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Learning and Evaluation/Newsletter/2018/5/17

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L&E Newsletter / Volume 5 / Issue 17 / November 2018
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Community Engagement Insights 2018: Fostering learning for improved support to Wikimedia communities

By Edward Galvez and María Cruz
In its second year in a row, the Global Wikimedia Survey sheds lights on community demographics, community health, and how programs to support Wikimedia communities are performing.

Community Engagement Insights is a cross-departmental project that surveys communities across the Wikimedia movement, and gathers input to help teams at the Wikimedia Foundation answer some questions: How can we best support communities? What needs have we not seen or addressed yet? Is our annual plan, as an organization serving the movement, still relevant?

The survey's annual report is an opportunity for community members and staff to find out what we've learned from communities across the Wikimedia movement. In April 2018, over 4,000 Wikimedia community members, answered up to 50 questions about their experiences working on the Wikimedia projects. We heard from editors on Wikipedia and other websites, community organizers who coordinate programs or manage organizations, and volunteer software developers. In this iteration of the survey, we witnessed an increase in response rates for editors (11%) and volunteer developers (37%), and a decrease for program organizers (-38%) and affiliate organizers (-15%), maybe due to the timing the survey was released in. These are the key findings we wanted to highlight:

  • Diversity among contributors the Wikimedia projects remains the same as last year. In terms of gender, the disparity persists, with an average of 10% women contributors across roles and projects. We did observe an increase from 25% to 35% of women in the role of program organizers. Across audiences, the median age is still between 35 to 44 years and has slightly increased since 2017.
  • Self-awareness about how one’s behaviors or actions affects others stands out as needing improvement among communities. Out of the various aspects of community health that we measured, contributors were asked whether their peers are aware of how their behavior or actions affect others. Out of a scale of 5, the mean score was about 3.05. This suggests that this could be an area to focus on to improve the health of the community.
  • Harassment is still an ongoing issue on the Wikimedia projects. 22% reported they had felt unsafe or uncomfortable in any online or offline space in the last 12 months. In 2017, it was 32%. This decrease is due to a wording change. 43% of editors have tried to help resolve a conflict on Wikipedia. When asked why they help resolve conflict, 38% said they are trying to help Wikipedia as an encyclopedia and 39% said they are trying to help Wikipedia as a community.

As in the first iteration, this issue of the Global Wikimedia Survey has data that is specific to different teams offering support to Wikimedia communities. Dive into the report to find the questions each team asked, and what data they are working on. One example of this is the data the Community Resources team gathered around what people are taking away from attending Wikimedia conferences.

Going forward, Wikimedia Foundation teams are continuing to learn from their report and deciding what to do next with the data and each team will have a list of actionable next steps in their report.

  • Further reading (links):
Advancing gender equity: Conversations with movement leaders

By Marti Johnson and Alex Wang
A new report highlights the experiences of 65 Wikimedians working toward gender equity on Wikimedia projects.

In April 2017, the Wikimedia Foundation’s Community Resources team launched the Gender Diversity Mapping Project to gather feedback from Wikimedians at the forefront of gender equity efforts in the Wikimedia movement. Our plan was to identify active movement leaders and document what they have learned from their work so far. The principal interviewer was Rosie Stephenson-Goodknight. The report, which was published in the second half of September 2018, describes the achievements, best practices, and barriers for gender equity work in the Wikimedia context, from the perspectives of some of the most active leaders in the movement. These are a few highlights from the report:

  • Inspiring change: in this section of the report you will find a gallery of 15 projects —ranging from Wikimujeres & Editona to Women’s History Month, India— that illustrate the geographic range and diversity of gender equity work in the movement. This section also explores some of the core values that inspire participants to get involved in gender equity work.
  • Best practices: the report highlights six best practices that participants identified as the most effective tactics they use in their gender equity work. These include hosting in-person events, focus on creating content, focus on intersectional knowledge, track progress, recruit new participants, and cultivate partnerships. Read on to unpack each of these practices and replicate them.
  • Barriers to gender equity: The report discusses the main barriers to gender equity in the Wikimedia movement, focusing on systemic bias in policies, lack of awareness and implicit bias in the community, and poor community health.

Read the report to find more important information, like definitions around gender, a deep dive on best practices - including a section on partnerships - and have a better understanding of what are the systemic barriers to equity. This report was presented to community members at the beginning of October 2018. In this virtual event, participants were able to give feedback and views on the findings of the report. Watch the presentation to learn about the reception it had within Wikimedia communities.

The Advancing Gender Equity report describes much that we can celebrate about the work of dedicated advocates who are changing the Wikimedia landscape into a more inclusive space—one that better reflects the full diversity of human knowledge. However, it also delivers a troubling message about the ways that Wikimedia projects and communities are deeply shaped by structural and social inequity that privileges some groups of people over others. Our strategic focus on knowledge equity signals that we are collectively turning toward this challenge with new focus, and we hope this report can offer Wikimedians concrete insight into where to apply their efforts.

Stay tuned

blogs, events & more!
Read our blog posts

Every month, we share knowledge with a focus on programs, process or tools on Wikimedia Foundation's blog. Find all our entries on the Wikimedia blog

Featured blog posts:

#1Lib1Ref is an annual campaign where librarians and other contributors to Wikipedia add references to improve statements with the ultimate objective of improving the reliability of Wikipedia. In 2018, the campaign was replicated in Latin America.
Read on to find out what were some key lessons learned.

In this installment, Anne Gomez - who leads the New Readers initiative - interviews Dr. Samuel Zidovetzki, an emergency department physician normally based out of New York City. Dr. Zidovetzki has been working with the WikiMedicine Project and using Internet in a Box to support his work with these patients.
Read on to learn about offline access to Wikipedia.


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December 2 - January 2: Community review of Wikimedia Foundation Project Grants 2018 round 2
December 31st: Deadline for candidates to submit their application to join the Affiliations Committee

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January 1: Board decisions on Annual Plan Grants
January 3-28 Committee review of Wikimedia Foundation Project Grants 2018 round 2'
January 11-13 Wikisammelan Kolkata 2019

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February 2: Proposal deadline for Wikimedia Foundation Conference Grants
February 8-10: Iberoconf 2019

A Program in the Spotlight

Editatona: writing women back in history

By Cármen Alcázar

Wikipedia is the number one reference website on the internet, it is made by thousands of volunteers who are predominantly male: women only represent 10% of editors contributing content to Wikipedia.

This low participation has an impact on what is written and how on Wikipedia: of the universe of biographies that exist on Spanish Wikipedia, for example, only 19% belong to women. If we look into occupations of these women who own biographies, we find that the majority are actresses and porn actresses; very little women biographies are about scientists, archeologists, or football players. On top of this, most women's biographies are informed by a sexist perspective.

In this context, towards the end of 2014, we created the activity Editatona. It was designed by Wikimedia México in partnership with organizations like Luchadoras, Social Tic, Impetú AC, and others. This activity was conceived as a combination of feminist tech learning and editing workshop, using inclusive language, writing articles from a gender perspective and hosting an editing marathon on Wikipedia. In some events, we even held consulting hours about online security and social media.

This activity has been replicated in Spain, Argentina, Bolivia, Brasil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Venezuela, Uruguay. In some countries where there is no community of editors (male or female), like Nicaragua or Guatemala, the editatonas are exclusively led and organized by women, and they always have gender topics as a focus.

Editatona has received two important awards: the Medalla Omecíhuatl (October 2018) given to Wikimedia México by the Instituto de Mujeres de la Ciudad de México (Institute of Women of Mexico City), for our contributions to science and technology, and whose personal experience contributes to the strengthening of women in this field and to a better quality of life for women.

At the Internet Governance Forum 2018, Editatona received an award by the Fondo Regional para la Innovación Digital en América Latina y el Caribe (FRIDA) (Regional Fund for Digital Innovation in Latin America and the Caribbean), in the category Technology and Gender. The ceremony took place in the headquarters of the United Nations for Education, Science and Culture (UNESCO) in Paris, France.

In the months to come, we hope to continue training women leaders who want to organize Editatonas in their local community!

  • Further Reading: (2 - 3 links)
The AffCom corner

In this space you will learn about affiliates news and processes.
By Dumisani Ndubane

Affiliates Growth:

We ran a social media campaign to celebrate the 100th mark milestone for Wikimedia User Groups on 19 October 2018 under the hashtag #100usergroups, which saw great participation from User groups around the world. In keeping up with this growth, we have completed an Affiliates Data survey which enabled us to update contact details for Affiliates primary contacts. The survey was also helpful to understand other aspects of our Affiliates, including Affiliate Boards leadership, Governance and membership practices, as well as Affiliates programs, strengths, and challenges. We will share the report and results of the survey in January 2019. If your group did not get to respond to this survey, it's not too late to send, just get in contact with dndubane(_AT_)wikimedia.org.
AffCom Elections in Progress:

It's that time of the year when the Affiliations committee calls for candidates to stand for election to join the committee. If you are interested please post your application on the nomination page and send an email announcing your application to affcom(_AT_)lists.wikimedia.org by 31 December 2018. As a reflection of our commitment to openness, transparency, and bilateral engagement with the Wikimedia community, the 2018 member selection process will include a public review and comment period. At the end of the public comment period, the applications will be voted on by the members of the committee who are not seeking re-election, taking into account comments put forward by the committee's members, advisors, Wikimedia Foundation staff and board liaisons, and the community. A final decision will be made by mid-January 2019, with new members expected to join later that month.

Learn from others!

Learn about the Poster Session at Wikimania

In the last two issues of Wikimania, we have witnessed our largest conference open a new space for shared learning: the poster session. In this event, participants can present an academic poster on a project they championed, or something they learned in organizing Wikimedia programs, events, and partnerships. This session, unlike others, allows presenters to connect with participants on a one-to-one basis, favoring deeper learning about one specific topic. Participants, in turn, get a chance to learn about multiple projects as they walk around the room. Curious? Find the posters submitted on Commons for Wikimania 2017 and Wikimania 2018.