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(archiving; leving only unresolved and most current issues.)
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Here are '''[[User talk:IBAlex/Archive|archived discussions]]''' on my Talk Page.
Here are '''[[User talk:IBAlex/Archive|archived discussions]]''' on my Talk Page.
==Edits to Sirinagar page==
Hi! I saw you were making several changes on the Srinagar‎‎ page, what was the nature of those changes? Cheers! IBAlex (talk) 15:26, 14 June 2013 (EDT)
I've got no idea where else to post this. I cannot email with that supplied link and and despite my better judgement, all evidence seems to indicate that i communicate here.
The nature of the changes to that page? I moved an entry that I posted about Dal-Fog Guest House a couple of weeks ago from the introduction of the sleep section to the budget section of sleep. I also moved an entry about a trekking services in the Budget Sleep section to the See section. I also removed some empty lines between entries in Budget Sleep section.
I also added a web link to another entry for a Srinagar guide I made a couple of weeks ago in the See section as as some some other minor edits. I also added a web contact link.
Given that you more than likely already know this, I am a little confused by your request. I don't have any connection with these businesses other than friendship of sorts i have with them that motivated me out my inertia to make the initial entries. I wouldn't have made them initially if i felt I couldn't recommend them. For example, I have stayed at the Dal-Fog for over 2 weeks. Although I am not a person that would normally want a guide, I felt others definitely would. I am a 55 year old Australian who has travelled in Thailand, Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, Nepal and India over the last 6 months. I intend to travel in Kashmir for a couple of months. I have found Wikitravel mostly useful and regret not making a contribution sooner.
Was there a problem with those edits and/or my contributions.
: Hello Richmur! Thanks so much for getting back to me and for such a detailed answer, appreciated! I'm an admin here on Wikitravel and just wasn't sure what you were trying to do on [[Srinagar]] page. I saw that you moved trek Kashmir form section ''See'' to section ''Sleep'' and I was wondering why. I believe this entry belongs more to section ''See'' or ''Do'' since it's an activity listing and not a hotel, right? Or is it a hotel that offers trekking tours? It's crucial for us to keep Wikitravel as accurate as possible that's why I'm asking. Also, I noticed that you have started contributing recently so I thought you might need some help:) I would be happy to see more of your edits on [[Srinagar]] and many other pages - [[Thailand]], [[Vietnam]], [[Laos]], [[Cambodia]], [[Nepal]] and [[India]]. We are delighted to have you here in our Traveler's community and we are happy that you consider our guide to be useful. Also, leaving a message on user's Talk Pages is the best way to communicate here on Wikitravel. Let me know if you have some questions. I'm here to help. Warm regards, [[User:IBAlex|IBAlex]] ([[User talk:IBAlex|talk]]) 20:02, 17 June 2013 (EDT)
Hello BAlex. Thank you for your welcome. Again, I am sorry I have not contributed sooner. To be honest, i am rather confused by who whole Wikitravel contribution and editing process, as well as not being confident about my writing ability. If you check the Srinagar page you'll find the trek entry mentioned in the Budget Sleep section, as all the edits i did a few days ago were reversed.  When I edited, i moved it to the See section.
Also, I am currently in Tangmarg, which is mentioned on the Gulmarg page as Tanmarg. It is a small town, 11kms from Gulmarg, and where buses from Srinagar terminate. Its few hotels are cheaper (but still expensive) than what is available in the often full or overpriced in the high season (like now). Would there be any call to create a page for this town?
Again i thank you, Richard Murray (Richmur)
::Hello Richard! Please use [[Wikitravel:Quick contribution guide|Quick Contribution Guide]] which can help you with your first steps on Wikitravel. Also, don't hesitate to ask me a question if something is unclear. You don't have to create a perfect, fully-formed article the first time around. Get your thoughts down and let others expand on them. That's how [[Wikitravel:Wiki|Wiki]] works! motivation to write and help other travelers is the key. We are happy to see that you are willing to contribute here!
::I put the trek entry on [[Srinagar]] page in the section ''See'', please check the article and do some more changes if you want. I have created a stub page for [[Tangmarg]]. [[Plunge forward]] and edit it! Thank you for suggesting that!
:: Just to let you know, if you want to sing your post, please use <nowiki>~~~~</nowiki>. All the best, [[User:IBAlex|IBAlex]] ([[User talk:IBAlex|talk]]) 12:56, 18 June 2013 (EDT)
==Fixed image widths==
==Fixed image widths==
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I'm getting a little frustrated that my efforts to drastically improve the look and feel of our articles are getting thwarted by the lack of a reply - it's been a week now. --[[User:118dot93dot73dot30|<font color="#FF3366">118</font>]][[User talk:118dot93dot73dot30|<i>dot93dot73dot30</i>]] 15:16, 17 March 2013 (EDT)
I'm getting a little frustrated that my efforts to drastically improve the look and feel of our articles are getting thwarted by the lack of a reply - it's been a week now. --[[User:118dot93dot73dot30|<font color="#FF3366">118</font>]][[User talk:118dot93dot73dot30|<i>dot93dot73dot30</i>]] 15:16, 17 March 2013 (EDT)
== Thank you! ==
Hi, thank you so much for your friendly welcome! Unfortunately I can't find out how to reply on my own page - maybe you can tell me? I enjoy contributing to Wikitravel very much and hope to do more in the future! It's a great project! Kind regards, [[User:MissGraham|MissGraham]]
: Hi MissGraham! Thank you for your nice message! We are happy to hear that you like Wikitravel project! Thank you for making our guide better for all the travelers! To reply on your [[User talk:MissGraham| Talk Page]], please click '''Edit''' at the top of the page. Let me know if you found it:) Also, when you want to sign your posts, please use<nowiki>~~~~</nowiki> wiki markup. All the best! Happy editing! [[User:IBAlex|IBAlex]] ([[User talk:IBAlex|talk]]) 17:37, 11 April 2013 (EDT)
::Yes, I found it, and now also learned how to sign a post! Thank you! :-) [[User:MissGraham|MissGraham]] ([[User talk:MissGraham|talk]]) 11:18, 12 April 2013 (EDT)
::: I am happy to help! Feel free to reach me anytime :) [[User:IBAlex|IBAlex]] ([[User talk:IBAlex|talk]]) 16:48, 12 April 2013 (EDT)
==Should IBadmins ignore policy==
when [[Wikitravel:Don%27t_tout#Don.27t_include_referral_codes_in_URLs]] states clearly "Referral codes don't benefit travellers and will lead to removal of the listing"?
By [ doing this], I think you are sending the wrong message since a bit of carrot and stick is needed with the marketeers... --[[User:118dot93dot73dot30|<font color="#FF3366">118</font>]][[User talk:118dot93dot73dot30|<i>dot93dot73dot30</i>]] 16:44, 12 April 2013 (EDT)
: 118,  instead of removing the whole listing, please remove the referral code []. The listing is informative and benefit the traveler. Thanks! [[User:IBAlex|IBAlex]] ([[User talk:IBAlex|talk]]) 16:47, 12 April 2013 (EDT)
::Did you read [[User_talk:Edralin#Please_conform]] ?
::Our policy was specifically designed for problematic users like this that make money from abusing our listings. Edralin never bothers to change his behaviour or even reply to any comments left on his talk page. I feel so strongly over this spam flood that I will stop contributing to Wikitravel if you are now going to ignore long-standing policies and encourage abusers. It's not as if [[Makati]] is lacking [[Sleep]] listings - there are another 31 different listings in the same "Mid-range" section alone! There are other consistent problems with this user too, going way back before you joined us... --[[User:118dot93dot73dot30|<font color="#FF3366">118</font>]][[User talk:118dot93dot73dot30|<i>dot93dot73dot30</i>]] 16:58, 12 April 2013 (EDT)
:::We appreciate your vigilance, 118. If users adhere to our policies for marketers, they can place a listing. I'm inclined to believe that a habitual abuser who refuses to change or reply to us should rather be disciplined (short-term ban?) first, then other methods used such as reverting all their new edits, or perhaps blocking them altogether. Of course it's true that we'd rather not have touters here. They must learn our ways or simply stop adding listing at Wikitravel. Please work with IBalex and other admins to come to terms on a course of action in this and future cases. I think you're both partly in the right here.--[[User:IBobi|IBobi]] ([[User talk:IBobi|talk]]) 20:03, 12 April 2013 (EDT)
:::: Ok, thanks, 118 and IBobi! Let's all keep an eye on [[User talk:Edralin| User Edralin]]. I have just left her/ him a message with a request to start complying with our policies. Let's consider this as a final call to stop breaching the policies. If she/ he keeps on touting we should block the account, do you agree 118? Kind regards, [[User:IBAlex|IBAlex]] ([[User talk:IBAlex|talk]]) 20:41, 12 April 2013 (EDT)
:::::I assume Edralin is financially rewarded for marketing efforts, either as a salaried employee or directly by way of marketing fees if "Edralin" is a firm's collective account. If I were an admin, I would have already instituted a series of escalating short term blocks of 1, 3, 8, 24 hours, followed by 1, 3 and 6 months since that would have taught them it was cheaper to dialogue and learn. The only tool that, as a normal user, I can use is to remove a listing completely and temporarily (where plenty of other sleep listings are on the pertinent destination page) since that sabotages Edralin's commercial reward without degrading the traveller experience too much. If I just remove the offending codes and [[MoS]] violations, I doubt they would ever notice. I believe that these kind of marketeers can be actively harnessed and channelled to our needs through education as [ this example] shows so I am not in favour of permanent blocks except as a very last resort when a bit of carrot and stick has failed. --[[User:118dot93dot73dot30|<font color="#FF3366">118</font>]][[User talk:118dot93dot73dot30|<i>dot93dot73dot30</i>]] 22:38, 12 April 2013 (EDT)
:::::: [[User talk:Edralin| User Edralin]] has been blocked now for 1 day since she/he kept on [[Don't tout| touting]] and failed to respond to the discussions on her/his talk page. 118, thank you for removing Edralin's postings. Your help is appreciated! Kind regards, [[User:IBAlex|IBAlex]] ([[User talk:IBAlex|talk]]) 13:35, 15 April 2013 (EDT)
:::::::I believe that action was appropriate and I have designed and placed on Edralin's User Talk page a new Block template. --[[User:118dot93dot73dot30|<font color="#FF3366">118</font>]][[User talk:118dot93dot73dot30|<i>dot93dot73dot30</i>]] 23:16, 15 April 2013 (EDT)
::::::::This blocked user has now switched to IP editing: [[Special:Contributions/]] --[[User:118dot93dot73dot30|<font color="#FF3366">118</font>]][[User talk:118dot93dot73dot30|<i>dot93dot73dot30</i>]] 04:01, 16 April 2013 (EDT)
[ here's an interesting edit] --[[User:118dot93dot73dot30|<font color="#FF3366">118</font>]][[User talk:118dot93dot73dot30|<i>dot93dot73dot30</i>]] 18:03, 19 April 2013 (EDT)
===Checkuser requested===
For newly created account [[Special:Contributions/Corncob]] believed to be a parallel account of [[Special:Contributions/Edralin]] and [[Special:Contributions/Duskromano]] because of their patterns of editing and specific and idiosyncratic [[MoS]] errors (not outlined here because of security concerns). --[[User:118dot93dot73dot30|<font color="#FF3366">118</font>]][[User talk:118dot93dot73dot30|<i>dot93dot73dot30</i>]] 01:44, 19 April 2013 (EDT)
: Thanks, 118. for cooperation! The IP address of [[Special:Contributions/Edralin]],, has created 5 different accounts which I just blocked for sock puppetting. Thanks! [[User:IBAlex|IBAlex]] ([[User talk:IBAlex|talk]]) 14:18, 19 April 2013 (EDT)
::Was [[User:Corncob]] one of them?
::(It's usual to name the parallel accounts on the main account's page if they are being used to circumvent scrutiny or blocks, but I can not see them listed there).
::It's very important for reasons of transparency and ''pour encourager les autres'' that blocks and the reasons for them are posted on the Users' pages.
::<small>(RN Admiral Byng was executed on 14 March 1757 aboard HMS Monarch in Portsmouth harbour.
::Byng's execution is referred to in Voltaire's novel ''Candide'' with the line ''Dans ce pays-ci, il est bon de tuer de temps en temps un amiral pour encourager les autres'' – "In this country, it is wise to kill an admiral from time to time to encourage the others."</small> --[[User:118dot93dot73dot30|<font color="#FF3366">118</font>]][[User talk:118dot93dot73dot30|<i>dot93dot73dot30</i>]] 17:08, 19 April 2013 (EDT)
:::I assume I will get a response in due course.
:::Meanwhile, Corncob's [ campaign] from the Philippines continues. They must think we're asleep or just can't be bothered... --[[User:118dot93dot73dot30|<font color="#FF3366">118</font>]][[User talk:118dot93dot73dot30|<i>dot93dot73dot30</i>]] 00:59, 22 April 2013 (EDT)
::::Malaysia seems to have [ joined the party] --[[User:118dot93dot73dot30|<font color="#FF3366">118</font>]][[User talk:118dot93dot73dot30|<i>dot93dot73dot30</i>]] 01:08, 22 April 2013 (EDT)
== Have replied on my page ==
Hi Alex. I have replied on my page to your question there. Cheers. [[User:Nurg|Nurg]] ([[User talk:Nurg|talk]]) 21:11, 18 April 2013 (EDT)
: Thank you for letting me know. I have replied as well []. I'm watching your page so I follow the conversation. Cheers! [[User:IBAlex|IBAlex]] ([[User talk:IBAlex|talk]]) 14:11, 19 April 2013 (EDT)
==Blocking users from editing their own talk page==
I do '''not''' believe it complies with either our policies (as currently enunciated) or natural justice that [ a blocked user] "cannot edit own talk page". Do you, and if you do, why please? --[[User:118dot93dot73dot30|<font color="#FF3366">118</font>]][[User talk:118dot93dot73dot30|<i>dot93dot73dot30</i>]] 19:57, 19 April 2013 (EDT)
: I understand your concern. However, we have many spammers that create very spammy user pages with tons of external links. As admins, we do block those users. It wouldn't make sense to let them edit their user pages when blocked because they will keep on spamming. And we are talking about at least 50 cases like that per day... If an individual feels that his account was mistakenly blocked and he wants to write something on Wikitravel, he gets a message that he can contact any of the admins. Me and the team would gladly respond to any inquiry. Cheers! [[User:IBAlex|IBAlex]] ([[User talk:IBAlex|talk]]) 21:34, 19 April 2013 (EDT)
::I think your reply makes some sense, but I need answers to supplementary questions.
:::Why do you not have the usual <s>Wikimedia</s> MediaWiki software option of blocking those who you regard as spammers '''with''' a bar to editing their own user namespace while also having the "normal" blocking option of barring edits to ''all'' namespaces ''other'' than their own user namespace?
:::My current perception is that far too much time and staff resources are currently devoted to these multiple spam accounts since they have a very limited SEO value to these stupid spammers (being "no followed") and no ordinary user is ever going to read these spammy user namespace pages! Effectively, they are part of the "dark and hidden web" if you configure your robots file to bar search engine spiders from reading user namespace.
:::Get yourself a mathematical Turing tester for new accounts, configure a new class of user: '''Novice''' that is unable to edit user namespace  until and unless they have made at least 6 unreverted edits in main space. I really do not think that any "normal" user (as opposed to trolls, sockpuppets, spam bots and former admins coming back to harass as a parallel account) is going to want to make edits in user namespace ''before'' they have edited some of our articles!
:::Are you really 100% certain that you have Wikitravel (almost) uniquely configured so you can block users from editing their ''own'' user namespace but they ''can'' edit '''other''' users' namespace so that they "can contact any of the admins". Are you really saying that you are only blocking spammers from editing their own namespace while they can still edit other namespaces (presumably, including Main)? How weird?
:::Have you '''tested''' the truth of what you say? The [[Wikitravel:Travellers'_pub#Blocked|LtPowers incident seems to indicate otherwise]]...
:::'''''Nurg''''', are you reading this? Have you ever seen such an oddball MediaWiki software configuration?
::::Sorry, 118, I don't understand your argument. [[User:Nurg|Nurg]] ([[User talk:Nurg|talk]]) 22:34, 19 April 2013 (EDT)
:::::Unless I'm completely misunderstanding things outlined at and other pages, the conventional option when blocking is to bar an account (or an IP or whole IP range) from editing ALL pages ''except'' their user namespace. If you additionally check the box that "Prevent this user from editing their own talk page while blocked" that does not release the previous general block - the net effect is that the user, IP or IP range can not edit anything, full stop - so how the heck is the poor bugger supposed to "contact any of the admins" when WT has also globally disabled the e-mail facility? The only way I can see this working at all is if some helpful admins are willing to publish their e-mail and/or street addresses. --[[User:118dot93dot73dot30|<font color="#FF3366">118</font>]][[User talk:118dot93dot73dot30|<i>dot93dot73dot30</i>]] 03:02, 20 April 2013 (EDT)
==Page protection==
Changed rosters mean I will probably be unable to edit for 5 days - so you might want to protect these two pages from the taxi touts for a week or two: [[Lake Toba]], [[ Parapat‎]] --[[User:118dot93dot73dot30|<font color="#FF3366">118</font>]][[User talk:118dot93dot73dot30|<i>dot93dot73dot30</i>]] 03:33, 23 April 2013 (EDT)
It may be just a question of poor English, but are they [ misrepresenting that there is current e-mail correspondence with you]? If they have a genuine case for listing then it would be far better that they made it on the associated discussion page of each article they want to tout in... --[[User:118dot93dot73dot30|<font color="#FF3366">118</font>]][[User talk:118dot93dot73dot30|<i>dot93dot73dot30</i>]] 11:38, 23 April 2013 (EDT)
: Thanks 118. for this message. See my responses to those 2 users [], []. I am watching [[Lake Toba]] and [[ Parapat‎]] pages and if ReyMysterio or Sautsagala reverts mine or your edit and tries to put the touty listing again [] I will block the user/ protect the page.
: This edit [] is unacceptable. Obviously, it wasn't me putting it there. Thank you for letting me know about it. Warm regards, [[User:IBAlex|IBAlex]] ([[User talk:IBAlex|talk]]) 13:20, 23 April 2013 (EDT)
::They are [ at it again!] --[[User:118dot93dot73dot30|<font color="#FF3366">118</font>]][[User talk:118dot93dot73dot30|<i>dot93dot73dot30</i>]] 14:27, 28 April 2013 (EDT)
::: Thanks! This is taken care of now! Best, [[User:IBAlex|IBAlex]] ([[User talk:IBAlex|talk]]) 20:10, 29 April 2013 (EDT)
== Thank you! ==
Thanks for the kind words regarding the photos I uploaded for the [[London]] page (and thanks for utilizing them!) I've got some of [[Bruges]] & [[York]] which I think could be suitable. I'll have a look through my archives, dig them out and upload them in the next couple of days! :)
: Thank you, Mark! The photos are truly outstanding! Now the articles look way better:) Looking forward to seeing pictures of [[Bruges]] & [[York]]! Feel free to put them also in the articles. If you need help, let me know. Cheers! [[User:IBAlex|IBAlex]] ([[User talk:IBAlex|talk]]) 12:21, 24 April 2013 (EDT)
== Listing of providers ==
Hello Alex,
We have an office in Senaru, Lombok, and offer Rinjani treks, so I added our agency on the Mount Rinjani page, where there was already a list of guides and trekking providers.
One user - Felix505 - always deletes us. He was writing that there are already sufficient providers listed and that we don't have enough experience, even if my husband is climbing Rinjani with guests for a long time. He started to be a guide 11 years ago and last year in April we opened our own office and organise Rinjani trips now.
We were reading the guidelines but couldn't find a note about expertism of listed offices. We have only seen that it has to be a "real world" office with address, phone number, and so on. And we have also seen that it's written wikitravel is not the Yellow Pages. But also: "The Wiki technique we use for Wikitravel makes it possible for us to include information that's not in other travel guides. This doesn't mean that we only include information not found in other guides. Wikitravel aims to be a complete travel guide -- not just an additional resource on the side of traditional guides." For us that looks like you want to offer a list of good providers, well established offices but also new ones.
We don't understand how a single user can decide, if a company is listed or not. Why does he has the right to delete us?
It would be great, if you could help us.
Best wishes, Sandra and Andreas
: Hello Sandra and Andreas! Thank you for your message!
: In this case I do agree with [[User talk:Felix505]] who [ explained] why the listings are being deleted.
: There has been enough listings already on [[Mount Rinjani]] and we don't think that expanding this section with more and more offerings from trekking companies would actually benefit the Traveler. As Felix wrote ''there is no need for the article to list every provider who enters the field. It should be understood these travel guide articles do not seek to provide a service directory for a destination.''
: We wish you all the best with your business!
: Warm regards, [[User:IBAlex|IBAlex]] ([[User talk:IBAlex|talk]]) 15:58, 26 April 2013 (EDT)
::Hello Alex, Thanks for your information. We hope to be listed here also one day. Best wishes
::: Thank you, Sandra for your understanding! It is very much appreciated! All the best, [[User:IBAlex|IBAlex]] ([[User talk:IBAlex|talk]]) 16:50, 26 April 2013 (EDT)
==Re: [[Barcelona]] page==
==Re: [[Barcelona]] page==
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Hi Alex, I forgot to post here to let you know that I had completed the detailed analysis of the Bike tours in Barcelona and posted it [ here] 2 weeks ago.  Sorry I didn't let you know sooner! :) [[User:BarcelonaExpert|BarcelonaExpert]] ([[User talk:BarcelonaExpert|talk]]) 10:05, 9 July 2013 (EDT)
Hi Alex, I forgot to post here to let you know that I had completed the detailed analysis of the Bike tours in Barcelona and posted it [ here] 2 weeks ago.  Sorry I didn't let you know sooner! :) [[User:BarcelonaExpert|BarcelonaExpert]] ([[User talk:BarcelonaExpert|talk]]) 10:05, 9 July 2013 (EDT)
: Hola Barcelona Expert! Thank you for letting me know about it! I haven't noticed your updates on the Talk Page, sorry! Here is my [ reply]. Cheers! [[User:IBAlex|IBAlex]] ([[User talk:IBAlex|talk]]) 14:08, 9 July 2013 (EDT)
: Hola Barcelona Expert! Thank you for letting me know about it! I haven't noticed your updates on the Talk Page, sorry! Here is my [ reply]. Cheers! [[User:IBAlex|IBAlex]] ([[User talk:IBAlex|talk]]) 14:08, 9 July 2013 (EDT)
== Addition to Saint Petersburg Page Mid-range Hotel ==
Dear Alexandra,
I was trying to make an edit to the following page - under Mid-range Hotels.
However I am unable to edit this page.
'''Hotel Vera''' - Suvorovsky Prospekt 25/16. Within walking distance of Nevsky Prospect and the Moscow Railway Station. [Official Website []]. A boutique hotel in St. Petersburg which has been entered into the St. Petersburg Registry of Architectural Treasures as the house of the wealthy merchant Stepnov. English speaking staff. Cafe / bar serves traditional Russian and European dishes. This hotel is one of the few hotels in St Petersburg which offers wheelchair access.
I hope you can assist me in adding this contribution to Wikitourist.
Best regards,
: Hello Brian! Thank you for your message! We are talking here about two different websites- you sent me a link to and here you have ''''''. Feel free to add your listing to Wikitravel [[Saint Petersburg]] page, following our policies for [[listings]]. Also, I strongly suggest to read our [[Don't tout| guidance]] as well. I hope this helps. If you need more assistance, please let me know, I will gladly help you. Warm regards, [[User:IBAlex|IBAlex]] ([[User talk:IBAlex|talk]]) 13:10, 20 May 2013 (EDT)
::I am logged in there but I don't see any options to edit or add a new listing. And when I went to the help area it said only administrators can add information on this page. Which is what led me to you.. I read the guidelines carefully and don't see any issues with my contribution. Just need help to get it put there. Can you help?
::: Brian, I have tried to add a listing as not registered user (not admin) and it looks like everything works. Every time you want to add/ delete info please click the option '''Edit''' and follow [[Wikitravel:Wiki markup| wiki markup]]. Also, I see that the listing for '''Hotel Vera''' is already there so [[Don't tout| no need to add it twice]]. All the best, [[User:IBAlex|IBAlex]] ([[User talk:IBAlex|talk]]) 17:51, 20 May 2013 (EDT)
== Bot ==
== Bot ==

Revision as of 18:18, 9 July 2013

Here are archived discussions on my Talk Page.

Fixed image widths

I was a little concerned about this edit of yours

It's great to add some pretty pictures but I think you need to remember that all our casual readers have their page width reduced by the adverts that appear on the right and many may have slow connections or narrow screens.

That's partly why we have these policies: and and this advice: Wikitravel:How_to_add_an_image#Sizing

What do you think are the chances of this proposal being implemented: Wikitravel:Travellers'_pub#Default_image_sizes_in_Thumbnails?

I've only changed the specification of the lead image, but you may want to consider removing the fixed width of 400px from the other images in our Singapore article after you have read the references above - especially as Singapore currently has star status, meaning it should comply with all our current policies!. --118dot93dot73dot30 15:10, 1 March 2013 (EST)

IT is looking at Wikitravel:Travellers'_pub#Default_image_sizes_in_Thumbnails proposal. personally, i think it's a great idea. Thanks! IBAlex 15:13, 1 March 2013 (EST)
Thanks for the quick response and I will keep my fingers crossed that this is quickly implemented. --118dot93dot73dot30 15:17, 1 March 2013 (EST)


The spam filter does not allow me to create a template to facilitate the display of panorama style images on small screen widths. Here is the code which needs to replace the current truncated code:

<includeonly> <div class="thumbinner"><div class="overflowbugx">[[File:{{{1}}}|{{{2}}}|alt={{{alt|}}}|{{#switch:{{{3}}} |thumb |thumbnail |frame |border={{{1}}} |#default={{{3|}}}}}]]</div>{{ #if: {{{3|}}}|<div class="thumbcaption">{{Magnify icon|link=File:{{{1}}} }}<!-- -->{{{3}}}</div>|}} </div></div></includeonly> <noinclude> This template is intended to add a panorama type image with a slider, caption and an "enlarge" widget </noinclude>

Thanks for your anticipated assistance. --118dot93dot73dot30 20:55, 5 March 2013 (EST)

Hi! Thanks! I tried to create this template but didn't manage to do that. I copy and pasted the code to Template:Panorama, is that what you were asking for? Thanks again! IBAlex 21:02, 5 March 2013 (EST)
I've had to revert your edit because it was not formatted properly. The problem is that the spam filter does not even allow me to show you the correct code here. Perhaps you can check the filter and see the code that I am trying to add?
I need to add style="overflzw:autz;"> just after the current part (that I managed to add) that says: <div class="overflowbugx" where the two occurrences of the letter "z" for Zulu expressed in code format are replaced by the letter "o" for Oscar. --118dot93dot73dot30 22:24, 5 March 2013 (EST)
That's the filter that prevents from using "Wikiv****e"....sorry :) IBAlex 20:15, 6 March 2013 (EST)
I don't think so. (That one's "Salem's Lot", I think). Why should the spam filter object to "overflow" and "auto" separated by a colon in a line of code? --118dot93dot73dot30 21:40, 6 March 2013 (EST)
If this helps in any way, here is what I see when I examine your edit at the Abuse Filter Log. IBAlex 13:23, 7 March 2013 (EST)
Yes, that was an earlier attempt of mine that had some unnecessary explanatory commentary that was not really needed. In that case, the spam filter did the job it was designed to do. However, in that instance it highlighted the 'spam" that offended against the rule. However I still can not use the offending phrase "(censored) overflow:auto" because it offends against the rule:

-> 'style( )*\=( )*(\"|')?overflow( )*\:( )*auto'

Can you find this edit to your user page in the log? --118dot93dot73dot30 16:39, 7 March 2013 (EST)

I see right now that the problem was not with the Abuse filter but with the [Wikitravel:Local spam blacklist|Spam Filter]. I removed the 'style( )*\=( )*(\"|')?overflow( )*\:( )*auto' phrase and this let me add the code to the Template:Panorama. I did this in good faith and now I am only wondering why this phrase was on the black list before. I would hate to do something that will harm WT.
Please let me know if with this template we can already put panoramic pictures in the articles. Thanks! IBAlex 18:32, 7 March 2013 (EST)

We made it, Alex! You can see the (working) result of the new {{panorama}} template here: User:118dot93dot73dot30/Test & here; I'm particularly gratified to see that the width of the displayed panorama box reduces its width automagically (at least with my XP and Linux Firefox browsers) if the window or tab width is decreased. Try it!

That overflow phrase can be powerful, so, if you are unable to assign any special editing privileges to me, it might be wiser to restore the local spam filter to what it was now we've got it working. It will be difficult and tedious for me to introduce new templates here if I keep running into this sort of problem, though... --118dot93dot73dot30 19:04, 7 March 2013 (EST)

Congratulations! Very good job! I'm happy that we can have panoramic images now on WT! IBAlex 21:47, 7 March 2013 (EST)
I restored the blacklisted phrase, thank you for suggestion! Which other templates are you thinking of creating?
I'll just create them if and when I find them useful. For example, I just got rather fed up using a lot of repetitive HTML when I have been trying to modify and clarify tdf a bit so I've just created Template:ol for colouring the good exemplars Template:Ol. Since your spam filters are so ferocious and restrictive it will not be possible to create anything really complicated or useful - unless you want to create a special category of users trusted not to spam you... --118dot93dot73dot30 22:06, 8 March 2013 (EST)
The filters are much needed here on WT as they help us fight spam and vandalism. Feel free to reach out to me anytime you have problems with them. I am here to help. As for now we are not thinking about creating any additional special category.
We highly appreciate your contributions here, thank you!
Congratulations! Very good job! I'm happy that we can have panoramic images now on WT! IBAlex 21:47, 7 March 2013 (EST)
I restored the blacklisted phrase, thank you for suggestion! Which other templates are you thinking of creating?
I'll just create them if and when I find them useful. For example, I just got rather fed up using a lot of repetitive HTML when I have been trying to modify and clarify tdf a bit so I've just created Template:ol for colouring the good exemplars Template:Ol. Since your spam filters are so ferocious and restrictive it will not be possible to create anything really complicated or useful - unless you want to create a special category of users trusted not to spam you... --118dot93dot73dot30 22:06, 8 March 2013 (EST)
The filters are much needed here on WT as they help us fight spam and vandalism. Feel free to reach out to me anytime you have problems with them. I am here to help. As for now we are not thinking about creating any additional special category.
We highly appreciate your contributions here, thank you!

I'm afraid your filters are making it impossible for me to do any useful work here.

Check the filter logs for my recent edits that were forbidden please.

Just now I wanted to test a new article title display format to avoid the problem of having a very thin lead paragraph squeezed between an infobox and a table of contents but was stopped again.

Please replace display:THWARTED with display:nOVEMBER(no space between the 4 letters and don't use the capitalised parts of the NATO spelling alphabet)oSCAR(no space between the 4 letters and don't use the capitalised parts of the NATO spelling alphabet)nOVEMBER(no space between the 4 letters and don't use the capitalised parts of the NATO spelling alphabet)eCHO, wherever it occurs below, and then substitute the proper code for the current first line at South Island/Title Template, please:

{{DISPLAYTITLE:<span style="display:THWARTED">{{FULLPAGENAME}}</span>}} --118dot93dot73dot30 18:45, 11 March 2013 (EDT)

Please would you favour me with a reply to the above request? --118dot93dot73dot30 19:11, 13 March 2013 (EDT)

I'm getting a little frustrated that my efforts to drastically improve the look and feel of our articles are getting thwarted by the lack of a reply - it's been a week now. --118dot93dot73dot30 15:16, 17 March 2013 (EDT)

Re: Barcelona page

Hi Alex, thanks for contacting me, it's great to hear from you again! As requested, I've written a detailed analysis in response to the discussion you started here. I hope it helps! :) BarcelonaExpert (talk) 20:11, 13 May 2013 (EDT)

Thank you, BarcelonaExpert! I have just read your response, thank you for all the details! I will let TonyB take part in this discussion before making a decision on how to proceed in this case. And I am happy to hear that you like the pictures I have added. We wanted the article to look as good as possible as it's our May Destination of the Month :) Warm regards, IBAlex (talk) 20:59, 13 May 2013 (EDT)
I had no idea Barcelona was the May Destination of the Month! That's great! I can't help but wonder whether my many additions and improvements to the article since March helped make it the Destination of the month by May. ;) Either way, I arrived just in time to have all my efforts seen and enjoyed by all WikiTravellers, and that's exciting! As for TonyB, I honestly don't think you'll be hearing from him as he just signed up one day, made 3 quick edits to the Barcelona page in 12 minutes, and never edited again since then, so I don't think he's here for the long-run. At any rate, when you have finished deliberating this matter with the Admins, please let me know if you agree with my analysis / recommendations and if you need any further "local" analysis from me. Thanks! BarcelonaExpert (talk) 13:01, 14 May 2013 (EDT)
Yes, BarcelonaExpert! Your contributions and improvements clearly helped us come up with this choice! Now so many WikiTravelers can see the article featured on the main Page:) Thank you once again! IBAlex (talk) 15:09, 14 May 2013 (EDT)
That makes me very happy to hear, thanks for letting me know! You're very welcomed, of course! :) BarcelonaExpert (talk) 18:36, 14 May 2013 (EDT)

Hi again Alex, there is something strange happening on the Barcelona page that I wanted to bring to your attention. If I'm reading things correctly, then according to the site, there is no code difference between your edit #2039776 and your edit #2039778. However, edit #2039776 correctly shows the Table of Contents in the top left-hand corner of the article (where I believe it naturally belongs), but in the more recent #2039778 edit, it shows it further below next to the "District" section. I'm not sure why the two different edits are displaying differently considering there is supposedly no code difference between the two, but shouldn't the Table of Contents be appearing as the first thing on the top left? Is this some kind of bug in the Wiki software? By the way, I also agree with you that the picture of La Rambla that I added several weeks ago should appear on the top right side of the article, not the top left, since it should be secondary to the more important Table of Contents and introductory text. Anyway, please let me know. Thanks! :) BarcelonaExpert (talk) 16:26, 21 May 2013 (EDT)

Hi BarcelonaExpert! Thank you for pointing that out and keeping an eye on the page!:) I think that Barcelona page got recently several edits that messed up the formatting of the page. I fixed it now by putting wiki markup for Table of Content(TOC). It should look ok now- TOC on the left and the picture on the right. I also feel it looks better and more organized this way. Thank you! Warm regards, IBAlex (talk) 18:25, 21 May 2013 (EDT)
OK, thanks for letting me know and for fixing it. It looks great now! :) BarcelonaExpert (talk) 18:44, 21 May 2013 (EDT)

Hi Alex, I forgot to post here to let you know that I had completed the detailed analysis of the Bike tours in Barcelona and posted it here 2 weeks ago. Sorry I didn't let you know sooner! :) BarcelonaExpert (talk) 10:05, 9 July 2013 (EDT)

Hola Barcelona Expert! Thank you for letting me know about it! I haven't noticed your updates on the Talk Page, sorry! Here is my reply. Cheers! IBAlex (talk) 14:08, 9 July 2013 (EDT)


hi, would it be allpwable for me to create a bot that could HTML scrape and so update opening times, prices, etc. to keep the site up to date?-- 14:46, 29 May 2013 (EDT), thanks for the message! Can you please elaborate more on this idea? What would the bot be doing exactly? Thanks :) IBAlex (talk) 14:50, 29 May 2013 (EDT)

Spam filters

Hi Alex,

Thank you for your advice about tackling the spams which rampant on ja: pages these days.

If you know more powerful and useful spam filters, would you please activate them on ja: pages? We are happy to hear your response on the ja: traveler's pub.--Shoestring (talk) 10:53, 1 June 2013 (EDT)

Hello Shoestring! Thank you for your response! Japanese WT has already several abuse filters that protect it from removing large number of characters from the articles or from IP addresses that make too many edits in a short period of time. English WT has more filters that are "phrase-specific", meaning that users cannot use certain words/ phrases on the site, such as profanity words or typical spam phrases like "Got nothing to say but here is my website...". All those banned phrases are written in English though. Please let me know what are the spam phrases on JA WT and I would happily create filters against them. I will have to know the Japanese equivalents of profanity words and the spam phrases. Are they in Japanese or both in Japanese and English? Feel free to send me an email with all the words/ phrases that you would like me to put into abuse filters. My email: [email protected] Thank you! IBAlex (talk) 13:27, 3 June 2013 (EDT)
Hi Alex,
Thank you for your response regarding the ja: spam-bots and sorry for not to respond to your comments quickly.
So far we need "phrase-specific" spam filter(s) like the one you mentioned above. Most of the spams on ja: are written in English, so the one you use on en: now could be effective for us as well. And if you can custom it to the Japanese version, we are very happy to use it (we can put the key words (such as profanity words and the specific spam phrases) ourselves).--Shoestring (talk) 05:12, 9 June 2013 (EDT)
Hey Shoestring, thank you for your message! I would gladly set up the filters against English profanity phrases/ words but I would need your help with Japanese. You can write me an email to [email protected] with all the Japanese words/ phrases you would like me to create filters for. Thank you so much for your cooperation! Warm regards, IBAlex (talk) 12:35, 10 June 2013 (EDT)

Deleting Free Walking Tours

Hello, I am a new tour operator for Asheville Free Walking Tours which is similar to other tour companies in Europe and NYC/DC like "Free Tours Stockholm" What do I need to do/write to keep this entry from being deleted? I am adding a value "thing-to-do" and this will be a regular tour for tourists in Asheville, Thank you for your help! Cwjones (talk) 10:16, 12 June 2013 (EDT)CJ

Hello Cwjones! thank you for your message. I would gladly explain why your listing was reverted.
  • We believe that your walking tour does not constitute a value-added activity (it's just a regular tour) and that a traveller could fulfil the substance of the tour on their own.
  • The operator must have a "real world" office with a phone number and address in the location where the tour operates. I haven't seen the address in your listing.
  • In practice this policy disallows listings for most audio tours, walking tours, and guided tours since the substance of such tours can generally be fulfilled by an independent traveller, and the information provided on such tours should ideally be included in the appropriate Wikitravel article. If you have a question about whether a tour can be listed, or feel that an exception is warranted, please use the discussion page of the appropriate article to discuss your concerns.
Here is a policy page that explains that. i hope now everything is clear. Warm regards, IBAlex (talk) 12:55, 12 June 2013 (EDT)
I do have a "real world" address, 1 West Pack Square, Ste 1700, Asheville, NC 28801. Secondly, The walking tour is based on the Stockholm Free Tour when I visited Stockholm last summer, and this tour is listed on that Wikitravel page for Stockholm. It is value-added just as the "Urban walking trail" tour is on the same page and the electric bike tours, giving the history and explanation of what is important in Asheville.
On foot-
Free Tour Stockholm [72] offers zero-charge guided tours in English year round, find out when through the webpage. It runs completely on tips and you don't have to book in advance, just show up. Highlights include finding out which Nobel Prize is a kind of fake, why Queen Christina had to sleep under her dead dad's heart and how not to rob a bank. This tour is currently the highest ranked tour on TripAdvisor, and since it's free, check it out! It starts from the big staircase at Sergels torg and takes 1 hour 30 min. Cwjones (talk) 13:08, 12 June 2013 (EDT)
Dear Cwjones, I still do not see what is the added- value your tour will offer and I believe that the substance of your walking tour can generally be fulfilled by an independent traveller. You can always start a conversation on Asheville talk page and see how the community responds. If the community feels that your listing should be there, we will consider putting it back on the page. Thanks! IBAlex (talk) 16:40, 12 June 2013 (EDT)


I changed the pictures of maps and flags from jpg or png to svg

I also changed the articles by removing [[File: and 250px|frameless]] NewFranco (talk) 13:38, 21 June 2013 (EDT)

NewFranco, thank you for a prompt message! Appreciated! Forgive me my question but why is it better to have the pictures as "svg", instead of "jpg" or 'png? I understand the changes where you removed this ugly formatting with [[File: and 250px|frameless]]- thanks a lot! Cheers! IBAlex (talk) 13:46, 21 June 2013 (EDT)
Svg has good quality NewFranco (talk) 16:39, 21 June 2013 (EDT)
png can be equally good. However, colours and region focus can be different, so I have had to revert some of your changes on a case by case basis. Great work on adding captions to the quickbar images! --W. Franke-mailtalk 04:51, 4 July 2013 (EDT)

German Wikitravel

Hallo IBAlex, schau bitte auf die deutsche Diskussionsseite Wikitravel:Stammtisch. Da wurden einige Fragen gestellt, die nur unzureichend beantwortet wurden. Die deutsche Wikitravel ist eingeschlafen und keiner kann sagen wie es weiter geht. -- Atze (talk) 14:26, 2 July 2013 (EDT)

Endlich! --W. Franke-mailtalk 15:57, 2 July 2013 (EDT)

Portuguese Wikitravel

Vandals and pages unpatrolled prevalent in Portuguese Wikitravel. 14:39, 3 July 2013 (EDT)

Hello! Thank you for reporting that. What kind of vandalism do you see there? IBCash who used to patrol Portuguese Wikitravel will stay inactive right now but we have another Portuguese admin over there (User:Livroturistico) who should help you with that. Please try to get in touch with him. Warm regards, IBAlex (talk) 14:50, 3 July 2013 (EDT)


I'm one of the previous contributors to the Slovenia article, and what I've seen happening there lately has me worried. Several IPs have reverted a single user removing content based on his explanation: "useless opinion." Most of those IPs have been blocked for "vandalism" by one admin, while the original editor who started the edit war (and had no other previous edits on the entire English Wikitravel) didn't receive any sanctions.

I have noticed that you have already been in contact with both users, and I would appreciate it if you could offer any information or help on this matter. From my point of view, this looks like a forceful removal of an opinion, where anyone disagreeing with such action is consequently banned. If this is how Wikitravel works, then you can count me out as a future contributor. 12:37, 6 July 2013 (EDT)

Hello IP! Thank you for your message! I have checked your contributions to Slovenia article and I see you have added very constructive information there. Thank you for that. However, the nature of a wiki is that the articles can be rewritten by many users who come and add information, it's normal. I see that the vast majority of the information you added to the article is still there on the site. It was just slightly edited. Apart from that I see that there has been an edit war between IP addresses and user Sloth who I advised to start a discussion on the article Talk page in order to reach a consensus. If the IP addresses fail to respond to his arguments and keep on engaging in the edit war, I will have to protect the page.
Also, I saw that you have inserted many obscenities on other user's talk pages and that you were blocked by the abuse filter. Sorry but in this case I cannot unblock you as my goal here on WT is to protect the site. i hope you understand. Warm regards, IBAlex (talk) 21:12, 8 July 2013 (EDT)
I can't see these 'inserted ... obscenities' is the view restricted to IBadmins? --W. Franke-mailtalk 10:19, 9 July 2013 (EDT)