Forums: Index War Room Proposal: Template Standardization Policy
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Hello all, many remember a blog I made about templates and use of personal ones, I was speaking with Bovell and Callofduty4 (among a few others) earlier on IRC about the use of unprofessional and sometimes plain useless personal or otherwise custom templates. Thus I have come to the conclusion I should propose the standardization of certain templates, namely:

  • Vandalism warning template
  • Bad edit warning template (this does not seem to be as widely customized, though standardization would protect it from such)
  • Welcome template

Although I cannot at the moment think of other templates that might need be included, there may be some. As it is, these templates are official warning or welcome templates, that are impressions of us (the community) as a whole. It is my proposal that somewhat strict regulation be instituted of said templates, such that they once more become templates (rather than nearly every user having his or her own personal message). My idea is that the two warning templates be restricted to the basic ones ({{Vandalism}} and {{Bad Edit}}) as well as the official Recent Changes Patroller warning ({{Vandalism/RCP}}) or those of any other official group, with provisions for the usage of personal messages so long as they do not vary greatly in the message given, and maintain a professional styling and tone. Regarding welcome templates, most of the welcome templates are plain silly, and many do not contain enough information. Here are some guidelines I believe could be implemented:

  • Links to
  • Help Desk
  • War Room
  • Policies
  • IRC page
  • User Manual
  • Manual of Style
  • Admin list page (or a full list of admins, with a summary of the new user hilite system)
as well as include basic summaries
  • Summarize a basic welcome.
  • Look and sound professional

I do not wish to restrict a user's freedom to express himself, but our standard welcome templates are enough for now, and could do with very few improvements. If you are a part of the NUW group, feel free to use one of the standard welcomes, or the Black Ops welcome. We can be expressive, but when it comes to welcoming users, Why do we feel the need to have our very own, unique message?. There are now so many personalized "templates" (though now they derive that only from the namespace) that users no longer may receive a different message depending on user, but will receive a different message depending on who welcomes them.

I hope we can all agree that there should at least be some regulation to the warning templates, as to the welcome templates, that's debatable. (PS: There will be a standardization policy implemented for the NUW usergroup effective soon.) Darthkenobi0(talk) 06:11, August 22, 2010 (UTC)

I agree with standardizing the layout, but I would like to keep the rest of the custimization to be more leaniant to individualism. (I.E. pictures and colors) Sigr5od Talk? Edits 13:40, August 22, 2010 (UTC)
Why do we need individualism in templates? Warnings and welcomes should be just that; with no relevance as to who gives it. It's a bad sign when nearly half the editing toolbar consists of welcome templates. One would wonder if we do anything other than welcome users! We only need one template for each function. One bad edit warning; one vandalism warning; one block warning. No difference in theme, layout or image (if any), and no variation based on who uses the template (be it admin, RCP, NUW, IP, etc.). Follow the fundamental rule of KISS. --Scottie theNerd 14:14, August 22, 2010 (UTC)
I can understand warning and block templates being made completely uniform, but I see no reason for Welcome templates to be made uniform, that's where I think our individualism should be allowed. Sigr5od Talk? Edits 00:14, August 23, 2010 (UTC)
I designed the block, vandalism and bad edit template to be as formal as possible - that's why I made them gray with the wiki logo. They explain everything and as Scottie said, there is no need for variations. The welcomes based on user groups might be passable, but the vandalism warnings based off user groups most certainly are not.  FANMADE_Animated_Derpy_Hooves_desktop_ponies_sprite.gif Sig1.png Sig2.png  14:19, August 22, 2010 (UTC)
Though with some new additions since they were made, those templates could use a few updates (but that's just the hilite, maybe user manual, not much). Personally, I'm fine with a few variants, the COD themed welcomes show new users we like our Call of Duty, and aren't afraid to be creative, but beyond that and (I stand by this) the NUW templates I see no reason to have others. The basic ones are basic, the themed ones are creative, and the NUW ones are just a user showing (s)he's a member of the group. Those are what I support at the very most, if the decision is to limit the vandalism and warning templates to the basic ones, it has my full support. Relatedly, I believe MediaWiki:Common.js (believe that's the correct one) should be updated to include the Vandalism and Bad edit warnings, and the welcomes should be updated to include a summary of the hilite system. (I believe that Template:Welc/CE is a great example of a welcome message doing its fullest). Darthkenobi0(talk) 18:49, August 22, 2010 (UTC)
Yeah, but a lot of the welcomes are probably tl;dr to a lot of users. Common.js can be updated but it's not necessary since most users have their own vandalism templates, and the blocked template is for the admins only.  FANMADE_Animated_Derpy_Hooves_desktop_ponies_sprite.gif Sig1.png Sig2.png  18:53, August 22, 2010 (UTC)
Well, as soon as some sort of consensus is reached on standardization (which I hope will mean users use something standard), Common.js should be, and if I said blocked I meant bad edit, so that the editing toolbar contains those as well. Darthkenobi0(talk) 18:57, August 22, 2010 (UTC)
I agree, if a consensus is met, I will remove any offending templates and update the common.js.  FANMADE_Animated_Derpy_Hooves_desktop_ponies_sprite.gif Sig1.png Sig2.png  19:01, August 22, 2010 (UTC)
Well Scottie had a good point, BUT I find it annoying when someone makes their own vandalism and/or welcome templates. They can get off-topic and annoying. Bravoalphasix 14:44, August 22, 2010 (UTC)

If we are to remove stupid templates because they are unnecessary, why should we keep Template:Vandalism/RCP? Or all the usergroup-related templates for that matter? What does that template tell the vandal that the Template:Vandalism|default on doesn't?  FANMADE_Animated_Derpy_Hooves_desktop_ponies_sprite.gif Sig1.png Sig2.png  19:04, August 22, 2010 (UTC)

Theoretically, nothing, but a few of the welcome templates are more informative. As I just stated on IRC, I'd like to keep the RCP and NUW templates simply because they were given official project group status, and a lot of work has gone into them, but if consensus is to use only the standard templates, I am wholly fine and supportive, though as I stated some of them could use updates to include newer information, and a few of the welcome templates are admin-only locked. Darthkenobi0(talk) 19:10, August 22, 2010 (UTC)

The templates that I use for vandalism and bad edits, and IP welcomes I think are fine. There is nothing wrong with a little individualism. The real problem lies in the fact the some users have made custom templates that are neither professional looking or contain images that have nothing to do with CoD. Those types of images, if anything are meant to be humorous but on the flip-side are nothing but flame bait. If anything should be enforced, it should be the wording for each template must stay the same and images for each template has to be an image from the CoD games. While we are at it there could also be a rule stating that: you are not allowed to place a stupid video or sound bite on the talk page. We don't want to be feeding the trolls. This is a perfect example of what I am talking about:, Personal WHISKEY35 signature Talk 20:33, August 22, 2010 (UTC)

I say that allowances be made for group templates that meet certain guidelines. Why should we need be individual for welcoming? I get that we should express ourselves but that is what our User Pages are for. Darthkenobi0(talk) 00:22, August 23, 2010 (UTC) Other templates that should be standardized (feel free to add one in):

  • Stub
  • Sdelete
  • Candidate for deletion

How do those need to be standardised? Also, regarding the NUW and RCP templates, I don't see how being a member of an official usergroup necessitates a separate template. Does a vandal warning from an RCP member make it any more formal or important? Does an NUW template make a new user any more welcome? If this answer is yes, some might point out that it might go against the spirit of COD:AEAE. If the answer is no, then we don't really need several templates that do the same thing. I can understand it if we had several templates for specific situations (such as how we have tempates for deletion and speedy deletion), but again I question why we need to have individualised templates for standard things. --Scottie theNerd 02:21, August 23, 2010 (UTC)

No, those groups and templates (as have others) have undergone a great deal of work. I would like if they would allowed, but so long as we standardize, I'm fully fine with removing them. Oh and those templates would be standardized on a "preventative basis". The stub template does have several variations (Template:Stub/Black Cats and Template:Stub/Reznov). Darthkenobi0(talk) 02:24, August 23, 2010 (UTC)

I like being able to use my custom ones. What's wrong with that? Cpl. Dunn(Talk) 14:04, August 25, 2010 (UTC)

Templates should be made so that all editors can use them when appropriate. When editors create custom templates that fulfil the same function as standard templates, problems arise in the consistency of the templates in terms of their appearance and content. Editors may become confused or mislead in some cases. --Scottie theNerd 14:25, August 25, 2010 (UTC)
I don't see how users will become confused because we're not all using the same template. Cpl. Dunn(Talk) 14:43, August 25, 2010 (UTC)
Let me ask you then: Why do you like using custom templates instead of standard ones? --Scottie theNerd 15:13, August 25, 2010 (UTC)
They provide you with more individualism, my templates have more information on them than the standard ones, and personally, I think mine look more appealing. Cpl. Dunn(Talk) 15:16, August 25, 2010 (UTC)
This is really all about personal appeal and I personally don't think we should restrict our users' freedom, whether it be custimizing templates to their liking. I can understand Warning and block templates being restricted and made formal, but I see no user in having all of them that way. Sigr5od Talk? Edits 22:47, August 25, 2010 (UTC)
I agree: custom vandalism and block templates make vandalism look like a personal duel. -- CoD addict · (talk) 21:48,September 1, 2010 (UTC)

How is it a personal duel? I do not get that. My vandalism template is the same as the standard one, the only differences being the background color and the image which in my opinion is better looking and the image gives the impression of seriousness. It is professional looking. The actual block template that I use is the standard one that is perfect the way it is. The welcoming template I use was created by some on else and was adopted by the NUW usersgroup. What I am trying to say is, as long as the templates in question follow the wording of the original template and the image on the template is a Cod image, then it should be fine. Personal WHISKEY35 signature Talk 23:19, September 1, 2010 (UTC)

If your template is better, we should use it as a standard. While I'm more lenient towards personalised welcomes (as long as they contain the right links); but Bad Edit, Warning and Block templates should not be tampered with. Administrative templates need to look the same so that users do not become confused when they receive different-looking templates for the same thing. We don't need images to make things look cooler or more serious (that would be gaming the system). There's nothing as serious and professional as a plain template that gets straight to the point. --Scottie theNerd 23:41, September 1, 2010 (UTC)

I agree with you 100% about the Bad Edit, and Block Templates. Maybe take a look at my Vandalism Template and you can see that it does have an air of seriousness. My Template. Maybe we can have the some kind of compromise between the two? I don't know. Just throwing things out there. Personal WHISKEY35 signature Talk 06:42, September 2, 2010 (UTC)

The black background is heavy and aggressive; the picture adds nothing (and I actually laughed at it); the first-person perspective makes it too personal; the welcome message assumes it is a new user rather than being a general-use template (although the standard template also has a needless welcome line). It contains what needs to be contained, but I really wouldn't want a huge black box on my talk page. Compared to the standard grey template, the black box is very intimidating and may be counter-productive in its use. Compared to a screenshot of an attack dog, the CODwiki logo makes the template official and professional. Serious: yes; but not the seriousness that would be effective. --Scottie theNerd 10:19, September 2, 2010 (UTC)
That's exactly what I meant by "personal duel." Don't you think the gargantuan black box with a fierce looking attack dog posted on your page in the first person makes it seem personal? I do. -- CoD addict · (talk) 21:10, September 2, 2010 (UTC)
No. Personal WHISKEY35 signature Talk 21:22, September 2, 2010 (UTC)

Can we also standardize the other templates? I've noticed there's both green templates with different sections in them and blue templates with no sections. Which one should we be using? I always have noticed that not all templates have links to view and edit them on them and they don't always have categories attached to them. Personal Poketape 8-bit Price Emblem flippedPoketape Talk8-bit Price Emblem MW2 00:02, September 8, 2010 (UTC)

CoD addict's idea doesn't sound very agreeable. Whiskey is right. Gold emblem MW2DevilWarrior112Talk Edits

So this proposal would essentially penalize editors who use non-standard templates, i.e. Griever would receive a warning for his custom block template?Spock1nlmgrEnterprise 09:35, September 13, 2010 (UTC)


Here's an idea I think most can agree to.

  • Completely standardize vandalism, block, bad edit and all page templates (such as stub).
  • Simplify these templates back to plain black-and-white with Wiki.png and nothing more, nothing less.
  • Create a set of information and links that must be included in a welcome template for it to be allowable.

If there's anything else people feel there should be in this, feel free to recommend it, hopefully once this draft concept is accepted we can standardize the templates and create the list set of welcome template criteria. --Good editing! Darthkenobi0(talk) 02:41, September 10, 2010 (UTC)

I would like some what of a theme to the templates, such as the skin's color, #9FB370, with #181B11. Plain old black-and-white just seems dull and boring, in my opinion.
Other that what I said above, it sounds good. --azuris_ 02:45, September 10, 2010 (UTC)
I agree, the same color as the Wiki's layout sounds fine to me. DoltenDolten signature USMC logo Let's Talk 03:24, September 19, 2010 (UTC)

Well yeah, that's part of the Wiki's theme right? Yeah, basically I think we should keep them how they were before, plain with three colors. Also, for welcome templates, I really think that COD:A and COD:P should be linked, if not transcluded (maybe the admin list, a hilite summary, and the simplified ruleset, all in collapsible boxes?) --Good editing! Darthkenobi0(talk) 02:47, September 10, 2010 (UTC)

On the hilite summary, I do not think that's needed as well. We can simply just add that information on the Project:Administrators page, putting it on the welcome template with a link to the administrators page seems just plain useless to me. --azuris_ 02:58, September 10, 2010 (UTC)
Template:Welc/CE is being modded, CE's permission, it will reflect a concept we're working on. I'm thinking collapsible box? Add hilite summary to COD:A pl0x. --Good editing! Darthkenobi0(talk) 03:04, September 10, 2010 (UTC)

Closed - Draft was made, but nobody voted on it. Darkman 4 22:39, October 24, 2010 (UTC)

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