I was asked by a volunteer for help getting stats on the gender gap in
content on a certain Wikipedia, and came up with simple Wikidata Query
Service queries that pulled the total number of articles on a given
Wikipedia about men and about women, to calculate *the proportion of
articles about women out of all articles about humans*.
Then I was curious about how that wiki compared to other wikis, so I ran
the queries on a bunch of languages, and gathered the results into a table,
(please see the *caveat* there.)
I don't have time to fully write-up everything I find interesting in those
results, but I will quickly point out the following:
1. The Nepali statistic is simply astonishing! There must be a story
there. I'm keen on learning more about this, if anyone can shed light.
2. Evidently, ~13%-17% seems like a robust average of the proportion of
articles about women among all biographies.
3. among the top 10 largest wikis, Japanese is the least imbalanced. Good
job, Japanese Wikipedians! I wonder if you have a good sense of what
drives this relatively better balance. (my instinctive guess is pop culture
4. among the top 10 largest wikis, Russian is the most imbalanced.
5. I intend to re-generate these stats every two months or so, to
eventually have some sense of trends and changes.
6. Your efforts, particularly on small-to-medium wikis, can really make a
dent in these numbers! For example, it seems I am personally
responsible for almost 1% of the coverage of women on Hebrew Wikipedia!
7. I encourage you to share these numbers with your communities. Perhaps
you'd like to overtake the wiki just above yours? :)
8. I'm happy to add additional languages to the table, by request. Or you
can do it yourself, too. :)
 Yay #100wikidays :) https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/100wikidays
Wikimedia Foundation <http://www.wikimediafoundation.org>
Imagine a world in which every single human being can freely share in the
sum of all knowledge. Help us make it a reality!
As we have stated in our annual plan , “currently, community members
must search many pages and places to stay informed about Foundation
activities and resources.” We have worked in the past two quarters to
create a single point of entry. We call it the Wikimedia Resource Center,
and its alpha version is now live on Meta Wikimedia:
As the movement expands to include more affiliates and more programmatic
activities every year, newer Wikimedians are faced with lack of experience
in the movement and its various channels for requesting support. In order
to expand Wikimedia communities’ efforts, we want to provide easy access to
resources that support their very important work. The [[m:Wikimedia
Resource Center]] is a hub designed in response to this issue: it is
intended to evolve into a single point of entry for Wikimedians all over
the world to the variety of resources and types of staff support they may
need to develop new initiatives or also expand existing ones.
This version of the Resource Center is only the beginning. For phase two of
the project, we will enable volunteer Wikimedians to add resources
developed by other individuals or organizations to the Wikimedia Resource
Center, and in phase three, the Wikimedia Resource Center will include
features to better connect Wikimedians to other Wikimedians that can
We want to hear what you think about this prototype and our plans for it!
If you have comments about the Wikimedia Resource Center, you can submit
your feedback publicly, on the Talk Page, or privately, via a survey hosted
by a third party, that shouldn’t take you more than 4 minutes to complete.
A feedback button is on the top right corner on every page of the hub.
Looking forward to more collaborations!
Communications and Outreach Project Manager, Community Engagement
As I mentioned in my email earlier this month, we've put together a longer
statement regarding paid editing and how we see the balance of the
communities' role and the role that WMF legal can play in these cases. We
tried to address the concerns that people have raised to us, and explain
when it's helpful to contact us to assist on a case. Of note, it does
explain what actions we can take even in cases that don't involve the WMF
You can find it here: Wikimedia Foundation statement on paid editing and
NOTICE: This message might have confidential or legally privileged
information in it. If you have received this message by accident, please
delete it and let us know about the mistake. As an attorney for the
Wikimedia Foundation, for legal/ethical reasons I cannot give legal advice
to, or serve as a lawyer for, community members, volunteers, or staff
members in their personal capacity. For more on what this means, please see
our legal disclaimer
Being put together by Eliezer Yudkowsky of LessWrong. Content is
cc-by-sa 3.0, don't know about the software.
Rather than the "encyclopedia" approach, it tries to be more
pedagogical, teaching the reader at their level.
Analysis from a sometime Yudkowsky critic on Tumblr:
(there's a pile more comments linked from the notes on that post,
mostly from quasi-fans; I have an acerbic comment in there, but you
should look at the site yourself first.)
No idea if this will go anywhere, but might be of interest; new
approaches generally are. They started in December, first publicised
it a week ago and have been scaling up. First day it collapsed due to
load from a Facebook post announcement ... so maybe hold off before
announcing it everywhere :-)
> Hi all,
> The Interactive Team in Discovery is in the process of putting its work on
> pause. The team's aim during this period is to get its work to a stable and
> maintainable state.
> Currently, work on new features is on hold. It is not yet known what the
> timeline is for this transition to a paused state, or whether there will be
> further deployments of features that have already been completed. I will
> update this list when there is more information.
> Dan Garry
> Lead Product Manager, Discovery
> Wikimedia Foundation
So it seems all work on Maps, Graphs and other interactive features is
going to be halted pretty soon. I was directed at this notification after a
Maps ticket mentioned:
With the team winding down
To which I asked:
> Why is the team winding down ?
To which Dan Garry responded:
> There were expectations that were set regarding things such as team goals,
> working collaboratively with stakeholders, and advance notice to
> communities, that were repeatedly not met by the team.
And he pointed me to this discovery mailing list announcement, which well
isn't really an explanation as much as a statement on the effect that
'winding down' will have.
My interpretation of the information up to here was: "we are dissolving
this team because it didn't perform and by posting to discovery mailing
list we did the minimal effort required to notify people, but lets hope
nobody notices what the notification really means"
At the same time Dan's words are a rather hefty review on the performance
of a team, which I'm not used to seeing from WMF. Refreshing, but unusual.
This annoys me and I answer:
> 1: I'd expect this to be announced on wikimedia-l, if we start a team we
> always seem more than anxious to do so.
> 2: I'd like some details. I thought we had left behind all the "let's try
> and hide this and hope no one notices it"-shit in 2016.
> 3: Thank you team ! You did some great work, and it was more productive
> and groundbreaking than many other teams have been able to do in 5 years.
A bit hyperbolic on all fronts, I admit.
To which Dan responds with:
> I am not the person who made this decision. I do not know all of the
> reasons it was made. The person who made the decision is on vacation for
> the next few weeks. I am trying my best to communicate as much as I can in
> her absence, which is why I made a public announcement of all that I know
> now rather than waiting weeks for my manager to return. I am afraid that
> some patience is required until Katie gets back from vacation.
So now Dan doesn't know enough to be able to discuss this, even though he
gave a rather destructive team review earlier.
1: This is exactly the kind of communication that 'the community' keeps
complaining about. Reactive instead of proactive. Evasive instead of
transparent. Now volunteers need to spend time to figure out what is
happening here ? This has cost me over 3 hours today. I would have liked to
have spent that time differently.
2: It shouldn't matter that Katie is on holidays, I'd assume/hope someone
takes over her duties while she is away (Likely Dan himself and/or Wes
Moran). Providing information on topics like this shouldn't have to wait
until someone returns from a (likely well deserved) holiday.
3: Why do I have to write this email ? It's really not that hard: Make a
decision, explain it.
These are all very nice sentiments. But they're phrased in very vague ways.
Is there anywhere we can see the actual concrete plan for the use of these
On Thu, Jan 26, 2017 at 7:30 PM, Samantha Lien <slien(a)wikimedia.org> wrote:
> This press release is also available online here:
> And as a blog post on the Wikimedia blog here:
> Wikimedia Foundation receives $500,000 from the Craig Newmark Foundation
> and craigslist Charitable Fund to support a healthy and inclusive Wikimedia
> Grant supports development of more advanced tools for volunteers and staff
> to reduce harassing behavior on Wikipedia and block harassers from the site
> SAN FRANCISCO — January 26, 2017 — Today, the Wikimedia Foundation
> announced the launch of a community health initiative to address harassment
> and toxic behavior on Wikipedia, with initial funding of US$500,000 from
> the Craig Newmark Foundation and craigslist Charitable Fund. The two seed
> grants, each US$250,000, will support the development of tools for
> volunteer editors and staff to reduce harassment on Wikipedia and block
> Approximately 40% of internet users
> <http://www.pewinternet.org/2014/10/22/online-harassment/>, and as many
> as 70% of younger users have personally experienced harassment online, with
> regional studies showing rates as high as 76%
> for young women. While harassment differs across the internet, on Wikipedia
> and other Wikimedia projects, harassment has been shown to reduce
> participation on the sites. More than 50%
> of people who reported experiencing harassment also reported decreasing
> their participation in the Wikimedia community.
> Volunteer editors on Wikipedia are often the first line of response for
> finding and addressing harassment on Wikipedia. "Trolling
> <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Internet_troll>," "doxxing
> <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Doxing>," and other menacing behaviors are
> burdens to Wikipedia's contributors, impeding their ability to do the
> writing and editing that makes Wikipedia so comprehensive and useful. This
> program seeks to respond to requests from editors over the years for better
> tools and support for responding to harassment and toxic behavior.
> “To ensure Wikipedia’s vitality, people of good will need to work together
> to prevent trolling, harassment and cyber-bullying from interfering with
> the common good,” said Craig Newmark, founder of craigslist. “To that end,
> I'm supporting the work of the Wikimedia Foundation towards the prevention
> of harassment.”
> The initiative is part of a commitment to community health at the
> Wikimedia Foundation, the non-profit organization that supports Wikipedia
> and the other Wikimedia projects, in collaboration with the global
> community of volunteer editors. In 2015, the Foundation published its first
> Harassment Survey
> <https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Research:Harassment_survey_2015> about
> the nature of the issue in order to identify key areas of concern. In
> November 2016, the Wikimedia Foundation Board of Trustees issued a
> statement of support
> calling for a more “proactive” approach to addressing harassment as a
> barrier to healthy, inclusive communities on Wikipedia.
> "If we want everyone to share in the sum of all knowledge, we need to make
> sure everyone feels welcome,” said Katherine Maher, Executive Director of
> the Wikimedia Foundation. “This grant supports a healthy culture for the
> volunteer editors of Wikipedia, so that more people can take part in
> sharing knowledge with the world."
> The generous funding from the Craig Newmark Foundation and craigslist
> Charitable Fund will support the initial phase of a program
> <https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Community_health_initiative> to
> strengthen existing tools and develop additional tools to more quickly
> identify potentially harassing behavior, and help volunteer administrators
> evaluate harassment reports and respond effectively. These improvements
> will be made in close collaboration with the Wikimedia community to
> evaluate, test, and give feedback on the tools as they are developed.
> This initiative addresses the major forms of harassment reported on the
> Wikimedia Foundation’s 2015 Harassment Survey
> which covers a wide range of different behaviors: content vandalism,
> stalking, name-calling, trolling, doxxing, discrimination—anything that
> targets individuals for unfair and harmful attention. From research and
> community feedback, four areas have been identified where new tools could
> be beneficial in addressing and responding to harassment:
> * Detection and prevention - making it easier and faster for editors to
> identify and flag harassing behavior
> * Reporting - providing victims and respondents of harassment improved
> ways to report instances that offer a clearer, more streamlined approach
> * Evaluating - supporting tools that help volunteers better evaluate
> harassing behavior and inform the best way to respond
> * Blocking - making it more difficult for someone who is blocked from the
> site to return
> For more information, please visit: https://meta.wikimedia.org/
> About the Wikimedia Foundation
> The Wikimedia Foundation is the non-profit organization that supports and
> operates Wikipedia and its sister projects. More than a billion unique
> devices access the Wikimedia sites each month. Roughly 75,000 people edit
> Wikipedia and its sister projects every month, collectively creating and
> improving its more than 40 million articles across hundreds of languages –
> this all makes Wikipedia one of the most popular web properties in the
> world. Based in San Francisco, California, the Wikimedia Foundation is a
> 501(c)(3) charity that is funded primarily through donations and grants.
> About Wikipedia
> Wikipedia is the world’s free knowledge resource. It is a collaborative
> creation that has been added to and edited by millions of people from
> around the globe since it was created in 2001: anyone can edit it, at any
> time. Wikipedia is offered in hundreds of languages containing more than 40
> million articles. Wikimedia and its sister projects are collectively
> visited by more than a billion unique devices each month.
> Harassment takes different forms on Wikipedia than it does on other major
> websites. Unlike other platforms, Wikipedia editors generally don’t write
> about their personal lives. Instead, on Wikipedia, harassment usually
> begins as a content dispute between editors that results in an attack on an
> editor’s personal attributes—their gender, race, religion, sexual
> orientation, political affiliation—based on something that they’ve shared,
> or an assumption based on the user’s edit history.
> About the Craig Newmark Foundation
> The Craig Newmark Foundation (CNF) is a private foundation created by
> craigslist founder Craig Newmark in 2016 to support and connect nonprofit
> communities and drive powerful civic engagement. The Foundation’s
> priorities include Trustworthy Journalism, Veterans and Military Families,
> Voter Protection and Education, Consumer Protection and Education, Public
> Diplomacy, Government Transparency, Micro-Lending to Alleviate Poverty, and
> Women in Tech.
> About craigslist Charitable Fund
> The craigslist Charitable Fund (CCF) provides millions of dollars each
> year in one-time and recurring grants to hundreds of partner organizations
> addressing four broad areas of interest including Environment and
> Transportation; Education, Rights, Justice, and Reason; Nonviolence,
> Veterans and Peace; and Journalism, Open Source, and Internet.
> Press contacts
> Craig Newmark Foundation
> Bruce Bonafede
> Wikimedia Foundation
> Juliet Barbara
> (415) 839-6885
> *Samantha Lien*
> Communications Manager
> Wikimedia Foundation
> 149 New Montgomery Street
> San Francisco, CA 94105
> (To be unsubscribed from this press release distribution list, please
> reply to communications(a)wikimedia.org with 'UNSUBSCRIBE' in the subject
> Please note: all replies sent to this mailing list will be immediately
> directed to Wikimedia-l, the public mailing list of the Wikimedia
> community. For more information about Wikimedia-l:
> WikimediaAnnounce-l mailing list
This is probably of interest to this list.
Delegation of policy-making authority
This was approved on December 13, 2016 by the Board of Trustees.
Whereas, the Board of Trustees has traditionally approved certain global
Use) as requested during the July 4, 2004 Board meeting
Whereas, the Wikimedia Foundation Executive Director has authority to
conduct the affairs of the Wikimedia Foundation, which includes adopting
and implementing policies;
Resolved, the Board hereby delegates the authority to adopt, alter, and
revoke policies to the Executive Director, who may further delegate such
authority to Wikimedia Foundation staff as they deem appropriate;
Resolved, the Board may continue to review and approve policies for the
Wikimedia Foundation upon request to the Executive Director or as required
Christophe Henner (Chair), Maria Sefidari (Vice Chair), Dariusz
Jemielniak, Kelly Battles, Guy Kawasaki, Jimmy Wales, Nataliia Tymkiv,
and Alice Wiegand
I wonder how much of this resolution is formalizing what was already
happening and how much of this is moving the Wikimedia Foundation in a new
direction. After a very tumultuous year at the Wikimedia Foundation, this
is certainly a notable development.
I also wonder in what ways this abrupt change will alter the relationship
between the editing communities and the Board of Trustees. The Wikimedia
Foundation Board of Trustees seems to be committing itself to downsizing
its role and responsibilities. The concern is that a change like this will
reduce accountability when policies are set, unset, and changed by someone
overseeing a large staff that regularly comes in conflict with an even
larger set of editing communities. The Executive Director, of course, is
unelected and has been a central point of repeated controversies recently.
It's been less than a year since the previous Executive Director resigned
after being forced out by her staff. In the context of the recent history,
this resolution is all the more puzzling.
Does anyone doubt that the English Wikipedia's longstanding,
pervasive, counter-factual, systemic bias towards supply side
trickle-down austerity libertarian objectivist economics due at least
in part to early influence of editors attracted to Jimmy Wales' former
public positions isn't at least partially responsible for the
situation Romaine describes below?
Would it be better to move the Foundation out of the U.S., fix the
bias, or both?
---- forwarded message ----
Date: Fri, 27 Jan 2017 04:33:53 +0100
From: Romaine Wiki <romaine.wiki(a)gmail.com>
To: Wikimedia <wikimedia-l(a)lists.wikimedia.org>
Subject: [Wikimedia-l] Concerns in general
Today I was reading in the (international) news about websites with
knowledge on the topic of climate change disappear from the internet as
result of the Trump administration. The second thing I read is that before
something can be published about this topic, the government needs to
Do you realise what the right word for this is? censorship.
Even if it is only partially.
Luckily there are many scientists working on getting all the data abroad,
out of the US to ensure the research data is saved, including on servers in
the Netherlands where Trump (hopefully) has no reach.
In the past week I was reading about the Internet Archive organisation, who
is making a back up in Canada because of the Trump administration. I did
not understood this, you may call me naive, but now I do understand,
apparently they have some visionary people at the Internet Archive.
I miss a good answer to this situation from the Wikimedia Foundation.
Trump is now promoting harassment and disrespect, already for some time,
What signal is given to the rest of the world if an America based
organisation is spreading the thought of a harassment free Wikipedia and
the free word, while the president of the US is promoting harassment,
disrespect and censorship on a massive scale.
This is just the first week of this president!
I am 100% sure everyone in the Wikimedia movement is willing to make sure
Wikimedia faces no damage whatsoever, including in WMF, but to me this
still starts to get concerning.
If we as Wikimedia movement think that free knowledge, free speech, freedom
of information, etc are important, I would think that the location where
the organisation is based is that country where liberty is the largest, I
do not know where this is but it is definitely not the US.
To my impression WMF is stuck in the US, so I do not believe they would
actually move when the danger grows.
But I think it is possible to make sure risks are spread over the world.
Certainly as we are an international movement that intends to cover the
knowledge of the whole humanoid civilisation.
To come to a conclusion, I think WMF and the Wikimedia movement should
think about a back-up plan if it actually goes wrong.
If you do not agree with me: that is perfectly fine, that's your right and
should be protected.
Today Wikimedia Belgium had the annual General Assembly
At 1 January 2017 the board had five board members. Every board member is
elected for a two years term, besides the president who is elected every
year. From these five board members, the two year term of two of them ended
(Romaine + Afernand74), as well as the term of the president ended
With no new applications for board members and the General Assembly and
board happy with how the past period has been dealt and how stable the
board has become, the General Assembly voted to give the three board
members a new term. Meaning that the board stays the same and as stable
team can move forward with our chapter.
The board is composed out of Geertivp (president), Romaine (treasurer),
SPQRobin (secretary), Afernand74 (National Liaison) and Lfurter (Gender and
See also: https://be.wikimedia.org/wiki/Board
Before the voting, the reporting from the past year was discussed, and the
board has been cleared responsibility.
The financial report from Wikimedia Belgium about 2016 can be found at:
The activity report from Wikimedia Belgium about 2016 can be found at: