Submissions:2018/A dozen ideas for newcomer-friendly user experiences

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This submission has been accepted for WikiConference North America 2018.



Title
Theme (optional)
Editor Recruitment & Retention
Academic Peer Review option
No
Type of submission
presentation
Author
Sage Ross
E-mail address
sage@wikiedu.org
Wikimedia username
Ragesoss / Sage (Wiki Ed)
Affiliation(s) (optional)
Wiki Education Foundation
Abstract

This will be a whirlwind overview of some of my favorite user experience ideas that could make a difference for newcomer retention.

After 12 years as a Wikipedian, I still think our project is one of the most meaningful and practical ways to make the world a better place in the long term. But most of the things that *work* for Wikipedia as a knowledge community and as a website that keeps you involved over time — newcomers never end up finding those things. And that's a problem that could be solved with the right tools and the right user experience interventions.

From the emails we send, to the tutorials we point newbies toward, to how we send newbies toward the right articles, to the tools for sharing on-wiki accomplishments, to gamification, there are a lot of relatively simple and isolated designs that I'd love to see us test out with newcomers. Many of the ideas I'll cover are shamelessly stolen from other sites, which have far more resources to try out new ideas and find things that work to enage users. Some of them, we've tried before but could do better; others we've never tried at all.

For each of these concepts and ideas, I'll quickly explain and illustrate the idea, then review what related things the Wikimedia ecosystem currently does and what we've tried before. Some of these things could even be tried on a limited scale without any changes to MediaWiki, by an interested chapter or technically inclined editor. But the main purpose will be to spark your imaginations about what we could be doing to make it easier for newcomers to find that happy path towards becoming an active editor.

I'll cover ideas for:

  • The account creation process
  • Drip email campaigns after signup
  • Tools for helping newbies find articles that match their interests and expertise
  • New directions for interactive tutorials
  • Personalization concepts to help new users feel at home on-wiki
  • Better ways of leveraging email
  • Social media tools
  • Gamification
  • ... and more
Length of presentation
30 mins
Special requests

I'll be leaving sometime Sunday to attend the Wikimedia Technical Conference in Portland, so scheduling this for Saturday (ideally), or early Sunday (if necessary) would be appreciated.

Preferred room size
25
Have you presented on this topic previously? If yes, where/when?
No
If you will be incorporating a slidedeck during your presentation, do you agree to upload it to Commons before your session, with a CC-BY-SA 4.0 license, including suitable attribution in the slidedeck for any images used?
Yes
Will you attend WikiConference North America if your submission is not accepted?
Yes

Interested attendees

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  1. Rachel Helps (BYU) (talk) 20:39, 13 August 2018 (UTC)
  2. Gamaliel (talk) 01:50, 14 August 2018 (UTC)
  3. Bawolff (talk) 05:48, 14 August 2018 (UTC)
  4. Jami (Wiki Ed) (talk) 14:33, 14 August 2018 (UTC)
  5. Matthewvetter (talk) 15:07, 14 August 2018 (UTC)
  6. Shalor (Wiki Ed) (talk) 18:14, 14 August 2018 (UTC)
  7. Samantha (Wiki Education) (talk) 17:02, 15 August 2018 (UTC)
  8. RightCowLeftCoast (talk) 23:17, 15 August 2018 (UTC)
  9. Montanabw (talk) 07:07, 16 August 2018 (UTC)
  10. James Hare (talk) 19:23, 19 August 2018 (UTC)
  11. Minh Nguyễn 💬 18:53, 14 September 2018 (UTC)
  12. Doddsam09 (talk) 14:00, 9 October 2018 (UTC)
  13. Another Believer (talk) 14:50, 9 October 2018 (UTC)
  14. Thsmi002 (talk) 15:10, 15 October 2018 (UTC)
  15. Granato31415 (talk) 10:34, 20 October 2018 (EDT)