Mining for Practices in Community Collections: Finds From Simple Wikipedia
The challenges of commons based peer production are usually associated with the development of complex software projects such as Linux and Apache. But the case of open content production should not be treated as a trivial one. For instance, while the task of maintaining a collection of encyclopedic articles might seem negligible compared to the one of keeping together a software system with its many modules and interdependencies, it still poses quite demanding problems. In this paper, we describe the methods and practices adopted by Simple Wikipedia to keep its articles easy to read. Based on measurements of article readability and similarity, we conclude that while the mechanisms adopted by the community had some effect, in the long run more efforts and new practices might be necessary in order to maintain an acceptable level of readability in the Simple Wikipedia collection.