Abstract: With this work, we present a publicly available data set of the history of all the references (more than 55 million) ever used in the English Wikipedia until June 2019. We have applied a new method for identifying and monitoring references in Wikipedia, so that for each reference we can provide data about associated actions: creation, modifications, deletions, and reinsertions. The high accuracy of this method and the resulting data set was confirmed via a comprehensive crowdworker labeling campaign. We use the data set to study the temporal evolution of Wikipedia references as well as users’ editing behavior. We find evidence of a mostly productive and continuous effort to improve the quality of references: There is a persistent increase of reference and document identifiers (DOI, PubMedID, PMC, ISBN, ISSN, ArXiv ID) and most of the reference curation work is done by registered humans (not bots or anonymous editors). We conclude that the evolution of Wikipedia references, including the dynamics of the community processes that tend to them, should be leveraged in the design of relevance indexes for altmetrics, and our data set can be pivotal for such an effort.
“The Wikipedia community has, over time, developed a complex maze of guidelines to protect the encyclopedia from vandalism and (self-)promotion. With this post we want to offer scholars some guidance towards their first edit. For demo purposes we selected a research article already written by one of us and figured out how to incorporate some of its findings and accompanying sources into Wikipedia. In the following step-by-step guide, we summarize our experiences from this process while drawing on Wikipedia’s help page for researchers….”
“In November, we reached a remarkable milestone: the number of times that images from Wellcome Collection have been viewed on Wikimedia passed 1.5 billion views. This post will talk about how the images got there, how people engage with them, and why it matters that our images are in Wikipedia articles….”
“From her home in Wellington City, New Zealand, Siobhan Leachman is devoted to doing what she can to make it easier for the public to access information about scientific discoveries. In particular, she wants to highlight the contributions of women in science.
Leachman is a volunteer Wikimedian, digital curator, and citizen scientist. She uses open content to create open content. Her mission in life: To connect everything. And in doing so, she relies on the Internet Archive—and adds to its resources. …”
This study aims to show that digital literacy can serve as a tool for effecting social change and highlights the achievements of an academic library in digital content creation using the Wikipedia platform.
The study adopted qualitative research method, Interview and document analysis were used for data gathering. Data gathered were analysed using content (conceptual) analysis.
Findings showed that the library has created or edited digital content for various categories of women, such as women in academia, industry and politics. These entries have received more than eight million views over a period of two years, which shows that the entries are being utilised. However, the editing exercise had been confronted with challenges such as accessing reliable citations in terms of the notability and verifiability policy of Wikipedia amongst others.
Currently, people rely more on online resources for their research, leaving physical library resources unused. Even, more students start their research online using Wikipedia. Thus, libraries could create visibility for their physical material using regularly visited sites like Wikipedia and its sister projects such as Wikidata; otherwise, these physical materials will remain invisible to the people that needed them.
Contributing to Wikipedia by creating a new entry or editing an existing one can help students to deepen their knowledge about a subject; Wikipedia editing may serve as an avenue for improving information literacy skills. Drawing from the theory of cyberfeminism as used in the study, information and communications technology has the potential to empower women and transform gender relations.
“During my time overseeing the library services department of a large school district, we found our subscription databases were generally a well-kept secret. The lack of trained school librarians available to teach these resources was part of the issue. But Google was ubiquitous, as was Wikipedia, and they became de facto research sources for students, despite their limitations for such a role.
Google has its place for students and researchers (I used it for this article), as does Google Scholar (which I also used). But for students, subscription databases should also play a central research role, beginning with age-appropriate sources for elementary kids – like National Geographic – and moving up to “Gale in Context” for middle school students, and more scholarly articles for high schoolers from sources like ABC-CLIO….”
“Both the EP and Council texts contain amendments concerning the role of Open Access Common resources. In response to the initial DGA consultation, we submitted feedback to the Commission where we highlighted the fundamental role played by these resources in the overall data ecosystem. To safeguard this key function, it is important that Open Access Commons resources are not negatively affected by the DGA.
The Parliament’s text contains an addition in recital 37a stipulating that the provisions established by the DGA are without prejudice to the ability of non-profit organizations to make data and content available to the public under open licenses. This amendment would clearly signal that Open Access Common resources fall outside the scope of the DGA. As such, it would recognize their key role in today’s digital ecosystem.
The Council text includes a new definition of data intermediaries stipulating that only for-profit services fall into this category. If included in the final compromise, this addition would ensure that existing Open Access Resources, like Wikipedia or Europeana – which are generally recognized as not-for-profit – are not subject to the requirements that the DGA will impose on intermediaries.
Taken together, these two modifications would ensure that Open Access Commons resources are not subject to additional requirements that could endanger their modus operandi. To safeguard their position in the DGA and increase legal clarity, both Council’s and Parliament’s contributions therefore need to be included in the final text….”
“As someone who is independent of cOAlition S, I have been monitoring with great interest the application of the Rights Retention Strategy (RRS).
Using Google Scholar and Paperpile, I have documented over 500 works published across hundreds of different outlets using the Rights Retention Strategy language in the acknowledgements section of the work. Authors are using it to retain their rights in preprints, journal articles, conference papers, book chapters, and even posters – this makes perfect sense; the RRS language is simple and easy to add to research outputs. It’s not a burden to acknowledge one’s research funding and to add the statement: “For the purpose of open access, the author has applied a CC BY public copyright licence to any Author Accepted Manuscript version arising from this submission“, and so authors are doing this….
I am also pleased to observe that ALL the major publishers appear to be happily publishing works containing the RRS language, including Elsevier, ACS, Taylor & Francis, Wiley, IEEE, and Springer Nature (inc. Nature Publication Group). So, authors need not fear practising rights retention.
I note that the RRS is a tool that can be and is used across all disciplines – it works equally well for STEM and HSS. Indeed one of my favourite examples of RRS-in-action is a Wellcome Trust funded output by Dr Barbara Zipser from the Department of History at Royal Holloway, University of London. Thanks to the RRS language Dr Zipser included in her submission, there is a full-text accepted author manuscript version of her work available at EuropePMC for all to read, whilst separately the journal-published version is available from the publisher website behind a 25 euro paywall. The author accepted manuscript has undergone peer review and has been accepted by the publisher (it is not a rough preprint, from before peer review). I do not need to read a version that has publisher branding & logos. When researchers choose the “green” route to open access, people need not feel sorry for the journal publisher – individual and institutional subscribers pay handsomely to support the journal. Thus, green open access is never “unfunded“, as some publishers have tried to claim….
As a keen Wikimedian, I am delighted with another aspect of the RRS. Prior to the RRS, green OA copies of articles weren’t much used on Wikimedia Commons owing to incompatible licensing. But now, with the RRS, suddenly, RRS-using green OA copies become easier to adapt for re-use on other websites. As Wikipedia is one of the top 15 most visited websites globally, I think it is very important that academic research is not prevented from being used there by overly restrictive licensing conditions. To celebrate this openness, I have added a few figure images sourced from cOAlition S funded, CC BY licensed, author accepted manuscripts using RRS to Wikimedia Commons. These images can be re-used within suitable Wikipedia articles across all languages, helping the transmission of research information beyond the constraints of academic journals and language barriers….”
Are you passionate about helping people and organisations share knowledge? Do you have experience of team working, developing partnerships and managing projects?
At the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) we’re recruiting our first Wikimedian in Residence and are looking for a proactive and enthusiastic individual with excellent communication skills to join us.
This six month post is part of a pilot to help NIHR evaluate the opportunities to use Wikimedia to support dissemination of NIHR funded research. We’re looking for someone who can help us to actively engage with the Wikimedia platforms and communities, provide training and write and edit Wikimedia content. While knowledge of Wikipedia and other Wikimedia initiatives is valued it is not essential.
Duties and responsibilities:
Scoping and development work
Support the establishment of a “pilot steering committee” with key representatives from across NIHR including Central Communications, Research Design Service and NIHR Academy.
Work with NIHR CED and the pilot steering committee to identify priority areas of NIHR’s research that could enrich Wikipedia and sister projects – thereby supporting the dissemination of NIHR funded research.
Identify and propose solutions to any barriers to promoting NIHR funded research including copyright or compliance with Wikipedia guidelines.
Advocacy: be an advocate for open knowledge within NIHR.
Reporting: produce ongoing updates and a summary report on the outcomes of the residency.
Writing/Editing Wikipedia articles
Create/improve Wikimedia projects content for identified NIHR outputs and research
Encourage and increase the direct participation of NIHR researchers in the provision of content for Wikimedia projects, and encourage creation (and improvement) of Wikimedia projects relating to NIHR’s content.
Provide training on Wikimedia editing, best practice and Wikimedia volunteer community engagement.
Develop guidance on the use of Wikipedia for NIHR staff addressing key issues related to copyright and Wikipedia best practice.
Organise and host workshops for NIHR staff, researchers and PPI representatives to enable them to directly contribute their knowledge and expertise to develop Wikipedia articles.
Collaborating with Wikimedia UK and Wikimedia volunteer community
Support collaboration between NIHR, Wikimedia UK and Wikimedia community – potentially leading to a sustainable relationship and joint projects in the future. Do this in collaboration with NIHR CED and other NIHR staff, relevant partner organisations and volunteers from Wikimedia movement.
Establish links between NIHR staff, Wikimedia volunteers and others, helping NIHR with Wikimedia volunteer engagement.
Share Wikimedia’s values and act as an advocate for its mission and ethos.
“When Vrande?i? reviewed how San Francisco was described in each language back in 2019, he noticed that 62 Wikipedia language editions listed an out-of-date mayor. The most egregiously out-of-date instance was the Cebuano Wikipedia, which listed Feinstein as the current mayor of San Francisco. The problem was that the Cebuano language Wikipedia was very out-of-date, which is where Wikidata could have helped. Wikidata allocates items a unique QID; the concept “mayor of San Francisco,” for instance, is Q795295. Different language editions of Wikipedia can then insert Wikidata queries within their articles. That way, if the mayor of San Francisco is updated after an election, one change to the central Wikidata item can update all of the language editions of Wikipedia automatically….”
Open Access version available as PDF
The vision statement of the Wikimedia Foundation states, “Imagine a world in which every single human being can freely share in the sum of all knowledge.” Libraries need not see Wikipedia as competition; rather, failing to leverage its omnipresence in the online world constitutes a missed opportunity. As a senior program officer at OCLC, Proffitt has encouraged collaboration between Wikipedia and cultural heritage institutions, leading to increased visibility and user engagement at participating organizations. Here, she brings onboard a raft of contributors from the worlds of academia, archives, libraries, and members of the volunteer Wikipedia community who together point towards connecting these various communities of knowledge. This book will inspire libraries to get involved in the Wikipedia community through programs and activities such as
contributing content and helping to bridge important gaps in Wikipedia;
ensuring that library content is connected through the world’s biggest encyclopedia;
working with the Wikipedia education community; and
engaging with Wikipedians as allies in a quest to expand access to knowledge.
Speaking directly to librarians, this book shows how libraries can partner with Wikipedia to improve content quality while simultaneously ensuring that library services and collections are more visible on the open web.
Leveraging Wikipedia: Connecting Communities of Knowledge edited by Merrilee Proffitt (Chicago: American Library Association, 2018). © 2018 American Library Association. Licensed under an Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International (CC BY-NC 4.0) license.
Abstract: This paper outlines a creative Wikipedia-based project developed by the University of Kansas (KU) Libraries and the KU Biology Department. Inspired by the tenets of open pedagogy, the purpose of this project is to use Wikipedia as a way for students to learn about the scholarly peer review process while also producing material that can be shared and used by the world outside the classroom. The paper is divided into three sections, with the first summarizing pertinent related literature related to the paper’s topic. From here, the paper describes the proposed assignment, detailing a process wherein students write new articles for the encyclopedia which are then anonymously peer reviewed by other students in the class; when articles are deemed acceptable, they are published via Wikipedia. The parallels between this project and academic peer review are emphasized throughout. The paper closes by discussing the importance of this project, arguing that it fills a known scholarly need, actively produces knowledge, furthers the aims of the open access movement, and furthers scientific outreach initiatives.
“Wikimedia Movement and the Paradox of Open
Saturday August 14, 17:00 UTC
Speakers: Anna Mazgal, Senior EU Policy Advisor at Wikimedia Deutschland
Tanveer Hassan, Senior Program Officer, Community Resources at Wikimedia Foundation
Alek Tarkowski, Strategy Director at Open Future Foundation, member of the Wikimedia Poland Association
Abstract: Open sharing of free knowledge, commons based peer production is increasingly seen as not only a challenge but also an enabler of concentrations of power online – this is the “Paradox of Open”. In early 2021, Alek Tarkowski co-authored (with Paul Keller) an essay describing this paradox. During the session we will conduct a conversation on this paradox and see how it applies to the Wikimedia Movement, often seen as one of the most significant achievements of the free knowledge / openness movement. In particular, we will reflect how we can solve this Paradox and combat unjust concentrations of power, as we implement the new Movement Strategy. The discussion will be led by movement members and partners who have been engaged in both current and past stages of the Movement Strategy 2030 process….”
The future of the university as an open knowledge institution that institutionalizes diversity and contributes to a common resource of knowledge: a manifesto.
In this book, a diverse group of authors—including open access pioneers, science communicators, scholars, researchers, and university administrators—offer a bold proposition: universities should become open knowledge institutions, acting with principles of openness at their center and working across boundaries and with broad communities to generate shared knowledge resources for the benefit of humanity. Calling on universities to adopt transparent protocols for the creation, use, and governance of these resources, the authors draw on cutting-edge theoretical work, offer real-world case studies, and outline ways to assess universities’ attempts to achieve openness.
Digital technologies have already brought about dramatic changes in knowledge format and accessibility. The book describes further shifts that open knowledge institutions must make as they move away from closed processes for verifying expert knowledge and toward careful, mediated approaches to sharing it with wider publics. It examines these changes in terms of diversity, coordination, and communication; discusses policy principles that lay out paths for universities to become fully fledged open knowledge institutions; and suggests ways that openness can be introduced into existing rankings and metrics. Case studies—including Wikipedia, the Library Publishing Coalition, Creative Commons, and Open and Library Access—illustrate key processes.