[Wikipedia-l] Re: One Chinese Wikipedia

Vina Wang vwang at myrealbox.com
Sat Sep 11 21:34:59 UTC 2004

I think we also need to make a distinction between two different "two versions" depends on what is split.

There can be two versions of the UI, or two versions of the article content, or two versions of both, which is what the original split was.

Two versions of the UI/Skin is what someone is working on the software for (sorry I deleted the email already so I don't remember who it was).  This is for the ease of the readers more for the editors.  Editors are familiar with the layout, and can generally make out what the page is, even on completely unknown languages.  It is also the most important part to a completely new person to wiki, to showcase what wiki is about.

I haven't heard anyone who actually objects to this.

There can also be two versions of the content like the current Chinese wiki.  You really won't know which charset something is in until  you read it.  

For people who are exclusively SC or TC users, the mixed version can be mildly annoying to completely revolting.  Each person has different tolerance level.  I can read TC, but can't edit in TC, since I don't know how to get my computer to take Pinyin and output TC.  A person who is well versed in both to the degree to edit articles in both is extremely rare.

This is a constant debate on Chinese wiki, and the most recent decision is to reduce duplicate articles in Chinese wiki where the tranditional and simplified version differs in charset only.  Pages that does not already have two versions does not get one created.  Instead, both charset goes on one page.  For Chinese wiki, this is a possible though imperfect solution since the two versions came from the same language source.  

This is for the convience of the editors to not having to type in the same thing twice, also for the readers to get the most complete information currently available on wiki.  It is voted in by the editors, as only the editors vote, like any other voting pages on wiki.  

Hence the ch-tw split which is a split for both, UI and articles.  What is being opposed by a lot of people is the complete split for articles.  It's a headache for editors but also a dis-service to a lot of readers.  Most Chinese readers would rather get a non-preferred version of TC or SC article, rather than not getting anything at all.  Interwiki links between the versions only work if there is a corresponding article.  Redirects does not bring you to the other wiki, but can be used to redirect between TC/SC on the same wiki.

-----Original Message-----
From: Stirling Newberry <stirling.newberry at xigenics.net>
To: wikipedia-l at Wikimedia.org
Date: Sat, 11 Sep 2004 12:35:11 -0400
Subject: Re: [Wikipedia-l] Re: One Chinese Wikipedia

On Sep 11, 2004, at 12:25 PM, yuanml wrote:

> let us sum up basic fact, pro and con we had discussed in a NPOV 
> manner.
> ==basic fact==
> *The same language: Chinese.
> *Two writing systems: TC & SC.
> *Chinese Wikipedia now mix TC and SC together.
> *Chinese Wikipedia community now have a consensus on unity.
> *SC artical vs TC artical at Chinese Wikipedia is about 10:1.
> *a unified solution is workable, although it is also acknowledged that
> there are significant challenges.
> *Someone tried to develop a solution for the differences in vocabulary
> among Taiwan, Hong Kong, Mainland, Singapore and Macau,
> the basic idea of the solution works.
> *there are huge and permanent implications of splitting up the two
> ==pros of a single version==
> *it makes the most sense from a language point of view
> *it makes the most sense from the point of view of having a top
> quality NPOV resource.
> *zh would work towards a traditional-simplified solution.
> *The advantage of a technical fix to the character problem
> to have one version is that the problems don't grow with time
> *The problem set of making two characters sets work isn't
> a fast moving target.

Someone mentioned another pro:

Technical work is of interest to other wikiprojects

> ==cons of a single version==
> *The SC UI is uncomfortable and scared away some of the TC users.
> *It is difficult for the TC users to look up some material such as
> names of places and people from traditional.

Also has been mentioned

Commits resources to a significant and non-trivial technical project.
Has political implications.

> ==pros of two seperate version==
> *attract more TC users.
> *there is a larger corpus of texts, many of them
> fundamental texts, which exist as originals
> in traditional characters.
> ==cons of two seperate version==
> *low quality on NPOV.
> *a technical fix to the character problem to
> diverged versions grow with time.
> *keeping up with two sets of wikipedians is
> a fast moving target.
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