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May 1+

10 Toolserver tools you've never heard of, but should know about

Sometimes it's difficult to publicize new tools, and there's really not a centralized list of tools. Might be an interesting topic. I'm constantly finding useful tools I've never heard of before. ‑Scottywong| soliloquize _ 05:26, 2 May 2012 (UTC)

The signpost is down both directors and a significant chunk of writers. Would you be willing to either recommend the 10 tools or write the piece yourself? Sven Manguard Wha? 05:35, 2 May 2012 (UTC)
There is a list at Wikipedia:Toolserver. (Incidentally, there is also a different list at Wikipedia:Tools.)
Wavelength (talk) 16:27, 2 May 2012 (UTC)
Neither are even remotely complete. Sven, I'll consider either recommending tools or writing it myself. I have to determine if I can commit the time required. I'll let you know. ‑Scottywong| squeal _ 20:58, 2 May 2012 (UTC)

This spring, law student interns with the Wikimedia Foundation's Legal and Community Advocacy team prepared thirteen notes on cases, legislation, and other issues, including CISPA, SABAM v. Netlog, and a few interesting copyright topics. Thanks, Stephen LaPorte (WMF) (talk) 21:24, 8 May 2012 (UTC)

Translation on Wikipedia and misconstrued information 05-08-2012

I am seeing this a lot. Someone finds an article in another language. They then use an electronic translator to translate it. As a result, electronic translators still being fairly primitive, the vocabulary and especially the grammar gets very mixed up. Then, someone posts a "copyedit" heading on the article. As a result, someone goes through the article and makes sense of it the best they can, not even knowing that it was a translation. In the end, you have an article with a lot of false information and links in another language that no one can discount. I don't know if it is worthy of a news story, but it is a good example of how facts can be misconstrued without realizing it. This "proof" was rampant in early science and it happens today in politics, intentionally and unintentionally.Editfromwithout (talk) 22:24, 8 May 2012 (UTC)

Slightly more harmless art project

Couple of photographers tried to create photos for some of wikipedia's articles on scientific principles:

Full set at:

A bit more artistic than wikipedians generally produce.©Geni 06:13, 11 May 2012 (UTC)

It's worth noting that they faked at least one. In most cases I'm okay with what they did, but when they knowingly upload inaccurate images for the sake of a personal art project, it's final warning before block territory. Sven Manguard Wha? 17:49, 11 May 2012 (UTC)

Volunteer-initiated extension to be deployed to Wikimedia sites

Random Root Page "is an extension written for MediaWiki that allows to display of a random root page. The regular Special:Random is not suitable for wikis (such as Wikibooks) which use a subpage hierarchy. This extension can be used as a substitute (so, for example, it can be used to show "random books" in Wikibooks, instead of random pages)."
(source code)

Volunteer Huji originally wrote this functionality a few years ago, and then WMF engineer Sam Reed rewrote the code about a year ago. It's relatively small, as MediaWiki extensions go, but will probably be useful to some Wikimedia communities. As recorded in this Bugzilla issue, we're now on track to deploy it to Wikimedia sites in the next few weeks.

As recent activity in the extension review queue shows, in recent months several MediaWiki extensions developed or initiated by volunteers have gotten closer to Wikimedia deployments. Thought the tech section of the Signpost might be interested.

Thanks, Sumana Harihareswara, Wikimedia Foundation Engineering Community Manager 02:07, 16 May 2012 (UTC)

How the Professor Who Fooled Wikipedia Got Caught by Reddit

A hoax orchestrated by a professor with the assistance of his class in 2008. "T. Mills Kelly encourages his students to deceive thousands of people on the Web." Was around for 4 years or so. See [1]. Needs research to identify the articles involved. Dcoetzee 07:19, 16 May 2012 (UTC)

The 2008 article was Edward Owens (hoax). It was identified as a hoax about a month after being created, [2], and has been identified as such since then. :) - Bilby (talk) 07:40, 16 May 2012 (UTC)
Well we have a misinformed journalist then :-P They're missing out on the hoaxes that really did fool Wikipedia for an extended period, like the recently-discovered Tillery (see Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/Tillery) which lasted for over 6 years. Dcoetzee 09:43, 16 May 2012 (UTC)

St. Louis teen news brief

An article about me came out about me in the Webster Groves, MO Patch [3] and today I was interviewed by the local St. Louis KTVI/KPLR news station. There might be more coverage from other outlets coming later. Worth a mention? Marcus Qwertyus 19:31, 16 May 2012 (UTC)

Cool! Congrats, kid! Sven Manguard Wha? 15:04, 18 May 2012 (UTC)

Arabic language contribution effort

FYI, I noticed in the news there is a campaign by "about 2,500 linguists, translators and online enthusiasts from 28 countries" to expand Arabic language content:

  1. Neil Parmar, "Mission to weave a wider Arabic Web", The National (Abu Dhabi), 22 April 2012
  2. Also covered by Emirates News agency (WAM) 23 April 2012[4]

Don't know if you are interested in this as it relates to Wikipedia. I will probably mention it in the next edition of Wikiquote in the news. ~ Ningauble (talk) 20:04, 18 May 2012 (UTC)

May 22+

Board seats

Access to research petition

See [5]; there may be a blog post coming too. -- phoebe / (talk to me) 17:08, 22 May 2012 (UTC)

How Right Wingers Took Over Wikipedia

I thought you might want to link this article in the News and notes section: -- Ssilvers (talk) 06:25, 30 May 2012 (UTC)

I always wonder whether articles like this are indications of bias at Wikipedia or indications of bias on the part of the writer. I have the same concern about the sources mentioned in the "Liberal bias" section of Reliability of Wikipedia#Susceptibility to bias. -- (talk) 10:19, 30 May 2012 (UTC)
Right-wingers have taken over! Yes, that would explain Wikipedia's porn problem! --A. Nony Mouse
It's grossly unfair to suggest that all right-wingers have a porn problem. Smallbones (talk) 14:47, 31 May 2012 (UTC)
All kidding aside, Wikipedia has always been right of center, but many either aren't aware of this or refuse to recognize it. When Conservapedia claims that Wikipedia has a liberal bias, that's wharrgarbl-ese for "How come Wikipedia won't let me tell the facts about how liberals eat babies?" And just so we are clear on the facts, there is good evidence that conservatives consume (buy) more pornography than liberals (Utah, anyone?) and the porn industry has always been a Republican stronghold, i.e. Steven Hirsch of Vivid Entertainment, numerous Republican porn actors, etc. For more info, see Benjamin Edelman 2009, Markets: Red Light States: Who Buys Online Adult Entertainment?, The Journal of Economic Perspectives; and Ewen Callaway, Porn in the USA: Conservatives are biggest consumers, New Scientist. Viriditas (talk) 07:11, 9 June 2012 (UTC)
I disagree that Wikipedia is right of center; I feel it is slightly left. In any regard I hope we can agree that the neutral center is where we should endeavor being. My76Strat (talk) 07:18, 9 June 2012 (UTC)

 Done - All going to plan, it will feature as part of the 'In the news' article this week (25th June 2012)

Larry Sanger - "What should we do about Wikipedia’s porn problem?"

"What should we do about Wikipedia’s porn problem?" Larry Sanger writes "Wikipedia and other websites of the Wikimedia Foundation (WMF) host a great deal of pornographic content, as well as other content not appropriate for children. Yet, the Wikimedia Foundation encourages children to use these resources. Google, Facebook, YouTube, Flickr, and many other high-profile sites have installed optional filters to block adult content from view. I believe the WMF sites should at a minimum install an optional, opt-in filter, as the WMF Board agreed to do [*] in 2011" (Disclaimer - the post represents the views of Larry Sanger, and suggesting this is worthy of coverage is not a personal endorsement of any specific statement he makes). -- Seth Finkelstein (talk) 22:33, 30 May 2012 (UTC)

I'm totally all for ignoring this. There are plenty of legitimate critics of Wikipedia. Sanger is not one of them, he's an utter loon. Sven Manguard Wha? 00:57, 1 June 2012 (UTC)
Agreed. SilverserenC 01:33, 1 June 2012 (UTC)
This may be a matter of where one stands in tribal politics, but I strongly disagree with the above negative characterization of Larry Sanger. Overall he has a significant critique of Wikipedia from a certain perspective, and I think it is revealing that the reaction of many editors is to personally attack him and dismiss him out of hand (again, this is not an endorsement of everything he says). Moreover, whatever one's take on the quantity and quality of sexual material which should be available, it's a topic which has been of Board of Trustees level concern. That seems inarguable. -- Seth Finkelstein (talk) 09:57, 1 June 2012 (UTC)
Wikipedia has a porn problem? Where does he contribute that he finds so much more that it is a problem? What sort of research has he done regarding this being a problem? I can tell you that in a discussion at a recent conference about why women do not contribute to Wikipedia, the presence of pornography was not even on the list of reasons. The view of most of the women present was you generally only came across this material if you were looking for it. Most people aren't and so it isn't a problem. Where it might be a problem, it could be overcome by increasing overall participation of women to help provide a more balanced perspective... but you don't do that by focusing on pornography. When we started looking at the most popular articles on the whole of English and Spanish Wikipedia, given how loud the anti-pornography contingent is, we were surprised that articles like penis, vagina and sex were not more popular. In one or two side conversations, there was also the belief that the focus on pornography amounted to the deliberate highjacking of the gender gap problem by a few people for purposes that had nothing to do with helping women. If we're going to discuss Larry Sanger, I think his opinion should be weighted against the discussions taking place by non-WMF female employees involved at high levels as volunteers in the movement. --LauraHale (talk) 10:05, 1 June 2012 (UTC)
I don't think Sanger is making any sort of (my gloss) "gender feminist" critique, but rather taking the standard (again, simplifying) "family values" type position. While someone involved in the topic might have such a view, and certainly there have been alliances of convenience, I don't see it as being a part of what he wrote in specific and what's he's attempting to do (except again as an alliance). He probably would object to the following characterization, but I'd say he's taking the older right-wing anti-sexual-material stance, rather than the newer left-wing anti-sexual-material stance. -- Seth Finkelstein (talk) 10:43, 1 June 2012 (UTC)
You might have misinterpreted what I meant by "a topic which has been of Board of Trustees level concern". I wasn't refering to the "gender gap" issue, rather instead I meant the controversial material resolution and the report (disclaimer: this is about significance, not agreement). -- Seth Finkelstein (talk) 11:22, 1 June 2012 (UTC)
Well, I took this to the Gendergap list, not Larry. To my mind, there is likely a correlation between the fact that Wikimedia rejects 18-ratings for any of its content, no matter how bizarre or kinky, and the extremely low female participation level here. To be clear, I don't think it is the porn that turns the women off. Rather, it is a fact that sites that reject 18-ratings – the only other example that comes readily to mind is 4chan (a Featured Article! quelle surprise) – are typically boys' clubs ruled by young single childless white males. Anything addressed to and frequented by both women and men – Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Flickr, Google etc. – has 18-ratings or safe search. However, the gender gap aspect is only one facet of this topic. At the end of the day, I am not arguing that Wikipedia's stance is untenable because it is reflective of a male-dominated culture, but because it is irresponsible. Wikimedia is taking private sexual images uploaded to the 18+ section of Flickr, where they are shared among a mutually consenting adult audience, and plonks them into Commons and Wikipedia for everyone from age six upwards to look at (without asking Flickr account holders for permission, I should add). Wikimedia hosts a bestiality video that's got more than 100,000 views this year, is illegal in half the world, and age-restricted in the other half, and just puts it there, having it come up as the top result in a multimedia search for the French words for "homework" and "holidays". Anonymous exhibitionists upload their penis and wank videos, and Wikimedia swallows it all, under NOTCENSORED, and presents it as "educational material" suitable for all. We have even had revenge porn uploaded and used as "educational material"; and as for 18 USC 2257 compliance, no one is really much bothered. Ya know, I am kind of disappointed with what Wikipedia has become, and is becoming. JN466 19:24, 3 June 2012 (UTC)

Slashdot coverage.So it's receiving further attention. -- Seth Finkelstein (talk) 11:18, 2 June 2012 (UTC)

@ Jayen466: You took it there. You got accused of pushing an agenda and derailing the conversation. You can be disappointed all you want but it doesn't change the fact that most of us rarely come across pornography in our normal editing. I'm disappointed that you would push your anti-pornography agenda at the expense of the gendergap issue. I haven't stumbled across a single piece of pornography in the past six months on English Wikipedia, English Wikinews or Commons unless I was specifically looking for it or one of the gendergap pornography conversation derailers was explicitly linking to it. Seriously, what are your interests that you are viewing pornography ALL THE TIME that you need it filtered? This needs ZERO attention unless contextualised against more research that suggests this is a problem or the main stream media picks up the story again. --LauraHale (talk) 21:56, 3 June 2012 (UTC)
Laura, the fact that you don't stumble across it doesn't change the fact that since its upload in January, 100,000+ people have watched just that dog-on-nun bestiality video, let alone all the other hardcore videos (three of which are in en:WP mainspace). There was a huge discussion on Reddit about it, a few weeks back: "TIL there's a hardcore porn movie hosted n Wikipedia (and it's nearly 90 years old) NSFW". For reference, this is the film's UK classification. Here is an article on the film in The New Statesman. "Yet in order to exhibit Polissons et Galipettes (the French title, which translates as "Naughty Boys and Acrobats"), art-house cinemas need a special or private licence that in effect aligns them with sex clubs." Yet we are showing this thing to all comers, including any kids who happen to enter the French words for "homework" or "holidays" in Wikipedia's multimedia search field, and then get this as their first search result. And you say this needs ZERO attention until there is media interest in it? I am sorry, in my view it needs a lot of attention that over 100,000 people have seen a bestiality video on Wikimedia that is made available here unfiltered, to children and adults alike, while in the real world, it is restricted to private sex clubs (or, in many other countries, plain illegal) and has probably been seen by a far smaller number of people than that in the real world. No other major website would do what Wikimedia is doing. Flickr's adult material is behind an 18 wall. So is YouTube's, and Facebooks's. Twitter has an adult setting. Wikimedia however goes the 4chan /b/ route and – with the apparent blessing of the Wikimedia Australia Vice-President! – makes the most bizarre forms of kink available to thousands of people each day, a not insignificant number of them minors. If you think watching bestiality porn is distasteful, then take up arms against Wikimedia enabling tens of thousands of people, including minors, to watch it on a tax-exempt website. If you think it's swell that adults and minors can view a bestiality video for free here, then at least be honest and say so. But don't play both ends against the middle, where my talking about this video is yucky, but making it available for the unrestricted viewing pleasure of hundreds of thousands is somehow a noble enterprise worthy of the public's donations, or something so everyday and normal that it needs ZERO attention by anyone. Hrmph! JN466 00:16, 4 June 2012 (UTC)
Sanger's blog post is ridiculous. First he suggests that the image filter has something to do with protecting children (it doesn't), then he makes absurd claims about the position of the WMF and the "official Wikipedia position" (whatever that means), finally he suggests that the best way to fix this problem is by creating negative publicity about Wikipedia rather than working to achieve consensus within the community (which will only have the opposite effect). Frankly, I'm sick of seeing Sanger's self-serving blather treated as if it had any relevance or importance. He may be able to hoodwink the rest of the media with his FUD, but I assume the Signpost is smarter than that. Kaldari (talk) 21:50, 3 June 2012 (UTC)
Flickr's 18 filter does provide a deterrent preventing minors from viewing their copious restricted material – material that Wikimedia gets out from behind that 18 wall to stick it up on Commons, where it is then available to the world without the safeguards it had in its original upload location. Minors simply can't see these files on Flickr unless they register an adult account, and expressly state that they wish to be shown restricted material. Parents on the other hand may tell children that Wikimedia sites are safe for them to surf on, because we are not exactly publicising the fact that we host all this sexually explicit material, and many people are demonstrably unaware of it. So a filter like they have on Flickr would actually be very highly effective indeed on Wikimedia projects, especially if we tell parents to set up their children's accounts for them. As for working to achieve consensus within the community, the community has had its chance and failed. Two years have passed. The board resolved publicly to install a filter, and then made a quiet unpublicised U-turn, going back on its word. Yet it expects everyone to look the other way and pretend nothing happened. Arguing that publicising failures to act will only make it more difficult to take the right action does not sound convincing, and after several years of inaction it begins to sound distinctly hollow. I has now become apparent that the Foundation will never act – which is exactly what critics predicted two years ago – and that anyone who trusted their statements that they would act was, whether by intent or just in effect, simply taken for a ride. --JN466 00:36, 4 June 2012 (UTC)
I think the fact that it's generated so much discussion here suggests that the story would interest a lot of community members and stimulate discussion. On the other hand, if all we get out of it is a bunch of arguing with no direction towards any sort of resolution it would ultimately be a distraction. I think the best thing to do is to mention the story and also link relevant recent proposals on related topics, to push discussion into constructive avenues. Dcoetzee 04:05, 4 June 2012 (UTC)
There has been some Twitter back-and-forth between Jimbo and Larry as well; Jimbo has reiterated his personal support for a filter, but it is clear that his position does not enjoy the support of the rest of the board. Although we could try to interview the individual board members, and specifically get their view on the appropriateness of hosting the material described (restricted Flickr images, out-of-copyright hardcore porn videos) above unfiltered. I could have a go, if no one else wants to step up to the plate. JN466 12:34, 4 June 2012 (UTC)

Whether you agree with Larry or not, or whatever your own personal opinions on this matter are, it's obviously news worthy. Saying "let's just ignore it" is about as textbook irresponsible journalism as I can think of. So write up the usual hit piece about it already, saying how wrong he is, how irrelevant he is and how nobody cares anyway, and all the other "neutral" bits that have been the hallmark of the Singpost for the past three years or so, but at least write it danggit.VolunteerMarek 15:40, 4 June 2012 (UTC)

  1. Is opt in
  2. Is culturally neutral
  3. Does not put an obligation on either our uploaders or our categorisors to know and flag what others might deem offensive.
  4. Does not interfere in the editorial process
Sue Gardener's comments last October included not going ahead with an image filter until at least January, and then not a system based on our commons categories. Now would be a good time to ask Sue and the board whether they still intend to do this, and the opponents from last time whether they could accept a proposal that meets many of the previous objections. ϢereSpielChequers 18:12, 4 June 2012 (UTC)

I believe the amount of coverage he's recently gotten - e.g. Slashdot, "Skype chat with @ajkeen which should appear soon on TechCrunch" - is sufficient to warrant a Signpost mention, even if one disagrees with his views. I'm struck by how much these comments show that tactically, he's right - i.e. unless he raises a huge media fuss, the internal newsletter of Wikipedia won't even mention it. Then of course he's to be condemned for that media campaign in the first place. Damned if you do, damned if you don't. -- Seth Finkelstein (talk) 21:54, 4 June 2012 (UTC)

Maybe if Larry actually had productive ideas instead of just grinding axes he would be given some credit. I'm all for having the Signpost discuss the image filter, but let's discuss it from a useful starting point, not the most polarizing one possible. Kaldari (talk) 22:56, 4 June 2012 (UTC)
It's ridiculous to demand productive ideas of Larry – it's like demanding he reinvent the wheel first when he says "Use a truck". All other top websites somehow manage to avoid showing unfiltered bestiality porn to children, or showing masturbation images in response to an image search for a toothbrush. That Wikimedia is the only one not managing to do those rather simple things has nothing to do with there not being any known solutions, but with Wikimedia's wilful refusal to use them.
And let's face it: unless there is a stink in the media, nothing happens. Laura even said so above: this should get ZERO attention until there is negative coverage in mainstream media. JN466 23:44, 4 June 2012 (UTC)
If anything ever threatens Wikipedia's existence, the image issue is likely to be one of the prime candidates. Whether it be copyright violations or a failure to control access to adult media. It behooves WP's/WMF's administration to do something about it sooner rather than later. Cla68 (talk) 00:09, 5 June 2012 (UTC)
Sadly, on a strictly realpolitik basis, I can't say that any faction's (shorthand - WP:NOTCENSORED, Think-Of-The-Children, WMF) political strategy is wrong in terms of getting the outcome they want. I have no idea how it will turn out. But it's a good case-study of something, perhaps many things. -- Seth Finkelstein (talk) 02:27, 5 June 2012 (UTC)
I agree with you that all three camps likely are pursuing the strategy best suited to match their goals and agenda. Cla68 (talk) 04:51, 5 June 2012 (UTC)
What do you (Seth and Cla) see as the goals and strategies of the factions you are describing? --JN466 05:40, 5 June 2012 (UTC)
Briefly, as I don't want to hijack the thread - status quo vs more content restrictions vs have controversy go away, respectively. Leads to ignore vs make noise vs statements of studying the matter. -- Seth Finkelstein (talk) 21:22, 5 June 2012 (UTC)
That sounds about right. Jay Walsh said to Fox, “the features have not yet been developed and implemented. Conversations and collaborations with the Wikimedia community on the topic of controversial content continue. [... more filler ...] It shouldn't surprise anyone that this is a tough issue for us to resolve. We want to get it right, and getting it right takes time.” In fact, I am not aware of WMF talking to the community about this at all, except for Kat and Phoebe saying in the run-up to their board seat elections that it was the right thing to say they'd be doing it at the time, and now it's the right thing to say that they're no longer doing it. That too only in response to a direct question from MZMcBride, and because it affected their chances of re-election. :/ --JN466 01:05, 6 June 2012 (UTC)
Seth summarized it better than I could. Cla68 (talk) 01:48, 6 June 2012 (UTC)
" - Porn still No. 1 on Wikipedia, co-founder Larry Sanger warns". Yes, I know, it's Fox News, but still, more coverage. Plus, TechCrunch. I wouldn't go to the wall on this, but I really think Sanger's sociological position as Wikipedia's Emmanuel Goldstein (or maybe Trotsky) is interfering with proper evaluation. -- Seth Finkelstein (talk) 21:22, 5 June 2012 (UTC)
One thing to remember is that even though Fox is often openly partisan, it is one of the top-viewed news sources in the US. Cla68 (talk) 01:49, 6 June 2012 (UTC)


WikiWomenCamp's four primary organisers: Beria Lima of Wikimedia Portugal, Laura Hale of Wikimedia Australia, Beatriz from Wikimedia Argentina and Siska, being held in frame, from Wikimedia Indonesia

WikiWomenCamp was held from 23 to 25 May in Buenos Aires. It was followed by the one day WikiGenero. A copy of the agenda can be found at WikiWomenCamp/Agenda. The conference was mentioned by the local press and several female participants blogged about the conference:

WikiWomenCamp was facilitated by Anne Goldenberg of Canada using Open Space Technology so the agenda was in a delightful state of constant flux!
On the last day, Anne explains something

Sue Gardner attended the last day of WikiWomenCamp and spoke at WikiGenero. Parts of Sue's major speech and Q&A session:

Additional media for the conference can be found at WikiWomenCamp 2012 on Commons.

A list of outcomes from the conference, which was funded with support from Wikimedia Australia, Wikimedia Argentina and Wikimedia Deutschland, include:

Conference specific outcomes

Wikimedia specific outcomes
Broad community outcomes

--LauraHale (talk) 05:46, 31 May 2012 (UTC)

While on it, this was an e-mail I sent to internal the day after I got back I think. It has some more details that may not be immediately obvious with out combing lots of notes:

... But WikiWomenCamp ended yesterday and today we have been having WikiGenero.

The past few days have been fabulous and for the most part, drama free. If you didn't get the chance to attend this year, I highly suggest trying to make the next one.

We had women and transgendered people representing 15 countries. There was, Not counting Sue Gardner , only one native English speaker. The conference was facilitated in two languages, with all women no matter the language feeling they could speak, others often stepped in to make sure they could. We had younger women in university and others who were retired.

At WikiWomenCamp, We discussed a wide variety of topics from Wiki Loves Monuments to Chapters to why women do not edit to project management to working on research related to the gender gap to discussing research methods related to Wikipedia to the challenges of the open source communicty versus the esiting wikimedia community to to issues in South East Asia to journalism to issues related to LGBT articles and dealing with the harrassment. We also worked on solutions to some problems identified at the conference including creating translations of materials and conference notes, to creating a new mailing list in English and Spanish where women could privately go to get support when dealing with harrassment that will be supported by active experienced members of the community to starting to take steps to relaunch the WikiChix wiki to starting to plan for the next WikiWomenCamp. (hopefully, the last point can have an announcement at the end of June.)

Many of the participants had never participated in an Open Space event before. There was a tremendous leap of faith required for many to show up to an all women's conference, which in some case involved airfare around $2100 USD and required over 36 hours in transit, where the the schedule was a bit fluid and where the agenda was not developed until about 20 minutes into the conference, and where the purpose was vague beyond provide a space and time for all these different women in the movement to get together and talk and collaborate together so they could go home and be more effective leaders. Those who attended all appeared to have gotten something out of it and the ones I have talked to are glad they came.

Thanks are again owed to Wikimedia Argentina for hosting the event. I'm not sure how my chapter would respond if some one e-mailed us out of the blue and said we will / should host a completely new conference with a very different format that was bound to (and did) cause some controversy. The accommodation was close to the venue and safe. The food was nice. The local wikimedian community opened their arms to us. Thanks are also owed to Wikimedia Australia who were the first chapter on board to financially support this conference. Thanks are also owed to Wikimedia Deutschland and Wikimedia Osterich who also supported WikiWomenCamp and helped being women from around the globe to attend. As women, we managed to pull together the money from chapters and elsewhere to make this happen. Thanks are also to Sue Gardner who joined us for the last day of WikiWomenCamp and was a speaker at WikiGenero. Thanks also the the Foundation for bringing in a male speaker for WikiGenero (and Wm-AR for handling visa issues for him). Lots and lots of people and organizations made a leap of faith and I hope they feel rewarded for it. :)

Many many pictures are available on Commons. Notes are available on Meta. Tweets can be found with #wikiwomen . We were mentioned in a local newspaper if you want to better follow what we were up to. --LauraHale (talk) 06:01, 31 May 2012 (UTC)

  • Can read a bit of Spanish. Can't understand most of it when spoken. On the other hand, I also can't read Russian. The newspaper article says we envy Wikimedia Argentina for the number of women on their board. ;) I think they had 4/10. Wikimedia Australia in comparison has 2/6. Close ratio wise. :D Siska was one of several women putting a lot of hard work into making this happen. Given the strong personalities involved, that we pulled this off speaks huge volumes. My respect for Sue for showing up is incredibly high. Some of us have been highly critical of her both privately and publicly. I'd have been intimidated knowing the audience... but major props. She came down, the only Foundation SF person other than Philipe to show and the only Wikimedian from the USA & Canada to attend. Long flight and a time commitment. She was friendly all around and I came away rather impressed. :) I don't always agree with her and won't always agree with her but my respect has grown a lot as she put her money where her mouth was and made the trip to this first of its kind conference on a topic she has a great deal of personal investment in. --LauraHale (talk) 06:17, 31 May 2012 (UTC)
  • Easy enough for you to get from Siska and Beria. The blog quotes probably work best... but if you can give me an idea of what you want, I can ping people on Facebook for comments. (Video might also be nice but to be honest, I haven't watched most of it. I just tried to convert and upload as much as possible.) --LauraHale (talk) 06:29, 31 May 2012 (UTC)

The above are a few of my favourite group pictures. :)

Some of the mug shots. :D

Random moments from WikiWomenCamp and WikiGenero. --LauraHale (talk) 06:54, 31 May 2012 (UTC)


WikiWomenCamp got underway today in Buenos Aires. :D We took a lot of pictures and videos; when we get home, many of them will be shared on Commons. We started around 10am with an opening circle led by our lovely and wonderful facilitator Anne Goldenberg from Montreal. The conference was facilitated using open space, so we started out with introductions and why we were here. After the hour long happy introduction fest, we broke into two groups. The first group discussed statistics for Wikipedia and how to measure success. The other group involved a discussion about our personal experiences editing Wikipedia as women and transgendered people. In both session, an obvious theme emerged that there are many regional and cultural issues that make doing global projects difficult because these conditions have to be taken into consideration when doing a project. The second time period became a single group that went into three session periods. We discussed why women did not edit Wikipedia on a personal, regional and global level. At the end of the day, we had a closing session and one of the major themes of this was how motivated and encouraged we felt about the situation going forward, that we could go back to our local communities with a real concept of what the gender gap means both locally and globally, and have the contacts to enact change. The Argentine catering was also fantastic (yummy!) and it enabled us to continue our seriously awesome conversations and all important networking. Tomorrow and Friday, we're hoping to progress from a problem identification to a more solution oriented form of thinking.

Session notes can be found at .

End e-mail. And another gallery of pictures I like and pictures of me. ;)

--LauraHale (talk) 07:22, 31 May 2012 (UTC)

Looks like the conference was awesome. Congrats! Kaldari (talk) 03:26, 1 June 2012 (UTC)

Article count goes negative for the first time

Though article creation has slowed in recent years, I believe this is the first time that other uninvolved people asked what happened when 8,000 articles were suddenly deleted. See Wikipedia:Village pump (miscellaneous)#Mass deletion? and Wikipedia:Administrators' noticeboard/Incidents/User:Jaguar. (talk) 20:43, 1 June 2012 (UTC)

DYK process

I would like to see coverage of the Did You Know process, highlighting what the process can teach editors. No check list of editing basics exists, and how many people are really going to read the entire Manual of Style? I learned with DYK how to make my own editing better. From the point of view of finding articles to nominate (going down the Tedderbot feed), it's kind of amazing that even some seasoned editors could be better - if stacked up against the simple DYK process. It's heartbreaking to find a great article, but no references. Or...good references, but it's little more than a stub. Most daily new articles would not pass DYK muster, meaning, just the basic length, references, and copyright issues: I think besides highlighting articles on the Main Page, DYK is a good learning process. Maile66 (talk) 18:17, 2 June 2012 (UTC)

From Renegade Blogger to Sociopathic Pond Scum

Fascinating blog posts - "From Renegade Blogger Sociopathic Pond Scum" and "Wikipedia and Me" George Mason professor Mills Kelly's personal reaction to a Wikipedia hoax article kerfuffle - "Given that long record of support for Wikipedia, its mission, and its ethos, it’s more than a little ironic to me that I am now the bête noire of the Wikipedia community ..." -- Seth Finkelstein (talk) 21:56, 3 June 2012 (UTC)

North American Education working group

The North American Education working group had an initial meeting on IRC on June 2. You can see the agenda at Wikipedia:Education Working Group/Online Meetings. Meeting notes should be coming in the next several days. I suggest mentioning this in the "News and Notes" section of the Signpost after the meeting notes are available. Pine 22:10, 3 June 2012 (UTC)

SpringerImages are miss-licensing our stuff

©Geni 09:25, 5 June 2012 (UTC)

CU/OS appointments

Arbcom has announced it is accepting new applications for Checkuser and Oversight at Wikipedia:Arbitration_Committee/CheckUser_and_Oversight/2012_CUOS_appointments. This is probably worth a note in the Arbitration report. MBisanz talk 03:07, 6 June 2012 (UTC)

IPv6 enabled, permanently

Following World IPv6 Launch day, Wikipedia now has IPv6 support turned on by default, and, if nothing serious goes wrong, will remain so indefinitely. At the same time, numerous other high-traffic sites such as Google, Facebook, Bing etc. turned on permanent IPv6 support in the same way. This is a big step forward in the development of the IPv6 Internet. There are some complications remaining to do with security and third-party scripting compatibility, but taking this step today has started the process of getting these fixed. -- The Anome (talk) 18:18, 6 June 2012 (UTC)

 Done Included in today's issue. - Jarry1250 [Deliberation needed] 10:34, 11 June 2012 (UTC)

German admin taken to court for inserting pornographic media in German Wikipedia, Age Record Requirement page in Meta, Larry Sanger

Further to discussions on Jimbo's talk, and the Sanger section above, I was just checking in on German Wikipedia, and found in the German Signpost ( ) that a well-known German admin, User:Achim Raschka, was recently taken to court in Germany for adding one of the early black-and-white porn films hosted in Commons to the German Wikipedia article on pornography. (Three of these films are also in English Wikipedia mainspace.) The following summary is based on the Kurier article, written by Achim himself.

Achim, who is well known as the author of the German vulva article that made an illustrated main page appearance in German Wikipedia a couple of years ago, was prosecuted for having violated a German law against "distribution of pornographic writings". According to the German WP article on it, the law aims to prevent pornographic writings from getting into the hands of minors without the knowledge of their parents, and also aims to protect adults from unwanted exposure to pornography. The prosecution came about because a woman reader in Germany had reported the German Wikipedia to the police, who determined that Achim had been the one to insert the video – which showed clear pictures of an erect penis, oral sex and penetration. They contacted him by e-mail in February.

Wikimedia Germany (Achim is a past board member) and the JBB legal firm helped Achim defend himself against the charges. They recently succeeded in having the case dropped, as a minor offence not worth prosecuting. Achim says in his Kurier article that the prosecutor's office did not respond to requests for a clarification of the legal position. Achim took the video out of the article in February and has said he will not put it back in; he also refrained from linking to it in his Kurier article, saying he would rather not have a corresponding police record.

A related matter is this conversation in Meta, about Wikipedians' 18 U.S.C. 2257 record-keeping requirements for sexually explicit materials. This led to a research project for one of the Foundation's legal interns, Jesse King, who posted the results of his research here:

This new page, which is preliminary research and should not be misconstrued as actual legal advice, spells out the potential criminal liability of individual Wikimedia admins and editors (as opposed to the Foundation, which is protected by Section 230) uploading, inserting or "managing" media whose creation involved real people engaging in sexually explicit conduct without keeping the legally required records. (Note that the new Wikimedia Terms of Use in Meta explicitly require all contributors to comply with applicable US law.)

Together with Larry Sanger's recent blog post and YouTube video, and the related media coverage on Slashdot, TechCrunch, BusinessInsider and Fox News to date on the image filter debate, there should be enough material there for an article on this topic area. JN466 17:02, 9 June 2012 (UTC)

Wiki Travel Guide under way: Wikivoyage members have agreed to join Wikimedia

On their general assembly last Saturday Wikivoyage has decided to take up negociations with the Wikimedia Foundation in order to join the Wikimedia movement. English Wikitravel would like to join and fork. Developments are supported by German Wikipedians. Would be great if you please could include it in today's Signpost! See [6] [7] (the latter in German only) for details.--Aschmidt (talk) 10:26, 11 June 2012 (UTC)

Interesting. I believe that this this has been in discussion for some time. I second the motion for the Signpost to mention this. Pine 08:32, 13 June 2012 (UTC)

Passing of an English Wikipedian

A really lovely community member, User:Philcha (aka Philip Chalmers), passed away on June 4th. He was an active GA author and reviewer, and I'm sure I speak for everyone who knew him onwiki that he'll be greatly missed. Might be nice to have a note about him in the next issue. Accedietalk to me 18:28, 11 June 2012 (UTC)

His name can be added to Wikipedia:Deceased Wikipedians.
Wavelength (talk) 18:57, 11 June 2012 (UTC)
Philcha significantly contributed to 42 successful Good Article promotions (one of which I promoted only a few months ago), and 1 successful FA promotion (Tyrannosaurus). He was unsuccessfully trying to work on the Nematode article before he died.[8][9][10] I would like to suggest that Wikipedians work on improving the Nematode article in his honor. Kaldari (talk) 21:55, 11 June 2012 (UTC)
I am very sad to hear this. --JN466 13:30, 12 June 2012 (UTC)
Does the Signpost mention the passing of notable Wikipedians? It would be a good community service for the Signpost to mention, briefly, the passing of any notable Wikipedian whose name is added to Wikipedia:Deceased Wikipedians or otherwise known to have passed. Pine 08:30, 13 June 2012 (UTC)

WLM Photo taken in Amsterdam last photo of valued monument

Hi, I just found out yesterday that one of my pics from Wiki Takes Amsterdam on 10 September 2011 is now promoted to valued image on Commons because Monday the 18th century clock gable building burned down completely (and some people died). This shows how important WLM is for recording such monuments before tragedy occurs. According to one of the coordinators, this about the 10th time it has happened since WLM in the Netherlands started in 2010. The moral of this story is that mediocre pictures are better than no pictures... Jane (talk) 08:07, 12 June 2012 (UTC)

Wikipedia mentioned prominently in US National Archives' Open Government Plan

See my post to the GLAM mailing list: [11]. Dominic·t 14:22, 12 June 2012 (UTC)

We'll add this into next week's news and notes section. :-) Ed [talk] [majestic titan] 18:25, 12 June 2012 (UTC)

Interview suggestion

Balloonman, a participant who was very active in Wikipedia's administration for a number of years, has retired. I think it might be very illuminating if the Signpost conducted an "exit interview" with him, as I expect that he would have many good insights into issues with Wikipedia's culture and model. I don't know if he shut down his email connection, but if he did, I expect that if you asked around you could find someone with his email address. Cla68 (talk) 06:22, 13 June 2012 (UTC)

There can be a category or a list, or both, for Wikipedian exit interviews. It (or they) can be interlinked with Wikipedia:Missing Wikipedians.
Wavelength (talk) 21:08, 18 June 2012 (UTC)

Teahouse metrics and pilot report are out!

Hi! The Teahouse pilot period has wrapped up and our metrics and pilot report are now out:

Thanks for considering it and thanks to the previous quality coverage about the project! Sarah (talk) 17:16, 13 June 2012 (UTC)

Video game forums use Wikipedia to harrass Anita Sarkeesian

...and about a dozen others if you search Google News. Kaldari (talk) 09:41, 14 June 2012 (UTC)

Note that at least some of the vandalism, such as adding a nazi stub template to the article (see the first link in the list above), seemed to betray a familiarity with Wikipedia's administrative processes. JN466 01:49, 16 June 2012 (UTC)
Worth noting, shame about the low quality of analysis so far from the media. Fifelfoo (talk) 02:03, 16 June 2012 (UTC)
I'd also suggest getting some input from women within the community. Let me know if you'd like some names! Sarah (talk) 07:23, 16 June 2012 (UTC)

Four-millionth article on its way

As I'm writing this now, the English-language Wikipedia currently has 3,976,451 articles in its main namespace, growing at a rate of just under 1000 articles per day. At this rate of growth, we can expect the enwiki four-millionth article in a month and a bit. A small celebration might be in order. Perhaps with cake.

It thus looks likely that User:WereSpielChequers will win the Wikipedia:Four-million pool. This also means that there's not much time left to vote in the Wikipedia:Five-million pool (2), but recent predictions suggest the five millionth article may not occur until 2017. -- The Anome (talk) 18:59, 18 June 2012 (UTC)

I'm sorry, but the cake is a lie. Jesse V. (talk) 16:11, 21 June 2012 (UTC)
I'm fairly sure that at current growth rates we are slightly less than a month away from 4 million, there's actually a good chance it could happen during or even just before Wikimania. ϢereSpielChequers 16:43, 21 June 2012 (UTC)

Teylers Multilingual Challenge ends

Teylers Museum director Marjan Scharloo awards Lodewijk Gelauff a Michelangelo print in Teylers Library 16 June 2012

From 21 January 2012 to 3 June 2012, the Teylers Multilingual Challenge was won by User:Effeietsanders. It was a Wikipedia writing challenge for the Teylers Museum in Haarlem, the Netherlands, based on the template created by the Wright Challenge. At the end of the challenge there were over 600 articles on Teylers related subjects in 13 different language wikipedias: en (203), nl (141), ca (103), hu (40), fr (36), es(19), it (19), de (17), ru (6), uk (6), fy (5), pt (4), eo (2). Roughly half of the articles were new, and a large selection of the rest were expanded or linked in some way to Teylers core articles. The Wikipedia article Martin van Marum was created and promoted to Feature article status in Catalans by second prize winner User:Davidpar. For an overview of the GLAM activities see here, and for an overview of the results, see here. Jane (talk) 11:04, 18 June 2012 (UTC)

Women's national football team article improvement

On 13 April 2012, the state was pretty awful with many articles wanted and Africa almost completely forgotten. With a lot of hard work and help from a few people, with at least one quick fail at the GA level for team non-existence and with an AfD survival for another team that hasn't played a game yet (and opposition to the team ever being created), we reached the state of the map above. :D In terms of gender gap work, this is a pretty big deal and something people can easily see what was improved and when. :) Would be great to get a mention of this hard work and really good improvement of women's content on a global level. (I think we have five articles now at GA level, more than the men's national teams.) --LauraHale (talk) 00:19, 19 June 2012 (UTC)

Indian Cinema task force

Indian Cinema is witnessing the celebration of 100 years of existence in a variety of ways. We at Wikipedia decided to do our bit towards the centenary celebrations, and have drawn up an ambitious plan to make Indian Cinema's mark felt this year and the next. I believe that such a landmark event backed by strong Wikipedia interest deserves a mention in the Signpost under the WikiProject report. Thoughts please. ~*~AnkitBhatt~*~ 08:10, 19 June 2012 (UTC)

"Most cited books"

A little snippet of interesting research that may be worth mentioning - the hundred most cited works in Wikipedia (or, at least, most-cited-and-include-an-identifier). Some are quite surprisingly specific - #11? Andrew Gray (talk) 23:08, 19 June 2012 (UTC)

The #11 is actually not surprising if you consider the number of articles we have about mollusc species, and that quite a few of them can be found in or around New Zealand. -- Daniel Mietchen - WiR/OS (talk) 14:56, 20 June 2012 (UTC)
Similar data: Most cited academic journal publishers on the English Wikipedia, Vietnamese Wikipedia etc. or on Commons. Works by way of DOI prefixes, so provides an underestimation. -- Daniel Mietchen - WiR/OS (talk) 14:51, 20 June 2012 (UTC)

Article feedback Tool

AFT5 interface

Heyall! The Fifth installment of the Article Feedback Tool is planning to undergo a wider release, from 0.6% to 10% of articles by 3 July. The community should be notified via a meta:Special:CentralNotice banner. ~ I take it the Signpost has already briefly covered this extension, so just thought it might be interested in the update. benzband (talk) 15:37, 21 June 2012 (UTC)

PLoS ONE: "Dynamics of Conflicts in Wikipedia"

Analysis of edit-warring: bit iffy (talk) 00:44, 22 June 2012 (UTC)


This? Old story though. benzband (talk) 18:19, 22 June 2012 (UTC)

I like it, but it's too old. Sorry! Ed [talk] [majestic titan] 06:57, 25 June 2012 (UTC)

June 26+

Paris Declaration on Open Educational Resources

On Friday, during the World Open Educational Resources Congress, a declaration on Open Educational Resources was adopted by UNESCO. Builds on the Cape Town Open Education Declaration. Key elements of the declaration are re-use and the licensing conditions compatible with that - an aspect that has frequently been ignored in OER contexts. For instance, MIT's Open Courseware is licensed CC BY-NC-SA 3.0, which is incompatible with both UNESCO's original definition of OER, and with re-use of such materials on Wikimedia projects. The situation mirrors that in open access publishing, where the Budapest Open Access Initiative has provided a definition (basically that Open Access means CC BY or more open, without any delay) that is widely ignored, which affects the compatibility of such materials with Wikimedia projects. I attended the conference and gave a talk on the potential for interaction between the OER and OA communities, using Wikimedia projects as examples. Pete Forsyth attended on behalf of the Open education project and had a poster there. -- Daniel Mietchen - WiR/OS (talk) 21:25, 25 June 2012 (UTC)

Teahouse enters phase two!

Hi everyone! We wanted to let you know that the Teahouse has now entered phase two! Phase two will allow the project to evolve into a more sustainable project and will require community participation to make that happen. We're currently working on the invitation process right now. I encourage you to take a look at the phase two page on meta and we look forward to continuing to build and grow a wonderful Teahouse with your help and support! Also, I shared our pilot report a few sections up on this page. Thanks! Sarah (talk) 05:19, 28 June 2012 (UTC)

John Roberts’ Wikipedia Page Vandalized: ‘Chief Traitor’ -- Powers T 12:48, 29 June 2012 (UTC)


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