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Tech News: 2015-15

15:41, 6 April 2015 (UTC)

This Month in GLAM: March 2015


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Wikidata weekly summary #153

Tech News: 2015-16

16:40, 13 April 2015 (UTC)

Please fill out our Inspire campaign survey

Thank you for participating in the Wikimedia Inspire campaign during March 2015!

Please take our short survey and share your experience during the campaign.

Many thanks,

Jmorgan (WMF) (talk), on behalf of the IdeaLab team.

23:34, 13 April 2015 (UTC)

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Wikidata weekly summary #154

Tech News: 2015-17

15:30, 20 April 2015 (UTC)

Nominations being accepted for 2015 Wikimedia Foundation elections

This is a message from the 2015 Wikimedia Foundation Elections Committee. Translations are available.


I am pleased to announce that nominations are now being accepted for the 2015 Wikimedia Foundation Elections. This year the Board and the FDC Staff are looking for a diverse set of candidates from regions and projects that are traditionally under-represented on the board and in the movement as well as candidates with experience in technology, product or finance. To this end they have published letters describing what they think is needed and, recognizing that those who know the community the best are the community themselves, the election committee is accepting nominations for community members you think should run and will reach out to those nominated to provide them with information about the job and the election process.

This year, elections are being held for the following roles:

Board of Trustees
The Board of Trustees is the decision-making body that is ultimately responsible for the long term sustainability of the Foundation, so we value wide input into its selection. There are three positions being filled. More information about this role can be found at the board elections page.

Funds Dissemination Committee (FDC)
The Funds Dissemination Committee (FDC) makes recommendations about how to allocate Wikimedia movement funds to eligible entities. There are five positions being filled. More information about this role can be found at the FDC elections page.

Funds Dissemination Committee (FDC) Ombud
The FDC Ombud receives complaints and feedback about the FDC process, investigates complaints at the request of the Board of Trustees, and summarizes the investigations and feedback for the Board of Trustees on an annual basis. One position is being filled. More information about this role can be found at the FDC Ombudsperson elections page.

The candidacy submission phase lasts from 00:00 UTC April 20 to 23:59 UTC May 5 for the Board and from 00:00 UTCApril 20 to 23:59 UTC April 30 for the FDC and FDC Ombudsperson. This year, we are accepting both self-nominations and nominations of others. More information on this election and the nomination process can be found on the 2015 Wikimedia elections page on Meta-Wiki.

Please feel free to post a note about the election on your project's village pump. Any questions related to the election can be posted on the talk page on Meta, or sent to the election committee's mailing list, board-elections -at-

On behalf of the Elections Committee,
-Gregory Varnum (User:Varnent)
Coordinator, 2015 Wikimedia Foundation Elections Committee

Posted by the MediaWiki message delivery 04:01, 21 April 2015 (UTC) • TranslateGet help


Hi, I've removed the langcat feature on Wikimedia movement affiliates logos best practices, because I consider it as abuse, vandalism, and disruptive. In other words, editors are unable to fix the completely broken en-gb categories without help from some wannabe-elite styling themselves as "translations administrators", but effectively degenerating into page owners. It's not a problem with TAs doing their best, let alone with you, it's an intrinsically broken procedure violating the core of all Wikimedia once stood for. Not amused after numerous similar issues on commons: Be..anyone (talk) 02:01, 22 April 2015 (UTC)

I am not sure I understand your concern. The problem with removing them is that they will then populate main categories with a lot of translated pages - making the categories harder to navigate. I checked, and each of those categories is probably setup for translation. My suggestion is that you bring this issue up on the Babylon talk page as I am uncomfortable giving just one page this unusual treatment. All of the pages associated with this one consistently use langcat - and honestly this is the first time I've heard any objections with them. Can you elaborate more on the Babylon talk page what you mean? Until then, I will need to revert the edit to prevent category congestion (which I have received numerous complaints about). Thanks! --Varnent (talk)(COI) 02:12, 22 April 2015 (UTC)
My guess is that the problem you had was with the en-gb categories being red links. That was pretty easy to resolve, and has now been done. However, I would request that you not remove the langcat template - as it causes a lot of category problems. Thank you. --Varnent (talk)(COI) 02:22, 22 April 2015 (UTC)
It does seriously not work for en-gb, check out — when I looked at it all categories were red (= missing), now some minutes later three of five apparently exist. If this is or was some "work in progress" I'm sorry for picking you as my second victim of general "translation abuse" complaints, but it is generally not only annoying, this system is worse than all spam+vandalism together. –Be..anyone (talk) 02:24, 22 April 2015 (UTC)
It was fixed by translating the categories into en-gb. This is not a work in progress, was something I did real quick (which anyone is able to - not just TAs), and is a solution to the red-link problem that does not result in category clutter. --Varnent (talk)(COI) 02:27, 22 April 2015 (UTC)
I could not fix it, action=edit resulted in "no permission", and translate didn't show the offending categories. I consider pages not permitting ordinary classic raw edit as gross, e.g., translations + wikidata, while template data + flow apparently got this right. –Be..anyone (talk) 02:41, 22 April 2015 (UTC)
If you go to the main category page and click on translate you are able to do it. The system does not allow editing of language pages as that is not compatible with the Translate extension (even TAs cannot raw edit them). I appreciate your opinion on the use of these tools, but again, I suggest you bring it up on the Babylon talk page rather than pick random pages to convey these opinions via. The changes you are seeking are movement-wide - and require technical changes to prevent new problems (like category clutter). --Varnent (talk)(COI) 02:47, 22 April 2015 (UTC)

Requests for comments on Wikimedia user groups approval process and agreements

This is an update from the Wikimedia Affiliations Committee. Translations are available.

The Wikimedia Affiliations Committee is requesting comments on the approval process and agreements for Wikimedia user groups.

Wikimedia user groups are groups of Wikimedia users who support and promote the Wikimedia projects in the offline world by organizing meetups and other projects. The Wikimedia Affiliations Committee's responsibilities include approval of new Wikimedia user groups.

The committee will seek community input until Friday, May 1, 2015. The committee will then review the community's input, and publish the new process and agreements on Meta-Wiki. The committee will again seek community input approximately six months after any changes are adopted to gauge effectiveness and if any additional changes are necessary.

Please see the RFC page on Meta-Wiki for more information and to provide feedback.

Thank you - Wikimedia Affiliations Committee

Posted by MediaWiki message delivery on behalf of the Affiliations Committee, 04:16, 24 April 2015 (UTC) • TranslateGet helpSubscribe or unsubscribe.

Wikidata weekly summary #155

Flood :-)

Hi Varnent. Would you please set a flood flag on your account until you finish? You're flooding recent changes right now :-) Thanks. -- M\A 15:27, 26 April 2015 (UTC)

Yes - sorry about that. :) --Varnent (talk)(COI) 15:28, 26 April 2015 (UTC)

Tech News: 2015-18

15:10, 27 April 2015 (UTC)

Id verification

Hi Varnent, I am a candidate for the FDC election 2015. I want to know how do I have my identification verified? Tanweer (talk) 07:33, 27 April 2015 (UTC)

Tanweer, the information on verifying your identification is available on-wiki: Wikimedia Foundation elections/FDC elections/2015#identification. Let me know if you have any follow-up questions. --Varnent (talk)(COI) 23:37, 28 April 2015 (UTC)

Community discussion on harassment reporting

There are many current proposals as part of the 2015 Inspire Campaign related to harassment management. I’ve created a page, Grants:IdeaLab/Community discussion on harassment reporting meant to serve as a central space where the various stakeholders in these proposals and other community members can discuss which methods might serve our community best so that we can unify our ideas into collective action. I encourage you to join the conversation and contribute your ideas! OR drohowa (talk) 12:39, 30 April 2015 (UTC)

This Month in Education: April 2015

MediaWiki message delivery (talk) 15:17, 1 May 2015 (UTC)

Learning Quarterly: May 2015

L&E Newsletter / Volume 1 / Issue 4 / May 2015
Learning Quarterly

Stay tuned
blogs, events
& more!

Leave your mark on Meta!
Gender Gap on IdeaLab and Learning Pattern Library.

MediaWiki message delivery (talk) 20:57, 1 May 2015 (UTC) MediaWiki message delivery (talk) 22:57, 30 January 2015 (UTC)

If this message is not on your home wiki's talk page, update your subscription.

Support request with team editing experiment project

Dear tech ambassadors, instead of spamming the Village Pump of each Wikipedia about my tiny project proposal for researching team editing (see here:, I have decided to leave to your own discretion if the matter is relevant enough to inform a wider audience already. I would appreciate if you could appraise if the Wikipedia community you are more familiar with could have interest in testing group editing "on their own grounds" and with their own guidance. In a nutshell: it consists in editing pages as a group instead of as an individual. This social experiment might involve redefining some aspects of the workflow we are all used to, with the hope of creating a more friendly and collaborative environment since editing under a group umbrella creates less social exposure than traditional "individual editing". I send you this message also as a proof that the Inspire Campaign is already gearing up. As said I would appreciate of *you* just a comment on the talk page/endorsement of my project noting your general perception about the idea. Nothing else. Your contribution helps to shape the future! (which I hope it will be very bright, with colors, and Wikipedia everywhere) Regards from User:Micru on meta.

About nomination for Board Elections - Keval Pandya

Can I ask you why you tagged me "Candidate not eligible" ?... KevalPandya (talk) 07:11, 2 May 2015 (UTC)

It does not appear that you meet the voter eligibility - which is a requirement for candidate eligibility. This tool shows the results of editor verification, and I was not able to find a developer account under the username you provided. If there is another registered editor or developer account you have used which you would like us to check, please let me know. I recognize that you may have contributed anonymously prior to that, but we have no way of verifying that. --Varnent (talk)(COI) 07:37, 2 May 2015 (UTC)
I have already checked eligibility guidance. Also, now you can check the username I provided. There were misunderstanding of mine to submit User Name here. So, check it again. Thank You, Varnent. KevalPandya (talk) 07:51, 2 May 2015 (UTC)
Sorry - but newly created accounts are not eligible. You must have met the developer or editor requirements prior to 15 April, 2015. In other words, you must have documented participation in the community as a registered user prior to the start of the elections. I encourage you to remain active and try again either when the board calls for community nominations or another election is held. Also, you do not need to post the Talkback template when you have initiated the conversation on my page. It is mostly a way to notify people that messages have been left on a page they are not getting notifications about. I already receive a notification when you reply on this page. :) --Varnent (talk)(COI) 07:58, 2 May 2015 (UTC)

Wikidata weekly summary #156

Wikimedia Highlights from March 2015

Here are the highlights from the Wikimedia blog in March 2015.
About · Subscribe/unsubscribe, 01:33, 4 May 2015 (UTC)

Translations of FDC statements


Thank you very much for translating statements (incl. my statement) into numerous languages. I particularly liked the quality of translation into French which is really good, but I would like to notice however that your translations into some other languages (e.g. Spanish, Italian and Russian) contained an error. I would like to notice that Wikipedias are per language, while Wikimedia chapters are per country, thus it is not correct to use words like "Wikipedia Ukraine" (like you used Wikipedia Ucraina in Italian), nor it is correct to use words like "Wikimedia in Ukrainian" (украинском секторе Викимедиа in Russian). I could not check all translations for this error as unfortunately I can't read Arabic, Bengali, Chinese and some other languages, so could you please correct your translations to make sure you did not make the same mistake?

Anyway thanks a lot for good translations in so many languages, and I really appreciate your translation efforts — NickK (talk) 02:28, 4 May 2015 (UTC)

Greetings, and thank you for your candidacy in the elections. While I did enter the translations into SecurePoll and Meta-Wiki, I was not the actual translator. The Wikimedia Foundation contracted with a professional translations service they have used in the past to conduct the many translations required in a quick and effective way. I will relay your concern to the staff who have been working with the firm. Thank you! --Varnent (talk)(COI) 02:45, 4 May 2015 (UTC)
OK, thank you for clarifying that. I actually thought that you could not translate all that manually, but I was thinking about something like ContentTranslate, as I thought that translations by someone else were unlikely to be added from a volunteer account. Then you can thank the French translator whose translation was really easy to read :)
I have edited some translations (especially Russian one) and I have translated the statement in two other languages, but I do not see any of these changes on the SecurePoll page. In addition, I do not see all names at Wikimedia Foundation elections 2015/Translation/SecurePoll (and names have to be translated into non-Latin languages). Do you know how can this be fixed?
Thank you for your involvement with the election and sorry for disturbing — NickK (talk) 03:41, 4 May 2015 (UTC)
Any translation changes have to be manually transferred to SecurePoll - it is housed on a separate wiki, and for security reasons, access to editing it is limited to staff and volunteers involved with the elections committee. I will check on what the status of the name translations are. I know in past years they opted not to translate names. I cannot speak to why without looking into it more. --Varnent (talk)(COI) 03:46, 4 May 2015 (UTC)
OK, I see, then please update Russian, French, Spanish, Italian and Turkish translations of my statement (there were minor errors in each of them).
Is it the same for adding new languages? I see that Ukrainian interface displays all messages in Russian despite many of them already translated, which is disappointing. We happen to have a lot of political discussions when a Wikimedia page is displayed in Russian instead of Ukrainian, and I think a similar discussion is likely to follow your recent post to ukwiki village pump. Is it possible to get Ukrainian interface added to SecurePoll?
Thanks — NickK (talk) 04:06, 4 May 2015 (UTC)
The biggest hurdle is time. We are trying to set things up so that future elections will be better prepared for translations, but there is still a lot of basic work happening to support it. The plan is to make translations available on VoteWiki as volunteers complete them on Meta. The initial 17 languages were those done by the professional translators - who are now working on the translations necessary for the board elections. We had about 4-5 hours to verify, format, and input them. In an ideal world, we would have more time to prepare and set all of this up. However, the reality is that we are working essentially on 48-72 hour turn around times on most tasks - which does not allow us to do nearly as many languages as we would like - or keep on top of the Meta to VoteWiki translations as quickly as we would prefer. That also does not account for random tasks and maintenance that comes up each day. I agree that is not ideal, but it is the reality we are currently working within. The committee is already discussing ways to make this better next time. My personal hope is that future elections start sooner, or that a standing elections committee is able to tackle a lot of the setup work that consumed some of our time. However, that is not the situation we are in now, so, the focus is on completing as many tasks as quickly as we possibly can. I am not trying to offer excuses or give you the impression we will not be working on transferring the translations. However, I wanted to give you a sense of the realistic barriers we are faced with and why it has not been done already. We absolutely agree that both SecurePoll and Meta-Wiki translations should be as diverse and easy to access as possible. The current results are the product of the realistic challenges of a small group of volunteers managing hundreds of translations and dozens of overlapping tasks to keep three elections running - and not a reflection of the committee's attitude towards the importance of making content available in as many languages as possible. --Varnent (talk)(COI) 04:24, 4 May 2015 (UTC)
It appears that presently, only 8% of the FDC election page is translated into Ukrainian. Right now, on the Ombudsperson page, it appears that only your statement is translated. It would be unfair to only make one person's statement available in that language - so we would need all others translated first. I suppose we could setup the interface, but it might not make sense to setup the translation navigation bar with that language until it is completely ready for candidate statements as well. Will discuss that with folks more. --Varnent (talk)(COI) 04:32, 4 May 2015 (UTC)
Thank you again for the translation efforts, but it's a bit disappointing that some languages were ignored and there was no call for translation (which is usual for such kind of elections). The problem for Ukrainian is that we have a mandatory fallback of Russian that we cannot remove: while seeing English instead of Ukrainian is just an untranslated message, seeing Russian instead of Ukrainian is a political problem
I will have a look what should be translated this evening. It would be great to have a group of SecurePoll messages separately, as they are currently mixed with answers (that are not translated even by WMF translators anyway), which makes translation a bit difficult — NickK (talk) 10:42, 4 May 2015 (UTC)
Sorry for writing you again, but I would like to highlight some more points about translations. It would be great to provide to tranlators a small dictionary of terms all Wikimedians are aware of. I am looking at Russian translations and I notice that some of them are meaningless, e.g. Wikimedia affiliates is translated as аффилированных лиц Wikimedia (meaning "people affiliated with Wikimedia"), and grant-seeking entity is translated as лицо, стремящееся получить грант (meaning "a person who wants to receive a grant"). The worst is probably Strengthening the movement through all the affiliates which is translated as Усиление движения через всех аффилированных лиц (means "strengthening the move across all affiliated people", literally meaning that there is a move across (or even through) people, not the movement is strengthened through affiliate organisations). Actually this looks a bit like machine translation and definitely worse than an average Wikimedian native speaker would do...
I do hope these were good faith mistakes, but too many terms like "Wikipedia in language X", "Wikimedia X", "affiliate organisation", "grant-seeking entity" are incorrectly translated making statements quite difficult to understand. Next time please either give a small dictionary to translators or make a call for proofreading by Wikimedian native speakers, as some translations are very difficult to understand due to numerous mistakes. Thanks — NickK (talk) 21:42, 4 May 2015 (UTC)
In the meantime, I have translated all statements into Ukrainian, please go ahead with publishing them. Thanks — NickK (talk) 23:31, 4 May 2015 (UTC)
Thank you for the suggestions and ideas. I will pass these along to the appropriate folks. Much of this goes beyond the scope of the Elections Committee. The 17 languages translated were identified by WMF as the most widely used by Wikimedians. We did in fact ask for volunteer help with translations (on multiple occasions and in multiple ways), but the reality is that 48 hours to fully translate 17 languages does not leave much time for volunteer review. If this were the only task the committee had, it might be more possible, but it is one of dozens of tasks that needed to be completely, nearly simultaneously. The process used was developed by WMF for things like the elections and strategic planning. The idea of a translation directory seems logical to me, but is a much broader topic than just this election. Again, with the limited time window, our ability to translate is very limited. Ultimately, some languages are going to be left out, that has always been the case with WMF elections, and unless we figure out a way to translate pages of text to over 150 languages in under 72 hours, that will likely remain the case. --Varnent (talk)(COI) 01:54, 5 May 2015 (UTC)
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