Wikibooks:Reading room/General

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Welcome to the General reading room. On this page, Wikibookians are free to talk about the Wikibooks project in general. For proposals for improving Wikibooks, see the Proposals reading room.

False positives[edit]

I am not sure that denying external links because of a mere technicality (that users' accounts are too new) is reasonable in my view if the reason is adequate enough (like this. Yes, we are not a link factory, but these are cases which would be otherwise acceptable.

P.S: That was the idea behind Wikibooks:Edit_filter/URL_requests, and while many requests there are denied, there are a significant number of requests which are reasonable as well. Leaderboard (discusscontribs) 22:02, 26 June 2019 (UTC)

Well, a couple of thoughts.
  • The filter log presumably understates the effect of the current restriction, because the log can't show that a spammer didn't try, knowing it wouldn't work.
  • Those slowed down by the restriction may be encouraged to a lasting attitude of conservativism in external linking.
--Pi zero (discusscontribs) 01:42, 27 June 2019 (UTC)


I've written an essay, in my userspace, about what direction I believe wikis should be heading for. Though short, it develops several themes I've had in mind for a while. I'd be interested in other Wikibookians' thoughts on it (at all levels — articulation, ideas, issues).

--Pi zero (discusscontribs) 16:02, 29 June 2019 (UTC)

Editing News #1—July 2019[edit]

18:32, 23 July 2019 (UTC)

Request from WMF T&S to review the book Suicide[edit]

I have moved this discussed from Requests for Deletion, where I originally posted it, as it isn't strictly a deletion request. QuiteUnusual (discusscontribs) 09:22, 12 August 2019 (UTC)

@CSteigenberger (WMF), Pi zero, Leaderboard:


In early August the WMF Trust & Safety team contacted (some / all?) admins on Wikibooks requesting a review of the content of Suicide. They noted two concerns: much of it had been created by a globally banned user in violation of the Terms of Use; some of it may be illegal in certain jurisdictions. They specifically requested the deletion of Suicide/Amitriptyline cocktail as crossing the legality line. The Terms of Use allow the Foundation to delete this content without community involvement. However, they requested instead that the community takes action, which for this one page I was happy to action pending a wider conversation (i.e., I have removed the potentially illegal content on precautionary grounds without prejudice to it being restored later). For the rest of the book we face a dilemma (as we do for all content here) - how do we ensure the content is accurate and, above all, legal when we lack the knowledge and skills to do this? If a subject is "on the border" so-to-speak, should we take the risk and allow it, or remove it? QuiteUnusual (discusscontribs) 09:22, 12 August 2019 (UTC)


  • The community has considered this book for deletion at least twice, and has consistently chosen not to delete it.
  • Looking at recent events, Trust and Safety —as a collective entity (I've nothing to say atm of any individual person)— I do not trust, and makes me feel very unsafe.
  • Ultimately if the Foundation says we have to do something, all our principles and policies (regardless of whether supposedly shared by the Foundation) count for nothing.
--Pi zero (discusscontribs) 12:26, 6 August 2019 (UTC)
Comment . This book is one that has been controversial on Wikibooks (see Talk:Suicide), and I remember conversing with users who were concerned about such books. That being said, I would still keep the book. This is a scientific discussion about suicide, and there is a clear disclaimer on the front page about the scope of the book. Nothing in the book explicitly promotes suicide e(and it isn't telling 'lies' either). To remove this book would be a sign of censorship on the part of WMF, and I would want WMF T&S to provide a clear rationale on why they think the book does not deserve to be here. Leaderboard (discusscontribs) 13:10, 6 August 2019 (UTC)
They have provided a clear rationale for the single page I have deleted. However as I'm on a phone editing this week I can't be bothered to try and type it all in. I will do so on Monday. For the wider issue, which I will also expand on, they have the right to delete it but have instead deferred to the community. I will expand on this next week too but for now I'd say they are being very reasonable and consultative. QuiteUnusual (discusscontribs) 19:16, 6 August 2019 (UTC)
Comment : How about adding more warning materials to hopefully stop unjustified suicides? I have added some ways.--Jusjih (discusscontribs) 04:05, 20 August 2019 (UTC)
I distantly recall a suggestion that the book can help to talk down someone who is considering suicide by speaking to them rationally about the subject, rather than patronizingly. Warnings need to not lose that scientific honesty. --Pi zero (discusscontribs) 05:00, 20 August 2019 (UTC)
That would dilute the meaning of the subject. Wikipedia's article on suicide does not have a warning, so why should Wikibooks? Leaderboard (discusscontribs) 15:56, 20 August 2019 (UTC)
A cogent point. Likewise Wikipedia's article on suicide methods. --Pi zero (discusscontribs) 16:59, 20 August 2019 (UTC)
(I see that one has an RFC about adding a hatnote.) --Pi zero (discusscontribs) 17:05, 20 August 2019 (UTC)
My take is this, T&S most likely will like to prevent people from learning how to suicide. I chime in as in Chinese Wikiversity I once AFD an article on how to kill someone in an enclosed room on the basis of it being unethical. The community decided to keep it. I find similarities between my thought as per what T&S are thinking, let's not teach people to do harm. However, the arguments then presented in the AFD is that there are ways many sites out there teaching the same, the article is just something that summarize ideas out from the web. Hence, my take is this, for those contents that are original research i.e. some manner to commit suicide - I don't know is the amitriptyline cocktail is available on the web or not but these should be deleted per TOU of ensuring a safe environment. We can have a book focusing on suicide, but not to teach people how to suicide, at least not more than what the enwp article have. Regards,--Cohaf (discusscontribs) 17:33, 20 August 2019 (UTC)
I now tried to read some of the pages and stop at 2 pages, the detail is making me uncomfortable as an adult. The main page is ok for me, but once I clicked into the methods of suicide, it makes me very uncomfortable (I have no issues reading the enwp version). I think these should be trimmed down. --Cohaf (discusscontribs) 17:37, 20 August 2019 (UTC)
There should be something sobering for a Wikibookian about the idea that it's okay to provide a shallow treatment —which is the purpose of an encyclopedia article— but it's not okay to provide an in-depth treatment — which is the purpose of a book. I'm not saying some of the book content doesn't make me uncomfortable; I'm saying that when I recognize in myself an impulse to censor, that also makes me uncomfortable. --Pi zero (discusscontribs) 17:50, 20 August 2019 (UTC)
Concurred, I dont wish to censor either. However, I'm trying to understand what T&S is thinking and trying to get a win win solution. Be aware that even if we dont agree for deletion, they could still summary delete if they wish to although I dont think they will given the recent FRAM issue. An approach will be to look up into some of the books in this category on Amazon or etc, if they cover the same content, ours should be safe to keep. I remembered something along the lines of commons:COM:PORN or Wikipedia WP:NOTCENSORED can be ways we set the boundaries of what can or what cant be included in a book. Regards, its indeed sobering and I wish we never have to discuss this kind of inclusion issue with T&S involved.--Cohaf (discusscontribs) 03:37, 21 August 2019 (UTC)
We must make our decisions based on our own ethical principles. We can listen to concerns expressed by T&S, as we would to any intelligent party raising such concerns, and weigh those concerns in the light of our ethics; but if we compromise our ethics because we feel intimidated by T&S, then our behavior is unethical. If we consider concerns raised, make an ethical decision that T&S doesn't agree with, and T&S then decides to override us, they are violating our ethical principles but we are not, and we can hold our heads up high. --Pi zero (discusscontribs) 04:09, 21 August 2019 (UTC)
Just to note that I did ping T&S (at their request) so they could see and comment on this discussion. Given their failure to do so, I will email them as we really need their input. QuiteUnusual (discusscontribs) 09:38, 21 August 2019 (UTC)
@Pi zero: Sure, this seems a fair approach. I just don't want things such as FRAM to happen here, when we hold our heads up defying them, we simply don't have the ability to do any form of civil disobedience, so my approach is to try to reach a compromise as far as possible. I seen summary deletion and even protection on zhwp by T&S, the feeling is really very bad. I seen CU rights being yanked away with superficial explanation of safety and the Ombudsmen Commission have yet to finish the report for 1.5 years leaving stewards having to do CU which is a horrendous but necessary arrangement. I have always stick to my principles and will oppose what nonsense I don't believe in (like I did on meta regularly) and will sure to do so here using an approach that will not be that sour. @QuiteUnusual: Is there anymore T&S share with you or just this is it? Then they should really elaborate on what their concerns are and I think we should wait for their response before discussing any further. I will also email them too.--Cohaf (discusscontribs) 12:20, 21 August 2019 (UTC)
It was specifically User:CSteigenberger (WMF) who emailed and I think I have provided all of the relevant info from the email. QuiteUnusual (discusscontribs) 14:02, 21 August 2019 (UTC)

New tools and IP masking[edit]

14:18, 21 August 2019 (UTC)


You cannot upload PDF., Right?-- (discuss) 00:45, 25 August 2019 (UTC)

Usually, uploads should go to c:. What did you have in mind to upload here? —Justin (koavf)TCM 01:30, 25 August 2019 (UTC)
I would like to move File:Manual de Bolsillo Wikipedia - Wikimedia Argentina.pdf from Commons. Just as I pass text to b:es:.MONUMENTA (discusscontribs) 01:58, 25 August 2019 (UTC)
@MONUMENTA: If it's already on Commons, why do you need a local copy? —Justin (koavf)TCM 02:05, 25 August 2019 (UTC)