Reading/Multimedia/2012-13 Goals

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Here are the original engineering goals for the multimedia program, initially written for the Wikimedia Foundation's 2012-13 fiscal year. Since they were written, we had to defer the launch of the multimedia team until higher priority existing teams were fully resourced. We now plan to start the multimedia team in the 2013-14 fiscal year -- and many of the objectives below remain important and will be considered as we start the planning process for that team.

Goals[edit]

The proposed Multimedia team will build features that will enable easier contribution of multimedia content to Wikimedia projects. Specifically, the following areas will be addressed:

  • Improve curation and feedback tools to manage new and existing contribution streams
  • Enable multimedia contributions in a more user-friendly and seamless manner
  • Improve display of multimedia content
The red line represents indexed growth of the number of Wikimedia Commons contributors since February 2009, compared with other top projects. As can be seen, Wikimedia Commons is the strongest performing project in terms of relative contributor growth.

Rationale[edit]

At the present time, the number of Commons contributors is one of the few editor engagement metrics that are increasing. Over the past year, Commons has seen 25% year-over-year growth in contributors. The web is also moving towards more visually driven interfaces, so having strong multimedia support helps WMF meet the expectations of modern readers.

In fiscal year 2011-12, we have developed the technology infrastructure that previously was not available to support the storage and use of large amounts of multimedia. This is a necessary precondition for increased investment in contribution tools in the next fiscal year.

When developing new contribution streams (mobile photo uploads, improved integration of uploading into Wikimedia projects, etc.), we have to keep in mind that we are likely to receive a significant amount of low-quality or inappropriate uploads. Accordingly, we want to focus our investment not simply on increasing the inflow of new contributions, but also on improving quality management tools, including simple means for audience feedback.

Team[edit]

There are currently no resources assigned to Multimedia.

Proposed resources:

  • New: Product Manager
  • New: Senior Software Developer
  • New: Front-end Developer
  • New: Back-end Developer
  • 2011-12 hire: Interaction Designer (shared, 25-50%)

Activities[edit]

  • Support photo upload features developed by the mobile team with backend improvements and curation tools.
  • Improve integration between Wikimedia Commons and client projects like Wikipedia or third party users
  • Improve display/playback of various types of multimedia content
  • Support for competitions/contests

Output and Outcomes[edit]

  • Target: xx commons contributors/month

Milestones by quarter[edit]

Q4 11-12 (April-June)
  • TimedMediaHandler on Commons (if not, fold into Q2 2012):
    • Multiple derivatives (bitrates, formats), including WebM
    • Subtitle support
    • Transcode existing videos on Commons
Q1 (July-September)
  • As multimedia team spins up, begin speccing out curation tools to support mobile photo uploads
Q2 (October-December)
  • Improve multimedia curation tools (quality control, user-to-user communication, tagging - similar to Page Triage issues)
  • Implement media feedback experiment (similar to article feedback, to get audience feedback on uploaded/used media)
  • Improvements and fixes to Upload Wizard
Q3 (January-March)
  • Continue curation tools improvements / media feedback tools development
  • Wikimedia Commons upload/media display integration improvements
Q4 (April-June)
  • Wikimedia Commons upload/media display integration improvements

Interdependencies[edit]

  • Mobile will hit us in Q1 with their first pilots related to mobile photo upload. Likely we won't see immediate uptake, but if the team is successful in driving mobile media contributions, this will dictate a strong focus on curation/quality control tools early on -- a good problem to have.
  • Will drive a lot of storage load on Site Operations, and we may need to build out a larger job queuing and transcoding processing infrastructure as TimedMediaHandler goes online, video on commons grows drastically, or the community comes to a decision on policy supporting (or not) licensed encumbered codecs (i.e. H.264 output for mobile devices older than iOS5 and Android ICS).