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The Wikipedia Library
Books & Bytes
Issue 28, April–May 2018

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In this issue, we highlight #1Bib1Ref, new partners, global developments and, as always, a roundup of news and community items related to libraries and digital knowledge.


The #1Lib1Ref campaign is now a twice-yearly event! #1Lib1Ref in May ran for the first time this year beginning on 15 May, wrapping up 5 June. This is a great expansion of the event and it means that there is another opportunity to make Wikipedia more factual and verifiable by leveraging the expertise of librarians around the world. We've seen lots of activity from the Spanish Wikipedia in particular, where it is popularly known as #1Bib1Ref, but contributors from around the world are also getting involved. Chile, Mexico, Argentina, Cameroon, India, Brazil, Ghana, Portugal, Uruguay and Australia are a few of the countries participating in this second round of activities.

Check out the edits tagged for 1lib1ref and 1bib1ref.

Novaj partneroj

The Wikipedia Library is announcing signups today for free, full-access, accounts to published research as part of our Publisher Donation Program. You can sign up for:

  • Rock's Backpages – Music articles and interviews from the 1950s onwards – 50 accounts
  • Invaluable – Database of more than 50 million auctions and over 500,000 artists – 15 accounts
  • Termsoup – Translation tool

Other partnerships with accounts available are listed on our partners page. Do better research and help expand the use of high-quality references across Wikipedia projects: sign up today!

User Group

The Wikipedia Library User Group has officially been renamed to the Wikimedia and Libraries User Group, because of the wider community the group represents. The former name was chosen by the Wikipedia Library team at the inception of the group. Later, based on input from the founding members, a poll was conducted and the Wikimedia and Libraries User Group turned out to be the most preferred name, hence the rename. On a related news, the new group contacts are User:Merrilee and User:Sodapopinski7. The steering committee has been meeting twice every month consistently since its election to discuss the ongoing and future activities of the user group. To help the committee prioritise and plan activities this year, the committee invites you to participate in this poll. The committee last met on 14-15 May 2018 and discussed, among other things, the activities poll and GLAM Wiki Tel Aviv 2018.

The committee decided to use the libraries(_AT_)lists.wikimedia.org list and has started making announcements there. Please join the list for future announcements and for internal discussions and communications.


The Star Coordinator program is a quarterly award to recognize coordinators of The Wikipedia Library for their amazing work in their communities. And the winner for the 1st Quarter of 2018 is...

Krishna Chaitanya Velaga, celebrated for his contributions towards starting the first TWL branch in India and leading outreach campaigns in his country. His quest to obtain reliable resources led him to the path of the Wikipedia Library and has further motivated his volunteer activities as a coordinator.

Krishna has through the resources of the Wikipedia Library created several articles about military history with at least one featured article and several A-Class articles. Since volunteering in the capacity of a coordinator with TWL, he has led several outreach activities including OpenCon 2018 New Delhi and is currently organizing #1Lib1ref training for librarians to showcase the value of reliable sources for Wikipedia.

See past winners on the Star Coordinator page.

Wikipedia Library global coordinators' meeting

An hour-long bi-monthly global coordinators' meeting (IRC session) happened on May 2, 2018. The meeting helped everyone understand what's happening in everyone else's branches. Also, various success stories, issues and fixes were discussed. The meeting was publicly logged and is available online for reference.

Spotlight: What are the ten most cited sources on Wikipedia? Let's ask the data

An excerpt from the Wikimedia Blog post by Miriam Redi, Jake Orlowitz, Dario Taraborelli, and Ben Vershbow, Wikimedia Foundation

Citations are the foundation of Wikipedia’s reliability: they trace the connection between content added by our community of volunteer contributors and its sources. For readers, citations provide a mechanism to validate and check for themselves that what Wikipedia says is sound and trustworthy: they act as a gateway towards a broader ecosystem of reliable knowledge. In an effort to spearhead more research on where Wikipedia gets its facts from, and to celebrate Open Citations Month, we asked ourselves: what are the most cited sources across all of Wikipedia’s language editions?

To answer this question, we published a dataset of every citation referencing an identifier across all 297 Wikipedia language editions. The dataset breaks down sources cited in each language by identifier–a PMID or PMC (for articles in the biomedical literature), a DOI (for scholarly papers), an ISBN (for book editions), or an ArXiV ID (for preprints).

The full dataset, extracted from the March 1, 2018, Wikipedia content dumps, includes a total of 15,693,732 records and shows important variations across languages in the kind of sources volunteer contributors cite. The dataset also only includes citations by identifier, which means not all citations on Wikipedia are reflected in the dataset; many more publications than the records included in this dataset are cited that don't reference any identifier (and our next analysis will be able to tell you what percentage of total citations this dataset represents).

On average, the majority of publications cited by identifier across Wikipedia language editions are books. German Wikipedia – one of the top 5 language editions by the number of articles – relies primarily on information sourced to book editions, with 87% of citations in the ISBN category. Conversely, English Wikipedia sources its information equally on scholarly publications and books, while Arabic Wikipedia uses more scholarly publications than books.

Unsurprisingly, Wikipedians love reference works. The top 10 sources by citation across every Wikipedia language are all reference books or scientific articles describing large collections. Many of these publications have been cited by Wikipedians across large series of articles using powerful bots and automated tools.

This data release is only a first step among many to come in understanding how citations are used on Wikipedia. In the next few months, we'll focus on additional analyses of citations in Wikimedia projects, to understand how they are accessed by readers since we care about the public being able to verify information that Wikipedia cites. We’ll also continue to work with partners to promote the use of this data and deepen our research of citation practices on Wikipedia.

Bytes in brief

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