Last modified: 2013-06-27 01:26:05 UTC

Wikimedia Bugzilla is closed!

Wikimedia has migrated from Bugzilla to Phabricator. Bug reports should be created and updated in Wikimedia Phabricator instead. Please create an account in Phabricator and add your Bugzilla email address to it.
Wikimedia Bugzilla is read-only. If you try to edit or create any bug report in Bugzilla you will be shown an intentional error message.
In order to access the Phabricator task corresponding to a Bugzilla report, just remove "static-" from its URL.
You could still run searches in Bugzilla or access your list of votes but bug reports will obviously not be up-to-date in Bugzilla.
Bug 25834 - Expand the gender options/selection
Expand the gender options/selection
Product: MediaWiki
Classification: Unclassified
User preferences (Other open bugs)
All All
: Normal enhancement with 1 vote (vote)
: ---
Assigned To: Nobody - You can work on this!
: 44300 (view as bug list)
Depends on:
  Show dependency treegraph
Reported: 2010-11-08 05:23 UTC by p858snake
Modified: 2013-06-27 01:26 UTC (History)
10 users (show)

See Also:
Web browser: ---
Mobile Platform: ---
Assignee Huggle Beta Tester: ---

MediaWiki patch to add gender option "Other" (5.19 KB, patch)
2013-01-24 06:45 UTC, Derrick Coetzee

Description p858snake 2010-11-08 05:23:17 UTC
We should probably have more than just Male/Female/Unspecified for our gender options due to various reasons.

Some suggestions have been floated in this reddit discussion[1] which was primarily about Drupal although due to how we utilize this information with the magic words[2], I'm not all that sure how we could. 

Comment 1 Mark A. Hershberger 2011-02-09 23:17:07 UTC
What would your (closer to the ideal) {{gender}} magic word do?
Comment 2 Purodha Blissenbach 2011-03-13 23:54:24 UTC
Related: bug 27744, and bug 27743
Comment 3 Niklas Laxström 2011-09-18 12:02:54 UTC
I think this is out of the scope of current gender feature, which is aimed for proper i18n. It is probably relevant for the planned social profile thingie. Untagging i18n.
Comment 4 p858snake 2011-09-22 23:29:27 UTC
This was in regards to a discussion that happened off site when we were talking about gender indenity in {software/webapp} packages, We discussed this again not long along and it was basically decided that unless you can have free form boxes that "Male/Female/Undisclosed" were the best options to have and nothing more was really needed.
Comment 5 Olivier Finlay Beaton 2011-09-22 23:33:04 UTC
Do like the Australians. "Male", "Female", "Other". Since it's a non-forced option, keep "Unspecified". "Other" != "Unspecified" really.

You _identify_ as "Other", you never identify as "Unspecified". But someone who doesn't specify never identifies as "Other".

Let the translators slug it out with regards to message/name content.

This is obviously a heated issue, it re-occured in
about adding the gender dropdown to the signup form.

Is it worth re-opening this issue?
Comment 6 MZMcBride 2013-01-24 06:15:37 UTC
*** Bug 44300 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***
Comment 7 Derrick Coetzee 2013-01-24 06:41:57 UTC
My bug at which was just resolved as duplicate of this one provides much more specific and detailed justification for why this should be done, as well as a patch that does it. Please take a look.
Comment 8 Derrick Coetzee 2013-01-24 06:45:06 UTC
Created attachment 11675 [details]
MediaWiki patch to add gender option "Other"
Comment 9 Derrick Coetzee 2013-01-24 06:45:47 UTC
Okay I didn't realise when I created bug 44300 that this bug already existed. Here is my justification and attached patch (above) copied from that bug.

There are a substantial number of people who view themselves as neither male
nor female, either because they are genderqueer or because they live in a
culture with a traditional third gender, such as the Hirja, the kathoeys, and
Two-Spirit. See:

Although the Gender field is used primarily for grammatical purposes and there
is no universally accepted grammatical convention for non-binary people (for
grammar purposes it could simply be treated the same as "Undisclosed"), I
believe adding a choice of "Other" to the Gender field would help to make
projects based on MediaWiki more welcoming to these people, who otherwise are
compelled to choose "Undisclosed" even if they wish to be open about their

There is substantial precedent for this on other major websites which also have
an "Other" option for Gender, including but not limited to (from

* Google Profile / Google+
* YouTube
* Flickr
* deviantART
* LiveJournal
* MIT's edX

Other major open source software has also added it, such as Drupal. Diaspora
made Gender a free-form text-field. And Australia, New Zealand, and the United
Kingdom allow citizens to list gender as "X" on their passport.

In short, I think adding an "Other" option that is treated grammatically the
same as "Undisclosed" would be a simple, straightforward change that has
considerable precedent and would benefit many users. I've included a patch
against version 1.20.2. Most code did not have to be changed because in the
current code MediaWiki uses gender-neutral wording (if available) whenever the
gender is not male or female.

Translation notes: In the patch I use the "version-other" message which is an
existing translation message that just happens to read "Other". Ideally we
should have a "gender-other" message explicitly for this purpose, which would
merely clone version-other, but I'm not sure how to coordinate that with, etc. Advice would be appreciated.
Comment 10 Derrick Coetzee 2013-01-24 06:48:07 UTC
Re-opening for further discussion in light of additional information and patch provided above. I believe the number of sites supporting an "Other" gender has vastly expanded since 2010 when this bug was opened. Please let me know your thoughts.
Comment 11 Nemo 2013-01-24 06:51:09 UTC
I don't think anything has changed in the meanwhile and I don't see any additional information.
Comment 12 Derrick Coetzee 2013-01-24 07:02:55 UTC
Please see my extensive comment above (timestamp 2013-01-24 06:45:47 UTC). What has changed since 2010 is that Google, YouTube, Flickr, deviantART, LiveJournal, MIT's edX, Drupal, Diaspora, and numerous other major websites have begun to support an "Other" option for Gender. Major governments in three countries in 2011 and 2012  implemented changes to allow for X indicating "Other" on national passports. My comment above explained this in considerable depth and I am very frustrated that you refuse to even acknowledge these justifications. If MediaWiki does not wish to also add an "Other" Gender option, I would like to understand why it is different from all of these other organizations.
Comment 13 Nemo 2013-01-24 07:11:19 UTC
Sure, all social networks should include one such option.

(In reply to comment #12)
> I would like to understand why it is different from all of these
> other
> organizations.

You've obviously not read the discussion at bug 30442 if you ask this question.
Maybe examples are clearer: see bug 31816, there's a patch for it that needs a little work but would avoid confusion like yours and others'.
Comment 14 Derrick Coetzee 2013-01-24 07:32:39 UTC
Okay. I did read that discussion and I am aware that the Gender option is *intended* to be used primarily for internationalization and primarily in non-English languages, but that's not how it's used in practice - users use it to identify genders of other users and a popular gadget at English Wikipedia ( uses it to place male/female symbols beside usernames.

But I agree that the fix at bug 31816 would also be acceptable and even preferable - it's better for the software not to ask for gender at all if it can avoid it - at least as long as it provides a gender-neutral option in languages that support it.

Note You need to log in before you can comment on or make changes to this bug.