On 10 September 2015 at 10:56, Pine W <wiki.p...@gmail.com> wrote:

> James,
> Yes, there is more to the story than can be told in the data that we have.
> On the other hand, it seems to me that it's a bit harsh to respond like
> that to WSC's attempt to share good news.

​Then in my e-mail I have failed entirely, and I apologise.

My point is that we should all be very cautious in mis-reading a single
number (even sustained over a trend) as ​being "nice" when in fact we have
no reason to suspect that it is necessarily "good news". It is not "good
news" until we know that it is positive and can explain why.

Shouting from the rooftops about events as "good news" without the solid
evidence to back such a claim up risks damaging all the community efforts
working to find and fix the issues at play. If we are going to improve the
situation, we have a duty to ourselves to be honest and realistic about
what we know, and what things we find tell us. We need to hold ourselves to
the highest standards of truth, and not rush in with the first
interpretation that comes to mind.​

Perhaps you can also think of
> positive ways to interpret the data, such as that the increased speeds of
> page loads may be having a desirable positive effect on the productivity of
> highly active editors.

​WSC has worked hard to come up with positive reasons. :-)

I felt we needed to be more balanced, nuanced and realistic viewpoint. To
use a metaphor, possibly this datapoint is a candle of light in a storm of
darkness, but it might be the transformer exploding in sparks just as much
as it might be a the end of the storm.

However, since you asked, some positive narratives that might also or
instead be true:

   - Faster load/save times make the site feel more responsive and so
   people can do more edits in the same amount of time.
   - Increased community quality criteria lead to many very-active editors
   taking up the baton and correcting dozens of articles each.
   - Simpler, more understandable community norms and processes mean some
   feel driven to improving their areas of the.
   - Cleaner, clearer designs for tools to make mass-edits more accessible
   and appealing to more users.
   - Decreased competition increases the reader demand and so eyes in some
   environments previously lacking, pushing more people over the line from
   "active" into "very active".

However, all these narratives are merely speculation.

I believe that Aaron H. is working on ways to measure the "value" of an
> editor's contributions. When that work is done, I hope that we'll have a
> better measure for how productivity is changing over time for different
> cohorts of editors.

​I too look forward to knowing more about the world, and measuring value,
effort and types of edits as Aaron is trying to do would be a fantastic
improvement in understanding the picture better, yes. ​This may take some
time though, and Aaron and his team needs our support, not just heaping of
expectations on him and their work. :-)

Let's not count chickens before they've hatched.

James D. Forrester
Lead Product Manager, Editing
Wikimedia Foundation, Inc.

jforres...@wikimedia.org | @jdforrester
Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at: 
Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l, 

Reply via email to