Wiktionary:Beer parlour

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Lautrec a corner in a dance hall 1892.jpg

Welcome, all, to the Beer Parlour! This is the place where many a historic decision has been made and where important discussions are being held daily. If you have a question about fundamental Wiktionary aspects—that is, about policies, proposals and other community-wide features—please place it at the bottom of the list (click on Start a new discussion), and it will be considered. Please keep in mind the rules of discussion: remain civil, don't make personal attacks, don't change other people's posts, and sign your comments with four tildes (~~~~), which produces your name with timestamp. Also keep in mind the purpose of this page. There are various other discussion rooms which may serve the idea behind your questions better. Please take a look to see which is most appropriate.

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Contents

March 2015

Templatizing topical categories in the mainspace[edit]

FYI: Wiktionary:Votes/2015-03/Templatizing topical categories in the mainspace.

Let us postpone the vote as much as discussion needs.

This thread seems related: Wiktionary:Beer_parlour/2015/February#Simplification of topic categories adding. --Dan Polansky (talk) 21:32, 1 March 2015 (UTC)

How is this even close to being ready for a vote?

[Global proposal] m.Wiktionary.org: (all) Edit pages[edit]

MediaWiki mobile

Hi, this message is to let you know that, on domains like en.m.wikipedia.org, unregistered users cannot edit. At the Wikimedia Forum, where global configuration changes are normally discussed, a few dozens users propose to restore normal editing permissions on all mobile sites. Please read and comment!

Thanks and sorry for writing in English, Nemo 22:32, 1 March 2015 (UTC)

Thanks for the news. We forgive you for speaking in English. --Type56op9 (talk) 14:44, 5 March 2015 (UTC)

Sports logos in images[edit]

Happened to notice both woman and American have sponsorship logos clearly visible in the image thumbnails. If we need to illustrate these concepts, can we find images which aren't as corporatish? Pengo (talk) 07:16, 2 March 2015 (UTC)

We should also extirpate all national flags, political slogans, references to NGOs, religions, etc. not essential to the ostensive definitions the images provide. DCDuring TALK 12:32, 2 March 2015 (UTC)
Logos I'll grant that getting rid of a corporate logo for a generic concept like "woman" is probably a good idea but an American flag behind an American on the entry for "American" doesn't seem like a problem to me. In this case, the image contains the word "Toyota", which is the problem, not American symbols. —Justin (koavf)TCM 14:12, 2 March 2015 (UTC)
I agree that the American flag in [[American]] is OK. I've switched the entry's image to one which is similar in every way except that it lacks the Toyota logo. - -sche (discuss) 17:34, 2 March 2015 (UTC)

{{l-self}}[edit]

The documentation for {{l-self}} claims it does not support tr=, but a simple test reveals this is not the case. The question is then: should it? ObsequiousNewt (ἔβαζα|ἐτλέλεσα) 14:29, 3 March 2015 (UTC)

In principle there's no reason why it couldn't. —CodeCat 19:55, 4 March 2015 (UTC)
But are there any languages that use transliteration within inflection tables? ObsequiousNewt (ἔβαζα|ἐτλέλεσα) 20:06, 4 March 2015 (UTC)
Yes. And this template isn't used only in inflection tables. It's used for any template that includes links to the same language. And the underlying logic which omits links to the current page is also used by {{head}} for the inflections: {{head|en|noun|plural|fish}} on fish will not generate a link for the form. —CodeCat 20:19, 4 March 2015 (UTC)

Parameter for Template:head to indicate that a form is missing[edit]

Several templates across a variety of languages have custom-written code to show a message like "missing" or "please provide" if one of the forms in the headword line is lacking. For missing genders, we already have a standard approach that {{head}} understands, which is to use "?" as the gender. I'd like to do the same for headword-line forms, so that the following will automatically generate a message and categorise the entry appropriately: {{head|en|noun|plural|?}}. Of course, templates written to use Module:headword or {{head}} can then use this themselves.

Of course, the downside is that you can't link to the entry ? in the headword line anymore, which is probably not normally going to be a problem, but there may be a few edge cases where it turns up. So an alternative way would be to include an extra parameter to indicate that a request should be included in case of a missing form. Something like this: {{head|en|noun|plural|f1request=1}} or perhaps the shorter {{head|en|noun|plural|f1req=1}}. This would then fit into the same fN... format that many of {{head}}'s parameters already use.

I don't expect there will be much opposition to this, but I'd like to ask anyway just in case. If you have a preference for one of the two proposed approaches, please indicate this. —CodeCat 19:54, 4 March 2015 (UTC)

The first one looks much better, is there (will be there) any edge case to start with? I don't think there would be any. --Z 08:13, 18 March 2015 (UTC)

Min Nan loanwords[edit]

How should Min Nan loanwords from Japanese be written when they don't have any kanji/Chinese characters? Min Nan is usually written in Chinese characters or in POJ. Should they be written in Pe̍h-ōe-jī, or should they be written in hiragana/katakana? For example, the Taiwanese Min Nan word for ice cream is "ai55 sirh3 khu33 lin51 mu11" according to 臺灣閩南語常用詞辭典. Currently, I have written it as アイスクリーム (ai55 sirh3 khu33 lin51 mu11) in the translation box under ice cream. The problem with loanwords is that that they don't follow tone sandhi and may not even have one of the 7 tones of Min Nan, which is problematic for POJ. Any ideas for this situation? Justinrleung (talk) 03:56, 5 March 2015 (UTC)

Min Nan terms should be written as they would be by Min Nan speakers. Unless Min Nan speakers use katakana to write the terms, we shouldn't. If we know the Japanese terms that are borrowed, those should be linked to in the etymologies for the Min Nan entries, but not be used in the names of those entries. Beyond that, I would refrain from meddling with a language I don't know. Chuck Entz (talk) 04:16, 5 March 2015 (UTC)
We should probably use the attestability for translations, just like for entries. I doubt "アイスクリーム" (Japanese for ice cream) can be attested to be Min Nan or any Chinese topolect, besides, it's a borrowing (ultimately) from English, so "ai55 sirh3 khu33 lin51 mu11" is a Min Nan pronunciation of "ice cream". Min Nan (Hokkien) is mostly a spoken dialect. If a written form is missing, then it shouldn't be added. As an example, Armenians use a lot of Russian words in speech but those terms lack a written form (ask User:Vahagn_Petrosyan). There are many other cases with diglossia or when a language/dialect lacks a well-developed written tradition.
The other issue is non-standard transliteration, as in tempura, see Min Nan translations 天麩羅 (thian35 pu55 lah3). As Justinrleung explained, it's not a standard tone sandhi but the source is only one online dictionary. --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 04:24, 5 March 2015 (UTC)
Are there any Min Nan speakers who can give any suggestions to this problem? Justinrleung (talk) 20:14, 7 March 2015 (UTC)
We have currently no native Min Nan speakers. The term may be derived from Japanese but katakana is not used to write Min Nan. It would be hard to attest both the Japanese spelling "アイスクリーム" and the "ai55 sirh3 khu33 lin51 mu11" since Min Nan, as I said, is mostly a spoken dialect. If it's written down, it's written in Chinese characters or Pe̍h-ōe-jī. The source above doesn't suggest the term is written in katakana in Min Nan. Here's what the dictionary says with English translations in brackets:
  • 詞目 ai55 sirh3 khu33 lin51 mu11 (dictionary item)
  • 日語假名 アイスクリ-ム (Japanese kana)
  • 日語羅馬拼音 aisukuriimu (Japanese rōmaji)
  • 釋義 冰淇淋(附錄-外來詞表) (meaning "ice cream" (appendix - table of loanwords))
From "ai55 sirh3 khu33 lin51 mu11" one can't really say that it's definitely from Japanese, not from English. I have recently added all translations of "ice cream" into Min Nan I could find in dictionaries and made アイスクリーム to be verified. Eventually, it should be deleted, since it's not verifiable as a Min Nan term. --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 21:57, 9 March 2015 (UTC)
  • Sorry for any confusion -- I wasn't making a case for アイスクリーム#Min_Nan. I agree with you that katakana, AFAIK, are only used to write Japanese. Instead, I just intended to ask if the etymology of the Min Nan term was EN > NAN, or EN > JA > NAN. ‑‑ Eiríkr Útlendi │ Tala við mig 23:47, 9 March 2015 (UTC)
  • I understood your question. It may be of Japanese origin, if it's a word in Min Nan. According to the dictionary it is. What I meant is that non-standard romanisation "ai55 sirh3 khu33 lin51 mu11" doesn't really indicate that it may be Japanese (except for "khu33"), it's very similar to how Mandarin words are transliterated using Chinese characters and phonology, note that (sī) and (mǔ) are some of the Chinese characters used in romanising loanwords with non-syllabic "s" and "m". Yes, Japanese words are or were well known in Taiwan and there are loanwords in colloquial Taiwanese Mandarin and Min Nan but this particular word may only have been used colloquially and may never had a written form. Most words have Chinese character spellings or at least POJ. --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 00:04, 10 March 2015 (UTC)

Inspire Campaign: Improving diversity, improving content[edit]

This March, we’re organizing an Inspire Campaign to encourage and support new ideas for improving gender diversity on Wikimedia projects. Less than 20% of Wikimedia contributors are women, and many important topics are still missing in our content. We invite all Wikimedians to participate. If you have an idea that could help address this problem, please get involved today! The campaign runs until March 31.

All proposals are welcome - research projects, technical solutions, community organizing and outreach initiatives, or something completely new! Funding is available from the Wikimedia Foundation for projects that need financial support. Constructive, positive feedback on ideas is appreciated, and collaboration is encouraged - your skills and experience may help bring someone else’s project to life. Join us at the Inspire Campaign and help this project better represent the world’s knowledge! MediaWiki message delivery (talk) 19:22, 5 March 2015 (UTC)

What 20%? We don't have women on Wiktionary. Hos are not good at lexicography. --Vahag (talk) 20:31, 5 March 2015 (UTC)
Not many but we do have them. What about active ones like Hekaheka, CodeCat, Panda10, Fumiko Take (not 100% about the gender of others)? --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 22:18, 5 March 2015 (UTC)
@Vahag, despite your generalization I'll assume good faith* and direct you to read ho. Modern and Old Armenian, Russian, German, and English aren't enough to familiarize— well, even some native speakers of American English— with just how
b£00d¥ ɟ∪ɔkᵻɳɢ INSULTING  that word is. It has no place whatsoever in any Wikimedia project except to be discussed, never used. --Thnidu (talk) 00:43, 6 March 2015 (UTC)
* Whoops! I just fixed this link. --Thnidu (talk) 04:41, 7 March 2015 (UTC)
I think good faith can only be assumed in combination with an assumption of mind-boggling ignorance and/or stupidity. Either way: not acceptable. --Catsidhe (verba, facta) 00:51, 6 March 2015 (UTC)
Unanimi sumus, Catsidhe. Nonne clare videtur ira mea? --Thnidu (talk) 05:35, 6 March 2015 (UTC)
Not good at all. I think Vahag was just being silly. I didn't get what "hos" mean at first. --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 05:53, 6 March 2015 (UTC)
@Anatoli T. (I've switched our four-colon replies to maintain chrono order.) "Being silly" does not stretch that far. (... Боже мой, I envy your polyglottism!) Perhaps one has to live in the US or be in very close touch with its cultures to appreciate that word. Calling that "being silly" is like excusing groping a stranger's crotch as "just like a tap on the shoulder". Uh-uh. And look at the sexist remark the word is embedded in. --Thnidu (talk) 06:15, 6 March 2015 (UTC)
I've known Vahag for a long time, not personally though. He trolls from time to time and gets into trouble for that but he is not really a racist, sexist, homophobe and anti-Semite as he sometimes pretends to be with his silly jokes and comments. I think he just wants attention or create a stir. Not sure. Re: polyglottism - thanks for the praise but I am not as good with languages as you may think but I spend a lot of time on them. --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 06:35, 6 March 2015 (UTC)

North American English vs Canadian and American English[edit]

Some entries are labelled {{lb|en|North America}} and some are labelled {{lb|en|US|Canada}}, and these are categorized differently. This seems unhelpful — users have to check two categories to find all Canadian (or American) entries. Should we (a) make {{lb|en|North America}} an alias of {{lb|en|US|Canada}}, or (b) try to periodically change instances of {{lb|en|US|Canada}} to {{lb|en|North America}}?
The first option is obviously more practical, as the second would require the sort of vigilance and recurring effort that we don't always manage to muster. One might say that it's useful to have a category for words common to both the US and Canada, but the same could be said of "ambitransitive" verbs, yet we've made that label an alias of "transitive, intransitive".
- -sche (discuss) 00:00, 6 March 2015 (UTC)

I like having "North America" be an alias for the separate categories. It would be useful to periodically review definitions that were in {{lb|en|US}} and not {{lb|en|Canada}} and vice versa, but, as we have no practice of marking items as having been passed such a review, it seems to mean a lot of repeated coverage of the same issue. DCDuring TALK 03:19, 6 March 2015 (UTC)
OK, I've made the "North American" label an alias for "Canada, US". Wiktionary:Todo/North American is a list of entries which are labelled as either Canadian or American but not both. We could go through the list, removing entries as we checked them. Once all the entries were removed, we could restore the list to its original state, periodically compile new versions of the list, and compare them to that version to find out which entries were new and thus needed checking. That would hopefully avoid too much re-examination of the same entries. - -sche (discuss) 05:13, 7 March 2015 (UTC)

anchors for links from other Wikimedia projects[edit]

  • On occult, I've added a null-length HTML span with ID to the medical sense of the adjective, as a target for a link from Wikipedia:Occult (disambiguation)#medicine, there being no single appropriate WP page; see the Talk page there.
  • I've done similarly on several other definitions here before, generally noting the reason for the anchor. But this time it occurs to me to ask if there's any problem with my doing this.

Please message me to reply. --Thnidu (talk) 00:09, 6 March 2015 (UTC)

Ungoliant MMDCCLXIV has helpfully answered me on my talk page:
Nothing wrong with it, just use the template {{senseid}} instead of adding the html code manually.

--Thnidu (talk) 02:28, 6 March 2015 (UTC)

We generally discourage HTML, especially in principal namespace In this case {{senseid}} is available and could be useful as a target for in-Wiktionary linking too. DCDuring TALK
Thanks, DCDuring. I'll try to go back over my contribs and templatize any HTML anchors. --Thnidu (talk) 05:41, 6 March 2015 (UTC)

Etymology: root or stem?[edit]

How should the words root and stem be used in an etymology? Are they interchangeable? E.g. "From a Proto-Ugric root *xyz-" or "from an imitative root with -asb suffix"? Google search returns more hits for "imitative root" than for "imitative stem" and 9 hits for "Proto-Ugric stem" (mostly from our Wiktionary), 7 hits for "Proto-Ugric root". It would be helpful to have a list of recommended usage. --Panda10 (talk) 18:23, 7 March 2015 (UTC)

Looking at the Lexicon of Linguistics and other references at root at OneLook Dictionary Search and stem at OneLook Dictionary Search, they probably should not be used interchangeably in a dictionary with our pretensions to technical precision. As I understand it a stem is the invariant, common part of a set of inflected forms of a word. I think it should only be used within a given language. I think root can be used to refer to something more basic than a stem within a language as well as in comparisons across language (I'm hand-waving here.). DCDuring TALK 18:58, 7 March 2015 (UTC)
I don't know about Proto-Ugric, but there is a clear distinction between root and stem in Proto-Indo-European. The root is the most basic lexical part, which has a canonical shape (one or two consonants followed by a vowel [almost always e] followed optionally by a sonorant consonant followed optionally by an obstruent consonant). A stem is in many cases a root (appearing in one of its "grades", full grade, o-grade, or zero-grade) followed by a suffix; the stem is what the endings are added to. A single root may form multiple stems, especially in verbs, which may have a present stem, perfect stem, aorist stem, etc., all formed from the same root but using different "grades" and different suffixes (or no suffix at all—some stems are identical to the roots they're formed from) and maybe other modifications like reduplication. See for example *gʷem-, a root, which forms the present stem *gʷm̥sḱé-, the aorist stem *gʷém- (which happens to be identical to the root in this case), and the perfect stem *gʷegʷóm-. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 19:31, 7 March 2015 (UTC)
The Uralic languages (to which Ugric belongs) also have a distinction between roots and stems. There are two basic root types: (C)VCV and (C)VCCV, where the second vowel must be a, ä or e (i is also equivalent to e in non-initial syllables). So anything that does not ultimately have this structure is not a root in Uralic. The difference with PIE is that roots can be (and often are) words on their own, so we don't put a hyphen after them. If the root is a verb, we do add a hyphen. As for Ugric, I would be very cautious making reconstructions for it as there isn't actually agreement on whether Ugric even exists as a linguistic group with a definite ancestor (other than Proto-Uralic). User:Tropylium can tell you more. —CodeCat 00:32, 8 March 2015 (UTC)
The technical definition is indeed as Angr says: a root is an inanalyzable content morpheme, a stem is a root plus any possible (productive or fossilized) derivational suffixes. Some definitions may include epenthetic vowels or other morphophonological alternations as a part of a stem, but not as a part of a root; e.g. it would be possible to say that Hungarian hal (fish) has the root √hal, but in some inflected forms the stem hala-.
(The a/ä/e thing is probably not a useful criterion for Ugric, since original unstressed vowels are not distinguished in Hungarian.)
Within etymology, I'd suggest not calling proto-language items "stems", unless one is talking about proto-language morphology specifically. --Tropylium (talk) 01:11, 8 March 2015 (UTC)

Thank you all for the helpful information. I have already started removing the words root and stem, using simply "From Proto-Ugric *xyz-" or "From Proto-Finno-Ugric *xyz". For the proto-language items, I am using two reliable references: Uralonet, an online Uralic etymological database of the Research Institute for Linguistics, Hungarian Academy of Sciences (take a look at kerül and its Uralonet entry, the other is a printed etymology dictionary. The challenge is to provide an accurate translation of the Hungarian text. --Panda10 (talk) 14:15, 8 March 2015 (UTC)

Women honoured in scientific names / Inspire Campaign[edit]

Estimates of the percentage of Wikipedia editors who are female range from 9% to 23% percent.(source) I imagine the stats on Wiktionary are similar. WMF are searching for ways to address the gender gap with their Inspire Campaign. I have little idea how to address that issue in any really useful way.

But if anyone's interested in making entries for women naturalists/biologists, etc who have been honoured in scientific names, like, for example, [[kingsleyae]], I can put together a candidate list of potentially eponymous specific epithets (e.g. the most common epithets ending in -ae which have no other declensions). Then it will be a matter of picking out the names of humans from the list (which will also include places and parasite hosts) and making entries for them. Perhaps some notable scientists who are missing Wikipedia entries could be uncovered, and so feed into efforts of Wikipedians looking for such entries to create. I might try making a test list, and if anyone's interested in adding their name to a proposal, I might write up something for IdeaLab. —Pengo (talk) 16:56, 8 March 2015 (UTC)

I take it that entries like idae#Translingual are not what you have in mind. DCDuring TALK 18:29, 8 March 2015 (UTC)
Looking through the "A"s (through "An") in my Dictionary of Scientific Bird Names, there are a fair number of women's names. Unfortunately, the yield of those who were not wives, daughters, innamoratae, patrons, mythological or historical figures, or unknown is not high, to wit, two: angelae and annae. I looked at ever eponymous epithet in the range. I'm not really willing to go through the whole book with such a modest yield. DCDuring TALK 19:17, 8 March 2015 (UTC)
My impression from looking at hundreds of insect names is that people named tend to be: 1) The people who found and/or provided the type specimens, 2) colleagues (especially authors of invalid names superseded by the names published) 3) benefactors 4) friends and/or family 5) celebrities and/or historical figures 6) targets of disguised insults or other hidden messages. The earlier custom was to draw as much as possible from classical antiquity, which deteriorated into picking random names out of dictionaries as the number of new taxa outstripped the supply of meaningful figures to allude to. The sheer volume of taxa and the restriction on identical generic names or binomials has led to more and more frivolity such as puns, names from pop culture, etc.
Of the categories above, there are some really interesting people in the first category, including a surprising number of women. There are also a few surprises in the second category with some notable female scientists from a century or more ago. Chuck Entz (talk) 22:31, 8 March 2015 (UTC)
@DCDuring, Chuck Entz: — kingsleyae was actually my first find of a missing -ae named for a human, which gave me some hope. Most of the fish named for her seem to have been first discovered by her too. "idae" is kind of borderline, I guess at a minimum, finding who an entry is eponymous for is important (I'm guessing idae usually refers to an Ida of Greek mythology, though didn't find anything definite in my cursory search). Scientists was my initial focus, but there's nothing wrong with increasing the number of female historical figures, patrons, celebrities, and mythological figures too, and it's also quite possible family and innamoratae were also involved in research. —Pengo (talk) 00:15, 9 March 2015 (UTC)
@DCDuring: I don't suppose it would it be any less tedious if you had an "The Eponym Dictionary of Birds"? —Pengo (talk) 03:41, 9 March 2015 (UTC)
A favorite example is the whitefly genus Bemisia, described in 1914 in honor of Florence Eugenie Bemis, who was herself an expert on whiteflies. In 1904 she published a monograph on whiteflies of California in which she described 15 species new to science. I wish I could create a Wikipedia article on her, but I haven't been able to find biographical information, let alone citable references. Chuck Entz (talk) 04:08, 9 March 2015 (UTC)
What about focussing on species which were discovered by women? - -sche (discuss) 21:58, 8 March 2015 (UTC)
@-sche: Species discovered by women would be great, but I have no idea how to find or make such a list. Though it might be easier for plants. The International Plant Names Index (ipni.org) has a "forename" field for their "authors" database, so it could be possible to pick out the feminine names, e.g. Miriam Cristina Alvarez (who described Ditassa oberdanii Fontella & M.C.Alvarez, a dogbane from Espírito Santo, Brazil). Ok, so maybe I do have an idea for how to make such a list. Some of the authors in the database seem to be authors of research papers but don't appear to have any species associated with them, e.g. I.Blok (Ida Blok), which tripped me up a bit. I'm not sure where to find an International list of male/female names. I could try extracting them from Wiktionary and/or try to guess based on suffix. Maybe I should write up a grant proposal. —Pengo (talk) 00:15, 9 March 2015 (UTC)
  • Let's say we do this. Are we doing it so that we can show that we care? If so, how will anyone know what we've done? Do we need a set of women's categories to advertise what we've done? DCDuring TALK 23:07, 8 March 2015 (UTC)
  • @DCDuring: "Are we doing it so that we can show that we care?" Yep. (Also there's a tiny chance it might even encourage new editors, as these entries are fairly straightforward to create.) "If so, how will anyone know what we've done?" Write up some sort of summary on an IdeaLab item I guess. I'll have a go at creating the start of one soon. A category could help. We really ought to have one for eponymous specific epithets named for non-mythological humans or the like already. No idea if a category should be split by gender, but it's easy enough to pick the -ae's from the -i's anyway. —Pengo (talk) 01:13, 9 March 2015 (UTC)

First attempt: Here's a bunch of epithets ending in -ae, sorted by usage in books. Not sure how useful it is. —Pengo (talk) 00:15, 9 March 2015 (UTC)

We have nearly 200 items in Category:Translingual taxonomic eponyms and I don't always remember to categorize the items there, so there could easily be fifty or a hundred more. DCDuring TALK 03:37, 9 March 2015 (UTC)
I got the total up to 660 without creating any new pages. Though only found 14 -ae pages to add (which includes a ship: sibogae). —Pengo (talk) 10:53, 9 March 2015 (UTC)

Here's the IdeaLab page, which I have created in my quixotic quest to gather more participants and interest. Please add your name of support it if you're even vaguely interested. Pengo (talk) 23:03, 11 March 2015 (UTC)

Show/hide broken[edit]

Some days the show/hide (inflections, conjugations, translations) functionality is gone and I can't view translations except by clicking "edit". What's going on? This started to happen one or two weeks ago, perhaps at the same time that "§" characters started to appear next to headings. I'm running Firefox on Linux. --LA2 (talk) 14:02, 9 March 2015 (UTC)

Even when it is broken, the content should always be viewable, so it's a double bug. It should not have anything to do with § though, since § is a new Mediawiki feature, and the "NavBars" (hide/show boxes) are created with MediaWiki:Gadget-legacy.js. If it happens again, could you check the log (Tools > Web development > Web console) to see if there is a javascript error? — Dakdada 15:02, 12 March 2015 (UTC)
Now I removed all cookies from my Firefox browser pertaining to en.wiktionary, and that solved the problem! Can you imagine that a cookie could cause this?! LA2 (talk) 19:05, 15 March 2015 (UTC)
Happened to me too, hours ago. I also deleted cache, which did not solve the problem. Then I checked Delete cookies and other site data checkbox which solved the problem.
@Dakdada, I did look into the console log and I remember there was an error caused by Gadget-legacy.js
It seemed to me that the problem started when I clicked some buttons under the "Visibility" toolbox. --Dixtosa (talk) 19:16, 15 March 2015 (UTC)

Bad italics in comparative/superlative entries[edit]

Could someone please modify Template:en-comparative of and Template:en-superlative of so that they don't put the literal word in italics at the end? e.g. at civilest, it should say "most civil", not "most civil". Equinox 19:16, 9 March 2015 (UTC)

Done. —CodeCat 19:21, 9 March 2015 (UTC)

Codifying sarcastic/ironic and some other rhetorical use as inelligible under CFI[edit]

Vote created at Wiktionary:Votes/pl-2015-03/Excluding most sarcastic usage from CFI

Every so often, a definition like "big: (sarcastic) small" finds its way to RFD. Sarcasm and irony are productive in the English language (and all other spoken languages, as far as I know) and there are effectively no restrictions on what can be twisted sarcastically. Standard practice has been to delete obvious sarcastic and rhetorical use (see eg. talk:touché, talk:James Bond, talk:thanks a lot), but this isn't actually mentioned anywhere. Therefore, I would suggest adding the something like the text quoted below to CFI.

As far as I can tell, this would only result in merging/deleting senses on two pages: great and pray tell, possibly also no kidding, thanks a bunch (which did survive RFD) and eon. Thoughts or improvements welcome. Smurrayinchester (talk) 16:57, 11 March 2015 (UTC)

What exactly is this referring to in "this can be explained in a usage note"? DCDuring TALK 21:12, 11 March 2015 (UTC)
I've tried to make that sentence a bit shorter and clearer. Smurrayinchester (talk) 21:22, 11 March 2015 (UTC)
I'd have guessed that, but it wasn't clear. Thanks.
I agree that it would be useful to be able to point to a policy something like what you've offered. Your draft would be good enough for me, but perhaps it can be further improved. DCDuring TALK 21:45, 11 March 2015 (UTC)
Sounds good to me, though I wonder whether there are cases where a word is now almost exclusively used in a sarcastic way, and rarely or never with its original meaning. If so, those might need special treatment. Equinox 15:51, 12 March 2015 (UTC)
  • I don't want to see this sort of long wording in CFI. I think the problem of sarcastic meanings is marginal anyway. Furthermore, each sarcastic meaning has to be scrutinized for how characteristic it is, and therefore, to what extent it has become lexicalized and thereby inclusion-worthy. The regulatory part (as opposed to explanatory) of the above seems to be largely captured in this: "The straightforward use of sarcasm, irony, understatement and hyperbole does not usually qualify for inclusion." The use of "usually" makes room for reasonable exceptions. If metaphor is intended to be on the list, it needs to be explicity there; it is now conspicously absent. Of course, inclusion of metaphor in the list would make this rather open to abuse. --Dan Polansky (talk) 19:09, 12 March 2015 (UTC)
Metaphor is a tricky case, as you say. Since it's a much more irregular process than the rhetorical devices listed above (or perhaps more accurate, sarcasm, irony, understatement and hyperbole are subtypes of metaphor), and since it's one the main drivers of linguistic evolution, it would be daft to have a blanket exclusion. While it's a bit wordy, I think some explanatory verbiage is needed. CFI changes that just add a rule without giving any context to its application just seem to cause endless squabbling (look at the arguments WT:COALMINE caused). I've put a more pruned version below, which still (I hope) provides enough of the background to the rule to allow it to guide RFD debates effectively. Smurrayinchester (talk) 09:56, 13 March 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose: Too blanket. There are some sarcastic/ironic definitions that we should have. Furthermore, some words/phrases are used sarcastically frequently, while most are used hardly at all. Purplebackpack89 20:21, 12 March 2015 (UTC)
Can you give an example of a term which would fail CFI under these rules, that should nevertheless be included? The cases that you mention are already covered by with the sentence "Common rhetorical use can be explained in a usage note, a context tag (such as (Usually sarcastic)) or as part of the literal definition." Indeed, usage notes specifically exist to explain the nuances of usage that a definition cannot provide. Smurrayinchester (talk) 09:56, 13 March 2015 (UTC)

Rhetorical devices[edit]

The meaning of a statement always depends on context, and there are various rhetorical devices that speakers and writers use in order to convey a particular message without meaning what they literally say. These include sarcasm, irony, understatement and hyperbole. In speech, the use of these devices is often highlighted by a particular intonation, and in writing, this may be mimicked by the use of italics, quotation marks or exclamation points. Because the set of words and phrases which can be used rhetorically is almost limitless, and because separating ironic use from literal use is often difficult, the straightforward use of common rhetorical devices does not usually qualify for inclusion.

This means, for example, that big should not be defined as "(sarcastic) small", "(understatement) gigantic" or "(hyperbole) moderately large"; the fact that an English speaker might use the word this way is obvious and not especially noteworthy. Common rhetorical use can be explained in a usage note, a context tag (such as (Usually sarcastic)) or as part of the literal definition.

Figures of speech that are not obvious from their parts – for example, a euphemism which successfully disguises its true meaning, or a sarcastic turn of phrase which is more than a simple inversion of meaning – or which are never used literally are not covered by this rule, and can be included on their own merits.


Alternative wording[edit]

The straightforward use of sarcasm, irony, understatement and hyperbole does not usually qualify for inclusion: these are standard rhetorical devices which affect the meaning of a statement as a whole, but do not change the meaning of the words themselves.

This means, for example, that big should not be defined as "(sarcastic) small", "(understatement) gigantic" or "(hyperbole) moderately large"; the fact that an English speaker might use the word in these ways is obvious and not especially noteworthy. Common rhetorical use can be explained in a usage note, a context tag (such as (Usually sarcastic)) or as part of the literal definition. Figures of speech that are not obvious from their parts or which are never used literally are not covered by this rule, and can be included on their own merits.

Phonetic transcriptions (narrowness, number)[edit]

I have been informed that phonetic transcriptions on this site are only to be done on a certain level of depth. As I am personally interested in the variant pronunciations of languages, non-phonemic ones included, I would like to ask whether there are really any great arguments against giving a medium number of regional narrower pronunciations under a broad heading, like in the examples here and here. Korn (talk) 10:39, 12 March 2015 (UTC)

  • I feel like such fine phonetic detail doesn't belong in a dictionary because it's not a lexical property of the word in question. The fact that /ʁ/ is realized as [r] in Bavarian is a fact about the phonology of Bavarian, not a fact about robben. I also wonder how verifiable a lot of these pronunciations are. Who says that it's [ˈʁɔ.m̩], with a highly unusual and almost unpronounceable sequence of vowel plus syllabic consonant in northern and central German? I live in Berlin, and while I've certainly heard [ˈʁɔbm̩] (which isn't even listed), I don't think I've ever heard [ˈʁɔ.m̩]. I don't think I can even produce [ˈʁɔ.m̩] in a way that is reliably distinct from [ˈʁɔm]. And who says that the standard German pronunciation of Madrid is [ˈmadʁɪtʰ] with an aspirated [t] at the end of a syllable? I've never read a phonological description of standard German that permits aspirated consonants at the end of a syllable. I'm also curious about what inflected and derived forms of Madrid are attested to verify the claim that the final consonant is underlyingly /t/, i.e. that the word works in German as if it were spelled Madrit. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 10:31, 14 March 2015 (UTC)
  • I lived in Berlin (north east) for five years and my impression is that [m̩] is by far the dominant Berlin and German pronunciation. -ben is certainly not pronounced with a fully released plosive like Bad and preventing [b̚m̩] from becoming [m̩] requires some carefulness in speech. When speaking careful, though, I think people normally end up with some form ending in [n] again. Concerning Madrid: The adjective, 'madrider'. Hearing it pronounced with [d] would make me assume the speaker was from an area with intervocalic consonant voicing, i.e. Schwaben, Sachsen, the north et cetera. Its pronunciation with /t/ is based in the devoicing in the noun.
  • As for the lexical property, it could just as well be stated that the fact that /r/ is realised as [ʁ̞] in Western, Central and parts of Northern Germany is a fact about the phonology of Central, Western and parts of Northern Germany and not about the word in question. But at the end of the day, both pronunciations are both permissable and spread variants of the standard language and not features of a non-standard dialect. Hence, if either deserves a place in the list, so does the other. And a note about where they are used seems a reasonable service of convenience. Actively excluding them would mean to blot out a considerable portion of German speakers and creating North-Central-centric bias in this dictionary. Especially with comparison to the English entries, which always differentiate between at least two or more variants (English, American, Australian, Canadian and American dialects), or Indonesian entries which list both /o/ and /ʊ/ (sarung#Malay) and /e/ - /ɪ/, there certainly is some precedent for, at the very least, more level of detail than just a phonemic description of one single accent; even when that accent is the one considered to be the educated regiolect in the cities where most of Germany's TV, radio and cinema is produced.
  • Lastly, as for the aspirated /t/, English Wikipedia cites the Duden Aussprachewörterbuch (which I don't have around to check) as a source for consonants having the same level of aspiration in all positions. It is also mentions that initial-only aspiration is a distinctive feature of northern northern Germany, which is reasonable as the same has been said by Low German grammarians over a century before. Korn (talk) 13:59, 14 March 2015 (UTC)

Coupla new votes[edit]

Thanks to their recent vandal-fighting, I've started a couple of votes for adminhood to be bestowed upon Mr Granger and ISMETA --Type56op9 (talk) 12:43, 12 March 2015 (UTC)

SUL finalization update[edit]

Hi all, please read this page for important information and an update involving SUL finalization, scheduled to take place in one month. Thanks. Keegan (WMF) (talk) 19:45, 13 March 2015 (UTC)

Striking a Blow Against a Spammer[edit]

I just deleted an entry for the name of a business/its website domain name where the definition was a verbatim quote of a slogan from their website (I'm not going to mention the details to avoid giving them the search-engine-ranking boost they were aiming for- I've given enough information here so you can easily find them).

After deleting the entry and blocking the IP for 6 months as a spammer, I took it a step further: I noticed a yelp.com entry for their business, so I signed up there with an account under my own name and zip code and posted a negative review- citing only facts verifiable in the deletion log and noting the lack of direct evidence. Now, whenever anyone searches for the website, this review will come up. Unless I'm missing something, this tactic has the potential to remove some of the incentive/reward for search-engine spam in cases where a negative review would make a difference (this is an advertising/marketing business in Texas).

What does everyone else think about this? Chuck Entz (talk) 00:17, 14 March 2015 (UTC)

This could be an effective approach. There's always the possibility Person A would create an entry for rival Person B's business, knowing we'd delete it and smack Person B, but our historical experience suggests most spammers aren't that smart or else they would have realized by now we delete spam pages and they don't gain any SEO. - -sche (discuss) 02:53, 14 March 2015 (UTC)
I doubt it will make much difference, since spammers are such single-minded meatheads, but it can't actually hurt. If you feel you've got time to mess about filling various online forms then go for it. Equinox 02:59, 14 March 2015 (UTC)

Template:lang[edit]

Do we still need {{lang}}? Is there anything that {{lang|it|Nel mezzo del cammin di nostra vita}} does that {{l|it||Nel mezzo del cammin di nostra vita}} (note the two vertical bars after it) doesn't? If I want to put a link inside {{lang}}, e.g. {{lang|it|Nel [[mezzo]] del cammin di nostra vita}}, it doesn't even tell the link to go to the Italian section, while {{l|it|Nel [[mezzo]] del cammin di nostra vita}} does tell the link what language it is. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 10:48, 14 March 2015 (UTC)

In which situations is {{lang}} used anyway? I’ve only seen it used in quotations, but I think we would benefit from a template specifically for that (one that works like {{usex}}). — Ungoliant (falai) 17:57, 14 March 2015 (UTC)
Besides quotations, I've sometimes used it in inflection-table templates for forms that don't need linking. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 19:51, 15 March 2015 (UTC)
Looks like replacing it with {{l}} is the way to go. — Ungoliant (falai) 14:28, 16 March 2015 (UTC)
My gut is to keep both. As I've said time and again, merging and moving templates does little other than confuse a lot of editors. Purplebackpack89 14:33, 16 March 2015 (UTC)
The way this process should and used to work is that, if folks agree, the template is deprecated, then its use converted to some other, then deleted.
Deprecation can be preceded by discouraging use. Should we discourage use of this in any of its applications? In all of its applications? The discouragement can be in the form of changing the documentation, gradually converting some or all uses to some other template, as well as any adverse conclusion of discussions such as this. Ii also might be a a good time to determine whether the replacement templates are as good as they could be and to review their documentation. It is a bit more work, but a gradual process should reduce the adverse effects on contributor habits, and extend the utility of edit histories that use older templates. DCDuring TALK 17:05, 16 March 2015 (UTC)
I don't really give a flying fox if we delete it or not; I just want to know if there's any particular reason I should keep using it. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 21:23, 16 March 2015 (UTC)
Based on {{lang/documentation}} it's basically a shortcut to <span lang="LANGCODE"></span>, which I think is still needed because of browsers that don't work out the script for themselves. How useful it is for languages that use the Latin script, well, I think it only changes the HTML, to a human user, it's no different. Renard Migrant (talk) 20:29, 17 March 2015 (UTC)
  • Usability perspective:
My current understanding is that various accessibility and other tools can make use of linguistic metadata provided by {{lang}} to decide how to handle text. I've been using it for some time to specify that non-link text I am entering is not English.
From what I've been able to test, both {{lang|LANGCODE|$Text}} and {{l|LANGCODE||$Text}} produce identical output in the browser:
<span class="LANGCODE-SCRIPT" lang="LANGCODE" xml:lang="LANGCODE">$Text</span>
This proposed change would thus only 1) affect what templates editors use, and 2) require that someone go through and change all instances of {{lang}} over to use {{l}} instead.
I'm fine with that. I can't think of any other real downsides. ‑‑ Eiríkr Útlendi │ Tala við mig 23:15, 17 March 2015 (UTC)
There are some differences. Compare {{lang|ru|[[тест]]}} and {{l|ru||[[тест]]}}. —CodeCat 00:08, 18 March 2015 (UTC)
  • With the [[]] link brackets, {{lang}} produces:
<span class="Cyrl" lang="ru" xml:lang="ru"><a href="/wiki/%D1%82%D0%B5%D1%81%D1%82" title="">тест</a></span>
Meanwhile, {{l}} produces:
<span class="Cyrl" lang="ru" xml:lang="ru"><a href="/wiki/%D1%82%D0%B5%D1%81%D1%82" title="тест">тест</a></span> (<span lang="" class="tr" xml:lang="">test</span>)
Without the [[]] link brackets, {{lang}} produces:
<span class="Cyrl" lang="ru" xml:lang="ru">тест</span>
{{l}} produces:
<span class="Cyrl" lang="ru" xml:lang="ru">тест</span> (<span lang="" class="tr" xml:lang="">test</span>)
It looks like the key difference is addition of transliteration for those languages for which our infrastructure supports transliteration.
Query: Are there any use cases where users would want to 1) mark text as a specific language, but 2) not have any automatic transliteration? ‑‑ Eiríkr Útlendi │ Tala við mig 18:21, 18 March 2015 (UTC)
Our templates already support tr=- to suppress transliteration. So you only have to search for entries which have that. It's probably used mostly in inflection tables. —CodeCat 19:46, 18 March 2015 (UTC)
I think the idea is something like this, on aduire, where the intention is not to link. Renard Migrant (talk) 17:33, 19 March 2015 (UTC)
But that's where you'd use {{ux}}. —CodeCat 18:36, 19 March 2015 (UTC)
It's a citation, not a usage example. Renard Migrant (talk) 12:45, 21 March 2015 (UTC)

Template:confusion[edit]

Whyyyy do we have both {{ux}} and {{usex}}??? ‑‑ Eiríkr Útlendi │ Tala við mig 18:38, 19 March 2015 (UTC)

See Wiktionary:Grease pit/2014/February#Template for eg over usex like label over context. —CodeCat 18:59, 19 March 2015 (UTC)
They work the same, one being a redirect to the other.
{{usex}} came first and its name is a bit more intuitive, so some users are accustomed to it and it might be a little bit easier for someone new to Wiktionary to figure out what was intended. As evidence of usex being more intuitive, it gets some use on our discussion pages as an abbreviation of usage example, whereas I don't recollect a single instance of such use of ux". OTOH, {{ux}} is shorter. If there were a big shortage of two-letter codes or a clearly better use for either of the template names we could revisit the matter. DCDuring TALK 20:54, 19 March 2015 (UTC)

Pronunciation formatting[edit]

Should phonetic or phonemic transcription be preferred, by default? WT:PRON appears to be silent on this. Yet this can be a relatively large difference for languages where a word's surface realization involves several phonological processes.

Also, {{IPA}} seems to link every pronunciation to the corresponding [[w:$LANG phonology]] article, even if one does not exist. This seems like a bad idea, given the policy that "[i]deally, every entry should have a pronunciation section". I would suggest instead directing it by default to [[w:$LANG language#Phonology]] (though it seems possible to contemplate defining a set of languages for which it instead links to the separate phonology article). --Tropylium (talk) 14:23, 16 March 2015 (UTC)

I prefer phonemic transcription because that's what most dictionaries use and because that's what lexical. That said, the phonemic transcription need not be highly abstract; for example, if the distinction between two phonemes is loss in a certain environment, then the sound that surfaces can be transcribed even if an abstract analysis would regard the other sound as the underlying one. (For example, German Rad can be transcribed /ʁaːt/ rather than /ʁaːd/ since /t/ and /d/ are distinct phonemes in German, even though an abstract analysis would posit /ʁaːd/ as the underlying form.) But that's just my preference; we have plenty of examples of narrow transcription being used, and there's no reason we can't use both. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 21:06, 16 March 2015 (UTC)
If allophonic differences cause the distinction between two phonemes to collapse, then that collapsed phoneme should really be treated as new phoneme in itself, rather than either of the original phonemes. For example, in Eastern Catalan, unstressed /a/ and /e/ fall together as /ə/, and you can't really say which of the two it originally belongs to. It's a new phoneme altogether, albeit one that occurs in complementary distribution to both /a/ and /e/. For final devoicing, the same applies in principle, albeit that the phonetic realisation of the new phoneme coincides with the realisation of one of the two phonemes that it results from. But the distinction is definitely phonemic, and it's only when you go into morphophonemics, comparing related forms of a lemma, that the original /d/ arises. Another way to look at it is to ask: if Rad were the only possible form and had no other forms or related terms to compare it with, how would you know it was /d/ underlyingly? You couldn't, and therefore the phoneme is /t/. —CodeCat 21:33, 16 March 2015 (UTC)
I agree. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 22:26, 16 March 2015 (UTC)
Phonemic, please! I don't think anyone wants to see a whole raft of vowel variants for Yorkshire, London, Manchester, Essex, Scotland, etc. — and that's just the UK! Equinox 21:17, 16 March 2015 (UTC)
I'll agree with everyone then. Renard Migrant (talk) 20:29, 17 March 2015 (UTC)
I'm not asking due to dialects as much as languages with several surface filters between phonemics and phonetics. For an example: Tundra Nenets леды (skeleton) is phonologically analyzable as IPA(key): /lediă/, phonetically realized as IPA(key): [lɤːðɨː]. Would you mandate transcribing the former? Or would you be OK with using "subphonemic" transcription where e.g. the vowel backing process, universal in all varieties of the language, is transcribed? How about the lenition of /d/, which is almost universal — would you consider the fact that there exist a few dialects that have [d] in this position sufficient grounds to not mark [ð] at all?
(For that matter, suppose I were to indicate an underlying phonemicization IPA(key): /lixt/ or even just IPA(key): /līt/ for light, citing w:The Sound Pattern of English…?)
"Do not put in tons of dialectal pronunciations" is not at all the same as "put everything in purely phonemic transcription". --Tropylium (talk) 00:04, 18 March 2015 (UTC)
That's a difficult case. On the one hand, you don't want to give such a highly abstract representation (like the SPE ones you mentioned) that the word would be unrecognizable to native speakers if pronounced the way it's transcribed. On the other hand, you don't want to overwhelm the user with a bunch of fine phonetic detail whose absence would probably not be noticed by native speakers. One rule of thumb I sometimes try to follow in cases like this is "How narrow a transcription can I get without using any IPA diacritics, superscripts, etc., but only the basic characters?" Obviously that rule can't be applied exceptionlessly in all cases, but if [lɤːðɨː] is unambiguous as it stands, then don't go overboard and transcribe it [l̪ˠɤ̽ːð̺ɨ̠ː] or whatever. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 20:02, 18 March 2015 (UTC)
Would it not be possible to automatically generate phonetic transcriptions from the phonemic one? After all, it's predictable by definition. —CodeCat 21:11, 17 March 2015 (UTC)
In the past, a few users suggested using super-broad/"diaphonemic" transcriptions. Perhaps one day English entries will have expandable templatized pronunciation sections like Chinese entries, where phonemic and semi-narrow phonetic transcriptions into major dialects are shown by default, while smaller dialects' pronunciations, and super-broad/"diaphonemic" and super-narrow transcriptions, are shown when the template is expanded. (Check out the obscure dialect+chronolect in dirty.) PS I definitely agree that Rad should be transcribed as ending with /t/, not /d/. - -sche (discuss) 01:24, 19 March 2015 (UTC)
For what it's worth, I heavily support pursuing this idea. Not that my word seems to be worth much, as before I both asked about how to create such a collapsible template and just a bit further up this page asked more or less the same question about narrowness and diaphonemic/dialect IPA policy and was widely ignored both times. Korn (talk) 11:45, 19 March 2015 (UTC)
Automatic phonemic → phonetic transcription is in principle viable, but fully unified diaphonemic transcription is generally not. Consider examples like lava or pasta. --Tropylium (talk) 00:58, 1 April 2015 (UTC)

Request for citations (!= RFV) for entries not in other dictionaries[edit]

We have a good number of entries (definitions in entries) not in other dictionaries that have no citations. They really should have some citations to confirm our definition and to make us look a little more systematic than Urban Dictionary. The RfV process gives urgency to the process of attestation, but that urgency may be excessive for many of these. Would it make sense to have {{rfcites}} (or something) for entries that were not in {{R:OneLook}}, {{R:Century 1911}}, or any glossary or dictionary in Google Books (template to be written)? I suppose it would be most productive for this to be applied first to entries. Attempting to determine whether a definition is or is not in another dictionary is much harder than determining whether a term is. DCDuring TALK 17:08, 17 March 2015 (UTC)

I like the idea of some sort of collaborative wiki project where you can grab any word/sense without the requisite three citations and go away and cite it, and it is then removed from the list. This would take a lot of organisation, and a bot. Still, it could be done, and I would rather that we generate a separate list, based on our current entries, than change those entries by adding yet more template markup to them. Equinox 19:43, 17 March 2015 (UTC)
There are {{rfquote}} and {{Template:rfquote-sense}}, created on 24 October 2007‎ and 22 October 2007‎. They categorize into Category:English entries needing quotation, which now has 10,750 items. --Dan Polansky (talk) 19:54, 17 March 2015 (UTC)
Thanks. I had looked at Category:Request templates, really. There are only about 60 uses of {{rfquote|lang=en}} AFAICT, somwhat fewer of {{rfquote-sense|lang=en}}. Would it be unreasonable to categorize the English ones into a specific category? DCDuring TALK 01:02, 18 March 2015 (UTC)
I sometimes put {{rfex}} on senses that strike me as dubious but don't seem worth an RFV. I don't think those categorise, but at least it's something editors will see while editing. Equinox 19:55, 17 March 2015 (UTC)
Would it be helpful to have {{rfex}} categorize into the same category as {{rfquote}} or into a different category or none at all. If it contained "en" or "lang=en", the new search could find it, even without a category, but someone would have to know search and know what to look for. DCDuring TALK 01:01, 18 March 2015 (UTC)
Tentative support but not on the main page, perhaps. Also, we need to consider normalisations of spellings and rare languages, for example, quoting Chechen word чӏогӏа (č̣oġa, strong) would be difficult for two reasons - non-standard spelling "чlогӏа" is more common (problems with palochka, especially lower case "ӏ") and Chechen doesn't have a lot of digitised books published. --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 01:24, 18 March 2015 (UTC)
{{newrfquote}} could be made less conspicuous, like {{rfelite}}, and placed at the bottom of the L2 section. {{rfquote-sense}} is relatively inconspicuous and could me made a bit less conspicuous.
As to the other problems, of course, I'm thinking mainly of English. Judgment needs to be applied for each language, indeed for each individual use. DCDuring TALK 01:47, 18 March 2015 (UTC)

Walser German and Swabian[edit]

It has been brought to my attention that we have Category:Walser German language and Category:Swabian language.

In my opinions, we shouldn't treat these two as separate languages. They are part of the Swiss German dialect continuum, which is covered via Category:Alemannic German language. There is no reason at all to keep Swabian. As for Walser German, it is the least intelligible of the dialect continuum, virtually incomprehensible even to other Swiss German speakers, but linguistic tradition has always treated it as just a variety of Swiss German, and there is no reason why we shouldn't follow suit. We can always use dialect labels to distinguish the different languages, and there are many, many more varieties of Swiss German (like Alsatian) that are not covered. -- Liliana 22:18, 17 March 2015 (UTC)

Yes, merge them into gsw (Category:Alemannic German language). There are lexical distinctions and phonological and hence orthographic distinctions that can be drawn between the lects, but none of them are so great that it would be sensible to treat the lects as separate languages. (And there are many equally distinct varieties of the Alemannic dialect continuum which have not been granted codes, as you've noted.) A cynic might wonder if the reason Ethnologue et al are so much quicker to grant codes to the dialects of other languages than to the dialects of English is that they all speak English well enough to recognize how silly it would be to consider da yooge boid ate da olykoek /də judʒ bɜjd eɪt də ˈ(oʊ~oə).lɪ.kʊk/ and the huge bird ate the doughnut /ðə hjudʒ bɝd eɪt ðə ˈdoʊ.nʌt/ different languages. - -sche (discuss) 20:01, 20 March 2015 (UTC)
Incidentally, I stumbled onto this today: "I notice that 'Walser' is counted as a separate language, but all the other Swiss German dialects are grouped under Swiss German. Does anyone happen to know why this is? My grandparents speak Walser and we have absolutely no trouble communicating (I speak a different, High Alemannic, dialect)."
I have merged Walser into gsw.
- -sche (discuss) 21:28, 17 April 2015 (UTC)

Wordset[edit]

Any thoughts on Wordset? They open sourced their code and data recently and emphasize a structured data approach (in contrast to Wiktionary). Their claim that Wiktionary is "unstructured" is not really correct, there a number of tools which can successfully parse the content (I contribute code to one of them). At best I would call Wiktionary "semi-structured". What I agree with however is that it is time to try out new ways to build a collaborative platform at scale. For instance there is a voting system built into wordset which is used to reach consensus on proposed changes. The big problem is that Wiktionary (and Mediawiki) can be quite intimidating to potential new contributors, the templating system is powerful but also complex. And it was obviously never designed to create a dictionary. On the other hand Wordset's data model is quite limited at the moment (for a project that aims to be more structured), and they only focus on English headwords, at least initially. Jberkel (talk) 18:08, 18 March 2015 (UTC)

  • I'm not impressed. SemperBlotto (talk) 08:03, 19 March 2015 (UTC)
  • It is quite easy to have a data structure when only focusing on one language and only looking for a definition. But try to do that with all languages (described in several languages), with much more diverse information to store and organize (pronunciations, etymologies, flexions, synonyms...) and it becomes very difficult. The semi-structured Wiktionaries allows to have all of these, but at the cost of a real structure (also parsers only work to some extend, and usually only for one Wiktionary language), which indeed make it difficult to reuse the data. Wikidata may be able to improve this, but it is going to be very difficult. Nonetheless, this Wordset site is open-source, including the definitions, and with a philosophy close to the Wikimedia projects, so we should not try to see it as an adversary. — Dakdada 09:16, 19 March 2015 (UTC)
    @BD2412: If they don't import content from dictionaries like us, it will take them a long time to achieve coverage. Some of their content is apparently from WordNet and is available on what looks to me like a non-standard license. Their content is "Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License". Can they simply import our content given that license? Can we use their content provided we include them as a reference? DCDuring TALK 15:22, 19 March 2015 (UTC)
    Yes, and yes. They claim to use "the same CC license for the content as Wikipedia uses, CC-BY-SA", and we can hold them to that. Like everyone else in the world, they are free to copy and reuse our content so long as they credit us for it, and we are free to do the same as to theirs. I would not hold my breath on their providing anything that we can actually use, however. bd2412 T 19:07, 19 March 2015 (UTC)
    Thanks. They might have some particularly well-worded definitions and usexes from time to time. BTW, can we copy WordNet with acknowledgement or is their license a little different?
I've been thinking that it would be handy to have a definition-writers custom edit interface that automatically generated links to various copyright-free and appropriately licensed dictionaries' entries for the headword being edited. Other links might be to various corpora and gateways. Standard boilerplate to credit the sources that needed crediting could be part of it too. At a very basic level templates like {{taxlook}} and {{REEHelp}} do a little of this, but a complete editing interface would be much better. DCDuring TALK 20:42, 19 March 2015 (UTC)
We are completely free to copy from WordNet, so long as wherever we copy, we include on the page: "WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved. THIS SOFTWARE AND DATABASE IS PROVIDED "AS IS" AND PRINCETON UNIVERSITY MAKES NO REPRESENTATIONS OR WARRANTIES, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED. BY WAY OF EXAMPLE, BUT NOT LIMITATION, PRINCETON UNIVERSITY MAKES NO REPRESENTATIONS OR WARRANTIES OF MERCHANT- ABILITY OR FITNESS FOR ANY PARTICULAR PURPOSE OR THAT THE USE OF THE LICENSED SOFTWARE, DATABASE OR DOCUMENTATION WILL NOT INFRINGE ANY THIRD PARTY PATENTS, COPYRIGHTS, TRADEMARKS OR OTHER RIGHTS". However, I'd rather not include that anywhere in Wiktionary. bd2412 T 20:54, 19 March 2015 (UTC)
@BD2412: Indeed. In contrast Wordset needs a simple acknowledgement and link to their site. Or is our way of tracking changes not sufficient? DCDuring TALK 21:04, 19 March 2015 (UTC)
From a first glance, it doesn't look like their licence is compatible with ours, in particular the CC ShareAlike clause. ShareAlike means copyleft; they can't "add" restrictions on content that are not present on its original form on Wiktionary. If licencees have to include their copyright notice, it violates that, because such a requirement does not exist here. So Wordset cannot use Wiktionary content. —CodeCat 21:10, 19 March 2015 (UTC)
But our license is also CC ShareAlike. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 21:39, 19 March 2015 (UTC)
I was referring to ours. Theirs is not, as far as I can tell. So it's probably incompatible. —CodeCat 21:47, 19 March 2015 (UTC)
It is the same, per their own words: "Specifically, we’re going to be choosing the same CC license for the content as Wikipedia uses, CC-BY-SA." [1]Dakdada 16:31, 20 March 2015 (UTC)
Yeah, it's confusing because we're simultaneously talking about Wordnet and Wordset in this thread. Wordset has the same license we do, but Wordnet doesn't. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 16:41, 20 March 2015 (UTC)
Anyone else notice how they function on "yae" [sic] votes? Heh. Equinox 14:25, 19 March 2015 (UTC)

Interlanguage (interwiki) links[edit]

Does anybody know what the plan is for interlanguage links? Wikidata (as used in Wikipedia) is not yet used in Wiktionary. New articles lack interlanguage links (one example is lägel, created by me on February 21, which also exists on sv.wiktionary, but isn't linked) and existing articles here lack interlanguage links to newly created articles in other languages of Wiktionary, apparently because the interwiki bots have stopped. Should the bots be restarted? Or will Wikidata support come soon? --LA2 (talk) 21:58, 23 March 2015 (UTC)

@LA2: See d:Wikidata:Wiktionary. The fact that interwiki links aren't handled by Wikidata is pretty ridiculous, really. In (e.g.) Wikipedia, there won't be a direct one-to-one equivalent of every idea in every language edition and figuring out where all of them should point can be really tricky. In Wiktionary, it's irrelevant: the entry at wikt:en:foot and wikt:es:foot should link together no matter what (as long as neither of them is a redlink). This could all be accomplished painlessly in an afternoon. —Justin (koavf)TCM 01:52, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
"the entry at wikt:en:foot and wikt:es:foot should link together no matter what [...] this could all be accomplished painlessly in an afternoon": Indeed. And no shortage of Wiktionarians have pointed that out to the folks at Wikidata. They, in turn, have made it clear they are not going to do it. - -sche (discuss) 03:57, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
@-sche: Do you have links or diffs? I can't imagine that the Wikidata community refuse to make interwiki links on Wiktionary. —Justin (koavf)TCM 04:35, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
I think they would like to do all of Wiktionary at once, not just interlanguage links. And since defining a structure for Wiktionary linguistic data is really hard (and much discussed), they will probably not attack the problem until the other projects are converted to Wikidata.
Also, there are some small exceptions that we need to take care of for interlanguage links: see the table I made in d:Wikidata_talk:Wiktionary#First_and_second_phases, in particular the "apostrophe", "capital" and "other" interwikis. Those are due to different communities typographic rules (and some errors). — Dakdada 10:24, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
This sounds like a deadlock situation. How sad! In the meanwhile, it couldn't hurt to restart interwiki bots, could it? I still have bot status (LA2-bot) on some languages of Wiktionary, so should I just go for it? LA2 (talk) 15:29, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

Out[edit]

Hi. I'm not gonna be using this username anymore. Time for a change. See you soon with a new name. --Type56op9 (talk) 12:49, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

OK thanks for letting us know ♥ Soap (talk) 15:07, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
It wasn't one of your better names, really. Equinox 02:06, 27 March 2015 (UTC)

Entries from the GCIDE labeled "Webster 1913 Suppl."[edit]

So I've found entries in the GCIDE which are missing from Wiktionary, such as "Pimola":

 <p><ent>Pimola</ent><br/
 <hw>Pim*o"la</hw> <pr>(?)</pr>, <pos>n.</pos> <def>An olive stuffed with a kind of sweet red pepper, or pimiento.  </def><br/
 [<source>Webster 1913 Suppl.</source>]</p>

Apparently these are from the "Webster 1913 Suppl."

My question is this: Should these be copied into Wiktionary? Is it OK for me to copy this definition into Wiktionary, or are there license restrictions for the "Webster 1913 Suppl." ?

Oh, interesting. There are also other words missing which are labeled, simply, "1913 Webster", such as Pinxit:

 <p><ent>Pinxit</ent><br/
 \'d8<hw>Pinx"it</hw> <pr>(?)</pr>. <ety>[L., perfect indicative 3d sing. of <ets>pingere</ets> to paint.]</ety> 
 <def>A word appended to the artist's name or initials on a painting, or engraved copy of a painting; <as>as, <ex>Rubens pinxit</ex>, Rubens painted (this)</as>.</def><br/
 [<source>1913 Webster</source>]</p>

Should these be copied in? "Pinxit" seems like a pretty useful word. Are there issues with using the GCIDE definitions?

It's out of copyright due to its age, so you can do what you like with it. Please add them! Equinox 13:33, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
The worst that could happen is that some of them won't meet our attestation standards. Add 'em and we'll sort that out eventually. DCDuring TALK 13:41, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
Oh, yea. You should register. It makes it easier for us to communicate with you in a friendly way. DCDuring TALK 13:44, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
Thanks, I'm registered now. User:Pnelsonmusic But obviously a newby. I've been reviewing the GCIDE for a search engine linguistic processing project and have noticed these differences between it and Wiktionary. Maybe I'll write a program to identify all missing items. TALK 13:52, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
We look forward to your contributions. Equinox has done a lot of work on getting entries from Webster 1913. DCDuring TALK 15:43, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
Not all of us really approve of copying definitions from other dictionaries, even when they are out of copyright. Definitions are supposed to be our own work. But I have no objections on obtaining lists of words from ANY dictionary or similar source - I do that myself. SemperBlotto (talk) 09:15, 29 March 2015 (UTC)
But we see farther if we stand on the shoulders of the giants who preceded us. DCDuring TALK 09:43, 29 March 2015 (UTC)

How can I add a "thank" note?[edit]

How can I add it to edits in entry histories, next to "undo"? Or is it visible to other users and not to myself? I'm more used to the "undo" function being used, or just tacit approval of edits. Donnanz (talk) 17:18, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

The person receiving thanks gets a notification. Others have to read the log. — Ungoliant (falai) 17:37, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
I understand that, I've done that myself and have also received thanks. But I'm afraid that doesn't really answer the question. It doesn't show in the entry history for edits I do. Donnanz (talk) 18:55, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
Maybe your page histories look different from mine, but when I look at a page history, the "thank" button is there for all diffs except my own and those made by anons. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 10:16, 29 March 2015 (UTC)
Ah, I was beginning to suspect / think that. Thanks, I guess that solves that. Donnanz (talk) 10:20, 29 March 2015 (UTC)

Death and taxes[edit]

No entry for death and taxes? Really? ;) ~ heyzeuss 05:07, 31 March 2015 (UTC)

Damn! UD has it and we don't! We are doomed. DCDuring TALK 12:49, 31 March 2015 (UTC)
What is it supposed to mean; how would you define it? It's just part of a popular phrase about things that are inevitable, but it still only means, in that phrase, DEATH + AND + TAXES. Equinox 15:30, 31 March 2015 (UTC)

Bad Romanian translations[edit]

I know I keep sounding like a broken record - this is not the first time I bring this up - but I've been monitoring Romanian translations and entries, and BaicanXXX is adding incorrect entries again. A great number of contributions are direct translations and don't reflect Romanian equivalents. For instance answerphone is "robot telefonic", not telefon cu răspunzător de apel or telefon cu răspuns automat. The term traveling in basketball is translated pași and not pași greșiți. Baican's translations are four times out of five explanations and not Romanian equivalents. I've also recently found out that he has several operating sock puppets, most of which have been blocked by Romanian Wikipedia administrators because Baican kept using words that don't exist and users who opposed this user's way of contributing were harassed. I just want to know what to do; I usually correct mistakes when I see them, but it's hard to keep up. If his contributions are deemed to be ok, then I'll back off. I just want to know which policies apply. Thank you in advance, --Robbie SWE (talk) 19:59, 31 March 2015 (UTC)

This is definitely a worthy issue. I've given him a warning on his talkpage about it. The way you can help is to a) revert his incorrect/unidiomatic translations and fix them, b) tag his entries for WT:RFV if they're not actually used in Romanian or WT:RFD if they're just a sum of parts, and c) mention on his talkpage if he continues to make these errors so that any admin who may wish to block him in the future has a record of any offences that may occur after he was warned. —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 06:39, 2 April 2015 (UTC)
Oh, and I forgot to mention: if he is operating sockpuppets here, please report them! Abusing multiple accounts is not okay (e.g. editing with one account if another has been blocked). —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 06:53, 2 April 2015 (UTC)
Ok, I'll make changes where needed from now on. I blocked Baican's sock puppets (the ones I could find were Bon.line, LaPietre, Trepier and WernescU) back home in the Romanian Wiktionary after making sure that the administrators of the Romanian Wikipedia confirmed that these accounts truly belonged to the same user. Just a heads-up about Baican's modus operandi: he never responds in the language of the Wiktionary project he is active in, so don't expect him to answer in English. --Robbie SWE (talk) 18:26, 2 April 2015 (UTC)
Unless he's currently active, there's not a lot to discuss they all need checking individually. It's not a policy issue. Many of them are so bad even I can confidently remove them. Many of them are sentences, like for marathon he'd add in Romanian race of 26.2 miles. That's a fictional example but many of them are as bad as that if not worse. Renard Migrant (talk) 23:11, 2 April 2015 (UTC)

April 2015

International Journal of Lexicography[edit]

Hi, I'm not sure where to post my question. Is there someone who has access to the International Journal of Lexicography? I'm interested in an article on Dictionary illustrations because we have some recent discussions about it on Czech Wiktionary (they are strictly prohibited there and routinely deleted) and this article is supposed to provide good insight. However I don't want to spend $28 on it (I tried the DeepDyve free trial subscription but they have this journal only since 2004). Thanks to anyone for any help. --Auvajs (talk) 05:38, 2 April 2015 (UTC)

@Auvajs: I have access. I've downloaded it and I'll be emailing you with the pdf shortly. —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 06:12, 2 April 2015 (UTC)
Wow, that was so fast! Thanks very much! :) --Auvajs (talk) 06:19, 2 April 2015 (UTC)
Rádo se stalo. —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 06:45, 2 April 2015 (UTC)
Images are really useful in dictionaries. I have an Italian language dictionary - sometimes I struggle to quite make out what the definition means, but then they have it in a page of pictures and I think "Oh! One of those!". SemperBlotto (talk) 07:06, 2 April 2015 (UTC)
@SemperBlotto: In case anyone didn't know: Wiktionary:Picture_dictionary. —Justin (koavf)TCM 07:15, 2 April 2015 (UTC)

Suggested modification to sign language syntax[edit]

In British Sign Language (BSL) there is a hand shape that is frequently used which can't be described using the current notation (usually called '10' http://www.signbsl.com/sign/10). I suggest adding ...i@... (for [i]nside or t[i]p) to Entry_names, Detailed description of phonemes used in sign entry names to fix this. ...i@... would be underneath ...p@... in the Detailed description of phonemes used in sign entry names for 'The thumb tip contacts the inside of a finger of the same hand'. Nathanael Farley (talk) 07:41, 2 April 2015 (UTC)

On etymology referencing[edit]

I recently added a recommendation on WT:ETYM that references for the reconstruction of proto-words should preferrably be centralized on their appendix pages. User:Dan Polansky reverted this with the comment:

I see no discussion supporting such a policy, and it is easy to verify that Wiktionary by and large does not reference etymologies so the putative policy contradicts long-term common practice

This was re-reverted as minor by User:Angr. Fair enough I guess, the page is a draft proposal after all. But I support having some discussion regardless.

There is a vote Reconstructions need references in preparation, but rather than editing that right away I'd like to sound the community for a few propositions — since, in addition to my comment on reference formatting it seems that we lack agreement on reference requirements in the first place as well.

Still, note that in principle these are separate questions. Wiktionary undeniably allows references, and my original comment applies to how they should be organized when present. But regardless, for starters, my thoughts on reference requirements:

  1. All etymological information should be verifiable. Which applies to several types of information, e.g.:
    • A given set of words being related to each other at all.
    • A given set of words being related in a specific fashion: usually, common descent or loaning in a specific direction.
    • Reconstructions (phonological, morphological and semantic) for proto-forms of words that are related by common descent.
  2. Wiktionary is a work in progress, and edits to etymology sections do not need to immediately have every possible detail sourced.
    • It would probably be a good idea to bring in a {{citation needed}} template and other similar ones for tagging information whose validity someone contests, or which someone thinks should just be cited more clearly. (Also, these two things probably need different inline tags.)
  3. Elementary synthesis of sources is allowed. E.g.:
    • Phonetic reconstruction: if we can source to Smorgle that *k in Proto-Foobar is reflected as Foo h, Bar k, and if we can similarly source to Zoop that the Foo word hu and the Bar word ku are related, at this point there is no problem in creating a Proto-Foobar entry *ku, even if we for the moment have no exact citation for this proto-form in the literature.
    • Phonetic reconstruction: if Smorgle gives a Proto-Foobar word *tata, Zoop gives a Steamy Foo reflex haha for this etymological set, and Shroobadoo has argued that Proto-Foobar *t should be reconstructed as *☕ whenever Steamy Foo has /h/, we can just fine reconstruct Proto-Foobar *☕a☕a rather than *tata, even if Shroobadoo never treated this particular word.
    • Etymological affiliation: if von Papperson states that word-initial *pr was forbidden in Proto-Foobar but evolved in early Bar; Böp states that in Swampy Foo there are loanwords such as prumf that have been acquired from Bar; and Zoop states that Swampy Foo pripi and Bar pripi are related, there is no problem in asserting that the former is probably a loan from the latter.

The third point might be the most contentious. Several further caveats may be required, e.g. all claims used as basis for synthesis of sources should probably represent mainstream scholarship. --Tropylium (talk) 07:44, 2 April 2015 (UTC)

I agree on all your points – a dictionary is more than definitions – these are methods that "keep an honest man honest" and separate fringe from scholarly interpretation of facts. Also, scholarly consensus changes and providing references or mentions places the etymology on a timeline for future contributors. BTW, User:Dan Polansky also doesn't like my documentation method of including content that is not an attestation of usage, and doesn't like me referring to Wiktionary:Citations and Wiktionary:References since they are not policies. You are not alone. —BoBoMisiu (talk) 13:32, 4 April 2015 (UTC)
  • Yes, "All etymological information should be verifiable" but that does not mean that the English Wiktionary should demand that parts of etymology are referenced using <ref> technique. I oppose such demand, and so does the overwhelming previous practice. --Dan Polansky (talk) 13:41, 4 April 2015 (UTC)
@Dan Polansky: I noticed your subtle moving the goalposts from a discussion about references in an entry into a discussion about a particular format of references (wrapping references in <ref>s). Referencing helps future contributors, shows quality and credibility of the content, demonstrates veracity, and is valid rationale to defend against accusations of plagiarism and copyright infringement. Transparency is a good. —BoBoMisiu (talk) 15:31, 4 April 2015 (UTC)
Moving the goalposts would be making the standard stricter to exclude what passed the earlier one. As to the point at hand: you do tend toward excess in citing. You don't need to nail down every single detail in a definition with a reference. Etymologies need to be referenced, yes- but not definitions. A descriptive dictionary defines terms the way people use them, not the way reference works specify is correct. If people use water beetle to refer to a cockroach, so do we- even though a cockroach isn't a beetle. Technical terms such as taxonomic names are somewhat of a special case, since correctness as a technical term is relevant. Still, the taxonomic literature is full of misapplied taxonomic names, and of changes in meaning due to splitting and lumping. In my area, most of the scrub oaks referred to as Quercus dumosa are really Quercus berberidifolia- for a long time no one paid attention to the difference. While true Q.dumosa only grows along the coast, there are all kinds of references in the literature in numerous disciplines to Q.dumosa being found/used, etc. far inland. Wiktionary isn't a journal of record, and citing details in the definitions as if we were is a bit deceptive and adds to clutter. That's not to say we shouldn't have links to other, more comprehensive sources, but only in moderation. This is a dictionary, so we try to keep things structured and streamlined for ease of use. Chuck Entz (talk) 17:12, 4 April 2015 (UTC)
@BoBoMisiu:, Dan Polansky is not 'subtly moving the goalposts' as what he refers to was part of the original reverted addition. I think the way the server interprets <ref></ref> syntax is ugly, and I try to avoid it. Also, people over use it, they use it for citations instead of just writing out the citation next to the sense which is to be cited, which is the best way to do it. Renard Migrant (talk) 17:23, 4 April 2015 (UTC)
Also verifiable is not the same as verified. Verifiable means if you try to verify it, you can. That's what we want. If something's not contentious, don't add a reference for it, because we end up with references coming out of our ears and the actual definitions become hard to find even for experienced users. Renard Migrant (talk) 17:26, 4 April 2015 (UTC)
@Chuck Entz: I agree with you, "If people use water beetle to refer to a cockroach, so do we- even though a cockroach isn't a beetle." Yet, having an entry that doesn't clearly distinguish for the user between what an authoritative sense and what is another just-as-real usage lacks something. As for "making the standard stricter to exclude what passed the earlier one", the three attestations of usage are unaffected, but it structures entries into the haves and the have not, i.e. those entries that are denied a connection to what is considered factual – that is a systemic problem that will not go away. As to ease of use, a collapsed section has all the content and yet provides a visually simple interface, which could be added by a bot, so that is not the same issue as ignoring what every school child is taught (to provide credit to your source and avoid plagiarism and copyright infringement).
@Renard Migrant: I agree with you, "verifiable is not the same as verified", that is not the same thing as not giving credit to your source. The notion that excluding things so it looks pretty is just style over substance that can be solved by collapsed sections. —BoBoMisiu (talk) 20:31, 4 April 2015 (UTC)
Etymological dictionaries usually do not give credit to sources on a per-entry level. The idea that you need to credit your source of information on a per-entry level or else you have a copyright infringment is wrong. Copyright protects expression, not information; you can take someone else's information but you cannot take their expression - a particular sequence of words or sentences; if you take someone else's expression, you are liable to have copyright infringement and referencing does not make it much better. Nonetheless, I when I was entering etymologies from a public domain source, I nearly always stated my source in the edit summary; I saw many editors of etymologies not do even that much. --Dan Polansky (talk) 18:03, 4 April 2015 (UTC)

┌─────────────┘
@Dan Polansky: "Etymological dictionaries usually do not give credit to sources on a per-entry level" because they are paper. Deciding what is or is not someones creative work or potentially discovery is beyond most contributors; transparency is not beyond most contributors. —BoBoMisiu (talk) 18:22, 4 April 2015 (UTC)

That's not just because they're paper, it's also because they have onymous authors who have reputations to consider and who can generally be trusted to do their research. We don't have that luxury. Because we're a wiki that anyone can edit, we have to show that our etymologies haven't been pulled out of our collective ass. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 18:41, 4 April 2015 (UTC)
Bravo! —BoBoMisiu (talk) 18:47, 4 April 2015 (UTC)
I refuted the copyright infringement assertion, and none of the things added above counterargued that refutation. As for the other subject whether we want to use <ref> in order to show which sources were used, I object to making that a demand or the recommended practice. An editor was adding <ref> to etymologies of Czech entries, and while I did not like it, I did not revert it. But it is one thing to tolerate the use of <ref>, and an entirely different thing to pretend that the English Wiktionary has a policy that requires contributors of etymology to use <ref>; I oppose such a policy, and claim that the use of edit summaries to state sources should be enough; in fact, we have not been chastising editors who provided zero edit summaries and zero references using <ref>. --Dan Polansky (talk) 18:57, 4 April 2015 (UTC)
Nobody can copyright that the English word lemma comes from the Ancient Greek word λῆμμα (lêmma). Also you've confused excluding things with not including things. You're basically arguing that literally everything should be included in every entry, relevant or otherwise. That's nothing to do with style over substance, that's insanity over substance. Renard Migrant (talk) 19:06, 4 April 2015 (UTC)
@Dan Polansky: where did you refute it?
@Renard Migrant: I agree with you, but chains of assertions that are copied from sources are someone's work. —BoBoMisiu (talk) 19:17, 4 April 2015 (UTC)
Nothing at WT:ETYM requires contributors to use <ref> or to provide sources for their etymologies at all. Doing so is recommended whenever possible; it is not required. Etymologies without references are more likely to be removed as possible bullshit than ones with references, but it is neither the case that all unsourced etymologies are bullshit nor that all sourced etymologies aren't. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 19:25, 4 April 2015 (UTC)
@Angr: I was reminded WT:ETYM is only a draft, so I started to ignore it, maybe I should follow it. I think references add transparency. Like you wrote, that bullshit still needs to be removed whether it is referenced or not. I disagree with Dan Polansky that an edit summary is equivalent to a fully cited reference. I think Tropylium's "Wiktionary is a work in progress" is valid and I suggest forking w:Template:Citation needed span from wikipedia. That template wraps the particular questionable content in a visually distinct box, making it easy to see where contribution is requested and what is suspect. A "synthesis of sources" is a good idea as long as it references where each piece of information comes from. That way a synthesis is transparent. I also think forking w:Template:Citation/core and changing the R: templates into wrappers with consistent parameters is a good idea and a step away from willy-nilly flat references toward structured machine readable data, but that is a future discussion. —BoBoMisiu (talk) 20:31, 4 April 2015 (UTC)
I think you'll find that forking templates from Wikipedia is not exactly popular around here. The people who propose doing so usually don't understand the difference between Wikipedia, with its large editor population, extensive bureaucratic infrastructure, and loosely-formatted, single-entry structure vs. Wiktionary, with its small editor base, simple rules/procedures and rigidly-formatted multi-entry structure, which requires that everything be concise and to the point. As for hiding the References section: that would still leave lots of superscripts, most of which link to statements of the obvious. If you really want to be thorough, how about word-frequency statistics? Binary checksums? Diagramming of the sentence structures? Those can all be hidden away in boxes, but will all lead to reader resentment for wasting their time if they follow the references. It reminds me of pulling over in the middle of nowhere because of a light on the dashboard: it was time for an oil change based on the mileage. If you have too much pointless information, hidden or not, the important information gets lost in the clutter. Chuck Entz (talk) 22:49, 4 April 2015 (UTC)
Tags like [citation needed] do not have communication between editors as their only function. They also alert the reader to pay attention to the quality of the information, and can help editors easily tell where they left off work previously.
I loosely agree with Dan that a citation provided in an edit summary is good enough to retain the edit, i.e. grounds to not revert it, but if other editors want more explicit referencing, it's not a reason to prevent them from adding some. --Tropylium (talk) 23:09, 5 April 2015 (UTC)

┌─────────────┘
So a discussion about objective etymology referencing comes down to the subjective – a delicate aesthetic preference of looking at a pretty entry without seeing those brutish superscript numbers? That reminds me of the quote from Amadeus: "It's quality work. And there are simply too many notes, that's all."

@Chuck Entz: the solution to your concern "that would still leave lots of superscripts" is to allow the user to choose through a user preference toggle.
References are not just for statements of the obvious. Your propositions about "word-frequency statistics? Binary checksums? Diagramming of the sentence structures?", are an unintentional red herring about potential uses of collapsed sections, they are about different propositions than the one presented by Tropylium which is about references. The revision as of 19:26, 1 April 2015 is:

Etymologies should be referenced if possible, ideally by footnotes within the “Etymology” section, secondarily just by listing references in the “References” section. The Reference templates are useful in this regard.
If a word descends from a common root with several words in related languages, and an appendix page exists for the reconstructed proto-form, references on details of the reconstruction are best placed on that page, rather than duplicated across the cognate entries.

For six weeks, I misunderstood: Etymologies should be referenced if possible, ideally by footnotes within the 'Etymology' section, secondarily just by listing references in the 'References' section.
I, for six weeks, created sub-sections within entry etymology sections. I would like it changed to:
Etymologies should be referencedinclude Wiktionary:References if possible(for policy, see Wiktionary:Entry layout explained#References), ideallypreferably by footnotes within the 'Etymology' section(see Help:Footnotes), secondarily just by listing referencesin theor simply adding the source to the entry 'References' section (for policy, see Wiktionary:Entry layout explained#References).

While Wiktionary:Entry layout explained is a policy, I would like to see a clear explanation about the actual status of Wiktionary:References is. Is Wiktionary:References a policy?

I think that the other paragraph would be more understandable as, If a wordterm descends from a common root with several wordsother terms in related languages, and an appendixa page exists for thethat reconstructed proto-formterm (for policy, see Wiktionary:Reconstructed terms), references on details ofabout the reconstruction are best placedpreferably located on that reconstructed term page, rather thanand not duplicated acrossin the cognate entries.BoBoMisiu (talk) 15:39, 5 April 2015 (UTC)

Ok, after that long tangent on <ref> tags that addresses approximately nothing about my initial post, this is more interesting. Your adjustment of "word" to "term" is obvious, and I've edited that and a couple other language adjustments in. (WT:ETYM is currently only a think tank; you don't need explicit community consensus to edit it, for simple copyediting at least.) Two other comments:
  • I am not convinced that reconstructed terms necessarily require formatting as separate entries, hence the more general expression "appendix".
  • For the same reason, I don't think WT:ELE should be the best place to refer to for reference policy. Appendices are not, necessarily, entries.
--Tropylium (talk) 22:28, 5 April 2015 (UTC)
@Tropylium: the reason I point to WT:ELE is that it seems to be the only policy in a vague hierarchy of how-to pages. Some administrators seem to place little value on reasoning that refers to other than policy pages. I have experienced that, examples include Until the proposal gets past the draft stage and gets voted on, WT:ELE governs. (DCDuring), Using non-policies including Wiktionary:Citations and Wiktionary:References as an argument is rather unconvincing (Dan Polansky) —BoBoMisiu (talk) 00:15, 6 April 2015 (UTC)
You're correct, but this doesn't change the fact that WT:ELE only governs dictionary entries. It says nothing about how things that are not entries should be formatted. If you think this is a problem (I for one would agree; that's the general project that this entire thread is about), the solution should be to work on establishing further policy, not to attempt scavenging policy bits elsewhere that kind of apply if you squint right. (I.e. a non-policy that states "do things as if policy A was in effect here" remains a non-policy.) --Tropylium (talk) 22:42, 21 April 2015 (UTC)

Finding old deletion discussions, and related points[edit]

An attempt to create the entry "get behind" ([2]) leads to a page that says "You are recreating a page that was previously deleted" and then provides a log entry that reads "deleted page get behind (Failed RFD, RFDO; do not re-enter)".

1. How do I find the deletion reason/discussion? The link to "RFD" in the log entry just throws me into the current version of that page, which is useless long-term. Furthermore, the supposed RFD archive page ([3]) says that the archive is no longer active, but that "The current procedure is to archive the RFD discussion to the corresponding article's talk page". Er ... can anyone else spot the flaw in that procedure??

2. The explanation of "Failed RFD; do not re-enter" at [4] says "This term (in a particular language) failed WT:RFD. Do not re-enter it. You may re-enter a different term, especially in a different language." Suerly "Do not re-enter it" is too final? What if something previously rejected gains a valid meaning in the future? (I'm not suggesting this is the case for "get behind", but obviously it could happen.) Also "You may re-enter a different term, especially in a different language" is odd and pointless. 31.51.1.15 17:27, 2 April 2015 (UTC)

  • Subsequent to writing the above, I have discovered that the talk page http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/Talk:get_behind exists even though the page "get behind" does not. I did not realise this was possible. Is this how it is generally supposed to work for deleted entries? This is unintuitive, and I propose to updated the documentation to explain it. However, what is the expected procedure for navigating to such a page? I found http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/Talk:get_behind by first navigating to a known existing talk page and then changing the last part of the URL. Is this what users are expected to do, or is there a more friendly way? 31.51.1.15
You're right that we should have some message that the deletion debate is on the talk page, or should be eventually on the talk page. Attempts to create talk page archived by bot are underway. I completely agree that sometimes it's really hard to find deletion debates because of change in archive methods over the years, and sometimes debates are not archived anywhere. Renard Migrant (talk) 23:16, 2 April 2015 (UTC)
I made a couple of wording changes here and here. 86.152.162.235 23:40, 6 April 2015 (UTC)

Possibility of a "Sister projects" report in the Wikipedia Signpost[edit]

Hello, all I'm a volunteer at the Wikipedia Signpost, the Wikimedia movement's biggest internal newspaper. Almost all of our coverage focuses on Wikipedia, with occasional coverage of Commons, the Meta-Wiki, MediaWiki, Wikidata, the Wikimedia Labs; we have little to nothing to say about Wiktionary, Wikiquote, Wikibooks, Wikisource, Wikispecies, Wikinews, Wikiversity, or Wikivoyage. I'm interested in writing a special long-form "sister projects" report to try and address this shortfall. Is there anyone experienced in the Wikitionary project with whom I can speak with, perhaps over Skype, about the mission, organization, history, successes, troubles, and foibles of being a contributor to this project? If so, please drop me a line at my English Wikipedia talk page. Thanks! ResMar 21:04, 5 April 2015 (UTC)

No takers? :(. If not I will contact highly active editors individually a little later on. Resident Mario (talk) 04:14, 9 April 2015 (UTC)
There are probably not many active wikiversians :) --Auvajs (talk) 04:21, 9 April 2015 (UTC)
@Resident Mario: Perhaps you might consider asking for them at Wikiversity instead? —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 04:33, 9 April 2015 (UTC)
He is asking for representatives of all "sister projects" (including Wiktionary). I have responded on his WP talk page. bd2412 T 14:18, 9 April 2015 (UTC)
@Auvajs, Metaknowledge, BD2412: Apologies. This is a copy-paste error I made when I was sending out these messages do to not paying enough attention, I went back through my messages and had thought I fixed this error. As you can see I did that wrong, too. Mass messaging manually is a pain... Resident Mario (talk) 18:10, 9 April 2015 (UTC)

Creating a new RFVA section for 2015[edit]

I have archived a few RFV discussions at Wiktionary:Requests for verification archive/2015. I wonder why nobody bothered to archive from 2014? Hillcrest98 (talk) 14:47, 6 April 2015 (UTC)

We archive RFVs on talk pages now (e.g. Talk:azur). — Ungoliant (falai) 15:01, 6 April 2015 (UTC)
  • Read the top of WT:RFV. Only closed discussions can be archived. In case of doubt, check the common practice. I have emptied Wiktionary:Requests for verification archive/2015. --Dan Polansky (talk) 15:16, 6 April 2015 (UTC)
    • Typically a successful RfV will result in citations being placed on the questioned page, so there will not be any reason to RfV it again. bd2412 T 14:19, 9 April 2015 (UTC)

Entries for typos[edit]

Consider oredaceous; in hindsight it seems an obvious typo for predaceous, but not so obvious that one could deny its existence on first principles. It could well be an example of pretentious use of an obscure but defensible technical term. So, on encountering the term I checked in case

(1) it meant something that I should know but didn't or

(2) it was illegitimately intended to mean something that I knew, but could not assign a meaning to

(3) an error.

I did a bit of googling and concluded that

1) It was indeed a typo, but

2) That a few people had indeed adopted it in their published (not necessarily peer-reviewed) documents as (possibly) legitimately meaning something along the lines of:

"'Oredaceous' sounds like 'predaceous', Did you mean predaceous when searching for oredaceous? 1. (a) Living by or given to victimizing others for personal gain" as very reasonably appears in Dictiosaurus.com.

NOW THEREFORE I am not a frequent lexicographer, even in WK and have not yet fallen foul of typos here. Would it be correct or acceptable to create an entry for a completely redundant finger-trouble typo such as oredaceous, if only as a redirection to predaceous, or to put it into the predaceous entry as a common typo, or do we leave it to users to blunder and assume that WK doesn't have such hard words, so it must be a very special term of great value to impress readers? JonRichfield (talk) 16:00, 9 April 2015 (UTC)

It does fit the general principle of WT:CFI: "A term should be included if it's likely that someone would run across it and want to know what it means." I think that including "likely" is inappropriate there, because we do include very rare terms that the average person is very unlikely to ever come across. That would certainly include a rare typo, which would nonetheless have readers baffled. If a word is a typo, we can't necessarily expect the reader to know what the correct word is. At the same time, it would be a rather insane task to start documenting all attested typos.
I think the best we can do is to make more of an effort to get the search function improved so that it recognises typos better. Right now it does not give any results for "oredaceous" even though it's only one (!) character away from predaceous, an existing entry. The fact that the search does not catch this is clearly a failing on its part and definitely needs improving.
However, it's also possible in other cases that a word is a typo in one language but a legitimate spelling in another language. Our search will then happily send the user to the entry for that other language, but the user will not find an entry there for the language they are looking for. They might think that Wiktionary is incomplete. —CodeCat 16:11, 9 April 2015 (UTC)
It also says in that sentence 'term'. Is a typo a 'term'? Surely not. I say we exclude them all together. All words in all languages does not mean all strings of characters in all languages. Renard Migrant (talk) 17:05, 9 April 2015 (UTC)
You're looking at it from a principled point of view. But a dictionary exists for a purpose; our purpose is to help our readers find lexicographical information that they are looking for. People will be looking for typos, so we have to help them find what they need, too. Just saying "sucks for you that the writer of the text you are reading made a mistake, too bad" doesn't get anyone anywhere. —CodeCat 17:09, 9 April 2015 (UTC)
I am adding to entries about the words Sophy, Sofie, Sofee, Soffi, Sofi, Sophi, Sophia, Sophie, etc. After several weeks, I still don't know at what point those words, which regularly described at least two senses, stop being spelling mistakes (or if they were in the first place) in over four centuries of attested usage and become {{alternate spelling of|Sophy}} and {{alternate spelling of|Sufi}}, the two more common contemporary terms.
My point about oredaceous, which is a different type of case, is that a reader could also not know if the search term is a spelling mistake, but the wiktionary search results page provides a link to "try searching the site using Google" which provides alternative wiktionary entries for the reader. Which, in my opinion, is adequate for just typos. Nevertheless, character recognition software also provide erroneous results, for example, oredaceous instead of the correctly written predaceous that the search engine then uses, and the reader still needs to interpret what is being presented. —BoBoMisiu (talk) 18:50, 9 April 2015 (UTC)
I think the way to deal with typos is using the search engine to suggest similar entries based on spelling. Not having entries. That's dubious as you have to start making assumptions about what word is intended. Renard Migrant (talk) 19:01, 9 April 2015 (UTC)
  • Isn't this something that software even better than our search engine should do? I could imagine approximate searching for each language based on whether something was heard (using a descendant of soundex), read from a scanned print document, read from an a keyboarded document, read from a manuscript, all with the possibility of specifying date of the document and of any transformations and script and typeface. I really don't see that we are helping much with the paltry few errors we would have entered in a year or two if we were to go down this path. DCDuring TALK
  • Slightly off topic but on topic as per subject title: Now as before, I see zero added value for the user of the dictionary in our excluding attested high-frequency typos. Therefore, I oppose removal of high-frequency typos. Some people seem to distinguish misspellings from typos; for misspellings, we have a voted on policy in WT:CFI#Spellings. If misspelling is understood to include typo as a subclass or more specific case, our present policy excludes rare attested typos but not common, high-frequency attested typos. Let me remind all newbie readers that Wiktionary includes common misspellings as misspellings (declaring them as such) so as to not mislead the reader, e.g. in concieve. --Dan Polansky (talk) 19:13, 9 April 2015 (UTC)
I agree with Dan Polansky that misspelled words should not be excluded, and I agree with Renard Migrant that the search engine is the better way to provided suggestions, and I agree with DCDuring that, especially for terms like oredaceous, other software does a better job. The wiktionary search results page has the suggestion to contribute something that is not found in wiktionary. These are complementary processes. I don't think oredaceous is a misspelled word since I think it, oredaceous, does not involve people. I think it is a recognition software error that was scraped by other sites and will eventually correct itself, its ephemeral without usage outside the error and scrapings. —BoBoMisiu (talk) 20:09, 9 April 2015 (UTC)
With the prevalence of bad OCR in search engine databases, there are tons of scannos with "cl"="d", "1"="l"="!","o"="e"="a", "u"="n"="ii", etc., and web pages are stiff with transposed and/or missing letters, doubling of the wrong letters, etc. These are often amply attested, but utterly useless as entries.
I think the best solution would be a list of non-wikilinked examples of common typos and/or scannos for a term on the page for the term, but hidden. That way the page would show up in search results, but there would be little visual clutter or use of resources, and fewer clicks to get to the right pages.
I suppose we could put the list in a collapsible box, or we could wrap it in a template that would make it completely invisible, like the keywords you often find in html header sections. Chuck Entz (talk) 02:11, 10 April 2015 (UTC)
@Chuck Entz: Can you give an example of an attested, high-frequency scanno? To me, it seems like an unlikely occurrence. As for oredaceous, is it attested? Like, we don't count a scan showing a scanno as an attestation since what a human says about what they see in the scan prevails over what the scanning algorithm sees. As frequency ratio, "oredaceous" does not show in GNV at all, so is not a common typo/scanno by any stretch, and shall be excluded per WT:CFI#Spellings: oredaceous, predaceous at Google Ngram Viewer. --Dan Polansky (talk) 05:01, 10 April 2015 (UTC)
Sorry- I didn't think that all the way through. No, the durably-archived part doesn't include the OCR, so scannos generally aren't attested per CFI. Still, if someone uses the clipping tool in Google Books, they get the OCR, rather than the visible text, and there are sources such as Project Gutenberg and the Germanic Lexicon Project which have OCRed texts in various stages of proofreading. The lack of CFI-compliant attestation is all the more reason to avoid making entries, but the possibility that people will use them in searches is reason to have them present in some form. Chuck Entz (talk) 19:57, 10 April 2015 (UTC)

Well, I hadn't intended to start so much reaction; my apologies. My own feelings are in tune with those such as CodeCa but I am not inclined to agitate for any major change of policy. At Finedictionary I found that they give lists of possible typos (apparently not necessarily known to have occurred) for their entries. Something along those lines had occurred to me, but I had rejected it as perhaps a bit over the top. Also I am not sure how well it would work in practice. It seems likely that such a feature would give nearly every entry such a long tail of "Containing..." entries that it might render the "Containing..." feature almost unusable. OTOH, I certainly would militate against creating headwords for every misspelling or typo. Bottom line... I probably must resign myself to the fact that noise happens and that sometimes one simply must be resigned to sacrifice an hour to guarding against accidents and illiterisms. Thanks everyone for your contributions. JonRichfield (talk) 12:14, 10 April 2015 (UTC)

  • I would oppose having entries for typos that are not actual instances of the writer mistakenly thinking this was the correct spelling of the word. bd2412 T 20:22, 10 April 2015 (UTC)
  • Same. Suggesting correct spellings is something for a search-engine heuristic, not something to be manually entered, IMO. We have enough work to do on improving the actual content. Equinox 21:29, 10 April 2015 (UTC)
    What about typos that are adopted as real spellings, like pwn for own, teh for the or kik for lol? —CodeCat 22:28, 10 April 2015 (UTC)
    They're words pure and simple, what in your opinion needs discussing? Renard Migrant (talk) 22:32, 10 April 2015 (UTC)
    Well, once they're adopted as real spellings, they are no longer typos, and become dictionary material. Equinox 22:40, 10 April 2015 (UTC)
    The difficulty would be in distinguishing these cases. For example, what if there are four attestations of one of these, but we can't tell which ones were intended (and thus meet CFI) and which were accidental? Depending on how we decide, it might meet CFI or it might not. —CodeCat 22:43, 10 April 2015 (UTC)

Stewards confirmation rules[edit]

Hello, I made a proposal on Meta to change the rules for the steward confirmations. Currently consensus to remove is required for a steward to lose his status, however I think it's fairer to the community if every steward needed the consensus to keep. As this is an issue that affects all WMF wikis, I'm sending this notification to let people know & be able to participate. Best regards, --MF-W 16:12, 10 April 2015 (UTC)

Excessive Footnoting in Etymologies[edit]

I'm posting this as separate from Tropylium's topic, above, because it's a separate issue and it would have overwhelmed the discussion there.

In the etymology for Sophy, User:BoBoMisiu has, by my count, 23 citations to 8 references in 8 places. This is nuts!

The first two references cover everything that would be needed to verify the accuracy of the etymology (maybe a third to verify the statement that it's not related to Sufi), and there's no need to cite the same source multiple times in the same etymology. I really don't care what dictionary was used to supply the Persian spellings used to replace the transliterations in one of the sources, nor do I care where the glosses for those terms came from. The other references might be useful for an encyclopedia article, but in an etymology, they're just clutter.

I don't know whether they want to show off their erudition, or they're afraid they're going to get audited by the dictionary police, but, as far as I'm concerned, this referencing style adds nothing to the dictionary that's worth the massive clutter.

What does everyone else think? Chuck Entz (talk) 22:23, 10 April 2015 (UTC)

The etymology is constructed but I can't read Turkish or Arabic to complete it, or for that matter to decide what could be eliminated in the chain of assertions. Not all sources show the same thing. —BoBoMisiu (talk) 22:26, 10 April 2015 (UTC)
The word that comes to mind is dim. The same citations are repeated within words of each other. Just stick 'em at the bottom like everyone else does. You can read the whole entry without scrolling anyway. And not that many anyway, five links saying the same thing aren't better than one, unless the one is unreliable. How many of your links do you consider to be unreliable? Renard Migrant (talk) 22:31, 10 April 2015 (UTC)
So your suggestion is to leave out the Turkish? Or not show that the Turkish is found in one English language source? I consider all the sources reliable, yet I don't know how the Turkish fits in; I did the work and a future editor, who has insight into the Turkish and Arabic, will not have to repeat the research for each step in the chain of assertions. Both of your suggestions are to limit the content – my suggestion is to give the reader more control. Like I wrote above (diff), seeing reference numbers should be a user preference for those who prefer not to see those brutish superscript numbers, it is a simple style sheet solution. The references section, in my opinion, should be collapsed by default, as should the etymology section and pronunciation section. —BoBoMisiu (talk) 23:34, 10 April 2015 (UTC)
  • I generally agree with the above by Chuck Entz: clutter with little added value. To my dismay, I have now realized that I am to blame in part since it was me who started using the ref technique in Sophy in diff; I even said in the edit summary that "it would be better to have a reference per individual etyological claim". As far as I am concerned, the ref technique can be abandoned in Sophy, and the number of references to be placed at the end of the entry can be reduced to the minimum needed to cover the information presented. I am still of the opinion that providing references in edit summaries is a useful practice that provides tracing to them without cluttering the entry. I admit that the detailed style of referencing currently used in Sophy would be useful to source claims that really matter; I don't think etymology matters so much to be worth the clutter. --Dan Polansky (talk) 06:28, 11 April 2015 (UTC)
Why aren't any of you addressing the differences between the three things that are commonly seen as different:
  1. the the structure of a entry
  2. the content of an entry
  3. the presentation of an entry
The concept is "separating presentation from content and structure" (search on DuckDuckGo), you are all discussing how to solve an aesthetic preference, which is the presentation, by altering the content instead of the presentation. "Clutter" is a aspect of presentation and not an aspect of content or structure. Removing content is not a solution for a presentation preference; adding a user preference toggle (set by style="visibility:hidden" for the tag) to control the visibility of the superscript reference numbers is a solution for a presentation preference. I believe none of you have any information about the readers preferences about this other than your own opinions. The comment that "I don't think etymology matters so much to be worth the clutter" shows the misunderstanding caused by conflating issues of content, presentation, and structure.
As far as etymology, it is not a definition that a contributor crafts. It is usually based on expert, or at least informed, opinion which is someone's work and should fully cited. —BoBoMisiu (talk) 16:30, 11 April 2015 (UTC)
References in this context aren't content themselves, they're there to support the actual content. Most of your references are useless in this context, so the discussion about clutter is to show that the unnecessary references aren't harmless filler that can be ignored, but actually harmful to the entry. Yes, you could probably find ways to make it less conspicuous, but you haven't really justified their presence in the first place. As for your last point: an etymology actually is something the editor crafts. Yes, it's based on expert opinions, but you don't need to reference every part of crafting the definition. Like I said, the first two sources cover the task of verifying the etymology just fine. Details like providing glosses and converting transliterations to the actual terms in the original scripts aren't the kind of thing that you need to reference- editors who know the languages in question often do that without consulting any sources at all. Yes, it's a good idea to be sure you know what you're talking about, and that might require consulting various sources- but that's for your benefit, not for everyone who reads or edits the entry in the future. Also, an etymology isn't like an article, where a point that needs referencing is separated by paragraphs of text from other places where the same reference is used. If a source supports multiple parts of the etymology, you only need to have one reference to the source, which can go at the end of the etymology. It's only when a reference narrowly deals with only one part of the etymology that you would put the reference inline in the middle of the etymology. Chuck Entz (talk) 17:53, 11 April 2015 (UTC)
@Chuck Entz: References are content. They are part of providing the curated selection of details about the subject of the entry, as are the selections of quotes used to attest usage. References are a selection of further reading directly connected to other parts of content. Selected external links are content for the same reason. All these things provide a user with content – that contributors compile and curate – that is insightful. I use a giant late 1960s dictionary as my go-to reference because I believe it provides me with reliable information about things – not just words – that I want to know about. It is reliable because it was fact checked. I use OED online for the same reason. Wiktionary is different because the content contributors add into etymologies or usage notes without high quality sources does not reach the same standard. I have seen many poor etymologies that lack credibility, and – of course – lack references. While Chuck Entz believes references are not for everyone who reads or edits the entry in the future, I believe that anyone repurposing a fully referenced assertion does benefit by using reliable content and not spreading unvetted worthless bullshit like in the Chinese whispers game. I am not one of the editors who know the languages in question often do that without consulting any sources at all. I can reasonably assume that few contributors read Farsi, Turkish, or Arabic, providing a reference about something that uses a different script, that most readers cannot comprehend, demonstrates the reliability of the assertion. Including the original language term allows a reader to cut that term and paste into a search engine. The reliability of each assertion (just a few words) in a chain of assertions demonstrates the reliability of the chain. To say that I haven't really justified their presence in the first place is just assuming that a reader who visits wiktionary is the kind of reader who doesn't want to know more about the minutia of an etymology, and the kind of reader who doesn't want to know what is factually accurate through reliable references. I don't assume that. Please explain to me how those references are actually harmful to the entry, other than a personal aesthetic. —BoBoMisiu (talk) 13:13, 14 April 2015 (UTC)
I would shorten here the following points:
  1. No reference needs to be provided for the Italian and Spanish words; references for their origin should be located on their entries (although since they do not exist yet, I can understand for the time being leaving the referencing on the English entry). It's not obvious whether they need to be mentioned at all.
  2. It's unclear to me why is صفوی (ṣafawī) mentioned; the existence of this does not seem to be relevant to the etymology of the English term, which appears to be straight from ṣafī. (If there is some relevance — e.g. if Persian ṣafī is actually a back-formation from ṣafawi — this should be mentioned explicitly.)
  3. General sources, here the Century Dictionary, the OED, and perhaps Skeat's etymological dictionary, seem to provide nothing that the more specialized sources do not, and they could probably be safely cut away from the entry. References exist for the purposes of showing where a claim originates, not for showing who else has read the same source material.
--Tropylium (talk) 23:02, 21 April 2015 (UTC)

Trimming CFI slightly[edit]

I wanted to suggest a minor trim to WT:Criteria for Inclusion#Constructed languages, where it says:

That's true, but as it says above, any constructed language without consensus to be included is by default not included in the main namespace. There's no reason to list these in particular, and in fact the list is very arbitrary and the choice of mentioning these specific constructed languages makes it appear that we are giving them special weight or something. So it seems reasonable to delete that bullet point and thus make the section slightly simpler. Thoughts? —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 01:05, 13 April 2015 (UTC)

I support that, but I would actually support a broader rule that disallows terms in languages that have not been passed between generations at least x times. That would exclude "new" conlangs. It's kind of like the "spanning at least a year" rule but for whole languages. —CodeCat 01:21, 13 April 2015 (UTC)
Maybe you misunderstood; I'm not proposing any change to policy, just a removal of redundancy in the CFI. —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 02:01, 13 April 2015 (UTC)
@Metaknowledge: For what it's worth, listing the most common conlangs which are likely to be readded (such as Toki Pona) is probably helpful as it will provide documentation here saying that it's not accepted. Plenty of editors will see documentation here before checking an external list. —Justin (koavf)TCM 03:21, 13 April 2015 (UTC)
It would also exclude pidgins and creoles though. -- Liliana 23:21, 13 April 2015 (UTC)

Anybody should be allowed to nominate people for whitelist[edit]

At present, nominations for the whitelist are supposed to be only done by administrators. That seems:

  1. excessive (why should we need so many hoops to jump through with whitelist? It's harder to be whitelisted here than many other projects; to say nothing of the fact that many projects don't even bother with whitelisting)
  2. unfair (it grants too much power to sysops and not enough power to Joe users), andd
  3. time-consuming (it'd be so much easier for people to self-nom).

I am seriously considering starting a vote about this matter, but I thought I'd discuss it here first. Purplebackpack89 17:43, 13 April 2015 (UTC)

support. But with one little correction: not for anybody but for only autopatrolled users.Dixtosa (talk) 17:51, 13 April 2015 (UTC)
I think the logic behind having only admins nominate people is that admins are the only(?*) people affected by the whitelisting vs non-whitelisting of a user, since admins are the ones who have access to the "patrol" feature. (*Are there any edits Joe User could make if he were whitelisted that he couldn't make if he weren't whitelisted?) If we do expand the nomination franchise, I support the restriction that Dixtosa seems to be proposing, that nominations have to be made by a user who is already autopatrolled (this also prevents self-noms). - -sche (discuss) 18:16, 13 April 2015 (UTC)
@-sche: What's so inherently bad about self-noms, though? I have major problems with restricting nominating people to the whitelist to people who are already on the whitelist. This is an open community and groups should be open to everybody, not selected only by people who are already in those groups. Plus, there's the issue that sysops or whitelisters have to actively be looking around for people to whitelist, rather than potential whitelist candidates coming to us. FWIW, I also think the claim that admins are the only people affected is a stretch, as it defines "affected" pretty narrowly. At the very least, "affected" should include non-admins who are on the whitelist. Purplebackpack89 18:35, 13 April 2015 (UTC)
I think you're under some misapprehension that whitelisting is a special right or privilege. It isn't. It's just a way we patrollers (who are almost exclusively admins) ease the load of checking every edit, and it really doesn't affect the editor in question. I suspect that this is just related to your issues with the establishment and your own personal lack of power against people you annoy. —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 19:54, 13 April 2015 (UTC)
If whitelisting isn't a special right or privilege, why did another editor fight to try and take it away from me? And why are you assuming that I'm doing this solely because I don't like getting kicked around by bullying admins (like the guy who tried in vain to take away my whitelist rights)? And why hasn't anybody given a good reason on why self-nom should continue to be forbidden? Self-nom doesn't mean you automatically get it. Purplebackpack89 20:18, 13 April 2015 (UTC)
"If whitelisting isn't a special right or privilege, why did another editor fight to try and take it away from me?" One could equally ask, if whitelisting isn't a special right or privilege, why are you fighting over its rules? Equinox 22:25, 13 April 2015 (UTC)
I think you're confused, @Equinox:. I'm the one suggesting it is a right or privilege. Metaknowledge is the one arguing that's a near-meaningless distinction. Purplebackpack89 22:37, 13 April 2015 (UTC)
I don't see a problem with anyone nominating editors for whitelisting, but approval for whitelisting has to be left to admins. In my experience, the people who need patrolling the most are the people who think their edits are perfect, in spite of massive evidence to the contrary. Usually such people are easily able to find others of similar temperament who are only too happy to support them. Please note that I'm not talking about you, but there are people who pop up from time to time, such as Gtroy/Luciferwildcat, Drago, and many, many others who would all have liked to have no one checking their edits so they wouldn't have people pointing out what they were doing wrong. Chuck Entz (talk) 01:26, 14 April 2015 (UTC)
Likewise, I don't have any problem with admins approving people for the whitelist, so long as anybody is allowed to nominate for it. Purplebackpack89 02:06, 14 April 2015 (UTC)
I have no objection to anyone nominating a user to be whitelisted but, really, why would they bother? It only affects the small subset of sysops who patrol Recent Changes. SemperBlotto (talk) 13:00, 14 April 2015 (UTC)
We don't really have any patrolers who aren't admins here. That's why it's on admins who can nominate and approve, as it only affects admins (since there are no other patrolers). I have no objection to changing that, I self-nominated on the Beer Parlour as a roll-backer and patroler, but nobody replied whatsoever. Renard Migrant (talk) 18:28, 14 April 2015 (UTC)
Hardly surprising. patroler / patroller?

Detailed linguistic maps[edit]

If they're of interest to anyone, I just stumbled onto this set of very detailed linguistic maps. - -sche (discuss) 21:28, 17 April 2015 (UTC)

A new language code needed[edit]

for Proto-Georgian-Zan. @Simboyd said the reason on my talk page. --Dixtosa (talk) 15:55, 18 April 2015 (UTC)

Ruakh requesting de-bureaucrating.[edit]

Given my activity level here, I don't think it makes sense for me to still be a bureaucrat — I'm never the first bureaucrat to respond to something, and nothing ever needs multiple bureaucrats — but I figured I should check in with the community before actually posting at [[m:Steward requests/Permissions]] to request that my access be removed, just so y'all don't feel blindsided or anything. (Note: SemperBlotto, Stephen G. Brown, and Hippietrail are all quite active at the moment, so I don't think I need to wait for a replacement to be appointed, or anything like that.) —RuakhTALK 03:29, 19 April 2015 (UTC)

@Ruakh: Trust once granted does not disappear with inactivity, I think. To the contrary, it is certain type of activity that leads to trust diminished or disappearing, such activity that would show trust was misplaced. It is only activity that can produce refuting instances against trust, not inactivity. I do not oppose or put obstacles to your self-nomination for de-bureaucrating; I merely present an alternative view that may lead you to reconsider. ---Dan Polansky (talk) 07:11, 19 April 2015 (UTC)
You still seem fairly active; doesn't look like a security risk; you might as well keep it. Equinox 04:39, 20 April 2015 (UTC)
Hmm. Well, OK. I guess it doesn't really matter one way or the other. —RuakhTALK 06:31, 21 April 2015 (UTC)
  • Weak oppose If we take away your tools, there's a pretty long list of other people who should lose tools, and not just for inactivity. Purplebackpack89 17:09, 20 April 2015 (UTC)

"Alt form of" caps[edit]

Did I dream it, or did "alternative form of..." use to begin with a capital A? Why was this changed? Equinox 04:39, 20 April 2015 (UTC)

It's a result of diff. You're not the first person to wonder why it was changed. I've undone the change. - -sche (discuss) 17:44, 20 April 2015 (UTC)
Thanks Equinox for this thread; thanks -sche for restoring the capital A; please keep it restored. --Dan Polansky (talk) 19:20, 20 April 2015 (UTC)
I actually preferred it with a small "a". You're never going to please everybody, no matter what you do. Donnanz (talk) 08:28, 21 April 2015 (UTC)
True enough. I don't mind either way, but I don't like arbitrary changes: they've ruined enough of my favourite Web sites already, usually because of idiot marketing departments, or a misguided idea that mobile phones are the primary target and computers are secondary. Get off my lawn. Equinox 02:09, 22 April 2015 (UTC)
There's been a lot of this going on. It's why I use nodot=1 and nocap=1 even in form of templates that don't have automatic dots or capital letters; because they're constantly being changed and the chance of such templates having an automatic dot, cap or both in the future is very, very high. Renard Migrant (talk) 08:42, 22 April 2015 (UTC)
nocap=1 is a useful tip. I have started using it. Donnanz (talk) 12:43, 26 April 2015 (UTC)
That came about after I requested it some time ago. It was because our form-of templates are horribly inconsistent. Should we have a vote to decide, once and for all, whether to start them with a capital or lowercase letter across the board? This, that and the other (talk) 08:46, 23 April 2015 (UTC)
I would support that, as it would be a non-foolish consistency. I would also support capitalizing the first word of definitions consistently throughout the project. bd2412 T 12:45, 23 April 2015 (UTC)
Me too.
@BD2412: Do you include definitions only in English, in Translingual, in all languages in your initial capitalization support? I do. DCDuring TALK 13:15, 23 April 2015 (UTC)
I would apply this only to (multi-word) English definitions. I view such a definition as a sentence answering the implied question, "what does foo mean". Translations are a bit different, since they ideally require only the single English word that corresponds to the foreign word, and we should avoid giving the impression that the word must be capitalized when written in English (unless, of course, it is a word that should be capitalized in English, like English or January). bd2412 T 13:21, 23 April 2015 (UTC)
What should be done for English terms that are just synonyms of another term? And what about non-English terms that require full definitions because there is no simple English equivalent? And what if a single entry contains a mix of different types, do we capitalise some definitions but not others? —CodeCat 13:29, 23 April 2015 (UTC)
If we decide to (continue to) capitalize English and non-English definitions and translations differently, we have the option of making the form-of templates use a capital+dot or not based on what lang= is set to (or we could make their display be language-independent). If we decide the templates should end with a dot, they should allow nodot=1 to suppress that dot in case additional information needs to be added manually after the template (see e.g. Karman street).
I capitalize English definitions, and don't capitalize non-English translations.
We could set up a vote with three sections, (1) English, (2) Translingual and (3) other languages, and have options under each like (a) always begin with an uppercase letter and end with a dot,* (b) never begin with an uppercase letter or end with a dot,* (c) begin with an uppercase letter and end with a dot if ___, otherwise do not. We could even have an option (d) make no formal rule. (*With exceptions for, pardon the tautology, exceptional circumstances, like it we for some unforeseen reason must begin a definition with "iPhone" or "isiZulu", or with "January" or "Chile", respectively.) - -sche (discuss) 21:27, 23 April 2015 (UTC)
I'd like everything in cap-dot format (as I call it). I have no strong feelings though. Renard Migrant (talk) 21:34, 23 April 2015 (UTC)
  • Alt form and any other high-profile template should be supported in both capital and lowercase forms, for ease of editing. Purplebackpack89 20:55, 24 April 2015 (UTC)
Yes, totally agree, though I think the question here is the flip-flopping on the default settings. These seem to change every few months. Perhaps even every few weeks. Renard Migrant (talk) 15:34, 26 April 2015 (UTC)

Cross-referencing etymological root words to their descendants[edit]

Has there been any past discussion or efforts to make root words consistently link to words which mention them in their etymology? —This unsigned comment was added by Technical-tiresias (talkcontribs).

Sounds like you're looking either for "What links here" or for the descendant/derivative lists. The latter are obviously works in progress, and I've no idea how well they're up to date.
I'd certainly endorse adding a clause in our etymology guidelines that when adding an etymology for a word, one should also check for a backlink at the parent word.
(Also, I'd love having a software framework that did this automatically, but that is probably beyond what can be reasonably done on Wiktionary.)
--Tropylium (talk) 23:15, 21 April 2015 (UTC)

Nominations are being accepted for 2015 Wikimedia Foundation elections[edit]

This is a message from the 2015 Wikimedia Foundation Elections Committee. Translations are available.

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Greetings,

I am pleased to announce that nominations are now being accepted for the 2015 Wikimedia Foundation Elections. This year the Board and the FDC Staff are looking for a diverse set of candidates from regions and projects that are traditionally under-represented on the board and in the movement as well as candidates with experience in technology, product or finance. To this end they have published letters describing what they think is needed and, recognizing that those who know the community the best are the community themselves, the election committee is accepting nominations for community members you think should run and will reach out to those nominated to provide them with information about the job and the election process.

This year, elections are being held for the following roles:

Board of Trustees
The Board of Trustees is the decision-making body that is ultimately responsible for the long term sustainability of the Foundation, so we value wide input into its selection. There are three positions being filled. More information about this role can be found at the board elections page.

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The Funds Dissemination Committee (FDC) makes recommendations about how to allocate Wikimedia movement funds to eligible entities. There are five positions being filled. More information about this role can be found at the FDC elections page.

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The FDC Ombud receives complaints and feedback about the FDC process, investigates complaints at the request of the Board of Trustees, and summarizes the investigations and feedback for the Board of Trustees on an annual basis. One position is being filled. More information about this role can be found at the FDC Ombudsperson elections page.

The candidacy submission phase lasts from 00:00 UTC April 20 to 23:59 UTC May 5 for the Board and from 00:00 UTCApril 20 to 23:59 UTC April 30 for the FDC and FDC Ombudsperson. This year, we are accepting both self-nominations and nominations of others. More information on this election and the nomination process can be found on the 2015 Wikimedia elections page on Meta-Wiki.

Please feel free to post a note about the election on your project's village pump. Any questions related to the election can be posted on the talk page on Meta, or sent to the election committee's mailing list, board-elections -at- wikimedia.org

On behalf of the Elections Committee,
-Gregory Varnum (User:Varnent)
Coordinator, 2015 Wikimedia Foundation Elections Committee

Posted by the MediaWiki message delivery on behalf of the 2015 Wikimedia Foundation Elections Committee, 05:03, 21 April 2015 (UTC) • TranslateGet help

"Adverbial forms" and cases of adverbs in Finnish[edit]

Including these in declension tables seems like a bad idea. The entire point of declension tables is to provide those wordforms related to the lemma that are generally predictable; not to list non-productive derivational items.

Some more detailed examples of problems:

  • ulkona is in no way an essive. It shares the ending -na, yes, but in its older locative sense (same as kotona or siinä).
  • ulko- is a prefix, not a nominative, despite both consisting of the unmarked word root.
  • yhä is not productively linked to yksi at all, and would be best treated as a derivative.

I get the impression that many of these categories ("situative", "oppositive") are original research, sort of. Is anyone else particularly attacted to them, or shall I add them to my mental checklist of items to clean up at some point? --Tropylium (talk) 23:29, 21 April 2015 (UTC)

While I agree that these are not inflections, there is value in showing certain sets of derivations in a schematic way. So maybe a separate table would be preferable. —CodeCat 23:36, 21 April 2015 (UTC)
A tabulative approach is informative, sure enough, but aside from relocation to derivatives it would need consideration on what to include. By comparison for base verbs: we could consider listing some of the more common categories, such as — the following based on hypätä (to jump) — inchoative (hypähtää), frequentative (hypellä) habitual (hyppiä), and reflexive (none for this, but e.g. kaataakaatua), as well as the name-of-action noun (which is somewhat non-predictable: hypätähyppy, hypähtäähypähdys, hypellähyppely, kaataakaato). The stacking of these gets complicated fast though (kaatua → habitual/frequentative kaatuilla → causative kaatuiluttaa → frequentative kaatuilutella → name-of-action kaatuiluttelu → …) so here we can easily see that trying to shoehorn every derivative into a single table would not be feasible. --Tropylium (talk) 00:58, 22 April 2015 (UTC)
We wouldn't have to show derivatives of derivatives, only immediate ones. —CodeCat 01:37, 22 April 2015 (UTC)

Phrasebook entries to get their own namespace[edit]

Wiktionary:Requests for deletion#I'm pregnant has raised some interesting points. Perhaps to have a phrasebook, we should have a phrasebook namespace. That way you bypass WT:CFI and WT:ELE which are for the main namespace (albeit it doesn't explicitly say that). I also don't think they need to be searchable in the main namespace because they're not the sort of things people would search for. Renard Migrant (talk) 17:39, 27 April 2015 (UTC)

Support. I also think that reconstructions should have their own namespace. —CodeCat 17:52, 27 April 2015 (UTC)
Support both. And if it possible to make Special:Search search in a particular namespace along with the main one then we can include Phrasebook namespace by default.--Dixtosa (talk) 18:59, 27 April 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose. This would create inconvenience for the user with no added value whatsoever; I find searching for I'm hungry perfectly natural, and it can be found by Google anyway. It is a solution in search for a problem. Category:English phrasebook has mere 345 entries; the mainspace is not overcrowded with phrasebook entries. --Dan Polansky (talk) 20:09, 27 April 2015 (UTC)
    Later: Let me also point out that we have other sentences than the phrasebook ones, including those in Category:English proverbs, which has 624 entries. Any creation of a separate namespace needs to be based on a deep, separate need, leading to a significant number of expected entries in that dedicated namespace. --Dan Polansky (talk) 20:16, 27 April 2015 (UTC)
  • I'm inclined to Oppose for the same reasons as Dan. I'd prefer adding something to CFI about what makes an acceptable phrasebook entry; the {{phrasebook}} tag is enough to distinguish phrasebook entries from other entries, implying "This entry may be intentionally SOP". —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 20:14, 27 April 2015 (UTC)
I don't like the phrasebook as currently implemented (it's arbitrary and disorganised) but I disagree: people probably would search for these phrases, and if we do categorise them, we'd probably do it with wiki categories and not by shifting them into another namespace. I would however at least like some kind of option for "expert users" to hide away the phrasebook stuff. Equinox 22:42, 27 April 2015 (UTC)

Categories for terms in a language derived from a particular PIE root[edit]

I've been thinking that it might be nice to have categories like this, such as Category:English terms derived from the Proto-Indo-European root *sed-, which would contain sit, seat, settle, sessile and many more. It would be very nice for people looking for cognates. I don't think there would be any opposition to this, and I was thinking of just implementing it on a small scale, but there are a few points that would need to be worked out first.

  1. Not all terms with their origin in PIE actually have a root. In particular, there are quite a few nouns for which the root is essentially unknown and uncreconstructable, like *wĺ̥kʷos. It would be possible to say that there is a root that just happens to exist only in this word. However, that doesn't tell us anything about the shape of the root; both *wlekʷ- and *welkʷ- are valid roots, and both become *wl̥kʷ- in zero grade. So there needs to be a way to account for such cases.
  2. We would need a new template for this, such as {{PIE root}}. We can't add it to any existing etymology templates, because for many terms we don't have any PIE etymology. For example, we don't show a PIE root for sitter, and I think it should stay that way. But we would still want it to appear in the aforementioned category. So the template to be created would have to only categorise, or maybe show a small box at most.

CodeCat 18:24, 27 April 2015 (UTC)

Shouldn't all English words derived from *sed- ideally be listed under Descendants at *sed-? —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 19:47, 27 April 2015 (UTC)
That would get rather crazy very quickly, when you consider all languages and all their derivatives. —CodeCat 20:03, 27 April 2015 (UTC)
Well, maybe so. Also, some words wouldn't be right on *sed- at all but somewhere else like *sitjaną. As for cases like sitter, they could have the category added directly without any template at all. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 20:17, 27 April 2015 (UTC)

Why aren’t inactives desysopped?[edit]

I’ve gotten the impression that administrators, after years of very little to no activity, get their special privileges subtracted. But there are several members of the personnel who haven’t touched the project in years, and their accounts are still administrative. Can somebody explain to me why these accounts are still administrative? Have we simply not gotten around to desysopping them? --Romanophile (talk) 04:51, 28 April 2015 (UTC)

There's no policy in place to provide for that. Perhaps there should be. —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 05:17, 28 April 2015 (UTC)
We don't routine desysops inactive admins, we do it sporadically by vote. Since inactive admins don't hurt the project in any way, editors aren't very keen on it. Desysopsing them doesn't add anything positive to the project either. You'd be hard-pushed to get that policy through, for that reason. Renard Migrant (talk) 15:19, 29 April 2015 (UTC)
However, it's bad security policy to have unused elevated accounts, since it increases the site's surface area for an attacker. Equinox 15:30, 29 April 2015 (UTC)
The security issue is mostly a red herring; sysops don't have any permissions which can do lasting damage, and inactive sysops would be the least likely vectors (as they aren't likely to have their password phished or be subject to an XSS attack etc.). - TheDaveRoss 16:47, 29 April 2015 (UTC)
Also, people looking at Wiktionary:Administrators will think we have lots of active admins (far more than we actually have). They might also ask inactive admins to do something (revert vandalism etc) and be surprised when nothing happens. So I'm in favour of desysopping. SemperBlotto (talk) 15:35, 29 April 2015 (UTC)
What's your threshold for inactivity, Semper? Purplebackpack89 16:13, 29 April 2015 (UTC)
I generally agree that long-inactive sysops (a few years of no more than token activity) should lose the bit, at least until they come back and edit enough to show a need for it. bd2412 T 02:15, 30 April 2015 (UTC)

What standards for Okinawan?[edit]

In the absence of any Wiktionary:About Okinawan page, I ask here.

What are the EN WT standards for Okinawan?

I was patrolling anon edits earlier and stumbled across うしぬちー (ushi nu chī, literally cow's milk). The basic content was fine, requiring some formatting and templatizing. The issues raised were twofold:

  • How should Okinawan be romanized?
The Wikipedia article itself is confusing, suggesting in a table that Okinawan is romanized using some IPA symbols, such as ʔ to mark glottals before bare vowels. The body of the text pretty consistently uses Hepburn. Comments on the Wikipedia Talk page suggest that most real-world examples of romanized Okinawan (i.e. not in upper academia) use Hepburn, same as for mainland Japanese.
I'd like to propose that we use modified Hepburn, same as for Japanese.
  • Where should Okinawan lemmata go?
I see some conflicting trends, where Okinawan entries might be filed under the hiragana spelling, or alternately under the kanji spelling. It seems that kanji are still used to write Okinawan, so it seems to me that the lemmata should go there, with the hiragana entries serving as soft redirects, again sames as for Japanese.

I've already reworked the うしぬちー entry to use our modified Hepburn romanization. If the lemma should be under the kanji spelling, we'll have to stubbify the うしぬちー entry and move the content to 牛ぬ乳 (and/or possibly 牛乳, depending on whether the is always written out explicitly).

I look forward to the community's thoughts on this. ‑‑ Eiríkr Útlendi │ Tala við mig 00:18, 1 May 2015 (UTC)

May 2015