Grants:IdeaLab/Email inactive (formerly active) users with a survey on inactivity reasons

Email inactive (formerly active) users with a survey on inactivity reasons
In a survey the adressed inactive and formerly active users could state their personal reason for their inactivity. This only adresses retention of users, not the acquisition. The answers should be categorised in non-wikipedia-related and wikipedia-related. Further categorisation could be conflict, loss of interest, personal agenda achieved...
themenot sure
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idea creator
this project needs...
created on15:17, 12 July 2018 (UTC)

Project idea


What Wikimedia project(s) and specific areas will you be evaluating?


Is this project measuring a specific space on a project (e.g. deletion discussions), or the project as a whole?
all wikimedia projects

Describe your idea. How might it be implemented?


Provide details about the method or process of how you will evaluate your community or collect data. Does your idea involve private or personally identifying information? Take a look at the Privacy Policy for Wikimedia’s guidelines in this area.
Email inactive users with a survey on their personal reasons for their inactivity

Are there experienced Wikimedians who can help implement this project?


If applicable, please list groups or usernames of individuals who you can work with on this project, and what kind of work they will do.
WMF Community Team, WMDE Team Communities?

How will you know if this project is successful? What are some outcomes that you can share after the project is completed?


Identify reasons for inactivity, then address the causes

How would your measurement idea help your community make better decisions?


After you are finished measuring or evaluating your Wikimedia project, how do you expect that information to be used to benefit the project?
Adress the causes for a higher user retention

Do you think you can implement this idea? What support do you need?


Do you need people with specific skills to complete this idea? Are there any financial needs for this project? If you can’t implement this project, can you scale down your project so it is doable?
Probably i could write a survey, but an automatic emailing of the survey to the inactive users would be needed, and some people to do the evaluation/analysis

Get Involved


About the idea creator


Author, mostly in natural sciences, member from 2014 until today


  • Volunteer I think this is a great idea, so I am now a volunteer. I don't know how this "ideas" campaign works however so I will look it up TheTechRobo3641 (talk) 12:10, 23 July 2018 (UTC)


  • Absolutely a great idea. I'm sick of sudden and unexplained inactivity.  — Mr. Guye (talk) (contribs)  16:44, 20 July 2018 (UTC)
  • good idea Hibernian (talk) 21:49, 20 July 2018 (UTC)
  • Good idea — Omegatron (talk) 01:11, 22 July 2018 (UTC)
  • Winged Blades of Godric (talk) 08:36, 22 July 2018 (UTC)
  • Good idea.This could identify the reasons for inactivity and suggest possible solutions. Bluenautilus (talk) 09:38, 22 July 2018 (UTC)
  • It will give a better understanding of Wikipedia editors, and bring up the problems/reasons why they stop contributing. Nyoome (talk) 13:47, 22 July 2018 (UTC)
  • Likes me! ProtoplasmaKid (WM-MX) (talk) 20:42, 25 July 2018 (UTC)
  • Sounds like a potentially useful idea. Gatoclass (talk) 13:56, 26 July 2018 (UTC)
  • Seems practical, although expecting editors to make long-term commitments to editing of any sort is unrealistic, in my opinion. Editing is a voluntary pursuit, a hobby. My concern is the potential time and energy spent on re-igniting interest in un-interested parties instead of investing that same time and energy into honing the skills of interested editors or sparking interest in potential new editors. Sometimes it's better to feed the dog that licks your hand than chasing the one that ran away, eh? Ouranista (talk) 14:12, 28 July 2018 (UTC)
  • Seems like a good idea if someone is willing to put the work into it. I can think of a few former users (and former admins) I'd love to see return. Deb (talk) 11:27, 4 August 2018 (UTC)
  • yes, exit interviews should be a metric for community health Slowking4 (talk) 19:26, 8 August 2018 (UTC)
  • As long as the survey has psychometric validity, I think it will be very helpful to increase engagement. I'd be happy to do some volunteer work if others commit to volunteering, especially those who are committed to valid surveys. I have psychometric training Schyler (talk) 23:29, 8 August 2018 (UTC)
  • Potentially very useful source of information, especially if there is an accessible combination of choice and free-form questions (so that it can be not only statistically analysed, but also explanations understood in users' own words). Sasuke Sarutobi (talk) 16:48, 10 August 2018 (UTC)

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