Sister Projects Committee
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This page provides information about the proposed committee responsible for creating and reviewing sister projects. We are currently in the phase of drafting and reviewing policies. Have a look at, help to write, and add your ideas to:
A sister projects committee is a proposed community committee that would be responsible for developing a clear policy and documentation for creating and reviewing sister projects. This would include adopting non-Wikimedia projects, and supporting and coordinating new project proposals to help them be successful; as well as considering requests to close, merge, or spin off existing sister projects.
Current new project process
There is currently hardly a process to deal with New project proposals. That page lists things about gathering support for a proposal, and suggests criteria for interest and support that should be met before a proposal is reviewed. The 'review' step once a project meets those criteria needs to be worked out. [Historically it has only happened via a site-wide RfC and a cross-project discussion and vote; which is hard to launch and a lot of work.]
Related discussion and suggestions
A recent thread on Foundation-l discussing the need for such a committee noted relevant categories and topics:
Communication and overview:
- "project interviews" : talk to each project and identify the support that its community expects from the WMF and from other Projects. We all often hear that everything-other-than-en.WP-is-ignored but if we had some published/agreed expectations that would make it much easier to see what was needed.
- "project reviews" : review how each project is working, and what open problems it has; is it growing or not, does it have other perennial problems. identify needs and possibilities. "what would an evaluation of Wikinews or Wikispecies say? Should we shut down such a project... cease to mention it on Wikipedia main pages... or invest money in promoting it?"
Naming, branding, visibility:
- naming conventions: rename Commons to "WikiCommons"? claim wikispecies.org?
- branding and cross-wiki promotion: have a WMF brand easily visible on every project header? Link visibly to all sister projects from the bottom of the sidebar / bottom nav?
- merge WikiSpecies -- w/ WikiData, or back into Wikipedia?
- merge-or-spinoff considerations: wikieducator and wikiversity have the same mission, and would benefit from being merged; 'who hosts the site' is a minor issue compared to the loss of splitting energy and focus across two wikis.
- merge meta wikis: Outreach + Strategy + MetaWiki into wikimedia.org? (proposal, discussion)
Improvements and feature requests:
- "easy improvements with high value". Start with Wiktionary
- lower barriers b/t wikis: global userpages, talk, watchlists. help valuate, prioritize and organize these feature requests
- Eloquence's presentation at Wikimania 2010 on sister projects
Annual cycles, trying new things:
- "Although our flagship project is highly successful, it would be good if we try to keep creating new communities. I have been sad for quite a while now that we don't create new projects any more. It would be great to see one new project every year :)"
- "I had suggested earlier that we might even run this as an annual thing, with a Wikimania-style bidding process for the new sister projects."
Here is a laundry list of potential tasks. Please add your own, and mark them as important/unimportant, and in/out of scope. Take the /Draft charter in mind.
- Defunct private wikis: grants.wikimedia.org (private, rarely used, unused since 2005), spcom (special projects committee, unused since 2006), &c
- Single-purpose, now dormant wikis: ten.wikimedia.org, sep11 wiki, &c.
- Periodic wikis: wikimania2005–wikimania2012
- Combining meta discussions: Strategy, Outreach, Meta
- Better plan for custom Meta namespaces: Grants, Research, &c?
- Conference proceedings and research papers on wikis - where do they go? See recent proposal for a conferences wiki extension; OpenMeetings.org (proposed as a sister project); &c.
- See also Acawiki / WikiScholar proposals
- Coordinating wiktionary with omegawiki.org: This was the original goal of omegawiki, the community still wants it; it addresses an underlying technical data-structure weakness.
- Coordinating wikispecies (monolingual) with species data on wikipedia (multilingual). Merge? More formalized plan for coordination with Encyclopedia of Life (many of whose contributors edit wikispecies too).
- Claiming the wikispecies.org domain: how important is this?
- Translations: Meta, translatewiki, interlanguage links... all are used in some way by translators. How should this work?
- Which of the above questions has an answer that may be modified once wikidata is fully functional?
- Is download.wikimedia.org in scope for this group?
- A prioritized bug list for each sister project? (e.g. oldwikisource:WS:BUGS) Large-scale questions? Ex: the 100MB file size limit on Commons (unchanged in 5 yrs!), the lack of a public image dump for Commons, proofreading extensions for wikisource, custom dual-category lists for wikinews.
- Summarizing expectations each project has of the WMF
- Summarizing expectations projects have of one another [esp. when they rely on eachother], and that WMF and readers have of projects
- Defining the spectrum of support options for projects by Wikimedia: from minor traffic generation/grants for Movement Partners, to vanilla hosting on the Labs/toolserver of a protoproject, to inclusion as WMF Project (with SUL, suffrage in global votes, adherence to shared principles).
- Projects that pass initial milestones for being added as a sister project should have some sort of roadmap or project plan, before final adoption. See for instance Commons:Project_plan.