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Notabilia – Visualizing Deletion Discussions on Wikipedia



Notabilia visualizes the longest Article for Deletion discussions in the English Wikipedia. It's a collaboration with Moritz Stefaner (visualization) and Giovanni Luca Ciampaglia (data analysis) and it was launched on the occasion of the 10th Anniversary of Wikipedia. Article for Deletion (AfD) discussions are represented by a thread starting at the bottom center of the screen. Each time a user recommends to keep, merge, or redirect the article a green segment leaning towards the left is added. Each time a user rec­ommends to delete the article a red segment leaning towards the right is added. As the dis­cussion progresses, the length of the segments as well as the angle slowly decay.

Notabilia is the winner of the interactive visualization gold prize at the Information is Beautiful Awards (2012)° and was listed by Co.Design among the "22 best infographics of 2011"°. It was part of the InForm exhibit° (2011) for the Adobe Museum of Digital Media° and of the FutureEverything Art Exhibition° (Manchester, 2012). It has been featured by The Guardian°, Co.Design°, BoingBoing°, Creative Review°, the Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation (NRK)°, Information Esthetics°, FlowingData°, DataVisualization.ch°, NetzPolitik°, Visualizing.org°, BigThink,°, Bright Magazine (38/2011)°, Page Magazine (6/2011)°, Information Architects°, PopTech° and Zooz Magazine°.

Just in time for Wikipedia’s forth­com­ing tenth anniver­sary, two researchers – Dario Tara­borelli and Gio­vanni Luca Ciampaglia – approached me for a coop­er­a­tion on visu­al­iz­ing the dis­cus­sions around arti­cle dele­tions on Wikipedia. The results are online at notabilia.net.

tree screenshot
I came up with a tree visu­al­iza­tion, where an Arti­cle for Dele­tion dis­cus­sion is rep­re­sented by a thread start­ing at the bot­tom cen­ter. Each time a user rec­om­mends to keep, merge, or redi­rect the arti­cle a green seg­ment lean­ing towards the left is added. Each time a user rec­om­mends to delete the arti­cle a red seg­ment lean­ing towards the right is added. As the dis­cus­sion pro­gresses, the length of the seg­ments as well as the angle slowly decay.

In the visu­al­iza­tions, I tried to cap­ture the ten­sion between chaos and order inher­ent to the dis­cus­sions, and pro­vide a nice serendip­ity inter­face as well.

So much to learn about…

unusual screenshot


two-hit screenshot


playmates screenshot

But also some more hard analy­sis can be found at notabilia.net, look­ing at the vote dis­tri­b­u­tions, lengths of dis­cus­sions, etc. Take a look yourself!

Source: Stefaner, M. 2011. Notabilia – Visualizing Deletion Discussions on Wikipedia. Well-Formed Data. Retrieved January 11, 2011, from: http://well-formed-data.net/archives/570/notabilia-visualizing-deletion-discussions-on-wikipedia.
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