Wikinews talk:Wikimedia Radio

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Discussion moved here from water cooler...

Discussion from the Water Cooler[edit]

I'm proposing a radio version of Wikinews. I feel that a radio version would help the popularity of Wikinews grow, as well as give listeners up to the minute updates. Radio streaming through the internet is not the expensive, if at all. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by OmegaMB (talkcontribs)

Are you aware of WN:AUDIO --A101 - (talk) 09:29, 20 April 2008 (UTC)
WN:AUDIO is not quite the same as streaming content to a media player, which is what radio would be. I can easily see that having a constantly running stream that looped through any audio briefs and spoken articles would have value to some people. I think any discussion on this needs more input from the community first, but I will ask Brion if the concept is feasible. --Brian McNeil / talk 09:34, 20 April 2008 (UTC)
  • Support - I think it's a good idea, and I think there are some people here who have wanted to do more video/audio. --David Shankbone - (talk) 21:28, 20 April 2008 (UTC)
  • Support But how? We discussed this previously and could not figure out an easy way. Await discussion. DragonFire1024 (Talk to the Dragon) 21:29, 20 April 2008 (UTC)
Can we have a bit of discussion and something fleshed out before we start voting?
I think a streaming service is a great idea but we need to work out what we're going to do and what's involved. That's why I've asked for Brion Vibber's input on this as the WMF CTO. Realistically, he may well come back to us and say we can't have developer time right now. SUL and Flagged Revisions are the top priorities at the moment. There is an option that someone could develop something on the toolserver, but before it would go on a main WMF machine it would need a security audit. And, as I've suggested on Brion's Wikipedia talk, we could get mms://, some of the other languages might be interested (I'm thinking Polish).
Whatever happens, technically we shouldn't be using proprietary formats for this. An Icecast server running out Ogg and MP3 streams would be the way to go imho. I do think this needs planning and carefully organising. That said, I'm all for it, and would be willing to support the venture either technically serverside or in the audio production process.--JamesHarrison - (talk) 15:39, 27 April 2008 (UTC)
So, rather than starting to vote on an idea that's not well investigated let's try to specify what we want from WMF, what we intend to do, and how we can get to a point where we have a viable Wikinews project. --Brian McNeil / talk 21:38, 20 April 2008 (UTC)
I would be in favour of a general "Radio Wikimedia", since I would find it unlikely that any one project would be able to contribute 24/7 content just yet. We might be able to set up an experiment on an external hosting service, like Live365 to begin with (assuming that there's one with a compatible ToS, of course). I'd be willing to contribute once I invest in some slightly better recording equipment. Chris Mann (Say hi!|Stalk me!) 00:17, 21 April 2008 (UTC)
It certainly is the case that when you look at our current audio output, and then look at filling 24 hours seven days a week, we'd need to be breaking out the bullwhips and driving people to exhaustion. My opinion is that if we have a requirement to do a fresh recording of the audio brief three times a day that's going to be a reachable target, but one that will require several contributors work on it. This is not something we can get into without having some slack in the resources we're dedicating to it. --Brian McNeil / talk 07:29, 21 April 2008 (UTC)
Comment great idea - but I think we are getting ahead of ourselves here. We can barely get enough text content to run around, nevermind getting an audio loop of it. How about we address this when we get enough content to make this feasible. --SVTCobra 01:16, 22 April 2008 (UTC)
I wonder if you're missing the point here? I believe a radio project would fail very quickly were it solely Wikinews content we tried to fill it with - hence the extensive sections below and proposals for cross-project cooperation. I think an initial goal of a minimum of three recordings of a news brief per day is quite feasible as a starting point. I have no reason to not believe that, if we get over ourselves, and let it be billed as "Wikipedia radio" until established that we'd attract people prepared to do scripts from our articles for the news brief and possibly record them.
The cross-project collaboration is what I thinks makes this a far, far better proposal than others in the past such as Video Wikinews. There are two WMF projects supposed to act as "glue"; Commons as a shared media repository, and Meta as a cross-project space. I don't see many people here saying they're regularly raising issues on Meta, and I know several people have concerns with Commons being a quite conservative project and not always considering a smaller project such as us. --Brian McNeil / talk 08:15, 22 April 2008 (UTC)
OK you convinced me. Go forth! Most of the work sounds too technical for me, but I can be contacted if there is anything people think I can help with on this. Cheers, --SVTCobra 23:48, 23 April 2008 (UTC)
Anyone can write scripts to be used for a news brief/summary. --Brian McNeil / talk 06:48, 24 April 2008 (UTC)

Radio: The content[edit]

Radio is a medium generally used either as a background or a source of information you can be getting stuff from while engaging in another activity.

Considering we (Wikimedia, not just Wikinews) have a global audience there are a variety of approaches we can take. It is unrealistic to assume that Wikinews could "solo" run a 24/7 radio service, so cross-project collaboration seems eminently sensible. In fact, I'd say iIt would be insane to think that Wikinews could - at this point in time - achieve a 24/7 service. A shared radio station would be the most realistic starting point. Taking into account the global nature of readership I would make the suggestion that the day be divided into three eight-hour segments. A great deal of content would be repeated in subsequent sections, but on a rolling basis that schedule would be updated with new content, so a reading of a Wikipedia featured article might only feature in two or three segments of the day.

For Wikinews, we have to look at what is realistically achievable. If we can update our news briefs five or six times a day we can likely justify a 10-15 minute segment at the top of every hour. That's 15-25% of the schedule straight away, and doesn't take into account how we could do other segments. --Brian McNeil / talk 23:28, 20 April 2008 (UTC)

Considering how quickly popular I suspect an idea like this could become, I believe we have to look beyond just starting up one WMF Internet radio station. There's possibly scope for individual projects running their own channels, but there is scope for Wikinews having a bulletin on virtually every channel. --Brian McNeil / talk 23:44, 20 April 2008 (UTC)

Imaginary schedule layout for Wikimedia Radio[edit]

The following is a schedule really quickly drafted and starting at 00:00 for simplicity. Obviously as a pilot evolved and we got feedback we'd need to tweak things like the start time for a third of a day (I am working on the assumption we arrange 8 hours of programming and people update the schedule for the next segment throughout the day.

  • 00:00-00:15 The Wikinews top of the hour news brief bulletin
  • 00:15-00:30 Wikipedia "did you know" and a spoken version of their featured article synopsis
  • 00:30:01:00 Music from Commons - possibly with a spoken quotation from Wikiquote between each piece.
  • 01:00-01:15 Wikinews top of hour bulletin
  • 01:15-01:30 Music from Commons
  • 01:30-02:00 Wikiversity basic (101) class on random topic
  • 02:00-02:15 Wikinews top of hour bulletin
  • 02:15-02:45 Wikipedia spoken articles, preferably featured.
  • 02:45-03:00 Music from Commons
  • 03:00-03:15 Wikinews top of hour bulletin
  • 03:00-03:30 Wikiquote quote of the day - with brief synopsis of quote source bios.
  • 03:30-04:00 Music from Commons
  • 04:00-04:10 Brief (hopefully updated) Wikinews bulletin
  • 04:10-04:30 The Wikinews magazine, in-depth report on our main leads at the time of broadcast
  • 04:30-05:00 Wikibooks, an excerpt from one of their best books
  • 05:00-05:15 Wikinews top of hour bulletin, expanded from prior fresh bulletin
  • 05:15-06:00
  • 06:00-06:15 Wikinews top of hour bulletin, expanded from prior fresh bulletin
  • 06:15-07:00
  • 07:00-07:15 Wikinews top of hour bulletin, expanded from prior fresh bulletin
  • 07:15-08:00

Okay, I couldn't see a way to fill a full schedule, but look at the Wikinews participation in this 8-hour day's worth of programming. We have 1h55 minutes of news brief material plus a 20 minute slot for a more in-depth piece. There's also a little over two hours that I've not assigned to anything. --Brian McNeil / talk 06:45, 21 April 2008 (UTC)

What's to stop us doing some sort of talk show segment - perhaps with interviews, accredited reporters talking, etc? --Skenmy(tcw) 07:59, 21 April 2008 (UTC)
Exactly what I have been saying. I believe with the contributers we do have, if willing and committed, we could do just that. Other than that I think the schedule is somewhat decent. DragonFire1024 (Talk to the Dragon) 08:05, 21 April 2008 (UTC)
Having given it some thought we might want to move around the open slots and make those change from day to day. So perhaps Wikinews has a once or twice a week "news in review", or a recent interview recording. Wikiversity has a English for beginners course that runs once a week and lasts a month (4 or 5 lessons). Where I was getting so frustrated about this in IRC is that I believe we can firm up a good quality proposal and thus pre-empt DF's nightmare scenario of Wikipedia hijacking the idea. --Brian McNeil / talk 08:16, 21 April 2008 (UTC)

I think as a pilot we should have a 3 hour weekly block, as a podcast.--Pharos - (talk) 01:03, 24 April 2008 (UTC)

You know what, if we had a 1 hour pilot that would probably be good enough too. Then we could work toward a daily podcast, with maybe a bonus program or two on the weekend. The idea is to start small and modest.--Pharos - (talk) 07:07, 24 April 2008 (UTC)
I'm in favour of doing podcasts, but nobody will sit through three hours, and one hour is likely a stretch too. I would approach it from the perspective of doing podcasts to fit timed slots as practice for doing real content. Once the technical hurdles are overcome I'd be in favour of starting streaming immediately, even if we just started with random music from Commons and an on-the-hour news brief. --Brian McNeil / talk 07:46, 24 April 2008 (UTC)
I see your point about the limited attention span of the listener, but I think an even bigger problem will be the limited volunteer contributions. After giving this some thought, I do not think we can rely on more than 15 minutes original content a day, and hourly updates will have to be quite out of the question for the foreseeable future.--Pharos - (talk) 11:22, 24 April 2008 (UTC)

Alternative schedule[edit]

Here is my proposal, designed to require a minimum of volunteer effort (of course, we can grow more ambitious as time goes on):

  • "Wikimedia Update", flagship 15-minute daily program, in three segments (could be done by three different people). Repeated on the hour.
  • "Shuffle Showcase", computer-selected random segment from list of approved items, one of two types alternating on different hours. Approximately 30-45 minutes long, fills in the hour till repeat of "Wikimedia Update".
    • "Spoken Wikipedia Shuffle Showcase"
    • "Commons Free Music Shuffle Showcase"
  • "Wiki Minute", short segments on copyright tutorials, donation solicitations, etc., recorded in advance. Selected at random by computer, and used as filler when "Shuffle Showcase" is too short.
  • "Picks", scheduled programs
    • "Wikisource Book Pick" (must be scheduled because books are arranged in chapters)
    • "Podcast Pick" ('Wikipedia Weekly', 'Not The Wikipedia Weekly')--Pharos - (talk) 11:22, 24 April 2008 (UTC)
I'm very much in favour of keeping content that isn't NPOV to a minimum and avoid material that is specifically targeted at active Wikimedians. --Brian McNeil / talk 08:19, 25 April 2008 (UTC)
Is there anything on this schedule that's non-NPOV (besides the podcasts, which wouldn't be on a daily rotation anyway)? Again ignoring the podcasts for a moment, only the 5-minute Signpost corner is really aligned toward active Wikimedians, and we could certainly edit down the technical jargon, and keep to project news items of more general interest. The "Wiki Minute" segments could very much be targeted to novices, teaching them about the basics of free content and wiki editing.--Pharos - (talk) 10:30, 25 April 2008 (UTC)

Radio: The service[edit]

As you'll see from the above I specify mms:// as the service. This is Microsoft Media Services, although from reading that and the Real Time Streaming Protocol article it's just one of those things MS have managed to cruft into the lexicon of web terms. As RTSP was developed by the IETF as an RFC that should be available to us, but confirmation from Brion would be nice. --Brian McNeil / talk 21:43, 20 April 2008 (UTC)

I believe that if something like this were to become a success there is scope to do things like get this carried on cable and "real" radio or satellite. If a sat. radio operator gets told there's an opportunity to have a free feed they can broadcast they might just take it up. Every American commuter with a sat. radio listening to the Wikinews news briefs followed by Wikipedia's article of the day? I think that's a big win. --Brian McNeil / talk 23:26, 20 April 2008 (UTC)

Ambitious. I believe the main ingredients to commuter radio are personality and music so we'd be strained in that regard. We'd also need to make sure we didn't turn into EuroNews (if you've never seen it, it is a EU-sponsored news show which has so little personality it is highly boring. The news featured in EuroNews can sometimes be what I call "alternative news" too - something Wikinews makes extensive use of (from my short amount of experience here)). Harris Morgan - (talk) 23:47, 20 April 2008 (UTC).
I love Euronews - I have always been drawn to it because of its diversity, but also its neutrality (eg its "No comment' section). There's no shortage of opinionated and personality-driven news, and I simply look elsewhere for that. (Note that I'm not suggesting that this proposed radio station should be lacking in personality and opinion - but simply that these things aren't always necessary.) Cormaggio - (talk) 11:13, 22 April 2008 (UTC)
If a pilot project was to be a success it would have to have a selection of music and not just be news reports. --Brian McNeil / talk 06:16, 21 April 2008 (UTC)
Rather than throw the idea to the sharks and post a message on foundation-l, I've brought this up on the ComCom list (which is private). I shot off my first email on the subject this morning before heading up to Utrecht. I'd not been clear enough that this was streaming 24/7 and had to write a much more fleshed out description of how this would work. As author, I can quote from this provided I don't quote anyone...
Cquote1.svg Sorry, this is long - so mark as unread until you have some time, and a cup of your favourite beverage.

We're not wanting to do a podcast, rather a 24/7 stream such as mms:// I suspect mms:// would be more appropriate initially as it would likely start with material from all projects where there is audio now and get reworked as other projects got up to speed on production of audio content. Of course, mms:// seems to be available... Could it even be a whole new project? Personally I'd be quite happy with mms:// for the brand recognition, but there would be people on all sides unhappy with that.

One of the key ideas behind having it streaming is many people will ignore the schedule, try it, and get on with something else while having it as background until something catches their attention. I'm not up on the latest phones, but I'd assume an iPhone would be able to access the stream; it has a decent sized screen, but many devices don't.

  • Wikinews: Top of the hour news brief, weekly magazine program, possibly spoken articles, and any recorded interviews of sufficiently high quality (Eg. David Shankbone's work).
  • Wikipedia: Spoken articles, recordings of material from latest articles featured on the front page. Odd facts - did you know type stuff
  • Commons: Free music.
  • Wiktionary: Word of the day with example uses (pref. from classical lit.) Might require combined with Wikipedia content to get the history of a word so a reasonable sized slot is filled.
  • Wikiquote: Selected quotations, something which has scope for notable people to be persuaded to record them.
  • Wikiversity: Spoken lessons - ideal for teaching things like languages.

With a global audience, you divide the day into three blocks of eight hours, the majority of content being repeated for two or three of these blocks then replaced with something else. Obviously, you have the Wikinews news brief updated as often as possible to keep it current; If the Wikipedia Featured article has a spoken version (or one is created of the synopsis on the front page) that changes daily. Commons free music is filler, but if we can find a "Radio 4 voice" contributor, a decent sized slot could be allocated to cover the works of a particular composer, as with Wiktionary, draw on Wikipedia to do a synopsis on the composer, break partway through and do a synopsis on the composition being played.

I threw together a quick schedule for an eight hour block and posted it on the below section of Wikinews' Water Cooler this morning, it contains free slots. I'd want to see these filled up with content of a less than daily nature. Eg, a Week in Review for the news done by Wikinews on a Sunday, content from Wikiversity (run a basic English course over the period of a month with 2-3 lectures a week).

I was a little rushed this morning to give as detailed an explanation as above. Mondays are not my best day as I'm up at 6am to take my little monster to school (he boards Mon-Fri). After that it's trying to get caught up on emails (sometimes I wonder why I subscribe to Foundation-l), and I had a job interview just outside Utrecht today. As a result of the last item my feet are killing me from wearing dress shoes.

DragonFire1024 (Jason Safoutin) was the most negative about the proposal yesterday in IRC, but seeing the schedule seemed to make him think this was realistic. Unless I ended up staying somewhere without Internet access I could manage one recording of a news brief most days, at a minimum Wikinews then needs two more so it changes each eight hour block. It would appeal to David Shankbone's ego to hear his interviews on the radio, I also think it would bring new contributors into Wikinews who wanted to do recordings.

Wikipedians would - I hope - be encouraged to record more articles, and I'd bet there would be a queue to record the Main Page article synopsis, and did you know section.

As you probably see now, I had my reasons for not taking this to Foundation-l to start with. The concern many on Wikinews would have is that the idea would be run away with by other projects like Wikipedia. So, if you can think of anyone not on this list and someone level-headed on their home project that might be interested pass it on with my email address.

Brian McNeil

I'm not naming names, but one UK listmember said that this is "WikiRadio4". I've only had one negative comment, and it was only very mildly negative in saying this was overly ambitious and a podcast would be better as a start. I actually think that's true, but the aim of the podcast should be to have practised producers of content for streaming radio at a later date. What about aiming to have the project well enough established to do near-live material from Wikimania? Not WM2008, but WM2009. Record keynotes and drop them straight into the schedule. --Brian McNeil / talk 00:52, 22 April 2008 (UTC)

Radio: The technology[edit]

As mentioned elsewhere, there are protocols for doing this that are (I believe) free enough. So I'm interested in knowing if anyone can tell me about what the available options are. I'd be surprised to discover there isn't a FLOSS install-and-run DIY radio station - or even more than one. Are these tools robust enough? Can we collaborate with them? What additional development is required to, as an example, drive the scheduling from a wiki? Would it kill the toolserver to experiment there? How much bandwidth for a peak hour audience of 1,000 listeners? 100,000? Would a security audit of the code be required before it went on a real WMF server? --Brian McNeil / talk 00:52, 22 April 2008 (UTC)

Hi guys, Fuzheado from Wikipedia Weekly here, and I'm also familiar with podcasting solutions of the last three Wikimanias (for better or worse). This is what I posted on Foundation-L. I think it's more useful here.
You can contact me (User:Fuzheado) or User:Tawker.
I think it's an admirable idea, and suggest you start small and grow bigger. No need for 8 hours off the bat, when there are zero hours now. As the longest running regularly published audio product in the Wikipedia universe, believe me when I say it is quite an undertaking.
Likely the best approach would be to have segments broken down into different chunks, not unlike what US NPR does with its twice daily news update, Morning Edition, Day to Day, etc. Each one can be an independent chunk that can be downloaded via RSS like on iTunes as a podcast. Then you stack all the canned audio segments together and have it available from an Icecast streaming server which can stream Ogg format audio for example.
That way you can make three audiences happy simultaneously:
  1. Podcast downloaders
  2. Streaming audio fans (like Shoutcast)
  3. Web-browser based listeners
Hope to hear more of your ideas. -- Fuzheado - (talk) 07:53, 24 April 2008 (UTC)
The idea of breaking the day into 8*3 is due to the global audience. Once you have the technical bits in place you just fire up the stream playing random Commons music, then start slotting in items to a very sparse schedule. Wikinews news briefs on the top of the hour, the Wikipedia podcasts on a Sunday with a mid-week repeat (run three times in each of these days) and, perhaps most importantly for getting the thing off the ground, the Wikiversity lessons/lectures on doing audio.
Several people have said "start with podcasts", and I while I agree, I am concerned we may end up stuck at just doing podcasts. --Brian McNeil / talk 08:53, 24 April 2008 (UTC)

What's the software options?[edit]

Icecast is mentioned in Fuzheado's email, which only has a fairly short description on Wikipedia. I took a quick look at their website and, yes, it'll handle the streaming, but I have this feeling we'd need people dedicated to scheduling and queuing stuff to play. We probably need something a little smarter. --Brian McNeil / talk 08:53, 24 April 2008 (UTC)

This page gives a pretty diagram of Icecast operation. As I understand this you have source machines that put together the stream and pass it to the Icecast server which broadcasts it to listener clients and to relay machines. From a bandwidth management perspective this is ideal. The various WMF sites where there are squid proxies could include relays to have points closer to the listeners streaming the material. It could even go as far as ISPs running a relay to have a single stream into their network then distributed to their customers. --Brian McNeil / talk 09:03, 24 April 2008 (UTC)
'Liquidsoap looks like the key tool to work from as an interface between Icecast and a wiki. (Thanks to Giloo from #icecast on freenode). There are Perl and Python interfaces although some coding will be required to feed a schedule into Liquidsoap. --Brian McNeil / talk 09:11, 24 April 2008 (UTC)
  • An extension to interface MediaWiki with Liquidsoap is likely required. --Brian McNeil / talk 09:21, 24 April 2008 (UTC)
Liquidsoap wiki can be found here. --Brian McNeil / talk 10:24, 24 April 2008 (UTC)
Just for fun, here is the audio setup at Wikimania 2005 for live broadcasting. [1] -- Fuzheado - (talk) 09:29, 24 April 2008 (UTC)
For WM2008 I'd bring along my Soundcraft Spirit 24, but it needs repaired after a close encounter with a beer. Plus I don't think they'd be too amused having to add the heavy-duty excess baggage costs onto the scholarship. :( --Brian McNeil / talk 10:13, 24 April 2008 (UTC)
I've run Icecast servers for up to 200 concurrent users in the past, and it's incredibly robust. I'd highly recommend it. It's also easy enough to set up. Basically, you need some streaming boxes (To mix the output and upload it _once_ to the server), then a server (which may relay to other relay servers to distribute load in high-volume situations), which clients connect to. WMF Squids could run Icecast relays, as Brianmc stated earlier, for geographical optimisation, although this does make server management a little more complex. I would be more than happy to contribute towards the technical planning and operation aspects of this.--JamesHarrison - (talk) 15:44, 27 April 2008 (UTC)

Continuity announcers[edit]

We'll definitely want some continuity announcers, especially if we're going to play old episodes of Wikipedia Weekly, etc.--Pharos - (talk) 23:47, 23 April 2008 (UTC)

I think that one of the most important things we'd need is, rather than content warnings ("The following programme contains sex, violence and coarse language, and will be of interest to adolescent males.") is license warnings ("The following broadcast is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License, and is based on text from Wikipedia article blah."), so that people can have an idea of what they can do with the various bits of the broadcast. If it were one radio station per project, then a single disclaimer somewhere (e.g. the site that links to the stream) would do, but with all the different licensing around a more specific option is necessary - and at the same time, it advertises the freeness of our content. Chris Mann (Say hi!|Stalk me!) 06:26, 24 April 2008 (UTC)
I agree with that. But I was thinking less of disclaimers, than of friendly introductions. Such as, "This discussion was recorded during the great fair use fight of 2005", or "And now on to a recording from a piece by Gustav Mahler", or "And speaking of Mahler, let's learn a little more about his life". Continuity announcers can give a little more color and variety (and context) to our programming, and make it a bit less dry and less like a robotic playlist.--Pharos - (talk) 06:42, 24 April 2008 (UTC)
Oh, absolutely. I'm thinking in terms of things like TV shows, where you will have the content warning before an individual program, and then the program itself may have a host, or anchor, or whatever. This would be similar, except that I guess you'd want the two to be a bit more integrated, like radio - I suppose the announcer would be more like the person who comes on during the credits of one show to tell you what's on next (and yes, I know, What's on second). If we went with the Icecast option, I guess it would be something that probably wouldn't get podcasted, but would get fed in between the bits of the stream. Chris Mann (Say hi!|Stalk me!) 05:24, 28 April 2008 (UTC)

Mix and match[edit]

I think we should be careful about using really long segments straight from Wikipedia or other sources. Using highlights, or interspersing commentary and asides (remembering we don't have to be NPOV), could make for more lively broadcasts. We might also use atmospheric music in the background, or as a brief separator between segments. Again, the role of continuity announcers comes up.--Pharos - (talk) 06:59, 24 April 2008 (UTC)

One of the things I'd like to see done is that Wikipedia makes it a "Should" item for an FA going on the front page that the summary has been recorded. This is a small segment, so I certainly agree that in some regards content needs to be kept in manageable sized chunks. --Brian McNeil / talk 07:49, 24 April 2008 (UTC)

Interval signal[edit]

I think w:Flight of the Bumblebee could make a fun and recognizable w:interval signal. Given that "Wiki Wiki" means essentially "fast, fast, very fast" in Hawaiian, I think it sort of fits. (Interval signals are used to fill in extra space between segments, and we'll have lots of segments of irregular length. The most famous interval signal is the BBC World Service's Bow Bells.)--Pharos - (talk) 11:50, 24 April 2008 (UTC)

Audio Wikinews - Problems listening to the file? See media help.
Too frenetic. Why not a competition to compose something for it? --Brian McNeil / talk 05:46, 25 April 2008 (UTC)


Now is our opportunity to use the Wikinews:Hotline. Using this, or something like it, would be it a lot easier for many people to contribute and comment, especially in a "feedback" segment.--Pharos - (talk) 23:47, 23 April 2008 (UTC)

Being able to phone up and leave a comment may be good, but I'm concerned that NPOV be adhered to as much as possible and actually be the default for the majority of content. --Brian McNeil / talk 09:16, 24 April 2008 (UTC)
Yeah, the idea would be to have a "feedback" segment (analogous to a civil talk page comment), not a politicized talk show. Of course, we would moderate what types of feedback make it to air.
If we want to appeal to a general audience, we might also want some sort of online forum where people can make comments on each program (this could be on a non-Wikimedia site).
And, on a separate issue, I think some contributors might actually find it easier to phone in a reading than to record on their own or use Skype.--Pharos - (talk) 11:37, 24 April 2008 (UTC)
I think a comments by phone section is more something for later on. I'm reluctant to see the project turned into "talk radio". --Brian McNeil / talk 08:26, 25 April 2008 (UTC)
Yeah, to clarify I was not thinking of "comment on the day's news", but "comment on the programs", like if someone thought a particular Spoken Wikipedia article was well recorded..--Pharos - (talk) 23:10, 25 April 2008 (UTC)
Two points here -- first technical -- I think we should try and generalize this outside of just the US. How are the messages accepted, from a technical point of view?
Next, don't worry too much about NPOV. As long as we disclaim that these opinions aren't are own, and also that we won't air swearing and other highly offensive stuff, I think we could even do things that aren't NPOV. Stories have to be NPOV, but I don't see why all opinions have to be -- they are people's opinions, after all. Historybuff - (talk) 16:29, 27 April 2008 (UTC)

Wikimania and other conferences[edit]

There are a lot of free-licensed audio and video (which is just audio + pictures) recordings from Wikimania and other conferences on the w:Internet Archive.--Pharos - (talk) 23:57, 23 April 2008 (UTC)

Radio: The scope beyond English Wikinews[edit]

The long-term scope beyond Wikinews is each project/language having its own channel, but a realistic pilot is working with content from all projects. --Brian McNeil / talk 23:29, 20 April 2008 (UTC)

I believe with the interest shown this is actually viable as another Foundation project. What do we call it? WikiRadio, WikiCast, something else? It would be the first project where a lot of new software would be needed and outside what is currently used. --Brian McNeil / talk 09:19, 24 April 2008 (UTC)

Interest from other projects[edit]

If you have been directed here and Wikinews is not one of your regular projects, please sign below and specify your home project. Feel free to add to the below sections if you have any ideas not listed for how an particular project could contribute. --Brian McNeil / talk 07:55, 22 April 2008 (UTC)


Like any of the projects a broadcast would be on a loop. Varying content would be preferred.

  • The daily "did you know?"s. Wikipedia's front page consists of a great deal of information that could be turned into an audio piece. The standard "click to play" would suit most people for this, but it could form a post-top of the hour news anchor to go with other content.
  • Spoken articles. I have a suspicion I've run into a "spoken article" link somewhere on Wikipedia. If there is enough of a collection of these then they could be played in random order. Interspersed with a news/collection of trivia piece you could likely fill an hour and only repeat the anchor piece more than once a day.
There is a collection of WIkipedia Spoken articles (w:WP:SPOKEN). There are at arouund a thousand recordings. --A101 - (talk) 06:24, 21 April 2008 (UTC)
Hmm, Wasn't 'Wikicast' already trying to draft some ideas for genuine radio-drama when it failed? ( Think early OTR style here - Journey into Space, Beyond 2000 type stuff) 13:14, 26 April 2008 (UTC)

I'm a fan of radio drama and all, but I don't think original fiction would really be part of the scope of a Wikimedia project. Possibly historical plays or books could be enacted in a multiple-voice recording (librivox does this), but that's as far as we could go I think.--Pharos - (talk) 12:01, 27 April 2008 (UTC)


  • Periodic fifteen minute slot of quotes. Run a few times a day, possibly with different quotes. If the radio idea takes off then possibly solicit quotes read by famous people.
  • Quote(s) of the day from people making the news that day. DragonFire1024 (Talk to the Dragon) 00:14, 24 April 2008 (UTC)


  • I believe the project has a word of the day.
    • Learning translations of a word in a dozen (often related) languages could also be fun.--Pharos - (talk) 01:23, 24 April 2008 (UTC)
This would work. Wiktionary need only do the word and definition as a base, then add the root and foreign language derivatives of the same root. This expands the section from something that could fit in 30 seconds to a few minutes. Throw in a few example sentences with translations into other languages where the same word is used and you have a good 5-10 minute piece. "And now, the word of the day... Stroopwaffel". :P --Brian McNeil / talk 10:55, 24 April 2008 (UTC)


  • Online classes? Perhaps language courses for non-native English speakers, or for foreign languages. This would dovetail with spoken Wikipedia articles - English or otherwise.
There's been a proposal to have a kind of radio station for Wikiversity at v:Wiki Campus Radio (shortcut v:WCR) for a while now. This has been primarily envisaged as an opportunity for people to learn through discussion, and to have these discussion sessions as podcasts which then form material for further learning. It has also been seen as an opportunity to learn about podcasting itself, which I think would be a great way to start off such a radio station - by inviting people to learn about the process, and then get involved. There is so much opportunity for learning here - I think it could indeed have spoken forms of Wikiversity content (and we need to make more such content for Wikiversity anyway), but it could also go beyond 'delivering' a course, and towards a more two-way, interactive process of learning. Anyway, count me in - and there are a number of people on Wikiversity who would be interested in getting this going. My main question is: is this envisaged as being something 'hosted' by one of the individual projects (Wikinews?), or, if it is to be 'Wikimedia radio', is it envisaged to be a separate WMF project? If the latter - good luck - it could get going if momentum takes it, but be warned that it took us a loooong time to get Wikiversity set up. ;-) (This was due to many complex factors of course, but it's worth a reminder.) Cormaggio - (talk) 11:05, 22 April 2008 (UTC)
The idea of running a "live" study group discussion with VoIP and then broadcasting it sounds like an interesting one. --Brian McNeil / talk 14:04, 22 April 2008 (UTC)
We've already done this a bit. We are definately planning to keep this going. Historybuff - (talk) 16:32, 27 April 2008 (UTC)
  • Bootstrapping the service via podcasts. If you read the WCV page over on Wikiversity you'll see they're already turning out the stuff that would turn listeners into audio contributors. --Brian McNeil / talk 15:19, 22 April 2008 (UTC)
  • Convincing professors to let their lectures be recorded in the classroom and free-licensed.--Pharos - (talk) 01:26, 24 April 2008 (UTC)
  • Maybe speak to the Open University? 13:15, 26 April 2008 (UTC)


  • Free music, For example, see Category:Concertos, am currently listening to this while I try and expand the proposal. Music gives filler, but as should be obvious from the above quoted email to ComCom, Commons could do a full slot were they to introduce a classical piece with a bio of the composer, then several tracks, an interlude with a spoken piece on the composition, then the rest of the piece.
Yes, we should be thinking about a "package deal", with contributions from multiple projects on one subject.--Pharos - (talk) 01:13, 24 April 2008 (UTC)
Maybe try and encourage the release of music under a free license. Example: send us your music and release under a free license, we will play it on air. DragonFire1024 (Talk to the Dragon) 00:12, 24 April 2008 (UTC)
Especially with w:Wikipedia:Requested recordings.--Pharos - (talk) 01:13, 24 April 2008 (UTC)
  • How about the Wikimedia equivilant of the BBC Radiphonic? After all you can't easily claim (C) on

math. ( Thinking Fractal music here!). 13:16, 26 April 2008 (UTC)


Wikisource has lots of audiobook content. --A101 - (talk) 14:50, 22 April 2008 (UTC)

That'd be a damn good idea too. I'll look for their equivalent to our water cooler and invite them over. If their audiobooks can be broken into segments that fit the schedule then we can have a "book of the month" where an entire book is broadcast over several weeks. I have fond memories as a child of tuning in to readings of The Lord of the Rings on BBC Radio. --Brian McNeil / talk 08:42, 23 April 2008 (UTC)
Wikisource:Wikisource:Audio recordings lists some of them but the list misses lots of the audiobooks. For example, wikisource:Around the World in Seventy-Two Days has an audio file for each chapter so it could easily be split into sections. --A101 - (talk) 14:59, 23 April 2008 (UTC)
I think audio books are a great idea. I remember how mad i was when cbc cancelled between the covers (used to be a read a random book program on radio 1 at about 10 pm). Bawolff 06:52, 26 April 2008 (UTC)
Query, What's the situation in regard to 'adapations' (C) wise? 13:21, 26 April 2008 (UTC)
What about plays, and operas? Does Wikisource have PD scores and libretto?;) 13:21, 26 April 2008 (UTC)
IANAL, but definitly copyrighted by the original owner (Reading something doesn't change the copyright of what your reading any more than copy and pasting it does). If you read it in a very creative way, you might end up having partial copyright of the reading (I'm not sure on that), but it is definitely copyright the originator of the book. (in other words, use sources 70+ years old). 22:04, 27 April 2008 (UTC)
I didn't ask about readings, I asked about adaptations. ShakespeareFan00 - (talk) 23:45, 27 April 2008 (UTC)
I don't understand what you mean. An adaptation of a public domain work is always under whatever license the creator of the adaptation chooses to place it under. Maybe I'm missing what you mean by "adaptation"?--Pharos - (talk) 00:18, 28 April 2008 (UTC)
Are you thinking like a radio play adaptation of a novel, or something? Chris Mann (Say hi!|Stalk me!) 05:31, 28 April 2008 (UTC)
Yes, I mean Radio 4 adapts stuff for Radio all the time, The issue I have is wether radio adpatations have different licensing and copyrights compared to the original work... For example I can't do a War of the Worlds adaptation for radio, even when the Book comes out of copyright in 2016... :( 10:20, 28 April 2008 (UTC)
Of course you can make your own adaptation of public domain works. You just can't rip off other people's adaptations. For example, the Spielberg War of the Worlds film adaptation won't become public domain just because the book it's based on is public domain. (By the way, in the US War of the Worlds is already public domain and has been for decades).--Pharos - (talk) 19:20, 28 April 2008 (UTC)


Meta doesn't, as far as I can see, generate any suitable content. However it is important that an appropriate amount of brainstorming and discussion has taken place before we go to meta. This is where you would bring this up as a completely new project. I've been cautioned that this took a long time for Wikiversity. The final proposal taken to Meta for comment and consideration must have a basis where people read it and their reaction is that they'd try listening, wonder why nobody else had done it, and possibly inspired to have a go at creating audio content. --Brian McNeil / talk 14:43, 22 April 2008 (UTC)

Raised on Metapub --Brian McNeil / talk 10:04, 23 April 2008 (UTC)
  • Maybe not related to Meta Wiki in general, but combined projects we could use some slots for debates or discussions between projects of whatever nature. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by DragonFire1024 (talkcontribs) 00:16, 24 April 2008 (UTC)
  • So instead of being a slot to talk about meta itself, be a slot for meta-discussion of the projects? Chris Mann (Say hi!|Stalk me!) 06:21, 24 April 2008 (UTC)
Or just discussion in general about a certain topic that is most interesting in regards to all projects. DragonFire1024 (Talk to the Dragon) 10:20, 24 April 2008 (UTC)
I can certainly see scope for round-table discussions on items like licensing. --Brian McNeil / talk 11:43, 25 April 2008 (UTC)
This is basically the type of thing the 'WikipediaWeekly' and 'NotTheWikipediaWeekly' podcasts cover.--Pharos - (talk) 20:03, 25 April 2008 (UTC)
Yes but its something Wikinews does not have/do. DragonFire1024 (Talk to the Dragon) 18:27, 26 April 2008 (UTC)
'WikipediaWeekly' and 'NotTheWikipediaWeekly' aren't "official" Wikipedia projects. They're independent podcasts covering Wikimedia (primarily but not exclusively Wikipedia), which have pages at the English Wikipedia. If you want to start a similar podcast with more of a focus on Wikinews issues, I'd suggest you start by joining one of these for an episode (particularly 'NotTheWikipediaWeekly', which has a totally open format).--Pharos - (talk) 12:13, 27 April 2008 (UTC)
Wikinewsie User:TheCustomOfLife is someone who has been involved with the existing podcasts, and should be contacted.--Pharos - (talk) 02:56, 29 April 2008 (UTC)


Good idea but, unlike the otehr projects, Wikibooks audio has not yet been created. --A101 - (talk) 06:42, 24 April 2008 (UTC)
This may be a good thing. If people on Wikibooks can be convinced audio is worthwhile then they can take into account the constraints that radio requires when recording. --Brian McNeil / talk 07:39, 24 April 2008 (UTC)
  • What about the Cookbook? 23:49, 25 April 2008 (UTC)
"It's four AM, and now we aim to give you a case of the munchies with recipe of the day" :P --Brian McNeil / talk 07:02, 26 April 2008 (UTC)
Why not? ShakespeareFan00 - (talk) 13:28, 26 April 2008 (UTC)


Would the project follow NPOV? IMO it should. --A101 - (talk) 07:05, 24 April 2008 (UTC)

(I assume this is in response to my comment, so I'll answer here.) If by NPOV, you mean that we shouldn't spout conspiracy theories as fact, then sure. But if by NPOV you mean the announcers shouldn't have any opinions or quirky observations, then no, I think that would detract from the liveliness. For example, the Wikipedia Weekly podcast has lots of opinions. But of course, the segments between the announcements, the core Wikimedia content, would be totally NPOV as always.--Pharos - (talk) 07:17, 24 April 2008 (UTC)
I think that's the key point, the main material should be drawn from NPOV project sources such as Wikinews and Wikipedia, with any other aspects of gluing the whole thing together not quite so strictly constrained - although kept professional. --Brian McNeil / talk 07:37, 24 April 2008 (UTC)

Learning from past attempts: The Wikicast[edit]

Check out commons:Category:Wikicast material. I'm sure we can learn a lot from this project, which did not ultimately succeed, but produced a fair amount of material.--Pharos - (talk) 11:27, 24 April 2008 (UTC)

Might want to give ShakesphereFan00 a shout. I believe he was involved with all that (and the project that preceeded wikicast if i recall) Bawolff 06:56, 26 April 2008 (UTC)
Hmm, Intresting proposal, If it's legal. - I'd be more than happy to recycle some of my ideas from

the failed project, if someone can track down 'Werdna and the Backups' ;) ShakespeareFan00 - (talk) 13:25, 26 April 2008 (UTC)

Sounds like a band we might want to commission! --Skenmy(tcw) 13:27, 26 April 2008 (UTC)
Skenmy, Note the smiley, It was a partial joke... It would be nice to recover the Wiki from the failed project, but not essential... (I've already put some suggestions into the main page from what I can remember.) ShakespeareFan00 - (talk) 13:38, 26 April 2008 (UTC)
I hoped you would realise I had got the joke... --Skenmy(tcw) 13:55, 27 April 2008 (UTC)

Let's copy these people[edit]

Wiki FM, iteration on There's no reason radio has to be all audio.--Pharos - (talk) 01:46, 28 April 2008 (UTC)

Radio: From nought to sixty in how long?[edit]

That's sixty minutes.

If Wikinews wants a significant say in this project then we need to prove we can do our segment. For the beta/0.01 version that's at least a ten minute news brief, with a written news brief article/script maintained throughout the day and re-recorded whenever possible. A minimum of three recordings per day would be required to have a fresh brief every eight hours.

Software to manage Wikimedia Commons "filler music" is the next priority I'd place on this, and is a prerequisite to streaming being started. When we can fill 80-90% of our 'new territory' with random free content then we can breath a little easier because something is running. From a technical perspective it will actually be easier for a program to fill a long section than a short section. Gaps between tracks can be adjusted by fractions of a second to avoid prolonged periods that need a filler track.

Once those two points are in place, you start to look at bringing in any other audio projects that currently exist or can be kicked off between now and having the tools all working for the project.

  1. Existing Podcasts
    1. Get the Wikiversity podcasts on how to do audio on-air on a regular basis to give people an insight into how to contribute.
    2. Schedule in the Wikipedia podcasts for broadcast on two days. Slot that in to our goal of an eight-hour repeated schedule, so three broadcasts a day to hit as many people around the world as possible.
    3. Wikinews should be aiming for a "week in review" programme for podcasting.
  2. Additionally required material.
    1. 'Muzak' to avoid painful silences. Nothing on radio ever runs to a nice neat length of time, at least it doesn't until you're spending significantly longer on the production side than the actual length of broadcast. Flight of the bumble bee has been suggested, but I think something more soothing which could also be used for background behind announcements would be better. Watch BBC World or BBC 24 for the background stuff they have, there's musical simplicity to these that allows them to be faded out just about anywhere and not irritate people.
We can't have muzak going for 10 minutes straight, which is why I think we really need the "Wiki Minute" mini-segments, somewhat analogous to commercials. The interval signal should only play in that fraction of a minute between the last "Wiki Minute" and the top of the hour.--Pharos - (talk) 10:46, 25 April 2008 (UTC)
Why can't we have music playing for long periods? --Skenmy(tcw) 13:56, 27 April 2008 (UTC)
There's a difference between music and "muzak". Music is a symphony or a song or whatever; this is actual content, and we should play these for long periods. "Muzak" means filler material, and this should only be used to fill in short gaps of less than a minute.--Pharos - (talk) 21:43, 27 April 2008 (UTC)
    1. The pips. beep...beep...beep...beep...beep...BEEEEP! This is something followed by an "It is xx:00 UTC (eg "twelve hundred hours UTC"), and this is Wikimedia Radio. Coming up next, the news summary from Wikinews, followed by lectures on audio recording from Wikiversity."
    2. Other anchoring pieces. Similar to the piece for the pips you need to have, "That was the xx:00 UTC news brief from Wikinews, and now Wikiversity presents some material that could have you recording the next news brief", then later, "Further sessions from the Wikiversity project air tomorrow, if you cannot wait, visit the Wikiversity site and download the podcast versions of these lessons. The next news brief will be at yy:00, in the meantime enjoy some of the music that is freely available from Wikimedia Commons".
    3. Stream tagging. Most audio streams I've seen are able to have a sort of ticker in the player that tells you what's playing, and what's up next.
I really think 5 minutes on Wikinews (somewhat longer than the current audio news briefs, which are not at all on a daily basis yet), 5 minutes on Wikipedia, and 5 minutes on meta is just about all the daily original content we could hope to start with. We really can't underestimate the effort involved, and the difficulty of delivering a product daily. This dovetails with my "Wikimedia Update" idea for a flagship program above.--Pharos - (talk) 10:40, 25 April 2008 (UTC)

Move this discussion/page to Meta?[edit]

This might be a good time to move this discussion and planning page to Meta. Thoughts? Cirt - (talk) 06:24, 25 April 2008 (UTC)

As you'll note I've moved it into the Wikinews: space as WN:RADIO. There's still unanswered questions I'd like to have details on to flesh that out prior to going to Meta. --Brian McNeil / talk 07:17, 25 April 2008 (UTC)
Okay, sounds good. Cirt - (talk) 08:34, 25 April 2008 (UTC)

The software - help from 3rd parties[edit]

I've just had a fairly productive discussion in the #savonet channel on freenode. This is for the people who maintain liquidsoap and they seem very interested in how they can help a project like this. One of their number is looking into how liquidsoap could run off a playlist held in a wiki which, I think, is our biggest hurdle to getting a prototype service off the ground. --Brian McNeil / talk 12:57, 25 April 2008 (UTC)

Could there be a protected wiki page that holds the schedule (updated by an admin from an unprotected master list), like Wikipedia's front page sections? Then you'd just need to write a bot to read the page, and telnet in to the Icecast server with all the relevant commands. Chris Mann (Say hi!|Stalk me!) 05:53, 28 April 2008 (UTC)
It'd be something like that, yes. The actual flow is wiki->liquidsoap->icecast. --Brian McNeil / talk 06:14, 28 April 2008 (UTC)
I managed to make something like that work using IceS. Bawolff 05:16, 11 May 2008 (UTC)

Romain's letter[edit]

Right, we'd be glad to help you achieve this purpose for sure :-)

As I understand now, there are two tasks to fulfill:

  • Play free music during gaps, as well as scheduled news, like "top of the hour"
  • Insert news when needed

The first task looks like a fixed scheduling, and it is very easy to do this with liquidsoap. You first define the playlists, let say "pl1", "pl2", "pl3".

Now, if you want to stream pl1 on the first 20 min of each hour, pl2 and then pl3, you can combine them that way:

playlists = switch([ ({0m-20m}, pl1), ({20m-40m}, pl2), ({40m-0m}, pl3)])

Adding a top of the hour news can be done much like this, but you will use the track_sensitive=false parameter in order to switch to the top source as soon as it becomes available.

The playlists pl1, pl2 and pl3 can be defined in various ways. The more easy for instance could be that the playlist is a file (possibly distant) generated by a script of yours, in any recognized format. Then, you would define the following:

pl1 = playlist(mode=normal,reload=1,reload_mode="rounds",URI)

where uri can be a local file, a http file (http://...), or a custom protocol (wikinews://..) if you need more complicated things. As defined here, the playlist would be played in normal order, and then reloaded when finished.

The top can be generated with a dynamic request:

def new_top()
  url = list.hd(get_process_lines("/path/to/script"))
top = request.dynamic(new_top)

Where "/path/to/script" is a script of yours that returns the next hour news to stream.

This would still need some customization to make sure the source is ready only each beginning of hour, using a switch for instance. Perhaps David knows better than me how to achieve this. Also, you should make sure that caching don't causes trouble, like downloading an old news (next file might be asked long time before it is played..).

Now for the second task, this is more interesting. Basically, you can imagine that the regular source defined above is played when there are no dynamic request. Then, when you need to add a news, a bot/script would generate a new song request, that would be played instead of the regular source.

For instance, the ondemand source could be:

ondemand = request.queue(id="ondemand")

You would then wrap it on top of the previous source that way:

combined = fallback(track_sensitive=false,[ondemand,regular])

Then, when you want to stream a new dynamic request, you (or the bot/script) would connect to the telnet server, and execute: ondemand.push URI

This would trigger file resolution and check, and immediately stream it when done. You may also add some more beautification, like crossfade/jingle transitions, and even reduce the volume of the regular radio, and superpose the dynamic request.

I think these examples cover roughly what we discussed on IRC this morning. I only wrote quick example to try to give you an overview of what is possible with liquidsoap.

If you want to give more try to it, I'll be delighted to help you writting something for your usage, I believe it would be a great example of an advanced usage of liquidsoap.


Spoken Content[edit]

I'm very willing to record anything that is provided to me - it's writing the scripts that take the most time for me. Recording is a doddle when you do it all in one go - just edit out the sections that I make with a silence or loud noise and upload! But I cannot find the time to write all the scripts for Audio Wikinews. This also goes for other projects too - i'd be willing to create spoken versions of anything that there is interest in doing and a clear script for me to read from. --Skenmy(tcw) 17:25, 25 April 2008 (UTC)

We could do with 24 "This is Wikimedia Radio, it's <insert time here> UTC. Here is the news summary from Wikinews" recordings. ;-P --Brian McNeil / talk 06:19, 26 April 2008 (UTC)
I just did a script from the current leads... News briefs:April 26, 2008. --Brian McNeil / talk 09:29, 26 April 2008 (UTC)
Note, this script is only from the four lead articles. I believe we should start maintaining a script with the leads and a handful of the latest news items. The interview was the hardest one to handle and a lot of editorial "judgement" was required to decide how to present that. --Brian McNeil / talk 10:51, 26 April 2008 (UTC)

Licenses of Content used[edit]

I'm starting to realise that by limiting ourselves to only CC-BY and CC-BY-SA files, we wil be restricting our available content *massively* - especially in the areas of "filler" material. What's to stop us from streaming CC-BY-NC material? Or even CC-BY-NC-SA? --Skenmy(tcw) 18:20, 25 April 2008 (UTC)

Nothing...but then we cannot upload any of it to Commons et al. DragonFire1024 (Talk to the Dragon) 18:30, 25 April 2008 (UTC)
The NC/ND files are non free. Wikimedia does not support non free content. Wikimedia Radio uses Wikimedia (free) content not content of some random NC/ND site, so we don't need non free content. --A101 - (talk) 18:34, 25 April 2008 (UTC)
I don't see Wikimedia not hosting unfree content as an issue. While we will certainly be using the "free" material from Commons, we need more. I'm looking at places like ccMixter. --Skenmy(tcw) 18:36, 25 April 2008 (UTC)
CC Mixter is provides a reasonable amount of CC-BY music. (But virtually no CC-BY-SA) --A101 - (talk) 18:56, 25 April 2008 (UTC)
Besides the point. I'm still waiting to see a good reason why we cannot use -NC content on Wikimedia Radio. We will not be presenting it for download, or portraying it as under any license bar what it is really under with a bit of spoken preamble. It is streaming the content under the terms of the license - and I can't see what is wrong with that. --Skenmy(tcw) 18:59, 25 April 2008 (UTC)
I'm afraid this is non-negotiable. If we use -NC content it couldn't be "Wikimedia Radio", because that would contradict the principles of the Wikimedia Foundation, and they would not even permit us to use the name. If you want to start a different kind of project good luck with that, but that project certainly couldn't be called "Wikimedia Radio".--Pharos - (talk) 19:07, 25 April 2008 (UTC)
I must be dumb or something, because I am unable to see how us streaming this content is violating the principles of the Foundation. Please, someone explain it to me. You can't tell me it is non-negotiable without explaining why. --Skenmy(tcw) 19:10, 25 April 2008 (UTC)
Wikimedia promotes free content (Not free as long as you don't modify it or make money from it). It is planned to be a Wikimedia prject and Wikimedia projects can't gnore the licensing resolution of the foundation. In fact the resolution says thatit cannot be "ignored or eroded" by any WMF project. A101 - (talk) 19:14, 25 April 2008 (UTC)
(un-indent) Right - so what you are saying is that we cannot use it because -NC does not allow anyone to make money from it. (i.e. we can't use it because our listeners might use it in a nightclub or bar or whatever?) --Skenmy(tcw) 19:19, 25 April 2008 (UTC)
No, I am saying that we can't create a WMF project that violates violates a policy that cannot be "ignored or eroded" --A101 - (talk) 19:21, 25 April 2008 (UTC)
I am asking about the policy. It's absolutely pointless hiding behind the policy - I'm trying to understand why it exists. --Skenmy(tcw) 19:24, 25 April 2008 (UTC)
It exists to promote free content. The foundation Mission Statement says that "The mission of the Wikimedia Foundation is to empower and engage people around the world to collect and develop educational content under a free license or in the public domain, and to disseminate it effectively and globally." If you want to know the advantages of free content see this page. --A101 - (talk) 19:27, 25 April 2008 (UTC)

The policy is here because content should be 'properly' free, not non-commercial only stuff. So long as WMF doesn't allow the content, we can't use it on any project connected to WMF, such as Wikimedia Radio. Blood Red Sandman (Talk) (Contribs) 19:29, 25 April 2008 (UTC)

I think the word "content" is both ambiguous yet defining at the same time. I think we need Board input on this - this isn't something I think the Board will have envisaged when the Resolution was first passed. --Skenmy(tcw) 19:31, 25 April 2008 (UTC)
We can hardly ignore the mission statement of the project. A101 - (talk) 19:33, 25 April 2008 (UTC)
I'm more thinking about getting a new resolution or amendment passed. Or perhaps even some different board input. Who knows? Quit hiding behind the policies for a moment, Anon, and think outside the box. --Skenmy(tcw) 19:36, 25 April 2008 (UTC)
Do you expect the mission statement of the project to be changed. The resolution maybe but I doubt the mission statement of the project would be chaged to allow a few unfree songs. A101 - (talk) 19:38, 25 April 2008 (UTC)
Suffice to say, these principles are very strongly established as Wikimedia Foundation policy, which is not going to change any time soon. The Board has been extremely clear on this. This page is not really the appropriate forum to debate the merits behind this Wikimedia-wide policy. I suggest you take it to the foundation-l mailing list.--Pharos - (talk) 19:40, 25 April 2008 (UTC)
I'm not here to debate the policy. I'm here to get some constructive input into ways to either incorporate this into our project (which seems impossible as not a single person seems to be thinking outside of policy), or suggestions on how to otherwise fill the massive gaps that we currently have in this project. I had high hopes for this project - now I'm not so sure. I can assure you that you won't hear anything more from me regarding this policy. --Skenmy(tcw) 19:46, 25 April 2008 (UTC)
Even if the foundation had no policies I would still think that we need to be free. Our freedom is what will make Wikimedia Radio different. Without freedom the project would jst be another internet radio station. A101 - (talk) 20:22, 25 April 2008 (UTC)
Use of NC material may limit the project somewhat. I would like one of the longer-term goals be to see this carried by a satellite radio service - simply costing them the spectrum dedicated to it. As a commercial venture this would run into problems were we using NC content. --Brian McNeil / talk 06:16, 26 April 2008 (UTC)

This is probably the biggest shed-painting problem that a project faces. My personal opinion is that content should all be created dual or n-way licensed, so anyone can make any use out of it they want. That said, we definitely have to have a mechanism for those that want some exceptions, since there are always some people who don't like certain licenses. Historybuff - (talk) 16:37, 27 April 2008 (UTC)


i) So how is this different from the other attempts at 'free' radio or streaming?

ii) What about the licensing...? I.E Whose paying Harry Fox, ASCAP and RIAA? 22:04, 25 April 2008 (UTC)

This isn't about emulating a Top 40 station. This is about audio that is a part of the Wikimedia projects, i.e. from Wikinews, Wikipedia, etc. We wouldn't be playing Harry Fox, ASCAP and RIAA stuff at all.--Pharos - (talk) 22:38, 25 April 2008 (UTC)
So how do you propose to avoid 'broadcast tax'? 23:50, 25 April 2008 (UTC)
We would start with internet streaming, and there's no tax on that. If someone (say, university campus radio stations) want to put us on the air in a particular area, they'll be free to do that on their own initiative (we wouldn't be directly involved).--Pharos - (talk) 00:12, 26 April 2008 (UTC)
ASCAP? Sorry, we don't negotiate with terrorists. --Brian McNeil / talk 06:10, 26 April 2008 (UTC)

News Briefs[edit]

Wikinews needs to get recorded news briefs up and running again. --Brian McNeil / talk 06:41, 26 April 2008 (UTC)

Further Discussion[edit]

A project of this nature pushes for collaboration between projects that has - to date - not been effectively achieved. People from Commons will have to draw upon Wikipedia content if they want segments on composers; Wikiquote will have to draw from other projects to put quotes in context and have a reasonable length segment; Wiktionary will have to go beyond just the definition and start adding example uses, the root of the word, in effect an almost encyclopaedic section on their "featured word". There is a vast scope for the various projects to produce educational content that can be of use on a radio station.

All of the projects can start on this right now. There is no need to wait for a blank canvas in the form of a streaming service running random music with a gaping schedule. All the material can be done and packaged as podcasts, or packaged for broadcast. The earliest stages of a project like this should be getting audio material more prominence in places like the en.WP front page (eg. "Listen to this article") and at the same time the technology to make this a 24/7 streaming service should be investigated and worked on. --Brian McNeil / talk 11:22, 26 April 2008 (UTC)

We need to start cross-project collaboration on this on Meta. We are going to doom this project to failure by alienating others from contributing by hosting it "out of the way" on Wikinews - we could get a front-page News piece on Meta to advertise its' existence. By moving to Meta we are not just opening ourselves to criticism (which is inevitable), but to new ideas, fresh faces, cross-project collaborators, example content, and much more. By staying here we are choking the project. --Skenmy(tcw) 20:07, 26 April 2008 (UTC)
I expect this, the question is, do we have enough put together yet? --Brian McNeil / talk 20:40, 26 April 2008 (UTC)
Nothing would be enough, in my opinion. We have a good, grounded idea that is still wide open to new ideas and expansion. The perfect time to get others involved is now, not when we have something concrete and we say "well yes, but you should have come over to Wikinews 3 months ago and suggested that - it's just not workable now" --Skenmy(tcw) 20:43, 26 April 2008 (UTC)
It should be moved to meta when we have a project. Right now we have an idea with a lot of great possibilities. But we have no software, no content, no nothing. I think we should wait until we have something a little more hardcore. Especially now that we seem to be serious about this. DragonFire1024 (Talk to the Dragon) 20:50, 26 April 2008 (UTC)
Re-read my comment and you'll perhaps realise that we need other project's input and feedback on this. Wikinews is not the place for cross-project collaboration, it makes it seem like Wikinews Radio. --Skenmy(tcw) 20:57, 26 April 2008 (UTC)

Links to appropriate pages on Meta

I think we need to hijack that last one. --Brian McNeil / talk 08:39, 27 April 2008 (UTC)

I tend to agree with Skenmy having now given this some thought. Only a handful of people from other projects will take an interest while it is still here on Wikinews, I'm going to try and port the entire project page over to meta when I get time later today or tomorrow. --Brian McNeil / talk 08:44, 27 April 2008 (UTC)

Non WMF content?[edit]

Should we even be considering non-WMF content? --Brian McNeil / talk 08:49, 27 April 2008 (UTC)

The core content should be WMF but we could possibly have a small amount of non WMF content (free music etc.) --A101 - (talk) 08:59, 27 April 2008 (UTC)
It's free content, so the line between WMF and non-WMF isn't always so clear. For example, I think most of the Wikisource recordings are actually from, and I think we might want to invite that community to participate in some way.--Pharos - (talk) 11:46, 27 April 2008 (UTC)
If it's 'free' content and legal, why be limited? ShakespeareFan00 - (talk) 12:19, 27 April 2008 (UTC)
I say let's make use of anything available that's in WMF scope (i.e. free content with a neutral point of view where applicable), even if it's not currently hosted by a WMF project. Chris Mann (Say hi!|Stalk me!) 05:41, 28 April 2008 (UTC)

Possible contributors[edit]

Please list yourself below if you are interested in being involved in this project. Specify how you could contribute (eg scripts, recordings, editing).

  • Brian McNeil / talk 09:28, 27 April 2008 (UTC) Can do scripts and some recording work.
  • Anonymous101 Scripts, audio editing and possibly recording .
  • --Skenmy(tcw) 10:14, 27 April 2008 (UTC) Recording, technical work.
  • Pharos - (talk) 11:49, 27 April 2008 (UTC) Scripts, organizing programs, possibly recording if I get a working microphone.
  • Chris Mann (Say hi!|Stalk me!) 05:42, 28 April 2008 (UTC) - Scripts, recording once I have a decent mike. My parents always told me I had a face for radio.
  • Przykuta - (talk) - organizing programs in pl wikinews, I will talk with users about recording during Wikimedia Polska Conference. —Preceding comment was added at 21:51, 28 April 2008 (UTC)
  • OmegaMB / talk 08:24, 30 April 2008 (UTC) Can do recording work.

Why are we wasting our time doing this?[edit]

I do not see the point in any of this. 1) No one will realistically listen - even if they wanted too, I am sure they wouldn't bother after 5 minutes of fcuking around with the streams which no doubt will be in ogg. 2) I would rather listen to a million other things then pd music. 3) We can't even get standard stories read, how do you think you will get a radio steam going? 4) Resources would be far better wasted on other projects such as vod or, standard audio stories or, useful interesting news 5) Shouldn't we get the basics right.... like getting the standard writing on wikinews good

I believe the entire wiki model is screwed upon wikinews because we somply don't have enough writers/contributors (which is what is needed for a successful wiki) - then once we have the contributors, then we can focus on specific projects.

Symode09 - (talk) 06:45, 28 April 2008 (UTC)


Could we agree on a minimum amount of time which shall be set aside to hack away at scientology and then another chunk of time for shameless sucking up to scientology to "balance" things out? Symode09 - (talk) 06:48, 28 April 2008 (UTC)

Troll elsewhere. --Brian McNeil / talk 06:55, 28 April 2008 (UTC)
It was not trolling, it was sarcasm reflecting on wikinews' sensationalistic reporting on anything to do with scientology Symode09 - (talk) 08:50, 28 April 2008 (UTC)

Music, news and NPOV[edit]

We want to give people information. Music from Commons will be POV, but... NPOV will be possible, if this music is news - new song, new concert etc from Category:2008. A part of pl Wikinews is Photojournalism. Look at Fotoreportaż: Tymon & The Transistors w katowickim Carpe Diem. We could use images as information, we could use sound. So, problem is copyright, but we could use new stuff from Jamendo and similar projects - new songs and albums. Why not. Przykuta - (talk) 22:13, 28 April 2008 (UTC)