Fallout Wiki
Fallout Wiki
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Hi Folks,

Some of you will have seen the message Brandon @ Wikia/Fandom left on my talk page, I include it here for those who haven't.

Hey Agent c. A few months ago we talked to you on Community Council about Wiki Modernization and how we're using featured wiki videos to reduce the number of ads on the site and improve the performance of all Fandom wikis.

As we move forward we plan to expand our video production with many communities, including Fallout Wiki. If you are interested in which video types we might use you can find some great examples in this blog post. We don't have any specific plans for Fallout right now but, if and when we do, we may reach out to you, other admins, and users to be involved in writing video scripts or being part of the production process.

Let me know if you have any questions. Thanks! - Brandon Rhea(talk) 18:44, May 12, 2017 (UTC)

Some of you have already reached out with some concerns. As Brandon indicated it was something that has, until recently, been discussed in "Community Council", so I've been restricted by NDA from discussing it openly.

Many of the concerns that I've heard echo some of the concerns I raised earlier about content quality, editorial policy compliance, placement, autoplay/autosound, etc. Please feel free to express any opinions you have - positive or negative.

Before there is any change to the wiki's current rules and standards to add video, there will of course be a discussion and vote as per the usual process. My understanding from my discussions with Brandon (and his comment quoted above) is that we would have some specific content proposals before voting to add these.

I know video has been quite controversial in the past, but I do encourage everyone to keep an open mind to the possibilities, at least until we have some specific proposals on the table. Agent c (talk) 14:52, May 13, 2017 (UTC)

Okay, Correction. Wikia/Fandom will be unilaterally adding video whenever/wherever they want... although apparently we get input.

If we produce videos for Fallout, they would not be opt out. But we want to ensure that any videos that we do produce meet Fallout Wiki's standards. We don't want to produce anything that the community feels is not up to par. Which is why we're collaborating with communities on scripts and even on production, which is a key part of our evolving video process. - Brandon Rhea@fandom(talk) 15:04, May 13, 2017 (UTC)

I am very opposed to this. If we end up with Videoes that are of the quality I've seen during the trial (10 best spells from the Harry Potter Universe jumps straight to mind) then I'll go find something else to do.Agent c (talk) 15:06, May 13, 2017 (UTC)

I am exceptionally opposed to how they want to produce this content. I can think of pages where it would be good, such as location articles where we can make the content fit with the layouts, maybe even extend it to certain weapon and armor mods too. There are certainly good applications to video content, if the community retains control of the content and abides by Wikia's T&Cs by applying it, but enforced application like this is not going to go down well. Sakaratte - Talk to the cat 15:29, May 13, 2017 (UTC)

I've checked this out earlier on, and under its current form, it's something that makes the wiki impossible to edit for me. While the video quality was in some cases good in my opinion, the way they are forced on you just disables some users of being able to use the wiki anmymore. For me, it causes up to 15 second loading times before i can do anything on a page and then I didn't even mention how it sucks out my internet. I'm in my dorm limited to 10GB per month, I don't want 9GB gone to videos I don't want to watch, just because I'm patrolling edits or making edits myself (don't think this is unrealistic, seems to be downloading in HD). This might sounds like a very niche problem, but many are in similar situations, and i think phone users will have similar concerns when they aren't on wifi. And apart from that internet limitation, why would I wait 60*15 seconds (15 minutes extra edit time) if i just want to add 1 copy/paste template on 60 different pages? This kind of botwork is already frustrating enough, I don't want to be forced to lose 15 minutes just watching a stupid video download while I don't even wanna see that video. Stop the autoplay and the auto download and then it might be something that could make us better as some people might be too lazy so actually read an "encyclopedia". MIGHT. I doubt that under its current forced it can be an improvement, but it could have potential then for some things. - Greets Peace'n Hugs (talk) (blog) 15:41, May 13, 2017 (UTC)

We want to collaborate with the community here to produce videos that are up to the standards you feel are appropriate. That includes giving the community the opportunity to write scripts or, if anyone has the skill set to do it, even produce the videos. The 10 Best Spells example that Agent C gave was one that the Harry Potter Wiki admins approved of and enjoyed, so they made that determination during the initial tests that it met their guidelines—and each wiki is unique, so that style may not be appropriate for Fallout Wiki. @Peace'n Hugs - we're building an option into the video player that gives users (logged in and logged out) the option to disable videos for a set period of time. That's not only to allow user choice but also to account for situations like yours. It's niche like you said, but not niche enough to not account for. - Brandon Rhea(talk) 15:58, May 13, 2017 (UTC)
The phrase "for a set period of time" really annoys me. Why must a time limit be imposed, which is implied in your wording? If I don't want to watch videos for entertainment purposes ("videos for entertainment purposes" is one noun that I am gathering from this entire topic. Helpful videos pertinent to the location they are featured are not as irksome), I should be allowed to disable them fully permanently. It's nothing against Wikia's content creators, I just hold the "VfEP" that I watch to high and unique standards. What appeals to you, the rest of the wiki, or an anonymous user likely will not appeal to me, and I don't want my wiki experience dampened because I have a list of "Top 10 Best Robots" appearing in the middle of an article about the Corvega. Sigmund Fraud Talk Contributions 17:04, May 13, 2017 (UTC)
I guess this begs the question, exactly how much influence are we going to have over the videos that are selected/produced, and what sort of scrutiny process are we going to have? Is this going to extend to the point of vetoing an individual video, and who is going to be the one to do the scrutiny (shall we appoint a Single point of contact, a comittee, or community vote on every video). It may also be examining other options for the community if we remain unhappy. Agent c (talk) 17:10, May 13, 2017 (UTC)

Wiki articles are meant to be modified and improved all the time, and this can be done by the simple click of a button. But with videos this would be very problematic as there is no way of modifying a video after it is uploaded. As soon as new or better information is released on the subject of the article, the video will be outdated, and might even become completely wrong. Additionally, videos are a lot harder and time consuming to create than articles. This means time that could be spent improving lots of articles is wasted creating a video that few readers will even bother to watch. DisgustingWastelander (talk) 17:21, May 13, 2017 (UTC)

I'm a bit more open for this upcoming change. Often when Wikia is announcing changes I see considerable opposition in general, but keep in mind they provide us with the means to work on and enjoy the wiki. If they don't keep up with what advertisers want, their financial means reduce and we'll have less resources for it on the wiki. As far as I understand, videos are posted at the top of the page, but only if a video is of good quality and passes a few points of inspection. So it's not like every page will have videos, just a few pages (at first anyway) and they shouldn't be run of the mill. I also wonder if people here will be interested to create them, so most will come from Wikia I presume. Jspoel Speech Jspoel.png 17:32, May 13, 2017 (UTC)

I'm not entirely against it myself, I would certainly like more information about it before I say its a great idea. All we know at present is it is coming and we can't say no. We have some control, but we don't know where the line draws. If Wikia comes back to us with a detailed plan I will listen to what they have to offer and if happy to do so I am more than willing to supply material and support. I just want more information first. Sakaratte - Talk to the cat 17:38, May 13, 2017 (UTC)
To be brutally honest, the only "resources" they've managed to successfully provide, is the hosting itself. While one might point to certain Wikia created extensions as examples of such resources, keep in mind that they also are the gatekeepers on any other choice in extension as well. In other words, what they provide is only notable, because they're basically the only possible source.
Of course, granted, it's not like this wiki has much of a choice in the matter - after all, if a private server was financially feasible, with the traffic this site receives, I'm fairly certain such a thing would've happened 4-5 changes ago. Dulogo.pngDigital Utopia (talk) 12:32, May 14, 2017 (UTC)

This has the potential to be a significant deal-breaker. As others have said, I'll wait and see what actually happens. But if I'm forced to sit through 30 seconds of unwanted animation every time I change screens, or if I can't read a screen without little figures jumping, waving, and yelling at me, I'll probably get fed up and do without. Which wouldn't kill me, though it would be a shame because this is a great site. Wordmama (talk) 22:03, May 13, 2017 (UTC)

I'm not 100% opposed to it, however I am unhappy that it's being forced. In some situations it would be helpful, but in others it will be quite annoying. If there was a way to disable them from playing all the time that would be good, I also have slow internet because of living in a rural area, download speeds are limited and it will increase my load times significantly. The list of spells from the Harry Potter page for example took 30 seconds to load in today (often my internet is even slower), if even 1/10th of the pages on the Fallout wiki were like that I would have a hard time editing or looking up simple information. Not to mention making high quality videos with perfect execution is extremely hard, time consuming, and a giant pain. Unless you enjoy that sort of thing. Rebel427 (talk) 22:17, May 16, 2017 (UTC)

Moderate vent

One of the main reasons as to why I left Wikia, was because of changes like this one. I'm not going to be a crybaby about it, even though I absolutely cannot stand Wikia's transition over to a Fandom doctrine; however, I still feel that I'm obligated to make my grievances known, after all of the time and effort I have put into writing content and improving content all across Wikia (not that I feel entitled, mind you; I simply believe that I have enough experience at this point to provide constructive criticism).

I could deal with the forced skin change - I could deal with the social media profiles in the works, that will remove most customization options, and ultimately render Wikia a bit more boring of a place. A lot of stuff I even agree with, such as the article forums, and the discussions feature.

But then there are changes, where it almost seems as if Wikia have utter contempt towards the very people that helped make Wikia into the giant that it is today...

  1. Keyword ads, that turn target words all across Wikia, into completely irrelevant links, tricking people into either thinking that they have a virus, or into visiting wikis that they may or may not have any interest in visiting.
  2. Mandatory navboxes on the mainpage, and across generic articles, advertising irrelevant wikis.
  3. A topnav that continues to remove independence from wiki communities, and generally disrupts the aesthetic(s).
  4. Ads that are spawned in the smack-damn middle of articles, ruining content flow, and forcing readers to shift through bullshit in order to get back to what they wanted to learn about.
  5. Etc. etc. etc. etc. etc., video rails full of horrible/irrelevant quality videos, etc. etc. etc. etc., clickbait articles that plague Wikia social media and CC, etc. etc. etc. etc. etc., generic E-Mails from staff using robotic messages, etc. etc. etc. etc.

So let's be real, here: When wiki editing was still new, people were excited to get involved, and that led to a huge bang of editors and academics flooding Wikiapedia and similar outlets like Wikia. But the excitement is fading away, the bubble has burst, and editing is becoming more and more niche with every year that passes.

And instead of fostering the editing community that has remained, all I see are non-transparent decisions being made, with little to no regard at all towards how many veteran editors will become disillusioned and leave. I see ads, which are fine on their own, being taken into a dangerously unethical direction. I see Wikia so desperate to spread their Fandom ideology, that they are willing to sacrifice large portions of what the editing community has written for them, across every wiki, in order to advertise as many wikis as they can within other wikis.

And it's disgusting to me, really. It's disgusting to me, because while I understand why Wikia want to go the Fandom route, they are completely willing to sell out the foundation that made them into the giant that they are now, and are not even remotely apologetic about it.

Anyways, I'm sorry for the rant. These changes will happen, and I know that for a fact, as proven when they still went forth with changes as wikis were mass-migrating off of Wikia, and still continue to do so today, albeit at a slower rate now. It's just a shame when I see changes like this one, because all it does is validate many of the reasons as to why I left a place that I used to call home. 寧靜 Fox.png 22:17, May 13, 2017 (UTC)

Example of implementation

For those who want to see how this looks on a page, the video I make reference to is on this page. As Brandon indicates this isn't indicative of the content, please don't just judge it on that (as its clearly not compliant with our editorial standards), but more the actual implementation (position, function, etc). Agent c (talk) 19:11, May 14, 2017 (UTC)

Richie9999's arbitrary page break

I'm not a fan of the way the video follows the scrolling of page. I see the same thing on news websites and elsewhere and the first thing I do is close it. It took much too long to load in my opinion as well, slowing down the loading of the rest of the page, which is something I take issue with. In my opinion the content and important bits of an article should always take front seat. In the link Agent c left above, I strongly doubt anyone (other than those of us who want to see the way this video thing is gonna function) are going to that page because they are desperate to know what the top 5 best spells are, I think it much more likely that they are there to look up some spell or another. I also didn't like the fact that the video auto-played after it figured out how to go about loading its contents. Make no mistake, the content that is generated by the wiki and its editors, I feel, should always take priority in the loading scheme.

Enough of the negatives. I see potential for positives with these videos, you know, if they're not autoplaying monstrosities that take too long to load and therefore slow down the loading of the whole page and the community gets a say in what videos are made. They could be useful for explaining things like the fallout timeline and... that's really about all I can think of at the moment.

Richie9999 (talk) 19:38, May 14, 2017 (UTC)

I know everyone expects my normal long-winded witty riposte here, but I'll be blunt for a change: Page load times suck ass. Consistently over one minute for the example page that Agent c linked above, and that was AFTER I had already loaded the page once and most of the shit was cached. So, of course, I check my download speeds. I'm good, about 18mbs like usual. So it ain't me, thank you speedtest.net. I thought we (read: Wikia or whatever we call ourselves these days) were worried about page load times? I guess not. The Gunny  UserGunny chevrons.png 23:11, May 16, 2017 (UTC)

Staff reply

Hey everyone. Thanks for posting here with all of your feedback and questions. I read over all of them and it seems like the key points are load times, autoplay concerns, whether the content will be outdated, and the level of control the community will have over video content. Let's take some time to address those points.

  • Load times. In general we are not seeing any across-the-board issues with load times, so these are fairly limited cases. But we don't want to just dismiss the people who are having those issues either. We are working on ways to make sure that if connection speeds are slow, the video doesn't impact that visitor. An example of that could be not autoplaying the video if the connection speed isn't strong enough. The removal of some ad units from the site will also speed up page performance. We anticipate a net benefit to page load times between the addition of a video and the removal of some advertisements. Pages that have videos on them will have even fewer ads than pages without videos.
  • Autoplay. Autoplay is necessary for the success of the Wiki Modernization project. In addition to having a better-looking site in general, one of the goals is to remove some of the ad clutter on wiki pages. In order to offset the removal of some ad units, we need the ads that play in front of videos to be as valuable to advertisers as possible. To do that they will need to autoplay. I understand there are some concerns about autoplay but I think it's a fair tradeoff to have a better-looking and better-performing site in general. There was also a question about why there is not a permanent option to disable autoplay. Since this is a newer product that's still evolving (in both the features and video content), we want to make sure that we give users the opportunity to experience it again, help us in getting more data, and, ultimately, creating a better video experience. We have not ruled out a permanent disable options in the future, though.
  • Outdated content. If a video we created was outdated, we would update the video. Outdated content is not particularly useful to anyone.
  • Community control. We don't want you to feel like you're displaying content that doesn't meet your standards. We are more than happy to work with you in order to ensure that it does meet your standards. The word veto was used, but I wouldn't think of it in those terms. I would think of it as a collaboration where, together, we can work on a video until we're all satisfied with it. I'm now managing the team that will be creating Wiki Videos, so if it got to the point where you felt like you had to veto something my team creates then I would consider that a failure on my end and a breakdown of the collaborative process.

I hope that answers some of your questions and concerns. Let's keep this conversation going, especially in terms of collaboration on creating videos. We're choosing what videos we're currently creating based on top traffic pages, so what I would like to do is this. Next week, I will look at the top pages on Fallout and share that list with you. Together we can figure out which page would be the best candidate for a video. Then, one of my team members (who is a huge Fallout fan—New Vegas is one of his favorite games of all time) and I will work with you on scripting out and, if you like the script, producing the video. That way we can all get a sense of what the best video format is for Fallout Wiki. - Brandon Rhea(talk) 22:28, May 19, 2017 (UTC)

  • There hasn't been any replies here in 2 weeks, so I wanted to check to see if you all are up for collaborating on a video? - Brandon Rhea(talk) 18:39, June 2, 2017 (UTC)

I think at the moment we're still waiting for you. General trend seems to be a lot of reservations, but you were supposed to come back with a list of pages. Agent c (talk) 19:56, June 3, 2017 (UTC)

Ok. I'll bite. I'm actually kinda interested to see the quality you can come up with for the console command page video. Some kind of simple tutorial on how to use console commands showcasing the most common ones, tcl, additem, etc, would seem to be the simplest thing to do. How long would production take? What would you need from us? What would you like from us? What are you willing to do without us? The Gunny  UserGunny chevrons.png 22:55, June 5, 2017 (UTC)
I still have some reservations, based on your previous response Brandon, but that said I am not closed minded to the idea. Using a trailer for fallout 4 does seem the most sensible way of doing it, but in doing so would you be considering extending this to all game overhead articles and their expansions for consistency (Nuka-World, Fallout 3 etc). I appreciate that this is about putting the videos on videos with high traffic, I would want to see them applied in a way that balance the wiki in appearance. Sakaratte - Talk to the cat 06:48, June 6, 2017 (UTC)
Although I am broadly against video, the video I could clearly be in favour of would be to show things that can't be shown any other way... An actual How-To on using console commands might be something useful to have.
On a somewhat different topic... Back before F4 I had half a mind of a how to make a mod series. This wouldn't fit our editorial guidelines for an article of course, but as a blog series it is the sort of thing we'd consider. Is this something that might be of interest Brandon? Agent c (talk) 22:38, June 6, 2017 (UTC)
We'll go with the video on console commands then. My team's next step will be to write the script. To answer some of the questions here:
  • How long would production take? Whenever we start working on it, about 3-4 hours.
  • What would you need from us? What would you like from us? For this video we'll post the script in this thread ahead of time. At that point we'll give 24 hours for feedback.
  • What are you willing to do without us? We'll obviously be the ones producing the video internally once the script is finalized, so to answer your question: just production really.
  • Would we add trailers to all game/add on pages? Most likely, yes.
  • Blog series. We would only create videos that would live in the featured wiki video placement at the top of wiki pages. So we wouldn't be able to make those videos. But if you or someone else on the wiki wanted to make them, I'd be happy to provide some pointers and feedback.
- Brandon Rhea(talk) 00:00, June 9, 2017 (UTC)