Proposal talk:Core topics complete

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The level 1 and 2 links in the Summary don't work for me. 99.25.114.234 23:52, 14 August 2009 (UTC)

Fixed. Great proposal, by the way. --HereToHelp 19:47, 15 August 2009 (UTC)
Thanks for fixing and supporting HereToHelp. 92.23.129.36 10:08, 17 August 2009 (UTC)

Campaign

Campaign is proposed. Rursus 06:33, 19 August 2009 (UTC)

comment

I would distinguish between large wikipedias and small wikipedias. A small wikipedia with a few hundreds of articles should have a different set of core articles. For example, there should be an article on the country most people live in. Some rivers, mountains, citys in the neighborhood. Then articles about Wikipedia, Internet, more tech things. Maybe some global and local artist: Mickael Jackson, (whoever is number 1 on the pop charts). --Goldzahn 02:55, 21 August 2009 (UTC)

Countries are included under the wider core articles criteria, however my proposal would apply to English Wikipedia, the biggest of them all. At length, the articles discussed at level 1 and 2 would apply to any wikipedia, large or small. 92.0.223.41 17:53, 21 August 2009 (UTC)
Part of the problem, I think, is that it is difficult to write a general article that introduces a large amount of broad material and links to many different subtopics while still remaining reasonably short, coherent, and not redundant. I think that there needs to be a guideline 9or at least an essay) regarding how to best do the job. You can't just say, "pick one of the top ten and make it featured!". I've concerned myself with the level 3 vital articles, organizing them and cleaning up one or two. Why? because writing a general article is 'hard. (I considered a proposal about improving popular articles, but after doing research I realized such articles are (1) pop culture who's popularity fades in a few weeks, or (2) related to sex, which no one wants to work on, or (3) despite being relatively popular, visited by a very small percentage of viewers. I concluded that having the basics would drastically help our reputation.) --HereToHelp 19:09, 21 August 2009 (UTC)
I couldn´t write one of the Level/1-Articels even I had a library next to me. Writing an article for e.g. art needs a professor. On the other hand, it´s easy writing something about the city you are living and therefore the chance increases that another editor will expand the article. This is essential for wikipedias with maybe 100 articles. Yes, this proposal belongs definitely to the en:WP. --Goldzahn 19:55, 21 August 2009 (UTC)
So maybe get people to focus on the level 3s? HereToHelp 20:09, 21 August 2009 (UTC)

One issue with general article is, we are not sure to have made the full tour of the subject, the hard to track completeness issue. You aren't even aware that something is indeed missing until someone point it. --KrebMarkt 20:53, 27 August 2009 (UTC)

Basic problem

This proposal assumes that it is possible and desirable to educate volunteers to a professional level, in order to write a professional article. However, it takes a professional (or a dedicated amateur) years (first of education, then of hands-on work) to reach a professional level. Hoping that a bunch of volunteers can pep themselves up to do the same without the benefit of a formal education and without experience in the field looks unrealistic to me. It would be a lot more efficient to stimulate (or even allow) actual professionals (and/or dedicated amateurs) to contribute. So, the way forward would be to lessen the anti-elitist (or more accurately the anti-information) bias of the Wikipedia bureaucracy. - Brya 13:53, 30 August 2009 (UTC)

Impact?

Some proposals will have massive impact on end-users, including non-editors. Some will have minimal impact. What will be the impact of this proposal on our end-users? -- Philippe 00:07, 3 September 2009 (UTC)

At first sight, it might be expected that the Level 1 core articles will have considerable impact if they are sufficiently improved. I am not all all sure though that this will necessarily be the case. How often do people actually look for general information on topics of this kind? (Perhaps statistics are available on page views here??) And how meaningful can it be to try to summarise the most important features of such topics within the confines of an encylopedic article? The danger is, of course, that as further amendments are made, the slant of these articles could become ever more influenced by personal opinion or emerging trends.
Perhaps editors' time would therefore be better spent on developing the "outline" articles, expanding the main intros and adding short introductions to each section. Users, who are no doubt researching a more specific topic anyway in most cases, would then have an opportunity to find what they are looking for more easily. In this context, an effort could me made to increase the use of terms or phrases liable to become part of user searches so that a sensible overview is presented among the initial search results displayed by search engines or even within Wikipedia itself.
Finally, rather than undertaking extensive reviews of the English-language articles in their own context, it might be useful for editors to draw on versions of the same articles in other major languages. Here computerised translations could be a starting point (e.g. using Google's language tools) followed by extensive editing by bilingual editors.Ipigott 10:15, 4 October 2009 (UTC)

Explore core topics and top levels

After commenting on the Impact section today, I took a closer look at everything in connection with core topics and related top level articles. In particular, I looked at the work behind Wikipedia:Version 0.5 and Wikipedia:Version 1.0 which was in connection with the release of a much shorted version of Wikipedia on DVD. Here I was particularly interested in the page assessments given in Wikipedia:Version_1.0_Editorial_Team/Core_topics where quality assessments range from start class to GA and FA. I was also interested to see that the core topics here are not always the same as those in Wikipedia Level 1. The Version 1.0 list includes Personal life, Social Sciences, and Humanities among the Elite Eight (rather than Art, Language, Life, Philosophy and Science). Before going any further, I therefore suggest we should establish a valid list of core topics and top-level or second-level topics.Ipigott 10:50, 4 October 2009 (UTC)

I understand the desirability of standarization, but I don't think that it's entirely necessary. If we're only working on eight articles, you're right, but some lists have 100 or 1000 subtopics of different eight. There is no one correct way to categorize all of human knowledge, so several list exist with considerable social inertia. Taking time to organize reduces the focus on improving articles, which is what this proposal is about. I think you'd be surprised how infrequently general topics are visited; I think that we should find out where our work would be most helpful. HereToHelp (talk) 11:32, 4 October 2009 (UTC)
I quite agree that we should find out where our work would be most helpful. Any ideas on how we should go about it? Perhaps it could be based to some extent on page views but even these can of course be affected by the quality of an article, linkages from other pages and effective categorization.
I would also argue that with the wide range of enthusiastic editors we now have, it should be possible to upgrade all the Level 1 core topic articles simply by applying basic principles of wikification, citing pertinent sources and making the articles interesting and attractive. I would suggest the same approach could be applied initially to the pages still marked start class in Level 2. Why not simply include these as priorities for improvement in "Special Pages" or similar, based on the quality ratings assigned and possibly feedback from an editorial team? - Ipigott 09:25, 11 October 2009 (UTC)
Because most ediors are used to writing articles about specific things: historic battles, cricket competitions, hurricanes, and such, not broad introductory articles. This is why I have asked that a set of guidelines and instructions for writing these general articles be created. It is also why I encourage working on Level 3 articles, because they are neither too general (History) nor too obscure (Battle of Chateau-Thierry) but just right (World War I). As for determining commonly accessed articles, most of them are current events, and the difference between a popular article and a fairly popular one is slim. Perhaps we should encourage editors to read and make small corrections to general articles. we could "sell" this as educational enrichment, and hope that an article will be appealing enough to have an editor volunteer for more in-depth editing. This will probably work better for larger, more developed, more general articles anyway. HereToHelp (talk) 22:54, 11 October 2009 (UTC)
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