[Foundation-l] Wikikids

Mathias Damour mathias.damour at laposte.net
Thu May 31 21:30:32 UTC 2007


Robert Horning a écrit :
> The point about suggesting that this could be a "sister project" is that
> a proposal was set up on Meta, with other projects where this is
> explicitly a goal.  And that by posting on this list there is a
> presumption that somehow this is related to foundation business.

The original proposal were made by User:Necrophorus, who is a german wikipedian, on 18 December 2004  see:
http://meta.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?title=Wikikids&oldid=84922 So I don't thing that the dutch group that created WikiKids.nl is directly related to this proposal. They just took the same name one year later (which I beleive was not a trademark yet !)

> I find
> it unfortunate that you are not working with the developers of the Dutch
> language edition of Wikijunior, but that is your loss and it is also
> something that I hope can be corrected.
> As far as "owning an idea", I've seen some project proposals on Meta
> that get some criticism and the person who made the original proposal
> gets offended personally for what are stark realities of becoming a
> Wikimedia sister project.  In spite of the fact that the proposal has
> been made on a wiki, they don't like people messing with the wording of
> the proposal and making modifications or suggesting alternatives to
> making the project work out.  Or to join forces with people having a
> similar idea.

Well, sorry for not modifying the proposal into just help and contribute to Wikijunior ! We tried to explain how it was different (both format and participants) and I'm not sure that the wikijunior community would have liked to somehow change their project.
Maybe I shouldn't have criticised Wikijunior and Simple english Wikipedia but...

> Instead, they push the concept as though it is their
> chance to become a "God-King" of their own little domain with visions of
> grandure of (...)

> If you don't want "approval" from the
> WMF, but are here to merely advertise your project,

That's not really fair either, several if not many people have thought about a children wiki, and quite in a similar way. Why wouldn't you assume that it's just in the "Be bold" and "SOFIXIT" policy to make the proposal ?
It was also about giving news from the ones that work if one reason why the former proposal as sister project didn't take off was "I'm not sure it can work"

> One of the significant advantages of becoming a
> Wikimedia sister project is that you have some people who can help out
> to deal with some of these growing pains and help with both
> administrative overhead and establishing basic policies that seem to
> work.

The advantage I see is of course that it would make it more "visible", at least for wikipedians, and that they would trust and know where they are going if they choose to contribute. The argument of limited ressourses is IMHO not relevant, as far as contributors are concerned. en.wikipedia had about 150.000 articles when simple english was launched, I guess it didn't slow down its growth, and 10 other ones are over this number now.
Another thing is that if (ever) a wikikids project is open by the WMF, it's more likely to swarm (I mean make a new "colony") from the Wikipedias than from the Wikijuniors. Wikipedians would make the core of first contributors, and then could "recruit" people (especialy young people of course) that wouldn't have edit any wiki before. That's what happen on Vikidia.

Of course they could be some reasons such as not to engage into something that could be nearly a school pedagogical tool (that's how Wikikids.nl see it if I know well), if one think that it should be a matter for teachers, or not to deal with minor-related issues, or some other reasons I don't know.

It seems me probable that encyclopedic wikis for children in other language will open, but I actually have no fixed opinion on if the WMF should endorse them. It just would probably be the fastest way for them to be launched.

Anyway you will say I take for granted that it would be successful if launched. Everyone can have his opinion about this.

(hope my English will not be misunderstood)
Mathias Damour

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