[Wikimedia-l] Lower page views

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[Wikimedia-l] Lower page views

Anders Wennersten-2
We are seeing a steady decrease of page views to our projects
(Wikipedia). Nov-Dec-Jan it is decreasing in a rate of 5-10%
(year-year), and for big languages like Japanese,  Spanish close to 10%,
or some months even more  [1]

Is there any insights of why this is so? Could it be that Google take
over accesses with their ever better way of showing results direct  (but
then also with showing extracts of Wikipedia articles) . Or that our
interface on mobiles is inferior so we miss accesses from mobiles (now
being 54% of total). Or horror of horror that users look for facts on
all new sites with fake news instead of Wikipedia?

Anders

[1] https://stats.wikimedia.org/EN/TablesPageViewsMonthlyCombined.htm


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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Lower page views

Wojciech Pędzich-2
In order to have at least a partial answer we would need to know how the
pageviews relate to actual database traffic I assume? That would explain
Google and I do not know whether there are any other services worldwide
that use the datastram without actually displaying pages.

Wojciech

2018-01-23 11:55 GMT+01:00 Anders Wennersten <[hidden email]>:

> We are seeing a steady decrease of page views to our projects (Wikipedia).
> Nov-Dec-Jan it is decreasing in a rate of 5-10% (year-year), and for big
> languages like Japanese,  Spanish close to 10%, or some months even more
> [1]
>
> Is there any insights of why this is so? Could it be that Google take over
> accesses with their ever better way of showing results direct  (but then
> also with showing extracts of Wikipedia articles) . Or that our interface
> on mobiles is inferior so we miss accesses from mobiles (now being 54% of
> total). Or horror of horror that users look for facts on all new sites with
> fake news instead of Wikipedia?
>
> Anders
>
> [1] https://stats.wikimedia.org/EN/TablesPageViewsMonthlyCombined.htm
>
>
> _______________________________________________
> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at: https://meta.wikimedia.org/wik
> i/Mailing_lists/Guidelines and https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia-l
> New messages to: [hidden email]
> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Lower page views

jmh649
Our data is only comparable between May 2015 and Dec 2017 so:

Nov/Dec/Jan 15/16 total 15.7, 14.6, 16.2

Nov/Dec/Jan 16/17 total 16.4, 15.5, 17.0

Nov/Dec/Jan 17/18 total 15.3, 14.3, 16.4 (last number an estimate)

So went up from 15/16 to 16/17 and now come down in 17/18 to about were it
was in 15/16. We are definitely not seeing growth in pageviews though which
is concerning.

James



On Tue, Jan 23, 2018 at 5:10 AM, Wojciech Pędzich <[hidden email]>
wrote:

> In order to have at least a partial answer we would need to know how the
> pageviews relate to actual database traffic I assume? That would explain
> Google and I do not know whether there are any other services worldwide
> that use the datastram without actually displaying pages.
>
> Wojciech
>
> 2018-01-23 11:55 GMT+01:00 Anders Wennersten <[hidden email]>:
>
> > We are seeing a steady decrease of page views to our projects
> (Wikipedia).
> > Nov-Dec-Jan it is decreasing in a rate of 5-10% (year-year), and for big
> > languages like Japanese,  Spanish close to 10%, or some months even more
> > [1]
> >
> > Is there any insights of why this is so? Could it be that Google take
> over
> > accesses with their ever better way of showing results direct  (but then
> > also with showing extracts of Wikipedia articles) . Or that our interface
> > on mobiles is inferior so we miss accesses from mobiles (now being 54% of
> > total). Or horror of horror that users look for facts on all new sites
> with
> > fake news instead of Wikipedia?
> >
> > Anders
> >
> > [1] https://stats.wikimedia.org/EN/TablesPageViewsMonthlyCombined.htm
> >
> >
> > _______________________________________________
> > Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at: https://meta.wikimedia.org/wik
> > i/Mailing_lists/Guidelines and https://meta.wikimedia.org/
> wiki/Wikimedia-l
> > New messages to: [hidden email]
> > Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> > <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
> _______________________________________________
> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at: https://meta.wikimedia.org/
> wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines and https://meta.wikimedia.org/
> wiki/Wikimedia-l
> New messages to: [hidden email]
> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
>



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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Lower page views

Isaac Olatunde
Perhaps our readers aren't getting their topics of interest on Wikipedia,
partly because Wikipedia is becoming nothing more than a biographical
encyclopedia.

Regards,

Isaac.

On Tue, Jan 23, 2018 at 5:54 PM, James Heilman <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Our data is only comparable between May 2015 and Dec 2017 so:
>
> Nov/Dec/Jan 15/16 total 15.7, 14.6, 16.2
>
> Nov/Dec/Jan 16/17 total 16.4, 15.5, 17.0
>
> Nov/Dec/Jan 17/18 total 15.3, 14.3, 16.4 (last number an estimate)
>
> So went up from 15/16 to 16/17 and now come down in 17/18 to about were it
> was in 15/16. We are definitely not seeing growth in pageviews though which
> is concerning.
>
> James
>
>
>
> On Tue, Jan 23, 2018 at 5:10 AM, Wojciech Pędzich <[hidden email]>
> wrote:
>
> > In order to have at least a partial answer we would need to know how the
> > pageviews relate to actual database traffic I assume? That would explain
> > Google and I do not know whether there are any other services worldwide
> > that use the datastram without actually displaying pages.
> >
> > Wojciech
> >
> > 2018-01-23 11:55 GMT+01:00 Anders Wennersten <[hidden email]>:
> >
> > > We are seeing a steady decrease of page views to our projects
> > (Wikipedia).
> > > Nov-Dec-Jan it is decreasing in a rate of 5-10% (year-year), and for
> big
> > > languages like Japanese,  Spanish close to 10%, or some months even
> more
> > > [1]
> > >
> > > Is there any insights of why this is so? Could it be that Google take
> > over
> > > accesses with their ever better way of showing results direct  (but
> then
> > > also with showing extracts of Wikipedia articles) . Or that our
> interface
> > > on mobiles is inferior so we miss accesses from mobiles (now being 54%
> of
> > > total). Or horror of horror that users look for facts on all new sites
> > with
> > > fake news instead of Wikipedia?
> > >
> > > Anders
> > >
> > > [1] https://stats.wikimedia.org/EN/TablesPageViewsMonthlyCombined.htm
> > >
> > >
> > > _______________________________________________
> > > Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wik
> > > i/Mailing_lists/Guidelines and https://meta.wikimedia.org/
> > wiki/Wikimedia-l
> > > New messages to: [hidden email]
> > > Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> > > <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
> > _______________________________________________
> > Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at: https://meta.wikimedia.org/
> > wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines and https://meta.wikimedia.org/
> > wiki/Wikimedia-l
> > New messages to: [hidden email]
> > Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> > <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
> >
>
>
>
> --
> James Heilman
> MD, CCFP-EM, Wikipedian
> _______________________________________________
> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at: https://meta.wikimedia.org/
> wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines and https://meta.wikimedia.org/
> wiki/Wikimedia-l
> New messages to: [hidden email]
> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
>
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Lower page views

Shlomi Fish
In reply to this post by Anders Wennersten-2
On Tue, 23 Jan 2018 11:55:07 +0100
Anders Wennersten <[hidden email]> wrote:

> We are seeing a steady decrease of page views to our projects
> (Wikipedia). Nov-Dec-Jan it is decreasing in a rate of 5-10%
> (year-year), and for big languages like Japanese,  Spanish close to 10%,
> or some months even more  [1]
>
> Is there any insights of why this is so? Could it be that Google take
> over accesses with their ever better way of showing results direct  (but
> then also with showing extracts of Wikipedia articles) .

I think this is a likely contributing cause.

> Or that our
> interface on mobiles is inferior so we miss accesses from mobiles (now
> being 54% of total). Or horror of horror that users look for facts on
> all new sites with fake news instead of Wikipedia?
>
> Anders
>
> [1] https://stats.wikimedia.org/EN/TablesPageViewsMonthlyCombined.htm
>
>
> _______________________________________________
> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines and
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia-l New messages to:
> [hidden email] Unsubscribe:
> https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>


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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Lower page views

Christophe Henner-3
All across the web there is a trend in less page views due to the increase
of mobile.

People on mobile tend to click on less links than on desktop. So you can
witness increase reach in users and less pageviews in total.



Le 24 janv. 2018 08:59, "Shlomi Fish" <[hidden email]> a écrit :

> On Tue, 23 Jan 2018 11:55:07 +0100
> Anders Wennersten <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> > We are seeing a steady decrease of page views to our projects
> > (Wikipedia). Nov-Dec-Jan it is decreasing in a rate of 5-10%
> > (year-year), and for big languages like Japanese,  Spanish close to 10%,
> > or some months even more  [1]
> >
> > Is there any insights of why this is so? Could it be that Google take
> > over accesses with their ever better way of showing results direct  (but
> > then also with showing extracts of Wikipedia articles) .
>
> I think this is a likely contributing cause.
>
> > Or that our
> > interface on mobiles is inferior so we miss accesses from mobiles (now
> > being 54% of total). Or horror of horror that users look for facts on
> > all new sites with fake news instead of Wikipedia?
> >
> > Anders
> >
> > [1] https://stats.wikimedia.org/EN/TablesPageViewsMonthlyCombined.htm
> >
> >
> > _______________________________________________
> > Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> > https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines and
> > https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia-l New messages to:
> > [hidden email] Unsubscribe:
> > https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> > <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
>
>
> --
> -----------------------------------------------------------------
> Shlomi Fish       http://www.shlomifish.org/
> http://www.shlomifish.org/humour/ways_to_do_it.html
>
> Right to bear arms? In Soviet Russia, we have right to whole bear.
>     — http://is.gd/EU4puV
>
> Please reply to list if it's a mailing list post - http://shlom.in/reply .
>
> _______________________________________________
> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at: https://meta.wikimedia.org/
> wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines and https://meta.wikimedia.org/
> wiki/Wikimedia-l
> New messages to: [hidden email]
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Lower page views

Frederick Noronha
In reply to this post by Isaac Olatunde
A lot of arbitrary deletions (and Western-centric approaches) seem to have
disincentives some volunteers. At least I can speak for myself.

My conjecture is that if even I feel the Wikipedia, thanks to its many
successes, is increasingly unable to reflect the diversity of our world,
why should readers not feel likewise. And these are your growth areas.

Frederick Noronha
Fredericknoronha
Goa, India
Volunteer since 2006


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On 24 Jan 2018 8:43 am, "Isaac Olatunde" <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Perhaps our readers aren't getting their topics of interest on Wikipedia,
> partly because Wikipedia is becoming nothing more than a biographical
> encyclopedia.
>
> Regards,
>
> Isaac.
>
> On Tue, Jan 23, 2018 at 5:54 PM, James Heilman <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> > Our data is only comparable between May 2015 and Dec 2017 so:
> >
> > Nov/Dec/Jan 15/16 total 15.7, 14.6, 16.2
> >
> > Nov/Dec/Jan 16/17 total 16.4, 15.5, 17.0
> >
> > Nov/Dec/Jan 17/18 total 15.3, 14.3, 16.4 (last number an estimate)
> >
> > So went up from 15/16 to 16/17 and now come down in 17/18 to about were
> it
> > was in 15/16. We are definitely not seeing growth in pageviews though
> which
> > is concerning.
> >
> > James
> >
> >
> >
> > On Tue, Jan 23, 2018 at 5:10 AM, Wojciech Pędzich <[hidden email]>
> > wrote:
> >
> > > In order to have at least a partial answer we would need to know how
> the
> > > pageviews relate to actual database traffic I assume? That would
> explain
> > > Google and I do not know whether there are any other services worldwide
> > > that use the datastram without actually displaying pages.
> > >
> > > Wojciech
> > >
> > > 2018-01-23 11:55 GMT+01:00 Anders Wennersten <[hidden email]
> >:
> > >
> > > > We are seeing a steady decrease of page views to our projects
> > > (Wikipedia).
> > > > Nov-Dec-Jan it is decreasing in a rate of 5-10% (year-year), and for
> > big
> > > > languages like Japanese,  Spanish close to 10%, or some months even
> > more
> > > > [1]
> > > >
> > > > Is there any insights of why this is so? Could it be that Google take
> > > over
> > > > accesses with their ever better way of showing results direct  (but
> > then
> > > > also with showing extracts of Wikipedia articles) . Or that our
> > interface
> > > > on mobiles is inferior so we miss accesses from mobiles (now being
> 54%
> > of
> > > > total). Or horror of horror that users look for facts on all new
> sites
> > > with
> > > > fake news instead of Wikipedia?
> > > >
> > > > Anders
> > > >
> > > > [1] https://stats.wikimedia.org/EN/TablesPageViewsMonthlyCombined
> .htm
> > > >
> > > >
> > > > _______________________________________________
> > > > Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> > https://meta.wikimedia.org/wik
> > > > i/Mailing_lists/Guidelines and https://meta.wikimedia.org/
> > > wiki/Wikimedia-l
> > > > New messages to: [hidden email]
> > > > Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/
> mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> > > > <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
> > > _______________________________________________
> > > Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at: https://meta.wikimedia.org/
> > > wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines and https://meta.wikimedia.org/
> > > wiki/Wikimedia-l
> > > New messages to: [hidden email]
> > > Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> > > <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
> > >
> >
> >
> >
> > --
> > James Heilman
> > MD, CCFP-EM, Wikipedian
> > _______________________________________________
> > Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at: https://meta.wikimedia.org/
> > wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines and https://meta.wikimedia.org/
> > wiki/Wikimedia-l
> > New messages to: [hidden email]
> > Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> > <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
> >
> _______________________________________________
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Lower page views

Tilman Bayer
In reply to this post by Anders Wennersten-2
Hi Anders,

some notes about possible reasons below. As a data analyst in the
Foundation's Readers department, I am tracking our overall pageview
numbers on a monthly basis, which we report to the WMF board alongside
other metrics about editor activity etc. (This is also publicly
available at [1], where this recent pageview decline had already been
remarked upon earlier. What's more, you can check this regularly
updated chart for a visual year-over-year comparison: [2] )

There are probably multiple causes for this year-over-year decrease
observable during the last few months. We know about one of them for
certain: The recent rollout of "page previews"[3] to all but two
Wikipedia versions. This is a new software feature that shows an
excerpt from the linked article when the reader hovers their mouse
over a link. It is designed to save readers the effort of clicking
through certain links. So a decrease in pageviews was fully expected
and is to some extent actually evidence for the feature's success.
According to our A/B tests, this decrease is around 2-4% (of desktop
pageviews). We are on the other hand going to measure this new,
alternative form of reading Wikipedia (i.e. the number of previews
seen) just like we measure pageviews now; there is currently a
technical discussion about this on the Analytics-l mailing list. But
for now it is not yet reflected in our public traffic reports.

Google-referred pageviews did indeed see a year-over-year decrease of
some percent since November (but not before) [4], although this may
still not explain the entire rest of the year-over-year change in
overall pageviews. Regarding Google's Knowledge Panel - i.e. their
Wikipedia extracts that you mentioned - a research paper published
last year [5] has confirmed that it indeed has a negative effect on
our pageviews (which had long been the topic of speculation without
much actual evidence). However, Google already introduced this feature
in 2012, so it has been around over half a decade now and can't be
responsible per se for any recent drops. One would need to look for
more recent changes made by Google. (They actually made a tweak to the
panels for a particular topic category in early November [6], but to
me it seems rather unlikely to have had a noticeable effect on our
overall Google referrals.)

Likewise, the internet-wide multi-year trend towards mobile doesn't
really explain this recent trend in our total (desktop + mobile)
pageviews - as James already pointed out, just a year ago we were
actually seeing a year-over-year *growth* of several percent for an
extended time period.

Generally, keep in mind that while page requests by bots and spiders
are generally filtered out, the pageview numbers still encompass a
smaller amount of other automated views and artefacts, which can also
be responsible for sizable changes. In the data reported to the board
[1] I apply various corrections to filter out some more of these. But
the numbers at stats.wikimedia.org still include them. For example, if
you had looked at the same year-over-year change last summer, you
would have encountered an even bigger year-over-year pageview drop
which however is almost entirely spurious: An issue found and
mitigated in July/August 2016 had artificially inflated desktop
traffic up to 30% during these two months. There is a Phabricator task
to correct this in the publicly available data [7], but it is still
open.

Besides the monthly reports of core metrics at [1] which come with
brief observations about trends, we also publish a more in-depth slide
deck about readership core metrics once per quarter.[8] The next one
will come out in two weeks and I plan to do some further analysis
(e.g. check if the decrease was focused geographically) in preparation
for that; so perhaps we will know a bit more then.



[1] https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Audiences

[2] https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Wikimedia_pageviews_year-over-year_comparison_(since_May_2013).png

[3] https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Page_Previews

[4] http://discovery.wmflabs.org/external/#traffic_by_engine and
http://discovery.wmflabs.org/external/#traffic_summary , select weekly
or monthly smoothing for easier comparison, but keep in mind the
default view includes bots/spiders

[5] Connor McMahon, Isaac Johnson, Brent Hecht: "The Substantial
Interdependence of Wikipedia and Google: A Case Study on the
Relationship Between Peer Production Communities and Information
Technologies" https://www.aaai.org/ocs/index.php/ICWSM/ICWSM17/paper/view/15623
. BTW we are still looking for someone to volunteer a summary or
review of this paper for the Wikimedia Research Newsletter/ Wikipedia
Signpost, so that more community members can learn about this research
- contact me in case you're interested.

[6] https://9to5google.com/2017/11/08/google-search-knowledge-panels-news-publications/

[7] https://phabricator.wikimedia.org/T175870

[8] Cf. last quarter's edition:
https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Wikimedia_Foundation_Readers_metrics_Q1_2017-18_(Jul-Sep_2017).pdf


On Tue, Jan 23, 2018 at 2:55 AM, Anders Wennersten
<[hidden email]> wrote:

>
> We are seeing a steady decrease of page views to our projects (Wikipedia). Nov-Dec-Jan it is decreasing in a rate of 5-10% (year-year), and for big languages like Japanese,  Spanish close to 10%, or some months even more  [1]
>
> Is there any insights of why this is so? Could it be that Google take over accesses with their ever better way of showing results direct  (but then also with showing extracts of Wikipedia articles) .
>
> Or that our interface on mobiles is inferior so we miss accesses from mobiles (now being 54% of total). Or horror of horror that users look for facts on all new sites with fake news instead of Wikipedia?
>
> Anders
>
> [1] https://stats.wikimedia.org/EN/TablesPageViewsMonthlyCombined.htm
>
>
> _______________________________________________
> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at: https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines and https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia-l
> New messages to: [hidden email]
> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l, <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>




--
Tilman Bayer
Senior Analyst
Wikimedia Foundation
IRC (Freenode): HaeB

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Lower page views

Anders Wennersten-2
Many thanks, Tillman,  for your reply and also Christophes. Your
analysis shows there are factors effecting pageviews that needs a
qualified analysis to get to understand the numbers .

I am also happy to see that there are clever people looking into this,
and I was also  very glad to see, in the minutes from the Board meeting
in November (coming out yesterday), that this negative trend was up on
the table and discussed (twice?).

On the other hand I am still concerned. Could it be that our readers is
less interested in our project and/or looking for information from other
sites? We have been used to a steady increase of page views, and even if
there are technical reasons (as you put forward) for very much of the
decline, I still interpret the figures that the fact is it its_not_
increasing as it has been doing. And this even as our project is getting
more substantiated and better quality content, and we still see a
healthy big increase in many ("emerging") versions.

The minutes from November meeting (with its very much expended
content-thanks for that) talks of a general guideline of increasing
employed personnel with 10-20% for the coming three years. Is this for
getting our platform more competitive as users look elsewhere for
answers? But to have the ambition to match the platforms for Google and
Facebook must be futile would it not? Or are we being naive making big
investment for expansion when our "market share" is decreasing (if this
is the case), and where consolidation would be more appropriate?

Would a proper market survey (of how our users look for info on the  net
and over time)  be a thing to be made before committing to an
expansionist three years plan?

Anders


Den 2018-01-25 kl. 07:57, skrev Tilman Bayer:

> Hi Anders,
>
> some notes about possible reasons below. As a data analyst in the
> Foundation's Readers department, I am tracking our overall pageview
> numbers on a monthly basis, which we report to the WMF board alongside
> other metrics about editor activity etc. (This is also publicly
> available at [1], where this recent pageview decline had already been
> remarked upon earlier. What's more, you can check this regularly
> updated chart for a visual year-over-year comparison: [2] )
>
> There are probably multiple causes for this year-over-year decrease
> observable during the last few months. We know about one of them for
> certain: The recent rollout of "page previews"[3] to all but two
> Wikipedia versions. This is a new software feature that shows an
> excerpt from the linked article when the reader hovers their mouse
> over a link. It is designed to save readers the effort of clicking
> through certain links. So a decrease in pageviews was fully expected
> and is to some extent actually evidence for the feature's success.
> According to our A/B tests, this decrease is around 2-4% (of desktop
> pageviews). We are on the other hand going to measure this new,
> alternative form of reading Wikipedia (i.e. the number of previews
> seen) just like we measure pageviews now; there is currently a
> technical discussion about this on the Analytics-l mailing list. But
> for now it is not yet reflected in our public traffic reports.
>
> Google-referred pageviews did indeed see a year-over-year decrease of
> some percent since November (but not before) [4], although this may
> still not explain the entire rest of the year-over-year change in
> overall pageviews. Regarding Google's Knowledge Panel - i.e. their
> Wikipedia extracts that you mentioned - a research paper published
> last year [5] has confirmed that it indeed has a negative effect on
> our pageviews (which had long been the topic of speculation without
> much actual evidence). However, Google already introduced this feature
> in 2012, so it has been around over half a decade now and can't be
> responsible per se for any recent drops. One would need to look for
> more recent changes made by Google. (They actually made a tweak to the
> panels for a particular topic category in early November [6], but to
> me it seems rather unlikely to have had a noticeable effect on our
> overall Google referrals.)
>
> Likewise, the internet-wide multi-year trend towards mobile doesn't
> really explain this recent trend in our total (desktop + mobile)
> pageviews - as James already pointed out, just a year ago we were
> actually seeing a year-over-year *growth* of several percent for an
> extended time period.
>
> Generally, keep in mind that while page requests by bots and spiders
> are generally filtered out, the pageview numbers still encompass a
> smaller amount of other automated views and artefacts, which can also
> be responsible for sizable changes. In the data reported to the board
> [1] I apply various corrections to filter out some more of these. But
> the numbers at stats.wikimedia.org still include them. For example, if
> you had looked at the same year-over-year change last summer, you
> would have encountered an even bigger year-over-year pageview drop
> which however is almost entirely spurious: An issue found and
> mitigated in July/August 2016 had artificially inflated desktop
> traffic up to 30% during these two months. There is a Phabricator task
> to correct this in the publicly available data [7], but it is still
> open.
>
> Besides the monthly reports of core metrics at [1] which come with
> brief observations about trends, we also publish a more in-depth slide
> deck about readership core metrics once per quarter.[8] The next one
> will come out in two weeks and I plan to do some further analysis
> (e.g. check if the decrease was focused geographically) in preparation
> for that; so perhaps we will know a bit more then.
>
>
>
> [1] https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Audiences
>
> [2] https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Wikimedia_pageviews_year-over-year_comparison_(since_May_2013).png
>
> [3] https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Page_Previews
>
> [4] http://discovery.wmflabs.org/external/#traffic_by_engine and
> http://discovery.wmflabs.org/external/#traffic_summary , select weekly
> or monthly smoothing for easier comparison, but keep in mind the
> default view includes bots/spiders
>
> [5] Connor McMahon, Isaac Johnson, Brent Hecht: "The Substantial
> Interdependence of Wikipedia and Google: A Case Study on the
> Relationship Between Peer Production Communities and Information
> Technologies" https://www.aaai.org/ocs/index.php/ICWSM/ICWSM17/paper/view/15623
> . BTW we are still looking for someone to volunteer a summary or
> review of this paper for the Wikimedia Research Newsletter/ Wikipedia
> Signpost, so that more community members can learn about this research
> - contact me in case you're interested.
>
> [6] https://9to5google.com/2017/11/08/google-search-knowledge-panels-news-publications/
>
> [7] https://phabricator.wikimedia.org/T175870
>
> [8] Cf. last quarter's edition:
> https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Wikimedia_Foundation_Readers_metrics_Q1_2017-18_(Jul-Sep_2017).pdf
>
>
> On Tue, Jan 23, 2018 at 2:55 AM, Anders Wennersten
> <[hidden email]> wrote:
>> We are seeing a steady decrease of page views to our projects (Wikipedia). Nov-Dec-Jan it is decreasing in a rate of 5-10% (year-year), and for big languages like Japanese,  Spanish close to 10%, or some months even more  [1]
>>
>> Is there any insights of why this is so? Could it be that Google take over accesses with their ever better way of showing results direct  (but then also with showing extracts of Wikipedia articles) .
>>
>> Or that our interface on mobiles is inferior so we miss accesses from mobiles (now being 54% of total). Or horror of horror that users look for facts on all new sites with fake news instead of Wikipedia?
>>
>> Anders
>>
>> [1] https://stats.wikimedia.org/EN/TablesPageViewsMonthlyCombined.htm
>>
>>
>> _______________________________________________
>> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at: https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines and https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia-l
>> New messages to: [hidden email]
>> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l, <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
>
>
>

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Lower page views

Christophe Henner-3
I will only answer for our discussions during the board meeting.

This goes two fold:
* we have many teams, including in tech and product, that are understaffed.
Without pointing at one specifically, I raised that at work I have team I
can compare to the Foundation's one, on the very same topic, that is 5 FTE
larger. Even though my company isn't, yet! :), as big as the projects are.
So we have to invest to catch up on some debt we may have.
* we need to evolve. The web and the way people access information and
learn have changed in the pas few years. Plus we the way people address
knowledge in the world is very diverse. We have need to work on that. To
fit new usages and cultural differences.

On one hand consolidating on the other hand evolving.

What it actually means, I can't answer yet. There will most probably be
more on that in the annual plan. But I hope the intent is clearer.

(And for the minutes thank Chuck who did an amazing work documenting our
meeting :))

Le 25 janv. 2018 09:14, "Anders Wennersten" <[hidden email]> a
écrit :

> Many thanks, Tillman,  for your reply and also Christophes. Your analysis
> shows there are factors effecting pageviews that needs a qualified analysis
> to get to understand the numbers .
>
> I am also happy to see that there are clever people looking into this, and
> I was also  very glad to see, in the minutes from the Board meeting in
> November (coming out yesterday), that this negative trend was up on the
> table and discussed (twice?).
>
> On the other hand I am still concerned. Could it be that our readers is
> less interested in our project and/or looking for information from other
> sites? We have been used to a steady increase of page views, and even if
> there are technical reasons (as you put forward) for very much of the
> decline, I still interpret the figures that the fact is it its_not_
> increasing as it has been doing. And this even as our project is getting
> more substantiated and better quality content, and we still see a healthy
> big increase in many ("emerging") versions.
>
> The minutes from November meeting (with its very much expended
> content-thanks for that) talks of a general guideline of increasing
> employed personnel with 10-20% for the coming three years. Is this for
> getting our platform more competitive as users look elsewhere for answers?
> But to have the ambition to match the platforms for Google and Facebook
> must be futile would it not? Or are we being naive making big investment
> for expansion when our "market share" is decreasing (if this is the case),
> and where consolidation would be more appropriate?
>
> Would a proper market survey (of how our users look for info on the  net
> and over time)  be a thing to be made before committing to an expansionist
> three years plan?
>
> Anders
>
>
> Den 2018-01-25 kl. 07:57, skrev Tilman Bayer:
>
>> Hi Anders,
>>
>> some notes about possible reasons below. As a data analyst in the
>> Foundation's Readers department, I am tracking our overall pageview
>> numbers on a monthly basis, which we report to the WMF board alongside
>> other metrics about editor activity etc. (This is also publicly
>> available at [1], where this recent pageview decline had already been
>> remarked upon earlier. What's more, you can check this regularly
>> updated chart for a visual year-over-year comparison: [2] )
>>
>> There are probably multiple causes for this year-over-year decrease
>> observable during the last few months. We know about one of them for
>> certain: The recent rollout of "page previews"[3] to all but two
>> Wikipedia versions. This is a new software feature that shows an
>> excerpt from the linked article when the reader hovers their mouse
>> over a link. It is designed to save readers the effort of clicking
>> through certain links. So a decrease in pageviews was fully expected
>> and is to some extent actually evidence for the feature's success.
>> According to our A/B tests, this decrease is around 2-4% (of desktop
>> pageviews). We are on the other hand going to measure this new,
>> alternative form of reading Wikipedia (i.e. the number of previews
>> seen) just like we measure pageviews now; there is currently a
>> technical discussion about this on the Analytics-l mailing list. But
>> for now it is not yet reflected in our public traffic reports.
>>
>> Google-referred pageviews did indeed see a year-over-year decrease of
>> some percent since November (but not before) [4], although this may
>> still not explain the entire rest of the year-over-year change in
>> overall pageviews. Regarding Google's Knowledge Panel - i.e. their
>> Wikipedia extracts that you mentioned - a research paper published
>> last year [5] has confirmed that it indeed has a negative effect on
>> our pageviews (which had long been the topic of speculation without
>> much actual evidence). However, Google already introduced this feature
>> in 2012, so it has been around over half a decade now and can't be
>> responsible per se for any recent drops. One would need to look for
>> more recent changes made by Google. (They actually made a tweak to the
>> panels for a particular topic category in early November [6], but to
>> me it seems rather unlikely to have had a noticeable effect on our
>> overall Google referrals.)
>>
>> Likewise, the internet-wide multi-year trend towards mobile doesn't
>> really explain this recent trend in our total (desktop + mobile)
>> pageviews - as James already pointed out, just a year ago we were
>> actually seeing a year-over-year *growth* of several percent for an
>> extended time period.
>>
>> Generally, keep in mind that while page requests by bots and spiders
>> are generally filtered out, the pageview numbers still encompass a
>> smaller amount of other automated views and artefacts, which can also
>> be responsible for sizable changes. In the data reported to the board
>> [1] I apply various corrections to filter out some more of these. But
>> the numbers at stats.wikimedia.org still include them. For example, if
>> you had looked at the same year-over-year change last summer, you
>> would have encountered an even bigger year-over-year pageview drop
>> which however is almost entirely spurious: An issue found and
>> mitigated in July/August 2016 had artificially inflated desktop
>> traffic up to 30% during these two months. There is a Phabricator task
>> to correct this in the publicly available data [7], but it is still
>> open.
>>
>> Besides the monthly reports of core metrics at [1] which come with
>> brief observations about trends, we also publish a more in-depth slide
>> deck about readership core metrics once per quarter.[8] The next one
>> will come out in two weeks and I plan to do some further analysis
>> (e.g. check if the decrease was focused geographically) in preparation
>> for that; so perhaps we will know a bit more then.
>>
>>
>>
>> [1] https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Audiences
>>
>> [2] https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Wikimedia_pageviews_
>> year-over-year_comparison_(since_May_2013).png
>>
>> [3] https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Page_Previews
>>
>> [4] http://discovery.wmflabs.org/external/#traffic_by_engine and
>> http://discovery.wmflabs.org/external/#traffic_summary , select weekly
>> or monthly smoothing for easier comparison, but keep in mind the
>> default view includes bots/spiders
>>
>> [5] Connor McMahon, Isaac Johnson, Brent Hecht: "The Substantial
>> Interdependence of Wikipedia and Google: A Case Study on the
>> Relationship Between Peer Production Communities and Information
>> Technologies" https://www.aaai.org/ocs/index
>> .php/ICWSM/ICWSM17/paper/view/15623
>> . BTW we are still looking for someone to volunteer a summary or
>> review of this paper for the Wikimedia Research Newsletter/ Wikipedia
>> Signpost, so that more community members can learn about this research
>> - contact me in case you're interested.
>>
>> [6] https://9to5google.com/2017/11/08/google-search-knowledge-pa
>> nels-news-publications/
>>
>> [7] https://phabricator.wikimedia.org/T175870
>>
>> [8] Cf. last quarter's edition:
>> https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Wikimedia_Foundation
>> _Readers_metrics_Q1_2017-18_(Jul-Sep_2017).pdf
>>
>>
>> On Tue, Jan 23, 2018 at 2:55 AM, Anders Wennersten
>> <[hidden email]> wrote:
>>
>>> We are seeing a steady decrease of page views to our projects
>>> (Wikipedia). Nov-Dec-Jan it is decreasing in a rate of 5-10% (year-year),
>>> and for big languages like Japanese,  Spanish close to 10%, or some months
>>> even more  [1]
>>>
>>> Is there any insights of why this is so? Could it be that Google take
>>> over accesses with their ever better way of showing results direct  (but
>>> then also with showing extracts of Wikipedia articles) .
>>>
>>> Or that our interface on mobiles is inferior so we miss accesses from
>>> mobiles (now being 54% of total). Or horror of horror that users look for
>>> facts on all new sites with fake news instead of Wikipedia?
>>>
>>> Anders
>>>
>>> [1] https://stats.wikimedia.org/EN/TablesPageViewsMonthlyCombined.htm
>>>
>>>
>>> _______________________________________________
>>> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at: https://meta.wikimedia.org/wik
>>> i/Mailing_lists/Guidelines and https://meta.wikimedia.org/wik
>>> i/Wikimedia-l
>>> New messages to: [hidden email]
>>> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
>>> <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
>>>
>>
>>
>>
>>
> _______________________________________________
> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at: https://meta.wikimedia.org/wik
> i/Mailing_lists/Guidelines and https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia-l
> New messages to: [hidden email]
> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
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