that share a subfandom and communities that meet in person. "Gamers" are a fan community, but they don't hang out together; LJers are a fan community because they share an online location. Community-by-shared-identity vs. community-by-shared-practice. --Elfwreck 23:34, 2 October 2008 (UTC)
This is definitely on the agenda, we'll be talking about it this weekend and doing something soon. Thanks! --Hope 09:42, 3 October 2008 (UTC)


We really need some kind of contributors' forum! Most people don't know about this page, and it's not a great venue for actual discussion. I suspect most contributors feel isolated and confused, because the wiki format is not set up for easy real-time interactivity. Perhaps a LiveJournal community or something? I think it's urgent to make contact with people before they get discouraged. -- MSilverstar (forgot to sign this)

Noted, we're aware and agree. We've set up the Chat as a temporary measure while we figure out where the best place for this is. --Hope 09:43, 3 October 2008 (UTC)
I don't know how feasible it is, but what about something like an InvisionFree message board/forum, also on (or possibly on I think hosting a forum offsite on another service is going to restrict who uses it, and a blog isn't really a great way to do support IMO, but a forum with a link to it right on the page, with message threads that are visibly archived for people to find help in, could work out. It would be a good place to put any wiki news/announcements, too.
That sounds like a very fine idea, setting it up so the same login works for a discussion forum. -- Msilverstar 04:05, 4 October 2008 (UTC)
SECONDED. Also, I tried three different searches to find this page, failed, and eventually went to "my contributions" 'cos I knew I'd added stuff here before. Searching for "Issues" doesn't bring this page up. --Elfwreck 17:04, 3 October 2008 (UTC)
Search couldn't find this page because the whole Fanlore section is not searched by default. You have to click the checkbox in Special:Search or at the bottom of the search results. So I made an Issues placeholder page, and it now shows up if you type Issues in the search, and click Go or Search. We may need to do this for other pages as well. -- Msilverstar 04:46, 4 October 2008 (UTC)
Thanks, MSilverstar - redirects are good. I'll put a link to this page on the Main Page as well. Re: message boards/forums, it is something we're looking at now. --Hope 06:04, 4 October 2008 (UTC)

Image Restrictions

Do we have a policy on explicit images? I'd like to put Ponderosa's Snarry pic in the Strikethrough/Boldthrough history (it's Creative Commons, so free to upload), but it's, umm, a bit extreme for jumping out of the page at people. Seriously NSFW. However, it's also very relevant to the St/Bt events.

Do we have any way to do a "click here to view full image" or something like that, so people don't get caught by surprise by explicit stuff?--Elfwreck 17:09, 3 October 2008 (UTC)

It is possible to link to images instead of simply embedding them. I've added the issue of warning for/allowing explicit content and strong language to our Issues list, we'll be discussing it in the near future. Cheers! --Hope 06:04, 4 October 2008 (UTC)

Where's the guide to wiki codes? Where are the basic templates?

I'm completely new to this. Is there an easy-to-find guide to what the different codes/tags look like in a wiki? It took me forever to move from using an em tag to using two single quotes for italicizing terms.

Similarly, there are lots of pages I want to create or add to, but I want them to look uniform and to contain the information that people actually want to know. Is there a set of templates for COMPLETE pages, maybe sorted by page type? Like, here is a template for a new fandom--just fill in whatever blanks you can, and leave the rest for someone else? -- Ignaz

You can find help on wiki formatting here.
I agree that sample pages would be good, not only for ease of creation, but also for standardization. Is the correct type for a movie "movie" or "film"? "TV" or "television"? "US" or "United States"? I don't really have a preference, but the tech writer in me is crying out at not having what amounts to a style guide. --Nestra 04:49, 4 October 2008 (UTC)
Yes! A style guide! Thank you! That's exactly what I would like. Ignaz 21:36, 4 October 2008 (UTC)
It really is hard to get started, I though wiki stuff is baffling for quite a while. Try the New Visitor Portal and/or see if Fanlore:Chat is open. Good luck. -- Msilverstar 04:56, 4 October 2008 (UTC)
The "Help" Link on the left hand side is a great place to go for, well, Help. I'm not sure how many more links like that to provide without overly cluttering the main navigation...
Thanks for the tips on standardisation, will add that to our Issues page too. --Hope 06:04, 4 October 2008 (UTC)
There is no set of templates. We're designing them by consensus, and sharing them by fannish osmosis; eventually there'll be standards. Right now, there's a blurry kind of "add bits you think are relevant; odds are, other people will agree those are relevant." Decisions about labels (TV vs television, film vs movie) are being made either in Talk pages, or the chatroom, and spread by, umm, habit among the more active editors.
The bad news: there are no standards. The good news: all effort is appreciated, and there are plenty of people who don't mind (and possibly enjoy) clicking on random pages and adjusting minor bits of phrasing. And there will be sample "proper" pages and templates and all that, as soon as there's enough content to decide on what those are. (At least, so I gather. I'm not an official anything; I just jump around on recent changes adding categories where I spot them missing.) --Elfwreck 06:12, 4 October 2008 (UTC)
By "templates" do you mean overall structures for pages in terms of subheadings and so on? Guidance of the "here's what we want for this page, please fill in the gaps" variety? --Hope 11:51, 4 October 2008 (UTC)
Yes. I've been trying to think of another word for "page template" so it won't get confused with the infoboxes. A list of common or standard heading for some categories, and some kind of guidelines for the expected scope of the wiki... how influential does a filksong need to be before it should get its own page? Individual fics--do award-winners get pages? Should TV shows list their characters? And other questions like that. --Elfwreck 15:01, 4 October 2008 (UTC)
Hope, that's exactly what I mean--that and what Nestra said above, a style guide. I want to be able to edit a fandom's page--or start a whole new page--knowing that what I create is going to be structured and formatted more or less identically to other fandoms' pages. I'd like to easily be able to answer questions like whether show titles get italicized, whether terms in the glossary get italicized, how much production info should be included for each TV/movie fandom, whether it should be TV/movie or television/film, what subsections each page should include and what order they should be in, etc. I need rigid organization! *g* Ignaz 21:36, 4 October 2008 (UTC)
Seconded! I've only been filling out the little box provided in Template:FandombyText, because I don't know the proper structure for adding other information and I don't want to be Wrong in the Wiki! I've been opting for film over movie, because the relevant category is Category:Film, and television and United States because I'm neurotic like that. But a style guide to make that (or something) official would be a thing of beauty and a joy to editors. --ainsley 23:52, 4 October 2008 (UTC)
Info now! Style guide later! Seriously--don't be intimidated by the lack of standards. We'll figure them out over time, as people contribute. Yes, it means a lot of touchup work, and some pages that don't get touched up until someone notices that they used all bold instead of italics for book titles. Don't worry about it. Fandom in general, and this wiki crew in specific, is swarming with people who love to make thirty-second changes to fix things. Style guide will be built after enough people start using a style that we know what's comfortable & easy & looks good. I don't want a committee sitting down & deciding, "these should be bold; those should be italic"--and then discover that the font chosen for default makes italics look blurry. Put stuff on pages so that it looks good to you--or mark it "this needs cleanup" (in one of several ways); it'll get fixed. Eventually. --Elfwreck 01:38, 5 October 2008 (UTC)
I think there are probably two categories of users right now -- those who are comfortable diving in and updating things, and those of us who are slightly paranoid about getting something wrong. *g* My comments are certainly not meant as a complaint -- the site is beautiful, and it's obvious how much work has already gone into it. I just hate to think of creating more work for the Gardeners. But I will update and not worry too much about standardization. --Nestra 02:00, 5 October 2008 (UTC)
Yes. That. Especially the last two sentences. (Yes, I'm practicing how to use a talk page.) --ainsley 03:16, 5 October 2008 (UTC)

Interface request: Upper right corner, make current page more obvious

I don't know if it's just me (Firefox on a Mac), but I can't see any difference among the text items in the upper right corner. It would be nice to see at a glance whether one's on the DISCUSSION page or the PAGE. On MediaWiki, they have the current place as the frontmost tab, which works pretty well as a "you are here" marker. On my system, I have to run the cursor over the link to see if it's active or not. This may be fixable with CSS, or may be a long-term request, I just wanted to report it before I forgot it. -- 05:32, 4 October 2008 (UTC)

Will add to the formatting issues list, I suspect there's a CSS fix for it somewhere. Thanks! --Hope 06:04, 4 October 2008 (UTC)
Thanks! --Msilverstar 01:35, 5 October 2008 (UTC)

And oh snap, I finally realized what you meant by "simply press the + next to the edit link". The plus is not an operator adding HISTORY and EDIT together, it's a "ADD A SECTION" link. o.o And it only shows up on Talk pages. Wow. That's pretty obscure. Can you tell from weblogs whether the link is getting used at all?

It is a bit of evidence indicating the interface may need more affordances for what's a separate link, because color links are so subtle. Elegant but confusing. I would recommend in the long term, putting some nice looking underlines or boxes or highlighting or something to indicate what is and isn't a live link. But that's a really long-term issue. --Msilverstar 01:35, 5 October 2008 (UTC)

And one more request, which is that a Templates link on the left menu would be so useful. I don't know how much traffic the Upload file link is getting, but I'm wiling to bet that Templates would get 100 times more. Thanks! --Msilverstar 03:19, 5 October 2008 (UTC)

I would like a subcategory within Fans for deadfans

Obviously we could call it some thing else, but I think it would be useful to be able to find, basically, our obituaries--Sherrold 17:10, 18 November 2008 (UTC).

Done! See Fanlore:Sitemap for listing. --rache 20:56, 23 November 2008 (UTC)

Uploading Images

Where in the layout are the images supposed to go? Into the templates? I haven't seen a good example yet of how this works. None of the actor or character pages I looked at had any images. Help? --Doro 01:32, 8 October 2008 (UTC)

Specifically wrt actor and character pages, since that's more a kind of 'canonopedia' material than fan-o-pedia, I'm not convinced they need images. At the moment, we're focused on getting images of fanworks, and things likke zine covers. --Betty 06:24, 15 October 2008 (UTC)
There are some of these on the Stargate Atlantis/John Sheppard page, if you need examples. --rache 22:38, 23 November 2008 (UTC)

We need a category/template for how-to fanworks <g>

Fanworks about how to create fanworks. That would cover zines about how to make zines, webpages about how to make webpages, and of course, the many fanworks about how to write or how to vid. The usual fanworks template doesn't seem to fit these works very well. Examples: There's nothing in the template that encourages you to say "how to" or meta-meta or whatever.

Done! See Fanlore:Sitemap for the full list. --rache 20:55, 23 November 2008 (UTC)

Status of changes?

Are there any active members of the wiki committee making changes these days? It seems like things kinda stopped happening. --Msilverstar 06:09, 14 November 2008 (UTC)

I wondered about that too -- not about things not happening, but there's no feedback on this page attached to any of the new issues. Is there a new place we should be making requests?--Sherrold 17:09, 18 November 2008 (UTC)
We are working on the issues list now, so more updates should be forthcoming. --rache 23:02, 23 November 2008 (UTC)