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Wikisource News (articles)
Wikisource News
May 2007 report
by Pathoschild, 01 June 2007


Wikisource in Tamil created, Old English closed[edit]

  • The Tamil Wikisource was created at this month. It was considered by the language subcommittee on April 27, approved May 07, and created the next day. The months-long delay after its proposal caused some controversy on the mailing lists, some blaming the language subcommittee for stifling progress. One Wikisource administrator retired in protest, and an earlier request to create the wiki was denied because the subcommittee had not approved it.[1][2][3][4]
  • Following lengthy discussion on Meta and a request filed, the Old English Wikisource was locked from editing. Since the project was opened on 02 June 2006, only fifteen pages were created (of which four works). The English Wikisource continued to accept Old English works after the Old English Wikisource was opened, and the community considered it within its scope as a subset of English.[5][6][7]

Wikisource is web's #24 wiki[edit]

A recent study estimates that Wikisource is the 24th most viewed wiki project on the Internet, with an Alexa rank of 6783. However, Alexa rankings are not considered representative of real traffic, since they only take into account visits from users with the Alexa toolbar installed.

Wikimedia wikis by rank
Wiki Alexa rank
smaller is better
Google PageRank
Of ten, bigger is better
1. Wikipedia 10 8
13. Wiktionary 2248 6
17. Wikibooks 3293 6
24. Wikisource 6783 5
32. Wikinews 15606 6
>57. Wikimedia Commons


Featured works[edit]

Arithmetic on the Frontier was featured for June 2007 with the following text:

Arithmetic on the Frontier, first published in Departmental Ditties and Other Verses in 1886, is a sardonic poem describing the Second Anglo-Afghan war between highly-educated British soldiers and poor tribesmen. This poem is still relevant to many conflicts today, and is frequently cited in news articles and blogs.

A great and glorious thing it is
       To learn, for seven years or so,
The Lord knows what of that and this,
       Ere reckoned fit to face the foe—
The flying bullet down the Pass,
That whistles clear: "All flesh is grass."

Three hundred pounds per annum spent
       On making brain and body meeter
For all the murderous intent
       Comprised in "villanous saltpetre!"
And after—ask the Yusufzaies
What comes of all our 'ologies. (Read on or see all featured texts.)

Technical changes[edit]

  • {{author}} was overhauled to add automated categorization by date and era, move formatting to the stylesheet, and implement various minor improvements. The usage has been changed, although old parameter still work temporarily.[10][11][12]

Wikimedia Foundation[edit]

New Business developer[edit]

The Board has hired Vishal Patel as part-time business developer. He is tasked with developing market strategies, creating initiatives for generating revenue, assisting in contract negotiations, and preparing written reports and presentations. The hiring is part of an ongoing staff reorganization, and is intended to correct a lack of financial data and planning.

Patel has worked in the Wikimedia office as a part-time intern since January 2007. He has been charged with a number of immediate tasks, as reported by board chairwoman Florence Devouard (Anthere):

  • report on all business deals we currently are in (who, what, when, how much).
  • analyze the price asked for certain services and implement an increase if suitable
  • coordinate sponsorship for Wikimania
  • follow up on brand marketing proposal
  • be the general contact person for all the various (and sometimes really amazing) business deals proposed to the Foundation


Election Steering Committee created[edit]

The 'Board Election Steering Committee', tasked with managing the upcoming 2007 Board elections, will include Aphaia and Jon Harald Søby (2006 election officials), Tim Starling (technical adviser), Benjamin Mako Hill, Newyorkbrad, and Philippe Beaudette.[15][16]

Unofficial brand survey[edit]

Erik Moeller (board member) unofficially suggested that every Wikimedia project be renamed to use the Wikipedia trademark, renaming Wikisource to Wikipedia Sources. However, this proposal met with strong opposition from users who offered such reasons as the dilution of the Wikipedia trademark, damage to the smaller projects' potential and individuality, and the possibility that this would make them 'subprojects' of Wikipedia.

Later this month, after discussion had died down with little or no support for the idea, Erik has launched an official brand survey to gather wider opinion. The survey asks several questions related to branding, including ‘Would you support or oppose rebranding the projects as "Wikipedia Sources", "Wikipedia Quotes", "Wikipedia Textbooks", and so on?’ The survey can be found at m:Wikimedia brand survey. [17][18]


Syntax highlighting[edit]

The SyntaxHighlight GeSHi extension, which enables syntax highlighting of programming code, has been enabled on all Wikimedia wikis. Editors can use it by wrapping code in <source lang="php"> (changing php to the appropriate language). However, there is currently no support for wiki code highlighting. For example:

<?php echo 'I am an apple.'; ?>


New features[edit]

  • Restricted actions
    • When assigning access, bureaucrats can now provide a reason for the log. (bug 9784)
    • An automatic deletion summary ("page contained...'") will be generated for all pages, not just very short pages. (bug 9656)
    • Administrators are now exempt from the account creation limit; other users can create up to six accounts per day. (bug 9139)
  • Editing
    • Editors can now surround images with a light gray border using the 'border' toggle parameter, used the same way as 'thumb' and 'frame'. For example: 3by2white.svg. This is intended for images which blend into the background. (bug 6072)
  • A new version of the search feature is being tested at using outdated English Wikipedia search data; feedback is requested.
  • Redirects in categories can now be differentiated from non-redirects using CSS.
  • When viewing changes to a page, the two columns are now forced to 50% width. Previously, long lines stretched the page beyond the width of the browser window. (bug 1229)



  1. "A successful request not yet fulfilled (was Language Prevention Committee created)" (Foundation-l, April 2007), continued
  2. "future of the Wikisource" (Wikisource-l, May 2007)
  3. "Bug 9831: Create Tamil Wikisource (approved by subcommittee)" (Wikimedia Bugzilla, May 2007)
  4. "Bug 6982: Request for setting up tamil wikisource site" (August 2006)
  5. "Wikisource in Old English language closed" (Wikisource-l, May 2007)
  6. "Closure of Old English Wikisource" (Meta, proposals for closing projects, December 2006–May 2007)
  7. "Middle English" (Scriptorium, September 2006)
  8. "Top 57 Wikis By Rank" (Ad Volcano blog, May 2007)
  9. 9.0 9.1 "Wikizine #72" (30 May 2007)
  10. "Authors by date" (Scriptorium, February 2007)
  11. "Author template changes" (Scriptorium, May 2007)
  12. "Living people category" (Scriptorium, May 2007)
  13. "[announcement] new staff member in business development" (Foundation-l, May 2007)
  14. "Business Developer" (Wikimedia wiki)
  15. "Board Steering Committee formed" (Foundation-l, May 2007)
  16. "News and notes" (Wikipedia Signpost, 28 May 2007)
  17. "Rethinking brands" (Foundation-l, May 2007)
  18. "Wikimedia brand survey open" (Foundation-l, May 2007)
  19. "Extension:SyntaxHighlight GeSHi" (MediaWiki wiki)
  20. "Syntax highlighting" (, May 2007)
  21. "Wikizine #71 (21 May 2007)
  22. 22.0 22.1 "Technology report" (Wikipedia Signpost, 28 May 2007)