Commons talk:Help desk

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Moved some misplaced questions to the Help desk proper[edit]

I moved some questions that did not belong on this page to the Help desk proper. It seems unlikely that the original questioners will still be watching the Help desk. Leaving misplaced questions on this page is not good, because it encourages more new users to ask Help desk questions here. I've also seen questions that belong on the Help desk that users leave on other talk pages around Commons (e.g. Talk:Main Page).

I wasn't sure whether to move the old questions directly to Help desk archive pages. I decided not to because (a) I'm lazy, and (b) it would be misleading to imply that the questions originally appeared on the Help desk at the dates of the archive pages. So I just decided to be bold and shove all the old questions onto the Help desk. They will archive off soon enough. I marked all the questions I moved. --Teratornis (talk) 05:40, 7 March 2009 (UTC)

Help Desk Chat?[edit]

It doesn't work here. Neither if I click the chat room link #wikimedia-commons nor if I click the German direct access link.

Anyone else with the problem? Does the chat still exist?

Greets, Horst-schlaemma (talk) 08:48, 17 June 2009 (UTC)

You need to have som ekind of IRC software installed to make the link work. There are details at w:Wikipedia:IRC tutorial. Pruneautalk 11:19, 17 June 2009 (UTC)
I'm no freaking rookie, you know ;) I'm using mIRC. But there's nothing happening if I click the links.
Greets, Horst-schlaemma (talk) 13:17, 17 June 2009 (UTC)
The link you gave doesn't work because it uses the wrong protocol (namely http), the links given on the help desk page work for me, though: #wikimedia-commons. The direct access link doesn't work for me either. To enable the irc protocol being opened in your IRC client, you must configure your browser and / or your operating system to use this client for the protocol. How to do that depends on the browser and operating system. --rimshottalk 06:30, 18 June 2009 (UTC)

Thank you. Perhaps Wiki should think about installing a browser or Java applet based solution... Greets, Horst-schlaemma (talk) 12:22, 18 June 2009 (UTC)

Please change the German text / Bitte den deutschen Text ändern[edit]

jetzige Version / current version:

  • "Deutsch: Diese Seite ist ein Forum für neue Benutzer der Commons. Hier darfst du jede Frage in jeder Sprache stellen, in der du willst. Für schnellere Anworten, besuche bitte den Live-Chat-Raum #wikimedia-commons im IRC (Direktzugriff)!"

Kann man das nicht mal irgendwie tatsächlich auf Deutsch formulieren? Sonst schreckt das doch jeden Newbie ab. Wie wäre es so?/
May someone please change the German text on the Help desk page into:

  • "Deutsch: Diese Seite ist ein Forum für neue Benutzer der Commons. Hier darfst du jede Frage in der Sprache stellen, die du bevorzugst. Wenn du schnellere Hilfe benötigst, besuche bitte den Live-Chat-Raum #wikimedia-commons im IRC (Direktzugriff)!"

Da ich nicht weiß, wie das hier änderbar wäre, bitte ich einfach mal darum, das zu ändern. --Geitost (talk) 11:13, 18 June 2009 (UTC)

✓ Done, hab ich geändert. --Martin H. (talk) 00:14, 20 June 2009 (UTC)

Sick of copyright laws[edit]

Sometimes it seems like half the Help Desk traffic is about licenses, a topic of great general importance but equally great uninterest to me and presumably to others who only send our own photos and don't mind if big business makes millions from them without notice. Should the existence of a separate licensing forum be made more prominent, for example by moving the entire discussion box to the top of the page, alongside the multiple language explanations of what a help desk is? Jim.henderson (talk) 04:57, 18 July 2009 (UTC)

Some thoughts:
  • How difficult is it to ignore the uninteresting Help desk questions?
  • What are you photographing? Some man-made objects have legal restrictions. See for example en:Eiffel Tower#Image copyright claims. A faithful photographic reproduction of a copyrighted 2D artwork also violates copyright. If you photograph only nature scenes, your original art works, freely-licensed works, and other non-restricted objects, then you are OK.
    • I looked at your gallery and I don't see any copyright issues with the scenes and objects. But these issues might be important for other users who read the Help desk and might not think to look at a separate copyright discussion page.
  • Many users who ask questions on the Help desk are new to Commons; some are new to wikis in general. It is hard enough for them to find the Help desk and figure out how to post a question. Giving them more conditional branches to navigate makes it harder for them to ask a question. Helpers will have to waste time telling new users they shouldn't have asked their question on the page they picked.
  • Help desk traffic on Commons is low, it looks like only 3 to 5 questions per day. Dividing the low-traffic Help desk would make two or more even lower-traffic Help desks. If a Help desk has traffic that is too low, helpers may lose interest in checking it, or they may check less frequently. This might slow down answers. In any case, the usual motivation for splitting a discussion-type page is when the traffic becomes overwhelming. I don't think 3 to 5 questions per day is there yet. The Help desk on the English Wikipedia has a lot more traffic, and has undergone several splits into specialized help request pages, with mixed results. The biggest problem is that a large proportion of new users are generally confused, and will simply ask their question in the first page they find.
--Teratornis (talk) 20:13, 18 July 2009 (UTC)

Thanks, and yes, I mostly do buildings, bridges and other items where copyright issues are rare, which of course does not detract from the importance of such issues for people whose interests lie elsewhere. And yes, though most of us come to Commons through the Wikipedias after being seasoned there, others with valuable ideas to contribute arrive as raw newbies, for example User talk:Zmorgan on whose questions I spent some time recently.

However, no, I do not propose a vigorous multiplication of Commons fora, nor an effort to discourage ignorant questions in this one, for the reasons you outline. A second reading of my question is likely to reveal a proposal for a modest change in the layout of this forum. Jim.henderson (talk) 19:02, 20 July 2009 (UTC)

I guess I did not understand your suggestion. You might make an example layout on a (or some) user subpage(s) to illustrate what you want to change. I recognize that the general layout of Commons seems to indicate an underlying assumption that Commons users will have first gained experienced on the various Wikipedias. However, a fair percentage of questions on the Help desk lack signatures, which might be an indicator of inexperience. We might expect the Help desk to get a disproportionate share of inexperienced users, as the experienced users can probably figure most things out by reading the friendly manuals and relying on their experience with the analogous features on the Wikipedias (such as categories, file licensing, etc.). --Teratornis (talk) 19:35, 20 July 2009 (UTC)

Nice to know that we agree, repeatedly, on the need to cater to newcomers and our only misunderstanding is on how to do it. On the theory that a simple thing may be more easily done than said I looked more carefully at the top of the page, thinking to make the change myself, and discovered the Template Commons:Help desk/Header which is semi-protected and somewhat complex to my uninitiated mind. However, the discussion box seems to be invoked by a subtemplate at the bottom, and I propose moving it toward the top. This would implement my proposal for, quoting myself above, "moving the entire discussion box to the top of the page, alongside the multiple language explanations". —Preceding unsigned comment added by Jim.henderson (talk • contribs) 15:44, 22 July 2009 (UTC)

You seem to refer to {{Discussion menu}} when you write "discussion box". I had no idea initially what you were talking about. It helps to refer to things by their exact names, since I suck at mind reading every day, and at thinking most days. As far as moving it goes, I'm not sure how much that would help. If people knew how to read instructions, they wouldn't need the Help desk, since very few questions on the Help desk break new conceptual ground. Most questions are rehashes of stuff that's already in the FAQ, in the manuals, or in the Help desk archive. Over on the English Wikipedia Help desk, there have been several waves of redesign of the instructions at the top of the page. The editing tends to go in a cycle: some helpers note that users are asking inappropriate or ill-posed questions, so they add more instructions. As questioners keep making the same mistakes, the helpers try to make the instructions more conspicuous, with larger fonts and louder colors. Then someone else comes along invoking w:WP:CREEP, and noting that "people are ignoring the instructions anyway", trims them back down. So the state of the instructions tends to be a function of where the page happens to be in its cycle, until the admins get tired of it and protect the header page. One factor that makes instructions hard to read is the short term memory overload of the typical new user. A person who is preoccupied with some problem that drove him or her to the Help desk may not have any spare attention with which to notice the instruction telling them to ask their question elsewhere. Something that might actually be useful is to display instructions above the edit window, where there is less clutter. See w:Wikipedia:Editnotice for information about how to do that. Incidentally, it seems from the lack of responses by other users that our little discussion here has rather narrow appeal. --Teratornis (talk) 02:01, 23 July 2009 (UTC)

Answering questions in a different language[edit]

Do other Help desk volunteers have an opinion about answering questions in a language different from the language the original questioner used to pose the question? With Google translate I can usually understand a question posed in German, French, Spanish, etc., when the technical content is familiar to me. However, I can only write in English. I don't use an automatic tool to translate my answer because I cannot guarantee the result will convey my meaning after the tool garbles it. I would rather defer to other Help desk volunteers who are fluent in those languages, but sometimes when I check the Help desk, a question has languished for some hours with no response. (Questions in some languages might never get an answer.) I'm wondering whether it is better to provide an answer in the "wrong" language quickly, or to let the questioner wait longer for an answer in the "right" language. Since the Commons seems to have a large English language bias overall, I assume most Commons users are somewhat comfortable with reading English if no other option is available. I assume that most people would rather get an answer quickly even if that means reading a different language. However, I do not wish to insult anyone. Comments? --Teratornis (talk) 17:05, 2 October 2009 (UTC)

Sure. Were someone to answer me in Spanish or French I would offer thanks in that language and indicate whether I needed translation. If in German or other languge I know not at all, I would simply ask for a translation. Sometimes one person may know the information and another know the languages. No need to feel insulted when everyone is trying to help. Jim.henderson (talk) 01:41, 4 October 2009 (UTC)

Archiving after 7 days?[edit]

The page isn't exactly short and people probably don't read older discussion, thus I'd reduce the archiving from 10 days to 7 days. -- User:Docu at 05:39, 2 July 2010 (UTC)

✓ Done -- User:Docu at 10:37, 3 July 2010 (UTC)
I undid it for now, as the bot didn't work at all. The template was broken. -- User:Docu at 10:50, 3 July 2010 (UTC)
It's finally working again, but 7 days is probably sufficient.  Docu  at 20:15, 4 July 2010 (UTC)

HelpDesk archives[edit]

A little cleanup of the archives will be done shortly. Please see Commons:Village_pump#HelpDesk_archives. Thanks! Rehman 14:57, 17 January 2011 (UTC)

"Users needing help"[edit]

Moved from Commons:Help desk —14:53, 31 January 2011 (UTC)

Hi. Just curious: does anyone ever check out this category? Some of the help requests there are several months old and have not been answered yet. Is it preferable for users to post their help requests at the help desk instead? (And if that's the case, should there perhaps be some sort of disclaimer on the {{helpme}} template that warns users that their {{helpme}} requests may not be answered for a very long time?) Thanks, BMRR (talk) 01:11, 31 January 2011 (UTC)

Category:User needing help - de is empty. Maybe we should include here at top of helpdesk a warning for every non-empty category like it was done by Leyo at the side bar of Commons:Forum here.
Maybe a template which produces a list of non-empty categories (could be included e.g. here at help desk) and which produces only the given language if the parameter language is set to a language. For example: {{User needing help|language=de}} could then be included at German Commons:Forum. Cheers --Saibo (Δ) 02:23, 31 January 2011 (UTC)
Maybe it's preferable if we direct users to this page instead. --  Docu  at 07:11, 31 January 2011 (UTC)
I have asked the creators of the template for the advantages of it. I do not see them.
Disadvantages: 1. Users can even have problems with copy'n'paste - so using the template is impossible. 2. Due to the system of using categories it always will take a bit longer than here.
However, for me, we can keep it and use it. If we have this kind of announcement I proposed the answers should also not take too long. Cheers --Saibo (Δ) 12:02, 31 January 2011 (UTC)

The purpose of the template can be seen here. If an (experienced) users discovers a question in a language (s)he does not speak, (s)he can advise people speaking this language by adding {{helpme|language code}}. --Leyo 13:07, 31 January 2011 (UTC)

Thanks Leyo! Okay - so it is intended that not the people who have a question add the template rather other people who see a question somewhere in no-man's land add it. I have tried something (bad template programming) - useful?

{{User:Saibo/Sandbox}}:

or {{User:Saibo/Sandbox|language=en}}:

Cheers --Saibo (Δ) 14:40, 31 January 2011 (UTC)

The scenario Leyo points out is the most common. Another one is in longer discussions (say, for example, a deletion request) and the uploader leaves a message in a language the nominator does not understand, the nominator may than add {{helpme|de|discussion}} (if the uploader was German). Someone who speaks German can regularly check out Category:User needing help - de and if he or she is interested and/or knowledgeable in File-related issues, the user can help out on the DR and prevent the DR from dieing to an "unknown" (ie. by translating or responding). Please see also Bot request. –Krinkletalk 14:48, 31 January 2011 (UTC)

Hi im a user need help im trying to delete an old pictures that is owned by me reason way its a militry photo that i took in the bast years and now the persons in this two picture want them removed they have changed there minds about having the picture displayed on the internet so who i can remove or delete the pictures.... thanks ArnoldMighty (talk) 15:13, 4 January 2013 (UTC)

Moving copyright discussions away from Commons talk:Licensing, possibly to Help Desk[edit]

Please see Commons:Village_pump/Proposals#Move_copyright_discussions_away_from_Commons_talk:Licensing. Rd232 (talk) 12:02, 26 June 2011 (UTC)

should we use {{resolved}}[edit]

Should the

Yes check.svg Resolved

template be used on the help desk for questions that have been satisfactorily answered? —Preceding unsigned comment added by Gauravjuvekar (talk • contribs) 2011-12-20T11:29:27‎ (UTC)

Should we use signatures? ;-) In fact I would instead like to change the archiving to Template:Autoarchive_resolved_section and use
{{section resolved|1=[[User:Saibo|Saibo]] ([[User talk:Saibo|<small>Δ</small>]]) 15:20, 20 December 2011 (UTC)}}
this instead. :-) We could also create Commons:Help desk/resolved module and place a green checkmark in it and some adjusted text for a better understanding by the persons asking for help.
This archiving mode would also prevent the archiving of still open questions. Cheers --Saibo (Δ) 15:20, 20 December 2011 (UTC)
Beware transcluding {{section resolved}} is not possible. So a template needs to be subst:ed In general, I would not shut-down Misza here. There are sometimes very strange question no one feels comfortable to answer. -- RE rillke questions? 15:30, 20 December 2011 (UTC)
The template should use {{must be substituted}} if that's the case. Is subst:ing essential for it? Rd232 (talk) 15:45, 20 December 2011 (UTC)
You can simply use {{section resolved}}. But this has no green arrow. Bot looks in the Wikitext for {{section resolved}} or {{resolved section}}. -- RE rillke questions? 16:06, 20 December 2011 (UTC)
Why should it be transcluded?! That is not needed (already used like this at Commons:Forum/resolved module). And, yes, Misza could continue to run (maybe just with a bit longer time than currently). --Saibo (Δ) 17:37, 20 December 2011 (UTC)
And what's the purpose of Commons:Forum/resolved module? -- RE rillke questions? 17:53, 20 December 2011 (UTC)
I do not why someone created it - but it is used if someone places the "resolved section" template on the Forum page. I have just created by simply embedding (so we keep all translations) {{resolved}} and {{Section resolved/standard module}} in Commons:Help_desk/resolved_module. See Commons:Help_desk#Categorisation_bot. The design is a bit awkward now - so simply putting both templates together is probably not the best. ;-) So just take this as demo. Cheers --Saibo (Δ) 19:58, 20 December 2011 (UTC)
Ooops. Missed that {{section resolved}} contained this functionality. Thanks for the explanation. -- RE rillke questions? 16:58, 21 December 2011 (UTC)

Well, to come back to the core issue: yes, I think we should use {{section resolved}} per Saibo. Rd232 (talk) 19:21, 21 December 2011 (UTC)

What do you think about the content? Should be changed to something more compact? - Archiving is currently "|algo = old(7d)". What about extending that to 10 days and setting up SpBot to 4 days? 4 days after tagging as resolved should give enough time to read an answer - or is this too short? We could also go longer - Help desk isn't that long. But it is good for a better overview to have resolved topics archived. What do you think? --Saibo (Δ) 20:19, 21 December 2011 (UTC)
The "resolved" tag should be on the same line as the "I think this discussion..." text. Those numbers seem fine. We might get more traffic if/when I get round to applying {{Help pages footer}} more widely, since that will link many more pages to the Help Desk. Rd232 (talk) 21:38, 21 December 2011 (UTC)
Traffic: Or if we include such a link like in template:uwlsubst in more problem tags. It seems quite to be accepted by users who really are interested in keeping the files here. Will tweak a bit on the design... --Saibo (Δ) 23:08, 21 December 2011 (UTC) Done (hope the wording is okay [French and Korean need a translation - currently they have the generic text]) - see e.g. Commons:Help_desk#Please_rename. If no one opposes I will change the licensing ~ tomorrow. Cheers --Saibo (Δ) 23:59, 21 December 2011 (UTC)
done. What about a shortcut for "section resolved" {{subst:r}}? There doesn't seem to be a shortcut available. What do you think? Is consuming such a nice, short template name approriate here? We do have such names usually for link templates like {{tl}}. As it would be substed for every use it is easily to switch this name over to another use in the future as there are never inclusions. --Saibo (Δ) 21:26, 22 December 2011 (UTC)
Rillke tweaked the styling a bit - thanks! That looks nice, I think. --Saibo (Δ) 22:57, 22 December 2011 (UTC)

Good point people for Commons to help new users?[edit]

Hi everyone. I'm looking to gather 1-3 contacts for Commons who would be interested in serving as point people for new editors from Wikipedia. I don't expect that it'll be too time consuming, but, just in case we have a new editor stop by the Teahouse who expresses interest in participating in media contributions and you can be friendly and welcome them and perhaps direct them to an area that might interest them. You're welcome to respond here, or even better, on my talk page if you're interested in being added to this list. Thanks :D SarahStierch (talk) 15:12, 1 March 2012 (UTC)

Hi Sarah, will or shall there also be a emphasis on women? --Martina talk 16:10, 1 March 2012 (UTC)
Hi Martina! Great question. Since the project is part of my fellowship, in a way, yes! You can learn a bit more at the Q&A we developed on meta about the project, here. (it's a quick read!) SarahStierch (talk) 17:38, 1 March 2012 (UTC)

Enabling Liquid Threads on this page[edit]

from Commons:Help desk
Should we ask to enable mw:Extension:LiquidThreads on Commons?

Benefits:

  • Automated signing of Comments
  • Easier arrangement of Comments

I am not sure about performance and "archiving".

Test it at mw:User talk:Rillke. -- RE rillke questions? 12:10, 22 June 2012 (UTC)

As from my experience with Liquid Threads on translatewiki.net (however several months ago), it still lack obvious things like preview of subject. Visual style was also out of sync with rest of MediaWiki. --EugeneZelenko (talk) 14:47, 22 June 2012 (UTC)
It might be good to test it someone but folk get so confused on Commons as it is. It needs to be used more widely (and accepted) before it hits a multilingual project for me. --Herby talk thyme 14:49, 22 June 2012 (UTC)
Please no. Strategy Wiki, where LT was enabled, was impossible to follow.--Ymblanter (talk) 17:49, 22 June 2012 (UTC)
But the current situation is also rather optimal. People uploading with the Wizard, then experience problems and then have difficulties asking for help. Then let's wait until LQTs 3.0 are ready to use. -- RE rillke questions? 18:37, 22 June 2012 (UTC)
Merits of LiquidThreads aside, I wouldn't enable it until/unless en.wiki and de.wiki have, since many people coming here will be familiar with one of those. --Philosopher Let us reason together. 19:10, 22 June 2012 (UTC)
My experience with LT is that it is more intuitive than editing a talk page. Also, our recruitment is not limited to just other WMF projects. --Bensin (talk) 23:55, 27 June 2012 (UTC)
Last time (about 9 months ago) I tested LQT it was FUBAR (and it already was above version 1). So, no, please not. LQT sucked. If it does not in the current version then the devs should not have labeled the previous versions more than version 0. --Saibo (Δ) 00:12, 23 June 2012 (UTC) Oh, and, imho this section belongs to the talk page. ---Saibo (Δ) 00:14, 23 June 2012 (UTC)
Yes it does, but who reads the talk page? -- RE rillke questions? 12:49, 23 June 2012 (UTC)
I think most people who help out here have the page on our watchlist, which means we also watch the talk page. That's just me extrapolating from my very scientific sample size of 1, though. :) LX (talk, contribs) 15:20, 23 June 2012 (UTC)
Make that a very unscientific 2.  ;-) --Philosopher Let us reason together. 05:33, 24 June 2012 (UTC)
Please, no! I've sometimes had to use the extension on other projects and it is horrible. --Stefan4 (talk) 19:24, 23 June 2012 (UTC)
Agreed. I still think we should follow en.wiki and de.wiki on this just for familiarity (which would mean "no" now, but maybe "yes" in the future). But if the decision comes down to the merits, I agree with Stefan. --Philosopher Let us reason together. 05:33, 24 June 2012 (UTC)
I don't think we have to wait for both WPs if the software is intuitive enough. (Meaning you don't need extra-knowledge to use (post, follow, maintain, ...) it). Since the VisualEditor will be pushed by WMF, I think we will experience more and more people who aren't aware of wiki-markup anyway. -- RE rillke questions? 07:49, 24 June 2012 (UTC)
"pushed"? Usually pushed things are not nice (I do not think I need to enumerate). If they have the visual editor they can use it on help desk - fine. ;-) Cheers --Saibo (Δ) 22:22, 27 June 2012 (UTC)

Find as you type[edit]

What about suggesting search results from the archives and Help:-namespace while the user types into the subject field? It would be also nice if we could get the user flagging their posts like "technical issue" or "copyright question" and perhaps apply a marker to them or ask additional questions. -- Rillke(q?) 09:37, 10 October 2012 (UTC)

Automated signature at COM:HD[edit]

Something that is easy to implement is an automated signature check before submitting (for new users [= all users who don't have a user group other than autoconfirmed]). If the signature is not detected, it will be added. Does someone oppose running a test? -- Rillke(q?) 15:43, 13 December 2012 (UTC)

On English Wikipedia, there is a bot, en:User:SineBot, which signs lots of posts automatically. It would be nice to have that bot on Commons. Automatic signatures are not only needed here, but also on other pages. However, any kind of automatic signatures would be useful. --Stefan4 (talk) 15:55, 13 December 2012 (UTC)
+1 Rd232 (talk) 15:48, 21 December 2012 (UTC)

Opinions about enabling Visual Editor at COM:HD[edit]

as soon as it is suitable for talk pages. -- Rillke(q?) 15:43, 13 December 2012 (UTC)

Commons:Upload help[edit]

To everyone helping out here, please consider putting Commons:Upload help on your watchlist and helping out there as well. Thanks, Rd232 (talk) 15:42, 21 December 2012 (UTC)

Uploaded Images[edit]

Moved to Commons:Help desk#Uploaded Images. This page is for discussions about the help desk. LX (talk, contribs) 13:54, 9 June 2013 (UTC)