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Multimedia:Issues reported by users

From Wikimedia Usability Initiative

Summarized from Commons:Usability issues and ideas

Recruiting participants

  • Newcomers are not sufficiently enticed to join the community.
  • Very few members of the general public are familiar with Commons.
  • Commons is not "usable" from a corporate perspective, and virtually no media conglomerates or commercial ventures contribute any content.
  • There is no "unified" watchlist, that would encourage users of other Wikimedia projects to be more involved in Commons.

Creating content

  • SVG is not widely used and known.

Uploading content

  • Uploading several pictures of the same subject is long and complicated, because the user has to redo all the work (description, category, license) each time. And they have to wait for each picture to upload.
  • People who upload their own work and just want to share their pictures on Wikipedia are asked to decide things like what license to use. At the same time, we have to make sure people understand what rights they keep and what rights they give away.
  • The permissions process is too complicated; acceptable images are deleted because of badly worded e-mails.
  • The software doesn't extract relevant metadata from files (e.g. EXIF), nor does it provide category suggestions.
  • It is not possible to upload a new version of a file using another file extension.
  • The "simple" upload form is too verbose and complicated; it mixes an upload form and a complete tutorial.
  • The upload form provides too many fields and the buttons at the bottom are unneeded for most users.
  • When preparing a mass upload, there is no cross-platform tool to store the metadata, descriptions etc. offline.
  • Adding pictures takes a lot of time; this hinders the participation.

Using and reusing content

  • Some local wikis use a template with a picture to show audio files, but clicking the picture doesn't play the file.
  • It is currently not possible to download downsized versions of high-resolution files for people who have small bandwidth.
  • Linking commons image to facebook does not show any preview; see Facebook guidelines.

Searching, finding and exploring content

  • Commons is full of low quality content and there is no quality control
  • There is duplicate content.
  • Categories are only available in English; it is difficult to use them for people who can't read/write English.
  • Galleries vs. categories: duplicate?
  • When using the search feature, it is impractical to have only a few thumbnails (and their associated text). If the user is looking for media files, we should display media files.
  • When browsing categories, it is extremely cumbersome to have to browse through all subcategories to explore the content. CatScan
  • Our category system discourages inexperienced users and is overall very inefficient.

Crosswiki integration

  • Moving files from a Wikimedia project to Commons is difficult.
  • Moving files from a Wikimedia project to Commons removes the files from the uploader's (and possibly other people's) watchlist.
  • When a file is moved to Commons with a different name, the old name doesn't work any more.


  • Proposing files to deletion or reporting copyvios is too complicated.
  • When on a file description page mirrored from Commons on a local wiki, it is annoying and unsettling for the user to have to go to Commons, a separate website.

Feature requests

This section contains feature requests for which no associated issues could be identified.

  • social tagging: allow a public per-user tags
  • allow tagging and search by tags into large "super-categories"