[Foundation-l] [WikiEN-l] English Wikipedia ethnocentric policy affects other communities

Neil Harris usenet at tonal.clara.co.uk
Wed Dec 20 20:14:34 UTC 2006

Guillaume Paumier wrote:
> Some thoughts (copied from
> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia_talk:Username#Clarification ):
> The facts are:
> * for the moment, non latin accounts are blocked on sight.
> * in the very future, SUL will merge all accounts from the same person into
> one single account.
> What bastique and others, including me, ask is:
> * blocking accounts in a different alphabet should not be the default
> behavior anywhere, neither on the english-language wikipedia nor on the
> japanese or russian ones.
> * If people use their account to add interwikis sometimes, there should be
> no problem with them keeping their non latin username.
> * If people are active on the project, we assume they know the language at
> least a little. Thus, we can ask them to use an alias (see
> [[Special:Preferences]] > signature) readable by the people on this project.
Great. This is (more or less) my proposal #1. As far as I can see, if 
this is a generally acceptable, all we need to do is to:

1 to prevent dodgy spoofing games, make sure that aliases are unique 
within the multilingual Wikipedia user namespace (this might, for 
example, mean that the fictional Takeshi above might have to adopt the 
alias Takeshi2 if there's already a "User:Takeshi",


2 make the alias visible in the user interface alongside the real 
username wherever it appears -- which should be relatively easy to do, 
since all the occurrences in the UI should be greppable, making this 
possibly just a search-replace job, something like (pseudocode)

     "[[$USERNAME]]" --> "[[$USERNAME]] ([[$USERNAME|$LOCALALIAS]])"

Or something like that.

-- Neil

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