Strategy/Wikimedia movement/2018-20/Transition/Follow-up events/Cluster H

This page contains raw minutes from the discussion of the initiative cluster H: Prioritize Topics for Impact, which took place on 5 February 2021. The minutes were cleaned up and merged from across different documents by the Strategy Support Team, and a summary of them can be found in the follow-up events report. The discussion followed a structured template (as shown below), which was also created by the Support Team.

Video summaries from the follow-up event discussions
Summary of room 2: High-Impact Topics
Summary of room 3: Knowledge + Content Gaps

Key indicator and objectives (WHAT) edit

What are the objectives of this initiative for the next 18 months? edit

  • +++++Define a process for identifying, reviewing, and approving areas of high impact[1]
    • (whether local or global) - workload, not pushing down regional priorities[1]
    • Defining high impact: Impact is not necessarily the same as a “popular topic”.  (not rigid,  but a framework to focus energy)[1]
    • Extend our analytics capabilities to less crude measures than pageviews, including: the time spent / scroll depth, references interacted with, readability scales, and especially reader feedback.+++Pilot with a clear set of partnerships (i.e. SDGs)[1]
    • The content is influencing the decision making in the society in day to day challenges they are facing in the sectors like - water scarcity/quality, women’s issues, health, science etc.[1]
    • Consider topics with short-term impact (pressing political and social challenges in a society now) and topics with long-term impact (such as women health, SDGs).[1]
    • Evaluate previous understanding of impacts. [1]
    • Avoid “deprioritization” because it leads to controversy and may  contradict the freedom of editing.[1][2]
    • A clearer sense - backed up by data - of where there are significant gaps in the world’s knowledge on Wikipedia, and what some of the tactics are to address these gaps[2]
    • Suggested approach:
      • Identify the steps of a reader processing and acting on our content (e.g. discovery, access to the text, looking at the text through their specific cultural lens, being able to derive actionable knowledge)[3]
      • Conceptualize it as an “impact funnel” and identify bottlenecks.[3]
      • Success means having a clear picture of which steps result in the biggest loss of potential impact (e.g. is offline access or readability of the text the bigger problem in practice?)[3]
  • Contextualize the meaning of impact[3]
    • Clarity of content gaps in each regional list to understand what is missing[3]
    • Identify, categorize and prioritize current and future trends (+1) for high impact topics from a regional perspective (static/dynamic)[1]
    • Do (quick) experimental research activities in focused target groups that are underserved[3]
      • Address their needs immediately (even if just with symbolic forward moving to engage them in process)[3]
      • Report on global scale to compare, connect and match these trans-local efforts[3]
    • Mapping of tools that are already available[3]
      • Example of ranking of articles based on the progress of the article[3]
      • Tools are often drafty and there is not more comprehensive data available, as a result[3]
  • +-  Evaluate external sources against our processes (is this in the next 18 months)?[1]
    • We can analyse the highest searches from respective regions with data from search engines[1]
    • Conduct a press review of major media outlets to understand regional priorities[1]
  • Explain
    • There should be data based stories/engagement about the utility of working on High Impact topics. What changed, how did it change, why is this important, what can be improved.[1]
  • ++Assure processes for high quality content for high impact topics. (readers)[1]
    • Support efficient and effective patrolling of content[1]
    • Increase the longevity quotient (resilience, lasting value) of high impact topics. (High impact topics often come with a limited period of engagement. They are topics that catch the beat of the moment so to say. In smaller communities where the number of editors/Wikimedians does not vary significantly, stubs that get created often pose a challenge than constructive work) (pressure on editors vs. Importance short-lived)[1]
    • Pilot initiatives that demonstrate topics for impact strategies outside of where we already have success (i.e. Gender gap, Medicine)[1]
    • High impact topics speak and interact with strategic goals identified by govts, aid organisations, civil societies  [1]
    • Conduct a pilot project on a small wikipedia (and/or other type of wiki) to try implementing a topics coverage tool[3]
  • Standardize impact measurement tools to improve the data and support better research[3]
    • Need to expand abilities of the wikis to do annotations that make it easier to pull the data together: such as the PageAssessments extension and comparison tool[3]
    • Enable visualizing the data as an important aspect of the tools.[3][2]
    • Map of tools/features that are needed for different stakeholder groups[3]
      • Examples: clear quality assessment of a page made visible to all readers, better categorize articles / taxonomy / data, suggested topics tools, analyse research trends, tools for expert editors, etc.[3]
  • Capacity building for communities, enabling them to identify gaps and adequately respond[2]
  • Build a central system for capacity building in different regions, to empower communities to identify and work on their own understanding of “impact”.[1]
  • This research should be through a distributed model between different affiliates and communities rather than sitting with the WMF alone.[1]
  • Regional hubs and capacity building could take on this growth. They could be drastically different across geographies, and they may lead to different implementation of the high impact topics.[1]
  • Decolonization can be a very powerful frame for some of this work and our global distribution is perfect for it.[3][1][2]
  • Bring cultural institutions into a direct conversation with source communities that are asking for cultural restitution.[2]
  • Align the partnership strategy to the needs of the content in the different contexts[3]
    • Outreach to partners is as important for the impact[3]
  • Reduction in misinformation
    • Build Support for structured citations, to deal with misinformation related to quality of references[3]
    • Map out key organizations and potential partners worldwide that can help ensure dissemination and use of the information on high impact topics[1]
    • Tools around disinformation and misinformation needs a conversation between the Foundation research team and project functionaries so the tools can be built together[3]
    • Wikimedia projects may not cover what we need to combat disinformation beyond “fact-checking”.[3]

What are some anticipated obstacles or barriers to a successful implementation? edit

  • Clear communication and coordination of efforts within the free knowledge movement[1]
    • Providing topics and frameworks that include different sizes/kinds of communities, operating in different contexts.[1]
    • How to conduct small research studies or surveys across language communities.[1]
    • How to deal with socio-political issues/burning current affairs in the region?[1]
  • Mapping pipelines of potential contributors for topics -- it does us little good to pursue an impactful topic, if we have a hard time recruiting contributors[1]
    • Creating communities of concern, little beyond interest, more serious and committed[1]
  • How to measure the impact on society? Is there some value addition in the decision making process?[1]
    • High impact should not limit to increased site visits (+1 -- it should also map against transformative impacts as well i.e. should change someone’s life if well shared)[1]
  • Being too ambitious in planning[1]
    • Come up with a process to identify high impact topics with a lot of iterations and thinking. Adding more goals could be ambitious.[1]
    • Think about major goals rather than spreading ourselves too thin.[1]
  • How to work on content gaps when these may be different for different communities (geographic and thematic)[2]
  • Gaps in content usually usually originate from gaps in the community of contributors and readers (no-one has chosen to add content on this topic). Who will fill the gap?[2]
  • How do we know when a gap is filled?[2]
  • Framing Wikimedia projects as tools for activism (increasing representation in the internet without compromising safety and sovereignty) rather than re-colonisation/re-oppression[2]
  • Decolorization could not sum up all of the content gaps: The Decolorization-like methodologies are maybe applying all of the content gaps, but not account for all gaps.[2]
  • How to pass this “message” to the Wikipedia community and editors that do not participate from these discussions and that do not want a “content framing” or specific content promotion from Wikimedia structures?[2]
  • Freedom of Panorama policy as a hindrance to sharing visual content in some high impact topics[2]
    • The Free of Panorama policies are based on a Western concept that needs to be contextualized.[2]
  • Lack of sources is the origin of the problem for creating content, especially for marginalized or unrepresented communities or languages[2]
    • Most of the “indigenous” knowledge is not written but oral. This content could be connected by using Commons or other Wikimedia projects.[2]
  • Diversity of priorities and capacities in different contexts[3]
  • Comprehensive tools (to map all topics in all languages and all projects) might be very hard to build and take more than 18 months / technical difficulty[3]
  • Language barriers / differences in implementations in different languages[3]
  • We need better analytics capabilities to understand impact better, but we also want to keep ourselves to high privacy standards.[3]
  • Addressing a vast issue in a really short time. Lack of measurements and tools of what we are going to achieve.[3]
  • Lack of sources and reliability.[3]
  • Spectrum of licences that would be needed to include partners in covering topics.[3]

Implementation steps (HOW) edit

Defining impact

  • Identify a framework and process for selecting topics[1]
  • Research what does “Impact” mean for different communities[1]
  • Start with topics that external groups find “impactful” (such as the SDGs).[3][1]
  • Discuss how local communities respond to that kind of action[1]
  • In smaller communities, interest isn’t always comparable to the number of editors. Many newcomers would create stubs in topics that are exhausting for experienced editors to go back to later.[1]
  • Define priorities on two different levels: global and local[1]
    • For example, “women rights” could be a wide global priority, but may not be prioritized by every community in their local context.[1]
  • Develop a flexible process that responds to the constant change in priority topics over time. It should provide a framework for the movement to prioritize on either a global level or a local level.[1]
  • Categorize priority topics based on their longevity[1]
    • Some topics have effective short term impact (e.g. politics), others are more resilient (e.g. science and health).[1]
  • Research[1]
  • There is some research and knowledge about readership and the importance of certain topics, but there are a lot of missing pieces and unknowns.[1]

Dedicate resources

  • Prioritize resourcing against some areas[1]
  • Develop a decentralization strategy that promotes this work in more parts of the movement[1]
  • Pilot an area of impact (new, ie not gender gap)[1][2]
  • Increased participation of state/ national  institutions (for example cultural, copyright agencies) in identifying content gaps & form a strategy / program to address it[2]
  • Start Initiative online meetings and Focus Group Interviews for un/under-represented groups[2]
    • Maximize virtual  meetings since global or intercontinental conversations became more possible rather than in person conversations[2]
  • Sharing information and experience among Wikimedians from other regions[2]
    • There are a lot of research projects and initiatives going on, it’s important to connect  [2]
  • Specific content gap follow-up meetings[2]
  • Define the tools and/or skill-sharing mechanisms we need / the technical architecture we aim at:[3]
    • Define this from the perspective of different stakeholders (readers, editors, journalists, affiliates, foundation, tech users)[3]
    • Eg. expand abilities of the wikis to do annotations that make it easier to pull the data together[3]

People (WHO) edit

Who would like to take part  in this initiative’s working group? edit

  • Regional Hubs[1]
  • Online community members, affiliate, relevant foundation staff[2]
  • Librarians, researchers (tools)[2]
  • volunteers[2]
  • Wikimedia Argentina[3]
  • Wiki Education[3]
  • Wikimedia sister projects’ communities[3]
  • Affiliate or foundation hired staff to facilitate discussions[2]
  • Experts on high impact topics[3]

Who is/are interested in having additional responsibilities to coordinate this working group? edit

  • Regional/ thematic hubs[2]
  • Online communities (local or global thematic)[2]
  • Wikimedia UK[2]
  • Wikimedians for Sustainable Development[3]
  • Wiki Education[3]
  • WM CEE, LGBT+ UG, GLAM Croatia in founding[3]

Is anyone missing who should be part of implementation? edit

  • Foundation staff (legal, public policy, campaigns, behavioral research)
  • CreativeCommons, OpenStreetMap, UN agencies with which we have previous work[3]
  • Educational institutions[3]
  • Disinformation experts[3]
  • Experts to think about potential harm / ways things could go wrong (sociologists? Cultural critics?)[3]

Sources edit

References edit

  1. a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa ab ac ad ae af ag ah ai aj ak al am an ao ap aq ar as at au av aw ax Room 2: High-Impact Topics
  2. a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa ab ac ad Room 3: Knowledge + Content Gaps
  3. a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa ab ac ad ae af ag ah ai aj ak al am an ao ap aq ar as Room 1: Support Systems