Responses below:

On Wed, Apr 10, 2019 at 5:07 PM Strainu <strain...@gmail.com> wrote:

>
> I would argue that, on the contrary, for the outside word we were less
> Wikipedia 10 years ago. Around that time there was still hope that
> Wikibooks or Wikinews could still be successful, at least in some
> languages. New language versions of other projects than Wikipedia were
> created relatively regularly and many people who started with
> Wikipedia moved on to maintain and develop other projects. Today the
> Foundation has all but given up on all other projects except the 3 you
> mention below (and, to some extent, Wikisource), Google is taking data
> from Wikipedia (but prefers other dictionaries instead of Wikt) and
> people barely hide a polite yawn when you talk about the other
> projects.
>

For the record, I was one of the earliest skeptics of Wikinews and was one
of the first accredited Wikinewsies in 2005. I believed the best way to
critically understand its flaws was to actually immerse myself in it. I
quickly saw it was not viable, and memorialized my thoughts about it for
Harvard Nieman Lab (below). I say this not to brag, but simply to say that
the "hope" of that era may be overhyped. :)

https://www.niemanlab.org/2010/02/why-wikipedia-beats-wikinews-as-a-collaborative-journalism-project/


> > - We stand on three legs (and more): If there was ever a time that
> > Wikimedia was more than Wikipedia, it is now. The trio of Wikipedia,
> > Commons and Wikidata is the bedrock of open knowledge sharing in a way
> that
> > was not true even 3 years ago.
>
> While that is true, the monolingual nature of the last 2 has left all
> but the most determined outside this revolution. While not directly
> relevant for the branding issue, it partially explains why people know
> about Wikipedia more: it's in their language!
>

Wait, I'm confused. Are you saying Wikidata is a "monolingual" project? As
a semantic database, it's perhaps the most multilingual-friendly project we
have. I've collaborated with Portuguese and French GLAM projects on
Wikidata because of how good it is at providing an interface for a shared
data set using the user's native tongue. So I'm eager to hear more about
why you believe Wikidata is in the "monolingual" bin.


> Specialization has clear advantages, but again, is not helping with
> branding towards the general public and that is our target, not GLAM
> or photographers.
>

This is a valid critique, though I'm not sure we've ever put the full force
of Foundation resources behind providing public awareness for Commons. It's
mostly been through community-level efforts and SiteNotice banners, to my
knowledge, for WLM, Commons POTY, Wiki Loves Africa, etc.

Not sure what the point is here. System biases are also obvious in
> Commons (copyright law) and Wikidata (very specific knowledge is
> required to understand how data is organized).
>

I think the point is: add the systemic bias of needing to know how to read
to the stack of the biases you also list here. There are a multitude of
challenges, and I think you absolutely win with "understanding copyright"
as the biggest user challenge we have. :)


> This war is specific to English Wikipedia and a few other wikis
> (admittedly, rather larger ones). Smaller communities have already
> largely embraced Wikidata in infoboxes and elsewhere. This has not
> changed how they represent themselves and I believe that the same
> holds true for the renaming.
>

Oh yes, there are many folks highly envious of Basque and Catalan Wikipedia
where Wikidata integration is used effectively on a large scale.


> Also, I believe it is mistaken to think of the branding proposal as a
> single, monolithic, yes-or-no proposal. It is rather a series of
> proposals, some easier and some more complicated to implement. Each
> should be analyzed independently for its own merits.
>

Agree. We won't know until/if it happens. I simply wanted to make sure a
broad set of concerns were being incorporated into the risk assessment.

Thanks
-Andrew
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