Wikimedia Foundation Report, July 2014
|You are more than welcome to edit this report for the purposes of usefulness, presentation, etc., and to add translations of the “Wikimedia Highlights” excerpt.|
Data and Trends
Global unique visitors for June:
- 432 million (-7.9% compared with May; -9.1% compared with the previous year)
- (comScore data for all Wikimedia Foundation projects, not including mobile devices; comScore will release July data later in July)
Page requests for July:
- 20.583 billion (+1.8% compared with June; +4.4% compared with the previous year)
- (Server log data, all Wikimedia Foundation content projects including mobile access, but excluding Wikidata and the Wikipedia main portal page.)
Active Registered Editors for June 2014 (>= 5 mainspace edits/month, excluding bots):
- 74,549 (-7.0% compared with May / -2.0% compared with the previous year)
- (Database data, all Wikimedia Foundation projects.)
Report Card (integrating various statistical data and trends about WMF projects):
(Financial information is only available through June 2014 at the time of this report.)
All financial information presented is for the Month-To-Date and Year-To-Date June 30, 2014.
|Legal/Community Advocacy/Communications Group||5,114,480|
|in US dollars|
- Revenue for the month of June is $1.31MM versus plan of $1.67MM, approximately $0.36MM or 22% under plan.
- Year-to-date revenue is $51.28MM versus plan of $50.07MM, approximately $1.21MM or 2% over plan.
- Expenses for the month of June is $6.58MM versus plan of $4.52MM, approximately $2.06MM or 46% over plan, primarily due to higher legal fees, capital expenditures, grants, outside contract services, personnel expenses, and travel & conference expenses offset by lower internet hosting expenses.
- Year-to-date expenses is $43.80MM versus plan of $50.07MM, approximately $6.27MM or 13% under plan, primarily due to lower personnel expenses, capital expenses, internet hosting, payment processing fees, staff development expenses, overall grants and travel expenses partially offset by higher legal fees, outside contract services, and conference expenses.
- Cash and Investments - $49.67MM as of June 30, 2014.
Petition for free access to Wikipedia on mobile phones
On July 28, the Wikimedia Foundation launched a petition for free access to Wikipedia on mobile phones, as it is offered in the Wikipedia Zero program. The petition is accompanied by the short documentary film, titled Knowledge for Everyone, about a group of high school students in South Africa who had written an open letter asking the country's mobile carriers for such access, so that they could use Wikipedia for their schoolwork.
Legal victories in Italy and against paid editing sites
After more than four years, a Rome court dismissed a case against the Wikimedia Foundation, describing Wikipedia as "a service based on the freedom of the users" and setting positive precedent for other claims in Italy. Also in July, the Foundation successfully obtained orders preventing four websites advertising a service of paid editing of articles on Wikipedia from abusing the “Wikipedia” trademark.
New Wikipedia app for iOS mobile devices
In July, the new native iOS Wikipedia app was released, following the successful launch of the Android app in June. The app has the same features as the Android app, including the ability to edit both anonymously and logged in, saved pages for offline reading, and a history of your recently visited pages.
Grants impact analysis
The Wikimedia Foundation's Grantmaking department published the first set of analyses for an impact review focusing on $4.4M of fully reported grants from the year 2013/14 in its three grants areas: Individual Engagement Grants, Project & Event Grants and Annual Plan Grants.
A detailed report of the Tech Department's activities for July 2014 can be found at:
- Department Highlights
Major news in July include:
- a recap of how the Operations team collaborated with the RIPE NCC to measure the delivery of Wikimedia sites to users in Asia and elsewhere;
- an analysis of the impact of the San Francisco data center on the speed of Wikimedia sites;
- the launch of the new native Wikipedia app for iOS;
- a first look at the content translation tool.
HHVM (HipHop Virtual Machine) is aimed to improve the speed of Wikimedia sites. The Beta cluster (the testing environment that best simulates our sites) is now running HHVM. The latest MediaWiki-Vagrant and Labs-vagrant (virtual machine environments that make it easier for developers to apply their code to Wikimedia sites) use HHVM by default.
In July, the Mobile Apps team launched the new native iOS Wikipedia app, following the successful launch of the Android app in June. The app has the same features as the Android app, including the ability to edit both anonymously and logged in, saved pages for offline reading, and your recently visited pages. The iOS app also contains an onboarding screen which is displayed the first time the app is launched, asking users to sign up. An update to the Android app was released, containing the Android version of the onboarding screen, as well as a a night mode for reading in dark environments, a font size selector, and a references display that makes browsing references easier. Next month, the team plans to continue improvements to page styling, and begin designing a dialogue that displays the first time a user taps edit to help them make their edit successfully.
This month, the team continued to focus on wrapping up the collaboration with the Editing team to bring VisualEditor to tablet users on the mobile site. We also began working to design and prototype our first new Wikidata contribution stream, which we will build and test with users on the beta site in the coming month.
In July, the Flow team built the ability for users to subscribe to individual Flow discussions, instead of following an entire page of conversations. Subscribing to an individual thread is automatic for users who create or reply to the thread, and users can choose to subscribe (or unsubscribe) by clicking a star icon in the conversation's header box. Users who are subscribed to a thread receive notifications about any replies or activity in that thread. To support the new subscription/notification system, the team created a new namespace, Topic, which is the new "permalink" URL for discussion threads; when a user clicks on a notification, the target link will be the Topic page, with the new messages highlighted with a color. The team is currently building a new read/unread state for Flow notifications, to help users keep track of the active discussion topics that they're subscribed to.
In July, the team working on VisualEditor converged the mobile and desktop designs, made it possible to see and edit HTML comments, improved access to re-using citations, and fixed over 120 bugs and tickets. The team also expanded its scope to cover all MediaWiki editing tools as well, as the new Editing Team.
The new design is possible due to the significant progress made in cross-platform support in the interface code. This now provides responsively-sized windows that can work on desktop, tablet and phone with the same code. HTML comments are occasionally used to alert editors to contentious issues without disrupting articles for readers. Making them prominently visible avoids editors accidentally stepping over expected limits. The simple dialog for re-using citations is now available in the toolbar so that it is easier for users to find.
Other improvements include an array of performance fixes targeted at helping mobile users especially. We fixed several minor instances where VisualEditor would corrupt the page. We also installed better monitoring of corruptions if they occur. The mobile version of VisualEditor, currently available for beta testers, moved towards stable release. We fixed some bugs and editing issues, and improving loading performance. Our work to support languages made some significant gains, nearing the completion of a major task to support IME users. The work to support Internet Explorer uncovered some more issues as well as fixes.
In July, the SUL (single user login) finalisation team worked on developing features to ease the workload that the finalisation will place on the community, and to minimise the impact on those users that are affected. A feature is being developed that allows users to log in with their pre-finalisation credentials, so that everyone who is affected is still able to access their account; this feature is mostly complete from a back-end engineering standpoint but now needs design and product refinement, and will hopefully be completed by late August. A feature to globally rename users in a manner that does not create clashing accounts was completed and deployed. A feature is being developed to allow accounts to be globally merged, so that clashing local-only accounts that were globalised by the finalisation can be consolidated into a single global account; this feature is in the early stages of implementation and no estimate is possible at this time. A feature is being developed to allow local-only account holders to request rename and globalisation before the finalisation, and also feeds these rename requests to the appropriate community processes in a manner that reduces the workload of community; this feature is in the design phase, and will likely be ready for implementation in early August.
Phabricator's "Legalpad" application (a tool to manage trusted users) was set up on a separate server that provides provides Single-User Login authentication with wiki credentials. We implemented the ability to restrict access to tasks in a certain project and worked on initial migration code to import data from Bugzilla reports into Phabricator tasks. We also set up a data backup system for Phabricator, and upgraded the dedicated Phabricator server to Ubuntu Trusty. A more detailed summary email about the status of the Phabricator migration was sent to Wikitech-l.
In July, the Request for comment for refactoring MediaWiki's skin system (which handles the appearance of wiki sites) was re-written and discussed with members of the community and staff. Work on the proposed system is scheduled to begin in August, alongside creating an Agora theme for, and server-side version of, OOjs UI, a toolkit used to compose complex widgets. In addition to the RfC work, a well-attended meeting was held for teams using or considering using OOjs UI, including Editing, Multimedia and Growth. From that meeting, several issues were identified as blockers to increased acceptance of the toolkit. The most prominent blocker is the lack of an Agora theme for OOjs UI at this time. Creating this theme has thus been prioritized and will be completed as soon as possible. The Design team has committed to delivering necessary assets by mid-August. Discussion about changes to OOjs UI also surfaced the desire to be able to create widgets on the server and then bind to them on the client (a feature proposed as part of the skinning RfC). This functionality is thus now planned to be implemented in OOjs UI before the skin refactoring begins.
This month we completed the documentation for the Active Editor Model, a set of metrics for observing sub-population trends and setting product team goals. We also engaged in further work on the new page views definition. An interim solution for Limited-duration Unique Client Identifiers (LUCIDs) was also developed and passed to the Analytics Engineering team for review.
We analyzed trends in mobile readership and contributions, with a particular focus on the tablet switchover and the release of the native Android app. We found that in the first half of 2014 mobile surpassed desktop in the rate at which new registered users become first-time editors and first-time active editors in many major projects, including the English Wikipedia. An update on mobile trends was presented at the upcoming Monthly Metrics meeting on July 31.
The brand new Services group started design and prototyping work on the storage service (see code) and REST API (see code). The storage service now has early support for bucket creation and multiple bucket types. We decided to configure the storage service as a back-end for the REST API server. This means that all requests will be sent to the REST API, which will then route them to the appropriate storage service without network overhead. This design lets us keep the storage service buckets very general, by adding entry point specific logic in front-end handlers. The interface is still well-defined in terms of HTTP requests, so it remains straightforward to run the storage service as a separate process. We refined the bucket design to allow us to add features very similar to Amazon DynamoDB in a future iteration. There is also an early design for light-weight HTTP transaction support.
- Fundraising is off to a strong start in the new fiscal year – raising $4.5 million in July.
- We welcomed Victoria Shchepakina as a new Fundraiser Program Associate. She will focus her efforts on the Wikimedia Shop.
- We started accepting Bitcoin. See the blog post for the full announcement.
- A Petition for Free Access to Wikipedia on Cell phones was published. We will be emailing this petition to our donors in order to increase awareness about Wikipedia Zero.
Major Gifts and Foundations
- The MGF team raised over $2.4 million in July, including $1.25 million from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.
- Fall fundraising events scheduled for September 22 in NYC and November 6 in San Francisco
- The online fundraising team ran low-level banner tests world-wide, and a full-scale campaign in Japan. Emails were sent to previous donors in the Japan and South Africa. Approximately $2 million USD was raised in July through these campaigns (preliminary numbers as donations are still settling).
- The team held focus groups with donors in the US, primarly focused on optimizing mobile and email fundraising.
- The team prepared translations of fundraising messages into multiple languages for upcoming international banner campaigns. If you would like to help with the translation process, please get involved.
- We are making our mobile banner tests more sophisticated, and ran a very successful one on July 30 which increased donations 3.5 times.
- Published the first set of analyses for grantmaking impact review (a full assessment will follow)
- 4 new members are appointed to the Funds Dissemination Committee (FDC) by the WMF Board of Trustees: Risker (Anne Clin), Matanya (Matanya Moses), B1mbo (Osmar Valdebenito), and Thuvack (Dumisani Ndubane). Welcome, and congratulations!
- The Travel and Participation Support program launched a revamp. Besides making workflows more user-friendly and fun, some experimental changes in this revamp aimed at supporting more participants to accomplish Wikimedia's mission include: broadening the eligibility of event types and offering Wikimedia merchandise as an outreach-tool for participants
- 110 Wikimania scholarship recipients are headed to London next month, and we can't wait to learn about the outcomes of their participation.
- A review of Project and Event Grants which were reported on in 2013-14 was completed. 32 different Wikimedia projects were supported (out of 36 grants), resulting in over 340 events, 10K people involved, 190K photos to Commons, and over 8K articles written. See full report.
- 2014-2015 Round 1 of the FDC process kicks off, with the initial announcement of eligibility status for all 15 organizations that submitted a Letter of Intent (LOI) for the upcoming round.
- Several members of the grantmaking team participated in the International Human Rights Funders Group (IHRFG) annual conference in New York City, where we talked about the challenges and opportunities in funding human rights work, and importantly, shared our experiences in participatory grantmaking with the larger field of funders (and wrote the Wikipedia article).
- Launched new Learning Quarterly newsletter. Sign up to subscribe
In other news, from grantee projects:
- IEGrantee Keilana published a kit to help replicate successful experiments in countering systemic bias in Wikipedia.
- As The Wikipedia Library's 1-year IEG comes to a close, Ocaasi is measuring outcomes and notes that so far,
the Library is serving 1,940 editors with access to 2,924 free journal accounts worth 1.2 million USD. There is still room to grow as the Library has set its sights to move well beyond English.
- The results from Wiki Loves Earth are coming in. With the support of a PEG grant, the Macedonian community submitted over 12,000 photos, with 200 already in use in Wikipedia articles!
- Members of Wikimedia Taiwan have translated the Editing Wikipedia brochure into Chinese -- filling a huge gap in resources for our global community.
- Amical Wikimedia supported as many as 792 articles created through the Catalan Culture challenge in 92 languages.
Visits and Events
- Asaf Bartov participated in the Ukrainian 10th Anniversary WikiConference in Kiev, delivering a keynote on identifying and managing conflict of interest in non-profit governance (as distinct from w:WP:COI while editing)
- Asaf Bartov visited Wikimedia Serbia in Belgrade, to have a meeting with the board and an open wikimeetup.
- Anasuya Sengupta and Garfield Byrd visited Wikimedia Israel in Tel Aviv, to learn more about the chapter's current work and future plans.
- Grantmaking session preparations are underway for Wikimania. Some events in the works include: an IdeaLab mixer and workshop and a panel showcasing grantee projects from across our 4 programs.
Annual Plan Grants Program
- 20 reports reviewed; 6 grants completed; 11 reports submitted; 15 organizations evaluated for eligibility; 4 new committee members appointed
- The WMF Board of Trustees announces four new appointments to the FDC. Welcome to new members Risker (Anne Clin), Matanya (Matanya Moses), B1mbo (Osmar Valdebenito), and Thuvack (Dumisani Ndubane)! New members were appointed by the board after a selection process including statements from nominees and a public question and answer phase. The terms of the new members will begin 1 August. We thank the departing members for their invaluable contributions to the work of the inaugural FDC: Mike Peel, Arjuna Rao Chavala, Anders Wennersten, and Yuri Perohanych.
- Organizations receiving grants in 2013-2014 Round 2 were contacted in order to execute grant agreements and send payments. New grant terms started on 1 July, and the first round of progress reports will be due 30 October.
- Initial eligibility for 15 organizations submitting Letters of Intent for 2014-2015 Round 1 was announced on 18 July 2014. Organizations in the YES IF category will have until 15 July 2014 to meet eligibility gaps and move to the YES category. Organizations in the YES category will be eligible to submit proposals for 2014-2015 Round 1, which will be due on 1 October. As of 30 July, 10 organizations are already deemed eligible to participate!
- 11 Quarter 2 progress reports for 2013-2014 grants were submitted by 30 July. Second installments of grant funds will be sent to 2013-2014 Round 1 grantees.
- 11 Quarter 1 progress reports for 2013-2014 grants and 2 Quarter 3 progress reports for 2012-2013 Round 2 grants were reviewed by FDC staff. Some highlights from the Q1 progress reports include:
- Amical Wikimedia supports as many as 792 articles through the Catalan Culture challenge in 92 languages.
- Wikimedia Serbia hosts a successful EduWiki conference.
- 9 impact reports for 2012-2013 grantees were reviewed by FDC staff and 2012-2013 Round 1 grants have now been completed by 8 organizations (including Wikimédia France and Wikimedia Foundation, that submitted impact reports earlier); 2 organizations will need to return underspent grant funds before grants are complete and 1 organization still needs to submit English translations of audited financial statements before its grant is considered complete. Some highlights from the impact reports include:
- Images gained through WMIL's WikiAir program show an impressive 9.1% use rate for a group of 1,441 photos, and one of the photos was featured on the President’s greeting card for Rosh Hashanah.
- WMCH supports the upload of 11,453 pictures, including 437 quality images in 2013.
- WMAR shares impressive results from the international Mujeres Iberoamericanas contest, which produced 1,227 improved articles and an outstanding retention rate of contributors.
- WMAT shares a learning pattern about community engagement in photo contests.
Project and Event Grants Program
- 5 new requests were funded, 1 request was declined, and 11 reports were accepted in July 2014.
- The Grant Advisory Committee has a new look and Workroom. We are currently testing a new review process over the next few months. Feedback is welcome!
Grants funded in July 2014
- Printing Editing Wikipedia in Chinese: To fund the printing of "Editing Wikipedia" in Chinese for distribution by Wikimedia Taiwan.
- Wiki Loves Monuments in Ireland 2014: To support the Irish community to organize the country's first Wiki Loves Monuments.
- Acitivites in Egypt: To support activities organized by the new Eygptian User Group, including Wiki Loves Monuments, the Wikimedia Education Program, and edit-a-thons.
- Wiki Loves Monunents in Thailand 2014: To support the new Thai User Group to organize Wiki Loves Monuments.
- Script Encoding for Nepal: To support a meeting of stakeholders to discuss two Nepali scripts (Prachalit Nepal and Ranjana) with the goal of creating script proposals that will be submitted for review and eventually published in the Unicode Standard. Once they are in the Unicode Standard, they can be used on Wikimedia projects and elsewhere.
Reports accepted in July 2014
- Discover the Biodiversity of Sulawesi Financial Report: WM Indonesia completed training for the Areca Vestiaria Bird Club and purchased photography equipment for their project to document the biodiversity of Sulawesi over the next two years. View their photos and start using them in Wikimedia projects!
- WM Slovakia Annual Activities Interim Report: WM Slovakia organized a successful writing contest and are looking to increase activities with schools.
- WM India April-December 2013 Activities: WM India's activities included a GLAM program at the National Museum in Delhi, Wiki Academies in Hyderabad and Chennai, promotion of Samskrit Wikipedia, WLM, and much more!
- Wiki Loves Earth in Macedonia 2014: Macedonian Wikimedians uploaded over 12,000 photos of the natural world, with more than 200 photos already in use on Wikimedia projects!
- WM Czech Republic Mediagrant II Interim Report: WM Czech Republic's Mediagrant supports photographers through wikiexpeditions -- 7,402 photos have already been uploaded, including coverage of 74 protected areas and 518 heritage sites.
- WM Czech Republic Communities Interim Report: WM Czech Republic held their first edit-a-thon and have activated a new volunteer community in Brno!
- WM Czech Republic Presentation & Outreach II Interim Report: WM Czech Republic is moving forward with GLAM and education activities. They are digitizing a set of historic photographs from Afghanistan (1961-1962), partially available here.
- WM Denmark Wikipedian-in-Residence Scholarship II: Despite lots of interest from GLAM institutions, WM Denmark was unable to identify a partner with the time and resources to support a Wikipedian-in-Residence.
- Wiki Loves Monuments in Serbia 2013: WLM in Serbia was well-covered by the country's media with over 30 reports! Over 400 photos from the competition have already been integrated on Wikimedia projects.
- WM Serbia GLAM Start-up: WM Serbia cooperated with the Museum of Aviation Belgrade, multiple cultural centers, and are deeply involved with the Digital Belgrade project, which aims to document all of Belgrade's monuments through online photos, articles, and QR plaques.
- WM Serbia Annual Plan 2012-2013 Financial Report
Individual Engagement Grants Program
- Round 2 2013 grantees are preparing to finish their final reports as the new crop of round 1 2014 grantees begins to pick up steam on their new projects! For example:
- Keilana published the finalized version of her kit to help others replicate her successful experiments in hosting workshops aimed at countering Wikipedia's gender gap and other forms of systemic bias. Thanks to verynice.co, for donating their pro-bono design skills to WMF to make this kit shine!
- Meanwhile, Amanda published her first blog post charting the course ahead for her own gender gap research.
- As one year of funding for The Wikipedia Library comes to a close, Ocaasi is measuring and reflecting on what's been accomplished so far and what lies ahead for this growing global program aimed at expanding access to sources for Wikipedia editors around the world. So far, the Library is serving 1,940 editors with access to 2,924 free journal accounts worth 1.2 million USD. At the same time, this month the Arabic Library pilot team pulled metrics from the book pilot's first month. 11 books have been successfully purchased for Wikipedians so far, but shipping to several countries in the Middle East remains the largest restriction to growth at present.
Reports accepted in July 2014
- Wikimaps Atlas - Midpoint: Much of the backend infrastructure for the Wikimaps Atlas is now functional, and a website with a front-end making it easy for new users to generate maps is still in the works.
- The Wikipedia Library - Final report: As The Wikipedia Library's first year comes to a close, the program is serving 1,940 editors with access to 2,924 free journal accounts worth 1.2 million USD. There is still room to grow as the Library has set its sights to move well-beyond English!
Travel and Participation Support Program
- 2 new requests were funded and 3 reports were accepted in July 2014.
- The Travel and Participation Support Program has a new look. At the end of July, we launched a redesign of the program pages, based on analysis conducted on the program's first 2 years. Besides making workflows more user-friendly and fun, some experimental changes in this revamp aimed at supporting more participants to achieve Wikimedia's mission include: broadening the eligibility of event types, offering Wikimedia merchandise as an outreach-tool for participants, and bringing Wikimania scholarships under the umbrella of WMF's TPS administration processes. We're also piloting the first usage of the new Add-me gadget in program applications, making it easier than ever to endorse someone else's request for funding.
Requests awarded in July 2014
- shchung’s research talk on OER course integration using Wikibooks in Open Distance Learning at OpenSym 2014
- Daniel Mietchen’s workshop at Open Science, Open Issues on Wikimedia projects as platforms for Open Science
Reports accepted in July 2014
- Netha Hussain - AdaCamp and Open Source Bridge 2014
- Niharika Kohli - Open Source Bridge 2014
- Richa Jain - Open Source Bridge 2014
WMF's Grantmaking team has partnered with Travel & Finance to send 110 volunteer Wikimedians to London via Wikimania Scholarships. Most arrangements have now been made, and scholars are ready to travel! Some changes to the program this year are aimed at bringing Wikimania scholarships in-line with grantmaking's existing best-practices and processes for funding travel. As part of our commitment to transparency and to help establish a baseline for iterations in future years, we've published a list of scholarship recipients, and will be requiring all scholars to submit a short report about their experiences.
Learning and Evaluation
- Individual Engagement Grants:
- Prepared and launched a survey to collect feedback from users involved in proposing and evaluating Round 1 2014 IEG proposals.
- Project & Event Grants: Conducted impact analysis of all grants reported an during FY2013-14. Hosted a Google hangout to discuss results, which can be found on Meta. Major takeaways:
- PEG grantees focused on specific goals were able to report back the most success
- Online writing contests work great: 3 of 36 grants did them, resulting in 60% of total article contributions
- Grantees receiving over $10K tended to underspend quite significantly (by ~30%)
- We need a shift into quality of content (e.g., use of photos vs aggregate # of photos)
- Travel and Participation Support: Helped launch features for the new space! See other section
Grants operations and tools
- Made some progress on making grants administration work paperless by getting internal approvals electronically using Fluxx; began using Fluxx for the 2014-15 grantmaking year.
- Ran two qualitative data analysis experiments using Dedoose on grant reports, and education program leaders survey.
- More than 40 people tuned in for "Beyond Wikimetrics" (video, blog post, resource page) the first of a series of three Wikiresearch webinars focused on teaching Wikimedians how to use technical tools such as MySQL and the MediaWiki API for research purposes. These webinars are intended to teach leaders of mission-aligned projects (grant funded and otherwise) the skills necessary to perform self-evaluation, as well as to provide other community members with the skills necessary to perform exploratory research that could lead to innovative new initiatives.
- Helped develop and launch a Lua-based infobox for ultimate use in IdeaLab and across grants pages, but first in the Travel and Participation Support Program revamp (see Travel and Participation Support Program section for more details).
Program Evaluation & Design
- Launched Evaluation Pulse 2014, a first-year's end feedback survey to reassess program leaders' capacity, as well as learning and resources needs, for evaluation. Are you a project or program leader and/or evaluator who would like to take the survey? Message firstname.lastname@example.org to receive an invitation to participate.
- Launched new Learning Quarterly newsletter. Sign up to subscribe
- Worked at various stages of consultation on three survey strategies and tool development: Wikimania Exit Survey, Wikimania Hackathon Survey, and a user group survey.
- Launched the Survey Question Bank with questions developed in partnership with program leaders piloting survey strategies
- Code cleaning for evaluation portal redesign and templates to assure translatability of pages and links of the redesign plan and mock-ups.
- Published two new blog posts: Digging for Data: How to Research Beyond Wikimetrics and Wikimedians in Residence: a journey of discovery
- Hosted virtual meet-ups on Beyond Wikimetrics: Using Databases and APIs for Research with 20 attendees live (4 from the GLEE team) and 66 views (as of 7/29/2014), and Project and Event Grants: an impact review of 2013-14 with 18 attendees live (5 from the GLEE team) (on 7/29/2014).
- Developed infographic icon sets and will upload to Commons for upcoming in-person meet-up sessions surrounding Wikimania 2014. Preview icons on this WiR infographic.
- Developed infographic and
- Nearing end of contract (8/6/2014) for Wikimetrics features development (Central Auth Cohorts, Tagging, and Delete User)
- Portal Space Metrics: In July, 1140 edits were made by 24 non-WMF users to the portal main space (1098 edits, 15 users), portal talk pages (3 edits, 1 user) and to Grants:Learning_patterns (39 edits, 8 users). As for page views, there were 1467 total views of the portal's main pages Portal landing page (450), /News (375), /Tools (73), Library (158), /Parlor 42, and Grants:Learning_patterns (369).
- The community dialogue around program evaluation closed July 15th, having been promoted broadly. This request for comment was open online from May 15 to July 15, and had a total of 403 page views between its description (209) and talk page (194), with only 6 users contributing feedback. (Due to low responsiveness in terms of edits to the talk page, and a few points of feedback expressing that people did not feel comfortable disagreeing with some of the ideas which had already been posted there, key questions from the dialogue were integrated into the Evaluation Pulse 2014 survey to encourage broader project and program leader feedback. Survey respondents' anonymized answers will be integrated into the online documentation space after collection.)
- Posting to social media: 52 posts to Twitter (19 new followers (117 total followers), 528 views, 19 link visits; 15 retweets); 13 Facebook posts (157 members, 498 views, 31 likes, 9 comments); 2 Google+ events for July (70 followers, 26 new followers, 7,780 profile views, 10 +1's, 13 comments, 5 shares)
- Started preparing for a Global South user survey by collecting information about the kind of questions to be asked in the survey.
Wikipedia Education Program
Anasuya Sengupta outlined the team's plans in an announcement on 27 June 2014: "As the team goes forward to develop a road map for the future with our community members, Floor Koudijs will be the interim Senior Manager for the Education Program. Initially the team has been assigned different parts of the world in order to create a baseline of educational programs and activities, with Floor responsible for North America, Latin America and Western Europe, Tighe Flanagan for the Arab region and Africa, and Anna Koval for Asia and Eastern Europe."
- Floor Koudijs will lead the Wikipedia Education Collaborative Panel, which will report the Collaborative's activities and progress.
- Tighe Flanagan will lead a panel presentation on the impact of Wikipedia education programs around the world.
- The education team will share an update of their work since this spring at the Grantmaking team's IdeaLab Mixer and poster session.
- The education team will host an education meetup on Friday, 2 August 2014 at 7PM local time.
- The team will be staffing the WMF - Grantmaking/Education booth in the Community Village. Please stop by to meet the program managers and get involved with our outreach.
Wikipedia Education Collaborative
The Wikipedia Education Collaborative (formerly called the Cooperative) met in teleconference on 11 July 2014. One result of this meeting is an information page about the Collaborative and its purpose. This description will serve as the basis for the Collaborative panel session that will take place in London at Wikimania 2014.
Arab world programs
- Summer editing continued in Egypt during the month of Ramadan with some additional summer cohorts.
- Program volunteers in Jordan are considering creating a Wikipedia Education Program Advisory Committee to guide the program locally.
- The Wikipedia Education Program now has a page on Foundation wiki. It was developed in consult with the WMF's Communications, Community Advocacy, and Wikipedia Zero teams to support interdepartmental collaboration.
- The July issue of the education newsletter This Month In Education featured articles from education programs in Macedonia, Mexico, Israel, the Czech Republic, Wikimedia Deutschland and Wikimedia UK, as well as updates from Brazil and South Africa.
- Education portal improvements continue at Outreach:Education. Special attention is being paid to visual contrast -- for readability, accessibility and WCAG compliance -- as well as to navigation for ease of use. Feedback is welcome at Outreach:Talk:Education.
July was a very busy month for us as we moved through the process of annual reviews, annual compensation increases and cost of living adjustments, and supporting organization-wide discussions on results and implications. We have also decided to move from Jobvite to Greenhouse as our jobs applicant tracking system, so we are planning for that roll-out and implementation. Ongoing work in contract renewals, immigration, and leadership development continued - including continuing the second session, second cohort, of our leadership development program for directors and managers.
July Staff Changes
- New Requisitions Filled
- Victoria Shchepakina - Fundraising
- Emanuela Neagu - HR
- Kristen Lans - Engineering
- Joel Sahleen - Engineering
- Conversions (Contractor to Requisition)
- Arlo Breault - Engineering
- Keegan Peterzell - Product/Strat
- Nick Wilson - Product/Strat
- Erica Litrenta - Product/Strat
- Jessica Robell - Fundraising
- Requisition Departures
- New Interns
- Josephine Gulingan - F&A
- Segun Aluko (LCA)
- New Contractors
- Contracts Ended
- Total Requisitions Filled
- July Actual: 187
- July Total Plan: 207
- July Filled: 9, Month Attrition: 0
- FYTD Filled: 9, FYTD Attrition: 0
- FY positions planned: 233
Finance and Administration
- The Wikimedia Foundation RFP for Investment Advisory Services closed July 31, 2014. Final selection is scheduled for August 31, 2014.
- Net investment returns for Wikimedia Foundation for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2014 were $352,237.
- Completed site visit for Wikimedia Israel.
Legal and Community Advocacy
LCA Report, July 2014
- The WMF offered assistance to Wikipedia editors named in a U.S. defamation suit, and the plaintiff withdrew his complaint without prejudice, although he may refile at some unknown point in the future.
- After more than four years, the Roman Civil Tribunal dismissed a case against the Wikimedia Foundation, setting positive precedent for other claims in Italy. The plaintiffs' separate case against WMIT was dismissed.
- The legal team was heavily involved in analyzing the laws and regulations surrounding Bitcoin and assessing the risk in adopting it as a new donation method.
- WMF won two UDRP actions against four paid editing sites.
- The legal team prepared Wikipedia Zero Operating Principles that we posted on the Foundation wiki along with a template Wikipedia Zero agreement consistent with our values of transparency and accountability.
- Submitted : 30
- Completed : 25
- Submitted : 18
- Pending : 11
- Approval not needed : 7
(none in July)
Coming & Going
- We also said goodbye to Joe Jung, a rising 2L from Harvard law, who completed his summer internship and assisted us with many exciting intellectual property and advocacy issues during his time here.
- The summer class of Legal Interns organized a panel discussion at WMF, titled Legal, Technological, and Social Barriers to Free Knowledge, including speakers from the Information Society Project at Yale Law School, Google Project Loon, the Wikimedia Foundation, the Electronic Frontier Foundation, and the Asia Foundation.
- The Wikimedia Foundation supported the Fair Deal coalition in opposition to copyright-related provisions of the Trans Pacific Partnership.
- With Wikimedia Chile, the Wikimedia Foundation prepared a letter to the Chilean Subsecretaria de Telecomunicationes about Wikipedia Zero.
- We began discussions with the advocacy advisory group and Commons about taking a stance on non-free “open access” academic publishing licenses.
- Along with the design team, we participated in an ongoing discussion on refreshing the basic Creative Commons license templates on Commons. We look forward to continuing that discussion at Wikimania.
In July, the media was fascinated by the inner workings of Wikipedia, from bots to bans. An early July report on Sverker Johansson, a Swedish Wikipedian and physicist whose bot “Lsjbot” has created 2.7 million articles, lead to inquiries into whether bots were taking over Wikipedia. The Twitter account @congressedits, tracking anonymous edits from U.S. Congress IPs, spurred a slew of imitations in other nations, including one which found that Russian government IPs were involved in editing the article on the downed Malaysia Airlines Flight 17. This Twitter transparency drew scrutiny to recurring vandalism from the U.S. House of Representatives; a subsequent ban of one particularly vandalous Congressional IP generated significant press tinged with perhaps a little media schadenfreude.
In July, the blog team worked on final preparations for the relaunch of the Wikimedia blog, which took place on July 31. The blog's new design is responsive, provides better support for multilingual posts, offers blog admins a tool for simple transfering of image licensing information from Wikimedia Commons, and reflects the blog's evolution over the past years from a venue for WMF staff to share updates about their work to a news platform for the entire movement. The move to third-party hosting enables the WMF Operations team to better focus on their core mission of operating one the world’s most popular websites, and gives the blog team access to dedicated tech support which will also facilitate future updates to the platform.
Major Storylines through July
Anonymous edits by Congress
- Twitter bots track articles edited anonymously from Congress IP addresses. Topics include Choco Taco and Horse Head Mask.
- The Guardian (18 July, 2014) 
- Yahoo News (16 July, 2014) 
- Ars Technica (11 July, 2014) 
- Engadget (11 July, 2014) 
- The Washington Post (10 July, 2014) 
Ban of Congress IP address
- A congress IP address gets banned for 10 days for vandalism.
- WIRED UK (28 July, 2014) 
- TIME (26 July, 2014) 
- New York Magazine (25 July, 2014) 
- BBC News Technology (25 July, 2014) 
- Aljazeera (25 July, 2014) 
- The Guardian (25 July, 2014) 
- Newsweek (25 July, 2014) 
- Ars Technica (24 July, 2014) 
- Gizmodo (24 July, 2014) 
Malaysian flight MH17
- Russian state IP edits Wikipedia in an apparent attempt to sway opinion surrounding flight MH17’s crash.
- The Telegraph (30 July, 2014) 
- Tech Times (22 July, 2014) 
- Global Voices (18 July, 2014) 
- Slate (18 July, 2014) 
- The Huffington Post (18 July, 2014) 
- In Sweden, Sverker Johansson and his bot have created over 2.7 million Wikipedia articles.
- Boing Boing (16 July, 2014) 
- Gizmodo (16 July, 2014) 
- The Huffington Post (15 July, 2014) 
- Daily Mail (15 July, 2014) 
- Popular Science (14 July, 2014) 
- Wall Street Journal (13 July, 2014) 
Other worthwhile reads
- ”American Canyon man researches, edits Wikipedia”
- Times-Herald (07 July, 2014) 
See also the July press clippings
WMF Blog posts
Some highlights from the blog include:
- The Wikimedia Foundation successfully obtained orders preventing four websites advertising a service of paid editing of articles on Wikipedia from abusing the “Wikipedia” trademark (July 29, 2014).
- Wikimedia launches a petition for free access to Wikipedia on mobile phones (July 28, 2014).
- A video recap of Wikimania 2013 (July 22, 2014).
- Re-cap of Wiki loves Pride 2014 (July 18, 2014).
- The Wikimedia Foundation supports the Fair Deal Coalition in voicing opposition to certain provisions of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) (July 09, 2014).
Media contact through July 2014: wmf:Press room/Media Contact#July 2014
For detailed coverage and news summaries, see the community-edited newsletter “Wikipedia Signpost” for June 2014:
- Volume 10, Issue 25, 02 July 2014
- Volume 10, Issue 26, 09 July 2014
- Volume 10, Issue 27, 16 July 2014
- Volume 10, Issue 28, 23 July 2014
- Volume 10, Issue 29, 30 July 2014
We helped various Foundation teams create graphics and giveaways to help represent themselves at Wikimania, and to show our thanks to the Wikimedians we don't usually get to see in person. We also worked with Grantmaking to continue improvement of grant application pages and tools.