Grants talk:Project/Rapid/Wikimedia Ghana User Group/Wikimedian in Residence at Impact Hub Accra

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Hi Roysandytei. Thank you for this grant request and to everyone else that has worked on putting together the plan. It's great that you've been given 3 months of coworking space at Impact Hub. It's also a great idea to think about how to better support new/existing community members as well as respond to requests. However, we cannot fund the Wikimedian in Residence as it is currently scoped in this proposal. As you can read in our funding guidelines we do not fund residencies where the sole focus is on content creation as this is equivalent to paid content creation. We can fund residencies where the role is focused on collecting resources, training and engaging new and existing editors, and organizing events around integrating content. Please let us know how you would like to move forward. Best, Alex Wang (WMF) (talk) 22:23, 20 October 2017 (UTC)

Hello Alex Wang (WMF), Roy and I have added new details to include events over the weekends. We thought piloting this for a month we had to go lean hence the reason we didn't add events but restricted recruiting and editing assistance to a one-on-one appointment basis. However we have added 2 events now. Let us know if we need to add more details. Sandiooses (talk) 23:30, 23 October 2017 (UTC)


Hi Sandiooses. Thanks for the additions. It would be helpful to have a bit more information.
  1. Please confirm that the WiR would not be paid for their time. It looks like they will just be reimbursed for transportation and food.
  2. Please confirm the length of the project. It says you have the space for three months but it looks like the project is for 20 days.
  3. In general, the role of the user group is to facilitate community building through outreach events, training of new editors, and skill building and socializing for experienced editors. The user group should not be seen as the people responsible for creating/improving Wikipedia content in that geographic area, but should empower others to fix errors themselves. Serving as a kind of hotline for editing requests is a risky strategy that seems unsustainable in the future. Instead, we would encourage you to use this free space and the WiR's free time to gather hard-to-access resources that community members need to work on articles they are interested in and to also train newcomers. Please let us know what you think about this. Someone serving in this role should have experience with trainings and organizing Wikimedia events. It looks like the selected person is a relatively new editor and would need strong support from the user group for this to be successful.
Best, Alex Wang (WMF) (talk) 02:53, 26 October 2017 (UTC)


Responses[edit]

Hello Alex Wang (WMF), I will copy your concerns and leave responses in line. I went through the funding guidelines and I understand where you are coming from.

*Please confirm that the WiR would not be paid for their time. It looks like they will just be reimbursed for transportation and food.

The WiR will not be paid

*Please confirm the length of the project. It says you have the space for three months but it looks like the project is for 20 days.

The reason why the project time is shorter is that the topics that the WiR will be working on is a finite set of a group of articles on Parliament constituencies in Ghana which we believe the WiR should be able to handle in 20 days.
We could be underestimating the time needed because I know there's a lot gone wrong with the set of articles but we want to see what 20 days can do. For extension of the time we can easily drop the Impact Hub a message.

*In general, the role of the user group is to facilitate community building through outreach events, training of new editors, and skill building and socializing for experienced editors. The user group should not be seen as the people responsible for creating/improving Wikipedia content in that geographic area, but should empower others to fix errors themselves.

Here's a bit of background information on the WiR idea. The WiR has been a Wikimedian since 2012 but became inactive. Recently he started to share a common concern we had about the state of articles on Ghana’s parliamentary constituencies and decided to take it up after hearing about our 2016 project which was seeking to fix articles on the constituencies among others.


I invited him to join our activities to refresh his editing skills, and to start editing with a user account. He started attending and volunteering at training workshops and has now improved editing on his own and even now takes up fixing errors. I believe that is all part of the empowerment mandate. Every now and then, when we do/don't have workshops where we recuit and train in large groups, we still help people on the individual level develop both editing and program leading skills.
We could not finish improving articles on constituencies during our project because it was a specialized topic and not all participants wanted to focus on that. Some of the tasks also required follow ups. However our parliament constituencies are one of the basic ways Ghana has been demarcated and the outdated information need to be dealt with.


The gaps start here on the main list of Parliamentary constituencies. Since 2012 there have been some changes but Wikipedia hasn't kept up.
The Ashanti Region of Ghana for instance received eight more constituency demarcations from 39 seats to 47 in 2012. While Wikipedia is aware the seats are now 47, only 39 are listed on the main page for constituencies in Ghana.
A constituency like Ahafo Ano South was split into Ahafo Ano South East and Ahafo Ano South West. Both articles are not available on Wikipedia. This means the member of parliament and other details of encyclopedic value are lost. These kind of gaps on Wikipedia exists for the other 9 regions of the country.
Besides the omission in the information, there’s also widespread confusion on the wiki about similar names. For instance a constituency called Weija which was created in 2004 but demarcated into Anyaa-Sowutuom, Bortianor-Ngleshie-Amanfrom, and Weija-Gbawe in 2012. Weija was retired and made defunct and is not the same as Weija-Gbawe. However to date, admins who have no knowledge about this refuse to be corrected and have refused to remove a redirect link to Weija-Gbawe which is a totally different region altogether. I have tried to rectify this via talk page but it hasn’t yielded much. Follow ups to such issues are needed and we are not successfully getting that done by working in large group workshops. A concerted effort is needed. The outdated information is nearly 5 years old. We need to do something.

*Serving as a kind of hotline for editing requests is a risky strategy that seems unsustainable in the future.

We will remove the hotline aspect of the project. That might even overburden him. However the user group still does receive editing requests. They end up in our Whatsapp groups and mailing list. If he were to be handling them, that would be an even more transparent approach. However, I agree that it should be removed from the proposal. I will see to it.

*Instead, we would encourage you to use this free space and the WiR's free time to gather hard-to-access resources that community members need to work on articles they are interested in and to also train newcomers.

On the issue of hard to come by resources which the WiR will collect before the Wikipedia election project, I noticed there was no official dataset online that we could rely on to fix some of the outdated information. I was told that the data set was on the Electoral Commission (EC) of Ghana’s website but the EC rebranded in 2016 and the document is not available on their site anymore. So what I can arrange for the WiR to do is go to the EC and request the document.
I also discovered a book titled Elections in Ghana (1951-2012) by Alex Kaakyire Duku Frempong, published in 2015 with ISBN 9988209835, 9789988209834 which covers the new constituencies on pages 221 – 224 which the WiR can borrow from a library, or from the political desk of Citi FM (I can arrange that, I work there). It captures the new demarcations and other relevant info.


*Someone serving in this role should have experience with trainings and organizing Wikimedia events. It looks like the selected person is a relatively new editor and would need strong support from the user group for this to be successful.

The WiR has been part of our events as a volunteer and a trainee. The group is interested in raising program leaders, it prevents volunteer burnout and also increases the number of active Wikimedians in the community as everyone can get their chance to lead something. I agree he needs strong support and he’ll get it. At least 3 program leaders are present at all our events as volunteers whether they are leading it or not. That’s our standard practice. We can give you proof of that from submitted grant reports.
Lastly, we will remove the parts on the Wikipedia Education Program from the grant and create a separate grants page Sandiooses (talk) 13:31, 7 November 2017 (UTC)