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

Page previews & SRF datatables format

Sochin67 (talkcontribs)

Dear all,

not sure whether this has been discussed already - but obviously page previews are not working in a result table of SRF datatables format.

Is this a known issue or am I doing something wrong?

MediaWiki: 1.31.0

PHP: 7.1.19-nmm1 (fpm-fcgi)

MySQL: 5.7.21-nmm1-log

Many thanks!

Reply to "Page previews & SRF datatables format"

Problematic image previews on election page suggesting a potentially wider problem

Summary by Alsee (talkcontribs)

The preview for this page: (can be previewed from "Next" on this page for example:,_2017)

shows an image of a leader of one specific political party. It is problematic for the preview to show one leader over another in an electoral race that has not begun and and is not decided. Presumably there are similar instances of electoral decisions or democratic debates where the image should be carefully moderated to avoid associating the Wiki article with one or other side or prejudicing the impression of the page before it is opened.

Alsee (talkcontribs)

There is a Phabricator task to allow more control over what image (if any) is selected, however I don't believe there is currently any way to directly control this.

I have moved the infobox and all of the images out of the lead section. It's a pretty crappy workaround, but it should fix the problem for this article for the moment. Other articles are going to run into the same problem though. (talkcontribs)

Cool, I noticed your edit. Is there a way to bring this issue to wider attention? I think it is something that will be manipulated.

Alsee (talkcontribs)

Already done :)

I posted the issue to English Village Pump. It will get plenty of attention there. However this is really a global issue. Getting the message out to other languages wouldn't be easy.

Reply to "Problematic image previews on election page suggesting a potentially wider problem"
2A00:23C4:198F:7F00:193D:EB65:3608:F726 (talkcontribs)

Page Preview is completely broken on an iOS device where it won't go away and even when it works as expected it's distracting, covers up what I'm reading and depending on how link laden the page is I have to be very careful how I scroll to avoid distraction.

I appreciate there is a way to disable it but it requires disabling it on all devices. If you at least have away to set it to disabled via a URL parameter then that will make it easier to share across multiple devices and it's a non-issue if the cookie eventually gets expired or culled.

Reply to "Broken and distracting" (talkcontribs)

You have the answer for everyone right there in Reference Tips. You allow THE USER to decide how they want to interact. They can choose to Hover or Click.

Page Preview you give the user no choice - it's either off or on.


I hate them. It's the most intrusive reading experience I've ever had on any web page. And how do you turn it off? By interacting with the very thing you want to go away. Just terrible.

Again. Why? Why can't I have the ability to click on it if I do want to use it?

Reply to "Hovering/Clicking"
Salgo60 (talkcontribs)

I am working together with a vendor of a Swedish genealogy software to integrate Wiki context see Task T204229 and prototype (see is there any good code sample of previews of Wiki content done on e.g. jsfiddler/github....

TheDJ (talkcontribs)
Salgo60 (talkcontribs)

Excellent I have started to play around using Jquery and searching in Wikipedia... and have presented that for some people so all ideas are welcome...

All advice are welcome. I feel a little bit scare to use "mouse over" and performance "cost"....

Reply to "External previews" (talkcontribs)

I had to write to a friend of mine who works for Wikipedia to share my enthusiastic support for the new page preview feature--what a fabulous (albeit slightly ADD) addition to an already amazing learning tool. He pointed me to the page explaining how much thought you put into this, and detailing how aware you are already of "rabbit-hole"-style learning. The visuals in pop-ups are especially great and aid in the contextual flow of learning, making a visit to any topic a potential adventure in learning that's actually even more fun and probably really effective from an educational point of view. As a parent of a young son who will likely be surfing Wikipedia pretty soon, my sincere thanks for caring enough about effective learning and helping to make the pursuit of knowledge an entertaining, self-guided interactive adventure.

-Tom Sturm

Easthampton, MA

TheDJ (talkcontribs)

Thank you for your words (talkcontribs)

You're welcome! Thanks for putting in the thought & labor.

Reply to "Brilliant. Kudos to Wikifolk" (talkcontribs)

I really like this feature I really liked this feature... right up until it bugged out on me.

Before: Ctrl-clicking on a preview opened the page in a new tab.

Now: Same but also registers as having clicked the preview.

This is kind of annoying considering I use that shortcut so I can continue looking at the page I'm currently on.

CKoerner (WMF) (talkcontribs)

I'm a fellow ctrl/command clicker myself. Could you tell me more about what browser/OS combination you're using? I don't think the previews should be getting in then way of that browser feature. I am able to reproduce it though. I filed a task for the engineers to look into things. Thank you!

CKoerner (WMF) (talkcontribs)
Reply to "Extra click registered" (talkcontribs)

I don't find them intrusive, but the best thing to happen to Wikipedia since Wikipedia. I'm surprised you don't set the popup preference for anon users via a cookie, but I suppose people would complain about cookies then. Keep up the good work. You might want to take a look at the page preview for Pentecost though. Someone's been a bit naughty.

Reply to "Intrusive? Nope."

Too intrusive, improvements proposed

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..

CKoerner (WMF) (talkcontribs)

Thank you for the feedback - and cynicism. :) Part of my job is to make sure project teams don't do anything purposefully disruptive to the reputation of the projects or larger movement. So, I hope with some faith you can believe me when I say there's been no attempt to use the feature in a manipulative way. There is a task to review the disabling of the feature for logged out users. There's also a larger discussion around settings for logged out users as mentioned below. (talkcontribs)

Is there somewhere I can add my name to a list of readers who are pissed off with preview and the fact that I can't turn it off. No matter how many times I click the settings and disable it, there they are again. I'm looking for a Firefox add-on to disable them. Anyone have any ideas? (talkcontribs)

I would like to add my voice to this too. I am forced to stay logged in at home so I don't have to deal with this very intrusive popup but at the office I can't be logged in and therefore I am forced to click the "disable" setting multiple times a day in an attempt to try and make it go away, which never works for very long. The preview is annoying, it obscures what I'm trying to read, and I'm generally not interested in what it has to say.

TheDJ (talkcontribs)

> I am forced to click the "disable" setting multiple times a day in an attempt to try and make it go away, which never works for very long

BTW. this shouldn't be needed, unless you using something that messes with the local storage of the browser. Do you use 'cookie' blocking or something ? (talkcontribs)

I'd like to be added to the list as well. (talkcontribs)

I'm also among the users who would rather not have them. I've never purposefully activated one, but they are often popping up to obscure the text I am trying to read. I guess I'll eventually learn to corral my cursor.

Reply to "Too intrusive, improvements proposed"

Page Previews configuration change for new accounts

CKoerner (WMF) (talkcontribs)

Hi all,

We wanted to let you know about some planned changes to the configuration of Page Previews for newly created accounts. Currently, the feature is off by default for all logged-in users and on by default for all logged-out users. When people create an account, the feature will appear to vanish which would be confusing.

We plan to change this configuration and enable the feature for all new accounts. [0] For current logged-in users, there will be no changes to the current configuration. If you have the feature off, it will stay off. If you have it on, it will stay on. If there are no major concerns raised, we plan on making these changes sometime in early July, 2018.


Reply to "Page Previews configuration change for new accounts"