Wikinews:Spread Wikinews

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Vaguely inspired by Spread Firefox, this is a place to share and develop ideas for promoting Wikinews. Help get those stats up!

Feel free to jump in with any ideas or comments.

Reply to blogs[edit]

Keep an eye on Feedster, BlogPulse and Technorati. Reply to any posts about Wikinews — explain the site, reply to criticism etc.

If the comments section asks for a 'URL', be sure to put in https://www.wikinews.org!

Propagate stories[edit]

Since Wikinews content is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 License, it can be used very easily on any other site. Submit links to Wikinews or the complete story. See Wikinews:Story propagation for a systematic approach to this. Of course, posting links on your blogs or in comments is also a good way to get people interested in the site. Don't forget that beyond the web, there are also mailing lists and Usenet discussion groups. But very few things have as much impact as a successful story submission to Slashdot or digg.

Link to Wikinews on Wikipedia[edit]

Keep an eye on Wikipedia Current Events on the WP main page and articles relevant to recent Wikinews stories. Link to Wikinews using the template:{{wikinews|Insert article name}}.

Use the Wikinews Importer Bot to automatically update Wikipedia pages[edit]

See the Wikinews Importer Bot for how to implement importing Wikinews items into Wikipedia portals and articles. For example:

Make and distribute merchandising[edit]

The Wikimedia Shop features shirts, coffee mugs, clocks and other cool stuff with the Wikinews logo. Buy them for your own entertainment or give them away at special occasions.

Print us out![edit]

Grab a print edition, print out a load, and leave it in places such as common rooms, canteens, etc.!

Broadcast us![edit]

There is an audio version of Wikinews which, like all other Wikinews content, is free for anyone to use. Put it into your Podcasts, broadcast it live, or send it to your friends.

Recruit citizen journalists![edit]

Instead of messing around on student newspaper, students could be spending their time writing real news. This letter can be used to persuade them of the benefits of doing journalism citizen-style.

What can be done to both grow our audience and our contributors?
Wikinews reported on 2017-05-08 that 3,471,349 articles were started in 33 different Wikinews language communities, but only 222,328 (6.4%) were published (if I understand those numbers correctly). For the English language Wikinews, only 0.8% were actually published. Is it fair to say that the vast majority of unpublished articles represent frustrated humans, who are less likely to contribute to Wikinews in the future?
To increase the rate of submissions -- and our audience -- I think it would help to (a) understand why those articles were not published and (b) take steps to increase the publication rate. Examples:
  • Not neutral or not credible: Some help in rewording or asking contributors to get input from their opposition in a conflict could help educate contributors and encourage them to do more. It may even help resolve conflict -- converting heat into light!
  • Not newsworthy: If it's written from a neutral point of view citing credible sources, etc., can we “publish” it on a “back page” and / or get geolocation information and only offer the story to people nearby? I think boring reports on public meetings of governmental bodies should always be accepted, because they could help prevent (or expose) problems like the City of Bell scandal, where the death of a local newspaper seems to have encouraged a group of public officials to engage in massive criminality. Such articles should not be featured (except to people interested in that jurisdiction) but could be available for a search, e.g., link from a Wikipedia article about that governmental entity. (I believe the current minimal level of audience control of the media contributes to virtually every major problem facing humanity today; for documentation, see Winning the War on Terror. Wikinews might facilitate major improvements.)
  • Not 'news' style: If it's written from a neutral point of view citing credible sources, etc., can we accept poor style and grammar for articles on a “back page,” hoping to encourage contributors to write other articles in the future? Some of those could be of sufficient general interest that other Wikinewsians might help rewrite them in 'news' style to convert them into “page one” stories. (Non-native speakers should be encouraged to try to bridge the language divide. If we had had this in the early 1950s, the U.S. war in Vietnam might have been avoided, because too many people would have known that roughly 80 percent of the Vietnamese supported the Communist Ho Chi Minh, as Eisenhower noted in his autobiography published in 1963.[1])
I'm proposing a “Birds of a Feather” session for Wikimania 2017, August 9-13, in Montreal to discuss these and related questions. That proposal is open to revisions by anyone until the question at the end, “Is this Submission a Draft or Final?” is set to “Final”; I ;an to do that May 13 to meet the May 15 deadline.

Email signatures[edit]

Simple and effective. Add a link to Wikinews to your email signature to attract everyone you write to onto Wikinews.

Personal web sites and blogs[edit]

Every contributor who has a blog and or web site can put a link to Wikinews.

Spread the word[edit]

Word-of-mouth advertising is perhaps the easiest way of increasing the popularity of Wikinews. While conversing with people, just mention Wikinews whenever you get an opportunity, chances are they will become curious and decide to check it out, and hopefully contribute to it.

  1. Dwight D. Eisenhower. "[ The White House Years (1953-1956): Mandate for Change]" — Doubleday, 1963