Talk:Page Previews

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About this board

Page Previews solves the core problem of users opening multiple tabs to gain an understanding of a word in the context of the subject they are reading. Whenever a reader hovers over a link to another article, a short summary of the subject, including its graphical image, is provided to them so they can decide whether they need to visit that subject more fully before continuing the current subject.

Please give us feedback on your experience using this feature so we can change and improve it. Each language is welcome in this discussion!

You can read more about the feature here.

Known Issues

CSProfBill (talkcontribs)

I have to add my voice to the chorus of people who find the implementation of "page previews" too intrusive to accept. If I were cynical, I would say it was designed to force people to give up their privacy by beating them with page previews unless they log in. Part of the problem is the bad design of the pop-up itself. Instead of having a single click on the "gear" turn off the previews, it merely takes you to another popup, where you have to both click "disable" and click "save", then another pop-up to click "done" - 4 points and clicks in all. Even then, the attempt to turn off the harassing previews may not last through a "back" click, and is lost across private-viewing browsers or across restarts of the browsers, all of which I use quite frequently in the interests of avoiding "tracking" by various commercial websites that might share the browser with a use of Wikipedia.

In short, while I am quite sure there are some users who like the feature, and many who neither like or dislike the feature, there are some, including myself, who find it so offensive and so intrusive that it s worth while to log in to record my objections here. It seems that quietly cursing about how intrusive and offensive this "feature" is to some does not have any actual effect. I can, however, offer at least the suggestion above and another suggestion, below as an attempt to ameliorate the problem of the two opposed user communities,

The only way I can see out of the dilemma of faced by the developers of how to advertise a feature with such diverse reception to non-logged-in users, might be for wikipedia to implement an alternate url, or append start-up information in its url, so that the initial setting for such a feature can be embedded in the bookmark that accesses wikipedia initially and for the selected value to be propagated across clicks on links even when clicked as a new browser..

Reply to "Too intrusive, improvements proposed" (talkcontribs)

This page is not easy to find as is the disable option.

This is a strange way to use this. Hulu has a preview but it's directly related to a show. Twitter's preview/page is directly related to a user profile. Amazon also slightly increases to give you some more information on that one show. Gmail's is about the sender. All of them are a 1 to 1 relationship which make sense.

The way it is here things can suddenly popup that have nothing at all to do with the article. There is not always a 1 to 1 relationship and that makes no sense. And there's no user control except for disabling it.

Too annoying to use for me. Give the user control and it might be a good thing but as is there's nothing about it that makes sense.

CKoerner (WMF) (talkcontribs)

Regarding the disable option, we have a task for the product team to review. (talkcontribs)

I meant Netflix, not Amazon.

CKoerner (WMF) (talkcontribs)

Thanks for taking the time to provide feedback.

You said this page was difficult to find. If you don't mind me asking, how did you find it?

The feature provides more context about the hyperlinked word or phrase for readers within an article. Can you expand more on what seems strange? Are the articles linked from pages not providing context to the subject you're reading? Your examples provide similar context to the user and I want to better understand the difference.

What sort of user control could you imagine adding? (talkcontribs)

"The feature provides more context about the hyperlinked word or phrase for readers within an article."

As an example, to make Lithuanian Jews a link that I could activate by scrolling when I'm reading about Bob Dylan is just not that relevant to the article. Great that his grand parents were Lithuanian Jews but that doesn't mean I want to read about Lithuanian Jews. And it's not that there isn't some distant context there, it's that it can popup without being summoned even if I don't want to read it.

User control like a little button - I've seen small buttons with ? in them next to words and links that when clicked activates a popup that provides information, some informative, some providing help. The user has total control. It doesn't have to be disabled or enabled, it's just there IF you want to use it.

There's just way too much information in a long Wikipedia article to have all these links be popping up just by scrolling over them. For me it's too cumbersome and annoying. Easier just to turn it off so I can read the article in peace.

CKoerner (WMF) (talkcontribs)

Ah, I see. Thank you for the feedback. I'll pass it along to the product team.

Reply to "Strange use" (talkcontribs)

I tried to keep with the page preview but I had to turn them off. They’re too intrusive for reading.

They would be better as an on call type thing instead of either leaving them on or turn them off.

I’m reading about Tutankhamen and I turned on the cervical vertebrae page preview by accident, it just sprang out.

Now I can’t just read the article, I got to really pay attention to how I read it. If I don’t pay attention then here’s some of the other pages that could spring out at me while I’m trying to read:

sickle cell disease, Marfan syndrome, Philadelphia, walking sticks, CT scans and literally dozens of other really not relevant to me on this article.

And all I really want to do is read the article on Tutankhamen.

On call button would be better for everyone. Then I wouldn’t have to decide to leave it on or turn it off. This solution serves everyone and that's the goal.

CKoerner (WMF) (talkcontribs)

>On call button would be better for everyone.

Discoverability is an important aspect of reader-focused features. How would you imagine this would work? (talkcontribs)

I came here to say pretty pretty much exactly what you point out but you beat me to it. I 100% agree with you, it's very annoying not being able to just read the article without changing how you do it.

I've noticed a few more things.

Why does the Language have a settings icon/gear that you MUST manually activate but no other settings work like that? They're mixing in all kinds of user interfaces without any consistency.

Why would you introduce something like page previews in such a way that it interferes with your major purpose which is reading information? Why can't that be manually activated like the Language settings icon?

Why would they argue about putting a disable at the bottom, the same place as the enable? Again, they're using 2 completely different user interfaces to do the same thing, in this case On/Off. On not only doesn't work like Off, it's not even in the same place. It all makes for a very poor design.

I turned it off not because it couldn't be useful but because it's done so poorly and it's very annoying.

Lars Fex

CKoerner (WMF) (talkcontribs)

>Why does the Language have a settings icon/gear that you MUST manually activate but no other settings work like that? They're mixing in all kinds of user interfaces without any consistency.

Page Previews are one of the few logged-out user features that has any interface for preferences. Other tools (I would love examples) have been built by other teams over a long period of time.

Perhaps this leads credence to having some sort of unified preferences for logged-out users. :) See:

Reply to "Turned off"

Brackets containing IPA are not properly displayed

Summary by SUM1

Discovered the issue was a missing closing bracket, not an issue with hovercard.

Edit 17 April 2018: rediscovered that there is in fact an issue with the displaying of brackets containing IPA. Detailed below.

SUM1 (talkcontribs)

As I understand, it is hovercard's policy to remove bracketed content in link previews (which is a good thing). Well, it is failing to do this when the IPA template is used within brackets. It seems to end the omission at the end of the IPA template rather than at the closed brackets. As you can see in the example below, it correctly omits the next set of bracketed content after the first failed omission.

Example: pagelink preview

SUM1 (talkcontribs)

Update 17 April 2018: I have discovered that there is in fact a problem with brackets containing IPA being displayed in link previews. The problem seems to follow the exact same logic as described in my original post above.

Example: pagelink preview

@CKoerner (WMF)

CKoerner (WMF) (talkcontribs)

@SUM1 I wanted to let you know I saw this and have reported it to the project manager. We're looking into it. I'll let you know what I find out.

OVasileva (WMF) (talkcontribs)

Hi @SUM1 - thanks for reporting this! The issue you mentioned was actually happening due to a parenthetical that needed closing - note that the first parenthetical in the article right before the IPA was never closed. This has since been fixed now in the page and the preview no longer shows IPA. That said, we are aware that more edge cases with parentheticals might occur - please let us know if you've noticed any other issues.

2604:6000:120C:8033:7917:657F:8F12:F348 (talkcontribs)

Hovercard is displaying brackets and other punctuation if their are multiple IPA templates used. Examples [[w:Louisiana]], [[w:Scythian languages]], and [[w:Scythians]]

2604:6000:120C:8033:7917:657F:8F12:F348 (talkcontribs)

Those are supposed to be links to

Reply to "Brackets containing IPA are not properly displayed"
Adam trev (talkcontribs)

Please put Disable option at the bottom of the page. I could not stand this and closed them immediately when they popped out. I looked around for the disable option but could not find it and had to research it. Not everyone is going to leave the popped out window open long enough for them to see the gear.

This wasted too much of my time. Don't hide it away please, make it easy for people who don't want it.

Thank you.

CKoerner (WMF) (talkcontribs)

Thanks @Adam trev for the feedback. The team considered multiple options for enabling/disabling the feature. We tried to come up with a solution that works for the majority and found that a link in the footer was not the most discoverable. There are a lot of links there already and most folks don't even read those that are there! :) Our testing shows that folks know how to disable. Regardless, I've shared your note with the team for their consideration. (talkcontribs)

Thanks for the reply but it seem odd. I do not understand how there be a lot of links that are not used as good reason to not include it. It seems like a much more likely place than to hidden away in popped out you want to go away. Are you limited to one place and only the one? It can not be in the two places?

But thank you ok.

Adam Trevijano (talkcontribs)

Hi. Just to say, I also do not think disabling is clear at all. I have spent a lot of searching to find this page and how to disable this (IMO) disruptive and intrusive change. I did not think to look at the actual pop-up because I was trying to do exactly the opposite to that! I also looked at the header and footer of the pages for settings instead.

TheDJ (talkcontribs)

Based on some of the feedback, I have created a ticket phab:T194345 to take another look at this, but it's going to be low priority I think. (talkcontribs)

Why is ok for "enable page views" at bottom but not "disable"? If as said people don't use others then why can put "enable" but not "disable". Why low priority? If one is there why not the other? Make no reasonable sense.

Reply to "Please make disabling more visible"
YappyHiker (talkcontribs)

I tried to deal with the settings as a logged on user but the page preview section in Appearances is not showing the ability to do this. Just gives me the Skin and then the date. Why?

CKoerner (WMF) (talkcontribs)

Hello. Which wiki are you trying this on? For instance, it's not enabled here on or on a project like Wikidata.

Reply to "Not Seeing Page Previews"
Pbsouthwood (talkcontribs)

English Wikipedia is adding short descriptions, eventually to all articles. These may be useful for page reviews once WMF has disabled the use of short descriptions drawn from Wikidata. The short description is an annotation to the article title, which when done correctly, should provide a one-line indication of article content. Cheers,

TheDJ (talkcontribs)

page previews tend to be longer than short description though. Short description is one liner, a disambiguator of the title. A page preview (or rather text extract) is the size of the first paragraph of the lead of the article, a google top result blurb or the size of what Alexa/Siri might answer you.

Reply to "Possible use for short descriptions"
TheDJ (talkcontribs)

> stop making decisions based on your own egotistical self.

I think this is the best part of your post, in which you request changes (decisions) for your self.

CKoerner (WMF) (talkcontribs)

@Shanklin land, welcome to Thus far you've been discussing the feature with other volunteer contributors such as yourself. They are trying to provide context and you are being rude. They are not responsible for the feature being deployed.

Your arguments regarding this feature shows a shallow understanding of the subject, a lack of assuming good faith, and an unhealthy level of contempt for the work people have done - if not contempt for individuals themselves. It's worth mentioning that we don't do that here and we ask that folks work together in a civil manner. We have expectations on how we treat each other. If you are unable, or unwilling, to engage with folks in a civil manner then I ask you spend your time elsewhere.

At this point, we have listened to the feedback (yours and others), provided options to opt-out, and reiterated the research and work that has gone into the feature. We are open to constructive examples, links, and bug reports to address issues. They are welcome here or on Phabricator.

OVasileva (WMF) (talkcontribs)

Hi, @Shanklin land, I am the PM on this project.  I have been following this conversation from the beginning and believe that theDJ and CKoerner have done a really good job at thoroughly addressing your concerns and pointing you correctly to the documentation and previous conversations with the community where the answers to your questions can be found.  Thus, I find myself with nothing to add.  Thank you for your concerns, but we believe that our data, both qualitative and quantitative, has led us to the conclusion that this feature is welcomed by the majority of readers.  I would encourage you to review our documentation and test results a second time if you’re interested in learning how and why we came to the decisions we did.  

Reply to "Just priceless"

Page Previews is a genius idea for the Wikipedia glossaries!

LearnMore (talkcontribs)

Thank you for implementing Page Previews for Wikipedia. It is a great idea, especially for the Wikipedia glossaries. It is fantastic studying tool. It allows users to turn glossary terms into flashcards just by hovering over the terms. You even get the illustrations!

By the way, speaking of glossaries, could you please add a link on the Main Page of Wikipedia to the Category:Wikipedia glossaries page. I think the glossaries are one of the most important features of Wikipedia but a lot of people are not aware of them. Page Previews will now allow people to start using them as flashcards as well as glossaries. So please, please, please add the link. Readers will thank you.

I absolutely love Page Previews!


CKoerner (WMF) (talkcontribs)

Thanks for the feedback. As for adding a link to Category:Wikipedia glossaries, you'll have to consult with the community to have that change made. I'd suggest making your argument on the Main Page talk page for a start.

Reply to "Page Previews is a genius idea for the Wikipedia glossaries!"

"There was an issue displaying this preview"

2 (talkcontribs)

Not sure where to report this, but today's featured article includes a link to the 1974 Atlantic hurricane season which, if hovered over, consistently gives an error message "There was an issue displaying this preview". Other links work, I suspect maybe it doesn't work here because there's no intro? Apologies if this was already reported.

Bdijkstra (talkcontribs)

There was no intro because the page was vandalized and this somehow got unnoticed by the en.wikipedia community for 8 hours. Should be OK now.

Reply to ""There was an issue displaying this preview""