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  • Hey, I understand that you're trying to help people understand about the way Wikipedia does talk page indentation, and that's generally a good thing. Not everyone will adopt the new forum, and some wikis will continue to have traditional MW talk spaces. So it's a skill worth talking about.

    However, it may not be universally helpful to stress current policy at Wikipedia. What you're pushing as the "correct" way is something that has not always been the correct way, and it's clearly one of two ways that has been accepted at Wikipedia. Many Wikipedians, myself included, were trained by wikipedia:help:using talk pages to simply indent each new post, as this April 2007 revision clearly shows. A lot of Wikipedians (and by extension some Wikians) remember a time prior to 2006 when there weren't actually any hard rules at all.

    Truth is, there was a lot of debate in the early days of wiki editing — and certainly Wikipedia editing — about exactly how it should go. And that's reflected in wikipedia:help:using talk pages' history, too. It was briefly the method you suggest in 2006, then it was the "indent every new post" method until it went back to the "call and response" method around the turn of 2008. Eventually, the "indent every new post" side simply stopped bothering to edit the help file, and the "call and response" crowd got their way. But people still regularly use the "indent every post" method at Wikipedia.

    So I think you're probably expressing a bit too much certainty when you actively insist that there's a "right" way to indent on talk pages. There are a couple of different methods, each with their strengths and weaknesses, each with some claim on the notion of being "the Wikipedia way".

    Not that "the Wikipedia way" matters, since this is Wikia, and local wikis are free to accept, reject or totally ignore Wikipedia at their leisure. Or to bypass the issue by choosing to accept comments and/or walls instead of talk pages. .

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    • 452

      Thanks. I'm not a wikipedian myself, so I didn't know the history.

      Yeah, I was just using that page as an example, rather than saying "this is the wikipedia way!"

      A better example - that I've used in my most recent response - is to point out that threaded conversations have worked that way since before wikipedia. The most obvious examples that spring to my mind are yahoo groups and livejournal comments. Not the most shining beacons of websites, but they used that method of displaying threaded discussions, and both predate wikipedia (as does my usage of them).

      You're also right that I shouldn't insist on it being the "right" way - I should probably just continue to point out that it's confusing to "indent every post" as it makes it unclear who the comment is meant for.

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    • Yah, I find the confusion over the two methods most profound here at CC — largely because CC admins seem to have a policy of erring so far on the side of "no instruction creep" that there's no instruction at all. So you've got relatively newer editors clashing with relatively older ones over indentation, and then you've got the totally brand new people who don't indent at all.

      Without a local help file/policy here at CC, "right" becomes subjective. And it's ust another reason that, despite its flaws, the Wall forum is largely improves communication.

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