Wikimedia Space/Editorial guidelines
The Wikimedia Space prototype phase has concluded. Discuss Space is being closed and the Space blog will continue in a new home. Check the announcement for details.
The Wikimedia Space editorial guidelines provide a framework to suggest ideas for blog posts, submit drafts and review them. All submissions to Wikimedia Space are guided by the Wikimedia Space Guidelines.
How to get started
- Join Wikimedia Space. (Having trouble joining?)
- Once you have your Wikimedia Space account (and not before), create a new article.
Now you can start writing a draft and submit news for publication. Don't forget to read over the #Scope section to understand what the goals are for Wikimedia Space. See #Getting your news published for more details on the publication process.
All blog users start with the Contributor user right. These permissions give you the following:
- Create a new draft
- Submit articles you have authored for review
- Upload media
- Edit other articles that have not been published
- View other articles in review by status, category, and calendar views
- Modify settings for your profile
If you would like to help mange the editoral process, elevated rights are available. Please contact the editorial review board to discuss access. You can do so by creating a topic discussion in Wikimedia Space, or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
- News produced by committees and affiliates, like the ones being posted in wikimedia-l.
- Links to interesting Wikimedia stories and discussions published in other channels.
- News about Wikimedia partners, the ecosystem of free knowledge and other current events that are connected with the Wikimedia movement and are targeted to Wikimedia contributors.
- Announcements, requests for feedback, reports, newsletters… produced by the Wikimedia Foundation for Wikimedia audiences.
News with an unclear impact on the Wikimedia movement and opinion articles are out of scope.
If you want to host a discussion around a project, event, or topic you do not need to create a blog post. You can instead create a new thread in the Discuss space.
Our goals for Wikimedia Space:
- To support and expand the work Wikimedia communities are doing all over the world, by sharing their stories for others to learn from, and facilitating access and discoverability for newcomers.
- To promote a culture of learning by sharing stories about successes and challenges in Wikimedia programs and events.
- To inform newcomers and established contributors about movement activities and possibilities for engagement related to their interests and background.
- To promote the Wikimedia vision that everyone can freely share in the sum of all knowledge.
The primary objective of Wikimedia Space news is to help groups inform the movement about their activities. Most news posts are expected to be authored by people involved in the activity. News about a project, a committee or an affiliate are expected to be submitted by identified members of the project, the committee or the affiliate organization.
Volunteers covering news about projects that don't have yet their own voice are welcome.
Roles and responsibilities
Wikimedia Space will have the following roles:
- Contributor. This is the default role for new users. This role will be able to write and manage posts, but not publish them. This role will be fulfilled by anyone who wants to contribute a story to Wikimedia Space.
- Editor. People in this role will have the power to edit and publish anyone’s news posts. This role is open to any Wikimedia contributor and will include foundation staff.
- Administrator. People in this role will have the power to manage the software settings and add features, among other things. This role will be fulfilled by a Wikimedia Foundation employee.
In order to reflect the kind of stories we hope to publish, we can establish blog categories and tags in advance. These categories and tags will improve findability of resources and stories. These mirror the taxonomy of the Discuss side of Wikimedia Space.
- Wikivoyage, Commons, Wiktionary, Wikipedia, etc.
- Wikimedia 2030
- Environment network
- Gender gap
Tags can be expanded at will by blog authors. For general writing here are some recommended tags.
- Shared learning. Under this tag, we’ll share reports, lessons learned, and reflections on failure.
- Wikimedia affiliates and governance. In this tag, we’ll group stories about new affiliates, governance, and anything connected to the institutional growth of the movement.
- Editor experience. In this tag, we can have stories from content contributors that share why they contribute in the way they do.
- Wikimedia projects. Stories from different language version Wikipedias, submitted by correspondents (potentially)
- Wikimedia Foundation Grants. In this tag, we should publish stories about call for proposals, projects funded, and proactive grantmaking campaigns.
- Tech news. Any stories involving tech improvements, phabricator tasks, etc.
The editorial board maintains the news, its content, design, processes and structure. They also review all the news prior to its publication.
This board is created with at least three members of the Community Relations team at the Wikimedia Foundation, the team in charge of providing the means for this news feature to run efficiently and accomplish its goals.
The board welcomes new members based on their contributions to the movement.
Getting your news published
Every news post goes through a few stages before it is published. News posts can be drafted anywhere, but eventually all will need to be created within the Blog. Editing is then managed by the editorial team and posts are scheduled on our editorial calendar. These steps help us to ensure our quality standards, which include: Registered users can create drafts to be shared with the editors. Authors and editors may discuss privately improvements about the draft. All news pieces must be reviewed by a second person in order to guarantee our quality standards. These standards include:
- Relevance of the topic
- Proper grammar
- Neutral point of view
- Use of references and links when applicable
Anyone who wants to submit a post to be published in Wikimedia Space will have the contributor role in WordPress. You can create an account via integration with Discourse (which itself is connected to your Wikimedia account) We use five stages to manage each news post. A news post can be in one of the following stages.
- Pitch - a contributor has logged in and submitted an idea for a blog
- Draft - after the pitch is approved, a contributor starts working on an article.
- Pending Review - a contributor submits the draft for review by the editors
- In Progress - an editor is reviewing the draft and leaving editorial comments for the author.
- Scheduled - The editor and author have agreed that the news post is prepared for publication and a date and time have been scheduled.
- Published - The news post has been published and is now publicly accessible on Wikimedia Space.
In this section, we'll walk you through each of these steps.
Step 1: Create a pitch
Every news post starts out with an idea, and we ask you to come to us at this stage of the process. If you have an idea for a draft, you can login to Wikimedia Space and submit your draft for publication. If you have a pitch, and idea, or a question before you start writing, leave a note on the forum and tag it with Wikimedia-space-blog and we can chat.
It doesn’t need to be a full idea—we can help you with that part. These are the questions we’d like to answer or come prepared to think through with us, in decreasing order of importance:
- What is the goal of this news post? (What outcomes are you hoping to achieve?)
- Who is the audience for this post?
- A basic outline of what you want to say.
- Deadline or intended publication date, if the post needs to go out in a certain timeframe. Please get in touch with us at least two weeks before any deadlines.
- Image ideas, if you have them. We require at least one freely licensed image, with a minimum width of 1024 pixels and usually, but not always, from Wikimedia Commons. This image will be the primary imagery associated with your post. (Please don't use screenshots, graphs, and logos for the primary image. They are great in middle of the post!)
- Ideas for title and summary (title should be descriptive, catchy, and in the present tense)
- Who needs to approve this post (if applicable)?
- Will there be any translations for this post? Translations can be made at any time by any community member, but if you need something ready in advance let's discuss.
- What category best describes your story? (1 minimum, 2 maximum)
If you don’t know the answers to these questions, do not worry! That’s why we’re here—to help ensure that you are reaching your intended audience with the content that will help you reach your goal. A friendly reminder that all submissions must be in scope and follow the Wikimedia Space code of conduct.
Step 2: Write a blog draft
The editorial team, with foundation staff support, will check for new submissions daily. This process can take a few days, depending on how much is in our backlog.
What does a post look like? News posts are typically between 500–700 words. They have a clear audience and goal, a general connection to the Wikimedia movement's mission, and a complete outline with a beginning, middle, and end—with a call to action, if possible. They can be a Q&A, a numbered list, a series of short paragraphs, or something else entirely.
Write your post! If necessary, see past news posts for inspiration or specific ways to structure your post.
Step 3: Submit your blog for review
The editorial team has seen your submission and will be in contact with next steps. You will be notified of this status change and may see comments in your draft from the team.
Step 4: Editing your blog
This is the stage where most of the work will happen. We will work with you to edit your news post and give suggestions or advice. We may ask you to send us sourcing material, or other material to ensure that the post is factually accurate. We will work with you to resolve any outstanding issues, and to make sure that your post is readable for a general audience. When these edits are finalized, we will add a comment to your document, move the document into the approval process, and set a date for it to be scheduled.
Step 5: Your blog is scheduled for publication
We maintain an editorial calendar to schedule upcoming posts. This schedule is subject to frequent changes, based on other content in the pipeline and the approval process. Please let us know if you have any deadlines we should know about. At this point, we also need to have the images that will accompany the news post.
Step 6: We publish your blog
Once a post is published it is made public for all to see. Authors will be sent an email notification from WordPress. A corresponding discussion topic is created in the forum using the title of your post. All news posts are added to the Wikimedia-space-blog tag.
Code of conduct
All the users of Wikimedia Space are subject to the Wikimedia Space code of conduct. Submissions infringing this code of conduct will be moderated.