Talk:Question of the week/Archives/2009-11-23

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from my experience

This is just some suggestion I have fro my experience with a troll on wikipedia.


It was because of the actions of a troll that I left and I'm sure many other editors leave for similar reasons.

I'm a professional scientist and engineer who has worked in both academia and industry and I'm more than happy to add my knowledge and experience. I also except that others can come and edit my work but I do find it extremely frustrating to spend time and effort research a subject and get good sources to have a person come along with the deliberate intention destroying things. I had a problem with one such troll. I went to arbitration which didn't solve anything as the editors involved in arbitration had very little idea of the subject and sided with the troll. I gave up with wikipedia after that but the troll went on to cause trouble on a number of other places on wikipedia and it eventually it took two years for him to get banded permanently. As a result I've decided to come back but I'm still having problems with one editor from that time.


I would like a system to deal with trolls that works better. I would like to suggest that groups of pages come under the care of a team of experts who can decide on disputes and block obvious trolls from those pages.

I would suggest the editors use their real world identities and with proof of qualifications (so we don't have trolls as editors).

07:30, 28 November 2009

I just read "from my experience". I do not know if this is possible or even reasonable on any wiki area but if a professional contributor is in a wiki area, and writes as a professional including correct spelling, why can not that person have a page s/he works on and has the ability to lock everyone else out then sign with their own name? This way other professionals can decide if anything should be changed. If something should be changed in their opinions they they should be allowed to contact the writer of the article via e-mail with his real name and have a mannerable discussion. If not this idea then perhaps there are other ideas along this line of thinking. I think that if someone suggests others use real names then that person (, 28 November 2009 ) should use their real name which that poster did not do aside from not even using an established alias. What are your concerns of using your own name unless you are doing something wrong? What is that expression that has been suggested, "Be Bold" --William Maury Morris 00:17, 29 November 2009 (UTC)

00:17, 29 November 2009

What could be done to increase the number of active contributors to the projects?

  • Readers who have never contributed believe that they have nothing to contribute. But that's because they think contribution = writing articles. We can tap eager volunteers for all kinds of tasks, like copy-editing, peer reviewing, or even just flagging interesting news articles. There should be a banner at the top of Wikipedia at all times that says "We want you! Let us show you how you can contribute." And then take them to a Wizard that asks them their interests and skills. And don't just take people to articles where they can start writing. Someone may read a lot of news, and they'd be a great researcher. Someone may just have time to make comments on articles, so show them some articles they could peer review. Randomran 19:40, 23 November 2009 (UTC)
  • It turns out that many many people still don't know they can edit. They click through from a Google search, they see the title of the article, they scroll down to find the info they want, and they never see the little tabs on top. Seriously. I got told by someone just a couple days ago that they only found out they could edit cause their professor said so. Before that they thought maybe there was some committee or something that handled the content. So, putting something on the content pages that is visible and conveys the message simply that "you can edit, just click this button" would get people past that hurdle. -- ArielGlenn 01:13, 24 November 2009 (UTC)
  • Find a way to convert one-time contributors into long-term contributors. Wikipedia may not be a social network but user interactions work just like any other social interaction: most people stick around because they feel invited and welcome to do so, because someone else has taken an interest in them. How can we make that happen for anon editors? -- ArielGlenn 01:17, 24 November 2009 (UTC)
  • If we put some competition per year like (translation Rally By this can increase the number of editors and also the number of articles ..सरोज कुमार ढकाल 06:30, 24 November 2009 (UTC)
  • Why cant we develop wiki sites as the social networking sites(I mean add up some features) ..I know this would not be digestible for the geeks.. we can ensure that the people will spend time on it .. and also marking the user contribution Karma in Launchpad सरोज कुमार ढकाल 06:30, 24 November 2009 (UTC)
  • 1) I think Randomran and ArielGlenn are right. Many people don't realize how easy it is to make updates, or that there are many other ways they can contribute. Periodically placing a special message at the top of each article, similar to what is currently being done for the fund raising effort, could be used to catch peoples' attention, and to point them to the edit tab or other ways to contribute. 2) I also suspect a lot of people are intimidated by the HTML tags that are used for formatting. If there was a way to include raw text without any HTML tags, I think more people would be inclined to contribute. Formatting could be left to others. There are probably a lot of Wikipedians that like to do nothing but format information We need to be cautious though: we need to balance the desire to recruit new contributors with the need for well-sourced contributions. Too many articles are already full of unsourced claims that cannot be easily substantiated. We should favor quality over quantity. MissionInn.Jim 14:48, 24 November 2009 (UTC)

note: I moved this content to LQT; I did not create it.

19:16, 24 November 2009

When people contribute, they are neither welcomed nor thanked. The majority of contributors, in my view, who have any interaction with the community, have a negative one, simply because they do not know nor even care to learn all the intricate rules. The rule proliferation has become extreme, and there is no advocate for the casual editor. The only thing they encounter are the police.

01:01, 25 November 2009

Maybe a community like tab attached to the article as discussed here would help to create an environment where contributors are enabled to encourage and support each other. Also encourageing moderators to give more possitive feedback to contributors could help.

09:27, 25 November 2009

Ok .. so you make a good point ... what do you propose ... having a bot adding welcome messages is something that we do.. Making sure that the text is welcoming and not too long is another, having people willing to baby sit newbies is yet another ... working on the rules .. remember they are typical compromises ... Again, what do YOU propose ??

11:42, 25 November 2009

"...having people willing to baby sit newbies "

I will tell you something that I propose and that is always trying to be helpful, non-aggressive, and mannerable to others. I once left a wiki area because these things did not exist. I was new then and knew only a little about some rules yet I had created many articles and cited my sources. Sometime I came back and with an alias instead of my real name. I encountered a polite administrator who didn't act like a poster's cop looking for anything done wrong. His name is Billingshurst. He helped instead of condeming so quickly. He took that time and helped me and he used excellent manners and I stayed. Since then I have posted many articles on Wikipedia, uploaded images on Wiki Commons, and I have placed several books on WikiSource. He assisted me when I needed him amd always with excellent manners. He and his methods made the difference to me. Had he been without good manners and especially ill mannered I would have quit permanently. There are a few administrators that like to think to highly of themselves even though they themselves might do quality work on articles. Billingshurst is high quality all the way. Believe me, good manners make a world of difference. Brother Officer 07:35, 26 November 2009 (UTC)

07:35, 26 November 2009

They do. Good manners, a willingness to help is what we should encourage and promote... Having positive stories helps to slowly move things in a more positive direction because in the end it is a mind set. Thanks,

13:32, 26 November 2009

If there is a bot posting welcoming messages, then it's broken. Having people "willing" to babysit newbies, is not the same as having an obvious way that a newbie can ask for assistance especially against perceived abuse. I already suggested we add to the sidebar something like "Report Abuse" or "Help! Help!" or whatever. Trying to teach newbies how to get to AN/I is a non-starter imho.

05:36, 30 November 2009


I think this should be reworded because "babysit a newbie" might appear offensive to any ADULT who is new and wandering around. I note your link connects to your busine$$ where you can make more money. I was told this is not allowed. Maybe I am wrong? If it is okay then many people could place their personal business ads like yours on each part of each system like wikipedia, here, and all other sections connected to or related to wikipedia. That would be a lot of ads for your personal busine$$--Bowman 23:09, 30 November 2009 (UTC)

See my main research website at I am a professional genealogist and freelance biographer. I have been doing genealogy as my sole profession, since 2004, but was doing it as a hobby for 30 years prior to that. I am available for hire. If you would like to hire me, you can email me at


23:09, 30 November 2009

For now, I have no issue with links to peoples' employement, even if it's self-employment. If it gets out of hand, we'll reconsider. We've got real decisions to make here, let's not let the cosmetic things get in the way, okay?

23:26, 30 November 2009

One simple way to make it clearer that you can edit a page is to make the edit button bigger and to change its color.

More importantly, if you're going to be making any sorts of changes with these goals in my mind, you need to have a framework where you can experiment with changes like this and experiment to see if they actually work.

20:33, 25 November 2009

Something we've been discussing at the Quality Task Force and at Community Health Task Force is the need to stop editors from leaving and how to regain those who left. Making Wikipedia more easy to edit is of course crucial to attracting new editors, but if we keep burning through the ones we have, this will not be enough. --Piotrus 01:19, 26 November 2009 (UTC)

01:19, 26 November 2009

Bulls Eye!!! and it is very rare for me to use more than one exclamation point :0)

There are exceptions in some experiences. This is not the situation on WikiSource with Billingshurst who is helpful and has excellent manners. He is the best administrator I have encountered and read about over the years on wiki areas. Brother Officer 07:48, 26 November 2009 (UTC)

07:48, 26 November 2009

During September 2009 7700 new contributors came to English Wikipedia, but 8900 left it. We are far away from the question how to attract new users to become contributors; we are in the middle of the crisis related to how to attract old contributors to stay. --Millosh 12:12, 26 November 2009 (UTC)

According to that fact, we should think more about how to make Wikipedia and other Wikimedia projects as places where people like to stay. --Millosh 12:12, 26 November 2009 (UTC)

I would suggest the next: --Millosh 12:12, 26 November 2009 (UTC)

  1. Imposing rules related to abusing powers and playing the system from the side of the users at positions (administrators and so on). --Millosh 12:12, 26 November 2009 (UTC)
  2. Globalize community and rules. The vast majority of rules are not related to the particular culture, but to the goals of Wikimedia projects. --Millosh 12:12, 26 November 2009 (UTC)
  3. Make a control body (probably, WMF body), which would be checking validity, efficiency and possible consequences of projects rules. --Millosh 12:12, 26 November 2009 (UTC)
  4. Stricter insisting on civility and good behavior toward newcomers. Treat incivility and bad behavior toward newcomers as abusing rights. (Consequently, such person can't be admin.) --Millosh 12:12, 26 November 2009 (UTC)
  5. Split rights into pieces. A contributor who is abusing deletion nomination shouldn't be able to nominate article for deletion anymore (or for some time, at least). And so on. --Millosh 12:12, 26 November 2009 (UTC)
12:12, 26 November 2009

As I was reviewing some of the reasons why people were posting threads at WR (the site which may not be named...), I noticed a few cases where admins had called contributors really nasty names. Not your typical nastiness but over-the-top nastiness. They were reported, and not desysopped. I find that disturbing. Would there be support for a "Ten Words that will get you auto-de-sysopped" list ? Like the F-bomb for instance.

05:43, 30 November 2009

What ratio of contributors to readers should Wikimedia aim for?

What is the context for these figures? It would help to have some context to put these figures into.
What is the ratio of contributors to users for other encyclopedias, print and online?
What is the ratio of contributors to users for newspapers? textbooks? non-fiction books? I expect the ratios for these other forms of education media are also less than 1:2000, but I don't know that for a fact.
In a medium like scientific journals or other academic journals, the ratio of users to contributors is much higher, I would expect.
Knowing what other media's ratios are like might help determine what an appropriate level of contribution should be. Drvestone 19:27, 23 November 2009 (UTC)

I think doubling it, to 0.1%, would be pretty ambitious. But Drvestone is right that we should set a benchmark based on what we've seen in similar projects. Randomran 19:40, 23 November 2009 (UTC)

note: I moved this content to LQT, I did not create it.

19:15, 24 November 2009

I'm not sure we can answer this question based on this slide because the scale is so small. We're talking about the difference between 0.02 and 0.04%. Perhaps the conclusion we can draw from this is that the ratio of active contributors to visitors is not a useful statistic.

I think what's more interesting are the raw numbers. Portugese Wikipedia has about 1,700 active contributors per month. Korean Wikipedia has about 600. Perhaps you need to hit 1,500 active monthly contributors before you become a sustainable Wikipedia. Note that these numbers might be different for Wikipedia than for, say, Wiktionary.

20:38, 25 November 2009

When you look at the Korean Wikipedia it has a really healthy growth. I do not see any reason to suggest that with 600 monthly editors it is not sustainable. What you are saying is that most of the really small Wikipedias are not sustainable. I wonder what this is based on.. Remember it is the road that we travel that is key, not so much the goal itself.

00:04, 26 November 2009

The ratio of contributors to readers does not seem relevant to me. If we want to expand Wikipedia, we should be looking at the number and quality of contributions. MissionInn.Jim 14:30, 26 November 2009 (UTC)

14:30, 26 November 2009

I'm inclined to agree with you, Mission. Perhaps a more useful metric would be the ratio of editors to articles, which may give us insight into whether we can maintain the content.

14:47, 26 November 2009

You caught me, Gerard. :-) I misspoke, and in doing so, I probably revealed an unconscious bias that many people probably share.

What constitutes a sustainable wiki? Certainly, any online community with 600 active users is tremendous. It's good to be reminded of this.

What constitutes a quality Wikipedia? Size matters, but it's not the only thing. Can we agree on what the "right" size might be? And how many active users are required to get to that size?

19:54, 27 November 2009

There are some really small Wikipedias that represent language with a REALLY small number of speakers. Some of them have exceedingly active editors that really make the language come alive. Consider Saterfrisian for instance, I would not be surprised when their Wikipedia is an important resource for the language on the Internet.

As long as people are passionate about their language in this way, I could not care less about any attempt to numerically define if it is "sustainable". Such projects prove that languages can be made to sustain.

Hausa is one of the languages that is in the top 50 in number of people speaking the language. Currently its Wikipedia has 140 articles BUT there has been activity at on its localisation... The potential of Hausa is huge...

Again, do not look at Wikipedias and wonder if their goal has been achieved, consider the road towards the goals for that language. We provide infrastructure to travel the road, and as more people join, as more articles are written these Wikipedias achieve goals that are relevant to the people that speak the language. Remember for many languages Wikipedia is the first encyclopaedia EVER to be written in that language...

For me, it is strategic for us to prepare the grounds, build the equipment so that communities have their Wikipedias, and can achieve the goals that are relevant to them. A quality encyclopaedia is just one goal.

23:16, 27 November 2009

I generally agree with this. Two questions:

  • When should others (the Foundation or the Chapters, for example) invest in some of these smaller wikis, and if so, what should they invest in?
  • Can we quantify the cost of maintaining/supporting each Wikipedia?

Gerard, I know your answer to the first question -- localization. I generally agree with this. Where should this stand in our list of priorities, especially with the Wikimedia vision in mind? How do we evaluate these lists of possibilities more rigorously?

02:27, 29 November 2009

What ratio of contributors to readers should we aim for? 1. Contributing in small ways should be easy enough, and Wikimedia projects should be wide-ranging enough, that everyone who uses them can also contribute in some small way. And the collaborative, participatory, free culture ethic should be widespread enough that people consider contributing to the commons part of their civic duty.

17:39, 29 November 2009

Two questions, when the editor community is healthy we do not need a specific number of editors .. compared to the readers. As long as the readers are happy, the content good should we strife for a bigger community of editors .. What is the benefit ?? I do not understand appreciate why this is relevant. Thanks

00:04, 30 November 2009

Telephone friends and ask them

I have asked some friends, in the past, about posting and they weren't interested. I am going to ask them again and find out via casual conversation plus I am going to as some others that I have not asked before. I can collect some opinions of non-contributors this way. None of these are shy and all have a university education so it will be interesting to learn what they have to say. Other contributors here can do the same thing but will they? Is this somewhat not like trying to get more contributors to come to wiki areas -- or is it? Who among you few posting has the courage to do this? My guess is two at the most if that many and in all honesty I expect none will. It is somewhat of a challenge.--Brother Officer 01:12, 27 November 2009 (UTC)

01:12, 27 November 2009

Okay, I just now got off the telephone after speaking to a professional linguist. He knows several languages and went through a university on a scholarship. I have known him all of my life minus 7 years. I asked some of the questions I have seen here. He does use wiki areas from time to time. He stays very busy but he has his spare time. He stated that in reference to contributing, he had "just never thought of it." When busy researching one gathers information from many sources and moves on. I especially discussed the Spanish areas with him because I know he has had over eight years of Spanish and taught Spanish. He also has several years of French and Latin and some Italian. I asked him to please consider some of what we are doing here and of the questions he asked me I told him that you can create an alias if you want to. Since he had never thought of writing on a wiki area he didn't know one could create an alias. This fellow is a professional and years ago he worked for the Peace Corps. Did anyone else telephone anyone and ask they why they don't contribute to one or more of the many wili areas? It is good to tell people that there are these various areas because this fellow I chated with loves languages. He is sharp and knows what he is doing so if someone were to "troll", as I read in another post here, or be foolish towards him, he would not continue to waste his time. This is why I thought of allowing some people to create and not allow others to but in on their work as I have stated in another message here called "from my experience" I myself wonder if anyone reads these ideas that I write and more so follow up on any of them or am I just wasting my time here? --William Maury Morris 01:18, 29 November 2009 (UTC)

01:18, 29 November 2009

Brother Officer; Since your User page is empty, I would not normally be inclined to respond to your question. Please don't take offense, but I generally take wiki users less seriously, if they don't provide any information about themselves.

I would not have a problem with checking with people I know to get their opinions, but I would prefer that we (the Quality Task Force) first decide that this is a priority. My time is limited (I happen to have been on vacation this week, and had more time). I don't want to be going off in many directions without some clear plan.

06:48, 29 November 2009

I understand your points MissionJim and I will state this for now. I looked in here to see what was taking place in all areas. I have nothing on my user page mainly because I am rarely ever in this area. I was passing through one day and filled in a bit of information and then moved on to the areas that I am usually in. What I dislike about a User Page is that the world can read it. Google picks them up so with the opening in the wall I'm not inclined to tell the world about myself but I would do that with an administrator via e-mail if it were necessary. Besides, the user pages I have seen look like to me that some people are bragging and too it obviously takes a lot of time to make them pretty and I spend that time doing what I was doing just before I came here moments ago -- transcribing an entire book dated 1849. Transcription is what I like best. I ended up here only because I wandered into my talk page and found an invitation by Phillipe whom I have never heard of. I contribute to wikipedia, wiki commons a little and place transcribed books on wikisource. My entrance here is unusual but because of the polite invation I participated. Back to my book for the night. Oh! I rarely am offended by anything anyone writes. I have been in a lot of discussions and debates on listservers and my hide is thick. I am not inclined to get offended. I myself am on no task force and have no desire to be on any. I am mainly just posting books to wikisource at this point and I enjoy doing this. I came here by invitation to try to help with ideas. I may think about doing a User page but to me it seems like a waste of time when I can work on transcribing books to wikisource with the spare time I am allocated.
Very Respectfully, --Brother Officer 08:19, 29 November 2009 (UTC)

08:19, 29 November 2009

Brother Officer; It is very interesting to hear that you enjoy transcribing. I have wondered how Wikisource process occurs. Do you type every word, or do you have some OCR tools that help you digitize the info? I had considered posting a book that I have, but I decided that I would prefer spending my time doing research and organizing information in articles to make them easier to read.

This is a good example for one of the other threads that talks about how there are many ways to contribute. It also points out that everyone has specialized interests and skills.

I understand why you wouldn't want to post a lot of personal info on your user page. I do find it helpful though when people provide some information on their interests and background. Even though all the info provided could potentially be fictitious, I feel that most of the time people try to be accurate. It gives me the sense that I am talking to a real person.

Thanks for contributing.

13:47, 29 November 2009


I'm willing to converse on just about anything but are we not off topic here? I don't want to get into trouble by writing here. I detest arguments and attempts at put-downs. Are you and all others here administrators? Following your lead and in reply to your questions, long ago I typed old books by hand. They were old and rare books in universities and one could not check them out. (I also buy and sell old and rare books but this is a new three year hobby.) Therefore, I wrote the books down on paper and later typed them into computer. I have a lot of determination. I often like tasks others don't want to consider. The victory of accomplishment with such things is that much greater. I like the challenges. With books I now use OCR but because they are old books one has to do editing by hand. OCRing old books isn't the only thing I like. It's just what I am doing now. I like just about everything. I've started many topics on wikipedia and contributed to many more. Now I am working on old books. They're fascinating, a step back into time. Wikisource itself has many options but I choose to work on my own projects. I do type out portions of the many volumes of books wikisource has. Those are already scanned and the image is beside the scrambled text that has to be looked over and corrected. I work on articles and books that I have an interest in. I don't care much about modern books unless they are a spin-off from old books. I don't care for fiction (except a few classics) aside from it being on television. BTW, have you ever met any achiever whose time is not limited? :0)
Kind regards, --Brother Officer 21:26, 29 November 2009 (UTC)

21:26, 29 November 2009

I think you are right about being off topic. I'll reply on your discussion page.

22:34, 29 November 2009

The Japanese Wikipedia is the second wikipedia in traffic ....

Edited by author.
Last edit: 23:26, 27 November 2009

Given that the Japanese Wikipedia is the second wikipedia in traffic, given that we already agreed that article numbers is not really relevant, I am surprised to see these statistics as the basis of this question. Also the selection seems to be about number of native speakers not about the number of speakers and as such jv is less relevant then id.

Consequently the question framed like this has its own internal problems and is therefore hardly answerable. Thanks,

20:12, 23 November 2009

Sorry but I am missing the connection: aren't we asking about the desired ratio of contributors to readers? It seems like that's something we can discuss independently of article counts or whatever.

00:58, 24 November 2009

A ratio is a comparison to something else.. What ratio are we discussing. If this is not relevant, then fine.. It only means that the way the question was put is not appropriate. I think it is largely irrelevant, the question could have been "how do we grow our editor community in relation to the number of people visiting our wikis" this question at least acknowledges that only readers become editors ... the current question assumes that everyone knows about our projects.

10:00, 24 November 2009

I think you're right, Gerard. As I stated above, I think that our conclusion from the slide might be that asking about ratios is the wrong question.

20:39, 25 November 2009

It's possible that the ratio of readers to contributors is relatively fixed. I know that in shareware, the ratio of downloads to sales seems to hover around 1 or 2%, no matter how much marketing you put behind it.

That said, I still think that we can convert more readers into contributors if we expand what we mean by "contributor". Most people think the only way they can contribute is by writing articles. They don't realize that we need people for peer review, people to flag news articles about certain industries and fields of study, and people who can just help copy-edit. There may be an entire class of readers who realize there were tons of ways they could help.

21:02, 25 November 2009

Really excellent point. One of the things we should potentially be doing is tracking other types of volunteers. Could be a recommendation for Task force/Community Health.

20:01, 27 November 2009

We need people to take pictures in every country. We need these pictures to feature in articles in every Wikipedia and maybe even as featured pictures. We need people to restore images so that they become awesome illustrations.

It is not only about words..

23:25, 27 November 2009

Rich Text Editor

Why not introduce an editor using the .RTF extension that eliminated hand-coding in some of the wiki areas such as WikiSource books? I would love to have a few colors, indenting, &c. as opposed to hand-formatting to get "full justification"; indentation and just to see some colors there. It's a color world! Oh, and a spell checking editor. Too, color coding is nice to highlight a certain word or perhaps a link as opposed to the almost unseeable light blue links back to Wikipedia. Also, I can work for up to about 16 hours at the computer but my eyes get tired of a snow-white bqackground and black text as I see even now while I type. A soft color background would do in this area and other areas like this. One has to look at images to find colors unless you hand-code these things. I think some colors are a must and note that people often use colored signatures in wiki areas. People like color! This black text on white background reminds me of the days when Internet, on a Unix system (Archie, elm, trn &c) and file transfer protocol aka FTP existed. Only "plain vanilla ascii" was allowed and webpages and browsers did not exist. Those days passed and colors came and now decades later here on wiki areas it is back to black and white.-- 02:59, 27 November 2009 (UTC)

02:59, 27 November 2009

Some ideas

Those who contribute are motivated by something. Ask contributors to define their motivation. There are already many good suggestions posted here that I would have suggested so I will ask this, Why should anyone bother to contribute? What would they gain from it. I think non-contributors are people who have to be rewarded in some manner. We see barnstars &c. hither and yon and a system could be worked where contributors are awarded a star on a User page or Talk page that can be placed there only by the wiki system. Some how reward contributors. Napoleon was asked why he gave out so many medals and his reply was that one of those medals was worth 10,000 troops. This is because they had a goal in collecting those medals. Anyone who contributes 1 year, 2 years, 3 years should be so noted. They types of materials, artcles, books, images can also have a reward system. There has to be a feeling of achieving something for contributors and non contributors alike. Obviously this is not the case with everyone but I refer back to Napoleon's answer of awards thast cost him nothing but gained him a lot of troops. It is an emotional thing and our emotions are what drive us all in the directions we take. Brother Officer 06:22, 26 November 2009 (UTC)

06:22, 26 November 2009

Rewarding contributors strikes me as an interesting idea, but any reward should also take into account the quality of the contributions. As a reader of Wikipedia (I also contribute) I find personal opinions embedded in an article and unsourced contributions are worth much less to me than contributions that have been researched and well sourced, but even some types of sources are more valuable than others. A master bibliography for all of Wikipedia could help. Each source in the bibliography could be evaluated and rated. Articles and individual contributions could be rated based on the quality of the source. MissionInn.Jim 14:41, 26 November 2009 (UTC)

14:41, 26 November 2009

Agree with that. A lot of contributions are really subjective. Something like Featured Article status or adminship is at least determined by consensus... If we reward people just for hanging around, we're talking more about acknowledgment than reward. Some people manage to make it through an entire year and end up getting blocked or warned repeatedly.

16:04, 26 November 2009

".. If we reward people just for hanging around, we're talking more about acknowledgment than reward."
I don't understand the above where is states "just hanging around" because that is no contributor.--Brother Officer 00:46, 27 November 2009 (UTC)

" Some people manage to make it through an entire year and end up getting blocked or warned repeatedly. "
I would like to see what you have written about. Anyone getting "blocked or warned repeatedly" should not be allowed to keep posting in my opinion. But my opinion does not have the experience that your does backed by the offenses. It sounds like to me that anyone doing those things that causes them to be blocked repeatedly should be placed on a wait to post again status and that this would increase with each offense by any given problem person. Finally, a permanent lock out but that, I think, should be by the opinion of several people and not just one person.--Brother Officer 00:46, 27 November 2009 (UTC)

00:46, 27 November 2009

You'd be surprised how forgiving the community is, if you read this study. Someone can sockpuppet, edit war, canvass, and deceive so that they can push their viewpoint. But if they promise to be good guys, they can come back, repeatedly. Many people learn from their first block and become great guys. Many people learn from their second block too. But others just become smarter, and find ways to barely meet policy, and push a viewpoint. The rare time they cross the line, they've acquired enough supporters who are really just pushing the same viewpoint. You see a few barnstars, and all is forgiven. I wouldn't reward these editors with anything more than 20 characters.

01:37, 27 November 2009

Unsourced materials must be difficult to deal with. Initially I would say that if the material has no source cited that it will be removed. However, as I now pause and think on this, I remember a lot of things but I do not remember all of the sources. I have a university education but I cannot recall all of my excellent professors by name nor my high school, or grade school teachers names. I may not recall what each looked like. I love books and learn from then just as others do but I cannot always recall who authored what I read because I have read so much over decades. I agree, it is a problem. I think perhaps some things must be obvious though and be maybe those can be dealt with. I really cannot say because I have not have had to cover that area of watching over people's sources or lack thereof. You have that experience, I don't. I am on the other end of that situation. An article that is subjective would be expected by me regardless of what rules state I would not expect complete objectivity. I don't think it is in the nature of most people not to be subjective. Why does a person write an article? They obviously feel a desire to. Why? Because they have something the want to state. Why? It is deep within them to do so. Why? See previous answer. Okaym why not cite sources? If they know the sources then they should be cited. Perhaps the sources are unknown to them -- perhaps they have forgotten the titles of books and which author arthured which books so how can one cite a source -- by "I remember"? Nope, so they write anyway and don't cite because they can't cite. Too, perhaps they fear copyright problems with what they write. Perhaps they do not know of fair use of some materials. You, if you have to deal with these things, as a volunteer, have to be the judge. It is an important position, an honorable position and a difficult position but remember -- you are a volunteer and you do your best and that is all anyone can ask of you or that you should expect of yourself.
I wish this thing had a spell checker! :0)


--Brother Officer 00:25, 27 November 2009 (UTC)

00:25, 27 November 2009

Contibutors Please Define Some of Your Motivations For Contributing.

A possible approach to getting more contributors and retaining those we now have is to state why those who contribute do so. Personally I like socializing but I prefer to know with whom I am socializing. I like to know something about them. There are User pages and perhaps new people can be directed to one or more of these to learn from a long time contributor. But those pages are picked up by Google and not everyone wants their life shown on Google which is why I myself make my User page different as shown here and I wrote that before a message was sent to me asking to join in conversing here to work on some of these questions. I have a hatred for death that takes away so much. Therefore it will not take away all that I can create. I contribute to Wikipedia and Wikisource and Wiki Commons for this reason. This is aside from the fact that long ago when I wanted to read a certain book the work was archived away in a university somewhere and I could not read it unless I went to the university. Books archived away are a shameful thing in my thinking -- just sitting on a shelf, if you see it, wear white gloves or someone will turn the pages for you and in a special closed off room. I write to of my own family materials archived away in a university. From a point of sadness I get angry and then determined to do something about these situations of archiving away and death taking good knowledge away forever. I love books and I love history and science. There is little that I do not like. Still, for these few things I have mentioned I will work towards defeating in some manner and to some extent -- the extent that I am able to make a change with these situations. Thus I have worked on articles on Wikipedia and posted a fewe images on Wiki Commons and my favorite that I found only recently is transcribing illustrated books for WikiSource. I have posted under several aliases and under my real name. I have learned here on wiki areas and I have a lot more to learn. Usually I just stick to the books where I don't feel I will be condemned -- not that I have ever been "blocked" nor told that I might be. I still consider myself a "newbie" which perhaps many should as well who have been here for years. Technology is forever changing at a fast pace and that makes all of us "newbies" that have to be "baby-sit" to some extent even if by exchanging ideas from others here on wiki areas. Well, I hope that what I have written is okay and I have tried not to hurt anyone's feelings in what I have written as good manners are very important to me. This is the most I have ever written in a conversation area. "So be it" Brother Officer 23:43, 26 November 2009 (UTC)

23:43, 26 November 2009

This discussion is based on how to get to wikipedia 1.0. We need to start to think about Wikipedia 2.0 discussionpage:Talk:Question of the week

The effort over the past 9 years has been all about getting the basic information recorded and formatted, the projects and languages set up. We can begin to see the outline of what a world where that has been achieved would be like.

  • As more and more articles are brought up to high school standard we will need contributors with undergrad knowledge to improve them.
  • As Universities see quality rising some will use editing wikipedia as part of course work. Others will follow. Every scientist has to pass a language requirement. Writing an lead para for a science article which covers all our style points should fulfill that requirement in most cases.
  • As some GLAMs start to release material there will be less room for tourist snapshots of the same objects.
  • As some GLAMs start to release materials other GLAMs will come under pressure to follow.

Most significant of all

  • As the corpus of knowledge on Wikipedia grows and becomes more reliable it becomes more useable for other purposes.

Wikipedia 2.0 will be all about accessing Wikipedia and Wikimedia content in other ways that the traditional wiki page. My prediction: in 10 years time less than 10% of access to our data will be via our sites.

We need to start thinking about what we need to do to unleash our data, how to make it reusable, searchable, parseable.

  • moving the infobox data out of the articles into a semantic wikidata so it is reusable and editable in other language WPs and outside WPs
  • Doubling down on getting lead paragraphs just right - since many reusers will need no more than that.
  • Look at ways of making sure there is a path for readers who access our data via reusers to become editors.

There is a real question of how many editors we will actually need when the info base is more secure. Apache is open source and free but how many web users feel obligated to contribute patches? If the number is less than one in a million does that make it less free?

17:37, 24 November 2009

Good point! What are the tools available for data mining today? What tools would be useful?

Creating open source API:s for different purposes would be great, one such could use cross refferences between different language wiktionaries to construct a dictionary for example. Don't know if it exists allready, but if not I don't think there would take much coding to get one working.

18:27, 24 November 2009

Interesting vision. Many other websites pull directly from Wikipedia already. Regardless of how the information if delivered in the future, it is important that we work on improving the quality of the information. Wikipedia 2.0 needs to include more emphasis on improving the quality of articles. MissionInn.Jim 14:48, 26 November 2009 (UTC)

14:48, 26 November 2009

Encourage usage of wikiversity in education

Encourage teachers to use wikiversity in school projects. A class at whatever level could make research, gather information and discuss on a Wikiversity projects. Such projects could be ideal for cooperation among different schools too. Even if the project not produces information that is usefull for anyone outside of the project it helps students to learn to edit a wiki, additionally it could be a fun and effective way for the students involved to learn the actuall subject and it prepares students for global cooperation that is increasingly important. And by the way, some useful information might even be produced.

09:30, 24 November 2009