Missing recommendations about how to increase participation in under-represented group.
Missing recommendations about how to increase participation in under-represented group.
The below question is important and needs to be revisited.
- What key features/changes offer the greatest potential to increase participation, particularly from under-represented groups with a high potential to add value to the projects?
The answer to this question needs to be foremost in the mind of the Wikimedia Foundation Board and staff as they develop and implement the Strategic Plan.
Can someone define the under-represented groups. Thanks.
That said i thanks i have already discussed with Ramdoran a potential feature here.
The Reader Conversion task force did was assigned this area to focus on, but did not make recommendations.
I think a WYSIWYG interface is essential for increasing participation in these groups.
WYSIWYG is probably key for people who have tried Wikipedia at least once and got discouraged. The "community health" task force addressed that. But I think KrebMarkt is really onto something when he focuses on readers who have never even thought of contributing. Reader conversion might be even more important than improving participation from existing users.
There is a parameter i would call Wikicivilization rating.
It represents the difficulty to make an edit in a given article more complex and difficult it is and higher the rating. High rating would mean that an editor must have a good grasp of "Wikipedia culture": policies, guideline, article history, rfc, ArbCom ruling, etc... to edit an article in serenity.
Wikipedia is the encyclopedia that everyone can edit. That's rich but what a new editor at the "barbarian" level of "Wikipedia culture" is de-facto allowed to do without being reverted, rebuffed or bite?
It's urgent to point at potential new editors areas with low Wikicivilization rating so they won't meet head on the "Wikipedia culture" wall.
Could the left menu contain a link to a page where the visitor can answer a few questions about who he/she is (education, profession, age, interests and so on) and then be given a list of articles that are in need of creation or expansion. In the local language project we have considered compiling a list of the most popular topics from traffic logs and search engines, to see what people want to read about and identify gaps in the Wikipedia content. If there is such a list and the list is filtered so that topics that allready has well written articles are filtered out, and if the topics are cathegorized, then anyone that answers the questions could be given a number of articles that are in need of creation or expansion.
Something like that ;)
We need a minimum of information of the users center of interests from there we can point at articles that suit there interest and capabilities.
Another idea is to use real life events and news to emphasize selection of articles related to the subject that need improvements or creation. After the death of Michael Jackson there was a renewed drive to improve articles related to him.
Anything that help to beat to pulp the ideas like "Everything is done here" will be useful.
Anything that make potential new editors to click on the [Edit] button more often is welcome.
Take a look at strategy 2 in the Local language projects recommendations, which is aimed at increasing content that are of interest to a wider cultural spectrum. The aim of a similar recommendation here would then be to make sure that the diversity of topics within a culture is all covered? I think the two recommendations could reinforce each others then.
Another idea could be to run campaigns on the Wikipedia pages where a certain topic is highlighted in the bannerspace that is used for the fund raising during some times of the year. There could be a topic of the week/month campaign where people are encouraged to fill in gaps in underrepresented areas. People could be given the opportunity to vote for what topic they want to have their own campaign, which could help identifying what topics are likely to attract editors. A couple of administrators could coordinate such a campaig, working with identifying what articles needs to be created or expanded within that topic and providing support to new editors.
I like this idea. We need to make sure that it is used to educate the person about all the possible ways to contribute.
Different people have different styles of editing or creating articles. Some people like to work on joint projects, while other people like to work alone. Some people like to start from scratch in their user space and launch and article as a well developed article, then shepherd it to a GA or FA. Other are happiest doing wikignoming by fixing spelling errors or grammar. We need to be sure to not put one style over others but work hard to embrace each person's contributions.
I think you're really onto something. If we rated the experience level of a Wikipedian (1-5), and then rated the complexity of an article (1-5), we could figure out if they're in over their head. If experience < complexity, give them a nudge. We wouldn't need to necessarily restrict editing. We would just have to give them a reality check: it's harder for a newbie to add something to a featured article that sticks, compared to expanding a stub. We could even flag certain tasks, such as nominating an article for deletion or creating a new article, as being more "complex" tasks that might require a higher experience level to avoid getting "bitten".
Giving a new user a guide to the difficulty of the task sound like a good idea. I would definitely support something that helps match users skill level to tasks.
But each person will be the best gauge of how quickly they want to dive into a task. Some people are new to WP but not new to either professional writing, and other people may know coding/wiki editing which gives them a big advantage over new people that are mostly here to share content material. But there are times when being a topic expert is really needed and the most lacking. So need plays a big role in the situation.
And having new user learn that mistakes they see can be corrected, and that other people will correct their mistakes, too. What makes a wiki work is collaboration model.
I think that's why we'd probably want to avoid being too restrictive. We wouldn't exclude Wikipedians based on their experience level. Only raise their awareness that they're about to do something that is usually what veterans do. There is always a risk of being reverted or making a mistake, but it's easier to handle if you know what you're getting into. Besides, someone who has experience outside Wikipedia would quickly prove it, and the disclaimers would disappear once it became clear that they did not need them.
A new user a guide to the difficulty of the task would be useful.
For putting a complexity rating on articles this is not doable as who will be qualified to set them at the start? Worst case is editors inflating it to fend off potential opposition on a given article.
Editing complexity is real factor but one that can't be objectively quantified each article while consensus can be found for rating tasks and processes difficulty.
So we are limited to make a selections of what can "safely" done by new editors and progressively have them involved in more "complex" contributions
I think we can be somewhat objective about it.
An article that is marked as a stub will be improved by nearly any edit. That's a 0/5 or 1/5, because most people will appreciate any effort to expand it.
An article that has been marked as a good or featured article will only be improved by editors with a great understanding. Those are 4/5's or 5/5's, because we expect the rate of reversion to be highest for these articles.
I guess that makes most normal articles a 2/5 or 3/5. More likely to be reverted than a stub, but not as likely as a featured article.
And most procedural stuff (creating an article, renaming an article, deleting an article) is at least a 3/5.
We can definitely start there.
Starting this way may limit editors hijacking complexity rating.
I think we should eventually give a try to most proposed solutions. Now the question is how long it will take to implement them.
Yeah, it's definitely worth a shot:
- Editing stubs
- Editing non-stub articles
- Editing non-stub articles that have been tagged as under dispute, or that have citations in them (e.g.: presence of ref tags)
- Procedural tasks: moving, creating, deleting articles...
- Editing good and featured articles
That would be my strawman.
If you want the public to participate, stop trying to educate - or 'Wikify' - them! That is, if you want them here in the first place.
Unfortunately, the genie is already out of the bottle. It's not up to us to stop "wikifying" people. It's up to the thousands of users who have already been "wikified", and can leverage every process and tool to run circles around people who aren't.
I think it's literally impossible to remove the barriers. But the barriers being what they are, can we make them easier to overcome?
Increasing participation, improving the "WYSIWYG", removing barriers and avoiding discouragement... My friends, might not the Wikipedia:Sticky Notes idea help some of these things? I have created a section in the village pump here too. Preferably you would throw comments there :)