WikiProject Report: Where are they now?
Since this is the first WikiProject Report in six months, we thought we'd look back at some of the 41 WikiProjects that have been previously featured in the Signpost from October 8, 2007 to June 15, 2009. Where are they now?
Highlights and Pitfalls
When WikiProject Biography was featured in the first WikiProject Report on October 8, 2007, the project's 400 members were celebrating its fifth birthday. Over two years later, WikiProject Biography is still active and boasts more than 600 members including 32 admin members. With over 700 pieces of featured content and more than 1,700 good articles, WikiProject Biography is one of Wikipedia's great success stories.
WikiProject Military history, the second project featured in the Signpost, would be covered twice by the Report on October 11, 2007 and July 28, 2008. It continues to be a very active project with an impressive 417 featured articles, 62 featured lists, 9 featured topics, 179 featured pictures, 9 featured sounds, 10 featured portals, and 218 A-Class articles. The project is nearing its goal of 500 featured articles and has organized two special long-term projects called Operation Great War Centennial and Operation Majestic Titan. The first aims to improve articles related to World War I, while the second has the goal of raising all battleship and battlecruiser articles to FA.
The only other project to be featured twice is WikiProject LGBT studies which was reported upon on December 3, 2007 and May 25, 2009. To keep their 58 featured articles and lists free of vandalism, the project's members regularly patrol the LGBT watchlist. The number of articles within the scope of the project continues to grow rapidly, leaving the project with a backlog of unassessed articles with which the project members would greatly appreciate some help.
Of the most recently featured projects, WikiProject Oregon tends to be the most active. When the project was featured on June 15, 2009, project members boasted about their double collaboration system providing two articles each week for collaborative improvement. Those collaborations continue to this day, although they are now offered at a fortnightly rate. To get a feel for how busy the project is, take a look at the project's very active talk page where new discussions are started daily.
Not all projects have fared so well. Motto of the Day was once a thriving WikiProject but has fallen on hard times. The project's talk page reveals that members were already having problems maintaining a constant supply of mottos several months before the Report interviewed six active contributors on January 31, 2009. Shortly after celebrating the project's fourth anniversary in April 2009, activity slowed down. In November 2009, one contributor commented that the project had been "teetering on running dry with only short bursts" of activity in the previous months. The last post on the project's motto nomination page was on November 28, 2009.
The Report's interview with folks at WikiProject Color hinted at a promising future for the small project, but it hasn't grown much since the project was featured on April 13, 2009. While it remains active, the project still has yet to bring an article up to featured status and the project's three good articles were battered by reassessments, leaving only the color green with good article status.
There have also been some consolidations as WikiProjects changed focus or took on new responsibilities. WikiProject Food and Drink swallowed the inactive WikiProject Ice Cream while WikiProject Final Fantasy was absorbed by WikiProject Square Enix.
The Many Faces of WikiProjects
Several of the earliest WikiProjects featured in the Signpost focused on utilitarian topics like WikiProject Outline of Knowledge (formerly WikiProject Lists of basic topics), WikiProject Missing encyclopedic articles, and WikiProject Guild of Copy Editors (formerly the League of Copy Editors).
The most active projects previously covered by the Report tend to be related to sports and entertainment, including WikiProjects on football (soccer), ice hockey, professional wrestling, films, music, opera, video games, and the Simpsons. WikiProject Family Guy has been very active, resulting in 35 good articles, a featured article (North by North Quahog), and a featured list (List of Family Guy cast members). The project continues to produce a constant stream of good article nominees, mostly covering individual episodes of the television series.
In one of the Report's eeriest coincidences, WikiProject Michael Jackson was featured one month before the pop star's death.
Over the years, WikiProject Report has tried to be somewhat comprehensive in its coverage. All three of the largest monotheistic religions have been featured: Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. Scientific topics featured in the Report have included WikiProjects on plants, agriculture, molecular and cellular biology, chemistry, pharmacology, tropical cyclones, and the solar system. Geographic topics have ranged from the large countries covered by WikiProject China and WikiProject India to smaller communities like WikiProject Greater Manchester.
Next week, WikiProject Report will focus on a storied project started in 2002. Until then, feel free to take a look at previous reports for the projects mentioned above and many more in the WikiProject Reports archive.