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Auto-populate username suggestion list in the New Discussion Tool
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Description

This task is about making it so when you open the username suggestion list (T232601) in the New Discussion Tool, it pre-populates with the usernames of people who have commented on the page to date.

Behavior

  1. Visit a page where the New Discussion Tool is available (e.g. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia_talk:Talk_pages_project?dtenable=1)
  2. Click New section
  3. Go to the tool's Visual mode if you are not there already
  4. Type @

Current

  1. Notice the Find user: context item appears empty

Desired

  1. ✅ Notice the Find user: context item appears filled with the usernames of people who have previously commented on the page you are starting a new topic on

Done

  • Desired behavior is implemented

Event Timeline

During today's 17-March meeting, @Esanders noted that in implementing what this task is asking for, people will notice that the username suggestion list will behave differently when using the New Discussion Tool and when using the Reply Tool.

  • When using the Reply Tool people will find that the username suggestion list is populated with the username of other people who have commented in the section they are drafting a comment within.
  • When using the New Discussion Tool people will find the username suggestion list populated with the username of other people who have commented on the page they are drafting their discussion topic on.

We are comfortable with this inconsistency because we are assuming the use cases of the two tools are distinct enough [i][ii] not to cause confusion.


i. We are assuming that when people are wanting to ping someone while drafting a new topic, they are most likely doing so to bring people into the conversation who have previously spoken on the given page.
ii. We are assuming that when people are wanting to ping someone while drafting a comment, they are most likely doing so to address someone who has previously commented within the conversation they are talking in.

I worry that this might lead to unwanted mentions. If we show a dropdown with usernames to someone adding a new topic on an article talk page, they might assume we're encouraging them to contact these people with questions about the article. However, someone who commented on such talk page might not actually care about the article much or want to be contacted about it.

Change 674928 had a related patch set uploaded (by Esanders; author: Esanders):
[mediawiki/extensions/DiscussionTools@master] Populate user mention list in new topic tool

https://gerrit.wikimedia.org/r/674928

I worry that this might lead to unwanted mentions. If we show a dropdown with usernames to someone adding a new topic on an article talk page, they might assume we're encouraging them to contact these people with questions about the article. However, someone who commented on such talk page might not actually care about the article much or want to be contacted about it.

I think we should keep any eye out for this, but we are only suggesting these names if they actually use the tool or type @ so I'm not overly concerned.

I think this has too much potential for negative interactions between people to add it.