Reading/web/Projects/Wikidata Descriptions

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About[edit]

The reading team would like to add Wikidata descriptions to the mobile web view of Wikipedia. These descriptions would display under each article title.

Why?[edit]

We are helping give mobile readers as much information as possible, in as little time as possible. These descriptions provide an instant and concise view of the article's subject which provides context for users prior to the beginning of the article.

Here is a sample showing the difference between how an article looks on mobile now and the proposed change. Notice how adding the Wikidata descriptions clear any confusion immediately.

Adding the Wikidata descriptions as a subtitle provides a quick description of what this page is about. This is a common practice on the web which has been long researched. Wikipedia mobile apps already use Wikidata descriptions underneath article names - for over a year now. They have also been showing in search results on mobile and on the Wikipedia.org portal since late 2015.

The descriptions[edit]

Wikidata descriptions are very short descriptive phrases, used to give context about the item. They are used for a disambiguation purpose. They are not a short version of the article introduction. They can be edited by users on Wikidata, following some guidelines.

Moving forward[edit]

The Reading team already enabled this feature on the Catalan and Polish Wikipedia a few weeks ago. There have been no inconveniences expressed so far. We would like to move forward on three phases. The idea is planned to be deployed gradually as follows:

  1. Leave top 6 Wikis (in terms of articles count) by traffic, from initial phase, divide the rest into two groups, and enable one group at a time.
  2. Which means nearly 130 Wikis every 2 weeks, then the top Wikis two at a time.
  3. Get back to top 6 Wikis and enable descriptions gradually. If a community among the top 6 is willing to allow adding the descriptions at an earlier phase, we can discuss planning this earlier.
  • If there are any problems with the feature, we have a configuration switch built as part of the feature so that we can turn it off very quickly if there are any problems, at any phase.
  • If a community has comments on the suggestion, or there are options around enhancing the feature. We would like to discuss it in the talk page in any language).

Imagine Wikipedia without content from Commons? Our content is a treasure, and it is our responsibility, as a movement, to find out ways to best incorporate it and make it more visible to the world, through different channels.

See also[edit]