Wikipedia:WikiProject X/Newsletter/Past issues/1

Hi! Thank you for subscribing to the WikiProject X Newsletter. For our first issue...

Has WikiProject X changed the world yet? No.

We opened up shop last month and announced our existence to the world. Our first phase is the "research" phase, consisting mostly of reading and listening. We set up our landing page and started collecting stories. So far, 28 stories have been shared about WikiProjects, describing a variety of experiences across numerous WikiProjects. A recurring story involves a WikiProject that starts off strong but has trouble continuing to stay active. Most people describe using WikiProjects as a way to get feedback from other editors. Some quotes:

  • "Working on requested articles, utilising the reliable sources section, and having an active WikiProject to ask questions in really helped me learn how to edit Wikipedia and looking back I don't know how long I would have stayed editing without that project." – Sam Walton on WikiProject Video Games
  • "I believe that the main problem of the Wikiprojects is that they are complicated to use. There should be a a much simpler way to check what do do, what needs to be improved etc." – Tetra quark
  • "In the late 2000s, WikiProject Film tried to emulate WP:MILHIST in having coordinators and elections. Unfortunately, this was not sustainable and ultimately fell apart." – Erik

Of course, these are just anecdotes. While they demonstrate what is possible, they do not necessarily explain what is typical. We will be using this information in conjunction with a quantitative analysis of WikiProjects, as documented on Meta. Particularly, we are interested in the measurement of WikiProject activity as it relates to overall editing in that WikiProject's subject area.

We also have 50 people and projects signed up for pilot testing, which is an excellent start! (An important caveat: one person volunteering a WikiProject does not mean the WikiProject as a whole is interested; just that there is at least one person, which is a start.)

While carrying out our research, we are documenting the problems with WikiProjects and our ideas for making WikiProjects better. Some ideas include better integration of existing tools into WikiProjects, recommendations of WikiProjects for people to join, and improved coordination with Articles for Creation. These are just ideas that may or may not make it to the design phase; we will see. We are also working with WikiProject Council to improve the directory of WikiProjects, with the goal of a reliable, self-updating WikiProject directory. Stay tuned! If you have any ideas, you are welcome to leave a note on our talk page.

That's all for now. Thank you for subscribing!

Harej 17:21, 9 February 2015 (UTC)[]