Home » State of Wikipedia report for July 2023

State of Wikipedia report for July 2023

by | Jul 12, 2023

By Josh Greene, CEO, The Mather Group

This month, our Wikipedia Chaos Index sits at 66, continuing the slightly lower score following the spring’s high level of activity. This is typical – as with most years, we expect an increase in the Index in the months to follow.

Though new page submissions remain steady, there was an uptick in pages nominated for deletion. This does not represent a large change, but is significant as it reflects a more stringent adherence to Wikipedia’s guidelines for approval of new pages.

With the adoption of the Online Safety Bill in the United Kingdom, Wikipedia could potentially become inaccessible in the UK. Seems crazy, but the bill adds a number of legal requirements for tech companies and websites to follow that Wikipedia may not be able to. It spells out policies designed to combat harmful content online that many companies, and Wikimedia, fear the bill goes too far.  Instead, peers are suggesting Wikipedia and other similar sites have a regulatory exemption, and be considered “low risk” for harm because they provide a public good.

As argued by the former Facebook director of policy in Europe for a decade, non-commercial sites for the purpose of public information (that have limited user-to-user functions) should be exempt from potentially harmful aspects of the policy – including verifying users through ‘age-gating’, which Wikipedia has said it will not do.

Should anyone be worried? Most likely not; all government parties have expressed a desire for a flexible, ‘future-proof’ bill, and most experts believe an exemption will be provided for Wikipedia. However, considering this news alongside other recent headlines (like Wikipedia being blocked in Pakistan back in February), it is a constant reminder that Wikipedia is a global project, and one constantly subject to the whims of international law in all of its 300+ language editions.

For more information, contact Josh Greene at [email protected]

(NOTE:The Chaos Index is our proprietary metric for measuring turbulence throughout Wikipedia and tracking the community’s current sentiment towards corporate-related pages. The index measures community actions such as editing frequency, content deletion, message board posts, and many other activities that contribute to unstable corporate page environments.)

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