The Signpost

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Sounding out, a universal code of conduct, and dealing with AI

A group of young men enjoying Wikipedia's new sound logo

Wikipedia's new sound logo has been rolled out, as announced on Wikimedia News.

The Verge says the winner of the contest to create the sound was Thaddeus Osborne, "a nuclear engineer and part-time music producer from Virginia". Osborne describes the sound design as a combination of whirring pages and clicking keys.

Gizmodo says the sound is "cute". – B

WMF board has ratified the UCoC Enforcement Guidelines

The WMF has announced that the WMF board ratified the Universal Code of Conduct Enforcement Guidelines on 9 March 2023. This means the Enforcement Guidelines are now in force and

may not be circumvented, eroded, or ignored by Wikimedia Foundation officers or staff nor local policies of any Wikimedia project.

A Voter Comments Report summarising community comments made as part of the recent community vote on the Enforcement Guidelines (see previous Signpost coverage) has been published as well.

The Enforcement Guidelines now in force state:

Enforcement of the UCoC by local governance structures will be supported in multiple ways. Communities will be able to choose from different mechanisms or approaches based on several factors such as: the capacity of their enforcement structures, approach to governance, and community preferences. Some of these approaches can include:

  • An Arbitration Committee (ArbCom) for a specific Wikimedia project
  • An ArbCom shared amongst multiple Wikimedia projects
  • Advanced rights holders enforcing local policies consistent with the UCoC in a decentralized manner
  • Panels of local administrators enforcing policies
  • Local contributors enforcing local policies through community discussion and agreement

As for systemic failure to follow or enforce the Code, the Guidelines state:

Systemic failure to follow the UCoC

  • Handled by U4C
  • Some examples of systemic failure include:
    • Lack of local capacity to enforce the UCoC
    • Consistent local decisions that conflict with the UCoC
    • Refusal to enforce the UCoC
    • Lack of resources or lack of will to address issues

The "U4C" here refers to the UCoC Coordinating Committee that the WMF will form. The adoption of the Enforcement Guidelines attracted press coverage (see this issue's In the media section); the underlying Wikimedia Foundation press release is here. AK

Policy on large language models still under development

An attempt to create a policy about AI-generated articles is happening at Wikipedia:Large language models.

The draft policy as of this writing includes reiterations of existing content policies, including no original research and verifiability. The draft adds in-text attribution is necessary for AI generated content.

In related news, the Wikimedia Foundation has published a "Copyright Analysis of ChatGPT" (which, despite the title, also touches on the subject of AI-generated images), and on March 23 held a community call on the topic of "Artificial Intelligence in Wikimedia" (meeting notes). – B & T

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