Re: [Wikimedia-l] Wiki Travel Guide

2012-04-12 Thread Yaroslav M. Blanter

On Wed, 11 Apr 2012 13:30:45 -0600, James Heilman wrote:

@Yaroslov
1) A merger within a WMF project  is supported by admins from both WT 
and
WV. WV is going to be meeting on the possibility of merging June 9th 
in

Germany

2) Wikimedia's mission is to provide freely available educational 
content I
am not sure which WMF principles you do not see such a site as 
being
compatible with? You mention that a good travel guide selects 
information.
A good encyclopedia sections information as well. I am not sure why 
we
would encounter any differences? We deal with spam here on Wikipedia 
all

the time.

2a) Not catering to a specific audience is one of the criticisms of
Wikipedia. The proposed travel guide would write for a general 
audience.

Wikipedia has written for a general audience with some success.


I actually do not have an opinion on whether Wikitravel should or 
should not be accepted as a WMF prtoject (I am currently leaning to the 
opinion it should). I just pointed out obvious problems. I maintain a 
travel guide website since 2004, and I know the issues are not so easy 
to resolve, especially the audience. This is why they have so many 
printed guidebook series IRL, and this is why I only used two or three 
of these series in my life (and other travelers use something else and 
under no circumstances would use what I use). These issues should be 
analyzed very carefully before the actual decision has been made.


Cheers
Yaroslav

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Travel Guide Wiki

2012-04-12 Thread Thomas Morton

 First, NPOV would probably be a deal-breaker. The travel wiki community
 (usually working at Wikitravel) have long used Traveller's Point of View.
 This point of view is not neutral at all, but favours the traveller.
 Hoteliers, restaurateurs, etc. have different points of view, but for us
 it's the traveller's that counts. We're under the impression that there are
 other Wikimedia foundation projects which don't use NPOV, and so those of
 us favouring approaching WMF have been able to argue that we wouldn't be
 forced to use it. If that's wrong then we should probably just give up this
 line of exploration and go find another solution.


I'm not sure NPOV would be such a problem - because NPOV is really
misnamed. It's about representing the mainstream viewpoint in a fair and
objective way.

For a Wiki dedicated to travel information the mainstream viewpoint is
certainly the travellers.

What I think would be important to avoid is too much subjective information
from one individual; for example, where I to write about York, UK I would
recommend not going to the Jorvik centre (a main attraction) because I
thought it overpriced and boring.

Whilst my viewpoint on this is subjectively valid, it may not reflect the
overall viewpoint of travellers to York (I know plenty of people who loved
it)! NPOV aims to make sure that the most mainstream of these viewpoints if
reflected - and any other viewpoints (i.e. hate it) are given space if
deemed appropriate.

So in summary I don't see that there is any real difference in our stance
on this - it might just need a bit of rethinking.

This really ties back into something more important; which is sourcing. I
think one thing that WT sorely lacks is secondary sourcing the support the
material, and that this would improve its content significantly. I'd be
cautious of supporting a new WMF project that avoided sourcing in favour of
mostly whatever the editors contribute from their experience. I think a
good argument could be made for using personal experience to write a WT
guide - but it should also incorporate good sourcing and editorial
standards as developed here (Wikinews is a good example of where
they successfully manage such a tradeoff).

Second, this is a fairly old and established community, with its own
 habits, mores, etc. As with other communities it makes some sense perhaps
 to learn about ours a bit before visiting. I think some of our fellow
 travellers are a bit concerned about being swamped by the shear size of the
 communities involved in other WMF projects (Wikipedia) and rightly so. They
 worry that the travel guide community runs a chance of quickly losing
 editorial control, and that this will lead not to the desired
 consolidation, but rather more unhealthy splintering in the collaborative
 travel guide space.


I think that's a relevant concern; there would have to be tradeoffs on both
sides I imagine. If WT are looking purely for a new host then.. I'm not
sure that is a good fit. If you are looking for a movement to become a
wider part of, to hold a specific corner (the travel side) and contribute
your own viewpoints as well as recieve some of ours... then that is
definitely a good idea.

You'd like to attract a community, but under your own rules... however this
community has a number of viewpoints that might not match up with how WT
currently operates (from my investigation anyway).

I don't see this, personally, as an unassailable problem.

One further thing worth pointing out; from the discussions so far I gather
the current host is unlikely to provide any technical support, such as a
full dump for importing? This represents a problem to overcome because of
attribution - any import would need a way to record the attribution history
of each page (i.e. the authors) to comply with the licensing. I don't think
pointing to the original WT page would work because, obviously, that could
disappear etc. Just a point to remember.

Tom
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Travel Guide Wiki

2012-04-12 Thread Mark Jaroski
On Thu, Apr 12, 2012 at 11:41, Thomas Morton
morton.tho...@googlemail.comwrote:

 What I think would be important to avoid is too much subjective information
 from one individual; for example, where I to write about York, UK I would
 recommend not going to the Jorvik centre (a main attraction) because I
 thought it overpriced and boring.



 Whilst my viewpoint on this is subjectively valid, it may not reflect the
 overall viewpoint of travellers to York (I know plenty of people who loved
 it)! NPOV aims to make sure that the most mainstream of these viewpoints if
 reflected - and any other viewpoints (i.e. hate it) are given space if
 deemed appropriate.



The whole point of a travel guide is subjective information from
individuals! However, there are travellers with different interests. Jorvik
actually works out pretty well for travellers with children, for instance,
but for (young) adults travelling on their own it's pretty overpriced, and
not so interesting so that's what the guide should say. I don't think
that's NPOV though, because the Jorvik probably think they're pretty
awesome for everybody.




 So in summary I don't see that there is any real difference in our stance
 on this - it might just need a bit of rethinking.


We'd like to express it as Traveller's Point of View.


 This really ties back into something more important; which is sourcing. I
 think one thing that WT sorely lacks is secondary sourcing the support the
 material, and that this would improve its content significantly. I'd be
 cautious of supporting a new WMF project that avoided sourcing in favour of
 mostly whatever the editors contribute from their experience. I think a
 good argument could be made for using personal experience to write a WT
 guide - but it should also incorporate good sourcing and editorial
 standards as developed here (Wikinews is a good example of where
 they successfully manage such a tradeoff).


Uh, sourcing? While things like telephone numbers and addresses are clearly
sourced from somewhere I tend to think that most travel guide writing is *
original* creative work. We've also tried to maintain a slightly cheeky
tone, which is hard to do in collaborative work.



 One further thing worth pointing out; from the discussions so far I gather
 the current host is unlikely to provide any technical support, such as a
 full dump for importing? This represents a problem to overcome because of
 attribution - any import would need a way to record the attribution history
 of each page (i.e. the authors) to comply with the licensing. I don't think
 pointing to the original WT page would work because, obviously, that could
 disappear etc. Just a point to remember.


I'm more concerned that now that we're discussing this in a more-or-less
public forum that they could get wind of it and start actively resisting.
They could make things a bit more difficult, though there are XML back-ups
out there which we could fall back on.

 I still think it's a good idea to not mention them or the collaborative
travel guide we're talking about by name for the time being. I do very much
prefer to think of them as a hosting provider than an owner, because
that's what they do: hosting in return for the right to advertise on the
site. They just happen to own the URL and, I believe, the name.
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Travel Guide Wiki

2012-04-12 Thread Mark Jaroski
We've mainly approached this issue encouraging the different groups of
travellers to add relevant content for their areas. We specifically try to
mix it all in, because we don't want to section anyone off. There was
considerable controversy back in 2005 or so about adding an LBGT section to
the guide template: most of the community came down on the side of mixing
everything in. Likewise with family-friendly stuff like Jorvik.

We have in fact strived for a level of neutrality among different kinds of
travel. I think the particular policy document would be worth reading here:
Be Fair

http://wikitravel.org/en/Wikitravel:Be_fair

I know, I know, I wrote that I'd rather not name the site, and there I go
adding a link. I didn't want to cut and paste.
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Travel Guide Wiki

2012-04-12 Thread Thomas Morton

  What I think would be important to avoid is too much subjective
 information
  from one individual; for example, where I to write about York, UK I would
  recommend not going to the Jorvik centre (a main attraction) because I
  thought it overpriced and boring.
 


  Whilst my viewpoint on this is subjectively valid, it may not reflect the
  overall viewpoint of travellers to York (I know plenty of people who
 loved
  it)! NPOV aims to make sure that the most mainstream of these viewpoints
 if
  reflected - and any other viewpoints (i.e. hate it) are given space if
  deemed appropriate.
 


 The whole point of a travel guide is subjective information from
 individuals!


Is it? I'd define it as useful advice for travellers.

Subjective information from only a few people can be useless, because most
people will have different viewpoints (for example; I would write about the
beautiful historical parts of Amsterdam, but, say, a younger person could
just have easily been looking for information on drug tourism).

The point of NPOV is balancing these personal priorities to make sure the
readers gets lots of useful information. Rather than say Don't bother
walking up to the Sacré-Coeur, it's a long climb and not worth the bother
you'd say The climb up to Sacré-Coeur can be a long one.



 However, there are travellers with different interests. Jorvik
 actually works out pretty well for travellers with children, for instance,
 but for (young) adults travelling on their own it's pretty overpriced, and
 not so interesting so that's what the guide should say.


Well I went as a child; and would recommend families not to bother
(overpriced, not all that interesting). Which possibly hihglights the point?



 I don't think
 that's NPOV though, because the Jorvik probably think they're pretty
 awesome for everybody.


Well, yes, but that's not NPOV because the Jorvik centre's view is
demonstrably biased :) (i.e. not a travellers perspective).



  So in summary I don't see that there is any real difference in our stance
  on this - it might just need a bit of rethinking.
 

 We'd like to express it as Traveller's Point of View.


I think this is a good name for it.

p.s. I read your fair link with interest - I think that is a good way to
resolve the issue with clashing of personal experience. However one thing a
bigger community brings is a difficulty in resolving these problems (or,
they crop up more often). On Wikipedia we can use sources so that
uninvolved people can voice an opinion and help resolve the situation - but
where this relies on personal experience that is simply not possible. Do
you have an approach to help scale this form of dispute resolution?

Other questions I had:

- What sort of size is the WT community at the moment?

- What are the policies/approach to copyright violations and other issues
such as slander, etc?

- What is the policy r.e. advertising and promotional (quite often, when I
use WT, I see a lot of content that seems quite promotional in quality -
e.g. for a particular restaurant).

Cheers,
Tom
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Travel Guide Wiki

2012-04-12 Thread Thomas Morton
Just to highlight my earlier point about sourcing, the article on Florence
currently says:

Opera was invented in Florence.


This happens to be true - but I have no proof of it, and it may well simply
be the opinion of the original writer. Much of the rest of the historical
section is the same; it is encyclopaedic detail about the city, spiced up
for travel guide purposes. I have no issue with the spicing up (it is
appropriate in the context), but I think this is the sort of content that
can/should be sourced to help the reader be assured the material is true in
at least some way (even if there is subjective opinion mixed in).

Tom
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Travel Guide Wiki

2012-04-12 Thread Casey Brown
On Thu, Apr 12, 2012 at 2:53 AM, Mark Jaroski mark.jaro...@gmail.com wrote:
 We're under the impression that there are
 other Wikimedia foundation projects which don't use NPOV, and so those of
 us favouring approaching WMF have been able to argue that we wouldn't be
 forced to use it. If that's wrong then we should probably just give up this
 line of exploration and go find another solution.

My impression of sister projects is the same. Not all of the same
rules that apply to Wikipedia also apply to sister projects. With the
exception of very few mandatory things (like respect for information
about living persons), individual projects can determine their own
rules and policies as much as they want.

-- 
Casey Brown
Cbrown1023

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] [Foundation-l] Volunteers Wanted: Funds Dissemination Process Advisory Group

2012-04-12 Thread Thomas Dalton
On 10 April 2012 17:51, Barry Newstead bnewst...@wikimedia.org wrote:
 If we simply select an FDC (btw - how would this happen?) and ask them to
 figure out the issues for themselves, this would be a recipe for serious
 challenges that could doom the FDC from the start. A relatively brief, but
 structured process that is open, has an effective advisory group of trusted
 people, and is supported by consultants who can give us structure and help
 us with the heavy-lifting on process design seems like a solid way to get
 us to a good outcome and help the FDC get off to an effective start.

We would select an FDC by having a discussion on meta about how we
think we should select an FDC and then, once we have a consensus, we
implement it. That's how we make decisions around, whenever possible.
I think we should at least try and reach a consensus rather than just
assuming that we need to delegate decision making power to yet another
committee.

Can you expand on what you mean by serious challenges? Do you mean
people will challenge the decisions of the FDC if it isn't spelt out
exactly what decisions they should be making and how? In my
experience, the opposite is true. If you try and codify exactly what a
decision making body is allowed to do then that allows people to
challenge it and you end up with situations like the US is facing at
the moment with the legislature having passed a law but it's now going
through the courts because people are challenging that law.

If you take the British approach of parliamentary sovereignty, that
doesn't happen. We elect people to make decisions for us and then we
let them make those decisions. If they make bad ones, we elect
different people next time. (Of course, we complain constantly about
the decisions they are making, but that's just good fun!) With the FDC
we would have another safety net in the form of the WMF board's veto.

Everyone agrees that the FDC is going to be a very powerful body, but
you are trying to restrict its power as much as possible. It will be
far more effective if you just give it the power to make the decisions
that it thinks are best. That is, after all, its job.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] teaching people how to edit Wikipedia

2012-04-12 Thread Ziko van Dijk
Hello,

Myself, I have a presentation which shows a basic wiki principle; I
noticed that showing the same thing onwiki would make me jumping too
much from page to page.
Showing Wikipedia functionalities then onwiki I call Wikipedia
surfing (version history, talk pages etc.).
If it is a workshop with the intention to make people edit then I
create a pseudo encyclopedia on user subpages. That's a number of
simplified Wikipedia articles with hardly any markup. From article to
article, the complexity and amount of wikisyntax grows. The newbies in
groups of 2 correct the language and content (I put in some errors for
them).
I prefer that because editing real WP makes people anxious, and I want
to be undisturbed with the newbies.
Kind regards
Ziko



2012/4/11 Heather Ford hf...@ushahidi.com:
 Have a quick question for some work I'm doing on Wikipedia literacy:

 What resources are folks using to teach others how to edit Wikipedia? At 
 Wikipedia Academies etc?

 Thanks in anticipation :)

 Best,
 Heather.


 Heather Ford
 Ethnographer: Ushahidi / SwiftRiver
 http://ushahidi.com | http://swiftly.org
 @hfordsa on Twitter
 http://hblog.org

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-- 

---
Vereniging Wikimedia Nederland
dr. Ziko van Dijk, voorzitter
http://wmnederland.nl/

Wikimedia Nederland
Postbus 167
3500 AD Utrecht
---

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] [Wikimedia Announcements] Announcing Community Fellow Peter Coombe

2012-04-12 Thread James Forrester
On Thursday, April 12, 2012, Siko Bouterse wrote:

 It is my pleasure to introduce our newest Wikimedia Community Fellow of
 2012, Peter Coombe. As a fellow, Pete will be working with the community to
 improve help documentation on English Wikipedia. He’ll be leading a 6 month
 effort and taking a data-driven approach to reorganize and rewrite key help
 pages in order to make them more usable for new and experienced editors
 alike.

 Pete comes to the fellowships program with an impressive resume. He’s been
 editing English Wikipedia as The 
 wubhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:The_wubsince 2005, he’s an admin with 
 over 75,000 global edits, and an active
 member of Wikimedia UK. Pete volunteered on the Social Media Team in the
 2010 Fundraiser, and worked as a Production Coordinator in 2011. He’s got a
 B.A. and M.Sci. with honors in Natural Sciences from the University of
 Cambridge, and much experience breaking down complex topics into clear
 written information. He’s participated twice in a program at Cambridge to
 create online teaching and learning modules on advanced materials science
 and engineering topics. He’s also worked at The Helpful Book Company,
 publishing books that teach senior citizens how to use computers.

 Pete’s talent for making the complex seem simple, combined with his
 experience A/B testing in the fundraiser and 7 years editing Wikipedia,
 make him a great fit for his fellowship project. To follow his work or get
 involved in the redesign project, please visit his project 
 pagehttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Help_pages_redesign_project.
 More info about Pete and his project are also on the WMF 
 bloghttp://blog.wikimedia.org/2012/04/12/help-is-on-the-way-announcing-community-fellow-peter-coombe/.
 Welcome, Pete!

Fantastic news, and a great thing to push forward. Congratulations Peter!

J.


-- 
James D. Forrester
jdforres...@wikimedia.org | jdforres...@gmail.com
[[Wikipedia:User:Jdforrester|James F.]]
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] teaching people how to edit Wikipedia

2012-04-12 Thread Heather Ford
Thanks, Ziko. That's really interesting and sounds like an effective way of 
getting them started. 

I'm curious what kinds of problems people contact you about when they start 
editing for real? 

On Apr 12, 2012, at 1:45 PM, Ziko van Dijk wrote:

 Hello,
 
 Myself, I have a presentation which shows a basic wiki principle; I
 noticed that showing the same thing onwiki would make me jumping too
 much from page to page.
 Showing Wikipedia functionalities then onwiki I call Wikipedia
 surfing (version history, talk pages etc.).
 If it is a workshop with the intention to make people edit then I
 create a pseudo encyclopedia on user subpages. That's a number of
 simplified Wikipedia articles with hardly any markup. From article to
 article, the complexity and amount of wikisyntax grows. The newbies in
 groups of 2 correct the language and content (I put in some errors for
 them).
 I prefer that because editing real WP makes people anxious, and I want
 to be undisturbed with the newbies.
 Kind regards
 Ziko
 
 
 
 2012/4/11 Heather Ford hf...@ushahidi.com:
 Have a quick question for some work I'm doing on Wikipedia literacy:
 
 What resources are folks using to teach others how to edit Wikipedia? At 
 Wikipedia Academies etc?
 
 Thanks in anticipation :)
 
 Best,
 Heather.
 
 
 Heather Ford
 Ethnographer: Ushahidi / SwiftRiver
 http://ushahidi.com | http://swiftly.org
 @hfordsa on Twitter
 http://hblog.org
 
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 -- 
 
 ---
 Vereniging Wikimedia Nederland
 dr. Ziko van Dijk, voorzitter
 http://wmnederland.nl/
 
 Wikimedia Nederland
 Postbus 167
 3500 AD Utrecht
 ---
 
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Heather Ford 
Ethnographer: Ushahidi / SwiftRiver
http://ushahidi.com | http://swiftly.org 
@hfordsa on Twitter
http://hblog.org

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Travel Guide Wiki

2012-04-12 Thread Tom Morris
On 12 April 2012 21:24, James Heilman jmh...@gmail.com wrote:
 With respect to audience, on Wikipedia we write for a general audience yet
 our medical content is still used by 50-70% of practicing physicians.
 Lonely planet lists hotels in different section based on price. On
 Wikipedia we use editorial judgement about what to include and what not to
 include. We have subjective policies like [[WP:DUE]]. Just because
 something is subjective does not mean it cannot be done. There are books
 like the 1000 must see places before you die.
 http://www.1000beforeyoudie.com/  Referencing of this content is possible.


It is one of the most pernicious myths in Wikimedia-land that we
aren't riddled with subjective standards.

1. As an English Wikinews reviewer, I make decisions as to the
importance and newsworthiness of what goes on the homepage every time
I publish a story. Is the latest development in the Trayvon Martin
case more or less important than Facebook buying Instagram? On what
basis do I make such a decision? Oh yeah, newsworthiness. That well
known, objective measure! ;-)

2. On Commons, there is a category called Suggestive use of
feathers. Is there some sort of Platonic measure of how one uses
feathers suggestively? Same for Erotic pole dancing. Am I to believe
that Commons editors are deciding on some purely objective basis
whether pole dancing images are erotic or not? (I pick on the
erotic/suggestive categories solely because of the BLP-esque issues
Commons often raises and fails to adequately deal with.)

Subjective decisions happen all the time on the projects. There's a
reason why we generally prefer our admins to be made of flesh and
blood rather than just building hyper-intelligent AIs to run the
projects.

-- 
Tom Morris
http://tommorris.org/

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[Wikimedia-l] [Wikimedia Announcements] Announcing Community Fellow Peter Coombe

2012-04-12 Thread Siko Bouterse
It is my pleasure to introduce our newest Wikimedia Community Fellow of
2012, Peter Coombe. As a fellow, Pete will be working with the community to
improve help documentation on English Wikipedia. He’ll be leading a 6 month
effort and taking a data-driven approach to reorganize and rewrite key help
pages in order to make them more usable for new and experienced editors
alike.

Pete comes to the fellowships program with an impressive resume. He’s been
editing English Wikipedia as The
wubhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:The_wubsince 2005, he’s an
admin with over 75,000 global edits, and an active
member of Wikimedia UK. Pete volunteered on the Social Media Team in the
2010 Fundraiser, and worked as a Production Coordinator in 2011. He’s got a
B.A. and M.Sci. with honors in Natural Sciences from the University of
Cambridge, and much experience breaking down complex topics into clear
written information. He’s participated twice in a program at Cambridge to
create online teaching and learning modules on advanced materials science
and engineering topics. He’s also worked at The Helpful Book Company,
publishing books that teach senior citizens how to use computers.

Pete’s talent for making the complex seem simple, combined with his
experience A/B testing in the fundraiser and 7 years editing Wikipedia,
make him a great fit for his fellowship project. To follow his work or get
involved in the redesign project, please visit his project
pagehttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Help_pages_redesign_project.
More info about Pete and his project are also on the WMF
bloghttp://blog.wikimedia.org/2012/04/12/help-is-on-the-way-announcing-community-fellow-peter-coombe/.
Welcome, Pete!
-- 
Siko Bouterse
Head of Community Fellowships
Wikimedia Foundation, Inc.

sboute...@wikimedia.org
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] teaching people how to edit Wikipedia

2012-04-12 Thread Chris Keating
 Have a quick question for some work I'm doing on Wikipedia literacy:

 What resources are folks using to teach others how to edit Wikipedia? At
 Wikipedia Academies etc?


Have a look at the Outreach Bookshelf:
http://outreach.wikimedia.org/wiki/Bookshelf

Welcome to Wikipedia is well-used by Wikimedia UK.

(And if anyone else has outreach materials, please do add them to the
Bookshelf)

Chris
Wikimedia UK
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