Water cooler

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Welcome to the water cooler
This is a place to find out what is happening and to discuss our external projects and activities. Feel free to suggest ideas that could help our charitable mission or ask questions about how you can help. To discuss the inner workings of the charity, head over to the engine room.
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Kanban for editathons

A kanban board at the Women in Classical Studies editathon at Senate House, London

I just saw the newsletter with a picture of the kanban board used at the Women in Classical Studies editathon. What a great idea! It helps people share what they are working on. Helps to avoid edit conflicts. Enables organisers to list all the articles that have been improved. It could possibly work well for a recap session at the end too, where people talk about the changes they made.

Who was involved with that editathon? Who has used it elsewhere? I would love to hear how it has been used in practice.

Yaris678 (talk) 15:09, 3 February 2017 (GMT)

Hi Yaris678, I was the lead trainer at the Women in Classical Studies editathon. I saw the kanban in an Instagram post for an Art+Feminism editathon. It worked much better than expected - a fantastic indicator of the achievements of the day.Eartha78 (talk) 19:02, 3 February 2017 (GMT)
Cool. So how did you use it? Did you get people to brainstorm a load of post-its of articles to look at, at the beginning of the day? Did you just say 'if you have an idea, stick it on the board'? Did you come with the post-its filled out already? Yaris678 (talk) 10:25, 11 February 2017 (GMT)
The group were quite well prepared prior to the editathon. They had identified a number of articles to create - some had already done the research and started to writing in their sandbox. When we began the second part of the editathon they each committed to an article, wrote it on a sticky note and stuck it to the wall! Moving the notes from left to right was surprisingly motivating and a good excuse to stretch ones legs. Also used the sticky notes for an evaluation exercise at the end of the session. Eartha78 (talk) 18:27, 16 February 2017 (GMT)
Thank you Eartha78. That is really interesting. I will use this next time I do an editathon. Yaris678 (talk) 09:39, 19 February 2017 (GMT)

Wikimedia UK's plans for 2018 - community consultation

Watch our video about our plans for 2018

Wikimedia UK is in the process of writing our proposal to the Wikimedia Foundation for funding during 2018/19. The deadline for the bid is 1st October after which it is assessed by staff at the Foundation, there is an opportunity for community feedback and questions, and the Funds Dissemination Committee (FDC) meet to consider proposals and make recommendations about grants.

As 2018/19 is the final year of our 2016 - 2019 strategy, our programme for next year is in many ways a continuation of our activities in 2017 and falls under three key strands:

  1. Diverse content and contributors
  2. Promoting open knowledge
  3. Education and Learning

These strands are directly related to our three strategic goals, which are to:

  • Increase the quality and quantity of coverage of subjects that are currently underrepresented on Wikipedia and the other Wikimedia projects
  • Contribute to the development of open knowledge in the UK, by increasing understanding and recognition of the value of open knowledge and advocating for change at an organisational, sectoral and public policy level
  • Support the use of the Wikimedia projects as important tools for education and learning in the UK

We would welcome input from the UK community into our plans for next year - which we are still shaping - and have created a short video to highlight our programme strands which you can watch here. You can give us feedback on our programme anytime, but if you’d like your views to be taken into account in our submission to the Wikimedia Foundation for funding, please do comment below by Friday 29th September. If you’d prefer to get in touch by email, feel free to contact me on lucy.crompton-reid@wikimedia.org.uk.

There are several questions in particular that I’d like to ask:

  • Is there anything that Wikimedia UK should be doing more of, or new activities that we should consider, in 2018/19?
  • What work would you like to see us continue?
  • Is there anything you think we should do less of or stop doing?
  • How would you like to be involved in Wikimedia UK’s programme next year?

With many thanks indeed for your input.

LucyCrompton-Reid (WMUK) (talk) 13:39, 21 September 2017 (BST)

ACTRIAL and new users creating new pages at events

Hi All,

Some thoughts on WP:ACTRIAL and our events:

  • It makes sense to encourage new users to work in Draft: name space.
  • This doesn't change the fact that it is worth asking people to create an account in advance (and to remember their password!)
  • We have to expect that some people won't create an account and most of those who have won't be auto-confirmed - this is OK.
  • If there are admins present at the event, they can make new users confirmed.... although I wouldn't stress over it - there is no harm in the Draft: name space.
  • All the above is less of an issue if we take the approach of #Training from the back of the room described above. If the group is split into teams that are deliberately set to have the full spread of ability, we can encourage people to help other team members, including the following:
    • Middle-ability people to show the people with no account how to create an account.
    • Experienced editors to help newer editors to find a page that might need editing.
    • Experienced editors to create pages that other team members are interested in editing.

You could even get admins to confirm accounts of non-confirmed people in their team, but it might actually be better to not do that. If the experienced people in the team have actually created the article then at least we know it is in their contributions and so they can steward the article towards improvement. e.g. 1. the day after the event, they might go back to the article and tidy it up, 2. if the article gets tagged for deletion, they are better able to discuss it and improve it, whereas a new user may feel bitten.

Yaris678 (talk) 14:44, 25 September 2017 (BST)

Obvious question, where do we find data on how many non-autoconfirmed users and IPs actually make pages that satisfy Wiki Criteria? 15:31, 26 September 2017 (BST)
According to WMF research, of the 1,180 articles created every day on the English Wikipedia, about 7% are by non-autoconfirmed editors. Richard Nevell (WMUK) (talk) 16:55, 2 October 2017 (BST)
Thanks for your input Yaris678. Working in Draft: or User: space is probably going to be integral to dealing with this. I've not used Draft: much myself, but I'm keen on getting people to use their sandbox to prepare material and then copy it over. It does mean a chunk of the pages people work on aren't copied over the to the mainspace but that's a reasonable trade-off. Richard Nevell (WMUK) (talk) 16:59, 2 October 2017 (BST)
The #Training from the back of the room sounds like a really interesting idea, I'm interested in this kind of collaborative/peer learning process. Sadly for the bulk of editathons I manage, this wouldn't be applicable, as I'm generally working with a whole bundle new users, trying to advocated for further use in their organisations. Lirazelf (talk) 14:07, 3 October 2017 (BST)
Thanks Lirazelf. I guess you'll have to rely on the first four bullets - especially the draft namespace. I think it would be useful to have a non-new user move the drafts across. Preferably during the training session, so people can see their work "live" on Wikipedia, which will create excitement. Ideally, well before the end of the training so that people can continue to edit their articles in main space - seeing that this is a normal thing to do is important.
I fringe benefit of this approach is that each article edited will be in the contributions list of at least one non-new user. That way, they can "steward" the article to a certain extent. This will be particularly important if the article is nominated for deletion - having someone who knows the ropes will help to get the article in a position to keep - and help to argue that it should be kept. But more generally it will be useful, to keep the article quality up.
Yaris678 (talk) 12:59, 19 October 2017 (BST)

Wiki Loves Monuments UK 2017 awards announced

1st prize: The derelict West Pier in Brighton, by Matthew Hoser

I am very pleased to be able to announce the 2017 award winners for Wiki Loves Monuments in the UK.

First place goes to Matthew Hoser for his image of the derelict West Pier in Brighton.

In second place was Paul Stümke, who captured the Glenfinnan Viaduct at Loch Shiel.

Third was Oliver Tookey for the De La Warr Pavilion in Bexhill on Sea.

The special prize for the best image taken in Scotland was awarded to Keith Proven for Smailholm Tower.

The special prize for the best image taken in Wales went to Sterim64 for Craig-y-mor.

You can see all of these images, and the other stunning pictures that were awarded Highly Commended status at Wikimedia Commons.

Many congratulations to all of our prizewinners, and thanks to all who volunteered to help make the contest a success: contestants, judges, reviewers and Wikimedians in many roles. Thanks also for the kind support we received from the International team, from our friendly staff at Wikimedia UK, and from our 2017 prize sponsors, Wikimedia UK and Archaeology Scotland. MichaelMaggs (talk) 07:43, 31 October 2017 (GMT)

Effects of broadband

Looks like BT wants to push more people to faster internet where it has fiber: https://uk.reuters.com/article/uk-bt-group-broadband/bt-incentivises-operators-to-move-customers-to-faster-broadband-idUKKBN1KE0LR

Is someone monitoring the trend of average internet speed and the impact it has on user activity in the Wikimedia projects? Nemo bis (talk) 08:43, 24 July 2018 (BST)

Hi Nemo bis, I'm not sure that our small charity has the capacity to do something like this, or how it might benefit us. You are welcome to expand on why you think this would be a good idea if you like. John Lubbock (WMUK) (talk) 12:29, 2 April 2019 (BST)