Page MenuHomePhabricator

Links to talk pages in mobile view for all anonymous users
Open, MediumPublic

Assigned To
None
Authored By
Sj
Jul 28 2013, 1:57 AM
Referenced Files
F34618913: Minerva talk tab mockup aj.png
Aug 24 2021, 4:47 PM
F23360804: talk-loggedout.jpg
Jul 5 2018, 6:37 PM
F2878249: Talk page
Sep 30 2017, 8:37 PM
F18867: talk.png
Dec 5 2014, 6:18 AM
Tokens
"Orange Medal" token, awarded by Sj."Dislike" token, awarded by 1997kB."Heartbreak" token, awarded by eranroz."Heartbreak" token, awarded by Florian.

Description

The talk button on the Minerva skin is currently only visible to logged-in users whom have greater than 5 edits, or logged-out users who have opted-in to the beta setting. This differs from desktop which shows it unconditionally.

Original task report:

The mobile interface for wikipedia currently doesn't offer a link to the Talk/non-Talk page. Nor does it offer a clear link to the History page.

Request: add a thin set of tabs at the top of the page, as on the non-mobile interface. Include at least "Article/Project" "Talk".

Either offer a "History" tab (which would take you to the non-mobile interface, as currently), or move up the "last edited X days ago" line to be a subtitle, just below the title. If the latter, add the text "(see page history)" to make it clear that clicking on that text will display the history page.

This will make editing and interacting with the site via mobile much more rewarding. Thanks!

See Also:

This card tracks a proposal from the 2015 Community Wishlist Survey: https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/2015_Community_Wishlist_Survey

This proposal received 6 support votes, and was ranked #79 out of 107 proposals. https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/2015_Community_Wishlist_Survey/Talk_pages#Access_talk_pages_in_the_mobile_interface_from_main_article

Developer notes

Removing this logic would actually throw away a lot of code debt.
SkinMinerva has a method isTalkAllowed.
Removing this method and it's usages would show the talk button for everyone.

Related Objects

Event Timeline

There are a very large number of changes, so older changes are hidden. Show Older Changes

@kaldari my concern about this was mostly: T116686

Talk page (1×1 px, 42 KB)

But since we are unable to get anywhere with discussion pages, and since this has already been open for 3 years (longer in other forms actually), I don't think that that problem outweighs the one where people don't have access to talk pages at all, right ?

I propose we just flip the switch. I have a slight fear we might see lots of complaints about vandalized talk pages, but communities can set a filter to block edits from mobile edits rather easily.

Jdlrobson raised the priority of this task from Low to Medium.Jul 5 2018, 6:24 PM
Jdlrobson added a subscriber: Aschroet.

@ovasileva given this came up again and dates back to 2013 maybe we can just do this? I've never been convinced that hiding the talk page link to anons is a good idea. cc @alexhollender

@Jdlrobson maybe we could add some kind of info/disclaimer element for logged out people? E.g.

talk-loggedout.jpg (643×375 px, 93 KB)

But please make clear that a talk page isn't a online comment section…

But please make clear that a talk page isn't a online comment section…

Agreed. Let's take extra care with the copy here

@ovasileva @alexhollender pleaseeee can we show this button to anonymous users. It would simplify so much testing and make so many editors happy.

Based on this ticket, it sounds like we have some sort of consensus for showing the talk page link for unregistered users, but nothing has happened since 2018. Is this because there are concerns not mentioned in this ticket, because it would require more time and effort than is obvious, because there are decisions that need to be made, or some other reason?

Just so people have a chance of understanding where we are on this and why.

@Johan - I think this is mostly a matter of prioritization - we've been working almost exclusively on desktop recently and this was deprioritized in the process. Due to this, it might be difficult to provide a timeline right now. The next step here would be to settle on a design and there are no current blockers for that.

To add to Olga's comment, FWIW there are no technical blockers here . Enabling this on a wiki is as simple as $wgMinervaTalkAtTop['base'] = true; so if we wanted to do it on a specific wiki or run an A/B test that is all that should be needed. We may however want to tweak the experience for anons so I see this as being blocked on design and/or product.

The concern being that in the less cluttered mobile web version of the site, this would be more prominent than on desktop (where readers have largely ignored the talk tab for a couple of decades), thus attracting more confused non-editors?

The concern being that in the less cluttered mobile web version of the site, this would be more prominent than on desktop (where readers have largely ignored the talk tab for a couple of decades), thus attracting more confused non-editors?

Exactly. Mainly, it arises from experience we've had with direct links in the past. A few years ago we put a talk page link to a specific page within the settings page, which was already quite hidden away, and we received a ton of spam/messages that were confusing, etc (about 50% of the entire page was this), so we had to back out of it fairly quickly. That said, since that was for a specific page it is likely users didn't quite know what they were supposed to do on a talk page. Perhaps this would be mitigated if the link is on every page. I think a good next step might be to turn it on on a medium-sized wiki (@Johan I know you mentioned that Swedish might be interested) and see what happens.

I'll mention this possibility to the Swedish community.

it is likely users didn't quite know what they were supposed to do on a talk page

Perhaps better wording on mobile could help. Recently "Save changes" button changed to "Publish changes" in editors similarly, so maybe some better button text than "Talk" would do great. Something like "Discuss an issue with this page" (but obviously shorter)

@ovasileva Swedish Wikipedia would be very happy to see the link turned on for unregistered users and see what happens.

Swedish Wikipedia is now testing this.

A first reflection that I only realised now: The tab doesn't indicate if a talk page actually exists or not, so you're pretty likely to click on it and get a warning that your IP is about to be shown because a) you're not logged in but b) you've clicked on a link to a page which doesn't exist so you're in editing mode so c) you're told that, hey, if you want to edit this, be aware your IP will be shown.

But few people will realise they're in editing mode or what that means, they'll just click on a tab which tells them their IP will be exposed. There's some sort of solution for this.

Something like T54165#4401045 probably wouldn't hurt, no.

@Johan this is partly why it's not the default for anonymous - there are a few bugs that we haven't had the time to prioritise and fix but patches are welcome!

Yeah, we're adapting the "your IP will be public" warning locally as a short-term solution.

@Johan any update on how this is working on sv: ? Good to see this progress.

I don't think we've noticed any issues. No explosion of confused mobile talk-page users.

(This reply based on my personal experience, nothing else.)

In case it's interesting. I'm seeing 47 talk page edits from anons on mobile web in the last month, 26 of which were reverted. How does that compare to anonymous edits on non-talk pages?

Roughly five days for the last 500 anonymous edits in general. If we're averaging less than one revert talk page post per day, we're probably not too unhappy. Want me to start a local conversation and see what the general opinion is, in addition to whatever data we have and can look at?

That sounds promising to me.

The concern being that in the less cluttered mobile web version of the site, this would be more prominent than on desktop (where readers have largely ignored the talk tab for a couple of decades), thus attracting more confused non-editors?

Exactly. Mainly, it arises from experience we've had with direct links in the past. A few years ago we put a talk page link to a specific page within the settings page, which was already quite hidden away, and we received a ton of spam/messages that were confusing, etc (about 50% of the entire page was this), so we had to back out of it fairly quickly. That said, since that was for a specific page it is likely users didn't quite know what they were supposed to do on a talk page. Perhaps this would be mitigated if the link is on every page. I think a good next step might be to turn it on on a medium-sized wiki (@Johan I know you mentioned that Swedish might be interested) and see what happens.

If a user can edit, they must be able to reach talk pages. Either enable the talk link or disable the edit link. Disabling the edit link is probably more controversial than enabling the talk link, so just enable the talk link. If that results in spam, any project can gather consensus to disable it.

I find that the Article & Talk links that appear are a bit out of place. I would put it as a 'Discuss' link besides the edit link (which would then requires getting a suitable icon).

I agree simply dumping them to a create talk page may be a bit confusing, and some guidance to be desirable (not sure if it's best to do that in the mobile or in the general create-talk messages) but not showing them the link seems bad. Probably, many users would feel more comfortable reporting issues there than when editing (badly) the page itself (if they dare to).

@Xaosflux I just wanted to reply to https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Village_pump_(proposals)#Enable_Article_%2F_Talk_tab_bar_for_mobile_anon_users but it looks like its got archived (which I don't think was right FWIW - I think here you are requesting a config change and in the other discussion it's something much more intangible and larger in scope that if nothing else might hinder your rather modest mission here).

For some background, contrary to the fun theories on the on-wiki thread so far, the reason that there are talk page links for anonymous users is that the mobile site evolved from nothing in an agile process, so there was a point in time when the mobile site didn't even have talk pages or notifications. So we didn't "remove" anything. In fact, it's the opposite - we added a talk experience based on community members requesting we prioritized it. In the early days it was difficult enough to get the site to display in a mobile screen, let alone worry about talk pages :)

I've actually seen very little dialog between editors and WMF about enabling talk pages (zero on English Wikipedia until now) so I don't know what the situation is here. The development teams are pretty stretched given the complexity of the wiki projects so it seems like a matter of priority to me, but as you can see in the discussion above, the Swedish Wikipedia enabled it (Via a WMF employee) and WMF was quite amicable, supportive and curious in making that happen.

I'd suggest at least commenting here that you are running an RFC to give staff a heads up and a proposed timeline in case they want to reprioritize any work in preparation for that decision and make you aware of any concerns that would aid that discussion (e.g. I know there are concerns around the red link experience for users clicking a talk page as it is super confusing ). I am just a mere developer so note that I do not represent any concerns that product and designers might have.

Hope this is helpful.

I'd suggest at least commenting here that you are running an RFC to give staff a heads up and a proposed timeline in case they want to reprioritize any work in preparation for that decision and make you aware of any concerns that would aid that discussion (e.g. I know there are concerns around the red link experience for users clicking a talk page as it is super confusing ).

But you just did that for me? :) And it has been reopened, and so far it's looking good.

Here's a free mock-up for the developers (maybe @alexhollender is interested in this):

Minerva talk tab mockup aj.png (1×3 px, 293 KB)

From top to bottom: anon wide, anon narrow, logged in wide, logged in narrow. The icon I used is https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:FAQ_icon_(Noun_like).svg which is probably a bit too dark, but icon choice wasn't the purpose of this mock-up anyway.

Note, enwiki has requested this be enabled - Site Request is at T293946

Change 741097 had a related patch set uploaded (by Inductiveload; author: Inductiveload):

[operations/mediawiki-config@master] enwikisource: enable anonymous talk page mobile tabs

https://gerrit.wikimedia.org/r/741097

Note: enwikisource has requested this be enabled and tracked in T47955
Removing patch for review since this doesn't effect the default setting.
cc @ovasileva