|It has been suggested that this page be merged with Proposal:Wikischolarships (individuals are granted online access to paid scientific publications). (Discuss)
Editors who contribute to "vital articles" and raise them to featured status should be nominated for a Wikipedia scholarship. The winner(s) should receive recognition, money, and tools that enable further contributions.
Every major contributor to a featured vital article should be eligible for a Wikimedia scholarship.
- Vital articles are top importance articles on key topics (see: vital articles).
- Articles reach featured status based on whether a consensus of editors agree they meet a certain criteria (see: featured article criteria).
The scholarship(s) should eventually be awarded to the biggest contributors to the most vital articles. The scholarship should include:
- Money (e.g.: $1000, or some other nominal sum that would be seen as impressive outside the WMF)
- Recognition (e.g.: a certificate, a trophy, an invitation to a conference, publishing their work, etc.)
- Tools (e.g.: a subscription to Nexis.com, JSTOR, or some other powerful research tool that can help improve articles)
- Barnstars help keep people going on with their volunteer activities. But they're too subjective and small to motivate heroic contributions to challenging areas.
- Money, tools, and global recognition would motivate the kinds of contributors we need for our vital articles.
- I didn't know the "vital articles" list existed until literally today. A scholarship would help attract publicity to this list, and attract contributors who don't know where WMF needs help.
- Let's start a trend that can be expanded in time. One day, let's have different scholarships for specialized areas. (e.g.: an award just for essential history articles, science articles, etc.)
- What is a fair sum for a scholarship?
- What tools would help encourage our greatest contributors to keep going?
- How many scholarships can the WMF afford to give?
- Do we have adequate processes for classifying an article as "vital"? For classifying an article as "featured"?
- What is a fair process for awarding scholarships to the eligible class of contributors?
- Scholarship money is the biggest cost, but can be balanced against the benefit of improving vital articles.
- Evaluating the eligible nominees will take some time and effort.
- Creating a competitive environment may create feelings of hostility and bitterness.
- Using prizes to motivate people may undermine the volunteer ethos of the WMF.
Sources of inspiration:
- Proposal:Include competitive approaches to creating content
- Proposal:Run an annual prize for best featured content
Do you have a thought about this proposal? A suggestion? Discuss this proposal by going to Proposal talk:Scholarships for contributors who bring vital articles to featured status.
Wikimedia Canada is gearing up for a pilot project to test the effectiveness of a scholarship for medical students