News from across the Wikimedia movement
Mon, 03 Aug 2020 16:35:32 +0000




Diff https://diff.wikimedia.org

Remembering Muid Latif https://diff.wikimedia.org/2020/08/03/remembering-muid-latif/

Mon, 03 Aug 2020 00:00:00 +0000


On 11 April 2020, the Wikimedia community lost one of its contributors – Muid Latif. Muid was known for his contributions as the Project Lead for Creative Commons Malaysia. Muid actively promoted the free-culture movement and open collaboration. He was a Malaysian web designer, graphic designer, and digital artist who actively encouraged the young generation to take the plunge into design and make their mark in the field. Muid was also one of the official Behance Ambassadors representing Malaysia. His demise is lamented by many not only because of his efforts in the field, but also because he passed away at the young age of 41 years.

A graduate in fine arts from the University Technology Mara (UiTM), Shah Alam, Selangor, Malaysia, Muid founded Digital Malaya Project (DMP), a collective art group that supports Malaysia’s creative multimedia industry in 2001. This Project was involved in art exhibitions from Malaysia to Singapore, Jakarta, Bangkok, Japan and Germany, and had been involved in pro-bono projects and campaigns with the Malaysian AIDS Council, Yahoo! Flickr Malaysia group, government bodies, and NGOs such as the Perdana Leadership Foundation.

From left: Kat Walsh, Creative Commons Legal Counsel & Board member of the Wikimedia Foundation, Jennifer Kang of CC Korea, Muid Latif, Project Lead of Creative Commons Malaysia and (Diane) DaYe Jung of Creative Commons Korea in conjunction of Creative Commons Indonesia Launch, Jakarta, Indonesia on 11 November 2012

As a volunteer-promoter of youth career and free knowledge, he addressed many college youth gatherings on choosing a career in web design. Ameen Harun, one of the former students of Limkokwing University of Creative Technology recalls his close interaction with Muid when he made such a presentation at the campus in early 2000s. This lead Ameen to choose Web design as a major. The proximity also led Ameen to closely follow the Digital Malaya project and the emphasis on web standards. Ameen also recalls that he and Muid shared common interest in X-Men Comic series which further bonded their association.

Malaysian entrepreneur Chun Woei recalls how a meeting between him and Muid at a digital art exhibition led to close collaboration between them since 2004. Despite his deteriorating health, Muid was always cheerful, initiative and ready to help anyone in need in the area of digital art and creativity. He sums up Muid’s work and passion thusly, “He never knew when to give up, nor did he ever feel tired even when he was sick. He would always showcase the best of his efforts to cheer up others. His passing is definitely a big loss to the digital arts and design scene in Malaysia, especially to the young talents who need someone to inspire and aspire them. He symbolized iconic bravery, strength, cheerfulness and joyful approach which carried an innate brotherly feeling. His spirit will forever live on with me and I will continue to build this community with his strength and bravery. His positive energy will always be cherished.”




Muid Latif, Malaysia Digital Artist

Tech/News/2020/31 https://diff.wikimedia.org/2020/07/28/tech-news-2020-31/

Tue, 28 Jul 2020 18:36:03 +0000


Latest tech news from the Wikimedia technical community. Please tell other users about these changes. Not all changes will affect you. Translations are available.

Recent changes

  • The Starter kit is now available for wiki communities. This page lists technical resources, tools, and recommendations. These are essential to operate a wiki project. This is mostly useful for smaller wikis where the community has limited experience with this. [1]
  • The first features of the Desktop Improvements project are available for logged-in users on all wikis. In order to use them, uncheck Use Legacy Vector in your local or global preferences in section Skin preferences. More improvements are planned. Feedback is welcome.
  • Advanced item On multiple wikis, a UTCLiveClock gadget is available. For wikis that import the gadget directly from mediawiki.org, end users can now choose a different timezone to show instead of UTC.


  • Advanced item The deployment train for MediaWiki has been blocked this week. [2][3]
  • Translation Notification Bot was sending the same message multiple times to every translator. This has been fixed. [4]
  • Some users were receiving the same notification multiple times. This has been fixed. [5]

Changes later this week

  • Recurrent item The new version of MediaWiki will be on test wikis and MediaWiki.org from 28 July. It will be on non-Wikipedia wikis and some Wikipedias from 29 July. It will be on all wikis from 30 July (calendar).

Tech news prepared by Tech News writers and posted by bot • Contribute • Translate • Get help • Give feedback • Subscribe or unsubscribe on wiki.





Advanced item

Advanced item

Recurrent item

2020 reasons to not just stop Wikimedia conferences https://diff.wikimedia.org/2020/07/21/2020-reasons-to-not-just-stop-wikimedia-conferences/

Tue, 21 Jul 2020 18:00:00 +0000



As well pointed out recently by Katherine Maher we are still facing a very difficult time in our history. A nasty disease with heavy side effects on human interaction. Something we cannot just ignore.

This affects our community. Even if it is considered a virtual one.

Anyway it’s more than virtual. We invest so much efforts in sharing free knowledge. We release contents of any kind. We try to cover almost every topic, in every language, for every culture of the world.

1. We do not work well without human interaction

As convivial volunteers, we are a movement evolving much faster if we interact with each other.

We like it! Learning stuff. Teaching stuff. Building stuff. Talking about our interests. Testing our skills. Discuss about our ideas. Leaving feedback on suggested contributions. Being curious. Discover if that new hacky wiki tool can save us 5 minutes. Why not? 😎

We know. This requires interaction. Much interaction.

2. Try to Hack meetups again

In the Wikimedia Movement there are many events happening all around the world every single day. But now they must stay in compliance of the COVID-19 warnings and make a choice:

  • cancel an event
  • re-design it

Right now, lots of standard meetups are trying to evaluate the second option and we want to share one of these stories.

Another small success story? We hope!

3. What about the itWikiCon?

itWikiCon 2020 community post-it survey

Let’s talk about this “itWikiCon“. A Wikimedia conference organized by the italian-speaking community since 2017.

If you need lots of room to talk about Wikiquote, Wikibooks, Wikiversity, Wikidata, Wikinews, Wikipedia, Wikisource, …, licensing, content disparities, community engagement, OpenStreetMap, GLAMs and pasta & pizza, you know. This may be that kind of cozy event.

Some awesome venues hosted this live event:

  • the Renaissance villa-fortress in Trento (look at the photos!) for 2017
  • the astonishing Como and its lake in 2018

4. Yes but, we don’t have a “standard to online” conversion button

Yes, this may sound completely crazy and insane but, again, doing such conversion is not impossible. You are not alone in this.

For example we said the itWikiCon in these minutes is gathering the ideas to build the new two-day program of the itWikiCon 2020, scheduled for 24 and 25 October.

They are also taking some advantages from difficulties! Allow the participation of very distant volunteers, be more sustainable and introduce some strange cool stuff like virtual tours. Imagine visiting breathtaking cultural places and nature landscapes from your home!

And because unity is strength, why not organizing everything in conjunction with other communities or even other events?

5. Never try to be alone in the party

We have librarians, teachers, students, hackers, …, but if something is missing, don’t be afraid to ask.

There are no more excuses. Today it’s possible to to stay coherent with our vision and organize interesting online events without digital issues or privacy nightmares. It’s simple as long as you do not try to do everything by yourself!

The itWikiCon has found an epic infrastructure contribution from the Italian Academic & Research Network (GARR) and the partnership with the Italian Linux Society’s event: the national Linux Day 2020 online.

Sharing the event between two or more communities allowed the itWikiCon to gain enough bandwidth for every guest and without costs.

Not bad, and even more fun together!

6. Please don’t take away Users’ Freedom

Last rule. You cannot ignore all the simple, powerful, ethical, existing Free Software solutions. Really.

Freedom is important. You have to be active and proactive to preserve your freedom, or people will take it away.

― FSFE member interviewed during an interesting campaign in the European Parliament

Here some of the technologies powering the itWikiCon and many other events:

  • BigBlueButton – video conferencing made easy
  • PeerTube – streaming and broadcasting platform
  • Jitsi – even more easy video conferencing
  • OBS – control room (wow!)
  • Icecast – scalable streaming
  • Giggity (from F-Droid) – schedule viewer for conferences

It’s just too lazy to do not even evaluate them!

Look for some help, try them, and find a good service provider—bonus point: from your own country—and have fun.

7. Be bold and share your ideas

What online meetup do you want to attend? What problems are you encountering in 2020? Can you do it with Free Software? Do you need an help? Share your thoughts!

I almost forgot… good luck Italy and have a nice itWikiCon 2020 online! ❤




ItWikiCon 2020 community survey results

itWikiCon 2020 community post-it survey

Tech/News/2020/30 https://diff.wikimedia.org/2020/07/21/tech-news-2020-30/

Tue, 21 Jul 2020 16:34:07 +0000


Other languages: Bahasa Melayu • ‎British English • ‎Deutsch • ‎English • ‎Nederlands • ‎Simple English • ‎español • ‎français • ‎italiano • ‎magyar • ‎polski • ‎português do Brasil • ‎suomi • ‎svenska • ‎čeština • ‎русский • ‎українська • ‎עברית • ‎العربية • ‎کوردی • ‎മലയാളം • ‎ไทย • ‎日本語 • ‎한국어

Latest tech news from the Wikimedia technical community. Please tell other users about these changes. Not all changes will affect you. Translations are available.

Recent changes

  • A temporary fix helped wikis make their main pages more mobile friendly. This was in 2012. It has not been recommended since 2017. The mobile main page special casing stopped working 14 July. 60 wikis now have main pages that don’t work well on mobile. You can see which ones, how to fix it and how to get help in Phabricator. This is the same problem that was reported in Tech News 2020/24 and 2020/26.


  • There is a problem with the interlanguage links. The interlanguage links are the links that help you find a specific page in a different language. The sorting is broken. The developers are working on a solution. [1]
  • Some users keep getting the notifications for the same event. Some of these are old events. [2]
  • Some users have trouble logging in. This is probably a browser cookie problem. The developers are working on understanding the problem. If you have trouble logging in you can see the details on Phabricator. [3]

Changes later this week

  • Recurrent item The new version of MediaWiki will be on test wikis and MediaWiki.org from 21 July. It will be on non-Wikipedia wikis and some Wikipedias from 22 July. It will be on all wikis from 23 July (calendar).

Future changes

  • There is a Printable version link. This will disappear. That is because web browsers today can create a printable version or show how it will look in print anyway. [4]

Tech news prepared by Tech News writers and posted by bot • Contribute • Translate • Get help • Give feedback • Subscribe or unsubscribe.





Recurrent item

Affiliations Committee 2020 Mid-Term Election results https://diff.wikimedia.org/2020/07/20/affiliations-committee-2020-mid-term-election-results/

Mon, 20 Jul 2020 17:00:00 +0000


We are happy to share that Başak Tosun, Bunty Avieson, Jeffery Keefer, Ravan Al-Taie, and Suyash Dwivedi are new members who have been appointed to the Affiliations Committee, while Camelia Boban has been re-appointed.

Here are Başak Tosun, Bunty Avieson, Jeffery Keefer, Ravan Al-Taie, and Suyash Dwivedi, in their own words:

Başak Tosun

I have been a contributor to Wikimedia projects since 2005. I mainly contribute to Turkish Wikipedia. For a long time, I was only an online contributor; I discovered that contributions to free knowledge could go beyond editing after I joined an international WikiCamp in 2015. Then I contacted fellow wikipedians to form a user group in Turkey and became one of the founder members of Wikimedia Community User Group Turkey. I took the responsibility of Wikipedia Education Programs in the group and organized Education Programs in several courses at 8 different universities. Additionally, I take part in organising edit-a-thons, partnership search, organising local contests.

Bunty Avieson

I am a media academic at University of Sydney and a member of Wikimedia Australia. I learned to edit at an Art & Feminism event in March 2017 and immediately followed up with an online course. I have since hosted edit-a-thons in Sydney and Bhutan, but my interest goes beyond editing to the larger goals of the Wikimedia movement, particularly around knowledge equity and diversity. I’m currently leading two research projects to build smaller language Wikipedias. One is a collaboration with Tata Institute of Social Sciences in Mumbai to train two groups of retired Tamils, in both Sydney and Mumbai, to edit Tamil Wikipedia. The other is a three-year project funded by the Australian Research Council, to train Bhutanese to publish on both English Wikipedia and also develop their Dzongkha site. I’m an active member of Women Write Wiki and Women In Red.

Jeffery Keefer

I serve as a Wikimedian in Residence for the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI). I started editing Wikipedia three years ago while attending an open education conference in London where I went to a workshop and was challenged to learn to try editing Wikipedia. Between then and now Wikimedia has become my online home, where I edit and teach students how to use our Wikimedia projects, am active across all three types of Affiliates, and was one of the writers of the Movement Strategy Recommendations. I have a PhD in educational research. I am or have been involved in a number of Wikipedia + Wikimedia projects across the Movement: Wikimedia Movement Strategy: Integrator, Writer, and Co-Coordinator of the Capacity Building Working Group; Election Facilitator for the Affiliate-Selected Board Seats (ASBS) election, 2019; Member of the Board, Wikimedia New York City; Member, Project Grants Committee; AffCom Reporting Representative, LGBT+ User Group; Member, Editorial Board of the WikiJournal of Humanities; Member, Wikimedians in Residence Exchange Network; Member, Wiki Project Med Foundation Member; WikiConference North America User Group.

Ravan Al-Taie

I am Ravan Al-Taie. I’m the founder of Iraqi Wikimedians User Group. I am an engineer, working as a professional in the Oil industry. I started editing Wikipedia in 2008, edited Arabic wikipedia and became an admin in 2013 for more than 6 years. In 2015, My mother language is Arabic, but I speak Kurdish language fluently as well, that’s why I helped in Kurdish Wikipedia and currently helping other colleagues to correctly start Kurdish Wikipidian user group as per the foundation process because I strongly believe the more diverse we are the best to be in representing the global knowledge heritage. I’ve led several offline activities such as organizing WLM for 3 years in Iraq, as well as starting the first editathon and learning workshop in all Iraq with great success. After that, I’ve focused on bringing more women to the movement in order to decrease the big gender gap that we have in Arabic Wikipedia.

Suyash Dwivedi

I have done my graduation in Electronics Engineering and have been a Wikimedian since 2013. Mostly I edit on Commons, Hindi, English, Wikidata, GLAM, Wikivoyage and sometimes on other Wikipedia projects. I have organized many outreach activities, including conferences and edit-a-thons. I am the founder member of Hindi Wikimedians User Group. Apart from Hindi, I also contribute to English Sanskrit, Marathi, and Punjabi language Wikimedia projects. I was the Lead Organizer of Wiki Loves Monuments 2017 in India, hosted Wikimedia 2030 Movement Strategy Salon in Bhopal, organized Wikipedia Asian Month for Hindi and Sanskrit languages in 2016-2017-2018 and 2019 (for Sanskrit). I have also worked on a short term contract with the Trust and Safety team as ‘Universal Code of Conduct Facilitator’. Currently, I am working on the Internet in a Box (IIAB) hardware to make this device easy to install and control in public places. I also contribute to various other projects like-Creative Commons, ‘Common Voice’ by Mozilla. Raspberry Pi Foundation (JAM organizer), OSM, OpenCon, and Internet Archive. I am volunteering in various UN Environment Programme and campaigns, Google Local Guides (Level 9) and a member of the National Ataxia Foundation.

Please join me in welcoming the newly-appointed members of AffCom.

Rosie Stephenson-Goodknight (she/her)
Chair, Affiliations Committee

Originally posted by Rosie Stephenson-Goodknight to Wikimedia-l on 12 July 2020.




Affiliations Committee 2020 New Members

The 2020 Community Insights survey shows higher diversity among newcomers https://diff.wikimedia.org/2020/07/15/the-2020-community-insights-survey-shows-higher-diversity-among-newcomers/

Wed, 15 Jul 2020 07:00:00 +0000


Who contributes to Wikimedia projects? What helps new contributors feel more empowered to succeed? Who is more likely to experience harassment or discomfort on-wiki? The answers to these questions can help the Wikimedia movement better support a diverse, inclusive, and sustainable community. 

In late 2019, the Global Data & Insights team (formerly Learning & Evaluation) collected data from more than 2,500 Wikimedians from all over the world through the 2020 Community Insights survey. These data help paint a picture of our Movement’s demographics and Wikimedia communities’ social and technical experiences. They also tell us whether we are progressing towards the Wikimedia Foundation’s Medium Term Plan goals and the 2030 Strategic Direction. 

Here is what we have learned:

If we want to increase our Movement’s geographic and gender diversity, we must focus on attracting and retaining newcomers.

  • Almost half of Wikimedians live in Europe and one-fifth in Northern America (as compared to 9.7% and 4.8% of the global population). 87% of Wikimedians we surveyed are male. 
  • Compared to more tenured contributors, those who started editing in the last two years are three times as likely to live in Africa, twice as likely to live in Asia, and twice as likely to be women. They are also more socioeconomically diverse.
  • New volunteer developers are half as likely to live in Europe as tenured ones.

Our growing diversity is at risk if we do not improve our social and technical environments, especially for those who often have worse experiences.

  • Contributors who joined the movement in the last two years feel significantly less empowered to succeed on Wikimedia platforms if they are women, live in Eastern Asia, or are not fluent in English.
  • Almost half of women and of contributors living in Eastern Asia said they felt unsafe or uncomfortable in Wikimedia spaces in the last year.
  • Youth, newcomers, and contributors living in Africa and Southern Asia indicate more positive technical and social experiences in Wikimedia spaces than others, including feelings of belonging and engagement in their communities. Youth in particular are more satisfied with their technical experiences than others.

Though highly aligned with the Wikimedia Foundation’s vision, communities are less enthusiastic about the actions and processes in place to achieve those goals.

  • Most respondents feel aligned with the Wikimedia 2030 strategic direction, but slightly fewer feel the Foundation has the right strategies and abilities to support the global movement. Confidence in the Foundation is higher in Northern Europe, Southern Asia, and Africa; and lower in Eastern Asia.
  • On-wiki admins, and to a lesser extent movement organizers, feel moderately empowered to succeed in their roles, and most see their communities (and not the Foundation) as a source of support.
  • Communities are confident in the quality of the software that the Foundation produces, but less confident in the Foundation’s collaboration and prioritization when creating that software.

To learn more about these findings, as well as information about our methodology, please visit the full survey report here! If you have any questions, please reach out to the Global Data & Insights team at globaldataandinsights@wikimedia.org.

This data is graciously provided by our committed communities, keeping the Wikimedia projects alive, providing free knowledge to the world.





The Power of Knowledge: A Look at the AfroCROWD Juneteenth Conference on Civil Rights https://diff.wikimedia.org/2020/07/14/the-power-of-knowledge-a-look-at-the-afrocrowd-juneteenth-conference-on-civil-rights/

Tue, 14 Jul 2020 22:38:23 +0000


On June 19, 2020, during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, people from eight countries spanning three continents gathered online to participate in Wikipedia’s first ever virtual Juneteenth conference on civil rights, hosted by AfroCROWD.  It was on this day, June 19, 1865, now celebrated as the Juneteenth holiday, enslaved Africans in America finally learned two years after the fact that they had been set free. So this day not only celebrates emancipation, but the life changing power of knowledge. 

For our Juneteenth event, we originally hoped to offer a discussion and free Wiki editor training as we had every month for the last 5 years. In the wake of the worldwide George Floyd and Black Lives Matter protests, what transpired far exceeded our expectations. 

The inaugural conference kicked off a weekend of activity starting with an opening talk on the significance of Wikipedia to the Black historical narrative by Dr. Alexandria Lockett, an experienced Wikipedian and English professor at historically Black (HBCU) Spelman College. It continued with seven Wikipedia coaching sessions, each of them an hour long training hosted by volunteers throughout the movement. 

The result:

Participation from 8+ countries: Countries including Ghana, Nigeria, Canada, South Africa, Jamaica, England, Haiti, and cities throughout the United States, the south (big up Spelman and Georgia!) and both coasts joined in the event.

From artists to entrepreneurs, librarians, organizational executives, and teaching instructors, they were of diverse professions and diverse experiences with Wikipedia. About half came to learn for the first time.

Together we saw:

  • More than 70 total participants.
  • Five languages were spoken among the attendees, although the event was in English. One group of women even brought their own Hausa interpreter from Nigeria.

The Edit-a-thon: While our focus was not on quick editing, 36 registered participants took to Wikipedia that weekend. 

Together they:

  • edited 229 articles
  • 79 of them from scratch, with 
  • 1.48K total edits and 
  • 522 thousand words added. They entered
  • 4759 references yielding
  • 4.51 million views (as of July) and
  • 20 Commons uploads

Our goal is to continue to gather Wikipedians from around the globe for more peaceful exchanges of ideas like this. 

A memorable moment: The sun had set on the east coast, and it was our final Zoom session of the conference. We had spent a weekend focused on how to close the gaps covering civil rights, the Black community and other related topics on Wikipedia. As the session wrapped, participants and coaches, some who had stuck around for both days, were sharing their experiences and getting to know each other until, at 8:46 PM EDT,  when we abruptly stopped our conversations. It is at this time we entered into a moment of silence in memory of George Floyd and left. 

We had started the conference at 8:46 AM on the pacific coast and began every session at 46 minutes after the hour to mark Floyd’s age at his death. We also did this in observance of the recorded 8 minutes and 46 seconds he lay begging for his life. There was something, however, to the finality of it this time. It was a sobering reminder of the reason we had united together this weekend in June.

How to continue the momentum:

Help translate articles: Do you speak more than one language? Sometimes information on Wikipedia may be available in one language but not another. As long as language remains an obstacle, we are missing an important part of the story. We are looking for people to help translate items begun at Juneteenth into other languages to close those information gaps.

Join us at our next event! On July 21, from 5-8PM ET, we are organizing with the Afro Dominican community. Sign up at Bit.ly/WikiAfroDR.  We could use an interpreter in at least Spanish.

Thank you to all who participated in helping to make our first Juneteenth Civil Rights Conference a success. We are also thankful to Spelman’s Dr. Alexandria Lockett whose thought provoking talk was a game changer and to the many Wiki coaches who came from throughout the movement (for seven one hour long sessions over two dedicated days from 8:46 AM PST June 19th to 8:46 PM EDT June 20, wow)!

Check out the charts below to learn more about this event and the contributors who made it work.

Contact us at AfroCROWD.org/Contact ! 

Find more on the Juneteenth conference on Wikipedia by searching WP:JT2020.

*AfroCROWD Juneteenth statistic results in graphs:




Black Lives Matter – demonstratie, Rotterdam.

Welcome to Diff, a community blog for the Wikimedia movement https://diff.wikimedia.org/2020/07/14/welcome-to-diff-a-community-blog-for-the-wikimedia-movement/

Tue, 14 Jul 2020 21:57:34 +0000


From hosting a virtual language conference to uploading photos (like this sunbathing cat!) for Wiki Loves Earth, the Wikimedia volunteer community around the world does incredible things every day. Starting today, it’s easier to hear about them: we’re excited to announce the launch of a new blog for the Wikimedia community to connect and share learnings, stories, and ideas from across the movement. It’s called Diff.

What is Diff?

Diff is a blog by and for Wikimedians, intended to provide a hub for learning. Diff exists as a resource for people to share ideas, projects, and questions across languages and borders. Think of this as a place to find inspiration and collaborators!

The name “Diff” is in reference to the wiki interface that displays the difference between one version and another of a wiki page. It also reflects the “difference” our communities and movement make in the world every day.

Who should join?

Anyone and everyone who’s passionate about the movement for free knowledge. The strength of our movement comes from diverse communities around the world collaborating to advance free knowledge for all. Whether you’re a newcomer or a decade-long daily editor, take photos for Commons or make technical contributions, log onto Wikimedia from your mobile phone in Montreal or your laptop in Lagos, we want you to join.

We’re building Diff together

Anyone is invited to contribute posts! Start by creating your account on Diff. If you’re interested in drafting an article, please take a look at our editorial guidelines to get a sense of if your topic is a good fit for the blog. The scope of the Diff blog is news about the Wikimedia movement, for the Wikimedia movement. Check out our first two posts, on Wiki Her Story and Juneteenth.

After you have set up your account, you can create a new article and submit it for review. Diff is multilingual. Posts can be written in any language and translated to and from any language. If you have a question feel free to leave a note on the project talk page on Meta. Bugs reports and feature requests can be made on Phabricator. Please add the #diff-blog tag when creating new tasks.

We are all responsible for making Diff a friendly and safe community blog for everyone. We have guidelines for Diff and moderation upholds the code of conduct; please take a close look at it and be considerate of your fellow community members. 

2020 has ushered in a large number of changes to how we live, work, and volunteer. Amidst our new normal of social distancing and canceled in-person events, it remains important to gather, build community, and strengthen our bonds to each other — no matter the medium. We’re thrilled to see what the collective imagination, ingenuity, and expertise of the Wikimedia volunteer community will create on Diff! Tell your communities about Diff, set up your account, and if you’re ready, start sharing your stories with the movement!





#WikiHerStory: a month-long initiative to amplify gender equity work on Wikimedia projects https://diff.wikimedia.org/2020/07/14/wikiherstory-a-month-long-initiative-to-amplify-gender-equity-work-on-wikimedia-projects/

Tue, 14 Jul 2020 21:40:34 +0000


What do a Dutch software developer, a British physicist, and an Indian Wikimedian-in-Residence all have in common? They are just some of the inspiring women featured as part of the Wikimedia Foundation’s #WikiHerStory initiative (Meta page) launched this Women’s History Month (March 2020). Through the initiative, we aimed to build public awareness of community projects that increase gender equity on Wikimedia projects and encourage other people to get involved in these efforts. Read on to learn more about how we got started and some important lessons learned.

Sharing volunteer stories

Through the Wikimedia Foundation blog on Medium and on Instagram, we highlighted stories of women volunteering in the movement around the world to show Wikipedia readers that there are many different ways women participate in the Wikimedia movement. There are experienced and brand new editors; technical contributors; movement organizers; and countless other opportunities to get involved. We wanted to illuminate these different pathways as a way to inspire new folks to get involved in ways that are most meaningful to them. We drafted a list of questions and then conducted interviews with the volunteers over email, which helped make it easier to work across multiple time zones. They sent in photographs, and we developed graphics to accompany the stories.

Updating web materials

We know volunteer communities and affiliates in the Wikimedia movement support a wide variety of projects and initiatives to address the gender gap on Wikimedia projects. For #WikiHerStory, we wanted to draw greater attention to these efforts and provide a central place where anyone could learn more about the gender gap and find ways to get involved in addressing it. To do this, we updated the Foundation’s webpage on Wikipedia’s gender gap to include links to the latest research and data, including new insights from reader research and Community Insights surveys. We also provided a list of ways interested readers could get involved in solving the problem: writing and editing biographies about women; improving content about gender equity, feminism, and the arts; contributing freely-licensed photos of women; joining virtual edit-a-thons during Women’s History Month, and supporting the #WikiHerStory initiative by posting and following on social media. We highlighted numerous affiliates doing important work on gender equity on the projects around the world, such as Art+Feminism and the #WikiGap challenge, and how interested newbies could get involved.

Partnerships with the Smithsonian and UN Human Rights

In the weeks leading up to the #WikiHerStory initiative, we collaborated with The Smithsonian in their announcement to release 2.8 million 2D and 3D images under a Creative Commons license, many of which include collections from and by women. Additionally, the United Nations Human Rights Office included Wikimedia as a partner in their #IStandWithHer campaign which aimed to change the narrative and address bias about women in the world. By collaborating with both The Smithsonian and UN Human Rights, we helped further solidify Wikimedia’s relevance in the space of gender equity, reached new audiences from UN Human Rights and The Smithsonian, and opened the door for future collaborations in this area with institutional partners. 


If your community is interested in running a similar initiative, we recommend a few best practices, informed by our own experiences with #WikiHerStory. 

  1. Put people first. Share human stories, like those of affiliate leaders and volunteers. Role models are inspiring to others who are thinking of joining the movement. You could ask a question as simple as “Why do you edit Wikipedia?” and get content for a blog post, tweet, or Instagram caption.
  2. Develop web materials well in advance of your planned launch date. This could look like a few graphics for Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook to promote an edit-a-thon, for instance, and then setting up a dashboard for participants to join and log their edit-a-thon progress. It could also involve a standalone website or Meta page featuring original content in the form of posts and videos. This made it more effective to ask others to help amplify the initiative and easier for readers to learn how to get involved in Women’s History Month activities. 
  3. Find collaborators who share your values and can help amplify your work. That could include a local influencer, a company or non-profit with a social following willing to help share your event, a government department or educational institution, or anyone else passionate about spreading free knowledge!
  4. Be adaptable. Not everything will go according to plan, and that’s okay. March was a tumultuous month for global health. As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, many of the events that we posted about on the gender gap resource page had to be canceled, or the organizers pivoted to hosting virtual events instead. As we learned from this experience, responding with agility and being willing to make adjustments quickly is always valuable — no matter the topic of your campaign. We even used the moment to create a new Medium blog post about women sharing important COVID-19 information on Wikipedia.

Our deep gratitude (and much WikiLove) goes to the partners and volunteers who supported #WikiHerStory and the countless communities who are leading efforts to improve gender equity on the projects. Thank you for working so tirelessly to address this critical issue!




#WikiHerStory 2020

Tech/News/2020/29 https://diff.wikimedia.org/2020/07/13/tech-news-2020-29/

Mon, 13 Jul 2020 22:41:00 +0000


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Latest tech news from the Wikimedia technical community. Please tell other users about these changes. Not all changes will affect you. Translations are available.

Recent changes

  • Users can thank others for their edits. Checkusers can now see user data related to that action. This can help identify sock puppets who harass others using thanks. [1]


  • Everyone was logged out a couple of weeks ago to fix a security problem. The problem was not entirely fixed. Because of this everyone was logged out once again last week. [2][3]

Changes later this week

  • Wikis that are not for one specific language can translate pages. Sometimes parts of translations are outdated or missing. Outdated translations are marked with a pink background. Missing translations will also be marked in the future. This markup can sometimes break things. It can soon be disabled by using <translate nowrap></translate> on the source page. [4]
  • Recurrent item The new version of MediaWiki will be on test wikis and MediaWiki.org from 14 July. It will be on non-Wikipedia wikis and some Wikipedias from 15 July. It will be on all wikis from 16 July (calendar).

Future changes

  • Advanced item Wikimedia code review plans to use GitLab. It would be hosted on Wikimedia servers. [5][6][7][8]

Tech news prepared by Tech News writers and posted by bot • Contribute • Translate • Get help • Give feedback • Subscribe or unsubscribe.




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