Re: [Wikimedia-l] extend mediawiki software to allow append a group, and COI to an edit

2014-02-25 Thread Laura Hale

  On Sat, Feb 22, 2014 at 7:25 AM, rupert THURNER
   could wmf please extend the mediawiki software in the following way:
   1. it should knows groups
   2. allow users to store an arbitrary number of groups with their
   3. allow to select one of the groups joined to an edit when saving
   4. add a checkbox COI to an edit, meaning potential conflict of
   5. display and filter edits marked with COI in a different color in
   6. display and filter edits done for a group in a different color in
   history views
   7. allow members of a group to receive notifications done on the group
  or when a group is mentioned in an edit/comment/talk page.

I think Rupert's proposal does not go far enough in terms of addressing the
potential conflict of interests by contributors because it focuses
exclusively on paid edits while failing to address other conflict of
interests problems that lead to neutrality issues.  While anyone should be
free to edit, the edit box should contain a dynamic box at the bottom that
includes a potential list of conflicts that create bias problems based on
the conflict.  The user, before submitting their edit, should click each
box verifying what their (potential) advocacy problems are so that their
edits may be vetted.  This includes gender, religion, nationality,
ethnicity, political alignment, Political party membership, academic
discipline, level of education, yearly earnings, city you live in, and

So if you are editing an article about Serbian politics, you would be asked
if you are a Serb nationalist, a Croatian nationalist, a right wing
political party member, a left wing political party member, male,
Christian, Muslim, have a PhD, work for the government, work for for a
non-profit, if you live in Belgrade, etc.  This would increase Wikipedia's
transparency and accountability of editors for their actions.  It would
actively discourage advocacy of all types, including the paid type.

Laura Hale

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Wikimedia Ukraine -- is everyone safe?

2014-02-20 Thread Laura Hale
On Thu, Feb 20, 2014 at 2:30 PM, Bohdan Melnychuk wrote:

 Some WMUA members stay on barricades. Other help in hospitals. IDK if
 right now but they do regularly. --Base

I've blogged about this issue at
 The people I've dealt with in the chapter have been awesome all
considered in trying to support the movement by providing free information
while at the same time trying to deal with everything that is going on
around them.

Laura Hale

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] online survey invitation

2014-02-10 Thread Laura Hale
Can you provide more information about this survey?  Some of the questions
feel really vague and context specific.  There are some terms in there that
appear to be aimed more for the researcher than the respondent ease in

On Mon, Feb 10, 2014 at 9:24 AM, zhuangziyun ziyun_zhu...@hotmail.comwrote:

 Excuse me, could you please help me with my paper by filling out a
 questionnaire? I am currently doing a project about personality traits and
 knowledge sharing in Wikipedia.

 The survey will take about 5 min of your time.


 I need about 200 respondents, so your little help counts A LOT to me and I
 would GREATLY appreciate it!

 Thank you so much in advance!

 PS: If something is unclear or difficult to understand (English is not my
 first language), please tell me. I will fix it immediately.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Recognition of two new user groups

2014-01-29 Thread Laura Hale
On Wed, Jan 29, 2014 at 5:16 PM, Michel Castelo Branco wrote:

 Unity was achieved two years ago for a Brazilian chapter. This user group
 proposal is a condition imposed by AffCom for a future apply as a chapter
 after1 year. The group accepted it in an open discussion. So, here we go...

 Michel Castelo Branco

Did aff-comm initially recommend to the Wikimedia Foundation board that
Wikimedia Brazil be approved as a chapter? Or did aff-comm talk them into
becoming a usergroup before any approval?

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Registration open for Chapter Board workshop

2013-12-06 Thread Laura Hale
Hi Chris,

If there is only one Wikimedia Foundation board recognised thematic
organization, why did you chose to use a plural?  And The Wikinewsie Group
has aff-comm recognition, and as the Board has never rejected an aff-comm
recommendation, I don't particularly see the problem.

What I do see as problematic is WM-UK organizing this conference, talking
about chapters moving towards professionalism in the context of the
Wikimedia Movement while charging chapters and a thematic organization to
attend, selecting a hotel for participants to stay at that costs above the
per diem rate that the WMF funds for, and then saying there is the
expectation that it will not be an issue for people to attend with the high
registration fee and high accomodation costs because these will not be
incurred by individuals but by their organizations.

As the Movement appears to be having a discussion about finacial
responsibility and effect use of donor funds, that sort of approach appears
to run counter to all of that.  No explanation other than We talked down
the price! appears to have been forth coming as to why a place was
selected that costs roughly USD$200 a night.  There is no agenda for this
conference to understand why the conference is worth that expensive costs.
 The people presenting clearly are not in need of the conference as it is
Wikimedia UK, Wikimedia DE, Wikimedia PL, Wikimedia France.  These are by
and large the chapters with FDC funding or access to independent sources of
funding.  They are clearly not being targetted for training.  The people
who appear to be targetted as attendees are ones who have no money... and
you're off to charge them large amounts.

I don't see how these costs, which you expect to be absorbed by donor
funds, are a good use of those funds.  I don't see how expecting people to
incur expenses over around USD$850 to attend a two day conference ($400 for
two nights, $65 for registration, $230 for a flight from somewhere close in
Europe, $50 to get to the event from the airport, $100 in food) where the
thing starts out by violating WMF guidelines.

What knowledge exactly are you planning to pass on to people from less
developed chapters?  Fiscal responsibility, best use of donor funds,
following WMF's best practices for grant funding...  These are off the
table?  What else is there?

Laura Hale

On Friday, December 6, 2013, Chris Keating wrote:

 Hi Laura, you can bypass the registration fee by selecting other payment
 option in the way I said.

 In response to another off list query, I should point out that
 unfortunately this workshop is only open to existing (incorporated 
 recognised) chapters/thorgs, not those still in planning or awaiting

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[Wikimedia-l] The Wikinewsie Group News Edition 6, December 2, 2013

2013-12-02 Thread Laura Hale

This is just a notification that the latest edition of The Wikinewsie Group
News newsletter can be found at .


The Wikinewsie Group News Edition 6, December 2, 2013

If you know anyone interested in Wikinews, journalism on Wikimedia projects
or The Wikinewsie Group, please encourage them to subscribe to the
newsletter by adding their name to the
The Group

   - Aff-comm recommended to the Wikimedia Foundation Board that The
   Wikinewsie Group be recognised as a thematic organization in early November.


   - Wikinews Education
   post was published on Wikimedia's official blog.
   - Discussions were had on IRC and Skype about the possibility of
   installing the education extension on Ukrainian, Czech and Korean Wikinews.
   While these could be used to potentially re-invigorate the local
   communities and provide a cohort of new contributors, the limited
   contributor base at the moment makes it difficult to implement. Greater
   partnerships would need to be done with chapters to provide people to
   assist local projects in running any education initiative.
   - What is news? handout
   was created to supplement existing training materials as this is an area
   where new contributors sometimes have issues on English Wikinews.
   - Documenting your original sport
   created to supplement Wikinews Original Sport
   Assistance is requested in translating these documents into Spanish and


   - LauraHale attended Wikimedia CEE Meeting
2013 in
   Slovakia representing The Wikinewsie Group. She had conversations with
   people from several chapters about the potential to do things with TWG
   including the Polish, Estonian, Serbian, Czech and Ukrainian chapters.

Original reporting projects

   - The paperwork was submitted at the end of the month to send five
   Wikinews reporters to the Sochi Paralympic Games.
   - Attempts were made to secure media accreditation for the Commonwealth
   Games. The application was unsuccessful.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Wikisource Community User Group recognized

2013-11-24 Thread Laura Hale
On Sun, Nov 24, 2013 at 12:54 PM, Bence Damokos wrote:


 You can learn more about the group and how to join at

 The Affiliations Committee resolution is at
 The group has already signed the user group agreement, their first round of
 recognition runs until 31 November 2014.

 Please join me in welcoming them and wishing them luck.

Welcome and good luck. :) It is very encouraging to see people from sister
projects coming together to try to work more collaboratively together
inside their own language groups and to develop more formal ties with
existing chapters to facilitate programming to support the work being done
on them. :)

Laura Hale

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Copyright infringement - The real elephant in the room

2013-11-14 Thread Laura Hale
On Thu, Nov 14, 2013 at 4:47 PM, Andrew Lih wrote:

 FYI, on the last Wikipedia Weekly podcast, we talked with Sage Ross about
 the plagiarism issue, and he walked through the study with some very
 interesting insights. Video here, and the discussion started at 11 minutes,
 30 seconds into the podcast.

I've done a study of student contributions on English Wikinews.  We've
found that only about 15% of student submissions have a copyright issue.
 The level of plagiarism and copyright problems is about the same for
regular contributors, new contributors and student contributors on English
Wikinews with that range of 10 to 15%.  This is an issue we have to be on
top of because nothing gets published on the project without being reviewed
for this issue.

Laura Hale

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[Wikimedia-l] The Wikinewsie Group News - Edition 5, November 8, 2013

2013-11-08 Thread Laura Hale

The Wikinewsie Group News  Edition 5, November 8, 2013  Project news

   - The Wikinewsie Group/Local Wikinews
the start of a guide that explains local Wikinews project policies
   the goal of making it easier to recognise credentials across project, build
   on accumulated reputation from one project to another and facilitate
   translation work.
   - Historical Czech Wikinews
a blog entry by
   Okino that looks at the
   community impact of allowing writers to write Wikinews articles from a past
   perspective, IE writing a story about a historical battle as if you were a
   journalist writing that article the day after it happened. The purpose was
   to attempt to make Wikinews more collaborative in nature and avoid the time
   constraints of the immediacy of news reporting. Okino shows that while the
   reaction to the idea was positive, the true interest in writing the
   articles of this type was small as the vast majority of them were written
   by him.
   - A conversation is taking place on Wikinoticias about allowing CC-BY-NC
   images to be locally
   - A conversation is taking place on English Wikinews with a WMF staff
   member about the future of search and potential special search features for

 Training materials
A video for new reporters who lost their first article on English Wikinews

   - A one page
created that explain how to avoid plagiarism on Wikinews. Available
   data suggests this is somewhat of an issue for new and student reporters on
   English Wikinews, with roughly 10 to 20% of all submitted articles having
   some sort of copyright issue.
   - Training materials were created to better support new reporters
   wanting to produce photo essays. They can be found at Photo Essays for
   and Wikinews Photo Essay
   Assistance is requested in translating these to other languages and
   localizing them to local project requirements. This would be very helpful
   ahead of the Sochi Paralympic Games, where there are expected to be a
   number of photo essays produced.
   - Given the difficulty of new reporters being unable to get their first
   article published on Wikinews, a video was created to encourage these
   writers to stick with it. It can be found at The first time writing for
   It is somewhat tongue in cheek, and tries to address the emotional
   implications of a not ready review. The problem of getting new reporters
   who are unsuccessful at getting their article published has been identified
   as a major area for work. It has a large impact on reporter retention.

 Of interest for journalists

   - Copyright's Role in a Free
an article by Terry Hart of the copyright alliance on the issue of
   funding important investigative journalism.


   - Provisional Chairperson
LauraHale made a
presentation at the EduWiki
   Conference 2013
Cardiff, Wales about educational efforts on English Wikinews. Findings
   she included that changes in reviewing practices between semester 1 and
   semester 2 for one university course saw similar improvements for new
   reporters. What is good for students is good for the whole community.
   - With the Education
successfully on English Wikinews, a portal was started at WN:EDU
   [4] to encourage and provide
   training for educators to use Wikinews in their coursework. This is
   something The Wikinewsie Group is hoping to expand upon in the future, and
   plans to try to get translated into other languages. Plans are also
   underway to create a student portal to provide training for students. Many
   things to Sage

[Wikimedia-l] Thanks for EduWiki conference

2013-11-03 Thread Laura Hale
I wanted to thank wikimedia UK for organizing EduWiki 2013. I think they
did a fantastic  job with the conference, managed to get the right people
there, opened doors to make things happen and left me motivated to continue
to do educational outreach for Wikinews. Combine that with good wifi and
decent food, I cannot wait for next year's conference. My only request
would be less rain.

Great job. :)


Laura Hale

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Kumusha Takes Wiki

2013-10-02 Thread Laura Hale
On Wed, Oct 2, 2013 at 8:57 PM, Yaroslav M. Blanter pute...@mccme.ruwrote:

 On 02.10.2013 14:03, Florence Devouard wrote:

 Dear friends

 It is my pleasure to announce the launch of a new project, Kumusha Takes

 Hi Florence,

 you may want to look at WikiVoyage as well. There, we badly need
 reasonable info on Africa, and it can come without sources as soon as it is
 not obvious fairy tales. (It is a pity that Russia never had African
 colonies, so that the Russian Wikivoyage can not immediately benefit from
 the project).

It might also be worth looking at Wikinews. is our category on English
Wikinews. (
Russian.) has some
documents created on editing that might be useful for new contributors.
 Some one from Wikinews would probably be more than happy to customize
learning materials for the project to local needs.

Laura Hale

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[Wikimedia-l] The Wikinewsie Group News - Edition 4, October 1, 2013

2013-10-01 Thread Laura Hale
A copy of the most recent edition of The Wikinewsie Group newsletter can be
found at
 This month's edition includes information on:
* our progress with aff-comm application.
* research being conducted by the group.
* education outreach being worked on.
* planned original reporting at the Sochi Paralympic Games.
* technical updates to e-mail, servers, translation tools, etc.
* information for reporters on oppprtunities to report at the United
Nations and get more recognition for their work.
* technical issues in regards to conducting outreach.
* a list of original reporting completed in the past month-

Laura Hale

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Planned school curriculum by MPAA

2013-09-26 Thread Laura Hale
On Wed, Sep 25, 2013 at 9:09 PM, Tyler Romeo wrote:

 On Wed, Sep 25, 2013 at 2:33 PM, Andrew Lih wrote:

  I'd be OK if they simply gave some space in the training materials to
  about public domain, free licenses and fair use. That's not likely to
  happen given who's in control of those lesson plans.

 You're still just arguing about the correctness of the material. I agree
 that this curriculum is stupid and misleading, but that doesn't explain why
 the WMF should care enough to make a statement, or even continue
 discussion, about it.

One alternative option would be to work with the Education folks and create
Wikimedia centric lesson plans for teachers to use that share the values
people are expressing.  These can be linked on education outreach pages,
distributed to chapters, etc.  Or general handouts can be made that explain
these concepts ad the linked on . This is a nice option
because it is pro-active and community driven.  If some one does approach
the WMF externally asking for support on this issue, they have the
materials to then work with.

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[Wikimedia-l] Wikimedia blog moving to

2013-09-05 Thread Laura Hale
On Thursday, September 5, 2013, rupert THURNER wrote:

 Personally i think this is a bad idea, especially with respect to all the
 nsa discussions. If wmf is not able to host it might be hosted by one of
 the chapters, or wikinews might accept a new article type blog, what you

Cool idea, but maybe Wikipedia, Wikibooks, Wikiversity, meta or outreach
would be a better fit mission wise?  Blog hosting would violate fundamental
Wikinews project guidelines regarding neutrality, style guidelines and
verifiability.  Thus, not a good fit for Wikinews, though I am sure if you
contact the local communities, they would appreciate the suggestion. :)
 (Maybe Spanish Wikinews would appreciate it.) If it was a serious option, is getting Icelandic hosting for our reporting journalism
workspace to protect our reporters...  I believe we already have a
Wordpress install, so as a potential thematic organization, The Wikinewsie
Group could be placed to assist.  We chose Icelandic hosting for a variety
of reasons that have been mentioned in previous security related

Laura Hale

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] [Wikidata-l] Meeting about the support of Wiktionary in Wikidata

2013-08-09 Thread Laura Hale
On Fri, Aug 9, 2013 at 6:13 PM, JP BĂ©land wrote:

 I agree. We also need to include the Omegawiki community.

Why? The question of moving them into the WMF fold was pretty much no,
because the project has an overlapping purpose with Wiktionary, and the
technology they use cannot be supported with the existing resources
available.  There was a great deal of community reasoned community

If they independently want to engage in the process on the Wikidata side
without a goal of creating a competing Wikimedia project, that is one
thing... but bringing them to the table as equals sets bad precedent for
sister projects, contributor retention, community support, etc.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Communication plans for community engagement

2013-08-07 Thread Laura Hale
On Wed, Aug 7, 2013 at 1:27 PM, Yaroslav M. Blanter pute...@mccme.ruwrote:

 Not commenting on the topic of the thread, is there any data around to
 show that the English Wikipedia is mainly written by North Americans (aka
 residents of the US and Canada)? Seems to me that it is likely to be the
 case but not 100% obvious.

The answer would be best answered topically. I have data that shows
Australian content tends to be maintained by Australians.  When you start
looking at some things on the very specific gradient, other nationalistic
editing patterns appear.  During the London Olympics and Paralympics, there
was a large number of UK editors contributing to articles about ALL London
Olympic and Paralympic sports.  Boccia articles I have found are often
updated by Poles.  Equestrian has a large number of British contributors.

Laura Hale

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[Wikimedia-l] The Wikinewsie Group Newsletter: Edition 2, August 6, 2013

2013-08-05 Thread Laura Hale
The second edition of The Wikinewsie Group Newsletter is officially
published at

This edition includes information on GLAM, Education, research activities,
technical news, local project news and our original reporting efforts
across all projects.  To subscribe to our on wiki version, please list your
name at .

Newsletter text below.

Laura Hale

The Wikinewsie Group News

There is less to report, as the group spent time focusing on
behind-the-scenes aspects of obtaining thematic organization recognition.
Aff-Comm application status updates

   - The Wikinewsie Group answered several questions from the Affiliations
   Committee at Talk:The Wikinewsie

Education and GLAM

   - Members are working to create educational materials to use at training
   workshops in English and Spanish. Current print training materials include a
   one page guide to original sport reporting on English English
   , a one page guide to conducting multilingual
   , a guide to getting photo essays
and a guide to writing for English
   - The University of Wollongong class participation on English *Wikinews* is
   winding up as the semester ended. It looks like a new semester may be
   starting soon. The instructor has created a presentation about the class on
   *Wikinews* that can be found at
   - A member of The Wikinewsie Group met with a GLAM partner about the
   value of English *Wikinews* and Wikinoticias for freely sharing
   knowledge about culture.

Technical updates

   - Pi zero has moved to a new phase in the development of an improved
   reviewing tool for English *Wikinews*.
   - Gryllida is working on the development of a tool to make translating
   material from one project to another easier. The new beta *wmtrans*
   tool here, which you can use to
   translate*Wikipedia* and *Wikinews* articles from one language to
   another. Its difference from the Meta translation tools is include the the
   ability to translate an article as a whole, per-paragraph, and add new
   paragraphs if desired; a dictionary box for you to look up geographical
   names without loading entire Wikipedia pages; and whole-page translation
   philosophy instead of translating by parts. The tool also features a
   multilingual interface; you can add new sections to
data.ini to
   add your own. You are encouraged to send them, and bug reports, to
   - Discussions have been going on behind the scenes about the potential
   for The Wikinewsie Group to support the technical aspects for Wikinews
   project development following suggestions on Wikimedia-l that this would be
   a place chapters could demonstrate leadership potential and work with the
   Foundation. There are currently a number of developers active in the
   Wikinews community.


   - Given feedback by a member of the Wikimedia Foundation Board (Samuel
   Klien that the English
   language project should consider content import from other free news
   sources as a way of increasing community participation, content output and
   traffic, research was done inside the community using another language
   project as a baseline to determine the potential impact in terms of
   achieving those goals. A copy of this research can be found at
   Content Import
   In a nutshell, the findings are: content import did *not* result in
   increased community output or increased community size. Content import also
   resulted in fewer page views per published article. Content import was not
   successful at achieving a positive community or traffic related impact.
   - A tiny piece of research done examining relative article popularity by
   year on English *Wikinews* can found at Article rank and article
   More in-depth research along these lines may produce interesting results.

Across the languages

   - Over on Italian Wikinews on July 25,
   they hit 30,000 total pages.
   - English Wikinews completed elections for their Arbitration

[Wikimedia-l] Research:Anatomy of English Wikipedia Did You Know traffic

2013-08-03 Thread Laura Hale

I posted research about the factors that may impact English Wikipedia Did
You Know article traffic on the day.   Because the research is a bit long,
a copy of it can be found at

Summary: This research examines the traffic of 544 English Wikipedia Did
You Knows to try to determine which variables play a role in the
determining the number of page views an article will get on the day. It
largely concludes that the number of dependent and independent variables
make it to difficult to isolate specific reasons why one type of article
performs better than another, though there are some general time and topics
that will likely result in greater views.

Any feedback is appreciated either here, on the research talk page or

Laura Hale

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Research:Anatomy of English Wikipedia Did You Know traffic

2013-08-03 Thread Laura Hale
On Saturday, August 3, 2013, Kerry Raymond wrote:

 Hi, Laura!

Hi Kerry.  Thanks for the comments. :)

 I wonder if a variable worth considering is the number of views of the DYK
 vs the average number of page views of the article(s) (per day/week/month
 or whatever) promoted by the DYK *before* the publication of the DYK
 (obviously this can only measured for expanded articles rather than new
 ones). The hypothesis here is that more popular topics make more popular

This is actually one of the areas that is worth looking at further.  People
have attempted to time DYKs to coincide with certain events.  TonyTheTiger
is actually very good at doing this for some his hooks.  It can and
sometimes does create tension in the project as people try to get things
timed for these events and not everyone wants to oblige them.  (One
situation that particulary comes to mine is the Kony2012 article at where the article was stalled at DYK
because a reviewer did not want to time it to coincide with an already
large media blitz.)  It just would require a lot of subject knowledge to do
any indepth research on this topic and looking through T:TDYK to see where
things are in the special holding areas often to identify some of these.

 Another interesting variable is number of page views of the article in the
 days/weeks/months after the DYK. It would be interesting to know the extent
 to which DYKs drive additional interest in the topic both in the short term
 and whether any increase in interest is sustained longer term. I would
 hypothesize any initial sharp increase during the DYK, with a sharp
 fall-off after the DYK finishes but with a small sustained elevation.

Yes, my casual observation has been that historically, articles get an
average page views per month bump after DYK that they do not enjoy with
other processes like GA or peer review.  (This casual observation and
assumption further research would bear it out as likely fact is based on
the fact that you have rapid content development other processes do not
require, and then subsequent SEO stengthening by appearing on the front
page.)  I think having looked at the articles the hypothesis is true, but
would need a great deal of additional data that you also have two mini
traffic bumps prior to appearing at DYK, with the first being from the
contributors working on the article, and the second as a result of the DYK

 It would also be interesting to see if articles mentioned in DYKs show any
 increased edit activity OR the creation of new inbound links to the article
 in the short or long term, but I am less sure about what is the baseline
 for comparison (given that a DYK article will have recently been created or
 expanded, suggesting an abnormally high level of edit activity immediately
 preceding the DYK). Possible proxies are articles in the same categories?

The possible baseline would be new articles that meet DYK articles that do
not appear at DYK or conversely comparing the article's editing history in
several periods: Before DYK work, during DYK expansion, during DYK review,
the day of and the week after DYK review, and the two month period after
the DYK.  (I had actually considered doing this type of research to look at
the contributions and DYK, but it would serve a completely different
purpose.  Hence, it would need to be retooled.  I think this could
potentially be one of the strengths of DYK that people fail to consider in
that it does give new articles of a slightly higher caliber more eyes and
potential contributors from the established editing pool than the article
would otherwise get.  I would love to see someone do research on the
contribution effect of DYK, especially say if they could possibly compare
it to other processes in terms of contributor participation.

Laura Hale


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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Why the WP will never be a real encyclopaedia

2013-08-01 Thread Laura Hale
On Thu, Aug 1, 2013 at 10:55 PM, Rui Correia wrote:

 Can you honesty tell me that you have not come across articles that are
 'untouchable'? That you know they convey a view that is not entirely right,
 but YOU and I cannot change it? Can you tell me that you have not come
 across editors who are hell-bent on preserving this or that article just as
 it is?

I too am a journalist with my work published on two different continents in
print.   I am also a social media metrics lover.  As a journalist, I value
verifiable, fact based, neutral reporting.

If you are making the claim that English and Portuguese Wikipedia are
doomed, I would love to see some verifiable, fact based, neutral oriented
data sets to support the claim, especially as this would imply systematic
bias on a large scale.  You have pulled one article and non-neutrally
labeled it as a representative article for all projects.  Yes, I know of a
number of articles and topics that are pretty much untouchable but this is
far from 99% of all articles on the project.  (I would put the number at
probably 0.1% and that feels generous.)  This feels like a sensationalist
claim (which I would normally say is trumped up by the media in order to
spin a story, but this is not a media story) based on one or two articles.

Bad research.  Bad reporting. There are ways to get attention to this VERY,
VERY important topic without resorting to sensationalist calls that have
little thoughtful documentation.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Collaborative machine translation for Wikipedia -- proposed strategy

2013-07-27 Thread Laura Hale
On Saturday, July 27, 2013, David Cuenca wrote:

 On Fri, Jul 26, 2013 at 11:30 PM, C. Scott Ananian javascript:;wrote:

  This statement seems rather defeatist to me.  Step one of a machine
  translation effort should be to provide tools to annotate parallel texts
  the various wikis, and to edit and maintain their parallelism.

 Scott, edit and maintain parallelism sounds wonderful on paper, until you
 want to implement it and then you realize that you have to freeze changes
 both in the source text and in the target language for it to happen, which
 is, IMHO against the very nature of wikis.
 Translate:Extension already does that in a way. I see it useful only for
 texts acting as a central hub for translations, like official
 communication. If that were to happen for all kind of content you would
 have to sacrifice the plurality of letting each wiki to do their own

Actually, this sort of translation service might be extremely useful for us
on Wikinews.  We have a fair amount of direct cross translation work from
one language to the other.  Our articles generally become non-editable
after a short period of time because of the nature of news reporting.
 There are issues for things like original reporting where getting say
original Czech language reporting outside the major news stories that
international media can easily sell for syndication do not get reported.
 Thus more local news from minority languages being shared... yeah, big
benefit for us. :)  There might be a few Wikinews language projects that
would be willing to sign on as beta testers for a collaborative translating
tool. :)  I think one of our regulars, Gryllida, has been trying to develop
a tool to make translating easier so it would fit really well with existing
project goals.

Laura Hale


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[Wikimedia-l] The Wikinewsie Group Newsletter - Edition 1

2013-06-02 Thread Laura Hale
Originally published at

The Wikinewsie Group Newsletter

Sharing news about the group's activities
and things taking place on local Wikinews projects.
Key resources

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   Wikinewsie Group IRC Channel
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The Wikinewsie Group

Since mid-April, supporters of The Wikinewsie Group have been quite active,
doing a number of activities in support of the organization. These include
selecting a provisional board, engaging in research projects, working to
support original reporting, discussing setting up off-line events, and
promoting our efforts and the broader work being done by Wikinews reporters.

   - On May 4, a meeting was held to select the provisional board. It was
   decided that the board would be composed of the following people:
   LauraHale (Chair), Pi
   zero, Brian
   The total number of people and roles was based on the draft bylaws. 18
   people, a little under half of all people who were listed as supporters,
   attended the meeting. aff-comm has been advised of this, and that we are
   ready to discuss the group's bylaws with them. They have responded back to
   indicate their review will start shortly.
   - Tentative steps are being taken to have a Wikimedia conference in
   Iceland with a Wikinews workshop as a component of it. This would likely be
   in December to coincide with the 10th birthday of Icelandic
   Having some discussions about the possibility of having a small Wikinews
   conference somewhere in Europe sometime in the next year.
   - Wikinews:GLAM was
   created after writing about previous experiences with GLAM projects on
   English Wikinews
   content related to GLAMs across all
   Hopefully, with groundwork underway, there should be two announcements
   about Wikinews and GLAM projects by the end of June that will build upon
   previous success.
   - It does not look like there is a single presentation about Wikinews at
   Wikimania in Hong Kong has been approved. Given that, plans are to have
   some sort of Wikinews meetup while there independent of the official tracks.
   - Efforts are underway to do a better job at translating articles from
   one language to another, and successfully guide them through any local
   review processes. This is not a one way street of material from English
   Wikinews to other languages: We have successfully had two articles start on
   Spanish Wikinews that were translated to English Wikinews, where they
   passed the local review process and were successfully published. Comments
   on this effort are welcome at The Wikinewsie Group/Project
and User talk:LauraHale:
   - Efforts are underway to develop a matrix to understand key policy,
   community and content requirement differences between different Wikinews
   projects. Once complete, this should ease cross Wikinews collaboration by
   having a starting point to discuss content related issues when translating
   for review, and trying to standardize any policies across projects.
   - Four pieces of research have been completed. They include Blocks on
   , Research:Wikinews Review
and English Wikinews and the Gender
   If you are doing any research, formally or informally, about any language
   Wikinews project,