Team Fortress Wiki:Discussion

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Adding alt text to images

There doesn't seem to be a consistent method of adding alt text to pictures found in articles, which is a major accessibility barrier. It would be great if this could be managed somehow. Crabguy (talk) 20:20, 18 August 2022 (UTC)

So for images using [[File:]], the alt parameter should work fine. Images in the <gallery> tag can also use the |alt=, but it should be between the description text and the filename such as
File:Scout.png|The Scout from Team Fortress 2|The Scout. As for any templates, a separate parameter would have to be added.
GrampaSwood (talk) 20:37, 18 August 2022 (UTC)
While we appreciate the initiative, adding alt texts manually to images would be an awful lot of work for something that won't hold that much value to us.
In terms of accessibility for screen readers, articles generally are well-written and tend to go in-depth about its content. In some cases, image thumbnails have visible text which describe the image.
Unfortunately, we've had users in the past that wanted to take on big tasks like this one, only to never fully go through with them, which left some inconsistencies or had us clean up after them, so we're sometimes skeptical on the delivery.
If you still believe that this is needed, we could add automatic support for it through the necessary templates, in the same way that Wikipedia does; however, galleries and such would need to be done manually. — Wookipan (talk | contribs) 22:04, 18 August 2022 (UTC)

Staff emergency meeting

Notice: This discussion primarily concern staff matters, but the public is free to comment on it, as more voices provide more value. I'll be here to answer questions and take notes on suggestions or criticism.

A brief rundown on what happened recently
I'm sure by now most of you is aware of the recent commotion that happened these past days, which has arised a bunch of serious issues that we need to do something about.

There also won't be no TL;DR, because I really want you guys to pay close attention to this matter and comment your thoughts on it. I apologize in advance if it's not concise or easily digestible, but I've spent a fair amount of time on the formatting to ensure readability.

If you really don't want to read the whole thing, then please refer to the section that has the most relevance to you, and comment on it accordingly.

Let's address a few things:

  • Wiki Cap hiatus
  • Nomination process
  • Staff cohesion/inactivity

Wiki Cap hiatus

Recently, the Wiki Cap nominations were put under hiatus by Lagg, because he believes that we're no longer capable of managing the voting process, either due to concerns of bias, friend nominations, lack of substantial reviews for translators, or fear of the cap getting devalued. See Nominations talk for details.

These are perfectly valid concerns and should've been tackled long ago. I can see where he's coming from, and I won't deny that the issues at hand are affecting the overall nomination process – because it very much is. However, unilateral action was not the way to go about it, regardless of who done did it. A change this big should've been discussed and decided by bureaucracy, and I stand by that statement. With the staff lazing around, I can sort of see why this eventually happened, but that does not mean it's justifiable or that we should condone it.

Judging translators
This one is a sticky wicket for sure; judging translator candidates has become more difficult for us, especially with STS sunsetting. Valve has since moved their community translation efforts to the third-party platform, Crowdin, which functions identically to STS, except that anyone can participate, with minimal efforts. A lot of the old STS mods have been transferred over there, so it doesn't mean there's no moderation. In fact, it's the contrary.

How should we solve this?
Instead of solely relying on STS mods to conduct reviews of translators, we've decided to seek out help from cap holders that were granted a cap based on their translation efforts, who we believe to be qualified translators, thus still ensuring fair judgement. To combat bias/nepotism, a minimum of two reviews should be conducted, by different reviewers.

This will lengthen the review process, but not by much. Official Crowdin mods should always be the first go-to, and if none are available at the time, fall back to cap holders, or mix the bunch. A compiled list of qualified reviewers are still underway, but should make it easier for us to get a hold of reviewers in a timely manner.

If all else fails, ask the community for help, but remember; just because someone is a native-speaker, does not necessarily mean they can give substantial feedback and fairly judge someone's translation quality, forcing us to take it at face value.

Lagg believes the English part of the wiki to be fully complete, and that there's only polishing left to do, which isn't enough for cap standards. Even with the game being in maintenance mode, content updates still happen every year or so, and we don't know if/when a major update could drop. Those content updates are still enough for people to contribute imagery, weapon demonstrations, string additions to templates, as well as new translations.

Continue or discontinue the Wiki Cap?
Now the question for the hiatus remains: Are we willing to finally cause a change and end this stagnation, or pack it all up and discontinue the Wiki Cap? While it may be a big incentive for people to start editing and encourage quality contributions, it also shouldn't be their sole reason to join the wiki, because the cap isn't a participation right, and I too believe that honest and hard-working editors can still be attracted afterwards, just like with any other wiki.

Inevitably, the cap will get discontinued one day, and I've come to terms with that fact and so should you – but has that day really come? It could be argued that the cap has long since served its purpose, but I'll remain on the fence with that one.

Personally, I would be lying if I said I enjoy voting on candidates. I'd usually take a lot of time out of my day to thoroughly analyze candidates to ensure fair judgement, which is why I tend to write long essays sometimes and why I'm generally slow to vote in a timely manner. Whether I enjoy it or not, I still wish to continue doing it, for the sake of those that truly are deserving of a cap.

Nomination process

If we are to choose continuing cap distribution, we ought to make some changes to the current nomination system. Some wants to continue it the current way, while others want to reduce vote requirement count or autopilot it. For not to mention concerns of bias or friends nominating friends and how we should approach it.

Friend nomination/backing
I won't lie, I somewhat frown upon blatant friend nominations, as they usually are openly biased or lack substance, but they aren't exactly prohibited. Organic nominations happen rarely nowadays, because people either don't know how to start a nomination or don't take up the initiative.

Based on my own observation, community engagement will increase the odds of someone being nominated, but then it will likely be by someone that the nominee is familiar with, thus causing it to become a "friend" nomination. Without any community engagement on the wiki, editors are bound to burn out quickly, especially if they only have the cap in mind and continue to edit alone.

The point is, a vast number of past nominees have likely been nominated by friends or users they are close with, who felt they deserved it. Though, in the end, the voting staff are the ones doing the evaluation, so if they deem a nominee eligible, then what difference does it really make? Unless the voting staff member had some sort of bond to the nominee, I'd say it's quite irrelevant.

Unfair to past recipients
It could be argued that any such change to the current system/process would be unfair to past recipients or devalue the cap, but if we really want to continue distributing the cap, we would need to adapt to the current state.

How should we solve this?
Below is a list of proposed models by both staff and users, as well as my thoughts on them:

WindPower's proposal:

Link →
I would really like to see how this works in practice and how it will be handled. Otherwise, we probably should lean towards a more automatic process, but not fully automated, so that less action is required by staff to conclude a nomination.

Tark's proposal:

Link →
Reducing vote requirement count could lead to having poor judgement being overlooked and have the nominee bestowed a cap too quickly for the rest of the staff to determine. Some nominees in the past had almost received a cap due to lack of substantial review, and when it was finally revealed that their contributions weren't good enough, staff had to retract their votes in the last minute.

If we actually could automate nominations by tracking and filtering users based on a set criteria, as you suggest, then it should eliminate the concerns of friend nominations and biased backings. Whether backings should still be kept, we can decide by then. This would also solve the issue with the lack of organic nominations, but would require the staff to be active enough to review the suggested candidates and reach a consensus.

Gabrielwoj's proposal:

Link →
This could somewhat work, but also leaves out transparency. Granted, voting is already held behind closed doors for the sake of the nominee's privacy, although nominees can request access to their logs at any time.

The biggest issue with this, however, would be that the staff has to be fairly active, yet alone active enough to watch contributors, evaluate them based their contributions, and finally, take up the initiative to gather the rest of the staff and reach a general consensus on whether or not to grant a cap to that user. I can imagine this is what the initial process was like, but it just wouldn't work in this day and age.

Dereko's proposal:

Link →
Not a bad take, but giving a selected few editors a limited voice will run dry real quick, I'm afraid. I suppose an established voting committee could bear fruit, but they will need to be carefully picked, of course.

Devaluing the cap
Would a new system end up devaluing the cap? It's kinda hard to say, and largely depend on what system we decide to use. And no – it won't be in the sense that we will start giving caps out willy-nilly, as that should never happen. We should still strive to retain its value as a privilege and reward for valuable contributions, no matter what system gets put in place.

Will it become easier or harder? Ultimately, the goal is to keep the process running with minimal staff interaction to avoid months-on-end stagnation and wait time. If past recipients find the new system unfair, they'd have to understand that this is done to keep the distribution process going at a steady pace (even if going for years) and adapt to the current time/state.

Personally, I don't think it's ruining its value, and I'm not too worried about it. But I'll fully admit that I want to retain the cap's image as a privilege and reward and not as a participation right.

Staff cohesion/inactivity

A long-term issue to say the least, but it's only natural for people to move on or become less active due to life or simply lack of interest – it's inevitable – and as I've already said, bringing in fresh staff is a temporary solution, as they too one day will become inactive, thus returning us to square one. Though, by definition, any solution is temporal, but we should at least try to do something about it if we're still interested in being a part of this project.

What can we do to become more active?
Honestly, it depends on if/how you want to stay active. Granted, this is all volunteer participation and we don't require you to edit the wiki everyday. You're pretty much free to come and go as you please, but I think it goes without saying that this is the root cause of the inactivity issue – and I happen to "abide" by it, too.

If you don't wish to participate or bring something to the table, then I'd assume you're either too lazy and just wish to keep your fancy title as a staff member, or are simply too busy with life. The latter is perfectly understandable and can't be avoided, but poppin' your head in every now and then – especially during these situations – shouldn't take that much time out of your busy schedule. If you really are unavailable, then please just make it known.

I'd also like to see more of you on the IRC. I can understand that you may forget to start up your client or whatever the reason may be. And to those of you that lack a bouncer, I'll offer free bouncer service to those interested. You may idle if you want, but it should make it easier for you to follow-up on past conversations rather than having to look up the wiki's public logs each time.

Recruiting more staff
We're a small enough team as-is, and with the majority of our team being as inactive as they are, it's difficult for us to keep up with staff duties, such as managing the nominations, as addressed earlier, or being available to deal with spam/vandalism/troublemakers. This will lead to less and less action being taken due to no discussion or concensus being made on existing matters, and eventually will lead to unilateral action, as seen by the enacted Wiki Cap hiatus.

As such, we should be looking into getting fresh staff onboard to create a better dynamic, which will hopefully cause a better flow. Eventually though, we will run out of potential staff candidates, and when that time happens, it might be a reasonable idea to call it quits and initialize archiveMode()

Below is a list of potential staff candidates and why they might fit the bill, as well as who is vouching for who. You may vouch for any of these candidates or explain why you don't want them as staff, or even propose some yourself, down in the comments. Only staff members count, but we're open to suggestions.

Ashe ✔️

Ashe, not to be confused with Ashes, has been a member of the wiki for 2 years and receivied a cap for his general participation in the Weapon Demonstration Project, and has since been co-managing the official YouTube channel. He seems to have a good understanding of how the wiki works and is also taking on Spanish translation work, which would also make him a good pick as loc mod.

Current backers

Dereko ✔️

Dereko has been on the wiki for 4 years and mainly do translation work for zh-hans (simplified Chinese). He is a cap holder and seem like a competent translator, whose also responsible for managing the wiki Bilibili account (Chinese video platform) and has provided feedback on translators. Would be an overall good pick as loc mod.

Current backers

Yossef ✔️

has volunteered

Yossef registered his account back in 2013, but first became active in 2018. He does not have a cap, but as stated in the Moderator guidelines, we have had capless (heh) moderators in the past. Nikno would be a good example of that. Alright, I'm going off on a tangent here, sorry.

Yossef is active on the wiki, regularly participate in discussions, hasn't caused any mishap or shown signs of being troublesome, and he is slowly crawling his way up the ladder in gaining a better understanding on how the wiki works. I've personally explained a few technical questions to him or helped him out with other technical matters. Even if he's lacking in experience, I wouldn't mind having him as a staff trainee.

Current backers

In terms of backing/vouching, there should be at least four backers. If we really have trouble deciding, it may be reduced to three at a minimum, or the candidate will be discarded. Also, this won't be the future staff election process, I'm just trying to kill two (or multiple) birds with one stone, unless you want it to be.

  • Checkmark indicates met criteria, but candidate may still receive more backers.

If you've read through this entire wall of text, I sincerely thank you – have a cookie 🍪

reserved for those that read the entire thing >:(

Above message written by user User:Wookipan on a third-party site, copied and pasted here. I will add my thoughts shortly as all users have been asked to participate regardless of user groups. Naleksuh (talk) 19:09, 28 August 2022 (UTC)


Here are my thoughts on the situation.
I don't see a need to stop wiki caps. I've seen a lot of people say they joined because of the caps, and while this wasn't my experience (I didn't even know the cap existed at the time of joining) I don't see a need to add any hiatus or sunset it. I also don't think it was appropriate to unilaterally add a hiatus. I think people could simply hold a discussion on the caps.
I don't think there should be a requirement for moderators and sysops to be online every day, though people going for extended periods of time or not even being able to be contacted is a seperate issue. I would also like to have specific responsibilities currently held by a single person User:WindPower who is rather inactive to either be delegated to new sysops or be doable by multiple people. WindPower already transferred ownership of the YouTube channel to another user Ashe, though that's its own seperate issue.
I have no problem with either Ashe or Dereko having moderator permissions at this time. I have never heard of Yossef myself. I would also be willing to volunteer myself, having been here longer than the other three, though my name was not added to the list. Also, I don't see a reason why we are looking for only one specific person. In my view, it's a task of whether or not any individual person has the need, experience, and trust for the group, not having a specific amount of people or a ratio of sysops to non-sysops.
Yes, there has definitely been a lot of incivility and personal attacks exchanged in the IRC channel. I think everyone should be nice. I myself have done my best to stay out of the situation and this has worked for the most part, though I will not claim to be perfect. Naleksuh (talk) 19:33, 28 August 2022 (UTC)

Since this seems like a somewhat big things about TF Wiki, I am really not sure if this will be the place to talk about this, and if people will come and see all the comments. I do not really have much interactions with Lagg, so I will leave some parts of discussions out.

As a Wiki Cap nominees myself, one word to describe my feelings as a nominees is just "confusing". I can agree with most of the issues talked, but there is just so much more that can be improved.

I would like to see the Wiki Cap nominations to stay at this time of year, and I believe most of the issues could be solved by changing the nomination process, however this could mean it is a big process and lot of time and people are needed for this to be up.

Start from "confusing", one day I saw I got a message from Yossef asking my opinions on getting nominated for Wiki Cap, although I do not have hope on actually getting the Wiki Cap, but I thought it was no hurt just to hear others opinions on me, so I agreed the nomination. It is that moment all the confusing starts, there's no clear rules or anything on how you will get evaluated, there's no welcome package on my talk page for things like what to do next, or that I can request to see the chat log of the Wiki staffs. It is entirely feels like it's all just behind the scene and judged by the staffs. I doubt there can be a automated process on evaluating the Wiki Cap nominees, however I would love to see:
  1. a public list of some suggested requirements on getting Wiki Cap, such as edit count or file upload count, although rules are not enforced, but it can still be used to facilitate the voting process and set a bar for getting the Wiki Cap.
  2. a list of Wiki Cap nominees and their detailed reason for getting/not getting the Wiki Cap, in which way they did good and deserve getting the cap, that is also good for future voting references.
  3. a welcome package on the nominees talk page once they got nominated, for detailed process on how they will be evaluated, estimated time for the process, and what they can do during this process, for example request to see the discussion log of the staff.
  4. wiki staff actually have their opinions on nominees composed and public for others to see, instead of just a number below the Yes or No. This is kind of things that matters for public, instead of all the friend backers messages.
  5. actual discussion activities going on, like having a discussions on the nomination page with the staff members as well, instead of just the friend backers talking inside the little boxes. People, and staff can ask questions, and the nominees can come address these questions publicly. Nominees can come out and list some of the things they felt important to let others know them better, instead of just other people talking about things they see you have done.
Although I can see we are in the sunset on this game, and this Wiki, I still love to see improvements for this whole Wiki cap process and hope it can be open indefinitely until no one cares about this anymore.

About the staff inactivity, I do have a feeling it is about the whole there is not much things going on in the TF Wiki. I do not have much opinions on adding new staff members, and I am more than happy to see all these three people becomeing staff members, if they already have something in their mind, that they can do became a staff member, to actually improving the TF Wiki. There is just so many situations that I found myself having ideas to improve the TF Wiki, but thinking it not worth the effort at this sunset age, or do not have anyone to help me with, for example improving Weapons' Shot Type and Damage Type. --AlexT 01:18, 29 August 2022 (UTC)

Note: The original post is from the wiki's Steam Group page
As we know, the Cap situation hasn’t been easy in the past few years. And I totally understand the concerns people are having while distributing the Cap.
I made a pastebin a while ago addressing some points.
Regarding the current Cap distribution system, I suggest in making some reforms. Its no surprise that the old system is no longer as sustainable as it was since its implementation a decade ago. We can start perhaps, by implementing one of the ideas I mentioned in my bin.
Cap holders that are image/video makers, can partake in voting for nominees that are being nominated for their image/video contribution. This way the voting pool is bigger and can make nomination process faster.
We can use this idea or perhaps other ideas as a pilot and see how this reformed system develops.
I’d like to hear what y’all think.
YossefTalk 12:10, 18 September 2022 (UTC)

Adding a notice to Talk pages

Denied has recently made a suggestion that I agree with. In their words: "Every talk page needs some edit note like THIS IS NOT A PLACE FOR DISCUSSIONS OUTSIDE OF THE ITEM ITSELF. FOR COMMUNITY DISCUSSIONS GO TO THE STEAM FORUMS."

While not necessarily with those words or formatting, I do believe adding such a notice could discourage new contributors from adding topics, sometimes creating entirely new talk pages in the process, with questions like "how do i shot bullet?" or statements such as "pootis man is funny" while teaching them the proper place for them. - BrazilianNut (talk) 16:58, 1 September 2022 (UTC)

I'm neutral on this, I'll support it but I also think it's not too large of an issue currently. Also try avoiding using {{Quotation}} on talk pages as it breaks them.
GrampaSwood (talk) 17:03, 1 September 2022 (UTC)
I think the more common misuse of talk pages is to use the talk page for talking about the page's subject, but they can both be encompassed in one message. BrazilianNut, are you picturing something like this being on MediaWiki:Newarticletext? Naleksuh (talk) 20:20, 1 September 2022 (UTC)
No, I'm not, Naleksuh, and that's the misuse I was trying to say, but I admit I failed to convey that thanks to bad examples and maybe some poor wording. - BrazilianNut (talk) 22:20, 1 September 2022 (UTC)
If you didn't mean that, then what did you mean? I was hoping you would elaborate rather than simply saying no. Naleksuh (talk) 06:24, 2 September 2022 (UTC)
An editnotice similar to Brain Bucket or Chicken Kiev is what I imagine he means, but on every page starting with Talk:.
GrampaSwood (talk) 10:57, 2 September 2022 (UTC)
What GrampaSwood said; I meant a red edit notice, like the ones for those two articles, at the start of Talk pages telling contributors that a Talk page is for discussing the article itself, not for asking questions or making comments about the article's subject (like using a weapon's Talk page to ask how to best utilize it or to comment how they think it should be buffed/nerfed), and that they should use the Steam Forums for such things (maybe providing a link as well).
Apologies for any confusion caused by bad examples or by making my messages too short. - BrazilianNut (talk) 12:17, 2 September 2022 (UTC)
That's a tough nut. It might help to tokenize the page titles in the tag, somehow. "This <item's> Discussions are for talking about issues within the <item's> page, not for talking about the <item>." That is not easy to pose or parse. Imagine the translators. You may have mentioned this, but if you go with the tag, it should clearly state to the reader that it has a link to the full explanation of the policy.
M I K A D O 282 ⊙⊙⊙⊙⊙ ⊙⊙ ⊙⊙ (Contact Mikado282 (SM)) | (contribs) (Help Wanted!) 13:20, 2 September 2022 (UTC)
Pictogram nope.png Nope. It's possible, but the amount of work involved in adding and maintaining it is far greater than simply reverting the edit and messaging the user. — Tark 21:26, 2 September 2022 (UTC)

Create an exception for an item link from the dictionary

Please read the discussion here.
Does anyone know how to create that kind of exception? Tiagoquix (talk) 19:41, 7 September 2022 (UTC)

Pages with the fewest revisions - redirects

Pages with the fewest revisions (long loading) -- there are many redirects here with names in other languages, such as Spanish and Russian. Are they OK to be in the Wiki or should they be deleted? Tiagoquix (talk) 02:18, 19 September 2022 (UTC)

Unless redirects are actively harmful, there is no reason to remove them.
GrampaSwood (talk) 09:39, 19 September 2022 (UTC)