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Op-ed

We must do more to turn readers into editors

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By Ypnypn
Ypnypn is an inclusionist who has been editing Wikipedia since 2010. He wrote the essay Don't overwhelm the newbies.
The views expressed in this op-ed are those of the author only; responses and critical commentary are invited in the comments section. The Signpost welcomes proposals for op-eds at our opinion desk.

Recently I was having a casual conversation with a friend, and he mentioned that he spent too many hours a day playing video games. I responded with a comment that I, too, spent way too much time on an activity of my own – Wikipedia. In an attempt to reply with a relevant remark, he offered something along the lines of: "So have you ever written anything?" After a second, I quickly answered yes, but I was still in shock over his question. It seemed to be rooted in a belief on his part that using Wikipedia meant just reading the articles, and that editing was something that someone, hypothetically, might do, but not really more likely than randomly counting to 7,744.

This made me realize how much of the general populace views Wikipedia – as a website put together by some mysterious people, probably professionals. "that anyone can edit" is a phrase like Coca-Cola's "It's the real thing", seen a thousand times without ever really being thought about. The numerous [edit] links? Who knows what will happen if you click, but probably not worth finding out. Most sites have dozens of random links floating around, so people tend to mentally adblock them, especially considering that the links are all the way on the right side of the page.

That's right, a simple change of moving the [edit] links to a more visible location might gather many new editors. Companies spend vast amounts of money and time to determine the perfect layout to attract customers; we need to spend just as much effort trying out various tweaks to determine what will attract editors. This needn't harm the readers, if done right. But we absolutely must engage in trial-and-error to figure what will work best. Maybe my suggestion will help; maybe not. But there's no excuse for ignoring the issue.

Of course, the position of the [edit] links is hardly the only reason for the popular misunderstanding of Wikipedia. MediaWiki may be simpler than HTML, but is nothing compared to Microsoft Word. It's not a coincidence that so many Wikipedians understand some form of programming. VisualEditor should help the issue somewhat, but it's years behind schedule. Other causes may include the uniqueness of Wikipedia: readers have no experience with the idea that online info comes directly from other readers.

But perhaps the main reason why readers don't realize that this is really an encyclopedia "that anyone can edit" is that it isn't. Consider this: out of the top ten articles visited per this, three are semi-protected. Most major articles like United States, science, sun, apple and encyclopedia are protected (from a reader's perspective), so the edit links don't show up at all. While it's been claimed that only 5% of articles are protected, these more or less coincide with the 5% most viewed articles (with plenty of exceptions which prove the rule). Readers don't see protection as an unfortunate action taken to prevent vandalism; they see it the same way they can't edit the New York Times's website, evidence of a clear-cut distinction between readers and editors. To make matters worse, so-called anonymous editors can't create pages (unlike in most language versions of Wikipedia), so a casual visitor will have little inclination to believe that (s)he can, indeed, take part in building the world's greatest source of knowledge.

There isn't a simple solution to this. Encouraging helpful edits while preventing unhelpful ones is an ultimately impossible task. But as time goes on, we feel an increasing need to fully-protect Wikipedia's reputation by semi-protecting its articles, making us resemble Citizendium. It's easy to revert vandalism; let's not focus solely on preventing it no matter the cost.

The introduction of pending changes protection may help somewhat. Readers are once again given the [edit] links, thus being invited to contribute. But after they click "submit (not save) changes", they are told that their submission will need to be reviewed by an experienced editor. Encyclopædia Britannica offers the same thing, and almost any newspaper will take a look at what you mail them. The concept of readers being the writers is completely lacking. And in any case, pending changes can not feasibly be applied to thousands of pages, as a huge backlog would quickly develop.

A lot of effort has been spent on trying to enhance newbies' experiences. This effort, including the Teahouse, is certainly vital. But it does nothing about getting people to make a single edit in the first place. We're so used to seeing Wikipedia through the eyes of editors that we don't understand how it looks to a reader. We enjoy claiming that "All readers are editors" without doing anything to make this saying a reality. Before I started seriously editing, I didn't even know what a star or plus in the upper right corner meant. The average visitor has no clue and no real desire to have a clue – fact: most people who want to join Wikipedia already did – and we don't really care, preferring to spend time making new rules about hyphens and dashes, and designing a Teahouse to help newbies navigate them.

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The trend: http://reportcard.wmflabs.org/graphs/active_editors 71.215.85.167 (talk) 22:18, 7 March 2013 (UTC)[reply]

Here is a good summary chart below. It says the maximum number of active editors (5 or more edits in the last month) was 51,370 in March 2007. See also: commons:Category:English Wikipedia active editor statistics for more stats and charts.

--Timeshifter (talk) 03:00, 11 March 2013 (UTC)[reply]
Addendum: The Wikipedia problem. Wikipedia success is direct proportional to its quality. The Wikipedia's vandalism in the broad sense is direct proportional to its success/ popularity. On the other side, the editing capacity is direct proportional to its popularity. And it's inverse proportional to the world economic crisis, to Wikipedia's vandalism and Wikipedia's quality. --Chris.urs-o (talk) 08:15, 10 March 2013 (UTC)[reply]
Addition: each edit requires more effort as Wikipedia's quality gets better. --Chris.urs-o (talk) 08:43, 13 March 2013 (UTC)[reply]
And the time space continuum requires some reverse thrust on our part just at the point of our approaching the event horizon of the black hole, says Mister Spock to Captain Kirk. --Timeshifter (talk) 11:14, 10 March 2013 (UTC)[reply]

Preceding a statement with "fact:" does not make it so. Citation? Ijon (talk) 23:26, 7 March 2013 (UTC)[reply]

You're right, I forgot to mention referencing paranoia as a major cause of this problem. -- Ypnypn (talk) 00:05, 8 March 2013 (UTC)[reply]
Thank you for the snark, but I'm afraid you're dodging the question. Even by your book, my question is not an instance of "Referencing Paranoia", because this isn't harmless information; this was a claim you were asserting without evidence, that, if taken seriously, has significant implications (e.g. much spending on outreach would best be stopped if you are correct). It is therefore not at all paranoid to ask you to bring evidence for your claim, or at the very least, to flag to others the highly subjective nature of your assertion (which is perfectly acceptable, in an op-ed, of course). Ijon (talk) 21:31, 8 March 2013 (UTC)[reply]

How do you propose to deal with the influx of unhelpful edits and vandal pages that would occur if semi-protection were turned off and IPs could create pages? You claim that reverting vandalism is easy, yet I see from your contributions that you have little to no experience dealing with vandalism or correcting the work of new editors. Danger High voltage! 00:21, 8 March 2013 (UTC)[reply]

He did not say to turn off semi-protection. He did not claim reverting vandalism is easy. --Timeshifter (talk) 11:16, 10 March 2013 (UTC)[reply]

My edit button is right next to the section heading, but I believe that's because I chose to in user preferences. Perhaps that should be made universal, if only as a test to see if it makes a difference?--SPhilbrick(Talk) 00:28, 8 March 2013 (UTC)[reply]

As User:Danger points out, vandalism is a continual series of waves eroding the hard work of our editors. The real issue with Wikipedia is that only so many persons will self-select to contribute. The vast numbers of people that only read Wikipedia see no incentive to edit articles. The divide between editors and lay readers is both real and appropriate. I recommend every editor in academia consider the Campus Ambassador program. Chris troutman (talk) 02:06, 8 March 2013 (UTC)[reply]

Pro tip: regularly try to read/edit while logged out signing anon to make case-in-point ;-). This can give us some insights into how others view our wiki. Anon contributions are getting harder and harder every year. Especially the fact that you can't spontaneously create articles and "make red things blue" as a logged out user really breaks the wiki for this our largest group of contributors.

"But do you see what kind of mess people make at first?" is no excuse. Eventually messy stubs grow into wonderful articles; and the people grow up alongside. We have an entire wikipedia full of examples of that principle. (that, and speedy-deleting those messy first stubs is/was pretty much phase 20 in the meatball:WikiLifeCycle ) --2001:980:DE98:1:5108:A946:B993:2C2A (talk) 09:28, 8 March 2013 (UTC) "Hooooom, patience my little hobbit!" said the Meta:Eventualist[reply]

  • I question the premise of this opinion piece. "We must do more to turn readers into editors" - why, exactly, must we do this ? I see no problem statement anywhere in this piece. "The average visitor has no clue and no real desire to have a clue ... and we don't really care" - yes, I don't really care about this. Please tell me why I should. Gandalf61 (talk) 12:27, 8 March 2013 (UTC)[reply]
You must not have been paying attention to the many previous discussions about the declining number of active editors. http://stats.wikimedia.org/EN/PlotEditorsEN.png --Timeshifter (talk) 11:07, 10 March 2013 (UTC)[reply]

"And in any case, pending changes can not feasibly be applied to thousands of pages" Really? It seems to work well for the 1.5 million articles on the German Wikipedia, where it is globally enabled. —Naddy (talk) 13:04, 8 March 2013 (UTC)[reply]

  • I don't share the concern that Pending Changes may drive off new editors...but I do think this piece misses one of the major hurdles faced by newcomers: editors (at all levels of the power structure) who are so vested in the rules and procedures that they've taken OWNership of them and forget the real reason why some folks are here. The constant power struggles, passive-aggressive sniping, and endless debates about using a dash or something else is very off-putting. Perhaps the community needs to acknowledge that OWNership of the rules and process is a bigger threat to expanding editorship than OWNership of articles or pending changes. Intothatdarkness 17:58, 8 March 2013 (UTC)[reply]
  • The sad fact of the matter is that Wikipedia has transformed itself from a free and open space to a gated community. In the beginning we had open plains upon which to graze, people who were anxious to help and contribute, and a few rules, regulations, and guidelines to govern behavior here. Now however the site is practically locked downed, we absolutely do not want people editing the articles, we cringe at new material, we delete anything (and I do mean anything) that is judged to be unencyclopedic, and we can not be bothered to help anyone, be they newbies, veterans, or just the curious. We have transformed ourselves from the utopian Star Trek the brutal Star Wars Empire, and we are now paying the cost for it. From where I sit, the only way to recapture the earlier joy and the growth we enjoyed is to return to that time, meaning roll back the guidelines, the policies, and lose the protections, but of course that will never happen, and stories like this will herald the death of Wikipedia. In summary, "We have met the enemy, and they are us." TomStar81 (Talk) 21:27, 8 March 2013 (UTC)[reply]
  • I mostly agree with Ypnypn's views. We should encourage more readers to turn into editors, and that means several rules of Wikipedia. To answer Gandalf61, we need more editors because diversity is clue to the goal of collecting the sum of all knowledge. How can we do that if only 10% of editors are women? Same with ethnical, geographical and socioeconomic groups: Wikipedia is written by a small group of the world's population, and that introduces systemic bias. Wikipedia is amazing, but it's far, far from perfect. --NaBUru38 (talk) 02:46, 9 March 2013 (UTC)[reply]
Sorry, but that still doesn't tell me why I should care. Words like "diversity" and a mission statement like "collecting the sum of all knowledge" just don't engage me on a personal level - they have no connection with why I edit Wikipedia. 99.99% of "all knowledge" is of no interest to me - will I ever want to know who won the Oklahoma Film Critics Circle Awards 2007 ? No. In any case, most "knowledge" is not notable and so does not meet a basic benchmark for inclusion in Wikipedia, so this mission statement is at best meaningless without some significant qualification. I agree with you that Wikipedia is not perfect, but I think we disagree about the locations and causes of its imperfections. Gandalf61 (talk) 09:41, 9 March 2013 (UTC)[reply]
  • Maybe it is more worthwhile to look at ways to retain existing editors instead of driving them away with creeping wikilawyering. Just like the government has way too many laws Wikipedia has increasingly more policies which drives away well meaning editors who just can't stand the wikipoliticking. Targaryenspeak or forever remain silent 15:25, 9 March 2013 (UTC)[reply]
  • I really enjoyed reading this piece. Regardless of the merits of its specific assessments or proposed solutions, I feel that the heart of this editor is in the right place. Indeed, we need to make Wikipedia the encyclopedia that anyone can, and does, edit. Otherwise we'll just keep gradually shifting towards the very protectionist, elitist view of experts vs. laymen that we claim to challenge. --Waldir talk 02:17, 10 March 2013 (UTC)[reply]
We've had more than 10 years to improve Wikipedia and we still have more than 2,000,000 stubs. We need to turn readers in to editors so we can improve our quality. The reason we haven't improved our quality so far is because we don't have enough editors. And why don't we have enough editors? I'd say TomStar81 (talk · contribs) answered that, "We have met the enemy, and they are us.". Couldn't put it better myself. 64.40.54.70 (talk) 07:53, 10 March 2013 (UTC)[reply]
I believe the average length of the stubs has increased significantly over the past 10 years. There are lots of perfectly good short articles masquerading as stubs, but because there is only one reference (no matter how solid), the stub tag has been appended. So looking just at the number of stubs doesn't help. On the flip side of that, the criteria for featured article status has also been significantly sharpened up. So looking at these numbers doesn't tell the whole story. Jane (talk) 07:31, 11 March 2013 (UTC)[reply]
Isn't this like suggesting that the quality of driving would be improved if driving tests were abolished ? There is a counter argument that more editors actually leads to more stubs, not fewer, and the route to improving quality is to reduce the number of new, inexperienced editors. And this still doesn't give me a reason to care - 2 million stub articles don't affect me since I won't be reading them. Gandalf61 (talk) 09:12, 10 March 2013 (UTC)[reply]
You've made your point several times that you don't care. We get it. --Timeshifter (talk) 11:21, 10 March 2013 (UTC)[reply]
That's an unfair oversimplification. My point is that there is no convincing argument in the article (or indeed so far on this discussion page) that says why exactly Wikipedia needs to attract more new editors or how having more new editors would improve my personal experience of using Wikipedia. Gandalf61 (talk) 11:45, 10 March 2013 (UTC)[reply]
  • Good article for those already familiar with the underlying assumptions. Some tooltips for all edit buttons saying "you can edit this article" would be helpful. We should enable section editing via [edit] links for all editors by default whether logged in or not. Also, I did not pay attention to the lack of edit buttons on protected pages before. That is a very important point. The edit buttons should be returned, but protection should not be removed. The tooltips for edit buttons on protected pages could say "you can edit this article if you are logged in". This way we constantly invite readers to edit even on protected pages. Very good article. For more ideas: User:Timeshifter/More articles and less editors. --Timeshifter (talk) 11:30, 10 March 2013 (UTC)[reply]
    • Returning the edit button without the capability to edit is tantamount to calling 9-1-1 and telling the operator your house is on fire, and then when the firemen show up, telling them not to bother putting the fire out but to gather up sticks to toast the marshmallows you saved from the kitchen. You may as well add a standard disclaimer to the top of every page here: "Edit buttons are present on every page for your use. Certain terms and conditions may apply. For complete disclosure of what you can an can not do, click here". TomStar81 (Talk) 05:20, 11 March 2013 (UTC)[reply]
The red link would be a nice touch. :) Just kidding. Besides the tooltip messages, a message could show up when a non-logged-in reader clicks an edit button on a protected page. I mean, I already get such messages when I forget to log in, and I click on an edit button on a non-protected page. --Timeshifter (talk) 14:09, 11 March 2013 (UTC)[reply]
  • Consider helping prior editors not just new editors: After reviewing thousands of articles, it becomes obvious that many veteran editors are still providing extensive work for Wikipedia articles. They need better tools and collaboration processes. Rather than obsess on getting new customers, an alternative business model is to work closely with prior customers to supply more of their needs or requests. Focus on the best customers. In fact, some organizations have been shutdown after new customers realized prior customers were not kept satisfied, after closing the sale. Hence, more improvements which simplify work, and improve enjoyment, for prior editors will not only facilitate their contributions, it can also help to assure new editors that they will be well treated here, in the future. -Wikid77 (talk) 05:32, 11 March 2013 (UTC)[reply]
I totally agree with this, and in fact, I would go so far as to say 99% of the active editors today are former editors who just kept on trying, with or without wikibreaks in between. Word-of-mouth still works best to get people editting. For the record, I am one the people who voted against pending changes, because it scares people away from editting, and I didn't even think of the lack of edit buttons - that's a good point! Jane (talk) 07:31, 11 March 2013 (UTC)[reply]
And how pray tell do you plan on helping the vets? No socializing is permitted here, so its not like you can have a long "how was your day" kind of discussion, and helping with the articles is all well and good except that most vets are versed enough in that trade and specialized enough in their practices that they can handle this without the help. So if we can not inquire as to the well being of our members, and the vets do not necessarily need help in editing, then whats left? More barnstars that will rarely if ever be awarded? New, fancy outreach projects that launch with fanfare but are forgotten about three weeks later? Surveys that require the vets to fill out questions which establish the facts, but ultimately result in little if any change? Wikipedia is dying, and the dying people want to be able to look back and see that someone out there gave a damn, and in the case of the vets specifically we are a dying breed in a dying website, so that's especially true for us. Reversing this trend is going to take more than a few lip service promises and a slight tweak to policy, it requires drastic steps, but those steps will not be taken in no small part because the powers that be have a vested interest in keeping things the w they currently our in order to ensure a safe and secure environment for the articles. That such an environment comes at the cost of the editor base in presently unimportant to Wikipedia, but there will come a time when that must change or the site will officially meet its end. TomStar81 (Talk) 09:55, 11 March 2013 (UTC)[reply]
I am sorry you feel that way. None of the outreach projects that I have partipated in have "died". In fact I still hear about all of these (the first was back in 2010). I would not call the people who drop out of the firing line on the first try "vets". I would a vet someone with 10,000+ edits. No, I think this group who "drop out" at the very beginning a group that can not be exactly put in the same category as the "newbies", but also not in the category "vets". How to mobilize I don't know, but I do think they probably give Wikipedia a bad reputation in real life, so we need to address this somehow and give them a second chance. I suspect many of them have been insulted by accusations of copyvio or vandalism while they in fact attempted good faith edits. As you say, there is no forum and no helpdesk, so it remains an issue. I think the answer is more face-to-face informal gatherings at the local level, but how to achieve this is a challenge. Jane (talk) 13:50, 11 March 2013 (UTC)[reply]
Wikid77. As you said, better tools and collaboration processes. Also as you said, improvements which simplify work, and improve enjoyment. You said all these things would help in retaining and drawing back prior editors and veteran editors. I think they would help both old and new editors. Moving Meta to the Commons would help one aspect of collaboration tremendously. It seems to me that the Wikimedia Foundation and staff have been out of touch for the most part since at least 2009. --Timeshifter (talk) 14:31, 11 March 2013 (UTC)[reply]
Wiki77 hit the nail on the head. We need to start focusing on the editors we have. I think many these ideas that come and go regarding new editors are really misguided and stem from a poor intuitive understanding of the Internet. Let's stop pretending Wikipedia is still in some sort of expansion phase. It's not. This is a mature project and we need to start thinking of it as such. As for turning readers into editors, nobody should talk about such things unless they've pondered deep and hard about the "1% rule"; that is, that most people are lurkers, not contributors. As for editor decline, I can't help but notice that something weird happened at near the end of March/beginning of April of 2007 in the active editor graph. Glancing through the Signpost shows that this coincides with the Wikimedia Foundation Licensing policy. I do recall years ago that a large number of files were deleted and I remember a bunch of editors being very angry and upset about it. It was likely the enforcement of this policy that I am remembering. It is possible that the introduction of this policy jilted enthusiasm for the project, sparking editor decline in a large and long-lasting way. It may also be the origin of the idea that "elite" editors just delete contributions, which I've heard repeated so many times in comments on forums and stuff. Jason Quinn (talk) 05:28, 13 March 2013 (UTC)[reply]
  • A couple of years ago the Foundation paid for a "usability study" that looked over the shoulder of a bunch of people who were encouraged to edit Wikipedia. As I remember, the only clear conclusion of that study was that many first-time would-be editors gave up after clicking "Edit" because they could not understand the mess they saw in the edit window.
    Recall that when Wikipedia was invented, its creators wisely decided to use a special "wikisource" language rather than raw HTML, because they wanted articles to be editable by anyone, even people who did not know HTML and did not have any familiarity with computer languages. In particular, they decided that simplicity of the wikisource was totally more important than aesthetics or typographical conventions. So, for example, they settled on straight quotes rather than open-close quotes.
    Unfortunately, Wikipedians at all levels seem to have forgotten that philosophy. The first thing that one sees when clicking "Edit" is a bunch of templates for tags, hatnotes, infoboxes, and other paraphernalia. Often one has to scroll a windowful or two before getting to the head paragraph. The text is usually littered with templates,  s, and in-line references (and templates within references), and part of the source is now devoted to looks rather than contents.
    No one can possibly know by heart all those templates and their parameters. Experienced or computer-wise users can guess and hack their way around that jungle of templates; but a novice user can only conclude that "everybody can edit" means "everybody with a computer science PhD". (The only "new editors" who will not be put off are the vandals.)
    Wikisource complexity alone cannot explain the sudden jerk in the plot above around 2006-2007. However, as the usability study concluded, it may explain why Wikipedia is no longer able to attract new editors. Sadly, there has been absolutely no reaction by the Foundation to that finding...
    All the best, --Jorge Stolfi (talk) 07:01, 13 March 2013 (UTC)[reply]
This is a good point and well articulated. Infoboxes in particular are quite problematic in this regard. I wonder if we should start using subpages for infoboxes and include them into the article. References too are very ugly but I find it hard to know how to even circumvent that without giving up valuable inline citations. Tables are also also unfortunate little creatures and one of the things that a WYSIWYG editor would help out with. Jason Quinn (talk) 07:14, 13 March 2013 (UTC)[reply]
Jorge Stolfi and Jason Quinn. Moving all references to the bottom of the page would make things a lot easier. There is a reference format that does that. Maybe we should have a massive conversion project to move all references to the bottom of the page. Leaving only the pointers in the text. And we could make those pointers as small as possible.
I am beginning to think that the Visual Editor, like the greatly-disliked Liquid Threads, is a waste of resources. Wikipedia grew incredibly fast, and is still growing. All with the current wikitext editor, and the current talk pages. What we need are tweaks, not vaporware. We need some section watchlisting on talk pages. We need reference-only highlighting in wikitext. Infoboxes and tables are not as much of a distraction as references.
Wikia has a visual editor along with a wikitext editor. Many, if not most, regular Wikia editors, like myself, hate the visual editor, and many, if not most, regular editors have disabled it in preferences. The visual editors on both Wikia and Wikipedia have hundreds of problems. Well documented in numerous discussions, and Bugzilla. --Timeshifter (talk) 14:22, 13 March 2013 (UTC)[reply]
I think the Visual Editor is fantastic. I have been waiting for WYSIWYG wikiware for years, knowing that a pet project would probably fail without it, and I was almost ready to attempt to blow some life back into Mindtouch Core to get something going. Mediawiki's VE may be a death-knell for many competing open source wiki projects.
Re VE on wp, I was recently stunned to by a comment from a very bright & generous nephew who has done heaps of web dev and taught web use in the 3rd world, and yet who has never made a wp edit(??!!!) on account of the 'yet another @#$% editor'-barrier. Myself, I only jumped that barrier because I was incensed by a wp error. (More recently, I have only bothered to go thru the learning curve of setting up a wp account because I knew that a major rewrite of a page would probably fail if I attempted it anonymously; this despite that I have done unix sys admin etc for decades.) Do not underestimate the height of those barriers.
Similarly, get ready for a possible avalanche of edits as those barriers are removed:
  • Before VE, I suspect that most editors overcame the editing barrier because they were sufficiently incensed by wp content - passion drove them over that barrier. Previously, someone might have preferred e.g. 'him or her' to 'them', but found that wp editing involved too much of a learning curve for them to bother making their trivial change. Now they can tweak to their heart's content... Oh boy. (or girl)
  • The recent push to educate uni classes with 100s of students into wp editing is nerve-wracking enough even before adding the VE factor.
  • My personal bug-bear is when a casual user comes in not knowing the topic but having ideas about grammar and wp standards. I especially dislike it when someone starts adding 'citation needed' based on inconsistent criteria (e.g. they challenge all unrefed numerical assertions in one particular area, but don't challenge equally unrefed textual assertions). This has the potential to reduce previously useful articles to an unbalanced collection of weasel words, given that past contributors may be entirely confident that there are good references available for previous assertions, but lack the time to hunt up sources not already on the 'net. (I know that I shouldn't hope that wp can act as a adjunct to the existing 'net material that is buffed by consensus, yet wp can be very useful in this regard.) With VE, such nitpicking will be easier for far more people.
It seems to me that wp has already matured a lot (in the sense that, for this reader, when I turn to wp for info it usually has better than what I would expect to find in Britanicca etc). Looking at the Active Editors on English Wikipedia graph above also suggests we have leveled off at the point were there is relatively little left to impassion readers into overcoming the Editor barrier (disregarding pockets of -ism edit wars). Thus perhaps wp has largely finished its growth stage and is already in its refinement stage. When VE becomes the default and the Edit button is brought into more readers' consciousness, there will be an unfavourable change in ratio between nitpickers and those who were passionate enough to jump the wp non-WYSIWYG editor barrier. In consequence, existing editors might become exhausted by newcomers, and wp might face death by a million nitpicks. I'm all for VE being the default, but perhaps wp should slow down on moving the Edit Button to where it will get the attention of more readers.
BenevolentUncle (talk) 06:20, 2 June 2013 (UTC)[reply]





       

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