Since 2008, the Wikimedia Foundation Communications team has used the Wikimedia blog to share updates and accomplishments from the Foundation, including software releases, updates to critical infrastructure and the monthly reports for all the departments. Just as significantly, we’ve used the platform to showcase the work done by some of the tens of thousands of Wikimedia volunteers from all around the globe – whether it’s software improvements, editathons or the distribution of financial resources.
We recently surpassed 1000 posts on the blog, and hope the material we’ve covered has been helpful and interesting to our readers, but we have much more that we’d like to accomplish with this platform.
So far the blog has functioned as a good chronology of aspects of the Wikimedia movement, with quite a significant focus on the Foundation. Over the last year, we’ve substantially expanded the coverage of the volunteers who contribute to the projects and we’ve showcased the great work they do, from profiles of Wikimedia Commons photographers, to interviews with editors and contributors on the many different language Wikipedias and sister projects. We’ve expanded multi-lingual content and we’ve recently begun to integrate video content, with interviews that were produced at Wikimania 2012.
Also in 2012, we have opened up the blog to guest contributors from around the movement. A number of Wikimedia chapters and enterprising volunteers have contributed articles about the work they are doing to raise awareness of the movement. We’d very much like to see this trend continue and we’d like you to feel empowered to contribute content related to the Wikimedia projects. You can draft blog posts at the blog portal on Meta-Wiki and you can reach out to any of the blog team through that page, through email, or through our talk pages on the wiki.
With the increase in published posts, we’re seeing significant limitations of our current blog design and functionality. The standard chronological blog format makes it hard to curate and feature articles, especially when we have many interesting posts per day. The Communications team is working with designers from several departments at the Foundation on a complete renovation of how we communicate movement successes to the world, who does it, and how we display that work. We’ll be transitioning to a format that more closely resembles online magazines, and we are integrating design ideas that come from the work of our mobile and editor engagement teams.
We’d like our readers to be a part of these changes and we’ll announce various ways you can participate as we move forward. As a first step, you can take the survey and help us improve the design, function and processes around the blog. With this survey, we hope to better understand how readers engage with the blog and what you’d like to see change.
Please fill out as many questions as you’re comfortable with. If you have more to say, or wish we had asked other questions, feel free to leave your comments and suggestions below.
(A special thanks to Oliver Keyes, Community Liaison, Product Development, for his work in drafting the survey)
For the Wikimedia Foundation blog team:
Matthew Roth, Global Communications Manager
Tilman Bayer, Senior Operations Analyst (Movement Communications)