WikiProject Military history stands behind one-fifth of English Wikipedia’s featured articles

Photo by Alfred T. Palmer, public domain.

Featured articles are considered the pinnacle of article evolution on Wikipedia—”the best articles Wikipedia has to offer.” It may take several months of community assessment for an article to get this status. Last month, WikiProject Military history found that they had surpassed a long-held project goal of one thousand featured articles. This number makes up nearly 20% of all the featured articles on the English Wikipedia.

The “WikiProject,” or a group of editors who formally organize themselves around a topic, includes task forces that help organize collaboration on particular military history topics. These task forces work on certain topics such as Military aviation, Intelligence, etc., based on nations and regions such as African, Asian, Ottoman, then periods and conflicts such as the American Civil War, Crusades, or Classical Warfare.

Most of the project’s featured articles go through an internal A-class review process, which helps the editor prepare their article to get a featured article star. The project’s contest department gives twenty-six points to every editor that works on a featured article from scratch. These points sum up to a monthly and annual Military history writing contest.

For newcomers, the project academy presents several guideline pages to help write a featured article, understand the FA criteria, write a large-scope article and more. And when a member writes a featured or an A-class article, they get featured in the Project’s monthly newsletter, The Bugle.

Other ways to keep the members motivated include the annual awards such as the Military historian of the year, Military history newcomer of the year, WikiChevrons, and other titles.

Started as WikiProject Battles in 2003, widening its scope, the project eventually settled at WikiProject Military History. Since its inception, the project has remained one of the largest and most active projects on the English Wikipedia.

Krishna Chaitanya Velaga, Coordinator, WikiProject Military History

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Galician Wikipedia celebrates day of literature with a painting contest

Galician Literature Day is an annual public holiday observed on 17 May, where the locals of Galicia, Spain, celebrate their language, literature and writers. For the upcoming year, the Galician Wikipedia community has decided to celebrate the day by holding a painting competition to draw the author of the year for 2018: María Victoria Moreno.

“It is difficult, sometimes, to find images to illustrate Wikipedia articles, especially portraits of people who died in the past eighty years.” says user Elisardojm, administrator on the Galician Wikipedia and one of the competition organizers. “The photos available are usually copyrighted… We would like to promote other ways for people to contribute to the Wikimedia movement.”

To join the competition, a participant needs to do a portrait of the honored writer in the Galician Literature Day for 2018, María Victoria Moreno, and share their work under a free license. Works should be uploaded to the relevant category on Wikimedia Commons by 31 December 2017. “It can be a drawing or any other form of art,” says Elisardojm. “The works uploaded later than the end of December will be appreciated but will not be considered for the competition.”

User HombreDHojalata from the Galician Wikipedia came up with the idea for a contest, which was then carried through to reality by Elisardojm and other Wikipedians in the community. The volunteer team is now working on promoting the contest using local media in Galicia and sharing it with art groups on the internet.

In brief

by Македонец, CC BY-SA 4.0.

Collaboration between Brazil and Macedonia to share photos from Wiki Loves Contests: Last month, the Wikimedia Communities in Brazil and Macedonia held two exhibitions for the winning photos in Wiki Loves Contests in 2017. The Brazil Wikimedia Community held an exhibition for the winning photos in Macedonia and Shared Knowledge group in Macedonia organized the exhibition for Brazilian photos. All photos had QR codes leading to Wikipedia articles that explain the monument in picture.

Call for volunteers for the Wikimania program committee: The committee will help put together the program and schedule for Wikimania 2018, the annual conference of the Wikimedia movement, held on July 18-22 in Cape Town, South Africa. Committee member responsibilities include helping promote the call for presentations, recruiting speakers, and reviewing program submissions. Review dates this year will be in the March-April timeframe. More details on Wikimedia-l.

FDC update: The funds dissemination committee of the Wikimedia Foundation has announced the elected position holders for this year. Bishakha Datta is the new committee Chair while Liam Wyatt is the Vice-Chair and Katherine Bavage is the new committee Secretary. More details on Wikimedia-l. Also last weekend, the committee met in Madrid to assess and provide recommendations on the Annual Plan Grants provided by the community individuals and groups. More on meta.

Metrics meeting for November and December: Since the Wikimedia Metrics and Activities meetings for November and December fall on popular holiday weeks in the United States and other parts of the world, organizers will combine both in one meeting that will be held on Thursday, 14 December, from 6:00 – 7:00 PM UTC (11 AM – 12 PM PT). More about Metrics meetings on meta.

Wishlist survey 2017 starts: The Foundation’s Community Tech team builds features and makes changes that active Wikimedia contributors want, and the Wishlist Survey sets the team’s agenda for the year. The third annual Community Wishlist Survey started early this month and the vote on proposals will start on 27 November. More details on meta.

First local WikiConference in Italy: Trento in Italy hosted the first local WikiConference for the Wikimedia movement in the country. The conference was an opportunity for the editor community to attend workshops on the use of templates and internet bots, discuss topics of concern like the gender gap on Wikipedia and providing safe spaces for refugees online.

Milestones and and anniversaries: This month, the Latvian Wikipedia celebrated article number 80,000, while the Albanian Wikipedia celebrated their 70,000th one. On a different side of the world, the Maithili Wikipedia community held an event to celebrate the Maithili Wikipedia day. Congratulations to all involved!

Samir Elsharbaty, Writer, Communications
Wikimedia Foundation