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Forums: War Room Regarding the use of "user talk pages"
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We've now been using Message Wall for quite some time now. One of its key usability improvements is that it ensures that conversations between users stay in one place for easy tracking. It gives notifications when somone replies to a thread that you've followed or have commented on.

Some users, disliking Message Wall or possibly just liking the look of their signatures, have gotten around having to use it by making a page in the user space and directing users to leave messages for them there. This practice is detrimental to the wiki for two reasons. Firstly, for the sake of convenience for the few who have done this, it inconveniences everyone else who messages them. Rather than being immediately notified of a reply, they have to check back or add the page to their watchlists. I don't think our wiki should endorse practices that are for the benefit of the few rather than the many. Secondly, it introduces an inconsistent user experience – and one that is more difficult to use – that I believe confuses people, particularly new users.

Because the harms of this practice have far outweighed the personal benefit delivered to those who engage in it, I'm proposing that we no longer allow this to continue, and ensure everyone uses Message Wall. The 888th Avatar (talk) 14:03, October 2, 2012 (UTC)

I think it's up to the author, but wjxhuang was right. I need to check back at someone else’s talk page, and I, sometime, forget to do it. Acer Evan Seek anything about fanon! Jet sprite 14:09, October 2, 2012 (UTC)
The pros of doing this definitely outweigh the cons. It's time there was policy on this anyway... There are few users this will affect, if at all, and I do agree, these kinds of practices should be centralized to maintain the accessibility of our communication methods, and for consistency purposes. Message walls have predominantly replaced the old talk pages on many wikis for a reason; they are far superior in their design aspect and in their use, and reflect the contemporary methods of communication now used primarily on the Internet. Thus, the system is familiar to many users, new or old, and I do not believe there is a logical reason it will majorly inconvenience anyone to use message walls instead of the old talk pages. KettleMeetPotwall 14:19, October 2, 2012 (UTC)

Yo I noticed that too man. Some people have talk pages and its wack. Everyone should have the same thing. It makes speaking to each other easy. I support 888 ya digg? Demon King Raizon 14:57, October 2, 2012 (UTC)

We are a community and this wiki prides itself on making community decisions a rule. When the community decides something -as it has by choosing to enable message wall- it is something that has to be followed by all, whether or not you like it. There have been many decisions that I do not support on this wiki, but since the majority rules, I follow them anyway, as that is the best way to work together and to maintain community cohesion, so yes, I am in support of this proposal. Lady Lostris vstf (talkHotN) 15:06, October 2, 2012 (UTC)
888 brings up good points in regards to notifications and friendliness of the system to new users. I support this. --AvatarRokus Ghost (Message meRead my fanon) Aang Cosmic Toph-DoBS-2 17:35, October 2, 2012 (UTC)
Per all, I support. Ozai Spirte The Final BattleSparks From HadesAzula sprite23 19:38, October 2, 2012 (UTC)
Why didn't we think of this any sooner? I support. SixMoodyDwarves Sokka Sprite Season 1 Voltorb Is Back! Sokka-wolf-c1 19:41, October 2, 2012 (UTC)

I agree. There shouldn't be exceptions for something the community has decided for the entire wiki, Message Wall should apply to everyone despite the user's preference. As 888 said, the reasons to not allow the use of "user talk pages" would benefit the majority and will avoid the confusion for newer users. Dcasawang1wall 21:06, October 2, 2012 (UTC)

I agree with 888 on this. I support. TheBigO Fan Bolin sprite Be the leaf 23:03, October 2, 2012 (UTC)

Per KMP and 888, I fully agree. WaterbenderTaikai (Marionette · Parentless) 01:00, October 3, 2012 (UTC)

Yes, we decided to switch to message walls, so these "talk pages" are a sidestep of community consensus at best and a downright contravention at worst. Adherence to community decisions isn't supposed to be selective; users can't choose which ones they will follow. Therefore, these "talk pages" need to be purged. ― Thailog 01:12, October 3, 2012 (UTC)

Agreed. Message walls were enabled following forum consensus, and bypassing the usage of them with talk pages violates the terms of this decision. Annawantimes (Talk) 01:16, October 3, 2012 (UTC)
Support per all. I used a talk page once, and I soon realized that message walls are much more efficient because you can receive notifications and you don't have to check the page constantly, especially for the people that don't have emails enabled, or those who don't really check their email. --Katara Sprite Season 3Humble (Talk HftN) 01:23, October 3, 2012 (UTC)
I oppose. Or kinda. If this is passed, could I use my talk page ONLY for fanon subscriptions. I find it easier like that. I use my phone to read A LOT, and this make it easy for me to look at all of my subscriptions. This won't be however for regular conversations. Just for subscriptions. Srijay KTechFilmer 17:08, October 3, 2012 (UTC)
@Godsrule. I believe user talk pages can still exist and be used however you would like, but cannot substitute for message walls, as you have right now. Ozai Spirte The Final BattleSparks From HadesAzula sprite23 17:17, October 3, 2012 (UTC)

I totally agree. I hate talk pages, and having to use them for some people is just annoying and bothersome. Tracking talk pages is tedious, even when they are the standard layout for a specific wiki. But when you have no notification of a reply once you've message someone that has a talk page, it is irksome to have to continuously check it until the person replies. Though, I am a little per SFH. Appa-dobs1HenryJh 98 (BlogsATSWFFF)Appa Sprite 01:39, October 4, 2012 (UTC)

Despite my previous "talk-page-love", I have got used to the Message Wall quite well (the only thing I really dislike is that there are many occasions when I receive notifications about threads that I don't follow)... Anyway... I do think that prohibiting any user from creating a sandbox and transforming it into a talk page prevents some kind of personal freedom... Their Message Walls are still there, and if, for example, I don't want to get in touch with him/her by using the "fake talk page", I am able to do it by the Wall, and the communication will be ok. I do think that any measure of prohibition about ways of getting in touch, (despite of the contents), should not be encouraged. If the talk pages fulfill the goal for this minority who likes to use sandboxes, I can't see why creating an impasse since their Walls are there. If they could've make the walls disabled, that would be a problem. However, those users aren't obliging anyone to get in contact by the talk pages. If they don't check their walls, I think that's a situation up to them only and not to the community. Just my two yuans. Master Ratava 14:46, October 4, 2012 (UTC)
"Personal freedom" should not be taken to mean "freedom to inconvenience others". The concept of freedom in our society is not unlimited. You are not permitted the freedom to do things which impinge on the rights of others, for example, but even where this is not the case, it is indecent to abuse freedom by making life more difficult for everyone else. More difficulty is exactly what you get when you make any change whatsoever to the functionality of a Message Wall or use any other means to try to ensure or otherwise encourage users to use a "user talk page". Freedom without restriction or the bounds of common courtesy is anarchy, condoned by no-one, and therefore makes these practices unconscionable.
In the alternative, I think you mistake "contravention of community consensus" for "personal freedom". While freedom is certainly virtuous, it does not mean "freedom from community decisions". That's equivalent to making personal exceptions for yourself offsite with regards to national law. It was a community decision to use Message Wall, and community decisions are binding on all users on this wiki.
To be clear, this proposal does not ban the outright use of user space pages that happen to have some dialogue and signatures on it. It does ban the use of "user talk pages" as the preferred and primary method of contact for users. You will no longer be able to direct users to use a "user talk page" because you prefer it that way. You will no longer be able to use javascript to ensure that you only get notifications for messages left on the "user talk page". You will no longer be able to hide Message Wall by default. These are the practices that are believed to be problematic, and therefore, we must officially close this imagined loophole. The 888th Avatar (talk) 15:45, October 4, 2012 (UTC)
I agree with 888 on this subject. Maybe the people can use talk pages for certain things, and other's who would like to communicate with those people through talk pages can, but I believe Message Walls should be the primary source of communication on the wiki. Appa-dobs1HenryJh 98 (BlogsATSWFFF)Appa Sprite 21:03, October 4, 2012 (UTC)

Benjamin Franklin (Famous early american old guy who has a lot of sayings for those of you who don't know him) once said "Democracy is two wolves and a sheep deciding what to have for lunch" I think some people may have very good reason for keeping their talk pages so we should get their input before making a command decision. TheLoKnessmonster Sokka-sprite 21:12, October 5, 2012 (UTC)

There are very few users who still use talk pages. Regardless, you do make a fair point, since only one user that still uses a talk page has seen this forum thread. Ozai Spirte The Final BattleSparks From HadesAzula sprite23 21:15, October 5, 2012 (UTC)
Matey has been messaged about this a while ago already -and he's about the only one I know that still uses the talk page. This proposal will go on according to the rules like any other, namely if three days have passed with no comment and there is a clear consensus -as now is the case- then the forum passed, regardless of who participated. Lady Lostris vstf (talkHotN) 21:18, October 5, 2012 (UTC)
But, wasn't there like a bunch of nonies and registered users harrasing, spamming, and/or other bad things on other users when the Message Walls popped up while and we still keep getting more right now and we have like a few of nonies and registered users did kinda did harrasing, spamming, and/or other bad things at some users in their talkpages a while ago which its not that much?-- King Marth 64 (talkother wikisblogs) FE4_Junior_Lord_Sprite.gif Peace_Ness.png 03:37, October 6, 2012 (UTC)
That's an argument for the entire community either using Message Wall or talk pages, not an argument for why some people should be allowed to make exceptions for themselves, so it's irrelevant. The 888th Avatar (talk) 04:04, October 6, 2012 (UTC)
No, I think it might be a better way to put talkpages back that we might possibly avoid too many random users smashing on other people's walls. And no, its more relevant, but thats kinda a baises suggestion, sorry.-- King Marth 64 (talkother wikisblogs) FE4_Junior_Lord_Sprite.gif Peace_Ness.png 05:58, October 6, 2012 (UTC)
Sorry, but again, that's not what this forum thread is about. This thread assumes that the community has decided to use Message Wall. It's simply about closing an imagined loophole in that decision. The 888th Avatar (talk) 06:04, October 6, 2012 (UTC)

Again, another ridiculous proposal. It should be my choice what goes in my user space. This just says that we have users on here that actively support a communist Avatar Wiki. Matey Y. (talk  A:TLoM) Korra-chao2 13:37, October 6, 2012 (UTC)

Perhaps if you explained exactly why it's ridiculous, instead of making more of the usual generalizations and then insulting all the users in this forum, you would be able to convince more people. Just a smart suggestion, mate. KettleMeetPotwall 13:42, October 6, 2012 (UTC)
First, sorry if people are offended by the truth.
The first factor is basic freedom. The talk page is in my user space and I still have a message wall. The script also provides notifications.
Another factor is unobstructive scripting — message walls cannot be edited on mobile devices with less reliable JavaScript support, whereas talk pages can. Matey Y. (talk  A:TLoM) Korra-chao2 13:46, October 6, 2012 (UTC)
Just because you repeat something doesn't make it true, MateyY. While I explained why there is no unlimited freedom in society, your response to that is just to call any constraint "communist". I can tell you for a fact that if we were to go by your interpretation of what is "communist", every community and every nation would be "communist". Any law banning you from doing something would be "communist". You know what? The fact that you can't make a contract purchase unless certain points of law are followed would be "communist", despite their root in classical liberalism with its emphasis on individal consent. I think it's probably a good idea to read Karl Marx's Communist Manifesto before you go around calling anything "communist".
And did you really just suggest that for your convenience when editing on mobile devices, you wish to inconvenience the 90% of the wiki who access this site on a traditional computer? The 888th Avatar (talk) 13:59, October 6, 2012 (UTC)
"Basic freedom"? Really? Why don't you expand upon that point and state when talk pages were part of basic freedoms, hmm? And what do you mean you still have your message wall? From my knowledge, you hid it and attached all sorts of decorative messages in order to force people to access your talk page. Isn't that right?
And you seem to forget that we do not exclusively cater to mobile devices. If I recall, the demographic of all our users and anonymous users access this site via a computer or a comparative device. So, the second point is pretty much moot, unless it was in your intention all along to convenience that odd one person who always accesses the site through a mobile device, which is absolute tripe as far as basic logic is concerned. KettleMeetPotwall 14:04, October 6, 2012 (UTC)
Sure, you should be able to have a talk page, but you shouldn't be able to use javascript to get rid of the Message Wall. It's an inconvienence to most people who want to communicate with you, MateyY. And I don't believe there are people on this wiki who want it to be communist. We are just trying to make it more fair and convenient to others. Appa-dobs1HenryJh 98 (BlogsATSWFFF)Appa Sprite 21:32, October 6, 2012 (UTC)

Well, so this forum thread is about banning "sandboxes talk pages" that function as primary method of communication, as 888 said. Then, I agree to keep them as a second method, since the first one shall continue on being the message walls. I assume that to avoid any more disturbance, links to "user talk pages" shall remain on the profile pages, instead of a try of redirection on the wall page. I do agree that this must be a contradiction to the wiki decision of using the walls, but I do believe that users shall have the right to keep their fake talk pages, but providing their links (as I said) on the profile page. Since one more way of communication may not harm the order, if it's used as not the first choice. I agree with banning talk pages that are the preferred and primary method of contact for users (since we have the walls), and also with the redirection thing, and enabling javascript to ensure the notifications (as 888 said), and banning the possibility to hide Message Wall by default. But I disagree about prohibiting user from using their fake talk pages as secondary communication channel. Since, that makes they feel comfortable about being around, and keep the welcoming feeling about fellowship that I think the community needs. Banning the possibilities of making the user talk pages get a higher esteem than the walls is what I get, but avoiding users to make them is something that will only create a pain for editors to look for, and motifs to strict communication that is what makes this wiki different than many others. The feeling of freedom, not the hurt-the-wiki-decisions freedom one, is what and why many users come here looking for. A way to show their ideas, without being thrown away unreasonably. A way to get to know each other, and make friends, and have fun. Master Ratava 14:36, October 6, 2012 (UTC)

Don't worry, the aim of this proposal is definitely not to say you can't use a user space page as a way to discuss things with other users. Its only aim is to ensure that Message Wall is unmistakeably the primary way by which a user should receive communications. That means you can link to a talk page, but you can't try to make it the main way to reach you, in text or in functionality. The 888th Avatar (talk) 14:47, October 6, 2012 (UTC)
So the way I understand it is you are allowed to have a talk page, but you can't use JS to put a Talk button on top of the Message Wall button or use the [show] [hide] buttons, right? Srijay KTechFilmer 19:52, October 7, 2012 (UTC)
Pretty much, I believe that's the decision we've come to, so the communicator gets the choice of how to communicate with the communicatee. Appa-dobs1HenryJh 98 (BlogsATSWFFF)Appa Sprite 19:52, October 7, 2012 (UTC)
The goal is to make the message wall the standard means of communication for all. It has to be easily accessible to every user as the community has chosen a while ago to enable it -and has by now become standard. However, those users we still want to use talk pages are still allowed to do so, though they are not allowed to hide their message wall in any way. They may provide a link to a sandbox-turned-talk-page and an accompanying message with the request that they rather like to be messages there than on the message wall, but that's about it. The primary and most visible way of contacting them still has to be the message wall for everyone's convenience. Lady Lostris vstf (talkHotN) 21:48, October 7, 2012 (UTC)