Grants:Project/Rapid/Rossella Vignola (OBC)/Wiki4MediaFreedom edit-a-thon - II edition/Report

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Report accepted
This report for a Rapid Grant approved in FY 2017-18 has been reviewed and accepted by the Wikimedia Foundation.

Participants at the Wiki4MediaFreedom edit-a-thon in Sofia (November 27th, 2017)


Did you meet your goals? Are you happy with how the project went?

We are very happy for the outcome of the second edition of the Wiki4MediaFreedom edit-a-thon. The event was transnational and multilingual, it involved 30 participants, mostly journalists and media freedom experts from different European countries (Bulgaria, Kosovo, Greece), plus Wikipedia and Wikidata experts from Bulgaria, Italy, UK, Germany, Belgium, Serbia. The edit-a-thon was implemented thanks to the cooperation of the Association of European Journalists Bulgaria, the British ngo mySociety and the Wikimedians of Bulgaria User Group. Before the morning session dedicated to introduction to Wikipedia and an editing session on media freedom-related content, the afternoon was dedicated to an introduction to Wikidata and the project “EveryPoliticians”. After a training, participants tried to enter political data on Bulgarian politicians in Wikidata and experimented with some visualizations and SPARQL queries.

The initiative took place at the same time as a series of events happening in Europe and around the world in the context of the Global Legislative Openness Week, an initiative of the Open Government Partnership to raise awareness on open, participatory legislative processes.

The event achieved its goals as it:

a) made possible the creation / improvement of contents on media freedom-related issues in different language editions of Wikipedia (English, Bulgarian)and on Wikidata;

b) increased skills, including on Wikidata

c) contributed to recruit new Wikipedia editors, in particular among journalists; and

d) allowed socialization of community members and make possible the encounter of two different communities, namely journalists and Wikipedians / Wikidatians. Both these communities share the battle for media freedom and freedom of information alongside with the need for quality information and a richer and plural information ecosystem.


Please report on your original project targets.

Target outcome Achieved outcome Explanation
Number of events: 1 1 1 edit-a-thon named “Wiki4MediaFreedom” was successfully runned on November 27th in Sofia
Number of participants: 30 30 Around 30 participants, from different countries (Italy, Bulgaria, Germany, UK, Greece, Belgium) took part in the edit-a-thon. This includes: expert wikipedians and wikidatians, journalists and media experts, and journalism students.
Number of new editors: 10-15 10
Number of articles created or improved: 10-15 10 Apart from content edited in Wikipedia, participants added several items to Wikidata.

See the list of articles created / edited in the dedicated page on META (the list is not exhaustive).


Projects do not always go according to plan. Sharing what you learned can help you and others plan similar projects in the future. Help the movement learn from your experience by answering the following questions:

  • What worked well?

The cooperation between OBCT and the local Association of European Journalists Bulgaria proved to work very well in attracting the expected number of participants for a 7-hour event held in a working day. This cooperation made possible the encounter of different communities, i.e. journalists and media experts and Wikipedians, thus stimulating common understanding, new synergies and possible projects in the future.

  • What did not work so well?

The logistics of the room did not allow to easily circulate among participants to check their work and offer assistance.

  • What would you do differently next time?

The novelty of this year edit-a-thon was the “Wikidata track”. In order not to discourage participation in this session as well - that can perceived quite a technical one, it would be probably appropriate to invite to the event a group of data journalists / data experts that could engage and participate more actively.


Grant funds spent[edit]

Please describe how much grant money you spent for approved expenses, and tell us what you spent it on.

Item Budgeted (EUR) Spent (EUR)*
Food and drinks for participants 200,00 237,53
Room's rent at Red House Sofia 150,00 150,00
Contribution to Travel & Accomodation expenses for Wikipedians from other European countries joining the event (for replicability) 450,00 370,41
Total spent 757,94*
Requested WMF contribution 800,00

NB: In addition to the budgeted expenses (EUR 757,94) we spent EUR 14,00 for printing some materials for the participants. Such expenses were not foreseen in the budget (Documentation has been sent to the WMF). Also, we spent more money than foreseen (EUR 237,53 instead of EUR 200,00) for "Food and drinks for participants". Since we had some savings under the budget line "Travel and accommodation for international participants", can can we move EUR 37,53 of unspent funds from the line-item "Contribution to Travel and Accommodation expenses for Wikipedians from other European countries joining the event" (450 EUR foreseen, 370,41 actually spent) to the line-item "Food and drinks for participants"?

If this will be covered by the WMF, remaining funds are: 800,00 - (757,94 + 14,00) = EUR 28,06

Remaining funds[edit]

The funds remaining from this grant in the amount of 200 EUR (see discussion page for final underspend amount) were deducted from another grant payment for Grants:Project/Rapid/Rossella Vignola (OBC)/Wiki4MediaFreedom Writing & Translation Contest.

Do you have any remaining grant funds?

  • In addition to the budgeted expenses (EUR 757,94) we spent EUR 14,00 for printing some materials for the participants. Such expenses were not foreseen in the budget (Documentation has been sent to the WMF). If this will be covered by the WMF, remaining funds are: 800,00 - (757,94 + 14,00) = EUR 28,06

Anything else[edit]

Anything else you want to share about your project?

The edit-a-thon “Wiki4MediaFreedom” is a follow up to a GLAM project implemented in 2015-16[1] by OBC Transeuropa in cooperation with Wikimedia Italia as a part of the European project named “European Centre for Press and Media Freedom”.[2] As we believe there is a lot of opportunity for collaboration between the Wikimedia community and journalists and media freedom experts, we would like to plan a follow up to this Second edition of Wiki4MediaFreedom edit-a-thon, by organizing a series of small similar edit-a-thons across Europe over the course of 2018.

All the relevant information on the edit-a-thon (including the list of articles created / edited, and the slides) are available in META; pictures of the event are available in Commons.[3]

See also the articles on the event published on OBCT portal [4] [5] and the report published by the participants of the Wikimedians of Bulgaria User Group.[6]


Introduction to Wikipedia (download)
Presentation of the initiative "Wiki4MEdiaFreedom"