Wikidata:Requests for comment/A need for a resolution regarding article moves and redirects

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An editor has requested the community to provide input on "A need for a resolution regarding article moves and redirects" via the Requests for comment (RFC) process. This is the discussion page regarding the issue.

If you have an opinion regarding this issue, feel free to comment below. Thank you!

Untitled[edit]

During the edits I have been doing on Wikidata, I realized that there is an issue that needs to be resolved. I'll use one of my edits as an example to show my point:

I was attempting to add to 2011 Pan American Games (Q2049076), the English version on this entry being en:2011 Pan American Games. I was trying to add the following entries to this Wikidata entry: bcl:2011 Pan Amerikanong Karawat and et:2011 Pan-Ameerika mängud. However, these two entries being added run across a conflict with Wikidata entry Q230186, the English version on this entry being en:Pan American Games. Upon investigating the Bikol Central (bcn) and eesti (et) articles I was trying to add to the same Wikidata entry as en:2011 Pan American Games, I found that these two pages are redirects to their corresponding articles on the Wikidata entry with en:Pan American Games listed, preventing from being added to Wikidata.

The problem that I am running across involves this situation where Wikipedia "1" has two articles, "Apple" and "Orange", and Wikipedia "2" has an article, "Apple", but "Orange" as a redirect with its target being "Apple" or "Pear" (a redirect towards "Apple" as a section redirect being the most common). In a case like this, "Orange" for "Wikpedia 2" would not be able to be put on the same entry in Wikidata as the "Orange" in "Wikipedia 1" (or entered at all, for that matter) since it is a redirect to another target ("Apple" or "Pear"). This problem occurs most often in this situation when "Wikipedia 1" has a complete article for the topic "Orange", but "Wikipedia 2" has an article ("Apple" or "Pear") with "Orange" as a section redirect towards the article, preventing the "Orange" in "Wikipedia 2" from being added to Wikidata at all if its target ("Apple" or "Pear") is listed on a Wikidata entry. It seems like there needs to be some sort of way to allow certain exceptions for redirects to be listed in Wikidata, especially in cases like this. Steel1943 (talk) 02:27, 4 March 2013 (UTC)

To redirect to a section inside an other article that is about something else will break the basic premise for Wikidata, the articles main topic will not be about the same. The number of cases where this rather minor situation occur is so small that it is an error in most cases. Last summer Denny did an analysis to check if this was a big problem, and it doesn't seems to be overwhelming. His results is available in Ratio of language links to full text in Wikipedias [1]. I've inspecting some of them and so far I have not found any serious problems, but I tend to agree that in some cases it would solve some of the problems if we could link to a specially marked redirect. The best example is the Bonnie and Clyde problem, many Wikipedias have an article of the pair but not so many have biographies about each of the persons. Jeblad (talk) 03:11, 4 March 2013 (UTC)
You seem to be missing my point. I'm not stating that there should be section redirects hardcoded into Wikidata. I'm referring to cases such as my example above, where if one were to look up "Orange" on "Wikipedia 2", it would redirect the user to "Apple#Orange", since the text in the redirect is "#REDIRECT[[Apple#Orange]]". In no way am I saying that there should be hardcoded section redirects in Wikidata. I'm saying that "Orange" in "Wikipedia 2" should be allowed to be listed on the same Wikidata list as the "Orange" in "Wikipedia 1", whether the "Orange" in "Wikipedia 2" is a redirect to "Apple" (#REDIRECT[[Apple]]) or "Apple#Orange" (#REDIRECT[[Apple#Orange]]). I'm stating that in this case, "Orange" from "Wikipedia 2" should be allowed to be added to Wikidata, not "Apple#Orange". In fact, for the sake of my point, please disregard the fact that I ever mentioned "sections" in this discussion. Steel1943 (talk) 03:57, 4 March 2013 (UTC)
I strongly support Steel1943. As long that an article and a redirect towards this article have not exactly the same topic -and that happens very often- it would be a very good thing to allow the redirect to be used to be listed in Wikidata. If you don't like this feature, you would be free not to use it ; but I see no serious reason to prevent users who wish to interlink redirects to do that. To dig a bit more in the interesting example given by Jeblad, open w:de:Clyde Barrow, which is a redirect : it contains three interwiki links, linking it to three articles such as w:pt:Clyde Barrow which are themselves added to Q3320282. The use of Wikidata on the four wikis concerned by these redirects would destroy this piece of information. What is the positive side of this destruction ? I can't see any. Touriste (talk) 05:44, 4 March 2013 (UTC)
I think the "positiv" side of this "feature" is to prevent people to link to redirects in the case were they meant the real article thus unnecessarily increasing the serverload every time that interwikilink is called. But this could be solved easyly by prompting the user " foo is a redirect to bar do you really wan to attach foo to this item". But there might be also some other pandora boxes opened by allowing redirects like loops and redicets changed to totaly

different subjects. @Jeblad i don't know if it is really that seldom. I am working right now on Wikidata:Wiki_import_task_force/dewiki and most of them are such cases. --Saehrimnir (talk) 16:13, 4 March 2013 (UTC)

I would also support this (as I have before), and I've stated as such before. Saehrimnir's idea of "do you really want to do this?" seems like a good way to make sure it's not "abused" in some fashion. It would really help clean up lists of characters articles topics that commonly have redirects from topics which are covered on other wikis but not on the wikis with the lists. --Izno (talk) 16:51, 6 March 2013 (UTC)
I doubt the single page constraint will be removed as it is a prerequisite to make the implicit lookup of items to work. Jeblad (talk) 17:08, 6 March 2013 (UTC)
And that's precisely how this helps. I can add en:Draenor (or en:Outland (Warcraft)) to Q850277. It helps navigation for other wikis, if not the wiki which has the redirect article. --Izno (talk) 17:40, 6 March 2013 (UTC)
Support. Allowing sitelinks to redirect pages (even if they are redirects to sections) would get around the problem we have at the moment where a Wikipedia page has sections on different entities which are notable enough to be added to this page but not notable enough to each have their own pages. As time passes some of these entities may get promoted . Some related entities may get demoted, with a section added on this page and their own page converted to a redirect. Meanwhile a similar process happens on other languages so these pages on different languages are never synchronised. This happens a lot with minor characters in works of fiction though I have come across it on a little scottish island with two castles which has two pages on de:wp but where en:wp makes them share a page.
Even if no language wp gives these entities separate pages it is still worth having separate pages on wikidata for each entity, all linked via redirects to the shared wp page because that lets us create statements on wikidata about each of the entities. If the only page on wikidata links to "minor characters in foo" then the wikidata page is about the wikipedia page, not about the characters, and there are not very many statements we can make about that page.
The same will happen if we have a table comparing software features (for instance - the same applies to all tables, family trees, data visualisations). Stage 3 of wikidata is about creating these tables from data on wikidata but this will only work if each entity has it's own set of statements on wikidata and that will only happen if the criteria for wikidata pages are loosened a bit. This is already happening a bit. The criteria now permit wikidata pages to be created for any geographical administrative region and for any species, even if they don't yet have wikipedia pages.
I am going to start a new section with a proposal for how the criteria should be changed to allow a limited number of redirects. Filceolaire (talk) 01:09, 7 March 2013 (UTC)
How will the reverse direction work? If the sitelinks from several items resolve, by way of redirects, to one page, how will that page point back to all of them? —Naddy (talk) 17:07, 10 March 2013 (UTC)

Another example (with no redirect to section): Q103169 =red algae / Rhodophyta has both scientific nouns in some languages and vernacular nouns in other languages. In each language, a redirect exist from one to the other. It would be better to have all the scientific nouns in one element (even if some are redirects), and all vernacular nouns (even if some are redirects) on another one. And there are thousand and thousand of cases like this one. TED 02:35, 18 March 2013 (UTC) 

Wikidata pages are about entities, irrespective of the particular naming convention. Since there is only one entity there should only be one wikidata page, even though most languages have both a scientific as well as an vernacular name. Secular mind (talk) 15:57, 23 March 2013 (UTC)
I have examples in my work. Q2244884 links to the en: article about several types of Soviet early warning radar. If I want to say Q4077004 had an instance of both main types mentioned in Q2244884 I've had to make a dummy Q13107170 which isn't linked to any Wikipedia pages. Secretlondon (talk) 20:57, 13 May 2013 (UTC)

Proposals[edit]

Proposal 1[edit]

Where an item has a wikidata page, because it has a dedicated page on one Wikipedia, but on other wikipedias the item is on a shared wikipedia page with other items, with redirects to each item from separate redirect pages, then the Wikidata page for that item can have a sitelink to the redirect page. As the wikidata page only relates to one item it can have statements related to that item.

A separate Wikidata page will contain links to the shared wikipedia page and any other shared pages on other Wikipedias. As this wikidata page relates to a wikipedia page rather than a single item therefore it can only have statements related to the wikipedia page or (perhaps) statements related to all the items on the shared page.

Note that the shared page may have infoboxes for each item with data imported from the individual wikidata pages for each item or it may (after phase 3) have some data visualisation - e.g. a family tree. Filceolaire (talk) 15:00, 10 March 2013 (UTC)

Proposal 2[edit]

Where there is a 'shared' wikipedia page which covers more than one item a separate wikidata page can be created for each item, linked to the shared page by redirects on the wikipedia. This is so that each item can have it's own wikidata page with statements related to that item, independent of statements related to other items on the shared page.

This can apply to :

  1. TV season listing all the TV shows in a program in one season
  2. List of minor characters in a novel, movie or other work of fiction.
  3. Season for a sports team
  4. Comparison table e.g. for features in software
  5. family tree
  6. other shared pages

Filceolaire (talk) 15:00, 10 March 2013 (UTC)

Commentary on proposals 1 and 2[edit]

I have nothing deeply "against" any of them. I simply find them a bit intricate -I prefer 2 as being shorter.

Some questions : what are we to decide in view of this "resquest for comment ?". If some "decision" is taken here, somebody will have to change something in some page of code to simply make it technically possible to sitelink wikidata items to wikipedia redirects. Would not it be simpler to simply here comment a proposal asking for this technical move ? We can write then write a policy explaining how this new technical feature should be used, but our means to get sure that it is strictly followed are limited (only humans can decide whether the title of a redirect is equivalent to the title of the page where it leads or only to the name of a section of this page). So we can recommend but hardly force. My own proposal would be much easier : it would be to ask for the removal of the technical limitation forbidding sitelinking to redirects, not more than that. What do you think of this point of view ? Touriste (talk) 15:30, 10 March 2013 (UTC)

I think it would be good to agree how redirects would be linked before we have the limitation on such linkages removed. We do have a big problem here that needs solving, and linking to redirects (possibly redirects that have yet to be created) does seem like it could be part of the solution. But it isn't without problems of its own.
For instance, currently Wikidata only allows one link from each item to a single article on any particular Wikipedia. Assuming that constraint remains in place, redirects can present a problem because there can be multiple redirects for a given topic on each Wikipedia - e.g. for spelling variations, disputed names, different perspectives on the subject, and so forth. How will we choose which redirect to link to?
The various Wikipedias each have their own policies regarding redirects. Are our proposals compatible with all these policies? I think I read somewhere that some Wikipedias prohibit redirects entirely - is that true? --Avenue (talk) 22:02, 10 March 2013 (UTC)

I'm not sure I can distinguish the difference between options 1 and 2. Could you make that more clear? --Izno (talk) 14:48, 11 March 2013 (UTC)

I fully support any of them, which seems very similar to me. The point is allow sitelinks to redirects so we can interwikilink languages without separate article for the item, as those included in lists or similar stuff. --Rondador 13:55, 13 March 2013 (UTC)
I raised the same issue here, and was pointed to this RfC. I can understand the technical limitation concerning anchored links, so I will settle for redirections. The proposal 2 seem to cover exactly the needs. Therefore, I support it strongly. --Harmonia Amanda (talk) 16:49, 18 March 2013 (UTC).
I confirm that I am for the proposal 2, which would allow to create a wikidata page for any group of redirections concerning a precise subject, even if it does not have a proper article on any particular WP. I find that much simpler and more logical. According to the proposal 1 Legolin (Q7505605) is at present entitled to a wikidata page. When it will be merged with Ossiriand, should we delete the wikidata page? I think that if several wikipedia created redirections on the same subject, then it is interesting for wikidata. And if wikipedias want to merge their short articles, they would be able to do it without destroying the interwiki for all the others WP. --Harmonia Amanda (talk) 22:06, 18 March 2013 (UTC)
Okay, I think I understand the distinction between Props 1 and 2. 1 says "only if it has a Wikidata page (because we have other wikis which do have articles)" and 2 says "any redirect of sufficient 'quality'". Is that a correct understanding of the proposals? If it is, I would only support proposal 1 and not proposal 2. We should attempt to avoid managing other wikis' redirects if at all possible, and only if a wiki has an item on a particular element should we link the corresponding other wikis. --Izno (talk) 21:27, 18 March 2013 (UTC)
I also support proposal 2. Problem I see with proposal one if is a particular group of topics is considered on, say, Norwegian Wikipedia, notable enough to have one article for each but not all items of this group do actually have an article, and in the same time they all the items have entries in lists on fr: and en:, we would have to wait for no: to really create the articles to make all the interwiki links between en: and fr:. -Ash Crow (talk) 22:03, 18 March 2013 (UTC)
There are many items without any sitelinks now, created for the sake of structure needs. I believe that we can extend Proposal 1 with these items so that they could include some redirects and become items with sitelinks. May be we'll be able even to totally exclude such exceptions from WD:N by adding redirects to them :) --Infovarius (talk) 11:12, 28 May 2015 (UTC)

bind to __STATICREDIRECT__[edit]

The "bug" report [2] proposes to make the distinction between "normal" redirects and those standing out by being marked as __STATICREDIRECT__ . Since the latter had been invented in order to prevent wikilinks from beeing substituted automatically because (I'm interpreting:) editors see a semantic difference the case appears to be conceptually quite similar. -- Gymel (talk) 16:55, 11 March 2013 (UTC)

This distinction can be useful, if we consider that a __STATICREDIRECT__ is a valid target for a sitelink, as it's an item IRW. For example: es:Espana is a "normal" redirect that deals only with a misspelling. It should't be interwikable. de:Bilbo Beutlin is a redirect that should be static, interwikable with en:Bilbo Baggins. --Rondador 14:00, 13 March 2013 (UTC)
Yes, it does make a useful distinction, as it presumably marks redirects that refer to a topic distinguishable from that of the target article. But it could be applied to misspellings too, if they are misspellings of the distinct topic's name, or be a non-unique reference for other reasons (e.g. alternative correct spellings, or disputed names). This could still cause a problem for Wikidata. Which redirect should Wikidata choose to link to? That's easy to answer for misspellings, but not so easy for disputed names. --Avenue (talk) 23:50, 13 March 2013 (UTC)
I don't see this as a good idea. Using things in software that were functionally meant to do other things entirely tends to turn around and bite you. --Izno (talk) 02:40, 14 March 2013 (UTC)

new Proposal zero[edit]


Summary[edit]

Wikidata deals with entities, which are subject of Wikipedia articles in any language. As a first step in phase 1 pages for such entities are created and linked to the corresponding Wikipedia articles. This is used for interwiki links, which allow readers to find articles with the same subject in different languages.

Organizing human knowledge by subject is not a trivial task and editors different languages may come to different conclusions when the subjects of articles should be combined or broken apart. A good example for this are Bonnie Parker and Clyde Barrow. The English language editors came to the conclusion, that they are best described in a single article en:Bonnie and Clyde, while the Portuguese language editors chose to have separate article pt:Bonnie Parker and pt:Clyde Barrow.

With respect to interwiki links this leaves us with two questions:

  1. How do we tell the reader of pt:Bonnie Parker where they can find relevant information in English?
  2. How do we tell the reader of en:Bonnie and Clyde where they can find relevant information in Portuguese?

Question 1[edit]

It may be possible to try and deduce the correct article based on properties between the entities and the availability of articles in different languages. But this is a complex task which would place a significant burden on the server and has the potential to go terribly wrong. Alternatively we can use the knowledge of the English language editors, who already created the redirect en:Clyde Barrow which points to en:Bonnie and Clyde #Clyde Barrow. In order to tab into this knowledge it is necessary to allow Wikidata entities to link to such redirects.

Question 2[edit]

Since we do not know if the reader is looking for information on Bonnie Parker or Clyde Barrow, neither Portuguese article is a good landing point for this reader. We need a page which displays the available options. Again, while an automatic solution might be possible, it is unlikely to be feasible. We should leave it up to the Portuguese language editors to provide such a page in the form of a – possibly short – overview article. It may be tempting to try and resolve this issue by means of Wikidata alone, but unfortunately a good solution depends on the local language editors.

There's a way, although it's tricky: can't you go to en:Clyde Barrow (the redirection page) and see there the interwikis, as you see the categories? —Rondador 09:20, 27 March 2013 (UTC)

Conclusion and follow ups[edit]

This makes it clear that the solution will need to allow linking Wikidata object to redirects and the creation of overview articles in the local language.

  • #Proposal 0 needs to be accepted and the necessary changes to the software need to be made
  • The notability guidelines should clarify that redirects alone are not sufficient for notability
  • We need guidelines on what kind of articles or redirects may be linked, WD:N #Exclusion criteria have already started this, it has to be expanded and possibly put on separate page
  • Wikidata should make a recommendation to the local language Wikipedias on guidelines for overview articles

-- Secular mind (talk) 10:17, 24 March 2013 (UTC)

Clarification[edit]

In case we modify the software so it does allow to link to redirects, I wanted to clarify that this would have the following consequences:

  1. when entering a link into the Wikidata item to a Wikipedia, redirects will not be automatically resolved anymore
  2. a Wikipedia article will still only display the language links that are on the directly associated item in Wikidata, and additionally local links, but it will not collect those from redirects
  3. a Wikipedia article will not be able to directly access data from an item connected to a redirect to the article, but only to the item directly connected to the article

I don't need an extension or a second round of RFC, but I just wanted to make sure that this is understood before we implement the change. Cheers, --Denny (talk) 10:25, 26 April 2013 (UTC)

Is it possible to notify users when they add a redirect link? --Stevenliuyi (talk) 12:57, 27 April 2013 (UTC)
The plan is that wikidata data will be accessible from anywhere on the web. Surely it will be possible to access the data from a any wikipedia page? Even if it needs some extra code so it doesn't count as 'direct access'? Filceolaire (talk) 08:36, 18 May 2013 (UTC)
I was wondering, how this useful idea is getting on? Ad 1, could the links to redirects have different colour on Wikidata, or some visible marking as redirects? Ad 2, could links to redirects be accessible from Wikipedia pages, please? Ad 3, that is understood, I believe. Also, is there a bug on bugzilla for this? Sorry if my questions are a little stupid. Littledogboy (talk) 21:01, 10 July 2013 (UTC)
If other language links are not displayed, as Denny outlines, this approach makes no sense as the basic problem is that the articles "Bonny" and "Clyde" should have language links also to those Wikipedias which have only "Bonny and Clyde" articles, this is not needed for the corresponding items. Can we solve the problem by enhancing only the client GUI to show additionally language links of those items, which are connected with a special property (e.g. "hypernym article")? I.e. if item Bonnie Parker (Q2319886) has a property "hypernym article" (or similar) linking to Bonnie and Clyde (Q219937), article pt:Bonnie Parker shows below the current language link a section "language links to related topics" with the language links from Bonnie and Clyde (Q219937). Thus, we could keep the cleaner solution "no redirects in Wikidata" and have language links in the articles.  — Felix Reimann (talk) 08:12, 9 October 2013 (UTC)
Felix, this sounds like a clean solution, providing useful information to multilingual readers and preserving cultural differences, while keeping simple semantic rules for automation. Strong support! We could even collect the hypernyms automatically by looking at redirects to the global page in languages that have separate pages. Can somebody look at the feasibility and impact on software? — JFG talk 06:04, 28 October 2013 (UTC)
I don't think it should be automatically, it would unnecessarily clutter "Bonny and Clyde" on a wiki which has both "Bonny" and Clyde", and "Bonny and Clyde". For a more realistic example, some wikipedias will have articles about a municipality and articles the settlements in that municipality, other wikipedias will only have articles about the municipality (and perhaps some major settlements). A hatnote (like "see [.../w/index.php?title=Clyde&redirect=no Clyde] for interwiki links") might be enough. --80.114.178.7 04:01, 16 December 2013 (UTC)

Replying to each of @Denny:'s points:

  1. We clearly need to add some way to highlight that the page they are adding is a redirect. We can create a separate bug for that and make it a blocker for Bugzilla52564.
  2. That makes sense and seems like a logical end result. At the very least, it's an improvement on the current situation.
  3. This definitely makes sense and will prevent unintentional problems like groups being assigned claims for individual people or albums being assigned claims for individual songs, etc. I don't really see much of a down side to this.

Personally, I support moving ahead. Kaldari (talk) 23:28, 14 October 2014 (UTC)

Please reopen this RfC and don't do this[edit]

Sorry, I did not see this before and so had not the possibility to comment before, so I might be a little bit late. The vote above should be revoked, it's a silly idea. It was the primary reason for all IW conflict in the past with the IW linking bots before Wikidata. It took almost three months to clean up all this messe after Wikidata went functional. Let us not allow this confusing nonsense once again. There is no reason to link articles with redirects in other languages; if a Wikipedia has a redirect, then the articles are just not the same and never shold be linked with each other. I am against linking of redirects, strongly, very strongly. --Matthiasb (talk) 20:48, 1 June 2013 (UTC)

No. It isn't a silly idea so I oppose reopening this RFC. Filceolaire (talk) 01:23, 27 July 2013 (UTC)
Originally I supported idea about adding redirects. After this RfC part of (P361) is appears and widely used, property structure was greatly improved, another projects appears. I saw many problems that redirects will create. So my position is changed to strongly oppose redirects adding. I think this RfC is needed to be reviewed in some moment in the future to reflect current state of Wikidata. — Ivan A. Krestinin (talk) 07:38, 12 October 2013 (UTC)
I also supported adding redirects, and think that things have now moved on enough to justify further discussion. I don't oppose redirects at present, but I also don't feel as positive about them as I once did. --Avenue (talk) 11:07, 12 October 2013 (UTC)
@Matthiasb: Take the current case of "hatmaking" vs. "hatmaker". These have to be two separate items on Wikidata (since one is appropriate for 'profession' claims and the other is appropriate for 'field of work' claims), but no wikis have articles for both of them. English Wikipedia uses "hatmaking" and most of the other wikis use "hatmaker". We need some way for them to connect to each other. Kaldari (talk) 21:02, 14 October 2014 (UTC)
You are very right that there needs to be a solution for connecting items with similar meanings. If Matthiasb thinks 'the articles are just not the same' he seems to think that all knowledge is organized the same everywhere. It will never be.
But I still wonder what's the best solution: site-linking to redirects or item-linking to 'hypernyms'? Or both, depending on the circumstances? Bever (talk) 06:36, 16 October 2014 (UTC)
The advice that I saw was, that if there are wikidata pages of similar, but different meanings, it is better to merge the two wikidata pages. I thoroughly agree that allowing links to redirects is a bad idea - see the recent chat topic, "Redirects cause bad merges". The problem is that wikidata links are bilateral, and links to redirects are inherently unilateral, meaning that the proper way to handle links to redirects is with a local interwiki link, which is unilateral. 76.24.193.7 03:32, 26 October 2014 (UTC)
The advice you saw was idiotic; merging, for example, items about criminals and items about their crimes, or about their victims, would be very harmful. The "Redirects cause bad merges" discussion is about a problem with the tool, not the links to the redirects. Andy Mabbett (Pigsonthewing); Talk to Andy; Andy's edits 10:38, 26 October 2014 (UTC)
The advice was for cases where combining them makes sense, not where combining them is idiotic. The problem, though, with linking to redirects, is inherent, and not a function of the tool, and it stems from the fact that wikidata links are bilateral and links to redirects are unilateral, plus the fact that most redirects are nonsensical to link to, such as to redirects from common misspellings. While you may have decided that the problem was with the tool, that was perhaps not known when the section was opened, and clearly the problem with linking to redirects goes beyond just the tool. 76.24.193.7 17:41, 26 October 2014 (UTC)
Strawman: no-one is suggesting links to redirects from misspellings. Andy Mabbett (Pigsonthewing); Talk to Andy; Andy's edits 12:49, 27 October 2014 (UTC)
Many things I see and argue for have their origin in my involvation in the building of the DE:WP category system. There are people calling me the pope of (German) WP category system, some other don't like my ideas, however my expertease on the German WP category system is widely acknowledged, even by the latter, and just in case some did not notice to date, Wikidata is some kind of abstract category system.
@ Kaldari: There is no need to connect "hatmaking" and "hatmaker" to each other. The first ist a an activity, the latter a profession. Oh well, I have to correct myself: In general –ing is the activity of an -er’s profession. However, I don't expect the Wikidata community getting these kind of subtleties just before it became almost too complicated to clean it up. --Matthiasb (talk) 23:19, 26 October 2014 (UTC)
I did not call your expertise on categorisation in question (why do you feel the need to talk about yourself?), but the the problem is that we have several category systems next to each other. The Wikidata hierarchy not necessarily concurs with the division of a Wikipedia into articles (and the Wikipedias amongst each other, neither).
Why would you not want to connect two articles about almost the same subject with each other, if there are no articles which get the preference for linking? If I were reading de:Hutmacher, and I would like to read what the English Wikipedia tells about the subject, it is a pity that en:Hatmaking is not linked. And the other way around. Besides, en:Hatmaking is for a large part dedicated to hatters. Bever (talk) 05:24, 28 October 2014 (UTC)
I have seen quite a bit of discussion (not sure where) about how to group articles about both A and B, and those about A, and those about B. My recollection is that the advice is to link them through an item about AB, but the problem is that wikidata does not allow that - only one wiki article can be in the wikidata item for each language. 76.24.193.7 19:20, 29 October 2014 (UTC)

Wikidata deals with entities, but Wikipedias deal with articles; those are different stuff, which have different structures, and evolve in different ways. Even if it was a good thing to have a one-to-one relationship between Wikidata and all the Wikipedias, forcing these to share the exact same structure, that's not something going to happen in any near term.

Meanwhile, the focus of interwiki links should be to allow readers find the content about the same topic in other articles, even if it's covered in a different article. That was easy to do with wiki markup, and Wikidata took the easy away. If that process interferes with the goal of defining a perfect, bug-free structure of knowledge, the navigation should take precedence. Because it's interferring with the need of users in the real world, and because you can only create a perfect structure by having real examples of difficult-to-classify content and building a system that can represent them, not by forbiding those difficult examples.

99% percent of the interwiki links I try to add between articles in different languages through Wikidata fail (ok, that's because most links that wouldn't fail have already been created, but bear with me for a second). I find at least five or six failures a month (and I'm not looking for them), which means that they're not rarities but fairly common. The failure is usually because of redundant nodes, usually because the articles in the different languages go by slightly different inflections (such as the "hatmaking" and "hatmaker" example above), or because there are two ways to name the same thing and there's one content node for each. In most cases, linking to a redirect page that represented the right concept in the other language, and that targeted the article where that concept is actually covered would be the easiest solution, requiring little effort and knowledge by the editor creating the link.

You're not avoiding links to redirects by forbidding them in the tool, as they can still be created as wiki markup. The question is if you want to have them inside Wikidata, allowing editors to create them easily and wikidatans to review them, or outside Wikidata as the old style of direct links within articles, where they are poorly mantained and could ultimately only be reshaped by bots. Allowing links to redirects is an easy short-term solution that would allow knowledge to be captured. If that means the knowledge that needs to be cleaned-up later, that's still better than not having any knowledge to clean up because the knowledge editors tried to add it and it was rejected by the tool. Diego Moya (talk) 13:54, 6 December 2014 (UTC)


I also strongly support proposal #0. Different language wikis will always have different relevance criteria. In the German wikipedia, for instance, many concepts are not seen as important enough for their own article, whereas redirects to some "larger" topic defining the concept at hand are usually accepted. I do not want to repeat all the (pro) arguments from the discussion before - but as a very casual editor, I find it frustrating that I cannot create an interwiki link from an English article to the corresponding German "article" (which is just a redirect, but it is about exactly the right concept). My example is en:Westermarck effect: In the German wikipedia, the exists an article about Westermarck (the guy) and a redirect "Westermarck-Effekt", redirecting to the article about the guy. So clearly, the redirect is about a different concept than the target of the redirect, but (under the assumption that the de:Westermarck-Effekt is not important enough to get its own article, it is a perfectly good solution. Before wikidata, this was not a problem. With the current implementation, it actively forbids me to create any interwiki link whatsoever: It is impossible to link to the redirect, and to link to the redirect target is not only wrong (because it is about a different concept), but also forbidden, as it is (correctly) already linked from en:Edvard Westermarck. I am only a (very) casual editor, so I do not know how to learn more about the current status of the implementation of proposal #0, but I believe it to be urgent to remedy this situation. Any interwiki link that cannot be created is a lost opportunity. Any potential collaborator that is frustrated by not being able to enter clearly correct and useful information is prone to not come back. I think Wikidata is a wonderful project and a step in the right direction, but in this case, it violates the wiki spirit. -- 46.237.240.144 23:09, 5 January 2015 (UTC)

If I understand all of this talk page correctly, then now I can create redirects, for example, from demographics of Russia (Q4224) to Russia (Q159) in all languages Wikipedias, and put these redirect in demographics of Russia (Q4224). Then there will be 277 interwikis not 25. That is nonsense... All time I thought this project (Wikidata) help to arrange interwikis not disarray... --Treisijs (talk) 22:56, 6 December 2015 (UTC)

Meanwhile in practice, people continue to use old style interwiki links at the end of the article if it's not possible to add these to wikidata, which is a total mess. Please just do it.--TheRandomIP (talk) 00:37, 12 February 2016 (UTC)

Maybe there could be some template at the bottom of a WParticle that shows the interlinks for closely-related articles. So to take the example of en:hatmaking there are the regular Wikidata-formed links to pl.wp and is.wp. Lets put a template (maybe in the form of {{WDlink|Q1639239}} at the bottom of that page which generates the sitelinks to hatmaker, so the de.wp, fr.wp and +-ten more are also linked. This way we keep using Wikidata so the editors won't have to put manually links. But those sitelinks never overrule the direct WD-item. Q.Zanden questions? 18:13, 21 December 2017 (UTC)