Submissions/Collaboration across many languages - the death anomaly case study

From Wikimania 2013 • Hong Kong

This is an accepted submission for Wikimania 2013.

Submission no.
Subject no.
Collaboration across many languages - the death anomaly case study
WereSpielChequers (original author); currently arranging a new presenter
From the United Kingdom
E-mail address;
Personal homepages

The Death anomaly project is one of Wikipedia's many quality improvement projects. It isn't an unusually large or important quality improvement project, but it is fairly unusual in working across many different language versions of Wikipedia - including some of our smaller projects as well as two of our largest. This presentation will explain what the project is and how it works, give some examples of what this project has achieved, explain some of the problems that it has experienced and also discuss how this sort of approach could potentially be used to assist in other areas of the project.

Detailed proposal

Across our nearly 300 language versions of Wikipedia we have over a million biographies of living people, and on current estimates most of these people will die this century. As a matter of respect it is important that our articles on people are correct as to whether that person is currently alive or dead. So we have a substantial ongoing maintenance task to keep our articles on these people up to date, and we can't rely on the volunteers who originally wrote such articles as by the time the subject dies the original creator may no longer be active.

The Death anomalies project is a cross wiki project using data from around eighty language versions of Wikipedia and with teams on about a dozen languages requesting reports for their languages. The vast majority of corrections are on the dozen languages currently requesting reports via the m:Death anomalies table, as most of the time we are updating biographies from living to dead rather than the reverse. But many other language versions have also benefitted from corrections made as a result of this project.

This presentation will cover:

  • What the Death anomalies project is and why we need it.
  • How it benefits Wikipedia
  • How it uses the intrawiki links and birth and death categories to identify anomalies where the article on your wikipedia says someone is alive but the article in another language says they are dead.
  • What we can do about the 200 language versions that we don't yet have birth and death categories for.
  • What are some of the other things that we could potentially do with the same sort of approach.
WikiCulture and Community
Length of presentation
25 minutes
Language of presentation
Will you attend Wikimania if your submission is not accepted?
WereSpielChequers is no longer able to attend;
Slides or further information (optional)
Will be provided some time before the conference
Special requests
Preferably not at the same time as any session related to Wikimania scholarships

Interested attendees

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  1. Daniel Mietchen - WiR/OS (talk) 21:47, 23 January 2013 (UTC)[reply]
  2. Jeromy-Yu Chan, COIC (talk) 14:15, 30 January 2013 (UTC)[reply]
  3. ShenMi MeiRen (talk) 08:31, 6 February 2013 (UTC)[reply]
  4. Slashme (talk) 16:17, 7 April 2013 (UTC)[reply]
  5. sats (talk) 08:18, 28 April 2013 (UTC)[reply]
  6. Heard a lot about this already; would like to hear more. CT Cooper · talk 23:20, 28 April 2013 (UTC)[reply]
  7. 05:17, 1 May 2013 (UTC)[reply]
  8. Iopensa (talk) 15:32, 1 May 2013 (UTC)[reply]
  9. Multichill (talk) 14:07, 4 May 2013 (UTC)[reply]
  10. Add your username here.