Discworld & Pratchett Wiki:Mended Drum

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 This is a location to discuss non-content matters (what do we do with content disputes, vandalism, etc, what do we want to do with this wiki, and so on).

Well, that hurts

Changing the backend of architecture had a hiccup and I had to restore from my previous backup. We've all new changes since the 23rd :( --Osiris (talk) 18:12, 7 July 2021 (UTC)

Back up again faster than expected; now about the previous problem... Is there yet hope of recovering the Discworld & Terry Pratchett namespace (or the missing images)? I have the Mended Drum archives, but I don't know what's to be done with the rest of the missing pieces. Old Dickens (talk) 21:48, 9 July 2021 (UTC)
I restored the Mended Drum archives. What other pages are you looking for? --Osiris (talk) 18:57, 10 July 2021 (UTC)
The portals on the Main Page, mainly (the About page doesn't even have the link now); there may be more I haven't seen yet. --Old Dickens (talk) 19:56, 10 July 2021 (UTC)
I think everything is back. At least all of the ones I can find in the database are restored. Can you give me an example page with a missing image? I'll tackle those next. --Osiris (talk) 21:12, 10 July 2021 (UTC)
Yay! (I wonder how you did that.) Missing image in Chidder, e,g. --Old Dickens (talk) 22:55, 10 July 2021 (UTC) The File List suggests that all images between Aug, 2006 and the Long Drive may be missing. --Old Dickens (talk)
Sent you an email --Osiris (talk) 05:20, 11 July 2021 (UTC)

New staff

After a long period of inadequate supervision, the wiki is pleased to announce the appointment of new administrators:
Jagra as Head Librarian and
Rabbi Moishe Rosenbaum as Spiritual Adviser . Old Dickens (talk) 00:42, 24 January 2022 (UTC)
And belatedly, having opened his email:
Guybrush representing the underside of the Disc.

Much appreciated! I'll huddle up with Pastor Oats. Thanks, Old Dickens and Osiris! Moishe Rosenbaum (talk) 01:08, 24 January 2022 (UTC)
Thanks very much; and a position that no ones going to try to assassinate me over. Ook. Jagra (talk) 22:20, 24 January 2022 (UTC)
Well, you know what they say about "running on Fourecksian time"... Thanks folks. Nice to be on the team. - Guybrush (talk) 03:43, 2 February 2022 (UTC)

Discussion of respect for peripheral creations

(moved from Talk:Jocasta Wiggs.)
Gee I hate The Watch! Does it deserve references here beyond its own page acknowledging its existence? It has almost nothing to do with the works of Terry Pratchett. --Old Dickens (talk) 00:47, 4 February 2022 (UTC)

I mean, it's a related work and people are going to want to know more about it; I don't like the idea of trying to put everything relevant on that one page. And if someone wants to know more about the character in the show, who gets a lot more screen time than the book version, this felt like the right place for a little paragraph. But if the consensus is it's not wanted here, fair enough and I'll stop adding info about it. I'll note it's not universally hated, though, despite its faults. -- Guybrush (talk) 03:59, 4 February 2022 (UTC)

OK, two opinions. Is anyone invoking Terry's name entitled to advertising here? Where's the limit? --Old Dickens (talk) 05:01, 4 February 2022 (UTC)

I haven't seen the show, and I don't intend to - not after I saw what the young (my age!) Ms. Pratchett had to say about it on twitter a long while ago. But, that said... it's not a pirated fanfic, it's a legit derivative work that, as Guybrush says, people may come to this site for info about. As long as anything about it is clearly marked as from the show, or "non canonical", or something like that - as long as we're not representing The Watch as an actual Terry Pratchett creation - I'm okay with it getting coverage. Though my heart agrees with Old Dickens. And someone please correct me if I'm wrong about anything here. Moishe Rosenbaum (talk) 05:24, 4 February 2022 (UTC)
Terry's name appears in the titles, Rob is still credited as a producer and the Narrativia logo appears at the end, which for me is qualification enough; and no other adaptation has been different enough to require additional information like this (except maybe the TV version of Good Omens). But it's true that the important difference between The Watch and other adaptations is that the official Pratchett team are clearly unhappy with the result, and that they didn't have the equivalent of the veto power Terry had on all projects while he was alive. I also understand why people don't like it, even if I did (if with plenty of reservations). I want to document it somewhere - not least for fans who want to know more about it without watching it - but to avoid contention, perhaps we should just confine it to the specific article. I can find somewhere else for the greater detail. (As it happens, I have a whole separate wiki I've been working on, on which I've already set up interwiki to L-Space.) -- Guybrush (talk) 12:11, 4 February 2022 (UTC)

You may be right. I started here arguing against content restrictions since we don't take up any weight or shelf space.
What, then, might be reasonable limits to inclusion or linking in the wiki? So far, I and contemporaries have treated spam pretty ruthlessly because it was obvious. What credit do we give a book/story/movie/tvseries/game/... that has only a nominal connection to Terry Pratchett? We already treat Discworld Noir as if it were canon, so it's muddy. --Old Dickens (talk) 18:33, 4 February 2022 (UTC)

This discussion is getting big enough that we should shift it to the Drum, since it's no longer just about The Watch, but what our policy is on inclusion of stuff in general. My two cents though is that anything officially licensed should definitely be included, and that unambiguously includes both The Watch and Discworld Noir, even though neither was written by Terry himself. -- Guybrush (talk) 00:39, 5 February 2022 (UTC)

I think the difference is that Discworld Noir does not get equal billing in an article if it uses a canonical name. What do we do with fanfic versions and creations? I still prefer separation of peripherals. Old Dickens (talk) 04:52, 29 December 2022 (UTC)

We used to have a page for administrative discussion, but Osiris never liked the idea. -- Old Dickens (talk) 04:18, 5 February 2022 (UTC)

Down time

And...we're back. They blowed that cable up real good. --Old Dickens (talk) 16:27, 25 February 2022 (UTC)

Railroad company doing maintenance didn't check for existing lines and dragged it's feet taking responsibility and allowing access for repairs. 1100 Tuesday to 0200 Friday complete outage. Then I had to update the DNS back to normal and wait for propagation. --Osiris (talk) 16:59, 25 February 2022 (UTC)
Woo-hoo! Thanks, Osiris. For all I understand about such things, you might as well have said "a witch flew into a tower." Glad we are up and running again! :-) Moishe Rosenbaum (talk) 18:45, 25 February 2022 (UTC)
Yeah, he often talks IT to me. I just smile and nod. He's a sort of Ponder Stibbons among us old-fashioned wizards. --Old Dickens (talk) 00:25, 26 February 2022 (UTC)
As someone who did understand all of those words...thanks for getting it sorted, Osiris! ;) -- Guybrush (talk) 05:00, 26 February 2022 (UTC)

Those missing facilities

Is the loss of hit counters, PopularPages and such interesting utilities due to practical or philosophical reasons? --Old Dickens (talk) 01:53, 2 March 2022 (UTC)

CQ Vade Mecum

French site Vade Mecum has been hijacked and the link leads to a load of malevolent crap. Their Facebook page remains and doesn't mention the problem. It wants someone with better French than mine to ask them. -- Old Dickens (talk) 03:13, 31 March 2022 (UTC)

Page count

Trying to do a count of total pages (the page counter having been broken for some years), I find that Special:AllPages reports:
"A database query error has occurred. This may indicate a bug in the software."
It gives the error code [71b51ca94cd2a7996b274243] 2022-05-12 04:37:07: Fatal exception of type "Wikimedia\Rdbms\DBQueryError" Old Dickens (talk) 04:46, 12 May 2022 (UTC)


I'm glad "TilanissaWildhawk" and "Argent Stallion" are just spammers. They sound problematic as real contributors. Old Dickens (talk) 15:55, 1 June 2022 (UTC)


Editing appears to work.

Does editing still work?

I dunno; ISP has been down all day all over the country. (Seems to work Old Dickens (talk) 05:00, 9 July 2022 (UTC))

This is me. Testing editing after applying the upgrade... --Osiris (talk) 19:37, 9 July 2022 (UTC)

Server Move

Editing may be a bit slow for a while. I had to move to a slower system to perform some maintenance on the old server. I'll move it back as soon as i can. --Osiris (talk) 20:40, 18 July 2022 (UTC)

Moved DB to Amazon RDS so we'll see how fast it goes. --Osiris (talk) 20:28, 19 July 2022 (UTC)
Not that fast at the moment. Old Dickens (talk) 23:42, 19 July 2022 (UTC)

Everything okay?

Site's been offline for a day or two, by my reckoning; just moving back to the old server, or something else? (PS - I've been bit quiet, but I'm still around!) -- Guybrush (talk) 05:57, 30 July 2022 (UTC)

Back for a while, but not on the real server, apparently; still at dial-up speed. Old Dickens (talk) 16:04, 30 July 2022 (UTC)
Back on dedicated hardware. --Osiris (talk) 22:02, 2 August 2022 (UTC)
Back at warp speed already! Nice work, Scotty! Old Dickens (talk) 14:56, 3 August 2022 (UTC)
Special pages is not back, however. [7f0d5fb90f244811375db569] 2022-08-03 20:03:27: Fatal exception of type "TypeError" Old Dickens (talk) 20:05, 3 August 2022 (UTC)
I complained before about the loss of some features of Special Pages, but I wonder if we can get along without the whole set. Are they coming back?
(I can search out individual pages if I can remember the Speling, and Categories are available from the Main page, but the list was more convenient. If the list must go the link should be removed from the sidebar.) Old Dickens (talk) 23:35, 21 August 2022 (UTC)

Annotations (again)

Soliciting opinions of administrators and all users on the admissibility and editing of annotations; does the old consensus hold? Does anyone's opinion qualify as an Annotation? See User talk:Moishe Rosenbaum#Annotations. Old Dickens (talk) 02:51, 17 November 2022 (UTC)

I think some editorial control would be appropriate, at least in the form of some basic standards. We're the successor of the APF, and that was compiled intentionally, rather than including every comment made by fans on the group. I agree with Moishe that "this reminds me of this other thing" isn't sufficient. As a baseline, specific similarities should be cited, and where possible evidence for a link. If there is none, then that should be clear by using language like "might be a reference to" - there are some long bow comments in some annotations which are written as if they are fact. And I am also okay with old annotations being edited where appropriate, too. Part of agreeing to contribute to a wiki is understanding what you write is not permanent and may be changed by others over time. Disagreements can be hashed out on Discussion pages if need be. -- Guybrush (talk) 11:12, 19 November 2022 (UTC)
Well said, Guybrush. Successor to the APF - large boots to fill! You're right that we need to aspire to that level, even if we don't reach it all the time.Moishe Rosenbaum (talk) 00:39, 20 November 2022 (UTC)

With all due respect to Leo and Mike, I had hoped for more than a collection of annotations. If, on the other hand, we were going to be a continuation of the APF, annotations would need to be filed in the annotation pages with original edition page numbers. Nobody does that. Old Dickens (talk) 02:13, 20 November 2022 (UTC)
Moishe said: "Yet I kinda think that on a wiki, we have to put up with some of the less-specific annotations in order to get the awesome ones, the same way panning for gold requires one's hands to get quite mucky before the good stuff filters out." I guess that depends on your idea of less-specific but I'd prefer we tried to refine the gold and dump the muck. Old Dickens (talk) 02:34, 20 November 2022 (UTC)

Well, I do put annotations in that way - and I'm willing to go through and move them to separate pages, with page numbers, for the books at least. (Page numbers don't have to be from the original editions (the later paperbacks are far more common these days, after all), as long as the edition is noted.) For other kinds of articles, a separate annotations section at the bottom is fine, but should be cleaned up wherever possible. We aren't just annotations, of course - I also think our role is to be a source of "who is that again?" kind of information that the Discworld Companions are actually really bad for, as they are all jokes and no actual context - but we're also not the only Discworld-themed wiki. I'm keen for us to differentiate ourselves and not end up a dumping ground for everything like some of them are; the Fandom one, for example, has huge slabs of the APF next to stuff from this wiki and other stuff that's just nonsense, with no differentiation or proper organisation. So I also definitely agree we should dump the muck and refine the gold! -- Guybrush (talk) 02:17, 22 November 2022 (UTC)

Bonzer! Death to graffiti artists! We have been something of a dumping ground for any crackpot opinion since the consensus of ten years ago that "my uninformed and illogical opinion is as good as yours". My ideal would be no annotations in factual pages, but if we can edit them and cull the worst it's a useful compromise. Old Dickens (talk) 02:55, 22 November 2022 (UTC)

I'm 100% on board with "edit them and cull the worst". Here we *go*. (And good luck to your respective foot-the-ball teams today and tomorrow!)Moishe Rosenbaum (talk) 18:39, 22 November 2022 (UTC)

No such luck. Moishe/Osiris 5, Guybrush 6, Old Dickens X. Old Dickens (talk) 21:03, 23 November 2022 (UTC)

After watching the first games, I would've wagered on Old Dickens over any of the rest of us. Your team looked great. Alphonso Davies is a beast.
Now, in the 2023 Women's world cup, USA/Canada/Australia sound like three favorites. DYK I have a Haley Raso jersey?Moishe Rosenbaum (talk) 21:50, 1 December 2022 (UTC)

...and then

Here's a challenge for the new consensus on annotations. See Moules. Here is a looong annotation based only on a similar made-up word, but it's amusing. There's nothing wrong with it in itself and I'd say it was positive contribution, but it does over-balance the main article. Opinions?

I mean, I'm happy to move this to the talk page. It's certainly interesting, and it adds background that I wasn't aware of, since I'm American and younger than TP. Yet, I agree this is more an interesting side note rather than an annotation. Are others okay if I move it to talk? Moishe Rosenbaum (talk) 21:52, 1 December 2022 (UTC)

That could be done...I asked because I was torn myself. I have been more interested in getting the utter nonsense out than the merely peripheral. Old Dickens (talk) 02:31, 2 December 2022 (UTC)

Yeah, I agree - we don't need to be ruthless! I'd probably edit something like that shorter if possible, or perhaps in this case add a bit more detail to the main article, but we don't need to remove something interesting as long as its clear and doesn't detract from the utility of the article. Having it in a separate section helps there, too. I don't know if moving it to the talk page is best, though - a lot of users will never think to look there. -- Guybrush (talk) 09:31, 6 December 2022 (UTC)

Repeated annotations

One benefit to having annotations in articles about things and people is that when they crop up in multiple books we can easily do a "see Piecemaker" (for example); as it is now, many annotation pages include annotations for things already annotated elsewhere, and not always in agreement. (The Thud! annotation for the piecemaker said it was a reference to a bomber plane, with the gun mentioned as a "maybe".) I'd be keen to replace a lot of those with a wiki-link, or at least to edit down to a short version with a link to the detail. -- Guybrush (talk) 09:35, 6 December 2022 (UTC)

No argument from me. I've seen a few that are about the same concept, but phrased completely differently on the book's annotation page and on the page for the concept itself. Not the end of the world, of course, but where you see these, I'd say, change it - I'll do the same!Moishe Rosenbaum (talk) 01:32, 7 December 2022 (UTC)


Recalled from the archives:
I'd suggest that for an annotation to count as such, it has to satisfy several criteria:

i) The argument is as watertight, logical and succinct as possible;

ii)The mistake is avoided of attributing specific status to a generic observation. To explain, the anthropomorphic personification of Death is a universal concept which has been around, in the "modern" form of scythe-carrying animated skeleton, since mediaeval times. A lot of people have used this image - Pratchett is only a contemporary user, and not the latest. There is a discussion on the "Reverse Annotations" talk page as to why the makers of the animation Family Guy may' have been influenced by the Discworld in their interpretation of the Death character, and why the makers of The Simpsons almost certainly haven't. In principle, just because other people use the Death icon does not imply they've borrowed it from Terry - as he himself said we're all fishing from the same stream.

iii) The onus is always on the Annotator to explain exactly why they think their insight qualifies as an Annotation. As the maths exam says - explain your workings.

iv) An Annotation you have to explain with a convoluted thousand-word essay almost certainly isn't. In this case it's likely to be the author's own wishful thinking. the best and most certain ones are short, pithy and tie exactly between the Annotation and the idea or concept it showcases.

v) The more points of association you see between the text and an external idea or quality, the more likely it is to be an Annotation. For instance, the shout-outs to Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice to be seen in the pages of Snuff. Everything fits; nothing is problematic or wishful thinking. Conversely, just because two words used in a character name or description also appear in a Beatles song title, it doesn't necessarily mean this is intentional. Lucy Tockley was not in the habit of spacing herself out on hard drugs, for instance, and almost nothing in the song lyrics is reflected in the events of Lords and Ladies. The association is tempting, but ultimately only superficial. Soul Music aside, look more deeply into the lyrics of songs, not just the titles, to check as certainly as you can as to whether TP is really referencing them. Avoid superficiality.

vi) It helps to know a little about Terry: for instance, his favourite novelists: it isn't then a long jump from George Wambaugh (police procedurals and cops-as-buddies novels) to the City Watch. Nor from George McDonald-Fraser (war stories involving unruly Scottish soldiers) to the NacMacFeegle. We also know his favourite rock/pop/folk music includes They Might Be Giants, the Blue Öyster Cult and Steeleye Span, all bands referenced freely in the books to date. He is also fond of bad puns and absurd humour.

vii) Terry has a serious side. His thoughts on assisted death - and the dignity of life - are well known. Sometimes an annotation might be there to point the thoughtful in a given direction. He's good at multi-level puns, that is, condensing the maximum of information into the least possible words. Look out for this too, but this is necessary more speculative. For instance, a very minor character yet to get even a speaking part - although the context suggests with a very marked and unique accent - is Miss Smith-Rhodes, teacher at the Assassins' School. In one name, Terry has condensed a hundred years of political history in Southern Africa, and this screams out that this name did not happen by accident: Cecil Rhodes created a country called Rhodesia. Ian Smith was its last white ruler, in the tradition of Rhodes, fighting a bitter civil war before having to concede defeat and hand it over to black majority rule and Robert Mugabe's tender care. These two names condense the rise and fall of white empire in Africa into two words - very economical shorthand. Maybe he has a sketched-out plot for a lost colony in Howondaland? And in the context of academia, a Rhodes Scholar is a gifted student from the white British Empire who gets to study for free, and with a grant, at Oxford or Cambridge.... for this number of referents to come together in a single character strongly suggests something is going on here. These things are certainly worth noting.

--AgProv 03:42, 28 November 2011 (CET)

Oh, ay. Should be printed on the Main Page, but, the Devil being in the details, how to enforce it? AgProv has contributed lots of useful and entertaining annotations, generally admitting it, at least, if they become imaginative. We might even be able to agree on what's "watertight and logical", but others won't. I spent last year campaigning against vacuous annotations and graffiti in general but the consensus seemed to be that anyone had the right to free expression here, short of spam. (Meanwhile, why is this meta discussion in Lucy Tockley's page? I'm moving a copy over to the Mended Drum.) --Old Dickens 00:44, 29 November 2011 (CET)

Some guidelines for annotators?

Useful annotations:
Explaining the more obscure bits of British institutions, geography, pop culture, etc. to the rest of us. British movies, rock and roll and some tv shows will be known internationally: not so much comic strips, radio personalities, the Football League and cricket or the British Post Office. This may occasionally work in reverse for Fourecksian or Genuan trivia, Seattle or the environs of Power Cable, Neb. (See SiD's note on Integrated Mail Processors (Going Postal/Annotations). That's interesting (and still in the Annotations page).

Explaining details that might not be known outside your area of special interest (except by a researcher of TP's experience). Math and physics to the journalists, say, or German philosophers to the more technical.

Useless annotations:

The Bleeding Obvious. Please, you can't read Pratchett if you're thicker than a Troll sandwich.
Explaining the Jokes, unless there's a real chance they depend on a useful annotation above.(Even then, a joke explained tends to be a joke spoiled.)
What You Think The Author Was Thinking. If you were as smart as he is you wouldn't be working for free here, would you?

--Old Dickens 03:29, 15 December 2011 (CET)

Opinions? Old Dickens (talk) 06:26, 25 January 2023 (UTC)

I agree with nearly all of this, though the bit about “useless annotations” needs to take into account that Pratchett’s readers in 2023 don’t have the same cultural context as those at the time of publication. What was "bleeding obvious" in 1983, 1996 or even 2015 may not be so for new readers now - and indeed, wasn’t for all readers then! We don’t know who is reading an annotation, beyond that they are interested in Pratchett’s work. So I think annotations should be written in plain language and explain themselves clearly, with a minimum of assumptions. They should convey everything you need to understand the basic reference, then link to sources that explain further so they don’t get too long. (e.g. it’s enough to explain that the band We’re Certainly Dwarfs is a reference to one of Pratchett’s favourite “nerd rock” bands, They Might Be Giants; see also Foul Ole Ron and the origins of “Bugrit millennium hand and shrimp”.) So I guess I’d add “Annotations should be complete.”
I also think some jokes might need explaining now, if the cultural references they rely on are now more obscure than at the time of writing. And I say this as a sometimes professional comedian and comedy writer who hates doing that!
I’d prefer we didn't use language describing folks as stupid for not getting things. Pratchett has a broad appeal, and he read and researched widely; no-one gets every joke and reference.
Finally, when it comes to reverse annotations, I think they ought to have a much higher bar to clear: unless they’re unambiguous or there’s clear evidence, we have no idea if other creators have even read Pratchett, let alone are really referencing his work. -- Guybrush (talk) 05:17, 26 January 2023 (UTC)

As a North American, I didn't get all the jokes in many of my first Pratchett books either, but the bleeding obvious needs moderation before the article/annotation becomes condescending. I'd admit that there needs to be consideration of the generation gap. --Old Dickens (talk) 05:52, 26 January 2023 (UTC)

That was interesting

Hey, we've moved behind the scenes again. Sorry for the downtime. My home internet company decided to remove my static IP so back to the cloud we go. It was a pain to get working again. Let me know if you find anything broken. --Osiris (talk) 03:25, 29 August 2023 (UTC)

Bugger. Are they worse than my IP? Old Dickens (talk) 04:58, 29 August 2023 (UTC)

AI content and fan project promotion

So we have a new contributor (hello DugBride if you’re reading this) who is adding AI-generated images to pages without images, and attributing them to their fan project, a Discworld “re-skin” of the board game Oath. Which means the time has come for us to have a policy about AI-generated content. As a writer, actor, teacher, podcaster and more, every facet of my life is currently being made worse or at best more complicated by diffusion model images and large language model text, so I’m not a fan. But I recognise that’s not necessarily a majority opinion. So: what do we think? I don’t think we want AI text here at all, and at a bare minimum I want art to be clearly attributed to the model that created it. I would prefer hand-drawn fan art for character and item art, and I confess I am not a fan of some of the images uploaded so far, but again I recognise that’s a preference. But I am also not in favour of the wiki being filled up with images that promote a fan project, even if it is one I’m interested in. (This is why I have limited mention of my own podcast here, and started my own wiki for the detail I wanted to share.) What do you folks think? -- Guybrush (talk) 22:48, 7 December 2023 (UTC)

I'm not a fan either, of course, and I would certainly ban AI-generated text, except how would you recognise it? Images are more difficult. What if the image were created in an old-fashioned (two years ago?) drawing program? What about photographs? I expect you know a lot more about the process than I; what if the AI is just used to smooth out an original drawing or color it, or...? Enforcement seems to be the hardest part. Other ideas, anyone? Old Dickens (talk) 23:37, 7 December 2023 (UTC)

I’m not proposing we get too draconian about it, but having an official policy (or as close to official as we get) is enough to get us started. If folks want to ignore the rules and do it anyway, we can address that if necessary. I would just like us to be clear about whether we want images created by a diffusion model - which is to say, a generative AI like MidJourney or Dall-E which takes a text prompt and then creates an image based on analysis of training images (many used without permission) and associated descriptions. If someone makes art themselves and includes some kind of computer assistance in their process, I am not that fussed, just as I don’t mind if someone has a chat with ChatGPT to get inspiration for the fanfic they then go on to write. But the kind of thing created just by prompting an algorithm seems rather against the fandom spirit of L-Space, to me; fandom involves community, and that means if you need art for a project, you talk to other fans and find fan artists who are willing to help. An example policy might be something like: “This wiki does not permit the use of content created wholly or primarily by generative AI systems, including large language and diffusion models for text or art. All text added should be the work of the contributor; any art uploaded should be done so only with permission, and attributed to the creator.” -- Guybrush (talk) 08:00, 9 December 2023 (UTC)

Hi there thanks for the welcome and open discussion I was aware both issues you have raised were contentious which is why I messaged Old Dickens direct before touching a page to get the go ahead to open this can of worms. I don't know how the back end of these things work so had to feel my way and have learned a fair bit in the past couple of days. Including where you talk about these things.
Here is where I am at...I would say if you don't like AI content then don't allow any AI content, if it is uploaded but then attributed to the model then I think you would be promoting it and will get a lot more. It has been surprisingly easy for me as a first time user to access and upload images seemingly without any gatekeeping, I am sure you already have safeguards against this but you may want to relook at those if you are hoping people will act in good faith. As for the project promotion, I agree it's a bit too much and if it's OK I will remove all references just leave the link in in my profile. Following the example set by Guybrush. I will of course not add any more pics but, it might be best if the current images stay while you make your decision, a picture tells a 1000 words even if those words are “we don't want these pictures” if then they are removed you may have to do it because although I can remove the page code, I have no idea how to delete uploaded files. Ironically I have been using both this reference and Guybrush’s podcast regularly without knowing they are connected for the last few months to get up to speed on Discworld, it took me all my life to read most of the books and so I have had to take shortcuts to work on the project references. I have a lot of respect for both sources and wouldn't want to cause any trouble.
If the images are unwelcome then I doubt I will have much to add as a contributor, there are a few unanswered questions when doing my research that I might be able to offer something on; Holy horns gesture? Guild Weathervanes? But you seem to have a lot covered and I have my own shed to be working in, maybe further down the road if you need some help administrating incoming imagery then I can help, although my field is Digital Imagery I am no artist and no expert in spotting deep fakes either. Finally I am thrilled you have both looked at my work in progress even if your not fans, I appreciate discerning feedback but happy to keep in my shed for now where I can choose how long Carrot has grown his hair. DugBride 11:44, 9 December 2023 (UTC)

Hey DugBride - I might not be a fan of the art, or even Oath, but your project is pretty amazing! And we do have a Fandom page where you could list it, at the very least. I want to thank you for engaging in this discussion in generous good faith, too. I’m not interested in having to police images really, but I think if we have a policy and find the right place to get it in front of users then that should be enough - I’m not expecting a torrent of diffusion model generated Discworld characters any time soon! — Guybrush (talk) 20:10, 14 December 2023 (UTC)

I'd go along with Guybrush's policy statement, above, now, where does it go? I wouldn't like a big banner of "don'ts" on the front page, but if it's in "About", or Help:Editing nobody will read it. Help:Editing is already noted at the top of every editing page, so I guess we could say ignorance of the law is no excuse. I have to defer to Guybrush on interpretation of what's too much AI; I don't suppose it's possible to credit the source in an AI image when there might be dozens. Old Dickens (talk) 18:44, 10 December 2023 (UTC)
I think on image upload I had to tick a box marked "this is my own work" If it had said this is my own work and not AI generated I would have halted at that point. Apologies for the multi edits; still learning. --DugBride (talk) 12:33, 11 December 2023 (UTC)

This is a pretty good idea. What if we create a policies page (it could also include guidelines on annotations etc) and then link to that from the upload page? We can probably change the language on the upload page itself, too. And to be honest ownership is part of the problem; at the moment the ownership of generated images is murky at best, and it’s certainly unclear who owns copyright. So that does seem like the right place to put it. — Guybrush (talk) 20:10, 14 December 2023 (UTC) On the subject of “how much AI is too much AI” I don’t think that’s a big problem; right now the thing we don’t want are wholly generated images - things created by diffusion models and similar tools, stuff like MidJourney or Dall-E, which create an image for you based on a text prompt. We don’t need to worry about folks using “AI” tools when making digital fan art (anything vaguely automated is being misleadingly lLabelled “AI” At the moment, even when many of those technologies already existed under other more sensible names). Perhaps we just need a clarifying clause on the “your own artwork” covering that it has to be yours, used with permission, allowed by copyright law and attributable to a person. I think it will also help to include in our art policy that as a fan project we want to showcase fan artists; you are welcome to use whatever you like to make art for yourself or or your own projects, but here we want to showcase human-drawn (etc) fan art. And as a longer term solution, perhaps I can do some call-outs in other fan spaces asking if folks have character and location fan art they’d be happy for us to use on the wiki for articles which lack images? — Guybrush (talk) 20:24, 14 December 2023 (UTC)

I second all that, except that the Upload file page is for images and doesn't relate to annotations; also it's a "special page" and Osiris would have to modify it. Help:editing is already linked from editing pages. Old Dickens (talk) 21:19, 14 December 2023 (UTC)
DugBride has removed his contributions. I'm of two minds on this; I have despised computer-generated pop music for many years now and I would prefer hand-made art or clever photographs, but we've begged for illustration for years and some of what we have isn't very good. I wish we could have more as useful as PetuliaGristle.jpg for example. Are these opposite and irreconcilable viewpoints? Old Dickens (talk) 04:17, 16 December 2023 (UTC)
Missed one, just removed Detritus from the page this morning, like I said I can't do much about the images I uploaded as it won't let me delete the copy on the server. I sympathise with your issue, there are significant characters and locations without graphical representation. The AI works for me as I have to produce 250 images for a very small audience on zero budget, and I am more keen on design and mechanics than artistry. I don't think its as vital a part of your offering. Its possible that in the new year I will take Guybrush's advise and reach out to some of the fan-artists to see if they want to help my project but only when I have something significant to demonstrate. I'll be happy to mention the gaps here that need filling, but it sounds like you have already been down that road. --DugBride (talk) 12:00, 18 December 2023 (UTC)
Hi, all, sorry I'm late to the discussion... boarding school at Hogswatch is a time sink. Anyway, y'all have said pretty much everything I would have, so all I'll do here is lend one more voice in support of Guybrush's suggestion, This wiki does not permit the use of content created wholly or primarily by generative AI systems, including large language and diffusion models for text or art. All text added should be the work of the contributor; any art uploaded should be done so only with permission, and attributed to the creator. I don't think we need to do much more in terms of advertising or enforcement, as long as we have something like this clearly stated somewhere. People don't necessarily read rules before editing. If we find someone using ChatGPT to make articles, we politely ask them to stop, and can point them to the statement if they wonder whether the polite ask has community consensus behind it. Moishe Rosenbaum (talk) 01:01, 21 December 2023 (UTC)
Have you watched The Holdovers? Old Dickens (talk) 02:30, 21 December 2023 (UTC)
I haven't, but I just read about the movie... boarding schools are (for the most part) very, very different places in 2023 than they were in 1970. Yet, the popular perception of class privilege and influence lives on in the zeitgeist. My school doesn't allow students to remain on campus over Christmas break. The ones for whom getting home would be prohibitive - usually just a few folks from overseas - generally stay with friends. We have a faculty member who helps coordinate such stays if students need help. My family hosted several of my son's friends, who were from China and Vietnam, on occasion.
Okay, in spring 2020 most of our international students remained on campus, and I was one of many faculty who volunteered to chaperone / entertain them. That's a very different story, with very different cultural context, to what I read about The Holdovers. <smile>


Clicking Atom in the sidebar bar produces the message: "This XML file does not appear to have any style information associated with it. The document tree is shown below.", followed by pages of XML gibberish. Not widely useful. Old Dickens (talk) 03:34, 26 December 2023 (UTC)

The Atom link is only visible in Recent Changes, your Watchlist or the history of a specific page, and generates an RSS feed (in Atom format) from entries in that list using XML which is (hypothetically) useful for other apps or websites to read. The main use case I’ve seen for that recently is a Discord bot which posts recent changes to a specific text channel, but generally speaking RSS has fallen from favour for most uses except podcasting. The Atom feed option is built in to MediaWiki so we can’t remove it by editing the sidebar menu, but probably there’s an option to disable it in the config file if we really want to. (FYI I don’t get the error you mentioned, though I did get a different one trying to view the feed for my Watchlist that suggests we might have an out of date extension somewhere?) — Guybrush (talk) 12:29, 26 December 2023 (UTC)