Wikimedia Girl Geek Dinner/Manchester November 2014

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date Sunday 23 November 10am-4pm
location Spaceport X, 24/26 Lever Street, Manchester, M1 1DZ
more info On the Manchester Girl Geeks site
tickets £4, including lunch, from Eventbright

Info for participants[edit | edit source]

Info from the Manchester Girl Geeks site

Manchester Girl Geeks presents an introduction to editing Wikipedia. Practically everyone uses the free encyclopaedia to find out about the world - but have you ever tried adding to it? Women are sorely underrepresented in editing and contributing to Wikipedia articles, and we aim to shift the balance.

Helpers from Wikimedia UK and Manchester Girl Geeks will show you how to take your first steps as a Wikipedia contributor, and can provide more advanced help to those who've already dabbled. Bring along your favourite sources and add to the body of knowledge together.

The editing day will include separate areas for beginners and people who already know how to edit Wikipedia - if you attended our event last year, or you already have experience of editing, there'll be a more advanced area where you can get on with editing, and have help on more advanced topics. If you're not experienced, trainers will take you through the basics of logging in and editing, as well as give you some ideas of how to contribute.

The day runs from 10am-4pm, and refreshments and lunch will be provided. Please let us know if you have any special dietary requirements.

What to bring[edit | edit source]

  • A laptop/computer, on which to edit; if you don't have one you can bring, please get in touch beforehand and we can sort something out
  • Reference materials on topics you'd like to write about, such as books, papers or journals.

Info for trainers[edit | edit source]

Sign up[edit | edit source]

Sign below if you are training:

Outline plan[edit | edit source]

10:00 People turn up, get a cup of tea, get the laptop booted up and connected to the WiFi.
10:15 Introduction from Gemma
10:25 Notes on today
  • Two streams with some plenary sessions
  • Describe the different activities that the two groups will do
  • It’s interactive!
  • Ask if you need help – a trainer or a fellow participant
  • Help each other
10:35 What do we want from today?

Everyone says their name, what their experience is of Wikipedia and what they want to get out of the day. Hopefully this will draw out of some of the participants why they think Wikipedia is so good so we won’t need to do any "selling" – the other participants do it for us. This may lead to a change of plan. e.g. an extra/alternative activity for the established editors.

  • Good opportunity to confirm things for people and spread that knowledge to others present
  • Good opportunity to dispel myths
10:50 Newbies

In area set up with a "demonstration computer" attached to a projector with an experience Wikipedian (but not the one doing the talking) in the driving seat.

1. Get everyone who doesn't have one a user name – Go to the English Wikipedia and click on create account. There is good guidance there on user names.

2. Try some wikicode in the sandbox. Link to the sandbox is in the top right.

  • Ask people to write a sentence about their first pet.
  • Hand out some cheatsheets or get people to go Wikipedia:Wikipedia:Cheatsheet.
  • Ask people to put the name of the pet in bold.
  • When demonstrator demonstrates this, they also demonstrate edit summary and preview edit.

3. Write about yourself on your user page.

  • If you want to remain anonymous, be careful how much you give away.
  • You can mention where you live. Make a wikilink to the article about where you live.

4. Random article!

  • Click on the random article button
  • Gives people an idea of the breadth of Wikipedia and that it is a work in progress
  • Ask people to highlight any issues they come across.
  • Ask what they think should be done about it.
  • We'll need some judgement here. Somethings may end up being too complicated to get into but hopefully it will be a good opportunity to get people editing the encyclopedia. e.g.
    • Fixing typos.
    • Correcting errors
    • Finding references (Google!)
    • Clean-up tagging
  • Show one of the early changes on the big screen
  • Typo fixing etc. can be explained to people on a one-to-one basis, though others may be interested to watch.
  • If something big comes up, like adding references, gather people round. Consider demonstrating how to do it on the demonstration machine.

5. The History tab and diffs. Would anyone like to show off their edit? Gather round that person’s laptop. Click on history tab. Now we can all see why the edit summary was important. But what if we want to know the details of the edit? I wonder what the previous edit looked like...

6. Talk pages.

  • Ask people how they think disagreements are resolved.
  • Ask people to suggest an article they may think is particularly contentious
  • Highlight the talk page
  • Signature
  • New threads go at the bottom
  • If an issue appropriate for discussion has already come up, suggest that someone leaves a message about it.

7. Watchlist

  • Very useful if you are waiting for a response to a talk page comment!
  • Also useful if you want to see what changes happen to an article.
Established editors

1. Discuss what we'd like to do. There are some ideas at Wikipedia:Wikipedia:WikiProject Women scientists/Worklist and Wikipedia:Wikipedia:WikiProject Greater Manchester/Article requests.

2. Who wants to do what?

3. Possibly split into pairs as per Wikipedia:Pair programming

4. Once everyone is introduced to the activity, trainers on hand to answer questions.

12:35 Lunch
13:20 Verification and citation

Plenary session. But if some of the established editors want to carry on with women scientists that is fine.

1. If verification has already come naturally in the previous exercise, great. Follow on from that. Otherwise, ask participants:

  • What do you of the reliability of Wikipedia?
  • How can you know if a "fact" in Wikipedia is reliable? – Reliable sources

2. Introduce verification policy. Policy in a nutshell: Other people have to be able to check that you didn't just make things up. This means that all quotations and any material challenged or likely to be challenged must be attributed to a reliable, published source using an inline citation.

  • Quotations
  • Challenged or likely to be challenged
  • Extraordinary claims

Explain that you can always check the policy by going to WP:V. There is also Wikipedia:Wikipedia:Reliable sources/Noticeboard

3. Citation tool

13:50 Add information to Wikipedia!

Plenary session. But if some of the established editors want to carry on with women scientists that is fine. Consider dropping this activity if overrunning significantly. People will have already edited to a certain extent and the next bits will help to round of the day.

Invite people to use hard-copy sources provided and sources on the internet. Find something you want to write about. See if its already there. Start a new article or expand the existing one.

This can develop into a general editing session with people asking the trainers for help as they require it. If they someone needs new inspiration, suggest:

  • More from the women biogs list (especially if a newbie who hasn’t seen it before)
  • Pick another hard-copy source
  • Click random article until you see something needing attention
  • Wikipedia:Wikipedia:Pages needing attention
15:10 Tea break
15:25 Getting help

Plenary session. But if some of the established editors want to carry on with women scientists that is fine.

Describe the different sources of help

Get people to look at Wikipedia:Help:Contents – good summary of options

Describe some in more detail:

  • Helpdesk
  • Teahouse
  • Reference desk
  • Community portal

Encourage people to be bold.

15:40 Summary discussion

1. What did we learn today? Get one thing from each participant and write it on the flip chart.

2. Will people use what they have learnt?

3. Will they continue editing Wikipedia?

4. Is there anything else people want to know?

Resources[edit | edit source]

It would be useful is someone coming up from London could bring:

  • Cheatsheats
  • References such as a collection of biographies

Room layout[edit | edit source]

It would be good to have:

  • Main room
    • Projector
    • Seats set up so everyone can see the big screen while at a table with their laptop
  • Side room
    • For use by experienced editors

Plans for after[edit | edit source]

Those who want to can go to the Manchester meetup at Port Street Beer House, which is only two minutes' walk away.

Lessons learnt[edit | edit source]

At the end of the event, the participants were asked what they learnt. This is what they said.

  • How to link to specific sections of Wikipedia pages
  • Learnt so much I'd never even thought about
  • Useful place to publicly put what I've learnt academically, so it's not just in my head.
  • Learnt how to share photos of kittens, and how to redirect.
  • Learnt how to get inspiration for articles to start editing. Also playing around with templates.
  • Always end up looking at something new on Wikipedia.
  • Learnt about Lua, Wikimedia Commons and the community portal.
  • Learnt about how Wikipedia handles original work.
  • Really quick and easy to sign up and to use the editing tools, and how to conduct yourself on Wikipedia. Wikipedia is a common sense thing, rather than hard-and-fast rules.
  • Wouldn't have looked at Wikipedia if there hadn't been a group of people to come together to work on it.
  • Now know more about references and citations, what a reliable source is, etc.