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March 1-


The Military History WikiProject is hosting a March 2011 backlog reduction drive, a month-long effort to reduce the number of articles marked as needing attention to referencing, structure, coverage, supporting materials, etc. in the project's B-class template. The goal for this drive is to reduce the number of articles tagged as needing attention while simultaneously increasing the number of B-class articles in the project. Barnstars will be awarded at the conclusion of the drive. Participants can sign up throughout the month in the Participants section of the drive page, although the drive started March 1. Dana boomer (talk) 22:36, 1 March 2011 (UTC)

Wow! So many drives in March! This is in addition to the March drives by the GOCE and GAN. You can try putting a sidebar request at the WikiProject desk. Hard to say if the WP:WWF April drive will benefit, or suffer from these due to burn out. – SMasters (talk) 02:09, 4 March 2011 (UTC)

Rollout of RefToolbar

I'm a little mystified that the rollout of the RefToolbar to all editors on the English Wikipedia (mentioned above) wasn't deemed newsworthy for the Feb 28 Signpost. This is the first major change to the editing interface since the 1.16 rollout as far as I know and should make adding citation templates much easier for newbies (or anyone). Kaldari (talk) 02:34, 2 March 2011 (UTC)

The success of the proposal had already been reported in Wikipedia:Wikipedia Signpost/2011-02-14/Technology report. The actual rollout could have been mentioned too, but it seems no one got around to write this up. (By the way, is there an explanation somewhere which user preferences might interfere with the toolbar? I can't see it when logged in.) Regards, HaeB (talk) 16:23, 3 March 2011 (UTC)


The BBC mentioned Wikipedia in an article on plagiarism. [1] Ed [talk] [majestic titan] 05:29, 3 March 2011 (UTC)

Sports Illustrated article inaccuracies attributed to use of Wikipedia

C.J. Wilson on inaccurate SI feature: 'The writer just went on Wikipedia, looked up some stuff and just copy and pasted it' "The [SI writer] spent a couple days with me, which is why it's surprising, but other than that, he just went on Wikipedia, looked up some stuff and just copy and pasted it," Wilson said. "There wasn't anything insightful [in the article], which is a bummer. It was a waste of time." -- Seth Finkelstein (talk) 13:48, 3 March 2011 (UTC)

Did you fact-check Wilson's claims? None of the statements named as inaccuracies in that article (his father having been a pilot, voting for Obama, stopping when 15 years old) appear to be contained in the current version of the Wikipedia article, or its recent history (back to June 2010 for the first two, see [2][3]). And according to Yahoo! news, Sports Illustrated is standing by the story.
It looks like this might be an interesting case of anti-Wikipedia bias (thanks for bringing it to our attention), but I had to postpone coverage to next week.
Regards, HaeB (talk) 14:44, 8 March 2011 (UTC)

Old Man Murray deletion

Well, simply put, the notability guidelines and wikilawyering have failed us once again. A noticeably apathetic AFD happened and an article about an once-prominent website went poof. Folks outside Wikipedia were justifiably annoyed. Slashdot discussion is pretty interesting. Apparently, the article seems to have been since been userfied. Let me wonder aloud for a while: what did this accomplish, except to generate 218 comments in Slashdot (and counting) and considerable ill will? Do we need to absofarkinglutely nuke everything that isn't 100% up to standards, and do it yesterday? *sigh headshake etc* --wwwwolf (barks/growls) 18:24, 3 March 2011 (UTC)

Addenda: Looks like it was subject to a second AFD too. And DRVd. Yep, it's a giant mess all right. Imagine if all this energy was put to improving articles. --wwwwolf (barks/growls) 18:34, 3 March 2011 (UTC)
Imagine if gaming journalists actually wrote about gaming history instead of relying on Wikipedia to do it for them. Kaldari (talk) 20:55, 3 March 2011 (UTC)
But that would mean we could make articles in a calm and civil manner. That is obviously not the way to do things: as we've seen here, nothing gets articles fixed faster than several websites that funnels the pure, solid, passionate rage into article creation. Sure, it generates hundreds of kilobytes of rants that eat even more WP server space, but hey, things are obviously better this way. </unfunnydepressedsarcasm> In related news: BoingBoing comments, too. --wwwwolf (barks/growls) 11:32, 4 March 2011 (UTC)
And of course the article has been resurrected. Kaldari (talk) 08:11, 8 March 2011 (UTC)

Jimbo on Google algorithm change

Fast Company has an interview with Jimmy Wales and Leander Kahney of to discuss the changes Google recently made (see Google Blog post) which have removed a lot of content farms and other spammy fragments of the darker side of SEO. Jimbo seems pretty optimistic about it: "I haven't seen the numbers yet for Wikipedia, but I doubt it's affecting Wikipedia at all–almost nothing does."

Jimbo also attacks the content farms like Demand Media:

As for pros and cons of the algorithm changes, I think the pros are that Google is being pro-active about editorial quality. They're realizing they're starting to return lots of websites that are just nonsense–very low-quality stuff–or websites that are just scraping content. It's great when Google kicks that stuff out. Obviously, a lot of people who are negatively impacted won't have that particular view.

Whether or not the Google algorithm changes are going to remove content from Wikipedia mirror sites that add no value is something we will have to wait and see about, but for Wikipedia contributors, it might mean having less spammy sites cluttering up the listings and should hopefully make it easier to find more third-party reliable sources. —Tom Morris (talk) 16:21, 4 March 2011 (UTC)

I doubt the sort of searches affected here are used much for finding reliable sources. The key effect, besides yet another ranking boost for Wikipedia, is the disfavoring of commercial arguable competitors, e.g. -- Seth Finkelstein (talk) 02:34, 5 March 2011 (UTC)


Not sure if we will make this weeks deadline, but I've started Wikipedia:Wikipedia Signpost/2011-03-14/Editcountitis which should be ready for the 14th if not the 7th. feedback welcome especially as to whether this is the sort of article you want. ϢereSpielChequers 14:50, 5 March 2011 (UTC)

Sorry about not replying earlier - until yesterday I assumed this was still meant to be a draft (in which case the following comments may be a bit premature, and the parts that have become obsolete should be ignored).
The diagrams are somewhat informative, and the number-crunching work behind them is valuable. But I'm failing a bit to see the news story here (especially considering that this is apparently intended to run as a separate section, i.e. a major story). That edit counts satisfy a power law (which is a preciser formulation of the vague "climbs steadily and then jumps up at the end" impression formulated in the analysis) has been stated long ago, see e.g. [4] (and also this, this or this).
Also, the analysis part lacks rigor, and some of the subjective impressions may not carry over to the average reader. Examples:
  • "In the last three years the number of edits needed to get onto List of Wikipedians by number of edits has risen by 5,000 edits to 11,396, meaning a very small number of extremely active users continue to contribute large numbers of edits." - Even if the reader manages to guess the omitted information that that list is confined to a fixed number of editors, and that 4000 is to be regarded as a "very small number", this rise by itself doesn't mean much about the actual trend, i.e. whether the top 4000 contribute more or less, in relative or absolute terms. It does not replace looking at their edit count restricted to a current time span, as done (for months) in the PARC analysis linked above, or the official WMF statistics (concerning mainspace edits).
  • It is not at all clear why one eighth of all edits should be expected and considered "fairly small", but a quarter should leave one "shocked".
  • "just over 30,275 edits. This might not seem to much at first" - maybe to users who are themselves near the top of the list, but the average reader may not share that sentiment (and it is somewhat at odds with 11,396 having been judged a "large number" earlier).
  • "If you think of the fact that there are around 14.1 million editors on the site, that chart is probably just a tiny percentage of the overall percent [sic] of Wikipedians who edit." - Why the waffling? Isn't the percentage of 4000 among 14.1 million an exact number? Even if one omits accounts without edits, a more precise statement is possible.
  • The introduction to the comment promises the reader insights on "how the editors with very high edit counts compare to the rest of the community", but the data only seems to say that as individuals they have, well, more edits. It's not clear what the statements about the life situations of very active editors in the last paragraph are based on. (This is some - weak - evidence for the assumption that they are more likely to be male.)
I think the story could benefit from a thorough rewrite, review of previous research on the same topic, and maybe the attention of some editors that are knowledgeable in statistics.
Regards, HaeB (talk) 14:54, 8 March 2011 (UTC)
Thanks, one aspect of the news is that we have now broadened the list to 5,000 editors - so quite a few readers will now be on the list. I've taken your point on clarifying that the list was of 4,000. Some of the other points sort of translate as a discrepancy between my view of these stats and Kevin Rutherford's view - especially the 11k big 30k small bit. Whether you treat it as a major story or a minor one is a matter for the Signpost team - as co-author I have too much COI to decide how much space if any Signost should give this. Obviously I think that the subject and the graphs are newsworthy but others may not. ϢereSpielChequers 22:00, 11 March 2011 (UTC)
OK, considering that no further work has been done on the "analysis" part since I brought up the above points, I have now incorporated two of the diagrams and the introductory paragraph (including the news aspect you pointed out) into a somehow related story in Wikipedia:Wikipedia Signpost/2011-03-14/News and notes. Regards, HaeB (talk) 02:04, 15 March 2011 (UTC)

English offline release now available

Wikipedia:Version 0.8, the latest collection designed for offline release, is now available for download. It contains around 47,300 articles taken from all subject areas in the English Wikipedia, with selection based on importance and quality. It is being used by the Version 1.0 team to test out automated revisionID selection, with software based on WikiTrust. Free downloads of Version 0.8 are available in the form of raw ZIM files, or bundled with Kiwix or Okawix readers (PC/Mac/Linux). A BitTorrent release is also under way, with iPhone/iPad and Android variants made available later this month. Walkerma (talk) 03:18, 6 March 2011 (UTC)

Incorporated into Wikipedia:Wikipedia Signpost/2011-03-07/News and notes. Regards, HaeB (talk) 10:22, 8 March 2011 (UTC)

Service Awards reform

The Service Awards have been reformed. Previously, the awards for the higher levels grew progressively more unrealistically difficult for any human editor using the default tools to achieve, and these have now been been rationalized. If you are an editor of 4.5 or more years service, you may be eligible for a jump in your Service Award level, see WP:SERVICE.

(suggestion by Herostratus (talk) 00:55, 10 March 2011 (UTC))

Children's museum of Indianapolis uploads have begun

This week the Children's Museum of Indianapolis began uploading images as part of their collaboration with Wikipedia (user:HstryQT is currently "in residence" there - see WP:GLAM/TCMI). Unlike most multimedia donations from GLAMs which are "mass donations" this project "hand picks" images that will be useful in articles. Currently there are 30 uploads of which two thirds are already in use in articles[5]. This is the first time the institution has used Creative Commons. See commons:Category:Images_from_the_Children's_Museum_of_Indianapolis. Notable usages in Wikipedia that you would not expect from a collection focused on Children include: Atlantic blue crab, Women's suffrage in the United States and Dwarf crocodile. Witty Lama 02:47, 11 March 2011 (UTC)

Arwiki User:Producer

ar:User:Producer has died. He's made 33,000+ edits on Arabic Wikipedia. I don't think he's the same user as User:Producer on enwiki. Outside of Wikipedia, Producer (Nasib Al Bitar) spent 31 years working for Dubai TV, heading the programme department, and retired several years ago. [6] [7] People are leaving condolences at ar:ويكيبيديا:الميدان/أرشيف/أخبار/03/2011. --Aude (talk) 16:11, 11 March 2011 (UTC)

Planning to have something ready for next week to include in News & Notes. --Aude (talk) 02:26, 15 March 2011 (UTC)

Here is a little bit about him, feel free to edit if you think I overdid it: Producer was a very prolific editor and a prominent community member. He loved to help new contributors as they took they first wikipedia steps. He was also respected and admired by most users for his politeness and friendliness when discussing any topic even heated ones, which made him the go-to guy for conflict resolution. He will be missed. --Shipmaster (talk) 04:50, 16 March 2011 (UTC)

here are some information about his contributions:

so total edits 45,000+ , data retrieved from: and . P.S.: he died at the age of 57 years and 8 months. --Bassem JARKAS (talk) 09:50, 18 March 2011 (UTC)

WP:URBLP Milestone

It would be nice to highlight that WP:URBLP has gotten the number of articles tagged as unreferenced biographies of living persons down below 10,000. More focus on it means more work will get done... Jclemens (talk) 02:49, 13 March 2011 (UTC)


iCorrect corrected some WP articles as well as criticised WP. User:Whitepaw corrected the article on Sir John Bond after seeing the info. Kayau Voting IS evil 16:09, 13 March 2011 (UTC)

Oh, and I almost forgot. It's newsworthy. Kayau Voting IS evil 13:13, 14 March 2011 (UTC)

US National Archives Wikipedian-in-Residence opportunity

Just officially announced... "This summer, we hope to strengthen our institutional relationship with the Wikipedian community by hosting a Wikipedian in Residence. We are currently seeking applications for this student position for the 2011 summer. The Wikipedian will gain an insider’s look into the National Archives and develop an appreciation for the records and resources we have available." — US Archivist David Ferriero

This is a summer intern position, with stipend, for a student to work at NARA 2 in College Park, Maryland.

Full blog post and

Please mention this in next week's signpost and please let me know if help is needed with the wording. --Aude (talk) 21:47, 15 March 2011 (UTC)

Coverage of gender gap in UBC paper

I'm quoted! Under the wrong name... but I'm quoted! -- Zanimum (talk) 01:48, 16 March 2011 (UTC)

The Contrib team

Wikipedia's Contributions Team has now finished its Great Backlog drive, which was a massive success, clearing up over 33,000 article problems. Although it has now ended, users are encouraged to work on cutting down backlogs further - or, if they haven't yet signed up to the project, get involved and provide any proposals or suggestions they might think appropriate. Ironholds (talk) 21:18, 16 March 2011 (UTC)

Pending changes RFC

Is going to enter a third phase on Saturday. This phase will involve users filling out a questionnaire with several questions regarding if and how we should deploy pending changes. We really want as much participation as possible, and of course this will be the next (hopefully decisive) chapter in a long saga. As such I think it would be great if you could run a story about the RFC and the issues we are attempting to resolve.

I have been steering the RFC as best I can, our point man from the Foundation in all this is Steven (WMF) (talk · contribs). Beeblebrox (talk) 20:37, 17 March 2011 (UTC)

India is No.6 in donating to Wikipedia

The Hindu and The Economic Times writes about India climbing up to No 6 donor countries to Wikimedia Foundation. India is No.6 in donating to Wikipedia, India joins top 10 Wiki donors club (, link2) -- Tinu Cherian - 10:53, 19 March 2011 (UTC)

Credo donation

See here Wikipedia:Credo accounts: Credo, an online reference resource, has donated 400 accounts to the foundation (bringing the total number of donated accounts to 500. They provide online access to around 2 million encyclopedia, dictionary, and other compendium entries. The accounts are being given out to active editors to be used as source material for enhancing existing articles and to create new ones. The new accounts are going to be handed out starting March 23 —Charles Edward (Talk | Contribs) 12:12, 21 March 2011 (UTC)

Thanks! Hopefully the word will get out as much as possible by tommorrow. —Charles Edward (Talk | Contribs) 17:18, 22 March 2011 (UTC)

My76Strat and RfA's

A few days ago, User:My76Strat declared retirement because of a failed RfA (more specifically the comments on the RfA). A short time after, a large chunk of the community asked him to come back on his talk page, including Jimbo himself. Finally, he came out of retirement. All of this made me understand the power of WP's community, and also the evilness of RfAs. Maybe you could do a story on Strat's retirement and the problems with RfAs.... Regards, ManishEarthTalkStalk 04:14, 22 March 2011 (UTC)

Wikipedia used as source in tsunami exercise

The Wikipedia article Cascadia subduction zone was used as a source of background information for the participant handbook of a United States federal government led multi-nation tsunami warning exercise called PACIFEX. See the document's page numbered 2 (the PDF's page 6). Ks0stm (TCG) 07:06, 24 March 2011 (UTC)

Wikimedia UK AGM + WikiConference UK 2011

Hi all. Wikimedia UK is holding its Annual General Meeting and WikiConference UK 2011 on 16 April 2011 in Bristol. Registration is now open, and we're inviting talk proposals on both Wiki[p/m]edia content, and also chapter/wikimedia strategy, until 2 April. We'd love to see as many people there as possible. :-) Thanks. Mike Peel (talk) 09:53, 26 March 2011 (UTC)

Geographicus Rare Antique Maps

Hi guys, would be nice if you could mention the donation of Geographicus Rare Antique Maps in the next signpost edition. Geographicus Rare Antique Maps is a specialist dealer in fine and rare antiquarian cartography and historic maps of the 15th though 19th centuries. A large portion of their inventory of authentic antique maps is online at their website. Geographicus Rare Antique Maps donated their collection of digital images of maps. The collection consists of more than 2000 old maps. Thank you, multichill (talk) 10:52, 26 March 2011 (UTC)

Covered in the upcoming edition: Wikipedia:Wikipedia Signpost/2011-04-04/News and notes. Regards, HaeB (talk) 03:36, 31 March 2011 (UTC)

Religion and Philosophy open meeting

We are looking to have an open meeting on the topics of religion, mythology and philosophy which is expected to run through April and May at Wikipedia:WikiProject Religion/2011 meeting. It is our hope that the meeting will serve as a open forum for discussion on how to improve all religion-. mythology-, and philosophy-related articles, with perhaps specific proposals and activities for the upcoming year to do so discussed later. Any and all editors who are involved in related content are very sincerely requested to offer their input. John Carter (talk) 17:17, 26 March 2011 (UTC)

Murder of Meredith Kercher article controversy

I'm surprised the recent Signpost issue has no mention of the controversy around Murder of Meredith Kercher (see talk page for details) -- Seth Finkelstein (talk) 03:23, 29 March 2011 (UTC)

[8] It definitely was on the list, but unfortunately no one had gotten around to write this up by the time the midnight UTC deadline was approaching. Hopefully we'll get to mention it next week. Regards, HaeB (talk) 05:55, 29 March 2011 (UTC)
Yep, I put it on the list, but I couldn't find the time or inclination to understand and write it up. —Tom Morris (talk) 11:07, 29 March 2011 (UTC)
I found it fascinating in terms of a debate over verifiability-vs-truth and Wikipedia. The commentary on a "guilt" site "Evolution Of The Wikipedia Article On The Murder Of Meredith Kercher", written by a Wikipedia editor, is the most focused on the Wikipedia aspects. And s/he said it, not me: "... Wales entered the Murder of Meredith Kercher article rather like an elephant in a china shop, essentially accusing established editors who had laboured for years to try and maintain the article of having conspired to suppress and censor other points of view". -- Seth Finkelstein (talk) 23:57, 29 March 2011 (UTC)
 Done Added to In The News. Let the drama commence! Tom Morris (talk) 19:43, 4 April 2011 (UTC)
OK. You might want to give the article a general look-over for clarity. "in 2009 two of her flatmates, ... were convicted of the murder" - while not strictly a wrong statement, THREE people have been convicted in the murder (with the third unarguably having the most forensic evidence of involvement in the attack). "are innocent. ... (including through the Perugia Murder File website – often referred to as the 'PMF')" - again, not strictly wrong, but very misleading to a casual reader, as PMF is editorially a guilty-guilty-guilty website. "The True Justice for Meredith Kercher website said:" - no, one (claimed) Wikipedia editor writing an article on the website said that. -- Seth Finkelstein (talk) 22:22, 4 April 2011 (UTC)
Fixed. Thanks. —Tom Morris (talk) 22:32, 4 April 2011 (UTC)

Credo donation - pt 2

Over at WP:Credo, after have 400 reference accounts donated, giving access to 2 million + articles from Credo, and online reference website, we have failed to find 400 editors willing to accept accounts, despite substantial advertisement at the content review processes, IRC channels, the village pump, the signpost, forums on META, etc. There are still about 150 accounts available. (My personal comment is that this is directly related to our declining number of editors.) —Charles Edward (Talk | Contribs) 17:07, 30 March 2011 (UTC)

man prints out every featured article

So a guy printed out and bound into one giant book every featured Article on the English Wikipedia. It pretty cool looking.[9] [10] --Found5dollar (talk) 20:29, 31 March 2011 (UTC)

Thanks, but this is old news, we reported on it in June 2009, as did other media. No idea why it is suddenly making the rounds again. Regards, HaeB (talk) 20:42, 31 March 2011 (UTC)

April 1

Wikipedia asks why it has few academic contributions

"Wikipedia asks why it has few academic contributions" (Nick Farrell) "Having written papers on different Wikipedia entries over the last ten years and seen them slashed to hell because some self important jerk does not think they are important enough, only to be replaced by some other turd's ill informed writing, why can't they see it? ... It seems fairly obvious that while Wackpedia gives editorial power to a select group of chums, who have power complexes, and no need to prove their qualifications on a subject, real experts will stay away in droves." -- Seth Finkelstein (talk) 00:53, 1 April 2011 (UTC)

I think the usual "links or it didn't happened as described" applies.©Geni 13:42, 3 April 2011 (UTC)
According to the first Google hit: "Nick Farrell is the author of esoteric and magical books." That's not the kind of academic contributors that we are really looking for. Hans Adler 14:02, 3 April 2011 (UTC)

review paper

Review of Wikipedia research working paper published; reviewed [11] -- phoebe / (talk to me) 17:48, 3 April 2011 (UTC)

Covered in Wikipedia:Wikipedia Signpost/2011-04-11/Recent research. Regards, HaeB (talk) 13:17, 14 April 2011 (UTC)

Wikipeda in NYT "Erasing the Digital Past"

Interesting mention in this NYT article on "Erasing the Digital Past" "On a recent Wednesday afternoon, he was preparing a briefing for a new client, describing how he would “fix” Wikipedia and the top search results on various search engines. On the walls of his office were framed copies of Google search results and Wikipedia entries of clients: a reality television star, a movie actress and a chief executive officer. Mr. Tom calls it his “wall of fame.”" -- Seth Finkelstein (talk) 02:20, 4 April 2011 (UTC)

The scary thing is that this is really only the tip of the iceberg. Every major corporation in America now has in-house PR people designated to work on Wikipedia. The sloppy ones (like Wal-mart) we notice. Most of them, however, go completely undetected. Kaldari (talk) 02:30, 4 April 2011 (UTC)
 Done Added to In The News. —Tom Morris (talk) 20:15, 4 April 2011 (UTC)

Cancer Research and Wikipedia

Happymelon 10:28, 4 April 2011 (UTC)

 Done Added to this week's In The News. —Tom Morris (talk) 11:37, 4 April 2011 (UTC)

WP in the news Tom Reedy (talk) 18:46, 6 April 2011 (UTC)

Mentioned in Wikipedia:Wikipedia Signpost/2011-04-11/Features and admins. Regards, HaeB (talk) 13:17, 14 April 2011 (UTC)

A regular feature

With the RfCs, the Ambassadors, the WikiGuides, the incubation project, the new page patroller tutoring project, so on, and so forth - would it be an idea to turn my reports on how things are going at the newbie end of the spectrum into a regularly-running feature? Ironholds (talk) 13:02, 8 April 2011 (UTC)

(Referring to Wikipedia:Wikipedia Signpost/2011-04-04/Editor retention)
In general, editor retention is likely to remain an important news topic for quite some time. Which particular bits are newsworthy enough to be highlighted in each Signpost issue would need to be decided on a case-by-case basis, but e.g. the conclusion of an RfC (especially if it leads to actual changes in policies or technical settings), or new research would be worth covering. Another idea would be to interview some Ambassadors about what they learned about newbies' experiences (see also this recent posting by the Public Policy Initiative, regarding the closely related gender gap topic). Feel free to start writing things up in the "News and notes" section (see Newsroom); if it becomes too long there, it can always be broken out into a separate section later.
Regards, HaeB (talk) 18:22, 8 April 2011 (UTC)
Works for me; I'll see what I can come up with, and then pass it by you for length/sectioning/whatever. Ironholds (talk) 19:06, 8 April 2011 (UTC)
Great; I'm sure there will be at least some things to cover, e.g. the new Board resolution on the subject. Regards, HaeB (talk) 21:06, 8 April 2011 (UTC)
Done in Wikipedia:Wikipedia Signpost/2011-04-11/News and notes. Regards, HaeB (talk) 13:17, 14 April 2011 (UTC)

A recent letter to _The Guardian_ (my emphasis) "As an independent network of nearly 300 historians aiming to build links with policymakers and the media, we have discussed the pros and cons of contributing our expertise to Wikipedia (Editorial, 6 April). We decided to insert links in the references of Wikipedia entries to History & Policy articles, which can be found at The aim was to provide Wikipedia users with high-quality historical research, accessibly written and freely downloadable, and to drive traffic to the H&P website. The result was startling: a few dozen links increased visitors from Wikipedia to H&P significantly, moving the online encyclopedia from below 10th to the third most popular source of traffic to our site. We intend to continue embedding links to our papers in relevant Wikipedia entries." Aren't these people violating WP:COI and WP:EL#ADV policies? Should someone look into this as impermissible self-promotion? (I'll likely be flamed if I do it myself) -- Seth Finkelstein (talk) 14:54, 10 April 2011 (UTC)

I'm inclined to assume good faith here as everywhere. Is there information about the specific instances where such links were inserted? --U5K0 (talk) 15:25, 10 April 2011 (UTC)
I certainly agree that they're acting in good faith, in that they honestly believe their links improve the article. But that's true of many website owners, who often get told nonetheless that they're in violation of Wikipedia's policies. I've quoted the full text of the letter, it's short (or at least the version which appeared on the Guardian is short) -- Seth Finkelstein (talk) 15:37, 10 April 2011 (UTC)
Covered in Wikipedia:Wikipedia Signpost/2011-04-11/In the news. Regards, HaeB (talk) 13:17, 14 April 2011 (UTC)

TermWiki seems to be using a lot of copy-pasted non-referenced wikipedia text in its copyright articles (I was looking up entries about cities). Isn't there a rule against this? --U5K0 (talk) 16:40, 10 April 2011 (UTC)

It depends on whether Wikipedia's terms of use are respected, see Wikipedia:Mirrors and forks. Regards, HaeB (talk) 22:01, 10 April 2011 (UTC)

Shakespeare authorship question

This might be the most remarkable article (as far as the article's history goes) on Wikipedia. It may also serve as a model for how to deal with tendentious POV editing. It's been covered on Signpost of course during the arbitration proceeding. After the arb decision it quickly became a featured article, and now looks like it will be scheduled as Today's Featured Article on April 23 (See WP:TFAR, final decision is up to Raul). The last bit to capture my attention is a footnote in the article, referring to the book Contested Will, especially pp 216-218, which discusses how Wikipedia was used in the debate on the authorship question. I haven't before seen a "popular-academic" book discuss Wikipedia's role in a popular-academic debate. It would be great to congratulate the main editors on their achievements on April 23 and it would also be interesting to look into Wikipedia's role in this type of academic debate. Smallbones (talk) 16:57, 10 April 2011 (UTC)

Thanks, we've mentioned this on this week's version of "Features and Admins". Dabomb87 (talk) 03:25, 12 April 2011 (UTC)

suggestion for review

If anyone has the time (I'll do it if I get around to it, I have a copy!) -- James Gleick, "The Information". Gleick is a famous science writer; his latest book is about "information" broadly. A few pages towards the end are devoted to Wikipedia. -- phoebe / (talk to me) 16:27, 12 April 2011 (UTC)

A Wikipedia-focused review might be a great idea, go fort it! Listed it at Wikipedia:Wikipedia_Signpost/Newsroom/Review_desk#Suggestions (already published). Regards, HaeB (talk) 13:17, 14 April 2011 (UTC)

WP in the news in Australia

article here Seems a spinner for a mining company got caught out editing the Fortescue Metals Group article and related topics. Orderinchaos 04:33, 13 April 2011 (UTC)

Portal Report

How about making a section that is a portal report. We already have a wikiproject report. ~~EBE123~~ talkContribs 21:21, 13 April 2011 (UTC)

Maybe some of the regular writers from the WikiProject report want to comment on the idea? Portals are often mentioned in the WikiProject report about a corresponding WikiProject (e.g. see this week's issue for coverage of Portal:Japan). Regards, HaeB (talk) 13:17, 14 April 2011 (UTC)

10 millionth image uploaded to Commons

This image as the 10 millionth image on Commons as of approximately 23:00, 15 April 2011. The uploader is User:Leinad who is a sysop, bureaucrat and checkuser on the Polish Wikipedia and a steward of the Wikimedia Foundation. Press release being developed. Royalbroil 02:57, 16 April 2011 (UTC)

wikipedia editor turns expert on a subject and publishes a scholarly article on it

That's what I did. The details are on my user page. Is this interesting for the signpost? JaapBoBo (talk) 20:00, 19 April 2011 (UTC)

Wikipedian-in-Residence at the Children’s Museum of Indianapolis

I didn't even know we had one but they've been bloging about it:

©Geni 17:41, 21 April 2011 (UTC)

Feedback on an article in the news


The first GLAMcamp will be hosted in New York City May 20-22 at the New York Public Library! Are you a Wikimedian interested in working with galleries, libraries, archives and museums? Perhaps you know someone or you work at a GLAM! We're going to be gathering to not only further collaborations, but take care of much needed business - writing documentation, case studies, development tools, how-to's, taxonomy, and more. In the evenings we'll be getting the VIP treatment at major museum institutions, doing some #Wiki-Bonding and having a great time. So hopefully you can join us!

"Skeptical Adversaria" - Skeptics' Corner article on Wikipedia

This article has caused much comment and quite a stir. I'll leave it at that. "What should sceptics do? My advice is emphatically not to edit Wikipedia. It is painful and one-sided and stressful. A better practice is to select some area of pseudoscience or cultism or crankism, and document its treatment on Wikipedia. Much of the success of Wikipedia is based on credulous media coverage, ..." -- Seth Finkelstein (talk) 22:02, 22 April 2011 (UTC)

Given the number of the author's socks we've banned over the years I'm not sure how credible that advice is.©Geni 10:32, 23 April 2011 (UTC)
Offhand - why not? It seems perfectly reasonable to me for someone to give advice not to get entangled in work where it went badly for him. That's passing on the results of experience. It would be a strange viewpoint that only people who have had positive experiences with Wikipedia, or who have a bias in favor of it, can have valid insights about it. In fact, "painful and one-sided and stressful" strikes me as a quite a fair summary of trying to deal with cranks and Wikipedia:Randy in Boise over contentious Wikipedia articles. -- Seth Finkelstein (talk) 20:19, 23 April 2011 (UTC)
It's more the ammount of effort they put in an attempt to keep comming back. I mean if they felt it was worth that amount of effort is that really consistent with saying people shouldn't edit?©Geni 20:36, 23 April 2011 (UTC)
It can be consistent, in a way of having tried and tried and tried (including socks/ban evasion), and finally, after much wasted effort, coming to the conclusion that it's all doomed to failure, due to intrinsic flaws in Wikipedia's structure. One can argue the specifics. But yes, the general idea there would seem to me self-consistent. -- Seth Finkelstein (talk) 21:00, 23 April 2011 (UTC)
Given the number of times they tried for your versions of events to be true the person would have to be ah rather slow in reaching conclusions and we know that isn't the case.©Geni 21:55, 23 April 2011 (UTC)
Bad habits can be difficult to break - e.g. gambling, destructive relationships, overworking, trying to fix Wikipedia (:-)), etc. Many intelligent people have repeated failures here - indeed, the lament of keeping on making mistakes with ill-suited romantic partners is a genre in itself. So I don't think your claim follows. One can continually fail at self-improvement, yet still instructively write of flaws (indeed, arguably there's more relevant insight into the process in that case, than someone who has no trouble at all easily changing for the better). -- Seth Finkelstein (talk) 22:11, 23 April 2011 (UTC)

Wikipedia's "Macaca" Problem

Article at Slate about our Macaca (slur) article: Powers T 20:22, 27 April 2011 (UTC)

Wikiproject Public Art takes the Milwaukee airwaves!

Wikipedia revealing people who took out injunctions

The Daily Telegraph is reporting that people are revealing the identities of people who have took out injunctions and super injunctions, and that these are still visible in the articles history logs. ISD (talk) 08:41, 28 April 2011 (UTC)

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