[wiki] - A new users experience with ubuntu doc community

Previous Topic Next Topic
 
classic Classic list List threaded Threaded
3 messages Options
Reply | Threaded
Open this post in threaded view
|

[wiki] - A new users experience with ubuntu doc community

Julien Tremblay
Gunnar Hjalmarsson said:
 Thanks for your application.

I'm not ready to approve you as a member at this point, since your
Ubuntu history is unknown to me. Please feel free to join our mailing
list <https://lists.ubuntu.com/mailman/listinfo/ubuntu-doc> or let us
know otherwise who you are and what you would like to contribute with.
Then, once we know each other a bit, you may want to reapply.

--
Julien Tremblay McLellan

--
ubuntu-doc mailing list
[hidden email]
https://lists.ubuntu.com/mailman/listinfo/ubuntu-doc
Reply | Threaded
Open this post in threaded view
|

Re: [wiki] - A new users experience with ubuntu doc community

Julien Tremblay
Hello Ubuntu-docs team!

My name is Julien and I am new around here. I am writing this e-mail to start a discussion of default wiki permissions policies in 2019.

First, I will present my supported argument. Following that, in section 2 I will offer my thoughts and experience on trying to contribute to the wiki as a new user. I figured data first, opinions after.

1) From a number's point of view

The logical case for changing the contribution settings and culture in regards to the Ubuntu wiki, is to take a look at Abandoned pages and page hits.

If we look at the most popular pages, via https://wiki.ubuntu.com/PageHits only 10 pages, have over 1000 hits. High traffic and critical pages must be protected from vandalism, that is self-evident.

However, the vast majority of wikipages get  below 100 hits if not 10 hits, which include, pages such as newletters, meeting notes and more which are correctly protected.

However, they are also a lot of regular pages, that are not highly sensitive,  such as https://wiki.ubuntu.com/EyeCandy that should be editable by default, or with the least amount of friction possible.

Monitoring the wiki is easy, and a solution would be to have minimal oversight of https://wiki.ubuntu.com/RecentChanges. It is easily manageable by one person since the volume of edits is about 10 page edits per day.

Now onto my experience and the cause for this e-mail.


2) My experience on-boarding and joining the Ubuntu-docs community.

I debated, writing this e-mail, as I felt it was a poor first introduction, to this community. Yet I know, Ubuntu-docs is an open place, to bring new ideas and is open to user feedback.

I want to start by expressing, that I came across the opportunity to give back to Ubuntu as a total newbie by lounging in the IRC channels username: julientm and having someone suggest ubuntu documentation as a great place to get started, since, in that user's opinion the Ubuntu wiki had room for contributions.

As I navigated to the wiki I tried to find a random page to edit and get my feet wet, However I, was restricted by the default setting, which i found odd for a wiki. As the natural wiki workflows are the opposite, that is.

Most wikis are open to user input by default and restricting editing access as needed. Looking at some of my favorite wikis, such wikipedia and archwiki who allow default user contributions, without approval. I was perplexed by this choice.

I thought it strange, but then, followed the Ubuntu-docs on-boarding process requesting access, on launchpad, yet, was denied because I did not introduce myself in the mailing list. While I see this step as  good community building, it made me question the necessity of a written introduction as required and made me question the leadership and the future of Ubuntu wiki.

It gave me the impression that the Ubuntu-docs leadership was limiting the wiki's potential with restrictive on-boarding policies and that is in part why the wiki seems rather inactive for a project of this size.

This experience raised some additional concerns in terms of accessibility and universal access for Non-English speakers, having to introduce oneself to the community in English rather then editing an article, can be overwhelming.

Letting Non-Native speakers edit wiki pages, while, they do not have the best grammar to offer. It still offers a way for anyone to be coached and see their grammar mistakes, when a native speaker spots grammatical errors. Allowing them to contribute would let internal users develop key points, that are useful to get the ball rolling.

I also found that having to introduce oneself to the community adds to a long process that will eliminate many user contributions. Having to create a launchpad is reasonable, but waiting for manual approval to edit the wiki from admins seems excessive. In addition to manual approval, the admins are requesting new users send an intro to the mailing list.

Having all these steps naturally alienates users who want contribute minor edits such as correcting a typo, outdated material, and dead links. Vital and important contributions for the user experience.

I want to add that, after having created a launchpad account and updating my profile information. I requested to join the ubuntu-doc team, but, was denied, as I had not introduced myself to the mailing-list. The reason given was the my Ubuntu history was unknown, yet, I never had a chance to provide any history, to make it known. Is this really the right approach? Why not trust users, to be viable members of the community as a default, rather, then signalling distrust for new users.

If Archwiki, or Wikipedia, can leave the vast majority of it's pages open to user input, to the point that users can edit without verification or an account, why can Ubuntu not dedicate itself to opening it's documentation to greater public participation?

Granted they use Mediawiki and not MoinMoin Wiki Engine, but, MoinMoin seems to offer the same reversion functionality, that is used to correct vandalized pages.

This is the first time I write to a mailing list. I am looking to be properly educated on this matter, as I am a new user who has not maintained large projects and my credentials are solely as a user and his experience. If I violated any custom, please forgive my ignorance.

Thank you for all the great work. I love Ubuntu and hope to be able to join the ubuntu-doc team and encourage stimulating discussion.


--
Julien Tremblay McLellan
IRC handle:julientm
15147460536
[hidden email]
Montreal, Canada
PS Sorry for sending an empty email prior to this one. I should know better then to edit my mail with all the required fields filled in.

________________________________
From: ubuntu-doc <[hidden email]> on behalf of Julien Tremblay <[hidden email]>
Sent: Tuesday, April 23, 2019 1:05
To: [hidden email]
Subject: [wiki] - A new users experience with ubuntu doc community

The reply I got when trying to join the community.
Gunnar Hjalmarsson said:
 Thanks for your application.

I'm not ready to approve you as a member at this point, since your
Ubuntu history is unknown to me. Please feel free to join our mailing
list <https://lists.ubuntu.com/mailman/listinfo/ubuntu-doc> or let us
know otherwise who you are and what you would like to contribute with.
Then, once we know each other a bit, you may want to reapply.

--
Julien Tremblay McLellan

--
ubuntu-doc mailing list
[hidden email]
https://lists.ubuntu.com/mailman/listinfo/ubuntu-doc
--
ubuntu-doc mailing list
[hidden email]
https://lists.ubuntu.com/mailman/listinfo/ubuntu-doc
Reply | Threaded
Open this post in threaded view
|

RE: [wiki] - A new users experience with ubuntu doc community

Doug Smythies
On 2019.04.23 02:22 Julien Tremblay wrote:

> Hello Ubuntu-docs team!
> My name is Julien and I am new around here.

Hi Julien. Welcome.

> I am writing this e-mail to start a discussion of default wiki permissions policies in 2019.

Ugh ya, we (or at least I) don't want to discuss this anymore.
We basically didn't have any choice here, as bad people with bad intentions were wreaking havoc
on the wiki pages daily.

Please review the e-mail archives for June 2016:
https://lists.ubuntu.com/archives/ubuntu-doc/2016-June/thread.html
see several branches of: "Current wiki access status"
in particular:
https://lists.ubuntu.com/archives/ubuntu-doc/2016-June/019943.html

... [snip]...

> Monitoring the wiki is easy, and a solution would be to have minimal
> oversight of https://wiki.ubuntu.com/RecentChanges. It is easily
> manageable by one person since the volume of edits is about 10 page edits per day.

I am not a wiki person (I mainly contribute to the serverguide), and can
not comment if such granularity of access control is even possible, let
alone practical.

... [snip]...

> I debated, writing this e-mail, as I felt it was a poor
> first introduction, to this community. Yet I know, Ubuntu-docs
> is an open place, to bring new ideas and is open to user feedback.

Agreed. For my part of it, the delay in my reply is because
I have other priorities for my linux volunteer hours at the moment.

> I want to start by expressing, that I came across the opportunity to
> give back to Ubuntu as a total newbie by lounging in the IRC channels
> username: julientm and having someone suggest ubuntu documentation as
> a great place to get started, since, in that user's opinion the Ubuntu
> wiki had room for contributions.
>
> As I navigated to the wiki I tried to find a random page to edit and
> get my feet wet, However I, was restricted by the default setting, which
> i found odd for a wiki. As the natural wiki workflows are the opposite, that is.

Agreed, but it we didn't find a viable alternative to restricting access.
(see above).

> Most wikis are open to user input by default and restricting editing access
> as needed. Looking at some of my favorite wikis, such wikipedia and archwiki
> who allow default user contributions, without approval. I was perplexed by this choice.

> I thought it strange, but then, followed the Ubuntu-docs on-boarding
> process requesting access, on launchpad, yet, was denied because I
> did not introduce myself in the mailing list.

You were denied because we did not know you and you only joined launchpad a month ago.
(not that launchpad join date actually matters. We have had bad guys join and sit dormant
for a period, then wreak havoc.) But yes, it was suggesting that you also join this e-mail list.
 
> While I see this step as  good community building, it made me question the necessity of
> a written introduction as required and made me question the leadership and the future of Ubuntu wiki.

We know the current situation is not great for on-boarding, and we do wonder how many
potential good contributors have simply given up.

> It gave me the impression that the Ubuntu-docs leadership was limiting the wiki's
> potential with restrictive on-boarding policies and that is in part why the wiki
> seems rather inactive for a project of this size.

Yes, there is a lack of subject matter expert contributions in general.

... [snip]...

> ... MoinMoin seems to offer the same reversion functionality, that is used to correct vandalized pages.

Yes, but even that work completely overwhelmed volunteers, back when access was unrestricted.

> This is the first time I write to a mailing list.

Thanks.

> I am looking to be properly educated on this matter,
> as I am a new user who has not maintained large projects and my credentials are solely as a user and
> his experience. If I violated any custom, please forgive my ignorance.

> Thank you for all the great work. I love Ubuntu and hope to be able to join
> the ubuntu-doc team and encourage stimulating discussion.

For wiki editing you only need to be a member of the "Ubuntu Wiki Editors" team,
and I see you have applied for membership in that team.
https://launchpad.net/~ubuntu-wiki-editors

... Doug


--
ubuntu-doc mailing list
[hidden email]
https://lists.ubuntu.com/mailman/listinfo/ubuntu-doc