Wikispecies:Village Pump

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if you use the title box, you don't need to put a title in the body
1 (2004-09-21/2005-01-05) 2 (2005-01-05/2005-08-23)
3 (2005-08-24/2005-12-31) 4 (2006-01-01/2005-05-31)
5 (2006-06-01/2006-12-16) 6 (2006-12-17/2006-12-31)
7 (2007-01-01/2007-02-28) 8 (2007-03-01/2007-04-30)
9 (2007-05-01/2007-08-31) 10 (2007-09-01/2007-10-31)
11 (2007-11-01/2007-12-31) 12 (2008-01-01/2008-02-28)
13 (2008-03-01/2008-04-28) 14 (2008-04-29/2008-06-30)
15 (2008-07-01/2008-09-30) 16 (2008-10-01/2008-12-25)
17 (2008-12-26/2009-02-28) 18 (2009-03-01/2009-06-30)
19 (2009-07-01/2009-12-31) 20 (2010-01-01/2010-06-30)
21 (2010-07-01/2010-12-31) 22 (2011-01-01/2011-06-30)
23 (2011-07-01/2011-12-31) 24 (2012-01-01/2012-12-31)
25 (2013-01-01/2013-12-31) 26 (2014-01-01/2014-12-31)
27 (2015-01-01/2015-01-31) 28 (2015-02-01/2015-02-28)
29 (2015-02-28/2015-04-29) 30 (2015-04-29/2015-07-19)
31 (2015-07-19/2015-09-23) 32 (2015-09-23/2015-11-21)
33 (2015-11-21/2015-12-31) 34 (2016-01-01/2016-04-17)
35 (2016-03-22/2016-05-01) 36 (2016-05-01/2016-07-12)
37 (2016-07-13/2016-09-30) 38 (2016-10-01/2016-12-04)
39 (2016-12-04/2017-01-17) 40 (2017-01-18/2017-01-28)

Wikidata discussion of interest[edit]

Colleagues here may be interested in an ongoing discussion on Wikidata of how to represent taxon names. Expert input will be welcome there. The outcome may affect how we pull data into this project. Andy Mabbett (Pigsonthewing); Talk to Andy; Andy's edits 11:53, 28 January 2017 (UTC)

Speaking of, could someone with actual understanding of the ICZN have a look at how Brya has been dealing with various homonyms recently? Just looking at Perophora pulverula I see first the issue that the page arguably shouldn't be there in the first place (there is certainly no consensus for listing names not in current use). Most glaringly, the name is invalid because the species is not placed in that genus anymore (it wasn't even placed there prior to being moved to Eadmuna!), not for any reason linked to the generic name's homonymous nature (which wouldn't even make the name unavailable[=invalid sensu ICBN] under ICZN I believe). Circeus (talk) 11:14, 29 January 2017 (UTC)

Category:Non-standard taxon formatting and old files[edit]

Until yesterday there was (for years, I think) 2 articles in the Category:Non-standard taxon formatting, I fixed one, and started a little research. With help of Special:AncientPages I found many old Non-standard taxon formatted articles, most of them created 2005 by User:Josh_Grosse~specieswiki (contributions), files which I believe needs to be sorted and later updated to the present standard. Im now going through such files, adding the Category Non-standard taxon formatting, but Id like to hear what other think about this, critic, comments, suggestion etc. Dan Koehl (talk) 18:21, 28 January 2017 (UTC)

Dan, I've had a look at the page you linked, but feel unable to do much about it. Yes, the formatting is nothing like standard, but correcting it would be way outside my area of comfort, which is restricted really to just a few insects. Accassidy (talk) 18:43, 28 January 2017 (UTC)
Yes, but thanks for confirming I treat those files correct, by adding them to the category Category:Non-standard taxon formatting. In order not to disturb so much on recent changes, I will now mark the edits "minor edit". If noone objects, Id prefer to run this operation in Bot mood instead. But I will await some more comments from other users. Dan Koehl (talk) 18:56, 28 January 2017 (UTC)
Seems to work fine, now the work is taken care of by KoehlBot, should anyone see errors in its behaviour just tell me. Dan Koehl (talk) 19:52, 28 January 2017 (UTC)
Had to move back to manually use of AWB, some Taxon authorities was in the group, and I had to revert the bot. Dan Koehl (talk) 21:09, 28 January 2017 (UTC)
Now its down to totally 98 files in Category:Non-standard taxon formatting which need to be updated. Please brief me of bad formatted files I have missed, so they can be submitted in this category. Dan Koehl (talk) 21:53, 28 January 2017 (UTC)

Files in Category:Candidates for speedy deletion[edit]

I now start to go through the +4 000 categories in Category:Candidates for speedy deletion and speed delete categories with no obvious interesting content. Files with ptentially intersting content will not be deleted, but marked with merge template, and a link to the file, that info may be merged into, for an example, see Category:Euhexomyza_coprosmae_(New_Zealand).

Such categories with potentially interesting content, that may be transfered to the correctly named category, will be categorized in category:Pages to merge and category:Non-standard taxon formatting. (Should I also remove them from Category:Candidates for speedy deletion?)

I hope this helps to make it easier and faster to go through those categories, before those categories also get deleted. Dan Koehl (talk) 12:47, 29 January 2017 (UTC)

Considering the sheer number the only thing I can think of that would at least be a start is to delete all the empty ones and then have a look at the rest and see what we have. These have been hanging around for a while with no sensible reasoning for their existence. So I propose to just delete the empties, then see what the rest are. Cheers Scott Thomson (Faendalimas) talk 13:40, 29 January 2017 (UTC)
Yes. I guess one step in this direction is to sort those files which has some content, and like you say, delete the more or less empty ones.

The question is now, wether the files with content, should be removed from Category:Candidates for speedy deletion? Dan Koehl (talk) 13:52, 29 January 2017 (UTC)

No I think leave them there because in all likelyhood they will be deleted, or merged or something. Keeping them in speedy deletion keeps them flagged to be dealt with. Remove as needed once examined. Cheers Scott Thomson (Faendalimas) talk 14:16, 29 January 2017 (UTC)
Agreed leave them. I have been going through some plant based pages and removing references and links as required prior to deletes. Careful some possibly relevant files/links etc on the discussion page as well. Andyboorman (talk) 15:17, 29 January 2017 (UTC)

Please note that there are quite a few additional categories in the form of Category: Australia <<taxon name>> and Category: New Zealand <<taxon name>>. For example: Category:Australia Dynastinae -- Mariusm (talk) 15:58, 29 January 2017 (UTC)

Oh yes, now I remember them. Must be hundreds, maybe thousands of those also. Ill mark them up and sort them in relevant categories. Dan Koehl (talk) 16:57, 29 January 2017 (UTC)

I just looked at Category:Candidates for speedy deletion. So many useless categories, most of them created by the same Stho002, without approval from the community. My opinion is that Wikispecies should be usable and editable by any taxonomist, not only a by a minority who creates categories and adds useless complexity. My conclusion: Delete them all. Jeanloujustine (talk) 21:38, 29 January 2017 (UTC)

That's been pretty much agreed. We're working on it XD. Any discussion that crops around here relates to technicalities (mostly about details of applying Dan's bots to the problem). 07:51, 30 January 2017 (UTC)
I think I have sorted out the majority of those files, now theres well over 6 000 files in Category:Candidates for speedy deletion. Ive seen to that theres a warning not to delete the Category:Non-standard taxon formatting files without consideration, and theres a direct link from each file to the correct formatted file, to make it easier to transfer content, which may be useful. Dan Koehl (talk) 11:24, 30 January 2017 (UTC)


Could someone who speaks Spanish please see whether there is anything salvagable in Culebra de cuatro lineas, and assist the IP editor who created it? Andy Mabbett (Pigsonthewing); Talk to Andy; Andy's edits 18:44, 29 January 2017 (UTC)

I checked and the article Elaphe quatuorlineata already exists and in good WS format. I don´t see any need to keep this article. Maximum I can do is adding this spanish name to VN. Honestly, should be deleted.--Hector Bottai (talk) 19:10, 29 January 2017 (UTC)
Agree. It's a description (with grammar and orthotypographical errors and typos) where only the vernacular names can be salvaged. I moved them to Elaphe quatuorlineata. Sobreira ►〓 (parlez) 20:32, 29 January 2017 (UTC)

Year-of-description Categories — do we need them?[edit]

I want to remind you we have several YEAR-OF-DESCRIPTION categories meaning the year when a certain author described a species/genus/familia:

  • [[Category: New species xxxx]]
  • [[Category: New genus-group name xxxx]]
  • [[Category: New genus-group names xxxx]]
  • [[Category: New family-group name xxxx]]
  • [[Category: New family-group names xxxx]]
  • [[Category: New fossil species xxxx]]

Where xxxx denotes the year.

Most categories were made by Stephen [Stho002] and are scarcely used.

My questions:

  1. Do we really need them? Are they useful in any way?
  2. If we decide they're OK, can we devise a bot to add them to all pages?
  3. do we need the duplication of <<New genus-group name xxxx>> and <<New genus-group names xxxx>>?

Mariusm (talk) 07:49, 31 January 2017 (UTC)

I was intending to bring that up later on, but my feelings are pretty clear:
  1. I don't believe sorting by years is improper, especially from a nomenclatural data point of view. It may be more appropriate to do so on Wikispecies than on Wikipedia, in fact.
  2. A bot may not work very well, however, because priority cannot be readily extracted from virtually any botany page (and maybe not even from zoology pages). Plus priority works differently between ICZN and ICBN: the former has only group-level priority while the latter attaches priority to each combination. Creating the categories (ca. 250 of them: one for each year starting with 1758) and moving already categorized articles, however, could easily be automated, I believe.
  3. If we choose to keep these categories, the hair-splitting introduced by Stephen (which is only applicable to zoology anyway) seems entirely unnecessary and "names published in xxxx" (basically the same as on wp:) should be more than sufficient for our needs.
Circeus (talk) 08:30, 31 January 2017 (UTC)

But Wikipedia has a much more elaborate category system. For example for 2016 alone they have the following category hierarchy:

  • Category:Species described in 2016
    • Category:Bacteria described in 2016
    • Category:Eukaryotes described in 2016
      • Category:Animals described in 2016
        • Category:Insects described in 2016
          • Category:Beetles described in 2016
          • Category:Moths described in 2016
      • Category:Fungi described in 2016
      • Category:Plants described in 2016
    • Category:Fossil taxa described in 2016
      • Category:Ootaxa described in 2016

All these categories are very much incomplete. Mariusm (talk) 10:25, 31 January 2017 (UTC)

Personally I can see no real value in them. If you are doing some project such as a checklist it will not be sorted by year. It will be sorted by taxonomic categories, I am thinking in terms of used by the reader not by the editors. I do not think it is worth our time to create information that will not be used. I do not use them on Wikipedia either for the same reasons, though eventually someone comes along and adds them to pages I create there. I do not remove them, but I think its a waste of effort. Cheers Scott Thomson (Faendalimas) talk 10:40, 31 January 2017 (UTC)
I did not know these categories existed at WS, I can't see any value at all.--Hector Bottai (talk) 11:18, 31 January 2017 (UTC)
The category tree becomes more elaborate on wikipedia owing more to an approach that tries to keep category size somewhat smaller than what you'd find on other projects more than due to any specific usefulness of the subcategories themselves (hence beetles and moths being separated from insects and not, say, ants: it's entirely dependent on what's been put there and can be split off). I would never argue in favor of anything that elaborate for wikispecies! At best a separation by codes may be relevant.
As I said earlier I'm not particularly arguing in favor of the categories, but given that publication date is nomenclaturally a very important piece of data about a name, I have a hard time believing they are inherently useless (year of publication is certainly more impactful on nomenclature than the author, and we categories in far more details by that criterion). Circeus (talk) 12:36, 31 January 2017 (UTC)
(speaking specifically for the zoology) I find this kind of categorization helpful, creating the possibility to cross search data, for example cross the "Category:MNRJ" and "Category:Names described in 1998" and obtain specific data on species described in the year of 1998, housed in the MNRJ. The creation and maintenance of these categories can be robotized, facilitating the work and not overloading the users. And I agree with Circeus, we already have author taxa categorization, year is important too. Burmeister (talk) 12:53, 31 January 2017 (UTC)

I agree that the description years can be valuable in various cross searches but there are some problems we nust overcome:

  1. How we automate the process of entering these categories for the vast majority of pages which lack them.
  2. How we solve the discrepancy between zoology – where the year is presented for the original combination and botany – where the year is presented for the latest combination.
  3. How we name the categories and how we divide them.

Without automation and without a reasonable agreement between zoology and botany it would be impossible to glean any benefit from these categories. Mariusm (talk) 13:23, 31 January 2017 (UTC)

The discrepancy self-solves if we solve the naming issue. Priority in Botany still starts with the original name at any given rank (these ranks are just more numerous than in zoology), and new combination must respect that priority.
The problem is not with the creation of new pages (we could easily have a simple categorization template, say {{nomencats|1810|Robert Brown|XXX}} with a bot following after and creating missing categories), but with updatng existing pages. But since massive work is needed either way on existing pages, I don't see it as much of an argument. Circeus (talk) 13:40, 31 January 2017 (UTC)
Repositories have the template {{rl|Repository}} that automatically categorize (not yet in currently usage, but I think it can be robotized), so it's possible create a {{yl|YEAR}} with the same purpose for the years. Burmeister (talk) 13:47, 31 January 2017 (UTC)
Hey, someone else knows about that! Nice to see this idea of mine got noticed at some point. Circeus (talk) 13:49, 31 January 2017 (UTC)
I think my feeling can be best summarized as such: we are already categorizing by two out of three key elements that define a name: author and type (in the form of repository). If we're gonna specifically not categorise by the third element (year of priority), then we better have some damn good arguments against doing so. Circeus (talk) 13:54, 31 January 2017 (UTC)
@Circeus: in botany the original combination is not dated unless the Basionym is added as part of the Synonyms section. In many pages there's no Basionym listed. How can we deal with this situation? Another problem is that our botanists here believe that the latest combination should take precedence over the original combination when adding the <<Category: yyy taxa>> to the page. Mariusm (talk) 15:20, 31 January 2017 (UTC)
Year of description is only useful within a single taxon. That is Priority under the code is for the synonymy, it looks at which name is usually the valid names among the list of available names for one taxon. The date of publication is part of the author field. How can a category that lists all organism described in a given year help with this when Priority is only applied within one taxon and needs all names from whatever date lined up in order from oldest to youngest. Priority is not relevant here. Cheers Scott Thomson (Faendalimas) talk 15:29, 31 January 2017 (UTC)
Marius, that is precisely my point: it doesn't matter that a bot can't add the date to these pages since the data required to categorise needs to be added manually anyway, and it should be easy enough to add the date category/template at the same time.
It seems to me we are forgetting a basic principle of a wiki: the fact it's a constant work-in-progress. Unlike the unwieldy fossil taxa category systems we have and need to simplify greatly, a date category system is easier and faster to put in place than the author category system we already have (for starters, there's a defined, closed number of possible categories and they can be bot-generated in 20 minutes).
Geeze, I swear you people think that only category systems that a bot can generate an populate from even the barest of pages should be implemented. If bots could do the job, we wouldn't need editors! Circeus (talk) 16:21, 31 January 2017 (UTC)
@Circeus: I have no issues with categories including manual ones, I just don't see how this set of them is useful in our context. Cheers Scott Thomson (Faendalimas) talk 19:34, 31 January 2017 (UTC)
@Faendalimas: I'll give you a scenario where the description-dates will be useful: Suppose you're researching on an expedition to the Brazilian Amazon which brought back insect samples to a certain museum. You want to find out which specimens were discovered as new to science from that particular expedition. You can perform a cross-search of the particular expedition-year with the museum-name to get the candidates for your inquiry. @Circeus: regardless of a bot, there's a difference of opinions for botany: You think the relevant description year is the date of the original-description (basionym) while the botanists think it's the current-combination date. Mariusm (talk) 08:13, 1 February 2017 (UTC)
I'm aware of that. I'm not the one who brought up basionym dates. Mind you, this can be easily fixed by using something along the lines of "Names published in xxx" (for nomen novum, basionyms and everything zoology, where combinations are not treated as separate names at all) and "combinations published in xxx" for the other cases. Original date is still relevant for botany, since that is what establishes priority. Circeus (talk) 11:15, 1 February 2017 (UTC)
I would prefer Circeus' last proposal, if we decide to have categories for publication year. But in botany it's sometimes more complicated with priority, if the rank of a taxon has changed. Priority is only for the same rank. So the date and even the first name at species level may be quite different from the date and name of the first description of that taxon, (thus making it difficult to search for new taxa from a particular expedition). --Thiotrix (talk) 12:58, 1 February 2017 (UTC)
Actually your scenario would not work @Mariusm: when specimens were found and when they were described are rarely the same year, in fact the difference can be as much as 20 years. Several of the turtle species I described were discovered over a decade earlier. I still see no real value in this, I am not arguing against it if you want it fine. But it will not help for synonymies, I doubt it will help for your expedition scenario, I can think of little consistance taxonomic or nomenclatural value. Just a list of how many species were described each year if you want that. Cheers Scott Thomson (Faendalimas) talk 16:48, 2 February 2017 (UTC)

@Thiotrix: @Circeus: I'm somewhat confused. Lets take for example a particular plant species — Pycnarrhena poilanei. What would you prefer to be written there – [[Category: Names published in 1938]] or [[Category: Combinations published in 1972]] or both?? Or perhaps [[Category: Plants published in 1972]]?? Mariusm (talk) 13:33, 1 February 2017 (UTC)

Really, the issue comes down to whether we want these category to reflect bibliographical information only (publication date) or also nomenclaturally accurate (i.e. date of basionym publication for species combinations). While these two pieces of data are identical in zoology (since subsequent combinations are not separate names), they differ considerably more in botany. For example most new combinations have priority based on their basionym, but raising an infraspecific taxon to species status creates a name with separate priority date from its basionym (because priority is determined separately for each ranks).
I had to make the point since using combination's publishing dates would precisely makes your scenario unworkable: combinations based on that expedition's names would inevitably have later dates and not register in your search. Unless, that is, we chose to create and categorize redirects in a similar fashion to what we're doing for repositories. But this is getting a little complex, I'd assume. Yes I'm aware that I'm kind of arguing against myself here. Circeus (talk) 13:59, 1 February 2017 (UTC)
Probably such categories are not fully useless, but their implementation will need much time. And I suppose, that most work will have to be done manually. I am not sure, if it is worth the effort.
Concerning differences between zoology and botany, it is true that combinations are "names" in the botanical code. So, having different categories for "names" and "combinations" does not seem correct to me. The botanical code distinguishes between "name of a new taxon", "name at new rank", "replacement name" etc. – see Glossary. In my opinion, there should be only "Names published in xxx", and both zoology and botany would categorise everything, what are names according to their codes. That means, that botany would categorise combinations, but zoology would not. Anyway, for full implementation, also synonyms will have to be categorised. Also in zoology, heterotypic synonyms often will exist only as a redirect page. I suppose, mass categorising of redirct pages cannot be done by a bot, as the information needed for correct categorisation is to be found somewhere else.
@Mariusm: The date of the name is about naming, not about the description. Even if we don't have to do with a replacement name or a new combination, it is possible to validate a "name of a new taxon" by reference to an existing older description – see ICN Art 38.1. So, as combinations are names as well, their relevant date is, when the new combination has been established. Priority can be important also here, e.g. when an already existing combination is blocking the transfer of an even older basionym.
In case of Pycnarrhena poilanei, the name "Pycnarrhena poilanei" should be categorised in 1972 and both "Pridania poilanei" and "Pridania petelotii" in 1938. --Franz Xaver (talk) 14:09, 1 February 2017 (UTC)
@Mariusm: Actually, the case of Pycnarrhena poilanei is a nasty example. When I created the taxon page, I felt obliged to reproduce, what is written in the papers, I had used. However, when the code (ICN) is applied here, it appears, that Gagnep. in 1938 has managed to create three invalidly published names: Pridania, P. poilanei and P. petelotii – see ICN Art. 35.1 and Art. 38.5a. (He missed to give a separate description of the genus Pridania and destroyed his attempt to suffice with a "descriptio generico-specifica" by adding a second species.) When Forman revised the genus, he obviously overlooked this fact and published a new combination based on the invalid name Pridania poilanei, which he was not entitled to do. However, it maybe is possible, that Pycnarrhena poilanei Forman can be regarded as a "name of a new taxon" validated by the Latin description given by Gagnepain (1938). In this case (Gagnep.) has to disappear from the author combination, the name then is to be treated like a basionym – it anyway would be the oldest validly published name. However, I am not yet sure, if there is one more pitfall somewhere in the code. --Franz Xaver (talk) 15:33, 1 February 2017 (UTC)

@Circeus: @Franz Xaver: @Thiotrix: I feel we can agree on having only [[Category: Names published in xxxx]] and categorize for zoology the original-combinations-years and for botany the latest-combinations-years, with an option of categorizing also the synonyms for zoology and the original combinations for botany – but with a lower priority. Can we agree on that? Mariusm (talk) 06:14, 2 February 2017 (UTC)

That was really what I was expecting we'd get to anyway should we decide in favor XD. We can't do much about synonyms anyway until/unless we figure out what to do with, for example, pages that would be a list of 3+ different homonyms. made by User:Circeus
Does that mean, that each taxon page should have at least 3 categories: [[Category:xxxx taxa]], [[Category:Names published in xxxx]] (or shortly template:y|xxxx), and [[Category:Repository xxxx]] (or template:r|xxxx) for the Holotype? --Thiotrix (talk) 07:41, 2 February 2017 (UTC)
The main question is, if Wikispecies is meant to be a hypertext database about taxa and taxonomists, or if it wants to allow for combined requests (e.g., "which plants were first described from Sicily"?). This would need even more categories and maintenance effort, and I think, wikidata could be the better place for such complex questions. In my opionion Wikispecies may have categories for the basic questions "who - when - where - what (for fossils)"
For lists of homonyms, I think they should be treated as disambiguation pages, where each item is linked to its own redirect page, which can easily be categorized. --Thiotrix (talk) 09:22, 2 February 2017 (UTC)
Multiple discussions have established that geography was not proper to Wikispecies. As far as taxon pages are concerned, my belief is that we should stick to nomenclaturally-relevant categories (since taxonomy is taken care of via taxonavigation, but I'll make a suggestion later on about a specific type of taxonomy-related category). Circeus (talk) 10:18, 2 February 2017 (UTC)
My edit was misunderstandable, with "where" I meant of course not geography but the repository of the holotype. --Thiotrix (talk) 10:39, 2 February 2017 (UTC)
It's not such a big hassle really: instead of writing {{a|author|author name}} , xxxx we can write {{a|author|author name|xxxx}} and modify the template {{a}} to take care of the new category. It even would be less typing! – instead of " ," we'll need only "|". Mariusm (talk) 11:19, 2 February 2017 (UTC)
@Mariusm: You are aware, that the template {{a}} is also used in different contexts, e.g. in reference templates as Template:Fabrizi & Ahrens, 2014? --Franz Xaver (talk) 14:55, 2 February 2017 (UTC)
Making an optional category-generating parameter is easy. Besides, I do believe we want a template that can unify the variopus author link templates, because having {{a}}, {{aut}}, {{auth}} and {{author}} is pretty much pure madness IMO. The range of situations this would needs to handle is not so complex that a single template couldn't do the job easily. Circeus (talk) 22:53, 2 February 2017 (UTC)
@Franz Xaver: Circeus is right! Templates can be smart... The 3rd parameter can be conditional: If you put only 2 parameters it will behave like it used to; when you add the 3rd parameter (the date) it will do the additional job of adding the category. @Circeus: can you give it a try and modify {{a}} for the additional task? Mariusm (talk) 06:30, 3 February 2017 (UTC)


[undent] @Mariusm: I'll look into it later today. I should point out I'm not a huge fan of the smallcaps style. Circeus (talk) 13:48, 3 February 2017 (UTC)

{{au}} handles everything except being used in references. The current version also has a no small-caps formatting but only because I didn't want it complicating code until I was fully done. Besides, that should almost certainly be moved to a separate {{sc}} meta-template anyway and reference formatting should be done with frickin cite templates! (They should really not be so hard to update for our few peculiarities.)
  • Parentheses are excluded from the link, but this isn't too hard to change. It's just convenient since it makes for less parserfunction calls.
  • Parentheses cannot be automated around a name built with ex or with the ":" of en:sanctioned names.
  • I can add a parameter for alternate links (there's a lot of stuff in the form [[Template:Author, 2000|{{aut|Author}}, 2000]], but I dunno if that's a Stephen-only thing), however, clever used of the parameters and a= can effect a similar result:
    • Original: ([[Template:Broun, 1894a|{{aut|Broun}}, 1894]])
    • templated: {{au|Template:Broun,|1894a|1984|p=yes|a=Broun}}(Broun, 1984)
      • Technically, the template can link to ANY page on the wiki in this fashion.
Circeus (talk) 20:53, 3 February 2017 (UTC)
@Circeus: thanks for your effort but I think there's some misunderstanding here: (1) the format [[Template:Author, 2000|{{aut|Author}}, 2000]] is unacceptable (this was discussed a long time ago and agreed upon). It was introduced by Stephen and isn't used by others. (2) {{au|Georg Frey|Frey|1969}} doesn't seem to produce the desired effect: There's no link to the author and no "Category: Names published in 1969" produced. (3) The small caps are essential to my mind and this is also the case with the user majority here. Mariusm (talk) 08:59, 4 February 2017 (UTC)
Is the documentation on the template page not clear? 'cause I feel like you haven't even tried to look at it:
  1. That this sort of link to ref templates can be achieve is a side-effect of the template design, not a goal. I only mentioned it in passing.
  2. On the contrary it produces the exact desired effects:
    • Using the template like that causes it to try and link to an hypothetical "Georg Frey Frey". The correct format is clearly intended to be {{au|Georg|Frey|1969}}. Parameters are given name(s), family name (i.e. the displayed part, replaceable with the custom "a" parameter), the combination of which should form a page that exists, lest a link is not generated, and year.
    • Categories are not generated unless the extra parameters date or cat (d and c for short) are used. The reason for this should be blatantly obvious: if it did, the template could not be used more than once per taxon page without suppressing the categories every time! The code that generates categories, clearly stated in the documentation is either {{au|Georg|Frey|date=1969}} or {{au|Georg|Frey|1969|d(ate)=yes}}
    • Same for the author category, which can even be customized if it happens to differ from the two parameters used in the template, as in the Broun example.
    • Note that categories are, very sensibly IMO, never created outside mainspace, so try as you might, you can't generate them on the Village Pump.
  3. As I clearly stated, the small caps are only not there for now as I make sure I've got the core of the template running as smoothly as I want/need it to. I intend to use a separate template to integrate it in this one anyway.
I'm not sure where you even got the idea that {{au|Georg Frey|Frey|1969}} is a valid syntax for the template to begin with. It's not even a valid syntax for any of the templates this one would replace. Circeus (talk) 10:56, 4 February 2017 (UTC)
@Circeus: Sorry for the misunderstanding but it's not how the template {{a}} behaves like. It works both for {{a|Georg Frey|Frey}} and also for {{a|Georg Frey|Frey, G.}} hence the first parameter is the full name and the 2nd is the displayed one. I supposed the {{au}} will work in the same manner. Mariusm (talk) 14:45, 4 February 2017 (UTC)
I could work the {{a}} default format, since {{a|Georg Frey|Frey}} is the same as {{au|Georg Frey||Frey}}, however, it's impossible to work in {{a|Georg Frey|Frey, G.}} alongside that. I am fine with that, because the same template should not handle both author orf names and author of references. Again, there was no excuse for not using the cite templates as early as possible, leaving us with an issue bigger than Stephen's personal gardens: we have more than forty frickin thousand pages in category:reference templates!
At least the use of {{a}} in reference template is easily removed by bot, fixing that issue temporarily (i.e. while waiting for conversion to cite templates) if we choose to: {{a|Georg Frey|Frey, G.}} would have the parameters intact, but the wraparound altered to {{sc|[[Georg Frey|Frey, G.]]}}. Circeus (talk) 06:19, 5 February 2017 (UTC)
@Circeus: No, no, please!!! The cite templates have been decided to be unsuitable for WS! I must also stress that all uses for authors templates except for {{a}} and {{aut}} are extremely rare! 99% use only {{a}} and {{aut}}! Only Stephen used the {{auth}} and so on. You seem to work against the consensus established here for the author templates. Mariusm (talk) 06:34, 5 February 2017 (UTC)
Why? As far as I can tell there are exactly two "standard" differences in formatting (besides the fact that for the most part people just do whatever the fuck they want): small-cap authors (so easy to put in it's not even worth mentioning), and ISSN used for series links (which could in fact be automated if we used these templates). Wikispecies is literally the single most backward project on this issue, so excuse me if I don't take it very seriously. Circeus (talk) 09:04, 5 February 2017 (UTC)
I should point out this issue is specifically making Wikispecies less relevant, see here someone whose specialty is working with big taxobibliographical data bemoaning specifically "the lack of a decent bibliographic template" as an impediment to doing things with Wikispecies. That was six years ago and there was no questioning of the status quo ever since? What are we? The Japanese Imperial family?! It prevents any sort of interaction with any tool at all, starting with reference gathering like Zotero. How can we pretend to try to make Wikispecies relevant when we are not to much shooting as nuking ourselves in the foot? Circeus (talk) 09:48, 5 February 2017 (UTC)
You know what? As soon as the geographical category thing done with, I'm turning to THAT instead of the high-order categories, because it's just so damn ridiculously petty. I'm betting that even with the citation module having been converted to Lua on Wikspecies, I can still make the tiny spacing and punctuation changes required to follow the "species" style. (I still find that ridiculous from this crew. You are constantly having to deal with journals/editors who have subtly different styles from each others, and you spit in the face of a system designed to remove that whole formatting hassle—and it's not like anyone can't just do as they please if they choose to anyway; who would even notice?) Circeus (talk) 11:11, 5 February 2017 (UTC)

Sorry for that digression, but this sort of things just riles me up like crazy (it's a perfect example of the "important issues getting sidetracked and nothing ever getting done" that I mentioned before, and by saying it now I'm probably derailing this conversation again...). I'd like more opinions though. Does anyone else think the template must be able to handle the use case of {{a/au|name surname|surname}} in a way that generates a link? I'm pretty sure, however, that detecting a sequence of the form "string|string" and deleting the first string is easy. @Dan Koehl: any thoughts about that and the possible conversion of {{a}} in reference sections I outlined above? Circeus (talk) 11:19, 5 February 2017 (UTC)

This is not worth getting caught up on. However you want to do it is fine with me, but it is useful to be able to have it generate a link in the form of {{a/au|name surname|surname}} since when listing the synonyms each taxon name in zoology is proceeded by the surname and year, this should link to the author page whose namespace will be in the form of first names surname, in saying that I do not care if only one of the options does it, I am happy to use both {{a}} and {{aut}} or whatever for example for different purposes. As for a decent author template I am guessing you are meaning like the Wikipedia one, I have to say I am no fan of it, I do not use it on WP. I find it cumbersome and does not produce a proper citation style format as a writer I find that displeasing so I do it myself on wikipedia. In saying that I guess some sort of template that produced scientific style citations in a format acceptable in science would be useful. But I am yet to see one on any wiki. Digressing a little, if you go the path of automating the link in an author citation template to find for example the doi or something of the paper, I would rather you did not make this automatic, there are far better, licence free places to obtain access to publications than through the doi. However, that is a digression. Cheers Scott Thomson (Faendalimas) talk 12:15, 5 February 2017 (UTC)
And yet no one back then even ATTEMPTED to simply adjust {{cite journal}} (thankfully that is the pre-lua version because god helps us if it were the lua thing. I'm sure it's a very elegant thing to a programmer, but to common mortals like myself, it morphed into a monstrosity that no one can do anything with anymore) for the minute changes needed. And I do mean minute. Literally minuscule. Things like punctuation (I can remove the date parentheses in less time than I need to add small caps to {{au}}!) and a few things that are not even connected to the template itself. And suddenly Wikispecies could become relevant to people. It would have usable, machine-harvestable data, of which we currently have not a single piece anywhere on the website. While I'm aware taxonomic data in the form we present it will probably never be machine-harvestable, having references that are would be a gigantic step in making Wikispecies genuinely useful to the greater community. Circeus (talk) 12:40, 5 February 2017 (UTC)
@Circeus: Let's stay calm and not get needlessly agitated on these issues. You're speaking from a programmer's point of view. If you needed to enter 100 citations in the {{Cite journal}} format you'd be very quickly exasperated. It is much harder to chop a complex citation into the various fields of {{Cite journal}} then to lay it down in one piece. It is also very difficult for a casual user to master the intricacies of such a complex template. You're right when you say it's much more machine-friendly, but is it also more human-friendly? I say it is not. Mariusm (talk) 13:27, 5 February 2017 (UTC)
I have no idea why {{cite journal}} was not modified, I agree it could have been. I need to ask though what are you trying to accomplish. I was under the impression you are talking about the templates used in our name declarations eg: Rheodytes devisi Thomson 2000 coded as {{a|Scott Thomson|Thomson}} 2000. Are you trying to have it so that it will also create the reference list ie as per {{reflist}} on wikipedia? If so I would support that. All I personally would ask of that is follow standard harvard science format. What others think on that I do not know. Reference list is simple, it follows standard journal practices and it will be fine. But when it comes to name declarations we are governed by the rules of nomenclature, of which there are 5 for different sets of organisms and they do not agree with each other. They were also written prior to computerisation and hence were never intended to be data mined or automated. This is an unfortunate side effect of how long they have been used but not one easily dismissed. Please explain exactly what your are trying to accomplish and I can help you. I am a programmer but I am not understanding everything you want this template to do. I thought you were just adding the date to it so that we can do something like this if we wish {{a|Scott Thomson|Thomson|2000}} though personally I would want an extra option of page number on date ie {{a|Scott Thomson|Thomson|2000|595}} which would appear as Thomson 2000:595. Where the page number is the page of the species declaration, not the pages of the article, ie that article actually goes 593-598. No need to yell ok, I am trying to help I know nomenclature is frustrating done it for 25 years. Cheers Scott Thomson (Faendalimas) talk 13:38, 5 February 2017 (UTC)
The conversation derived to the cite templates because {{a}} is heavily used in them (i.e. to generate the small caps and author links), and I was pointing this usage would not be supported in {{au}}, at least not in the default formatting, because I was of the opinion the template used to format taxon authorities should never have been used in references in the first place.
I think people are annoyed because when they think "unfriendly", they think of the HUGE list of possible parameter (I think around 50 as of this writing), when 90% of references are handled with something like 10 parameters, even less so when there are fewer links or only one author.
I said that people would do whatever the hell they want either way... and that's what they do. It took me 10 minutes to find out people are formatting books in series in at least three different fashions.
There is no reason{{au}} to be machine-harvestable (nor is there even a standard applicable in this case as far as I can tell). People are confusing two completely different points about {{au}} for taxon authorities and the cite templates for references (thus completely sidelining the discussion, again as predicted). Circeus (talk) 05:56, 6 February 2017 (UTC)
There really was no need to protect the project from Stephen. The userbase does a good enough job of making it a useless closed garden without his intervention. Circeus (talk) 05:59, 6 February 2017 (UTC)
Ok @Circeus: now I get what your trying to do. I agree with you the template should not be used to create references lists. As I pointed out I would support the idea of an automatic reflist similar to the reflist template in wikipedia for this. It is an aside but I wanted to comment on it. The user friendliness of the cite templates could be made simpler by acknowledging the different types of articles better, we have cite journal and cite book, we really need a different one for cite chapter as these are written out differently to true journal articles but are also not really a book. Having three different cite templates for the different types of articles would reduce the parameter load individually and hence user friendliness. However this is an aside, so please do not let this distract the main discussion. Cheers Scott Thomson (Faendalimas) talk 19:00, 6 February 2017 (UTC)

As a side note I will agree with one point of @Mariusm's the {{Cite journal}} template is ridiculously user unfriendly and fails completely on the ideal of any program/ script/ template of KISS ie "keep it simple stupid". It would be better done away with wiki wide. But lets move forward do the best we can. Cheers Scott Thomson (Faendalimas) talk 14:01, 5 February 2017 (UTC)

I was asked for opinion, and Im afraid I will do everyone frustrated or disappointed. I would support that all the input done here were done directly into the wikidata database, rather than through all kind of different templates, but what would come out with a visually identical result. Im a friend of standards, and for each submission manually done now, theres a risk for some indivuals error, or that some small difference is done, this would not happen, when all records were in their own little pocket in a database. I would therefore work more to make a fusion between WS and Wikidata, rather than discuss and develop all those different templates. Dan Koehl (talk) 22:48, 5 February 2017 (UTC)
@Dan Koehl: you indeed frustrated me with this post. A crat who doesn't believe in the wiki he's crating is not an easy matter to digest. I for one believe that Wikidata isn't suited for taxonomic data and that WS is very much more so. Mariusm (talk) 05:39, 6 February 2017 (UTC)
Actually, I wanted to know how bot-friendly converting {{a|name surname|surname}}, year to {{au|name|surname|year}} would be. Circeus (talk) 05:56, 6 February 2017 (UTC)
@Circeus:, I think thats an easy task to do, with AWB, and evventually in botmode. Dan Koehl (talk) 10:55, 6 February 2017 (UTC)

@Circeus:, if you give me a couple of examples, I can happily try it out with AWB. If its not many that may be enough, with out bot. Dan Koehl (talk) 01:55, 12 February 2017 (UTC)

@Mariusm:, you misunderstood me, and You put words in my mouth which I did not myself write. I believe in this wiki very much, I was was not comparing Wikispecies and Wikidata in that sense, I was referring to a method uf submitting records, the data into the database. I dont think its being done in the most easiest and efficient way now, and being forced to make semi-produced templates for each and every new article, is not user friendly, and unattractive for new users, therefore against the goal of the project. With an alternative interface, where the records were stored in wikidata, (which they already partly are?) would make the work easier. In 2004, when I started here, there was no wikidata existing. If it had existed back then, Im sure the submission of data would have been performed in another way, similar to what I described. Dan Koehl (talk) 10:55, 6 February 2017 (UTC)
@Dan Koehl: Sorry if I misinterpreted your meaning, but you said fairly clearly "I would support that all the input done here were done directly into the wikidata database" and I postulated that in that particular situation there's no way that WS can continue to exist as a separate wiki. The "wikidata database" doesn't allow for many WS features to be expressed, including notes, comments, type species, holotypes and much more. "Wikidata database" will cripple WS and make it totally ineffective. Why rather than help us improve the existing WS would you rather give up and throw us upon the "wikidata database", why? Mariusm (talk)
@Mariusm: it seems we are speaking about different things, I was referring to an easier interface, where posts are submitted through windows into a database, where the records in the end get stored, in which database, and physically where, is for most users unknown. I dont think anyone dreams of that I would not defend WS wiki and its use and existence. I am helping. I have not fiven up anything, I havnt thrown anyone anywhere. Please dont waste more time for us both, discussing non existing issues.
On the other hand, if you read Help:General_Wikispecies, its already written there: The founder of the Wikimedia Foundation, Jimbo Wales, has written a note, that already makes clear the difference between Wikipedia and Wikispecies. The Wikimedia Foundation also hosts a project called Wikidata. Wikidata is a database for various types of content. Wikidata centrally stores (and allows users to manage) data from all Wikimedia projects, and to radically expand the range of content that can be built using wiki principles.
Imagine that you can edit the content of an infobox on Wikipedia with one click, that you get an edit form specific to the infobox you are editing, and that other Wikipedias automatically and immediately use the same content (unless it is specific to your locale). Imagine that some data in an article can be automatically updated in the background, without any work from you — whether it is the development of a company stock, or the number of lines of code in an open source project. Imagine that you can easily search wiki-databases on a variety of subjects, without knowing anything about wikis. Wikispecies data will eventually be stored in Wikidata..
You are referring to yourself as member of the group us, like if I was not member in the group you think you belong to. This is going a little bit to far now, and I want to kindly remind you about Wikispecies:Policy: Be civil. Being rude, insensitive or petty makes people upset and stops Wikispecies from working well. Try to discourage others from being uncivil, and be careful to avoid offending people unintentionally.'
Discuss the issue, and the subject, not my person, please!
Dan Koehl (talk) 12:44, 6 February 2017 (UTC)
@Dan Koehl: Please make an effort and be less aggressive in your speech. You're mixing being rude with a natural wish of mine to clarify our standpoints following a statement of yours which seemed to me to be rather incompatible with WS basic aspirations. Mariusm (talk) 13:59, 6 February 2017 (UTC)
@Mariusm: What seems to to be my standpoint according to you, is not the subject here. You already confirmed that you have misunderstood me, now please drop the efforts making my person a subject for this discussion, or weather I am incompatible with WS basic aspirations. Thats a personal attack, please follow Wikispecies:Policy. I have been referring to submitting records the interface of WS, and I dont believe that all the templates is the fastest, easiest, and best solution for the future. I think there must be better and more user friendly methods. Dan Koehl (talk) 14:08, 6 February 2017 (UTC)
@Dan Koehl: Fine. The vary last thing I want to do here is to engage in an argument with you. You just need to allow more free rein for opinions contradicting yours to be heard, and heard aloud. In the present case, your statement was of major consequences and of paramount importance for me, therefor I was in a need to clarify it once and for all. You're entitled to hold any view you want as long as you let others express theirs without being harassed. You don't have to apologize or to make any excuses. The only thing I demanded is to clarify your position. I wish you all the best. Mariusm (talk) 16:00, 6 February 2017 (UTC)
As far as I know, I havnt harassed anyone, if Im wrong, please give me a diff. All I did, was having an opinion, which was an answer requested by Circeus, and I dont view that as any kind of "Statement", it was merely a personal comment. I always let anyone express their opinions, and therefore dont see any need for excusing myself. You did a lot more than "demanding that I clearified my position, among other things questioned my loyality to WS you indicated that I was rude, that Im a crat who doesn't believe in the wiki Im crating, that I throw you upon the "wikidata database", etc, etc. Can we quit the discussion about Dan Koehl and focus on the project now, please? Dan Koehl (talk) 16:15, 6 February 2017 (UTC)

@Circeus: I think such a change is easy to make, with AWB and/or a bot. Dan Koehl (talk) 10:55, 6 February 2017 (UTC)

@Mariusm: I believe you misunderstood me, and I ask you please not to put words in mouth, like that I believe in the wiki, you are completely wrong. And I didnt compare the projects in that sense, what I mean is that it would be easier to update all records in an easier and more precise way than today, and without being forced to make a semi-complicated template for ean and every new aricle/file. When I started here in 2005

Circeus: don't get me wrong - I'm not against {{au}}. I think it's a fine template. My problem is the elimination of the small caps for author's name. It is used in most publications and catalogues. I don't see why you're against it. And yes - the {{Cite journal}} is for a different discussion. Mariusm (talk) 06:25, 6 February 2017 (UTC)

I'm not even eliminating it. I just didn't happen to put in the template at the time. I DO intent to have it in there. In fact I've just created the subtemplate {{sc}} for that as I prep the citation templates.
ETA: {{au}} and {{cite journal}} now feature small-capped authors. Furthermore {{cite journal}} now accounts for all the style differences with the original cite templates. The remaining differences (i.e. display of identifiers and use of ISSN to link the periodical) are not an issue of referencing style per se (you can do the latter already), and a small amount of additional wrangling can easily automate ISSN links. I have not yet started on {{cite book}} because it seems people are not quite in agreement (Didn't I say something earlier about people doing whatever they wanted anyway? Yes, yes I did.) regarding the proper formatting for books within series. I have found three distinct formats. Circeus (talk) 11:18, 6 February 2017 (UTC)
Circeus: What would happen while using template au, if the authority is a new one and its page or the "category:xxxx taxa" are not yet created? Can they be created as redlinks? --Thiotrix (talk) 08:03, 7 February 2017 (UTC)
Redlinks happen indeed: the template checks and will not create a link if the author page is missing, but the categories will always be generated as long as the relevant parameters ("date" and "cat" respectively, d and c for short) are triggered. The template won't generate categories if the page isn't in mainspace, however. Circeus (talk) 10:34, 7 February 2017 (UTC)
@Circeus: How would you use Template:Au in Rhamdia quelen? As it seems, the parenthesis parameter would not work correctly with two authors having described the taxon. As parenthesis easily can be added manually at the right place, it is probably better to remove this optional parameter from the template. Regards --Franz Xaver (talk) 13:36, 8 February 2017 (UTC)
Indeed the template cannot handle any cases where two links/names are present within parentheses. I don't see this is as much of a problem at all since it should be blatantly obvious in the first place that the template isn't meant to handle for than one author at a time in the first place (not that it couldn't, but since people around here have refused to use cite templates on account of so-called user-unfriendliness, I dare not assume they would be willing to use {{au}} if it had the several extra parameters needed to do so). Circeus (talk) 14:01, 8 February 2017 (UTC)

Wikispecies need Patrollers[edit]


  • Autopatrollers: Most users with Autopatrolling Rights are experienced wikipedians and hence generally understand what is needed.
  • New users and not Autopatrollers: However, what we are looking for when a not autopatroller has edited a file, a patroller checkup that the page has been edited or created in lines with what we need on Wikispecies, following our accepted formats. The page does not have to be complete, particularly if it was only recently created. That is: be friendly and give users time to finish it. This work is done by Patrollers.
  • Patrollers:. Many users already have the Patrollers right, but doesnt use it, maybe because they dont know what to do, and how:

Article edits and submission done, by users who are not yet Autopatrollers need to be checked up. One way to see unpatrolled edits is to go to RecentChanges where unpatrolled articles has a red-colored ! in front of the article name.

A more affective way though, is to follow the link to the left, called RTRC, where you see a list with the last edits. In order to filter out the unpatrolled edits, you mark by clicking the checkboxes: "Hide bots", "Hide registered users" and "Hide patrolled edits", and set the Autodiff on "on". Then you click the blue button "Apply" to get the list of unpatrolled edits. Once you do, to patrol an edit, click on the link "Diff" before the file name, and you will see the latest revison change. If its OK, you can patrol it by clicking the [Mark as patrolled] link. Or, if the file has been vandalized, you can click on rollback. In ordet to patrol next file, ckick on "close" in the upper right corner of the patrol window, and again click on "Diff" for the next file to patrol. You can get new diffs automatically, if you check the checkbox, "Autodiff".

There is presently approximately 852 not patrolled edits (+5) unpatrolled edits, in need to be patrolled.

On Wikispecies, only a limited number of users help with patrolling, as you can see on Wikispecies Patrollers activity, and it would be good if more users engaged in this, helping out to keep the back log as short as possible.

If you want to help with patrolling, please apply for Patrolling Rights in the section Requests for patroller rights. The statistics for recent patrols can be seen here.

Dan Koehl (talk) 11:34, 31 January 2017 (UTC)

@Dan Koehl: In case you didn't notice, that template by SteinsplitterBot is old--the bot is defunct. —Justin (koavf)TCM 09:26, 11 February 2017 (UTC)
Thanks for the info, @Koavf:, I checked with Steinsplitter, and he says that now it should work again. Dan Koehl (talk) 15:49, 13 February 2017 (UTC)
@Dan Koehl: That it is! Thanks a lot. There were some old reports from that bot and some templates that I had been thinking about deleting for housekeeping but if it's running again, then that is handy. — The preceding unsigned comment was added by Koavf (talkcontribs) Alvaro Molina.png Alvaro Molina ( - ) 05:01, 14 February 2017 (UTC).


Unless I've missed it (I have searched, extensively) Wikispecies does not have its own policy on paid editing. This means that the default WMF policy:


I propose that we adopt the same policy as Wikimedia Commons:

The Wikispecies community does not require any disclosure of paid contributions from its contributors.

Thoughts? Andy Mabbett (Pigsonthewing); Talk to Andy; Andy's edits 22:20, 6 February 2017 (UTC)

  • Symbol support vote.svg Support I agree Dan Koehl (talk) 22:37, 6 February 2017 (UTC)
  • Redundant. It's already implemented in foundation:Terms of Use in every page across all projects. Besides, we don't have the power to modify it even if we want to. OhanaUnitedTalk page 01:34, 7 February 2017 (UTC)
    • Your comments are orthogonal to reality. The default policy is the one I linked to, not the one I propose here. And the WMF have explicitly invited projects to set out a policy different to that default (as can be seen on that linked page), as Wikimedia Commons have done. Andy Mabbett (Pigsonthewing); Talk to Andy; Andy's edits 11:45, 7 February 2017 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support It's probably not necessary to even create a page for that here but to simply mention in passing at some policy page. The likelihood that this project would even encounter a problem with it is low compared to Wikipedia. —Justin (koavf)TCM 02:19, 7 February 2017 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support I support it but I too was under the impression we have no say in this anyway. Cheers Scott Thomson (Faendalimas) talk 07:16, 7 February 2017 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support I think that Wikispecies is systematic and standardized enough that paid vs. unpaid contributions would be very unlikely to produce any conflicts of interest. Nicole Sharp (talk) 08:41, 7 February 2017 (UTC)
  • Symbol neutral vote.svg Neutral Like Ohana, I find it somewhat redundant. Sound enough otherwise. Maybe throw this over at WS:RFC since there's a wikiwide message about RFCs right now? Circeus (talk) 11:42, 7 February 2017 (UTC)
  • Symbol neutral vote.svg Neutral Paid editing probably never will be a big issue for WS. Why then have own policy? --Franz Xaver (talk) 12:28, 7 February 2017 (UTC)
    • Many people who edit are (by the WMF definition) making paid edits. Why make them declare that (or put them in a position of jeopardy for not doing so), if it "probably never will be a big issue" here? Andy Mabbett (Pigsonthewing); Talk to Andy; Andy's edits 13:24, 7 February 2017 (UTC)

Current position[edit]

At the time of writing, and while this project has no local policy on the matter, we are bound by the WMF policy on paid editing.

I have created Wikispecies:Paid editing to make that clear.

It is apparent from the above discussion that some colleagues have not been aware of this, or of what that policy actually says. I encourage all editors, whether professional or amateur taxonomists, to make themselves familiar with that policy. It states:

These Terms of Use prohibit engaging in deceptive activities, including misrepresentation of affiliation, impersonation, and fraud. As part of these obligations, you must disclose your employer, client, and affiliation with respect to any contribution for which you receive, or expect to receive, compensation. You must make that disclosure in at least one of the following ways:

  • a statement on your user page,
  • a statement on the talk page accompanying any paid contributions, or
  • a statement in the edit summary accompanying any paid contributions.

Applicable law, or community and Foundation policies and guidelines, such as those addressing conflicts of interest, may further limit paid contributions or require more detailed disclosure.

A Wikimedia Project community may adopt an alternative paid contribution disclosure policy. If a Project adopts an alternative disclosure policy, you may comply with that policy instead of the requirements in this section when contributing to that Project. An alternative paid contribution policy will only supersede these requirements if it is approved by the relevant Project community and listed in the alternative disclosure policy page.

For more information, please read our FAQ on disclosure of paid contributions.

We reserve the right to exercise our enforcement discretion with respect to the above terms.

Please express your views about whether to maintain this status quo, or adopt a local policy, in the above section. Andy Mabbett (Pigsonthewing); Talk to Andy; Andy's edits 13:33, 7 February 2017 (UTC)

Not sure about what I think about the need etc, but I chose to support you with this, just because I value the initiative and your will to develop the infrastructure at Wikispecies, and every step in that direction I regard as positive. Im therefore not sure on whether a local policy is really needed, or not, but my first suggestion, since you start with such issues, maybe you could also develop some categories, where those different documents belong to, so it will be easier to trace them, and find them? As well as to find out which documents we miss, and should be added? You will surely come up with something relevant.I may come back reg your question, but would like to see other users answers and opinions first. Dan Koehl (talk) 18:21, 7 February 2017 (UTC)
Thank you for your kind words. You mean categories like Category:Wikispecies policies? Andy Mabbett (Pigsonthewing); Talk to Andy; Andy's edits 22:30, 7 February 2017 (UTC)
Quick query then. I am a professional taxonomist and paleontologist. I am obviously employed as such. However I do not get paid to contribute to Wikispecies. It is not part of my job description. Everything I do on wikispecies is done in my own time. However I do if writing about species I described clearly use publications as references that like all science I am not paid to write, but the science behind them I may have been paid to do. Sometimes I am not paid, typical science we do it because we love it. No money in it. How does this figure in in peoples views. Not referring to NPoV or OR here, just in relation to this policy.
As for whether we should include something then I guess we should even if we just agree with the general policy which I have no issue with. I do not foresee any special circumstances for this wiki. Cheers Scott Thomson (Faendalimas) talk 22:50, 7 February 2017 (UTC)
AIUI, that is a grey area. Some people would regard you writing about your paid work as being within the bounds of the policy. Some would also regard it as "paid editing" if you cite a work in which your employer has an interest, for example. I always advise editors I am training on sister projects to err on the side of caution, and under the default WMF policy I would advise you to make a declaration on this project. The policy propose above would render that utterly unnecessary, even if you boss explicitly tells you to edit Wikispecies. Andy Mabbett (Pigsonthewing); Talk to Andy; Andy's edits 22:59, 7 February 2017 (UTC)
My user pages on all wikis declare what I do and who I work for, which taxa I have described so its all in B&W and has been for some time. With taxa I have described if I write the wikipedia page about them I ask for the information to be reviewed by other editors, making it clear I have an NPoV issue on that topic, and accept their decision. So I have no issue with it. Science is strange, My employer has a vested interest in me and my research but my publications are my problem. In saying that, of course my publications are a big part of my CV so there is a feedback loop there. Anyway I have digressed a little here as I wanted clarity where this issue potentially effected me. On your proposal as I said before I can see why we need to say something here, personally I have no issue with the standard policy and think it could be adopted here. I can think of no reasons for anything out of the norm mfor this wiki. Cheers Scott Thomson (Faendalimas) talk 00:36, 8 February 2017 (UTC)
Yes, your user-page declaration meets the requirements of the WMF default policy, without question. For the avoidance of doubt, I was speaking generally. However, you suggest that "the standard policy... could be adopted here". My point is that it applies already, by default, and will continue to do so unless we adopt an alternative. Andy Mabbett (Pigsonthewing); Talk to Andy; Andy's edits 11:18, 8 February 2017 (UTC)
Mr. Mabbett could you please add some examples where this is relevant? --Succu (talk) 23:08, 10 February 2017 (UTC)
We're discussing such an example in the posts immediately preceding yours. Andy Mabbett (Pigsonthewing); Talk to Andy; Andy's edits 11:57, 11 February 2017 (UTC)
In all honesty my reasons for stating what I do have been more about NPoV and OR than paid editing, however I can see that it could be seen that way too, although personally I do not consider myself paid per se to edit in any way. I do not get paid for my publications like most scientists I publish because I more or less have to. I realised you were talking about adopting a policy here that made this issue less of a problem. However considering this is more than a paid editing issue, ie the NPoV and OR issues, I feel any scientists should declare their interests up front, particularly on this project. Hence I think the standard policy for this issue is fine. Cheers Scott Thomson (Faendalimas) talk 12:37, 11 February 2017 (UTC)

Managerial inflation[edit]

We're seeing in the last months a torrent of managerial/administrative/cleansing projects which strive to straighten the crooked back of WS. While some are welcome, others are forcing far too much of a good thing which becomes expressively bad. Yet other good-intentioned enthusiasts enforce projects which are not in line with the common taxonomic practice. The administrator/user ratio has become insupportably high and as a consequence we reached a situation where even the mere existence of WS is questioned — the reasoning goes that Wikidata can and should absorb WS and replace it's function to become a more efficient substitute.

I understand the allure of "revolutionizing" a "limp old horse" but what we need here is primarily editors who perform the routine entry of taxonomic data and not endless managerial projects — they are just fine, but up to a certain limit. Mariusm (talk) 05:27, 8 February 2017 (UTC)

@Mariusm: I certainly don't disagree with you. If you have particular things in mind, then I'd be interested to get your perspective. Even if certain policy/administrative things aren't done, the value of the resource is that it provides good taxonomic data. —Justin (koavf)TCM 05:34, 8 February 2017 (UTC)
@Mariusm: I'd be interested to know which specific, recent, "managerial/administrative/cleansing projects" you think are superfluous, and should not have happened, and why. Furthermore, I don't see anyone seriously questioning the existence of Wikispecies, but - as I have here before - it is redundant to store data twice (or more) and it makes sense to store taxonomic data on Wikidata, where it can be used by this project, all the Wikipedias, and more. I also fail to see how the number of administrators impacts on this. Andy Mabbett (Pigsonthewing); Talk to Andy; Andy's edits 11:50, 8 February 2017 (UTC)
@Pigsonthewing: regarding the Wikidata merger — Dan Koehl wrote above the following: "I would support that all the input done here were done directly into the wikidata database ... I would therefore work more to make a fusion between WS and Wikidata." I would say this puts a question mark on WS' existence, don't you think? You also may agree with me that managers engaged 100% of their WS-time in managerial tasks are prone to escalate their "projects" and come up with unnecessary mends, like plucking-out spaces from "Category: xxx" from between ":" and "xxx". When you're continuously in search for projects to do you inevitably come up with something too grandiose or something too superfluous. Mariusm (talk) 12:43, 8 February 2017 (UTC)
No, I don't think Dan's comment "puts a question mark on WS' existence" at all; I refer you to my above explanation. If someone fixes a malformed category name, such as in your example, I applaud them. If that is all they do on Wikispecies, so what - it relieves those who do the more hard-core taxonomy edits from the burden of having to perform such far-from-unnecessary fixes. I asked you "which specific, recent, 'managerial/administrative/cleansing projects' you think are superfluous, and should not have happened, and why". Is renaming categories your only example? Andy Mabbett (Pigsonthewing); Talk to Andy; Andy's edits 13:24, 8 February 2017 (UTC)

@Mariusm: I want to repeat that 1. you have misinterpreted me in the discussion above, since I "dont puts a question mark on WS" at all. Im aprogrammer, I work with databases, and I was refering to where the records are stored, sorted, and how to update the base. I run the worlds largest elephant database, and it would take me ten times the time to update the records there, if I would use any similar method like the how the work is done here, Im trying to do the work as exact as possible, and theres no room for mispellings, and 2. what I referred to with a "fusion between WS and Wikidata" was the technical aspects, NOT THE WEBSITE, an easier interface, where you dont need to create one or more templates for each new file. But this is a matter of taste and opinion, and as long as I dont interfere with your opinions, or harass you for them, I demand the same from you. You have tried for some days now, to attack my person, and I once again, ask you kindly to focus on the subjects, discuss how and why to work on WS, and not me, my person, my opinions, or other users, whos opinions you dont like. And let users speak for their opinions themselves, dont tell others which opinion I have, please!

Please follow the Wikispecies:Policy:

  1. Avoid personal attacks: Do not make personal attacks anywhere in Wikispecies. Comment on content, not on the contributor. Personal attacks damage the community and deter users away from editing. Nobody likes to be abused. and
  2. Be civil. Being rude, insensitive or petty makes people upset and stops Wikispecies from working well. Try to discourage others from being uncivil, and be careful to avoid offending people unintentionally..

I am not working to destroy Wikispecies. Now I ask you to stop this personal cruisade you started against me some days ago during the Template discussions. OR, if you think I have broken any rules on WS, and abused my user rights or something, then report me on correct place, and let me undergo investigation, and defend myself. But trying to start rumors about this and that you accuse me for, Its useless, you and me are not enemies, I dont want to destroy Wikispecies, I am not questioning the existence of Wikispecies.

We had peace and a good working atmosphere here on WS, for a long time now, let it stay like that. I hope everyone agree with that, if Im wrong then tell me so. Dan Koehl (talk) 01:05, 9 February 2017 (UTC)

Very well. Perhaps I misinterpreted the wiki code of conduct and misunderstood the good intentions fogged out by cover words. Let's leave it at that and close this chapter and be done with it. I'll keep my conversations here to the strict minimum. No harm intended. Mariusm (talk) 05:10, 9 February 2017 (UTC)

Category:Names published in xxxx - Consensus to use it?[edit]

Resulting from of the discussions above, I see there are three positions about "Category:Names published in xxxx":

  • some regard this kind of category as unnecessary.
  • others regard it as useful and would prefer to have it for data management.
  • a third proposal was, that Wikispecies should begin using Wikidata as a tool for data input and categorization.

The third one is a more fundamental question and probably a more long-term goal, and it deserves its own extra discussion, of cause. Just to focus here on "Category:Names published in xxxx", can we achieve a consensus to use it from now on? (zoology: year of original-combination / botany: year of last accepted combination, plus year of basionym on its redirect page). --Thiotrix (talk) 10:13, 9 February 2017 (UTC)

As I understand the previous discussion, it has not been shown convincingly, that such kind of categories actually can serve some useful purpose. Of course, the year, when a name or combination was established, is an important information for all kind of priority issues, but why categories? Is this worth the effort?
Anyway, the date is a property of the name of a taxon, not of the taxon itself, considering that taxa may be re-circumscribed several times without changing name, author, and date. So, all kinds of synonyms also have their dates (and autors). If implemented, this will mean much work. --Franz Xaver (talk) 12:03, 9 February 2017 (UTC)
As I stated above, my view is that as a category this is not particularly useful, It is important information but being on the mainspace page for each taxa is enough, In terms of priority, for any of the codes priority only applies within a specific taxon and we do not list junior synonyms as mainspace pages in any case. Hence it is not going to group taxa together for this purpose. We should also recognise that issues of priority though reported by us are not for us to make nomenclatural acts upon. In saying all that if people wish to have these categories I have no objection to this, but I do not see significant value in it. This is not a reflection upon categories in general, they have many uses, some essential, but this one is a gray area for usefulness to me. Cheers Scott Thomson (Faendalimas) talk 12:16, 9 February 2017 (UTC)

Introduction to Wikidata Live on YouTube[edit]

You can just now watch Tech Talk: A Gentle Introduction to Wikidata for Absolute Beginners [including non-techies!] Dan Koehl (talk) 19:16, 9 February 2017 (UTC)

Changing photo[edit]

Yes check.svg Resolved.

New to this wiki and I've been unable to figure out how a photo can be changed. The photo in Telmatobius culeus (File:Lake Titicaca Frog 1.JPG) shows Telmatobius marmoratus. I've corrected it at commons and wikis where I could figure it out, but was left puzzled by wiki.species. I could just remove the {{image}} template, but I presume it is possible to changed it to an illustration of a real Telmatobius culeus, which is already on commons (File:Telmatobius culeus.jpg). Anybody able to help? Thanks, RN1970 (talk) 19:57, 9 February 2017 (UTC)

Done this for you. I changed the image template to {{image|Telmatobius_culeus.jpg}} to specify an image, without specifying it defaults to an image based on the information at Wikidata I believe. Have a look at the source code on the page. You can follow a page here to its page on Wikidata by following the link with the Q number in it, ie. Q1628083. @Succu: I have not fixed the image on Wikidata, will do so later when I have a moment. Cheers Scott Thomson (Faendalimas) talk 20:07, 9 February 2017 (UTC)
Thanks, appreciated. RN1970 (talk) 07:39, 10 February 2017 (UTC)
I've changed the pic at wikidata - MPF (talk) 11:00, 16 February 2017 (UTC)

Graphical ancestry tree for higher taxa[edit]

This is interesting, go to this site and put in english or scientific name in "Root Item" and click the button "build". Dan Koehl (talk) 23:36, 9 February 2017 (UTC)

Updates of Help[edit]

It seems like a long time ago on the VP that I indicated that I would have ago at the Name Section of the Help Pages. See here for the VP discussion Name Section. Well I have made a start here. I would be grateful if you have a look through my efforts and comment, suggest changes or indeed just edit as you feel free. Regards Andyboorman (talk) 11:32, 10 February 2017 (UTC)


As pointed out above, we have had a lot of policy-type discussions lately (for better or worse), so that results in: 1.) this page because big quickly and 2.) we need to archive discussions even though some of them are important--they have just gone stale. So I cleared out several conversations over the past week, even though they are some important enough topics (like the whole conversations on our categories). Also, Wikispecies:Village Pump/Archive 40 isn't an excessively long page, so please archive a few threads from here to there before you create Wikispecies:Village Pump/Archive 41. —Justin (koavf)TCM 18:51, 10 February 2017 (UTC)

I think you were a little bit fast there, one month old discussions should be available here and not archived, I think. But I dont object your move, Ill start a poll below reg the subst of PAGENAME, a discussion not really completed, which is now in the archive. Dan Koehl (talk) 11:20, 11 February 2017 (UTC)

Poll reg subst:ing BASEPAGENAME[edit]

Its not totally easy to interpret a consensus from the previous discussions, but I try to make a poll, and ask for comments from @Ruthven, MPF:@Orchi, PeterR, Pigsonthewing, RLJ, Ruthven, Thiotrix, Tommy Kronkvist: and from everybody else in the WS community. Please vote!

Not use {{BASEPAGENAME}} and subst all occurance:

  1. Dan Koehl (talk) 11:23, 11 February 2017 (UTC)
  2. RLJ (talk) 11:55, 11 February 2017 (UTC) (taxon pages only)
  3. Andyboorman (talk) 12:36, 11 February 2017 (UTC)
  4. Burmeister (talk) 13:04, 11 February 2017 (UTC) [remove/substitute from taxon pages, but maintain the use in template domain]
  5. Scott Thomson (Faendalimas) talk 13:20, 11 February 2017 (UTC)
  6. BanKris (talk) 14:48, 11 February 2017 (UTC)
  7. Samuele2002 (talk) 15:28, 11 February 2017 (UTC)
  8. AfroBrazilian (talk) 19:50, 11 February 2017 (UTC)
  9. Franz Xaver (talk) 16:59, 12 February 2017 (UTC)
  10. Orchi (talk) 18:33, 12 February 2017 (UTC)
  11. Thiotrix (talk) 10:19, 13 February 2017 (UTC) (for taxon pages, but maintain in templates)
  12. Tommy Kronkvist (talkcontribsblockall projects) (Taxon pages only.)
  13. MPF (talk) 10:47, 16 February 2017 (UTC)

Keep {{BASEPAGENAME}} and not subst all occurance:

  1. I'm not aware of any bad consequences the BASEPAGENAME may cause. On the positive side it: (1) Greatly facilitates new page creating in automating insertion of twice the species names. (2) Greatly facilitates comb. nov. in heading off the necessity for replacing species names. (3) Prevents naming errors and typing errors. Mariusm (talk) 14:25, 11 February 2017 (UTC)
  2. A big advantage of a page that uses the {{BASEPAGENAME}} convention is when changing a species to a different or new genus. I cannot see what advantage is gained by having to type in Subst: as well, and can not yet see what benefit adding this "subst:" function grants. Accassidy (talk) 14:54, 11 February 2017 (UTC)
  3. Although I'm always subst'ing BASEPAGENAME for reasons of a clear source code, I don't see the harm, if it remains. --Murma174 (talk) 15:18, 11 February 2017 (UTC)
  4. If we substitute all occurrences we will destroy some very usable templates, especially {{taxa}}, and in reference citation wiki formatting. I see no usefullness for it in taxon pages, as manual format adjustments are necessary in any generic reassignment. Neferkheperre (talk) 16:41, 11 February 2017 (UTC)
  5. I use BASEPAGENAME and nothing else PeterR (talk) 15:12, 12 February 2017 (UTC)
  6. MKOliver (talk) 16:40, 12 February 2017 (UTC) - I use subst:BASEPAGENAME (almost?) exclusively. However, I don't want to "destroy some very usable templates" (above). Looks to me like the option to continue using BASEPAGENAME is valuable.

other alternative:


  • I think it would be useful if someone could set out, succinctly and neutrally, the claimed advantages and disadvantages of using BASEPAGENAME, as expressed in the earlier discussion. Andy Mabbett (Pigsonthewing); Talk to Andy; Andy's edits 11:55, 11 February 2017 (UTC)
  • I try to do a very brief resume of my point of view: using BASEPAGENAME makes sense if we want to automatise a process, e.g. a template that always writes in a fixed position the name of the page it's put into. If we want to use it for pages that will change name over time, AND the name has complex links with other pages, e.g. Taxonavigation, it's better to subst it or not use it at all. --Ruthven (talk) 12:40, 11 February 2017 (UTC)
  • Opinion - In my view since this has been discussed several times over the last couple of years and each time it was more leaning to not use than use, its a template that should be removed as much as possible, eventually the template itself. However we should replace it first where it has been used. Scott Thomson (Faendalimas) talk 13:51, 11 February 2017 (UTC)
You can't remove the 'template', as it is a 'magic word' and thus part of wiki code. --Murma174 (talk) 15:18, 11 February 2017 (UTC)
Sorry yes you are correct, but my point was that I was under the impression consensus on this had been achieved. Cheers Scott Thomson (Faendalimas) talk 20:28, 11 February 2017 (UTC)
  • I'm not aware of any wrong the BASEPAGENAME can do. Can someone explain to me what is it that makes BASEPAGENAME so undesirable? Mariusm (talk) 14:25, 11 February 2017 (UTC)
  • I'm definitely in a neutral camp. On the one hand, the less weird wiki coding words we use, the better but on the other hand, I suppose it's possible that a page would be moved (but how often is that? And someone will probably have to manually change some data if you move a page anyway...) —Justin (koavf)TCM 18:09, 11 February 2017 (UTC)
    • Page movements are considerable enough especially in the insecta domain. Species are being shuffled among genera incessantly. Yes, some data still may need to be changed, but editing is easier and less errors occur. Mariusm (talk) 05:46, 12 February 2017 (UTC)
  • I'm against changing. Keep BASEPAGENAME. Since some newcomers we have only discussions. Lets work. PeterR (talk) 12:25, 12 February 2017 (UTC)

It seems the opinions here are pretty even, so a consensus for anything keep, or remove, will be impossible...? Also, from my personal point of view, I never intended to destroy templates, I thought we were discussing putting BASEPAGENAME on taxon articles. Question: Should we change the vote to include only taxon articles, but not templates? Could that be a way to reach a consensus, where most users will accept either decision? Dan Koehl (talk) 16:50, 12 February 2017 (UTC)

As I understand the vote, it is about BASEPAGENAME in taxon pages. Of course, in templates the magic word can be useful. --Franz Xaver (talk) 16:59, 12 February 2017 (UTC)

Now I recall previous discussion on this better. Yes it was always just mainspace taxon pages were it was determined to remove this magic word, not templates. For and against has usually been about the same, ie 2:1 supporting its discontinuation. Hence I was under the impression consensus had been achieved. Based on discussion I am not sure it is necessary to have a preference on this. Scott Thomson (Faendalimas) talk 12:52, 13 February 2017 (UTC)

Yes, I would also interpret that there is a majority for the transfer of BASEPAGENAME in taxon, to subst: while after the transfer those pages will not any longer have the BASEPAGENAME content, but the real name of the species etc.

However, is a 2:1 majority, in this case also consensus? Id like to hear what the users who wanted to keep BASEPAGENAME has to say, @Mariusm, Accassidy, Murma174, Neferkheperre, PeterR, MKOliver: , you were in 2:1 minority after the voting, would you say we have reached consensus and accept the majority wish, and do you regard this issue as properly discussed, and can we move on and make the change? Or, is there more to say, before this discussion is over? I simply would prefer to reacha point where at least most of accept this voting as consensus. If not, Im not sure how to handle the situation, and ask for advice? Dan Koehl (talk) 08:41, 16 February 2017 (UTC)

No-one convinced me yet that BASEPAGENAME is so trouble-inducing as to justify not keeping it. I would like to hear the arguments of discarding it so I can defend my vote - which I'm not being able to do in the present situation. The users who voted for keeping BASEPAGENAME are extensive-species-page-creators. This says something on the necessity of keeping it. Mariusm (talk) 13:27, 16 February 2017 (UTC)

Wikispecies:Sock puppetry[edit]

I was preparing to translate this template when I noticed that the links were [[Wikipedia:]] so I turned into [[Wikispecies:]], however, known that the sockpupper page does not exist then create it we have to decide if taking a cue from Wikipedia or that link directly and replace the link with [[w: Wikipedia:]] I think it would be better to create the page. What do you think? --Samuele2002 (talk) 11:24, 12 February 2017 (UTC)

You may have a point, if you are willing to create the page, I would say yes. Dan Koehl (talk) 15:21, 12 February 2017 (UTC)
@Samuele2002: I don't know if we need a special policy page here on sockuppetry--our perspective is the same: don't do it. You can direct users to Wikipedia but directing them to m:Sock puppetry may be wiser, since that is a multilingual site and it's more about the overall approach in Wikimedia. Unfortunately, that template needs some work. —Justin (koavf)TCM 16:30, 13 February 2017 (UTC)
Agreed, we will develop some local policy and pages on this, and have done for the checkuser pages which will lead to this. But the general policy of sockpuppetry will be no different to Wikimedia. Cheers Scott Thomson (Faendalimas) talk 16:41, 13 February 2017 (UTC)
Ok so now we link to the page on Meta and I would say that sock puppers we could turn it into a soft redirect. What do you think? --Samuele2002 (talk) 19:03, 13 February 2017 (UTC)

De-Recognition of Wikimedia Hong Kong[edit]

This is an update from the Wikimedia Affiliations Committee. Translations are available.

Recognition as a Wikimedia movement affiliate — a chapter, thematic organization, or user group — is a privilege that allows an independent group to officially use the Wikimedia trademarks to further the Wikimedia mission.

The principal Wikimedia movement affiliate in the Hong Kong region is Wikimedia Hong Kong, a Wikimedia chapter recognized in 2008. As a result of Wikimedia Hong Kong’s long-standing non-compliance with reporting requirements, the Wikimedia Foundation and the Affiliations Committee have determined that Wikimedia Hong Kong’s status as a Wikimedia chapter will not be renewed after February 1, 2017.

If you have questions about what this means for the community members in your region or language areas, we have put together a basic FAQ. We also invite you to visit the main Wikimedia movement affiliates page for more information on currently active movement affiliates and more information on the Wikimedia movement affiliates system.

Posted by MediaWiki message delivery on behalf of the Affiliations Committee, 16:25, 13 February 2017 (UTC) • Please help translate to your languageGet help


Just letting you peeps know that the last (known) of Stephen's private garden category system have been deleted.

It took more than a month but Category:Candidates for speedy deletion has been basically cleared out. Circeus (talk) 17:24, 13 February 2017 (UTC)

momentous work, grats. I can tell by the all caps you just needed to yell that out, do not blame you. Sorry for anyone within 5 blocks of your home, I am sure you yelled it out for real too. I mean it though, jokes aside, big achievment. Cheers Scott Thomson (Faendalimas) talk 17:42, 13 February 2017 (UTC)
Thank you! Although it took several weeeks, I appreciate, that you did it manually. --Murma174 (talk) 18:09, 13 February 2017 (UTC)
P.S. I first had to find out, what peeps means ;-) --Murma174 (talk) 18:11, 13 February 2017 (UTC)
Good news, and yes, was better manually this time, than a mass delete. Dan Koehl (talk) 18:35, 13 February 2017 (UTC)
There are still a few stragglers but yes, they are disappearing rapidly. —Justin (koavf)TCM 19:23, 13 February 2017 (UTC)

Tags traslate and languages[edit]

I report this request --Samuele2002 (talk) 19:08, 13 February 2017 (UTC)

Thanks very much. --Samuele2002 (talk) 19:13, 14 February 2017 (UTC)

Auto-archiving bot for talk pages[edit]

Many wikis have a bot which archives talk pages, when there is a "marker" template present on that page, to indicate that this should be done. See, for example, my en.Wikipedia talk page.

I have asked User:Whym whether their ArchiverBot could kindly do this on Wikispecies, and they have agreed, subject to the five standard conditions:

  1. local community consensus for running the bot
  2. localization of the manual (if not yet available)
  3. the name of the marker template
  4. ensuring no AbuseFilter affects the bot
  5. flagging ArchiverBot as a bot.

Please see Whym's further explanation.

We already have User:MiszaBot/config available for point 3; see the instance on my talk page on this project.

The template can be used on user talk pages, article talk pages, and project discussion pages such as this one. It will not act on any of these, if the template is not present.

Is everyone happy to proceed? Andy Mabbett (Pigsonthewing); Talk to Andy; Andy's edits 13:03, 14 February 2017 (UTC)

I am fine with a bot archiving pages, including the pump. However we do need to be careful of one thing. Particularly on this wiki we have a habit of discussing policy changes and issues on the pump. Probably because we are small and can get away with it. As those discussions pan out, even if they stop some of them should probably be moved to the Wikispecies:Local policies page this would have to be selective as not all of these discussions needs to be saved in an obvious place. Basically for the pump we will need to keep an eye on what is being discussed and move things occasionally. Cheers Scott Thomson (Faendalimas) talk 13:21, 14 February 2017 (UTC)
Good point. We don't need to move the discussion, just create a summary (which can link to the archived discussion, of course). We also have Wikispecies:Policy. Perhaps those two pages should be merged? Andy Mabbett (Pigsonthewing); Talk to Andy; Andy's edits 14:40, 14 February 2017 (UTC)
@Pigsonthewing: My understanding of the difference between the two is that Policy actually publishes a complete and pithy, finalized statement, whereas Local Policy is a discussion of issues that may need to be different here than a default "this is how it is on Wikipedia/Meta". —Justin (koavf)TCM 07:39, 15 February 2017 (UTC)
Yes the concept behind setting up the page local policy was it would be a place to discuss, vote on etc policy issues. They could then be formalised where necessary for the policy pages. The reason for this was discussions of policy matters was cluttering up the pump, alot, so I tried to separate things out a bit. While recognising we are not Wikipedia in size and do not need massive numbers of subpages to accomplish this. Cheers Scott Thomson (Faendalimas) talk 11:51, 15 February 2017 (UTC)
Ah, in that case I'd consider moving "Wikispecies:Local policy" to "Wikispecies:Village Pump (policy)" (mirroring en:Village Pump (policy)). Andy Mabbett (Pigsonthewing); Talk to Andy; Andy's edits 14:28, 15 February 2017 (UTC)

Template:ZooBankAut - proposing deletion[edit]

{{ZooBankAut}} is redundant to {{Authority control}}, which automatically fetches the ZooBank author Id from Wikidata, if present. There are 468 instances of the ZooBankAut template.

I have just copied 403 such IDs - all of those for biographies with an equivalent on Wikidata - from instances of the ZooBankAut template to Wikidata.

I propose that we:

  1. get someone with a bot to remove the template from every author biography with a Wikidata equivalent
  2. have the bot add {{Authority control}} to those articles, if not already present
  3. Create Wikidata items for ~ 63 articles on which {{ZooBankAut}} is present, where no Wikidata item already exists
  4. repeat steps 1 & 2 for the new articles
  5. check for and resolve any uses of {{ZooBankAut}} not on biography articles
  6. delete the template

Thoughts? Andy Mabbett (Pigsonthewing); Talk to Andy; Andy's edits 14:07, 14 February 2017 (UTC)

@Pigsonthewing: This seems wholly sensible and with <500 transclusions, it could really be done by hand with AWB. We could also redirect to the template to {{Authority control}}. —Justin (koavf)TCM 07:41, 15 February 2017 (UTC)
@Koavf: I have AWB, but have not yet used it. If there is consensus to undertake this task, perhaps you would assist me in doing so? Andy Mabbett (Pigsonthewing); Talk to Andy; Andy's edits 15:48, 15 February 2017 (UTC)
@Pigsonthewing: Definitely. I will keep my eyes peeled here. As far as I'm concerned, no objection in several days constitutes consensus as this is not a controversial task at all. —Justin (koavf)TCM 20:30, 15 February 2017 (UTC)

Using AWB to convert hyphens to en-dashes[edit]

Discussion moved to Project Cleanup/Using AWB to convert hyphens to en-dashes Dan Koehl (talk) 00:56, 16 February 2017 (UTC)

IRC Channel[edit]

Heya for those that use it I was thinking the channel #wikispecies should be added to the home page, same place as the twitter info. If you want I can make an instructions page for IRC that includes a hotlink to the channel. This will open the users preferred IRC application connect them and open the channel. Can also put information on registerring and cloaking their IRC names. We have an admin channel too but that is by invitation but all users can take advantage of the option of live chat in the open channel to solve issues or ask questions. I can more or less be logged in there most of the time, I have IRC on my computer and phone. Cheers Scott Thomson (Faendalimas) talk 09:10, 15 February 2017 (UTC)

Just an addit for those unfamiliar. I am going to write a page about IRC how to etc, but briefly, you can download a client if you want, most are free. Or you can also add plugins to whatever browser you use. It is also available as an app for your phone if you prefer. My user page has a hotlink to the #wikispecies channel which I will put on a how to page when I have done it. Cheers, Scott Thomson (Faendalimas) talk 15:41, 15 February 2017 (UTC)

High-order categories: planned deletions pt. 2[edit]

Last month there was a lot of talk, but fairly few arguments were put forth in favor of keeping most of the categories, so I'm gonna start applying the criteria I offered back then to the categories in question:

  1. Is the category directly relevant to the taxonomy or the nomenclature, broadly construed, of the name/taxon on that page?
    This would exclude, for example, categories based entirely on geography or ecology of the concerned taxon.
  2. Is it, from the data one can reasonably expect to find on a taxon page, straightforward to tell whether it belongs to that category?
    This would exclude category that may not necessarily fall criterion one (i.e. where symbiotic or parasitic relationships may be actually relevant to taxonomy), but are not normally recorded as nomenclatural data on Species (unlike, say, type location or locality).
  3. Is the category directly redundant to an existing page?
    This would mostly excludes categories based of taxonomic groups.

So, applying this set of criteria and unless there are strong arguments put forth by users toward keeping them, I'll begin emptying and deleting the following categories (and any subcategories thereof) starting a week from now (February 22):

I see no issues with creating list pages if requested, which I'll leave in the requesting user's userspace for them to work on however they see fit (as I told @Neferkheperre: regarding Category:Littoral Marine Species). I should mention that no matter what happens to it, Category:Littoral Marine Species would require a name change anyway to conform to basic page name principles. Circeus (talk) 20:11, 15 February 2017 (UTC)

Basically I agree with your premise, we deal with taxonomy and nomenclature. What categories we use should be relevant to that and as you say not redundant. I am only referring to categories directly related to taxa here. Anything else is somewhat unnecessary so I do not see why they should exist. However, like before, before deletion they should be checked for any valuable information. Cheers Scott Thomson (Faendalimas) talk 21:40, 15 February 2017 (UTC)
Agree, zap them all. I've already dealt with the first (it only had 2 entries) - MPF (talk) 11:48, 16 February 2017 (UTC)
Somewhat related topic - looking at Category:Invasive species, the first listed item is Achatina fulica. This page has a lengthy references list, with most of the references related to its invasive biology, not to taxonomy. Should all the non-taxonomic refs be removed? I'd say yes. - MPF (talk) 12:05, 16 February 2017 (UTC)
I'm really only interested in the categories, but when I was dealing with Stephen's New Zealand categories, I only bothered to preserve references of taxonomic interest. Circeus (talk) 13:32, 16 February 2017 (UTC)
@MPF: I think only original reference, latest taxonomic review, possibly refs for various recombinations are relevant. Beyond that get rid of them that is for the Wikipedia account if it has one. Cheers Scott Thomson (Faendalimas) talk 19:04, 16 February 2017 (UTC)
My view is a little broader, but mostly I agree that purely papers on biogeography (e.g. new regional/country records) or invasive biology (Stephen was very interested in that particular topic) are not relevant. On the other end I'll keep things like bibliographic papers that help establish publication dates or authorship when relevant (e.g. stuff from Zoological bibliography), as well as things like redescriptions/description of previously unknown forms (it's not infrequent that not all genders or castes are known for insects, or the fruit/seed of a plant unknown at the time of its naming). Those fall within my meaning of "taxonomy or nomenclature, broadly construed" Circeus (talk) 19:14, 16 February 2017 (UTC)
I think any paper which mentiones the relevant species should be included in the species' page. (A mention is nomenclature/taxonomic treatment or attributes given to the species such as distribution, material, notes, inclusion in a checklists etc.) Any general works, mentions of the familia or genus the species belongs to, etc. should be excluded. Mariusm (talk) 16:11, 17 February 2017 (UTC)

Huggle for wikispecies[edit]

I have applied at for the use of en:Wikipedia:Huggle (link to enwiki) at Wikispecies, see the application. Huggle is a diff browser intended for dealing with vandalism. Its a very good program to Patrol files, delete files (also mass delete) and contact affiliated editors at once regarding any specific file. I have no idea as to how long time this application stays in que, but i guess we should be able to use it in a couple of weeks. Dan Koehl (talk) 15:42, 16 February 2017 (UTC)

Wikispecies on Wikipedia[edit]

I have reactivated the page w:en:Wikipedia:Wikispecies on enwiki, this page was before just a redirect to the enwiki article about Wikispecies.

w:en:Wikipedia:Wikispecies informs and discuss, about how Wikispecies relates to Wikipedia. There is links to the user box for Wikispecies contributors, which they can place on their enwiki user page, to market Wikispecies. There is also a mailing list for newsletters, where interested users on enwiki can be reached with newsletters and information regarding Wikispecies. Please have a look, maybe there's something you would like to change or add. Dan Koehl (talk) 09:49, 17 February 2017 (UTC)

well if anyone on EN Wikipedia wants it the user box for Wikipedia that says you edit here is {{Template:User Wikispecies}} just for info. Cheers Scott Thomson (Faendalimas) talk 10:33, 17 February 2017 (UTC)

Automating new page creation[edit]

We can signifitely accelerate our new page creation by harvesting data from the Catalogue of Life. It currently has 1,656,180 living and 12,852 extinct species in their records. It gets its data from 156 reliable databases.

Data of unavailable WS genera can be harvested in the form of the following lines:

Gastroserica haucki Ahrens, 2000 Species accepted name
Gastroserica herzi (Heyden, 1887) Species accepted name
Gastroserica higonia (Lewis, 1895) Species accepted name

Each line can be transformed into the following page (data taken from the 1st line):

Species: ''[[Gastroserica haucki]]''

== Name ==
''Gastroserica haucki'' Ahrens, 2000

* Species accepted name.

== References ==
* {{aut|Roskov Y., Abucay L., Orrell T., Nicolson D., Bailly N., Kirk P., Bourgoin T., DeWalt R.E., Decock W., De Wever A., Nieukerken E. van, Zarucchi J., Penev L.}}, eds. 2017. Species 2000 & ITIS Catalogue of Life, 30th January 2017. Digital resource at []. Species 2000: Naturalis, Leiden, the Netherlands. ISSN 2405-8858.

@Dan Koehl: Do you think you can automate the line transformation into the resulting page? Mariusm (talk) 15:45, 18 February 2017 (UTC)

Maybe, do you have any example which I can experiment with? Dan Koehl (talk) 16:06, 18 February 2017 (UTC)
Yes the 3 lines above; I repeat them:
Gastroserica haucki Ahrens, 2000 Species accepted name
Gastroserica herzi (Heyden, 1887) Species accepted name
Gastroserica higonia (Lewis, 1895) Species accepted name
Each line has to produce a different species page in the Genus Gastroserica Mariusm (talk) 16:42, 18 February 2017 (UTC)
How much of this data is not in Wikidata? The most effective and sensible way to proceed would be to crate new pages from Wikidata (preferably by transcluding, rather than copying, data) and to add any missing data directly to Wikidata. I see, for instance, that the first example Gastroserica haucki, is at d:Q14861805. Andy Mabbett (Pigsonthewing); Talk to Andy; Andy's edits 16:58, 18 February 2017 (UTC)
eol is good, but like The Plant List and Tropicos it is not 100% reliable for plants due to a number of factors. The automatic page creation will need a thorough check with more reliable regularly updated databases and also the latest findings from phylogenetic/morphological studies. Just a thought. Andyboorman (talk) 17:08, 18 February 2017 (UTC)
@Andyboorman: This isn't eol i'm speaking of, it's the 'Catalogue of Life' and it takes its plant data from: "Mosses from MOST • Liverworts and hornworts from ELPT • Ferns and fern-allies from World Ferns UPDATED! • Cycads from The World List of Cycads • Conifers from Conifer Database • 4 flowering plant families from IOPI-GPC, 114 families from WCSP and 274 families from World Plants"
@Pigsonthewing: Wikidata does't have the data we need. It doesn't have neither the author nor the year, the validity and the references. Moreover, the 'Catalogue of Life' is updated for 2017 and is much more comprehensive. Mariusm (talk) 05:19, 19 February 2017 (UTC)
Which is why I said "add any missing data directly to Wikidata". Persisting in building two parallel databases is untenable. Andy Mabbett (Pigsonthewing); Talk to Andy; Andy's edits 10:24, 19 February 2017 (UTC)

For what it's worth, I am entirely in favor of (semi-)automated article creation from reliable databases. If nothing else, it's not a problem to auto-create a couple dozen and see how they look. But Andy's point is well-taken that data belong on Wikidata, so any bot or tool should run on both projects. —Justin (koavf)TCM 05:27, 19 February 2017 (UTC)

Again, our data is much more detailed than Wikidata and the two databases don't match in scope.
The 'Catalogue of Life' has 1,656,180 living species while we have a total of 505,000 articles including authors, repositories etc. I suspect we totally have about 300,000 living species. We can significantly and effortlessly increase our inventory and make our database more comprehensive. Mariusm (talk) 05:35, 19 February 2017 (UTC)
There was discussion about collaborating with EOL about 5 or 6 years ago (maybe even longer). But it went nowhere because Wikispecies was (and still is) much smaller project than EOL. Meanwhile, EOL has greater collaboration institutions, established a pipeline of newly published information with journals, secured funding for paid staff and more liberal use of images (they permit CC-BY-NC that Commons, and by extension Wikispecies does not allow). Our only advantage over EOL back then was the speed of adding newly described species within a day or a week after publication (which was Stephen's original goal before he went into something else) while it would take EOL or COL months and years to add or correct pages based on new information. If we want to overtake EOL or COL, we have to play catch up first. The problem back then (and still is to this date) is to figure out how to handle conflicting information when our project has already created the page while the bot is trawling the same page on EOL or COL. You need humans and especially editors specialized in that area to vet which information is more up to date. OhanaUnitedTalk page 05:50, 19 February 2017 (UTC)
I have to agree with the human factor. One of the reasons there is no genuinely accurate and up to date online database for life is the difficulty of the nomenclature. It is done for groups, eg Reptile Database etc, but groups can attract specialists for that group. For wikispecies we need to attract specialists for all groups. It is very difficult to know what are good and bad nomenclatural decisions if you are not specialised in that group and know all the relevant literature. Automation will get lots of duplication. We need people who can make these nomenclatural reasonings. One thing I ask please have any automatically generated page flagged as such so it can be easily found and a decision can be made to keep it or trash it. Cheers Scott Thomson (Faendalimas) talk 06:23, 19 February 2017 (UTC)
@Faendalimas: We could employ a Draft namespace. —Justin (koavf)TCM 06:56, 19 February 2017 (UTC)
"our data is much more detailed than Wikidata" Which data do we hold, that Wikidata cannot? "the two databases don't match in scope" This is not disputed, but it is also not a reason to maintain two sets of data separately, when one is a subset of the other. Furthermore, I'm not seeing any substantive argument for doing so. Andy Mabbett (Pigsonthewing); Talk to Andy; Andy's edits 10:24, 19 February 2017 (UTC)
@Pigsonthewing: I want to understand once and for all what you mean by two sets of data. I see the only common data between WS and WD the species name; that's all! WD maintains links to other sites while WS holds valuable information: author, date, synonymy, references, comments etc. Can you tell me exactly where's the convergence you speak about? In the species name and what else may I ask? I can Similarly say there's a convergence between EnWP and WD and that WD is a subset of EnWP... What you implicitly say is that WS has no raison d'etre. What you implicitly say is that you don't believe in WS. If you don't find a reason to maintain two sets of data separately than the logical conclusion would be to shut WS down. Mariusm (talk) 10:59, 19 February 2017 (UTC)
Ok before this explodes I will say one thing. From the point of view of a scientist and a taxonomist the data that wikidata currently holds on these taxa is neither complete enough nor can it be presented in a way that would be acceptable to taxonomy. You have the species name then you prioritize the references by most recent. Ie it seems to be good enough to say stated in some recent ref. From a taxonomic point of view, wrong, that is not good enough. Taxonomy looks at refs from first to last for priority and last to first for justification, you need both. Using my specialty since I have looked, almost every turtle uses two refs, Fritz and Havas 2007 and TTWG 2014 as the standard accepted ref for every species. Not good enough for science. It has no type data, it does not do synonymies, it is inconsistent with its parent taxa, and for the most part is being edited as a database with no understanding of what that data is. Wikidata's scope is very broad, so broad it cannot effectively deal with t yyinformation that requires knowledge of how to apply it. In my own view the only way for wikidata to handle taxonomic data effectively is for wikispecies to do all the construction of that data and wikidata to mine it, but you have to mine all of it. The only reasdon to do that is if the wikipedias were actually using this data properly. In our case we do the taxonomy, wikidata mines it, the taxoboxes on every wikipedia use wikidata to supply the data to populate those. Which they do not do because each language has different taxonomies for the same species across the 80 odd languages of wikipeadia. So shrugs it should be done better I think. But I accept it is a work in progress. Cheers Scott Thomson (Faendalimas) talk 11:26, 19 February 2017 (UTC)
Depending on what you mean by "comments", Wikidata can hold all that you list (if by "comments" you mean "prose text", then it doesn't do much of that; but then neither does Wikispecies, and I don't think that's what you're proposing to import from CoL, either). If there's anything else that Wikidata doesn't yet do, that we need for Wikispecies, we can prose a property for it there. You can find a list of Wikidata's current taxonomic properties, and examples of their sue, at d:Wikidata:WikiProject Taxonomy. Your suggestion that Wikipedia, which has large slabs of prose in 295 projects in different languages, is converging with Wikipedia in a comparable manner is palpably false. I have never aid or implied that Wikispecies "has no raison d'etre", and it is utterly false to say that I "don't believe in" Wikispecies; I ask you not to desist from attempting to put words into my mouth. Andy Mabbett (Pigsonthewing); Talk to Andy; Andy's edits 19:18, 19 February 2017 (UTC)

Perhaps I wasn't clear enough on what my proposal is all about. I don't mean to harvest automatically directly from COF. No, I mean that a WS editor will search for WS genera which aren't yes represented in WS at all. The species lines for these genera will be extracted manually from COF and only then the automation will be activated and the lines will be turned into pages. COF isn't acquiring its data haphazardly; it takes its data from databases run by specialists; for example the data on Scarabaeidae is taken from 'World Scarabaeidae Database' run by the world specialist Schoolmeesters. The COF is accurate as one can get. Certainly WS editors aren't more accurate or more specialized than COF is. Mariusm (talk) 08:21, 19 February 2017 (UTC)

See for example how COF's page for Gastroserica looks like: [1]. On the other hand please look at our Scarabaeidae and see how many genera WS has with red links! all these can be resurrected semi-automatically, accurately and with minimal effort. Of course it will be only the first stage and the base of building upon adding more information. Yet the base will at least be present! Mariusm (talk) 11:53, 19 February 2017 (UTC)
Symbol support vote.svg Support IN the way Mariusm present this, as a selected way of adding species which are yet not existing, Im for this suggestion. We can always add a special category to those pages, and go through them, checking that they are accurate. Since, like Andy mentioned, all those records should abolutely be submitted to Wikidata at once, this project should be coordinated with wikidata, and it may turn out to be a very nice example of cooperation within the both projects. Dan Koehl (talk) 11:21, 19 February 2017 (UTC)
Symbol support vote.svg Support agree also with the way Mariusm states it, but I do have a caveat on wikidata. If we are going to flag it to be checked, it should only go to wikidata after its been checked. No point deleting it on two sites. Only increases the chances of errors. Cheers Scott Thomson (Faendalimas) talk 11:38, 19 February 2017 (UTC)
Symbol support vote.svg Support I agree with utilizing COF as one source for new taxon pages. I do that with WoRMS. WoRMS is formatted such that it can be easily copied and pasted into next higher taxon page and easily reformatted and used. I looked up COF yesterday and plugged in Chthamalus, which is for me simple to evaluate. COF listed 13 species, several of which were synonyms which had been transferred to Euraphia (spelled wrong there). Chthamalus has 26 currently recognized living species. COF will be helpful, but must be taken as partial only. Neferkheperre (talk) 14:31, 19 February 2017 (UTC)
Symbol neutral vote.svg Neutral I can see the real advantages of a CSV download that can then be used, for example in Excel, by macros or similar for a blanket creation of WS formatted data. However, I looked at a couple of instances, Brassicaceae was not up to date enough, as the source they use does not make allowances for the many changes post 2010 and it gives a 404 on its link. Brassibase is better, but beware changes are afoot!. Similar for Cephalotaxus which has been reviewed in 2013, but this is not in place, as the database they use either may not recognise the changes or has not implemented them. Finally and importantly for me, I prefer to use the full scientific name, such as Saxegothaea Lindl., J. Hort. Soc. London 6: 258 (1851), nom. cons., rather than just name, author and date. Andyboorman (talk) 16:53, 19 February 2017 (UTC)