HRWiki talk:Spoken Articles

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Please note that this project has been permanently abandoned. Any related discussion may take place here.

Contents

[edit] Problematic

Hey there. I notice this article on Lapper's page and I read the wikiproject thing too. I've got a couple of questions and concerns. I R F 14:07, 5 January 2007 (UTC)

So what's the consensous for spoken articles at the moment? So good or no good? I don't think it's a good idea to leave it in limbo. Shwoo 04:31, 10 January 2007 (UTC)

[edit] Scope

According to this page, there 1586 pages containing legit content. That is a huge undertaking. Do we realize how many takes just one article would require? I R F 14:07, 5 January 2007 (UTC)

Not everything needs to be recorded (for example, I don't see the point in recording transcripts, which comprise a huge part of a lot of articles). If we do go forward with this, featured articles and other high-visibility articles would be a good place to start. Trey56 14:33, 5 January 2007 (UTC)
A good idea. Transcripts are probably not the best to record right now, if ever. Featured articles may be a good place to begin. — Lapper (talk) 15:31, 5 January 2007 (UTC)

[edit] Dynamic

This isn't like making the bible on tape every article changes so quick it makes my head spin. Are we going to record every time an edit or addition is made to a page? I R F 14:07, 5 January 2007 (UTC)

Definitely not, for small changes. Also, it's rare for an important page to change dramatically. Once a representative version of an article is recorded, it wouldn't need to be updated for some time. Trey56 14:33, 5 January 2007 (UTC)

[edit] Professionalism

I seriously doubt that we have any professional voice actors in our midst. If it is done less than great, if will make the whole wiki seem less profession / credible. Almost youtube'ish. I R F 14:07, 5 January 2007 (UTC)

This is a valid concern, and for this reason I personally don't plan to record many. I do think we have some good readers (for example, Shwoo), but it's tricky to evaluate people and say "You're good enough to record one" and "You're not". Trey56 14:21, 5 January 2007 (UTC)
Perhaps if a recording is deemed less than acceptable, it can be redone. Everyone recording needs to make sure they annunciate clearly, splice cuts cleanly, and record according to Wikipedia standards. — Lapper (talk) 15:31, 5 January 2007 (UTC)

[edit] Need?

Why do this. Text readers are readily available. My collegue Adam is blind and he has a screen reader that reads his computer out loud and does so quite well. In fact that is one of the reasons why pages should adhere to xhtml 1.0 strict in matters like using <em></em> instead of <i></i> beacuase of how the browser would read it. I R F 14:07, 5 January 2007 (UTC)

I concur with IRFs last point. What are we trying to accomplish with this project? The majority of people who would need to use this feature have other ways to accomplish the assumed goal, and are more likely to use those ways rather than a link at the bottom of a page. But the question at hand for me is: What are we trying to accomplish with this project? - ISTC 14:19, 5 January 2007 (UTC)
Yeah, this is a very good point. Since it seems unlikely that many disabled people would actually be benefited from this, the main reason to do it is for the enjoyment of the people recording and anyone who wants to listen. But this purpose may very well be outweighed by the effort and space concerns. Trey56 14:33, 5 January 2007 (UTC)
According to Spoken Wikipedia, the benefited would include the reading impaired, the English impaired, as well as the visually impaired. Of course it's "fun" to record articles, but the benefits are not nonexistant. — Lapper (talk) 15:31, 5 January 2007 (UTC)
But that is reinventing the wheel. There are already free text readers for that very purpose. I R F 15:33, 5 January 2007 (UTC)
Another point made on that page is, "Visually-impaired users can use screen readers, of course, but with current technology, they may not be as accurate as a human vocal performance. " Perhaps you should bring it up at #wikipedia or on their WikiProject talk page to get more informed opinions. — Lapper (talk) 15:36, 5 January 2007 (UTC)
Bah, I don't care what 'kepdia does. They can do their own thing. But I do know this. I am currently taking online classes at University of Phoenix and since all my textbooks are in pdf form, I have a text reader read them....So I'm learning while I doing laundry. I used something like Natural Reader and although not perfect, it sounded quite human like (as opposed to wouldn't you prefer a nice game of chess). I R F 16:25, 5 January 2007 (UTC)
I haven't had the pleasure of a reader that doesn't stumble over strange words, names, abbreviations, etc. You can write rules to it, of course, but it would still play as "Wouldn't you preFER a NIce game OF chESS?" — Lapper (talk) 16:29, 5 January 2007 (UTC)

I don't think this project is where we need to be focusing our efforts right now. We should instead focus on improving the overall quality of our non-toon articles, which currently are not at a level of professionalism that would warrant having them recorded. — It's dot com 16:34, 5 January 2007 (UTC)

Yes, I did notice that when I was reading Stinkoman out loud some of both the sentences and organization were awkward. I entirely agree that effort should go first to polishing the articles, and this certainly should happen before they're recorded. As a side note, reading articles aloud (no recording necessary) proves to be a good litmus test for identifying what needs to be improved. Trey56 16:53, 5 January 2007 (UTC)
I agree here, I think some of our articles could go through some significant improvement. -- Tom 17:23, 5 January 2007 (UTC)
So what we basically need here is a rating system, that can be compared to Wikipedia's "Good Article" rating. Some, non featured articles, will be evaluated and be put on a list of good pages to have a spoken version of. The start of this project, in my opinion is to clear out the already featured articles for grammar, structure and other parameters. Any article tagged as "good" by a committee can be spoken. Elcool (talk)(contribs) 17:32, 5 January 2007 (UTC)
After a brief discussion, it's come to my attention that this project is probably superfluous. As Dot com mentioned, our articles (particularly our FAs) are definitely not to the standard we would like them to be. Elcool and I joint-propose to make it a point to increase the exclusivity of the status of Featured Article, as "interesting" articles probably shouldn't be the line we draw. On a related note, why do we have the clause regarding "not compromising previous work" if the previous work has not been identified on a basis of excellence? — Lapper (talk) 21:15, 5 January 2007 (UTC)
Lapper: I hate that no-compromise thing. To some people, it basically means "YOU NO EDIT PAGE! IF YOU DO YOU GET A SLAP ON THE WRIST!" Unfortunately, if you look through Talk:Cold One, you'll see an interesting conversation about an anomaly someone spotted. When I changed it, they alerted me that the article was featured and currently on the main page. I reverted it. Basically, that message scared me into siding with the current (at the time) version, which was incorrect. I now see my error. IRF: I personally like your idea. Now, if a page is edited, would the test reader reflect that? Because, if so, I think it would be much easier to just get a text reader of some sort so people can hear the new versions, not the ones from four months ago. Dot com, Lapper, and Elcool: I agree, the articles are not up to the standard they need to be. Bluebry 17:37, 18 March 2007 (UTC)
For that last thing, we're working on that. -Brightstar Shiner 17:47, 18 March 2007 (UTC)

[edit] Space/bandwidth

Right now, typical file sizes are on the order of 1MB. If few people are actually going to use this, is it worth the vast amount of memory it would consume? Trey56 14:21, 5 January 2007 (UTC)

I believe either It's dot com or Tom would not hesitate to let us know if the project grows so vast that we become stretched for server space. I don't think it's an issue that needs to be immediately addressed. — Lapper (talk) 15:31, 5 January 2007 (UTC)
I disagree, now before we get to far into this project is the best (well before we started would have been better, but that's not an option now) time for this type of issue to be discussed, it ties back into what articles are we going do this for? How many of them are there? Why do it for some but not for others if our purpose is to help those visually impared and not just to hear ourselves talk (figuatively and litterally), would they be less interested in the lists, or in the explanations and references? These issues all will end up determining how much space this project will take up, and thusly what the value/expense is of doing such a project. We are not a corporation with donors paying specifically for the space of such a project, so we as a community need to decide if this is really a valuable addition to the wiki, or if its not the best use of our resources (server space, time, money, etc.) - ISTC 15:54, 5 January 2007 (UTC)
In respective answer to your questions, (1) Presumably only featured, high-traffic, and articles of significance. (2) There are many. Possibly in the low/mid hundreds. (3) Presumably we will do it for all articles, but we have to start somewhere, and it's not going to be on running gags pages, etc. It would be best to do long-standing articles rather than lists. In addition, I believe you're going to far with this "expense" thing. As the aphorism goes, "Wiki is not paper", and although it may be taking up space, I believe it is the responsibility of those who can access such server information to inform us if it's gone too far. As for "if it's a valuable addition", such a discussion is taking place right now. There seem to be opinions that it's "pointless", but if it is indeed, you needn't contribute. This project will not hinder your ability to go right along editing pages. — Lapper (talk) 16:02, 5 January 2007 (UTC)
It is not my intention to say this is pointless, but rather an attempt at gathering information on something going on with something I care about. To say that those with concerns about it should just "stand down" and go about editing, I would say that this is simular to the creation of a page that someone may find "pointless" and wish to delete: Just because someone finds something interesting, or wishes to add it to the wiki, does not mean that it would be what's "best" for the community and thus there should be opportunity for all involved to express their concerns and discuss the subject. Otherwise the argument that I percieve you to be making would constitute anyone being able to add any page just as long as it could somehow be linked to H*R or the Wiki, but I somehow don't believe that is what you propose. - ISTC 16:14, 5 January 2007 (UTC)
You're correct, of course. My choice of wording was sub-standard. What I meant to get across was that in a similar instance, I, myself, did not fully approve of having a subtitles project, but the fact that the community approved although I may not have did not make me attack the project, but rather go about my way without contributing. What you said especially emphasizes that my wording was wrong due to my being a fervent deletionist and would most certainly not ignore a non-satisfactory page. What are your further concerns? — Lapper (talk) 16:19, 5 January 2007 (UTC)
I'm basically just expressing the same concerns as Trey and IRF, especially relating to bandwidth and server constraints. In addition I'd like for us to have a procedure in place before we started, because I honestly don't see a need as such with this wiki for such a program, but I'm ok with it existing if everything is in place for all to see and there is a firm plan of action for how, why, what, when, etc. As of right now I don't see a defined project, and as such I see it being ripe for rife discord and the potential for lots of reverts of substandard recordings, and other potential issues. - ISTC 16:40, 5 January 2007 (UTC) (please see this discussion for good example of aforementioned discored) :-)

I'm not sure whether space would be an issue, but I'm almost certain that bandwidth is an issue. Every 1 MB file that gets uploaded and then repeatedly downloaded eventually starts to add up to real dollars and cents that we have to pay. — It's dot com 16:39, 5 January 2007 (UTC)

[edit] Question

  • I have a really crisp and clear microphone, and I want to help out, alas, I don't know how to convert it to .ogg or what media player supports that type of extension. Can someone help? TheYellowDart(t/c)
As noted by Dot com in several topics above, this project is on hiatus until we get our current articles and FA standards up to par. If and when this project becomes frontmost in importance again, it'd be great to have you contribute. P.S. VLCLapper (talk) 00:50, 24 January 2007 (UTC)
Yeah, I agree with Lapper. I was going to say that Audacity is the audio recording and editing program most often used by wiki-types. I wouldn't go too crazy with recording articles, though...I think there are some pretty good reasons listed above for not pursuing this project right now (most importantly, we need to improve our articles first, plus bandwidth concerns). Trey56 00:52, 24 January 2007 (UTC)
Thanks Lapper. I'll just have to wait it out. Oh, and thanks for telling me which media player supports it. It's appreciated a lot. Your friend and never was your enemy, TheYellowDart(t/c)
After having the pleasure of hearing Lapper read Homestar Runner (Flash Cartoon), I thought I'd join in on this project once it starts up again. I don't have a microphone, but I can get one. I do, however, have an .ogg player, acting and singing experience, and a good reading voice. So once we get back to this, count me in! -Brightstar Shiner 16:31, 6 February 2007 (UTC)

[edit] Let's Talk About This Again

I'm not happy that this page is in limbo right now. Most people are saying that we're going to get back to Spoken Articles eventually, but when is that? There are many overlying problems with this project to deal with (memory, sound quality, figuring out how to actually do it right) and we're not even sure what the goal of this page is. I'm here to jumpstart this disscussion again and figure out if the wiki should have spoken articles or not. It's no use to just leave the page lying here to gather dust. -Brightstar Shiner 21:21, 3 March 2007 (UTC)

Yeah, guys, c'mon. Let's be bold and start this up again. I'm willing. --TheYellowDart(t/c) 21:49, 11 March 2007 (UTC)
I don't think the issue is that no one here has the initiative. The issue is that we haven't brought the majority of our articles up to par. — Lapper (talk) 22:04, 11 March 2007 (UTC)
Yes. If we wanted to start this up again, we would, at the very least, need to have a way to choose some of our finest articles to be recorded. Basically, articles that would be worthy of being published if there were any publications that cared about cartoons with dumb animal characters as much as we do. So, have a look around, find an article that needs improvement, and improve it! Heimstern Läufer 22:08, 11 March 2007 (UTC)
We could first record "Homestar Runner" or "Strong Bad". Those don't look half bad. All right, I'm taking your advice and I'm going to fix up some articles. BTW, Lapper, excellent job with the Spoken Article about Homestar Runner (body of work). Just sayin' ;-) --TheYellowDart(t/c) 22:12, 11 March 2007 (UTC)
{replying to Lapper after edit conflict, but also taking into account Heinstern's post} Maybe we should make a list of all the articles we want spoken and tag the ones that need cleanup. Then we'll go in there and start fixing them all. But what I think is the problem is that no one's sure whether this project is worth it or not, so they're not cleaning up the articles, and that's why Spoken Articles isn't going anywhere. -Brightstar Shiner 22:13, 11 March 2007 (UTC)
I can volunteer for listing and cleaning pages, but not recording since I don't have a mic. — SamSF%20sig.jpgFisher (Come in, Lambert.) 18:18, 11 March 2007
Featured Articles would be a good place to start. Not all of them have to be recorded, but we can pick and choose the ones we want to use. -Brightstar Shiner 22:20, 11 March 2007 (UTC)
I'll definably do so recordings. The Floppy Disk Container page is huge, and I think I could do that. --TotalSpaceshipGirl3 22:20, 11 March 2007 (UTC)
I was about to propose starting with Character pages. But your idea definitely deserves credit. — SamSF%20sig.jpgFisher (Come in, Lambert.) 18:22, 11 March 2007

Folks, please remember why the discussion about this project stopped:

I'm not sure whether space would be an issue, but I'm almost certain that bandwidth is an issue. Every 1 MB file that gets uploaded and then repeatedly downloaded eventually starts to add up to real dollars and cents that we have to pay. — It's dot com 16:39, 5 January 2007 (UTC)

We need to solve this issue before we can really start the project. Loafing 22:25, 11 March 2007 (UTC)

There's always the possibility of an outside host. --TotalSpaceshipGirl3 22:26, 11 March 2007 (UTC)
Aha! I knew it too good to be true! Here we were, getting all excited, and bam! Donations, anyone? I'm considering one. --TheYellowDart(t/c) 22:28, 11 March 2007 (UTC)
I was about to say the same thing: the luxury of having spoken articles isn't worth the bandwidth and subsequent monetary implications. However, we could definitely stand to improve our HRWiki:Featured articles, in addition to upcoming candidates in HRWiki:Featured Article Selection. Featured articles are the most central to the Homestar Runner body of work, and I think they should be our best-written ones too. Trey56 22:28, 11 March 2007 (UTC)
So is the suggestion now that we only record our Featured articles? That still seems reasonable to me. — SamSF%20sig.jpgFisher (Come in, Lambert.) 18:31, 11 March 2007
Very well said, Trey. In that case, I'm back to work enhancing articles. The Secrets That I Keep I done was fun! Bye. --TheYellowDart(t/c) 22:31, 11 March 2007 (UTC)
Huh? What just happened? Did this project just stop for eternity? I was just getting finished with the list we needed for which articles to record and this happens? I don't see why we can't find another way to do this without putting pressure on the server. As you may well know, this is exactly how Spoken Articles stopped the first time. -Brightstar Shiner 22:41, 11 March 2007 (UTC)
It hasn't stopped. I'm out enhancing articles right now. So far I got two. Like I said, donations, donations! --TheYellowDart(t/c) 22:49, 11 March 2007 (UTC)

Ahem. I knew that... And at long last, here is... the list:

What to record:
  • Everything besides the transcript on toons (maybe)
  • Most Featured Articles that aren’t just big lists
What not to record:
  • Small, unimportant characters/items that only appeared once or twice
  • User pages
  • Talk pages
I know it's not incredibly specific, but it's ten minutes' work. -Brightstar Shiner 22:58, 11 March 2007 (UTC)
There's no way we can abandon this project after so many Edit Conflicts! ;) I will donate what I can, though I'm not sure how much that will be. I'll also start improving the Featured Articles from this year (there are only 17 so far, and the longer we wait, the more work will need to be done). Do you accept credit card donations? — SamSF%20sig.jpgFisher (Come in, Lambert.) 18:59, 11 March 2007
Umm... doesn't Joey need to update the server? He hasn't been around lately and I don't know if he even wants to just for this project. As for the credit cards, the donations are available in PayPal and mail only, by the looks of it. -Brightstar Shiner 23:06, 11 March 2007 (UTC)
You can use a credit card together with PayPal. I think it is a very bad idea to use any server other than our own for anything related to the wiki. Even if there were no server issues, I still wouldn't think this project is worth our time and effort. Overall, our articles still need a lot of improvement before they would be in a recordable state. Anything that does get recorded would be too-quickly outdated. Most important, however, is that there's no demand for this. When we saw how cool Strong Bad Email blockquotes would be, it was a matter of minutes before they were all implemented once the final decision was made. When it was apparent how useful it would be to have subtitles, they practically sprang up overnight. On the other hand, I think the fact that we've discussed spoken articles for over a year with no real progress means that we don't really need them. — It's dot com 01:40, 12 March 2007 (UTC)
To clarify, it's actually been about 7 months since the initial proposal, and we've been talking about it for about three of those seven. I'm not sure who proposed donating, but if this is ever going to be practical, enough money has to be made *past* the next payment to constitute upgrading. And that's a significant amount of money; money which probably isn't going to end up being donated. In response to Dot com, just because we're thinking it through for a long time doesn't mean it's not as worthwhile as, say, the Blockquotes. In closing, I'd just like to thank everyone who commented on my amazingly "handsome voice". You're all too kind. — Lapper (talk) 02:14, 12 March 2007 (UTC)
Though I'm really not sure why anyone would want this, thats not really important. What I can do is suggest - why not let people record their readings and throw them on YouTube? They could be webcam vids of the reader, ioor That wouldn't cost anything extra other than 50 or 60 characters/page to link to the appropriate page. Perhaps they could all be uploaded by one user to YouTube so they could be indexed that way on YouTube as well. -JamesDean 21:24, 2 April 2007 (UTC)
YouTube might be interesting, but some people's parents (like mine) wouldn't be very happy having their child on a webcam on a site where a gazillion people go daily. Older people might be able to do it, or we could just have it be a sound recording, but this whole Spoken Article premise has pretty much been dropped in favor of this, which grew out of this discussion. -Brightstar Shiner 22:06, 2 April 2007 (UTC)

[edit] Legality Issues

Hello, I just noticed that some spoken articles already exist. As such I wanted to bring up the important issue of media Licensing. In most of this media, the current license indicating that these are sample sound clips is inadequate. These are not sample sound clips but rather complete original works. I believe that these should be all licensed under the same Creative Commons Deed that all articles in this wiki abide to. In order for that to happen, the author of each individual recording needs to release the recording into the public domain. If the recording was made by a 3rd party, that third party must release the recording in the public domain. How this can be accomplished I am not sure of. It's possible that registered users who made the recordings themselves might be able to release the recordings online, however I do not know about any 3rd parties involved (if any). Finally, I don't know if we have the appropriate templates to present the correct information. I know wikipedia handles all of this, so perhaps someone knows more about this. --Stux 04:44, 18 March 2007 (UTC)

[edit] Age limit?

Shouldn't we have an age limit of around 13 for recording articles? Or no? --Mario2.PNG Super Martyo boing! 23:06, 13 April 2007 (UTC)

Anybody out there? --Mario2.PNG Super Martyo boing! 17:25, 15 April 2007 (UTC)
You do realize that this project was terminated, no? — Lapper (talk) 17:27, 15 April 2007 (UTC)
No, I know that. Just when we get back to it... --Mario2.PNG Super Martyo boing! 17:28, 15 April 2007 (UTC)
I'm afraid you don't understand. The majority of the community has determined that this is a waste of time, space, and bandwidth. The project has been terminated. — Lapper (talk) 17:32, 15 April 2007 (UTC)
Oh, so it was COMPLETLY terminated. K. --Mario2.PNG Super Martyo boing! 17:32, 15 April 2007 (UTC)
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