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Comments from Lucas[edit]

(commenting on Special:PermanentLink/24829719)

  • wiki page for suggestions – yeah sure sounds good
  • consistent voice – I’m not sure… I think I’m leaning against it at the moment. Different styles could have some charm too. (Also, if we go for a multilingual account, I’m not sure how you would even define a consistent voice, let alone implement it.)
  • wiki way – I feel like social media is closer to en:Wikipedia:The deadline is now than en:Wikipedia:There is no deadline ;) by which I mean, while we can edit posts later when necessary, I think the initial post (seen by followers and further spread via early boosts) should already be “good”, whatever that means.
    • signing posts – I would start without signing, and perhaps make a poll about it after some followers have been gained. To me, signing can feel a bit “corporate”, if that makes sense?
  • content – agree on both counts
  • enwiki or all Wikipedias – I’d also prefer all Wikipedias, I think. Or we could make @Wikipedia automatically boost all other @Wikipedia_* accounts? (via a known list, not “any account anywhere that has that prefix”, of course ^^)
    • multilingual content – Yeah, that would be great.

Disclaimer: I’m not much of a Wikipedian ^^ but one set of comments is better than none, I suppose. Lucas Werkmeister (talk) 19:48, 5 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

You would think that signing posts would make it more personalized, but I totally get it, it's very much a corporate customer service thing to do. And thank you, this is all great feedback. Legoktm (talk) 02:25, 6 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]


This looks like a great initiative! I see that the page currently links CC BY SA 3.0 as the license; while this is true, I think that the GFDL should also be included, per the Terms. I'm not sure if it's best to link to en:w:WP:LICENSE, the Terms subsection, or somewhere else, given the dual-licensing. Thoughts appreciated! EpicPupper (talk) 02:30, 13 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Thanks! I basically just looked at the footer of Wikipedia itself, which says "Text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License 3.0; additional terms may apply". Given that there's no mention of GFDL there, I don't think it really is necessary for the Mastodon account profile to mention it. And then that page says, "...The best way to do that is with a link to", hence using that link in the profile!
As a practical matter, I'm pretty sure that basically no one today is actually trying to reuse Wikipedia content under the terms of the GFDL, it's way too onerous to comply with compared to CC, so it's probably not worth mentioning given we have limited character space in the profile fields.
All that said, this would probably be a good topic to post about! Briefly covering the license history from originally GFDL to the licensing referendum and now the ongoing CC 4.0 discussion. Legoktm (talk) 02:56, 13 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]


And discreetly in the April Wikis World update. Please spread the word! Legoktm (talk) 07:15, 13 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

A proposal for showing our language diversity[edit]

Hello! So happy we finally can move on this. One of the ideas I have been thinking of is how to show our language diversity when tweeting/tooting. Diversity is desired but, at the same time, difficult for readers.

I propose two ways of showing this diversity:

  1. Once a day retooting/retweeting a post made in another language Wikipedia account. We should need a census of stances in Mastodon to do it.
  2. In every post made in English, adding a footer displaying the number of languages the content is available. We can add something like: "Read it en English: [link]. Available in X languages [link to Wikidata languages section]

This way, we promote both multilanguage content and discoverability.

Let me know if this idea seems good. Theklan (talk) 08:28, 13 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Great idea. I gave your second idea a try in this post, what do you think? I'm actively looking for stuff to boost using the #wiki and #wikipedia hashtags, I did find this one, but I don't want to boost Twitter stuff. OTOH this looks like a good thing to boost (done). Legoktm (talk) 05:06, 14 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
It looks good. It can be something more standarized, like using an icon: 💬? 🌏🌎🌍? (mastodon allows to create custom icons, too).
🌍🌎🌏 Available in 6 languages. Theklan (talk) 12:01, 14 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Maybe File:OOjs UI icon language-ltr.svg? Legoktm (talk) 02:54, 19 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes, but it should be asked to @admin at to create a custom icon for that. Theklan (talk) 15:39, 19 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Good thing I know one ;) Ended up going with File:Green translation icon.svg, which I think will look better in both light and dark modes. Legoktm (talk) 06:21, 21 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
There's nothing like having direct contact ;) Theklan (talk) 07:27, 21 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Introducing: the grid[edit]

At @euwikipedia and @viquipedia handles we use a method to determine what to tweet. Is a mix of "on this day" that can easily be built, and then a grid of topics that we cover at least once a week. This way, we have historical data (births, deaths, battles and so on) mixed with the major knowledge topics: sciences (math, biology, physics, chemistry, geology, other), humanities (sociology, history, anthropology, phillosophy, religions, law) and arts and entertainment (paintings, sculpture, cinema, literature, sports). We should toot/tweet at least one article per topic per week.

We should have time sections to schedule the grid. Every day we would have:

  • On this day 1
  • On this day 2
  • Today featured content (from enwiki)
  • Science 1
  • Humanities 1
  • arts 1
  • Science 2
  • Humanities 2

Also, we should retoot other wiki content, as discussed above, but also Wikidata, Commons, user community... Theklan (talk) 08:52, 13 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Overall I like the general idea of ensuring balanced subject-area coverage. Just to clarify is your list per-day or per-week?
Based on your post I started looking into Mastodon scheduling options, and they're not very great. I'm going to take some time this weekend / early next week to make something better and more collaborative. Legoktm (talk) 03:10, 19 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
It should be around 8-10 toots per day (different time zones), so all topics are covered in one week (1 math toot per week; but two science toots per day). Theklan (talk) 15:40, 19 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@Theklan is live now if you want to give proposing posts through it (if that's too cumbersome to use, feel free to put them somewhere in a way that's convenient for you, I'll figure something out). And after a few weeks I can just give you permission to post through the tool.
I will say I'm a little apprehensive of posting every 2-3 hours, especially keeping in mind Nemo's comment below about not "spamming nonsensical trivia". But I'm down to try it out and see how well it's received, and adapting as needed. Legoktm (talk) 06:18, 9 May 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Making knowledge available =/= "spamming nonsensical trivia". Thanks, I'll try later today! You'll see how it starts working fine. Theklan (talk) 07:08, 9 May 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I have started from the most obvious: a daily tweet with the featured article at English Wikipedia. Arbitrarily, I have added the 12:00 UTC time, but it could be another one. I have made proposals for the next 11 days, once we start with a dynamic, we could start adding more articles. Theklan (talk) 14:35, 9 May 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@Theklan: My first impression is that there's already a bot that posts a plain excerpt of the TFA, which isn't necessarily bad, just that I feel like we can do better than that :) What do you think of my changes here? It highlights the lizard is "among the most iconic Australian animals", which (IMO) is the most hook-y thing about it, and also recognizes the editor who worked on the article to add a human element to it. Legoktm (talk) 07:32, 12 May 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
It was a starting approach to start making an audience and, later on, follow with more thigs. TFA is a good starting point for that, because it is not a challenge. Your proposals are really great, I didn't know the characters limit at, that's why I tried to make it shorter. But if you can fit it, adding the information about the author who made the featured content is a very personal touch that will make our community more "human". Theklan (talk) 09:16, 12 May 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@Theklan: are you still interested in collaborating on this? I started writing up a few for next week. Legoktm (talk) 08:02, 29 May 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes, I'm interested, sure. I have been really busy in the last weeks, but I hope that by the end of this week I will have some time to propose topics. How long in advance should I send them to give you time? The last time I proposed some but it seems that they were too close in time to post them. Theklan (talk) 08:35, 29 May 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Sorry about that :/. How about 3-4 days for now? Just so if we want to make changes we have a bit of time for back-and-forth before they have to be posted or become out of date. Legoktm (talk) 08:24, 31 May 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Convincing the critics[edit]

I notice that the announcement was met by some response containing common myths, such as the idea that the follower number on other social media is a valuable indicator, in a way that makes the @Wikipedia account somehow not comparable with "smaller" accounts. The reality is very different.

Some people may not know, or have forgotten, that the followers of @Wikipedia have grown by means of dilution. Initially @Wikipedia was mostly an account to educate people about Wikipedia itself. By early 2013 it had about 1400 tweets and 80k followers; with four more years it ballooned to 10k and 350k, and in the next 2 years it further doubled down on maximising volume, reaching about 19k and 450k by June 2019. A big part of this was spamming nonsensical trivia and outright purchase of followers from Twitter (with Twitter ads), for the sake of reaching some artificial goal set in the WMF plans (I believe it was 10 or 20 % yearly growth in followers). In the next 4 years there's been more inertia, with followers either increasing or decreasing depending on the direction of the wind.

All that follower chasing might have had some usefulness if it had increased the reach and impact of whatever was the intended message of the account, but right now it's pretty safe to say the account isn't achieving much. Followers have been stagnating a bit above 600k or decreasing; interactions are very low, lower than what gets with a mere 23k followers on the fediverse. This is unsurprising for anyone who has been paying attention.

Whatever the sunk costs Wikimedia Foundation has after years of (unfortunately) spending cash and staff on proprietary software services, their value may now be very low. Even an account with 100M followers may be worth approximately zero to its owner (as indicated by the fact it's abandoned and keeps losing followers).

Anyway, all this to say that it would be nice to have some statistics one can later compare to that of WMF-run accounts. Followers aren't significant. Interactions are easy to measure and it's easy to win on that metric in the fediverse, but they can be misleading too. Ideally the metrics would track some actually useful goal, but the things we're really interested in (like digital literacy, user registrations, user activity) are typically hard to measure. Nemo 00:42, 14 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Definitely yes, it would be great if we could track some metrics. Happy to figure out how to track them if people make suggestions :-)
As an aside, I'm curious what you mean by "spamming nonsensical trivia". Legoktm (talk) 05:17, 14 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
By "spamming nonsensical trivia" I mean high-volume posting of things which won't make the intended audience any wiser about the intended communication goals, typically by low-effort copy-pasting of factoids from Wikipedia articles. (As distinct from outright spamming such as when they started posting random series of letters and things like that.) It's my subjective call on what was going on. To be able to draw a line you first need to know what you're trying to do...
Following the POSSE principle, one possible objective would be to maximise clicks to existing blog posts (very old school, may not make sense). Maybe someone working on Diff can suggest what articles to draw from and check statistics later. There are hundreds one can probably use, so it should be possible to schedule 2-3 per day with some suitable summary and image.
One could probably have a mix of evergreen articles which are always relevant (say, something explaining the CC BY-SA) and some time-based celebration series à la "on this day". For the interviews/profiles which the Wikimedia Blog used to publish a lot around 2015, to have an excuse to repost (without implying special relevance of the person or anything) one could create a series like #HappyWikiBirthday and post them by date of first edit (or first registration) of the user the article is about. This is just a random idea for something easy to start with and hopefully scale later to other languages. Nemo 06:47, 14 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]


Hello! I would like to start adding content with the previous proposal in mind. Can I have access? Thanks! Theklan (talk) 06:13, 18 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Yes! but if you don't mind waiting a few days for when I/we have the new scheduling system set up, that'll make it easier to share access. Legoktm (talk) 03:43, 19 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Sure! Theklan (talk) 15:40, 19 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
My apologies, I'm a bit farther behind than I expected to be, I should have an update by Wednesday. Legoktm (talk) 04:27, 2 May 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No rush! (I have plenty of work too) Theklan (talk) 07:23, 2 May 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Inside baseball??[edit]

I'm a native English speaker but I've never heard this phrase before. Could we make the page here a bit more inclusive? Currently it seems to be designed for an in-group to talk to themselves using jargon only they undetstand. JMWt (talk) 18:16, 18 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

See wikt:inside baseball. Anyways, the intent wasn't to be exclusionary, that's just the word I thought fit best. But I've replaced it now, and if you feel there's other jargon on the page please point it out, or feel free to edit it yourself :) Legoktm (talk) 01:46, 19 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Thanks for reducing the USA/sports jargon! Nemo 11:20, 19 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Hi! Available to chat?[edit]

Hi @Legoktm and @Annierau: Are you available to chat about this account with some folks in the Foundation’s Comms Department? We’d appreciate the opportunity to align on content and approach. We’d also enjoy learning more about your experience managing the account so far and plans for the future. Let me know. Thanks! LDickinson (WMF) (talk) 14:59, 1 May 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

@LDickinson (WMF): Sure, that would be great! What's the best way for us to set something up? Legoktm (talk) 04:27, 2 May 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Great, thank you! I just sent you an email via Meta so that we can share our availability and coordinate a date/time and other logistics. Please let me know if you'd prefer to connect in another way. LDickinson (WMF) (talk) 21:26, 3 May 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Hi @Legoktm and @Annierau: It was nice to connect with you both last week! Thanks again for taking the time. We appreciate you sharing your experiences in running the account and the insights you've gained along the way.
As promised, I am sharing a message here to recap and follow up on next steps. I'll try my best to be concise! In our discussion, you shared some key things around your goals for the account, target audiences, and ideal content mix. Mainly, you shared that you'd like to use this account to reach both the Wikipedia reader and Wikimedia community audiences, and that you would like to provide updates on things happening internally within the movement (noting that you've already seen solid engagement with people in the movement tagging the account with questions).
We talked together about the varying needs and expectations for these two distinct audiences — including how a Wikipedia reader audience is likely not very familiar with the movement, so any content shared should be messaged in a way that allows them to go on the "journey" of understanding. In other words, content that is relevant to the movement audience is often inaccessible and sometimes confusing for the Wikipedia reader audience unless explained with further context.
In order to more strongly position the account and help provide clarity to followers on Mastodon, we discussed the proposal to change the name of the account to "Wikipedia movement," "Wikipedia volunteers," "Wikipedia worldwide," or something similar. In addition to the benefits already mentioned, this name change also relieves the burden from you and other account admins of managing any institutional responsibilities affiliated with Wikipedia as an entity (e.g. fielding fundraising support questions, legal or trust and safety concerns, etc.).  Could you please let me know what you think about the best next steps for changing the account name?
Please let me know if I have missed anything or if you have any other updates. Looking forward to keeping in touch around this exciting account.  Thanks again! LDickinson (WMF) (talk) 14:11, 17 May 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Interesting recap. Though I'm not sure about the name change. A name change only makes the account less legitimate IMO. They say it in their bio if the account is a community-run, didn't they? Same as the Wikipedia itself, the site is run and maintained by the Wikipedia community. Fediverse Report reported that they have a positive view of the Wikipedia's presence on Mastodon because it is run by the community, not a PR department, and it suits the spirit of the fediverse. That post got 962 likes and 1K boosts (retweets)! I've made three posts to the Wikipedia account, two introductions (id, jv) and one conference post. Others can also propose a post to @Wikipedia/Posts, as long as they follow the account's content guidelines. Beside Wikipedia, Wikis World also hosts three accounts of Wikimedia projects, including Wikidata, Wikifunctions, and MediaWiki.
If your concerns are about the fundraising support questions, couldn't they suggest people directly contact WMF at For legal and trust, did you mean a trust for what plans and who will manage the account in the future? I believe @Legoktm and @Annierau can explain more about how people can have access to the account and what the requirements are. Will it be decided by the community consensus? For safety concern, the instance's rules are similiar to UCoC and Contributor Covenant, which Wikis World users must comply with, including @Wikipedia admins. So that should be fine, right? Labdajiwa (talk) 12:00, 21 May 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
We don't have any specific requirements/process laid out yet for how people get access, the current focus is on getting people to contribute in the first place; and thank you for your contributions so far! I would expect it would the process would be something like having a good track record of submitting posts, and be someone that we trust, but not like a vote.
I believe the trust/safety point was if people ask the Wikipedia account questions related to those topics, rather than those issues on the Wikis World server. (And IMO the Wikis World rules are stronger than the UCoC.) Legoktm (talk) 21:43, 26 May 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Thanks @LDickinson (WMF)! And sorry about the delay in replying, still catching up after hackathon travel + vacation. That's a good summary, the one thing I would add is that our long-term goal is for the account to be truly collaborative, in the wiki spirit.
To get some more data, last week I posted a poll asking followers what they want to see. We got nearly 1k responses, with a supermajority asking for "facts", but a pretty solid 40% asking for "behind the scenes" type-content. Definitely we plan to work on making the behind the scenes stuff more accessible to
I guess I'm still not seeing a strong reason to rename. To me "Wikipedia volunteers" or "Wikipedia community" (my slight preference) feels redundant, what is Wikipedia if not run by volunteers or organized in a community? In the other direction, the WMF-run account on Twitter isn't "Wikipedia non-profit foundation", that would also be a bit silly :). Though I'd note that the Twitter account doesn't give any indication who runs it - on that front, the Mastodon account is more transparent towards followers.
I feel like donation/fundraising questions are actually the easiest to answer because there's already pretty clear documentation for editors on where to point people to? I feel like many of us have already learned to field these questions via VRT, IRC, on-wiki, etc. I am more concerned about non-straightforward questions like "why do you keep banning/mistreating/etc. trans editors" (something one specific person has replied to us a few times), but I also think a name change doesn't alleviate the problem.
I don't think I said it very explicitly in the meeting, but I do consider WMF staff to be part of the "community" that has a hand in this account. If a situation comes up in which we're unsure how to handle something, I certainly won't shy away from asking for help, whether it's you/Comms or a different team (e.g. DSA questions). And I would hope we can do the same in the other direction, so if there's something the WMF wants to communicate, we can facilitate posting/spreading it. I would add that WMF staff are already participating/collaborating with the @mediawiki account, so I hope we can do the same here. Legoktm (talk) 21:24, 26 May 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Hi there, @Legoktm, I hope you have been well! Thanks for sharing this follow up message, including the results of the poll, which are really interesting. And thanks for your patience on my reply.
First, I wanted to update you that the Foundation has launched a Mastodon instance; you can follow us at: There are more details in today's Wikimedia-l message from Anusha Alikhan, the Foundation's Chief of Comms. As she noted, it will be primarily focused on developer engagement and tech topics.
I'd also like to share more context on our recommendation to change the name of the account. (Apologies in advance for the long response.) Ultimately, this all comes down to finding a balance between two things: 1) positioning the account in a way that supports you and the other admins in reaching your goals, and 2) alleviating the accountabilities and responsibility connected with stewarding the Wikipedia trademark.
As you likely know, the names and logos of the Wikimedia projects, including Wikipedia, all function as trademarks. The Wikimedia Foundation fills the necessary role as legal owner of the tangible aspects of the Wikimedia brands (trademarks, domain names, etc.), providing an entity that can be listed on public records, enforce against misuse, and be a point of contact for anyone with questions about our brands. (There's a lot more helpful information on this topic in the February 2023 Brand Stewardship Report.)
When we use Wikimedia project trademarks to title social media accounts (like @Wikipedia), we are communicating to the public that the channel will be an official topline account for all sorts of topics, including legal situations, fundraising, technology updates, and more. This is important for anyone who pursues a verified account on Mastodon or any other social media platform to keep in mind.
As such, I hope you can understand the complex dynamic myself and other Foundation staff are navigating around the name of this account: On one hand, we are responsible for managing how the Wikipedia brand and trademark are used on social media. Accounts titled "@Wikipedia" fall under this purview, even if they include a reference to management by the Wikimedia community in the bio. On the other hand, we are completely supportive of you and other Wikimedia volunteers leading and shaping this account. As you said, "what is Wikipedia if not run by volunteers or organized in a community"?
So, the big remaining question is: How do we move forward in a way that addresses legal and liability concerns while also ensuring you and the other admins can build this account into all you want it to be? From our perspective, the best (and simplest) solution on the table is to rename the account to "Wikipedia community" or something similar. We are also in the process of developing some guidelines for community members running Wikimedia-affiliated accounts.
Lastly, I'll resurface another benefit of the name change that was brought up in the call. A name like "Wikipedia community" or "Wikipedia worldwide," in my opinion, does better reflect the content you're hoping to share from the account. This will offer more clarity to your followers, as well as raise awareness and understanding of the Wikimedia movement more widely.
I hope this is helpful information. What do you think? We're happy to have a call again if it's simpler to talk this through. Thanks for working with us on this! LDickinson (WMF) (talk) 20:58, 17 July 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
If WMF is worried about liability, it could start spending more effort to reduce the confusion between Wikimedia and Wikipedia. The first post by is not a good start, as it uses Wikipedia-centric imagery and only Wikipedia is mentioned in the bio.
Instead of the slightly menacing tone above, WMF would do itself good if it explained what plans it has to do better than does at the moment. Nemo 06:48, 18 July 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I'm still digesting your reply, but just to quickly address the trademark concern, I was under the impression that this kind of social media outreach was explicitly permitted per: "3.3 Outreach and recruiting new contributors: You may use the marks consistent with our mission to educate people about the Wikimedia sites and to recruit new contributors, as long as you make it clear that you do not work for the Wikimedia Foundation." Legoktm (talk) 21:52, 18 July 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The Wikipedia brand is a shared resource of our movement. Yes the WMF technically holds it on behalf of the movement, but they are holding it for the movement not for themselves exclusively. Should the community be able to use the brand to advance our movement, yes definitely. I am not seeing justification for a name change. The WMF is not the only ones involved in enforcement of misuse of our shared brand nor are the only ones who speak officially on behalf of our movement or Wikipedia. Doc James (talk · contribs · email) 10:21, 2 August 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Furthermore, @wikipedia on Twitter should be changed to something like WMF-Wikipedia, to reflect that is an account owned (and enclosed) by the WMF and not by the community who builds (English) Wikipedia. Theklan (talk) 02:39, 9 August 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
To expand on my current thoughts in absence of a reply to my earlier comment: the important question for me is are these concerns theoretical or actual issues? I.e., have there been concerns with posts?
As far as trademarks go, if this isn't already permissible outreach activity, I would think that we would want to reach for tools that give us the most flexibility here, like housing the accounts with a chapter or setting up a new user group (e.g. "Wikimedians for free social media") that has trademark authorization, which is probably best long-term from a governance perspective anyways.
Maybe I'm trying to read between the lines too much, but does WMF Comms want to run its own official "Wikipedia" account and this one is in the way? (I had assumed the answer was no because the WMF Mastodon efforts are just tech-focused but I'd love to be wrong on this.) Legoktm (talk) 05:35, 3 August 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]