CIS-A2K/Research/A comparative study of Wikipedia article creation campaigns in India

IntroductionEdit

The purpose of the Wikimedia movement is to provide free knowledge to diverse communities of people around the world, by contributing to various Wikimedia projects. Wikipedia is a platform where knowledge from around the world can be found but this requires an active volunteer community in different languages to do that. Campaigns and contests such as Wiki Loves Monuments, Art+Feminism, #1lib1ref, Project Tiger Editathon, Wikipedia Asian Month play a crucial role in motivating communities to work in an organized manner.

Project Tiger has been organized two times (the second iteration is going on) and Wikipedia Asian Month is being organized every year since 2015. Both are content creation campaigns on Wikipedia in which various communities participate to create content in their languages. Since both of them have seen huge contributions in Indian language Wikipedia communities, it would be interesting to learn from both of them and also understand what works and what needs to be improved in future iterations.

Research questionEdit

The purpose of this study is to understand the motivation of the participants who contribute to these campaigns, prevailing challenges and knowledge gaps in content creation and participation, and ways to address these. Another thing to focus on is what kind of content is most likely to be created in such competitions. This study will do a comparative analysis of both projects so that we can thoroughly explore these questions with both of them. . We hope our research will be beneficial for further Projects or Competitions or Contests. This study aims to help in improving future article writing contests/campaigns by identifying what motivates volunteers to contribute to Wikipedia during a campaign or a contest.

ObjectivesEdit

  • What is the key motivation behind volunteers who contribute to article creation campaigns/contests?
  • How does core organizing team, local organizers, worklists and communications affect participation?
  • How are Project Tiger and Asian Month as an initiative different from others for content creation on Wiki?

MethodsEdit

The primary method of this research is a comparative study. In this method, researchers compare two projects with several similarities and variables. We will do a comparative study between Project Tiger and Wikipedia Asian Month. Both are writing contests but the interesting thing is that both are quite different from each other. We will compare the objectives, scope, communities, languages, content, and impact created through these two projects, through an analysis of the documentation on both projects, the workflow, and developments on the Wikipedia pages on them. This comparison would help in understanding the importance and need for these types of contests.
The second method is interviewing; where we will ask some important questions related to the above parameters community members regarding these projects. These interviews will be organised during offline events. It can be with individuals or structured as focussed group discussions on the above questions.. We will connect with them via phone calls, social media or village pumps also. The research will focus on five selected language communities, chosen on the basis of the extent of contribution and participation in both contests.

Research outputsEdit

A short report/blog post will be prepared outlining key observations from the research study, along with recommendations for best practices for replication of such article writing contests across different language communities.

TimelineEdit

  • 20 September- October: Finalise the research topic, methods for research.
  • November - December: Concept note and methodology completed.
  • January- February: Interviews with community members.
  • March - April: Started working on the structure of the report
  • April to December 2020: The report was started to write and the first draft was completed. After reviewing the report found some things to be modifying. Now, working on second draft for the further work.
  • January 2021: Will be shared with internal feedback as well as with interviewees
  • January to February 2021: will submit the final report.

UpdatesEdit

As part of the case study, 15 interviews have been conducted with volunteers who have been a part of Project Tiger or Wikipedia Asian Month projects either as organizers, local organizers, or volunteers. For the final report/blog post, the Introduction, Context/Background, and Methodology sections have been completed; a first draft of the complete report/blog post will be shared with the research manager for internal review, followed by the team and persons interviewed for feedback. Once the feedback has been incorporated, the report/blog post will be ready for publication.

April to December 2020Edit

The first draft of the research report was completed and submitted for internal review to the research manager. The draft is presently being revised, with a focus on observations on WAM, to be followed by consolidating observations and analyis from the interviews on Project Tiger.The final report will then be shared with the team, external reviewer and respondents for feedback, to be followed by publication.