Summary of the "What we agree on: ..."-threads

Summary of the "What we agree on: ..."-threads

I have tried to pick out the main themes of the feedback in the "What we agree on: ..."-threads.

Advocacy Task Force

  • Prioritize public domain advocacy over net neutrality advocacy, because although both are worthy causes, there are already many powerful voices on the net neutrality effort. What about Wikimedia simply publically voicing its support of net neutrality (release a statement, allow net neutrality campaigners to list Wikimedia as official supporters with appropriate use of [a perhaps modified] Wikipedia logo to put on relevant websites) but not actually devoting any funding or resources to it?
  • I hope the environmental strategies and tactics continues to emphasize telecommuting Foundation employees when possible and reducing the per-employee carbon footprint.
  • Some discussion about why Advocacy not will be a priority of the Wikimedia Foundation, but that the foundation would be happy to see advocacy on a more local level through chapters. But in any way, the Wikimedia Foundation intends to strengthen its relationships with international organizations that share many or all of our values, and we will join them in advocacy work, judiciously, where & when we think our voice can add some value.
  • Some discussion about the role of the Foundations and the Board.
  • The advocacy recommendations are strongly Internet oriented and Wikimedia scope is broader. Because of that and according to our goals and our strategy, I would suggest that we should add preserving cultural heritage inside of our advocacy goals.
  • Have a page where advocacy agenda is being built at a high level? A page where the 10-15 key policy issues are listed, and our position summarized in say ~100 words for each? It would be a real service to the Wikimedia movement to develop such a statement of position.

China Task Force

  • As part of the efforts to execute the recommendation, Chinese Wikipedians in Mainland China had set up a group blog ( recently. And we planed to host meetups in cities also.
  • What about a project focused on reviewing the social and other tools that Hudong and Baidu provide (in addition to their outreach efforts mentioned above), and assessing which ones should be tried out on Wikipedia?

Community Health task Force

  • Some worry about whether the senior editor thing is elitist and potentially more divisive than figuring out a way to treat or hire low-income volunteers.
  • A summary of the Volunteer recognition recommendations in a broader context
    • Implementation: only by communities themselves with encouragement from WMF. Does basically not need to be put on vote etc.
    • Resources: some criteria needed for each project plus a small group per project; may be can be kept Wikimedia-wide, then only one group is needed and some effort to count edits etc (via toolserver?).
    • Opportunities: to prevent/postpone the leave and disappointment of volunteers.
    • Risks: do not see any. In the worst case, it will be a dead initiative.
    • Duration: presumably the effect will be steady, for both short-term and long-term after the initial phase to establish the rules.
    • Time-frame: couple of months to establish the guidelines and form the initiative groups.
    • Necessity: we assume that without this strategy the volunteers woul leave sooner, but they would leave anyway, with or without the strategy.
  • Some discussion about the actuall implementation, and about other recognition methods than barnstars. For example Physical recognitions such as certificates, sticker, mugs, etc., as well as vitual recognitions such as virtual certificates, thank you emails, etc.

Local Language Task Force

  • There is not only a lack of content but also a lack of reliable sources in local languages, especially for local topics. It would perhaps be useful if we had a breakdown of exactly how we think this might be implemented differently for countries where there is a relative lack of reliable sources
  • Is there anything the foundation can do to increase the amount of reliable sources in small languages, for example to promote and foster scientific research and publishing in small languages. And could voice recordings be collected and used as sources.
  • There has been some more ideas around automatic collection of information about what people wants to read. If such a list of topics is produced, editors could either specify in their profile what their areas of education, occupation and interests are, so that they can be given directed tips about how they can contribute. Or there could be a form where even anonymous user can fill in these questions and be given such tips.
  • Some discussion about the "reliable source policy".
  • There are languages which have orthography, but they aren't supported by either widespread fonts or by Unicode itself. If there are not letters, there are no Wikimedia projects. Wikimedia -- both, Foundation and movement -- should work on this issue.
  • Many languages don't have written forms or it is difficult or impossible to write them. Wikimedia should help to those language communities.

Offline Task Force

  • The 'Use of cellphones' recommendation seems to me to be one that could have a huge impact.

Movement roles Task Force

  • Chapters and real life events might be a better way to reach out to underrepresented groups, such as women.
  • We might want to move more toward a 'Wikimedia Network', making sure that the WMF is integrated with the chapters.

Financial sustainability

  • No comments

There has also been complaints about that the summaries of the recommendations are to brief to provide details about how the goals actually should be achieved.

Dafer4513:24, 3 April 2010

It would be nice if more of this were actually strategy related and not just "we think this is a good idea" material.

Advocacy is not a "strategy" in itself. "Carbon footprint" is nicely correct, but also not "strategy."

The issues about how to handle "local language" material (which also relate to the broad "China question") and how to address such broad issues, do impact strategy, and are, IMHO, the most salient of the "agreed upon" material above.

Collect15:35, 3 April 2010

I agree. There is not much of the material that realy leads to additions to the recommendations. But I think the following points in advocay agenda are strategy related at least.

  • Prioritize public domain advocacy over net neutrality advocacy
  • The foundation would be happy to see advocacy on a more local level
  • The Wikimedia Foundation intends to strengthen its relationships with international organizations that share many or all of our values
  • Have a page where advocacy agenda is being built at a high level.

I also have an additional comment to the Local Language Recommendations. In what way will the usability initiative affect the bandwidth and prestanda requirements of the editors connections and computers?

Dafer4515:59, 3 April 2010

As far as I can tell, "net neutrality" only applies in areas where competition for internet service exists -- which is not the entire world. On the other hand, public domain advocacy does not apply to areas with unitary control over the internet either. How can WX actually affect either?

With regard to international organizations - would any benefits reslt which can be measured in any way? I do not regard "getting more money" to be a valid goal in itself <g>.

And I agree that the Local Language part is of notable importance - though in what way can Wx affect bandwidth requirements etc.? Ought WX seek means of compressing material so that the user's computers "reconstitute" condensed material? As articles approach larger and larger sizes, some compaction is certainly feasible, and might represent a strategic goal.

(I use "WX" to mean each single component of the wikiverse, as well as the coordinated acts of such entities)

Collect20:03, 3 April 2010

The bandwidth requirements will not be affected when the monobook skin is changed to the usability skin, Vector, and other usability improvements such as the new toolbar is offered as default interface. Users may experience slowness when they use the new interface for the first time, but it will be faster as the program and image files will be stored in the browser cache. --Shuhari 07:18, 5 April 2010 (UTC)

Shuhari07:18, 5 April 2010
Edited by another user.
Last edit: 08:31, 5 April 2010

I tried using with firebug activated. It seemed like loading the editing environment for the first time required about 770kb of data to be loaded. On a 56kbps connection that means about 2 minutes at full speed. I am a bit worried that such an amount of data to be loaded at the first edit is likely to discourage new editors, especially in region where GPRS and other connections with similar speeds are likely to dominate. The rest of the editing seemed to be perfectly fine, with most of the time less than 1kb of data being loaded upon interaction with the interface.

Apart from this concern I liked the editing environment very much!

Posted by Dafer45, 5 April 2010