Research:Survey of user in Ireland

23:34, 12 February 2016 (UTC)
Edward Galvez
Duration:  2015-November – 2016-May
This page documents a completed research project.

This survey is the first to be undertaken in the Wikipedia community in Ireland, on both the English and Irish language Wikipedias. The aim is to capture information from users about their use of Wikipedia, and what they would like to see provided by the user group Wikimedia Community Ireland. The survey looks to raise awareness of the user group, whilst also building a picture of what editing and other on-wiki activities an average Irish Wikipedian engages in.

Methods edit

Using a Central Notice banner, the mailing list for Irish users, and social media, users based in Ireland will be recruited to take part in an online survey through Qualtrics. The survey, which should take 10 to 20 minutes to complete, will capture basic information on the editing behaviours of Irish Wikipedians, as well as some demographic information. It will also ask the participants about their awareness and interest in Wikimedia Community Ireland, and what (if any) support or activities they wish to see the user group foster. The survey will be featured as a banner on both English and Irish language Wikipedias, with the survey also provided in both languages.

Timeline edit

  • November 2015 to January 2016 - Planning, development and creation of survey.
  • 22 February to 20 March 2016 - Survey live and banner active for user in Ireland on EN and GA Wikipedia.
  • 21 March to 30 April 2016 - Analysis and interpretation of resulting data.
  • May 2016 - Publication of data, with the possibility of some visualisations.

Policy, Ethics and Human Subjects Research edit

The survey looks to recruit active editors that wish to engage in submitting data for the improvement of the Irish community. As with all banners on Wikipedia, it can be dismissed, and thus provides little disruption for uninterested editors.

Results edit

Survey Results edit

There were 78 respondents, with a few spam/unhelpful participants.

Wikimedia usage edit

Which language Wikipedias do you most frequently read? (Select all that apply)

  • English 96%
  • Irish 18%
  • French 8%
  • German 9%
  • Spanish 8%
    • Other (please specify): (all single instances) HT, EO, Japanese, Catalan, American, Dutch, Gàidhlig, Cymraeg, Esperanto, Turkish, Chinese (simplified), Polish

If applicable, which of the Wikimedia Foundation's other free knowledge sites do you read? (Select all that apply)

  • Wikisource 29%
  • Wikiquote 17%
  • Wikibooks 18%
  • Wiktionary 42%
  • Wikinews 14%
  • Wikiversity 6%
  • Commons 38%
  • Wikispecies 6%
  • Wikivoyage 10%
  • Never heard of them, 22%
  • Other (please specify): 10% wikihow (single instance)

How would you describe Wikipedia in your own words?

"Is mór an Vicipéid do theanga beag, Gaeilge go háirithe"

"I love it, even though my teachers tell me not to use it."

"Wikipedia is an open-access, comprehensive, easily accessible encyclopedia. It is the closest thing we have to the sum of human knowledge."

"It's an encyclopedia which compares in accuracy to the world’s best encyclopedias. It was built and edited by volunteers; and it’s constantly improving, both in content and in accuracy. In all honesty, I’m not positive that the accuracy is that great in the area of biography (especially regarding living persons). The same thing can be said about the area of religion. However, I’ve used Wikipedia in those fields with a feeling of certitude that the information I was obtaining was absolutely correct. I was once in an emergency room with a problem that the doctor said was extremely rare. After a short time, he left and researched information about it. He returned with a copy of an article from Wikipedia, and discussed it with me. I believe this is indicative of the trust he had in Wikipedia."

"A means to refresh ones mind as to data. A means to learn new data. A means to seek history information. A system that allows correction and updating so that its living and organic."

"Revolutionary. Transparent. Free."

"So far the most successful experiment in open collaborative working. It is now an invaluable public resource despite all its pitfalls."

"The User Generated Encyclopedia of Collective Knowledge"

"Giant Blog, usually correct, but with some credibility issues. Great starting point, could be better if Government bodies were to take responsibility for basic information - e.g. areas under remit, how to apply etc. and locked to them (i.e. only the author allowed to change)."

"A very useful repository of data. Extremely trustworthy on hard science and humanities. Sometimes can be a bit suspect in more contentious areas such as politics due sometimes to an abundance of caution, and sometimes to clearly biased editing."

"Go hiontach agus shaor! Is aoibhinn liom Wikipedia. Tá síul agam go bhfuil daoine ar fud an domhain gach lá a úsáid sé!"

"One of the best things ever invented. Flawed but brilliant. It still has not reached its potential."

"Crowd-sourced, crowd-curated knowledge base whose premise is that the most meritous definitions and explanations win out over inferior ones."

"Getting more complex with too many options and not enough guides."

"A user-generated repository of the world's knowledge - only to be used as a way of finding more accurate sources!"

"When i first began teaching university students, 11 years ago, I was skeptical. By the time I had finished (about 4 years ago) I would tell my students to use Wikipedia to get a general introduction to any topic before moving on to original research papers."

Contributing edit

What motivates you to edit Wikipedia? (Select 3 maximum)

  • Fixing grammar and other errors, 63%
  • Creating articles that are new to Wikipedia, 42%
  • Learning more about editing, and improving your editing 27%
  • I want to contribute to free knowledge on the Internet, 78%
  • I want to contribute content in my language, 17%
  • Other (please specify, separate by a comma): 17%

"Learning about new subjects by writing about them"

"To correct articles that I know to be inaccurate or materially incomplete"

"Keep information up to date"

"Leran [sic] information about an area while editing"

"synergy of wanting to add new knowledge and wanting to develop my own knowledge: researching article is both educating"

"Broader coverage in my ereas [sic] of interest"

What best describes where you spend most of your time contributing to Wikipedia? (select 5 maximum)

  • I write new articles 35%
  • I add content to existing articles 67%
  • I fix formatting, spelling and grammar, or make other minor edits to articles 62%
  • I do translation work into Irish 10%
  • I contribute photos and multimedia content to Wikimedia Commons 24%
  • I patrol for vandalism, copyright violations, or other problems with articles 21%
  • I answer readers’ questions and complaints, 8%
  • I resolve disputes among volunteers (e.g., mediation, arbitration) 5%
  • I organize or help to organize events, workshops, meetups, etc. 8%
  • I do public outreach or advocacy outside the Wikimedia community, 10%
  • I do technical work such as maintaining bots or tools 5%
  • I participate in chapter work 12%
  • I participate in discussions about articles, 15%
  • I develop or maintain policies, guidelines and similar community processes 5%
  • Other (please specify, separate by a comma): 12%

"all the above"

"support team, administrative tasks"

"I don't do any of this yet but hoping to!"

"I created one article about the primary source for my PhD, some 10 years ago. I don't edit much."

If applicable, which of the Wikimedia Foundation's other free knowledge sites do you contribute to? (Select all that apply)

  • Wikisource 29%
  • Wikiquote 21%
  • Wikibooks 24%
  • Wiktionary 24%
  • Wikinews 15%
  • Wikiversity 15%
  • Commons 65%
  • Wikispecies 15%
  • Wikivoyage 12%
  • Wikidata 32%
  • Other (please specify): 18%

How much time do you spend editing Wikimedia sites?

  • Less than one hour a month, 36%
  • 1–3 hours a month 24%
  • 1–3 hours a week 19%
  • 1–2 hours a day, 6%
  • 3–4 hours a day, 8%
  • More than 4 hours a day, 6%

Which of the following do you prefer to use to communicate with fellow Wikipedians?

  • Village pump 3%
  • Article talk pages 36%
  • User talk pages 30%
  • Project pages 1%
  • Mailing lists 0%
  • Social media (Facebook, Google Groups, etc.) 18%
  • Other (please specify): 12%

"I don't communicate with others."

"I barely talk to them. It's not easy to do via Wikipedia, Talk pages are confusing."

"In person"


What things might help you contribute more? (select 3 maximum)

  • Someone coaches me on how to edit 31%
  • Receiving answers to my questions on talk pages 19%
  • Receiving help regarding Wikipedia policies, and community norms 15%
  • Improved editing interface 19%
  • Other Wikimedians welcoming my contributions, 17%
  • Receiving appreciation for my contributions, 27%
  • Confidence that my contributions will not be removed, 22%
  • Knowledge that others benefit from my contributions, 41%
  • Other (please specify): 14%

"By 'someone coaches me' I mean that someone just points the way for me to find information."

"I would like to contribute research and technical time to the Wikidata project, ideally I'd like to be paid for this :)"

"A set time to edit in a social setting."

"I don't fully understand how to use the article talk pages. Perhaps if there was a forum / message board it would be more familiar."

Do you translate articles from one language to another?

  • Frequently 5%
  • Sometimes 19%
  • Rarely 21%
  • Never 55%

If you could improve one thing about Wikipedia, what would it be?

"When talk page discussions are not professional or polite, I wish more editors would step in to deescalate [sic] it."

"A better understanding of page comments by editors, when, how and why their comments will be removed -especially after posting edits to address their concerns."

"More tutorials on how to edit properly."

"Make it more friendly and minimise edit wars."

"Ba mhaith liom an deis a bheith agam bualadh le daoine eile agus foghlaim uathu agus smaointe a roinnt . Would like to have the chance of meeting up with other people, to learn from them and share ideas."

"EITHER Help or information on editing. OR Increased awareness of other Wikimedia projects."

"Add cheat-sheets that I could use while editing, even a massive web page that I could search with the find button that has 90% of what I could need to edit."

"Make people more aware of what it has to offer"

"I would like to see what's 'trending' on Wikipedia - I think it would offer a good insight into topics that are gaining momentum in a predominantly academic sphere."

Wikimedia Community Ireland edit

What kind of movement support would you like to receive? (Select all that apply)

  • Supporting a Wikimedia user group/chapter in my area, 24%
  • Grants to cover my Wikipedia expenses, 10%
  • Grants to help me experiment with new ideas, 19%
  • Scholarship to attend Wikipedia related events, 17%
  • Running a Wikipedia education program at my school, 13%
  • Creating a partnership with my local museum/library, 18%
  • None, I have no need of movement resources 50%
  • Other (please specify): 6%

"I'd just like to be able to visit online with someone who could tell me how to learn things about producing an article."

"For Wikipedia to connect to those who are Offline, offering incentived [sic] local courses etc that will encourage them to get online to read and contribute their local Story via local Hubs and USBs."

To what extent are you aware of the events run by Wikimedia Community Ireland since 2014? (such as Wiki Loves Monuments, edit-a-thons, hackathons and workshops)

  • Not at all aware, 55%
  • A little aware, 19%
  • Somewhat aware 19%
  • Very aware 6%

To what extent are you interested in participating in each of the following events?

Question Not at all a little interested somewhat interested very interested
Editing workshops 21 23 22 12
Edit-a-thons in the Irish language 58 6 9 5
More photo competitions 33 24 13 8
Other (please specify): 65 3 2 8


"General meet-up"

In general, to what extent have the following been obstacles to attending events run by Wikimedia Community Ireland? (Select all that apply)

  • The location or time of past events did not suit 21%
  • No interest in the event or its subject, 14%
  • No interest in attending Wikimedia-related events, 15%
  • Not aware of such events taking place, 63%
  • Other (specify) 8%

"lack of travel funds"

"Time schedule did not allow for attending event, personal health issues"

"Need for activity to be inline with my professional priorities."

Demographics edit

Which county in Ireland do you reside?

  • Carlow 1%
  • Cavan 3%
  • Clare 0%
  • Cork 14%
  • Donegal 0%
  • Dublin 36%
  • Galway 6%
  • Kerry 1%
  • Kildare 0%
  • Laois 0%
  • Leitrim 0%
  • Limerick 1%
  • Longford 0%
  • Louth 1%
  • Mayo 0%
  • Meath 3%
  • Monaghan 0%
  • Offaly 1%
  • Roscommon 3%
  • Sligo 1%
  • Tipperary 1%
  • Waterford 1%
  • Westmeath 0%
  • Wexford 0%
  • Wicklow 3%
  • I don't currently reside in Ireland, 23%

What is your age range?

  • 16–20 18%
  • 21–25 8%
  • 26–30 9%
  • 31–35 12%
  • 36–40 6%
  • 41–45 12%
  • 46–50 8%
  • 51–55 5%
  • 56–60 8%
  • 61–65 3%
  • 66–70 6%
  • More than 70 years 1%
  • No answer 5%

What was the highest level of education you have completed?

  • No schooling completed 8%
  • Junior Certificate or the equivalent 8%
  • Leaving Certificate or the equivalent 19%
  • Trade/technical/vocational training 5%
  • Bachelor’s degree 18%
  • Master’s degree 23%
  • Professional degree 6%
  • Doctorate degree 13%

Which languages can you fluently read and write?

  • English 99%
  • Irish 24%
  • French 13%
  • German 12%
  • Spanish 10%
  • Other (please specify): (all single instances) 15% Spanish, Esperanto, Chinese, Hindi, Kannada, Japanese, Tamazight, Ancient Egyptian, Turkish, Portuguese, Esperanto, Dutch, Italian, Old English, Latin

What is your current work status?

  • Employed for wages 36%
  • Self-employed 9%
  • Out of work and looking for work 5%
  • Out of work but not currently looking for work 3%
  • Homemaker 1%
  • Student 23%
  • Stay-at-home parent/caregiver 1%
  • Military 1%
  • Retired 6%
  • Unable to work 6%

Prefer not to say 8%

What is your gender?

  • Male 76%
  • Female 18%
  • Prefer not to say 4%
  • Other (please specify): 3%

References edit