Proposal talk:View deleted pages

From Strategic Planning

Quick comments

  • This has been debated countless times on; have you read those discussions?
  • I believe Mike Godwin has commented that this would create a number of serious legal implications (look at his contributions).
  • Deleted means deleted. Philosophically, we should stick with that.

--MZMcBride 01:50, 14 August 2009 (UTC)[reply]

  • [1], never gonna happen--Jac16888 00:40, 23 August 2009 (UTC)[reply]
    Mike Godwin's concern would not apply to a specific version of this proposal, dubbed "soft deletion" – which does not supersede the current "hard" deletion but would be an additional possibility between userfication and hard delete. Many admins will generally userfy deleted pages on request, so non-administrator users already have access to deleted pages (provided they are aware of the fact the pages were deleted, which is easy for pages deleted through the regular AfD process but particularly unlikely for prodded pages, whose retained visibility would be quite harmless).  --Lambiam 10:29, 23 August 2009 (UTC)[reply]
    The only problem with that is that it can only be used on articles after the ability is created, so for the millions upon millions of already deleted articles it won't make the slightest bit of difference, unless someone ones to go through and "soft-restore" the ones that fit under the proposal--Jac16888 13:42, 31 August 2009 (UTC)[reply]

I second the emotion of the proposal

"Deleted means deleted"? Fine ... then don't delete it. Archive it ... somewhere ... anywhere ... but keep it accessible. (In legal cases, no problem ... how often is that a real consideration ... or just a convenient rationale at this moment?)

If I work on something and it gets deleted for whatever reason (apart from legal) -- I may want to access the work so I can rectify it or finish it or whatever ... and it's not available ... then Deletion has killed my incentive to do that. More than that, it's work that I did in good faith and it's been arbitrarily erased WITHOUT RECOURSE.
Oh wait, I can write someone and explain to them. Why should I? Did they trouble to write me and explain what they intended? But more fundamentally: WHAT gives them the right? It's MY work, it should be MY job to delete. THEN I have a chance to see what I can save or move elsewhere.

(Has that happened to me a lot? No, just once or twice and on small additions or on pages that someone else created and I made the first and only contribution. STILL it's AGGRAVATING and OFF-PUTTING. And yes, I'm capping those words to indicate my irritation. Who wants to pour time into WP and have it whisked away in a second by someone *you don't know* after 10 seconds consideration?
Let's say I got sick or my grandmother died or I got called out of town for 2 weeks ... and in the meantime something I worked hard on was deleted without recourse. I'D NEVER EDIT OR CONTRIBUTE AGAIN. Hasn't happened yet ... to me.)

If someone has gone to the trouble of making a long list, or chosen a subject that isn't "notable" enough, or whatever -- in the judgement of whoever does the review -- sometimes only one person -- who died and made them God? -- that doesn't mean it has no value to anyone WHO UNDERSTANDS IT. YOU may not care about or see the importance in it. But there are BILLIONS of people on the Earth, and there are probably 20 or 40 or 100 to whom that subject IS worth exploring. So WHY DELETE IT? ONLY the person who put it there should have that option (again, with exceptions for legal issues.)

Meanwhile there's an article about a stupid joke that Ron Reagan made in 198x on NPR "we start the bombing in 5 minutes" sitting there unmolested and unassimilated.

Meanwhile little cliques can get together and pester the editors of the LGBT sections of Wikipedia in every way that they can, and noone seems to notice. DIRE.

FINALLY: You people put up a call for proposals on the top of the Wikipedia page. Then someone comes here and makes a proposal. How does it get treated? Subject to the same Kafkaesque quick judgement and execution that has infected WP in recent years. NICE. Do you want proposals, or just more bodies you can execute and throw in a ditch?

Don't write me about these comments. You asked for them, you got them, do what you think best with them. Twang 05:08, 14 August 2009 (UTC)[reply]

Allow searching of deleted content

While the vast majority of deletions are the right call, both for items accessible via history and deleted articles, I'd like the ability to search with keywords in search engine form (and not have to try some vain effort of skimming potentially megabytes - or far more - of text). For instance, a few examples of obscure data I liked:

The list of Digital Copy titles is now gone. SR-71 references in popular culture? Saddam Hussein references in popular culture? Movie appearances of the Smart Car? And countless trivia sections. All deleted and in the cases of the separate articles, inaccessible forever.

Sure, maybe those things don't belong in the articles themselves, nor should they live on as separate articles, but Please, no matter how silly or trivial they may be, give me the option of searching them in an effective way.

Yes, I am aware that there are ways around deletions: Wikipedia mirrors, Google cache, Internet Archive, and sites like WikiGrain. My point is that such an ability should be an official part of Wikimedia. And as for the "deleted means deleted" argument: Boy, you must hate the Internet Archive. Or the Usenet archive. Or Apple's Time Machine. Or for that matter any and all archives and backup of any data. My point is that archiving all the cruft and giving me a search engine to view it seems harmless and without it, Wikimedia is less of a resource. (unsigned comment by User:

Copyright concerns

If we would implement this, we would have to find a new way to delete copyright violations. Right now they are removed via the delete feature and so inaccessible for the greater public. If every logged in user could view them, deletion would not be sufficient. Regards, --ChrisiPK 20:36, 16 August 2009 (UTC)[reply]

If you have copyright concerns, perhaps you should take a look at the section When not to soft delete of en:Wikipedia:Soft deletion, a proposal-under-construction that was declared a failed proposal while the discussion was ongoing.  --Lambiam 09:20, 21 August 2009 (UTC)[reply]
Maybe articles that are deleted without copyvio and other critical reasons could be just blanked instead. This would allow to view "deleted" versions without implementing any extra features Audriusa 15:53, 30 August 2009 (UTC).[reply]

Revive soft deletion

The way to accomplish without causing very many of the significant problems highlighted by GChriss and others would be to revive Erik Moeller's old soft deletion proposal. It wouldn't even require any significant development or configuration changes. With soft deletion, weak, marginal, unencyclopdic, or otherwise unacceptable content that would currently be deleted via proposed deletion or Articles for Deletion would instead just be moved into another namespace. Content that ought not be accessible (copyright violation, pure nonsense, defamatory content, etc.) would still be deleted normally.--ragesoss 21:12, 16 August 2009 (UTC)[reply]

I agree

My first articles were both removed by admins who disliked the topics. In other words: The topics were banned. In the first case, the text was put on my userpage, so I could save it elsewhere: Citizendium and Wikinfo. But the text of my second article - PESWiki - is lost for me. So what should I do? Seems I must just shout: Hello! Anybody who can give me back this text?

It is very discouraging for a writer to discover that a clique of selfappointed censors can ban topics they dislike, and that more or less random passers-by in deletion debates can overrule my argumentation by throwing out phrases like "Pseudoscience!". OlavN 08:44, 25 August 2009 (UTC)[reply]

So maybe instead of doing soft deletion by moving the article to Wikipedia:Attic/X, we can move it to Citizendium :).

For the rest, deletion of the Ormus matter article was endorsed in Deletion review, and the main argument was the lack of notability and reliable sources. I don't know about the PESwiki article, but I can imagine the problems there were similar.  --Lambiam 20:44, 25 August 2009 (UTC)[reply]


Some proposals will have massive impact on end-users, including non-editors. Some will have minimal impact. What will be the impact of this proposal on our end-users? -- Philippe 00:18, 3 September 2009 (UTC)[reply]

Or possibly, a user access level

That can view deleted pages. This ability would be given out like candy to any registered user after a request. I've missed out on lots of obscure information that would have come in handy for my projects in deleted pages and became frustrated when I found out there was nothing I could do. Becoming an administrator would be counter-productive, as all I want to do is read deleted pages and not have the responsibility of directing hundreds of people. Being able to read the pages that were destroyed for no good reason would be immensely helpful. CompuHacker 01:54, 29 September 2009 (UTC)[reply]