OTRS/Reports/2013

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Open-source Ticket Request System

For prospective volunteers

2013

Introduction[edit]

This is a statistical report of general activity relating to the operation of Wikimedia's Open-source Ticket Request System. OTRS is used by the Volunteer Response Team to process emails from the public.

Emails sent to OTRS are assigned to a "queue" based upon the nature, the language and/or the Wikimedia project it might represent. This report reflects the general activity of the Volunteer Response Team. The statistics listed below are raw reports on account activity, administrative actions and ticket volume information for all language information queues and their subqueues. It also includes the same for sister projects, and permissions/photosubmission tickets.

After a request sat pending for about 3.5 years, our ticket system was finally upgraded to OTRS 3.2 this past August. With thanks to Martin Edenhofer, the creator of OTRS, who volunteered his time to assist Jeff Green and the Wikimedia Engineering team in the upgrade, our agents are able to more efficiently communicate with our customers. While we are still in the transition process and working out some bugs, we now have a more stable and secure environment to work in.

Account activity[edit]

  • Accounts created/re-opened: 161
Of these, 9 were for WMF employees, 33 were chapter representatives and 7 were solely for role-specific access, such as oversight, stewards, etc. The remaining accounts were for general information (and similar) queues. Of the new users, often more than one role is assigned upon account creation. As an example, someone from Commons might receive access to the sister projects, photosubmission and permissions queues.
  • Accounts closed: 212
Closed accounts #
Resigned 16
Inactive 133
Chapter related 7
No roles left * 34
Other ** 22
* When a user no longer has access to any queues, their account is closed with this note.
** Other: 13 WMF staff accounts, 5 miscellaneous, 1 removed, 1 test account

Administrator activity[edit]

Note: While an OTRS administrator may have zero/few logged actions, the majority of things they are tasked with are not logged. Examples include updating formatted replies, handling system maintenance tasks such as spam blacklist, message sorting, monitoring queues and agents for response time and quality, performing inactivity cleanups and creating statistics, orientating/coaching new (and existing) respondents, handling escalated tickets and issues with both agents and 'customers', recruiting agents and evaluate/process new applications. And of course, the OTRS administrators assist in answering tickets, just like all OTRS volunteers.

Current Former
Action Cbrown1023 Daniel Jredmond Keegan Mailer diablo Pajz Raymond Rjd0060 Tiptoety Abisys JeLuF Lyzzy Sebmol Total
Accounts created 29 13 0 16 0 8 38 47 7 0 0 2 0 160
Accounts closed 59 23 0 8 31 5 21 90 2 0 0 0 0 239
Roles changed 71 36 0 44 15 11 58 121 10 0 0 2 0 368
Addresses created 3 0 0 4 0 0 8 3 0 0 0 0 0 18
Addresses disabled 3 1 0 2 0 0 6 5 0 0 0 0 0 17
Queues closed 9 2 0 1 1 1 2 4 0 0 0 0 0 20
Queues created/reopened 3 0 0 2 0 0 5 4 0 0 0 0 0 14
Spam filter changes 1 4 0 0 0 31 1 7 0 0 0 0 0 44
Total 178 79 0 77 47 56 139 281 19 0 0 4 0
  • Abisys, JeLuF, Lyzzy and Sebmol were former admins who resigned/went inactive in 2013.
  • Pajz was welcomed as a new OTRS admin in April.

Queues[edit]

Note: The OTRS software formats subqueues after two colons. For example, info-en::Vandalism is the Vandalism subqueue of the info-en queue.

Opened Closed
  • account security
  • chapters::wm-ch
  • chapters::wm-de::wm-de-diversity
  • chapters::wm-de:wm-de-oer
  • chapters::wm-fr::wm-fr-ateliers
  • chapters::wm-nl:wm-nl-hackathon
  • Delete
  • glam::glam-de
  • https
  • info-sl
  • oversight::oversight-wikidata
  • Priority
  • referenten-de
  • Sister projects::Wikispecies
  • wlm::wlm-uk
  • ambassadors
  • ambassadors::ambassadors-en
  • business
  • chapters::wm-at
  • chapters::wm-ch::wm-ch-dons
  • chapters::wm-ch::wm-ch-fr
  • chapters::wm-de-jobs
  • chapters::wm-nz
  • chapters::wm-pl::wm-pl-konf
  • chapters::wm-uk::wm-uk-fundraising
  • commit-access-requests
  • info-de::info-de-dvd
  • info-de::komplex
  • info-en::Mobile
  • legal
  • legal::legal-tm-vio
  • legal::Usage requests
  • ux::Vector-en
  • volunteers
  • wm-au::au-det

Traffic[edit]

Notes
  • Totals include all tickets closed between 2013-01-01 00:00:00 and 2013-12-31 23:59:59 UTC.
  • In OTRS, the "root" or "parent" queue can also contain tickets. As every queue has its own address, sometimes messages are not filtered ahead of time to a subqueue and end up in this root queue. They can be moved to a more appropriate subqueue if it is exists, but sometimes they are just responded to from within that parent queue.
  • If you come here from the 2012 report, you might notice that we have dropped the distinction between different close states (i.e. +, - and nrn). This is because the majority of agents do not make use of these in a standardized way, so providing these figures would not be indicative of anything.

info queues[edit]

These queues are the general information addresses that are displayed on the Contact us pages on the Wikipedia projects. (See the English Wikipedia's page, for example.) They usually deal with questions from readers of Wikipedia and from the subjects of articles. They are typically divided based on the language that they are written in, not the project that they relate to, because the queues are staffed by Wikimedia volunteers speaking a certain language, not from a certain project.

Tickets closed Agents with access *
Queue 2012 2013 Change (%) End 2012 End 2013 Change (%) Per agent ** Notes
info 5 16 220 108 96 -12.1 0.2
info-af 18 4 -77.8 1 1 0 4
info-als 1 0 -100 0 0 0
info-ar 164 474 189 7 11 57.1 52.7
info-ca 90 56 -37.8 3 3 0 18.7
info-cs 419 419 0 6 7 16.7 64.5
info-da 115 128 11.3 6 5 -16.7 23.3
info-de 7647 7128 -6.8 47 44 -6.4 156.7
info-el 125 203 62.4 2 4 100 67.7
info-en 20112 29590 47.1 206 210 1.9 142.3
info-es 2399 2062 -14 22 25 13.6 87.7
info-et 22 4 -81.8 1 0 -100 8
info-fa 32 400 1150 1 7 600 100
info-fi 31 44 41.9 3 4 33.3 12.6
info-fr 1423 1164 -18.2 27 28 3.7 42.3
info-he 198 195 -1.5 10 7 -30 22.9
info-hr 4 3 -25 4 2 -50 1
info-hu 183 256 39.9 14 15 7.1 17.7
info-it 520 420 -19.2 10 8 -20 46.7
info-ja 384 242 -37 6 9 50 32.3
info-ka 0 0 0 1 0 -100 0 Created 08/2012
info-ko 82 37 -54.9 2 2 0 18.5
info-nds 17 3 -82.4 0 0 0 Inf
info-nl 2647 2583 -2.4 17 19 11.8 143.5
info-no 278 212 -23.7 5 3 -40 53
info-pl 763 1285 68.4 12 9 -25 122.4
info-pt 169 42 -75.1 9 9 0 4.7
info-ro 165 156 -5.5 3 3 0 52
info-ru 955 759 -20.5 15 17 13.3 47.4
info-scn 17 0 -100 0 0 0
info-sk 2 0 -100 1 1 0 0
info-sl 0 3 Inf 0 4 Inf 1.5 Created 11/2013
info-sr 49 50 2 2 1 -50 33.3
info-sv 332 252 -24.1 3 2 -33.3 100.8
info-tr 159 196 23.3 5 3 -40 49
info-uk 0 6 Inf 0 2 Inf 6 Created 12/2012
info-vi 24 11 -54.2 1 1 0 11
info-zh 178 118 -33.7 13 12 -7.7 9.4
Total 39729 48514 22.1

* This number is slightly lower than the actual as some agents have support access that covers multiple queues and these are not reflected in the table. These users do not usually answer tickets regularly though, for example OTRS administrators who have access to all info queues for administrative purposes.
** The figure is based on the (arithmetic) mean of the number of agents on Dec. 31, 2012, ("End 2012") and the number of agents on Dec. 31, 2013 ("End 2013").

Breakdowns

Note that info queues other than those listed below do not make use of subqueues (hence no breakdowns exist).

info-en

Queue 2012 2013 Change (%) Notes
info-en 7317 14952 104.3
info-en::Copyvio 521 562 7.9
info-en::Courtesy 6972 7948 14
info-en::Mobile 195 0 -100 Closed 04/2013
info-en::Organizations 9 713 7822.2 Created 11/2012
info-en::Quality 2316 1975 -14.7
info-en::Reuse 400 461 15.2
info-en::Schools 56 67 19.6
info-en::Tech-issues 273 610 123.4
info-en::Urgent 7 41 485.7
info-en::Vandalism 1619 2196 35.6
info-en::Voice messages 376 41 -89.1
info-en::info-en (Mohammed) 51 24 -52.9
Total 20112 29590 47.1

info-fr

Queue 2012 2013 Change (%) Notes
info-fr 1423 1163 -18.3
info-fr::Posters 0 1 Inf
Total 1423 1164 -18.2

info-nl

Queue 2012 2013 Change (%) Notes
info-nl 1334 1325 -0.7
info-nl::wikiportret 1313 1258 -4.2
Total 2647 2583 -2.4

info-pl

Queue 2012 2013 Change (%) Notes
info-pl 680 1240 82.4
info-pl::baninfo 83 45 -45.8
Total 763 1285 68.4

info-zh

Queue 2012 2013 Change (%) Notes
info-zh 99 66 -33.3
info-zh::info-zh-hans 34 23 -32.4
info-zh::info-zh-hant 45 29 -35.6
Total 178 118 -33.7

Sister projects[edit]

Though the general information queues may serve all projects, the majority of the queries received tend to be related to Wikipedia or the Wikimedia projects as a whole. As the numbers below show, there are not many tickets that relate to non-Wikipedia projects, but the Sister projects queues were created to give them special attention so that they could be handled by people who know more about the specific project.

Queue 2012 2013 Change (%) Notes
Sister projects 1 0 -100
Sister projects::Commons 378 234 -38.1
Sister projects::Wikibooks 80 92 15
Sister projects::Wikidata 0 9 Inf Created 12/2012
Sister projects::Wikinews 63 14 -77.8
Sister projects::Wikiquote 91 59 -35.2
Sister projects::Wikisource 7 4 -42.9
Sister projects::Wikiversity 12 7 -41.7 Created 04/2012
Sister projects::Wikivoyage 1 7 600 Created 12/2012
Sister projects::Wiktionary 98 82 -16.3
Sister projects::Wikispecies 0 Created 02/2013
Total 731 508 -30.5

Unlike in info queues, there is just one access right for all "Sister projects" queues. Between 2012 and 2013, the number of agents with access rose from 73 to 95 (+ 30.1 %). *

* These numbers are slightly lower than the actual as some agents have support access that covers multiple queues and these are not reflected. These users do not usually answer tickets regularly though, for example OTRS administrators who have access to all info queues for administrative purposes.

permissions[edit]

Sometimes Wikimedians would like to use images in articles that do not have clear cut licensing information. These images might not be licensed already, might have a license that is not permissive enough for use on Wikipedia, or might otherwise need confirmation that the copyright holder has agreed to the license shown on the projects. Wikimedians often contact the copyright holders of various images and ask them to license them so that they can be used on Wikimedia projects. The permissions team on OTRS is the one that processes these "permissions" e-mails and attempts to verify that the copyright holder releases the images under an allowable license, that they do so clearly while understanding what that means, and that they actually are allowed to license the images in such a way (e.g. they hold copyright). These e-mails are then stored in the ticket system so that they can be verified by anyone with appropriate access. For more information, see commons:Commons:Permission.

Queue 2012 2013 Change (%) Notes
permissions 60 194 223.3
permissions::permissions-commons 3572 4227 18.3
permissions::permissions-commons::permissions-commons-de 741 717 -3.2
permissions::permissions-commons::permissions-commons-es 123 198 61
permissions::permissions-commons::permissions-commons-fr 182 338 85.7
permissions::permissions-commons::permissions-commons-he 933 1159 24.2
permissions::permissions-commons::permissions-commons-pl 140 134 -4.3
permissions::permissions-commons::permissions-commons-pt 93 107 15.1
permissions::permissions-de 2096 2047 -2.3
permissions::permissions-el 69 65 -5.8
permissions::permissions-en 2549 2897 13.7
permissions::permissions-eo 2 0 -100
permissions::permissions-es 144 135 -6.2
permissions::permissions-et 33 58 75.8
permissions::permissions-fi 14 20 42.9
permissions::permissions-fr 646 506 -21.7
permissions::permissions-hu 295 309 4.7
permissions::permissions-it 258 309 19.8
permissions::permissions-ja 0 16 Inf
permissions::permissions-ml 4 21 425
permissions::permissions-nl 223 174 -22
permissions::permissions-pl 178 180 1.1
permissions::permissions-pt 134 97 -27.6
permissions::permissions-pt::permissions-pt-nf 4 4 0
permissions::permissions-ru 729 589 -19.2
permissions::permissions-sk 40 52 30
permissions::permissions-sk::erby-sk 0 0 0
permissions::permissions-sl 9 44 388.9
permissions::permissions-sr 46 43 -6.5
permissions::permissions-tr 26 72 176.9
permissions::permissions-uk 30 134 346.7 Created 10/2012
permissions::permissions-vi 2 3 50
permissions::permissions-zh 45 13 -71.1
permissions::permissions-zh::permissions-zh-hans 79 81 2.5
permissions::permissions-zh::permissions-zh-hant 64 35 -45.3
Total 13563 14978 10.4

Unlike in info queues, there is just one access right for all "permissions" queues. Between 2012 and 2013, the number of agents with access rose from 350 to 378 (+ 8 %). *

* These numbers are slightly lower than the actual as some agents have support access that covers multiple queues and these are not reflected. These users do not usually answer tickets regularly though, for example OTRS administrators who have access to all info queues for administrative purposes.

photosubmission[edit]

Wikimedia projects often lack good, freely-licensed images for certain articles, especially biographies of living persons. To mitigate this, the photosubmission queues were created on OTRS. They allow readers of Wikipedia and article subjects (or their agents) to easily submit photos to illustrate their articles. Similar to with the permissions queues, the photosubmission team verifies that the person submitting the article is capable of freely licensing it, that they clearly state their intent to license it under a specific free license, and that they understand what they are doing. The team then helps to add the images to the relevant articles.

Queue 2012 2013 Change (%) Notes
photosubmission 686 810 18.1
photosubmission::photosubmission-ar 0 0 0
photosubmission::photosubmission-da 0 8 Inf
photosubmission::photosubmission-de 31 26 -16.1
photosubmission::photosubmission-es 17 29 70.6
photosubmission::photosubmission-fr 0 0 0
Total 734 873 18.9

Unlike in info queues, there is just one access right for all Photosubmissions queues. Between 2012 and 2013, the number of agents with access increased from 105 to 108. *

* These numbers are slightly lower than the actual as some agents have support access that covers multiple queues and these are not reflected. These users do not usually answer tickets regularly though, for example OTRS administrators who have access to all info queues for administrative purposes.

Spam[edit]

Of the roughly 1,600 tickets created everyday, about 1,400 are spam and about 180 legitimate tickets end up in an info, sister projects, permissions or photosubmissions queue. This leaves approximately 50 legitimate tickets in other queues.* Prior to the upgrade, weak spam filtering led to almost half of all spam emails getting through into the queues everyday on a regular basis. To alleviate the workload associated with sorting out spam, the process of handling such emails was modified in the course of the upgrading process. The configuration of the spam filter (SpamAssassin) was changed and learning capabilities were added, and the filter now sends potential spam either directly to the "Junk" queue or to a new "Probably Spam" queue which is manually reviewed. In addition to that, we have established a semi-automated process for closely monitoring false negatives in November 2013, and we use address- or content-specific rules to catch emails we identify as not properly handled by SpamAssassin. That way, by the end of 2013, we could drastically reduce the number of spam emails making it to our ordinary queues to below 100 per day while another 110–120 emails are sorted into "Probably Spam" and assessed by volunteers.**

* Rough estimate. The number of spam emails is based on a two-week sample during the composition of this report (spam emails are deleted after 10 days and we do not keep track of the amounts). The other figures are averages based on all traffic in 2013. Since a small amount of queues (e.g. for oversighters) is not searchable by OTRS administrators, the number of legitimate tickets in other queues was increased by 10.
** Values for "Probably Spam" reflect the average from January 16, 2014, through March 8, 2014, as data for 2013 is not available.

Outlook[edit]

The major event of 2013 was the upgrade to OTRS 3.2, and the OTRS administration plans on making regular updates to the software a high priority in their requests to the Wikimedia Foundation. We also will continue to seek technical support for bugs and patches. Other support opportunities that we hope to undertake in 2014 include comprehensive agent onboarding, training, and continuing education. We also will work toward providing additional and improved documentation and support for all languages on the agents' internal wiki.