Wikivoyage talk:External links/Archive 2007-2018

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linking policy[edit]

The policy of not linking to local culture, news sites and blogs is a real disservice to wikivoyage visitors. Locally-written sites help a visitor know and understand a city better than wikivoyage or any travel guide ever could. This policy is extremely self-defeating. It also will discourage local sites from seeing wikivoyage as a partner. The internet is all about interconnection and this policy is an anti-social one that serves only to pointlessly isolate wikivoyage from the wider community. What is the process of having this policy changed? [re:] -- 12:11, 29 January 2007 (EST)

The process for changing the policy is to discuss your opinion and to try to build a consensus that the policy should be changed. I don't think there is any disagreement that there are lots of good sites out there that would be useful to travelers, but it will be an uphill battle to change the current policy for a few reasons:
  1. We don't want our guides to simply be link farms for every web site out there with a remote connection to a travel-related service. This is a huge issue, and we need a clear guideline that allow us to police links easily.
the policy is simple: "If I was traveling to Berlin (or any other place) might I be happy to have this link? Wanting something simpler than that is unrealistic and a cop-out. This wiki is human edited, not machine edited. The ability to distinguish fuzzy categories is among the things that distinguish humans from machines.-- 14:56, 29 January 2007 (EST)
  1. It is very difficult to determine what is a "good" site vs. what is junk. As a result we've implemented the "primary site only" policy, which makes it crystal clear what sites are appropriate. It is not realistic to expect editors to extensively research every web site to verify its quality, so we simply state that if a site is not the official site of a hotel, museum, restaurant, etc then it should not be included in the guide.
how is this different for a news site vs. a hotel site, the hotel, museum, restaurant, etc could be bad too, or even fictitious, how are online sites of interest to travellers different or somehow more work to manage for quality? -- 14:56, 29 January 2007 (EST)
  1. There is also an incentive issue. We don't want to allow links to other sites at the expense of including content within Wikivoyage.
I agree with this, but news sites and blogs are time-based dynamic content, wikivoyage is evergreen data, they serve different purposes. Wikivoyage can not give a personal impression of a city and what goes on there like a blog can. -- 14:56, 29 January 2007 (EST)
Please read the other discussions on this page, and if you have a suggestion of how the policy can be changed and still address the three points above please let us know. -- (WT-en) Ryan 12:27, 29 January 2007 (EST)
The policy should be same as the rest of the information on the page, if it is usefull to travellers it should be kept, "no reason, just policy" is an incredibly short-sighted reason to alienate the community news sites and the blogger communities, who could and would contribute to the success of wikivoyage. -- 14:56, 29 January 2007 (EST)
There are hundreds of sites on the Web for aggregating lists of Web sites located in or related to a particular place. We have links to one such project, the Open Directory, as a service to readers. Aside from that, direct links to the sites and services we describe in our guides makes sense. Roaming further afield in our guides doesn't. --(WT-en) Evan 13:45, 29 January 2007 (EST)
Another cop-out. Might as well say they could just google it. Check this link:] Can you honestly claim that serves any useful purposes at all? Please let me know how many clicks it took you to find even 1 interesting news item or blog entry from or about Berlin? -- 14:56, 29 January 2007 (EST)
1. The correct link is [1] (which is on the Berlin page).
equally useless, please provide the click count I asked for to demonstrate the point. -- 15:39, 29 January 2007 (EST)
2. Right on the page is Cityvox Berlin, which looks sorta interesting.
sorry, I failed to see any news items or blogs on that site. Just a commercial listings site. I am talking about local community news sites and local blogs about the city. Sites that give you local flavour, that is exactly what I look for when I travel. -- 15:39, 29 January 2007 (EST)
3. To the extent that the dmoz links are uninteresting, it shows why we don't want to start collecting that sort of thing here. -- (WT-en) Jonboy 15:23, 29 January 2007 (EST)
It is exactly a lack of human editing for context that makes them uninteresting.-- 15:39, 29 January 2007 (EST)
You are wrong -- dmoz is edited by humans. That's why we're pointing at it: if they are "uninteresting" when their entire purpose is to make a human edited directory, imagine how much more poorly we will do the same job when our main purpose is to write a travel guide! -- (WT-en) Colin 16:35, 29 January 2007 (EST)
Sorry Colin if my comment was unclear, the key words are for context, dmoz categories are much broader than wikivoyage articles, making it far more difficult to manage and entirely unlikely that they may produce a handy set of links for local community news sites and local blogs to match a particular wikivoyage article, since that is not their goal.-- 04:07, 30 January 2007 (EST)

Policy Suggestions: 1. Only allow external links to sites which publish content under a compatible "share alike" license. 2. Have a maximum number so that after a certain number of sites is reached consensus is needed to replace one if a new one is recommended. 3. Perhaps have a link-back policy, only allowing links to site that link to wiktravel 4. Of course, the primary language of the site should match the page it is being linked from.

IMO, The above rules would be manageable and would eliminate pretty much all overtly commercial, bad or spammy content. -- 15:39, 29 January 2007 (EST), I would second your ideas in theory--but it's even better if you have a number of news sources/blogs that, in your belief, complements wikivoyage content in a proper way. Maybe having several examples in hand would make your suggestions even more convincing? --(WT-en) DenisYurkin 16:04, 29 January 2007 (EST) is the one in specific that I though would compliment the Berlin article, as I am involved with the project I know that the site is intended to be useful and interesting for those who are interested in visiting Berlin, as for others I might recommend a few of these:,,,, etc, these are the sorts of sites that I look for when I travel, finding hotels is easy, they advertise and have conspicuous signs, finding a place to eat is not so hard either, getting a feel for the flavour, tone and goings on in a city from an insider is far more difficult and interesting. -- 04:07, 30 January 2007 (EST) and is now: --(WT-en) Tricknik 04:12, 30 January 2007 (EST)

Reading through the different here's my suggestion:

1. As the internet is becoming a handy tool even while travelling one could consider certain blogs and personal pages as information sites like a physical existing tourist information. Thus such a blog's URL would be primary in the sense of hotels, museums, etc.
2. as WikiTravel is meant to be unbiased these external pages would be adding to the idea and information WikiTravel caters without breaking the rules on the page.
3. in return the bloggers (supposed to be locals) could add unbiased info to WikiTravel, which is one of the main rules anyway (don't make rivals, make friends). A certain special area would be needed, maybe even added to the templates like: Locals, what locals say - whatever..
4. The external link to the blog then could be in the sense "more of my local opinion"
5. the link back then could be in the sense "more general information about..."

All I am saying is - it's not either that or this, but something in the middle. But like advertisement in newspapers, these local opinions should be separate and not confused with general information in the "TravelGuide".

And for all those PageRankers you just invent a special format or make it a rule, that a NO-FOLLOW tag must be used..

have fun

(WT-en) SonarTom 13:15, 26 June 2007 (EDT)

I like the idea of "opinion from real people's blogs" criteria, linking in return, showing it in special section and NO-FOLLOW (is it really pagerank-neutral?).
One question is to define criteria for that "opinion from real people's blogs". I don't think it should be from locals, BTW--as we're focusing on traveller's point of view (resident's point may be quite different for variety of reasons). --(WT-en) DenisYurkin 14:09, 26 June 2007 (EDT)
Just a quick note to say that even when nofollow is enabled for external links it unfortunately doesn't usually have any effect on people adding links; most of the time people just want advertising for their site, and nofollow-or-not, having a lot of links out there accomplishes that goal. At the moment while blog links aren't allowed in articles it's generally considered OK to add them to talk pages, and Wikivoyage Extra will allow a place for recording personal experiences.
Regarding any attempts to change external links policy, it's been stated repeatedly elsewhere, but any new external links policy must be totally obvious, and there hasn't really been a suggestion that meets that requirement. By "totally obvious" I mean:
  1. There CAN NOT be ambiguity about what is OK and what is not.
  2. It must be EASY for someone who is unfamiliar with the link or destination to patrol, since it's not reasonable to wait for someone from Jaboo to come along and say whether or not meets a guideline. Similarly, if an article has fifty blog links there needs to be some way to determine when a personal blog by someone living in Jaboo is inappropriate.
The present guideline is overly restrictive, but it meets the "totally obvious" criteria. Until someone comes up with a new guideline that allows additional sites and still meets those criteria I don't see that changing the current policy would be a good thing. -- (WT-en) Ryan • (talk) • 14:24, 26 June 2007 (EDT)
I think that we've done a pretty decent job of expanding space by adding a shared bookmark feature to Wikivoyage Extra. That means we have a place for photo albums, blog entries, newspaper articles, and all that other stuff. It won't be there when you print out an article to take with you, but that's really a good thing. --(WT-en) Evan 16:16, 26 June 2007 (EDT)

Policy Suggestion:[edit]

Allow external links to community created sites which publish content under a compatible "share alike" license.

Where should (or can) links to local community wikis go? They are not exactly blogs or news sites or review sites (though they share some similarities) but they also can have a wealth of local knowledge that can be invaluable to the traveler and that we really cannot hope to duplicate (nor would we want to - cluttering wikivoyage with information about local hair salons would seem a bit excessive). For example the entire wikispot "community of communities" has a gazillion local wikis under its umbrella - the largest of which is probably the Davis CA wiki According to their stats at )