Submissions/Diversity in the wikiHow Community

From Wikimania 2014 • London, United Kingdom

After careful consideration, the Programme Committee has decided not to accept the below submission at this time. Thank you to the author(s) for participating in the Wikimania 2014 programme submission, we hope to still see you at Wikimania this August.

Submission no. 1031
Title of the submission
Diversity in the wikiHow Community
Type of submission (discussion, hot seat, panel, presentation, tutorial, workshop)
Author of the submission
Krystle Chung
E-mail address
Country of origin
Affiliation, if any (organisation, company etc.)
Personal homepage or blog
Abstract (at least 300 words to describe your proposal)

wikiHow is a collaborative how-to manual that uses the same MediaWiki software as Wikipedia. At the core of this project is a volunteer community in which 3,000 registered accounts make approximately 40,000 main namespace edits per month, in addition to over 10,000 edits made anonymously per month. Since diversity of editors plays a tremendous role in the breadth, depth, and accuracy of content, this is an area of research worth exploring more deeply, especially as the project continues to grow.

At Wikimania 2012, I did a presentation with findings from a survey which looked at the gender breakdown of active editors in the wikiHow community. The most interesting insight was that the gender gap was smallest with younger contributors, and widest with older contributors. I'd like to do a follow-up of my presentation at Wikimania DC (recording is here: I propose another survey to see how various demographic factors affect editing, retention, topic selection, etc. Factors I plan to look at include gender, age, education level, and location. I'm hoping to design the survey to be more statistically robust than the previous study.

Given wikiHow’s growth in readership over the last few years, it will also be interesting to see whether the community demographics have shifted since the last survey. I’m hoping to gain and share more insight into the diversity and demographic trends of our community, and perhaps shed some light on whether wikiHow’s general growth and site redesign may have had any impact of the makeup of the active community.

I have been involved with the wikiHow community since its inception in 2005, and I have been the liaison between staff and community for several years. I've watched the community grow and the norms and demographics evolve over the years. I will also be organizing a community meetup around this Wikimania, as I did in 2012, so many wikiHow volunteers will likely be in attendance at the presentation to offer their perspectives on what it's like to edit on wikiHow and be a part of our community.

WikiCulture & Community
Length of session (if other than 30 minutes, specify how long)
30 minutes
Will you attend Wikimania if your submission is not accepted?
Slides or further information (optional)
Special requests
Please don't overlap with these presentations, as I'd really, really, really like to attend them :)

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  1. JackHerrick (talk) 22:22, 31 March 2014 (UTC)[reply]
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