On Fri, Sep 20, 2013 at 10:28 AM, Quim Gil <qgil@wikimedia.org> wrote:
How are these guided tours supposed to be triggered (apart from appending manually a string to the URL)?

There are a couple ways you can trigger a tour. Via a link or button, or by setting a tour cookie based on some event. For community members, the easiest way to trigger a tour would be to do something like appending the parameter on links or buttons. The Wikipedia Adventure project on enwiki starts their tour this way. 

For these two particular tours (firstedit, firsteditve) we will be delivering them post-registration, when you are sent back to the page you were on pre-signup. The goal here is to test providing nearly all first-time editors a guided tour, and to try a version of GettingStarted suggestions where we don't force everyone through Special:GettingStarted right after signup. Users will be given a choice of either taking a tour of how to edit the current page (if allowed), or taking a GettingStarted suggested task. We're hoping to launch that as an A/B test against the current GettingStarted experience as a control, probably next week. 

Already we know guided tours work for new editors accepting a GettingStarted task,[1] and we're hoping it will have similar positive effects for the many new users who don't accept a GettingStarted suggestion, typically because they signed up with a page to edit already in mind.   

Steven Walling

1. "Among the users who viewed a GettingStarted article and were given a guided tour, we found a statistically significant 3.9% difference in the rate of first edits made, and an even larger 13.6% increase in the rate at which new users attempted to edit."  https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Research:OB3