Talk:Task force/Recommendations/Local Language
|Thread title||Replies||Last modified|
|Research:Oral Citations||0||21:13, 23 July 2011|
|The major Wikipedias lacks content that are of interest to people in many regions.||12||14:12, 16 August 2010|
|Very good||0||14:05, 16 August 2010|
|Recommendation selection||6||16:59, 6 February 2010|
|What to work on?||1||23:51, 6 January 2010|
http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Research:Oral_Citations The Oral Citations Project is a strategic research project funded by a Wikimedia Foundation grant to help overcome a lack of published material in emerging languages on Wikipedia.
There is not only a lack of content but also a lack of reliable sources.
That's an interesting point. Do we have any data, qualitative or quantitative, to back it up?
Is there something that can be done to increase the amount of reliable sources?
There are not so many translations of en:Wikipedia:Citing sources and for example the Map Kibera Project shows that the lack of sources is a problem not only for Wikipedians. I don´t think that we are able to change the situation. Maybe this is a task for the chapters?
Task_force/Local_Language_Projects/Commons_and_differences_in_reach_and_regional_analyses refflects this as well in the paragraph about the written history of languages in different regions. I think this is one point where policies has to not be globally implemented as stated in the first secion of the recommendations "Important note about implementation of policies". In languages that don't have an extensive written history it might be most important to provide an encyklopedia at all, while it in languages like English is important that the encyclopedia is wellsourced as well.
The lack of reliable sources is a problem in many small languages when a topic is something local or cultural. However, often the speakers of small languages are also fluent in some "world languages", such as English, French, Spanish, German etc. and may use sources in these languages (if they are online) when writing articles about "general" topics (e.g. science) or about other countries and cultures.
I think that a relevant question is what Wikimedia could do to increase the amount of "reliable sources" in small languages?
For instance, could we promote and foster scientific research and publishing in small languages?
Or could we "promote" different "policies" for the small languages and, for instance, accept some "raw knowledge" in small language Wikipedias (stories, myths etc.)?
At the moment google is sponsoring a contest to encourage students in Tanzania and Kenya to create articles for the Swahili version of Wikipedia, mainly by translating them from the English Wikipedia (source). I´ve looked into recent changes of the sw:wikipedia and my impression had been, that they are translating articles a twenty year old from New York would do. Maybe the reason is that google contest, I don´t know. At least they don´t have articles about something local or the local culture. A few years ago I saw someone who translated one of my articles into Vietnamese and sentences which I added, because I wanted to link to some articles, had been translated too. Therefore these translated articles have got many red links and the locals don´t understand what is written. I don´t know, but if I translate an article I would cut everything away that is local. I mean, these wikipedias are not Swahili wikipedias, they are English wikipedias written in Swahili. What are they good for? Exporting Britney Spears to Kenya? Maybe we should look what sources are available there and allow them. For example, what about a voice recording as a source?
Thanks for sharing this. Interesting.
Maybe we should talk with the Google people and ask them to re-design their contest to have more focus on creating local articles about local issue that are much more relevant for the local people.
Collecting voice recordings and use them as sources is a good idea. This would definitely be a step to forward to the direction of accepting "documented" stories or myths as "sources" (when the topic is cultural or language related) - with science articles, I think, we should promote a strict "reliable source policy".
The Google contest at least shows that there are editors who like to write WP articles.
Besides, I like the recommendation: "Automatically collect data from the wikimedia projects traffic logs, search engines, alexa and so on about what people in different regions want to read about." Additionally, we have to find a way to make such a new special page known to the editors and the potential editors. "present the regional data easily accessible from the same regions main pages" Without a conversation between the Foundation and the small Wikipedias this will not happen.
I made a comment in a thread at the reader conversion discussion page connected to this recommendation to.
The idea given there was to have such a list as described in this recommendation. But then also have a form that would-be editors can fill out, answering a few questions about education, occupation, interest and so on, and then automatically be handed topics from the list that might fit their interests. They can in this way be given tips about articles that needs creation or extension, that they are likely to be able to contribute to.
Do you mean reliable sources or reliable sources in English.. Do appreciate that it is not a given that sources in English are reliable ,.,.
Given that we have to make at most 4 recommendations, this thread will be used for discussion about which recommendations will make it to the final version.
Right. I must say that I haven't looked at the recommendations yet. This may be a good thing. I have decided that I will review the current recommendations based on relevance to the Wikimedia Foundation's goals, acceptability in the current community, and if they are SMART (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, Time-bound).
This is my top list (lowest score at the bottom):
- Strategy 2: Outreach - make us known to them
- Strategy 3: Stimulate creation of content that is important for people in local regions - have what they need
- Strategy 4: Localization of the MediaWiki software - allow them to read and work in their own language
- Strategy 1: Minimize the bandwidth that is required to load pages - just less important to me; if they need what it has, they will download it; it's what I did in the days my connection was slow.
- Strategy 5: A simpler translation interface - this is already a higher level of functionality in my point of view. None of the currently successful Wikimedia projects had these tools. People will write it anyway if they think it is important to their audience, regardless of availability of more tools than we currently have.
I recommend to drop the bottom two proposals in the final recommendations (minimise bandwidth and improved translation interface).
I agree with you except maybe for Strategy 1 which I am unsure about if I would push higher up. I remember that my first contact with internet was through a 56kbps dial up connection and I where not to disturbed by the loading times. However, the webpages where at that designed to be loaded over 56kbps connections, and it was an important thing for webdesigners to ensure that the sites loaded fairly fast over such connections. Today it is important for webdesigners that their pages loads well on Mbps connections, but it leaves the less developed regions unable to benefit from the same pages. Actually I don't think my interent conection ever was so slow that it on an average took about half a minute to load each new page (on an average would mean that it is not very uncommon with loading times of one or severeal minutes), which I suspects might be the case in a fair amount regions.
I also think that I was inclined to accept the access times of the 56kbps connections because I had a genuine interest of new technology and developments. In Sweden I think it took until somwhere in the first years of 2000, when "instant access" speeds where achived, before internet usage became a part of the general publics daily life. And to get a large volunteer basis we want to bring Wikipedia to the large mass, not just to those especially interested, which makes me think that access speeds are very important.
This is the question I have worked most recently on though, which might make me a bit biased.
It looks like it is just the two of us deciding here. I propose we pick the top 4 recommendations from my list, ordered in the way you choose, and reword those in the way Philippe has indicated (assertions and facts). OK?
Yeah, seems like there will be no more comments. I agree with you, and think we can list them in the order you did. Do you think we should link to "further information" where the analysis performed is laid out in the way the proposals are written now?
There is also this note at the top of the document about taking care to not automatically implement policies globaly, do you think we should keep it there? It is not a recommendation, but a cautionary word I think is important to get through.
I have taken a first swing at reorganizing the recommendations into the right structure. It's a bit lengthy at the moment, but it's really time consuming to try to condense the information into neat statements. And I am not sure about how much more time I can devote to this over the next days. Will try to make my best though.
I think we should first pick our recommendations and only then work further on fine tuning the chosen recommendations. I think that will make us spend our time the most effectively and efficiently for the days we have left until the recommendations need to be finalised. Thoughts?