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From Wikimania 2014 • London, United Kingdom

1a: What are the problems new users face?

3 rules for the discussion room:

   1) Focus on YOU
   2) Be constructive and polite
   3) try to be short and on topic


Discussion room: New users - what do they need https://wikimania2014.wikimedia.org/wiki/Submissions/Discussion_Room/1#Saturday_discussions


Saturday, August 9th, 2014 9:30 start introduction 9:38 brainstorming 10:00 rating 10:05 conclusions 10:10 end


Identify the top-4 biggest bottle necks for new people to be successful as an editor that we can directly influence as a community.

What are the problems new users face?

  • how to maintain neutral point of view
    • presence of interest groups and lobbies
  • article gatekeepers - people that keep an eye on their article and feel it is theirs (reverting of additions)
  • Technical barriers
    • Visual editor disabled by default
    • Comment: Technical is something which can be overcome
  • newbies get lost in the system
  • High expectations from new users - people expect the article to be perfect (very high standard requested)
    • Inconsistency of the standard requested
  • Delation process is a bad experience
  • Attitude of contributors: people on the project can be not nice. Social issues
    • People also like and want to welcome new users
    • The deletion process is automatic (and separate from people's attitude and support): you receive a banner made by a template and the process starts
  • We expect people to come to us, we do not do much to welcome them
  • Feedback is very inconsistent
  • bad attitude towards editor retention
  • experienced editors seem to "know" what's the motivation of new users - based on the trouble of the first edit. issue of attitude
  • people contribute more as anonymous users
  • experts in real life clash with the rules and athmosphere - for example an expert see a mistake and just corrects it (because he/she knows about it); rarely they add a reference. Perhaps we are wrong to expect them to do so
  • obvious content we expect does not need references
  • overenthusiasm of newbies
    • Ties in with lack of respect, and specifically expecations of professionals, academics etc.
  • assumed to be sockpuppets
    • (But what is wrong with sockpuppets anyway?)
  • Rules are complicated - sometimes the established editors have them wrong (example policy does not say "everything needs a source", many people belive it does)
  • Besserwisserism by old users - even in cases they do not know better and do not know that they do not know
  • Besserwisserism by new users - they should also be able to listen
  • If you do everything perfect, would you be fine?
    • newbies don't do everything perfect.
    • if you are a newbie even if you do everything perfect you are treated differently (new comers are considered "inferiors")
  • Contributing to Wikipedia means to be "content experts"

Grouping issues

1 Technical 2 Style - how do i write 3 Rules - you don't know the rules so you can not follow them 4. Social (editors, processes) - attitude, clash between attitudes 5. Expectations - we expect too much from new users (neturality, perfection, rules) 6. References

Rating problems

  • Technical issues - 2
  • Access - 4
  • Style - 4
  • Rules - hard to know - 14
  • Social: conflicts - 21
  • Social: processes, partially automated - 3
  • Overenthusiasm of the new users -
  • Expectations from new users by the existing community (also part of the social conflicts) - 6
  • References for stuff that seems obvious

1b: Welcoming and retaining new users

3 rules for the discussion room:

   1) Focus on YOU
   2) Be constructive and polite
   3) try to be short and on topic


Discussion Room: Welcoming and retaining new users https://wikimania2014.wikimedia.org/wiki/Submissions/Discussion_Room/1#Discussion_Program_Session_1


10:15 start introduction 10:20 ideas 10:50 commitment 10:55 conclusions 11:00


30 ideas and 5 lowest hanging fruit and commitments (my objective for the month - i.e. i will compliment 10 people next week);.


Ideas on what we can do

  • Mentorship space/program (match contributors based on interest, etc.) - Matching system (English wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:CO-OP)
  • Welcome message, with a direct contact link, like on French Wikipedia "Hello, I'm Trizek, please contact me if you need assistance"
  • Snuggle: - A tool for experienced editors to welcome good faith newcomers https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Snuggle
  • Form tandems with wikipedians and newcomers
  • There is the "Teahouse" (החממה)
  • Slow down newer editors with w (6 months suppose) experience who bite newbies
  • Shorter and clearer help and welcome messages with clear links. helppages with 20 links are too much. - a two sentence help message is better
  • Giving new editors recognition or a reward or a badge to show that they have learned something - a barnstar that you get for learning something - and each time you learn something h barnstar gets bigger.(Contact Worm That Turned on en.wp for more https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:Worm_That_Turned/Adopt/Barnstar ) This may expand to include recognition of experienced users who complete education in nonviolent/civil communication or provide hospitality to new users.
  • Considering the expectations and the clash with expectations - need to find ways to measure why newbies leave
  • Personal meetups to help address gap between ideal ("anyone can edit") and reality ("almost no one's edits get through") - live meetup with wikipedians - live metchup with supports to newbies and learning of the rules.
  • Revision of edits are written as apologies ("we're sorry if we didn't understand what you intendend; we had to revert your change")
  • Reinforce that edits are live, and seen by the whole world, use that as an intrisic motivation
  • Showing after a week or month how many people saw the change and were positively effected.
  • Showing a video of a newbe seeing a mistake, going in and fixing it
  • Deliberately seeding small errors that are easy to fix. =) or maybe make them on sandbox/non article space? (Wikipdia adventure does that) (there are plenty of small errors already, we don't need to introduce error)
  • Wikipedia semi-regular easter egg / scavenger hunts? (i.e. fix a dead link, fix a grammatical error, etc.) -> badge or "patch"
  • Some form of online training course how to be a wikipedia contributor
  • Be able to see how much training in editing someone has. Positive reinforcement ofor users investing - a progress bar
  • Providing a list of articles newcomers can try editing. (Already existing on English Wikipedia by Growth team of WMF?)
  • Give newbies a list of assignments to do. Work queues that people can pick from based on their interestes.
  • Create a link page from which there is a an organised link tree to ALL possible instructions that the new user never finds (in shorter perspective this can be overcome also by giving advice to new user when they ask, and this also works well and is an effective way to pass the experise of editing to new users)
  • Be prepared to explain the basic principles of wikipedia / wikimedia projects in a friendly and understandable manner and create and keep available even beter and better templates and instruction pages where these are explainded in an understandable way
  • In the context of this discussion be sensitive to the different types of problems in different wikies the existence of which mainly is due to the different size of different wikies and the different kind of social dynamics in different sized wikipedias due to the different size of each wiki community
  • Encourage the use of discussion pages.
  • Monthly email showing how many thousands of people read the page you edited and used your knowledge, "the change you have made helped this amount of people"
  • Give a "thumbs up" even for little things - Use 'Thank' buton rght next to editor contribs
  • Give recognition of outstanding edits
  • Community post "achievement of the week" https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:EotW
  • Choose "contributer of the month" or "of the year" by the commiunity
  • Invite the newbiest to meetups - meet the contributors - put faces behind username*
  • Re-educate old users with a speach that is more fiendly (people are not always aware of how what they have written can be mis-read in an unfriendly way)
    • give credits for being friendly to newbies, recognition, (gamification here?)
  • the community invite the newbies to advance in the stages of microgames
  • out and find new peoples - go to museum
  • recruiting new people (events, museums, schools...)
  • banner on Wikipedia: if you want to edit follow this link and people are invited to meetup (But this should be part of the software, not an advertisement, right?)
  • better research why people do not edit even if they want (why they do an inital edit but do not become ongoing contributor)
  • we have as a community a lot of new ideas and a lot of experience, we need to share it better - we can create a list or on meta (list of attendees - obove)
  • have a "Panick button" - "here you can get help"
  • Provide a way for new users to rate their experiences / give feedback on how they've been treated
  • Encourage new users to communicate with each other (about their experiences)

Topic "The system"

  • Less templates - more personal attention
    • Issue is that the templates look impersonal, rather than that they are acutally templates
  • Less rules (WP:IAR)
  • Safe space - creating a safe space (more interactive than sandbox) Draft namespace(?)
  • It's better to help 5 new users well thn 50 welcoming tempates
  • we need a much better manual, and shorter summerized rulebook (each rule is 8 pages long) - every rule should be a single sentence - and then put all nutshells in one page (WP:Plain and simple on enwiki?)
  • the english wikipedia game: "The wikipedia adventure" (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:The_Wikipedia_Adventure) , in catalan wikipedia - "the tourist bus"
  • More ways to contribute that are safe and have less drama - not only article creation/editing, like images, geolocation, more fact checking, cleanup, cheking externial dead links
  • More motivating messages - we are used to saying "work not good" but we dont have good positive messages

Topic Welcoming

  • New editors want to create articles - and the feedback comes after weeks - speed up the process and the quality of the feedback
  • Finding people who are willing nd able to communicate in a frontal way - and newbies should be channeled to them. (where do I land after I created an account?
  • Get more vulantears helping new commers. (explicitly train people on how to be welcoming)
  • It takes a lot (of confidence) to overcome the barrier to press the edit button. We need a more inviting method then a blank page

Topic Working with newbies

  • Everyone interacting with newbiesw should be more friendly
  • Training in social manners/communication for experienced users and admins!
  • we need to take "don't bite the newbies" more seriously. PUNISHMENT FOR BITING NEWBIES !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  • French wikipedia had a message with a shark - "you have bitten a newbie" (no more biting newbies at fr.wp now, template has been deleted...)
  • Microediting thorough games.

Topic Credentials

  • Be humble in the front of experties of new users who happen to be expert - recognize experts when they exist
  • Specialist groups: specialist gathers users with expertise around a subject


Contributions - commitments mentioned

Collecting stories of success Training the existing users Thinking about new contributors types Meeups and training sessions Your contribution has been seen by --- viewers Contribution on welcome banners Help botton - try to trigger it Awareness Share what i learned as a new user with new users Get feedback Providing feedback Human face of Wikipedia Adding reward to contribution Simplify the rule system Mentorship space Helpdesk - personal face Banner on local wikipedia - if you want to edit click here Taking ideas from Providing ideas and a list of assigments

2a: Wikimedia Commons - needs and wishes for a perfect Wikimedia media database

3 rules for the discussion room:

   1) Focus on YOU
   2) Be constructive and polite
   3) try to be short and on topic

Additional rules:

  • Focus on things we can change as a community.
  • "The word copyright is forbidden in this room." (it will be substituted with ___The Law That Cannot Be Named___)



Discussion Room: Wikimedia Commons - Needs and wishes for the perfect Wikimedia media database https://wikimania2014.wikimedia.org/wiki/Submissions/Discussion_Room/2


Saturday, August 9th, 2014 1130am to 1210pm


Is Wikimedia Commons primarily a service project to other projects? - Yes (most people at the beginning - but question was asked as "Is Wikimedia Commons a service project to other projects?") - * Yes (most people at the end)

Has commons improved in the past year? (most - did not change)

Who thinks Flickr is better as overwhole experience? (most - think different)

What kind of problems and solutions? Problems

  • categories - most people dont see them, and can not navigate the website. Only use the search engine.
  • Incosistency in categories
  • No real tagging in Commons - intersection of categories?
    • tech side is implemented for this. Community processes would need to change
  • Too many categories?
  • Help people find the right category for their photos

Only have search engine, people don't see categories -- it's a design and interface problem -the display is the problem.

  • Lack of appropriate description of the pictures - (eg. only "church")
  • hard for new users who do not know what is allowed - the first images of new users are deleted - the policies are unclear.

we need better communication to new users.

  • Importing images from databses is problematic - we need tagging - this a user usability problem
  • no oversight of quality. difficult to find good quality images.- quality tagging needed. for example - a rating from 1 - 5 that the statistics thereof is displayed.
  • How can we surface good quality images?
  • Copy what google and flicker are doing with images - regarding quality ranking.
  • * usage on wikipedia articles may be used as a matrics to quality
    • microcontribution - ranking done by a lot of people
    • what is "quality" - thecnical? high quality image?
  • handle community disputes
  • "How many people have uploaded a video to Commons?" Roughly 10 raise their hand out of ~60 people in the room
  • We need to really "describe" photos to make them useful, descriptions need to be easier to put in
  • Too few galleries, we don't have organized collections (too many pics without a proper description and without a proper context)
  • "Some enforcement of unity" like geotagging, for example
  • Not obvious to outsiders how to re-use Commons images, or if you can even do so
  • communication is quite only in English
  • difficulties in handling complicated authorship (co-authorship, multiple-authorship)
  • no good way to keep connected derivative works versions/tree flow; to show that a image is derivative from another, in many cases the information is not there
  • Attribution not happening well in the real world - need to make clear attribution policy
  • Discoverability, eg. show images older than X

Different prespectives:

  • end users - usability making clearer, search problems
  • user/uploader - community issues

Solutions proposed: - 'endless scroll' of category view. Then the ability to re-order the results (alphabetical, most used in WP articles, rating/quality system....) --liangent did some work on multiple orderings of categories, but work kind of got stuck - Tools that are supported by the WMF (received applause) - Ranking - in different dimensions - aesthetic, quality, size, accuracy, representatvie etc. - Tagging- (Can include ranking) also tag for content,, format, and many other aspects, supports search - Galleries - Do we need more, or is it somehting that could be driven by tagging/categories? - Make 'English language descriptions' mandatory (not particularly well received by the audience...) - * alternative proposal, tag items without an English description for a translation - then need a workflow to get the translations done. - * Organizing translate-a-thons? Use the content translation tool?

  • make it clearer what is required for reuse, and how to reuse. Including cut and past HTML - is this already there? Visibility may need to be improved. (See new MV? -> MV does it)
    • there was js to do it prior to mmv.
  • make untagged / ranked images discoverable with visual image clustering algorithm; integrate with serious games to transfer metadata from similar images
  • turning a tehcnical solution into a social solution - better file data page with cleareer metadata
  • create a help desk by language
  • Nobody (in the room) thinks commons has a good user experience

2b: Will we still need categories in times of Wikidata?

3 rules for the discussion room:

   1) Focus on YOU, i.e. things YOU and the community can change
   2) Be constructive and polite
   3) try to be short and on topic, especially the native speakers


Discussion Room: Will we still need categories in times of Wikidata? https://wikimania2014.wikimedia.org/wiki/Submissions/Discussion_Room/2


Saturday, August 9th, 2014 12.15 start - introduction 12:20 theoretical background

12:30 discussion (see possible angles)

12:50 conclusions 13.00 end




Understand Wikidata's potential impact on category systems better

Some possible angles

  • Are we already 'in times of Wikidata'?
  • What functions should a categorization system fulfill
  • What could Wikidata do, that categories can't
  • What can categories do, what Wikidata can't
  • Is it worth it?
  • When will we be able to answer these questions? Who should?
  • What would be good checks & balances

Starting questions

  • Q1: Who knows and understands what Wikidata is? Many, many hands go up, many of them Wikidata developers/admins.
  • Q1A: Who works on Wikidata? (mostly Wikidata devs, admins and users)
  • Q2: Who truely understands the category system? Like a forth of the people raise hands.
  • Q3: Who thinks that Wikidata can replace the categories? (some do, some don't)

Brief overview of Wikidata

  • Lydia: to store the data contained in Wikimedia pages (especially infoboxes) in a way that can be fed back to these Wikimedia pages
  • Can everything be stored on Wikidata? Almost. But Wikidata will never store article texts, for example.
  • Digression on RDF (en:Resource Description Framework), but while RDF is in triples (A -->annotated link --> B), Wikidata also wants info on the source for that statement (and can eventually store an item about the source itself).

Wikidata has a potentially infinite number of combination related to categories: you can do your own query, with the data you need, without needing to setting up a category.

  • distinction between Wikibase (a pair of MediaWiki extensions - server and client - for providing and consuming structured data) and Wikidata (a Wikimedia project that uses the Wikibase extension)

Daniel Kinzler is defining what could happen: an image on Commons can represent something (i.e. an apple), so Wikidata can provide an item with the concept about "apple" (in the user's language), that could be included in the description on Wikimedia Commons of a picture representing an apple. This means that when you're looking for images of apples, you'll be facilitated by that. The more data - THEY ARE NOT TAGS, tags can be written badly - an image have, the more is easy for you to find what you really need (i.e. a Stark apple or a green-coloured apple). The research can be also done in ANY language, since Wikidata can provide you the results in your own language.

  • Lodewijk: Is Wikidata finished? (laughter)

At the moment, Wikidata and Commons are linked, but Commons can only access to sitelinks that are collected on an item. There is no access - still - to structured data on that item. ([ https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Multimedia/Structured_Data ] is about to start, but it will take lots of time, at least is TBD in mid-2015).

What do categories do?

  • Find images
  • help describe images
  • describe scopes,
  • (Jheald) Gives a wiki-page that can be edited to describe the set of images, a place where useful links etc can be added, in a very lightweight, easy-to-edit way.

See eg https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Category:Metropolitan_Improvements_%281828%29_Thomas_Hosmer_Shepherd -- ie links to internet archive copies of the book, etc. All in a way that can be modified ad-hoc, free-form, very easily.

  • Maintenance roles

-- eg in upload processing, a holding cat for eg all images of churches from a particular source, that have not yet been individually identified. -- eg images that have some serious problem that needs to be fixed.

  • Projects and partnerships and curated sets
    • structuring & tracking

User:Natkabrown, Natasha Brown - WikiTranslate: Question about filters on Commons (the not suitable for children, for religious people, and so on).

We decide to focus on Wikimedia Commons.

Magnus: grouping images by concepts can be done on the fly with queries

Digression about how values are dealt with in Wikidata: a property (i.e. "what the heck is this") can have multiple values ("it is A", "it is B", "it is C"), and those values can be defined as "normal", "preferred" or "deprecated".

Back to the "real" problem: all languages can have different taxonomies, and categories rely on those taxonomies. Which one applies to Commons? Who will decide? And what will be the solution that it'll decided upon?

  • Attribution: how does it work?
  • Categories as a normative statement: there are categories which are needed because they follow a certain agreed-upon taxonomy (i.e. plants+animals)
  • A target for interwiki links
    • PROBLEM at the moment: interwiki can't support both a category and a gallery for the same Q-item. This MUST be fixed.
  • A browseable structure that users can explore (including interwikies - this is important especially in small language wikies where interwiki categories offer important further information)

Daniel: categories list all the pages that have a link to that category. With Wikibase we can also replicate this system, and do more. [just from the technical point of view]

type ahead suggestions

  • suggestions based on metadata
  • image interpretation suggestions
  • add new properties/labels (or whatever would be necessary) to wikidata
  • group files by some criteria (content/ source/ license etc.)
  • maintain current category page (i.e. a list of files, plus some free text on the top) functionality. (Categories view might be something we will still want, just with the proper technical enhancements, just don't cancel them)

In the end, we can have both queries and categories.

Interested in more info about Wikidata

user:mloki0 user:Red_Baron_2

  • Q1: Who knows and understands what Wikidata is? Similarly large amount as before.
  • Q2: Who truely understands the category system? A few less than before
  • Q3: Who thinks that Wikidata can improve the categories? (almost everyone)

3a: What topics are relevant/notable?

3 rules for the discussion room:

   1) Focus on YOU
   2) Be constructive and polite
   3) try to be short and on topic


Discussion Room: What topics are relevant/notable? https://wikimania2014.wikimedia.org/wiki/Submissions/Discussion_Room/3

(see also: https://etherpad.wikimedia.org/p/Wikimania_2014_Discussion_7 )


Saturday, August 9th, 2014 14.30 start introduction 14:35 theoretical background 14:45 discussion

15:00 conclusions

15:10 end


Describe a number of processes, and how they are different from each other. Highlight best practices from around the world.

Starting questions

  • Q1: Do you think people outside the community understand what "notable" means?
    • Initial:
      • Yes: 1
      • Still 1
      • No: Everyone
  • Q2: Is notability subjective?
    • Initial: Almost everyone
      • End: Everyone
      • 4 objective
  • Q3: Do you think Wikipedia in other languages have a better process than the English Wikipedia?
    • Initial:
      • 5 yes


Focus on your own projects. Stick to the point.

Definition of notability

English, German, Estonian, Spanish, Catalan, Some non-aligned, Wikibooks, Finnish WP, Chinese? Russian, Italian, Dutch.

Introduction by Andy: WP:42 <-- the General Notability Guide (GNG) on en.wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/WP:42 Must have significant coverage in multiple independent reliable sources. Significant: not just mention Independent: Not my blog, or the company's blog, or a cut and pasted press release. "It has gone through a journalist's head" Reliable: Editorial process (e.g. journalist and editor, not vanity press or blog) Multiple: not just one.

Allow some use of non-independent sources for simple facts, e.g. location of offices.

Date of birth is problematic: people will lie about that. e.g. actors.

Shortcuts: notability for classes, e.g. buildings, footballers, schools, etc. Can have built-in gender bias or cultural bias, e.g. women's footballers

Final decision:

  • Nomination for deletion is made by an individual, consensus for final decision.


Notability is extremly subjective.

Issues which are emerging

  • Difficulty of finding the "independent" sources from different countries
  • Sources which are not considered reliable
  • Are there criteria for start-ups?
  • Notable for a community.
  • Issue of criteria by topics
  • Notable in one language but not in another language
  • Differences between communities and languages.

Relative notability: e.g. Dutch word of the year was deleted in German Wikipedia. Some other wikis have complete ad-hoc processes, case-by-case (e.g. Estonian).

The problem are the people behind the process. you might have the same process but the people behind the process differ. Lots of drama within the community. There were articles about individual voice actors, but they were deleted because these voice actors were not known for anything else.

For certain wikipedia the sources can be "not exactly the same" compared to the ones required by Wikipedia in English. Completly different sources in different geographic areas How you compare notability? A language that is spoken by people from different countries (e.g. English) has different issues than a language that is spoken by a relatively homogenous group in one country (e.g. Estonian) Notability is not necessary a issue in all languages. sources might be less relevant In Finnish wikipedia the process is the same than in Wikipedia in English In Wikipedia in German emphases on criteria by topic (quantitative criteria i.e. number of times in a league... around 100 pages). in Russian wikipedia we do not accept too short articles but less emphases on sources. English wikipedia is not always the most strict. it depends on the topic. How the nobability criteria is applied is a problem. The problem is with the people who apply the rules. Difficulty to check sources Assumption that sources from smaller or non-Global-North-countries are per se less significant than European/American sources Number of bias.

Systems to explain notability

Citing sources Writing articles about relevant sources - making sure the article states that the source is notabile. practically is useful but you should not be forced to do it. Delation debates Notability needs to be implicit in the article: you explain the significance of the topic in the article. how the topic affects other articles. Claiming notability in the summary if you know the rules you can play the game.

Possible angles

- How do you affirm/articulate/negotiate notability. Hilighting the process - Who decides? - Characteristic features. - General rule or case by case?

Articles for Creation (goes to "Draft" namespace) - http://enwp.org/Wikipedia:AFC - has the advantage of no speedy deletion for almost all criteria

3b: Exchange of deletion/review processes and best practices

3 rules for the discussion room:

   1) Focus on YOU
   2) Be constructive and polite
   3) try to be short and on topic


Discussion Room: Exchange of deletion/review processes and best practices. https://wikimania2014.wikimedia.org/wiki/Submissions/Discussion_Room/3

(see also: https://etherpad.wikimedia.org/p/Wikimania_2014_Discussion_7 )


Saturday, August 9th, 2014 1515 start introduction2 15:20 theoretical background 15:30 discussion

15:50 conclusions 16:00 end


Describe a number of processes, and how they are different from each other. Highlight best practices from around the world.

Starting questions

  • Q1: Who can explain the deletion process to a stranger?
    • Yes:
    • No: 5
  • Q2: Is the deletion process subjective?
    • Yes:
    • No: 4
  • Q3: Is the deletion process biased?
    • Yes: About 60%
    • No: 1
    • Abstain: about 40%

Q4: Are you an inclusionist or an exclusionist

    • Inclusionist: About 40%
    • Exclusionist (aka Deletionist): About 6 people

Andy explains enwiki

  • We need to draw the line somewhere - question is how and where
    • Criteria for Speedy Deletion: Speedy deletion to remove patent nonsense or abuse; can be deleted after tagging by anyone, e.g. spam, unsourced biographies of living persons, recently deleted articles that have been recreated.
    • ProposedDeletion (Prod): a tag on an article. if the tag is not removed the article gests delated after one week (the author can not remove the tag).
    • Nomination for deletion:
      • https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/WP:DEL
      • Community discussion, can be days to weeks.
      • Not a vote! Everyone taking part in the discussion should give a reason why it should be deleted.
      • Can be closed as keep, delete, no consensus (leads to article being kept), merge.
      • Deletion decisions can be appealed; admins can undelete.
      • Can get your text back from an admin even if it's been deleted.
      • Consensus is determined by admin (or whoever is closing the discussion)
      • Unsourced Biographies of living people are a specific reason for speedy deletion or proposed deletion.
      • Comment: "If a particular editor is banned, they delete everything they wrote, without appeal."
        • User banned - articles produced by a sockepuppet may be deleted, if not already expanded by other editors.
  • Differences with other wikipedias: time for delation can be very long.
  • Projects can have a leading role in defining deletion topics. (e.g. biology articles in de.wp, separate deletion process > appeal to regular deletion process possible. wide notability criteria, but strong quality criteria)
  • Propose for deletion in finnish wikipedia: if an article has no references, the author has 3 days. [what about counting the votes.?]
  • German admins have some scope of action (Spielraum), and different admins have different opinions. The admin decides then, after reviewing the arguments. - dfferent admins can make different decisions.
    • Undelete process: you can get the article undeleted
  • Also other projects have similar processes but it can end up with a discussion between an editor and the admin
    • In Commons, it's more objective: either out of the project scope, or copyright grounds.


  • Timing: give room/time for improving - how long does the process take
  • People "should do" but not necessarly do
  • We call the deletion process a "consensus process" which is not really true: differences of opinion will remain.
  • Dutch Wikipedia renamed deletion process to improvement process - the only change was the name.
  • I have seen admins delating articles outside the process.
  • in Dutch wikipedia they call the delation process "improuvement process" (if it is not improved in 3 days then it is deleted)
  • improuving an article during the delation process is complex because you can have the first comments related to a previous version of the article
  • Type of article changes the process: biographies can be delated quicky if the author is seen to be linked as a source in other articles.
  • The situation is not welcoming: you have the feeling when you start that everybody is there to delete your article. How to make the process friendlier

Best practices in the delation process

mw:Draft namespace: articles can be worked on until they're ready to go into the main space. Might be interesting angle, rather new experiment.

Some possible angles

- is the delation process linked to notability? in which ways does it differ from? - does delation correspond to discussions and fights? - is the process similar for new users and regular contributors? - can we use a different term than "deletion"? - other words used - how can we stop the deletion process being manipulated by "group voters" for contentious topics? - how would this problem change if there were good alternatives to binary deletion? - voting or not

4a: Admins - users with extra buttons or community leaders?

3 rules for the discussion room:

   1) Focus on YOU
   2) Be constructive and polite
   3) try to be short and on topic

No abbreviations please


Discussion Room: Admins: Users with extra buttons or community leaders https://wikimania2014.wikimedia.org/wiki/Submissions/Discussion_Room/4


Saturday, August 9th, 2014 16:30 start introduction 16:35 theoretical background 16:40 discussion advantages and disadvantages 17:00 conclusions 17:10 end


Identify advantages and disadvantages of letting admins be more than 'editors with some extra buttons'. Ideal situation and what is realistic.

Starting questions

Q0: Are you an admin?

  • Q1: Are admins nasty?
  • Q2: Are admins community leaders ?
  • Q3: Should it be easy to become admin?

Should admins be role models (not overemphasized)?

Possible angles

- Whis is their specific role? role with vandalism, welcoming new users, writing policies, contributing to discussions - Should admins be "better people" than non admins? (better knowledge of the projects, better behavious, better attention to policies) - What makes the perfect admin? - What makes the perfect community leader? - What admins can do, what they can not do? - What admins should do, what they should not do? - what do admins want? - power management - access vs. power

Definition of admins

  • Admins are there mainly to serve the community. they clean up the rubbish but they do not take the decisions.
  • Admins should serve the projects not the community.
  • They should be trusted not to destroy the Wiki
  • Trusted people.
  • For how long you are an admin
    • English, German, Greek is forever...
    • Forever Unless you are inactive Wikidata (system of 50% of the community confidence)
    • Renewals: Swedish renewed every year, German Wikipedia
    • Possibility to object to someone renewales (Dutch)
    • WIkiFur has the tenured status of colleague (admin power level equivalent), but only active colleages have the role of curator
    • Small wikipedias will have temporary admins

Issues emerged

  • Differences between languages and projects.
  • Should be role models -
    • Should be but they are not
    • Maybe be a role model should not be overemphasized.
  • Trusted by whom? - by the community.
  • Sometimes admins do not serve the community.
  • In Papua-New Guinea there are no chiefs; there are big man who are trusted.
  • Most admins on Wikipedia in English are not even active.
  • Larger spectrum: they sometimes they protect other admins, they have disagreements, they are friends, sometimes are correct or not.
  • They should be implementing community consensus.
  • Admins are asked to do things. Reponsing to user requests.
  • The English Wikipedia is different from the others (large community, different languages, less homogenous): a lot of differences and misunderstandings.
  • Different languages are multicultural (Spanish, French, Portuguese...)
  • Use of different words across different communities:
    • Admin group is called curators group (you are responsable)
    • Label that role differently: admins are called librarians/manager (= but it doesn't always work well).
    • The name can be manager: when they have a government problem they come to use; but admins are not managers
  • A lot of people do not know what is an admin on a Wikimedia site and what does it mean
  • Renewal process can be relevant
    • Renewals can discourage bad behaviour. At the same time it might discourage certain decisions if you are worried about votes.
    • I know it works. it removes bad behaviours
  • Ukrainian: desysop by community vote, previously vote could be opened by anyone at any time (it became too easy), now by anyone but only after discussion on the issue.
  • There are periods in which it becomes political. Admins can be not selected because of their views.
  • Community leaders
    • Experience in editing (at least 3 years - Wikipedia, free knowledge, language, they know where to find and check things)
    • You have to have the courage (or time) to show yourself. People can see your history and what you have done
    • If they are5213632w their behaviour (renewals...).
    • How can you say an admin should be a community leader if you don't know how the community should be
    • Community leaders should not be admins
  • There are roles which are not necessarily community leaders (i.e. arbitration, different processes); few people participating (you need the courage), not necessarly good people
  • Getting the consensus not voting. How many community have "consensus" but at the end they vote.

4b: Mass article creation - who should write Wikipedia?

3 rules for the discussion room:

   1) Focus on YOU
   2) Be constructive and polite
   3) try to be short and on topic 


Discussion Room: Mass article creation - who should write Wikipedia? https://wikimania2014.wikimedia.org/wiki/Submissions/Discussion_Room/4


Saturday, August 9th, 2014 17.15 start introduction 17:20 theoretical background 17:30 discussion

  • Positive (present and future)
  • Negative (present and future)

17:50 conclusions 18:00: end


Document a SWOT analysis of mass article creation.

Starting questions

Q0: Are you a bot? :)

  • Q1: Do you know what is mass article creation?
  • Q2: Do you know how does it work the mass article creation and what is bot?
  • Q3: Do you consider bots members of our community?
  • Q4: Are you in favour of mass article creation?

Who operates a bot? around 5 people

How mass article creation works

  • Getting community consensus on running a mass creation bot
  • Taking databases from sources, creating something that will be article, at least a bit more than stub
  • Lots of people find it harder to modify articles than create
  • Test run with feedback from community
  • Infoboxes, interwikis, etc. easy
  • After bot run, human Wikipedians go through articles to polish and correct mistakes
  • It produces also categories and templates
  • You can also take information from existing articles and produce something: visualization, map..
  • People improve articles created, so bots can't do all.
  • Do you check if the article already exist? there is a lot of work behind.
  • Topics: municipalities, insects, astronomy, things which can be described in tables
  • Uses lots of information from stats offices
  • Can pool info from database replications on Tool Labs
  • 10% of Catalan Wikipedia articles is the maximum number alllowed bot created articles. (430.000 total articles> 43.000)

Definition of BOT Any program. There are different types, people write their own scripts. There is a very high use of BOTs on the Wikimedia projects (in particular sister projects and small wikipedias or projects otherwise needing coverage)

First Wikipedia bot to make a big change was probably Rambot: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:Rambot


  • For sure Wikidata is changing things. data needs to be put on Wikidata first.
  • We need to consider Wikidata.
  • For obscure topics Wikipedia is not necessarily a useful source. There are competitors.
  • Issue of notability.
  • Approvals (bots and tasks). There are authorizations to require. in Polish Wikipedia we approve bot operators. on Wikipedias in Catalan only 10% of the total articles can be created by bots.


  • It is easier to start an article from a short text rather than from nothing.
  • At the time of a lot of uploads Wikidata did not exist.
  • Starting a Wikipedia in a language (municipalities)
  • Interest in the topic, interesting for readers.
  • Filling the gaps
  • To let Wikipedia stay on the leading edge by ensuring up-to-date-ness and completeness
  • Considered a way to boost the community
  • Producing a critical mass of content
    • Creates a "seed" for later editing - new article creation is more complicated
      • Thus lowers threshold for new users to contribute
  • There are some statistics on edits on articles created by BOTs
  • People have been focusing on insects since stubs where there.
  • It has an impact on notability: it facilitates inclusion (i.e. you create the article of a village with a stronger stub compared to a stub created by an unexperienced user)
  • Potentially useful for someone.
  • It is not a problem to have an article - it is not paper, it doesn't cost
  • Relevant to have articles on Wikipedia in English for a large community (people look at Wikipedia in English first)
  • There is not harm.
  • It is relevant to find content in all languages
  • We need to preserve time of volunteers
  • the stub is actually an article, small but it is a text.
  • it is not a machine which creates article; it is a bot operator taking decisions (there are responsibilities, issues of notability).
  • If its notable, it should have an article. If it should have an article, it shouldn't matter who creates it


  • Not necessarily people improve an article created with a BOT:
  • Now there is Wikidata (you can update information, provide information to projects in different languages)
  • Filling the gaps people are not necessarily interested in
  • BOT-created articles on smaller Wikipedias mostly stay untouched after they're created
  • Reduces the average quality of a Wikipedia
  • Some communities do not like stubs. On Wikipedia in German they want good articles not stub.
  • Stubs are not necessarily relevant.
  • In a certain language a content can be irrelevant (maybe in another one is relevant)
  • We loose writers because there is not much to contribute to.
  • If we only provide few and irrelevant information people will go looking somewhere else.
  • It produces work for admin to check the articles and to maintain (in particular in small wikipedias)
  • it does not enhance the brand (quality)
  • it appears in random articles all the time (i.e. insects bias)
  • small articles are difficult to update; if articles are produced through Wikidata they can be updated, but not articles created with mass article creation
  • management of articles is not different for 500 or 5'000 articles: you use tools. you don't watch, you use tools.
  • The criteria of notability is different for mass article creation: you can upload things which would not be accepted in a different way.
  • Notability should be applied very seriously on mass article creation

Possible angles

- does mass article creation really triggers new users and the development of wikipedias and projects? (experiences from different countries) - what is the relationship between bots and Wikidata? how things will change with Wikidata for mass article creation? - which content (dataset) can produce mass article creation? - is notability a relevant issue? - bots are typically designed and operated by a single developer, who gets community approval for the bot's task. What benefits and barriers does this single-developer model have for mass article creation? What would it look like if mass article creation bots were designed and operated by larger groups, like a wikiproject?

- Is the commons pendant to "mass article creation" "mass uploads"?

    • Sannita: no, because a "mass upload of images" may regard *many* articles (i.e. 630 images about 630 different deputies)