LinguaLibre

Events/Winter 2021-2022 Public Relations Campaign

< LinguaLibre:Events

This operation was cancelled due to lack of technical solidity on Lingualibre side, namely: 1) no proper search engine (unpractical Sound library, 2) LinguaLibre:Technical_board/Audio click bug (,,,,), 3) no learning feature or added values services for contributing community; 4) no serious plan to remediate those. Position expressed by Marreromarco, endorsed Yug.
Raising awareness about our mission among major macro-languages could open access to smaller linguistic communities, where most of the linguistic diversity resides.

The Winter 2021-2022 Public Relations Campaign is an outward communication effort initiated to raise awareness about LinguaLibre and its Recording Studio capabilities among the general public, Wikimedians, and language enthusiasts online. This campaign will go on the actual PR's field, and through experience will gather and create base PR materials (contact email, blog posts, base flyers, etc.) about our project and mission. As a first online campaign, we will mostly ride macro-languages such as English, Spanish, French, but our long objective is to particularly reach out to smaller linguistic communities within those areas. We would like the awareness created to cause a doubling and diversification of the core LinguaLibre team (coordinators, devs), and a doubling of monthly recordings by Summer 2022. Qualitatively, we aim to solidly cover the major Western languages and solidly move beyond them as well.

Details

  • Description: an initial Public Relation Campaign to raise awareness and call for diverse contributors, including speakers, developers, and others.
  • Place: online, emails, Meta.Wikimedia.org. LinguaLibre.org.
  • Time/Schedule: 2021/11/25 – 2022/03/31 (initial phase).
  • Lead by: Marreromarco (PR), Yug (Grants review). Support:Adélaïde Calais WMFr (soon), Wikimédia France.
    Any additional volunteers: we look for French, Chinese, Arabic, Hindi PR folk as well as minority languages contacts able to spread the campaign locally.
  • Co-participants: FOSS blogs editors and journalists.
  • Public: readers, to turn into aware public, advocates, or contributors.
  • Program: under discussion.

Definition

Public relations (PR) is a strategic communication process that builds mutually beneficial relationships between an organization and its public. The PR Campaign should establish relationships with our target audience, the media, non-profit Foundations, the Educational Sector and Private Companies.

PR Campaign Objectives

  • Increase the number of active contributors on Lingua Libre
  • Train and seed speakers and advocates worldwide, especially within minorities and endangered languages.
  • Receive more feedback from users to improve the platform according to their needs.

PR Methods

The strategies should be tailored in a case to case basis. Here is a list of methods:

  • Contact media outlets to promote Lingua Libre among their target audiences (e.g., Newspapers, Magazines, TV, etc.)
  • Banners on Wiktionary/Wikipedia would be very efficient. For example, a web banner on the “English Wiktionary”.
  • Publish messages on Social Media (Blogs, Reddit, YouTube, Facebook, etc).
  • Introduce the project to opinion Leaders in the field of language learning and Linguistics.
  • Invite non-profit Foundations and the Educational Sector to use and promote Lingua Libre.
  • Invite Private Companies to use and promote our project (respecting the License requirements).

PR Execution

A careful coordination is necessary to ensure a successful PR Campaign. All project members could contribute with ideas/proposals. However, the actual execution should be carried out by a person with experience/education in the field of Public Relations. For example, a university student that has a background in PR would be more suited to conduct the Campaign. Four points to consider:

  • A part-time intern at Wikimedia France would be desirable (if funding could be secured). It might create a better impression on possible partners if the lead-person on the PR campaign is on the premises of Wikimedia France in Paris. If an intern can send communications through an Institutional Address (@wikimedia.fr) it might be seen as more trustworthy than using personal e-mails.
  • Community members of Lingua Libre could write on this page possible partners to contact. For example, let's contact “Local Newspaper X” in France and the email address is “XYZ”.
  • To avoid duplication of work, write on this page when someone is contacted and what was the result (e.g., accepted and article published, accepted and YouTube video published, no reply, refusal, etc.)
  • Communications should be in formal language to offer a good impression. Please avoid informal emails like “Hey, I'm Mark. Check this awesome website…”

Possible actions

The sections below gather identified PR actors within the field of language diversity and technologies. Feel free to contact one of those actors, and initiate reporting on LinguaLibre.

By Country

Write here contact details of those that might be contacted by Lingua Libre. They can be media outlets (Newspaper, Magazine, TV, etc.), opinion leaders, Non-Profit Foundations, Universities, Language Institutes, Companies, etc.

Argentina

Canada:

Chile:

Spain:

USA:

Contacts made and Results

  • Blog Diolinux : Contacted on Nov. 2021. Yes check.svg ' Contacted → Interested → × Coordinating → × Redaction → × Publication.
  • It's FOSS.com : Contacted on Nov. 2021. Contacted → Interested → Coordinating → × Redaction → × Publication.
  • Omniglot.com : Lingua Libre published as an online language learning resource at https://www.omniglot.com/links/resources.htm (Monthly Readership: 1.5 million)
  • Cherokee Language New Kituwah Academy (Nov. 2021)
  • Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians (Nov. 2021)
  • Cherokee Preservation Foundation (Nov. 2021)
  • Carol Genetti, PhD (Nov. 2021)
  • Colleen M. Fitzgerald, PhD. (Nov. 2021)
  • Tink Tinker, PhD (Nov. 2021)
  • Steven T. Newcomb (Nov. 2021)
  • Alexander Argüelles, PhD (Nov. 2021)

Possible PR Funding

Community member Yug has review some available grants avenues to later submit requests to fund the "PR campaign 2022”. WMFR diversity manager Adélaïde Calais WMFr could help according to her possibilities in the review and advisory ability for such.

It would be necessary to be very specific regarding :

  • What languages/regions should be given priority?
  • Would it be possible to accept an intern at Wikimedia France, and under which conditions ?
  • Required budget and working hours.
  • Measurable goals of the Campaign (e.g., Reach 1.5 million recordings by December 2022, 1000 new persons registered, 30 new languages, etc.).

Planning for grant requests

  1. Short term (1~2 week): ideation, write down our core ideas and avenues.
  2. Medium term (1~3 months): draft one or two clean campaign proposals. Suitable to apply for a rapid grant, securing 1~5K USD for infographic, flyer editing, writing down core PR documents or kits. Get some intern or young person to work part-time on this for 2~3 months. It will also let us probe for real the funding ecosystem around us and tell us if funding for the time-consuming campaign itself, emailing partners, coordinating and writing external blog posts is possible.
  3. Long term (6 months): be able to repeat the cycle, with variant grant requests, funding targeted PR campaign such as Indian subcontinent, Amerindians languages, African languages, language-rich Indonesia. The idea is to forward WMF funds money to local Wikimedia user groups across the globe who can do the on-the-ground advocacy, events, and recording.

Community Discussion (Comments/Feedback)

Section to discuss about the "PR Campaign 2022". Feel free to write here your ideas and to edit the above sections

Just a simple idea to promote lingualibre.org (from Wikimedia France) among Wikipedia users

Banner / MediaWiki:Sitenotice
1) A Banner on Wikimedia Pages would be in my opinion the most efficient method to promote Lingua Libre. From January 2022, the new CEO of Wikimedia headquarters would be Maryana Iskander, a Lawyer born in Egypt whose family emigrated to the USA during her childhood. As the new CEO of Wikimedia comes from an immigrant background, she could support a Wikimedia policy of multiculturalism and recording endangered languages.

Amerindian Languages are severely endangered, and the public would sympathize with a preservation effort. For example, the [:en:Cherokee Language|]] in the US is considered "Moribund (8a)" by Ethnologue meaning that "the only remaining active users of the language are members of the grandparent generation and older". The few speakers of Cherokee that remain are bilingual (English-Cherokee) and a Banner on the English Wikipedia could help to contact them and invite them to record their voices on Lingua Libre. Such a high-impact PR effort of putting a Banner on the English Wikipedia would have to be done through Official channels by Wikimedia France. Adélaïde Calais WMFr and Yug. Maybe with the help of an intern at Wikimedia France an attempt could be made ?

Hello Marco,
Multiculturalism is already deep within Wikimedia's community. The current Grants pages already explicitly refer to "underrepresented and marginalized communities": the WMF's intention are clear, the slope is favorable, and the wind will necessarily continue to flow. WMF supports diversity, that's up to us to submit projects' ideas in different formats and to find the associated human power to push those to fruition.
The Banner avenue on its side is tricky. The Wikipedia's interface messages are decided by the local wiki communities, by votes and administrator. Wikimedia France and Adélaïde cannot decide this. (One top-down attempt in 2017 created a short crisis). They can simply encourage the Wikipedia community to have a discussion about this. Technically, similar to the "Month of Asia", we could organize and gather support for a "Month of Voices (LinguaLibre)" event. First on LinguaLibre, quickly testing the approach and a MediaWiki:Sitenotice, then lead a discussion on :fr:wp: for a similar event. But in practice we there would venture into the misty land of votes and discussions, which for efficiency’s sake, we simple volunteers would be wise to avoid. Yug (talk) 18:32, 26 November 2021 (UTC)

Yug and Adélaïde Calais WMFr : Currently the "search" system of LinguaLibre (i.e. user experience) makes it impossible to attract new contributors except the rare Wikimedian or FOSS advocate. Many language learners have told me that the website is unusable to listen pronunciations in their target language (.e.g. English). I understand that Lingua Libre was devised as a tool for Commons. Actually, "Lyokoï" said on Discord:

"le but de Lingua libre c’est pas vraiment d’explorer les enregistrements. Ça c’est le rôle de commons. Et vu que les enregistrements sont mis automatiquement sur plusieurs Wiktionnaires, c’est surtout là qu’il faut les chercher."

Poslovitch said "Je ne suis pas convaincu par l'idée de faire de Lili un portail de découverte/un site pour apprenants/une sonothèque."

If the above is true and the project would not implement a “search” system, then the project would never attract any audience and any PR campaign would be a “forlorn hope”. IMHO, the project has no future without making a “website” that would actually help people. The only pronunciations that can be of any benefit for language learners are those that appears on Wiktionaries. There are open requests to add Lili to Kurdish (02/21), Catalan (03/2021), Ukrainian and Spanish (11/2021) and each of those requests requires a huge effort and understanding of those languages. Furthermore, community approval is difficult to obtain ! I tried to convince the Italian community, and they rejected the idea. The English Wiktionary also BANNED Lingua Libre (they forbid adding Lingua Libre audios to the English Wiktionary). Many other Wiktionary communities might reject Lingua Libre and the recordings would have no real value at all hidden on LiLi Database. Honestly, a PR campaign with the website in its current state would be promoting "snake oil".

Given the current situation of Lingua Libre “search” functionality, I will have to adopt a wait-and-see approach. I will not spend many hours on a PR campaign or recording Spanish words if there is no search functionality (let alone lack of integration with Wiktionaries). I am very sorry. I will wait for the implementation of proper “search function” before contributing anymore to Lingua Libre. I might come back to record 400 words/day and promote Lingua Libre as soon as the audios could be helpful to people and not buried on LL Database without any practical search function. Goodbye for now… Marreromarco (talk) 22:34, 28 November 2021 (UTC)

Hello all,
I largely agree with Marreromarco. We cannot aim for the simple Wikimedia-centered objective to fill major Western Wiktionaries plus Wikimedia Commons. Wikipedia has grown as a healthy community because articles' contributors were also article consumers, offering a gentle pay-back.
For the general public as contacted by Marreromarco, LinguaLibre has no interest, no pay-back : a speaker hardly can browse its own audios. Neither the speaker themself, nor their friends can use LinguaLibre and the recorded words the following days, weeks, months. Perhaps years before some external apps reuse those audios.
LinguaLibre mission is also to record all languages. LinguaLibre therefore has the core strategic objective to look for diversity, to expand toward true minorities and marginalized communities, where 95% of the linguistic riches reside. Those local communities such as Atikamekw (15,000 speaker), Suruí (2,000), Taiwanese minorities (between 50 and 20,000 speakers), explicitly inquired for e-learning capabilities. They love their dying languages and are themselves looking for help, for services which allows their community members to rejuvenate their language. The service we currently provide back to them are very close to null : "Come contribute your language on LinguaLibre, so we put your voice recordings on [our] Commons and [our] Wiktionaries !". We cannot lead an outreach campaign toward such minorities, ask non-wikimedians and marginalized communities to contribute their voices and time without true services back. Same for non-wikimedian netizens interested in larger languages.
The current state of affair of a Wikimedia service turned inward is ok if we do have plans drafted, moving, and a will to provide them better services in the near future, starting with elegant browsing experience and minimal e-learning possibilities. We cannot both keep providing a wikimedians-only service AND want to record all world languages. These two aims are mutually exclusive.
If the former is preferred, our project's definition, public, and our mission should be redefined and displayed honestly. Yug (talk) 11:20, 29 November 2021 (UTC)