Wikimedia chapters/Reports/Wikimedia Deutschland/June 2012
Politics and Society
Publication of ACTA Brochure
In collaboration with iRights.info Wikimedia Deutschland published a brochure about ACTA in June. It's the goal of this leaflet to trace the history of the so-called Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement and to clarify potential problems. Even though all concerned EU committees recommended rejecting ACTA, it is possible that problematic regulations from ACTA could be integrated into other proposals like an amendment of the Intellectual Property Rights Enforcement Directive.
New Media Subcommittee: Discussion about Open Data
It was a first-timer for Wikimedia Deutschland to be invited to the New Media Subcommittee of the German Bundestag, which was a discussion about Open Data that took place on June 25th. In preparation for this talk we drafted and published a written statement. In our opinion, the discussion was very positive and a consensus could be identified among the participants about the necessity of Open Data initiatives and the respective social benefits. We documented our impressions in a blog post.
Neighboring Rights for Press Publishers
By means of a draft bill to introduce neighboring rights for press publishers, a three year old debate found its way back into the spotlight. In June we covered this story and our views and worries were similar to those of most analysts. We are of the opinion that this bill will not only be problematic and unhelpful but would most of all harm all those concerned with it. We also have to assume that projects like Wikipedia would be negatively affected by such a neighboring rights bill for press publishers.
Berlin Open Data Day in Berlin's City Hall
On June 6th, 2012 the second Berlin Open Data Day took place in the city hall of Berlin (Rotes Rathaus). Sebastian Sooth participated in the preparation of the event and hosted a workshop called "How can Open Data be Used?" with experts Jens Best (Open Data Network), Anke Domscheit-Berg (Government 2.0 - Netzwerk Deutschland), Maik Farthmann (INIT AG), Lydia Pintscher (Wikidata) and Prof. Uwe Ulbrich (FU-Messdatennetzwerk). Wikimedia Deutschland also collaborated in the joint recommendations concerning the use of Open Data which was also published during the event.
On June 2nd, Wikipedia and its sister projects were represented during the Long Night of the Sciences in Berlin. During this night, scientific institutions present themselves and their research to the public. Daniel Mietchen hosted a booth at the Naturkundemuseum Berlin (museum for natural history) while Marcus Cyron was at the Deutsches Archäologisches Institut (German Archaeological Institute). Both provided opportunities for visitors to learn more about the work of the [ http://blog.wikimedia.de/2012/05/31/wikipedia-trifft-archaologie/ Wikipedian in Residence].
In June, almost every week had a press release in store. The first was about the introduction of the Wikipedian in Residence since Wikipedia author Marcus Cyron started his work as first WiR on June 1st. He is employed by the Deutsches Archäologisches Institut for a period of six months. On June 14th, the draft bill for neighboring rights for press publishers was released by the German Justice Department. We published a press release about our take on the discussion the day after. A release about the Wikimania followed during the second week of June. The PR for the Zedler Prize for Free Knowledge was next. More than thirty blog posts gave insights into our topics in June.
The database for our press contacts was fundamentally restructured in June in order to make specific press releases for a more targeted audience possible. More than 900 contacts have been edited.
The second issue of our newspaper Wikimedium in 2012 was published. The participation of the community was great and we would like to thank all contributors for that. This time Wikimedium is not only available in print and as pdf but also in the form of an e-paper. In order to get a better understanding of our readers we also created an online questionnaire and would be thankful for your input.
Ideas for the next issue are welcome! Please add your suggestions on the Wikipedia project page or send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. The deadline for the next issue will be August 15th and it will be published in September.
The RENDER flyer was translated into English and an English version of WMDE's annual report 2011 was published. Also, a schedule for Wikimedia Deutschland's events at the Wikimania and a new Wikidata flyer were produced especially for the Wikimania. Together with the community a flyer for Wiki Loves Monuments was finished and information material for the Zedler-Prize for Free Knowledge as well as the Wikipedia Academy 2012 was created. Different giveaways were re-ordered and a revised version of the Wikipedia cheat sheet is underway. For an overview of Wikimedia Deutschland's information material please visit our website.
Education and Knowledge
WMDE's department Education and Knowledge is focussing more and more on winning authors and actively facilitating knowledge. After two workshops with students the first workshops especially for women took place in June (in collaboration with Frau und Beruf e.V. (Professional Women) and the Frauen Computer Zentrum Berlin (Women's Computer Center Berlin). The first workshop was also documented on the blog. The workshop with Frau und Beruf motivated some women to immediately start working on Wikipedia and led to fixed workshop dates in September. The collaboration with the Kompetenzzentrum Technik - Diversity - Chancengleichheit e.V. Bielefeld and Berlin also created manifold ideas for initiatives and networks that could help win new female authors. At the moment, the second camp for WMDE's speakers in September is being prepared. A number of new (male and female) speakers have registered.
Silberwissen (senior citizen program)
Project manager Elvira Schmidt took part in three Silberwissen-workshops and discussed the continued participation of their project partners (Chronisten Potsdam-Mittelmark, Volkshochschule Bonn together with the Seniorenbüro "Rat und Tat" e.V. and Seniorenuniversität Hannover). Due to the results of the mailing of the German Senior Citizens League (DSL) the collaboration with institutions in smaller cities will not be pursued any longer. Cooperations with colleges for senior citizens proved positive. After a follow-up of the workshop with the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Post- und Telekommunikationsgeschichte (DGPT) at the office of Wikimedia Deutschland a longterm cooperation is desired.
In Königs-Wusterhausen, Elvira Schmidt gave lectures about Silberwissen and its goal to win more authors for Wikipedia at the association ANIMATA. In a second blog post by Education and Knowledge the current state of affairs and results can be found.
Wikipedia macht Schule (school program)
This month two advanced trainings for teachers were on the agenda of Wikipedia macht Schule. One of them took place at the Schulentwicklungstag Schleswig-Holstein and created positive feedback. Open Educational Resources (free teaching materials) also found their way into the work of the Education and Knowledge team. The teaching material of our workshops can be found on Wikiversity. In addition, the further development and a potential collaboration with ZUM-wiki has been proposed. Whoever is interested in taking part can write us an e-mail. We will gladly forward them to our partners.
Hochschulprogramm (academic program)
We are currently receiving feedback on the first round of the academic program. An evaluation meeting with the teachers of the Universität Kassel is planned for August 3rd, 2012. The planning for the winter term is also under way. For more information please write us.
Zedler Prize for Free Knowledge
Intensive preparations for the award show of the Zedler Prize for Free Knowledge on July 1st were finalized during the past month. Invitations, logos, banners, certificates and awards were drafted and the nominees, jury members and many friends of the Free Knowledge movement were invited to the ceremony. In addition, the award show itself needed to be conceptualized. It needed to fit into the schedule of the Wikipedia Academy, which took place right before the ceremony, so that all winners could also be valued appropriately. Of all the seventeen nominated articles and projects five (three first and two special prizes) were awarded the Zedler Prize and will be presented here in more detail soon.
Looking back on two international events, Anja Ebersbach (board of Wikimedia Deutschland) and Nathalie Köpff have both published their reports. Their experiences, impressions and insights from the first WikiWomenCamp and WikiGénéro can be found on our blog: WikiWomenCamp and WikiGénéro.
Volunteers of the Portal:Biology of the German speaking Wikipedia met in June. At the same time a small meeting took place in Lehnstedt (Thuringia). On June 8th, Portal:Chemistry talked about different topics of their area and opportunities for strenghthening the quality of their articles. These meetings were financially supported by Wikimedia Deutschland.
From June 1st-3rd, more than 30 admins from the German Wikipedia, Wikibooks and Wikisource met in Hedersleben (Saxony-Anhalt) for the first AdminConvention. Wikimedia Deutschland supported this meeting financially and organisationally. In a former convent the participants talked about the role and self-image of administrators, help for newcomers and conflict solving, which is important for the first steps as well as continued work of new authors. Additionally, many other questions were discussed enthusiastically. The participants agreed that this convention should not be the last of its kind.
All the cameras of the tech pool were used in different places all over Germany and generated valuable content for the Wikimedia projects. In order to take pictures at the outfitting of the German olympic team a make-up set was purchased. The kick-off for the annual photo contest Wiki Loves Monuments took place during 48 Stunden Neukölln, the annual festival of the arts in Berlin-Neukölln and generated interesting contacts. This was sponsored by Wikimedia Deutschland.
Community Projects Budget
The newly-elected committee for the Community Projects Budget met on June 16th at the office of Wikimedia Deutschland in order to prepare the next call for proposals. Two dates will be set for the counselling of applicants. Most approved CPB-projects from the second supporting round have started their work by now. Three projects from the first supporting round are completed.
Different meetings by work groups concerned with free knowledge took place at the Community Space in June. Friends of free knowledge who want to meet in the Community Space can write an e-mail to Sebastian Sooth.
A hardware update was installed on the servers in Amsterdam (RAM, wiring, switches). During the Berlin Hackathon, Sebastian Sooth and Marlen Caemmerer talked with users of the Toolserver and developers of Wikilabs about the opportunities Wikilabs will offer to the developers of the Toolserver in the future.
Research and Development
In June we worked on the RENDER toolkit in the research project RENDER. We expanded the site by including a downloading area where we now offer downloadable data sets. In addition, we talked about the project and its current state with developers from the Wikimedia Foundation before the Hackathon Berlin. For those who want to find out more about this meeting and who would like to see the slides of the presentation, please go to Meta.
Since June 15th, 2012 Johannes Kroll has complemented the team as a software developer in order to develop the supporting tools for RENDER. We plan on presenting our first results at the Wikimania 2012.
The Wikipedia Acedemy (June 29th-July 1st, 2012) was prepared in June. Together with the organizing committee it was their responsibility to schedule the event and to create a program. In addition, they needed to integrate the submitted papers and posters into the schedule, publish them on the Academy's website (a preview can be found in the Wikimedia Research Newsletter) and to acquire speakers for the event. The keynotes by Sarah Stierch and Benjamin Mako Hill were the topic of a blog post. Besides content-related work the usual logistical challenges, e.g. reliable Wi-Fi, power, food, travel arrangements, housing of the speakers, designing the schedule and information material for the participants, promotion, coordination of responsibilities and e-mails as well as maintenance of the website, were on the agenda.
The Wikidata team continued working on the completion of the first project phase in June. During this phase it is the goal to store links between Wikipedia language versions in a central place rather than repeating them in the Wikitext of all articles concerning the same topic throughout the language versions. Before Wikimania there will be a fully functional demo version. Until then, we still have the demo system which can be tested here. For better understanding, an easier version of the data model has been published together with a reworked version of the storyboard for creating interlanguage links between Wikidata and Wikipedia.
At the beginning of the month the team participated in the MediaWiki-Hackathon and exchanged ideas with developers about many topics. In addition, Lydia Pintscher attended AdminCon, the Berlin Open Data Day and hosted discussions about Wikidata in Dresden and Cologne.
As a new Wikimedia project Wikidata certainly needs a logo. The search for the logo started with a call for proposals. In the course of the next days the voting for the best logo will start in order to determine which one will be the official Wikidata logo.
Wikidata will be very influential on Wikipedia. Project manager Denny Vrandečić calculated the proportion of interlanguage links between the contents of the individual Wikipedias.
Due to the many possibilities that have opened up for the further development of Wikidata we have decided to make a submission to the Knight News Challenge. It is our goal to make Wikidata a common, persistent and central repository of identifiers throughout the internet.
Hackathon Berlin 2012
At the beginning of June, Wikimedia Deutschland and the Wikimedia Foundation invited hackers from all over the world to the Hackathon Berlin 2012. Developers of both associations and members of the community met in Berlin at the biggest Wikimedia hackathon of all times from June 1st to June 3rd 2012. It was their goal to share their experiences, work on improvements and extensions of the MediaWiki software and to talk about new technologies and projects.
It was the first time that Wikimedia Deutschland worked hand in hand with the Wikimedia Foundation in order to organize such a conference. Both associations not only put up the necessary financial means but also organized the logistics and assistance for the participants in close collaboration. Weekly conference calls, hundreds of e-mails and different online tools were the basis for this international cooperation between Sumana Harihareswara and Rachel Farrand from the foundation and Nicole Ebber and Maria Rößler from Wikimedia Deutschland. It was a very interesting experience which we would like to build upon in the future in order to ramp up this constructive collaboration. A detailed review can be found in both blogs of Wikimedia Deutschland and the Wikimedia Foundation.
Exciting, constructive, critical - this is how the discussion about Wikipedia and our fundraiser with the participants of the first focus group turned out. In collaboration with the Wikimedia Foundation we invited ten of our German donors to this group interview in June. The meeting served us in preparing the annual fundraiser and was supposed to provide important insight into the perception and evaluation of our campaign. This study was conducted by the I+E Berlin Market Research institution. One of the institute's psychologists led the discussion in their premises. The participants talked distinctly positive about Wikipedia, donations, banners and appeals. A detailed blog post about the focus group and the first results of the discussion can be found here.
In order to prepare the next fundraiser we concentrated on consolidating our newly implemented database this month. As an example, multiple donations: The new database needs to notice that two or more donations belong to one and the same person in order to match these donations with a dataset. This might sound simple but can be very complex in individual cases. Transposed digits in the banking connection, missing house numbers, typos - all these cases can make it unclear to the program whether it is dealing with the same person when only 99% of the data matches. Human judgment has to decide here. Considering the 160.000 individual donations during the last fundraiser, it becomes clear how many special cases had to be manually reworked in order to ensure the quality of our data.
Until May, the membership applications, which were sent together with the donation certificates, created a return of 854 applications. The admission of these members to the association and the mailing of the respective welcoming letter was done with our database VEWA for the first time.