[Foundation-l] Is popularity a good thing for us?

GerardM gerard.meijssen at gmail.com
Mon Dec 17 16:38:57 UTC 2007

I am perfectly happy with the existence of Wikinews. It can and should cover
any relevant subject.

 This thread is about popularity and it was suggested for Wikipedia NOT to
do news anymore. My argument is that Wikipedia proves its worth by providing
background information to the news and when important things happen, it does
mention and adapt the concerning articles when things happen. For instance
there was an article on cardinal Reitzinger before he became pope. There was
an article about tsunamis before it struck the Asian and African coasts. By
having news articles readable from within Wikipedia, articles that links to
the relevant background articles we do what we do best. Theoretically these
articles could be Wikinews articles, the issue would be how to square the
Wikipedia metholody with the Wikinews methodology for such articles.

So please make Wikinews more respected and well read, make it cover all
relevant subjects; anyway you are doing good :) .


On Dec 17, 2007 1:30 PM, Brian McNeil <brian.mcneil at wikinewsie.org> wrote:

> Wikinews had better than adequate coverage of the Asian Tsunami, and if
> you
> dig up our interview with Sue Gardner you'll see she cites our coverage of
> events like the Virginia shooting as an influence on her decision to want
> to
> work for WMF.
> I may be mistaken, but it appears you are saying "Don't do it on Wikinews
> because less people will see it", or you are endorsing that principle
> which
> Wikinewsies would likely agree is already done by Wikipedia, just not
> written down anywhere.
> Brian McNeil
> -----Original Message-----
> From: foundation-l-bounces at lists.wikimedia.org
> [mailto:foundation-l-bounces at lists.wikimedia.org] On Behalf Of GerardM
> Sent: 17 December 2007 12:25
> To: Wikimedia Foundation Mailing List
> Subject: Re: [Foundation-l] Is popularity a good thing for us?
> Hoi,
> One of the moments when Wikipedia shines is when a major news item breaks.
> A
> thing where the news is the instigator and where the background articles
> of
> Wikipedia make the difference. Good examples were the tsunami, the death
> of
> the old, and the coronation of the new pope among others. They resulted in
> a
> massive amount of traffic for the Wikipedias. This is exactly where
> Wikipedia makes a difference, it is also what our "colleagues" cannot do.
> There are philosophical reasons to exclude news material from Wikipedia,
> but
> doing so is clearly detrimental to Wikipedia. Wikinews does not have the
> exposure that Wikipedia has. It will not get people searching for
> newsupdates as it happens on Wikipedia. Wikinews has policies that are
> unknown and unfamiliar to Wikipedians.  In a perfect world the news would
> be
> in Wikinews, animals and plants in Wikispecies ... but that is not the
> reality of things in reality you find them in Wikipedia as well.
> Thanks,
>     GerardM
> On Dec 17, 2007 12:03 PM, Brian McNeil <brian.mcneil at wikinewsie.org>
> wrote:
> > Thomas Dalton wrote:
> >
> > >It's an excellent point. I thought about it a few months ago and
> > >considered proposing a new policy banning anything under a week old
> > >from being included in Wikipedia articles (actually, it was a little
> > >more complicated than that, but that's the gist of it). It would help
> > >Wikinews, and would also reduce the number of articles which are a
> > >succession of "As June 2006 ..." paragraphs. Current events are not
> > >encyclopaedic and it's impossible to write a good encyclopaedia
> > >article as soon as something happens, since all the required sources
> > >haven't been written yet (you have a handful of newspaper articles
> > >which you can simply rewrite and that's it). I ended up not proposing
> > >it because I didn't think I was enthusiastic enough about it to
> > >survive the torture of trying to get it approved. Anyone think it's
> > >worth a shot?
> >
> > First off, this sounds like an excellent idea for all language variants
> of
> > Wikipedia to consider and perhaps adopt. Obvious exceptions would be
> > things
> > like deaths where you don't wait to put the appropriate date in the
> > Wikipedia article - but you don't turn it into an obituary either. You
> do
> > the obit. on Wikinews, and *you can prepare that in advance* on
> Wikinews.
> > [This may sound gruesome, but in reality someone could start a prepared
> > story for Terry Pratchett's obit today as he's announced he has
> > early-onset
> > Alzheimer's. The media reports and quotes from the man made today will
> be
> > relevant to the final article when he does pass on.]
> >
> > Scaling back to something less ambitious would be linking directly from
> > the
> > Wikipedia main page's in the news section to appropriate Wikinews
> > articles.
> > At the moment, at least on en., Wikinews has one link in the in the news
> > section which leads to the main page. This simple step might encourage
> > more
> > Wikipedians to dip their toe in the Wikinews waters and see that it can
> be
> > a
> > little different contributing on a sister project, perhaps even what
> some
> > may have experienced when Wikipedia was much smaller and there was more
> > uncharted territory to explore.
> >
> > I'd be delighted to see anything done that raises the profile of
> Wikinews
> > on
> > Wikipedia and encourages people to try another project. A
> > Wikipedian-specific introduction would be a start as citation methods
> > differ
> > and there needs to be a big warning that everything published appears on
> > the
> > main page (this may change if we're getting 50 articles a day). So, if
> you
> > want to progress on this my first suggestion is to find some victims,
> > er...
> > Wikipedians :) who can be persuaded to give Wikinews a shot. Then a
> > structure and set of messages can be developed to make it easier for
> > Wikipedians to transition to writing news and later incorporating it
> into
> > Wikipedia when things have calmed down and the event can be considered
> > historical.
> >
> > If you raise anything on Wikipedia about this, please let at least
> myself
> > know - or bring it up on the Wikinews-l list. I'd like to encourage some
> > of
> > our editors who are more frequent Wikipedia editors than myself to give
> > input.
> >
> >
> > Brian McNeil
> >
> >
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