Jul 10, 2018

Portuguese Wikipedia hits one million articles

Celebrating the fifteenth Wikipedia to cross the one million article rubicon.

Photo by F nando, CC BY-SA 3.0.

There are now one million articles on the Portuguese Wikipedia.

The Portuguese-speaking Wikipedia volunteer community is extremely proud of this achievement and is celebrating in Portugal, Brazil, Angola, and all over the Lusophone world.

The Lusophone community will now start slowly moving towards two million articles, but emphasis among the thirty thousand-strong community, three thousand of which with more than five edits a month, is turning towards quality over quality.

Articles created by bots (software that can easily make thousands of dull and repetitive tasks on Wikipedia, including the creation of simple articles) are no longer a staple of the Portuguese Wikipedia. In fact, there is currently a bot that is slowly redirecting about thirty thousand short articles about asteroids, created by one other such bot more than ten years ago, to little more than one hundred lists. No information is being lost, but convenience for readers is greatly increased.

The community is also thinking of ways to boost quality by improving the path towards featured articles. Of the million articles in the encyclopedia today, only a bit over two thousand have been reviewed and rated by Wikipedia editors as “good” or “featured,” markers of high quality.  Another 500 list articles boost those numbers slightly. One proposal currently underway is the resurrection of the “peer review” process to ensure articles are properly evaluated before getting this “gold star” and featuring on the main page of the Portuguese Wikipedia.

There are also a number of initiatives to diversify contributors to the site, which as in many other language versions is heavily biased towards men and inhabitants of richer nations. Besides participating in international drives to increase coverage and depth of articles on women—such as “A Mulher que você nunca conheceu” or “Arte+Feminismo”, organised by Wikimedia Portugal and groups in Brazil—there are also ongoing projects to increase participation from people in Portuguese speaking countries in Africa, such as the Guiné-Bissau project.

A further challenge to the Wikipedia movement in Lusophone countries, as many in the community are undoubtedly aware, has been of building a sustainable organization to support the activities of the thousands of editors. The still-recent de-recognition of the two Brazilian user groups as Wikimedia affiliates will certainly have an impact for the years to come, and is a culmination of long term and serious disagreements between members of the two groups. The situation in Portugal, meanwhile, had been stagnant for several years. (People who attended the Wikimedia Conference in Milan in 2013 might remember my extremely short presentation on the state of the Portuguese chapter at the time.) However, this year we have participated in more activities than the last four years combined, and if it depends on the people currently active in the Portuguese chapter you can be certain of many more to come.

After all, one million articles do not write themselves. Congratulations to all that have contributed to this landmark, no matter how large or small those contributions may have been—and to many more articles to come!

Gonçalo Themudo, President
Wikimedia Portugal

Apr 16, 2018

Mexican Ministry of Culture and Wikimedia Mexico

Mexican Ministry of Culture and Wikimedia Mexico partner to preserve Mexican culture and heritage

“We are excited to continue to expand Wikipedia’s free knowledge alongside one of the leading keepers of culture in my country,” says Iván Martínez, President of Wikimedia Mexico.

This article is available in: English Español

Photo by Zack McCune/Wikimedia Foundation, CC BY-SA 4.0.

Last month, the Mexican Ministry of Culture and Wikimedia Mexico formally agreed to a long-term partnership that will help collect and preserve Mexican culture and heritage on Wikimedia projects, like Wikipedia.

The possibilities of this agreement—signed between the Mexican government agency charged with overseeing the country’s centers of history and heritage, and the independent chapter working to advance the Wikimedia movement in Mexico—are far-reaching. Mexico has an extensive and diverse history and culture, reaching back thousands of years in Spanish and dozens of indigenous languages, but much remains undigitized.

“We are excited to continue to expand Wikipedia’s free knowledge alongside one of the leading keepers of culture in my country,” says Iván Martínez, President of Wikimedia Mexico. “I genuinely appreciate the willingness and work of everyone who made this possible, and thank them all for their sensitivity, vision, and now commitment to continuing the production of free knowledge in Mexico.”

Since being incorporated in 2011, Wikimedia Mexico has been one of the most active and engaging chapters in the Wikimedia movement. Their activities include hosting Wikimania in 2015, the annual conference that celebrates Wikipedia and the movement; and a partnership with the ministry’s Biblioteca Vasconcelos Public Library, which served as a first step to the formal agreement and will be continuing, in addition to existing agreements with the Digital Culture Center (Centro de Cultura Digital), the National Film Archives (Cineteca Nacional), and the National Sound Archives (Fonoteca Nacional).

In the near future, the chapter is planning to expand this work through an advisory role in the new Cultural Database of Cultural Objects of Mexico with Wikidata, and the launch of a national photography contest dedicated to the culture of Mexico.

To celebrate the formal agreement, the Mexican consulate in San Francisco held an official signing event on 12 March. In attendance were Gemi González, Consul of Mexico in San Francisco; Alejandro Salafranca, General Manager of Information Technology and Communications of the Culture Ministry; Ernesto Miranda, Coordinator of Digital Agenda in the Secretariat of Culture; Katherine Maher, Executive Director of the Wikimedia Foundation; and Iván Martínez.

The Wikimedia Foundation signed onto the agreement to confirm support to the chapter’s commitment. Moreover, the foundation’s Partnerships and Global Reach team has been invited to participate as a way of furthering the chapter’s extensive efforts and to have a stake in supporting the partnership.

At the event, Martínez spoke about the path ahead and what it is going to mean for the participants (condensed for this format):

I cannot speak for my tens of thousands of comrades who create and curate Wikipedia’s knowledge, but in my own Wikipedia activity, two of the skills I employ most frequently are patience and resignation.

Patience comes because knowledge is commitment. On Wikipedia, for example, editors commit to its cultural creation process. Pursuing a consensus solution, finding a rare citation, or programming an automated program can take days, weeks, or even years.

Resignation is more complex. That is inspired by Argentine poet Jorge Luis Borges, who once wrote that we live in constant resignation of having to choose the books we read because life will not be long enough to read them all. And so it is with Wikipedia. My presence, and that of all the other editors on the site, will in the end be merely temporary. I’m resigned to knowing that I will never cover everything I want to.

I feel that both of these skills will be useful in this partnership as well. That patience will help me in the extensive work that lies ahead in bolstering the world’s free and open knowledge with information from the Ministry of Culture, and that resignation will help me face the fact that this important work will extend beyond all of our lifetimes.

———

Jorge Vargas, Regional Manager, Strategic Partnerships – Latin America
Wikimedia Foundation

You can also read this post on our Medium publication.

Jan 10, 2018

What's your second screen?

What’s your second screen? Film, television, and the British monarchy fill Wikipedia’s most-viewed articles of 2017

 

Or: “The enduring power of Anglophilia.”

Image via Pexels, CC0.

Anglophile (noun): “a person who greatly admires or favors England and things English.” (Merriam-Webster)

The term certainly applies to 2017, as seen through the lens of the English Wikipedia’s readers. This year, millions used the free encyclopedia to learn more Queen ElizabethQueen Victoria, and the engagement of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry.

Anglophilia also feeds into into this year’s other theme: television and film, via The Crown and Victoria. In just the top 25 most-viewed articles, people visited Wikipedia over 200 million times to learn about the newest shows or as a second screen.

The list “speaks to the power that entertainment now holds over us,” says Wikipedia editor Stormy clouds, a volunteer Wikipedia editor and a member of Wikipedia’s Top 25 team, who helped compile a larger top 50 most-viewed list with commentary. He was struck by “the terrific power of Netflix,” which via The Crown helped power Queen Elizabeth to the third-highest view count of the year,[1] and believes that her “continued strong performance should act to dispel the myth that no one cares about the monarchy.”

To be fair, however, the monarchy’s popularity is not solely limited to the queen. The second screen effect is easily discernible from pageviews to the articles on Queen Victoria and Victoria the TV series. Both had jumps each week when people tuned in to watch the show on TV—and pointed their second screens at Wikipedia.[2]

Piling on top of all this, Markle’s article came in fifth—and although we’ve limited this list to 25 entries, Queen Elizabeth’s sister Margaret came in 37th, and Elizabeth’s husband came in 44th. Both, like Elizabeth, were featured on The Crown in its most recent season.

———

Outside Britain, the strength of India broke through in the realm of film: the most-viewed article about a film this year was Baahubali 2: The Conclusion. The film has seen extremely levels of popularity since being released last April—with over 105 million tickets sold, it quickly became the highest-grossing film ever in India ever by what can only be described as a ludicrous margin.[3] Baahubali 2 has made over 17.065 billion on a budget of 2.5 billion.

Wonder Woman flexed its muscles as well, placing both it, its leading star, and the ensemble Justice League film in the top 25. This may have been apparent as soon as June, where the first two articles were the most popular of the month. Classicfilms, who helped author the English Wikipedia’s article on Wonder Womantold our own Samir Elsharbaty back then that:

[Patty Jenkins, the film’s director] decided to focus on inclusivity as a way to work through the various complications of gender that seemed to stall the film for two decades. Her vision appears to have worked, particularly with that segment of the population who either grew up reading comic books or playing games related to these comic characters, and I think most would agree, that this is a tough crowd.

The top 25 most-read articles on Wikipedia in the year 2017 follow.[4] Our grateful thanks go to researcher Andrew West for collating the data, and to the Top 25 team for their work in verifying the entries that appear here.

  1. Deaths in 2017, 37,387,010 views[5]
  2. Donald Trump, 29,644,764
  3. Elizabeth II, 19,290,956
  4. Game of Thrones (season 7), 18,792,746
  5. Meghan Markle, 16,944,130
  6. Game of Thrones, 16,833,302
  7. List of Bollywood films of 2017, 16,391,427
  8. United States, 15,763,915
  9. Bitcoin, 15,026,561
  10. 13 Reasons Why, 14,934,202
  11. Baahubali 2: The Conclusion, 14,607,282
  12. It (2017 film), 14,539,123
  13. Queen Victoria, 14,164,451
  14. List of highest-grossing Indian films, 14,091,348
  15. Gal Gadot, 14,034,958
  16. Logan (film), 14,030,384
  17. Millennials, 13,417,915
  18. Riverdale (2017 TV series), 13,360,398
  19. 2017 in film, 13,298,613
  20. Stranger Things, 13,132,129
  21. Wonder Woman (2017 film), 13,062,375
  22. Dwayne Johnson, 12,444,987
  23. Star Wars: The Last Jedi, 12,442,644           
  24. Justice League (film), 12,048,341
  25. Elon Musk, 11,968,362

Quick hits
  • Two years ago, we asked if the dominance of film in that list was the harbinger of things to come. The answer appears to be yes … and no. While film is much more prominent now, TV is holding its own thanks in no small part to Netflix (#10, 20, partial credit for 3) and Game of Thrones.
  • Film articles on this list: #7, 11, 12, 14, 16, 19, 21, 22, 23, 24.
  • Film and television take between 14 and 16 spots, depending on how you count Queens Elizabeth and Victoria.
  • Millennials?
  • Deaths in <year> has been the most-read article in all but one year we’re published this list.
  • Page views to Donald Trump, the most popular article last year, fell by more than 45 million.
  • Only two articles on the list, Deaths in 2017 and 2017 in film, had less than half of their pageviews comes from mobile devices.

———

Footnotes
  1. Netflix’s 13 Reasons Why and Stranger Things also placed 10th and 20th, respectively.
  2. Victoria‘s first season aired last year, but was shown in the United States early in 2017; its second season appeared later in the year.
  3. Amusingly, that list of highest-grossing films in India was itself one of the English Wikipedia’s most popular articles of the year.
  4. As with every year we’ve done this, the top articles include the percentage of mobile views for screening purposes. However, we’ve upped the percentages to remove articles with less than 10% or more than 90% mobile views, as it almost always indicates that a significant amount of the pageviews stemmed from spam, botnets, or other errors. Beyond that, we’ve agreed with the Top 25 team’s decision to remove several entries with unclear reasons for their high popularity, like AMGTVLali Espósito, and “XXX.” This year’s xXx: Return of Xander Cage was popular, for example, but its release does not track with a major increase in popularity for XXX. The other two are standard removals in the Top 25’s weekly lists, with Espósito in particular having a strange percentage of views from mobile and Wikipedia Zero. You can see the full list and the cleaned list over on Wikipedia.
  5. Wikipedians chronicle the deaths by month, so the page now redirects to a “list of lists of deaths.” This year’s list has already been started at deaths in 2018.

———

Ed Erhart, Senior Editorial Associate, Communications
Wikimedia Foundation

Like what you’ve read? You can see a list of 2017’s most-edited English Wikipedia articles and previous most-viewed lists from 2016 and 2015Most-viewed English Wikipedia articles of each week are available through the Top 25 Report.

This post has been updated to clarify that there were 200 million pageviews to film and television articles in the top 25—a figure that does not necessarily equate to the number of people visiting those articles.

 
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