Community digest: Conversations with Wikimedia women; Arabic Wikinews and Global Voices collaboration; news in brief

Photo by Victor Grigas, CC BY-SA 3.0.

In an effort to celebrate Women’s History Month, and commemorate International Women’s Day, the Wikimedia Foundation’s Community Engagement department is hosting a series of conversations about women in the Wikimedia movement.

We’d like to take this opportunity to highlight women’s roles in the many spheres of the movement they occupy, to learn what challenges they face, and how they are thriving in their work.

The discussions will address women’s insights in three different spheres: Women in Wikimedia programs, Women in Wikimedia technical spaces, and Women in Wikimedia leadership.

Invited community members will be presenting at these three events, and everyone from across the movement is invited to participate in these discussions, that will be streamed on YouTube as follows:

The goal of these discussions is not only to inform our community about women’s roles in this movement, but to better understand the challenges and inequalities that they may encounter. The gender gap in the Wikimedia movement is a known and documented issue. Conducting surveys and holding discussions with female contributors, among other tools, help us understand the nuances behind these issues.

The discussions can also help raise the awareness about the amazing women currently contributing to the movement in different capacities.

The latest movement-wide survey reveals that while women constitute less than 15 percent of the total contributors, the gap is smaller by 10% when it comes to leadership roles in affiliate groups and program coordination. Having a better understanding of human experiences is invaluable for our work towards more diverse Wikimedia projects where we can replicate these success stories in different communities.

María Cruz, Communications and Outreach Manager, Community Engagement


Announcing a collaboration between Wikinews and Global Voices Lingua

We are happy to announce a collaboration between the Arabic Wikinews community and Global Voices Lingua to support Arabic digital content.

Global Voices Lingua is a project managed by a global volunteer community that works on translating what our editors and writers report in 167 countries. This is done in our entirely virtual non-profit newsroom, as well as working on translating Global Voices projects; Advox, Rising Voices and NewsFrames.

Wikinews is a Wikimedia project that relies on a community of volunteers to present reliable, unbiased, and relevant news. The project started in 2004, and as of February it hosted 4,076 Arabic news posts, making it the twelfth largest Wikinews.

The idea of this collaboration started during WikiArabia 2017, the annual meetup of the Arabic Wikimedia community, in Cairo.

Since the beginning of this collaboration, the ranking of Arabic Wikinews went up to the 10th place, thanks to importing 3682 Arabic Lingua posts via جار الله [Jarallah]’s bot.

Adding an additional copy in Wikinews will provide a new life to the posts, based on the open editing nature of Wikinews. Arabic Lingua content will be available on Wikimedia platforms offline via ZIM file format, viewable in Kiwix.

Arabic Lingua editors and contributors will be supporting the Arabic content on Wikipedia. We are working on extending this collaboration to other languages!

Mohamed ElGohary, Global Voices Lingua Manager.

This post originally appeared on Global Voices’ blog, where it is licensed under CC BY 3.0. It has been edited for publication on the Wikimedia blog.


In brief

Steward election results announced: Stewards are users with complete access to the wiki interface on all public Wikimedia wikis, including the ability to change any and all user rights and groups. New stewards are regularly elected by the global Wikimedia community and the elections are organized by existing stewards and run for roughly three weeks. On 28 February, five newly elected stewards were announced from a diverse group of Wikimedians around the world. More information on Wikimedia-l.

Global preferences available for testing: The GlobalPreferences extension allows user preferences to be set for all wikis in a wiki farm. This means that users can change their preferences for all linked wikis without having to visit each in turn. Local exceptions can be set for individual wikis. The extension is now ready for testing on the English Wikipedia, the German Wiktionary and the Hebrew Wikipedia before making it available in all wikis. The GlobalPreferences extension is one of the items from the 2016 community wishlist. More on how to test the beta edition is on Wikimedia-l.

Creative Commons invites Wikimedians to attend their annual global summit: The annual Global Summit brings together an international community of leading technologists, legal experts, academics, activists, and community members who work to promote the power of open and future of the Commons worldwide. Planned Wikimedia-related events include a keynote by Katherine Maher, the Wikimedia Foundation’s executive director, in addition to several discussions and sessions on how Wikimedia and Creative Commons work together. Wikimedians are invited to participate and registration is now open.

Wikidata hits 50 million (but not really): On 23 February, the Wikidata’s Q50000000 was created—an item page about about El Refugio, a village in the Mexican state of Durango, in the municipality of Mapimí. Perhaps strangely, though, this does not mean that Wikidata now has 50 million items. Wikimedian Denny Vrandečić wrote on Facebook that it is “merely” just a number, and that “there are about 45 [m]illion items currently.”

Swedish embassies host Wikipedia editathons on the World Women’s Day: On 8 March, World Women’s Day, the Swedish embassies in several cities around the world will host and support Wikipedia editing workshops that will focus on increasing the gender diversity in Wikipedia’s content. The event locations include Israel, Egypt, Indonesia, Colombia, and more.

Samir Elsharbaty, Writer, Communications
Wikimedia Foundation



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