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Magic word on English WP to replace Wikidata short descriptions
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Create a magic word to be used on English Wikipedia (and possibly elsewhere) to replace Wikidata short description in all of the places where the description is paired with English Wikipedia content, including but not limited to apps, search, and in Visual Editor's link module.

The model for this is the defaultsort magic word -- {{DEFAULTSORT:Big Sleep, The}} -- which is used in the wikitext on the article page to determine where the page title appears on category pages.

The new magic word should be {{SHORTDESC:1946 film by Howard Hawkes}}

RFC consensus acceptance criteria:

  1. "starting with blanks, and allowing them to be filled in manually and/or by bot"
  2. "Show no description where the magic word does not exist"

Event Timeline

Alsee created this task.Feb 14 2018, 5:23 AM
Restricted Application added a subscriber: Aklapper. · View Herald TranscriptFeb 14 2018, 5:23 AM

Not in scope of this task:

  1. It's hard for EnWiki editors to see vandalism or changes to Wikidata content:
    1. Showing Wikidata changes on EnWiki watchlists is not in scope. Locally defined descriptions resolves this issue natively.
  2. Editing Wikidata content requires going to another site:
    1. Providing a remote-editing UI to modify Wikidata content from the Wikipedia site is not in scope. Locally defined descriptions resolves this issue natively.
  3. Edits to Wikidata bypass EnWiki page protection:
    1. Removing Wikidata-Admin userrights to add/remove edit-protection on Wikidata English-descriptions and effectively assigning these rights to EnWiki Admins is not in scope. Locally defined descriptions resolves this issue natively.
  4. Wikidata content is subject to Wikidata policies and Administrative enforcement:
    1. Removing Wikidata-Admin userrights to block EnWiki users&Admins from editing Wikidata English-descriptions and assigning these rights to EnWiki Admins is not in scope. Locally defined descriptions resolves this issue natively.

(Any alternate proposal for the above item(s) should be sure to include all four.)

I'm having difficulty understanding this task. I found, which seems to be the example used here.

Is the idea here that a user would input the following wikitext: {{SHORTDESC:1946 film by Howard Hawkes}? If so, how would this wikitext be rendered? What would the output be specifically?

Or is the idea that a user would enter {{SHORTDESC:Q1137931}} as wikitext and get the string "1946 film by Howard Hawks" back?

Oh, I think I see what's being described here now. You want the ability to override (replace) the default Wikidata short descriptions that appear in some search results.

So {{SHORTDESC:1946 film by Howard Hawkes}} would output nothing in HTML.

Regarding "Show no description where the magic word does not exist", how do you envision this interacting with automatic descriptions, assuming those automatic descriptions are (re-?)enabled?

(This task reminds me of "page image" a bit. I can't remember if ended up implementing override capability for page images. If we implement "short description" overrides, we should maybe show this text at ?action=info?)

Do I want to ask why you don't just change the text on Wikidata instead of overriding it? :-)

Alsee added a subscriber: DannyH.EditedFeb 14 2018, 7:20 AM

@MZMcBride, I'd like to first note that this task is not about "what I want". Half of the text here is copied from T184000 written by @DannyH. The other half reflects an RFC community consensus. In fact I supported DannyH's version during the RFC. I am submitting the consensus result on behalf of the community.

There is clear community consensus against using Wikidata descriptions for EnWiki articles. It appears in apps, search, Visual Editor's link module, and formerly appeared at the top of articles in mobile web. There have been various suggestions for technical improvements to how Wikidata descriptions work, however the consensus is that enhancements to Wikidata descriptions would not adequately resolve the issues of using external content. Hopefully I can skip the wall-of-text summary of that debate? The RFC is linked, that RFC links to an earlier RFC, and there are months of discussions at EnWiki Wikidata/2017_State_of_affairs and EnWiki Wikidata/2018_State_of_affairs.

There is agreement between the WMF and community to build a magicword which allows the community to define article descriptions locally. The dispute is how to get there.

  • T184000 insists that Wikidata descriptions continue to appear on articles that lack the magicword.
  • T184000 insists that articles with the keyword, but lacking a description value, shall continue pulling descriptions from Wikidata.
  • T184000 also orders the creation of filters to prevent editors from creating a blank description. If we decide to blank a useless description, or we need to blank it during a BLP dispute, we would have to blank at Wikidata. And a Wikidata Admin can revert, BLOCK the EnWikiAdmin for the edit, and apply full protection on the item.
  • T184000 says Wikidata descriptions will only be turned off once two million local descriptions are created.

During the RFC I opened a section explicitly to propose that approach. I supported it. I pinged all discussion participants to that proposal. That proposal tanked.

DannyH disregarded the outcome and opened a task that was not requested.

TheDJ added a subscriber: TheDJ.

As on Wikipedia, we don't do content splits over differences in opinion.