QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Anything that's on topic but doesn't fit elsewhere, including related events that might be of interest to quizbowl players.
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QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Post by Stained Diviner »

Some of us are going to do some work on QBWiki in the next few days. I am going to start another thread that is more theoretical than this one. In this thread I am looking for suggestions along the lines of:
* Some pages do W well, and I think that more pages should do it.
* There should be a page on X.
* The Y templates should include Z.
* Here are some important pages that should be updated.

Keep in mind that I am looking more for things that should be added or improved rather than things that should be deleted. Also, if it's a topic that you know a lot more about than most community members, it might be easier for you to do the work yourself. That being said, if we like your idea and it's something we can do, then we will spend hours doing it.
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Re: QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Post by Snoopy »

There are dozens if not hundreds of pages that exist but say "this page has no content" (like this one). I'm thinking this was a server error at some point, though it seems like more pages are lost every time I go back there. I think that would be a good place to start.
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Re: QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Post by Snoopy »

I also just recalled this page, which is great and I think should be done for every state.
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Re: QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Post by vinteuil »

Snoopy wrote: Tue Mar 24, 2020 11:49 am There are dozens if not hundreds of pages that exist but say "this page has no content" (like this one). I'm thinking this was a server error at some point, though it seems like more pages are lost every time I go back there. I think that would be a good place to start.
This is just how MediaWiki deals with nonexistent pages: see https://www.qbwiki.com/wiki/Asdfasadf
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Re: QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Post by jonah »

vinteuil wrote: Tue Mar 24, 2020 11:56 am
Snoopy wrote: Tue Mar 24, 2020 11:49 amThere are dozens if not hundreds of pages that exist but say "this page has no content" (like this one). I'm thinking this was a server error at some point, though it seems like more pages are lost every time I go back there. I think that would be a good place to start.
This is just how MediaWiki deals with nonexistent pages: see https://www.qbwiki.com/wiki/Asdfasadf
I think some pages were actually lost—possibly those with only one revision. Ophir emailed me about this a while ago. I have no idea how or why that might have happened. (It might have happened during migration from when Mike Bentley hosted it, but it might have been more recent. If it was my fault, I'm very sorry!)

Note that "Andrew Kincaid" has "Read", "Edit", and "View history" tabs, while "Asdfasadf" only has "Create".
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Re: QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Post by Snoopy »

All the pages in question have blue links when you click on them; many of them have/are in categories even if they don't show up on the bottom. They existed at some point for certain.

Edit: I found it; every page with a page creation date of 24 January 2010 is gone. I'm absolutely certain they were there as recently as 2016, because I recall looking at them when I was in high school. No others seem to be affected.

Edit 2: This totals a loss of 374 pages. Massive and irreparable if no backup can be found.
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Re: QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Post by meebles127 »

I've suggested this elsewhere but I believe that the buzzer systems thread needs an overhaul. It's extremely outdated and that is what lead me to write my buzzer systems thread last year. I'm more than willing to update this page to help teams get strong and durable buzzer systems in their hands
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Re: QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Post by vinteuil »

meebles127 wrote: Tue Mar 24, 2020 4:48 pm I've suggested this elsewhere but I believe that the buzzer systems thread needs an overhaul. It's extremely outdated and that is what lead me to write my buzzer systems thread last year. I'm more than willing to update this page to help teams get strong and durable buzzer systems in their hands
I look forward to this revision!

Readers of this thread should remember that the entire point of a wiki is that anybody (in this case, anybody in the quizbowl community) is welcome to contribute, and nobody needs to be "licensed" to make changes, even to authoritative-seeming or old articles. (Although I wouldn't encourage editing the articles that are literal archives of essays/posts written elsewhere.)
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Re: QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Post by Ciorwrong »

vinteuil wrote: Tue Mar 24, 2020 5:06 pm
meebles127 wrote: Tue Mar 24, 2020 4:48 pm I've suggested this elsewhere but I believe that the buzzer systems thread needs an overhaul. It's extremely outdated and that is what lead me to write my buzzer systems thread last year. I'm more than willing to update this page to help teams get strong and durable buzzer systems in their hands
I look forward to this revision!

Readers of this thread should remember that the entire point of a wiki is that anybody (in this case, anybody in the quizbowl community) is welcome to contribute, and nobody needs to be "licensed" to make changes, even to authoritative-seeming or old articles. (Although I wouldn't encourage editing the articles that are literal archives of essays/posts written elsewhere.)
The issue at least for less-informed people such as myself, is that there are some articles which are hopelessly out of date. As a result, it would take a ton of work to revise them. I don't know many people who could restore 10 years of history to articles like this.

I think a good goal is to have all the College clubs pages have accurate and up to date information on current players and leadership. Not everyone needs to have a page made for them (I certainly don't need a page for example) but I think it would be helpful to know that, for example Dustin Lieu, is not currently leading the USC team.
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Re: QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Post by ScoBo »

Snoopy wrote: Tue Mar 24, 2020 11:51 am I also just recalled this page, which is great and I think should be done for every state.
Thanks! As it grows, the table is becoming more of a pain to edit in Wiki markup and I've been wondering if there is a better way to structure it. (The giant table format would be much easier to deal with in something like a Google Spreadsheet.) After I updated it for HSNCT last year, I added a comment on that page's discussion tab expressing this concern. If anyone has any ideas for a potentially better way to structure this kind of page, I'd love to hear them.
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Re: QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Post by Stained Diviner »

vinteuil wrote: Tue Mar 24, 2020 5:06 pm
meebles127 wrote: Tue Mar 24, 2020 4:48 pm I've suggested this elsewhere but I believe that the buzzer systems thread needs an overhaul. It's extremely outdated and that is what lead me to write my buzzer systems thread last year. I'm more than willing to update this page to help teams get strong and durable buzzer systems in their hands
I look forward to this revision!

Readers of this thread should remember that the entire point of a wiki is that anybody (in this case, anybody in the quizbowl community) is welcome to contribute, and nobody needs to be "licensed" to make changes, even to authoritative-seeming or old articles. (Although I wouldn't encourage editing the articles that are literal archives of essays/posts written elsewhere.)
While this is definitely true, I'll add that this thread could be a once in a lifetime chance to tell other people what to do on QBWiki, and this is a good place to point out that an important page is bad.
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Re: QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Post by Mike Bentley »

jonah wrote: Tue Mar 24, 2020 12:03 pm
vinteuil wrote: Tue Mar 24, 2020 11:56 am
Snoopy wrote: Tue Mar 24, 2020 11:49 amThere are dozens if not hundreds of pages that exist but say "this page has no content" (like this one). I'm thinking this was a server error at some point, though it seems like more pages are lost every time I go back there. I think that would be a good place to start.
This is just how MediaWiki deals with nonexistent pages: see https://www.qbwiki.com/wiki/Asdfasadf
I think some pages were actually lost—possibly those with only one revision. Ophir emailed me about this a while ago. I have no idea how or why that might have happened. (It might have happened during migration from when Mike Bentley hosted it, but it might have been more recent. If it was my fault, I'm very sorry!)

Note that "Andrew Kincaid" has "Read", "Edit", and "View history" tabs, while "Asdfasadf" only has "Create".
I had forgotten I used to host this wiki. Fun fact: we used to edit some Maryland high school tournaments via MediaWiki back in the days before Google Docs was a thing. It was a reasonably good way to collaboratively edit documents.
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Re: QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Post by jonah »

Mike Bentley wrote: Tue Mar 24, 2020 8:20 pm
jonah wrote: Tue Mar 24, 2020 12:03 pm
vinteuil wrote: Tue Mar 24, 2020 11:56 am
Snoopy wrote: Tue Mar 24, 2020 11:49 amThere are dozens if not hundreds of pages that exist but say "this page has no content" (like this one). I'm thinking this was a server error at some point, though it seems like more pages are lost every time I go back there. I think that would be a good place to start.
This is just how MediaWiki deals with nonexistent pages: see https://www.qbwiki.com/wiki/Asdfasadf
I think some pages were actually lost—possibly those with only one revision. Ophir emailed me about this a while ago. I have no idea how or why that might have happened. (It might have happened during migration from when Mike Bentley hosted it, but it might have been more recent. If it was my fault, I'm very sorry!)

Note that "Andrew Kincaid" has "Read", "Edit", and "View history" tabs, while "Asdfasadf" only has "Create".
I had forgotten I used to host this wiki. Fun fact: we used to edit some Maryland high school tournaments via MediaWiki back in the days before Google Docs was a thing. It was a reasonably good way to collaboratively edit documents.
Oh yeah, I used MediaWiki for writing/editing several tournaments too. It mostly worked pretty well.
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Re: QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Post by meebles127 »

vinteuil wrote: Tue Mar 24, 2020 5:06 pm
meebles127 wrote: Tue Mar 24, 2020 4:48 pm I've suggested this elsewhere but I believe that the buzzer systems thread needs an overhaul. It's extremely outdated and that is what lead me to write my buzzer systems thread last year. I'm more than willing to update this page to help teams get strong and durable buzzer systems in their hands
I look forward to this revision!
The buzzer systems page has been updated to better reflect more up to date information.
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Re: QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Post by BenWeiner27 »

Snoopy wrote: Tue Mar 24, 2020 11:51 am I also just recalled this page, which is great and I think should be done for every state.
In addition to nationals finishes, I think that it would also be cool if every state had its own page where it lists all the tournament winners from a state/circuit's history (at least definitely state championships and other major tournaments) where they could be viewed in a convenient table.
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Re: QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Post by Ben Dillon »

BenWeiner27 wrote: Wed Mar 25, 2020 11:37 am In addition to nationals finishes, I think that it would also be cool if every state had its own page where it lists all the tournament winners from a state/circuit's history (at least definitely state championships and other major tournaments) where they could be viewed in a convenient table.
What if many of these tournaments would be considered "bad quiz bowl"? Should those be listed at all? For example, I've listed *every* Indiana competition at INQBlots in the interests of preserving the history of quiz bowl back to 1974, but the first NAQT tourney wasn't until 2001.
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Re: QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Post by AGoodMan »

I tried to look into this awhile back and talked with Jonah about it, but is it possible to add citation templates like in Wikipedia? By this I mean when you edit Wikipedia, you can add sources and format them in a specific manner, which will show up in a References or Citations section toward the bottom of the page. I guess this is sort of low priority, but I think this could help make the Wiki look a bit more official.
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Re: QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Post by cwasims »

I did some work on the Toronto page recently, and I'm fairly happy with how it turned out: https://www.qbwiki.com/wiki/Toronto

I think Wiki pages for clubs should use some transparent and (ideally) verifiable criteria for determining who gets listed in the membership section: I don't think everyone who has played for a team need to be listed, and I laid out what I think is a reasonable proxy for the involvement/skill that I think warrants being recognized on a Wiki page. I would also recommend just listing names in paragraph as opposed to bullet form as it takes up much less space on the page.

There used to be write-ups from some random tournaments that aren't really that important - I elected to delete those and make a table with results from SCT, ICT, ACF Regionals, and ACF Nationals, since I think those give a good sense of the club's regional and national ranking over time, as well as its size (insofar as the number of teams sent to those tournaments is indicative of the overall club's size).

I ended up deleting the hosted tournaments section - I don't really think this is very important, and it would take a while to bring it up to date since U of T hosts a lot of tournaments. I left the history section basically intact since it's the only source we have.
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Re: QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Post by Santa Claus »

Are we going to ever change the guidelines for what information shows up on players’ pages? With the exception of really old stats that longer exist elsewhere, someone could fairly easily find tournament results for basically anybody thanks to Harry’s database, but this is the only information that literally can’t be deleted or Jonah will threaten to ban you. Meanwhile, it is strongly discouraged to include quotes and anecdotes about players, when that is almost certainly the most lasting impression that many players have on the community. As a result, the people with the most-fleshed out articles are usually high schoolers who have included every tournament they have ever played in (and Charles Hang) and many of the players who are currently active in college might have a sentence dedicated to their t-51st HSNCT placement and nothing about their active role in the community since.
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Re: QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Post by Stained Diviner »

ScoBo wrote: Tue Mar 24, 2020 6:29 pm
Snoopy wrote: Tue Mar 24, 2020 11:51 am I also just recalled this page, which is great and I think should be done for every state.
Thanks! As it grows, the table is becoming more of a pain to edit in Wiki markup and I've been wondering if there is a better way to structure it. (The giant table format would be much easier to deal with in something like a Google Spreadsheet.) After I updated it for HSNCT last year, I added a comment on that page's discussion tab expressing this concern. If anyone has any ideas for a potentially better way to structure this kind of page, I'd love to hear them.
This looks like a good way to do it, but no guarantees.
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Re: QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Post by Whiter Hydra »

Santa Claus wrote: Thu Mar 26, 2020 8:45 amWith the exception of really old stats that longer exist elsewhere, someone could fairly easily find tournament results for basically anybody thanks to Harry’s database, but this is the only information that literally can’t be deleted or Jonah will threaten to ban you. Meanwhile, it is strongly discouraged to include quotes and anecdotes about players, when that is almost certainly the most lasting impression that many players have on the community.
Is this something we should have a conversation about? We should probably decide as a community what the QBWiki pages should contain.
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Re: QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Post by Stained Diviner »

Thank you for the suggestions in this thread.

Joe Feldman and Tyler Vaughan are going to update tournament results. (Joe has already started, though he plans to stretch the work out over several weeks.)
Alex Dzurick is going to list team national appearances from various states.
Mitch Baron and Jon Suh are going to update collegiate team pages, and Mitch is going to try to add tables showing nationals performances.
Avinash Iyer is going to add tables showing nationals performances to high school team pages.
Alejandro Lopez-Lago is working on dead links.

This will leave a lot of work undone, and we'll probably only do a fraction of what is listed above. If you want something else done, you might have to do it yourself. Also, consider yourself encouraged to help the people doing the above jobs, because we could use the help.

Nobody is planning to do anything significant with the pages on individuals, and I agree that the purpose of those pages is still in question. If it was up to me, I would add a line to people's infoboxes that links to Harry White's stats, and then use the article to describe the course of their career, major matches/tournament/accomplishments, contributions to the game, anecdotes, and personal descriptions. It should generally be positive (think of things you would want somebody's family or potential employer to see), though it can describe cheating and other things that are clearly bad that a person did.
Last edited by Stained Diviner on Sun Mar 29, 2020 1:43 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Post by Stained Diviner »

Now it's my turn to make a request. Can somebody create an article on Discord? Give a basic description of what the quizbowl community uses it for and provide some links.

I made major changes to the quizbowl software article. If you can do better than me, please improve it further. I'm sure that many of you can do better than me.
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Re: QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Post by Marcion of Sinope »

I've been unable to edit any of the pages from 1/24/2010 that were lost; when I click "Save Changes," I am sent to the "edit conflict" page that results when two or more people attempt to edit a page at the same time. Does anyone more familiar with the software know any potential solutions or workarounds?

(The page for Brandeis was where I first encountered the issue. For the time being, I put the text I wrote on the Discussion page so I can move on to other articles.)
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Re: QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Post by jonah »

Marcion of Sinope wrote: Sun Mar 29, 2020 12:35 pm I've been unable to edit any of the pages from 1/24/2010 that were lost; when I click "Save Changes," I am sent to the "edit conflict" page that results when two or more people attempt to edit a page at the same time. Does anyone more familiar with the software know any potential solutions or workarounds?

(The page for Brandeis was where I first encountered the issue. For the time being, I put the text I wrote on the Discussion page so I can move on to other articles.)
I took care of this. If anyone encounters a similar problem on other pages, can you email me at [email protected]? I'm not able to pay continuous attention to the QBWiki now, but I can take care of specific things when notified.
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Re: QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Post by meebles127 »

Stained Diviner wrote: Sun Mar 29, 2020 10:29 am Now it's my turn to make a request. Can somebody create an article on Discord? Give a basic description of what the quizbowl community uses it for and provide some links.
I'll work on tackling this.
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Re: QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Post by Santa Claus »

Stained Diviner wrote: Sat Mar 28, 2020 3:49 pm Joe Feldman and Tyler Vaughan are going to update tournament results. (Joe has already started, though he plans to stretch the work out over several weeks.)
I’m not sure if this is being approached from the direction of compiling all the results from mirrors of a set or placing tournament results for schools on their articles, but I think it’s worth pointing out how few sets from the past couple years have articles (and even fewer side events).
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Re: QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Post by alexdz »

Stained Diviner wrote: Sat Mar 28, 2020 3:49 pm Alex Dzurick is going to list team national appearances from various states.
I wasn't able to work as long as I thought I could on this project today, but I did create some basic tables for a few states. Prior to my work on this project, Missouri and Illinois had pages created for this. My new additions are not color-coded or formatted properly yet (notably there's some weird abbreviations to be explained and a need for things like line breaks), but the basic information is there for the following states now:

Pennsylvania
New Jersey
Delaware
Arkansas
Kansas
Nebraska
Iowa

You can find any of these by going to the page "List of high school nationals appearances by {state name} teams" on QBWiki.

I'm intrigued to keep going on this project, and will probably continue with the other three states surrounding Missouri that don't have pages yet (OK, KY, TN) and also expand further from states bordering/near PA (NY, MD, VA, DC, WV). Some of the states with longer lists I'll save for a time when I can devote most of a day to the compilation of the data.

Special thanks to Harry White, who sent me a CSV file of attendance data for NSCs from 1998-2016, which proved extremely helpful in making this go much faster.
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Re: QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Post by Vembanad »

As someone who enjoys reading about Quiz Bowl, I find the existence of this project very heartening. One thing that I don't see discussed anywhere is comprehensive notability guidelines (something along the lines of https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Notability). There is a small enough number of college teams that all of them could conceivably have QBWiki pages, but thousands of high school teams play Quiz Bowl tournaments, and if we want the Wiki to remain in a state of upkeep, then it doesn't seem practical to have pages for every school that has ventured out to a tournament. Schools with high national finishes and consistently strong regional powerhouses definitely deserve pages, but where should we draw the line? (Of course, there are many unsuccessful schools that already have pages, but if we want the QBWiki to have a veneer of legitimacy, we should try to make it internally consistent.) This is perhaps a bigger problem for individual people -- how do we determine who is important enough for an article? It is even more impractical to give every Quiz Bowl player an article, so I think it's important that we determine who should be included, as there are certainly many top players, particularly at the high school level, without pages. (For example, only 6/10 of last year's All-World Players according to Fred Morlan, and 6/10 of the top players according to the Groger Ranks player poll, have pages.) Specific notability guidelines seem like the best way to go about this.

Additionally, I'd be curious to hear others' thoughts on how in-depth pages should go. There are several teams with very detailed accounts of year-to-year exploits (several Illinois teams come to mind -- Stevenson, Uni Lab, and Loyola Academy). I personally enjoy reading these, but should they be included? Would it be feasible to have them for all teams?
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Re: QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Post by cchiego »

A recent post on the r/quizbowl subreddit brought me to revive this topic.

I think individual player pages should, with very few exceptions, be deleted. Many of them could have small parts (2-3 sentences, max) rolled into team or organization pages. There are just too many individual players to keep up with and they're probably the worst examples of narcissistic self-editing. School pages I have less of an issue with--there are many fewer schools that play quizbowl than students and so it's easier to keep those up. It's also useful for new players on a school's team to get a sense of their school's history. If people want to post year-to-year exploits of a team I think that's fine; for individual players including every single tournament they ever played is a bit too much.

There also needs to be some kind of decision about the overall editorial tone, especially when relating to good/bad quizbowl or other practices and with team in-jokes. While I think it should come from a clear stance that pyramidal and fair quizbowl is better than bad quizbowl, there's a lot of snark on some pages and pointed beliefs about question-writing that I think detract from the overall product. In-jokes probably need some kind of notability standard.

Finally, there's the issue that the reddit post brings up of a lot of issues in terms of people who did not-so-good things that were uncovered in the past few years that remain unaddressed on the QBwiki. I'm not sure of the best way to address this; it doesn't seem like this would be an issue people would be particularly enthusiastic about going back through individually and I'm not sure about liability/legal issues for such posts. But given that the only other way to see this information is going back deep into the hsqb archives or the various Discords (how far back do those even go?), it might make sense to organize a sweep to update some of this info.
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Re: QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Post by cchiego »

Thanks to Jonah, I've gone ahead and set up a notability guidelines talk page on QBWiki that I hope in the next few weeks we can turn into a standard for notability and start pruning/deleting articles. Contributions and comments (in addition to those already mentioned on this thread) are welcome; I wrote down a few to start off the discussion, including some thoughts on what should be emphasized (as Reinstein notes above, you can easily search for and find statistics now for most players) in such articles.

I'd also like more people to contribute on the "talk" pages throughout the QBwiki and flag things that seem like they need to be examined, deleted, or updated in some way. There's too much for just one or two people to cover alone so any community help here would be great.
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Re: QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Post by Ciorwrong »

I certainly agree with what Chris says above. If I may use myself as an illustrative example, it's patently ridiculous that I have a QBwiki page but the school I attend, UCSD, has a preposterously outdated page that was last meaningfully updated in 2014. (Coincidentally, Chris updated the page then.) While I am grateful someone thought I was worthy of having a page, I'm simply not important enough to the history of quizbowl nor the modern state of the game to warrant a page existing. On the other hand, some quizbowl sets produced in the past five years do not have pages when it would be important for a new team to be able to look up basic information on past question sets. I know some work has been done on this, but this work should be continued until most modern sets have a page. That is certainly a better goal than "let's make pages for random SoCal high school players."

A lot of people my age or younger believe the wiki is outdated and full of erroneous information and in-jokes. The modal page is either some collegiate player from the mid 2000s or a random high school tournament no one cares about because it no longer exists. It was great to see Kevin Wang and others work to modernize the wiki's content earlier this year, but I certainly agree that a lot of pages including my own should be pruned. The QBWiki is one of the first quizbowl results to show up on Google, and the information on it should be somewhat germane to the modern game and not contain tons of jokes from 2006.

As an aside, how moderated in this quizbowl reddit page? I'd be very worried about people sharing unclear question content there or saying things anonymously that would rightfully put them in hot water here on the forums or on the public Discord. I continue to believe there is this emerging bifurcation between the social media new quizbowl players use and the established channels used by people my age and older. The opinion shared in that Reddit on the wiki seems to confirm this hypothesis of mine.
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Re: QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Post by meebles127 »

Ciorwrong wrote: Wed Dec 09, 2020 9:43 pmAs an aside, how moderated in this quizbowl reddit page? I'd be very worried about people sharing unclear question content there or saying things anonymously that would rightfully put them in hot water here on the forums or on the public Discord. I continue to believe there is this emerging bifurcation between the social media new quizbowl players use and the established channels used by people my age and older. The opinion shared in that Reddit on the wiki seems to confirm this hypothesis of mine.
There's a stickied post telling people not the spoil un-clear content and I know that others are on there who will yell at people who spoil un-clear content/tell them not to do so if they're verging on it.
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Re: QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Post by cchiego »

As an aside, how moderated in this quizbowl reddit page? I'd be very worried about people sharing unclear question content there or saying things anonymously that would rightfully put them in hot water here on the forums or on the public Discord. I continue to believe there is this emerging bifurcation between the social media new quizbowl players use and the established channels used by people my age and older. The opinion shared in that Reddit on the wiki seems to confirm this hypothesis of mine.
I'm one of the moderators there now since in the past it was just kind of sitting there without much content even though it had 1.8k subscribers. The main issue there is usually with borderline memes and low-effort posting, so I've tried to add more substantive discussions and stickied a lot of the quizbowl team and player improvement resources that are otherwise scattered about many different quizbowl websites (the lack of central organization in quizbowl, for all its benefits, is also like I said before frustrating and I think a challenge to bringing in newcomers since there's no one-stop-shop that lays everything out clearly). The subreddit also seems to reach a broader audience, at least in terms of who's willing to post and from where, than the HSQB forums for whatever reason these days.
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Re: QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Post by Santa Claus »

I agree that there is a degree of insider-ism still hidden in various odd nooks and crannies which should be swept up, but there's no need to throw the baby out with the bathwater and get rid of the whimsy of the wiki. For every person outside who might enter the wiki to learn "what is quiz bowl?", there are many, many more already inside who want to know more about a community they're already a part of.
cchiego wrote: Wed Dec 09, 2020 5:45 pm I think individual player pages should, with very few exceptions, be deleted.
I strongly disagree with this stance. The player pages, as sparse and poorly written as they are, are among the few reasons I go to the QBWiki. I would like there to be more player pages, and in fact I would like them to be more fleshed out with personal anecdotes (within reason - perhaps two per paragraph of separately justified content). I already know the rules and have no need to learn them again, and in the wiki's current state, there are not accurate pages for tournaments, sets, or schools. Pages for players give me a way to know things about players from eras before my own, or that I have never interacted with personally, and I can only imagine that it serves (or could serve) the same purpose for people who are less connected to the community than me.

Of course, expanding the other aspects of the wiki would also be very good, but I think this could (and should!) happen alongside expansion of player pages.
Ciorwrong wrote: Wed Dec 09, 2020 9:43 pm I certainly agree with what Chris says above. If I may use myself as an illustrative example, it's patently ridiculous that I have a QBwiki page but the school I attend, UCSD, has a preposterously outdated page that was last meaningfully updated in 2014. (Coincidentally, Chris updated the page then.)
Many of the bizarre decisions regarding what is and isn't currently on the wiki would be solved by writing more articles and doing more editing (and besides, the effort required to create a single player's page is far less than that needed to update the last 6 years of a team's history). In this example, this seems like motivation to update UCSD's page, not delete your wiki page.
Last edited by Santa Claus on Thu Dec 10, 2020 1:23 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Post by cchiego »

Santa Claus wrote: Wed Dec 09, 2020 11:04 pm I strongly disagree with this stance. The player pages, as sparse and poorly written as they are, are among the few reasons I go to the QBWiki. I would like there to be more player pages, and in fact I would like them to be more fleshed out with personal anecdotes (within reason - perhaps two per paragraph of separately justified content). I already know the rules and have no need to learn them again, and in the wiki's current state, there are not accurate pages for tournaments, sets, or schools. Pages for players give me a way to know things about players from eras before my own, or that I have never interacted with personally, and I can only imagine that it serves (or could serve) the same purpose for people who are less connected to the community than me. [...]

Many of the bizarre decisions regarding what is and isn't currently on the wiki would be solved by writing more articles and doing more editing (and besides, the effort required to create a single player's page is far less than that needed to update the last 6 years of a team's history). In this example, this seems like motivation to update UCSD's page, not delete your wiki page.
There are hundreds of player pages that seem to be basically stubs with a player's name, a school, and nothing else (and just as many of those for schools too). Many Wiki pages for players are frozen around 2008/2009, stating that a player who graduated college 8 years ago is currently in HS and such. It'll be a huge task to go through and simply update all of those, much less address the other concerns. This is why I think that as much as possible, it makes sense to pare down the number of player pages using some consistent notability criteria.

While I'd totally support seeking out past players to record their stories and anecdotes, that's an absolutely massive undertaking (who will be the Alan Lomax of Quizbowl?). In the meantime, having so many non-updated pages and stubs looks really unprofessional and confusing. I think notability guidelines for individuals are essential, though the presence of insightful/amusing anecdotes could be one of the guidelines involved in establishing notability as such.

The other issue with anecdotes and whimsy is that not everyone might appreciate such whimsy or want stories to be retold. What make for excellent 1 AM-in-the-IRC storytelling might also not be something that you'd want next to "How Quizbowl Works for Reporters" or something that a team would want their principal to see. There's also just a lot of weirdness and vitriol still present in a lot of articles that seems to be holdovers from mid-2000s era quizbowl that stands out today.
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Re: QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Post by Ciorwrong »

Thank you for the info on the Reddit Emily and Chris.
Santa Claus wrote: Wed Dec 09, 2020 11:04 pm Many of the bizarre decisions regarding what is and isn't currently on the wiki would be solved by writing more articles and doing more editing (and besides, the effort required to create a single player's page is far less than that needed to update the last 6 years of a team's history). In this example, this seems like motivation to update UCSD's page, not delete your wiki page.
It's never been clear to me if an individual associated with a school should edit the page of their own school. As I understand it, individual are highly discouraged from editing their own Wikipedia pages. Consequently, I've felt it is slightly awkward to edit the information about an organization you are a still apart of. At the very least, it remains hard to use a neutral or unbiased tone when you might still be involved in leadership, club decisions etc. The reason I edited my page was to have a more accurate list of my categories. It should be clear that people should not edit their own page or their team's page when any sort of controversy has taken place.

I do not wish to give any examples, but there are a ton of overly gratuitous pages on the wiki. It is genuinely difficult to know when editing one's own page or their team's page what veers into self-aggrandizement and gratuity and away from documenting past events. Reasonably, I think having an updated list of club leadership seems fine, but it's very odd when I stumble upon player pages with like dozens of tournament performances listed or narrated in detail. It reads like an unedited blogpost. I hope I'm making this distinction clear. Fwiw, there are a lot worse examples than the UCSD page, but I do not wish to single anyone out for bad wiki posting.

Kevin is correct in that, as currently constituted, player pages are the chief reason anyone would use the wiki. I agree with Chris that probably should not be the case going forward especially when the majority of player info is from when I was in middle school or before. As a reasonable stance, I think the pages of people who edit major tournaments like Regionals or who are routine national championship competitors should stay up. One issue I think is that a lot of pages become "dead" or majorly outdated when the one person on a team who cared stopped updating the wiki page and this creates weird clutter. As an example, the page on Walnut Hills has not been updated since 2011 when Joe Nutter was in high school because presumably people since haven't cared as much.

I think the general takeaway is that the wiki content is from a past era of quizbowl and I understand why a younger player would be confused on why there are so many pages on early naughts NACs or scandals from a Yahoo user group associated with people they have never heard of. I'd certainly try to contribute to a wiki that tried in earnest to document happenings in the 2020s.

As a fun exercise, click "random article" five times and see what comes up.
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Re: QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Post by Santa Claus »

cchiego wrote: Wed Dec 09, 2020 11:57 pm There are hundreds of player pages that seem to be basically stubs with a player's name, a school, and nothing else (and just as many of those for schools too).
[...]
It'll be a huge task to go through and simply update all of those, much less address the other concerns. This is why I think that as much as possible, it makes sense to pare down the number of player pages using some consistent notability criteria.
Much like actual Wikipedia, anyone can edit the wiki (assuming they go through a short approval process to receive an account), meaning that no single person has to do this work. If someone stumbles across a page that is no longer accurate and finds that it would only take a simple change to fix, then they could just fix it. If no one ever edits a page with an error because no one ever navigates to it, then it's a real tree-falls-in-a-forest situation: is it really a big deal?

Not every page on the wiki has to be on the same level - it seems eminently fine to me that someone who had a short and not particularly illustrious career in quiz bowl could have an article consisting of just a name, a school, and a few dates. I can understand a ideological stance against stubs, though - perhaps the notability criterion could simply be >0 references to a person outside of school rosters, which is straightforward enough when it comes to creating new articles for people and would remove most of these.
Ciorwrong wrote: Thu Dec 10, 2020 12:00 am It's never been clear to me if an individual associated with a school should edit the page of their own school.
I think people should write their own school's article (and to a much, much lesser extent their own articles) simply because there is likely to be no one else with both the information at hand and the interest in doing it. Obviously there are standards to be met, but that's what editing is for.
As I understand it, individual are highly discouraged from editing their own Wikipedia pages.
I think that the differences between the qbwiki and Wikipedia are large enough that this (and other things motivated by Wikipedia's policies, like notability criteria) ought be relaxed. This isn't something strictly written by and for the general public, even if it's intended to be shown to them.
EDIT wrote:
QBWiki's Main Page wrote:Unlike Wikipedia, there is no conflict of interest policy on QBWiki; you may and should write from firsthand experience, as long as what you write is true and doesn't violate anyone's privacy, etc
As a fun exercise, click "random article" five times and see what comes up.
I got Andrew Ullsberger, Fred Campbell, Montford, Fundamental Difficulty Error, and David Madden - a surprisingly relevant and atypically well-known group of articles. I don't think this is a good metric, though - doing this same experiment on actual Wikipedia will get you scores upon scores of tiny European towns, lakes in Africa, and minor rugby players. The thing that is more relevant to me is whether the wiki has information I actually want, and the answer is almost always that it's missing. That's why I'd much rather things be written than things be taken away.
Last edited by Santa Claus on Thu Dec 10, 2020 11:35 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Post by AKKOLADE »

I haven't given much thought to the QBWiki in several years, but I did want to check in to say that I think keeping individual player pages is valuable to preserving the history of quiz bowl. There's probably a lot that could be done to clean these up, but that doesn't necessarily mean that the pages themselves are inherently without value.
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Re: QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Post by cchiego »

AKKOLADE wrote: Thu Dec 10, 2020 1:41 am I haven't given much thought to the QBWiki in several years, but I did want to check in to say that I think keeping individual player pages is valuable to preserving the history of quiz bowl. There's probably a lot that could be done to clean these up, but that doesn't necessarily mean that the pages themselves are inherently without value.
I want to stress that about half of these individual player pages are some combination of "X is a player on Y team" and/or "X is an officer for Y team" and/or "X had 35 PPG at Tournament A and 25 PPG at Tournament B." Many times it's just one of those. And most of this information is very much out of date.

There's nothing else to go on for most of these, no "amusing anecdotes" that will be forever lost or anything like that. Sometimes there are self-proclaimed "greatest player in Z area" or in-jokes that seem to have nothing to do with quizbowl more broadly. Unless there's at least some kind of additional info like a specific story, a sentence on their personality, etc. or anything beyond just a link to stats as Kevin mentioned below, I think it makes sense to remove those pages and I'm starting to flag those for potential deletion.

Kevin has been doing heroic work to update a number of pages, especially the quizbowl lingo page. I've started a discussion of potential changes to some of the lingo entries and there's a discussion of what else to add. I'd eventually like to see more links back to more HSQB discussions that illustrate where a lot of issues and concepts that emerged during the "format wars" era of the 00s came from since otherwise a lot of the articles about that era don't make much sense. I also keep coming across bizarre categories and jokes (i.e. "haha X didn't score any points at nationals!") that really shouldn't be on the wiki. More help and ideas would of course be appreciated on the wiki to add more content; the question is not if anyone *can* edit or add to the wiki, but how many people actually *will* do so.
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Re: QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Post by Santa Claus »

As far as actual additions to the wiki go, it would be really nice to have additional extensions. As one example, I would like to do things like automatically link to stats pages in people's infoboxes based on their listed name but to the best of my knowledge there is no functionality to split strings in base MediaWiki. I don't have strong knowledge of what the best extensions would be but a cursory search shows things like ParserFunctions or Page Forms would have ways to do this, and I'm sure there are more generally useful extensions out there as well.

Alternatively you could allow Javascript but I imagine that's probably a terrible idea so maybe not.
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Re: QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Post by jonah »

Santa Claus wrote: Sat Dec 19, 2020 1:34 pmAs far as actual additions to the wiki go, it would be really nice to have additional extensions. As one example, I would like to do things like automatically link to stats pages in people's infoboxes based on their listed name but to the best of my knowledge there is no functionality to split strings in base MediaWiki. I don't have strong knowledge of what the best extensions would be but a cursory search shows things like ParserFunctions or Page Forms would have ways to do this, and I'm sure there are more generally useful extensions out there as well.
If you want to do a bit more than cursory research, I'm open to adding extensions that we're quite confident would facilitate improvements.
Santa Claus wrote: Sat Dec 19, 2020 1:34 pmAlternatively you could allow Javascript but I imagine that's probably a terrible idea so maybe not.
That makes me pretty nervous (and I don't know if it's even possible).
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Re: QBWiki Addition Suggestions

Post by Santa Claus »

jonah wrote: Sat Dec 19, 2020 3:17 pmIf you want to do a bit more than cursory research, I'm open to adding extensions that we're quite confident would facilitate improvements.
A bit more than cursory research I can do.

It seems that getting extensions is fairly straightforward (they can be downloaded with this helper here and there's a general installation guide here), so we could probably make a page somewhere on the wiki to request new extensions and they could be added as needed. I can tell you right now that if you added ParserFunctions I would have immediate use for it - it would be enough to automate adding stats to all player pages for sure.
jonah wrote:
Santa Claus wrote: Sat Dec 19, 2020 1:34 pmAlternatively you could allow Javascript but I imagine that's probably a terrible idea so maybe not.
That makes me pretty nervous (and I don't know if it's even possible).
Yeah this was a joke; please do not do this.
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