Wish you a wonderful 2013!
Appreciate in you taking time to deeply engage with the write-up and for
sharing your thoughts and queries. Some further thoughts and responses
1. Wiki-Panchayat is unnecessary.
Rationale: Keep four crabs in a box and each one will ensure that no one
will escape. Where there is a community there is bound to be a dispute.
Objective: Instituting a community based conflict resolution body,
especially to avoid edit wars. To be modelled on our good old Panchayt
First of all, I do not like the crab metaphor at all. The Wiki community
is a lot more collaborative and productive one assuming good faith. Edit
war is a minor problem which I hope every community is already addressing
adequately. If not, there are successful models to emulate from English
Even I used to not like the metaphor. But after being part of and engaging
with the various communities for about a decade I have slowly come to
appreciate the learning the metaphor gives to understand. It is that a
Community means vibrancy, diversity and plurality. At the same time these
qualities border-line with chaos, conflict and insularity. This is a major
challenge for any community. The best way to deal with it is from within
the community, which is the intent of the proposed Wiki-Panchayat. And yes
if there are successful models from the En-Wiki definitely they could be
adopted. Would appreciate if you could point me to these models. Still if
the metaphor troubles you we can strike it off.
2. QJS can be seen as micromanaging.
Earlier this year, there was an attempt by some members of the Tamil
Wikipedia to do strategic planning for Tamil Wikipedia. But, concerns about
micromanaging were raised and the effort was dropped later. I am afraid
that QJS may receive a similar response.
Firstly, it is important to clearly convey to the Community the intent of
the QJS. Its primary intent is to celebrate the collective spirit like the
'fan clubs' we see across India. Once they get this then the rest will
automatically happen. Secondly, definitely before we begin the concerns of
the community should be taken on board about QJS. And as I stated in the
write-up the modalities of QJS should be finalized in consultation with the
respective language communities. Thus it is possible that the QJS of Tamil
Wiki could be different from the QJS of Hindi Wiki. Lastly, in spite of all
this, if some members still express concern, then let us do a trial for at
least a year and then see. I am sure member will agree that it is better to
try and fail than not try at all. Haven't we all believed that Earth is
flat and considered sea voyage profane until we set-out! If documented, do
pass on the concerns raised about Tamil Wikipedia strategic planning. It
will be a useful doc. to further refine the QJS idea.
3. Many of your plans assume presence of enough core
the state being able to spend ample time on offline activities. This is a
chicken and egg problem. How would you address that?
Yes, you are right Ravi. This is a genuine concern and I do not have any
ready-made answers. However, right now I am working with the tremendous
good faith I have on the Core guys. There are also some ideas up my sleeve
on how to enroll these members into spending time. But I would welcome
suggestions and ideas on this.
4. Any word of technology partnerships / endeavours
languages / Indic language Wikipedias?
The more the merrier. All strength to the tech collabs and further
bettering of Wiki UI and fixing bugs. One thing to focus on would be to
build local capacities through an active interface with the core tech team.
//1) MOUs with Universities/Research Institutions; 2) Institute 5
Fellowships (quarterly) for Young Researcher in Residency Programme (YRRP)
in each focussed language area with 15 new articles and 100 edits in
respective language Wikipedia and 100 new key words as deliverables. 3)
Faculty Engagement Programme (FEP), 2 in each language for six-month
duration, whereby a faculty is provided support to mentor and manage at
least 5 Young Researchers on an Indian topic; 4) Wiki-Young Researchers
How will it be different from the India education program and how would
you avoid known pit falls?
It is different from the IEP, but is based on some of the learnings of IEP.
Firstly, it targets researchers and not students. There are many benefits
of working with Young Researchers (YR) than students. 1) YRs will be aware
of Copyvios and referencing; 2) Enthusiastic about doing research as it
will anyhow contribute to their own individual projects; 3) YRs are
relatively more open to criticism/feedback; 4) Because of the institutional
structure YRs will have closer interaction and monitoring by Faculty, which
will result in quality content; 5) The writing standards would be
relatively better; 6) YRs will be knowledgeable (i.e. research
preparedness) about their topics; 7) Will have more time at hand to
research and write
Secondly, the scope of Copyvio majorly reduces when it comes to Indian
Languages. Language issues will be relatively lesser as they will be using
Thirdly, from the very beginning the respective language community and Core
members will be active stakeholders in the entire process. This will make a
Fourthly, the focus is not disciplinary in the sense Wiki is not going to
be an alternative to the TBs and Course Material. Wiki will be promoted as
a learning and knowledge dissemination tool whereby these Knowledge
Institutions/Researchers are making themselves socially relevant and
societally connected. Simply put
Lastly, the scope is smaller but at the same time has the intent of
focussed engagement. Would welcome ideas on how we can further strengthen
//5 WCL to mentor at least 5 GWLs = A base of 150 leaders (i.e. 150
potential editors); 2) Each WCL to organize 1 Perspective Building
Programme (PBP) every week (avg 15 new members per event) = 750 PBPs; 3)
Each WCL to organize 1 Wiki-Outreach and Orientation event every month (avg
10 new members per event) = 300 Wiki-Orientations to reach 3000 members
(may result in 150 editors).//
The numbers are both ambitious and scary at the same time. I understand
that a role like yours would need to analyse progress based on numbers.
But, I would like to see the progress described in a qualitative way.
Looking back I feel the same, Ravi. Have I been scarily ambitious! But I
feel that we should aim at least this much if we need to gain more momentum
on the Indian wiki projects. I have put these milestones not because the
'role' demands it, but keeping in mind the A2K goals.
Could you please elaborate on what you mean by 'progress described in a
qualitative way'? I think the existing wiki structure already enables it.
Thanks and look forward to further feedback from you and others.