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m (Where are the images?: had the same prob)
(Where are the images?)
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Since a few days images are no longer shown in WT articles on my PC, just the caption and nothing more. Clicking on the link does not bring up the image either. This is also the case in WT de and nl (the only ones I checked). It cannot be my browser set-up, because in Wikipedia and in Wikivoyage and in other Wikis the problem does not occur. Just WT. Has anyone else got this problem? [[User:Dezwitser|Dezwitser]] 03:27, 6 December 2007 (EST)
Since a few days images are no longer shown in WT articles on my PC, just the caption and nothing more. Clicking on the link does not bring up the image either. This is also the case in WT de and nl (the only ones I checked). It cannot be my browser set-up, because in Wikipedia and in Wikivoyage and in other Wikis the problem does not occur. Just WT. Has anyone else got this problem? [[User:Dezwitser|Dezwitser]] 03:27, 6 December 2007 (EST)
:I used to have the exact same problem - images everywhere else but not at Wikitravel. It was quite some time ago, but I'm pretty sure I had to change my firewall settings.  Good luck! -- [[User:Fastestdogever|Fastestdogever]] 09:30, 6 December 2007 (EST)
:I used to have the exact same problem - images everywhere else but not at Wikitravel. It was quite some time ago, but I'm pretty sure I had to change my firewall settings.  Good luck! -- [[User:Fastestdogever|Fastestdogever]] 09:30, 6 December 2007 (EST)
::Thanks. The firewall was not the problem, but your hint gave me an idea. It was the NoScript add-on. Why WT of all wikis needs scripts to display images is beyond me - must be the commercial nature of this otherwise excellent site! [[User:Dezwitser|Dezwitser]] 20:41, 6 December 2007 (EST)

Revision as of 01:45, 7 December 2007

The Travellers' pub is the place to ask questions when you're confused, lost, afraid, tired, annoyed, thoughtful, or helpful. Please check the FAQ and Help page before asking a question, though, since that may save your time and others'. Also, if you have a question or suggestion about a particular article, try using talk pages to keep the discussion specific to that article.

If you are having a problem that you think has to do with the Mediawiki software, please post that on the Bug reports page instead.

Please add new questions at the bottom of the page and sign your post by appending four tildes (~~~~) to it, but otherwise plunge forward!



Keeping the Pub clean is a group effort. If we have too many conversations on this page, it gets too noisy and hard to read. If you see a conversation that could or should be moved to a talk page, please do so, and note the move here.

Stuff that's been moved:

Also, see the Travellers' pub archives for older archived discussions.

Please sweep the pub

So, the TP has been getting kinda crowded and messy. I'd really appreciate if we could all make an effort to clean up a bit by moving discussions to places more appropriate or deleting discussions that have reached their conclusions. It's a tedious job, but like most, it's easier if we do it together. --Evan 16:44, 20 Apr 2004 (EDT)

Should we sweep this out? -- Andrew Haggard (Sapphire) 03:20, 16 August 2006 (EDT)
Ugh, this place is getting messy and this is the one page I hate to attempt to organize. Anyone want to take a stab at cleaning it up? -- Sapphire(Talk) • 18:29, 11 April 2007 (EDT)


I don't think Evan posted this, yet, because he was having trouble with the wifi in SJ, but don't answer any emails requesting credit card information from an email purporting to be affiliated with Wikitravel. This is a scam and several emails were sent out to Wikia users. -- Sapphire(Talk) • 21:55, 15 April 2007 (EDT)

Add a counter to articles?

Hello, I'd like to know if it would be possible to add a counter to Wikitravel articles, so that editors could see how many times a particular page has been viewed. Would this be possible? Any interest? SONORAMA 09:29, 1 May 2007 (EDT)

I'd second that suggestion, if it is feasible. I haven't been able to find any statistics on article views, which would be useful and interesting. --Peterfitzgerald Talk 09:34, 1 May 2007 (EDT)
$wgDisableCounters is likely set to "yes" in LocalSettings.php as a mater of style because hit counters are so last century. The simple hit counter also counts search engine spiders and other robot spider hits. So it is not an accurate measure of human page visits. I keep the hit counter display turned on in my wiki so I wont feel so lonely (see top of the centered text block at bottom of any regular page at ). We don't need that at Wikitravel because Wikitravel actually rocks. Page edits and quality of text is a more accurate measure of community interest in a wiki. Evan could probably turn the counter display back on if persuaded. Do we really want it though? --Rogerhc 00:43, 3 June 2007 (EDT)
I like the idea, as well...the site's high traffic reflects well on all the good work going into these articles. Redondo 19:42, 13 June 2007 (EDT)

Advice for road trip across USA


My family are planning on a road trip next year from St. Paul, Minnesota to San Francisco. Any advice on good sights to take in? ~~John.

Hi John. You might try posting in the forums on Wikitravel Extra. (here's s shortcut to staring a new forum discussion: [1])I'm sure plenty of people will have suggestions... including me! Thanks, Maj 08:23, 2 May 2007 (EDT)


Can we IP ban them?

Please see Wikitravel:How to handle unwanted edits for more on how we like to deal with stuff like this. Thanks. Maj 16:19, 9 May 2007 (EDT)
thanks looked for something like that but didn't see it

Table of contents

Well, the new table of contents looks great, I think. The only problem I see is that it now appears at the top when viewing differences, pushing the differences over so that one has to sidescroll to see everything. Can we suppress the TOC when viewing differences, as we did before? Or simply push it down below the differences into the article where it would normally appear? 17:43, 10 May 2007 (EDT)

Issues related to the new ToC are being discussed here. --Peterfitzgerald Talk 21:27, 10 May 2007 (EDT)

Attribution Question

Most articles say "Based on the work by ...." at the bottom of the page. I've just added a page (Hsipaw). Why doesn't it say "Based on the work by Wandering?" --Wandering 12:54, 16 May 2007 (EDT)

Because it says "This page was last modified 16:17, 16 May 2007 by Wandering." Once the next person edits it, your name gets moved into the "Based on..." list. Jpatokal 13:06, 16 May 2007 (EDT)

Thanks! All is now clear :-). --Wandering 13:14, 16 May 2007 (EDT)


Coming out of RecentChangesCamp Montreal (RoCoCo) in May 2007 there was a sense that there is an opportunity to "brand" the edit button on wikis in the same way that the little orange radio waves icon is used to indicate a feed. This diffuse impulse is trying to coalesce here:

Thoughts? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Brandon CS Sanders (talkcontribs)

I think it's a great idea... I voted over there, and will keep an eye on how it develops. – cacahuate talk 15:23, 22 May 2007 (EDT)
Very cool idea, it will be nice having a recognizable button on all wikis. Have voted and added my comments there. --NJR_ZA 01:31, 24 May 2007 (EDT)

Applying for a passport

I have to replace my passport and while I've applied for a passport before I wasn't quite sure if my passport was damaged enough so that I'd be required to re-apply in person and pay the more expensive fees or if I could simply use a renewal form and pay the $67 fee, plus the expedited fee.

After trying to get hold of NPIC for an entire day I decided to stay up all night and wait until 06:00 then call (earliest possible time I could get a hold of an operator). I finally got a hold of someone and they saved me about $70 by telling me to do the renewal form.

This is going somewhere... just give me a second. Now, also with the new border crossing rules that require a passport when flying to/from 'them who are up north', Mexico, the US' Caribbean passports are likely to needed by several million more Americans than the previously 5 - 6 million who applied annually. Also, since by the end of January next year a passport will be required at all land/see/air crossings within the US the need for passports is going to sky rocket. (Might this be a conspiracy to get drunk co-eds to party in the US, rather than Cancun? One can only hope so.)

Anyhow, should we have an article that'd explain the process to apply for a passport? I'm on the fence about whether or not the scope should be expanded, but I definitely think it'd be useful for those of us with those 'what the **** does that mean?' scenarios. -- Sapphire(Talk) • 05:25, 24 May 2007 (EDT)

I was in line at the post office a few days ago thinking the same thing. I'm curious if the application process is similar in other countries as the U.S. (fees, wait time, etc). Also, it would be great to cover what would happen if I am out of the country and I lose my passport. -- Fastestdogever 10:13, 24 May 2007 (EDT)
An article about passports could be useful, but I'm not sure how much we can generalize about them. Certainly the "how to get one" information is going to vary dramatically by citizenship. - Todd VerBeek 11:11, 24 May 2007 (EDT)
The article should concentrated (and be titled?) to cover only US passports, which are thoroughly byzantine to apply for and have completely ridiculous waiting times. Jpatokal 11:22, 24 May 2007 (EDT)
Agreed about the waiting time, but I've never found the application process particularly byzantine. My renewal last year was quick and (just kidding) easy enough. Or is it getting ridiculous for new applications? In any case, topics such as passport privacy/security (e.g. RFID chips) and what to do if you lose it, are international in scope.
We should make sure to mention that there is no such thing as a World passport [2]Ravikiran 11:31, 24 May 2007 (EDT)
I would very much appreciate some information regarding how to get a Sealand[3] passport. --Peterfitzgerald Talk 13:14, 24 May 2007 (EDT)
This is cool. I wasn't expecting any support, let alone general support for the idea. So where do we go from here? A generic Passports article? A US-centric article titled US Passports? The current waiting period for an American passport is 14 - 17 weeks, if you don't spring for the additional $60 to get it expedited, which is rather byzantine, especially since you have to send off your birth certificate.
The Germans apparently only need to go to a city hall, tell someone they need one, and... poof... they have one. -- Sapphire(Talk) • 21:12, 27 May 2007 (EDT)
I'd suggest a travel topic article on Passports and visas. US passports are a section. Countries with odd visa requirements (e.g. Saudi Arabia does not have tourist visas, Tibet needs permits, ...) get another section that is mostly one-liners with links. Pashley 00:08, 28 May 2007 (EDT)
But doesn't information about countries with odd visa requirements go in those countries' articles? - Todd VerBeek 13:47, 28 May 2007 (EDT)
Yes, but it can also be covered at a higher level. Middle East, for example, has some info on problems with visas in that region. An overview pointing out potential problems — e.g. citizens of some countries (US, EU, Canada, Oz, NZ, Japan) can go most places without getting a visa in advance, but for other passports (China, India, ...) you need a visa, and anyone needs a visa almost anywhere (except EU-to-EU and a few other special cases) if they want to work — might be useful to many travellers. Pashley 02:17, 19 June 2007 (EDT)
I don't think it makes much sense to have a passport page. Most countries have fairly detailed directions already available on the web, and it seems to be informationally inefficient to have it reproduced here. At best, a link to the passport page would be enough. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Wandering (talkcontribs)
The US State Department has a lot of information, yes, but if it covered the situations I ran into then I wouldn't have proposed the idea here. By having the information here we can give travelers quick access to information they'd need that the State Department wouldn't be able to give them unless they called NPIC precisely at 06:00. -- Sapphire(Talk) • 19:30, 28 May 2007 (EDT)
It is several months since anyone added to this discussion. It should probably be archived, but where? Is anyone going to plunge forward and start such an article? Pashley 08:21, 18 October 2007 (EDT)
Since the US State department has sorted itself out, and the information and time estimates on their website are now back to mas o menos accurate, and you can call and get a real person on the line any time of the day, this discussion should probably be archived and forgotten.--Wandering 13:56, 18 October 2007 (EDT)

Site slowdown

Site painfully slow -- saving edit sometimes takes minutes or even times out on now. Is this due to increased traffic or something else? Maybe Webby Award traffic? Anything being done to fix this? :-) --Rogerhc 17:04, 25 May 2007 (EDT)

I haven't noticed serious speed problems lately, though of course it's never as fast as it should be. :) The site's traffic stats [4] don't include the past week yet, but I don't see a huge spike since the Webby awards :( so I don't think we can blame any speed problems on that... just on the ongoing increase in traffic (roughly doubling since a year ago). - Todd VerBeek 17:38, 25 May 2007 (EDT)
I've noticed serious performance issues too. We're talking ten to thirty seconds to load a page, like recent changes or editing an article. Jordanmills 20:14, 25 May 2007 (EDT)
I have definitely noticed this problem as well on multiple pcs and internet connections, although I can't say it has taken full minutes to load any pages. On shoddier wireless connections, I time out often for Wikitravel, but not for other sites. --Peterfitzgerald Talk 22:17, 25 May 2007 (EDT)
Yep me too... not painfully slow usually, but I've certainly noticed a fairly big difference in the last few weeks or so. – cacahuate talk 03:56, 26 May 2007 (EDT)
Ok, actually sometimes it's painful – cacahuate talk 02:04, 27 May 2007 (EDT)
Another me too. It can be several seconds to get to the home page. I usually go though my watch list looking at differences, which can also take several seconds per page. - Davidbstanley 04:46, 27 May 2007 (EDT)
I'm in China with a fairly slow connection. The site has usually worked reasonably well for me, but often quite slow. Lately it seems worse, but not by much. Pashley 06:07, 27 May 2007 (EDT)
So, I think there are two issues: one is that we've added Google Analytics code to each page, and I think that's why you get a delay when the page is almost loaded. I'll see if I can make that work better, and if not we can remove it.
I vote for getting rid of Google Analytics. I have noticed pages sticking on that on this and other sites. Davidbstanley 17:03, 29 May 2007 (EDT)
Second, we've got a lot of traffic. Internet Brands has an account with Akamai and we're looking into offloading the work of distributing images and static files (.js, .css) through their very fast caching network. That should probably perk up the response time quite a bit.
After that is in place, we're going to look at throwing some hardware at the site to speed it up. --Evan 12:50, 27 May 2007 (EDT)
I have discovered that throwing a hammer at a server tends not to produce the desired performance improvement. But then, I may not have hit the right spot; optimization is tricky work. - Todd VerBeek 13:00, 27 May 2007 (EDT)

shared:Wikitravel Shared:30 May 2007cacahuate talk 21:18, 31 May 2007 (EDT)

Site still s l o w ....... is there hope? --Rogerhc 19:20, 2 June 2007 (EDT)

Page saves are still s l o w, 10 seconds slow. Am I the only one? --Rogerhc 02:44, 12 June 2007 (EDT)

Nope, you're not alone... still crawling for me... getting a little annoying... ok, a lot annoying... – cacahuate talk 02:57, 20 June 2007 (EDT)
On the upside, the slow site speed is teaching me to be real proficient at tabbed browsing—I've got 15 tabs going in this window right now! --Peter Talk 03:38, 20 June 2007 (EDT)

I've recently begun to see significant slowdowns, and most of the time the browser status bar indicates it is waiting on, so that subdomain server may be a source of some problems. Assuming that server is serving images, are there any images on the pages without width & height values specified? If the slowdown is lack of images, rather than lack of HTML, adding a width & height tag to all images will allow the page to load even without having downloaded all files. -- Ryan • (talk) • 22:37, 23 June 2007 (EDT)

Mediawiki specifies height/width attributes on any images embedded in articles, so that's not what browsers are waiting on. is being used to store CSS, JavaScript, and image files, which Akamai distributed caching would presumably help. - Todd VerBeek 07:40, 24 June 2007 (EDT)
I don't think it's images in articles that are the problem - as you've indicated Mediawiki handles those properly. However, the "Powered by Mediawiki" image in the footer as well as the "Creative Commons" image both appear to be missing width and height tags - I don't know whether those are a problem or not, but adding width & height shouldn't hurt. -- Ryan • (talk) • 13:26, 24 June 2007 (EDT)
It was something that changed recently (in the last couple months), it hasn't been an ongoing problem... I'm guessing maybe it has to do with Evan's statement above that Google Analytics was added to each page? If that is indeed the problem, I vote for getting rid of it, at least for now until other measures are taken to counteract the slowdown... – cacahuate talk 14:22, 24 June 2007 (EDT)

Let's see how long this edit takes to save... 17 seconds! Ouch! --Rogerhc 19:34, 11 August 2007 (EDT)

Let's see how long this edit takes to save... over 60 seconds! IB, we have a problem. --Rogerhc 13:18, 11 September 2007 (EDT)

Working fine for me today and yesterday? One thing to beware of: if the admins edit the MediaWiki: system messages, the system grinds to a halt for a few minutes as all the caches get purged, but this is just a temporary issue that fixes itself. Jpatokal 22:25, 11 September 2007 (EDT)
I get what Roger describes routinely. This edit took 45 seconds to save for me. That's normal for me for the last couple of months. -- Colin 22:40, 11 September 2007 (EDT)

Need help with it:

Italian Wikitravel is under attack from what seems to be a distributed bot network; any help very welcome. --Evan 22:02, 25 May 2007 (EDT)

I just took a look and it appears that the crisis is over (at least for now)? - Todd VerBeek 09:20, 26 May 2007 (EDT)

Watchlist problems

The automated mechanism by which pages get "added to watchlist" seems haphazard. Although I have my preferences set to automatically add pages I create to my watchlist, only about 9 out of 10 new pages actually get on my watchlist. I've had to go back an add a lot of pages for which I am the only editor, and I just noticed this happen with the most recent new page I made, Udmurtia. Anyone know what's going on? --Peterfitzgerald Talk 13:13, 26 May 2007 (EDT)

I haven't noticed that, but while we're on the subject, can we revive the 2 step confirm process conversation too? What's stopping us from using the single watch/unwatch button like Wikipedia does? – cacahuate talk 14:54, 26 May 2007 (EDT)
Wikitravel pages are actually written to the server's hard disk the first time they're read; everyone gets the same HTML the server. This makes for a very fast response time (not lately, but usually). We do some JavaScript tricks to put your name, talk page, admin buttons, etc. onto the page. It's a pretty crafty system.
One thing we don't do is twiddle the "watch/unwatch" button based on whether the current page is already in your watchlist. I think the two-step process is worth it, compared to the speed savings and complexity of working out another solution. --Evan 12:54, 27 May 2007 (EDT)
Okie dokie – cacahuate talk 00:26, 28 May 2007 (EDT)
Aha! I finally figured out why the watchlist problem described above occurs. If you are logged out and editing a page, it is not possible to have the "watch this page" box checked. So if you log in and then save the page, the box will remain unchecked, regardless of whether you were watching the page in question, and you will by default automatically "unwatch" the page. I'd file a bug report, but it seems kind of pointless to do so, as there are about 80 open bug reports, none of which seem to be getting any attention. And now if I could stay logged in longer than 30 minutes, this wouldn't be a big problem—but I've given up all hope of that ever happening. --Peter Talk 03:35, 27 September 2007 (EDT)

Template approval process

Hey there! So I'm just thinking, based on several past conversations and some Star article nominations, would it make sense to have a Template rating system/status? I don't think it's worthwile having multiple levels or anything, but something as simple as "approved template" or "star template", which would make it easier in the future when evaluating a Star nomination. I don't think we're close to having any Star countries, but if we were, as an example, it would be nice if we'd already come to a consensus about Template:Regionlist, and that's it fully hashed out and has met its potential for the most part. Then a Star country would be required to use it, and we'd feel confident that the template was based on a reasonable consensus. The same would go for the new Climate templates, or a bus timetable template on a city page. ??? – cacahuate talk 22:31, 28 May 2007 (EDT)

I think this would be getting more bureaucratic than we need. If a template gets used widely without anyone undoing it, that's de facto "approved" status, via wikiconsensus. When people stop messing with it, it's a "star". And if we want to require a country article to use (or not use) a particular template, then we revise the Star criteria (or Guide criteria, or however strongly we feel about it) to say so. (P.S. A bus timetable template? I'd go around undoing it.) - Todd VerBeek 22:54, 29 May 2007 (EDT)

Moving all multilingual coordination to Shared

So, we've currently got lots of pages regarding language versions and policy duplicated between en and Shared. As this is (IMHO) an issue for Shared -- other versions don't concern English, they concern Wikitravel as a whole -- they should be maintained only on Shared. To start with:

Any objections? Jpatokal 04:28, 2 June 2007 (EDT)

IsIn vs IsPartOf

I can't believe this is not covered elsewhere, but I could not find it. What is the rationale for using one rather than the other. Should IsPartOf always be used? OldPine 09:31, 2 June 2007 (EDT)

I think it's a historical thing. IsIn was created, and everyone loved it and was happy. Then someone noticed that it broke badly for places with spaces or other non-alphabetical characters in the name, and the level of happiness declined. Evan then created isPartOf as a test to see if it fixed the problem, and the happiness level again increased. The downside was that we had a ton of articles that used isIn, but a much better solution in the form of isPartOf. Since isPartOf is a better solution I think it should replace isIn, but unfortunately we can't simply get rid of isIn since it's used in so many existing articles. If desired we could probably start a crusade to get rid of isIn altogether, much like 2005's war against the "External links" section, but prior to embarking on that battle it might be best to get other's opinions on whether or not it's worthwhile. -- Ryan • (talk) • 12:39, 2 June 2007 (EDT)
Ryan pretty much covered all there is to know, but in case anyone is interested, this was also discussed here. --Peterfitzgerald Talk 12:42, 2 June 2007 (EDT)

OK, Thanks. Seems way over my head so I'll just start using the new form. I trust there is a reason why the old template (IsIn) cannot just be changed, that is, fix the code. Is this not a job that a bot could run? (See IsIn, replace with IsPartOf?) Geez, nevermind. Why do I even think I can understand Geekiness on such I grand scale? :) OldPinw 13:06, 2 June 2007 (EDT)

The problem (as I understand it) is that IsIn requires the use of underlines and other kludges, but IsPartOf breaks if you use them. - Todd VerBeek 13:09, 2 June 2007 (EDT)
A key element of geekiness involves laziness. In this case, since nothing is actually broken we can procrastinate and avoid doing any additional work. If it HAD to be fixed then the laziness vs. work quotient (LVWQ) is applied to determine if it's worthwhile writing a bot. Basically, you guess how long it will take to write a bot (and this calculation is ALWAYS wrong by half) and compare that to how long it will take to fix by hand, taking into account the likelihood that someone else will deal with it. Note the special case where the person performing the calculations is too lazy to actually work out the solution, in which case you again default to hoping someone else will deal with it. -- Ryan • (talk) • 13:16, 2 June 2007 (EDT)

You know, I have been using IsIn because it is faster to type, but that's kind of silly. I'll add the IsPartOf to the article templates—it is marginally easier to edit. --Peterfitzgerald Talk 13:42, 2 June 2007 (EDT)

Ah, now that all rings a bell,Ryan. Guess I don't have the perspective. I was thinking that whipping up a bot is real easy since I've never actually done it... or even written a script in probably 10 years. It all seems so easy when you're sitting in the audience. Thanks, guys, for splainin' things to the old guy. OldPine 13:46, 2 June 2007 (EDT)

If for some reason we do go on a crusade or start a bot, I would suggest rather than changing IsIn's to IsPartOf's we should fix the IsIn template and then spend the work fixing the spaces and underscores. I also continue to use IsIn because I would much rather type that than IsPartOf, and it just has a much better ring to it. Lame, but true. On the new Hindi WT we've set up IsIn to work the way that IPO does here, though obviously a much easier task since we've only got like 20 articles. – cacahuate talk 03:26, 3 June 2007 (EDT)

I tend to use isPartOf by default these days since it just works better than isIn, but I agree with Cacahuate that a better solution will be to get isIn fixed and use that exclusively --NJR_ZA 05:10, 3 June 2007 (EDT)

We are currently trying to drum up consensus for a proposal to update the isIn code, get rid of isPartOf, and fix broken isIn's as they are found. Please comment here. --Peter Talk 18:33, 26 June 2007 (EDT)


Where should I report a broken instance of {{isIn}}? ({{isIn|Lower Saxony}} on Oldenburg page is not displaying at all.) --Rogerhc 19:31, 2 June 2007 (EDT)

Fixed the crumb. Wrh2 replaced isIn with isPartOf but still no crumb. So I, per Wikitravel_talk:Breadcrumb_navigation#Truncation_of_Breadcrumbs, purged the parent crumb pages Germany, then Lower Saxony, then the page itself Oldenburg and then reloaded the page. Crumbs show now. YEA! :-) Rogerhc 20:39, 2 June 2007 (EDT)

Image source/license templates

I can't seem to use the {{no source}} and {{no license}} templates for images. These are pretty essential template for a wiki site. Are they called something different in Wikitravel? OoishiMoe 02:07, 4 June 2007 (EDT)

Images should be uploaded to the shared site - see Wikitravel:How to upload files - which has most of the relevant license templates. However, please don't upload images without a license as it will likely have to be deleted in accordance with Wikitravel:Copyleft. -- Ryan • (talk) • 02:11, 4 June 2007 (EDT)
Actually any legacy image is CC by-sa 1.0 by default... and most image descriptions make, or at least should make, fairly clear where the image is coming from. Jpatokal 02:38, 4 June 2007 (EDT)
The majority of images here are travel photos uploaded by the person who owns them, so if a user doesn't specify a source, the source is implicitly that user. - Todd VerBeek 08:21, 4 June 2007 (EDT)

Touting on Userpages

I have seen some very fishy user pages recently (like this one). They are either soliciting, personal ads, or just offering business services. I figure these should be deleted, at least when the user is clearly not here to contribute content, but I am a little wary about just deleting userpages—should I just delete them? --Peterfitzgerald Talk 18:26, 4 June 2007 (EDT)

I don't have a problem with a business owner putting info about their hotel/restaurant/etc on their user page, even going so far as doing a little touting, as long as they've actually contributed to the guide, and it doesn't turn into a free "web presence" for their business. But I don't think the above-linked user page is appropriate. At best it's a "job wanted" advert, and I can't help wondering if the services being offered include "happy endings" (which would be even less appropriate). For something like this (especially since I doubt she's coming back), I think we should blank the page, with a note on her User_talk page explaining why. - Todd VerBeek 18:40, 4 June 2007 (EDT)
Anytime you feel wary about just deleting something, please hold off. In particular, if a user page has some content you think is unacceptable, it's much better to talk to that user than to just delete their user page.
I think that touting user pages are relatively harmless, and I think that it's more important that contributors feel that their user page is their own to do with as they wish. Clearly user pages don't fall under the same MoS requirements as pages in the main namespace. Unless there's clear and imminent harm from having a particular user page on the site, let's practice benign negligence. --Evan 22:42, 4 June 2007 (EDT)
I'm very much with Evan on this one - unless a user page is obviously in violation of the Wikitravel:Illegal activities policy or if they are obviously in violation of the "not a homepage service" goal then I think we should only modify them after leaving a warning on the talk page and reaching a consensus to do so on the VFD (or some other) page. The user page policy tells a user that the page is "their own user page", and just as you wouldn't enter your neighbor's house except in an extreme situation I don't think we should be patrolling user pages without good reason. -- Ryan • (talk) • 23:11, 4 June 2007 (EDT)
Just so I better understand how to deal with these—in this particular case, it appeared the user was using her user page to advertise her "escort services" and had not contributed any content to wikitravel other than the user page. I went with Todd's suggestion: blanked her page and left a note on her talk page. Did I overstep with this one? --Peterfitzgerald Talk 00:07, 5 June 2007 (EDT)
I think it's a rare case that we need to do this, but I agree this is one that should have been blanked, yes. I can't think of any reason beyond the 2 Ryan mentioned why we'd need to do this... either a user has turned their userpage into a large and unruly personal website, or if they're in violation of the illegal activities policy. Otherwise, don't worry about it – cacahuate talk 02:01, 5 June 2007 (EDT)
Sorry, I thought this discussion had concluded, so I just reverted Peter's blanking. I rolled back. I am on the fence on this one. — Ravikiran 02:08, 5 June 2007 (EDT)
I agree with Evan on this -- it's not our job to start censoring people's user pages. Jpatokal 02:15, 5 June 2007 (EDT)
One of our non-goals is to "provide personal hompage service", which, I believe extends to businesses. As policy says, "[user pages] should be used to support the development of the travel guide", which the user pages in question don't do. I'd say delete overt advertisements, but leave the user pages of users, who contribute alone, even if they advertise their businesses on a user page. -- Sapphire 22:10, 19 June 2007 (EDT)
The suggestion to "talk to the user" is a good one, and when I have reason to believe the user will be back for a conversation, I do exactly that. I don't like "censoring" anyone, and personally I don't care if someone sells sex, drugs, and rock-and-roll. But when they create a Wikitravel account and place an advert on their not-really-a-user page as their first and only edit, and it clearly isn't consistent with what this site is for, what are we supposed to do? Just leave it until they (don't) come back? The User: space (which isn't where she first created the homepage, BTW; I moved it there) is not the main Wikitravel space, but it's still part of this site, and unless we want this to turn into MyWikitravelSpace, some "policing" is necessary. "Benign negligence" is still negligence. - Todd VerBeek 22:40, 19 June 2007 (EDT)

I would be curious to hear some more opinions on this topic. User:Bestlyriccollection seems to me like a speedy delete candidate, since its only purpose is to spam in a place where we are loathe to interfere, but to speedy delete it would certainly go against the tide of this discussion so far. --Peter Talk 22:56, 15 July 2007 (EDT)

First, I'd ask if you'd leave a welcome message for the user and explain your concerns. If you think it needs to be dealt with immediately VFD it. I agree with you it doesn't much help the project and is fishy, but at least he/she isn't advertising "". -- Sapphire(Talk) • 23:06, 15 July 2007 (EDT)
I left him a message and went ahead and blanked the page... we've pretty clearly got a policy against using userpages as personal home pages... see Wikitravel:User page help. What we've been discussing above is users who are touting about their one specific business on their userpages... and we seem to be leaning towards letting that go. But this user had a list of at least 100 bookmarks, almost all of which had absolutely nothing to do with making a travel guide. One section of the links were to his various other userpages on other wikis, almost all of which had the same list of bookmarks. The notable exception was his Wikipedia userpage, probably because they've also got a similar (and sometimes well-enforced) policy – cacahuate talk 02:10, 16 July 2007 (EDT)

I just rolled back a blanking of some of JossDude's user pages. They're obviously in violation of the "not a homepage service", but at the same time they were all travel related and I'm really, really uncomfortable with getting into the business of policing user pages. Wikitravel policy states that a user's page is their page to do with what they like, so if we're going to start modifying them I think it should be totally obvious even to someone unfamiliar with Wikitravel why the modification is being made (ie the page is filled with spam links or hate speech), or else we should have some sort of discussion ala VFD prior to making changes. -- Ryan • (talk) • 22:01, 18 July 2007 (EDT)

Actually, I think our policy at Wikitravel:Goals and non-goals makes it pretty clear that a user's page is not their page to do with what they like as it sets clear limits on what the user pages can/should be. The only part that isn't clear is what happens if a User is in violation. The simplest thing to do is to just leave a message, but in this particular case, the User had not responded to multiple messages for months. I would also venture that my message on his talk page made it perfectly clear why I had modified his travelogues—as I said, I was trying to get his attention so that he would respond to talk messages letting him know that his User page use was in clear violation of Wikitravel policy. Lastly, I would just like to point out that this is no longer a matter of whether touting on user pages is a policy violation, it is now a discussion of how to police policy violations on user pages. --Peter Talk 02:19, 19 July 2007 (EDT)
And Ryan, I would like to point out that a good part of my rationale for the edits you reverted came from your earlier comment in this thread: "unless a user page is obviously in violation of the Wikitravel:Illegal activities policy or if they are obviously in violation of the "not a homepage service" goal..." --Peter Talk 02:34, 19 July 2007 (EDT)
Just to be clear, I don't think you necessarily did anything wrong, and I apologize if I've seemed overly critical. The issue I see is that I don't think there has yet been any agreement on how (or if) this issue should be handled - Evan advocated benign negligence, Ravi is on the fence, and Jani agreed with Evan. In my comments above I agreed with Evan, but I should have used the phrase "blatantly in violation" instead of "obviously in violation" to indicate when I would favor modifying a user page.
The policy currently in place allows us to easily deal with someone who (for example) shows up and creates a user page to hawk the latest male enhancement gimmick - to me that's a blatant/obvious violation, and I think it would be 100% clear to anyone that the content is inappropriate. In the case of JossDude, while his travel journals violate the written policies, I don't think that it's unreasonable for a new user (who probably hasn't read all of the policies) to assume that they could use their user space to write about their travels. Both examples technically violate the "not a home page" guideline, but I see the second example kind of like jay-walking - you only do something about it when it becomes a serious issue, and the rest of the time you just look the other way. Also, I really think that if people want to begin dealing with pages like JossDude's where it's not 100% clear that someone is abusing Wikitravel then we need a discussion process - "we should only modify them after leaving a warning on the talk page and reaching a consensus to do so on the VFD (or some other) page". That's my less than two cents worth, I'll shut up now. -- Ryan • (talk) • 03:05, 19 July 2007 (EDT)

Let's try to set reasonable limits. The guides are the focus of Wikitravel and our patrolling efforts should go there. The talk pages, the User pages and the project pages are supposed to be working towards that goal, but I think that in those cases we can and should allow a bit of leeway there. How much of leeway, is an open question, but let's accept that if we start applying our non-goal rules to User pages, every one of us is in violation. I mention something about me and where I work on my User page - i.e. I am using it as a homepage. If I put a couple of essays about my travels there, I am creating a travel journal. If I put a couple of photos from my last vacation, I am using it as a vacation photo gallery service. I asked Cacahuate for advice when I was planning my honeymoon, so I used Wikitravel as a travel chat board. If I run a restaurant, put a link to it on my user page and brag about how good the restaurant is, I've made it an advertising brochure.

I think the key questions to ask are: Is it travel related? Is it excessive? Does it harm Wikitravel's primary purpose?

Obviously, if someone puts a lot of spammy links or pornography on any page, it affects our reputation, may turn off users and may lower our google rank, so we should police that. If someone puts too many non-travel related photographs, it takes up space on our servers which is obviously a bad thing - but Evan should really tell us how much is too much.

So I think that we did the right thing with Bestlyricscollection. I am not sure if we did the right thing with Haiya1984 - the touting was not excessive, but because it is sex-related, it probably harms our image. But when it comes to JossDude, I am concerned that we are going overboard by blanking out his page, especially now that we have Extra. After all, what he is doing is travel related. He is not adding too many photographs, and I have a hard time thinking of any amount of travel related text as "excessive". It will not harm Wikitravel's reputation or image. On the contrary, if his friends visit his page, there is a chance that they will check out other parts of the site and stay on as contributors. We should try to nudge him to contribute to Extra, but I doubt if "I got kicked out of Wikitravel" is a good enough reason for people to move to Extra. Let it be, I say. — Ravikiran 03:17, 19 July 2007 (EDT)

Ravikiran's guidelines sound very reasonable to me. I will say, however, that the thing that attracted my attention to JossDude's travelogues was the fact that he has uploaded >70 large personal images (our Wikitravel:Goals and non-goals advises that >5 is "pushing it"). I suppose the space that he alone uses for image hosting is pretty negligible, but my guess is that it would start to take up too much server space if this sort of activity became popular. --Peter Talk 02:59, 20 July 2007 (EDT)

Suspected fraud

Here's another borderline case: User:Saradarani

Anyone familiar with the (still!) ongoing Mandarmani saga will recognize this as a very suspect touting userpage. There has been someone (or some people) who have been very persistently changing the phone numbers for the accommodations listings for Mandarmani and for several nearby locations. He/she/they have also claimed to "be" the owners of these accommodations listings. Since the phone number on this user page does not match up to the ones that the Sana Beach lists on its website, I suspect that this particular userpage tout is actually an attempt to trick people into calling someone else—in short, it is fraud.

My feeling is that we should blank this page. Does that seem reasonable to others? --Peter Talk 03:17, 2 September 2007 (EDT)

While Wikitravel's user page policy says users can do what they want with their user pages, that doesn't include misleading travelers with false information. If this user page is pushing false information with the intent of duping travelers then remove the offending info, but there definitely needs to be a note left on the user page explaining why the content was removed and what needs to be done to restore it, especially if there is any chance at all that the content in question could actually be valid. -- Ryan • (talk) • 03:41, 2 September 2007 (EDT)

Car rental extlinks

There have been a rash of car rental links breaking out throughout Wikitravel in the past few days, and it gives me an itchy urge to scratch out a bunch of "rmv extlinks." These are primary links, but it seems more like a corporate race to up google hits by adding "Schmertz" to every article in the United States. Personally, I see no reason to have car rental information any lower than country or top-level region articles (at the lowest). Do we have a policy on this? --Peterfitzgerald Talk 22:47, 6 June 2007 (EDT)

Translated item name

In <see, do, eat, etc. > tags, use an alt="" attribute to display a translation of the item name into the local language when appropriate and helpful to travelers. This will appear normal weight, italicized and within parentheses after the bold text item name. Example: see Harbin page.

Can we please include alt="" after the name="" attribute in the click-to-insert snippets of the edit page? Something like this:

* <see name="" alt="" address="" phone="" email="" fax="" hours="" price="" url=""></see>

Maybe add a note on the edit page bellow or above the click-to-insert snippets explaining what the alt="" attribute will do and also linking to a page about the click-to-insert snippets (or whatever we call them). And what is the something-extra="" attribute for? --Rogerhc 19:20, 11 June 2007 (EDT)

I'm still mulling this over, but I thought I would add that it is a bad idea to render foreign names by default in italics because this can cause problems across alphabets. Cyrillic fonts, in particular, use very different characters in italics, which would make italicized Russian place names, for example, useless to anyone who doesn't speak Russian. But I definitely agree with your basic premise—that listings should give local names, especially when the local signs are in a different alphabet. --Peterfitzgerald Talk 19:28, 11 June 2007 (EDT)
Actually, the alt tag is already implemented so that only Latin scripts (Unicode Ux0000-02FF, or at least that's what I asked Evan to do) are italicized and the rest are left as is. Test:

Test (Test テスト 実験 ижица 조선말).

As you can see, only the Latin word is italicized. Jpatokal 23:36, 11 June 2007 (EDT)
There's also a directions="" tag that can go after "address"... should we consider adding "alt" and "directions" to the template? or is that getting confusing for new editors? – cacahuate talk 01:15, 12 June 2007 (EDT)
Wow, there's a directions="" tag? I never knew that. That would be very usefulj I could have used it at least twice yesterday. And alt="" is a must for attractions with names not in Latin script. It definitely should be documented better. I see your point about it being confusing for new editors though. JimDeLaHunt 13:48, 12 June 2007 (EDT)
I've added the alt and directions tags to the edit tools. Jpatokal 23:30, 13 June 2007 (EDT)
I'm loving the directions tag. Gorilla Jones 23:52, 13 June 2007 (EDT)


The click-to-insert area of the edit page lacks ¥. Are we planning to use ¥ or 元 in English on China pages? --Rogerhc 19:08, 13 June 2007 (EDT)

Currency: ¢ $ € £ ฿ (baht) 元 CHF Kč kr mk Rs zł

lacks ¥

Good point, I added it – cacahuate talk 22:44, 13 June 2007 (EDT)
Definitely ¥, we're not Chinese (and I've removed the 元 sign). See also Wikitravel:Currency. Jpatokal 23:26, 13 June 2007 (EDT)
I prefer 元 on China pages where it is the local currency. ¥ feels less indigenous, more pretentious to me there. Any reason why we shouldn't simply use the indigenous 元 on China pages? --Rogerhc 17:02, 14 June 2007 (EDT)
Because "元" is not English: we don't use 円 for Japanese yen or บาท for Thai baht either. ¥ is instantly comprehensible as long as you know that the local currency is the Yuan, whereas 元 isn't and many browsers won't even show it right. Jpatokal 23:28, 14 June 2007 (EDT)
Which browsers wont show 元 right? --Rogerhc 19:34, 17 June 2007 (EDT)
Any browser(/PC) without Chinese fonts installed. Jpatokal 08:09, 18 June 2007 (EDT)
Personally I'd prefer RMB since I can type that and that is what I see most in China, after 元. Howevr, I can live with the current compromise and use "¥". See discussion at Talk:China. Pashley 01:29, 15 June 2007 (EDT)

Spam filter... ouch... PLEASE HELP

Someone has put something into the spam filter regex in LocalSettings.php (I think) without first removing all instances of that something from all pages and namespaces of This is bad because it causes the next person who tries to edit a page containing that something to be unable to save his edit, even if his edit has nothing to do with something. The person putting this something into the spam filter regex is in a much better position to remove instances of something from the site because he knows what something is and no one else knows this something. I hate it when this happens. I figure everyone hates it when this happens. Hope this helps. :-) Rogerhc 18:54, 17 June 2007 (EDT)

Wikitravel:Travellers' pub is currently blocked to further edits by something. --Rogerhc 18:56, 17 June 2007 (EDT)
I've reverted recent spam filter changes. -- Ryan • (talk) • 19:01, 17 June 2007 (EDT)
Thanks. Maybe a policy of removing instances of something from all Wikitravel pages before putting it into the spam regex would be in order. :-)Rogerhc 19:33, 17 June 2007 (EDT)
Well, I think that goes without saying, but the problem here was a user was attempting to prevent spam, however, as a result, when a page displayed certain numbers in a certain configuration it was automatically blocked. As an example, we were unable to edit the Cincinnati guide because '24 was used in the guide and the user attempted to block the spammer (who would paste seemingly random phone numbers into guides). -- Sapphire(Talk) • 21:08, 17 June 2007 (EDT)
The Cincinnati problem occurred when I tested something on one of the spammed eight-digit 'phone numbers where the same numbers in the same order appear in the following line of the Cincinnati guide: 28 W. Fourth Street" directions="Downtown, Inside Carew Tower" phone="+1-(513)-241-4104" email= "" fax="" url="" hours="Monday - Saturday 17:30 - 23:00 (bar opens at 16:45); Sunday 1
The spammer doesn't use random numbers, however it does look like he might sometimes be typing his numbers in incorrectly ~ 00:03, 18 June 2007 (EDT)

The "problem" with this page was that the Phone number spam section included a list of the spammed 'phone numbers and the associated URL; I've removed them. ~ 23:13, 17 June 2007 (EDT)

I'd just like to say that I am seriously considering nominating as an administrator. --Peter Talk 00:42, 18 June 2007 (EDT)
Too bad IPs can't be given any kind of elevated status. That said, I know exactly who is. Unfortunately, his/her IP keeps changing. If I am not mistaken, he/she is residing in Bangkok and has done thousands and thousands of useful edits. If it weren't for the fact that he/she hasn't signed up for an account he/she might be an administrator. -- Sapphire(Talk) • 01:08, 18 June 2007 (EDT)

Docent template problem

I can't seem to get the Template:hasDocent to work on the Washington (D.C.) article. Does anyone have a clue what is going wrong? --Peter Talk 19:51, 17 June 2007 (EDT)

Hmm. It doesn't seem to have anything to do with the page's protection. Perhaps my DC docenthood wasn't meant to be? --Peter Talk 22:01, 17 June 2007 (EDT)

OK, something very odd is going on. Now I can't seem to get the Template:Regionlist to work, although it worked just fine in the past and no new edits have since been made to the template. I tried to use it on the Armenia page, but this happened. All the stranger since it worked just fine a couple days ago when I was working on the Armenia regions and previewed my changes.

Why can't I use templates anymore?! :( --Peter Talk 18:40, 18 June 2007 (EDT)

TOC problems

The new TOC design is online for several weeks now. Still there are some severe problems, not only with the layout but also patrolling is bothersome now. As Evan doesnt see to care about these problems maybe we can fix them ourself. Does anybody have an idea which MediaWiki-Extension is used? Are we the only Wiki that uses this kind of TOC? --Flip666 writeme! • 19:24, 19 June 2007 (EDT)

The last thing I want to do is make you think I don't care, Phil. As far as I know, there are two serious problems (the way the ToC shows up with diffs, and the fact that the ToC shows up in the wrong places). I'll make those an immediate priority and work on them tonight. --Evan 21:10, 19 June 2007 (EDT)
I hacked up a temporary solution for the diff problem; let me know if it works OK. --Evan 22:51, 19 June 2007 (EDT)

Looks like what you did worked for diffs, good job! That was an annoying one. I know you've got a lot on your plate but it would be nice to fix the other things people took issue with as well:

  • getting the + sign to twist down - the new TOC is still pretty unusable for anything below the top-level sections in Safari
  • forcing all sections to stay below the TOC - see how Africa looks in my browser
  • getting the "bullets out of the margin", as Todd put it... but if you fix the above problem then I think this would become irrelevant
  • move the "contents" heading inside the box, or better yet, remove it altogether

Sorry to keep harping on them, but you haven't really responded to the previous requests, and as far as I know you're the only one that can fix these things  :) – cacahuate talk 00:10, 20 June 2007 (EDT)

The last two items are very low priority, IMO. I don't think sections-below-the-TOC is the best solution; it'd do ugly things to articles with brief intros and longish TOCs (like lots of city articles). Changing the regionlist template so that the left margin can move (do the div tags wrapped around it prevent that?) might be preferable. - Todd VerBeek 07:54, 20 June 2007 (EDT)
Thanks, cacahuate. Let's continue this conversation on shared:Tech:Table of contents makes too much whitespace. --Evan 08:11, 20 June 2007 (EDT)

Database dump

The lack of availability of a WT database dump was brought to my attention again today, when people at BeWelcome considered a synergy with Wikitravel. BW is the off-spring of Hospitality Club and CouchSurfing, a free, cooperative hospitality exchange organization. There will be a lot of active members, and the idea is to send them to Wikitravel to work on a travel guide. But the lack of an available database dump is holding this back. Well, anyway.

Check out project:Database dump and find out how we can book some progress here! Guaka 07:38, 21 June 2007 (EDT)

Download for offline reading

I will be traveling throught japan soon, and would like to keep a copy of all japan-related articels on my laptop.

How would I do that? I can use wget, but is there a page that lists all japan articles and only those? is there a better way? --Hugo, 15:44, 28 June 2007 (EDT)

It's probably not going to be of immediate help to you, but have a look at the Offline Reader Expedition and it's related talk page --NJR_ZA 09:32, 29 June 2007 (EDT)

Several content organization issues

Hello all. I have a handful of content reorganization proposals that no one has commented on. Unlike some of my more impulsive proposals (e.g., "Delete countries!"), these are all proposals I have been thinking about for some time. But I don't feel comfortable altering existing hierarchical schemes without some sort of "yes this is a good idea" comment; accordingly I would appreciate it if anyone would take a look at them. I suspect that I am just being ignored on some fronts, but others may just be flying under everyone's radar, so here's a list:

Finally, there is another woefully incomplete discussion at Wikitravel talk:Geographical hierarchy#Listing sub-regions? that I think requires some serious thought.

Thanks! --Peter Talk 04:30, 29 June 2007 (EDT)

Wikitravel talk:Accommodation listings

As there is an increase in the number of articles where the accommodation and restaurant listings are threatening to dominate the page, I'd like to revive the discussion on how to deal with mass listings. Opinions would be appreciated. See: Wikitravel talk:Accommodation listings#Avalanche of hotel listings WindHorse 12:10, 3 July 2007 (EDT)

External links

I noticed that external links within articles all have only numbers. I have been changing the numbers to actual words, that make the article look nicer. Is this perferred, or is the preference to just leave numbers? Flowergirl 16:22, 11 July 2007 (EDT)

See Wikitravel:External links. The "[1]" format is actually the agreed-upon format. Wikitravel:Accommodation listings, Wikitravel:Restaurant listings and a few other pages also detail this guideline. Hope that helps! -- Ryan • (talk) • 16:48, 11 July 2007 (EDT)
Actually, the number thing was just kinda left there (it's a leftover from Wikipedia-style references, I think), IMHO it looks pretty terrible. Something like "web" would be much nicer -- but this should be handled programmatically by Mediawiki. Jpatokal 22:32, 11 July 2007 (EDT)
I agree... [web] or something would look nicer. I would propose the same for email. I've done so herecacahuate talk 00:02, 12 July 2007 (EDT)
I'd like that, too. The escalating number-links are odd. Gorilla Jones 00:25, 12 July 2007 (EDT)
Another vote for [web] from me for listings; not sure it will fit links placed in the middle of regular text, though. --DenisYurkin 01:56, 12 July 2007 (EDT)
I would actually lean more towards using icons, if we do this. A flying envelope icon for mail is straightforward, although I admit I don't have a weblink icon in mind. --Peter Talk 02:04, 12 July 2007 (EDT)
I second the idea of using just an icon. What's wrong with the icon we already have that appears next to the number? Texugo 02:47, 12 July 2007 (EDT)
Absolutely nothing, I think that could work great. Should we move our discussion to Wikitravel_talk:Listings#web/email_format? --Peter Talk 17:26, 12 July 2007 (EDT)
YES, please continue to comment THEREcacahuate talk 03:57, 13 July 2007 (EDT)

Spanish Wikitravel

Hello, I'm NJM, admin of the Wikitravel:es. I've made some changes in our Main Page, but I haven't been able to do it satisfactory. I need some help because I want to have the two columns placed in paralel, but I don't know very much the wiki language. If someone could gime me a hand, the Spanish comunity will be very grateful. NJM

Time Shares?

So, how does Wikitravel handle time share rentals? I have rented in Las Vegas and Edisto Island a few times. All were pleasant experiences. Far less expensive than owning and much better than a hotel room! Is it a "travel topic", should they be added under "sleep"? 2old 11:39, 13 July 2007 (EDT)

It could be a travel topic. It is not a sleep entry -- see the "Apartment listings" section of Wikitravel:Accommodation listings for the guidelines which currently govern whether or not to include a particular place in sleep. -- Colin 16:17, 14 July 2007 (EDT)
I had read the part about "rentals of less than one week", so I see your point about "Sleep". I am not an advocate of "buying", but renting is a good alternative. For the time being, I will add it to requested articles. Thanks. 2old 15:35, 16 July 2007 (EDT)

Username change request

Is this the place to be renamed on WikiTravel?If so, can someone change my username from Skunkmaster to Skunkmaster IX

Please contact me on my talk page.


Skunkmaster 00:14, 15 July 2007 (EDT)

Usually the requests are made at shared:Requests for username change. But considering that you haven't made any edits yet, just go ahead and create the new account you want, and ignore the old one. – cacahuate talk 00:27, 15 July 2007 (EDT)

Italic romanization?

Why are we italicizing romanizations, eg Shanghai (上海 Shànghǎi)? Please reply on Wikitravel talk:Romanization#Italic romanization?. Thanks --Rogerhc 18:34, 16 July 2007 (EDT)


Split pages (IB is pushing to have our guide and star articles split into subpages by section) means lots more page views and lots more ad revenue when ads are finally implemented. How much more? Do you like 200% more, 500% more? Lots.

The community does not want split pages that break our community architecture into ad cubicles.

The community would understand and tolerate discreet non-damaging text ads that don't break our architecture.

The community also understands bad architecture and greed.

Let's have discreet non-damaging text ads now and drop the $ motivated splitting up of our community's great user designed, user written, Webby winning, one-page-per-destination architecture.

Please discuss at before it is too late to prevent the partitioning of our best articles into ad cubicles. --Rogerhc 20:44, 16 July 2007 (EDT)

Wikitravel:es has reached more than 1000 articles

Wikitravel:es has reached more than 1000 articles, which is a proud for the Spanish Wikitravel Comunity. Due to that fact, we would like to be included in your Main Page as a version with more than 1000 articles. Many Thanks Nanow jesús madrid 15:22, 19 July 2007 (EDT)

Congratulations! Gorilla Jones 15:30, 19 July 2007 (EDT)


I saw a "special page" on this a few days ago. Where did it go? 2old 12:35, 20 July 2007 (EDT)

gastronomic travel: where to start

From my experience, there's almost no information on gastronomic traveling at Wikitravel. What gourmet specialties are in each region? How to find authentic places (or even families) to try it? What are gastronomic regions in each country? What are the subtle differences between specialities in this vs that town/region; between countries?

How much this topic is welcome here? Are there already enthusiasts who are idle for some reasons? Can someone recommend any general books on where to start and how to approach? Should we start with a travel topic, or an expedition, or something else? --DenisYurkin 23:54, 20 July 2007 (EDT)

I make a point of including lots of food info in countries I write about (cf. Singapore, Thailand, Japan, Malawi). The Eat section should at a minimum cover the cuisine and point to areas with distinctive "subcuisines". However, I'm not really sure about how this could be a travel topic -- you can eat good food in any country, yet there's not much in common between a three-Michelin-star restaurant in Paris and the world's best phad thai stand in Bangkok. (Which, for reference, is next to the HSBC building on the south side of Lumpini Park. Open for lunch weekdays only and 29 baht a plate.) Jpatokal 02:41, 21 July 2007 (EDT)
What would we do without you Jani? You crack me up sometimes – cacahuate talk 01:09, 24 July 2007 (EDT)
Does it make sense to create some set of recommendations on what a gastronomically perfect article on a destination should include? Whether as a part of Star requirements (not sure) or as a separate list of requirements which we aim to achieve working on an article on a gastronomic side (which looks more reasonable to me). For example, I feel quite knowledgeable in Russian cuisine, but a blank page syndrome doesn't give me an idea of what specifically I can share with those travelers interested in the subject. --DenisYurkin 14:09, 22 July 2007 (EDT)
> and the world's best phad thai stand in Bangkok
BTW, does the current structure of Wikitravel is good for facts like this? How can wikitraveler find where in the world the best version of (younameit) dish can be found? --DenisYurkin 06:40, 25 July 2007 (EDT)
That's hopelessly subjective information. I think it's the greatest phad thai in the world, but my cousin wasn't quite so impressed by the ambience: it's a concrete shack with only two walls, no air-con and a very open kitchen, facing a major street, and you chow down on your noodles while sitting on little plastic chairs. Jpatokal 22:57, 25 July 2007 (EDT)
I always try to write a good bit on food for an area too. You're probably in good company here. Jordanmills 11:25, 21 July 2007 (EDT)

OK, let me ask a more practical question for a while. What would you recommend to do if I can't find enough info on cuisine and restaurants of a specific country I am heading to? Typically, all I know before my trip is my budget per day and places I will be likely visiting--and I want to get most of my trip in gastronomic sense. I even don't have any specific question to leave on the country's talk page. How would you approach that? --DenisYurkin 14:01, 22 July 2007 (EDT)

I think that info should be in the Eat section for the country. A description of the peculiarities of the food of that country and perhaps a general description of where to find the food. The reader can then drill down into district/city/city district pages for specific recommendations. (That's roughly what I did for Barbados though I cheated by adding a link to my favorite restaurant for Bajan cuisine!)--Wandering 11:53, 24 July 2007 (EDT)
Actually, I meant "how to start understanding local cuisine when there's no info on Wikitravel, and I know nothing on the region's cuisine", not "where to stick what I already have to contribute"-- as I have nothing yet. --DenisYurkin 06:33, 25 July 2007 (EDT)
Uhh... Google? Wikipedia? There are "Cuisine of X" articles for most places in the world there... Jpatokal 22:57, 25 July 2007 (EDT)

Ordering of items

(Probably trivial but it bugs me!) Is there a policy on ordering of items in a list? For example, should cities be listed alphabetically, by size, by perceived importance? Should eat/sleep listings be ordered alphabetically? What about things to see and do?--Wandering 16:51, 23 July 2007 (EDT)

  • Everything should be listed alphabetically. But if there are lots of things in the list, splitting them up into subgroups is encouraged. Jpatokal 21:49, 23 July 2007 (EDT)
This has been discussed briefly at Wikitravel_talk:Region_article_template#Order_of_cities and at Talk:Mediterranean_Europe#Alphabetic_or_geographic_order.3F. For cities lists, put capitals first, then use alphabetical order. Common practice, it seems, is to just use alphabetical order within all other lists (or their subdivisions, as Jani said). --Peter Talk 22:49, 23 July 2007 (EDT)
Thanks. That makes perfect sense. --Wandering 11:24, 24 July 2007 (EDT)

XXXX (city) for kids

I'd like to start the following articles 'New York City for Kids', 'Paris for Kids', and 'London for Kids' (and, of course, many other places for kids). Is there already a template out there for this? The rough idea I have is something like this:

New York City for Kids (would this be geographically under NYC or would it be a reference from within the NYC article)





Getting around (tips on subways, taxis, etc.)

See and Do (a list of very kid-specific things to do and see, each annotated by age).

So, is there already a template for this? Or should I just plunge forward!? --Wandering 16:17, 24 July 2007 (EDT)

I don't see any reason you can't use a standard city template. No reason to use "Hotels" and "Food", etc. instead of the typical "Sleep" or "Eat" sections. Just use the big city article template and leave out certain sections that are not applicable for kids, i.e. Talk, Stay in Contact, whatever. Texugo 19:03, 24 July 2007 (EDT)
I'd do them as itineraries. That template includes all but hotels, I'm sure it would be fine to add a 'Sleep' section listing recommended hotels for the purposes of the activities in the itinerary. It may not be the same as what you're thinking about, but there's a very good Charlotte with children itinerary. Gorilla Jones 19:23, 24 July 2007 (EDT)
Sounds to me like a new and useful class of itinerary. Can we get a consistent naming convention, though? "XXXX with children", "XXXX for kids", or even "XXXX for families", but pick one and use it consistently. I mildly prefer the first because it seems more general. Also, I don't think it needs to be limited to cities. I can see someone doing "France with children" or "Southern California with children". Pashley 21:23, 24 July 2007 (EDT)
Since there is a Charlotte with Children, perhaps that is the best way to go (thanks for the heads up Gorilla Jones). I think a Myanmar with Children is something I'd like to do as well. However, my next question is how is one supposed to find this. I don't see a link from Charlotte to Charlotte with Children. Is there some accepted way of linking related travel topics to an article?--Wandering 21:52, 24 July 2007 (EDT)
It's near the bottom of the Charlotte article. Itineraries usually go at the top of the 'See' section, where they get more exposure. (There's also a page that lists all of our itineraries by region.) I note, though, that Charlotte with children is listed as a travel topic, not an itinerary. Which should it be? I prefer it as an itinerary.
A travel topic may be more suitable. My understanding of an itinerary is that it outlines a sequence that the traveler should (or must) follow. XXXX with Children will be more like a list. --Wandering 10:09, 25 July 2007 (EDT)
In any event, I agree that this would be a useful class of article, "XXXX with children" is a good nomenclature, and am very curious to see what Myanmar with children will look like! Gorilla Jones 22:28, 24 July 2007 (EDT)
One could possible also add a {{related|XXXX with children}} to the main article page. --NJR_ZA 03:10, 25 July 2007 (EDT)
To itinerary or to traveltopic? I say travel topic, just because it's easier to write and lets the traveler decide the order of things. But I have detected some vague hostility from many Wikitravelers towards travel topics that I'd like to understand better. --Peter Talk 03:44, 25 July 2007 (EDT)

I've started a New York City with Children, as yet an orphan. Feedback and organizational suggestions welcome.--Wandering 16:46, 25 July 2007 (EDT)

Looks good so far. I think you could drop 'Get in', unless getting to New York with kids is significantly different than getting there by yourself. (As for 'Drink', I think the official Wikitravel policy on kids and booze is next on the agenda after the lao lao debate.) Gorilla Jones 23:42, 25 July 2007 (EDT)
Links put in Travelling with families. But with only two articles, and despite apparent consensus above, we already have inconsistent names! Charlotte with children and New York City with Children, without/with a capital on "children". I think the former is preferable. Anyone object to moving the New York one? Pashley 09:43, 26 July 2007 (EDT)
None from the uppercase guy. --Wandering 21:08, 26 July 2007 (EDT)

I like it!! Please add Washington D.C. with children to your list of things to do. 2old 13:27, 27 July 2007 (EDT)

Wikitravel:es appears on the news

In case you're able to understand the Spanish language, I guess you'll love to read the piece of news that a very important newspaper in Spain El País has published this moorning. Please, visit the Spanish Portada and clik in to the link to the article. Nanow jesús madrid 06:50, 26 July 2007 (EDT)

Direct link:
Pero para guías viajeras, Wikitravel. Nada mejor que los consejos de quienes han viajado para saber cómo realizar el viaje, qué es lo que hay que ver, cuánto cuesta comer, dormir, entrar en un museo o tomar un café. Los escritores especializados en viajes siempre han sido los encargados de facilitar esa información. Ahora, los wikiviajeros comparten sus conocimientos y experiencias a través de Internet.
Looks really good! Positive tone and no mistakes as far as I can see. Jpatokal 07:18, 26 July 2007 (EDT)
Congratulations! That looks like some of the most high profile publicity for Wikitravel (and certainly for Jesús) that I have seen—and it is overwhelmingly positive! --Peter Talk 13:21, 27 July 2007 (EDT)
Hey, congratulations! Lot's of good news about Es lately! – cacahuate talk 00:45, 28 July 2007 (EDT)

Just to update here: Since these two articles came out last week, we have seen a huge increase of traffic to es:. Over 600 new registered users and a lot of anonymous edits as well. We can hardly keep up with the welcome messages! Texugo 23:48, 29 July 2007 (EDT)

In the torrent of new edits on :es, I saw at least one comment saying that the contributor found out about Wikitravel after hearing about it on the television—has there been even more fantastic press recently in Spain? --Peter Talk 01:27, 30 July 2007 (EDT)
Yes, a local station did a story about it after seeing it in the newspaper. NJM told me he's going put the coverage on YouTube so we can watch it. Texugo 03:06, 30 July 2007 (EDT)

Goals and commercial policy

Could a commercial section be introduced? It seems illogical to exclude resources that many individuals would find invaluable purely, it would seem, on the basis of their commercial status. For example see User:Accommodationdirect many people would find this service really useful but it can't be referenced adhering to policy guidelines. If a commercial section was to be added Wikitravellers could make their own decisions about content they wished to view and I'm sure some would find this helpful.

It's good to know that User:Accommodationdirect is taking a pro-User:Accommodationdirect stance. I have composed a sonnet on the rare, fragile beauty of the internet hotel booking engine, wounded by the external links policy it cannot understand. Gorilla Jones 07:35, 27 July 2007 (EDT)
Ladies & Gentlemen, without further ado... Gorilla Jones, in A minor... – cacahuate talk 00:13, 28 July 2007 (EDT)

Mapping feature (new)

That is a really great addittion to Wikitravel!!! 2old 16:39, 27 July 2007 (EDT)

Wikitravel:How to draw a map... ? 19:46, 3 August 2007 (EDT)
Nope, check this out. --Peter Talk 20:08, 3 August 2007 (EDT)

Using dates in guides to clarify when something has been reviewed/noted/stated.

Couldn't find anything about this but I'm sure it's been asked... Not all areas are covered and necessarily up to date. When traveling to a country that has a history of civil unrest it would be particularly useful to know when the author that is giving the information got it time wise. "Was it last month or last year that the government started really cracking down on bribes?" Is there a preferred/acceptable way to be able to put in dates that things have been confirmed in the articles or is just looking at the article history the only way? Thoughts on this in general too! :) Jordan 17:29, 1 August 2007 (EDT)

Time-sensitive information can and should be tagged with disclaimers like "As of June 2007". Jpatokal 22:17, 1 August 2007 (EDT)
But not "This hotel was reviewed in June 2007." Gorilla Jones 22:38, 1 August 2007 (EDT)
Why not, by the way? --DenisYurkin 07:15, 2 August 2007 (EDT)
I believe that the original reason why not was that date stamps would fill up our lists with ugly non-travel-related information. But I have been thinking, couldn't we include date stamps in the listings templates? We could format the templates so that the date stamp only shows up when you are editing, not when you are just reading the guide. I wouldn't want to make date stamps mandatory, but I think that they would be useful—there is a reason why this keeps coming up. --Peter Talk 12:20, 2 August 2007 (EDT)
A collection of reviews of hotels and restaurants, written separately by individual reviewers, could have date stamps. This isn't that. The date stamps would still clutter the guides and make the signal-to-noise ratio worse. And if we're putting dates on restaurant and hotel reviews, why shouldn't we be doing it for museums and parks? Why shouldn't we be doing it for public transportation and basically every bit of the article for the exact same reason? (And suddenly we're Wikipedia with thousands of those stupid 'fact' tags, except ours are 'date' tags.) Once they're in there, nobody updates them. When I overhauled the Hanoi guide earlier this year, there were several "This information current as of 2005" lines. What better way to show readers that we're not an up-to-date travel guide?
Say I visit a city using Wikitravel's guide. I go to Major Museum X and have a nice time as the guide said I would. Why would I think to log on to Wikitravel and change the date of the listing to indicate that it's still current, when nothing else needs to be updated? Of course I wouldn't. So, after four years, we have a listing for Major Museum X, which has a date that's several years old, and we have New Minor Museum Z, which has a date that's less than a year old because it's not very interesting and nobody bothered to add it until now. As a reader, I am led to believe by the date stamps that I should have more confidence in the listing for New Minor Museum Z than Major Museum X. And in that way I've been misled by my Wikitravel guide. Gorilla Jones 13:46, 2 August 2007 (EDT)
I think we should save it to some kind of "policy FAQ: why we are not changing this or that". --DenisYurkin 16:26, 2 August 2007 (EDT)

Obihiro original author credit

Hi. I started this article yesterday, transferring it from my user page. To my surprise another editor - who put in a pair of parentheses and a section head - was then credited as the originator of the article at the foot of the page ('Based on work by Wikitravel user(s) WindHorse'). I've written to the editor about this - also to Peter who suggested taking it up here. Is it some kind of bug? After all the page history clearly shows who started the page. Any ideas? Thanks. -- Kleinzach 22:07, 1 August 2007 (EDT)

Nope, no bug. You're still credited as the original author. The reason WindHorse's name shows up last was because the last person to edit a page gets attributed at the beginning.. Look at the bottom of this page. Currently, it says: This page was last modified 21:38:28, 2007-08-01 by Marc Heiden. Based on work by Jani Patokallio,..., but as soon as I edit and save the changes I made to this page it will read: This page was last modified 21:38:28, 2007-08-01 by Andrew Haggard. Based on work by Mark Heiden, Jani Patokallio,. -- Sapphire(Talk) • 22:43, 1 August 2007 (EDT)
The phrasing is a little misleading, but it's not a bug. The credits will only list you once, so if you're in the "Last revision by" spot, you can't get in the "Based on work by" spot until you get bumped out of the "Last revision by" spot. I went and edited Obihiro, so it says "Last revised by Marc Heiden. Based on work by (you), Jani Patokallio, and WindHorse." And then, if Manute Bol edits the article, it will say "Last revised by Manute Bol. Based on work by Marc Heiden, (you), Jani Patokallio, and WindHorse." So on and so forth. (Either way, it's much more credit than you'd get for starting a page on Wikipedia.) Gorilla Jones 22:51, 1 August 2007 (EDT)
I also think the phrasing is misleading, which is why I suggested that Kleinzach bring this up in the pub. I presume that it wouldn't be too difficult to change the way this displays, so that the most recent editor is displayed as "last edited by" and in the line of editors credited as "work based on." Is there any support for such a change? And where is this code stored? --Peter Talk 22:57, 1 August 2007 (EDT)
I don't see a problem with the phrasing, but I'll go ahead and make a small change. Peter, the templates are - MediaWiki:Othercontribs and MediaWiki:Lastmodifiedatby. -- Sapphire(Talk) • 23:08, 1 August 2007 (EDT)
Actually, it wasn't the phrasing of either of the two individual templates, it is the combination. Right now it displays:

This page was last edited at 02:56, on 2 August 2007 by Marc Heiden. This page is based on collaborative work by Simon Holledge and Jani Patokallio and Wikitravel user(s) WindHorse.

But what I would like is something like this:

This page was last edited at 02:56, on 2 August 2007 by Marc Heiden. This page is based on collaborative work by Marc Heiden, Simon Holledge, Jani Patokallio, and Wikitravel user(s) WindHorse.

On a side note, to where are those $# bits pointing to? Is that something in the general language-version php file? I'm curious because I might want to tinker a bit for the Russian version. --Peter Talk 23:48, 1 August 2007 (EDT)
Hmm. I don't see a difference in what you say it reads now and what you'd like it to read. I'm not exactly sure what the $# is, but I do know they force the displaying of certain information. As an example, in the template about lastmodifiedatby $3 is the time, $2 is the date, and $1 is the user. I'm not positive if $1 always refers to users, but you can usually figure it out by comparing the template with the end result. -- Sapphire(Talk) • 23:54, 1 August 2007 (EDT)
The difference is what confused Kleinzach. It is clear that since User:A was the last to modify the page, the content must be based at least partially on User:A's work. Therefore the omission of User:A in the "This page is based on" sentence seems like a mistake. It gave me an awkward pause when I first started contributing here and I understand why it seems confusing for new users. --Peter Talk 00:01, 2 August 2007 (EDT)
That reminds me of confusion I have... what determines whether a user is in the "based on work by" category or the "and Wikitravel users" category? – cacahuate talk 03:02, 2 August 2007 (EDT)
Ah, that one I think I can answer: "Wikitravel users" = users who haven't entered anything in the "Real name" field of their preferences. --Peter Talk 03:08, 2 August 2007 (EDT)

Thank you to everybody for considering this issue. This text IMO would be ideal:

This page was last edited at 02:56, on 2 August 2007 by Marc Heiden. This page is based on collaborative work by Marc Heiden, Simon Holledge, Jani Patokallio, and WindHorse. The original contributor was Marc Heiden.

I think that would be clear and unambiguous. At the moment the last contributor has (by implication) the least involvement. -- Kleinzach 06:20, 2 August 2007 (EDT)

I'll object to only that last part, "the original contributor," because in most cases the original contributor did nothing more than create the page and add a template for others to fill in. I don't think that should garner "extra credit" ;) When I want to see who really did the bulk of an article, I just check the history anyway. But I would like to see the first two sentences of your proposal be implemented. Unfortunately, I do not know how to do this myself. --Peter Talk 06:39, 2 August 2007 (EDT)
I'm flattered to become the test case for this discussion, and would like special credit for such at the bottom of this page. ("Modeling by Marc Heiden" will do.)
I agree with Peter about no separate notice for the "original contributor". I don't personally care about getting dual credit, but if that's the outcome, then that's fine. I don't like the new unnecessary modifier "collaborative", though - let's restore the original phrasing of "Based on work by..." Gorilla Jones 08:42, 2 August 2007 (EDT)
If you remove the "collaborative" part, please do so around midnight EDT. Yesterday, the site was offline for 15 - 20 minutes because it takes the cache forever to be purged when you edit a MW file. At least at that time, it shouldn't be such a problem for most users. -- 09:05, 2 August 2007 (EDT)
I agree with Peter also, but mostly wanted my name to appear at the bottom of this page. OldPine 14:24, 2 August 2007 (EDT)

Actually there is a bug. Earlier today I initiated a Talk Page for Sapporo. Instead of the link on the article page turning blue, it has remained red (up to now). Clicking on it brings up the Talk edit page, rather than the Talk page itself. I think this is probably what happened when I started the Obihiro page. Apparently the second contributor somehow completes the creation of the page - though I am just speculating about this. Thanks. -- Kleinzach 11:13, 3 August 2007 (EDT)

That's not quite a bug (I think), it's just an oddity of our caching system. If you purge the cache for the page with the link and then refresh, the link turns blue. --Peter Talk 15:32, 3 August 2007 (EDT)

Wikitravel propaganda en español

Shortly after our publicity in El País some local tv station in Spain aired this one-sidedly positive advertisement for our guides, featuring our Spanish celebrity, Jesús. If you are interested, here is the youtube link. Note: it's in Spanish. --Peter Talk 03:40, 7 August 2007 (EDT)

That's awesome! -- Tim (writeme!) 12:20, 7 August 2007 (EDT)

Removal of URL from Blacklist

Goodevening, I am writing in to ask for the url mentioned below to be removed from your blacklist, I hope this is the correct section to ask. It was added to several florida accommodation sections where the website offers villa and accommodation rentals direct from the owner. It is not an agency and so it was felt that it complied with the wikipedia regulations based on its similarity to other websites that were listed. If this is not the case then please receive our apologies and the site will not be added again. Thank you for your assistance.

Quoting Blacklist: "This URL has shown up in articles for at least a half dozen Florida cities (see Special:Contributions/ and been reverted repeatedly over the past few days. As far as I can tell it doesn't meet the criteria set out in Wikitravel:Accommodation listings#Apartment listings, and the user is not responding to a message on his talk page. If the user ever responds and a resolution is reached then it should be safe to remove this from the blacklist. -- Ryan • (talk) • 18:08, 22 May 2007 (EDT) "

I've removed it for now, but please read Wikitravel:Accommodation listings#Apartment listings before re-adding this link to any articles. Apartment and other rental services must have a physical address - Wikitravel has been spammed over the years with hundreds (if not thousands) of rental agencies looking to make commissions, so the criteria laid out in the linked article are our attempt to draw a line that includes only those services that are of direct use to the majority of travelers. -- Ryan • (talk) • 14:25, 10 August 2007 (EDT)


A vandal has worked on it, from Budget to See. No idea how to revert damage.

Fixed - something odd with the listing template, just had to re-save. Fastestdogever 23:15, 14 August 2007 (EDT)
I keep coming across this. See Seminole (Oklahoma) - everything is there in the listings except for the name. As soon as it gets re-saved the names will be back. Is this just me? -- Fastestdogever 17:57, 19 August 2007 (EDT)
Nope, me too, on my home (Mac) and work (Windows) computers (tho both are Firefox, if that matters). Gorilla Jones 18:49, 19 August 2007 (EDT)
I've seen this, too. It was in another article. I'm using IE7. Clearing the cache seems to fix it. OldPine 18:55, 19 August 2007 (EDT)


Is it just me or has the search function sucked for days? If I enter any text that is not an article name it gives me some lame excuse and tells me to try later. OldPine 18:27, 18 August 2007 (EDT)

Well spotted. Filed as shared:Tech:Search broken on en, as it seems to work fine on all other language versions. Jpatokal 22:51, 18 August 2007 (EDT)

Nav Bar Display

This is probably something with my browser (Internet Explorer 7), but after trying and trying to fix it, I seek help here. Wikitravel now displays without the left side navigation bar. Instead I now have "Jump to: navigation, search" displayed at the top and links at the bottom. It has happened on and off for a week or so. Sometimes it seems to clear by restarting IE. Anyone know how to fix? OldPine 08:04, 20 August 2007 (EDT)

Wow. Just posting this brought back the nav bar! Seriously though. What is happening? OldPine 08:07, 20 August 2007 (EDT)


I have entered Geo|lat|log on several destinations, some work some do not. This one should, does not. What am I doing wrong??? Workerbee 13:55, 22 August 2007 (EDT)

Works fine for me. Maybe you have a caching problem. What exactly do you mean by does not work? Does it just not show the change for you? --NJR_ZA 14:36, 22 August 2007 (EDT)
Wow. Your good. After entering the geo info, saving and then checking the map, it was blank on several destinations, it now appears on all. Thank you for your response and help. Workerbee 09:19, 23 August 2007 (EDT)

August 22 announcement on Shared

The August 22, 2007 announcement on Shared about Maj and Evan's changing role in Wikitravel will likely be of interest to users here who may not have noticed it. Gorilla Jones 03:06, 23 August 2007 (EDT)

Wow. Great call. Thanks. OldPine 07:17, 23 August 2007 (EDT)
Again, for anyone not aware over here, the discussion that grew out of this announcement was particularly fruitful and IMO important—I do recommend that people check it out at shared:Talk:Internet Brands. Moreover, we have set up a new page shared:Roadmap where the Internet Brands team working on Wikitravel will coordinate its work with us on new features. There is yet another interesting discussion going on at shared:Talk:Roadmap. All definitely worth taking a look at. --Peter Talk 04:01, 2 September 2007 (EDT)

Attribution and article translations

DavidSaldanaSage just brought up a good point: according to our copyleft, shouldn't we have to credit original contributors when translating articles between language versions? What is our policy for dealing with this? Do we just indicate somewhere on the article or the talk page that it is a translation and the original version is at X? --Peter Talk 10:23, 29 August 2007 (EDT)

Yes, my solution on de: has been to use de:Vorlage:Attributieren. The only potential problems is someone can remove an author's name or delete the template. -- 10:35, 29 August 2007 (EDT)
Ah, cool. How does that template work exactly? Do you need to enter the original authors one by one each time you use it? Or does it automatically import them? And if so, is it set up to import only from :en? --Peter Talk 10:45, 29 August 2007 (EDT)
Well, there is another way: We could establish a policy that when preparing to translate an article that the article be exported and the imported as a first step. -- Mark 10:42, 29 August 2007 (EDT)
Yes, that probably would be a good way of doing things for complete translations, but I think a lot of partial translation also gets done, that is, added material translated from another language version to an existing article. --Peter Talk 10:48, 29 August 2007 (EDT)
I used to do that until I was told it was bad and could harm the website/server. Plus, you can't import pages with more than a certain number of "versions" (history). If you export the "last version" it doesn't attribute all of the authors, just the last person to have edited the page. IB, I would appreciate it if you could stabilize the server to allow me to import articles. Also, fix the issues with the attribution of the export/import feature. -- Sapphire(Talk) • 10:57, 29 August 2007 (EDT)
I guess you're replying to Andrew? I'm not sure how the template works, but it occurs to me that the exporter idea will have problems because of the fact that usernames are not necessarily the same across language versions. -- Mark 10:53, 29 August 2007 (EDT)
Unfortunately, each author has to be entered individually. Ie. {{Attribution|[[:ru:User:X|Real name]], and |[[:de:Benutzer:Sapphire|Sapphire]].}} Currently, I have 30 value fields that will allow you to enter 30 names. If you need to attribute more than 30 people you can also use the 30th field to write something like this {{Attribution|.....|[[:en:User:X|real name]], [[:en:User:Q|real name]], [[:en:User:T|real name]], and anonymous users of Wikitravel.}}. -- Sapphire(Talk) • 10:57, 29 August 2007 (EDT)
Whew, that could take a lot of time in some cases. Could perhaps a simpler, quicker template do the job by saying "This article is based on a translation of article X", with a link to that article, where the original authors are cited? Or would that not be enough to satisfy the terms of CC-by-SA 1.0? Such a template could link to the version in the history from which it was translated.
Perhaps this sort of quick template could suffice in the meantime, but I feel a feature request for IB brewing here. --Peter Talk 11:24, 29 August 2007 (EDT)
I might have a solution, but I'm not sure if it'd be legally kosher. Check User:Sapphire/Template:AttributionAlt in a few minutes. -- Sapphire(Talk) • 11:30, 29 August 2007 (EDT)
Done. The new template says 'We took content from this article, which is based on work by this list of authors.' I'm not sure if pointing to a list of authors is sufficient enough, or not. -- Sapphire(Talk) • 11:42, 29 August 2007 (EDT)
Nice job! That looks like good enough for the time being. I'll make translations of that into Russian and Spanish. But for a more permanent solution, perhaps we should ask IB on shared for a way to automatically get the names from the original language version into the translated page credit box. --Peter Talk 11:44, 29 August 2007 (EDT)
Sweet. I'd love to see more translating between language versions - I've always meant to raid the Japanese Wikitravel for eat/drink/buy entries for Japan articles. Gorilla Jones
Forgive my legal retardation, but if it's in another language, are we positive that it has to be attributed at all? If I can take a paragraph from a copyrighted website, paraphrase it and jumble it up a little and then use it here without attribution, what's the difference if it's being translated into another language entirely? – cacahuate talk 03:28, 1 September 2007 (EDT)
Yep. The Creative Commons website actually lists translations as one of their two examples of derivative works requiring attribution. The big difference is that the structure and idea behind the structure of the work is the same. For example, Wikitravel:Копилефт is certainly not a word-for-word translation of Wikitravel:Copyleft, but the structure of the article clearly comes from the original (there are also some sections pretty close to the original text). And jumbling up a paraphrasing of an incompatible source actually is copyright infringement. You need to totally rewrite, using your own words and organization, but using the source as just a reminder of the facts. --Peter Talk 03:44, 1 September 2007 (EDT)
Where on the page have you been putting the attribution template? At the very bottom? On the talk page? Somewhere else? Gorilla Jones 10:00, 1 September 2007 (EDT)
I put it at the bottom of the page so it can be next to the attribution in the footer. -- Sapphire(Talk) • 11:16, 1 September 2007 (EDT)

Main Page & Talk:Main Page both locked

Is this intentional/permanent?

If so, the main page blurb needs updating:

  • First, understand: We want you to edit this page. Like nearly every other page on this site, the Main Page is open for anyone to edit.

Also, might be a good idea to add an explanation to the top of Talk:Main Page. ~ 04:49, 30 August 2007 (EDT)

I've unlocked editing privileges for both pages, as neither protections were justified on Wikitravel:Protected pages per Wikitravel:Protected page policy. We should be more systematic about protections, IMO. --Peter Talk 05:05, 30 August 2007 (EDT)
Thanks, appreciated. How about Wikitravel:Local spam blacklist? ~ 05:11, 30 August 2007 (EDT)
The local spam blacklist is a bit more important security wise, since it is a principal tool on this language version for keeping our guides spam-free. We have had one excellent anon contributor in the past (possibly you?), but the blacklist does necessitate a slightly higher ease of communication/coordination, which anonymous use does not facilitate. I'm not necessarily opposed to a semi-protection of the Main Page either, but I'd prefer we do that systematically, rather than just sliding into it. --Peter Talk 05:18, 30 August 2007 (EDT)
Thanks for your reply. I've just posted a comment at Wikitravel talk:Local spam blacklist#Semi-protect?, which is where I should have asked my original question, apologies for the duplication. ~ 05:26, 30 August 2007 (EDT)

Links to previous category

Hoe can I do the upper links to previous categories. I mean like if I make the page china/hong kong I would get those upper links, but I saw here that yuo do it evan without it. (sorry for my poor English I from another language version). Thanks.

Which version? You need to copy Template:IsPartOf. Jpatokal 06:55, 5 September 2007 (EDT)

What is Mark as Patrolled

I was looking at some diffs today, and noticed a link which read Mark as patrolled. Of course, I clicked it (well, I had to, didn't I? It was there). Now I don't know what, if anything, I've done. What does this mean? Anyone got any idea? --The.Q 12:02, 5 September 2007 (EDT)

Wikitravel:Recent changes patrol Jpatokal 12:17, 5 September 2007 (EDT)

Hebrew Version

Hi. I'm from the Hebrw version and we got probelm with the Contents in the left side. I would like to knoe how can I change it to in the left side. Another question. How can I edit the special page of uploading file? Thanks a lot. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talkcontribs)

In general, the left side contents (i.e., sidebar) can be edited at he:MediaWiki:Sidebar. To edit the individual items in the sidebar, you will need to edit the individual MediaWiki files (e.g., he:MediaWiki:Mainpage. The MediaWiki file for the uploads page is at he:MediaWiki:Uploadtext.
If you are looking for a specific piece of text to change, located in a MediaWiki file, try searching through he:Special:Allmessages. You will need to be an administrator or bureaucrat in order to create and edit MediaWiki files. Hope this helps! --Peter Talk 01:09, 6 September 2007 (EDT)
Thanks for the help. But I meant to the Contents in the regular pages, not the media pages. And you did help with the Uploading file page. Thanks. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talkcontribs)
Sorry for the misunderstanding. I believe that the Table of Contents is not something that end-users like us can edit. Perhaps you should try creating a technical request on shared regarding your specific problem. --Peter Talk 13:08, 6 September 2007 (EDT)
Thanks a lot. You realy helped me.

"Broken" shared:/special: redirects

see also shared:Tech:"Broken" shared:/special: redirects

Special:BrokenRedirects is listing some (currently 7) shared:/special: redirects - anybody know how to fix this? ~ 06:08, 8 September 2007 (EDT)

From Northern Greenland to the Sahara

One of those moments that make even crusty old Wikitravellers like me go "whoah": in the space of 3 min, we just had excellent edits to Ilulissat, Northern Greenland and Timbuktu, Mali. Now that's what I call geographic coverage! Jpatokal 13:19, 8 September 2007 (EDT)

Natural hazards

Shouldn't we have travel topics on earhquakes, volcanoes, etc. instead of putting info about them in the articles? Kieltenketijä 20:11, 9 September 2007 (EDT)

  • Volcanoes have one, although it's mostly sightseeing info. Earthquakes don't, but realistically there is little to nothing a traveller can do to prepare for one. Jpatokal 23:11, 9 September 2007 (EDT)
  • I'd love to see a world map summarising major hazards — typhoons and hurricanes in some areas, tornados in others, volcanic activity, earthquake risk, ... Maybe with some text or a table giving seasonal info. Volcanoes and quakes are not seasonal, but the various winds, flash floods, etc. are. Pashley 02:33, 10 September 2007 (EDT)
    • I'd like a page like what Pashley said. It should also also include basic safety rules. Kieltenketijä 17:24, 15 September 2007 (EDT)

Can somebody refer to my question

in Wikitravel Shared. I haven't been answering for 5 days! Thanks

Thanks Jpatokal. And I wrote you an answer. So if you please answer me again.
And again nobody is answering me. What's gping on there?
Guys, what's happening with; can someone please answer that question? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talkcontribs)
Hi Orel zion, I answered on shared. Please use OpenIDLogin and sign your comment. -- Tatata 02:08, 2 October 2007 (EDT)

Language Links: when and when not?

Hi, I'm relatively new here and already have a question to which I could not find an answer in the FAQ and the Pub. Is there a rule about when to put a language link and when not? I stumbled upon a really awfully written article in another language (moreover, it contained hardly any info - clearly a stub, but not tagged as such), and thought it better not to link to it in the article I was editing, but keep an eye on it in case someone there improves it. Is that correct, or should we always link to other language versions of an article even if what they have there is rubbish? My knowledge of the language in question is about level 2 or even 3 on the Babel scale, so I recognized what I saw. -Dezwitser 12:06, 18 September 2007 (EDT)

The short answer is that languages are always linked to as long as they have a corresponding article. Sure, some articles are crappy today, but they might not be crappy tomorrow... Jpatokal 12:26, 18 September 2007 (EDT)

Printed guides

Don't you guys feel that wikitravel lays too much emphasis on printed guides? The main problem with this is that videos and audio clips can't be added. I'm sure the majority of people using this site while travelling access it on their mobiles, PDAs or laptops. I have often used wikitravel guides while travelling. I mostly use my iPAQ or my MacBook, and have never felt the need for printing the guides. Upamanyuwikitravel( Talk )( Travel ) • 07:12, 21 September 2007 (EDT)

You know, I've come to despise lugging a laptop around a country, or in one case a continent. It's a real pain and I'm actually surprised my old laptop wasn't stolen because I occasionally left it in hotel lobbies and restaurants. I do like printing off my travel guide because it's lighter. Although, now that I have a backpack for my MacBook rather than one of those carrying cases (ugh... I hate those) it's not as bad.
I assume you missed this, but now Evan, Maj, and Jani have Wikitravel:Wikitravel Press. -- Sapphire(Talk) • 07:57, 21 September 2007 (EDT)
As far as the Press is concerned, I'd be OK with audio and maybe even video, as long as they're clearly tagged as "unprintable" content (eg. {{audio|Clip.ogg}}), and I've previously supported adding audio clips to phrasebooks. See Wikitravel talk:Image policy. Jpatokal 23:37, 21 September 2007 (EDT)
iPAQ is a PDA manufactured by Compaq. It's kinda quite old now, it's been around in the market for half a decade or so. By the way, even I detest laptops, but PDAs are a good solution. And here in India most people access internet on their mobiles (cell phones) while on the move. Upamanyuwikitravel( Talk )( Travel ) •


So the top of this page says I can post when I'm annoyed. Well, I'm annoyed. Can someone tell me how to set up a proxy that will give me an American IP address? Thanks. -- Sapphire(Talk) • 18:51, 23 September 2007 (EDT)

You can google for public proxy or if you want to spend some money get yourself a virtual private server (google a bit, pricing starts at around US$5/month) and set up a proxy just for you. --NJR_ZA 05:21, 27 September 2007 (EDT)

Learning more?

I'm a bit surprised by this section of the phrasebook article template—it looks like an invitation to add a whole bunch of worthless external links. Is this something we mean to have? Or could I take the axe to it? --Peter Talk 02:05, 4 October 2007 (EDT)

    • Here's a vote for deletion of that section. ~ 04:43, 24 October 2007 (EDT)

Precedent setting policy debate taking place on shared!

An image has been put up for deletion on shared. The uploader had got it from flickr. At the time of uploading, he had mentioned that it was cc-by-sa licensed by the flickr user. He had credited the flickr user and provided a link back to the original photo. Now, the link does not go to the image, rather, it says that the flickr user has chosen to make the image private. The user posting it for deletion says that since we can't verify, we should delete. The uploader insists that at the time of upload the image was indeed licensed under cc-by-sa and as the cc-by-sa license is not revocable, we shouldn't delete. What view should Wikitravel take?

The uploader was me. Should that make a difference to the question? Please make your views heard at shared:Votes_for_deletion#Image:ZanskarIndus.jpg. This precedent will apply to all future decisions. — Ravikiran 01:59, 10 October 2007 (EDT)

Non-compliant redistributions

I have listed a number of sites at Wikitravel talk:Non-compliant redistribution. Do we have a standard letter/email that we send them to inform them of the violation and request them to become compliant? --NJR_ZA 03:34, 13 October 2007 (EDT)

Formatting Question

I introduced double columns in a section of an article where it seemed appropriate. However, the columns are sometimes "equal widths" and sometimes "differing widths". Does anyone know why this happens? The differing widths change, depending on the text by each bullet point. The article is "Decatur (Georgia)", but it appears to be a wiki formatting issue that I do not fully understand. Thanks for any help. --Baxterguy 08:05, 16 October 2007 (EDT)

It's a tables, so you will to specify the column width if you want to ensure that they are equal. I am however not sure it is a good idea to use two columns in the article. It's looks OK on my 1600x1200 and 1280x1024 display, but I suspect it will start becoming a mess at 1024x768 and be totally useless on any kind of portable device, especially if there are images in the same section. In addition to that it also breaks consistancy with the rest of the articles in the guide. --NJR_ZA 00:41, 17 October 2007 (EDT)

Mountain ranges guidelines

This edit looked like an indication to me, however I could not find any direction concerning mountain ranges on Wikitravel:What is an article?. A lot was said here some time ago, but it doesn't look conclusive to me. My initial supposition is that mountain ranges can either be continental sections or regions depending on size. But may be it would be desirable to formulate a straightforward guideline towards them? LukeWestwalker 16:56, 16 October 2007 (EDT)

Hmm, the first edit is mine, and you've given me second thoughts about it. My instinct is to delink anything that appears to be no more than a geographical feature. That's perhaps my bad and I think I picked that up from the "Bodies of water" exclusion in Wikitravel:What is an article?. There are indeed valid regions with the same name as mountain ranges, and perhaps reasons to have articles about mountain ranges per se (not just as a region article), but I wonder if this is a slippery slope. -- OldPine 18:14, 16 October 2007 (EDT)
I think that the tendency has been to de-link mountain ranges that don't have existing articles so that we don't encourage the creation of lots of articles that are outside of the existing regional hierarchies, and also so that we don't give the impression that every geological feature is article-worthy (Wikitravel:What is an article?). However, when people have created articles for regions named after a mountain range that's generally been seen as perfectly OK - see Rocky Mountains (Canada), Alps and Ozarks for a handful of examples. In this case OldPine's edit looks fine, although it probably wouldn't be out of line to create a region article for the mountain range and then restore the link, if that's something someone wants to do. -- Ryan • (talk) • 01:04, 17 October 2007 (EDT)
Thanks for your answers! To summarize them, I'd like to draw following conclusions (correct if neccessary):
  • OldPine - in favour of m-ranges as regions, not travel topics on mountains
  • Ryan • (talk) - in favour of m-ranges as regions
Shouldn't it be clearly formulated as a guideline somewhere?(see Appalachia below) If yes, where? LukeWestwalker 15:00, 17 October 2007 (EDT)
Rather than being regions in them self, mountain ranges generally tend to separate regions. They also tend to be very large structures that cover a lot of diverse ground and it seems a better idea to covers specific regions in the range in other region articles, rather than try to have an region for the whole mountain range. A good example of where this went horribly wrong is the Drakensberg. The original submitter created the article with the main focus on the Northern and Central Drakensburg, but that does poses a number of problems: 1)since the range is located in multiple countries it is hard to find a place in the hierarchy for that article to fit in, 2) the range covers a huge area and it will be impossible to have complete See/Do listings for the whole range in that one article. Dealing with it in pieces in the existing hierarchy seems to work a lot better, for example Southern_Africa#Landscape and Ukhahlamba Drakensberg and Ukhahlamba Drakensberg Park. Having said that, I'm sure there will be the odd exception where it will make sense to have a mountain article. --NJR_ZA 01:12, 17 October 2007 (EDT)
May be I am missing your point, but I think Drakensberg is not a good ex in this discussion (IMO it's encyclopaedic and should be vfd'd). I just would like to make allowed region templated articles entitled with some m't'n name - as for ex. Ukhahlamba Drakensberg is (nb. See or Do may be described more or less generally - according to the region area - ex Alps#Do, which is general but inspiring). Should any of two points you've made above be considered as a limitation rule towards such articles (for I have not got you clearly...)? LukeWestwalker 15:00, 17 October 2007 (EDT)
The solution to the Drakensberg problem may be creation of a disambiguation page. Something similar was done for the Rocky Mountains, with descendant nodes as cited above. Back on the original issue, I personally would like to see mountain ranges used where appropriate as destinations, not just regions. Many ranges contain places to eat, sleep, etc., that are unaffiliated with a town -- in fact, that's usually the point of those eat/sleep places, to be able to "get away from it all" and have nothing resembling a town nearby. Not only is it technically inaccurate to try to fit such places into an urban-oriented hierarchy; it does the traveler a disservice by failing to communicate what the real essence of the place is. "Most" ranges probably are adequately presented as regions with discrete destination articles under them, but if the range really is a destination in its own right, I don't see a compelling reason not to treat it as one. -- Bill-on-the-Hill 15:17, 17 October 2007 (EDT)
The point is that regions are the top priority here, not mountain ranges. If we take the USA for example, there are several mountain ranges in it. But in the case of Appalacia, it wouldn't make sense to have it as a region since it would be duplicating areas that are already covered in the South and Mid-Atlantic region articles. If a mountain range happens to make a very good region article for a particular area, then there's no problem with calling it by that name. But just because a mountain range exists doesn't mean it needs to have an article written about it. Just like we don't have an article about the Atlantic Ocean. Unless they're good region articles, or you want to write up a nice itinerary for the range, it probably doesn't need to be created. – cacahuate talk 15:22, 17 October 2007 (EDT)
p.s., Himalayas is an example of a budding itinerary – cacahuate talk 15:26, 17 October 2007 (EDT)
I agree as regards Appalachia; it's too big to be a destination, too diverse to be a region, and too amorphous to be an itinerary. (There ought to be some way to accommodate cases like this, but that's a separate issue -- maybe revisit our long-standing allergy to categories?) However, a blanket no-more-ranges declaration risks throwing out the baby with the bath water. The term "mountain range" may describe something continent-spanning like the Appalachians, Rockies, Andes, etc., but it is also used (more often, in fact) for hunks of real estate that are much more local in scope. Get into Basin and Range country in Nevada, for example, and the individual range becomes a perfectly natural "quantum" for defining a destination. There should be no reason not to treat such places as destinations if it makes sense to do so. And if an article based on a range starts to look like it's covering too much ground, well, that's what discussion pages are for... -- Bill-on-the-Hill 15:53, 17 October 2007 (EDT)

External Links

I'm trying to get my head around the do's and don'ts of external links. Is this an acceptable use of an external link? On the one hand it seems to simply be a link to a guide website, put in by a user who has pretty much only added links to that and its sister site to various articles, on the other hand it could be legitimate in directing readers to a source about the Mayan culture.

I've found myself cutting quite a few external links and wanted to get some advice on whether I'm being over-zealous. Andyfarrell 10:59, 17 October 2007 (EDT)

No that's not an acceptable extlink. Thanks for doing this sort of patrolling... --Jonboy 11:24, 17 October 2007 (EDT)


Since I live in Ohio, on the fringe of Appalachia, and have been considering starting a page on Appalachia as a region. I thought it best to bring it up here rather than face a VFD for redundancy. Appalachia is a unique region of the United States and offers a lot to a prospective visitor. I have traveled through Appalachia more time that I can count, but really know very little of it, but would be willing to research it and contribute to it. It is my hope that others will help fill in the blanks and provide a map.. Places like Asheville offer much to a visitor, included could be things unique to the area like the handling of poisionous snakes at religious services being legal in West Virginia, moonshine, Blue Ridge Mountains, Appalachian Hiking Trail and so on.. We could even include the sound track for Dueling Banjo's. (just kidding). Your comments will be appreciated. 2old 12:15, 17 October 2007 (EDT)

I don't know the area, so I can't say whether it makes sense as a region or not... is it really big? does it cross multiple states? Are the areas that it encompasses already covered pretty well by smaller regions? Another idea, if it doesn't make the best sense as a region, would be to create an itinerary of it instead – cacahuate talk 13:31, 17 October 2007 (EDT)
I appreciate your response. From Wikipedia Appalachia is a term used to describe a region in the eastern United States that stretches from southern New York state to northern Alabama, Mississippi, and Georgia. Although parts of the Appalachian Mountains extend through Maine into Canada, New England is usually excluded from the definition of Appalachia. Yep, kinda big area. It is pretty much the length and width of the Appalachian Mountains. Due to the terrain, it is an area that was difficult to traverse in early history and is not all that much better now. I have wandered deep into a lot of areas, (think-mountains,trees, mountains, trees). It is really different from the rest on the US in many ways once you get into the interior. My last trip was with a buddy to pick up a bag of poisionus snakes (no kidding). I think it is way to big for an itinerary. 2old 14:08, 17 October 2007 (EDT)
Yeah, sounds way too big for a region too  :( – cacahuate talk 14:16, 17 October 2007 (EDT)
See map. Image:Appalachia.png 2old 14:29, 17 October 2007 (EDT)
That looks really very big. You seem to want to create a mountain range article and having seen how quickly that can become a bad thing, I would certainly advice against it. See the comments above at Mountain ranges guidelines --NJR_ZA 14:50, 17 October 2007 (EDT)
Interesting idea, Mike. I agree that the area is too big and I think that may lead to generalities or spotty coverage. I would like to see the idea filter in somewhere though. Maybe as a part of South (United States of America) or W. Virginia or whatever state(s) best represents it--or even in county or other sub-regions. The name evokes an image of "poor isolated mountain areas", rather than (more deservedly) a culture. -- OldPine 15:24, 17 October 2007 (EDT)
I had not thought of it as a mountain range article, but that is a good point. Due to the unique location of this area and the absolute cultural differences in this area compared to the rest of the country, I felt an article would be in order. It really is not about the area as much as the different cultures in this area. But, I will put it on hold until it is clear that an article is appropriate. Thank you for your direction. 2old 15:28, 17 October 2007 (EDT)
Also being from Ohio, I'm kind of interested in the idea. Although, I have to say I'm actually more interested in an itinerary, something like - Touring Appalachia. Think you could develop something like that? -- Sapphire(Talk) • 16:15, 17 October 2007 (EDT)
I'd say it makes sense to have an article on this. Not sure how to classify it,though. It may not fit our definition of "region" — in particular the hierarchicality thereof — but is in fact fairly obviously a region, so I'd say make it a region article within the USA. If that breaks the hierarchy, OK. There are lots of other cases where the a straightforward hierarchical model does not fit the real world. Mediterranean Europe not including France leaps to mind, or the debate over whether Turkey belongs in Middle East as well as Europe.
An itinerary could also work, in addition to or perhaps instead of a region article, and it might even be shoehorned into a travel topic, Appalachian culture or some such, but I'd prefer a region. Pashley 08:08, 18 October 2007 (EDT)
Based on the comments, there seems to be some interest in an article of some sort on this, and I appreciate all of your comments. There are other areas that face simlar ethnic and cultural differences. Examples may be Louisiana and Quebec to name a few. In the case of Quebec, which is my least favorite Wikitravel article, it is biased towards the Francophone culture. It may be appropriate to have two articles 1. Quebec/Francophone 2.Quebec/English (English as Amish refer to non-Amish - Example Only). In that case, as in States within the Appalchian Region, the articles would have substantial differences, even though they are geographically the same. In the late 1800's and early 1900's Appalachia was a rugged, rural place. Today, if someone from outside of the country asked me to suggest three places in the USA to visit Appalchia would be on the list. While there are still rugged, remote areas, the people have adapted in various ways that include artist colonies and numerous cottage industries that could only be found outside of the cities covered in the Wikitravel articles. It would also be interesting to visit some of these areas with you linguists and see what your evalution of people who speak in tounges is. But this is getting long and I am sure you have the idea. I thought this info may be important to the discussion. Thanks again. 2old 11:40, 18 October 2007 (EDT)
Since Appalachian Trail is an existing itinerary, I think I will try to improve on it a little and develope more resources for the area there. Then if we decide a regional article is appropriate we can go from there. 2old 12:08, 1 November 2007 (EDT)

usablecity template v guidecity template

I've just updated the Sligo article, and now I've hit a minor problem. How do I decide if it's a {{usablecity}} or {{guidecity}} article? As I've made most of the changes to the page recently, I think it's a guide, but because I'm Irish (we don't like blowing our own trumpets!), I'm not confident enough to call it a guide. How do I know which I should call it? --The.Q 11:06, 19 October 2007 (EDT)

Thanks for asking, and may your tribe increase -- this kind of introspection and consensus-building is a good thing. I believe that's a Guide-level article and have made the indicated change, but to answer your question directly, check Wikitravel:Article status for general guidance as to when Guide or Usable are appropriate, and Wikitravel:City guide status for info specific to City articles. (BTW, I have a few suggestions for further improvements to that article that I'll leave on your talk page, although you've done a tremendous job with it.) -- Bill-on-the-Hill 11:55, 19 October 2007 (EDT)

region-wide guidelines

Do we have any previous cases of defining and following some guidelines at a country level, not globally for whole Wikitravel? I've just attempted with something like that for Eat sections in Spain--and would appreciate both references to similar experiences, and comments on my own initiative: Talk:Spain#guidelines on Eat sections of spanish cities. The idea was partially influenced by discussion in Wikitravel talk:Restaurant listings#price ranges. --DenisYurkin 17:10, 21 October 2007 (EDT)

BUMP :-) --DenisYurkin 17:01, 6 November 2007 (EST)

Attraction Template

Shouldn't there be one? For example, the British Museum, the Louvre, the Met Museum, and the recently added Villa d'Este and Villa Adriana are all worthy of a long articles in their own right but there is no template for that sort of thing. Perhaps something along the lines of:

The British Museum is a museum in London blah blah

Understand some background info

History if there is one

Getting there

Ticketing (packages, city discounts, tickets, etc.)

See Egyptian section, American section, Amravati, Elgin

Do gallery talks, etc.

Eat info about cafes

Buy the shop

Nearby attractions Russell Square, University of London, .....

Just a thought (perhaps there already is one!).--Wandering 13:01, 30 October 2007 (EDT)

I do not believe there is a need for such a template. I have been to the Louvre on two occasions and never found that the place required a separate article on Wikitravel. Sure, it's big, popular, and interesting, but you cannot sleep there and the museums do enough to give visitors instructions, details, maps, and tours to fill in the visitors about the stuff you mention. -- Sapphire(Talk) • 13:15, 30 October 2007 (EDT)
Where do those two new articles - Villa d'Este and Villa Adriana - fit in respect of the Wikitravel:What is an article? guidelines? ~ 13:25, 30 October 2007 (EDT)
I'm not so sure. It would be nice to know before getting to the Metropolitan Museum (or the Louvre) what all I can do there, the kinds of things I can buy (at the Metshop as well as on the street outside), and what I can get to eat at the rooftop cafe versus at the bar or the cafe or the restaurant. Of course all this info is on their website as well but that's not the same thing as a guidebook opinion. And there are tons of place in the third world where nothing is available (the National Museum in Delhi the Shwedagon Pagoda in Yangon but there is lots to see, buy, and, of course, it would be nice to know what one's eating choices are. Thing is that if we pack too much info about a single attraction in the See section of a city, the attraction list becomes a tad imbalanced. And, we still have the Villa d'Este and Villa Adriana problem. --Wandering 13:36, 30 October 2007 (EDT)
If there's no accommodation at Villa d'Este and/or Villa Adriana then those pages should be redirects. ~ 13:41, 30 October 2007 (EDT)
Sorry if I've got it wrong - I'm quite new here and by all means change it, if necessary. Of course there are places to stay near both villas - but I have only stayed at one that I didn't particularly want to recommend. I thought these headings were an invitation to others with knowledge to fill in. I'd be grateful for an explanation and I'll try to avoid further offence as I've done with other matters.Davidx 10:19, 1 November 2007 (EDT)
As per Wikitravel:What is an article?, attractions don't generally get their own articles, and if you really think about it, rarely need them anyway. As a travel guide we're just trying to give a general idea of what a site is about, why it's popular, and then the contact details, hours etc... if someone wants to know they entire detailed history of Villa Adriana they should head to Wikipedia or by a book on the subject. I'm redirecting both of those articles to Tivoli now, where they should be in the first place :) – cacahuate talk 14:36, 30 October 2007 (EDT)
I agree with Cacahuate. I think "long form" attraction listings generally cover the important attractions in sufficient detail. -- OldPine 17:25, 30 October 2007 (EDT)
Well, I'll just disagree and leave it at that. I don't think it a great idea to have an incomplete guide, nor do I like the idea (for reasons of symmetry, of excessive imbalance in the "See" section. --Wandering 20:02, 30 October 2007 (EDT)
Define complete though... we aren't being any less complete than any of the printed guidebooks... LP wouldn't devote 10 pages to the Taj Mahal, they'd write a paragraph or few and give the hours, etc. We do have a couple separate articles for attractions like Disneyland because it's practically a mini city with several eating and sleeping alternatives and "districts". If a site requires a little more than usual you can make a sub-section of See such as San Francisco#Golden Gate Bridge. I see it the same way as a city article... we have an Understand section which we can write a paragraph or two to describe the city, and even make some sub-headings for larger places... and if they care to dig a lot deeper than that, do as they've always done... by a book specifically about that location. As a travel guide we're interested mostly in the practical details of traveling to a place... not being the end all be all source of endless info on history, etc... I hope I'm helping you understand and not just giving you more things to disagree with ;) – cacahuate talk 20:49, 30 October 2007 (EDT)
Well, I'm not sure if LP is a good standard to look up to (though I never leave home without it!), but, even LP often has pull out kind of pages for major attractions (the Shwedagon Pagoda, the Valley of the Kings). Michelin Green Guides, on the other hand, have detailed sections for attractions. For example, the Paris one (mine is over 10 years old) has 36 pages on the Louvre divided into "The Museum", "Practicalities", "What to see and where" (highlights and their location), and then detailed guides for each wing and section. It's no big deal, but, if I had paid my 30euros and planned to spend the entire day in the Louvre, a handy portable section telling me practical things like where to dump my bag, which entrances are better, what to eat and where, where the hightlights are, and what I can buy there (French Ad posters, for example!) that I can pretty much only buy there would all be a great resource. --Wandering 11:47, 1 November 2007 (EDT)
I oppose the use of an attraction template, but only because I think that the few major attractions around that really warrant full, separate articles are often too different from each other for a boilerplate template to be very useful (in this, they are similar to travel topics).
But there is a part of our "you must be able to sleep there policy" that I fundamentally disagree with (although that policy sure is useful for weeding out non-articles). The Hermitage Museum in Saint Petersburg, for example, surely warrants an article of its own, despite the fact that it won't let tourists sleep over. The LP guide to the city certainly devotes a "Wikitravel-article-length" piece to the museum, which is a virtually endless collection housed in a palace accommodating to virtually endless interesting anecdotes, and which charges visitors for basic information like museum maps and information about the collections in foreign languages. And the fact that I managed to spend 70-80 hours of my life exploring the place makes it seem to me worthy of its own article.
The Roman Forum also comes to mind—our current 5-sentence description is almost a parody of the disadvantages to our "must be able to sleep there" policy. Any self-respecting guide to Rome should provide a blown-up map of the forum accompanied by detailed information about each of the sites (Palatine Hill should have the same treatment).
But then again, I suppose we can always make articles for places like this, though, by riding the wet 'n' wild slippery slope that is the travel topic. So I think I side with Wandering on this one, but I recommend to just keep abusing travel topics to get around the restriction ;) I'd be more than happy to see the Wandering guide to the Met. --Peter Talk 04:02, 31 October 2007 (EDT)
I think my words may not actually convey what I think. I believe we can have articles for attractions, but I do not support an article for every big museum (Like the Louvre) and that a case must be made why such attraction deserves its own article. I might VFD articles simply for purpose of ensuring that that we don't get too far down the slippery slope. -- Sapphire(Talk) • 05:46, 31 October 2007 (EDT)
I cannot object to the idea of a separate article for something like the British Museum. You may not be able to sleep there, but you can certainly spend more than one day exploring it. Is that a possible criterion that helps us avoid the slope? However, I'm not sure how such an article could be classified. It is not a travel topic the way pickpockets or altitude sickness is, something that applies in many destinations. Nor is it a destination in our usual sense (Can you sleep there? (TM)) or any other sense I want to use. I think it comes closer to an itinerary like Literary London than anything else. Pashley 06:41, 31 October 2007 (EDT)
The text I'd add to Wikitravel:What is an article?, as an exception at the end of the "What DOES NOT get its own article?" section, would be:
There can also be exceptions for really major attractions like the British Museum. If both the attraction is large enough one might spend several days exploring it and we have many paragraphs of text about it, then consider moving it to its own article. That article should be formatted using the itinerary template. The city or region article should have a brief description of the attraction with a link to the itinerary. Pashley 07:08, 31 October 2007 (EDT)
Support. --DenisYurkin 17:29, 31 October 2007 (EDT)

Disabled travellers

I think that it would be helpful to have an extra section in the templates for city, large city, regions etc where tips could be given on attractions which make/don't make provisions for the disabled. e.g. Some gardens have areas with tactile or scented plants, particularly suited to the visually impaired. Knowledge of whether or not there is a lift in buildings can be vital for those with limited mobility. I am pretty new here and would have no idea how to go about implementing this, even if others agree with the basic idea.Davidx 10:06, 1 November 2007 (EDT)

Not support That is a very good idea. Tips for disabled travelers, especially in the less traveled cities of the world, would be very useful.--Wandering 11:36, 1 November 2007 (EDT).
User:Sapphire is the voice of reason here. I wonder whether its worth suggesting that information for disabled travelers be included in the appropriate listing (and Cope) in the FAQ in Wikitravel:Article templates? It's not something I think about, for example.--Wandering 12:57, 1 November 2007 (EDT)
Support Great idea, but it may be better that those who are impaired, contribute the information, as they are more aware of needs and are quicker to notice it than those not impaired. Could this be started as a Travel Topic? Suggestions could be made for a new template on this issue to be included on each destination as suggested. I am always wondering, what were they thinking when they put all of those steps into public buildings and churches when they designed them. 2old 12:00, 1 November 2007 (EDT)
Sorry, but it's a bad idea, as proposed. The information can and should be included in our guides, but not in a separate section. If a traveler needs this type of information then that information should be mentioned in the description of the attraction, restaurant, or whatever. What's the point of saying 'Hotel X is a beautiful and comfortable hotel' in the Sleep section, then making the reader check some other section just to find out Hotel X doesn't have any accommodating features for handicapped travelers? Last point, but any other relevant info should be included in "Cope". -- Sapphire(Talk) • 12:11, 1 November 2007 (EDT)
We do have Tips for blind and visually impaired travellers and could have more travel topics along those lines. However, I mostly agree with Sapphire about info in destination guides. In general, it should go in the attraction info. Mention wheelchair access, or lack of it, in the description of a hotel or restaurant, not a separate section of a city or district article.
When there's more general overview info, then that can go in a country or region guide. "Elbonia" has stairs everywhere due to the mountainous terrain, and no wheelchair ramps or elevators" or "In Vooglia, wheelchair access is legally required at all restaurants." This lets us omit it in many attraction listings, just mentioning the exceptions. Pashley 05:02, 2 November 2007 (EDT)

Please, please, please

It seems like nobody is checking the technical requests, so can someone chek out this request here, this is so important for the Hebrew version. אוראל 04:13, 2 November 2007 (EDT)

Important RFC

I just wanted to make sure that people take note of the latest rfc added to Wikitravel:Request for comments. It is important, IMHO, that we have active input from a wide selection of wikitravelers regarding ad placement and there is a proposal being discussed to have right-aligned ads in a new sidebar.

Furthermore, I'm making this announcement because I'm not convinced that everyone is watching the rfc page—now that many of the most important discussions are taking place on :shared, it's really important that you add the Wikitravel:Request for comments page to your watchlist to make sure that everyone keeps abreast of the most important discussions over there. --Peter Talk 20:27, 5 November 2007 (EST)

Spoilers on Wikitravel

Let's say that I am writing a hypothetical article on a hypothetical amusement park, and one of the hypothetical attractions in this hypothetical amusement park is a ride that purports to take you to the top of a tower and give you a view of the park, but what actually happens is that once in the ride, they simulate an earthquake and fire. and if you are a kid or you are very gullible, you are supposed to get fooled into believing that the earthquake has actually occurred and the park has been destroyed and the illusion is maintained even when exiting the ride. Should Wikitravel give out the story or maintain the secrecy? — Ravikiran 10:14, 15 November 2007 (EST)

I say mention that "a surprise awaits," and leave it at that to deter someone else from coming along and adding the spoiler themselves. --Peter Talk 15:21, 26 November 2007 (EST)
You just ruined my vacation Ravikiran – cacahuate talk 00:00, 27 November 2007 (EST)
I'm also not in favor of revealing spoilers. Another example is Dewa Sanzan in Japan, where you'd rewarded at the end of an arduous hike with... a surprise. Jpatokal 02:10, 27 November 2007 (EST)

New activity

It seems like since the beginning of the month, there has been a big surge in activity by new and anonymous users on Wikitravel. Does anyone have any insight as to the seasonal fluctuations here? --Peter Talk 15:21, 26 November 2007 (EST)

shared:Multilingual statistics. I'm not sure I see much statistically significant difference... and I suspect that googular fluctuations are more important than seasonal ones. Jpatokal 02:28, 27 November 2007 (EST)

GFDL and Creative Commons

There's a Slashdot item pointing to an announcement that Wikipedia and FSF are changing GFDL to make it compatible with the Creative Commons license. [5] This would mean we could use material from Wikipedia and other GFDL sites. We probably would not want much of their text since our goals are different,but it could be really good for maps and photos.—The preceding unsigned comment was added by Pashley (talkcontribs)

Yup. It will also mean skipping the hassle of periodically explaining to newcomers why they can't do the seemingly harmless thing of copying info about history and geography from WP to WT. - Todd VerBeek 20:56, 1 December 2007 (EST)
yes, yes, yes. That would be an unbelievably huge step. OpenStreetMaps and wikipedia content would suddenly all be available --NJR_ZA 04:03, 2 December 2007 (EST)

Can someone who can read the official Wikimedia Foundation statement (link on page pointed to above, but it does not work for me, probably because of the Great Firewall) please look at the details? There may be limitations I'm not aware of. Once you have details, please track the process and make appropriate announcements and policy changes here when their new license is in place. Methinks this is important enough to be well worth doing, but I cannot do it. Volunteers? Pashley 06:07, 2 December 2007 (EST)

The key bits of the Wikimedia Foundation's statement are:
  • The Foundation requests that the GNU Free Documentation License be modified in the fashion proposed by the FSF to allow migration by mass collaborative projects to the Creative Commons CC-BY-SA license;
  • Upon the announcement of that relicensing, the Foundation will initiate a process of community discussion and voting before making a final decision on relicensing.
The Foundation can't just "relicense" Wikipedia, but they can use a clause in the GFDL to allow the use of "any later version" of the license, by making GFDL 2.0 say "Oh, and if this is a wiki, you can also relicense it under the terms of CC-By-SA if you want". FSF was already working a revision of GFDL to allow relicensing under a "GNU Wiki License" which was going to fix some of the problems of applying GFDL 1.x to wikis; I'm guessing they've just agreed to substitute CC-By-SA for that. The "migration" of Wikipedia isn't a done deal yet (that whole discussion-and-vote formality), and there are already some partisans wailing and gnashing teeth over this, but they're a very small number of people, and if Jimbo, RMS, and Lessig all want this to happen with WP, it will. Note: It will be up to every other project currently using GFDL 1.x whether they want to upgrade their license to the CC-By-SA-compatible one. Most presumably will, but there's probably a WikiCreativeCommonsSux out there that won't, and we won't be able to accept content from them. -Todd VerBeek 10:48, 2 December 2007 (EST)

Can't contact the database server?

Can someone please check to see if Central_Java opens OK. I am getting the following when I try to open that article

Sorry! This site is experiencing technical difficulties.
Try waiting a few minutes and reloading.
(Can't contact the database server: Unknown error)

I would like to confirm if it a real server side issue or just some local PC/browser/caching problem on my side --NJR_ZA 10:16, 3 December 2007 (EST)

I see the same. It's some sort of cache problem - the same thing happened to Greece yesterday and I was able to fix it by forcing a cache reload. If you enter "" and then type the article name it should do the trick. -- Ryan • (talk) • 16:02, 3 December 2007 (EST)
I've had that once or twice, always transient and not in several weeks.
Yesterday I had a real weirdness. Several pages such as my watchlist and the results page for a search I tried — I think anything with "Special" in the name — produced utter garbage on the screen. Neither ctrl-reload to empty the cache nor restarting the browser had any effect. Other pages were fine, and there were no error messages. So I told the computer to reboot, wandered off for coffee, and it was fine when I came back. Recent Firefox on Win 2K, behind the Great Firewall. Anyone got any idea what that was? Pashley
I have no idea about the "Special" pages problem, but the other problem has already been diagnosed on Shared. --Peter Talk 22:02, 3 December 2007 (EST)
Ah, thanks. Forcing the cache reload did the trick. --NJR_ZA 00:22, 4 December 2007 (EST)

Where are the images?

Since a few days images are no longer shown in WT articles on my PC, just the caption and nothing more. Clicking on the link does not bring up the image either. This is also the case in WT de and nl (the only ones I checked). It cannot be my browser set-up, because in Wikipedia and in Wikivoyage and in other Wikis the problem does not occur. Just WT. Has anyone else got this problem? Dezwitser 03:27, 6 December 2007 (EST)

I used to have the exact same problem - images everywhere else but not at Wikitravel. It was quite some time ago, but I'm pretty sure I had to change my firewall settings. Good luck! -- Fastestdogever 09:30, 6 December 2007 (EST)
Thanks. The firewall was not the problem, but your hint gave me an idea. It was the NoScript add-on. Why WT of all wikis needs scripts to display images is beyond me - must be the commercial nature of this otherwise excellent site! Dezwitser 20:41, 6 December 2007 (EST)