Backstage Projects: Support and Policymaking in Collaborative Cyberspace

Note to contributorsEdit

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Backstage projects [1] are online collaborative software enterprises which provide intellectual and technical infrastructure and support for the ongoing activities of collaborative online projects such as wikipedia, wikiversity, etcetera. As various parties replicate the model, the best management practices (BMP's) developed at Wikimedia Foundation projects will be implemented worldwide and thus so too will be the BMP of backstage projects. All of these collaborative projects use similar software and encounter similar issues. They include private, advertising supported wikis which users utilize as they wish, and focused open projects such as meatballwiki, wikionwiki[2]Ubuntu Team Wiki[3]. Independent Media Center (IMC) is itself is not a wiki, although it is an open collaborative media project, but it uses a backstage project for production of technical and administrative documentation as well as discussion.

Meta-focused backstage projectsEdit

Wikimedia OutreachEdit

Wikimedia Outreach is an offshoot of WikiMedia and is focused on building the numerical strength of foundation projects. It purports to serve as a home for multiple outreach and collaborative initiatives with "a bookshelf, a collection of best practices, and a coordination point for any activity that is directed to the public, to cultural institutions or to universities."[4]

Meta-focused wiki:Strategy wikiEdit

Strategic planning for wikimedia projects is an outgrowth of metawiki. In July 2009, the project began the first strategy-development project with the intention of producing a five-year strategic plan for the entire Wikimedia movement. More than 1,000 people from around the world contributed in more than 50 languages. Technologies deployed included IRC, [[Skype, mailing lists and wiki pages. The Bridgespan Group provided data andanalysis. Other important participants included Eugene Eric Kim of Blue Oxen Associates and Wikipedian Philippe Beaudette.[5]

Meta-focused backstage project: MediaWikiEdit

MediaWiki[6] provides software documentation and technical discussion for projects utilizing wiki software. Meta-focused wikis such as Wikimedia Outreach and Wikimedia Strategy are specialized projects that have their roots in Meta-Wiki.

Technical-focused backstage projectsEdit


Bugzilla is a bug tracker for MediaWiki. To use bugzilla you need to create an account. [7]


Incubator is a project for potential new language versions of wiki projects.


Toolserver provides nifty add ons for editors to use in creating and polishing articles. It is a collaborative platform providing unix hosting for tools for Wikimedia editors. It is operated by Wikimedia Deutschland e.V. and the Wikimedia Foundation. [8]You must request access to the server following the account approval procedure. This is where all of those bots users encounter seem to be roosting, and they proliferate constantly. [9] To use a bot, once you have created it and hosted it, you also need approval from the project on which you seek to deploy it.

Wikimedia MailservicesEdit

Wikimedia Mailservices administers Wikimedia Mailing Lists.


Wikitech is similar to mediawiki but includes server issues and overall wikimedia technical documentation.

Test WikipediaEdit

Test Wikipedia is for testing software changes


Wikistats is for collecting and processing wikimedia statistics.

Wikimedia LaboratoriesEdit

Wikimedia Laboratories is for developing new extensions and features.

Public relations focused backstage projectsEdit

Wikimedia FoundationEdit

Wikimedia Foundation is the overarching entity which funds and guides other projects it is affiliated with.


Wikimania is a website for the Wikimania International Conference.

Wikipedia TenEdit

Wikipedia ten is concerned with the Wikipedia ten year anniversary celebration.

See alsoEdit