May 18, 2022

“Building the Bots that Keep Wikipedia Fresh”

From Government Computing News:

Researchers at Stevens Institute of Technology classified the Wikipedia bots into nine roles and 25 associated functions with the goal of understanding what bots do now and what they might do in the future. Jeffrey Nickerson, professor and associate dean of research at Stevens’ School of Business, and an author of “The Roles Bots Play in Wikipedia,” published in November 2019, likened the classification to the way humans talk about occupations and professions, the skills required to do them and the tasks that must be performed.


Another feature of the Wikipedia bots is how they work with human editors. Often, editors create a bot to automate some of their editing processes, Nickerson said. Once they build it, they set it loose and check on it periodically. That frees the editors to do the work that most interests them, but they also become bot maintainers.

See Also: Research Article: “The Roles Bots Play in Wikipedia” (November 24, 2019)

See Also: MIT Researchers Develop an Automated System that Can Rewrite Outdated Sentences in Wikipedia Articles (February 13, 2020)

About Gary Price

Gary Price ( is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.