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Year: 2009 Week: 27 Number: 110
An independent internal news bulletin
for the members of the Wikimedia community
=== Technical news ===
[Michael Jackson Kills WP] - Michael Jackson, the "King of Pop", died
this week and nearly took Wikipedia down with him (as well as many
other websites). Wikimedia sites were unresponsive for a whole due to
the large number of page hits. The Michael Jackson article got nearly
6 *million* hits on June 26, more than the Main Page.
In the evening of the 2th July (UTC) Wikipedia&Co was virtually down
because of power outage of the European servers. The remaining servers
choked on the additional traffic routed to them.
http://stats.grok.se/en/200906/Michael_Jackson -- page hit statistics
http://techblog.wikimedia.org/2009/06/current-events/ -- techblog
explanation of issues
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/News_of_Michael_Jackson's_death_overloads_Internet_sites_and_sparks_hoaxes -- wikinews
http://techblog.wikimedia.org/2009/07/power-outage-in-wikimedias-european-servers/ -- wiki
[Usability] - the Usability team has released its first set of
usability improvement (the "acai" release) for testing. As of press
time, the new "vector" skin has been made available on all wikis for
users who select it from their preferences, please help test the new
http://techblog.wikimedia.org/2009/06/first-usability-release-is-coming-up-soon/ -- blog
http://usability.wikimedia.org/wiki/Releases#Acai -- "acai" release
[Usability BIS] - one aspect is already live by default; the new
design of the search results. Just use the internal search and see.
=== Request for help ===
[Fundraising 2009] - the Wikimedia Foundation is preparing for its
next fundraiser and would like feedback from the community on some of
the pages it has developed so far. In addition to the creation of a
new survey that they would like comments on, the Foundation is also
trying to enhance the visibility of the donate button. The new buttons
will be placed on the skin and will be viewable on every page. There
are also several design proposals that need community input!
blog post about it
http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Fundraising_2009/Survey -- survey
=== Foundation ===
[Licensing] - The "licensing update" changes have now been rolled out
to all languages and projects, with the new license being featured in
the footer and new interface items to translate for your wiki.
http://blog.wikimedia.org/2009/06/30/licensing-update-rolled-out-in-all-wikimedia-wikis/ -- blog
http://tinyurl.com/LU-interface-trans -- betawiki trans interface
[Board election] - Once again an election for the board of trustees of
the Wikimedia Foundation is coming up. It is for 3 seats this time.
But before there can be elections there must be someone to vote for.
Submissions of candidacy are open between 6th and 20th July.
[New grant: Commons] - the Wikimedia Foundation was just awarded a
US$300,000 grant that will research problems with and design new
tools/fix current tools for uploading files to the global Wikimedia
image repository, the Wikimedia Commons.
http://blog.wikimedia.org/2009/07/02/ford-foundation-awards-300k-grant-for-wikimedia-commons/ -- blog
http://wikimediafoundation.org/wiki/Press_releases/Wikimedia_Ford_Foundation_Grant_July_2009 -- press
http://wikimediafoundation.org/wiki/File:WMF_Ford_Multimedia_Participation_Project.pdf -- full grant
[Job: "Bookshelf"] - as a further development from the "Scribus
operator" volunteer position noted in Wikizine a few months ago, a new
job opening has been posted for project manager of the "Bookshelf"
project. The "Bookshelf" project strives to develop a slate of basic
educational materials (print, online and video) to attract new authors
and editors to Wikipedia.
volunteer position, scribus operator
=== Community ===
[David Rohde] - it turns out that Wikipedia, along with tons of other
media outlets, kept the kidnapping of journalist David Rohde out of
its article on him. This has caused a few Wikipedians and Wikipedia
critics to note this and either scream censorship or just point out
the fact that it was unsourced information that could help save
someone's life by erring on the side of caution.
http://features.csmonitor.com/innovation/2009/06/29/was-wikipedia-correct-to-censor-news-of-david-rohdes-capture/ -- blog post about
http://yro.slashdot.org/story/09/06/29/2120257/Wikipedia-Censored-To-Protect-Captive-Reporter -- slashdot
[A reliable article?] - A new tool tries to help make scholars feel
better about using Wikipedia by telling how reliable an article seems
to be by using "wikibu-points". These points are based on statistical
criteria and represent only possibilities, the creators hope that
warnings will help people think to look at the discussion pages or
article history. Wikibu is only available on the German Wikipedia at
http://www.wikibu.ch/ -- site/tool
mailing list post
[EN Wikibooks] - is now using Meta's unified "user language" template.
It will enable greater collaboration on the textbooks that teach
[enwp AFD] - An interesting AFD (deletion discussion) on the English
Wikipedia was recently closed -- it resulted in the deletion of 4077
articles, probably the most ever from a single AFD on enwp!
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Articles_for_deletion/Anybot's_algae_articles -- deletion
=== Media ===
[No tourists] - an article by a New Zealand newspaper tells that
"references to gang violence and crime on Palmerston North's Wikipedia
page have seen overseas investors and professionals shy away from the
=== Stats ===
[bn.wp] - The Bengali Wikipedia (bn) has reached 20,000 articles.
-- 20,000th article
=== Other news ===
[Who owns transit schedules?] - Only marginally related but
interesting nevertheless, the subject of a recent battle has been
pretty simple: who owns the copyright to bus arrival times? Public
transportation agencies are trying to assert that they own the times
and stop people from making iPhone apps (and similar items) off of the
content, so that they can do it themselves and charge people. Not
very FOSS of them!
[Wikizine@Foundation-l] - Wikizine will now be featured on
foundation-l too! Thanks to Milos for proposing it and the list
members for agreeing.
[Firefox 3.5] - ... is finally out. This main stream browser supports
natively Ogg Theora and Ogg Vorbis, the media file formats our
projects are using.
=== Quote ===
"Programming languages are like cats. It is easier to get a new cat
than to get an old cat fixed." -- Douglas Crockford
Editor(s): Casey, Walter
Thanks to: Rand, Steve Bennett, Brion, Domas, Nando, Erik, Belayet,
Naoko, Chad, Kul, Jay, Signpost, Adrignola, rainman-sr
Contact: reply or http://report.wikizine.org
Wikizine.org makes no guarantee of accuracy,
validity and especially but not limited to,
correct grammar and spelling. Satisfaction is not guaranteed.
Wikizine.org is published by [[meta:user:Walter]].
Wikizine is a irregular publication as long as there is noteworthy
news (and time)
Content is available under the GNU Free Documentation License
and also the Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 Generic License
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