On Mon, Apr 16, 2012 at 18:41, Jan Kučera <kozuc...@gmail.com> wrote:

> Hi there,
> how do we want to work on editor retention if we lack social features at 
> all???
> These go in the right direction:
> http://strategy.wikimedia.org/wiki/Proposal:Improving_our_platform
> http://strategy.wikimedia.org/wiki/Social_features
> Is WMF going to act finally???
> Kozuch


I put together that second link during the strategy process. Others
have since added to it but the page looks much the way I remember it
from back then.

It's really hard for me to recall quite what I was thinking. I did
believe that some kind of social glue would make the site more
"sticky" (as the geek parlance goes) but whether I still believe that
would lead to a better encyclopedia... I guess I'm not so sure about
that now.

Probably I was more driven by a sense of loneliness and isolation I
felt whilst I did my Wikipedia work.

Thing is, I think there are already vibrant communities within
Wikipedia and I'm sure there are bonds. Although, I confess, I'm
guessing because I'm not involved with any of them. But I would assume
that those that put together Signpost each week feel connected. Those
in the Military History group I imagine work together. I think if one
wants to join a group for social interaction there are plenty of
possibilities open to one.

So now, time having passed since I put together that page, I more feel
that the type of stuff I do on Wikipedia doesn't really lend itself to
bonding. I tend to read articles on myriad topics and follow where my
curiosity takes me. Is there the possibility of an "Autodidact
reader's group"? If so, what would they talk about? "I read *this*
today!" "Cool! Today I read this *other* thing!" Is there much value
in such exchanges? It seems to me that, no, there probably isn't.

There is also the Copyeditors Group but my relationship to it is that
there is plenty of info there for me to learn from but I don't feel
qualified to add to it. But I do know where to go if I have a
question, which is not to be sniffed at. So if I am left daunted I
know where to find support. Good.

What do I think about it all now... Personally, I think there is no
good on-wiki way to address my feelings of loneliness as a volunteer
but - guess what - that's fine! Because if I want to salve my
solipsism then I am a member of plenty of other websites where I have
friends to talk to.

However, I imagine there are ways to improve things for the groups
that already exist. I would suggest anyone wishing to pursue this
interviews regular contributors to the larger Wikigroups such as
MILHIST and the Signpost crew. What innovations can be made to
MediaWiki to help them do what they're already doing more easily?
Maybe liquid threads is enough? (I'm afraid I'm not a fan).

Perhaps it would be better if the Signpost guys, for example, want to
feel more bonded they simply exchange Twitter/Facebook details? Of
course many people want their Wikipedia identity to be separate from
their identity elsewhere and so would not wish to share such details.
Is there a solution to that?


To finish: your post as quoted at top states there are ZERO social
features. People can quite readily share text and images; there's a
talk page on EVERY page we have. I'm not sure what else you expect a
computer to do short of adding Skype/Voicemail.


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