German Wikipedia

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This page is a descriptive article on the German Wikipedia, feel free to add any comment.

Facts[edit]

Started: March 2001

Current size: 2,692,633 articles

Total edits: 221,668,439

Active editors: 18,151 in the past month

Areas of strength
  • General article quality
  • Several cooperation with third parties regarding e.g. Persondata (German national library) or CD-/DVD-production (Directmedia)
  • High grade of face-to-face contacts by means of regular meetings (so called “Stammtische”)
  • Creativity in inventing new ways of quality enhancement e.g. writing contests (“Schreibwettbewerb”), concepts as featured (“exzellente”) and good (“lesenswerte”) articles or events as “Wikipedia Academy” (involvement of experts)
  • Convenient BD: shorthand alias for "User_talk:" ("Benutzer_Diskussion:") namespace.
Areas of weakness
  • Still a low amount of animations and sounds.
Who is the competition (print, online)?
  • The general PR talking points are that we don't see them as competitors as they could take our content and sell it under the CC/GFDL terms. Competitors to those companies would be other companies that are using wikipedia content to build up products (like Directmedia publishing)
  • Bibliographisches Institut & F.A. Brockhaus (Brockhaus, Meyers) (online, physical electronic product, print)
  • Encarta (physical electronic product and online)
  • Bertelsmann (online, physical electronic product, print)

Prominent milestones/events[edit]

  • first meetup in Munich on 28th October 2003 in Munich
  • 100.000 articles in June 2004 on the very same "Wikipedia day" when Jimmy Wales was in Berlin and the German association "Wikimedia Germany" was founded.
  • first Wikipedia CD October 2004 published by en:Directmedia_Publishing
  • first Wikipedia DVD April 2005 published by Directmedia_Publishing
  • first Wikimania conference in Frankfurt in August
  • 500.000 articles in November 2006
  • 1.000.000 articles in December 2009
  • Media Viewer superprotect incident (2014)
What has its impact been?
  • TK

Features[edit]

What language features are challenging?
  • German Grammar changes combined nouns so that a [[term]]genitivesuffix does not always work.
    Example: Das Bibliographische Institut (nominative).
    Des Bibliographischen Instituts (genitive).
  • Not challenging per se, but the square and curly bracket characters on standard German keyboard need to be inserted using a special key combination using the Alt key. On Mac keyboards, they are not even shown on the key caps.
What would surprise the outside reader about the community?
  • its radical attitude towards deletion (see controversy about the deletion of Linux distribution in the German press April 2007)
What are some unique practices/characteristics?
  • Current events articles are highly discouraged.
  • Stubs (short articles) are not marked as such, as it is considered pointless.
  • More immediatism than on the English Wikipedia. For example, there exist no equivalents to the "[citation needed]" tag and its sisters, and only sleek and minimalistic article notice boxes like de:Vorlage:Belege fehlen instead of prominent ones like en:Template:Unreferenced and en:Template:Multiple_issues as used on the English Wikipedia.
  • Users are banned by public vote. An arbitration committee like the one on en.wp was approved by the community in April 2007.
  • The "rollback" tool is not granted through a standalone user right but included in the editor ("active sighter") user right.
  • The new protection level "active sighters only" between "semi-protection" and "administrators only" was introduced in April 2015. It is reminiscent of the extended autoconfirmed protection level introduced a year later on the English Wikipedia.
  • Instead of being deleted, pages found to have been created by banned users but without content-related issues are moved into a draft-like space and move-protected so only active sighters and above can move them back at their responsibility after review, allowing editors to decide autonomously between taking over and starting from scratch. (2018 community consensus)
  • No use of padlock icons to indicate page protection like on the English and French Wikipedias.
  • Since early 2016, both "Edit" (visual) and "Edit source" tabs and links are shown by default, whereas the English Wikipedia only shows "Edit" (indicated as "Edit source" while logged in) by default; showing both can be enabled at en:Special:Preferences#mw-input-wpvisualeditor-tabs.
Who were the earliest participants, who started it?
Other prominent Wikipedians?
  • Achim Raschka (initiator of the writing contest), Southpark, Bdk, Henriette Fiebig, Ulrich Fuchs (ex-Wikipedian, founder of fork Wikiweise), Hans Bug (most prominent banned user)