User:CKoerner (WMF)/Embedded reach
|This is an essay. It expresses the opinions and ideas of some Wikimedians but may not have wide support. This is not policy on Meta, but it may be a policy or guideline on other Wikimedia projects. Feel free to update this page as needed, or use the discussion page to propose major changes.|
|This is now an idea in the Idealab. Please join me over there!|
One of the directions described for the Wikimedia Foundation in our 2016-2017 annual plan is the idea of "Reach".
"Reach; everyone should be able to freely share in the free knowledge on our projects. We are making it a priority to reach new readers and contributors around the world and improve the experience for all, including those on mobile devices. To do this, we will better understand and respond to the needs of our global readers and contributors through research, new technologies, effective programs, strategic partnerships, and more."
From the mission statement:
“The mission of the Wikimedia Foundation is to empower and engage people around the world to collect and develop educational content under a free license or in the public domain, and to disseminate it effectively and globally.”
There is one achievable way to both further this direction and the mission that has not been strongly considered. There needs to be a consistent, easy way to embed and reuse Wikimedia content outside of WMF-supported wikis. The ability to embed content has been incredibly successful for other online resources of media - Flickr, Soundcloud, YouTube, TED, Instagram and more. Exposing the content within our movement outside of our corner of the world can draw more people back to our projects.
What would this look like?Edit
Imagine you are working on an online project that utilizes Wikimedia contributions. Say a journal, new report on a topic, or even a casual blog post. You want to reference information on Wikipedia, but you want something more than a hyperlink. You have to:
- Copy and paste the content
- Copy and paste the wiki URL
- Write up the proper attribution
- Implement that in whatever technical solution (like a CMS) you or your organization uses
All of this, every time.
This is a pain, inconsistent, and you're not 100% sure you'll get the attribution correct. What if you could easily copy a common wiki URL and something like this would appear:
And what about images from commons?
Embedded in a content management system (CMS) you might see something like this:
What would this work with?Edit
- Articles - Providing a link to xx.wikipedia.org/wiki/Article_Title and the first freely licensed image (with the option to remove the image if it's not relevant)
- Images - Commons images with attribution and a link to the file page.
- Maps - Maps could have a link to the fullscreen map (similar to how maplink works)
- Graphs - Ditto
- Article excerpts - Just a few sentences or a section - think Wiktionary definitions for a word.
Where would this work?Edit
Everywhere that can ingest the meta data schema to present a rich interface to content. Content management systems, social media, even other MediaWiki wikis could be a consumer.
How would this work?Edit
There are many existing ways to implement from a tech standpoint, and nothing preventing us from building a solution on our own (although "not invented here" is a concern). A few possible APIs to investigate:
- schema.org - used by many known sites to makeup their metadata
- oEmbed - a popular format for embedding content
- Some crazy new iframe thing we cook up
- http://embed.ly - not a solution for Wikimedia per se, but does support Wikipedia. :)
Note on CommonsEdit
Imagine if we were unable to embed images from Commons on Wikipedia. That our only access to that information was a hyperlink. That would be insanity. Now imagine that we don't make it easy for other sites outside of our own to do the same. Integration with WordPress alone would enrich our content to nearly 25% of the web. 
Concerns to addressEdit
- The biggest is attribution. Our implementation would need to ensure that reuse would include proper attribution for all media types.
- Open vs. proprietary - I propose we do consider adopting schemas that are popularized by for-profit organizations - specifically social media services such as Facebook and Twitter. We've seen good success elsewhere in the movement with using these services to further awareness of the work being done. The cost is minimal, the reach is great.
- The Wikipedia Library/Embedded discovery
- https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Apps/Share_a_fact - A very similar feature in the Wikipedia native mobile apps
- 50 Shades of Wiki: New Tools to Share, Remix, and Reuse - Session from Wikimania 2015
- RDP Wiki Embed - A WordPress plugin for MediaWiki URLs
Related Phabricator tasksEdit
- https://phabricator.wikimedia.org/T56829 - Implement support for sharing protocols (tracking)
- https://phabricator.wikimedia.org/T27854 - Expose image thumbs, embedded video players via oEmbed (API + discovery <link rel>)
- https://phabricator.wikimedia.org/T142243 - Add open graph meta tags
- https://phabricator.wikimedia.org/T142090 - Add hover-card like summary to open graph meta data
- MediaWiki could be its own generator and consumer of metadata from itself and other systems.
- "Usage Statistics and Market Share of WordPress for Websites, August 2016". w3techs.com. Retrieved 2016-08-11.