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Wikimedia monthly activities meetings/Quarterly reviews/Wikipedia Zero/September 2014

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The following are notes from the Quarterly Review meeting with the Wikimedia Foundation's Wikipedia Zero (Mobile Partnerships) team, September 29, 2014, 2:15PM - 3:45PM PDT.


Present (in the office): Tomasz Finc, Yana Welinder, Carolynne Schloeder, Kevin Leduc, Yuri Astrakhan, Rachel diCerbo, Toby Negrin, Kevin Leduc, Damon Sicore, Lila Tretikov, Erik Moeller, Tilman Bayer (taking minutes), Jeff Hobson, Adele Vrana, Dan Foy, Adam Baso; participating remotely: Smriti Gupta, Jorge Vargas, Brandon Black

Please keep in mind that these minutes are mostly a rough transcript of what was said at the meeting, rather than a source of authoritative information. Consider referring to the presentation slides, blog posts, press releases and other official material

Presentation slides from the meeting


slide 2

[slide 2]Agenda

NB: not all our partnerships are WP0, we are also working with OEM's

slide 3

[slide 3]

Team is growing
Jorge (formerly legal intern) now as contractor from Colombia, working on policy issues & partnerships
still missing SE Asia partnerships manager
couple of team members out in Q1; still short-staffed

slide 4

[slide 4]

we hit our big goals:
Pageviews 79M
migrate 52.5% of partners to IP (whitelisting, instead of URL whitelisting)
second SMS pilot deprioritized

slide 5

[slide 5]

work pipeline
Q1 was a lot of OEMs and policy
Lila: are we seeing a lot of traction with OEMs?
Carolynne: yes, making good progress
Lila: Tracking uniques yet?
(team:) do not want to track unique users [for privacy reasons], because we would need to give them cookies
Lila: talk to Toby
I want to compare apples to apples
(team:) currently UVs via ComScore
next q via our own site
Erik: definitions differ though
Lila: OK, but I want us to be able to attribute uniques [by either def] to WP0
Erik: team should be involved in LUCID [Limited-duration Unique Client Identifiers] discussions with Oliver from Analytics
Carolynne: concerned about scaling partners
Communications is still a gap
need to work specifically on Global South UX: support for languages, feature phones
thrid party use of content (mediawiki): great, but need to bring users back in
Lila: waiting on the Comms hire?
Carolynne: yes, and in the meantime working with Katherine and Minassian on comms
Minassian don't understand us enough for this, need in-house
Lila: what is your objective for communications?
Carolynne: visibility of programs
marketing efforts with partners present lots of opportunities (need to raise awareness in target segments)
Lila: try measure demand based on that?
e.g. when publishing a blog post, have a call to action in that?
Carolynne: yes, e.g. the recent post on Chile
Yana: and the petition
Lila: need more strategy
marketing vs. classical Comms (press) work
generate specific interest (via media) vs. just know how to write press release
Carolynne: agree we need "marketing"

slide 7

[slide 7]

Wikipedia Zero:
since last qr, built pipeline (e.g. onboarded Smriti)

slide 8

[slide 8]

Reach: 603M subscribers
with internet-enabled devices: 400M (back of the envelope)

slide 9

[slide 9]

pageviews: Yuri worked with Analytics
on old dashboards, missed HTTPS traffic
which we just turned on
Lila: so you were blind to that?
Yuri: yes, did not collect it
Carolynne: but HTTPS was only just turned on
Q1 was a bit flat, but did IP migration - might get like 10-20% bonus traffic
are on track for December goal
will set aim on stretch goals

slide 10

[slide 10]

steadily increasing #operators

slide 11

[slide 11]

Four launches in Asia in Q1
Smriti: Asia update
Q1 pipeline: started with 14 telcos, many new
Existing telcos: saw pageviews dip in summer and pick up again starting Aug
checked: is the integration optimal? can we improve PVs?
e.g. started Opera support
M-dot push: convert from zero.wikipedia.org to m.wikipedia.org
one rationale: zero-dot does not get organic traffic

slide 12

[slide 12]Asia pipeline

One large telco in India: talking about a test, hope they will expand it
Carolynne: Kul and Amit had tried to crack India before - difficult market; it's significant that Smriti got this going
Lila: how long to close?
Carolynne: we can still speed that up, three months is minimum
Lila: could we put these numbers in relation with population and subscriber numbers (penetration rate)?
Carolynne, Tomasz: sure
Lila: will help us focus

slide 13

[slide 13]Adele:

Africa & Middle East update
in Africa, we prioritize "big fish"
context for numbers:

  • seasonality
  • contract delays
  • some had problems implementing IP whitelisting (instead of URL)

growth in Rwanda, Nigeria, Botswana
things are changing there
getting important operators on board
Lila: I know, just doing contracts can be very slow in Brazil ;)
I've been supporting the team on policy side for 6-8 months, excited to be on partnership side now too
work with Edu team
Lila: what does subscriber number mean? pilot itself or reach in general?
Carolynne: subscribers of that operator
Jorge: Chile - see blog post on why it's an important country
this is preliminary work

slide 15

[slide 15]IP migration

Lila: do they choose to activate HTTPS?
Dan: yes

slide 16

[slide 16]

challenges: lot of back and forth with partners, find out what they are capable of doing
so far offered choice of whitelisting by URLs or IP
now with HTTPS, IP whitelisting is required
some even don't know immediately if they can support HTTPS
this is going to be focus in the next q

slide 17

[slide 17]

Lila: so for new partners, it's required?
mixed column in table (IP/URL) contains some of the biggest partners

slide 18

[slide 18]

Lila: what about those who can't do it?
Dan: sometimes we go back after a while to see if their hardware has been upgraded
recall we work in developing world with lots of old hardware; sometimes it makes sense to wait for upgrade
ongoing support for URL
we offer them assistance (on HTTPS) - we actually request manuals for their systems sometimes ;)
Tomasz: it happens ;)
Dan: but some of them really can't, because of hardware is too old
Erik: so the "can't" category contains 2.3% of PVs?
Dan: correct
Erik: need to define a threshold
recall that these are people who won't be able to edit
Carolynne: looking at it differently, it's 5% of PVs (including an estimate of non-IP in "mixed")
agree that the confused message is a problem (people not able to edit on WP0)
Carolynne, Lila: there's also value in making pages available for viewing only
Yana: they might be motivated [by reading Wikipedia on Zero] to get on Wifi to edit
Erik: agree, we can accept some of this, just need to develop a sense where that threshold is, monitor development

slide 19

[slide 19]

Regional Themes:

slide 20

[slide 20]

Health in Africa
Language in South Asia
Education in SE Asia

slide 21

[slide 21]

education: help our partners support our community - cool stuff going on

slide 22

[slide 22]

Pageviews in India
growing, but want to find out where PVs are coming from

slide 23

[slide 23]

India: growth via local languages
disconnect between how much of the people need acccess in local languages, and how many English (not local language) WP page-views we see
task not just for us, but also for community and Language Engineering team
local languages come up in every meeting with partners, important topic there
Lila: can we attribute pageviews to WP0? yes
Carolynne: we do reach people who don't care if it's free (middle class)
Yuri: that graph (Aircel) is WP0 only
Dan: many older cellphones can't display complex fonts for Indic languages; for Android, only newer models can
Carolynne: that's where relationships to handset manufacturers become important
working with Anasuya and Asaf from Grantmaking, language engineering and product/UX
Toby: historically we haven't geocoded by region in e.g. India, new package can do that[?]
Erik: not clear that this will shift even if we do everything right
Lila: Grantmaking is focusing on India, opportunity
e.g. largest non-English languages
Smriti: local lang speaker might need to go through 10 steps to just configure their phone
Lila: UX is really important
understand how phones are configured (get that info from handset manufacturer, or operator)
then, check how does font look like etc. - need to look at that directly
investigate that, as timeboxed project

slide 24

[slide 24]

Africa: Ebola
even UNICEF etc. do their campaigns only in English
community has translated WP article in local languages
suggested to operators to send SMS with article in local languages
Lila: should have actionable information, not just e.g. history of the virus
e.g. how to do burials

slide 25

[slide 25]

partnerships to distribute health content
(general, e.g. about hand washing - not just Ebola)
we were clear that WMF doesn't touch content (work with editors/Wiki Project Med foundation instead)
Lila: sure
partner with GSMA
for distribution on feature phones
include content on SIM cards
Lila: total population affected?

slide 26

[slide 26]

Adele: drives syndication
preloaded on Samsung devices
Tomasz: app or content preload?
Carolynne: both[?]
Firefox OS already does preload, Windows too
Erik: need to be careful of branding around health
have general disclaimer
Lila: agree
Yana: if they curate something based on our content, perhaps it should not be called Wikipedia
Toby: with handset preload, still decided by carriers?
Carolynne: it depends. Some are open handset markets.

slide 27

[slide 27]

(Adele:) OEM partnerships

slide 28

[slide 28]

Adele: Achievements
Americas, Brazil
We have commitment from one OEM to preload Wikipedia, more in pipeline

slide 29

[slide 29]

search integration, preload (seed content) - there is interest
Lila: (get mobile search right)
Tomasz: careful not to get into curating contenet
Carolynne: we're not touching content, Yana watches us ;)
Lila: Qualcomm has this nonprofit arm...
Lila: what's your thinking if OEM takes off?
Carolynne: want to do both OEM and Zero

slide 30

[slide 30]

Dan: Q1 results vs. Goals
hiring took longer

slide 31

[slide 31]

product & engineering Q1 results vs. goals:

slide 33

[slide 33]

Portal [for partners]: entire interface is done and mocked up
Jeff just started
begin implementation work tomorrow
building blocks were put in place by Yuri

slide 34

[slide 34]

portal mockup: 3 tracks legal/marketing /tech
Yuri: posted link for demo (defunct)

slide 35

[slide 35]

Work with Analytics, but also do our own analysis (lots of domain knowledge required)
curently from logs, but need full access to Hadoop
would like to collecct more data

slide 36

[slide 36]

new Graph extension for MediaWiki, Fundraisinig team is interested too
bonus: will be usable by Wikipedia editors as well, we would remove necessity for images in these cases
already have data for many partners, can just switch over from Limn to this new extension, it works dynamically
demo (just as an aside) Visualized edit history for Obama & D Adams, 500 last edits - could be added as a template to every article's talk page. (Adams spike from Google Doodle)
Toby: main thing you get [compared to Limn] is access control
Dan: slow getting data, neither Ops nor Analytics can measure
Tomasz: image compression?
Dan: can do on page by page basis internally, see 30% reduction, but needs to be verified externally
Erik: active where?
Dan: all new partners
will move existing ones too
Erik: evidence that compression has increased PVs?
Dan: working on analyzing that
Damon: In what layer is the compression happening?
Adam: on app servers

slide 37

[slide 37]

Dan: (Q2 focus)
portal - communicates [exchanging data] with CRM
add banners to sister projects, e.g. Wiktionary
make sure Yuri's Graph extension is consistent with previous

slide 38

[slide 38]


slide 39

[slide 39]

Policy update:
started to see questions regarding net neutrality
worked to explain that WP0 does not violate NN

slide 40

[slide 40]

started in Chile, because of new order there, with media reports that it would prohibit WP0
worked with them, to not undermine NN but not prevent WP0 either
regulator in Chile told us he does see difference between WP0 and the prohibited services
and other educational initiatives - important there
direct carrier outreach
Adele: Chile precedent has helped me in Brasil

slide 41

[slide 41]

Yana: presentation at Internet Governance Forum (IGF)
focus on digital divide
also highlighted our operating principles
very positive discussion at IGF, saw reports from conference that acknowledged that
and blog post on WP0 and NN
[slide 42
focus on A2K (access to knowledge): Wikimania talk with Yale ISP scholar, IGF panel discussion, meetings with advocates to collaborate on A2K
Lila: IMO it's a separate issue, WP is a public service. focus on A2K
need to work on messaging

slide 43

[slide 43]

Wikipedia Zero brand:
emphasize A2K
decide whether to retain term "Zero"
target mobile world congress
Lila: worry about expressing the goal of A2K [strongly enough]
should be a priority for Comms

slide 44

[slide 44]

Ecconet piloting free access to 50 educational services in Zimbabwe
in Zambia PVs, we see effect of internet.org launch
Lila: they have an army compared to us ;)
Carolynne: we let the portal slide a bit and still have hiring to do, but otherwise good on Q2 goals
Erik: likes seeing PVs climbing up ;)

slide 45

[slide 45]

slide 46

[slide 46]