What is the problem you're trying to solve?
Explain the problem that you are trying to solve with this project or the opportunity you’re taking advantage of. What is the issue you want to address? You can update and add to this later.
As an active contributing editor on Wikipedia and an active Twitter user, I have seen many social media posts on Twitter -- and Facebook and Instagram -- where high profile subjects of Wikipedia entries are very upset about their entries. Oftentimes the entries are stubs that do not reflect the subject of the article, are full of wrong information, are misrepresentative, and sometimes are aggressively anti-gender and/or full of negative biased information. The high profile, notable person will not know how to fix this problem, and the negative impact on their reputation and the feed of the information to Google and other SEO is harmful. The subjects often feel like there is no recourse -- and indeed beyond loudly complaining, there is no recourse. There is no existing Wikipedia Twitter feed similar to @SpotifyCares and @TWC_Help to provide a human, responsive solution.
This establishes a bad precedent in terms of Wikimedia projects as well as the open culture movement. There is no clear way to fix the problems, and there is no visible designated formal or even informal solution. It is very bad public relations for Wikipedia, and it is a problem that has solutions.
Also, I have developed a reputation online – especially within a small independent music community – as being the "go-to" Wikipedia editor when there are problems or artists are unhappy with their pages. I get tagged in social media and then participate in the process of updating and fixing Wikipedia entries. I have seen complaints on Wikipedia or have been reached out to on my Talk page after editing associated pages, have responded and had conversations with the stakeholders, and have spent a considerable amount of time addressing outstanding issues on the Wikipedia entries. This has become a somewhat regular experience. Which leads me to think there is definitely a supply & demand situation happening. This project could be a low-risk way to focus on and explore options to resolve the problems people are having with their pages while doing outreach and education about principles of Wikipedia and strategies for a productive experience with the experts and knowledge-bases within the Wikimedia projects.
What is your solution?
If you think of your project as an experiment in solving the problem you just described, what is the particular solution you're aiming to test? You will provide details of your plan below, but explain your main idea here.
This project is envisioned as a beta test implementation.
Provide administrative and organizational support to address this problem. Similar to @WeAreWikipedia, an unofficial volunteer-led Twitter account could be maintained and curated -- along with a possible integration with OTRS -- and an on-Wiki Meetup space similar to many Wikipedia Meetup projects, events, and initiatives.
The Twitter feed could be implemented as an Online iteration of the existing Wikipedian in Residence model, following the same established guidelines and structures. See image at right: "Wikipedian-in-Residence Scope Diagram."
The Twitter feed could address concerns, let subjects know that their issues are being heard by the Wikipedia community, and that they have a road towards a solution. The end-users would be presented with a sympathetic, positive, human response to their concerns.
- Potential implementation might include the following approaches and knowledge/skills/activities
- Wikipedian-in-Residence outreach within both Wikipedia and Twitter / social media communities to establish temporary to long-term partnerships with stakeholders that would provide value for Wikimedia project community
- Wikipedian-in-Residence focus could include content or data donation -- especially photos to Commons (and advocating usage of CC/free licenses), highlighting data possibilities -- especially Authority Control in Wikidata, and could include virtual or IRL editathons, workshops, online training, etc.
- Friendly and supportive pedagogic experience at all entry points to share expert level proficiency and experience with Wikipedia editing that includes triage "rescue" of pages as potential skillshares with fellow editors, best practices in approaches, etc.
- Build upon Wikimedia project's current community in promoting proficiency and experience with social media platforms, specifically Twitter
- Creation of administrative and organizational project management structure within which can coordinate beta project, input complaints into a basic tracking system (or OTRS), investigate complaints, respond to complaints, coordinate possible solutions, follow up surveys as to effectiveness and feedback on methodology
- Explore potential technical solutions that might provide broader answer to this ongoing issue
Examples of this solution in action (with press if it exists):
- Gene Weingarten
- Dif -- complained about picture
- Method of communication with subject: Twitter, email
- A recent news item, example of problem -- which was fixed
I am sure will be fixed (because it's a public complaint):
- Weingarten, Gene (28 September 2016). "Dear Wikipedia: Please change my photo!". The Washington Post.
- Beutler, William (3 October 2016). "Gene Weingarten Proves Wikipedia Still Needs a Better Way to Deal With Feedback". The Wikipedian. Retrieved 4 October 2016.
- Milowent (14 October 2016). "In the Media: Alright Wikipedia, I'm ready for my closeup". The Signpost.
- 2007 incident:
- Nadia Murad / Yazda -- September 2016
- Theresa Caputo -- September 2016
- Dif -- Aggressive editing by anti-medium stakeholders ? Neutrality issues
- Method of communication with subject: None
- Bonnie Burton -- September 2016
- Dif -- she was editing her own page
- Method of communication with subject: Twitter, Twitter DM
- Rhett Miller -- August 2016
- Julie Meyer -- March 2016
- Dif -- but prior edit history by one editor who seemed to have a personal vendetta was very problematic
- Smith, Matthew Nitch (15 March 2016). "A PR firm is being sued for 'botching up' an investment fund's Wikipedia page". Business Insider. Retrieved 24 March 2016.
- Chellel, Kit (14 March 2016). "How a Venture Capitalist's Bid to Edit Wikipedia Page Backfired". Bloomberg News. Retrieved 24 March 2016.
- Method of communication with subject: LinkedIn (she is an Influencer), email, phone
- Dif -- but prior edit history by one editor who seemed to have a personal vendetta was very problematic
- Jes Baker -- February 2016
- Dif -- AfD rescue from WikiEdu / editathon effort
- Method of communication with subject: None, AfD rescue
- Shearwater (band) -- October 2015
- Dif -- general complaint about state of article
- Method of communication with subject: Facebook
A secondary, possibly integrated and/or complementary initiative: Best practices and constructive approaches to new articles created during editathons that need "rescuing" and/or triage due to new editors and inadequate establishment of notability.
I suspect other initiatives might dovetail and/or stem from a successful implementation of this project.
Explain what are you trying to accomplish with this project, or what do you expect will change as a result of this grant.
- Addressing online loud and/or upset social media complaints about Wikipedia entries
- Provide recourse and a systematic approach to triage, in a test beta approach
- Establish a virtual and/or remote Wikipedian in Residence program, if this doesn't already exist
- Help people who are in distress, sometimes significant distress
Tell us how you'll carry out your project. What will you and other organizers spend your time doing? What will you have done at the end of your project? How will you follow-up with people that are involved with your project?
- Establish Twitter account
- Set up Twitter search strings -- Twitter Advanced Search
- Call for volunteers / assistance
- Create basic online tracking system and/or use OTRS ticketing system
- Prioritize complaints
- Establish best practices approaches
- Wikipedia editing (triage, deep scrub, etc.)
- Use hashtags in edit summaries to provide metrics see WMFLabs #Hashtags tool
- Solicit feedback from stakeholders
- Gather metrics
How you will use the funds you are requesting? List bullet points for each expense. (You can create a table later if needed.) Don’t forget to include a total amount, and update this amount in the Probox at the top of your page too!
- US$2,700 (US$30/hr x 10 hrs/wk x 9 weeks)
- Number of weeks: 9 weeks starting in January 2017. Length of project is definitely flexible if there is support for extension
- Rate is an amount midway between the hourly rates of the current AfroCROWD Project Manager (US$25/hr) and the Wikimedia New York City Metrics & Reporting position (US$35/hr)
- Rate assumes regular ongoing weekly administrative work as required to create a structured beta test of this project which would build a greater culture of openness and positivity towards all of the Wikimedia projects, but specifically to biographical entries on English Wikipedia
- Rate reflects the following minimum skilled work:
- WiR outreach within both Wikipedia and Twitter / social media communities to establish temporary to long-term partnerships with stakeholders that would provide value for Wikimedia project community
- WiR focus could include content or data donation -- especially photos to Commons (and advocating usage of CC/free licenses), highlighting data possibilities -- especially Authority Control in Wikidata, and could include virtual or IRL editathons, workshops, online training, etc.
- Expert level proficiency and experience with Wikipedia editing that includes triage "rescue" of pages as potential skillshares with fellow editors, best practices in approaches, etc.
- Proficiency and experience with social media platforms, specifically Twitter
- High level of administrative and organizational project management skills to coordinate program, input complaints into a basic tracking system (or OTRS), investigate complaints, respond to complaints, coordinate possible solutions, follow up surveys as to effectiveness and feedback on methodology
- A comfort with metadata and organizational structures, as well as reportage is necessary, especially if the project progresses and technical solutions are explored and/or implemented
- GLAM background
By "GLAM background," my intention here was to highlight the problematic nature of volunteering for digital labor that is part of the downside of Wikipedia. To bring any sort of consistent professionalism and a best practices, possibly private sector approach to the solution, there becomes a need to address this work via embedded, compensated GLAM Wikipedians-in-Residence and/or specific project work that is grant funded. This is a bigger issue outside the scope of this grant, but is something I want to mention, as at a certain point, having people do free digital labor becomes unethical and wrong. I love editing Wikipedia, but the fact that it is unpaid is inherently problematic, especially at a certain point of proficiency and effort. Please let me know on the Talk page if this needs to be addressed further. For information about the mention of Dorothy Howard and this article she wrote, which influenced my perspective on Wikipedia editing, please see Talk page.
- Howard, Dorothy (March 2015). "Labor and the New Encyclopedia: Dorothy Howard on unpaid knowledge work in a datalogical age". DIS Magazine.
How will you let others in your community know about your project? Why are you targeting a specific audience? How will you engage the community you’re aiming to serve at various points during your project? Community input and participation helps make projects successful.
- Mailing lists
- Wikipedians on Twitter
- Personal social media accounts
- Twitter: @erikaherzog
- I co-administer Wikimedia NYC
- Facebook: @erikaherzog
- Instagram: @erikaherzog
- Flickr: @erika_herzog
- And so on...
- Potential social media accounts, dedicated to project
- TBD, with guidance from WMF stakeholders
What do you expect will happen to your project after the grant ends? How might the project be continued or grown in new ways afterwards?
The project is meant to be a beta test to see how the idea in a very minimal scope might be received. With documented survey and feedback results, it might be expanded upon as a more formalized effort. This might be a potential paid WMF position, if the responses were strong enough and the processes successfully addressed the needs to reduce negative public relations impact on Wikipedia and create an official triage system for complaints.
Measures of success
How will you know if the project is successful and you've met your goals? Please include specific, measurable targets here.
- Reportage of metrics
- Beta test project structure that includes record-keeping and best practices / possible solutions documentation -- as well as enhanced communication of existing formal methods (email, phone, the idea of the OTRS system)
- Possible technical solutions that integrate OTRS or other possible systems
- With guidance from WMF and project stakeholders, would establish measures of success in addition to the above. The beta test would be a way to gather the measure of success for (a) if the project was helpful and productive and (b) data and potential options as to possibly moving forward with an expanded or some other type of program to address ongoing issue of responding to unhappy end-users of Wikipedia....
Please use this section to tell us more about who is working on this project. For each member of the team, please describe any project-related skills, experience, or other background you have that might help contribute to making this idea a success.
Note: If there are other active Twitter Wikipedians who are interested in this project, please let me know. Everyone is very welcome to be part of this project!
User:BrillLyle aka Erika Herzog
- Active contributing Wikipedia editor
- Secretary of Wikimedia New York City
- Active Twitter account:
- @Erika Herzog since March 2008 with 27,054 tweets as of 28 Sept 2016
- Active on other social media:
- Supporter of various Wikipedia and Wikimedia Foundation initiatives
- 2016 Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research (SCAR) Women of the Antarctic Wikibomb – Assisted scrubbing for global edits across projects, alphabetizing, total counts, page maintenance
- 2016 Art+Feminism – Updated event pages, scrubbed for edits, maintained node list for consistency, created Google calendar, kept MoMA event page updated and scrubbed event for edits
- 2015 Art+Feminism – Updated event pages, scrubbed for edits, maintained node list for consistency, kept MoMA event page updated and scrubbed event for edits
- AfroCROWD initiative – Administrative support on Wiki, help with event pages, scrub for edits for events, update Event Archive tab
- WikiCite 2016 (Berlin) – Invited participant, assisted with event page
- Background in professional word processing from 14+ years as a desktop word processor at investment bank in New York City
- Master of Science degree in Library and Information Science (M.S.L.I.S.) – 2011, Long Island University, C.W. Post Campus
- Certificate of Advanced Studies in Archives and Records Management
- "RefToolbar. Cite: Usage, Tips & Tricks"
- "Wikidocks. Wikipedia Meetup assistance for "boondock" areas with no active local chapters"
- "Authority Control: Wikipedia + Wikidata" – which is part of the Wikidata Help here
You are responsible for notifying relevant communities of your proposal, so that they can help you! Depending on your project, notification may be most appropriate on a Village Pump, talk page, mailing list, etc.-->
Please paste links below to where relevant communities have been notified of your proposal, and to any other relevant community discussions. Need notification tips?
- Mailing lists
- Wikipedians on Twitter
Do you think this project should be selected for a Project Grant? Please add your name and rationale for endorsing this project below! (Other constructive feedback is welcome on the discussion page).
- endorse well overdue. feedback by public letter is a sign of dysfunction. Slowking4 (talk) 23:55, 5 October 2016 (UTC)
- endorse Even though the approach disperses viable online help on the matter, it is still help that is needed, is welcome and can help tackle reported issues through a different service. Tsoukali (talk) 06:25, 6 October 2016 (UTC)
- endorse Really nice idea. Samwalton9 (talk) 17:15, 6 October 2016 (UTC)
- endorse It's great PR, and promises to be actually useful, too. Would be happy to volunteer for a group of editors assisting with the queue of incoming requests. Ott2 (talk) 12:50, 11 October 2016 (UTC)
- endorse They even contacted me personally on twitter about a wikipedia page. Too bad I was in China and I couldn't reply there :D--Alexmar983 (talk) 15:36, 11 October 2016 (UTC)
- endorse This could help resolve minor issues especially if the request to remove/change content includes a viable source for the knowledge claim. My concern is that biographical articles do not become PR. Wikimedia Foundation Transparency Report I use Twitter frequently and embed shortened urls of Wikipedia articles. #hashtags are brilliant and so far there are not many #Wikipedia hashtags.Oceanflynn (talk)Oceanflynn (talk) 16:49, 11 October 2016 (UTC)
- endorse We need to reach out to people where they are, not expect them to jump through obscure hoops. Gamaliel (talk) 17:24, 19 October 2016 (UTC)
- endorse Good idea. Would cut through the perceived bureaucratic snarl in a manner that projects openness and caring. Yngvadottir (talk) 20:52, 19 October 2016 (UTC)
- This is an excellent idea and I think that this project might provide guidance for other similar future ones. Mozucat (talk) 20:11, 28 October 2016 (UTC)
- I love this idea. --Anthonyhcole (talk) 17:38, 30 October 2016 (UTC)