User talk:John Stephenson/Archive 7

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John, I finally got around to accepting the MC and EC nominations and writing a short statement (one day shy of the deadline). Thank you for trying to move the process forward, and for nominating people, including me.Pat Palmer 01:51, 27 July 2013 (UTC)

Sorry I didn't respond to your notice about my getting nominated to the EC. It went to my spam folder. I really wanted to run! (Chunbum Park 19:53, 8 August 2013 (UTC))
Never mind, next time. :) Actually, that seems to be a real problem with anything CZ-related: every single ballot paper sent in went straight into the email account's spam folder until I set up an explicit filter for them. John Stephenson 19:57, 8 August 2013 (UTC)
John, what is an explicit filter, and how did you set it up? For my continuing education. Are you saying that messages sent via 'E-Mail this user' goes to users' spam? Anthony.Sebastian 20:16, 31 August 2013 (UTC)
I don't know if all e-mails sent via 'E-mail this user' always go into Gmail's spam folder. But certainly, this happened during the election. I went into the Gmail account and there's a link in the settings to 'Filters', which gives you an option to never send e-mail to the spam folder when it satisfies the conditions you've specified. This prevented ballots being labelled spam.
Actually, there may be a more general problem with CZ-related e-mail going to spam folders. I've had three cases recently of account applicants reporting that the e-mail in which they are invited to confirm their address when requesting a CZ account either didn't arrive at all (one case) or ended up in their spam folders (two cases). (I confirmed them manually.) I don't believe there is anything much we can do about this, as it's to do with how their ISPs' servers handle mail. John Stephenson 20:23, 31 August 2013 (UTC)
Can we tell them on the Request Account page to add us to their safe senders list, tell them how for several email clients? Anthony.Sebastian 22:05, 31 August 2013 (UTC)
Yes, that could be worked in there. A briefer be-sure-to-check-your-spam-folder message would also work. John Stephenson 13:03, 1 September 2013 (UTC)


Thank you for sorting out Charles Taylor. I had made a real mess of him. --Martin Wyatt 20:30, 11 August 2013 (UTC)

Strange email notifications

John, I'm getting email notifications about actions on CZ that occurred months, or years, ago. These notices are obviously related to what's happening now. Seems weird for CZ to tell me now that something was moved on 9 December 2012. Any idea why it's behaving this way? Russell D. Jones 20:08, 16 September 2013 (UTC)

Not sure at this stage. Can you forward me a couple of examples of those e-mails, including the full headers? Thanks. John Stephenson 21:02, 16 September 2013 (UTC)

History Page Header

John, at the top of the "history page" for approved articles is the header "Please note: This page only shows the name(s) of the Constable(s) who carried out the mechanics of the Approval process. To see the names of the contributors who actually wrote this article, see the History page for the Draft article." As part of this project to move mainspace approved articles to the "Citable Version" subpage, should not also that header be moved to the "Citable Version" History Page? Further, the header be removed from the mainspace page, no? It's obviously false if not misleading. The mainspace history page now does not "only show the name(s) of the Constable(s) who carried out the mechanics of the approval process" but does show the history of the draft text. Russell D. Jones 15:52, 20 September 2013 (UTC)

Thanks for reminding me. I find that the red banner only appears when I'm logged-out, which is why it hasn't been addressed thus far. Will look into it. John Stephenson 15:59, 20 September 2013 (UTC)
I get it whether or not I'm logged in. Jones 16:19, 20 September 2013 (UTC)
Weird. I can't get the banner to appear in the history lists of /Citable Version subpages, so I've deleted it for now. However, I can still see it when logged-out! I keep seeing different things depending on login status, e.g. in this new category I see 69 pages listed when I'm logged-out but 135 when I'm logged in. John Stephenson 16:35, 20 September 2013 (UTC)
Update: I've added a note the header that appears at the top of every /Citable Version subpage, directing the reader to the main article's history list, since I can't get the actual history banner to work on subpages. John Stephenson 16:51, 20 September 2013 (UTC)
Here's a clue: don't use the pinkwich skin. I don't--I see it. Jones 16:53, 20 September 2013 (UTC)


John, could you take a look at Talk:CIO and the history, and the former draft-page history. I'm having a hard time believing that CIO did not have any talk discussion. There isn't even a notification from the approvals manager that the draft had been approved! Jones 15:25, 24 September 2013 (UTC)

Fixed. I was moving pages in accordance with the Citable Version policy and something went wrong (server issue?) that I didn't notice at the time, such that two moves took place, leading to a circular redirect, instead of one. Also, you'll notice all the information in the header of the Talk page has disappeared. That is a consequence of abolishing /Draft subpages, because lots of templates refer to them. Trying to fix it... John Stephenson 16:49, 24 September 2013 (UTC)

citable version

Hi John, that's a great addition to the subpages format. I'm glad you managed to navigate the mess of code to implement it. Hope it was not too confusing. Chris Day 02:31, 4 October 2013 (UTC)

C++ code bits

John, I just saw your request on my talk page (from a month ago, to my embarrassment) to look at the pages containing C++ code. I will try to get to this soon. Sorry to be so slow (I've been sick for a couple weeks but better now).Pat Palmer 04:41, 3 November 2013 (UTC)

Howard's page

I object to your recent edit. I do not think deleting material from someone else's user page is ever acceptable except in cases of obvious vandalism touting, copyright violations, extreme obscenity or blatant illegality.

Adding a note that this is an obsolete page since Howard has left the project would be fine; you might even add a link to a page about the reasons. So would emailing Howard to get permission for changes, or trying to get settings adjusted so he could edit his own user and talk pages despite the ban. Sandy Harris 15:02, 9 November 2013 (UTC)

The content of the user page was out-of-date. Given that Howard was a prolific contributor, it is likely that readers and contributors will go to his page where, if the deletion had not been made, they could be led to believe that he is still an active contributor and an Editor in several workgroups. If Howard wants us to modify the page, he is more than welcome to e-mail us. As it stands, there are no rules about what to do with the user pages of an ex-member; all we can say is that, according to the Charter, user page material is released under the site-wide licence (you could bring this issue to the Council). As for settings: firstly, it is not technically possible at the present time to allow that, as far as I know. (Perhaps you would like to investigate this.) Secondly, allowing banned users to edit their old user pages would cause obvious problems. John Stephenson 16:39, 9 November 2013 (UTC)
However, on reflection, I think you're right that a note at the top would help - I'll do that now, and thanks. John Stephenson 16:57, 9 November 2013 (UTC)

Wanted Pages Engine

John, Thanks for the wanted articles distillation. But I started checking the wanted pages list and found something surprising when I started running down the links: every link was linked to a real, not a wanted, page. And since most of the links were to disambiguation pages (some links were from already disambiguated article titles), I'm wondering if one of the templates is generating non-visible links. Because certainly on many of the pages I checked, there were no red-links to a so-called "wanted page". So if one of the templates is doing this, then it would easy to re-code it to stop that behavior then the Special:WantedPages engine would be more helpful.

Related to this: the Special:WantedPages engine exists because a list (such as CZ:Wanted articles is difficult to maintain. Better to automate the process--but this has already been done. Russell D. Jones 22:20, 10 November 2013 (UTC)

I've looked into this and found that, as is the case elsewhere, the templates are fiendishly complex. Those red (disambiguation) links seem to be generated by the 'R' or 'Rpl' templates but I haven't found a way to switch that off without ruining anything else. In any case, the 'Wanted Pages' list will include any red link generated by any templates at all, on multiple pages, so for instance the automatically-generated links to 'Bibliography', 'External Links' etc. will be listed for thousands of articles. John Stephenson 11:03, 11 November 2013 (UTC)
Right, I've waded through the subpages code before, not "easy to re-code". and the rpl is complicated too. Somebody here, at one time, really liked templates.... Russell D. Jones 21:30, 11 November 2013 (UTC)
Found it: the list is populated by the parser language in the rpl template. There are calls to "{{#ifexist: { { {1|} } } (disambiguation)" which will cause, if false, rpl to determine which definition text to show; but since the call was made to a non-existent page, mediawiki assumes it must be a needed page and adds to the list -- even though there is no visible link on the page. Russell D. Jones 21:48, 11 November 2013 (UTC)
OK, so that has to be unpicked. You could try messing with the template on if the pages aren't locked for you. John Stephenson 21:52, 11 November 2013 (UTC)

Collapsed sidebar

John, can you direct me to someone who might be able to help me with the question in the forum about Collapsible sidebar? An example of how I am using them is here. The idea is that they are supposed to be collapsed. The code I use in my wiki does not even offer a "hide" button here, so I am using the format from Wikipedia here. Thanks! Thomas Butler 19:02, 18 January 2014 (UTC)

Not sure who can help. I think this ability may be facilitated by a MediaWiki extension, in which case it would have to be installed by someone with access to the servers.

Wikipedia India Education Program

Thanks. Will modify the caption text, and provide a source. Claus Bruentrup 12:35, 20 October 2014 (UTC)

BRAVO. That was a very wise move, and I firmly believe it should be carved in stone as CZ:policy so as to distinguish CZ from the other ones. Claus Bruentrup 14:43, 23 October 2014 (UTC)

About article Ganges

Dear John

I am approaching you for guidance. The present article on the Ganges river is an ancient version from Wikipedia which has various clones and artefact versions scattered across the Internet. As a result Google search down ranks all such non-Wikipedia forks as massive copyright violations / duplicate content, and they simply don't show up in search.

In the meantime, I've been developing a framework for a 'written from scratch' article on Ganga which is the modern name for the main river. It will be expanded suitably to out-pace the Wikipedia entry which leads in Google search rankings. I've regularly used a suite of tools to remove any duplicate text for Ganga.

Unfortunately, the Ganges article is standing in the way of Ganga ranking well and new visitors reaching this site to read it.

I'd like your guidance / permission for allowing me to manually merge Ganges into Ganga while preserving much of it and addressing the needs of the international / non-Asian readers comprehensively so there is minimum confusion or controversy over the various historical names and river naming conventions, while attracting more readers.

You can gauge the problem by following these links Copyscape Ganga Copyscape Ganges.

Regards Pradyumna Singh 16:17, 19 November 2014 (UTC)

Self Promotion

Thanks for the link to CZ:Policy_on_Self-Promotion. I have reviewed it carefully. I must regretfully ask for Medha Patkar, Aam Aadmi Party and "File:Aam-aadmi-party-logo.jpg" which are exclusively my uploads to be deleted expeditiously under this Citizendium policy, although I am not a member or closely connected to this political party, and I don't believe my edits to these articles are in any way promotional or biased or incorrect. For when I encounter any other files in future, could you direct me to the deletion request templates. Thanks Pradyumna Singh (talk) 14:08, 2 January 2015 (UTC)

History of Agriculture

The talk page of the History of Agriculture, which you adjusted following the approval of the article itself, has somehow become a redirect. I have put something on the page to which there is redirection, as I can't edit the redirection, but it needs to be rectified. --Martin Wyatt (talk) 20:49, 17 February 2015 (UTC)

Thanks for putting that right. But now that the Talk page is restored, I find I had already made much the same comment. --Martin Wyatt (talk) 22:28, 18 February 2015 (UTC)