growing, and I'm pleased to announce Jon
Harald Søby <http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Jon_Harald_S%C3%B8by> as
our newest Community Fellow. Jon brings 6 years of experience in the
Wikimedia community to his fellowship: he is an active editor, translator
and vandal fighter for several Wikimedia projects, an admin and bureaucrat
for Norwegian Wikipedia, and in the past has also been a steward, board
member for Wikimedia Norge, member of the election committee for Wikimedia
Norge and Wikimedia Sverige, and OTRS volunteer.
Language and localization are a major area of interest for Jon. Not only
does he help translate the MediaWiki interface and extensions, he's also a
founding member of the Language Committee and is finishing up a BA degree in
Linguistics from Norwegian University of Science and Technology. He has
traveled widely is always thinking from a global perspective. All of this
makes Jon a great fit for his fellowship project, which is focused on
piloting a new model for volunteer translations in the 2011 Fundraiser.
(Full disclosure: Jon started working with WMF earlier this summer as a
Fundraiser Production Coordinator, but we just had to make him a Community
Fellow when we saw how much potential there was for this project!).
Jon's fellowship will run until February 2012. His project priorities
include recruiting and coordinating more translators for more languages,
building pages and processes that make it easier for new volunteers to get
started, and improving systems for producing high-quality translations. To
learn more about the project or volunteer to help, please visit the 2011
be a translator.
Head of Community Fellowships
Wikimedia Foundation, Inc.
Opinion essay: The global mission, the image filter and the "German question"
Recent research: Top female Wikipedians, reverted newbies, link spam, social influence on admin votes, Wikipedians' weekends, WikiSym previews
News and notes: WMF strikes down enwiki consensus, academic journal partnerships, and eyebrows raised over minors editing porn-related content
In the news: Sockpuppeting journalist recants, search dominance threatened, new novels replete with Wikipedia references
WikiProject report: A project in overdrive: WikiProject Automobiles
Featured content: The best of the week
Arbitration report: "Broadly construed" explained, voting beings on Senkaku Islands case, invitation to comment on CU/OS candidates
Technology report: 1.18 deployment on track, "mythical" Git migration scheduled, editor decline statistics improved
Single page view
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Book:Wikipedia_Signpost/2011-09-26http://identi.ca/wikisignpost / https://twitter.com/wikisignpost
Wikipedia Signpost Staff
I am pleased to announce that Wikimedia Philippines has finally released its 2010 annual report, which is now available on Meta! Please take the time to read the report at http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:WMPH_2010_Annual_Report.pdf.
We hope that while the 2010 report is relatively short, the 2011 report, which will be the report of our first full year in action, will be full of activities, experiences and memories which are for all of us to share. I trust that Wikimedia Philippines, with the support of our members, partners and the Wikimedia community, will continue to aspire and strive for greater heights.
Maraming salamat po at Sulong Wikimedia!
Regards from Poland,
JAMES JOSHUA G. LIM
Block I1, AB Political Science
Major in Global Politics, Minor in Chinese Studies
Class of 2013, Ateneo de Manila University
Quezon City, Metro Manila, Philippines
Vice-President (2011-2012), Wikimedia Philippines
Member, Ateneo Debate Society
Member, The Assembly
Member, Ateneo Lingua Ars Cultura
jamesjoshualim(a)yahoo.com | +63 (927) 531-8301
Friendster/Facebook/Twitter: akiestar | Wikimedia: Sky Harbor
Below is the Wikimedia UK monthly report for the period 1 to 31 August 2011. If you want to keep up with the chapter's activities as they happen, please subscribe to our blog, join our mailing list, and/or follow us on Twitter. If you have any questions or comments, please drop us a line on this report's talk page.
This report is also available, complete with pictures, on our website at http://uk.wikimedia.org/wiki/Reports/2011/August .
1 Education projects
2 GLAM activities
4 Wikipedia Workshops
5 Board activities
6 Charitable status
9 UK press coverage
11 Upcoming activities in September
This month, Fiona Apps had meetings with staff at the University of Liverpool and University of Manchester about possible collaborations, and Sam Knight, the University of Bristol Outreach Ambassador, has been meeting with various student and staff groups within the University. He also helped to organise the Bristol Girl Geek Dinner (see below).
On 8 August, The Guardian ran a story on "British Museum makes the Wikipedia connection", based on an interview with Matthew Cock, covering the museum's viewpoint of Liam's Wikipedian in Residence, creating content vs. uploading photographs, QR codes and more.
The ARKive project - a collaboration to improve Wikipedia articles on threatened species - has continued through the month, led by Andy Mabbett (User:Pigsonthewing). Four articles related to the project have been appeared on English Wikipedia's Did You Know?. Full information is available at Wikipedia:GLAM/ARKive. The project will continue with two public events in Bristol on 15 September; one in the afternoon, the other in the evening.
A collaboration with the National Archive has been in the process of being drawn up this month, as reported in the August GLAM report, and described on a Wikipedia project page.
There is now a Wikipedia article about QRpedia, the QR code based, multi-lingual, mobile-friendly interface to Wikipedia, launched at GLAM/Derby. Appropriately, nine other-language versions have also been created. Meanwhile, developer Terence Eden is soliciting views on how QRpedia should deal with cases where articles are not available in the user's preferred language.
Roger Bamkin attended Wikimania on behalf of the chapter on 4-7 August. WMUK also provided scholarships to Isaac Kosgei from Kenya, a Wikimedian from Hungary and a number of UK Wikimedians. Isaac Kosgei was particularly successful as a proposal to improve health related issues in sub-Saharan Africa was created around him. In September, he will meet Michelle Obama to discuss his work.
UK presenters at Wikimania included Christopher Cooper, Roger Bamkin, Ironholds, Deryck Chan, James F., Tom Morris and WereSpielChequers. WereSpielChequers was interviewed by the local press - see the article in Hebrew, or the Google Translate version of the article.
On 15th July, Simon Smith (User:Tagishsimon) ran a Wikipedia workshop for post-graduate students of Archaeology, Cultural Heritage Management, Medieval Studies and Eighteenth Century Studies as part of the King's Manor Interdisciplinary Conference at the University of York. Feedback from the 15 participants was very positive and Simon stayed on for a workshop on interdisciplinary studies of the past and the conference's wine reception.
In August, forty people attended an evening event at the University of Bristol, jointly organised by Wikimedia UK and Bristol Girl Geek Dinners. The theme was Women in Wikipedia and the evening was led by Fiona Apps (User:Panyd). The mostly-female audience had one-to-one help from experienced Wikipedians including Jezhotwells, MartinPoulter and Bs5er. Fiona followed up with a post on the chapter's blog and an interview in the Signpost. There are more 'Wikipedia/Girl Geek Dinners' planned in future.
There were two board meetings this month. The first, an Executive board meeting on 9 August, focused on our participation in the annual Wikimedia fundraiser, as well as reviewing the status of recruitment for our office administrator and chief executive, and ensuring our adherence to the 2010 fundraising agreement.
The second, an in-person full board meeting on 27-28 August, was kindly hosted by Derby Museum and Art Gallery. On the first day, Ting Chen from the Wikimedia Foundation was present at the meeting by invitation, as were several Wikimedia UK members. The principle of openness, as well as the growth potential for WMUK, was discussed; Andy Mabbett described his experiences with the ARKive project; and John Byrne gave an update on progress with our application to become a charity. The upcoming fundraiser and the 2012 activity plan were also discussed. On the second day, discussion topics included assessment of Wikipedia trainers; reviews of actions and board member reports; and a continuation of the discussion around the 2012 activity plan. Draft minutes of the meeting are available on our wiki.
As mentioned in last month's report post-publication, a revised submission has now been sent to the Charities Commission, and we received their response to our submission in early September.
This month, we received £1485.89 in donations from 81 donors - this is our highest number of donors since February. For more information please see our monthly fundraising report at Fundraising Report - Monthly Totals 2011.
Our annual accounts for the period 1 February 2010 until 31 January 2011 are now available at File:Wikimedia UK accounts 31 January 2011.pdf. Note that they are pending the correction of one minor error, after which they will be signed and filed with Companies House.
We provided an additional £4,037.04 (6,598 USD) to the Wikimedia Foundation via an extension of the previous grant we gave them earlier this year, representing 50% of the donations received by WMUK in the months of February through June this year.
We also signed a contract with SmartDebit to provide administrative services which will enable us to accept Direct Debit payments. We expect to have systems set up for Direct Debit donations in good time for the 2011 Wikimedia Fundraiser.
Interviews for the temporary Office Administrator position took place this month, and Richard Symonds (User:Chase me ladies, I'm the Cavalry) was appointed to the position, starting from 1 September.
First stage interviews for the Chief Executive position also took place this month, with in-person interviews scheduled for the start of September. A total of 83 applications were received for the position. (For more information, see the blog post put out in early September.)
UK press coverage
Press coverage of Wikipedia in UK publications this month included:
2 August, London plods raid Wikipedia in counter-anarchist operation, Register - covering the reuse of Wikipedia content by the Metropolitan Police without attribution.
5 August, "The US should let its credit rating be downgraded – and shrug" mentions "You may have never heard of David Beers but every finance minister in the world knows of him," noted Reuters in a recent – and rare – profile of the analyst, who doesn't even have a Wikipedia page."
8 August, S&P's powerful chief steps out of the shadows - "Some time last Friday night, someone created a Wikipedia page for David T Beers. Overdue, you might think."
8 August, British Museum makes the Wikipedia connection, The Guardian (see #GLAM activities)
8 August, Wikipedia wants more contributors, MacWorld UK; also Wikipedia targets addition of many more contributors in ComputerWorldUK
8 August, Women! Wikipedia needs you, Guardian blogs
10 August, The end of Wikipedia as we know it?, Irish Times
19 August, Wikipedia founder to lead Radio 3 Festival, also covered by NewsOnNews and Cambridge technology news
22 August, The Spark (a free magazine distributed in South-West England) did a profile of WMUK trustee Martin Poulter, discussing reasons for contributing to the chapter and to Wikipedia.
There was one UK Wikimeet this month: London on 14 Aug.
Upcoming activities in September
We have quite a number of events planned for September, including:
1st - Institute of Physics Workshop
2nd to 3rd - Science Online London - "How are wikis being used to carry out and communicate science?" session
2nd-4th - RegioWikiCamp Brest (France) - Unconference on regional wiki projects
3rd - Mayor of Derby on Webstream to give prizes to Russia, France and Indonesia for Multilingual challenge
8th - British Museum internal workshop
8th - Steve Virgin and Roger Bamkin talking at TEDx Bristol
11th - London meetup with Chief Exec short list
14th - Workshop for GLAMs at Herbert Art Gallery and Museum
15th - Wiki Wildlife Bristol
17th - Manchester meetup
18th - In-person executive board meeting - Derby
27th - Manchester Girl Geek Dinner at B-Hive, Manchester. Fiona Apps (User:Panyd) speaking about Women and Wikipedia.
27th - Presentation for all staff at the British Library
For events in October and onwards, please see Events.
Wikimedia UK is the operating name of Wiki UK Limited.
Wiki UK Ltd is a Company Limited by Guarantee registered in England and Wales, Registered No. 6741827.
The Registered Office is at 23 Cartwright Way, Nottingham, NG9 1RL, United Kingdom.
It is with great pleasure that I can announce that the Hungarian
Wikipedia has reached the 200 000 article milestone yesterday.
To mark the event, we have issued the following press release and are
planning a party on October 1 in Győr, where everyone is welcome to
celebrate with us.
Hungarian Wikipedia Celebrates 200,000 Article Milestone
Hungarian Wikipedia editors say they need more people to join in and
help continue to grow the encyclopedia
BUDAPEST, September 10, 2011 — Wikimedia Hungary today announced that
Hungarian Wikipedia has reached 200,000 articles, an important
milestone in the history of the project. The 200,000th article was
created by user: Pakos at 02:08 UTC, September 10, 2011.
The article Crankshaft is about a mechanical component of engines.
Since its creation, the new article has already been edited more than
20 times by eight contributors within the first few hours of its
existence. Pakos, Ákos Pásztor, is an editor from Dorog and his main
areas of interest are astrology, motor sports and topics connected to
“I visited Budapest in 2005, when the Hungarian Wikipedia broke 20,000
articles. Now, six years later, the encyclopedia is 10 times bigger
and a hugely popular and vital public resource to Hungarian speakers
all over the world,” said Jimmy Wales, Founder of Wikipedia. “It’s my
hope that more people take an interest and join the mission and the
dedicated group of people who helped Hungarian Wikipedia get this far.
Congratulations on this exciting milestone!”
Hungarian-language Wikipedia, a top-20 language Wikipedia in the
world, was founded eight years ago, the first entry created in July
2003. Since then, Hungarian-speaking contributors reached 100,000
entries on July 17, 2008, growing at an average pace of 2,600 articles
Although this is an exciting milestone, there is still a lot of work
to be done. Today there are only 125 very active editors (people
contributing a hundred or more edits a month) and 600 active editors
(people contributing at least five edits a month). The number one goal
for Wikimedia Hungary, the local non-profit that supports Hungarian
Wikipedia, is to increase the number of people who volunteer their
time and contribute to making Wikipedia better. Comparatively, there
are 205,000 articles in the Czech Wikipedia, 173,000 articles in
Turkish Wikipedia, more than 3 million in English and 1 million in
“The wonderful thing about this accomplishment is that each bit of
information found on Wikipedia has been included by volunteers–
everyday people committed to changing the world by sharing free
information with others,” said Péter Gervai, founder of the Hungarian
Wikipedia and president of the Wikimedia Hungary Chapter. “But there’s
so much more that needs to be done. For instance, when you look up
something as basic as Academy Award-winning films, there’s almost
nothing available. It’s important that more people join us and edit
Wikipedia, because the information is only as good as the amount of
people who take the time to contribute.”
Volunteers from all over Hungary will gather together on October 1 in
Győr to celebrate the 200,000 article milestone. Anyone interested in
learning more about Wikipedia is welcome to join the celebration. For
more information, please visit
In the legal department at the Wikimedia Foundation, we have been examining
for some time whether, as the 5th largest website in the world, we need a
communication with our users, I think we do, so we’ve put ourselves to
drafting a new version with the hopes that we could get your review,
comments, and ideas.
- You can view the new draft here:
licensing agreement. It does not address a number of other subjects that
that are often relevant for both legal and community reasons. See, as
http://support.mozilla.com/en-US/kb/Terms%20of%20Service) and Creative
What we would like to do is to invite you to read the draft, reflect on it,
and leave your comments and feedback on the discussion page. We plan to
leave this version up for at least 30 days; indeed, a 30-day comment period
for changes is built into the new draft.
Our plan is to review the comments and feedback, make appropriate changes
and edits, return with a revised version, and, if appropriate, propose that
draft to the Board of Trustees for adoption and translation.
Generally, we sought to craft a document that is more even-handed, shorter,
and easier-to-read than most user agreements. Although we encourage you to
read the entire draft, here are some key provisions to give you some flavor:
- Security: The proposed agreement prohibits a number of actions - like
malware - that could compromise our systems. We thought we should be clear
as to what is unacceptable in this area, though most of these restrictions
will not be surprising.
- Roles and responsibilities: We feel we need to be honest with the
community on a number of issues, including user liability. We have heard a
number of community members asking for guidance on this topic. The proposed
agreement also seeks to provide guidelines to help users avoid trouble.
- Community feedback: With this version, and with each major revision
afterwards, we want the community to be involved … obviously. So the
proposed agreement gives users a 30-day comment period before a major
revision goes into effect (with Board approval). There is a 3-day exception
for urgent legal and administrative changes.
- Free Licensing: We felt our present agreement is somewhat confusing on
the free licensing requirements. The proposed agreement attempts to explain
more clearly those requirements for editors.
- Harassment, threats, stalking, vandalism, and other long-term
issues: The proposed agreement would make clear that such acts are
Novel for us, the agreement also raises the possibility of a global ban for
extreme cross-wiki violations, a need that we have heard expressed from a
number of community members. We will share that policy with the community in
draft form shortly. Dealing with such matters is a process that we hope
volunteers will continue to lead on a day-to-day basis.
- Other Legal Provisions: We do have other legal provisions...we are
lawyers after all. Most notably, the proposed agreement incorporates legal
sections that are commonly used to help safeguard a site like ours, such as
disclaimers and limitations on liability.
Thank you in advance for your review and comments. Your input will be
149 New Montgomery Street
San Francisco, CA 94105
+1 (415) 839-6885 ext. 6750
*California Registered In-House Counsel*
Imagine a world in which every single human being can freely share in the
sum of all knowledge. That's our commitment. www.wikimediafoundation.org
Please find below the WMF report for August, in plain text.
As always, the editable and formatted version is on Meta:
Starting this month, the reports are posted on the Wikimedia blog, too:
* 1 Data and Trends
* 2 Financials
* 3 Highlights
o 3.1 Wikimania
o 3.2 Summer of Research wraps up
* 4 Technology
o 4.1 Operations
o 4.2 Features Engineering
o 4.3 Mobile
o 4.4 Special projects
o 4.5 Platform Engineering
* 5 Research
* 6 Community
o 6.1 Projects
o 6.2 Fundraiser
o 6.3 Public Policy Initiative
o 6.4 Fellowship program
* 7 Global Development
o 7.1 Department Highlights
o 7.2 Grants Awarded and Executed
o 7.3 Chapter Relations
o 7.4 Global South
o 7.5 Brazil Catalyst
o 7.6 Mobile Strategy and Business Development
o 7.7 Editor Survey
o 7.8 Readers Survey
o 7.9 Mobile Research
o 7.10 Offline
o 7.11 Global Education Program
+ 7.11.1 Student organizations
o 7.12 India Programs
o 7.13 Communications
+ 7.13.1 Major announcements
+ 7.13.2 Global Communications
+ 7.13.3 Storylines through August
+ 7.13.4 Global media coverage
+ 7.13.5 Other worthwhile reads
+ 7.13.6 Wikipedia Signpost
+ 7.13.7 WMF Blog posts
+ 7.13.8 Media Contact
* 8 Human Resources
o 8.1 Staff Changes
o 8.2 Statistics
o 8.3 Department Updates
* 9 Finance and Administration
* 10 Legal
* 11 Visitors and Guests
== Data and Trends ==
Global unique visitors for July:
393 million (-1.5% compared to June; +9.2% compared to previous year)
(comScore data for all Wikimedia Foundation projects; comScore will
release August data later in September)
Page requests for August:
14.2 billion (+1.0% compared to July; +3.1% compared to previous year)
Report Card for July 2011: The Report Card is undergoing a redesign
as a more fully-featured dashboard. Current prototype can be found
== Financials ==
(Financial information is only available for July 2011 at the time of
Financial information as of July 1, 2011
* Technology Group: $731,415
* Community/Fundraiser Group: $250,872
* Global Development Group: $146,003
* Governance Group: $64,873
* Finance/Legal/HR/Admin. Group: $484,462
Total Expenses: $1,677,625
Total surplus/(loss): ($473,594)
Revenue was on plan at $1.2M, including $1M from the second Sloan
Expenses were below plan at $1.7M actual vs. $2.2M plan.
Cash of $17.1M, which is seven month of cash reserves at current
== Highlights ==
=== Wikimania ==
Group photo at Wikimania 2011, Haifa, Israel>
>From August 4 to August 7, Wikimedians from around the world came
together in Haifa, Israel for this year's annual Wikimania conference,
organized by volunteers from Wikimedia Israel.
The first day of the conference saw the keynote of Wikimedia Foundation
Executive Director Sue Gardner
(http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CtE-IlhbM-A&t=3m32s ) followed by a Q&A
session with the Board of Trustees
(http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CtE-IlhbM-A&t=30m30s ). Wikipedia
founder Jimmy Wales concluded the event with his customary "State of the
Wiki" address, highlighting the importance of making it easier to edit
Wikipedia. He also awarded the first annual "Global Wikipedian of the
Year" award to Rauan Kenzhekhanuly of the Kazakh Wikipedia.
Beyond these, the schedule
<http://wikimania2011.wikimedia.org/wiki/Schedule> included the following
presentations and panels by Wikimedia Foundation staff, fellows and
* Philippe Beaudette, /"Get Jimmy off my screen!" - the donations
model for the 2010-2011 fundraiser
* Frank Schulenburg, /Taking Wikipedia in Higher Education to the next
* Maryana Pinchuk and Victoria Doronina, /War and Peace: Writing
Wikipedia Social Histories
* Lennart Guldbrandsson, /Account Creation Improvement Project
* Liam Wyatt, /What next in GLAM?
* James Alexander, /WikiGuides and new users
* Ryan Kaldari, /Wikipedia Takes Your City (How to organize a
Wikipedia photo scavenger hunt)
* Ryan Kaldari, /Wikimedia and the Public Domain
* Barry Newstead, /Understanding Wikipedia Editors: Results from the
* Erik Zachte, /Global distribution of our community and readers
* Kul Wadhwa: /Wikimedia Mobile: What we've learned and where we're
(panel, with Patrick Reilly)
* Ryan Lane, /The Site Architecture You Can Edit
* Patrick Reilly, etc., /Wikimedia Mobile: What we've learned and
where we're headed
* Rob Halsell, /Wikimedia Operations Overview
* Roan Kattouw and Timo Tijhof, /ResourceLoader, modernizing
* Guillaume Paumier, /A Qt library for MediaWiki, and what you can do
* Brion Vibber, /Editing 2.0: MediaWiki's upcoming visual editor and
the future of templates
* Sumana Harihareswara, /How to get what you want from MediaWiki
* Brandon Harris, /Identity, Reputation, and Gratitude
* Markus Glaser, Timo Tijhof, Ryan Lane, /Testing for Mediawiki
* Andrew Garrett, /A brief introduction to MediaWiki extension
Research and Strategy
* Dario Taraborelli (with Daniel Mietchen and Giota Alevizou),
/Barriers and opportunities for expert participation in Wikipedia:
Results from a survey
* Erik Möller, Guillaume Paumier, /Quality and Engagement: Making the
* Dario Taraborelli (with Mathias Schindler, Angelika Adam, Denny
Vrandecic), /Participation in research projects
* Dario Taraborelli (with Daniel Mietchen), /An open-access and
open-data policy for projects of the Wikimedia Foundation
* Howie Fung, Steven Walling, Barry Newstead, and Diederik van Liere,
/How the Wikimedia Foundation is Studying Editing Trends: 2010-2011
* Moka Pantages and Steven Walling, /How to Start a Party on Six
* Brandon Harris, Howie Fung, Steven Walling, /Encouraging
Participation in Wikimedia Projects
* Dario Taraborelli, Diederik van Liere, Ryan Lane, /Opening up
Wikipedia's data: A lightweight approach to Wikipedia as a platform
The Foundation supported Wikimania participants with 77 full
scholarships and 52 partial scholarships (awarded to a diverse group of
recipients, selected by a volunteer scholarship review committee), in
collaboration with Wikimedia Germany. In addition, various other
Wikimedia chapters provided self-administered scholarships.
At Wikimania, the Wikimedia Board of Trustees announced the 2011-2012
Board members and elected officers:
* Ting Chen, Board Chair
* Jan-Bart de Vreede, Vice-Chair
* Stuart West, Treasurer
* Phoebe Ayers, Secretary
* Samuel Klein
* Bishakha Datta
* Matt Halprin
* Arne Klempert
* Kat Walsh
* Jimmy Wales
=== Summer of Research wraps up ===
Presentation of Wikimedia Summer of Research results (August 25, WMF
The Community Department concluded the inaugural Wikimedia Summer of
Research program, where eight academics from a variety of fields visited
the Foundation from June to August in order to take an intensive look at
the dynamics of Wikipedia’s editing community. They employed a variety
of qualitative and quantitative methodologies to tackle some of the most
pressing questions about current and historic editor trends. Their work
was organized as a series of weekly sprints, each devoted to a new topic
related to participation in Wikipedia by editors. In particular, they
focused on the participation of new editors, from the time they register
to how they first contribute and collaborate with existing community
In the final weeks the researchers gave a presentation on the findings
to staff, released code on public repositories, and documented their
work on Meta wiki. A comprehensive summary of the topics covered and the
key findings can be found at
== Technology ==
A detailed report of the Tech Department's activities for August 2011
can be found at:
* Technical discussions at Wikimania (see also general "Highlights"
section) and adjacent Hacking Days;
* Progress on HTTPS, and generally better processes in Operations;
* The kick-off of the Internationalization and localization tools project;
* New features in UploadWizard, including major work on customized
campaigns for the Wiki Loves Monuments event;
* MediaWiki 1.18 and the new Mobile platform approaching deployment
=== Operations ===
* *Tampa Data Center* — Mark Bergsma put into production the second
router, which means we have now router redundancy in the Tampa
network infrastructure. Mark also standardized LVS implementation
and puppetized the configuration. Other highlights in August include
software upgrade to Squid servers, and upload performance issues
* *Virginia Data Center* — Asher Feldman deployed the new Mobile
Varnish servers in the Eqiad data center. All six LVS servers are
ready and two of them are in production now, load-balancing the
mobile Varnish servers.
* *HTTPS* — Roan Kattouw and Ryan Lane fixed issues that surfaced
during the internal testing period. Ryan also set up SSL servers in
eqiad, enhancing Varnish to deal with X-Forwarded-For and
X-Forwarded-Proto HTTP headers, and making necessary changes to
Squid. On August 31st, HTTPS was enabled on wikimediafoundation.org
and Wikimedia Commons.
* *Virtualization test cluster* — The puppet configuration used in the
production sites has been split into public and private
repositories, and all sensitive information has been moved to the
private repository. Gerrit has been configured, and the public
puppet configuration will soon be moved into a public repository
there. Labs LDAP and SVN LDAP are currently being merged, so that
SVN users will more easily have access to Labs.
=== Features Engineering ===
* *Visual editor* — Trevor Parscal and Inez Korczynski worked on a
transaction-based model for the visual editor, where the document is
built as a series of events (instead of saving it entirely at every
change), which makes it easier to undo actions. Neil Kandalgaonkar
continued to work on real-time collaboration and is close to
presenting a demo of Etherpad working inside a MediaWiki edit
window. Ian Baker investigated and started to work on a chat system
to be integrated to the concurrent editing interface, for
collaboration and live help.
* *Internationalization and localization tools* — Siebrand Mazeland,
Niklas Laxström and Gerard Meijssen joined the project in August.
Niklas focused on code review for MediaWiki 1.18 regarding
internationalization issues; he also introduced more flexible
language fallback sequences. Siebrand worked on the product roadmap
for 2011-2012, and started to plan hackathons & localization sprints
in India in November. The Kiwix offline app was added to
translatewiki.net, where it can now be localized.
* *Article feedback* — Dario Taraborelli analyzed the volume of edits,
and couldn't yet find any statistically significant difference in
edits before and after the activation of the feature on English
Wikipedia articles. In order to clarify licensing and privacy
policies regarding the data, an explanation was published, stating
that user feedback data were considered public contributions just
like any edit.
* *UploadWizard* — Ian Baker worked on the TitleBlacklist API, as well
as bug fixes for UploadStash. Jan Gerber added XHR FormData support
to UploadWizard, and chunk uploads. Jeroen De Dauw's code to support
customized campaigns was deployed to Wikimedia Commons. Neil
reviewed Jeroen's and Jan's code, and generally prepared the code
* *ResourceLoader* — Roan Kattouw and Timo Tijhof got together in late
August to do back-end work on Global gadgets. They improved the
format for defining gadgets, which will eventually be done via a
user interface. Gadget internationalization is now also fully supported.
=== Mobile <http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mobile_Projects> ===
* *Mobile Research* — Mani Pande and Parul Vora continued to
synthesize the findings from field research in India and Brazil.
They launched user experience research in US with AnswerLab, and
have started recruiting readers and editors for ethnographic
research to be conducted in San Francisco, Dallas and Chicago.
* *MobileFrontend* — Tomasz Finc sent a second call for testers to try
out the new mobile platform developed by Patrick Reilly. The
MediaWiki community provided code feedback on the wikitech-l list,
which was addressed by Patrick. Tomasz called for developers to help
fix the last remaining bugs before full deployment, planned for
=== Special projects ===
* *2011 Fundraiser
<http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/2011_Wikimedia_fundraiser>* — Ryan
Kaldari built views and filters to facilitate reviewing changes to
CentralNotice campaigns and banners. Katie Horn added an API to the
ContributionTracking extension as well as minor bug fixes to some
Drupal/CiviCRM modules. Arthur Richards added a new log parser and
made bug fixes to the contribution auditing framework. Jeff Green
analyzed the server architecture and began taking strides to
increase resiliency and security.
=== Platform Engineering
* *MediaWiki 1.18* — Code review on MediaWiki 1.18 progressed well in
August and should be over by mid September. Gradual deployment to
Wikimedia wikis is planned over September, using the newly completed
heterogeneous deployment system.
* *Continuous integration* — Chad Horohoe continued to set up the
virtual machine environment, while the Operations team set up the
physical hardware in the Virginia data center. The final server will
use Jenkins instead of CruiseControl.
* *Wikitext scripting* — Volunteer Victor Vasiliev worked on a
MediaWiki extension to embed scripts into pages; this was a result
of discussions over the years about replacing ad-hoc template- and
ParserFunctions-based logic by a more efficient and powerful
solution. Tim Starling discussed the extension with Victor to become
more familiar with his work, and researched other alternatives. He
wrote a PHP extension embedding a Lua interpreter, and added support
for it to the existing Lua MediaWiki extension for backward
* *Summer of Code 2011* — In August, the GSoC students finished their
projects and students and mentors turned in their final evaluations;
all seven remaining students passed. They started to write to the
wikitech-l mailing list to summarize what they finished and what
still needs to be done.
=== Research ===
Research on new features continued with a particular focus on Moodbar, a
feature that was deployed in the English Wikipedia at the beginning of
this month. We also continued work on Article Feedback and contributed
to the wrap-up of the Public Policy Initiative with the collection of
data on article quality. We continued the analysis of the data collected
in the Expert participation survey (cf. Wikimania section).
Dario Taraborelli attended the DataCite 2011 Summit as an opportunity to
identify strategic partnerships on research data preservation and
Members of the Research Committee continued evaluating and supporting
research proposals submitted over the last month by external researchers
and released the second issue of the Wikimedia Research Newsletter, a
monthly overview of Wikimedia research in collaboration with the
Wikipedia Signpost.  Daniel Mietchen led the drafting of a Wikimedia
response to the EU Consultation on scientific information in the digital
== Community ==
Wrapped up Summer of Research with a rich set of results posted on Meta
general "Highlights" section)
=== Projects ===
Reader Relations and Support
We have implemented and field tested case management systems such as
SugarCRM to track issues that are being referred to us, and are pleased
with the results we're seeing. We continue to work closely with both
tech and legal to assure that community concerns are met. Average
time-to-close on cases is fairly extreme, because they're very complex -
they don't tend to get to us until all other avenues to resolve them
>From August 15 to August 30, the Foundation held a referendum
<http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Image_filter_referendum> to gather more
input into the development and usage of an opt-in personal image hiding
feature, which will allow readers to voluntarily screen particular types
of images strictly for their own accounts. Such a feature was requested
by the Board of Trustees in June 2011.
There are only three more weeks left in the Kaggle Data competition ,
which challenges data-mining experts to predict the number of edits a
Wikipedia editor will make, based on a training dataset. It has already
attracted 79 teams, 167 participants and 743 submissions. An exit survey
has been prepared and will be sent out once the competition finishes.
=== Fundraiser ===
In August, the fundraising team attended Wikimania and interviewed
nearly 50 Wikimedia contributors. We gathered this material so that we
can expand the range of voices and faces that appear (and perform well)
in our fundraiser. We are still in the process of interviewing editors,
donors, users, and staff. Please send a message to
wikistory(at)wikimedia.org if you'd like to share your story and explain
to readers in your own words why donating to Wikimedia is important.
Weekly testing of creative messages also continued in August. Please see
our test updates on meta for more information:
We have some hopeful signs that this year we'll have appeals from
editors, donors and others that will perform as well as the traditional
The fundraising team has started with bi-monthly fundraising drills --
full days of testing going through the motions of the real Fundraiser.
This provides insight on the daily tasks/problems we may have in the FR
and helps establish a more productive/sustainable production process.
The Production Coordinator (PC) Team worked on the localization of
Landing Pages and automating codes and processes, improving and updating
our Fundraising 2011 page  and creating new and more technically
robust banners and LPs.
In August, our team welcomed Peter Gehres and Alex Zariv as Production
Coordinators throughout the Fundraiser 2011.
Major Gifts and Foundations
We submitted two new requests for general support to foundations in the
month of August. Also, Jonathan Curiel joined our team as the
Development Communications Manager.
=== Public Policy Initiative ===
In August, the PPI team was actively involved in three key areas: 1)
Documenting the overall Public Policy Initiative and preparing the first
draft of the Stanton Foundation report, 2) Planning and facilitating 10
Regional Campus Ambassador trainings throughout the United States, 3)
Reporting the research findings of key aspects of the Public Policy
=== Fellowship program ===
Summer of Research
August was the final month of this project - see "Highlights" section.
The history fellows, who study the virtual community history of
different Wikipedia editing communities, wrote several blog posts this
month , , , , receiving mention in the English Wikipedia
Signpost. They will submit their final reports next month, and their
findings will appear on Meta.
== Global Development ==
=== Department Highlights ===
* Attendance at Wikimania 2011 (see also general "Highlights" section)
* Final Report of Editor Survey Complete
* Asaf Bartov's Visit to Kenya
=== Grants Awarded and Executed ===
=== Chapter Relations ===
* Signed chapter agreements with Macau, Chile and Canada. Finalizing
agreement with India and South Africa chapters.
* Finalizing finances for 2010-2011 Fundraising: payments of the
second installments received from Germany, UK and France. Full
report out soon.
* Discussing chapter transitional grant agreement 
with Wikimedia Australia, Wikimedia Austria, Wikimedia Hungary,
Wikimedia Sweden, Wikimedia Italy, Wikimedia Switzerland and
=== Global South ===
* Full-day discussion on Global South growth held at Wikimania
preconference. Notes here, including much advice applicable to all
chapters and future chapters:
* Asaf Bartov visited Kenya Aug 15th-18th and delivered five public
talks on university campuses in Nairobi and Mombasa as well as a
tech outreach talk at the Nairobi iHub. He also led a workshop for
Kenyan Wikimedians, and visited two potential local partners for
Wikimedia in Kenya.
* Many new contacts with volunteers from communities not currently
having chapters were established at Wikimania, including
representatives from Thailand, Armenia, Viet Nam, Japan, and Belarus.
=== Brazil Catalyst 
The main steps to move forward in the short term are to,
1. improve our collective understanding of the structure and work
dynamics of the Brazilian contributor community and engage in
dialogue with the community (we have one quantitative researcher who
is starting to work on this),
2. focus on outreach projects (specifically the launch of the Global
Education Program in Brazil) providing new energy for the community,
3. support community-led initiatives and efforts to form Wikimedia
Brazil (Brazilian Chapter) through grants and other support.
We will also continue to work on establishing a WMF presence in Brazil,
though that will be a secondary priority for the next 3-6 months.
=== Mobile Strategy and Business Development ===
* Exploring USSD protocol with various partners to bring access to
Wikipedia, without cost to end-users, to low end mobile phones in
* Currently working with the tech team on testing our mobile gateway,
which will be lauched in limited release in a week.
=== Editor Survey ===
The final report of the editor survey has been completed. We'll continue
to blog about the editor survey.
=== Readers Survey ===
We have received the datafile and toplines from our vendor, and are
analyzing the data.
=== Mobile Research ===
* We are working on the research report and have set up a wiki in meta
to share the data from India and Brazil:
* The translation process for the mobile survey is almost complete:
=== Offline ===
* For the next year, we will focus on tightening up the ability to
make offline collections as well as creating simple and clear guides
for downloading/distributing content.
* A new version of Kiwix - an offline reader - launched! We are
collecting feedback about the experience now.
=== Global Education Program ===
==== Student organizations ====
* Page creation process has been unified and streamlined, and pilot
pages are being rolled out to a test group of existing student
organizations to prepare for the start of the new school year.
* Merchandise request process is now developing: students will receive
annual welcome packs and will be able to request merchandise through
a minigrants program (this will also encourage students to make
their events public on Outreach wiki).
=== India Programs ===
* Two new consultants selected - Nitika Tandon (Participation) and
Shiju Alex (Indic Initiatives). Nitika has joined and Shiju joins at
the end of September.
* Continued support of proposed WikiConference in Mumbai in November
($40k grant from WMF; Fellowship for organizer; Advisory services).
* Wikipedia India Education Program
<http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:India_Education_Program> pilot in
Pune looking good in terms of numbers (>1000 students) but requires
intensive effort to provide adequate training, enabling and
hand-holding of newbie students. Having said this, check out the
o User: Abhilasha369 started a new article: Robinson Crusoe Economy
o User: basic.atari is working on the Human capital article
o User: SaurabhKB is editing Self-organizing list
o User: Aishani Sharma on Social preferences
o User: Jinchurikidan has been actively editing the article on
o 12 new Campus Ambassadors selected for the Pune pilot; training
expected by September 12
* Continued progress on legal registration of the proposed independent
public trust in India.
* Initial meetings with major mobile carriers / manufacturers
scheduled for next week.
=== Communications ===
* Communications conducted support for media outreach, and assistance
to the Wikimania planning committee through August 2011
* Ongoing design planning for new initiatives within the Foundation,
including the student clubs branding and identity and global
* Work continues on the transfer of monthly reporting and broadcasting
functions to the Movement Communications area of our team. New
projects are being developed for community-facing outreach -
specifically developing new channels for mission-critical information.
* Work has also kicked off on the 2010/11 WMF Annual Report, set to
release in November 2011.
==== Major announcements ====
Wikimedia Foundation Announces 2011-2012 Board of Trustees and Elected
==== Global Communications ====
* Conducted first-ever Communications committee (ComCom) meeting at
Wikimania. Lasted three hours and discussion focused on re-building
a more collaborative culture among participants, as well as sharing
best practices and working together on synchronized projects. 20
people attended and Tinu Cherian led a discussion about media
outreach in India and what we can learn from his experiences there
as a volunteer media spokesperson.
* Worked with Wikimedia Netherlands to plan media efforts around
pan-European Wiki Loves Monuments contest.
* Preliminary talks with Wikimedia Hungary to help build out a
communications plan to celebrate 100,000 article milestone for
Hungarian Wikipedia. Working to create best practices and model for
future milestone celebrations.
==== Storylines through August ====
Wikimania takes Haifa!
==== Global media coverage ====
College of Engineering Pune students to co-author Wikipedia-India
Sahitya Parishad to add more Gujarati pages on Wikipedia
Editing Wiki is now part of CoEP's syllabi
Oral citations to be part of wikipedia entries
Azerbaijanis more active than Armenians on Wikipedia
לכתוב ערך בוויקיפדיה במקום סמינר
Wikipedia editors voting on plan to "shutter" violent and sexual images
*Wikipedia founder: Israel-Palestine is heavily debated, but we're
vigilant on neutrality*
*מנכ"לית ויקיפדיה: יש לנו עקרונות נעלים יותר לגבי מקורות מאשר אתרי מדיה
==== Other worthwhile reads ====
==== Wikipedia Signpost ====
==== WMF Blog posts ====
==== Media Contact ====
== Human Resources ==
HR continued to gain ground in August, as the external
recruiters/screeners started to show impact on the hiring front. We are
ahead of plan in terms of prepping for roles at this point, most of the
slow down is around candidate quality. This is a different problem from
last year where process was most of the hang up, so although it is an
issue it is an easier one to address than our challenges from 2009-2010.
If you take attrition out of our current data, we are really close to
our goal for the month, only 2 behind plan, a significant improvement.
The deployment of our HRIS continued in August, we expect to have a
working beta for our data in mid September with a proposed launch date
in October. We'd like to speed that up some so we may invest more time
in testing than we'd originally planned to get it up and running sooner.
We also started working with a company we connected with via Mitch Kapor
called Intern Match. We are in the beta of their site, and their goal is
to reach out to students actively for underserved organizations like
ours where internships may not be an obvious pathway. The community
portion of their site launches soon, so we are excited about that.
=== Staff Changes ===
New Perm Position Hires
* Garfield Byrd, Chief of Finance and Administration (Administration)
* Jeremy Postlethwaite, Software Developer Back-end (Technology)
* Jonathan Curiel, Development Communications Manager (Community)
* Aaron Schulz, Software Developer Back-end (Technology)
New Other Position Hires
* Niklas Laxström, contractor (fills the permanent role of) SW
Developer – Internationalization (Technology)
* Roan Kattouw, contractor (fills the permanent role of) SW Developer,
* Siebrand Mazeland, contractor (fills the permanent role of) Product
Manager – Localization (Technology)
* Alex Zariv (contract extended) & Peter Gehres (re-engaged);
contractors, (fill the permanent role of) Production Coordinator
* Micheal Beattie (re-engaged)
* Ayush Khanna
* Tracey Fleming
* Gerard Meijssen (July)
* Sara Yap
New Legal Interns
* Christopher Johnson
* Laureli Mallek
* Jason Ross
* Chris Leonello
* Stephanie Thommen
* Skye Kraft
* Andrew Shields
* Doreen Strubhar
* Community Summer Research Fellows
o Giovanni Luca Ciampaglia
o Richard Stuart Geiger
o Aaron Halfaker
o Melanie Kill (July)
o Yusuke Matsubara
o Shawn Walker
o Development and Operations Engineer
o Global Education Program
o Portuguese Wikipedia Qualitative Researcher
o Consultant, Communications - India Programs
o Consultant, Team Support - India Programs
=== Statistics ===
Total Employee Count:
August Attrition: 0
YTD Attrition: 5
Remaining open positions to fiscal year end: 32
=== Department Updates ===
Real-time feed for HR updates: http://identi.ca/wikimediaatwork or
== Finance and Administration ==
* Beginning search for Head of Office Information Technology.
* Used tenant improvement funds to do upgrades to the third floor
== Legal ==
* Four legal interns are starting for the Fall semester, supporting us
on a wide variety of legal issues (working both part-time and
full-time for law school credit or educational experience). We are
extremely happy to have their support.
* MarkMonitor - We've engaged a domain name monitoring and management
company that will allow us to gain control proactively of domain
names that contain our project names as well as domain names that
are easily confused with our project names. This will help reduce
instances of deceptive websites that harm our users such as survey
scams, phishing sites, mirror sites, etc.
* Hiaring Smith - We have engaged this new trademark firm (with a good
international network) to help us trim our portfolio of unnecessary
fat while developing proactive strategy in regions we are
aggressively moving into. The firm itself was just named one of the
top 20 firms in CA by the World Trademark Review.
* Finalized internal legal policies:
== Visitors and Guests ==
1. Aaron Shaw (Berkman Center for Internet and Society)
2. Thierry Coudray (board member, Wikimedia France)
3. Achal Prabhala (WMF Advisory Board Member)
4. Sarah Stierch (community member, GLAM Wikipedian-in-Residence)
5. Hai Ton (ThoughtWorks)
6. Kaitlin Thaney (Digital Science)
7. Denny Vrandecic (Semantic MediaWiki)
8. Sizhe Liu (KPMG)
9. Glenn Turner (Advanced Mobile Notary)
10. Renata Stasaityte (WMF Audit Committee)
11. Pernilla Rydmark (.SE Swedish Foundation)
12. Kristina Alexanderson (.SE Swedish Foundation)
13. Sam Mankiewicz (CTO, Kiva)