Category talk:Commons photographers

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Would it be off limits to define PH-0 as "I know where the button is at the camera and that's it" and PH-1 as "Average skills and autofocus" (of course written in a more formal way). I'd probably belong to PH-1 then... --G®iffen 19:07, 11 April 2007 (UTC)

Proposal for a redefinition of photographer level[edit]

I find the definitions of the different skill levels somewhat arbitrary. Like what is a good camera and what is a good photo? The photos help to get an impression of what is required, but it is rather vague. Actually I do not think the level designation should have anything to do with the camera, only with the photos produced. Of course, it is an advantage to have a good camera as it greatly increases the chances for making nice photos.

Proposal 1: Simple rules, one new level, little emphasis on volume[edit]

I have the following proposal for a redefinition

  • {{User PH-0}}: Beginning photographer. Knows where the button is, and eager to learn more.
  • {{User PH-1}}: Intermediate photographer. Contributes with photographs which have value to the community in average technical quality.
  • {{User PH-2}}: Good photographer. Contributes occasionally with good quality photographs. The user has contributed with at least one quality image.
  • {{User PH-3}}: Advanced photographer. Contributes with good photographs of occasionally outstanding quality. The user has contributed with at least one featured picture.

I realize this lowers the bar a little as compared to common practise, especially for lvl 3. I therefore suggest, that a new higher level is defined for real experts

  • {{User PH-4}}: Expert photographer. Contributes photographs of outstanding quality and exceptional value to the community. The user has contributed with ten or more featured pictures.

The latter is equivalent to the level required to join the exclusive club at Commons:Meet our photographers.

The advantage of lowering the bar for existing levels is that most users will have an actual level with is equal to or exceeds the currently specified level. This means that some users can go up one level, which I think is encouraging (there will not be many complaining). Also for beginners, the hill to climb up is less. Getting 1 QI is acheivable if you listen to the advise and work on it, and so on.

On the page here the different levels could have an associated photo illustrating the photo quality required for each level - much like today but extended to include all levels.

-- Slaunger 06:37, 9 October 2007 (UTC). Slightly refrased. -- Slaunger 12:52, 9 October 2007 (UTC)

  • What an excellent proposal. I fully agree. --MichaelMaggs 12:34, 9 October 2007 (UTC)
    • Thank you. I have given it a few more iterations, I hope you still like it. -- Slaunger 13:26, 9 October 2007 (UTC)
  • For Ph-2 I would suggest 10 QI, not one. If they really are a good photographer that should be easy to get and would encourage more QI nomination (and thus more QIs). --Digon3 talk 14:49, 9 October 2007 (UTC)
    • Thank you for the feedback, Digon3. 10 QIs for PH-2 could be a good motivator, although perhaps five would be enough. My proposal of one QI is somewhat arbitrary. It has the advantage though that it is very easy to remember. Personally, I have <10 QIs and 2 FPs, which does not qualify me for PH-2 if it was not for the FPs, but qualifies for PH-3 due to the FPs, which is a little odd. Maybe the PH-3 level should have a an additional requirement of, say, 10 or 20 QIs besides a single FP? -- Slaunger 15:15, 9 October 2007 (UTC)
  • I would keep it simple, and avoid requiring complex combinations. Ph-2 = 5QIs seems best to me. 10 would be OK, but what would the extra 5 prove? Ph-3 = 1FP sounds OK, as actually that represents a significant technical step up from 5 QIs. --MichaelMaggs 17:47, 9 October 2007 (UTC)
    • Sorry, what is the 'technical' difference between QI and FP? FP now demands the technical qualities of QI images, plus something extra, the 'wow' factor, I do not see a 'technical' requirement difference. --Tony Wills 22:47, 10 October 2007 (UTC)
    For PH-2 1 QI is enough (if you've got the ability to take one, you can easily take 5 or 10). I would say >=10 QI + 1FP for PH-3, it parallels the >=10 FP for the next level. Dori - Talk 17:54, 9 October 2007 (UTC)
    Sounds reasonable to me. My only concern about the 1 QI requirement for PH-2 is the fast track review process at QI, which gives some kind of randomness - you can get lucky (unlucky really) and have a lousy photo promoted by a forgiving or inexperienced reviewer. However to get five through that way is unlikely, but it kills the simplicity in the rules as you correctly state. -- Slaunger 19:41, 9 October 2007 (UTC)
  • The whole idea looks nice but it won't probably work. Now, it is the users' responsability to use, or not to use, this kind of template in their pages. And, like with the babel language templates, it is left to them the choice of the most apropriate level. If this new template is approved, who will verify if it is correctly applied? And who will correct the users' pages when it is not? - Alvesgaspar 17:57, 9 October 2007 (UTC)
    • I do not envision that anybody should check it systematically. Just as nobody checks that you are actually as proficient in a given language as you specify in a babel box. I also do not see any danger of abuse. Especially the prestigious high level ones will be spotted immediately if a non-proficient photographer suddenly pops up in PH-3 or PH-4 user categories because the number of users in those categories are very limited. And if somebody puts a PH-2 on his user page wihtout having n QIs, I can live with that. I started this whole proposal because I thought of putting a PH-n on my user page, but I had no clear feeling of what the n should be and the existing definition on the category page are fuzzy. For me, the user boxes serves two purposes: As an informative one for other users and as a driver for my own goals. And with more clear cuts, the goals are less fuzzy. -- Slaunger 19:34, 9 October 2007 (UTC)
      • Agree, though one could envision having a periodic dump of users belonging in the PH-2 - PH-4 levels if there are objective qualifications. Dori - Talk 20:14, 9 October 2007 (UTC)
    • OK, you have my blessing ;-) - Alvesgaspar 20:26, 9 October 2007 (UTC)
  • very good idea. I will sign this proposal if i have to ;-) --Simonizer 16:31, 10 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Here is a contray view :
The existing ph system, like the babel box system, appears to have been designed to help people find a photographer. Hence the references to having a good camera (and hence the reason I never bothered to add a ph user box to my page, I do not have a very high quality camera (although some kind person added a ph category to my user page)). I saw it as a box to help people find someone to take pictures to illustrate articles etc. I am not sure how much it was used in this way though. The new proposed system simply seems to be a way of giving photographers a score based on how many recognised good photos they have provided. As far as providing incentive, does it really? Once you've got you 5, 10 QIs, FPs etc, do you just stop because you have reached the top?
I think we need to take a step back and first ask is this a tag to provide useful information to others or just another award to serve our egos :-) --Tony Wills 22:47, 10 October 2007 (UTC)
I think you are correct that the current ph system does not work very well as a help for others to find a photographer, which could be of help in taking photos of some needed subject. One of the reasons is that the ph designation is not enough. For example, if I was working on a wikipedia article on, say, trains in Belgium, and I needed a photographer for some train in Belgium, I would want to look for, say photographers of at least level two, located in Belgium, and capable of photographing trains. Since photographers user pages normally do not have information about their location and preferred subjects (an insect photographer in Belgium is perhaps not the best candidate for a train photographer after all) it is very tedious to find one as you would have to browse through all the user pages in the hope that there would be some indications of a location close to the subject and who is interested in and capable of doing it.
I still think the type of camera is formally irrelevant for the ph designation, as it is the photos contributed by that user which really matters. I too, do not have a very good camera, but by doing painstaking work in the digital darkroom stitching many photos together, I may still be able to contribute at a reasonable level.
So what is the purpose of the ph boxes? For me, they are two-fold. It gives an indication of what level one should communicate on with that user - for instance when it comes to discussing QI CRs or FPCs. Another purpose is as a recognision of the users skills as a photographer. We have of course the barn stars for that also, but these are handed out a little arbitrary IMO. It is different what drives users to contribute to the community. Some do it just because they like to contribute to a sympathetic idea, others are primarily driven by ambitious personal goal of wanting to acheive something, others somewhere in between. For the acheivers, I think the ph system is a valuable for helping to set those goals. If this also serves some users egos I do not have a problem with that, as along as it drives users to contribute.
What I like about my original proposal is the relative simplicity of the goals and that one level is identical to the bar needed for Commons:Meet our photographers. However, I think my original proposal has the drawback that the volume requirements are small such that you are not encouraged to use your skills to make a sizeable volume of high quality material. This is also the point, which has been raised by Digon3. Also our highly esteemed very best photographers has also reached the end of the hill with my original proposal. For them I would like to propose a final Master photographer level to strive for. This leads me to the following new proposal. -- Slaunger 08:36, 11 October 2007 (UTC)
I see that as the downfall: use awards for encouragement not a ranking system. After all, the numbers do speak for themselves, don't they? Why do you need to impose arbitrary limits to the ranking when the numbers do it for you? Cburnett 16:24, 21 October 2007 (UTC)

As I know by experience, it is interesting to have other use cases than the typical ones you attract by such a topic. Therefore my use case in a nutshell.

I used to be a "heavy" photoamateur with extensive equipment (6x9 cm film format, aspherical lenses, ...), specialised in candid, abstract and low light photography. Recently, I purchased a low/midrange digital camera (Sony H9) and I joined the commons with the intention to deliver encyclopedic photomaterial.

I started making series of photo's of buildings as I felt this was the biggest need. No "postcard" type of photographs, but more encyclopedic type of photo's. Not that I enjoy that particularly, but that seemed to correspond with the most pressing needs. I deliver 100 to 200 photo's per month.

So basically, the artistic quality of the photo's is (unfortunately) the least of my priorities, well behind the encyclopedic, documentational and productivity aspects. Currently, I don't want to spend my time on trying to get QI or FP awards, and frankly, I don't feel a need for obtaining a quality label (I am not overkeen on labels). So you could state that I am not "directly" concerned by this discussion.

On the other hand, as I am travelling quite a lot in my region, I am willing to make pictures of a specific object when there is a specific need as support for an article (after all, commons is a "server"). So my question is: how can I make my goodwill and capabilities known to the others without having to spend quite some time on QI or FP award circuitry. Don't get me wrong, I am not trying to get assignments as I see work for twenty years to come, I just want to help people if there is a real need, let's call it community work. --Foroa 09:48, 11 October 2007 (UTC)

  • Yes, you make a few good points, there are many good photographers (perhaps the majority) that do not participate in QI/FP, this proposed system would leave them out. So if it is just a recognition system, it needs to go further than counting QI/FPs. Another point is that FP candidates do not have to be self-created, so you need to do more than just count images. --Tony Wills 11:23, 11 October 2007 (UTC)
  • That was an interesting use case by a hard working Foroa. I certainly think the these kinds of contributions are very valuable for the community and I can understand the motivation for not wanting to go in the FPC/QIC circuitry. Again it empathizes that the PH system is probably not the best way to find a photographer to help out on a Wiki article. Concerning counting, yes, of course, an FP only counts if the user is the creator, which is not necessarily the same user as the nominator. I would like to stress that beeing a good photographer depends on other qualities than QI and FP counting, it is just the only measurands available as I see it, and much less fuzzy than beeing a good photographer.-- Slaunger 12:12, 11 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Another idea is that we combined proposal 1 and the system right now. The current system worked fine except for a few users who thought they were PH-3 when they had not even uploaded any pictures or obviously were not. I do not have time to expand on this now but the idea would be that you could say you were PH-3 without having any FP's or QI's, but if challenged or not obvious you would have to meet proposal 1 requirements. This way we could add the obviously great photographers who have not participated in any FP or QIs. Thoughts? --Digon3 talk 16:04, 21 October 2007 (UTC)
    • Honestly, what do you care whether someone adds an infobox saying he thinks he's a good photographer, and what's your motivation for "challenging" him? Do you feel good having it acknowledged that you're a better photographer than him? --Nattfodd 18:26, 21 October 2007 (UTC)

Proposal 2: More strict with emphasis on volume and two new levels[edit]

Another variant raising the bar a bit, with more focus on volume and with a new top-top level, which no-one fulfills...yet. Feel free to make it more concise and precise (I'm not native speaking) and adjust the numbers - they are a litte arbitrary. -- Slaunger 08:36, 11 October 2007 (UTC)

  • {{User PH-0}}: Beginning photographer. Knows where the button is, and eager to learn more. Has contributed with at least one photograph.
  • {{User PH-1}}: Intermediate photographer. Contributes with photographs which have value to the community in average technical quality. Has contributed with at least one Quality image
  • {{User PH-2}}: Good photographer. Contributes with a steady supply of good quality photographs. The user has contributed with at least five quality images.
  • {{User PH-3}}: Advanced photographer. Contributes with a steady supply of good photographs of occasionally outstanding quality. The user has contributed with at least one featured picture and ten Quality images.
  • {{User PH-4}}: Expert photographer. Contributes with a steady supply of photographs of outstanding quality and exceptional value to the community. The user has contributed with ten or more featured pictures and 100 or more Quality images.
  • {{User PH-5}}: Master photograper. Contributes massively with photos of flawless technical quality and exceptional value to the community. The user has contributed with at least one picture of the year, 100 Featured pictures, and 1000 Quality images.

I know that requiring one POTY for level 5 is a very hard requirement. Maybe it should not be there, but it would probably bring some extra attention to the forthcoming POTY elections. -- Slaunger 09:55, 11 October 2007 (UTC)

  • I sounds like you want to give recognition of a very specific thing, contribution of QI and FP images, so I suggest creating separate categories (and templates if you want), but leave the PH system as is. --Tony Wills 11:30, 11 October 2007 (UTC)
    • Recognition is actually not my primary intention. My primary purpose of my proposals is to get some objectiveness or clarity into the PH-n templates, and the only observables I could think of is the number of QIs and FPs. Today I am totally confused as to which of the categories I belong to due to the fuzzy definitions. The hard requirements could also be softened into guidelines or as examples of what makes you belong to which category. -- Slaunger 12:21, 11 October 2007 (UTC)

Indeed, you have to think carefully what you want to achieve with the label. And although I don't personally feel the need, I think that actions that provide some feedback on and recognition of the quality of the provided work can only improve the overall quality (Photographing and dumping images in a server is not a very awarding job). Personally, I would extend slightly the PH system to 5 or so levels with pure subjective levels that people chose themself, no need for a proof or counting. Such as level top to down: capability such as price winning professional, such as allround professional, advanced/talented amateur, 3--> 1 as currently defined (I hate the word amazing in the current definition). In parallel to that, I would set-up a more objective measurable system with QI, FP, (quality and volume don't go very well together) ...

Nothing would be easier than just define some new QI-n and FP-n templates to recognize acheivements regarding contributions of quality and featured pictures, but I'd rather not have it that way, as these primarily will be ego show-offs. Also I think it would contribute to pointless userbox spamming on user pages. IMO it should be possible to grasp a more objective PH-n definition which also includes at least a reference to capabilities which can be related to QI and FP photos without having to introduce seperate QI-n and FP-n templates. -- Slaunger 21:38, 12 October 2007 (UTC)
Very few people can hit two birds with one stone. Maybe one template with n parameters: ph-n, QI's, FP's, availability ? --Foroa 22:04, 12 October 2007 (UTC)
Maybe, although I do not have the fantasy to dig up a proposal. I guess I just prefer a one-parameter version.-- Slaunger 06:54, 13 October 2007 (UTC)

And finally, for a system that flags availability/willingness to do some picture taking jobs: I am searching for something (I am currently need something similar to announce availability to help in regional categorisation and translation). Suggestions more than welcome. --Foroa 12:49, 11 October 2007 (UTC)

I agree on that, but it is a seperate discussion IMO. -- Slaunger 21:38, 12 October 2007 (UTC)

Towards a conclusion?[edit]

Various view have been expressed, and I'm not sure there is real consensus, although several people seemed to like proposal 1 or a variant of it. Could we have a show of hands, with modifications where needed, to see where we are? --MichaelMaggs 21:44, 16 October 2007 (UTC)

Some people seem to prefer to keep the current ph-n definitions more or less unchanged. I have therefore added a proposal zero, which is to keep the ph-n system unchanged. I guess this proposal also covers the idea of keeping the PH-n system unchanged but supplement with independent QI-n and FP-n templates. If anyone supports that idea, please indicate if a supplementary QI-n/FP-n system is preferred as a parallel system. -- Slaunger 22:59, 16 October 2007 (UTC)

Proposal 0 - keep the existing system as is[edit]

  • Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose The current definitions are too fuzzy for my taste. And extending it with seperate QI-n/FP-n templates will only lead to ego-display template spamming of user pages. -- Slaunger 22:59, 16 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support Don't mix subjective labeling with measurable quality and performance labels. Don't leave hard working image providers that don't care about quality or performance factors (the majority I guess) in the cold. (Personally I dont care, it is the signal that counts) --Foroa 07:08, 17 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose per Slaunger. --MichaelMaggs 16:52, 17 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support Leave alone unless a wide mandidate is sought and gained from at least users of the ph-? system and preferably the wider commons population. --Tony Wills 21:26, 17 October 2007 (UTC)
    • Pictogram voting comment.svg Comment I agree with you that we should try to bring forth the opinions of more users in the PH-0 to PH-2 categories regarding this, such that it is not solely our top 0.1% photographes who vote here as it is not representative. I would hate if anyone feels my proposal is forced through behind the scenes without having an open discussion about it. I have tried to post notification about the discussion several times on the village pump, and I have dropped notes on talk pages of some users, which I know from previous edits might have an opinion about this. However, this is rather random and with only +1000 edits I'm not that familiar with possible stakeholders in the community. Therefore I urge everyone to spread the word about the vote such that we get a representative vote. Also we should keep the vote open for some time I think. It is no haste.-- Slaunger 06:37, 18 October 2007 (UTC)
A brief check of ph-3 users yesterday showed very few have been individually notified. --Tony Wills 10:34, 18 October 2007 (UTC)
Yes, only a few PH-3 users have been notified - it has been quite randow so far as I stated. However, PH-3's are already overrepresented in the vote, so we should rather focus on current users with PH-<3, which are more plentyful to get the wider opinion included in the vote as you state. I could drop a note randomly on some ph-1 and ph-2 user talk pages (10 each perhaps) and invite to vote to get a more representative opinion. Does that sound fair to you? -- Slaunger 10:45, 18 October 2007 (UTC)
Oh :-), as usual we think a little differently about these things, I have just notified all the ph-3 users on the basis that it affects them most and there is not all that many of them :-). (I also note there is now one ph-0 user :-). I am not too sure about the statistical validity of your suggested polling technique, but the more the merrier :-) --Tony Wills 11:10, 18 October 2007 (UTC)
Ahhh, and you are right that my suggested technique for widening the audience will not be representative either merely an improvement. And fine that you have notified all PH-3s. -- Slaunger 11:20, 18 October 2007 (UTC)
It is obvious that the smallest PH group on the top will be more inclined to increase the top level classification. I would be more concerned about the majority pack. Maybe the top 30 (excluding bots) of stats/top_uploaders.txt would show another dimension of the problem ?--Foroa 11:24, 18 October 2007 (UTC)
Yes, you are right. I just did a quick survey of 14 ph-2 users and it looks to me that the 'proposal 2' would demote every one that I looked at (none had 5QI) and only three had 1 or more QI. Mainly because most people do not participate in QI or FP. --Tony Wills 11:53, 18 October 2007 (UTC)
Hmm, perhaps someone should troll their images and nominate a few. Dori - Talk 01:02, 19 October 2007 (UTC)
To Foroa. I just checked out the top-ten non-bots on your list. Only one of those (Rama) has a PH user box already. Although your suggestion to ask the top-contributers in quantity is interesting I do not really see a point of involving users who does not seem to be interested from the very beginning. However feel free to contact them if you think I am wrong and you would like their opinion. -- Slaunger 12:36, 18 October 2007 (UTC)
You're right if you want to make it more elitarian, wrong if you want to involve more people. --Foroa 13:44, 18 October 2007 (UTC)
To Tony. Interesting observation about the PH-2 users. I will drop a note on 10+10 different and active PH-2 and PH-1 user pages (including Ramas). It will be interesting to hear their opinion about this. -- Slaunger 12:36, 18 October 2007 (UTC)
✓ Done I only selected users, who had contributions in October, as an indicator of activity. -- Slaunger 13:44, 18 October 2007 (UTC)
I think maybe you missed some. But this is fixed now I think. ++Lar: t/c 21:11, 27 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose per Slaunger. -- Lycaon 06:49, 18 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol neutral vote.svg Neutral While I agree that the current system is a bit fuzzy and maybe not detailed enough, I don't feel that linking it more closely with FP/QI figures would be a good idea, because it would increase competition (which is already a problem imho, see e.g. the QI comments on Image:Masked_owl_mask4441.jpg) and as Foroa pointed out, not everyone participates in QI/FP. So unless a convincing enough proposal is made with only a weak (at most) link to QI/FP figures is made, I vote for keeping the current system. --Nattfodd 13:09, 18 October 2007 (UTC)
    Just a quick comment on the competition aspect at QI. I think it is too far fetched to conclude that some reviewers oppose vote on that photo has got anything to do with competition. There is a speculation about it in the on-going CR, but to my mind that speculation is on very thin ice. Most probably it just reflects that different reviewers have different quality criteria and some day-to-day variances in their evaluations. The reviews are not an exact science. -- Slaunger 14:04, 18 October 2007 (UTC)
  • I support keeping the current boxes unchanged. If you wish to introduce new boxes that deal with QI and FP, go ahead but these are self labels and ought not to be changed by others. ++Lar: t/c 10:44, 25 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support ack Foroa. -- Bryan (talk to me) 11:25, 26 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support second choice... First choice is changing the wording a bit and the option of adding number of QI and FP. But I would be satisfied with keeping the system unchanged. FloNight♥♥♥ 12:48, 30 October 2007 (UTC)

Proposal 1[edit]

  • Symbol support vote.svg Support but with Ph-2 needing 5QIs. --MichaelMaggs 21:44, 16 October 2007 (UTC)
and I'd also Symbol support vote.svg Support Alvesgaspar's suggestion, below. --MichaelMaggs 16:51, 17 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support but with 5QI for Ph:2 and 3FP for PH:3. Also, to ascend to PH:n needs to qualify to PH:n-1. Alvesgaspar 22:38, 16 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support I am fine with Alvesgaspars proposal, which is somewhere between proposal 1 and 2. I'd also be fine with other intermediate proposals. -- Slaunger 22:59, 16 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support But with 5QI for Ph:2 and 2 FP and 20 (or so) QI for PH:3. It seems Proposal 1 is the most supported but we still need to work out the numbers--Digon3 talk 16:55, 17 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support but with 5QI for Ph:2 and 2FP for PH:3. One FP is a lucky shot, two not any more. Lycaon 20:45, 17 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support Ack Hans, how about 10 FP and 50 QI for Ph:4? Icons would be nice --Richard Bartz 20:50, 17 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Pictogram voting comment.svg Comment 5:QI for PH:2 and 1.5:FP, except discount sunsets by 30%, and insect pictures by 12%, count images that have both QI and FP tags as 1.33, give a bonus of 5 for people getting FPs using poor cameras and deduct same from people with good cameras but insufficient FP nominations ... ;-) --Tony Wills 21:23, 17 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support like Alvesgaspar: with 5QI for Ph:2 and 3FP for PH:3. --AngMoKio 11:07, 18 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support agree with Lycaon --Simonizer 12:28, 18 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Weak Symbol support vote.svg Support As long as this isn't enforced strictly and remains more like a guideline, it seems like a fine proposal. I just don't want the Ph:n rating to become one more way to show off and apply small labels to people. --Nattfodd 12:48, 18 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support It a good idea, and more measurable. But what will controling the using of templates? --Beyond silence 22.5px 13:42, 18 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support Commonly, lots of contributers will accept this proposal. If this proposal is applied to some Wikipedia Sites, there should be changed a lot. Rico Shen contact... 14:29, 18 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support with corrections as proposed by Digon3. -- MJJR 20:21, 18 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support Prop 1 or 2 doesn't matter to me as long as it's an objective measure (meaning a bot can figure out who belongs to which category, not that it's objective to get QIs or FPs). Dori - Talk 01:00, 19 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support agree with Lycaon --Lestat 08:26, 19 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support ditto. - Till 17:26, 19 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support agree with Lycaon --Hsuepfle 20:25, 19 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support as others --Orlovic (talk) 11:37, 20 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose changing the self selection and meaning of the current boxes. We don't test for language, after all. Introduce a new system if you like. Also I would not think this has consensus unless you've mentioned it in far wider places than you have so far. ++Lar: t/c 10:46, 25 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose 5:QI, Symbol neutral vote.svg Neutral about the proposal itself. -- Bryan (talk to me) 11:26, 26 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose a big change in the way that the current boxes are used. In addition to this system, I think introducing a new system of ranking based on QI and FP is fine. FloNight♥♥♥ 13:15, 30 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose for the record, in case it wasn't already obvious :-). Changing userboxes to something that is going to invite someone to 'police' its usage is asking for trouble. If there is no intention to 'police' it, then theres no point in defining criteria. Every new-comer here that has used user-boxes on any other wiki-project will reasonably expect to use it at will. --Tony Wills 12:14, 4 November 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose --Foroa 14:11, 4 November 2007 (UTC)

Proposal 2[edit]

  • Symbol support vote.svg Support Also ok with me to encourage quality and volume. In all circumstances I think it will be a good idea to introduce a master level PH-5 such that our very best photographers can have a yet unreached goal to pursue. It does not have to be the exact requirements proposed here, but just a very high bar, which can only be reached by very hard work of outstanding quality and value. -- Slaunger 22:59, 16 October 2007 (UTC)
    • Pictogram voting comment.svg Comment - What about finding that "one person" by election among the highest level ones (I'm not sure this is a serious proposal, probably not...) ? Alvesgaspar 23:14, 16 October 2007 (UTC)
      • Pictogram voting comment.svg Comment - I thought about something like that - I do not think voting would do though as you would have to do it continuously, right? Then I thought about simply stating that if a user has created more FPs than any other user this would qualify as PH-5. But on second thought I think this could have side-effects, which we do not want - like spoiling cooporation and trigger biased votings from competing users on FPC and such - or claims that they are biased. Then rather have a master level, which every expert photographer can strive for without competing directly against other users. -- Slaunger 23:26, 16 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Weak Symbol support vote.svg Support Why not. It would be a challenge, especially Ph:5--Richard Bartz 20:52, 17 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose for the record, in case it wasn't already obvious :-). Changing userboxes to something that is going to invite someone to 'police' its usage is asking for trouble. If there is no intention to 'police' it, then theres no point in defining criteria. Every new-comer here that has used user-boxes on any other wiki-project will reasonably expect to use it at will. --Tony Wills 12:15, 4 November 2007 (UTC)


  • I truely feel a rating system based on the number of QIs and FPs has no value to this community. From what I have seen here positive feedback from other members is the most effective encouragement for people to participate further and contribute more. Nominating other people's pictures for QI or FP will further our goals much more that an accounting exercise that is going to require ongoing monitoring to ensure it has any meaning (who is going to 'police' this system?, what moral right will they have to do that?). Seems like a make work scheme when there's already more than enough to do here :-) --Tony Wills 21:23, 17 October 2007 (UTC)
    Pictogram voting comment.svg Comment The proposals are not a substitute for positive feedback and encouragement from other users it is intended as a supplement. I agree with you that positive interaction with other users is probably the most vital motivator for a majority of users. However, some users (I admit I belong to them) are also motivated by personal goals, and to my mind the proposed PH-n definitions help define those goals. Concerning the police aspect I do not think we should worry too much about this unless we experience this is a real problem. I do not intend the system should be used as a ranking hammer for photographers. As Dori also states patrolling of higher levels (like lvl 3 and up) could be automated to some extend if we want to. For level two and below I do not think administrators and bots should go patrolling and spend resources. -- Slaunger 06:51, 18 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support But with less QI needed for Ph:5, more like 500 and no need of a POTY Benjamint 12:47, 18 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose I agree with Tony Wills, this proposal puts too much of an emphasis on sheer number of QI/FP. I would weakly support another kind of "award" based on the number of QI/FP, but leave Ph:n as a (semi) free way to tell how good of a photographer you think you are, independently of volume and bothering to nominate for QI/FP. As an aside, I find the required number of QI images to be a bit ridiculous in the high Ph. --Nattfodd 12:53, 18 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support It a good idea too, and more measurable than 0. May it's as good as 1. --Beyond silence 22.5px 13:43, 18 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support I think that it's too easy to be PH-2 and PH-3. I'm a beginner myself and already succeed the PH-2 if I consider the proposal #1. This one is more strict and serious. Acarpentier 14:40, 18 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support Prop 1 or 2 doesn't matter to me as long as it's an objective measure (meaning a bot can figure out who belongs to which category, not that it's objective to get QIs or FPs). Dori - Talk 01:01, 19 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose Ph-5 make no sense to me if virtually no-one can reach it. Would anyone capable of doing so really waste that much time submitting large numbers of images for QI status? --MichaelMaggs 18:42, 19 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose I think we already have the barnstars for quantity (and of course quality) and we should use ph-x only as a hint for other users that a user takes quality images. --Hsuepfle 20:28, 19 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support Pudelek 16:21, 20 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose changing the self selection and meaning of the current boxes. We don't test for language, after all. Introduce a new system if you like. ++Lar: t/c 10:47, 25 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose any changes that remove self selection as I do not think it will benefit the project to have a massive number of users be forced to participate in QI or FP in order to be classified. Volunteer participation in them is fine and should be encouraged. FloNight♥♥♥ 12:55, 30 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose Too far to the 'other' side.


Despite having contributed to en.wikpedia for near 3 years and uploading hundreds of pictures and drawings I had never heard of this category until today. Having skimmed the above I would like to propose an "anti-proposal".

Ability to take pictures ultimately has nothing to do with your equipment or what your "post count" is for quality or featured pictures. I, in fact, find forcing a relation between skill and # of anything absurd and missing the entire point of "skill". If you want ego stroking, just see Commons:Meet our photographers, which is based purely on a number.

If you want to truly recognize skill then it, by definition, is subjective and not quantifiable. This is the same issue of comparing programmers based purely on "number of lines of code" they produce.

So my proposal is the opposite of what is proposed here: purely self-evaluated based on personal perceived skill with the following guide:

  • ph-0 — literally pointing the camera and just hitting the button
  • ph-1 — understands basics to composure and adaptable to different scenarios; up to a very basic understanding of the technical ("how does aperture affect DOF?")
  • ph-2 — ability to take pictures with a desired composure, lighting, angle, etc. for any scenario; deeper understanding of the technical to wield them as desired
  • ph-3 — camera is "an extension of oneself"; can take pictures as desired "instinctively" with little active thought

This couldn't be any further away from any automated means of bot categorization of people. (I think that's a good thing.) Write a bot to compile a stats page if ranking people is what you really care about. Cburnett 06:24, 20 October 2007 (UTC)

Hello, I'm the former creator of this "Photo abilities category", I strongly agree with Cburnett, and I strongly oppose a categorization by the number of fearture images of an user. Photo abilities have nothing link to the number of your pictures feartured. Yug (talk) 06:26, 7 November 2007 (UTC)
Interesting thoughts and as I do prefer, much more subjective and far away from "competition". But it includes anyhow a ranking which is again defined by a specialist. I used to know very good ph-3 photographers (which I would call natural talents) that would hardly meet ph-1, let alone ph-2. --Foroa 06:58, 20 October 2007 (UTC)
Your ph-3 acquaintances certainly could know the technical without being able to verbalize it in technical terms: "I know a small aperture makes more of the subject in focus. Holding the shutter open longer makes fast things blurry." Etc. Creating PH-[0,1,2,3, etc.] by definition makes it a ranking but on the scale of skill, not arbitrary numbers (well, by my propsoal). Cburnett 18:39, 20 October 2007 (UTC)
  • I agree in principle, this anti-proposal is basically a refinement of what the ph-? system is now, the previous proposals are basically wanting to hi-jack a self assessed user-box system and replace it with an award system for no practical advantage to commons. Should we perhaps change the language user-boxes so that someone assesses (could perhaps be automated by a vocabulary comparison) peoples language abilities and awards them the appropriate language-user-box ??!. It would be more in keeping with current practices to create a number of photography barnstars that can be awarded by whatever means (automated, peers or self) and leave the ph-? system intact --Tony Wills 09:28, 20 October 2007 (UTC)
    • Why call this an anti-proposal? For me this is just as valid as a proposal as the other three current proposals. This one seems close to proposal 0, and maybe this anti-proposal could be incorporated in that proposal as a refinement of that one perhaps? I certainly do not agree with the conclusions drawn by any of you concerning my more quantitative proposals, but your opinions are just as valid as mine. As stated earlier I would really hate it if any of my proposals were carried out without having the majority of users interested in the templeates supporting it. Another option would be to compromise such that, for all except the highest levels the "requirements" in my proposal 1 and 2 are instead guidelines to equivalent capabilities. -- Slaunger 15:14, 20 October 2007 (UTC)
      • The current system (aka proposal 0) invokes equipment quality and is about image quality (not skill) and "fit for purpose" to use in articles. Proposal 1 invokes contributions and arbitrary numerical requirements. Proposal 2 takes 1 and gets ridiculous (1 POTY, 100 features, and 1000 quality!?). My "anti-proposal" is throwing all of that out to make it purely a self-subjective scale. Equating skill with # of anything doesn't mark your skill is a photographer. Leave awards and Commons:Meet our photographers for quantitative rankings and this to skill. Awards can put people in the same pigeon holes as the #1 & #2 proposals are trying to do. That's my "anti-proposal." Cburnett 18:39, 20 October 2007 (UTC)
        • OK. Thank you for clarifying that. So it's really an entirely different proposal. I get it. -- Slaunger 06:38, 21 October 2007 (UTC)

Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose I agree with you on the decoupling of the equipment (as proposal 1 and 2). The equipment is strictly speaking irrelevant although the chances for making really top-notch photos increase the better equipment you have (if you know how to use that fancy equipment). Your proposal very much focuses on the photographers awareness of what is a good composition and what is the relation between DOF and aperture for instance. I believe that what matters is the ability to produce good photographs. My original motivation for making new proposals was that I could not relate to current definitions and had no clue what I could put on my own user page. I guess with your proposal I would be equally confused. Like on my camera I do not have the option of adjusting the aperture manually. The aperture is controlled automatically by my camera. And although I do know vaguely that there is a relation between the aperture and the DOF it is not something I am that familiar with. According to your definition I would therefore be somewhere between ph-0 and ph-1 I guess? However, I do know that to make a sharp photo with a large DOF I need a fair amount of light and if the object is static and I keep the camera still and chose "long shutter" I have learned by experience that this gives a large DOF. This is of course because this makes the camera choose a small aperture behind the scenes, but I am not really that aware of it. If, on the other hand, I look at my products they seem to indicate they I am closer to ph-2 according to your definition despite my non-awareness of aperture. That is confusing for me and too fuzzy. -- Slaunger 19:47, 21 October 2007 (UTC)

This will surprise you: but I'm glad you "oppose". Why? You're voting for something that is not my propsoal.
You have inextricably linked photographical skill with quality imagery with "people on commons have voted your stuff as QI or FP". Having taken a quality image does not mean you are a good photographer. You can get lucky. Right time, right place. Etc.
My ranking is to reflect skill, not quality of imagery. Generally, they are linked but not always so. Take programming as an example. You can be an awesome programmer but the work you do may not be a "quality program" or a "featured program" because people who've taken a glance at it don't find it "pretty". Does not mean you have no skill to program. Another example: I have heard some very excellent singers who weren't multi-national touring millionaires, but humble "normal" people. Doesn't mean they have no singing talent because people don't ogle over them.
If all you care about is quality imagery, then stick with awards and such. Better yet, just go by the numbers. Someone with 20 FPs is a "better" photographer than one with zero. I think it's delusional and highly, highly misleading but whatever. If you want to rank skill then proposals #0, #1, or #2 don't cover it.
And if your oppose vote is because of how low of a ranking you'd get...then that's your personal issue. Get a camera that let's you have more control. Read some books. Experiment. Take 10,000s of pictures (extremely cheap with a digital). There are plenty of unique ways to enhance your photographical skills. As to your ranking as I quickly outlined above: can you compose a picture and have it turn out the way you want? All the time or just some times. Under drastic differing shooting scenarios or just in a few? It's purely subjective...that's the point! Where do you think you fit best? That's where you belong.
Let's assume, for a minute, that this ranking does get agreed upon to be reflective of your QI & FP contributions to the commons. I ask this: what has been gained? What does it matter to break people up into 4 groups when their precise ranking can be determined by the number of QIs & FPs they have? If you're looking for who knows how to take a picture then wouldn't you ask people that have the skill and knowledge of a good photographer or someone who doesn't necessarily know a thing about photography but has gotten lucky, been in the right place, etc.?
Let me rephrase my questions by using another field. If you wanted to learn from a teacher on how to teach, which would you better choose from?
  • A teacher who happened to have a lot geniuses for students.
  • A teacher who knows and understands methodologies for teaching a variety of students and can adapt their techniques based on the individual.
I'd have to go with the later.
If you want a teacher whose students have the highest GPA then make a list and calculate their exact ranking and pick from the top. Why confuse "teaching skill" when all you want is a teacher whose students have 4.0 GPAs? Cburnett 21:03, 21 October 2007 (UTC)
This is my general feeling as well, though I didn't manage to say it that nicely. --Nattfodd 22:23, 21 October 2007 (UTC)
Thank you for commenting on my oppose vote. My main reason for opposing is - as you state - that I should use the template which I think fits best. As stated for me it could be anywhere between 0 and 2 if I cross read your proposal with my own view of my capabilites. Since this leaves me very much in doubt I would rather abstain from putting any designation as I would have no meaning for me. I am incapable of relating to a subjective feeling of thinking that I belong to a certaing category. It makes me feel uneasy and I rather like to know what is the best match. It probably reflects a flaw in my personality and is probably a side-effect of a long education in the exact sciences. As to the speculation whether I oppose because your proposal would give me a low rank, the answer is no. I do not care how I am ranked relative to other users. It is just a means for me to set personal goals. Getting to the next level is a personal driver for me I must admit, and I cannot see that is wrong as long as it helps getting more and good quality contributions to Commons. I am relieved to see that may other users who are interested in the templates somehow also thinks it is a good idea to make the definitions less fuzzy. And then we just have opposite views on what makes your a good photographer. You argue that it is centered about the skills of the photographer, whereas I believe this is most objectively revealed by assesing the photos the photographer produce and upload. I believe both are valid view points and I certainly respect yours. Oh, and btw, I'd love to get better equipment, it just has a too low WAF (Wife Acceptance Factor). -- Slaunger 10:10, 22 October 2007 (UTC)
Again I reiterate, these proposals are trying to turn a user-info-box (and associated categories) into a rating system for the few people who participate in QI and FP. I have no great objection to such a system, but there is clearly a huge problem with taking over an existing system for our own purposes --Tony Wills 11:43, 22 October 2007 (UTC)
I'm an engineer by education, a medical doctor by academic desire/goal, and a software developer by pay check, so you're not going to "win me over" by sympathizing for "exact sciences" education... Again I ask about why awards and Commons:Meet our photographers are not sufficient for ranking that you have to "take over" (Tony's words) this category. You have a problem with skill ranking so stick to awards and barn stars and all that flashy "flare" if that's what drives you... Cburnett 13:13, 22 October 2007 (UTC)
I stated that I respect your opinion and views, didn't I? So give me a break, we disagree and there is nothing wrong with that. Different people have different views and different values. If not, the world would be very boring. - Slaunger 17:55, 22 October 2007 (UTC)
I fail to see how you can reach a compromise with diametrically opposed views. If you want a totally objective ranking then count their contributions. It's that simple. Why confuse it with anything resembling "skill"? I don't care how much you respect my view because I'm asking a fairly simple question that has yet to be answered. I'll restate it: you have awards, you have nice stats, and you have the "meet our photographers" page so why bother confusing all those objective means with anything resembling skill? Cburnett 23:38, 22 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Let me support your point of view, Slaunger, though I cannot fully participate in a sophisticated discussion like this, for English is not my mother language. Me too, I have had a long education in the exact sciences but I do not feel that was the cause of any flaw in my personality. If we want to categorize something and wish that categorization to be meaningful and useful to others, better be objective in the way we do it. Someone once wrote (Robert Heinlein?) that if something cannot be put into numbers, than it is not Science but just an opinion. I wouldn't go so far in the present issue, but the obvious way to categorize a photographer (or an artist, or a scientist, or a teacher...) is through his work. Please forgive me if I don't sympathize at all with most of the post-modern "fuzzy" ideas. Alvesgaspar 11:07, 22 October 2007 (UTC)
    • You cannot distinguish lucky from skilled based on his/her work. Cburnett 13:13, 22 October 2007 (UTC)
      • You can get lucky once or even twice, but then that's where the proposal 1 kicks in. Skilled photographers don't need luck. Lycaon 13:24, 22 October 2007 (UTC)
        • According to proposal 1, luck makes you an "advanced photographer" and a fifth of the way to being an "expert." Yes, an EXPERT. I wish luck worked that far in real life: I'd be a fifth of an expert in quantum chromodynamics and have a fifth of a Nobel!

          Skill beget quality. Quality begets awards & ego. However, luck begets quality. Why confound skill with luck when all you really care is quality of contributions??? Cburnett 23:38, 22 October 2007 (UTC)

Running in circles - (re)definition of the goal of the Ph-n[edit]

We keep stating the same, over and over again.

I suggest that we first make an agreement of the objectives of the Ph-n system. Once we agree on this, we can discuss how we reach the objectives.

I start with my perception to get the definition started. Feel free to correct/complete.--Foroa 12:36, 22 October 2007 (UTC)

Original objective of the Ph-n system
Allow each photographer to annouce his feeling on what photographer scale in terms of skills/capacity he classifies himself

New objectives
1. Expand the original scale to have a finer granularity
2. Provide a measurable way of validating the photographer's (subjective) claims
3. Allow for competition/quality ranking of photographers
I agree for 1 and bits of 2, but do we really want/need 3? I'm not sure more competition is what commons need. --Nattfodd 13:03, 22 October 2007 (UTC)

Time for a compromise?[edit]

Clearly the debate has polarized recently. If I should try to summarize there is a majority of users visiting this talk page who are in favor of some kind of objectiveness/clarification of current levels. There may be some slightly different opninions regarding the photo count but by and large we have relatively well-defined group there. Can we agree so far? Then we have a handfull of users who more or less strongly oppose the quantitativeness in proposal 1 and 2 for various reasons. I think it would be best to make a compromise where we seek a solution which tries to bridge the gap between these two sets of opinions. The current opposers could perhaps recognize that a large group of users would like more objectivity in the levels and the promotors should perhaps acknowledge the concerns pointed out by the opposers. As I see it the points raised are

Opposers view[edit]

(Fill me in here opposers, you are better at opposing than me ;-) )

  1. The proposals want to replace a qualitative system with a quantitative system.
  2. Because it is a quantitative system people will have to contribute a large number of images (up to 100 for some versions) to prove their true ability, submitting "a few photos" is not enough.
  3. Having QI/FP counts as a measure of photographers skill is unbalanced - it does not give a complete picture
  4. People uninterested in QI/FP but just producing good photos are going to be denied the usage of an existing user-info-box. The proposals mean they can no longer display their self assessed ability on their user page with a standard user-box.
  5. Having hard requirements will encourage ranking hammering. This spoils cooperation and triggers an unfriendly environment.
  6. It is equivalent to QI/FP counting. Why not just have barn-star type awards or other templates for image counting instead?
  7. By changing the definitions we change the meaning of user templates on existing user pages which many users will be unaware of.
  8. Most users of the existing system appear to have had no problem with the definitions, have not asked for a change, have not been notified of possible changes, nor told they may be 'demoted'.
  9. It will take valuable resources to check and patrol the user templates. Resources are already sparse and should be used elsewhere.

Supporters view[edit]

  1. The existing ph- system has too fuzzy definitions. We need objective measurements to figure out how good the photographer is. Currently, the number of created quality images and featured pictures are the most objective quality measures we have, so let's use them.
  2. If a good photographer has chosen not to nominate any of his/her own contributions yet, then do it. If the user is so good it should be no problem demonstrating that by nominating a few photos.
  3. The hard requirements helps defining personal goals. It is a driver for contributing good photos for quite some users.
  4. It should be possible to have a single system witout introducing further photo counting systems, which will only lead to template spamming on user pages.

I think both groups have some good points. I would therefore like to suggest a compromise proposal in an attempt to somewhat bridge the gap between these opposing views.

Compromise proposal[edit]

  • {{User PH-0}}: Beginning photographer. Knows where the button is, and eager to learn more.
  • {{User PH-1}}: Intermediate (Is Novice a better word?) photographer. Capable of contributing valuable photos to the community in average technical quality.
  • {{User PH-2}}: Good photographer. Capable of contributing photos of good value to the Community. Occasionally the photographic quality is of the same standard as a quality image.
  • {{User PH-3}}: Advanced photographer. Capable of repeatably contributing photos with qualities equivalent to a quality images. Occasionally the photographic quality is of the same standard as a featured picture.
  • {{User PH-4}}: Expert photographer. Capable of repeteably contributing photographs of outstanding quality equivalent to a featured picture.

(Feel free to improve on the written descriptions, I am not a native writer)

This proposal takes away the requirement aspect and allows users who has chosen not to be part of the QI/FP system to use the user boxes as well. For the users seeking objectiveness, there are at least some pretty good hints to quatitative equivalent measurements.

Furthermore, I would suggest that the user boxes are not checked at all. No patrolling, we ranking hammers from other users stating that they are better. Any user just puts on whatever he/she wants just as the babel system.

For those seeking a more quantitative system a parallel QI/FP template system can be set up. -- Slaunger 15:36, 22 October 2007 (UTC)

  • Symbol support vote.svg Support I like proposal 1 or 2 better, but if a compromise can help fill the gap I am in. -- Slaunger 15:36, 22 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Strong Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose - This kind of politically correct solution actually kills the objectiveness of the initial proposal. There is only one way to assess the capability of a photographer, which is through the evaluation of his work. If we think that some excellent author is not interested in participating in COM:FPC or COM:QIC, we can always nominate his pictures. - Alvesgaspar 16:40, 22 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Strong Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose - Fully agree with Alvesgaspar. Lycaon 16:49, 22 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Pictogram voting comment.svg Comment Ok, I get it. So much for diplomacy... I think I will abstain from making further "wize" proposals about this from now on. -- Slaunger 17:58, 22 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support This is a clarification of the ph-? levels, and fits with the way userboxes are used in all other instances eg Category:Graphics_abilities.
  • Pictogram voting comment.svg Comment I do not think any consensus can be reached about taking over the ph-? userboxes. I do not have any problem with a new system recognising a members contributions (the proposals recognise contributions not abilities), and I do not have any preference about its form (userbox type ratings or barnstar type awards etc), but note it is more like a barnstar in that it is awarded by the members peers. --Tony Wills 08:17, 23 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support Seems like a fine way to describe how one perceives his own photographic skill (which is what Ph is about, at least in my mind). And also opens the way to another kind of award/infobox based on the number of FP/QI, so that everyone would be happy. --Nattfodd 08:53, 23 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Pictogram voting comment.svg Comment Indeed: perceives. In other words, perception, subjective, fuzzy and in the end of no use at all. Lycaon 09:20, 23 October 2007 (UTC)
    • Pictogram voting comment.svg Comment Why would perception be of no use at all? Especially when the alternative depends on the number of FP/QI images, which themselves are selected from the subjective appreciation of voters... If you can find an objective metric of an image, then your criticism would make sense, but I fear it's either impossible or so hard that a couple of millenia of art critic haven't discovered it yet. The other "scientific" solutions proposed here just push the subjectiveness a bit out of sight, but don't remove it by any means. Besides, I think the real question one should ask is what use should the Ph box have? --Nattfodd 09:51, 23 October 2007 (UTC)
      • Maybe I should have put self-perception is of no use. I agree that proposal 1 will never be completely objective, but the voice of several voters smooths out the subjectiveness at least. If it was one person dictating promotion or delisting, I'd say it was as subjective as a pure self-perceived quotation. With the mix of voters deciding on the fate of photographs, objectiveness starts sneaking in and this peer reviewed recognition surely is better than pure perception. Lycaon 10:07, 23 October 2007 (UTC)
        • Then once again, we hit the problem of which use we want for the Ph box. Is it (as it is currently used today) "this is how good I think my photography skills are" or (as some would want it to be) "this is how good others have judged my photo skills to be"? The answer much depends on why we want to judge photo skills in the first place. Is it to help people finding good photographers when they have special assignments? Is it to introduce some kind of competition emulation between the members? Is it simply to flatter one's ego? And perhaps more importantly, why can't we have both kinds of boxes? --Nattfodd 10:21, 23 October 2007 (UTC)
          • As I stated before, the PH-* template could have the number of obtained QI and FP's as second and third parameter. The box would then display those numbers if any. --Foroa 11:46, 23 October 2007 (UTC)
            • Although that proposal does not make me cheer wildly I think that is an acceptable idea (with the purpose to bridge a gap of opinions and seek the widest consensus possible). -- Slaunger 12:13, 23 October 2007 (UTC)

Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose Agree with Alvesgaspar and Lycaon. We have no better and objective way of determining skill than by the fact that the users is able to obtain QI and FP promotions. Let's use that objectiveness as far as we are able, but without demanding very large numbers since that would test not skill but patience and a willingness to nominate. Anyone able to obtain say 5 or 10 FPs has demonstrated to my satisfaction that they have skill not just luck. --MichaelMaggs 12:23, 23 October 2007 (UTC)

  • Symbol support vote.svg Support --Foroa 11:39, 30 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support, it might be useful to mention QI or FP to help users choose their level, but I don't like the idea to use them for strict numerical requirements. /Ö 11:58, 30 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support per my comments below. FloNight♥♥♥ 12:12, 30 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support Hello, I'm the former creator of this "Photo abilities category", I strongly oppose a categorization by the number of fearture images of an user. Photo abilities have nothing link to the number of your pictures feartured. The current Compromise proposal is in the continuation of my former analyse : do our best to evaluate the level of photographers, but keep the door widely open to new skilled photographers or to those who don't care to be feartured.
Add clearly the rules that others users may change the level if an user who make beautifull photos but just stated himself PH-1 may be welcome. Yug (talk) 06:33, 7 November 2007 (UTC)

Time to decide[edit]

  • I think it is time to reach a conclusion. The results of the polls are the following, not considering "strong" and "weak" votes (please read "approve - neutral - oppose"):
    • Proposal 0 (present system): 2 - 1 - 2
    • Proposal 1 (4 categories): 17 - 0 - 0
    • Proposal 2 (5 categories): 7 - 0 - 3
    • Proposal 3 (anti-proposal): 1 - 0 - 1
    • Proposal 4 (compromise): 3 - 0 - 3
  • Since we have a clear winner, what we should do now is to precise the details of Proposal 1 before carrying out the decision. Here is my interpretation of the consensus (my opinion is that the # of QI should also increase):
    • PH:1 - no conditions
    • PH:2 - 5 QI
    • PH:3 - > 5 QI + 2 FP
    • PH:4 - >> 5 QI + 10 FP
  • Let's put the idea to work? - Alvesgaspar 13:27, 23 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Pictogram voting comment.svg Comment 8 people agreed with Lycaons idea of PH:3 - larger amount of QI + 2 FP, while three have agreed with 3 FPs. The rest have not specified. I think we still need to agree on the numbers. --Digon3 talk 13:37, 23 October 2007 (UTC)
    • You're right, I have changed the list above - Alvesgaspar 13:51, 23 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Pictogram voting comment.svg Comment In principle I think we are concluding a little fast since the last proposals were only proposed very recently. However, it seems likely this will be the result although I regret that we have not addressed the concerns of the opposers more. So, assuming this is the final result I agree with Digon as to the conclusion regarding the number of FPs.
With respect to the QIs I had a brief look at how many are promoted each month. It seems like currently about 70 QIs and about 30 FPs are promoted each month (correct me if i am wrong). This would call for a ratio of the order two between for #QI/#FP. I therefore suggest the limit should be 5 QI for PH-3 and 25 QI for PH-4.
There are a few more things we need to settle. Like what if you get below the limit because an FP is delisted? I would suggest that you cannot be derated again. The FP limits should be met when climbing up a level. Once that level is reached you do not go down again just because one of your FPs are delisted.
We also need good example photos equivalent to each level.
We need to settle on a single sentence to put on the template. The full description is what you get when you click the link.
Richard had a request for good icons. Any suggestions? -- Slaunger 17:26, 23 October 2007 (UTC)
  • I don't feel strongly enough about the numbers to argue the point. Alvesgaspar's interpretation seems fine. --MichaelMaggs 18:46, 23 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Actually drawing any conclusions on this is way premature. I oppose implementation of this without a much broader and clearer consensus. No other ranking boxes I know of on any WMF wiki are externally imposed, they are all self selected. Introduce a new system for QI and FP if you want but leave these alone please. The way this is being done seems somewhat like a relatively small self selected group trying to impose something on thousands of users that have not even been made aware of this discussion. ++Lar: t/c 11:02, 25 October 2007 (UTC)


Unless I'm mistaken this discussion lasted only a few weeks.I think this discussion was too short for a decision that is going to effect a large number of users. I understand your eagerness to fix a perceived problem but the low level of participation might mean that most people did not think that a problem exists. Since Commons is often not the home wiki, many users visit here less frequently but are but are an important part of the Community. I was checking the the various comments and the discussion but had not made up my mind yet about which change if any would best benefit the Community. I suspect that I'm not the only person that is interested in participating and feel the decision is being rushed. I don't mean to criticize your enthusiasm and work here but I wanted to let you know my thought. Take care, FloNight♥♥♥ 19:42, 23 October 2007 (UTC)

I also feel a bit cheated. I voted for proposal 1 before the counter-proposition and compromise solutions were here, and I am pondering about changing my vote now. I don't see the need to rush things like this. --Nattfodd 20:40, 23 October 2007 (UTC)
Hi Flo. I agree we are rushing things faster than we need to. Two weeks more does not make a big difference. I guess the only reason you found this discussion anyway was because I added a note on your talk page about it. You were one of the 10 current PH-2 users I picked at random with a notification to widen up the diversity in the users participating in the discussion. But do spread the word and do not consider the vote as closed. Your opinion - nomatter what it is is appreciated. -- Slaunger 21:06, 23 October 2007 (UTC)
Thanks for inviting me to the discussion. :) I think more discussion is needed to try and reach a conclusion that most people feel addresses their concerns. Key is more discussion about having these be user selected categories versus requiring people to to submit proof of their abilities to use them. I fear if these changes are made then there is going to be decline is use of the boxes. I do not think that is a Good Thing. Maybe we could tighten up the wording about the different levels a bit (not adding requirements but making more clear the skill level and quality of the photos that most users in the cat have), add a place for putting the number of FP/QI a user has, and then notify users to examine their selection to make sure it reflects the reworded categories. I see this as a compromise between doing nothing and requiring folks to change their level (which is going to happen with the proposed changes.) Thoughts? FloNight♥♥♥ 18:34, 25 October 2007 (UTC)
I think it is good thoughts and a fair compromise. You just need to make it less abstract. Especially about tightening up the current formulations such that they are clearer. I am done with making more wize proposals (I've run out of energy making proposals - three now, and every time a lot of problems). A proposal where I would not be in doubt as to which category I belong to would qualify for me. -- Slaunger 18:47, 25 October 2007 (UTC)
I'll take a stab at tweaking the wording of the current levels. Look for it tomorrow. FloNight♥♥♥ 23:45, 28 October 2007 (UTC)
I agree that the period of consideration was too short. I share the worry of some above that this proposal is potentially divisive in that some who are currently using PH will have their rating deflated, with no clear benefits to Commons. I think Pftdayelise's proposal hits the mark, to leave PH as it is, but to add, "templates like {{|FP|3}} 'this user has 3 FPs' and likewise for QI".[1] That leaves readers free to make whatever they will of that information. Walter Siegmund (talk) 17:04, 24 October 2007 (UTC)

We need better photographies on white background...[edit]

...and a better coordination between Photographers and Wikigraphists. It may be need to make adversing in this following way :

Yug - 12:44, 28 October 2007 (UTC)


Trying to reach consensus, I suggest that we adopt the Category talk:Commons photographers#Compromise proposal wording making it clear that it is a self selected category. Also, I think including a place for users to put the number of FP/QI adds valuable information and I have no problem with including it in the same template as long as it is not a requirement. After we make the changes, I think we should notify the folks using the boxes and ask them to re-evaluate their level based on the new wording. I'm open to other suggested wording as long as the boxes remain self selected. Thoughts? FloNight♥♥♥ 10:50, 30 October 2007 (UTC)

  • But that proposal has already been done and was rejected by most! Many times I have been told that Wikimedia is not a democracy. Fine, but at least there should be some rational way of reaching a decision. - Alvesgaspar 11:19, 30 October 2007 (UTC)
    Pictogram voting comment.svg CommentThree supporting (four including Flo) and three opposing so far. That is strictly speaking not equivalent to "rejected by most". -- Slaunger 11:25, 30 October 2007 (UTC)
    Pictogram voting comment.svg Comment Yes, it is, because the proposal is mutually exclusive with all the others. If there is one proposal (proposal one) which has a clear preference from the (interested) users, then that proposal wins and the other are rejected. It is OK if there is a significant number of users who think it should be given more time to the poll (is there really?). It is not OK trying to forget what happened until now - Alvesgaspar 14:05, 30 October 2007 (UTC)
    Exactly, the proposals are mutually excluse and the fact that a total of 19 users has voted something for proposal 1 and a total of (right now) 9 users has voted something for the compromise proposal is a clear indicator for me that a lot of the proposal 1 voters has not discovered the compromise proposal nor has considered the concerns raised by the opposers of the original proposals, which could make some users change their mind. And no, we should not forget what happened until now, we are not trying to do that, just trying to get the widest possible inputs of PH user box users and get the widest possible consensus oriented solution. -- Slaunger 14:43, 30 October 2007 (UTC)
    Alvesgaspar, based on more feedback that the levels should remain user selected, I hope that this compromise wording will be reconsidered by you and the others that opposed it. FloNight♥♥♥ 11:31, 30 October 2007 (UTC)
    Flo, to keep the list of supporters/opposers updated for the different proposal, it would be helpful if you explicitly voted on the proposal you favour. Also, if there are proposals you oppose, place an oppose vote on them. Thank you.-- Slaunger 11:40, 30 October 2007 (UTC)
  • One problem with "the vote" for proposal-1 is that a large number of the voters specified variations of the criteria etc and basically changed it into proposal-2 but with less levels. I think the original proposal is much nearer the mark. One suggestion that came up in my discussions with various people is to have a self-selecting qualatative user-box system but with an additional endorsement feature (QI tick or some other symbol) that is added to the box to say this user has demonstrated their ability to whatever arbitary standard we decide. So anyone can claim whatever level of expertise they see fit, but "we" control some quality mark that says "we" agree that they have reached that standard. (could be controlled by a template parameter like "verified=yes" or "demonstrated=3" or some such). This avoids demoting anyone and having to police the use of userboxes (which is a non-starter). --Tony Wills 12:04, 4 November 2007 (UTC)
    I think that is a good idea. -- Slaunger 09:14, 8 November 2007 (UTC)
  • for example:
{{User PH-3}}
  • {{User:Tony_Wills/sandbox|demonstrated=yes}}
{{User PH-3|demonstrated=yes}}
But we would use a symbol we create specifically for this, so that people can click on it to find out what the endorsement means --Tony Wills 11:27, 8 November 2007 (UTC)
  • Why don't we keep the 'box' more or less as is, with the only addition that this is a self perceived assessment, but change the ph category system reflecting the actual contributions (i.e. QI and FP)? Lycaon 08:03, 7 November 2007 (UTC)
    Lycaon, I did not really understand that suggestion. Could you try to be a little more specific about what you have in mind concerning changing the ph category system such that it reflects the actual contributions? -- Slaunger 09:14, 8 November 2007 (UTC)
    I think he is basically suggesting that we separate the userboxes from the categories, so they can declare whatever they like on their pages but the categories Category:User PH-1 etc are not part of the userbox template. We then set the categories based on QI/FP numbers as per proposals above. --Tony Wills 10:47, 8 November 2007 (UTC)
    That was more or less the idea, yes. :-). Lycaon 13:45, 8 November 2007 (UTC)
    Ah, yes, I get it. Hmmmm... but that means there will be no category where you can find all self-perceived photographers. Am I right? Is that not a drawback? As I see it Lycaons suggestion is equivalent to seperating the existing user box from an objective measurement. Two parallel systems. Would this be any different from having seperate user boxes for the quantitatively assessed image counts? Just trying to understand... -- Slaunger 11:04, 8 November 2007 (UTC)

I think we a getting some good ideas that can morph into a consensus decision if we keep talking. Some key ideas expressed are: A) for the boxes to be self-selected so no policing needs to happen and B) for something objective to be added so that the quality of the photographer can be better accessed (for people looking for someone to make images for them among other reasons.) Some of the suggestions address both concerns, I think. How can we fine-tune them to make them work. Ideas? FloNight♥♥♥ 13:42, 8 November 2007 (UTC)

As I stated in the very beginning of the discussion: just replace the checkbox in the template with the quantity of QI and FP's, so there is no discussion on levels, tresholds, control, policy .... --Foroa 15:50, 8 November 2007 (UTC)
If we had an automatically updated parameter that might be useful, but for some those parameters would have to be manually updated at least every week (if not every day ;-) :-). But I have no great objection to the idea. --Tony Wills 11:36, 14 November 2007 (UTC)

Self-perceived template proposal with an optional quantitative confirmation argument[edit]

In the continued re-iterations of these proposals and inspired by Tonys suggestion, I have created the following proposed templates, which could replace the existing templates. See my sandbox for links to the proposed templates. It is the first time I have tried to make templates so please be indulgent if they are not top-notch. I just hope you get the idea... If nothing is done actively, the templates continue to be self-perceived. This means that all current users of the template will not be demoted in any way. The only thing which I have done is to change the wording so that it is in correspondence with proposal 1 and the compromise proposal, which has gained wide acceptance except for the quantitative requirements. I have changed the colurs for level 2 and 3 to something which I hope you can see resemble bronze and silver colour. The new fourth level is gold coloured (I hope). With no additional parameters the templates look like this.

Proposal 0 - what we have now[edit]

Just for reference...


Self-perceived proposal 1[edit]

What the existing templates will become if no change is made on a user page...

PH-0 This user is interested in learning photography.
PH-1 This user is a novice photographer.
PH-2 This user is a good photographer.
PH-3 This user is an advanced photographer.
PH-4 This user is an expert photographer.

Is this acceptable for the self-perceived users? With this proposal these users are asscociated with the normal PH-n categories unless the nocat parameter is used.

Proposal 1 - quantitatively confirmed[edit]

Using an additional confirmed argument (and setting it to any value) in the template will lead to an extra line being displayed for the PH-2, PH-3, and PH-4 templates:

PH-0 This user is interested in learning photography.
PH-1 This user is a novice photographer.
PH-2 This user is a good photographer.
Quality Image(s) contributor
PH-3 This user is an advanced photographer.
Featured Picture(s) contributor
PH-4 This user is an expert photographer.
On: Meet our photographers

Things I have tried[edit]

I have experimented with putting the quality images logo in for PH-2 and the featured picture logo for PH-3, and a gold medal for PH-4, but it is not transparent and looks ugly IMO on the coloured BG. This may reflect that I am not competent enough to make such templates really cool. Template wizards are invited to improve on it in my sandbox. As you can see this extra line corresponds exactly to my originial KIS (Keep it Simple) proposal. That is, no intricate rules about having such and so many QIs or FPs to qualify for a level.

I have tried experimenting with additional QI/FP count arguments in the template but given up. I think it becomes a mess to include it in the same user box. The additional statement really has to be simple to be contained in there.

I think that is a pretty darn good proposal, which could gain wide acceptance and consensus. But then again, I could be wrong (again). Comments (be gentle)? -- Slaunger 22:30, 8 November 2007 (UTC)

Thank you for making these templates. They look good to me. I hope this will work since it seems to address several concerns. Yes, I can see how adding too much to the box would be difficult. I'm interested in hearing other comments about these boxes, also. FloNight♥♥♥ 00:19, 9 November 2007 (UTC)
I have no problem with the concept, I think the colour scheme is a nice idea, but bronze,silver,gold colours are not actually very attractive :-) --Tony Wills 11:29, 14 November 2007 (UTC)
I do not have strong feelings about the colours, it was just an idea I got. Feel free to make other colour suggestions - just edit my proposed templates and experiement if you or anybody else would like to.
The parentheses could also be removed from the PH-2 and PH-3 templates, which would implicitly mean two or more QIs or FPs. This would perhaps get rid of some of the arbitrariness in requiring only one QI/FP and still be a simple rule. -- Slaunger 20:07, 14 November 2007 (UTC)

Commons:Photography terms[edit]

Please help to expand the page Commons:Photography terms with your knowledge. 13:39, 25 March 2008 (UTC)

Archive this page[edit]

May we archive this page. If you want, change the colors of the PH template, but really : stop to talk endlessly about such things. That's big wast of time for no clear comparative gain. => such talks are to avoid. Yug 17:19, 11 March 2008 (UTC) (creator of these PH templates)

Well there are different opinions about whether it is/was waste of time. If you read the discussions you will find that many users found there was a point in considering a quatitative assesment for evaluating photographers skills. In the end it was not possible to reach consensus on the subject, so no changes have been implemented. My original motivation for the proposals were a frustration about current definitions which I find useless and confusing. I think it is worthwhile to keep the discussion clearly visible here, such that newly frustrated users don't start over again repeating the same discussions once more. I regret no consensus was reached. I still have no idea which template would be suitable to put on my own user page, so I have simply given up using it. -- Slaunger 14:13, 25 March 2008 (UTC)

Which camera used you to make good Macro ? at which price ?[edit]

Did you already took macro like or better than that ? with which camera ? at which price ?

Hello, please can you tell me with which camera you took your macro pictures. I plan to buy a camera, and I'm interested to produce macro photographs for commons. You can answer on user:Yug/Camera. 17:04, 11 March 2008 (UTC)

Is P880 a good camera?[edit]

I'm using a P880, and would like to know whether this can be considered a good camera. WRT the above, I don't really want to start a discussion, a simple "yes", "no" or "controversial" would entirely satisfy me. Paradoctor (talk) 14:50, 19 November 2009 (UTC)

  • There is no unique answer to your question. It all depends on what you want to do with the camera. It might be a good idea to browse this place and see what kind of gear our photographers use for their different kinds of shots. -- Alvesgaspar (talk) 16:05, 19 November 2009 (UTC)
    • Thanks, that would seem to indicate that my self-assessment as PH-2 is defensible. I'm assuming that the part of the camera behind the viewer is up to the job, of course. ;) Paradoctor (talk) 19:27, 19 November 2009 (UTC)
    • The 'part of the camera behind the viewer' is the most important one in most circumstances. Give a cheap compact camera to a pro and you will see the difference! -- Alvesgaspar (talk) 00:47, 20 November 2009 (UTC)