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Provide new special pages for statistics on the number of references tags <ref> per article
Closed, DeclinedPublicFeature



I was wondering if would it be possible to have some special page which lists "the most referenced pages" and "the fewest referenced pages" in the sense of the number of uses of the <ref> tags in those pages.

Considering that the information at the wikiprojects should be well sourced, if a page has few or no reference tags at all, it is likely to be a page poorly sourced. Currently, this is situation is indicated manually by adding templates [[Template:Citation needed]] and the [[Category:Articles with unsourced statements]].

Having this kind of statistics automatically generated and shown in a special page would help us to identify the pages which need citation. This should be usefull for other wikis as well.

The special page could let us sort the pages by: number of <ref>s, date of creation, date of last edit and so on...

Would this be feasible?


Version: unspecified
Severity: enhancement



Event Timeline

bzimport raised the priority of this task from to Low.Nov 21 2014, 10:49 PM
bzimport added a project: Cite.
bzimport set Reference to bz21209.
bzimport added a subscriber: Unknown Object (MLST).

The statistcs could be at special pages like one of these:

  • [[Special:UnreferencedPages]]: with an interface similar to [[Special:UncategorizedPages]];
  • [[Special:PagesNeedingReferences]]: with an interface similar to [[Special:WantedPages]] showing the number of references per article;

The idea of of using the number of citations to predict the quality of an article is also suggested in the FAQ of the ArticleFeedback tool:

Created attachment 15852
adds a page-property which counts the number of citations

this is a rather hacky way of counting citations on a page


An alternative to my previous patch would be to place the following line in the if statement instead of the first line:

$this->mParser->addTrackingCategory( 'no-citations-category' );

and also add $wgTrackingCategories[] = 'no-citations-category'; and appropriate MediaWiki messages on no-citations-category and no-citations-category-desc

Aklapper changed the subtype of this task from "Task" to "Feature Request".Feb 4 2022, 11:01 AM
Aklapper removed a subscriber: wikibugs-l-list.
thiemowmde added a subscriber: thiemowmde.

I'm going to boldly decline this 14 years later. Not that such a feature shouldn't exist. It does exist, e.g. via community-driven bots. But the information is not very helpful. It can especially not help with low-referenced articles. It's a long-tail distribution with millions of articles that have a 1-digit number of references.

All this makes it very unlikely this will ever become a native Cite feature.