Wikimedia chapters/Reports/Wikimedia Deutschland/August 2013

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Team Communities[edit]


Team Communities will provide logistical support for WikiCon, which will take place from November 22 to 24. Discussions on the exact venue for the event are still taking place (here). The team in charge of organizing the event is comprised of various volunteers. The first meeting to discuss the organization of the event with volunteers is currently due to take place on September 21.

An open editing session was held at the Wikimedia Deutschland office in Berlin for people with varying levels of experience interested in actively participating in the project. The WMDE office is now also increasingly being used as a venue for community events, which is helping to strengthen ties within the community and between the various departments at the office. The WMDE office in Berlin is just one of many places where community members can meet to discuss topics related to Wikipedia and its sister/associated projects, and find the support they need to collaborate more closely. The WMDE office also provides a place for face-to-face feedback.

WMDE has also been involved in supporting various community projects. For example, WMDE helped to finance the description and photographic documentation of the entire Route of Megalithic Culture in Lower Saxony. The photos of this cultural heritage site are available under a free license on Wikimedia Commons. WMDE also co-financed, with Wikimedia Österreich, the Wikipedia editorial team meeting for biology, and produced German flyers and T-shirts for members actively involved in the international photo competition Wiki Loves Monuments. For a complete list of the community projects supported by WMDE, please see Meta-Wiki.

Over the last month, the new Community Insurance has covered seven community events involving around 60 people.

Projects supported by the community project budget continued their activities in August. The Festival Summer project has now provided access to over 9,000 photos under a free license, the State Parliament (Landtag) project made its next stop at Schleswig-Holstein’s parliament and more events were held to discuss the project on the acceptable limits of professional writing in Wikipedia. A working group to develop the community projects budget was also established and has started work already. Applications for new projects are still welcome.

A workshop will be held in Cologne on October 6 to discuss what form local WMDE work and sources of support from local communities should take. The workshop is particularly aimed at community members in and around Cologne and the Ruhr region. Registration is still open for those who would like to take part.

Politics and Society[edit]

Peak Season for Election Questionnaire[edit]

In the run-up to the state parliament elections in Bavaria and Hesse, the Politics and Society Department sent election questionnaires to the parties running for office in both states. The election questionnaires were identical to the one sent out before the state parliament elections in Lower Saxony in January 2013 to ensure the results could easily be compared. All the answers from the parties in Bavaria and Hesse have been published in Meta-Wiki, and there is an analysis of the Bavarian parties’ answers on the Wikimedia blog. The parties participating in the Bundestag elections have until September 4 to answer our questionnaire.

GLAM Networking Event in Hanover[edit]

The second event for volunteers working with GLAMs in German-speaking countries took place on August 31 and September 1. Participants discussed and evaluated significant previous activities in the cultural sector, including the collaborations with the German Archaeological Institute, the broadcaster ZDF and the Braunschweig State Museum. Participants also discussed ideas on how volunteers might collaborate with cultural institutions in the coming year. The event concluded with a tour of the August Kestner Museum; Wikipedians also used this occasion to discuss various options for cooperation.

ZDF Meets Wikimedia[edit]

On August 16, as part of the ZDF “Fact Check”, twelve employees from ZDF’s Berlin studio took part in an event that provided detailed insights into how Wikipedia works behind the scenes. For more details, please see the blog entry by Tim Moritz Hector, the current Wikipedian in Residence at ZDF.

GLAM Flyer[edit]

The “Den Zugang öffnen” (Opening Up Access) flyer went to print this month with plenty of ideas for how Wikipedians, Wikimedia Deutschland and cultural institutions can collaborate. The aim was to catch readers’ interest and get them personally involved in making cultural assets digitally available to all. The flyer will be sent out in mid-September with a cover letter and a questionnaire for active and sustaining members.

Education and Knowledge[edit]

Diversity for Wikipedia[edit]

In August, Team Communities continued to plan for the international Wikimedia Diversity Conference. Wikipedians and other people interested in the topic of diversity and Wikipedia wishing to attend the event can register on here. The conference will be held in English on November 9 and 10, 2013, and is being organized by Wikimedia Deutschland, Wikimedia UK, Wikimedia Nederland and the Wikimedia Foundation.

Prof. Dr. Ilona Buchem, a visiting professor at the Beuth Hochschule für Technik in Berlin, cooperated with WMDE as part of the Diversity for Wikipedia project and was a visiting scholar at Wikimania. She led a session where she presented the German-speaking Wikipedias’ collaborative project on gender diversity, which was enthusiastically received by attendees. You can read more about Wikimania in her blog entry about the event.

Tour of Free Knowledge[edit]

The conference on open educational resources was booked up within just a few days. Around 300 participants will meet in Berlin on September 14 and 15 to discuss issues surrounding new formats, free licenses and the role of educational institutions. To encourage lively discussions on OERs (open educational resources), half of the conference will be curated and the other half will take the form of a BarCamp. From now on, we will post weekly updates on our blog about upcoming conference highlights. Anyone not able to take part will be able to follow all the keynote speeches and high points by reviewing the documentation and watching a live stream provided by Werkstatt.bpb. You can read the event program here.

Our partners are also launching a diverse range of OER-related projects (from workshops to information materials to working groups) alongside the conference. These will help drive progress on the subject – both at the conference and beyond.

Women Edit Pilot Project[edit]

The Women Edit pilot project has been launched and is aimed at getting women to actively take part in the Wikimedia projects. Whether they are involved in Wikipedia, Wikimedia Commons or Wikivoyage, there are a wide variety of ways to contribute, such as writing articles, uploading images, updating travel information or taking part in community discussions. Wikimedia Deutschland is currently organizing open networking events, editing parties and edit-a-thons in several German cities, and WMDE is looking for enthusiastic Wikiwomen to help organize and manage these events. By acting as contacts in their city or community, Wikiwomen can play an important role in creating and fostering networks. For more information, visit the Wikimedia blog or project page. Feedback and suggestions are always welcome.

Shared Knowledge Initiative and Senior Citizens Project[edit]

The Third Age Online EU project is drawing to a close. The concluding event will take place in Bern in September, and the team is currently working hard to produce a final report on the project. This will include a summary based on the project tutors’ practical suggestions that focuses on how the experience gained from the project might be applied in the future.

A few days ago, UM-Merit published the results of its survey on senior citizens and their use of Web 2.0, which includes Wikipedia. The answers to questions that asked respondents what motivates them to take part or indeed intentionally refuse to use Web 2.0 provided particularly valuable insights that could help attract new editors. Other questions asked respondents what they would like to see in an introduction for new Wikipedia editors. Common to all those who play an active role in Wikipedia was the idea of sharing knowledge and making a contribution to this process. We highly recommend reading the “Survey among New Wikipedia Users” report on the TAO project’s website.

Wikipedia in the Classroom[edit]

As part of the Wikipedia Work Group pilot project in Hanover during the 2012/2013 school year, five schools in the Hanover region used Wikipedia in the classroom, supported by the project team at the Lower Saxony Institute for Quality Development at Schools (NLQ), Ministry of Education and Cultural Affairs of Lower Saxony and Wikimedia Deutschland. A 40-page brochure detailing how the project was set up and carried out, and teachers’ experiences, is now available.

In addition, educational materials for using Wikipedia in the classroom will be co-published by WMDE in late October as part of the klicksafe project.

Research and Development[edit]


In August, work on the RENDER research project focused on evaluation and events. At WikiSym + OpenSym 2013, which took place in Hong Kong from August 5 to 7, Angelika Mühlbauer presented her paper entitled “Involving users to increase their acceptance” and shared her experiences of incorporating the community in research projects.

At Wikimania, we presented the supporting tools for the RENDER project and discussed how to proceed once the project ends. We also used this event to find more respondents for our survey evaluating the tools and their uses. Over the coming weeks we will analyze the results of the supporting tools survey and produce a final project report.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact the RENDER team.


There were two major events for Wikidata in August. The first was the team’s participation in Wikimania (read its report here). The other big event was Wikidata being made freely available for Wikivoyage. We also launched the Paper Cuts initiative, which will gather and remove the small bugs and glitches that considerably reduce Wikidata’s user friendliness. Lastly, Denny Vrandečić and Adam Shorland gave a short overview of the Wikidata’s current status and answered questions during IRC office hours.

If you have any questions regarding Wikidata, please contact Lydia Pintscher.

International Affairs[edit]

Wikimania in Hong Kong[edit]

Around 700 people from 88 countries travelled to Hong Kong in early August to attend Wikimania. The International Affairs Unit’s responsibilities there included coordinating the Chapters Village – a central point at the conference where different Wikipedia chapters could present themselves and their work, and engage with people at the event (check out the photos here!). Wikimedia Deutschland also had a small stand there, and Wenke Storn, Kasia Odrozek and Nicole Ebber were responsible for preparing and organizing information materials and a program for the stand, as well as a large projector screen.

Nicole and Lodewijk Gelauff also presented the coolest projects of Wikimedia Chapters. This 90-minute trip around the world featured over 40 projects and offered plenty of tips for implementing them elsewhere (Prezi, video from 1:33:00). Nicole also talked about themes and issues arising from WMDE’s work with other Wikimedia organizations, and how WMDE was perceived within the movement. Reports on Wikimania are available on the WMDE blog and in a special edition of Wikipedia:Kurier.

Chapters Dialogue[edit]

Wikimania in Hong Kong provided Nicole Ebber and Kira Krämer with an ideal opportunity to kick off the Chapters Dialogue project.

They presented the project and its approach to a diverse audience during a two-hour session at the pre-conference. The debate that followed provided plenty of feedback, questions and suggestions, and the 50 or so people in attendance were particularly keen to discuss the questions that had been published in Meta-Wiki before the session.

During the course of the conference itself, Kira conducted eight interviews with representatives of the Wikimedia Foundation, the Affiliations Committee and the chapters in Australia, the UK, South Africa, Taiwan, Hong Kong and Estonia. Nicole and Kira also established contact with other chapters and WMF representatives, and set up interview dates for the fall.

They also had the chance to talk to lots of other people (including WMF staff, members of the board of trustees and the chairs of the chapter boards) about the project and gain support for it. The project attracted a lot of interest and was greeted positively. For a comprehensive report, please visit the blog.

Public Relations[edit]

Press work[edit]

The Public Relations Department has been working with the Education and Knowledge Department and the Politics and Society Department to prepare for the upcoming OER conference and “Zugang gestalten” (Shaping Access) event. It has produced and sent out press releases and invitations for the OER conference, and has spoken to journalists personally to give them more information about the event. The communications concept for Zugang gestalten is currently being drafted, and the department is looking into media partnerships for the event.

Measures and materials to accompany this conference – and the diversity conference – are currently being planned and organized in conjunction with the relevant departments.

There have been press inquiries relating to a variety of topics, including the shutdown of the Brockhaus encyclopedia and the deployment of the new VisualEditor tool. Volunteers have also acted as contacts for journalists on a wide range of topics. For an overview of some of our August press releases, which have covered developments like the launch of the VisualEditor, please visit the WMDE website.


There were a large number of blog posts before, during and after Wikimania, the biggest event in the Wikimedia calendar, which was held this year in Hong Kong. These have all been listed and categorized (unsurprisingly) under the heading Wikimania on the WMDE blog.

Information materials[edit]

In August, WMDE produced various giveaways for use at events. A new updated flyer and T-shirts were produced for photographers interested in participating in the Wiki Loves Monuments photo competition, and T-shirts with the Wikipedia logo were prepared for other events. Wikipedia erasers, pennants for Wikipedia groups to use at their meetings and a range of postcards with freely licensed images have also been created. More giveaways, such as ballpoint pens and coffee cups, are currently being planned.

The OER conference is due to take place in mid-September. The Communications Unit has teamed up with the Education and Knowledge Department to produce a variety of event materials, including an event program, posters, banners, roll-ups and T-shirts for the organizing committee.

WMDE members will also receive information about partnerships with cultural institutions in mid-September. The Communications Unit is working with the Politics and Society Department to produce a flyer that clearly and concisely calls on members to promote the idea of free knowledge at cultural institutions in their region.


Wikimedia Deutschland launched its second major survey of WMDE donors in August. In order to identify any mistakes or glitches in the survey, it was first tested on around 150 donors. Once the Fundraising Team completed this initial test in late August, the survey was sent out to a randomly selected representative sample of donors. A detailed evaluation of the results will be available in four to six weeks. As with the 2011 donor survey, the results will be published online.

August also saw the team begin preparing the tests for this year’s fundraising campaign, and two tests have already successfully been carried out. The results of the first test can be viewed here, and the results of the second test will also be posted there soon. There is a page for discussing the test results, and you are more than welcome to join in. We also invite you to suggest your own ideas for testing.

Job Postings[edit]

You can find all current job postings at WMDE on the website.