Talk for Wiki Project "Letter from Jimmy and Orit: What we have learned so far"

Talk about this Project

  1. [ This comment is from a user you have muted ] (show)

    Hi Orit, [maybe this is repeated now in the one only directed to you]

    I love the WikiTribune project. So far I have adapted Twitter as my operating environment, as can be seen, for example, in my Medium blog story “Can #SocialBusiness3DoC disable #FakeNews? ( https://medium.com/@gmh_upsa/can-socialbusiness3doc-disable-fakenews-47df49184507 ).” Who knows, maybe some of my close to 250 stories on Medium might qualify as stories in WikiTribune as opposed to Medium.

    What follows has two precedents. They are in “Talk for Article ‘A neither #Brexit, nor #Bremain, #EU28 wide referendum scenario'” and in “Talk for Article ‘FT: Can Wikipedia’s Jimmy Wales fix the news?'” The first precedent is about whether or not the article qualifies as news for WikiTribune as it has a proposal that maybe you were not expecting.

    I don’t propose such decision be framed as a debate under the primacy of the parts as used in representative democracy politics, but as a generative dialogue under the primacy of the whole as I guess should be used in direct democracy politics, as can be seen in this search with many hits https://grupomillenium.blogspot.com/search?q=generative+dialogue on my Grupo Millennium Hispanola (GMH) blog. Many posts resulting from that search have links don’t work anymore. For example, those that are from my EWPC Blog on Energy Central that was eliminated with more than 300 posts, however most of those post are available unlinked in the GMH Blog.

    The second precedent is about the “fix” word used by John Thornhill, which I suggest to go a bit deeper by differentiating between transitioning the news as I guess is being done elsewhere and transforming the news as WikiTribune envisions and maybe others have done or are already doing.

    After John Thornhill RT your tweet “Letter from @jimmy_wales and me about where @WikiTribune is heading” with the quote “What we are doing is inverting completely how people normally think about communities and journalists – the community is not here to merely help the journalists. Rather the journalists will be here to work for the community” I added two tweet to make a three tweets conversation for the #GlobalDebout community.

    There two ways journalist can work for the community. One is about transitioning, which is very weel supported by the book “New Power,” by Jeremy Heimans and Henry Timms.” The question that remains is whether this will help the community go in the old direction the way “how people normally think” or the new direction that the WikiTribune project is aiming at. In that light, I proposed a “Systems Architecting heuristic methodology “Fact of Life” #GlobalDebout Big Shift in direction away from the Money currency into the Trust “current” (as coined in #NewPower).”

    One of the best quotes on this is that of the hashtag #Fordism. A “most famous quote attributed to Henry Ford is this: “If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses.” Of course, there are deniers that he ever said that. Anyway the this is what I said in one of the tweets that I sent to John Thornhill that on the second precedent, “If I had asked voters what they wanted, they would have said the American Way of Life”*… which of course is unsustainable.

    This is tweet #2: Jose A Vanderhorst S @gmh_upsa 15h15 hours ago More Replying to @johnthornhillft

    Jose A Vanderhorst S Retweeted Jose A Vanderhorst S
    “When people don’t understand each other, they can’t converse or find common ground… if we could only press a “reset” button… could be different and we could move forward together as a country.” — @HiddenTribesUS

    Is https://twitter.com/gmh_upsa/status/1054390130222473217 … the “reset” button for #Brexit?

    This is tweet #3. Jose A Vanderhorst S @gmh_upsa 48m48 minutes ago More

    If “journalists will be here to work for the community” is a #Jobsism proposal that people are not expecting but will love, Will they investigate a #Jobsism proposal of an electoral arrangement that works as a system with respect to globalization that people are not expecting?

    Please respond!

    Best regards!

    José Antonio (we use both names in our culture)

  2. [ This comment is from a user you have muted ] (show)

    I appreciate the refocusing of WikiTribune towards community empowerment (and away from content production). However it is a struggle to define the role of the community in the news cycle. I find the current generation of content by WikiTribune patchy and arbitrary. My view is that WikiTribune should not attempt to generate content. The millions of global news sources cannot be replicated by the WikiTribune community within the ‘window of relevance’ timescale. My view is that WikiTribune should seek to place the community as the editor and copy editor/fact checker, not the journalist. A major fault of the MSM is its selection of what is newsworthy, its echo chamber nature, and its inherent biases. These can be corrected for by the community. WikiTribune should enable the community to collate news from the widest variety of sources, it should enable the community-as-editor to determine ‘what matters now’, and it should translate the basic content of the most important stories to provide a high quality starting point for the community to fact check, broaden, balance, contextualise etc.

    1. [ This comment is from a user you have muted ] (show)

      While I agree with your suggestion that a valuable role for Wikitribune is to try to make the rest of the media honest – by editing, adding and fact checking – it would make Wikitribune’s appeal rather narrow – news nerds and pedants would thrive. But, it definitely should be part of Wikitribune’s offer.

      Wikitribune should generate original content, not to compete with the mainstream media, but to expand on and expose issues that are ignored or about which the mainstream media have become bored.

      Some newspapers used to be considered “the journals of record” to the extent that they were acceptable as evidence in court. The role of the media as “witness”, so that no one can say they did not know what was happening, has been replaced by the publication of highly perishable trivia, as ephemeral as the Mayfly.

      Appalling though the circumstances surrounding the death of Jamal Khashoogi are, the criticism of Saudi Arabia for the conduct of its almost genocidal war in Yemen has been neglected by the mainstream press (with the honourable exception of the BBC). Although thankfully Mr. Khashoggi’s death is bringing Yemen into the news again. None of the mainstream media report on the “Heart of Darkness” conflict involving sexual violence and mutilation in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Is there a role for Wikitribune to doggedly report what it can from the conflict?

      There are a huge number of neglected issues but the question is whether the contributors to Wikitribune have the resources to cover them.

    2. [ This comment is from a user you have muted ] (show)

      I agree with all of that, basically, depending on some particular nuances. Do you have specific software changes in mind?

      1. [ This comment is from a user you have muted ] (show)

        If I interpret correctly, “Do you have specific software changes in mind?” can be simplified to address “WikiTribune should enable the community to collate news from the widest variety of sources, it should enable the community-as-editor to determine ‘what matters now’, and it should translate the basic content of the most important stories to provide a high quality starting point for the community to fact check, broaden, balance, contextualise etc.”

        If that’s the case, I have been using Twitter to provide quality collaborations to get feedback from the #GlobalDebout community as thought experiments. Once the feedback is in, sometimes I produce Medium stories or narrative following John Hagel suggestions. For example, this is a narrative “The main thing that we learned so far is that in order to implement our vision, we should give the community the full confidence that WikiTribune is based on their contributions, while the professional team is here mainly to serve them where needed.”

        However, I suggest that news, for example, about politics are not to be fixed. A country that doesn’t work as a system is more than broken { I now add might be this related to neutral?} as suggested in the following tweet that added a comment in two parts (a second comment came later):

        Jose A Vanderhorst S @gmh_upsa Oct 20 More Replying to @FareedZakaria @washingtonpost @hiattf

        Please consider my #GreatNews4GD (with “4GD” as “for #GlobalDebout”) counterintuitive visionary response https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/global-opinions/jamal-khashoggi-what-the-arab-world-needs-most-is-free-expression/2018/10/17/adfc8c44-d21d-11e8-8c22-fa2ef74bd6d6_story.html?commentId=b9ea8f6c-dbcb-42a6-aa66-254e931b8cbd&outputType=comment&utm_term=.1b32ef7944b6 … to @KarenAttiah’s quote “I just hope, I pray that something good comes out of this.”

        Next is one paragraph from the comment: “Is it possible that the Arab Spring is an example of non democratic countries in a direction very far from the democratic ideal? Is it possible that the West in general has been getting increasingly non democratic, since the 1973 OPEC Embargo, as the external environment of nations has been under what Alvin Toffler had called Future Shock? Is it possible that after Margaret Thatcher and Ronald Reagan introduced the TINA (There Is No Alternative) to Neoliberalism and the Washington Consensus PLANS, respectively, the general direction of most nations continue getting less and less democratic?”

        Edited: 2018-10-24 09:46:50 By José Vanderhorst-Silverio (talk | contribs) + 369 Characters .. + 14% change.‎‎ (Note | Diff)

      2. [ This comment is from a user you have muted ] (show)

        I propose a community generated news feed, as follows…

        Journalism deemed high-quality / important by WikiTribune users is commended to the community in the form of a package containing title, weblink, category and brief synopsis. This is verified, posted to a non-sorted feed and distributed to signed-up ‘community editors’. The item is rated for quality / importance by the community, with flags for potential issues such as factual errors, reliance on a single source, political bias in content or topic selection etc. On the basis of the community rating (with a weighting for time relevance) the item is placed in an ordered news feed (filterable by category).

        The community generated news feed is valuable in itself. An alternative to the MSM controlled news selection or news feeds generated by individualistic, bias reinforcing algorithms designed to chase clicks.

        The community generated news feed can also enable an emergent community view of ‘what matters now’, providing a democratic basis for the selection of topics to be expanded into community produced content / articles.

        The value of the synopses produced by the community of external journalism should also not be underestimated. Summaries being both vital in our world of information overload but also potential sources of misrepresentation and bias.

        1. [ This comment is from a user you have muted ] (show)

          I just receive a message that says “WikiTribune — Someone replied to your comment on Letter from Jimmy and Orit: What we have learned so far.” The reply from Philip James starts with “I propose a community generated news feed, as follows…” and I understand it replied to Jimmy Wales’ comment. If that’s no the case, then I wonder the following?

          Was Jimmy Wales’ comment that said “I agree with all of that, basically, depending on some particular nuances. Do you have specific software changes in mind?,” directed to me?

  3. [ This comment is from a user you have muted ] (show)

    Dear Jimmy and Orit,

    Thank you telling us about the progress of Wikitribune over the past year. I, for one, am delighted Wikitribune is still here and that the project is starting to fulfil its undoubted potential. It is so badly needed: the democratic deficit caused by what I (perhaps rather pompously) consider to be unprofessional journalism, grows deeper by the day.

    Which brings me to the my point. One does not ask a community to undertake one’s open heart surgery, we have representative democracies where we delegate authority to those who (we hope!) will conduct affairs of state in our interests, we employ a mechanic to fix our cars. Is the idea of a “community” in Wikitribune going to deskill and de-professionalise news gathering? I reject the idea that a democratic deficit can be filled by democratised journalism. Or have I got the wrong end of the stick when it comes to understanding what the Wikitribune community is and what it should contribute?

    Let me declare an interest here: I am a reporter. That is my job and my skill. It does not put me “above” a community or a readership, but it does equip me with tools that allow me to observe, interpret and report what I see as accurately and objectively as I can. I write about things as an ordinarily interested observer may do, but without the personal and emotional input. The hard-bitten old hack (not a pejorative description) who taught me reporting kept emphasising, “Readers haven’t the slightest interest in your views.” The ordinarily, interested reader wants to make up their own mind in the confidence that the “evidence-based” reporting has an unshakable foundation.

    My career as a reporter has seen news increasingly editorialised. Latterly it has become emotionalised and sourceless as “citizen journalism,” that bounces stories around in the social media echochamber, has its trajectory increasingly fuelled by what seems to be, malign, external influences.

    I would like to see Wikitribune grow into a trusted franchise where anyone accessing the site can be sure that the reporting of news is not coloured by the reporter’s unsubstantiated, personal outlook, a source or view that may have been influenced or manipulated by individuals, corporations or states seeking to sway not just the Wikitribune community, but the community at large.

    Wikitribune’s leadership role is not to have reporting that places reporters “above” a community of a readership but imposes a professional imprint on Wikitribune’s output in reporting and writing.

    The idea Osman Ilyas suggests below of a comments section below articles is a way of people giving vent to their personal views without adding personal input to a piece of reporting. The Financial Times comment section is a great example of how it can work.

    Could I ask you both to expand on the role of the “community” or point me to where you have spelled out what its role should be?

    Kind regards,

    Henry Harington

    1. [ This comment is from a user you have muted ] (show)

      Hi Henry, while I agree that journalistic training should equip one “with tools that allow me to observe, interpret and report what I see as accurately and objectively as I can” there is a serious hubris amongst too many journalists, who as a class in practice do an absolutely miserable job of that as compared to, for example, Wikipedians, in terms of thinking they are the only ones who can do that.

      To be clear, there are many excellent journalists who do live up to ideals of neutrality – or at least try to, while being employed by publications which are increasingly not in the least interested in paying for that kind of journalism. Clickbaity rants are what the marketplace is rewarding today, and even serious organizations who hate that fact, are struggling to grapple with it.

      The reason we don’t want a comments section below articles is exactly the same reason that Wikipedia doesn’t have it – this isn’t a place for people to “give vent to their personal views” – there’s a big huge Internet for that, and it isn’t what I’m interested in here.

  4. [ This comment is from a user you have muted ] (show)

    It would be nice to have comments under articles as well.
    Is there a public github repo with a task board so that the community can contribute to building the website too?

    1. [ This comment is from a user you have muted ] (show)

      Yes! We have the code here – https://github.com/wikitribune

      1. [ This comment is from a user you have muted ] (show)

        Will the purchase of the “public github repo,”for example, by Microsoft change its policy to the “private github repo”?

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