WikiClassics User Group/Reports/2019

The WikiClassics User Group was recognized as a Wikimedia user group on May 9, 2019. This report outlines our accomplishments and activities between May 2019 and April 2020.

Written by User:Alexmar983, User:Epìdosis


This is our first report and it is mostly based on these examples: Wikimedia LGBT, WikiDonne, Wikisource e Wikitongues.

We use the main year in the title but it refers to the period from May 2019 to May 2020. The activities during the warm-up period, specifically March and April 2019, are listed here

There was no precise plan for the previous year, but we will be more structured in the future. The next year will be less exploratory and more focused on specific goals. For the plan for the next twelve months, see WikiClassics User Group/Plans/2020.

The activities were reduced during the last months because of the COVID-19 pandemics. The main reason is that many of them required meetings (such as the March, 8th events or the award ceremony for Wiki Loves Classics), and also one of the most active user (Alexmar983) had to focus his expertise on the description of the pandemics to inform the general public. it was a necessary activity but it clearly reduced the coordination effort of the UG.


Wikimania 2019Edit

We provided an informal presence, as stated in this report.


We gave our support to the initiative of March, 8th. We originally planned a parallel session in Pisa and Rome for the event at the Swedish Institute in Rome but it was cancelled. We did more activities online.

Wikimedia Summit 2020Edit

We were planning an informal presence again, but the event was cancelled.

Social media, communication and outreachEdit

  • We were very active on Twitter, where we set up a very efficient account. It's less used during the last months, but we engaged our public with specific tweets about new Wikidata property proposals, creating a constant feedback.
  • Starting with this tweet we had the preliminary idea to be maybe the first WMF affiliate to propose new emojis. We are working on that for next year (we wanted to be sure the group is approved for a second year before we start, it's a relatively long process that requires continuity).
  • In general, we cross-post all information related to similar activities by other affiliates. We try to provide maximum coverage for every aspect and we think all thematic user group should do the same whenever possible.
  • The Facebook group is less active but it's mostly because there was no strategy to increase its activity.

The core issue was the Twitter account because it's faster and in case of no renewal of the UG it can still remain active to cross-post information. Also, the academic community on Twitter in this field looked very reactive since the beginning. For Twitter we set up a specific campaign during the summer that rapidity increased the followers of circa 50-100 per month. We focused on showing Wikidata properties tagging involved accounts or following as many account as possible being followed back. We stopped it around September, but we proved that it works well and we will resume it again this Summer in preparation of Wiki Loves Classics 2020. For Facebook, we plan for Wiki Loves Classics 2020 a more structured campaign coupled with Instagram.


Wikimedia CommonsEdit

Flyers for Wiki Loves Classics 2019
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We can state that commons:Commons:Wiki Loves Classics is going to be one yearly activity of our user group.

The 2019 edition was exploratory but proved that there is interest in transversal activities that focus on specific aspects of Wiki Loves Monument: this is one possible step of improvement of the competition in other fields (e.g. gender gap themes). One interesting idea was creating winners' categories for details that aren't usually the focus of national finalists of Wiki Loves Monuments.

We managed to get prizes from two sponsors (print of the photos and books) even if it was a preliminary test; an exhibition was planned in spring 2020 with an official award ceremony at least for the Italian winner, sending the other prizes by mail, but everything was postponed because of the pandemics.

The impact of the contest was useful: some national editions lack efficient clean-up for copyright violations which was provided by some of our volunteer (DarwIn); we also improved the categorization and descriptions. Next year, we want to collect clear metrics about this.

The 2019 edition was also important to engage more people from the academia in the Wiki ecosystem. This will be helpful for example in the future if we want to create an academic committee.

In the 2020 edition, we want to be more proactive. Instead of analyzing uploaded images ex post (and improve the cleanup for copyright violation and their descriptions), we want to target specific academic communities before the upload phase for high-quality upload of details. We will contact WMF affiliates before the start, with a clear programme.

The results of Wiki Loves Classics were published on January, 21st and announced the following day. tweet. There was also a social media campaigned designed to interact with some of the WMF affiliates using images from national compatitions, but the winners of WLC2019 were not highlighted on line with specific tweets, waiting for a better occasion with the sponsors. Originally, t was supposed to occur around March 2020.


Mizardellorsa has drastically increased his activity on la.wikisource as an exploratory mission for this user group. This also included a revision of official documents from the Catholic Church (Middle Age Latin).

We are structuring a future goal of improving the coverage of Latin texts for school activities. This is important especially during the current COVID-19 lockdowns, which are putting huge stress on the national school systems and their needs of infrastructures. This activity will give support to this project during the next year.


The subsequent IDs have been created (see also d:Template:Ancient world properties):

IDs are progressively presented on social media (Twitter) pinging related institutions, improving the coverage of our social media channel and creating a useful network for the activities on the long term.

Epìdosis is collaborating with JBradyK to import to Wikidata a large amount of data about ancient places, people and works from ToposText.


Photo of the first lesson at Liceo Galilei

Four joint lessons (June 2019) were given by Epìdosis and Vmuggittu at Liceo Galilei in Pisa about Wikidata and Wikipedia, with special focus on classical topics (some articles were translated from English to Italian Wikipedia: list here).


The group started with 29 members in May 2019 and involves now 38 users. Not all users are equally involved but this might be improved starting next year with more regular on-line meetings, as proposed in the 2020 plan.

The main contacts were not changed. It was said since the beginning that one of them (Alexmar983) will probably phase out of his role during the next 12-18 months so there will be some replacement. Originally, the plan was to discuss this aspect preparing for the first official presence at a WikiSummit (choosing the delegate), we are waiting to see how the situation evolves.


  • 2020-05-06: The report was originally submitted to the UG users in this discussion.
  • 2020-05-08: The complete report was linked to the Telegram group of the Wiki User Group Affiliates.
  • 2020-05-09: Followers on twitter informed.