As the Twenty-First Century drags on, more and more aspects of our daily lives are dominated by digital gizmos, and more and more common tasks are automated. So, then, why not Wikipedia? In recent years, automated programs, also known as robots or “bots,” have demonstrated that they can sign comments left on talk pages, revert vandalism, check for copyright violations on new pages, add or remove protection templates, and archive talk pages more expeditiously, with fewer errors, and with more civility and less drama than the human editors. Should we be looking forward to the day when Wikipedia will be fully automated, where bots will trawl the net for news sources and automatically include every last tidbit of gossipy trivia about celebrities or fictional television characters, rendering Wikipedia’s human editors entirely unnecessary?
Ah, but I can hear the objections already. Can bots be programmed to be snarky and disingenuous? Will they be able
…continue reading Wikipedia: a Bot’s-Eye View
By Andreas Kolbe
With contributions from Jake S, Nathalie Collida and Triptych
The Wikimedia movement’s 10th Wikimania conference at the London Barbican (6–10 August 2014) concluded on Sunday. Two years ago, when discussing the London bid for the event, Jimmy Wales had confidently stated,
I spend a lot of time in London, and believe I can help significantly with ensuring a well-funded conference at a great venue, with VIP speakers (academics, politicians, media, entertainment). I have extensive and good relationships with the UK press and believe I can help land great press coverage for the conference. I’m a big fan of this bid.–Jimbo Wales (talk) 16:36, 27 July 2012 (UTC)
Unfortunately for Jimbo, those extensive and good relationships weren’t quite enough to overcome the healthy skepticism of the UK press towards his almost blatant contempt for the EU’s recent “Right to be Forgotten” ruling. This culminated in
…continue reading Wikimania 2014
A couple of years ago a bored teenager took a couple of photos of himself and posted them to Wikimedia Commons. The first photo was of his bare legs, the second photo was of his nipple. Then for some reason, probably because he’d grown up a bit, he wished that those images weren’t on online any more. At the beginning of January 2012 he made a formal request asking Wikipedia commons remove the photos for him. Simply enough, you may think, but this is Wikimedia Commons, and things are never simple there.
Within a twinkling of an eye it was declared that photos of teen boy nipples are highly educational – request denied. But not before another user “VolodyA! V Anarhist”, who in 2000 was convicted of child pornography offences, had told him that:
Without any other information apart from “please delete” i
…continue reading Wikimedia needs your nipples