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Forums > Senate Hall > SH:Status article nominations
  • I'm not really sure where to put this, but I think it's time that we as a community do something to address the fact that something needs to be done about the state of the status article nominations. Looking at the featured article nominations today I realised that no nominations have been successful at all so far this year and the Featured article history hasn't even been changed from 2016 yet, despite at least one failed nomination. Only a single review has been made by a member of the Inquisitorius this year, and a fair few from previous years sit unresponded to. Overall the entire system has ground to a complete halt, despite the fact new nominations are regularly added. The situation for GAs and CAs is the nearly the same, although not quite as dire, where the four nomination limit means many users can't even add new nominations as their old ones sit idle.
I honestly have no intention of criticising anyone here, I fully understand that life gets in the way of Wookieepedia all the time, and motivation might be low especially after the legends/canon switch over. That being said, we clearly need to make a change of some kind as the current system we've been using is simply no longer working. We need a fairly large wave of promotions for users into the different review boards so that each has at the very least three users regularly active in reviews, since this is the number of votes needed for an article to pass. Otherwise we need to change the system itself so that it can start to move again, perhaps requiring less votes or something similar.
I would begin nominating people myself, but felt it would be worth having a discussion first about what needs doing, especially since my own activity can be a little sporadic and so there are probably others with a better idea who the best nominees would be. Again I want to stress this isn't an attack on anyone and I hope we can all work out a solution together. Ayrehead02 (talk) 15:05, April 24, 2017 (UTC)
  • Activity has definitely grinded to a halt, and I'm sure everyone has good reason for being less active. Perhaps it's time for a community-wide vote consolidating the three review panels into one large panel with authority over all three nomination processes, thus giving the few active members the ability to use their more powerful votes on FAs, GAs, and CAs. It might also be time for these panels to get together and elect a few new members who are frequently active nominators and reviewers to beef up the ranks a little. If that can't happen, perhaps a community-wide vote can take place. Either way, the state of status article nominations is a little depressing, and we as a community need to step up and fill the void of those who are no longer able to carry the weight of writing and reviewing. MasterFredCommerce Guild(Whatever) 01:49, April 25, 2017 (UTC)
    • Something needs to change. Many of my nominations have been idling for months on end, and its getting rather annoying, especially when they only need one or two more votes to pass. - Imperial Information Office AV-6R7Crew Pit 01:54, April 25, 2017 (UTC)
      • I was just noticing that. You having several articles that are just waiting on objections to be struck that you've appeared to address. Others are just waiting on one more AC vote. MasterFredCommerce Guild(Whatever) 02:08, April 25, 2017 (UTC)
  • Being new to status article nominations myself (though a long time minor editor for many years), I'm not sure if I have any advice to offer at the moment, but I just wanted to let you know that I'm really grateful that you brought this up Ayrehead because I have noticed it too, and it has become worrisome. Overall, wiki activity across many wikis have been dying out I think; perhaps it's just a trend?—but a sad one, indeed. I'm a major editor at the Assassin's Creed wiki, and we literally have no regular administrators anymore, though they do check back in once in a while; I was surprised to find that the manpower of Wookieepedia, the premier or flagship wiki (at least in my mind), has similarly seen its manpower so diminished. If I have time, I'll try to help out more, especially with these article nominations, though obviously in some articles, my own votes isn't what is needed. Sol PacificusFirestorm 02:20, April 25, 2017 (UTC)
    • Personally, I think Wikia has cultivated a reader-focused layout and culture for its wikis, and that has hurt. The company runs on ad revenue, so they basically only care about getting as many people to look at pages as possible. There is no economic incentive to get people to write and edit. Everything is always about the readers. They've almost completely destroyed any sort of autonomy wikis used to have. Everything has to look the same for everyone. Every wiki has to be connected to all the others. The community is no longer specific to a wiki, it has to be shared through all wikis. Wikia has basically turned into social media, and it's hurting the wikis. We need writers and editors, or soon enough there won't be any new content for readers to see. That might not seem like a big deal since Wookieepedia already has more content than anyone could possibly read, but once the site becomes out of date as new information is no longer being added following new releases, readers will quit visiting the site. MasterFredCommerce Guild(Whatever) 02:26, April 25, 2017 (UTC)
      • Then I would suggest spreading the word that wookieepedia is running out of editors and needs new people. Jim The Lamproid (talk) 09:27, June 4, 2017 (UTC)
      • Combining the reviewing panels into one expansive group doesn't sound like a terrible answer. It's just that those who are experienced with CAnoms should be certified to tackle FAnoms too, and make sure everything that passes is to standard. --Clonehunter(Report your W.M.D.) 03:14, April 25, 2017 (UTC)
        • Combining reviewing panels is a solution, although it may be better to eliminate them entirely, at least in terms of requiring a certain number of Inq or AC votes to pass. It seems we have some people around willing and able to review, but they're not with the Inq—however, there needs to be some assurance of quality. I know it reflects poorly on us as members of these reviewing panels that we have been so inactive, but I know almost all of us don't really have time. For instance, I have time to be around on the wiki and do stuff, but reviewing is its own intensive and time-consuming process that I just don't have the energy to participate in. The best way forward may be to strike a balance where nominations no longer need Inq/AC/EC votes to pass, but those panels still exist and do what they do now in terms of reviewing articles that have already achieved status. Thoughts? IFYLOFD (Talk) 03:28, April 25, 2017 (UTC)
          • If we can get the review panels to select a few new members who are active on the nomination pages to be added to their ranks, I think we could safely eliminate the need for the required member votes. There are a good 3-4 writers on each nomination page that seem to have the hang things and could therefore help watch over new nominations and maintain the quality of the old articles. I think we have some good writers out there who want to participate, but for them to be added to the ranks requires a vote, and very few members are around to have such meetings. MasterFredCommerce Guild(Whatever) 03:34, April 25, 2017 (UTC)
            • Yeah, and as you said, that creates another problem—not only would we need to get enough people around to bring new people in, but people will have to agree, which has been a major hindrance to bringing in new people in the past. Besides, 3-4 writers isn't really enough, because you're then asking those few people to basically go through every single nom on the page, which is likely going to lead to them getting burned out and this cycle restarting again. IFYLOFD (Talk) 03:40, April 25, 2017 (UTC)
              • Perhaps, if we had another Mofference, we could do some quick voting there and just require a majority support to approve people. And 3-4 would only be a start. Consolidate the panels, remove inactive users, select a few new ones as a community, and then those few can be in charge of expanding their ranks along with the remaining members who weren't removed for inactivity. MasterFredCommerce Guild(Whatever) 04:08, April 25, 2017 (UTC)
                • A positive aspect of the review panels is that they're filled with great editors who offer some awesome advice, but they are often saddled with administrative duties or RL stuff. As of now, they seem to serve more as a hindrance than a help when it comes to actually passing articles. Perhaps each nomination need only one "stamp of approval" from the corresponding review panel once the prerequisite number of vote is reached. This way, we can continue to ensure quality while speeding up the system. - Imperial Information Office AV-6R7Crew Pit 04:14, April 25, 2017 (UTC)
                  • That might also be a nice middle ground. You're still relying on something from the review panels, but it's much less intensive. That could be something to look into the logistics of. IFYLOFD (Talk) 04:16, April 25, 2017 (UTC)
                    • Yeah, complete deregulation really can't be trusted to ensure status quality, but we just can't continue on this way any more. - Imperial Information Office AV-6R7Crew Pit 04:27, April 25, 2017 (UTC)
                      • I like the idea of requiring just one vote from a ranking user to pass an article. We'll have to make sure that the people we give this power to understand the level of quality that should be present, but other than that, this could really help us speed up the process. MasterFredCommerce Guild(Whatever) 04:34, April 25, 2017 (UTC)
                        • Wow this really blew up overnight, I'm glad to see others feels strongly about it. Merging the boards, only requiring one board vote and adding new members certainly seems like it could be enough to get things going again. I assume we'd still need 3-4 normal user votes as well? That seems like a system that would work. Hopefully if things become more active again then we could maybe one day split the boards back out or adapt in other ways, but at current activity rates this seems best for everyone. Ayrehead02 (talk) 07:08, April 25, 2017 (UTC)
  • The decline of our FAs and FANs are particularly disappointing, as that used to be one of the more exciting and engaging aspects of Wookieepedia (both for editors and readers). While I agree there's a need for restructuring our review boards, I also want to suggest that there is a value in "starting fresh". I would suggest that, at least until we have a reliable base of reviewers, we put a cap on the number of articles that can be nominated at any one time for a status. I would honestly suggest that only 5 be allowed on the nomination page at any one time, with each article being given a pass/fail deadline of two months from the point of nomination. If an article does not reach the required vote threshold within two months, it is removed and can either be reworked or added back to a queue of articles waiting to be put on the nomination page. I also think this should be done retroactively—meaning any nomination currently on the page after Alderaan Enclave will be removed and put into a queue. Newly completed articles will be added to that cue instead of the nomination page itself. By limiting the number of available noms and putting a time limit on their nominations, we give reviewers a window to voice their opinions and enforce quick responses from nominators. If, for whatever reason, a nomination stagnates, we no longer need to wait for Inq removal or allow the nom to sit on the page for four years. Trayus(Academy) 15:34, April 25, 2017 (UTC)
    • Understandably, this might not be particularly appealing to anyone with a nomination from Voorpee on down, but if you've waited this long I can't imagine an extra two months before renomination being particularly straining. We just desperately need to get this system moving without sacrificing quality. It might seem like a radical approach, but it will clean up the page, move noms quickly, and give us a queue of 36 high-quality articles to approach 5-at-a-time. And honestly, there's no reason an article should be nominated for over half a year, let alone multiple years. It shows that—despite its quality—it simply isn't getting the attention it needs to be approved. That, to me, should be a failed nomination. Trayus(Academy) 15:42, April 25, 2017 (UTC)
      • Perhaps I'm biased since I have four nominations that would be affected by this, but this system seems to be aimed at forcing nominators to respond quickly, despite the fact that the issue currently is having the board reviewers actually leave objections in the first place. It would almost certainly lead to articles simply cycling through the system over and over again—queuing for possibly months to get onto the active list only for them to not get enough reviews in the two month period meaning that their nominator adds them to the back of the queue again. This wouldn't necessarily be because they were low quality, but because no one fancied reviewing them which might be due to a myriad of reasons like people avoiding spoilers, a lack of interest in legends or canon, or more awkward article formats that people aren't use to like real world people or books. When they come back up, reviewers that had previously supported them might be gone and so they are reset to potentially zero supporting votes and have to hope that there's enough interest again within the new time limit. It also makes it practically impossible for longer articles like Revan or the Hero of Tython to ever reach status based purely on the amount of time it takes to review them. Perhaps if the merging of the review boards and the new members on them isn't enough to get things moving again then we could come back to considering something like this, but for now I think increasing reviews from review board members should be the priority, and I don't see how this really aides that. Ayrehead02 (talk) 16:42, April 25, 2017 (UTC)
        • To be honest, even an article like Revan or the KotOR comics shouldn't take two months to review; let's give ourselves more credit than that. These aren't novels, after all. If it's taking longer, the reviewer clearly doesn't have interest in the article. Nominations that fail to attract reviewers should be considered failed until such a point that they are reviewed. That's not a stain on the article itself—it can still be of great quality even if it's missing the star/nomination tag at the top. Additionally, capping the time that an article has to be reviewed and the number of articles that are nominated at any one time will make it easier for reviewers to even begin to approach the nominations page. Trayus(Academy) 17:27, April 25, 2017 (UTC)
        • Also, an article cycling through the system again and again means that someone is continually giving it attention, even if it's just the nominator. As it stands now, those that would be cycling through are just sitting there, as they have been for four years. Trayus(Academy) 17:29, April 25, 2017 (UTC)
          • Upon further contemplation, I've come to the conclusion that consolidating the panels is not a good solution. Just because somebody can review a CAN well does not mean they can review an FAN well. Also, only requiring one panel vote to pass a nomination would be undoubtedly detrimental to the quality of the articles, and I'd rather see the number of status articles decline than the quality. I fear that a temporary relaxation on the standards will soon become permanent, so I'd prefer not to even start down that path. I'm not sure what my solution would be to this problem, but for now I'll refrain from commenting and let the discussion continue without me until I have ideas to present. MasterFredCommerce Guild(Whatever) 17:50, April 25, 2017 (UTC)
            • I don't know why we should give ourselves more credit than that, the current state of the FAN page suggests that even a 1001 word article takes years for us to review so I don't know that we should build a system assuming reviews will be done rapidly until we've seen proof that they will be. I also feel that failing a nomination due to lack of interest from reviewers takes nominating down a weird subjective path of trying to please the favourites of the current review board. Instead to be honest I feel accepting membership of a review board should mean you're willing to review any article nominated, not pick and choose since this could lead to entire niches of article not ending up getting to status if not enough of the current review board care about reviewing them. As to MasterFred's point I agree that those measures could lead to a decrease in quality, and I'm happy to support initially just adding new members to the existing review boards and seeing if that is enough. That being said it will need to be a fairly significant influx of new people compare to the past, since each board should have at the very least three members who are highly active and preferentially more as that would mean that all three active members would have to review every article. Ayrehead02 (talk) 21:23, April 25, 2017 (UTC)
          • I agree with Ayrehead on this one. With the way articles sit stagnant on the FAN page without being reviewed, it's the Inquisitorius that needs a radical change, not the nomination limit. Cornelius Evazan is quite short and has only been looked at by one Inquisitor in the nearly two years it's been on the FAnom page. I dunno if any credit can be given when that's the rule rather than the exception --- an article like that certainly shouldn't take two years to be reviewed, but the reality is that it does. The problem is a lack of Inquisitor activity, which has been steadily declining since the glory days of 2010. Back in 2013, during my last few months as an INQ, I kept an Excel file of how many FAnom INQs were reviewing per month. We had thirteen Inquisitors at that time, and eight of them were reviewing two or fewer per month. It seems to have gotten much worse since then.

            I can't see Trayus's proposed solution as motivating the Inquisitorius to suddenly pick up their game. Furthermore, the FAnom queue would still be gigantic, but most of the noms would simply be invisible. They'd be fully-written, ready for review, but unable to be reviewed or given feedback on. Whatever the solution is, it needs to see a more involved Inquisitorius, whether that means promoting more people to it, changing the membership process to a democratic one, merging all the review boards into one, or what have you. I like that Trayus is thinking radically, since a radical change is definitely needed, but I don't think he's going in the right direction. Menkooro (talk) 02:13, April 26, 2017 (UTC)
            • I of course agree that we need to drastically alter the Inquisitorius and other review boards, but that's a half measure that won't address the full problem. The creation of the Inq wasn't the reason nominations ground to a halt. It's because there's no conceivable time at which a review is "due," so to speak. While five articles and two month limits are simple suggestions, I genuinely believe that any worthwhile solution needs to include some sort of limit on nomination times, otherwise we'll end up in this situation again with nothing to show for it but a different looking Inq. I know that for folks with nominations currently waiting on the page, it can be hard to see their temporary removal as a positive, but if we can craft an functional Inq and a workable time limit on nominations, your articles will progress much more quickly than they currently are. And to Menk's point about having "fully-written, ready for review" articles waiting—that's a good thing. We want as many well-written articles as possible on Wookieepedia. It's okay that they might have to wait their turn to get their star. The nomination number limit is something that can be negotiated and may end up being a temporary measure until things are rolling again, but I firmly believe that if we don't start instituting some sort of time limit on nominations, we won't be seeing the progress we're looking for in the long-term. Trayus(Academy) 16:24, April 26, 2017 (UTC)
  • Sol Pacificus and MasterFred, you're not imagining the decline in wiki participation in general: even Wikipedia's editorship has declined. While this article on Wikipedia's woes is three and a half years old, most of the reasons it cites are germane to Wookieepedia as well, though it overlooks other probable reasons, such as the novelty wearing off.
Wookieepedia used to have a very nice tool that showed the level of activity over time, but Special:WikiStats now redirects elsewhere. Is there any way to get the original page back? Asithol (talk) 22:00, April 27, 2017 (UTC)
  • I wholeheartedly agree that we do need to do something. I know that over the years, many of us "older" editors have, for many various reasons, drifted away. Speaking for myself, I know that due to work and personal matters, I simply don't have the time I once did. Perhaps one option would be to invite several of the newer users and reviewers who would be interested in the review panels to the IRC channel, where it could be further discussed with them and the other members of the review panels. If it were agreeable with both members of the review panels and those interested users, this could be used as a stepping stone towards nomination. Supreme Emperor (talk) 02:54, May 3, 2017 (UTC)

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