There's an article about Wikipedia on the New Yorker: http://www.newyorker.com/fact/content/articles/060731fa_fact
Please note one thing: three other Wikimedia projects are mentioned: Wikisource, Wikinews and Wikiquote - Wikibooks is not. It should be an
alert for us: media don't see us and don't write about us.
I am very disappointed that there were no articles about our third anniversary, an important event for our project. We missed a big chance
to get more attention. Perhaps we should think about what have we done wrong?
Piotr 'Derbeth' Kubowicz
Jabber id: derbeth(a)jabber.wp.pl
Pomóż Wikibooks stworzyć największy zbiór otwartych podręczników! http://pl.wikibooks.org/
Opera - the fastest browser on Earth! http://www.opera.com/
About some 8 months ago I started with an attempt to bring news with a
newsletter "Wikizine". I try to bring different types of news like
"Foundation", "Community", "Media" , "Technical news" and so.
So I try to bring the news for the Wikimedia family to the projects.
And that includes Wikibooks. I most say I have no idea of there are
already Wikibook people reading Wikizine, I hope so. If not I hope to
welcome now some soon.
But I am writing this fist of all to ask for your cooperation with
this newsletter. To be able to report news first the news must be
known. "Bulletin board" is one of the pages I look for to find news
about Wikibooks. I can not say I have discoverd there anything worth
reporting yet. Maybe I am looking at the wrong page.
But you can sure that if there is something going on in the other
Wikibooks language editions I will not find out about it.
So I request that if there is news about your project, especially for
the non-English editions, that you would report the news to me, to
Wikizine. Let the readers of Wikizine know there is more then
A way to make it more likely that someone will think about Wikizine is
to put a banner on your userpage or even better on a public page, also
for the non-English Wikinews versions.;
On the other side I try to get the news downhill to as most of the
projects and especially languages as possible. Because of piratical
reasons Wikizine can only be in English. But it would be fantastic if
people would be willing to translate the news and share it with there
A total translation of Wikizine is great but also a lot of work. Maybe
only translating the most relevant news can be enough for starting.
You could work together across the different projects in the same
languages. By cross-project cooperation the work of translation can be
Just only subscribing to Wikizine only is also useful of course. Then
you at least are informed.
Reading Wikizine can by email. Just click here below and follow the
Or you can also read Wikizine from the website;
Thank you for reading this and I hope to receive some news from Wikibooks!
This is a feeler to go out to any Wikibooks user in languages other than
English, or for that matter any Wikimedia user who wants to help
participate with the development of a general press release/status
report over Wikibook on Wikibooks day, July 10th, 2006. On that day
Wikibooks will be three years old from when
http://textbooks.wikipedia.org/ was first established and the first
pages were created.
If you want to help out with at least putting in a few positive comments
over what has happened on Wikibooks please join us at:
We have comments from the Polish, English, and German Wikibooks groups,
but more would be appreciated.
I know that this list doesn't really go that far, and that many of the
same people who subscribe to this list also monitor the Staff Lounge,
but any help on this is useful.
We would like to proclaim this in a number of places including Wikinews,
Foundation-l, and a few other places that might be of note with this all
coordinated on July 10th. Slashdot was one of the suggested places as
well, for instance. If there are any thoughts on how to "publicize"
this milestone, it would be appreciated.
Robert Scott Horning
This is an idea that has been kicked around, and I want to congratulate
one of the Wikibooks contributors by being bold and actually getting a
print version of Wikibooks content available for purchase from an
"on-line" store. It can be found right now at:
While I admire the effort that this user has put forth to get this put
together, I am concerned that it might affect the tax-exempt status,
especially as this link is found on a Wikimedia website and openly
"advertising" that this content is available for sale. Please see this
page for an example:
This is some outstanding content that has been fermenting on Wikibooks
now for over a year and a half, and is really the first fruits of the
Wikijunior sub-project on Wikibooks. This user is also not trying to
make any profit from the sale of this, and is really doing this just as
a public service and going through Lulu Press simply because they are
I am posting this to the wider Wikimedia Foundation List because I think
some guidelines should be developed regarding "official" links on
project pages for commercial content of this nature, and to what extent
the use of the name "Wikimedia Foundation" can be on such content. I'm
also hoping that the legal list will get wind of this and offer a little
bit of input as well in terms of how far can we go before we start to
tread on the non-profit status of the WMF.
Frankly, I'd like to encourage efforts like this, as it really can be
beneficial to spread Wikimedia content beyond the close circle of
internet users we currently have. Wikibooks in particular is moving
strongly in this direction, as we already have a couple dozen PDF files
for Wikibooks that are nearing at least major proofreading stages rather
than content building. It seems logical that an on-line bookstore is
going to happen in one form or another with this content, and many other
users are going to be doing this. Links of this nature should remain
relatively low-key and non-intrusive if you are trying to actually read
The question I pose then is should we push the genie back into the
bottle and stop this kind of linking, or should we as a community
encourage further commercial publication?
Should we allow commercial publication, but not allow links on project
pages to commercial resources of this nature? Be real careful here, as
it does have implications for other Wikimedia projects as well,
including Wikipedia "1.0" suggestions. The GFDL does allow commercial
publication, so the real point is if project pages can be used as links.
Should there be some sort of formal organization, even if just on a
local project level, that should control the content that is published
in this manner? Or should it just be done on an ad-hoc basis as
individual users feel motivated? This is mainly to see how commercial
links are used on Wikimedia project pages, not that any other person can
set up their own website and advertise they have published Wikimedia
content but not have links on project pages. A more formal organization
can help do things like coordinate ISBN numbers and make sure that
profits can be plowed back into the project.
From my understanding of non-profit laws in the USA (IANAL), as long as
we can show a need for the money that is legitimate (staff salaries,
equipment costs, reasonable travel expenses, etc.) fundraisers of this
nature aren't really too much of a problem. Indeed several non-profit
groups have on-line bookstores just for this purpose. Assuming a
runaway success with this sort of sale of content, we would have to do
direct fundraisers less often. I don't think too many people on this
list would complain about that. The only real problem might be apparent
endorsement of a commercial enterprise.
There is a control issue here that does need to be resolved, and that
would be how much control does the WMF want to have directly over this
kind of activity as well? That would also involve the use of Wikimedia
trademarks (aka Wikijunior) and logos.
Robert Scott Horning
> Thanks very much for this, John. I'm very happy you've "jumped in" to
> the discussion after just discovering it today :-)
> I think you're right in that Wikiversity is a bit vague and nebulous
> in its design, but many of us have been arguing that this is quite
> necessary thing for the creation of the project. A wiki-based centre
> of learning is a complex thing - unless we opt for a wiki-based
> repository of learning materials, which has been one of the more
> conservative options put forward. Once we decide to go for a more
> ambitious place where people can learn, it becomes more complicated,
> and, as you say, becomes flavoured by individual people's perceptions
> and expectations of what education is and how it is done. In allowing
> for a flexible project structure, I am hoping that individual people
> are able to pursue their own visions of what the best form of learning
> is for their subject and for themselves.
> As Michael says, there is really no point at this stage in going for
> an accredited university - it is well beyond our current resources,
> and possibly even the remit of the Wikimedia Foundation. However, we
> will be setting up a resource that accredited universities (or other
> centres of learning) can use in their own courses - and hopefully in
> the process gain some valuable contributors from their students or
> It occurs to me to ask what you've seen of Wikiversity so far - have
> you seen it on Wikibooks or Meta? Have you seen the current proposal?
> (It's at
> if you haven't.)
> I'm curious about your suggestions though - do you envisage a project
> where people write their dissertations on Wikiversity, with feedback
> from supervisors, or other students? How would you see it working
> Anyway, thanks for your input - it's always good to get a fresh
> Cormac (User:Cormaggio)
The response that Wikiversity has no plans to become accredited at the
moment make sense. Basically what I suggest is that private efforts to
organize internet-networked learning are a very good, maybe an inevitable
idea. The idea of a wikiversity where anyone can get a college degree seems
to be an impossible task if it is to be done well. A variety of approaches
must operate beside each other.
I personally don't envision wikiversity operating like a university, I
suppose my own opinion at this point is that wikimedia would play a much
greater role in terms of the content of said classes, rather than in
The idea that allowed me to stumble on wikiversity is an idea for a private
organization, non for profit or for-profit (whatever works) modelled on the
structure of Reed University. Personally I see this as more promising in
the short term than other vehicles of accreditation, because if a university
would sponser the program, the student must create a serious piece of work
in order to get recognition, rather than passing some sort of standardized
test. I am fairly young and have other ambitions, but if there was some
interest in such a possibility I would consider working toward it. I myself
am strongly considering abandoning a four year university to study
independently in order to write a thesis that I can then try to "sell" the
thesis for a degree.