Grants:IdeaLab/Make Wikipedia pretty!

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statusnot selected
Make Wikipedia pretty!
Wikipedia looks dated and drab - a new design with bright colors and contemporary style would attract more women.
amount6500 USD
granteeMerry Kay
idea creator
Merry Kay
this project needs...
created on22:15, 7 March 2015 (UTC)

Project idea[edit]

What is the problem you're trying to solve?[edit]

Perhaps one of the reasons that Wikipedia is lacking in female editors is because of the way the site looks. It is dull, static, austere, and dated. It looks male.

What is your solution?[edit]

Wikipedia would appeal more to women if they weren't greeted by a site that looks male. Make Wikipedia look fresh, inviting, and vibrant. This would be accomplished by creating a new "skin". This skin would become the new default skin for Wikipedia. Editors would be able to change the skin in their preferences if they prefer the "classic" dated look.

The efforts of volunteers and WMF employees have produced the current skins. Since we are looking for a contemporary, well-designed skin instead of more of the same, it will be necessary to hire outside designers who can bring a fresh attitude and experince with modern websites.


Get Involved[edit]



  • A prettier Wikipedia benfits everyone! Merry Kay (talk) 22:16, 7 March 2015 (UTC)
  • A great idea. But I suggest the designers should come up with several treatments, so we can put them to the community as proposals, perhaps also with a call for designs from the community in a similar way to the way we have selected our logos: if the new designs are that good, they (or a derivative of them) should win handily, and community buy-in will also result in far less friction from disgruntled users who dislike change. -- Impsswoon (talk) 02:13, 10 March 2015 (UTC)
  • Indeed, the current default theme is blue-grey-white is probably not the best colors set in the world. Let's experiment with other colour sets, and measure what impacts every colors set has. (UX is not only about color, but color is probably the easiest to fix). Would a less masculine-looking Wikipedia be taken less seriously by some readers? Probably, but that's another thing that needs to change. Nicolas1981 (talk) 02:40, 17 March 2015 (UTC)
  • So you think it's not because of women being treated badly, and actually getting banned from protecting other living women from libel, but paint? Can you be more condescending and insulting?

Expand your idea[edit]

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Expand your idea into a grant proposal

Project plan[edit]


Hire professional designer(s) and developer(s). Evaluate existing skins. Create new skin (or adapt existing skin) to create an attractive, modern skin which will appeal to internet users who are used to and expect good design. Gather feedback on new skin from target audience. Alter skin based on feedback. Gather feedback from Wikipedia community. Install skin as new default for IP users and users who have not specifically chosen an existing skin.


Project manager: 500 USD Designer: 4000 USD Developer (CSS code): 2000 USD

Community engagement[edit]

This project is intended to attract new users to WIkipedia by addressing the aesthetic failings of the site. As such, it is the feedback of people who are not yet Wikipedia editors that is most important. The Wikipedia community will be asked for feedback on the new skin before it is installed as the default skin.


As with existing skins, it will be available for modification so long as it exists. Variations featuring different graphics and colors could be created so that users can select the look that most appeals to their personality.

Measures of success[edit]

A makeover of Wikipedia will attract a lot of press attention. If it is successfull the reviews will be positive. If it is unsuccessfull the reviews will be negative.

Project team[edit]

Community notification[edit]

Please paste links below to where relevant communities have been notified of your proposal, and to any other relevant community discussions. Need notification tips?