Currently our policy for closed discussions is to delete them after a while. The advantage is that it's very easy to do, but on the other hand it makes it much harder to retrieve old important discussions that for example justified some decisions in the past. In fact, I can remember (briefly) discussing this very policy a long time ago somewhere, but I'm not even attempting to look for it, as it would probably take me half an hour...
Wikipedia uses another policy: they archive old discussions in Archive subpages, so that they'll always appear e.g. in search results. I'd like to discuss (more than propose) here whether such policy would better suit our wiki as well.
We may even create an "Archive" namespace and use its talk pages as archives, so as to allow better filtering the searches.
Finally, I think that I could automate the process of moving a closed discussion to an Archive page with Wiki Monkey, if we found that the added manual work is the only disadvantage.
- The biggest problem of the archive-by-moving method is that it is necessary to update all links to the archived discussion. Therefore the archiving process would be practically limited to using a bot.
- Personally, I find the archive scheme used on Wikipedia rather disorganized - IMO the "Archive" namespace would be better than subpages of the talkpage. They also have some archiving templates to ease browsing of large archives (I found one with ~120 pages), not sure if we need this. But wikipedia:Template:Hidden_archive_top certainly looks interesting, maybe we can just archive-by-hiding and leave the discussion in the original place (possibly moving to the top)? This way we would not have to update the links...
- If we agree on some archiving method, shall we archive all discussions or only the relevant (missing definition) and delete the others?
- -- Lahwaacz (talk) 10:51, 12 February 2014 (UTC)
- Well, I wouldn't require updating the links to archived discussions: if, after following a link to a talk page, the section is not found, a user should be aware of the fact that the discussion may have been archived, so (s)he should look in the appropriate Archive page, just like now (s)he's forced to look in the history. In fact, we're not currently requiring updating links to deleted discussions either.
- Only archiving "relevant" discussions would be ideal, the problem is indeed defining "relevant" so well and briefly that it doesn't take 10 minutes to a user to understand whether to delete or archive a discussion (most likely ending up choosing the third option "give up").
- -- Kynikos (talk) 09:19, 13 February 2014 (UTC)