Article feedback/Version 5

This is the project hub page for Version 5 of the Article Feedback Tool, (AFT5) an experimental project of the Wikimedia Foundation. AFT5 was developed from November 2011 to June 2013, and tested in three pilots on the English, French and German Wikipedias. The goal of AFT5 was to engage readers to participate on Wikipedia -- and to help editors improve articles based on reader feedback. After careful review of pilot results, this project was discontinued in March 2014, as outlined below and in this report.

Article Feedback Slides
New Article Feedback Form, shown at the bottom of some Wikipedia Articles
New moderation tools

Article Feedback seemed effective for engaging readers: 70% of survey respondents liked the tool; 2.7% of invited readers registered after leaving feedback -- and 3.0% of invited readers completed an edit. Over a million comments were posted during this experiment: on average, 12% of posts were marked as useful, 46% required no action, and 17% were found inappropriate by Wikipedia editors.

However, a majority of editors did not find reader comments useful enough to warrant the extra work of moderating this feedback. On the English Wikipedia, community members participating in an RfC in March 2013 recommended that the tool be implemented on a small-scale, opt-in basis, instead of being rolled out to every article. During the one-year period that followed, feedback was enabled by editors on over 4,000 articles, while it was also disabled on thousands more by editors opposing this tool. On the French and German Wikipedias, a majority of editors also voted against widespread adoption of AFT5. In our last French poll, about 45% of respondents wanted AFT5 removed everywhere, while 38% wanted to keep it on an opt-in basis, and 10% on help pages only; nearly everyone agreed it should not be on by default on the entire French Wikipedia. Their concerns are consistent across all three sites.

In a retrospective conducted in February with team members involved in the development of Article feedback, the consensus was that the time had come for the foundation to retire this tool. Most participants agreed that Flow is better positioned to give our readers a voice -- and that we should clear the way to make it a success. Based on these recommendations from community and team members, the foundation removed the tool on March 3, 2014.

Article Feedback - Video Tour

Learn more about the Article Feedback v5:

You are invited to try out Article Feedback now, on one of these pages:

Please let us know what you think of this new tool. We welcome your questions and suggestions on the Article Feedback Talk page.

See also:


View the Article Feedback slides

In October 2011, Wikimedia kicked off another round of product development on new and alternative methods of providing feedback regarding the quality of articles, including ideas like a moderated free-text comment queue for suggestions. To that end, the foundation hired Fabrice Florin as product manager for editor engagement.

The overall goal of this project is to find ways for readers to contribute productively to building the encyclopedia. Version 5 will also continue to test different methods for measuring quality, through both implicit and explicit methods. We invite the Wikipedia community (as well as all Wikimedians), to participate in this experiment. Together, we hope to create and test new collaborative tools towards these objectives:

  • engage readers to participate more on Wikipedia
  • give editors new tools to improve article quality
  • encourage readers to become editors over time
  • invite a collaboration between editors and readers
  • experiment with outsourcing web development

The first implementations of the Article Feedback Tool (Versions 1-4) were focused on the dual objectives of participation and quality. A new Version 5 of the Article Feedback Tool (AFT V5) is now being tested, to take into account both community feedback and data analysis for the current version (AFTv4). The main goal is to find ways for readers to contribute productively to building the encyclopedia. Version 5 will also continue to test different methods for measuring quality, through both implicit and explicit methods.

For Version 5, the Foundation replaced the previous ratings system with "comment" boxes, to invite constructive suggestions for improvement, rather than judgmental ratings. Readers can now provide useful feedback (such as "you're missing a section on that person's childhood") that editors could use to improve the article (as opposed to simply rating the article "3 stars" for completeness). This allows readers to better engage with editors, who could then actively improve articles if they find the feedback helpful.

A feedback page lists all the user posts for each article. All users have access to this feedback page, and can filter or sort that list in a variety of ways. Experienced editors and administrators have the option to feature posts more prominently, or hide offensive posts. Tools enabling readers to mark posts as helpful are also available, along with the ability to flag abuse. These feedback tools were designed in close collaboration with the editor community.

To learn more about next steps about Article Feedback, read this 2013 release plan.



Key features for AFT V5 include:

To learn more, visit the full feature requirements page) -- or check some of the links at the top of this page.

Get involved


We are developing this new tool in collaboration with Wikipedia editors, with whom we meet regularly over IRC and other channels. We are looking for more volunteers to help improve this article feedback tool.

Talk page


You're invited to give feedback about the Foundation's current plans for Version 5 and let us know what you think on the Talk page: what community concerns aren't being considered? Are there flaws in the current plans? How would you make the current ideas better? do you have any of your own to share? This is open to everyone - just drop your thoughts on the Talk page.

IRC chats


To invite community participation during the development of this tool, the Foundation hosted frequent IRC chats during office hours, as outlined in the schedule below. We hope you will join us on future chats. In the meantime, here are logs of our earlier IRC chats on Oct. 27, Nov. 3, Nov. 10, Nov. 18 and Dec. 16, 2011 -- Jan. 6, Jan. 13 , Jan. 20 , Jan. 27 and Feb. 16, 2012.


Research slides on Article Feedback v5 (2012-Q4)

AFT v.5

  • For live results of our current tests, check the metrics dashboard and feedback stream, as well as data dumps.
  • Metrics and research questions that will be used to test AFT v.5, as well as a detailed plan with the breakdown of the different tests that we will run, can be found on this page.

AFT v.4



Here are the Wikimedia team members who are working on this project at this time:

  • Product Manager Fabrice Florin
  • Lead Engineer Matthias Mullie
  • Interaction Designer Pau Giner
  • Community Liaison Oliver Keyes
  • Research Analyst Dario Taraborelli
  • Research Consultant Aaron Halfaker
  • VP Engineering / Product Erik Moeller
  • Product Development Director Howie Fung
  • Features Engineering Director Terry Chay

The first phases of development for AFT5 were outsourced to OmniTI, our development partner. Their team included Leon Fayer, Yoni Shostak, Reha Sterbin, Elizabeth Smith, Greg Chiasson, Mike Jackson and Sean Heavey.

Community members
Here are some of the Wikipedia community members who helped design this product with us:

We’d like to give special thanks and recognition to these community members who have already done so much to develop this new tool: we are grateful for your insights and commitment to this cause!