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Wikis World/Plan

From Meta, a Wikimedia project coordination wiki

Some ideas/plans to set up a Mastodon server for "wiki enthusiasts". This is explicitly not a plan to create some official "Wikimedia Mastodon". Discussion (in fediverse) started here...


  • Intended audience is people involved with wikis, and possibly other free culture/software collaborative projects. You are free to post about whatever (within server rules), it doesn't all have to be about wikis.
    • Content is default licensed CC-BY-SA 3.0, fair use is OK.
    • People can be asked to leave if they're considered out of scope.
    • The instance is going to be multilingual. However, in practice most initial participants speak English, so it's also possible to start it as a primarily English instance with the expectation that instances in other languages will appear (like en.osm.town).
  • Moderation is going to be stricter than what's tolerated on-wiki in line with general fediverse expectations
    • We can adopt the mastodon.technology ruleset to begin with since that's where most of us are coming from?
    • we'll subscribe to one of those anti-Nazi/fascist blocklists
    • Before starting the instance needs at least two persons who volunteer to be admins (or admin and moderator) because moderation work is the main #MastoAdmin chore and quickly turns political. Whoever takes this thankless responsibility will be a temporary benevolent dictator.
  • Registration will be invite-only until funding is secured for a larger instance.
    • (unsure about this) registration will be viral, you need 2 current members to endorse you to get an account (what riseup.net does)
    • Alternatively, the instance can start with a few months of open registration until a certain number of users is reached (like 100) and then switch to invite-only with every member able to invite people they know, like chaos.social. A soft limit of 5000 users (or similar) can be set, after which registration will be closed completely to allow other instances to grow.
  • We will use a fully managed hosting provider like masto.host, to support existing free software professionals.
    • Hosting it ourselves (e.g. Cloud VPS) was considered, but we didn't get enough volunteers to share sysadmin responsibility to pull it off.
  • Hosting resources and costs
    • Domain name was discussed privately to prevent squatting. Legoktm is willing to cover first two years (assuming it's like, less than $50 total).
    • The name should not contain a trademark and ideally be an unprotectable generic name to avoid a Reclaim the Logo situation. Ideally the name would be easy for search engines too, but unfortunately derivatives of "wiki" are often translated to "Wikipedia" by Google etc. so it's hard to tell.
    • Maybe in the future we can form a user group (Wikimedians for free social media user group) to get a grant to cover costs. If incorporated it could be arranged as social.coop or other non-profit-owned instances. In the long term the group could be responsible for recalling the admins.
    • The initial few months could be paid by the initial participants and later a rapid grant could be asked. The rationale is that the main contribution to the Wikimedia movement is the social work of moderating the instance, so the benefit is higher if less efforts are spent on the hosting work.
  • Legal stuff (from https://denise.dreamwidth.org/91757.html)

Timeline 2022>2023[edit]

proposals for 2023 (January)[edit]

  • ...

first wider discussions and lists (December)[edit]

first (new) people joining (November)[edit]

  • ...

first weeks proposals were (October)[edit]

The primary impetus/motivator for this is the mastodon.technology shutdown, which went readonly on Nov. 1 and shutdown Dec. 1.

  • Oct. 10 - get people to explicitly sign up and commit to helping with setup, and general consensus on the audience and scope of the server (don't have to agree on everything, just all be on the same page of roughly what we want)
  • Oct. 14 - have domain name selected/bought, initial server setup (do we want a test server first? or just set up the real database right away? ...) and testing begins
  • Oct. 28 - soft launch, have people start migrating

Interested people[edit]