Meta serves three distinct roles, which are all closely related but often involve different subsets of users.
- Discussion and formulation of Wikimedia projects, in particular policy discussion relevant to across projects, such as open-content licensing. The central venue for discussion is the Wikimedia Forum. Some high-level discussions, held mainly in 2009, were split to Strategy Wiki.
Special:MyLanguage/Wikimedia movementSpecial:MyLanguage/Wikimedia movementSpecial:MyLanguage/Wikimedia movementSpecial:MyLanguage/Meta:Requests and proposals#Meta_pagesSpecial:MyLanguage/Meta:BabylonSpecial:MyLanguage/Goings-onSpecial:MyLanguage/Wikimedia FoundationSpecial:MyLanguage/Wikimedia affiliation modelsSpecial:MyLanguage/ReportsSpecial:MyLanguage/EventsSpecial:MyLanguage/Grants:Index Special:MyLanguage/Category:EssaysSpecial:MyLanguage/Category:IssuesSpecial:MyLanguage/Multiple point of viewSpecial:MyLanguage/Time, issue, position, argument, evidence, source, authoritySpecial:MyLanguage/IPAmeatball:Special:MyLanguage/Research:Index
What Meta is not
http://www.usemod.com/cgi-bin/mb.pl?back=CategoryOnlineCommunitySpecial:MyLanguage/Meta:MetaProject to transfer content to MediaWiki.org
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"Metawikian" is a term also used sometimes, to indicate a member of the specific "Meta community", that is the community of Meta regulars who are more often active on Meta, for instance as contributors to its content pages or as facilitators of other discussions and processes.
Meta-Wiki was first created as "Meta-Wikipedia" in November 2001 to make the English Wikipedia less cluttered, by moving all meta-content (content about the Wikipedia website and its users), as opposed to actual content (encyclopedia articles), to a new wiki. Since its upgrade to Wikipedia's custom MediaWiki software, Meta has become a multilingual discussion forum used by all Wikimedia language communities. As the number of Wikimedia projects and translations increased, so too did Meta's scope. Meta comprises 70,848 articles. Many of the older pages here are still worded as being specific to Wikipedia, but arguably many now apply to all Wikimedia projects.
- Meta:Inclusion policy
- Meta:Deletion policy
- Policies and guidelines
- Steward policies
- New project policy (historical)
- Meta:Categories — introductory page for browsing
- Meta's Zeitgeist can give a clue about the main activities of any month (only main namespace, although talk could be more indicative)
- Meta:Babel templates — language competence of Meta users
- Meta:Requests for deletion
- Meta:Requests for undeletions
- Project portals — a list of Wikimedia project portals
- Wikimedia Foundation and the Wikimedia projects.
- An example of what is possible only on this wiki