Below is the Wikimedia UK monthly report for the period 1 to 31 August 2012. If you want to keep up with the chapter's activities as they happen, please subscribe to our blog, join our mailing list, and/or follow us on Twitter. If you have any questions or comments, please drop us a line on this report's talk page.
- Jimmy Wales
- Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales denies political muscle, BBC, 2 Aug
- Jimmy Wales keynoting at 'Technology: Disruption and Convergence', London, 4 August
- Jimbo Wales: Wikipedia servers in UK? No way, not with YOUR libel law, Register, 8 August
- Wikipedia founder says piracy verdict irrelevant to O'Dwyer case, ComputerActive, 15 August
- How Wikipedia Won Olympic Gold, Wired, 10 August.
- US presidential candidates
- Will Kelly Ayotte be Romney's running mate? Her Wikipedia page was updated 153 times in one day, Daily Mail, 8 August
- US political pundits begin scouring Wikipedia pages for hints over the identity of Mitt Romney's pick for potential Vice President, Independent, 8 August
- Wikipedia LOCKS editing access after Stephen Colbert tells his followers to mess with Mitt Romney's VP hopefuls' pages, 9 August
- Mitt Romney Wikipedia entry locked down, BBC, 10 Aug
- Wikipedia locks down editing on Mitt Romney, other Republican entries, TechRadar, 10 Aug
- Gender bias
- What has Wikipedia’s army of volunteer editors got against Kate Middleton’s wedding gown?, Independent, 16 Aug
- Guido Fawkes
- Caught! Guido Fawkes puffs up Wikipedia entry, Liberal Conspiracy, 17 Aug
- Wikipedia goes down thanks to cut cables, BBC, 6 August
- Wikipedia blackout after server cables accidentally cut, Telegraph, 6 August
- Wikipedia blames severed cable for global site outage, V3, 7 August
- Wikipedia blackout after cables cut, Telegraph, 7 August
- Wikipedia knocked offline by cut cable, PC Pro, 7 August
- Wikipedia Outage Caused By Cut Cable, TechWeekEurope, 7 August
- Wikipedia suffers outage after cable cut, ComputerWorld UK, 7 August
- Wikipedia goes down after data cables are accidentally cut in Florida, Metro UK, 7 August
- Brandon Harris
- Why Wikipedia Needs a “Kick In the Head”, Gizmodo, 13 August
- Printed Wikipedia
- Notes & Queries: Would a printed Wikipedia fit in the British Library?, Telegraph, 15 August
- Suggs and Wikipedia
- Madness frontman Suggs: I found out my Scots dad was dead by looking at my Wikipedia entry, Daily Record, 23 August
- Suggs: I learnt of my father's death on Wikipedia, Telegraph, 23 August
- Singer Suggs discovers family history on Wikipedia, Independent, 24 August
- Suggs learns of dad's death of Wikipedia, Daily Star, 24 August
- Suggs: I searched for my father for years, but found out he had died decades ago by reading my Wikipedia page, Daily Mail, 24 August
Education and Expert Outreach
The office staff and Martin Poulter adapted the Foundation's education case studies brochure to make a British version. This was sent out, with EduWiki conference flyers, to most of the universities in the UK, targeting in particular leading individuals in innovative and open education.
Wikimedia UK has had a spate of inquiries from university academics wanting to start educational assignments that improve Wikipedia. Martin Poulter is following up with phone and Skype meetings and seeking to arrange training sessions.
Wikimedia UK supported a Wikiproject Medicine outreach event at University Hospital, Coventry on the 31st. Doug Taylor and Martin Poulter attended, joining an audience of more than fifty, including many health professionals, university librarians and some experienced Wikipedia contributors.
The day's presentations were divided between medicine on Wikipedia and finding and using reliable sources for evidence-based medicine. User:Jfdwolff spoke about the origins of Wikiproject Medicine, explaining he was motivated to become a Wikipedian by the same interests that drove him to become a doctor. James Heilman (User:Jmh649), visiting from Canada, talked about plans to improve and translate a range of centrally-important medicine articles, including Cancer, Pregnancy and Schizophrenia, bringing reliable medical information to billions of people. Workshop organiser Helga Perry (User:Sharkli) gave an amusing presentation contrasting evidence-based medicine with its alternatives including "vehemence-based medicine" and "nervousness-based medicine". Jon Brassey showed off the TRIP database, a search engine for medical research that prioritises results according to their relevance to Wikipedia's Identifying Reliable Sources (Medicine) guideline. Brassey defended his decision to include quality medical articles from Wikipedia in the database: a move that has drawn criticism from some colleagues but been welcomed by others. Librarian Petra Meeson talked about critically appraising sources for inclusion in Wikipedia. She described a survey that asked 66 doctors which sources they consult first for clinically information. Twenty-four of them answered Google and 22 went straight to Wikipedia; far more than went straight to official databases. The day also included a training session, showing attendees how to add reliable sources to a medical article. Some Twitter commentary on the day has been captured with Storify. Wikimedia UK is seeking to support similar events in other parts of the country.
Final preparations for the EduWiki Conference 2012 (5-6 September) have taken place.
- See also the This Month in GLAM UK report for this month.
- Andy Mabbett convinced the historic Bartons Arms to make use of QRpedia codes, see commons:Category:QRpedia codes at The Bartons Arms.
- On 24-26 August, Andy represented Wikimedia-UK at Museum für Hamburgische Geschichte/2, a workshop (editathon) at Hamburgmuseum in Germany, where he assisted in the deployment of QRpedia, about which he spoke in Hamburg last December.
- The evening before, he gave a talk on Wikimedia QRpedia and more at Kultwerk West in that city.
- Andy is also proposing to make Wolverhampton into a Wikipedia City.
- Studying the world's first Wikipedia town, Monmouthshire Beacon, 8 August
- Planning for this event has continued throughout the month. This is a meeting/workshop for Wikimedians active in outreach to cultural institutions. Rather than an open community conference, this is a workshop targeting a small group of community-focused and technology-focused Wikimedians to discuss the key elements of the glamwiki.org project. Attendees can also include key representatives of GLAM (and related) institutions who already have a strong relationship with Wikimedia.
- Recruitment for our first developer position continued throughout this month. Unfortunately, we were unable to hire for the position, and we are currently investigating alternative options.
- Richard attended and met with several small startups who are creating apps which could be used to ease the 'reader' to 'editor' transition.
- WMUK also purchased a 500GB portable hard drive - mostly for off-site, non-personal data backup (such as copies of the fundraiser agreement and videos of board meetings), but also to be used for photography events where there is no fast internet connection to upload images directly to Commons.
- 2013 activity planning
(Summary of 2013 Activity Plan/Ideas)
- Microgrants/Operation Barras and Operation Flavius was approved. This grant pays for source material to be used in creating articles about various SAS exploits in the 1980s.
- Microgrants/Paralympics was approved. This grant supports one of our volunteers in photographing olympic and paralympic athletes outside of the olympic venues.
- Britannica takes on might of Wikipedia as encyclopedia to give Scottish schools free online access, Scotsman, 30 Aug
- Communications Bill
- We submitted a response to the UK Government's draft Communications Data Bill, the text of which is at Submission on Communications Data Bill
Upcoming activities in September
- 01 - Wikipedia Takes Coventry
- 03 - AHRC Wikipedia training workshop at the British Library
- 05–06 - EduWiki Conference 2012, University of Leicester
- 08–09 - Board meeting - in person, Coventry
- 09 - London meetup
- 10 - British Library: open afternoon and exhibition tour
- 13 - British Museum, Shakespeare: staging the world event
- 15–16 - GLAMcamp London, British Library
- 18 - Philatelic workshop at the British Library
- 23 - Reading meetup 1st ever meetup in Reading.
- 24 - British Library Wikipedia training workshop
- 24 - Conference Committee meeting
- 27 - Ethical Properties Wikipedia Workshop/September event
For events in October and onwards, please see Events.
Wiki UK Ltd is now known legally as Wikimedia U.K. as of 14 August, following from the change of name resolution passed at our AGM earlier this year. There is still a small issue regarding the difference between 'Wikimedia UK' and 'Wikimedia U.K.', which should be sorted out next month.
On 2 August, Chris Keating succeeded Fae as Chair of Wikimedia UK, and Doug Taylor was appointed Vice-Chair. Our blog post.
News from the Chief Exec
- For information on Jon's activities this month, see News from the Office.
Much of this month's press coverage is already recorded above. Below is a summary of some top line communications activity this month:
- Taken delivery of lots of printed materials, including updated education booklets, document folders for events, notebooks, welcome to Wikipedia booklets and guides to wiki mark-up. These were either designed or updated in-house, part of a developing trend to move as much design work as possible internally to reduce costs.
- Met with Wikinews volunteers to discuss their coverage of the Paralympics. Got to know some volunteers.
- Lots of preparation for Wikipedia Takes Coventry and the EduWiki conference. More details of these two activities will appear in the September report.
- Work continued with Digital Disruption and Demos on developing a project around digital literacy. The related workshop will take place on 24 October.
- The ongoing relationship with the CIPR remains strong with more work taking place around the next stage of developing the guidelines for the PR industry in interacting with Wikipedia. A session on this will take place in September at Social Media Week, London with David Gerard appearing on the panel on behalf of WMUK.
- Quotes have been obtained for media training for volunteers, trustees and staff. This is dependent on the training being approved.
Fundraising and Membership
This month, we received £2,835 in one-off donations, with 135 individual donations. The average donation amount was £21. 94 (69%) of these donors have had Gift Aid Declarations made and matched with their records. If anyone would like a full (but anonymised) csv file with more information, please get in touch with katherine.bavagewikimedia.org.uk and let her know your requirements.
As for direct debit donations, there were 5,852 successful direct debits this month, bringing in a total of £23,459.49.
Up to 31st August 2012:
- 212 new (membership commenced in preceding three months) and current members
- 42 'grace' members (membership within six months after date membership should be renewed)
- This adds up to 254 current members who are eligible to vote
- 146 Expired members
It is an identified priority that Katherine will work with Mike Peel as Secretary to chase all expired members who may wish to renew, and finalise and automate reminders for those whose membership is approaching expiration.