Grants talk:Project/Smallison/Music in Canada @ 150: A Wikipedia and Wikidata Project

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October 11 Proposal Deadline: Reminder to change status to 'proposed'Edit

The deadline for Project Grant submissions this round is October 11th, 2016. To submit your proposal, you must (1) complete the proposal entirely, filling in all empty fields, and (2) change the status from "draft" to "proposed." As soon as you’re ready, you should begin to invite any communities affected by your project to provide feedback on your proposal talkpage.

Warm regards,
Alex Wang (WMF) (talk) 19:44, 11 October 2016 (UTC)


Why Canadian music? Are you implying that this is some sort of underrepresented minority? Also, what sort of contributions do you plan to make? I hope you don't plan to create new articles on specific persons or groups; such activities rarely end up well. Nemo 08:25, 14 October 2016 (UTC)

Hello Nemo. Thank you for your comments on the scope section. We will make changes to address your questions.

Why Canadian music? Because we love music and we live in Canada and we know can make a contribution to documenting Canadian music culture because we already all work toward this goal every day off wiki. We can make this more clear.Smallison
Some areas on Canadian music are underrepresented. I'm not sure of your use of "minority" in this context. For example I am studying the folk revival movement in Toronto and I've noticed most of the artists and locations I am working on, for which there is content online and off, do not have articles. There were no articles on important music venues in the Yorkville area of Toronto. Venues for which there are historic plaques in the City. I've written a couple, but more need to be written. I'm of Metis heritage. There is a lack of content on this area of music culture and the existing pages need work. This is a small example we see echoed elsewhere. We will clarify our use of "underrepresented." In my original call for interest I asked people to look at local music cultures they feel is underrepresented in the mainstream. This would include issues of gender and ethnicity for example. We have had interest from a number of women's music groups, which would address a much documented problem of gender imbalance in Wikipedia. Smallison
We are aware of the problems with edit-a-thon participants creating new articles (been there, done that...) We don't want to have failed articles. We will clarify this isn the proposal, but will identify stub articles as well as articles needing filling out, structured citations, info boxes, etc. No articles will be started from scratch. Smallison
In a survey of representation of Canadian composers in Wikipedia, which provides analysis of a sample of composer entries from the Canadian Music Centre database, there is significant room for improvement of coverage of Canadian composers. The sample represents 3.85% of total entries in the CMC database. Of these entries (40), only 40% have pages in English Wikipedia, only 40% have pages in Wikidata, and only 1.75% have entries in French Wikipedia. As Canada has two official languages (English and French), this under-representation is significant. The data analysis can be accessed here. --Chittah (talk) 23:40, 20 October 2016 (UTC)
It is also worth noting that of the 40% of articles included in English Wikipedia, 50% were classified as stub-class and 50% as start-class, leaving significant room for development. --Chittah (talk) 23:49, 20 October 2016 (UTC)

Eligibility confirmed, round 2 2016Edit

This Project Grants proposal is under review!

We've confirmed your proposal is eligible for round 2 2016 review. Please feel free to ask questions and make changes to this proposal as discussions continue during this community comments period.

The committee's formal review for round 2 2016 begins on 2 November 2016, and grants will be announced in December. See the schedule for more details.

Questions? Contact us.

Alex Wang (WMF) (talk) 17:09, 14 October 2016 (UTC)


I have comments/concerns with this proposal:

  • In the first sentence I read: "yet Canadian content is relatively underrepresented". Is there really any evidence of this? Canada is a highly developed English speaking country, which are usually well represented in Wikipedia.
  • The almost all first section is devoted to everything except the issue it must address: the problem that you want to solve.
  • The second section "What is your solution?" seems to describe problems that you try to solve but lacks solutions for them.
  • Projects goals section looks like a plan of your activities. It does not clearly state any goals.
  • You should specify the duration of the project and its start and end dates. And instead "winter", "early fall" etc, please, use more specific dates.
  • The sustainability section looks like a list of results of your project. It does not contain anything about the sustainability.
  • It seems that the only specific and measurable result of the project will be 150 created articles/Wikidata entries. Is this true?

I think proposal needs serious improvements before it can considered for funding. Ruslik (talk) 17:04, 15 October 2016 (UTC)

Ruslik : Please see this analysis of coverage of Canadian composers in both English and French Wikipedia. As both are official languages, representation of this information in both English and French Wikipedia is important. In a survey of a sample of biographical entries from the Canadian Music Centre database, only 40% were represented in English wikipedia and wikidata, while only 1.75% were represented in French Wikipedia. --Chittah (talk) 23:44, 20 October 2016 (UTC)
I noticed that you made some improvements. However it is still not clear why you think that Canadian composers are insufficiently covered. en:Category:Canadian_composers contains 368 entries (not counting subcategories). I have not seen any research that demonstrates that Canadian composers are under-covered as compared to other countries. The list that you referred me to does not demonstrate that the composers without articles are, in fact, notable. Ruslik (talk) 16:59, 5 November 2016 (UTC)
Thank you for your comments Ruslik I have changed the language in that section to make our intent clearer. The coverage in Wikipedia does not reflect the breadth and depth of music making practices in Canada and is therefore "underrepresented." We make no comparison to other countries. We have offered three examples of means of demonstrating gaps in coverage of notable Canadian music practioners. The CMC requires membership and composers undergo a rigorous vetting process. To have one's music deposited shows notability. Bearcat offered the example of the Juno award winners and nominees. There is a similar issue with the Mariposa Festival.

Aggregated feedback from the committee for Music in Canada @ 150: A Wikipedia and Wikidata ProjectEdit

Scoring rubric Score
(A) Impact potential
  • Does it have the potential to increase gender diversity in Wikimedia projects, either in terms of content, contributors, or both?
  • Does it have the potential for online impact?
  • Can it be sustained, scaled, or adapted elsewhere after the grant ends?
(B) Community engagement
  • Does it have a specific target community and plan to engage it often?
  • Does it have community support?
(C) Ability to execute
  • Can the scope be accomplished in the proposed timeframe?
  • Is the budget realistic/efficient ?
  • Do the participants have the necessary skills/experience?
(D) Measures of success
  • Are there both quantitative and qualitative measures of success?
  • Are they realistic?
  • Can they be measured?
Additional comments from the Committee:
  • The project fits with the priority to improve quality (in this case, for coverage of Canadian music topics). It may also fit with the priority to increase participation if the project can deliver on a toolkit for using Wikidata/running Wikidata edit-a-thons. I think the greatest potential impact from this project will not come from content contributions but from the study of libraries and how they can best leverage Wikidata to provide better access to content for researchers and the general public.
  • This project has many ways to make an online impact, but I don't see it clearly aligned with Wikimedia priorities in the short term. The applicants have the idea to attract new users to improve content related to Canadian musicians and develop "leaders" to organize the national editathon: this a key feature of the project and if successful, the model could be adapted to other countries.
  • I am not sure about impact because I see no evidence that Canadian music is underrepresented. Even if 150 articles are in fact created and not deleted, the impact will be quite limited.
  • In general, it is not sufficient to have a project to do a one-shot content creation activity, since we would prefer to set in motion a process that would lead to systematic content creation in the gap that is being diagnosed.
  • The proposal outlines many activities and many goals - I think the risk here is that the project team could lose focus on what they are ultimately working towards, leaving us with no clear deliverable or takeaways at the end of the grant. This in turn threatens the sustainability of the work and limits the project's potential for impact beyond the duration of the grant.
  • Strong institutional connections are worth noting. Risk assessment is not done. No long-term impact is provided.
  • The team seems very capable in terms of music knowledge, project management, etc. but overall has very limited Wikipedia experience (and even less Wikidata experience). The budget is quite reasonable but I am surprised to not see more labour (i.e. project management/coordination) budgeted - perhaps this is being provided in-kind by the lead?
  • Participants appear to be new editors --none has over 700 edits. I would recommend volunteers who are interested in this proposal to get more acquainted with the projects, which will probably help them have a clearer understanding of an eventual gap they intend to work on. Given this lack of familiarity with the projects, risks associated to this ambitious grant request appear to be high.
  • There is no specific target community within the Wikimedia movement but many librarians and music scholars have been or will be engaged.
  • This project needs to work on outreach to the target Wikimedia communities.
  • This project has many positive things: well presented, good reasoning, well defined-experienced team; clear focus; clear activities and tasks to do. The budget seems a little low, but in the margins to ensure the success. The main challenge is the grantees do not seem to have sufficient experience with the Wikimedia projects.
  • I question whether this area of knowledge is something actually in demand by Wikipedia readers or more of a niche/specialized focus of people professionally engaged in this field. I do like the idea of supporting research on the question of libraries, structured data, and Wikimedia project (with Canadian music content as a case study) but I think the current proposal is trying to do too much at one time; I would recommend that they scale back, identify key goals, and focus on deliverables/outcomes.
  • I am not sure that the only measurable result - 150 stub articles - is worth the money requested.
  • I have two main concerns: (1) there is no assessment of sustainability --this should not be only a one-time episode of content creation, but should be framed and understood as setting a process for content creation on Canadian culture; (2) proponents are new users, with a very small amount of edits, so it is unclear how familiar they are with the Wikimedia projects in order to accomplish such an ambitious project. I would recommend to get more involved with projects before applying for project grants, and I would also suggest when the grantees involvement is higher to start with a smaller-scale activity, eventually with a rapid grant, so the need for this project is clearer for us to evaluate.

This proposal has been recommended for due diligence review.

The Project Grants Committee has conducted a preliminary assessment of your proposal and recommended it for due diligence review. This means that a majority of the committee reviewers favorably assessed this proposal and have requested further investigation by Wikimedia Foundation staff.

Next steps:

  1. Aggregated committee comments from the committee are posted above. We recommend that you review the feedback and post any responses, clarifications or questions on this talk page.
  2. Following due diligence review, a final funding decision will be announced on December 16.

Questions? Contact us.


Impact PotentialEdit

Does it have the potential to increase gender diversity in Wikimedia projects, either in terms of content, contributors, or both?Edit

  • The project will both increase gender diversity of content and of contributors. Statistically most librarians are women, therefore a high degree of participation of librarians will mean at least 50% of contributors will be women.
  • The project intends to try to focus on areas that have been neglected in traditional music scholarship on Canadian music, especially female composers and performers. Participants have been invited to focus on areas of music that have traditionally been broadly underrepresented, that is in wider society and not Wikipedia specifically. This will include women, indigenous and racialized groups. We were in part inspired by the Art + Feminism campaign and are adapting the model for our initiative.

Does it have the potential for online impact?'Edit

There are several key components of the project that intend to spark online impact beyond the generation of more content on Canadian music. Librarians and faculty members have a stake in teaching digital literacies. Wikipedia provides an ideal platform for teaching about online communities, writing for the web, the importance of citation, issues around copyright, the importance of open access, open data, and licensing. A number of members have experience with the open access movement and this is project is a natural extension of this work. We also plan to get involved in campaigns such as #1lib1ref as a means to build capacity and experience with our project members. The project will pilot community involvement in Wikidata. This is fairly new ground. Despite this it is easy to make the case for Wikidata, especially with librarians involved in metadata work as libraries practice authority control over their data. One member of the group (Allison-Cassin), along with advisor Scott, lead the organization of an event focused on Linked Data for the GLAM sector. During this event Scott led a workshop session on publishing linked open data, and since then Scott has begun to develop and give workshops on Wikidata. We see great potential for Wikidata and hope to make impacts in increasing the participation in Wikidata.


We hope the project will result in sustained engagement with Wikimedia projects such as Wikipedia and Wikidata by both the organizers and the participants. The project has already resulted in greater knowledge of the Wikipedia landscape and potential for libraries and researchers to get involved. With music librarians spearheading the project, we know we are in somewhat stable positions to continue the project in future, and continue providing in-kind time/resources. We know our universities like to support digital projects and big data projects. This project gives us a way of strengthening relationships within our musical communities; stronger relationships can only lead to stronger research collaborations in future. Several institutions have indicated an interest in creating a more programmatic focus on Wikipedia and Wikidata.

We will be creating a toolkit for training purposes. This can be reused and adapted by other projects, creating a sustainable impact.

We will be conducted extensive surveys of the coverage of Canadian music in Wikipedia and Wikidata and lists of areas needing work will be created. This will identify areas that can and will be worked on in the future.

York University is working on a collaboration between the Association of Research Libraries (ARL) and Wikimedia. This project has the potential to serve as a model for future collaborations between research libraries and Wikimedia projects.

Community engagementEdit

Does it have a specific target community and plan to engage it often?Edit

We have been very successful in activating our community (music librarians, music scholars, and music community members) with representation from all universities in Canada with music programs. This is an impressive response and clearly demonstrates there is interesting and willingness to sustainably engage. However, it appears that this community has not been very engaged in Wikipedia. We intend to change this. Furthermore, our project is using a stepped approach, including a workshop and online materials, and we are engaging with our community on a continual basis.

We recognize we need to increase our engagement and collaboration with existing Wikimedia communities. Team member Allison-Cassin attended the ARL/Wikimedia Summit in Columbus in August.

We will get involved with the #1lib1ref campaign and also plan to attend and get involved with Wikimania 2017 in Montreal. We have a desire to learn from existing communities of practice.

Ability to executeEdit

Can the scope be accomplished in the proposed timeframe?Edit

The project is ambitious, but we, the grantees and the advisors, as well as many participants, are experienced in holding events, workshops and are active in the off-wiki communities. The timelines are aligned with current workloads.

Is the budget realistic/efficient ?Edit

The budget is modest and reflects the fact that the grantees and many other participants have institutional support. This means labour is provided within the context of our work (therefore “in kind”) and we are also able to provide space, resources, event planning, and other supports in kind. Digital initiatives, outreach and community engagement are of high interest to many higher education institutions in Canada and this project aligns well with these goals.

Do the participants have the necessary skills/experience?Edit

Given the subject knowledge of our community and the accessibility of resources we are well-positioned to make a positive impact even without the depth of experience with Wikipedia. We are also all very experienced with working in online environments, the creation of metadata, citation data, assessing information sources, and the idea of neutrality. Our long timelines (the edit-a-thon taking place in October 2017) and the stepped approach to the project, with a workshop on editing happening in May, are intended to address our current gaps in experience. Furthermore, we intend to build collaborations with Wikipedians active in this area.

Measures of successEdit

Are there both quantitative and qualitative iterative measures of success?=Edit

Measures of success, as mentioned in the grant app., are multifaceted. While this appears in name to be a content drive, the intent is actually focused on community engagement and programmatic developments. It is true that we will likely have limited capacity to greatly expand our target content. However, this is not the full measure of impact or success. We have already achieved measurable success through our ability to recruit almost 30 organizations and prominent individuals. Our steering group members are reporting on engaging in fruitful conversations with their colleagues, faculty members and local communities, drawing attention to, and engagement with, Wikimedia projects. We will also develop a toolkit and workshops for the project that will be shared and available for adaptation and reuse. This will be particularly helpful in the case of Wikidata. Developing workshops and tutorials will be a success.

Are they realistic?Edit

Given the team's experience in developing outreach programming, workshops and tutorials, and our connection to our local music communities we feel we are realistic in our ability to achieve success.

Can they be measured?Edit

We intend to engage in a number of post-event assessment activities as well as ongoing assessment. Following on the example of Art + Feminism, a project one of our grantees has participated in, we will survey participants as to both their experience with editing and the possibility of future engagement with Wikimedia projects. We will develop assessment tools and we will share these tools for reuse by other projects.

Round 2 2016 decisionEdit


Congratulations! Your proposal has been selected for a Project Grant.

The committee has recommended this proposal and WMF has approved funding for the full amount of your request, $5,924 USD

Comments regarding this decision:
The committee is pleased to support your project to increase Wikipedia and Wikidata content around Canadian music through collaborations with local communities and institutions. While we appreciate the extraordinary level of expertise from the organizers and participants, and the value you will bring to this project, the committee has some concerns about the limited Wikipedian experience on your team, and would like you to add experienced Wikipedian(s) as an advisor to offer further guidance for a grant of this scope. WMF staff will be in touch about next steps about this suggestion going forward.

Next steps:

  1. You will be contacted to sign a grant agreement and setup a monthly check-in schedule.
  2. Review the information for grantees.
  3. Use the new buttons on your original proposal to create your project pages.
  4. Start work on your project!

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