Commons:A Culture of Kindness/Chat Log - May 24 2014

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A Culture of Kindness: Can we improve Wikipedia by 'being nicer' to each other? Presentation by Fabrice Florin at Wikimania Social Machines Weekend.

Community discussion based on Fabrice Florin's talk on "A Culture of Kindness", held by video conference during Wikimania Social Machines Weekend.

Here is the chat log from this Google Hangout, which took place on May 24, 2014 at 16:40 UTC (8:40 am PT).

If you are going to Wikimania 2014 in August, sign up here to join our session.


Google Hangout Chat Log

Edward Saperia 8:42 AM
Hello! We can hear you

Edward Saperia 8:42 AM
sound doesn't work for us, you wont hear us

Edward Saperia 8:42 AM
So if you talk to us, we can all chat to you If that's ok Dr Daniel Smith joined group chat.

Edward Saperia 8:45 AM
(for some idea - your audience is people very familiar with social media and UX, but not so familiar with wikimedia) What are you plans for reputation tools?

Chris McKenna 8:53 AM
Would more use of multimedia conversations disadvantage those on slower connections (e.g. developing world)

Edward Saperia 8:53 AM
Also marginalised groups: women, minorities, young/old What ideas do you have for reputation tools?

Dr Daniel Smith 8:55 AM
is there a clear sense of what issues do exist at present?

Stuart Lawson 8:55 AM
definitely important

Edward Saperia 8:56 AM
(for the record: less than half the people here are editors, but everyone is familiar with social media and UX)

Gianfranco Cecconi 8:56 AM
why do you think kindness is the key attractor? What are the other motivators for the potential editors when they are on other online networks and which networks are they on?

Ramine Tinati 8:56 AM
there might be an issue when changing the engagement mechanism (i.e. requiring users to sign up) may reduce user engagement

Gianfranco Cecconi 8:57 AM
Wikipedia is >10 old, could it be that it owes its success to NOT being kind?

Edward Saperia 8:58 AM

Ramine Tinati 9:00 AM
Are the core community the new users though? Or are they still the older users of Wikipedia?

Edward Saperia 9:00 AM
(However, many projects that require user engagement fail too!)

Ramine Tinati 9:00 AM
Given that the core community is a very small proportion of the total users Totally agree, toolkit is needed

Edward Saperia 9:02 AM
Something I have noticed is that new users don't understand the Bold, Revert, Discuss norm for wikipedia They post and have their stuff reverted, and are not used to the reversibility inherent in wiki software, and so are affronted

Dr Daniel Smith 9:03 AM
Presumably there's a tradeoff - i.e. implementing better permaban mechanisms might affect the number of contributions

Edward Saperia 9:03 AM
they don't realise that Bold, Revert, Discuss, Reinstate is also a very common pattern

Chris McKenna 9:03 AM
Is it more important for us all to be nice to each other, or to write the encyclopaedia? (Harry Mitchell via Chris McKenna)

Helen Armfield 9:04 AM
I think that unless you are experienced with the classical tutorial system, or had a classical education, the bold revert, discuss, reinstate; is not understood.

Gianfranco Cecconi 9:04 AM
Suggestion: did anybody try studying / measuring correlation between how "nice" an collaborative environment is and the quality of its produce? could it be that competition for reputation makes a better overall motivation? this could be a research subject for some PhD

Helen Armfield 9:05 AM
So rather than a reflection of a lack of kindness, it is actually a reflection of the nature of educational exposure of those who were 'in' at the start of the project.

Edward Saperia 9:05 AM
If reverts moved an edit to a draft space, and forced the reverter to write comments on their revert, then notifies the user of where their edit has been moved and why?

Helen Armfield 9:05 AM
see with the comment above and mine before that again

Edward Saperia 9:07 AM
With the newcomers I've mentored, it's common that they don't even know why their edit was reverted, or how to find out where it was reverted or why They don't know how to look at the history tab and if they do look at it, it's intensely confusing

Helen Armfield 9:08 AM
The bold/etc is a reflection of wikipedia as an editorial process - those of us who have come through the uni. or through the newsroom/publishing process understand it as process...

Stuart Lawson 9:08 AM
the first time my edit was reverted, i left a message of the reverter's talk page asking why, and they gave me a polite answer. that is not always the experience!

Helen Armfield 9:08 AM
project = wikipedia the opposite the beginning of the project had an academic culture more than tech. its centric of a specific educational process, rather than a specifically masculine one

Dr Daniel Smith 9:10 AM
some systems are beginning to use "muting" instead of blocking. i.e. the bully doesnt get heard, but they also dont try as hard to get around the block, because they think they've been heard.

Gianfranco Cecconi 9:14 AM
Suggestion: have you thought of offering "alternative views" of the same article, where the edits made by your "friends" or "trusted users" cannot be reverted by "non-friends"?

Edward Saperia 9:14 AM
Reminds me of What is on your longer term roadmap for products?

Ramine Tinati 9:15 AM
Suggestiion: Knowing your community can help engagement and activity (evidence from some research we have been doing on citizen science). Perhaps there should be mechanisms to know your community, not necessarily .the entire wikisphere. A personalised view of wikipedia

Edward Saperia 9:15 AM
It's like the facebook image viewer "theatre view" with the black borders (the media viewer)

Gianfranco Cecconi 9:16 AM
Ramine: same idea as mine

Ramine Tinati 9:16 AM
Ops, just saw! Great mind.. as they say.

Edward Saperia 9:17 AM
Have you considered making readership numbers as motivation for editing?

Dr Daniel Smith 9:18 AM
e.g. it might be good as "this article got 3000 views in the last day" ??

Edward Saperia 9:18 AM
Or "xxxxxx people have seen the articles you've ever edited" Do you know about Aaron's WikiCredit project?

Chris McKenna 9:20 AM
Category intersection can do some of that (re tag searching)

Gianfranco Cecconi 9:22 AM
Suggestion: have you thought of offering "alternative versions" of the same article, where the edits made by your network of "friends" or "trusted users" win over the edits by "non-friends", including the notorious reverts? Users would be able to switch between the whole community's version vs the friends'...

Edward Saperia 9:22 AM
Odd categories: This is what draft space is, effectively

Chris McKenna 9:23 AM
Gianfranco's suggestion sounds like it would be difficult to ensure NPOV, espcially for controversial topics like Israel/Palestine

Gianfranco Cecconi 9:23 AM
but do we need NPOV?

Edward Saperia 9:23 AM
I think the fork, pull, merge model is hard for people to understand, much more conceptually difficult than wikicode is

Gianfranco Cecconi 9:23 AM
it would be interesting to study several perspectives

Edward Saperia 9:24 AM
but arguably is an unavoidable part of the experience

Helen Armfield 9:24 AM
?NPOV is??

Edward Saperia 9:24 AM
Neutral Point Of View

Chris McKenna 9:24 AM
NPOV = neutral point of view

Gianfranco Cecconi 9:24 AM
NPOV is a myth

Edward Saperia 9:24 AM

Helen Armfield 9:25 AM
iow 'fair, accurate and contemporaneous'...

Edward Saperia 9:26 AM
I think the fork, pull, merge model is hard for people to understand, much more conceptually difficult than wikicode is, but arguably is an unavoidable part of the experience. Do you think this can be made more intuitive?

Gianfranco Cecconi 9:27 AM
we're going into philosophy here, all is inevitably subjective and a wikipedia article is always the expression of the group of user being interested in that subject

Edward Saperia 9:27 AM

Helen Armfield 9:29 AM
yup useful

Chris McKenna 9:29 AM
there ins't actually a lot of noise to hear!

Edward Saperia 9:29 AM
I think the fork, pull, merge model is hard for people to understand, much more conceptually difficult than wikicode is, but arguably is an unavoidable part of the experience. Do you think this can be made more intuitive?

Gianfranco Cecconi 9:30 AM
noticed that the learning curve super steep, needs a roadmap for a journey from newbie editor to advanced,with gamification on the way ?

Edward Saperia 9:31 AM
Gianfranco: people are trying this: But often it's built and doesn't go anywhere There are also many, many, many intro guides all over the place: but people rarely find them See also:'t_Mess_with_Texas Peter Feltham left group chat.

Edward Saperia 9:35 AM
The WMF can raise more money for more engineers, but chooses not to, why is that?

Gianfranco Cecconi 9:36 AM
do you think your customers are the users or the editors?

Edward Saperia 9:37 AM
(we have to start wrapping up )

Ramine Tinati 9:39 AM Good article on Readers

Edward Saperia 9:39 AM
Thank you! See you at Wikimania

me 9:40 AM

Edward Saperia 9:41 AM
Thanks very much!

Dr Daniel Smith 9:41 AM

Gianfranco Cecconi 9:41 AM

Helen Armfield 9:41 AM
ty Chris McKenna left group chat. Gianfranco Cecconi left group chat. Stuart Lawson left group chat. Dr Daniel Smith left group chat. Edward Saperia left group chat.