Help:Navigating Wikidata/User Options

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This page provides information on some of the user options available to registered Wikidata users, as well as some tips for configuring settings in order to make the most of what Wikidata has to offer.

A registered user is a user who has signed up for an account and has logged into Wikidata and/or any of the Wikimedia projects (via the unified login). If you have turned on two-factor authentication, you may be asked to enter a token as part of logging in to your account.

Please note that the user options outlined on this page are only available to those who have already created a user account for Wikidata. While creating a user account is not necessary in order to contribute to the project, it is encouraged. Creating an account is easy and free, and does not require your name or any personal details. It is also possible to login with your username and password you use already in any Wikimedia project via SUL which provides a unified userlogin for all projects.

Language settings

The Preferences menu for Wikidata
The ULS (here for the English language) is found at the top of the page
The "In other languages" section of an item page
Babel user information
en-0 This user has no knowledge of English (or understands it with considerable difficulty).
en-1 This user has basic knowledge of English.
en-2 This user has intermediate knowledge of English.
en-3 This user has advanced knowledge of English.
en-4 This user has near native speaker knowledge of English.
en-5 This user has professional knowledge of English.
en-N This user has a native understanding of English.
Users by language

There are many reasons why you might want to customize your language settings. For instance, you may want to view Wikidata in a specific dialect which is a distinct variety of a language (Canadian English and Brazilian Portuguese are considered dialects of English and Portuguese). If you know multiple languages, you may want to view and add information about items—such as labels, descriptions, and aliases—in all the languages you understand while editing Wikidata.

You can set your language preferences in one of three ways: via the "Preferences" link in user options, by using the Universal Language Selector, or through the Babel extension (#babel template).

Language fallback chain

Only the Universal Language Selector and Babel extension allow you to specify a language fallback chain. The fallback chain refers to Wikidata's systematic way of displaying content to you when it is not available in your primary language of preference. For example, if you have indicated that you know language X, Y, Z, but a page is not available in X or Y, you will automatically be provided with a Z version of the page. You can view your current language fallback chain at Special:MyLanguageFallbackChain.

Features which utilize the user's language fallback chain:

Features which use the default language fallback chains:

  • HTML page title and H1 heading on item pages
  • Claims with the data type "item" displayed on item pages
  • {{Q}} template
  • API call wbgetentities with parameter languagefallback=1

Preferences menu

This option is the easiest and best for users who will be reading and editing Wikidata in one language only.

You can update your language settings by clicking on the "Preferences" link at the top of any page. You can also reach the Preferences menu (when logged in) by visiting Special:Preferences. On the first tab titled "User profile," scroll down to the "Internationalisation" section. Select your preferred language from the drop-down menu and hit "Save" at the bottom of the page to save your settings. Dialects of languages are available for selection, however, full translations of site pages may not exist for them; if you would like to read and edit Wikidata in a dialect, it is therefore recommended that you use one of the other language setting options in order to state your language fallback chain.

Universal Language Selector

This option is best for users who will be contributing to Wikidata in a language that is not fully supported by the default Wikidata input settings and/or their native keyboard.

You can access the Universal Language Selector (ULS) by clicking on the following icon found at the top of any page: ULS. The ULS provides a mechanism for configuring your language settings for both the Wikidata interface and your input methods (i.e. you will be able to type text in languages not directly supported by your keyboard). For more information, see the ULS extension page.

Babel extension

This option is best for users who will be contributing to Wikidata in multiple languages. When editing Wikidata, if you know multiple languages, you may want to see information about items—labels, descriptions, and aliases—in those languages and have the option of adding any missing information in the languages you understand to those fields.

You can activate the Babel extension by adding the #babel template to your user page. Syntax for the #babel template is as follows:

{{#babel:xx-i|xx-i|...}}

where xx is a MediaWiki language code, and i indicates your level of proficiency in the language; i will either be a number from 0 to 5 (where 0 is no knowledge and 5 is professional proficiency) or the letter N for native speakers. Multiple language are separated by |. For example, if you wanted to add a #babel template that showed you had native understanding of English, advanced knowledge of French, and professional proficiency in German, you would use the following code:

{{#babel:en-N|fr-3|de-5}}

More information on the number designations is available from the babel extension page. For MediaWiki language codes, see the list of projects per language codes.

After adding the #babel template to your user page, labels, descriptions, and aliases in the mentioned languages will be shown just below the "In more languages" section on item pages.

LabelLister gadget

To access the label and description in all languages, turn on the gadget LabelLister.

Gadgets

Gadgets are special scripts, or programs, written by other users which help make certain Wikidata tasks easier and more efficient to do. For example, one gadget, known as Merge.js can be used to first perform a semi-automated merge of two items and then request the deletion of the duplicate item.

Gadgets can be activated in the Preferences menu under the "Gadgets" tab. Gadgets are mostly based on JavaScript, so please note that JavaScript has to be enabled in your browser in order for them to work.

To view the list of gadgets available to you, see Special:Gadgets. More information, including documentation and author details for gadgets, can also be found at Wikidata:Tools/Gadgets.

Access levels and permissions

A user's ability to use and modify certain Wikidata interface features is determined by the user rights the user has. Just some of the special access levels a user can have include administrators, bureaucrats, translation administrators, and property creators.

Some access levels for user accounts may be requested at Wikidata:Requests for permissions. Users may self-nominate, or nominate one another. Other access levels need to be assigned manually by a user with the appropriate authority.

To learn more about the different user access levels and permissions, please see Wikidata:User access levels.

See also

For additional information and guidance, see:

  • Wikidata:Project chat, for discussing all and any aspects of Wikidata
  • Wikidata:Glossary, the glossary of terms used in this and other Help pages
  • Help:FAQ, frequently asked questions asked and answered by the Wikidata community
  • Help:Contents, the Help portal featuring all the documentation available for Wikidata