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Proposal:Survey our readers as to what they expect from Wikipedia

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Every proposal should be tied to one of the strategic priorities below.

Edit this page to help identify the priorities related to this proposal!

  1. Achieve continued growth in readership
  2. Focus on quality content
  3. Increase Participation
  4. Stabilize and improve the infrastructure
  5. Encourage Innovation


That a survey is undertaken to better understand what Wikipedia users and readers want from Wikipedia.


I propose that a survey is commissioned which would seek feedback from our readers and users. I would imagine this would be in the form of one of those pop up surveys that other sites utilise. I propose that the survey seek to ascertain a mission statement of sorts from our readers and users through the use of pertinent questions. We could seek to resolve debates or at least seek clarification as to the usefulness of our notability guidance, as well as gain a better understanding as to what our readers actually use us for, what information they find useful and which of our current practises they find unhelpful.


This would be valuable information in better tailoring our content to meet the demands of our readership. Policy changes have made it harder for our readers to communicate on these issues; previously if we were missing information a reader could add it, but new articles are no longer creatable without an account that is four days old on the English Wikipedia. The efficiency of our speedy deletion system could also be counter-productive in this area, as could the change in direction away from a notion that Wikipedia is not paper towards some sort of model based on existing, paper based encyclopaedia. Such a survey should help us understand if Wikipedia should base itself upon traditional models of encyclopaedia or whether it should seek a newer model that better satisfies our readers.

Key Questions

Really I think this would be better left to the people commissioned to undertake the survey, as suggested questions could bias the result, but here are a few ideas:

  • How useful do you find Wikipedia?
  • What do you think of Wikipedia's content?
  • What do you understand by notability?
  • What do you think Wikipedia should include?
  • Do you think there are natural limits to Wikipedia's coverage?

Potential Costs

I don't really have any idea as to the cost of a survey. I welcome input.

The setting up of a survey could be done with the http://limesurvey.org open source survey software.


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Community Discussion

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