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Mobile user communication issues
Open, Needs TriagePublic

Description

Communicating with users is critical in order for the community to provide feedback to the edits of new and more seasoned editors alike. This is how people learn, help each other, how they are warned about potential consequences (Block), stopped from making incorrect edits etc.

The share of mobile users has increased significantly over the years, yet the mobile platforms have opted out of implementing the infrastructure for communicating with other users ever since these mobile interfaces were developed. When the mobile interfaces were readonly this wasn't as much of a problem but over the years more and more edit functionality has been implemented yet the communication (and thus feedback loop) has been left in the dust.

This is significantly frustrating the desktop editing community and causing confusion for editors using the mobile platforms.

Enwiki discussion: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Village_pump_(WMF)#What_we've_got_here_is_failure_to_communicate_(some_mobile_editors_you_just_can't_reach)

Table adapted from User:Suffusion of Yellow/Mobile communication bugs:

EditorTag"New message" alertOther alertsCustom block messagesPartial block shown as partialEditnotices [1]Custom edit filter messages
Desktop (IP)Orange bar of doomN/AYesYes (?)YesYes
Desktop (User)Miniature orange bar of doom [2]
YesYesYesYes [3]Yes
Mobile Web (IP)Mobile web editNo T240889N/AYesYes (?)No T201595Yes
Mobile Web (User)Mobile web edit Looks like other alerts T240976YesYesYesNo T201595Yes
iOS (IP)iOS app edit No (?) T274404N/AUnknownUnknownNo T201596Broken [4]
iOS (User)iOS app editNo T274404No T274404No T275118UnknownNo T201596Broken [4]
Android (IP)Android app editNo T95396N/ASeems flaky T276149UnknownNo T201597No (?) T276139
Android (User)Android app edit Yes (w/ ding+vibrate)Yes (w/ ding+vibrate)No T276147No T276147No T201597No T276139

[1}: See also T201613: Unify 'edit notices' technology stack
[2]: Shown in Vector (default), Monobook, and Modern skins. Looks like other alerts in Timeless and MinerveNeue skins.
[3]: Shown in Vector (default), Monobook and Modern and Timeless skins. Not shown in MinervaNeue skin.
[4]: If the message is at MediaWiki:Abusefilter-warning-foo, the user will see <abusefilter-warning-foo>, and not the content of that page

Related Objects

Event Timeline

I tried to fix a typo and a notice came up that said I had been blocked from editing. There was no explanation why, nor any indication of how I could find out why. How can I find out? This has happened before, and I think it happens when I'm not using WiFi.

I tried to fix a typo and a notice came up that said I had been blocked from editing. There was no explanation why, nor any indication of how I could find out why. How can I find out? This has happened before, and I think it happens when I'm not using WiFi.

Probably a big rangeblock on your carrier, @Valereee ...but it's hard to tell the actual block reason, now, isn't it!

I tried to fix a typo and a notice came up that said I had been blocked from editing. There was no explanation why, nor any indication of how I could find out why. How can I find out? This has happened before, and I think it happens when I'm not using WiFi.

Probably a big rangeblock on your carrier, @Valereee ...but it's hard to tell the actual block reason, now, isn't it!

Sounds like it might be an iOS variant of T276149?

A recent example of these problems is User:CejeroC. He was a productive editor on the Android app, but kept adding colours to infoboxes against the wishes of the community. But because he couldn't read any of the messages that were being sent to him he got blocked. And likely he now doesn't even understand why he was blocked either, because of T276147: Android application does not show block messages. See also https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=User_talk:Jimbo_Wales&oldid=1017351614#The_tragic_case_of_User:CejeroC

Read -> Communicate -> Review -> Edit...
I've tried explaining this to WMF people so many times over the last 10 years (@Quiddity can back me up on this). From micro contribution concepts to short descriptions to wiki education dashboard and mobile edits, this mistake is made again and again. WMF should really document this as an essential part of their product design and roadmap prioritisation.