< Scratch Wiki talk:Community Portal

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Unfinished discussions

Open the Wiki to other Scratchers

I kinda feel that we should open ourselves up to people without accounts. I mean there is obviously going to be vandalism, but if you take wikipedia for example. I'd say about 40% of edits are from users without accounts and most are constructive edits. I also think that opening up this wiki to non-registered users would also bring an increase in the amount of users that register. Also, when we allow guests to edit, it greatly broadens the scope of who sees what on the wiki. A guest might notice a minor grammatical error or a page that no one noticed that should be deleted. The idea of a wiki is for ANY scratcher to be able to edit.If you don't want to open it up to anybody, you could at least make it so that a Scratcher logs into the wiki with their Scratch Account.
Dazman (talk | contribs) 21:37, 8 April 2011 (UTC)

i fully support this idea. also, if things don't go well, we can just lock it again.
Veggieman001 (talk | contribs) 23:09, 8 April 2011 (UTC)
I'd like it too, but the answer has always been no >:(
Chrischb (talk | contribs) 23:15, 8 April 2011 (UTC)
i'd like to hear a reasonable counter from one or more of the bureaucrats to why this couldn't be done if they are so against it.
Veggieman001 (talk | contribs) 00:16, 9 April 2011 (UTC)
I think that the main problem is that only bureaucrats can ban people. If we opened the wiki to guests and allowed sysops to rollback and make bans, I don't see why we wouldn't be able to allow guests. My main reason for wanting guests is because the number of editors will increase. More editors (despite some being vandals) will still mean that the wiki is improving. I can't simply deny that vandalism would be a problem, but if we institute this correctly, we would hopefully be gaining more useful editors than vandals. With enough moderation of activity, vandalism should not be a problem. We can even have Wiki Police.
EDIT: If we were to open it up to all Scratchers, we should have an official list of Rules
Dazman (talk | contribs) 02:47, 9 April 2011 (UTC)
The bureaucrats vetoed that too because they fear that if they gave admins ban powers there would be more accounts for people to try getting into. Kinda annoying because none of them seem to come on daily - it doesn't feel so secure, eh?
Chrischb (talk | contribs) 05:24, 9 April 2011 (UTC)
The fact that we don't post doesn't mean we don't check the wiki? ;-) On average, how long does it take for someone to get their wiki account approved?
Andresmh (talk | contribs) 06:03, 9 April 2011 (UTC)
Chrischb (talk | contribs) 06:11, 9 April 2011 (UTC)
What mistake? And can't a sysop also approve accounts? Wow this is like a sub-discussion...lol
Dazman (talk | contribs) 06:22, 9 April 2011 (UTC)
The reason I asked about the delay for account approval is because I want to understand what we might be missing by not letting anyone with a Scratch account to edit the wiki. I am still not convinced it is a problem. I'd be convinced if I had some evidence such as the number of people who seemed valuable contributors to the wiki not wanting to contribute because of the delay in account approval. I definitely do not see the value of opening to wiki so that even people without Scratch accounts can edit it.
Andresmh (talk | contribs) 06:30, 9 April 2011 (UTC)
I see your point about letting users that don't use Scratch edit it, but why couldn't we log into the wiki with the same Username and Password that we use on [scratch.mit.edu]. I think it would be great if those accounts were connected. We would have to transfer my data though because my name on scratch is dazman not Dazman...
Dazman (talk | contribs) 06:45, 9 April 2011 (UTC)
Just use a secure account password. If I ever got sysop, I would make my password significantly longer. I doubt that their is a hoard of hackers trying to destroy this wiki. However, I think your right about it not feeling secure. Lucario hasn't mentioned anything in over a week I think. A vandal could come on and blank hundreds of pages, but we wouldn't be able to ban them until a bureaucrat came on which could take days or even weeks. Suggestion: Ability for a sysop to make a temporary ban. I wonder if that is possible.
Dazman (talk | contribs) 05:46, 9 April 2011 (UTC)

If there's people out there who have qualities which we want in this wiki, then they should be able to portray that when they apply for an account. Also, I have often had to deal with a new user, who is inexperienced, and doesn't really know what they're doing. Often they'll make lots of edits and create pages which don't follow the basic format of this wiki. Many times I've had to clean up all their edit, then politely tell them what they did wrong. After that, they either leave because they're bored, or start to get it right. Anyway, the point is, even for one inexperienced user, this can take a fairly long time. So if we open the wiki to anyone, who can all make edits, it will be hard to deal with. On Wikipedia there are around 150,000 active editors, and about 2000 administrators (I've rounded both to nearest 1000 to make it easier). This is a ratio of one admin for every 75 active users. At the moment we have 4 active admins and 19 active users, so that's around a 1:5 ratio. But supposing we opened the wiki to anyone. Lots of people would suddenly begin to start making edits (I estimate at least 1000 if we announced it publicly on the front page), which would suddenly make at least a 1:250 ratio, which would be problematic.
WeirdF (talk | contribs) 07:15, 9 April 2011 (UTC)

You always express things so well ^^
Jonathanpb (talk | contribs) 08:30, 9 April 2011 (UTC)

actually, to respond to one of dazman's things, users on mediawiki cannot have lowercase titles. it is impossible in the software, i believe.
Veggieman001 (talk | contribs) 14:44, 9 April 2011 (UTC)

Oh cool. And WeirdF, that just means we need more admins ;)
Dazman (talk | contribs) 18:06, 9 April 2011 (UTC)
If we could ban, it would be easier.
@WeirdF: It is on the front page. Wiki link on the Front Page.PNG
Scimonster (talk | contribs) 18:25, 9 April 2011 (UTC)
I know it's on the front page. I meant if it was advertised that anybody could edit.
WeirdF (talk | contribs) 18:49, 9 April 2011 (UTC)

also, if we open it up, we should advertise the policies like the one about no pages about projects/users a lot more. because even many new editors don't see them.
Veggieman001 (talk | contribs) 18:55, 9 April 2011 (UTC)

For sure.
Scimonster (talk | contribs) 19:02, 9 April 2011 (UTC)

>gasp!< OldWheezerGeezer's actually posting something! Yes, hello everyone. If I could just offer my two cents here, I think it is sort of a good idea, although I do kind of like feeling like I'm part of a smaller, more exclusive branch of the community :) lol. Anyway, if anyone and everyone could make edits (though of course they would have to have an account...what if they had to have Scratcher status? Or at the very least, shouldn't the moderators be able to edit the wiki?), then we would have to have someone on almost all the time to make the sure the edits weren't vandalism, and I know that I'm not really very active anymore, and that the other editors all probably have like school and homework or jobs to do during the day, so that doesn't give them a lot of time to go through possibly hundreds of edits a day. Another thing: Wikipedia is open and free because it is a massive data center, for literally information on everything in the world, and a group of people can't possibly know everything. While with the Scratch Wiki, it's just information on the very small Scratch Community, and therefore 20-30 people can probably do a good job of docmenting everything there is that needs to be documented. So I suppose you could argue it any way. That's all for now folks. See ya :)
OldWheezerGeezer (talk | contribs) 01:29, 12 April 2011 (UTC)

I definitely agree with the "being in an exclusive part of the community" thing, however the only problem with that argument is it can seem rather selfish. I'm against the idea for now, it's impractical, I worry it would ruin the wiki and despite it being a selfish argument, I do like being in this small group. The reason I hardly ever go on the TBG anymore is the same reason, it just stopped being fun when there were suddenly loads and loads of active users. I'm not saying I'd give up the wiki but I do prefer it like this.
WeirdF (talk | contribs) 06:29, 12 April 2011 (UTC)
The thing is, when I envision this Wiki, I see it as a place like wikipedia. Where there are thousands of edits a day. Where eventually, Scratch has become so big and important, that the wiki is a vital source of info for Scratchers. I don't know about you guys, but it still sends chills down my spine thinking about how amazing it would be if we could be as big as something like wikipedia. I still remember back when we had just under 300 articles and im amazed at the progress that we are making today. All I want is the wiki to be bigger and better. I see opening up the wiki to ALL scratchers as a way of making this vision true. Of making the Scratch Wiki the best guide possible. I understand all of your concerns from vandalism to poor editors and more. but I feel that once we find a way around those problems. We might be much happier. Perhaps we will not be. Maybe we will only gain a few more editors, but I feel like this is the right course of actions despite all the possible problems.
Dazman (talk | contribs) 07:13, 12 April 2011 (UTC)
We can never be like Wikipedia. Now wiki can. Wikipedia is about everything. This is only about Scratch. Obviously it would be great if this was the prime source of information for every Scratcher (I personally think it is the best), but allowing vandals in isn't the way ahead. If we have to make the wiki bigger, I think the way ahead is more prominent advertising of it. I don't know whether anybody else has, but I've been interviewed by the Scratch Team. Karen Brennan, who I was talking to, said this:
Quote Icon.png Quote:
Author: I think it's just one of those things that, as a member of the Scratch Team, we never really imagined members of the community would create themselves, you know? It's just

so awesome and it's such a great resource!

Text:  Karen Brennan 
I'm sure the Scratch Team would be willing to make it more prominent than a forum post that is hardly every posted on, and a small link near the bottom of the front page.
WeirdF (talk | contribs) 07:58, 12 April 2011 (UTC)
I feel like a good way of getting more people to use the wiki is by linking to useful articles when a topic comes up in a project or the forums. For example, if someone has a question or it seems like they would benefit from information available on the wiki, do let them know. That connects to the idea of making articles that people would find useful to understand how to create projects and socialize on the website. How can we make it more prominently?
Andresmh (talk | contribs) 20:51, 19 April 2011 (UTC)
Have you ever seen me do that? If not, look at about 1/2 my recent posts in AAS.
Scimonster (talk | contribs) 04:56, 20 April 2011 (UTC)


I was editing wikipedia recently and I just realized while looking at the recent changes for an article, that they have bots! I was thinking about it and I thought it would be cool to have a bot that fixes double-redirecs, broken links, and adds internal links if they are not in the article already. Does anybody have programming experience or know how they work?
Dazman (talk | contribs) 06:24, 9 April 2011 (UTC)

Well if you can be bothered to read it, there's instructions here.
WeirdF (talk | contribs) 07:19, 9 April 2011 (UTC)
I am learning python as we speak.
Dazman (talk | contribs) 19:26, 12 April 2011 (UTC)
My first bot will detect if a post has been signed. If not it will automatically add the signature. Im not sure how it will detect the <scratchsig> thing but ill figure it out.
Dazman (talk | contribs) 19:27, 12 April 2011 (UTC)
Wow, that would be an AWESOME bot :O
But what if you're simply editing your post? It'd automatically add the signature, and you couldn't edit it out without placing another...
Jonathanpb (talk | contribs) 07:20, 15 April 2011 (UTC)
Good point. Maybe if it has "edited" in the description?
Scimonster (talk | contribs) 13:52, 15 April 2011 (UTC)
EDIT: No, if it's at the end it should be fine.
Scimonster (talk | contribs) 13:53, 15 April 2011 (UTC)

wiki tutorial

if i wanted to, oh i don't know, make tutorials on how to do certain aspects of image editing like with blocks and stuff for editors, would i be able to? and if so, what namespace would they go under? scratch wiki?
Veggieman001 (talk | contribs) 21:29, 10 April 2011 (UTC)

We already have something like that Here.
Dazman (talk | contribs) 21:43, 10 April 2011 (UTC)
that's a bit different, but i guess it would go under the help namespace. it would be like a tutorial using gimp about how to make a nice looking optimised indexed transparent png of a script. the image thing that is just about formatting images in articles.
Veggieman001 (talk | contribs) 21:48, 10 April 2011 (UTC)
Sounds great to me :D
Chrischb (talk | contribs) 05:28, 11 April 2011 (UTC)
okay! :D
i'll probably work on a draft in my userspace today
Veggieman001 (talk | contribs) 22:52, 11 April 2011 (UTC)
done! is it good?
Veggieman001 (talk | contribs) 03:37, 13 April 2011 (UTC)
Scimonster (talk | contribs) 09:35, 13 April 2011 (UTC)
+1 Great work Veggieman ^^
Jonathanpb (talk | contribs) 11:58, 13 April 2011 (UTC)
why, thank you :} it's basically what i did with all those images.
Veggieman001 (talk | contribs) 22:57, 13 April 2011 (UTC)
It's a really good article! My only concern is the namespace. The Help: namespace refers to articles that "describe how to use the Scratch Wiki." The article isn't directly about using the wiki, it's to do with image editing. But I'm not entirely sure what the namespace should be...
WeirdF (talk | contribs) 08:39, 14 April 2011 (UTC)
yeah, i wasn't sure, but dazman said help so i just put it there for now. hmm....
Veggieman001 (talk | contribs) 15:00, 14 April 2011 (UTC)

How to get attention to one's projects

This question seems to come up a lot on the forums and in other places. I'd suggest creating an in-depth tutorial about this on the Wiki. Some threads that come to mind are: http://scratch.mit.edu/forums/viewtopic.php?id=24770 and http://scratch.mit.edu/forums/viewtopic.php?id=60131 Ideally the wiki can have a more authoritative and consensus-based list of suggestions and links to different opinions.
Andresmh (talk | contribs) 06:15, 11 April 2011 (UTC)

That would be a cool idea! :D Would the article be like a tutorial, or would it simply list a lot of tips?
Jonathanpb (talk | contribs) 07:16, 11 April 2011 (UTC)
Well Andres said an in-depth tutorial, I suppose it will be proper tutorial.
WeirdF (talk | contribs) 07:54, 11 April 2011 (UTC)
I'm gonna start work on it now then.
WeirdF (talk | contribs) 07:55, 11 April 2011 (UTC)

What's new?

I haven't been on the Wiki since forever. ;-; Did anything important happen while I was gone?
Aidan (talk | contribs) 22:03, 12 April 2011 (UTC)

uhh... Scimonster's a sysop, i made like 400 edits over the weekend, and umm... not much.
Veggieman001 (talk | contribs) 00:57, 13 April 2011 (UTC)
General activity :P
Chrischb (talk | contribs) 03:20, 13 April 2011 (UTC)
We got several new articles.
Scimonster (talk | contribs) 07:27, 13 April 2011 (UTC)

The wiki compiler treats 3 different types of links differently

All these links will be to the top of this page.

An external link ( [http://wiki.scratch.mit.edu/wiki/Scratch_Wiki_talk:Community_Portal#top top of the page] ), internal link ( [[Scratch Wiki talk:Community Portal#top|top of the page]] ) and anchor link ( [[#top|top of the page]] ) are all treated differently by the wiki compiler: what we call them.

External links get the http:// prefix, regular links are /wiki/PAGENAME, and anchors are #ANCHORNAME.

Highlight this and look at the source: top of the page top of the page top of the page

As you can (probably) see, they are what I just told you. I tested in my sandbox. I think some browsers do internal links faster. What I'm getting at — to speed up page loading, use internal links.
Scimonster (talk | contribs) 12:11, 13 April 2011 (UTC)

(No, it's not only at you, dazman :P)
Scimonster (talk | contribs) 12:11, 13 April 2011 (UTC)

Editing user pages

Is it allowed to edit user's pages? I happen to think that for a few reasons, it should be allowed, except if they specifically say no. These cases:

  • Making external links internal/fixing links
  • They have a template that can be easily replicated (i.e. block)

What do other people think?
Scimonster (talk | contribs) 18:12, 16 April 2011 (UTC)

No. I think it shouldn't. The userspace is a personal area, only to be edited if something is inappropriate, or to leave a message on the talk page.
Veggieman001 (talk | contribs) 19:59, 16 April 2011 (UTC)
Userpages are property of whoever owns them, and even if it's such a little thing I'd want to edit, I would leave their userpages alone. Even if the user were inactive, I'd leave his/her userpage alone... an external link isn't going to kill the wiki, anyway :P
Jonathanpb (talk | contribs) 00:06, 17 April 2011 (UTC)
If someone sees a mistake it can always be pointed out on the user's talk page...
Chrischb (talk | contribs) 00:33, 17 April 2011 (UTC)
I thought I was saying "what if they will probably not log in for another year or so, and certainly won't check their talk page."
Scimonster (talk | contribs) 04:59, 17 April 2011 (UTC)
Well, then maybe you should just ignore their userpage? It isn't like an external link on a userpage will kill the wiki servers...
Jonathanpb (talk | contribs) 06:48, 17 April 2011 (UTC)
OK, that sounds fair.
Scimonster (talk | contribs) 06:53, 17 April 2011 (UTC)
I probably don't need to point this out, but obviously anything that breaks the rules needs to be removed from a userpage...
WeirdF (talk | contribs) 07:06, 17 April 2011 (UTC)
Of course, it goes without saying.
Scimonster (talk | contribs) 07:09, 17 April 2011 (UTC)
I worry about external links pointing to commercial websites. A lot of professional spammers want to use websites with .edu domains to link to their pages because that gives them higher ranking in search engine results. So for example having a link to a website that sells cars from wiki.scratch.mit.edu gives that website higher reputation on search results. If people start using the Wiki to link to spam websites two things will happen: 1. More professional spammers would want to use the Scratch wiki and 2. Search engines might start to censor the Scratch Wiki. All this is to say to be particularly careful with external links and use them sparingly.
Andresmh (talk | contribs) 16:26, 17 April 2011 (UTC)
So what are you saying in a nutshell? Yes or no?
Scimonster (talk | contribs) 16:54, 17 April 2011 (UTC)
I am saying no to COMMERCIAL SPAM external links.
Andresmh (talk | contribs) 17:52, 17 April 2011 (UTC)
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